Wednesday September 22, 2021

Making sacrifices

August 01, 2020

As we mark Eidul Azha today, it is a time to think of just how much has changed and will change in the coming days and months. A festival devoted to the spirit of sacrifice must indeed give us pause to think about what the Covid-19 pandemic has brought in its wake – and why it has struck the world the way it has. We should be thinking of how we can all, as individuals, groups and communities, sacrifice to improve the situation of the 220 million people who now form our rapidly growing nation. Not only that, as people of a world that is facing similar challenges and nightmares, we must see what we can sacrifice easily for the good of the world at large. For now, we must pray for peace and health for everyone. For a world that can meet each other without fear of getting ill and dying. For a world where travel is possible. And where children can go to school without worry, or meet their grandparents openly.

Most of all, Eidul Azha is a time when we should be thinking not only of our own families, but also of others who may live less privileged lives. This is especially important today when the pandemic has struck people's livelihoods in a cruel manner. The spirit of the occasion is all about compassion and sharing. There is unfortunately too little of this in our deeply segmented world. Divides need to be bridged and a more even space created in which all can share. We must hope the groundwork that can make this possible can be laid down step by step. Let's hope this Eid is more than just rituals, and that people go beyond the superfluous so that its true meaning can be brought home to everyone in the country and a sense of commonality constructed which links up people everywhere within our own borders, and also those living across them in the region as a whole and in other parts of the world. To create a better world, we must hope for a better system – which serves all of humanity and not just the one percent of it.