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Old Age Home

Monday August 23 2004 10:29 IST

By Karmayogi

Till the war, most of us lived as joint families. Who will take care of the aged was no question. It was a matter of affectionate privilege to tend the aged that were sick. Not to do so was a sacrilege. The times are changing. Life is demanding. One is not able to take care of one’s child, as both parents are employed. Even when the children are somewhat grown up, every morning for all members to go out to office and school is a battlefield. It is a war of nerves. Too few are trying to accomplish too much. The result is, through violent tension, the personality develops. Others break down. Parents at home are a help, often a hindrance. Even in India, Old Age Homes are emerging and proving to be a relief in many cases. In other cases, it is the stamp of their utter failure.

Old Age Home is a permanent fixture in the West. For them, money is not a problem, loneliness is. A greater problem in old age that has no affectionate occupation is bitter memories of the past. Past failures haunt, now hurt more than in the past. Even past accomplishments now appear to be no success. What worries age is the lack of energy. When energy sags, the view of the world changes for the worse. God has given extended life. Maybe it is the medicine or the doctor, but it is no longer pleasant for some, maybe for many. Those who take to the reciting of devotional songs largely escape from this barbaric horror. Such people come to an atmosphere of Spiritual Peace. At once they feel the relief. Peace dissolves the worry, the frustration, the nagging memory that wells up from below. Indian soil carries that Peace. Indians are not fully aware of it till they leave the shore. Even then, when they set foot in the land of plenty, many people feel an elation and elevation they have never felt. The sight of Prosperity is so gratifying that they fail to notice the emptiness of life there. Only those who have lived in a spiritual atmosphere feel the dryness of life in other nations.

A foreigner is contemplating building resorts in India in chosen places where Peace is pronounced so that some of his friends may enjoy it for some months every year. It suddenly struck him what a boon it would be for the aged in the West to visit here and live in the Spiritual Peace. So he thought of Old Age Homes in India for the aged Westerners. The idea possessed him ultimately. Whatever its commercial possibility or cultural desirability, it is true that Spiritual Peace dissolves human misery, not only in old age but in all ages. If one seeks it consciously, Spiritual Peace can transform depression into elation. The spiritual atmosphere of India has the innate power to offer a new life of freshness to the aged. It is India’s forte.
 
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