Long time back, when I was merely 9 years old, studying in fourth standard, my teacher asked me to write an essay on the dowry system. I didn’t know the meaning of Dowry System. So I copied from an essay book, without understanding any meaning. But, some text remained somewhere in the back of my mind. I went home and recollected everything I remembered. Then, I asked my mother, “How much did you bring in dowry?” “500 rupees”, she said. At the time of my mother’s marriage, this amount must be more than one full year’s income of my maternal grandfather who was the sole earning member of the family.
Me: “This is so bad.”
Mother: “I don’t think so.”
Me: “Why should your father give so much of his hard-earned money in the occasion of your marriage?”
Mother: “No worries. I had two brothers. So my family recovered that money and even received more than that from the families of both my sisters-in-law.”
Me: “This is disastrous.”
Though I had copied the essay from the book, I had decided that I would never copy this norm from the society.
20 years have passed. I am yet to convince my family that it is really disastrous. I have realized that even though it is a very positive change, it’s very difficult to bring that in the already grown-ups. Every time, I get an occasion to discuss on the topic, I simply say, “I wish your teacher had asked you to write an essay on Dowry System in your primary school.”
Essay is merely one example; many things that happen in our childhood do have a lasting impression on us. The movies that we watch, the stage shows, the rituals, the happenings in our neighbourhood, and all that we see for the first time in life can hardly be forgotten. So it’s very important for us to experience that in a correct manner so that it can bring a very positive change and help us build a very effective character. My point is, right experience builds effective character, effective character builds wonderful citizens, and wonderful citizens build a wonderful nation. And for this purpose, the necessity is to sow the seeds of righteousness right from the beginning. Because, it almost takes a generation!