November 15, 2012

Another New Year; Another new Beginning

Dear Friends, 
Let me wish you a very happy Islamic New Year. In this 1434th year, may Almighty Allah's Bountiful Blessings continue to be upon each one of us His creations. May Maldives see a wonderful year ahead and begin a process of healing that will pervade every nook and corner of our country. Life is short, and in this brief episode we should not but give the best we can to our fellow brothers and sisters, rather than take. If we stop to reflect even for a little while, our reflection would reveal that the anger we have in our society does not have to be so. But then, only we ourselves can ultimately be the salve and solution.  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's  ' Psalm of Life' depicts the path to an inspiring mindset. Those who were in school with me in Trinity College, Kandy, Sri Lanka,  would remember this from our Grade 6 English class:

TELL me not, in mournful numbers, 
  Life is but an empty dream!— 
For the soul is dead that slumbers, 
  And things are not what they seem. 
Life is real! Life is earnest!         
  And the grave is not its goal; 
Dust thou art, to dust returnest, 
  Was not spoken of the soul. 
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow, 
  Is our destined end or way;  
But to act, that each to-morrow 
  Find us farther than to-day. 
Art is long, and Time is fleeting, 
  And our hearts, though stout and brave, 
Still, like muffled drums, are beating  
  Funeral marches to the grave. 
In the world's broad field of battle, 
  In the bivouac of Life, 
Be not like dumb, driven cattle! 
  Be a hero in the strife!  
Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant! 
  Let the dead Past bury its dead! 
Act,—act in the living Present! 
  Heart within, and God o'erhead! 
Lives of great men all remind us
  We can make our lives sublime, 
And, departing, leave behind us 
  Footprints on the sands of time; 
Footprints, that perhaps another, 
  Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother, 
  Seeing, shall take heart again. 
Let us, then, be up and doing, 
  With a heart for any fate; 
Still achieving, still pursuing,  
  Learn to labor and to wait.

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