Remember, Express and Share Happiness
As a child, I always looked forward to especially Independence day and Rakshabandhan for kite-flying. When I was a child, the home of my grandma was the choicest spots for kite-flying. All of my cousins , relatives and friends from the neighbourhood would gather on Grandma’s home terrace and blitz the sky with myriad iridescent colours.Even now, with childhood sewn neatly into the tapestry of my past, the month of august evoke that same longing because during this time the festival season starts.All of us used to gather at the terrace with the colourful and beautiful kites along with their manja (nylon kite thread) and chhakri. Our elders used to guide us about how to make kite reach new heights. As soon as kite reached the new heights we all felt very excited.
Once airborne, it was a challenge to see whose kite could climb the highest and stay aloft the longest. For those less fortunate, the challenge was simply to get off the ground.For others though, the launch, usually a massive one in a sudden gust of wind, brought immediate joy. Our elders used to teach us that how to fly i.e. apply pressure to soar higher; slacken the line to float aimlessly or sink. Only through constant pressure could we soar; without it we only maintained altitude, or even worse, we sank.The joy of kite-flying was invariably delayed, however, by the necessity of untangling miles of string that had become tangled by neglect, tangled by impatience, or tangled by the very winds that we so desperately needed and had for so long eagerly anticipated. The winds were tricky. Like so many other powerful forces we would later know in life, they possessed the power both to bless and destroy.
The lessons of kite-flying are simple, yet profound. They are lessons that were taught without my realization until life’s experiences connected them with the necessary analogies. Kite-flying teaches that freedom must be cherished but also respected. It must be tethered securely to the control line of self-discipline. Otherwise, its benefactors will never appreciate its power both to incarcerate and liberate. Kite-flying also teaches that if we expect to soar higher in life, we must remember that constant pressure tempers us and makes us stronger through adversity and challenge. Therefore, we must be willing to welcome or at least embrace a certain measure of risk and change.
Kite-flying also teaches the necessity of slackening the line from time to time. If we never rest; if we never take time to reflect or renew; if we never release our firm, controlling grasp on life, we will never be able to let out more line, and consequently, we will never have the additional string necessary to climb. Unfortunately, kite-flying always involves episodes of kite-crashing, and those intermittent failures teach us how to accept defeat with grace, neither fearing nor fleeing from failure, but instead accepting and embracing it as an inherent component of life. And finally, kite-flying teaches that idealism must be strung to reason if anything useful is ever to come of it; otherwise, the impracticality of our imaginings will get caught in the branches and flutter forever, of no value to anyone. The winds of Spring can keep us young as we are driven ever higher by the sudden gusts and pressures of kite-flying. And, hopefully, because of the skills developed over years of practice, when the time comes for us to put our kites away forever, they will resist and cling to the winds of Spring, having to be dragged kicking and screaming from the sky.
* Inspired from: http://davidputnammedia.com