Sunday, April 17

... to walk for those who cannot walk

Today was Palm Sunday. It reminds me that I am just one week away from another Easter.  
I was amazed at seeing this small group of Christian pilgrims taking this urban trail to St.Thomas Mount (located far away at Malayatoor). It is a 400 km trail through five districts of Kerala.  Walking gently through the roads, they will take six days to reach their destination.

I am glad to see one of them with a cycle too. All the important provisions have been loaded on to this cycle. That was great! A cycle lover like me quickly found a friend in him! (On the mountains, trekkers use mules and Sherpas to haul their provisions. On the road, I think, cycle is a better idea!) 

Sometimes friends ask me,“Is there life after death?” I think today’s religions all threaten people with these sort of questions.  It is important to ask, Is there LIFE before death?”  If so, “What is the quality of that life?

I believe that if one cannot walk his way to life, then, that life is indeed so very challenged. The gift of walk is a great gift indeed. For each of us, only when we are unable to walk will we learn the real value of it.
It is sad that less and less people walk these days.  However, what amazed me today is the fact that there are people who value walking even in urban environments, ... like the pilgrim brothers I met.

An old attitude to walking: I am grateful to myself and to God for the gift of walking. But there are millions who cannot walk. This reminds me of an old Buddhist attitude to walking: to walk for those who cannot walk. If we can truly walk, talk and live for those who cannot do it, how great the world will be! The physically challenged, the mentally weak, the falsely accused prison inmates kept away from the light of freedom, the sexually abused men, women and children, the animal world which cannot communicate fully to us, … the list goes on and on. They need a little "walk" from us.
Can we walk for them?
Can we talk for them?
 Can we laugh or cry for them ? 

True, all of us have our own forts, our own strong grounds which we seldom share with the world. Today, can we sit in those silent forts and just think of all the underprivileged. Can we tell God about them? Can we walk for those who cannot walk? 

And then the saint in me goes on to ask,"Can I walk for the past, ... and the future ?"

Post Scripts : I write this blog for my Dad. In his youth and manhood , he walked remarkable distance and lands. Today he cannot. At 88 years of age he finds it difficult to walk. Today I walk for him.