The moniker of "Crane Bedi" that I got during my stint with Delhi Traffic Police forms the essence of this blog. A crane clears the way and makes pathways. This is where I express my thoughts and share my experiences and concerns for a better world.
Sunday, September 11, 2016
Lessons to girls for doing well in journey called life
How does one feel seeing over 2,000
cute, round, black-haired heads with curious eyes, all in the age group of 16
to 20, sitting cross-legged and you have the task to address them?
Truly electrified, responsible and
caring — that is how I felt when I was in front of an audience of the girl
students at Stella Maris College, Chennai. It was an experience that none of us
will probably ever forget.
I decided to prepare them for life
ahead, just like a parent prepares a daughter, provided the daughter is
listening. And these girls with ears and eyes focused on me, were listening.
It was a colossal inspiration and a
responsibility. What do I give them...that they could keep with themselves as
an addition to their toolkit of life skills.
Since I wanted them to be aware,
happy, safe and self-reliant, I gave them the three sets of mantras, in a
manner that they will always remember.First Mantra was the ‘ABCD of
Freedom’. What does freedom mean? It meant ‘Ability’ to flourish. Ability comes
from the appropriate use of opportunities.
This is within ‘Boundaries’ to be
adhered to, based on the one’s own ‘Conscience’, with a sense of ‘Duty’.
I explained how important at this
age was for them to focus on improving their abilities and make the best of
opportunities available. The fact that they were enjoying good health, by
making use of ‘five wonders’ (five senses), they must understand the value of
this gift of nature.
On ‘Boundaries’, I meant
self-imposed regulations or discipline based on their own reflection and sense
of duty, as students and citizens.
I then took them to the second
mantra. It was about the ‘Three Ws’ that can change the world — Women, Weather,
First ‘W’ was they themselves. It
was how they shape their lives and perform. It was in their own hands. The
second ‘W’ was the Web or technology. The use of that too is in their hands.
How well they use it, how much they train themselves in it and make it as a
part of their growth is crucial.
The third ‘W’ is weather, over which
none of us has any control. But we need to be prepared to take on its vagaries
and volunteer as responsible citizens to check the environment degradation.
I then came to the third mantra, of
‘Three Ms’, which, I believe, change the lives of women in particular.
The first ‘M’ being money. I
explained to them that without financial independence, there will be no
empowerment. They must grow up to be self-reliant in all respects. Financial
independence will make them secure substantially.
Second ‘M’ was marriage. I told them
the kind of life partner they choose will make or mar their idea of journey
called life, as an incompatible marriage is stressful and may stop their
growth. But it still is reversible. Marriage is not mandatory.
It is the third ‘M’, the motherhood,
that will change their life forever. Once a child is born, the mother relives
her life. It is not reversible.
Hence they must know what they want,
when they want, and how will they fulfil their responsibilities. What kind of
support system is available for them to nurture their child along with
fulfilling their professional pursuits is important.
In the end I explained to them, all
these mantras demand energy from them.
How will they generate it? There is
no instant recharge as is there for batteries in electronics. They have to have
the skills to recharge.
I made them shut their eyes and go
within. I made them experiment that by looking inside with eyes closed in the
wee hours of the day, they could generate energy to go that extra mile to
I explained to them how I learnt
this art and how without that I would not have been able to serve long hours in
all my demanding assignments. The students practised meditation for 10 minutes
and learnt to tap the inner energy.
I won’t forget this experience. Nor
should those daughters forget the ABCD, the ‘Three Ws’ and the ‘Three Ms’.