Baffled by the title? Let me explain. I was recently watching the 1980’s classic Bollywood movie Khoobsurat and there was this scene where the female protagonist breaks into an impromptu song and urges us to think what if? – What if birds swam in the ocean and the fish flew; what if coffee was available every time we opened a tap and candy and toffees grew on trees; what if the Sun was blue and the Moon was red; what if we slept on a table and ate on a bed…what if, what if, what if…. And that got me thinking! (Now you see the problem with having a vivid imagination?) Well, it got me thinking, what if things weren’t the way they always are in the real world?
But, I wasn’t indulging in as ingenuous thoughts of the lyricist as mentioned in the song (watch here); but something else entirely –
You see, I had just read the morning papers and checked my FB feed; and was raring to have a go at the things that were really annoying; but that is beside the point, I think. And I thought how the world that seemed so hopeless and so lame sometimes, would actually be better if things were different!
Every girl’s birth, for example, would be celebrated. Kanya Pujan would be a merriment and veneration in the real sense! Every girl would have a great upbringing where she and every single girl like her would be able to go to school, which would be very close to her home, would be hygienic and roomy, with huge windows that bring in plenty of light and fresh air, dotted with trees to provide the necessary shade; and oh, they would have toilets in the school too – clean and fresh smelling ones at that!
All the children would have a lovely childhood, playing outdoors, eating homemade snacks, having a gala time with their parents. Children would love to go to school, where they could participate in the learning process and speak their mind and the homework they got would actually be more a help to them, than a headache for their parents!
Children would grow up confident and ready to take on the world with the knowledge they received in school and the fair upbringing they received at home. No one would be worried about choosing a certain stream to study in the University that helped make more money, but rather, be able to read something that gave them the freedom to learn and understand what they really liked!
Mothers won’t be scared to let their children read the newspapers as the only news there would be, would be that of progress and how every country, and collectively the world, makes progress. The only thing people would fight would be environmental degradation and global warming! The atmosphere in the world would be that of peace and harmony. The words hatred and unrest would be unheard of; and people would be one collective community irrespective of their caste, creed or religion. It would be a world where everyone looked out for each other. And the only time any explosives would be used would be when there was a celebration, a festival or when India won a cricket match – and there would be a lot of that!
No girl would be scared to stay out late at night as she would need protection from no one at all. You see, all men would be raised to respect women and co-exist with them in harmony. There won’t be anything girly about dolls or anything taboo about periods. Every girl, or even boy for that matter, would be given the choice of if he/she wants to marry, who they want to marry; and even when and where they want to marry.
Every father who has a daughter would be proud of the fact and the one who has a son would be appreciative of this fact. People would marry because they felt it was the right thing to do – no girl, or boy, would be forced to marry just because it was time to get married! People would have the freedom to make their own informed decisions and would be held responsible for the decisions they take.
Every daughter-in-law would be treated as if she were the daughter of the house and every son-in-law would have the same responsibilities as that of the son of the house. There won’t be unrealistic expectations from a newly-wed girl to do the exact things in the exact manner that the lady of the house has been doing for a long time; in fact, there would be no expectations from the daughter-in-law; allowing her to surprise her new “parents” with her skills!
Every old parent – mother or father – would be equally proud when their daughter supports them, as they would be, of their son supporting them. And every parent – mother or father – would be equally proud of their son who takes care of his in-laws needs and responsibilities, as they would be, of their daughter doing the same.
Love Marriage and Arranged Marriage wouldn’t be a debate, but it would be the fact of “Marriage” that would be celebrated. The word dowry would be unheard of; and so will be the word abuse! The happiness and the social acceptance of the couples will not be decided on whether they have children or not. Nor will the point of who earns more – the husband or the wife – ever be a matter of debate. Having a child of their own or adopting a child would be decisions left to the couple in question and not open to the world for debate; in fact, adoption would be revered and celebrated!
People would have no trouble recognising their priorities – parents, children, family – and the family unit will be the winner in the ultimate race, where today the corporates are seen winning. (Where not only fathers but also mothers are burning the proverbial midnight oil for their personal advancement, which incidentally, is also extremely beneficial to the corporates they work for!)
Now, wouldn't that be an amazing world to live in?
*Sigh* It is indeed interesting what a rambling mind can come up with when faced with the question of what if, isn’t it? Well, if things weren’t the way they are; I guess they would be the way they should be! But then, that would be an ideal world, isn’t it; and that is why a farce!
Is there anything else that you think could be different? I would love to know in the comments section!
P.S: Please do not include “I wouldn’t let my imagination run wild this way; or at least refrain from making my thoughts public!” in your comments (even if you think so) Thanks!
Image courtesy: Pixabay