I was once asked whether the death of a hero makes one a hero or is it possible for people to become heroes within their lifetimes.
I could pick one or agree to both. My stance was muddled, but I was sure that it was way too easy to become a hero in today’s times; social media, youtube, blogs- the magnanimity of technology and the ideas of “sharing thoughts” enrich life today. These screens make us all HEROES.
I was reminded of Malala Yousafzai, the youngest Nobel Laureate. I thought of Nelson Mandela. Of Mother Theresa. My view was simple; now a days, thoughts travel fast than ever; and when I say- thoughts, words, ideas; the very essence of these are preserved such that their actions speak the same. These thoughts, words and ideas are the same as their work, intent and success; I believe no words can inspire other people unless the “source” practices the same.
To emphasize, I took names of philanthropists like Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Clinton, whose established fortune is invested in future leaders. Surely, these are heroes, who are being celebrated and cherished during their lifetimes.
Looking back at it now, leaves me –blank. We have a very different criterion to categorize heroes.
Two days ago, the brutal killing of Sabeen Mehmud- founder T2F, raised thousands of facebook posts, tweets, columns and articles. T2F is haven to literary groups- aspiring youngsters- and those who want to talk, listen and accept. I was always a fan of this place, not knowing that behind the great success of this forum, there is a woman—also. And I still will be a follower- though I have never visited this floor ever, but the very idea of this place has inspired me. It was a place for spoken poetry, open discussions, for people to enjoy music and live the beats, for those in the literary world to meet and greet the ones who arenot! – and sadly, I never once visited this place, regardless of always “Going” to their facebook events, never knowing this great lady whose brainchild is beyond all definitions of amazing!
Today, like many others, I learnt about a Hero and that changed my opinion; adjust rather.
There are some who become heroes when they are still alive- more responsibility and pain to endure. Others live, fulfilling all the responsibilities and endure pain- until they die- and die in dignity and honor. No matter how many lives these unsung heroes have transformed, their lives are sung when they are gone- a little too late for the world to know of the goodness it still holds.
I was reminded of Nabiha Chaudhry, Late CSP Officer, who passed away 6 months ago; someone who made news when she was gone- and then the world cheered for her. I learnt about Sabeen Mehmud when she was gone- nevertheless, it is an honor to have lived in the time when such people existed.
Our clocks are ticking too- fast. The question is, have we done enough already? Are we prepared to RIP and in dignity?
…the clock is ticking!