some thoughts on Friendship Day...!
Reading “Rent A friend” news where lonely souls can “hire” a friend if and when they need one, made me wonder what friendships mean these days. They aren’t long term any more. This age is about quick fixes, fast foods and faster relationships. Nor are they about emotional give and take. I remember when our teacher in Nainital asked us to collect writings on “friendship” for our scrap-book. I’d found a lovely poem by some great man whose name I should be excused for not remembering over the years, but these initial lines I do.
“It never is a one-way traffic
To friendship that we treasure
There is give as well as take
Within the fullest measure”
These describe and sum-up the phenomenon completely, giving the essence and entirety of friendship. If it’s one-way, it simply doesn’t exist, is the fundamental truth.
That was then! Over the years the dilution inherent in the environment has percolated to this relationship too. After SRK’s mega hit “Kuchh Kuchh Hota Hai”, friendship has taken a turn and is more about friendship “days” and “bands”. The depth of relationship is perhaps measured by the quality of the band. In this era of quick changes in climate, environment, economy, friends too seem to be following suit.
The age-old concept of friends being likeminded people with similar value- systems and morals has undergone a tremendous change. Now, even value-systems in the so called “seat of cultural values” that was once India, everything is susceptible to malfunction, right from machinery to humans to wardrobes. So much so that we’re undergoing a serious and severe ‘Indian values malfunction’. Earlier, meaning and depth of friendship, automatic core feelings of giving, sharing, “being there”, genuine concern and even sacrifice existed. Today it’s different. “A friend in need is a friend to be avoided” said Lord Samuel and this is how it is now. Then friends were probably made for life even though no ceremonial vows are taken to enter into this relation. There were no hidden agendas or motives to “be friends”. Friends were treated well and one wouldn’t ever trample on the dignity, self respect, feelings or emotions of friends.
But change, as they say, is inevitable. Friendship then was about “bOnds” but now it’s more about “bAnds”!! Nowadays friendships are made with selfish motives and personal agendas. People may not be at the same wavelength or emotional level, but still make friends with someone because they want to use him, his position or his contacts. Such relationships aren’t long lasting. In some cases they probably last as long as the Velcro or hook of the friendship band! Specially the younger generation is quite “practical” and doesn’t like to waste time or tears over bygones. They can say hi & bye quite soon with very little tolerance or patience in between. They neither worry nor cry over lost friends, but move on and start emailing or sms-ing the new one. With this renting facility, guess it will just be “have money, can hire” kinds with no commitment whatsoever.
In others friendships may last as long as professional interests of both are intertwined and mutual benefits achieved. “You scratch my back I scratch yours”, simple. I don’t know how many of you noticed this depiction in OSO’s title song, when SRK and Govinda enacted it.
Now, friends can be the nicest and sweetest people on earth when they need you yet are capable of looking through you and walking past without so much as even the slightest sign of recognition or the blink of an eye. Beware of “fair weather friends”.
Such is the status of friend “SHIPS” today. They are perhaps “ships” with a fate worse than that of the Titanic. They have no solid anchor in the form of genuine bonding. My dear friends just remember “bOnds” may last longer than a life time even without fevicol but “bAnds” of friendships may give in, inspite of fevicol, at the very first shower rain. So don’t let your friend “SHIP” sink anywhere else apart from your heart!!
For, as someone said “People walk in and out of your life all the time but friends leave their footprints…… in your heart……forever!”