Monday, 13 February 2012

Rise In Love

February is just one of those months where we see the power of consumerism in full swing. It is a month with a specific date dedicated exclusively to love. But wait! Said who? I leave you to ask these questions to yourself as I go ahead and explain to you the discovery of an awesome Indian character that surprisingly enough has a lot to do with love! There is a character in our mythology who is very similar to Cupid, I would even go and say that he plays a role very similar to Cupid... he is none other than Kamadeva. Have you heard of him?

The name Kamadeva can be translated as "God of Love". Kama meaning longing or desire and Deva meaning love. There are several variations regarding the birth of Kamadeva in different Puranas. One such Puranic story narrates his birth as Kamadeva arose from Brahma's heart and is always portrayed to be serving Lord Indra. He is characterized by a greenish or reddish complexion, decked with flowers and ornaments, armed with a bow made of sugarcane and strung with a line of honeybees. He is accompanied by his wife Rati who symbolizes desire, a parrot who serves as his vehicle and his close friend Vasanta, who is none other than the God of Spring! Does that ring a bell?

Kamadeva is assigned by Indra to help defeat the demon Tarakasur. The only one who can defeat this horrible demon is Shiva's son. But Shiva is in meditation and only Kamadeva can break his meditation. He sets the right mood and awakens Shiva with a flower arrow. Shiva is so furious on being disturbed that he opens his third eye and burns Kamadeva to ashes! Shiva notices Parvati standing by and asks how he can help her. Parvati begs of Shiva to resuscitate Kamadeva. Shiva agrees only under the condition of giving Kamadeva a disembodied form. The spirit of love is formless and spreads across the universe affecting even Shiva himself, who falls in love with Parvati. Shiva and Parvati's son Karthikeya goes on to kill Tarakasur. Thus, Kamadeva succeeds in his duty.

On the 14th of February, thousands of people celebrate love across the world. Thanks to the kitsch consumerist attitude, this day has become more of a commercial day where retailers take advantage of people's soft hearts and stuff them up with red and pink items and chocolates and hearts. It is a time of the year when everybody suddenly remembers the importance of love. But do you know what I believe? I believe love should be celebrated every single day. Over the years, seeing people around me obsess about one specific date has made me realize, "it's not about buying or giving... it's about giving and giving." And giving, not just things but giving of oneself--one's love, time, attention, care, a listening ear , a warm hug ... why wait for that single day in a year? Why not dedicate every single day to love? For sure, it would make a world of difference in our lives. 


I shared the story of Kamadeva to some of the people around me and they were shocked yet interested in listening to the story of Kamadeva. Come to think of it, we aren't that different after all, isn't it? I guess it's time we recognized and realized that and rise in love.

1 comment:

Swarnali said...

Great post dude :D
Loved every bit of it. Knew a different version of the Kamadeva story,so reading this one was super cool. & yes even i believe love should be celebrated every single day!!