Togetherness, forgiveness, thankfulness


DEEPAVALI was celebrated earlier this month. For some people in certain parts of the world, Thanksgiving is coming up. And the Christian community might have started preparing for Christmas already.

The entire world may be greatly tested by the Covid-19 pandemic, but life goes on – and holding safe cultural and religious celebrations that promote togetherness, forgiveness and thankfulness is the way to move on with life.

This year has taught everyone the lesson of togetherness. When Covid-19 struck, gathering with loved ones became nearly impossible. We seem to have lost the privilege to physicalise our emotions through the therapeutic touch of hugs, kisses and handshakes when meeting relatives, friends and colleagues.

Who would have thought that those lovely, friendly gestures that can heal souls and strengthen relationships could someday harm our health? But thanks to technology, people may reunite safely with family and friends virtually.

Apart from bringing people together, celebrations are also the time for forgiveness, a beautiful art that can lead to a peaceful heart. Forgive, forget the past, and focus on the present for the sake of enjoying a fruitful future – as Mahatma Gandhi once said,

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”

As every religion promotes reconciliation and repentance, religious celebrations should be the perfect time for one to start anew with the heart and mind filled with love. In fact, forgiveness can be the best gift one could give and receive.

Ultimately, celebrations teach people about being thankful. Feeling thankful is a deep

emotion that shows one’s remembrance of God. This element of thankfulness helps us enjoy the moment without forgetting the underprivileged. This should be our self-reminder to celebrate in moderation.

In addition, we could express our thankfulness through generosity and doing things like giving the hungry a feast, buying new clothes for orphans and preparing gifts for children. After all, the more love and happiness we share with others, the more blessed our lives will be.

Oftentimes, celebrations are associated with parties and presents, but here’s a different viewpoint: Sometimes, a prayer of praise to God is a celebratory moment for someone who cherishes another day being alive, while a reflective thought before bed is another moment in which we can immerse ourselves as we complete a day in life.

MUHAMAD SOLAHUDIN RAMLI

Marang, Terengganu

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