Monday, May 4, 2009

Is youth extinct?

Youth is stifled because the rat-race continues.. many parents seeking only such schools which would put their children in the list of rank holders and top scorers in examinations; pushing them into a variety of supplimentry courses which give them little time to blink from their books, leave alone “to stand and stare” in their leisure; focussing their own obsessions on them and deciding a future by the measuring yardstick of the Toms Dicks and Harrys of society or the economic returns of courses with an impact on social prestige.

Fourteen years of this fruelling life from the age of three onwards! Fourteen years of tunnelling with blinders to avoid “distractions” from the harsh goals of studentship! Fourteen years of the printed matter absorbed and soaked into the brain to be poured out again onto answer papers, cover-to-cover, letter-to-letter. And when the fourteen years are over, he stands before you, a seventeen year old, ready to step into the next tunnel of academics called “Higher Studies”, a tunnel that is in no way different from the earlier one in quality or kind. So another three, five, seven or sometimes even more years before he actually begins to live.. an adult! Not having known what it was to be a youth!

Youth is not just the inevitable count of years. It is more an attitude than a period of time. Youth is said to be exuberant, full of spirit of adventure. Youth is alive to emotions and makes no distinction between people and positions. Youth is sensitive to suffering, responsive to reasoning and fine – tuned to trust and tolerance. Youth is always sharing, ever caring, seldom unforgiving and never vindictive. Youth gives fair credit to merit and is ignorant of partiality. Above all, youth believes in giving a helping hand to the downtrodden even when he himself tries to climb the ladder of success.