Here is a heart warming story of filial devotion and love.


On September 24, 2006, Waseem, 20, donated a part of his liver to his father, Mohammed Jogilkar, 50, who had liver cancer and possibly only a few months to live.  The transplant operation was a marathon side-by-side operation on father and son at a Mumbai hospital in India which was assisted by over 30 medical staff for almost 14 hours.


Though this is a quite extraordinary story, in the context of India, and many East Asian and other countries, this may seem very natural.


In India, the entire focus of the parents is to give good education and, thereby, good future to their children, underlining the assumption, which may be true also, that because of poverty, lack of education and opportunity, they themselves could not achieve the social status to which they were capable of and they do not want their children also to fall into the same trap.


Furthermore, children are welcome to live with their parents as long as they want or feel comfortable.  The children will live in a joint family even after attaining adulthood and, sons even after getting married and being financially independent.  On the other hand, when parents become financially dependent on their children they are always welcome to live with them.


The stories of parents sacrificing everything, even life for their children are abundant.  Yet, there are heart-warming stories of children sacrificing for their parents like the hero of the modern day story mentioned above.


One of them is Puru.  Puruís father, Yayati, was cursed for his infidelity by his wifeís father to become prematurely old.  Later, he relented and said that if any of the sons of Yayati exchanged his youth for the fatherís old age this could be done.  The four older sons declined to exchange their youth with the fatherís old age.  The last, Puru, however, agreed to do it.  Yayati started to enjoy again his youth.  Ultimately, however, he realized that sensual desires are never satisfied by indulgence.  He gave back his son his youth and spent rest of his days in austerities and meditation.  Pandavas of Mahabharat were the descendent of Yayati and Puru.


A better known story, also from Mahabharat, is that of Bhism.  When Bhismís father fell in love with a girl, her father put the condition that the child born of the marriage should become the king.  The king refused.  But, Bhism said that he agrees not to become the king on his fatherís death.  The wily father of the girl said, ďWhat about the sons of Bhism?Ē  Upon this Bhism took the vow of celibacy for life!


Similary, Ram went to exile when his step-mother asked for it from his father who was promise-bound to fulfill whatever she asked.  This broke the kingís heart and he died thereby fulfilling the curse he had incurred while he inadvertently killed the son of an old couple who was taking the old parents on a pilgrimage on his shoulders.


I would stop here without offering any comments.  But would request you to ponder over these stories and compare them to the present situation.



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