Gaffe Inside the Sanctum

Abbey Chakma

The Kathina Civara Dana is just around the corner. It brings much razzle-dazzle and heralded exquisite ecstasy among people in the far-flung corner of Buddhist world. From the first week of this month, as the exact date has been inked in, the celebration will be kicked off with a great ardor in several Therawada Budhhist Diasporas, in Arunachal as well. Villagers expected to host Kathinchivar Dana are tied up in preparing the celebration slaving away at the uphill task of constructing the marquee for the ceremony and ensuring guest’s finest accommodation. The ceremonial site is being decorated. The occasion celebrated every year during winter is very auspicious and thousands of devotional hearts welcome it enthusiastically.

It is also awaited by every Chakmas throughout the year. This is the occasion where we can still discern the beauty of our culture, tradition and beliefs of offering overnight hand-weaved robes (chivar) to the Sangha which in return brings prosperity and joy in the community. An increadible blend of cultural and religious ritual of our community is profoundly embedded in Kathinchivar dana .

But there are some unsocial activities that stay below the radar, or may be deliberately avoided, inside the sanctum of Kathinchivar danatsova amidst the mirth. To say the least, this ceremony has become a stage to practice the reprehensible romance and obscenities. The premise of the celebration is thronged by young blokes and lasses who congregate to celebrate it ostensibly, but in obverse reality they gather to cynically have romance. Romance is not the crux of the matter but the practice of it in such holy occasion must not be done as it reflects back negative energy instead of divine energy. Being in the ceremonial premises along with the motivation of flirting instead of spiritual practice is the worst thing. Still there is an exception because there are also many who are attracted towards this great occasion drawn by their spiritual interests. They devotionally celebrate this auspicious event. I appreciate them but many people just regard this great occasion as an amusing recreation. It can be spotted everywhere which is one of immoralities that are performed in holy places. Furthermore, the audacious practice of immoral activities is the antithesis of what the spiritually significant Kathinchivar dana should be celebrated for. Attending such sacred place to offer prayers is only a pretext for having romance and adults stay on qui vive for a hunt. This is the changing world of new Chakma generation, in the throes of dynamics confronting loads of flux, which is falling prey to such lascivious acts and unsurprisingly nobody wants to change. During a long tete-e-tete with a chum, we thrashed out the overwhelming presence of this faux-pas which is slowly propelling our culture into a gradual decline. Massive dimension of this gaff is considerably manifested in the view of students, if you try to gauge their thinking thoroughly, not least the youngsters who strain at the leash to go for flirting in this pious occasion. Spiritual significance and ethics remain only in the tongues and nobody pays heed to their own conscience, which echoes aloud within them. Parents are kept in dark as it is an auspicious day but to a mammoth extent some parents neglect these things, albeit umpteenth cases of abortion every year bring stigma to the families. This is an ominous sign of cultural decline denoting the adverse presence of ill-civilized Chakma society in the future.

Discussion on many social evils becomes the part of our fully-fledged APCSU’s prioritized agenda- demonstration against drugs was a commendable one- but does not the blatant romance during such a sacred event appeal them to even minimum proportion? Or, it is a deliberate negligence? With no surprise, I feel the word “fully-fledged APCSU” is here of a bit misnomer- APCSU fares very poorly in this field and has continuously shown the ineptitude in averting these kind of social immoralities. If the birth certificate issue is a matter of paramount importance, why can’t it be strained to put emphasis on the awareness of this cultural havoc? Who knows if APCSU itself is indulged in these activities and abet the rampant course of actions happened during religious occasions? Not to reveal. What I want to say is that It must be also very imperative to in veigh against these kind of irreverent activities without further ado otherwise no far are the days when we won’t be able to distinguish any difference between western culture and our culture, which can still be preserved by staving off the ongoing blunders. APCSU should take enough measure to control it. It’s a bit of hypothetical if I suggest APCSU to act with highhandedness but it is also a crucial matter in contradiction which should not be neglected and we should strain our every nerve to counter these practices, though unbridled and unrestrained, inside a holy shrine. So I would earnestly like to appeal APCSU to try their best even on least possibility to prevent this problem because APCSU is the only union which is capable of single-handedly tackles this critical problem.

Even Mahabodhi Temple in Bodhgaya was once swarmed by numerous couples romancing inside the holy premises before the critically tragic bomb blast which prompted the government to tighten the security. Now the sanctum is guarded by a stringent security and under the circumstances, the couples are not seen leisurely shuffling through the campus. And in the same way if volunteers are deployed to act against these uncultured behaviors inside Kathinchivar dana premises, a distinct measure of reduction in such activities can be apparently witnessed. If people are made aware of these impious things arising in the spiritual occasion, they will tend to take hard line against these unsocial blunders. The youngsters carousing under the influence in such auspicious time must also be checked, keeping them under surveillance. Emboldened by hard-stuff, the boys irreverently do heinous acts following the rush of adrenaline and fall oblivious of the moral ethics. So, the selling of alcohol must strictly be prohibited during Kathinchivar Dana. It will certainly reduce the blunders. An innocent question rattles my cage-Is our next generation going to inherit a spoilt culture from us? Think about it.

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