We humanbeings are called social animals because we are the only creatures with the ability to socialize with each other. I often joke with friends that if we fail to socialize with others, then we lose the “social” part and we become only “animals”. It is part of our culture to get together with friends and relatives from time to time to take a short break from busy schedule and relax over a simple meal. But today, life has become so busy for everybody that we hardly get a chance to see our friends and relatives even in months. So, I feel that such an occasional gathering among friends and relatives is an important part of our social and cultural life. A social gathering is not only about eating. It is more than that. It helps us strengthen our bonding and deepen our relationships. It is the time when we exchange our concerns, and understand each other’s situations. More importantly, such gatherings can contribute to passing the values and a sense of belonging down the generations.
Yesterday, I and my family were invited for a lunch at our aunt’s house. It was an informal family gathering of about eight people, some of whom I had never been able to even sit down together and have a chat with. We had a wonderful moment, talking about happenings in the village, both recent and old. I felt more close to the group and I guess everybody else felt the same. It was more than just eating and drinking. I believe it brought us closer to each other and there was a sense of community and belonging. I realized that such a tradition must be kept alive in all the times to come. As a social animal, we are born to depend on each other for survival and if we do not care about our friends and relatives, it would be difficult or even impossible to live a productive life. So, it is very important to inculcate such values to our children to be passed down the generations. It was so kind of Aunt Durga, for kindly arranging this gathering. It was not my first time to be in her place though. I loved the spirit with which we were invited. I could feel the flow of so much of love, care and respect in each serving and I am sure everybody thoroughly enjoyed the day.