Happiness is best felt when shared. Its not only important to express our love to the people who care for us but its also important to care for the people around us. People who may not be related to us by love or friendship but people with whom we share the same sky, the same air and a part of our consciousness. We walk on the same planet with them. I’m referring to our fellow human beings, the next door neighbor to whom we forget to smile, those children begging on the streets, the people sitting outside hospitals shivering in cold, the old man who has trouble crossing the street or that self doubting young lady who always looks down. These are the people we often ignore, people who don’t seem to exist. It has become acceptable to miss them as we are slaves of the ‘alarm’, ‘routine’ and our so called ‘important work’. Work which not only gives you an illusion of self importance,but it simultaneously kills your spirit, makes you a machine, makes you numb. Slowly and slowly you drift away from the world around you. You become your work , a product of the human machine. When you don’t care for yourself, how can you care for the world around you? So it becomes acceptable to be indifferent to the world around us. But its Christmas, the day of the birth of our savior , Jesus Christ. So its the perfect time to save yourself, to come out of that mechanical shell and to look at the world around you. A time to look at the world around you, a world that cries and bleeds, a world that is faulty but still worth loving and caring for.

Its Christmas and there are people in the world who will be sleeping without a cover . Today my heart aches for the people whose lights are dim this season, while everybody else’s shines brightly like the sun. It aches for those people who crave for the kind of celebration that we get every year. Yes we get celebration but are we really happy ? Or has celebration also become like a task to be fulfilled ? We have forgotten that happiness is best felt when shared. Shared with the people who have nothing to offer you. But you do exchange love and joy with them. That love rises up in the sky and it illuminates the world around you . It becomes a better place than before. I decided to celebrate Christmas a little differently.

So this time I shopped for the children at the BALIKAASHRAM Orphanage situated in Dadar , Mumbai and of spent time with them. Initially I was a little apprehensive. I had never done anything of this sort before. I dressed up as Santa and went with cakes and gifts. Those children removed all my anxiety. They were so happy and welcomed me with songs. Interacting with them expanded my world. Those bundles of joy and enthusiasm , their happy faces lit me from within. And I forgot about the daily negativities that consumed me. Yes, spending time with them also ‘helped’ me immensely. Fortunately photography was not allowed inside and we got more time with each other.

Not only did I shop for those children but also for the street children who beg and work. Children who are toiling when they should play and have fun. In India children still work and beg. I can’t change their situation, I have my own limitations . But I can always bring a smile on their face. You never know when your random act of kindness can change someone’s life. Even if it doesn’t change entirely, it shall certainly add to the joy of the world. This is what Christmas stands for, reaching out for others, loving one another despite our differences. Rising in the common celebration of the birth of our savior, for God doesn’t differentiate between the young and the old, rich or poor. God speaks in the language of love. The language that we should speak often and offer to the world around us.

This season I ask you to open your heart, awaken the human within you. No man will be a stranger and the world will be a better place once you remove those coffins of suspicion. Yes open your heart. You are also God’s angel and you are capable of immense love. So don’t ignore the old lady who lives next door, call your parents frequently, never stop expressing your love . If you feel sympathy or empathy for someone, go and help. You never know what doors will be opened by your smallest gestures.

Celebrate the true spirit of Christmas. Love and Share. Happiness is best felt when shared.

Love you all,

Aishwarya.

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