Renowned American President, Thomas Woodrow Wilson had once said;
“If you lose your wealth, you have lost nothing,
If you lose your health, you have lost something,
But if you lose your character, you have lost everything”
Being of inquisitive nature, one much necessitated, fundamental question which pops up instantly in my head –
- What exactly does CHARACTER mean?
- What did Wilson mean?
- What do people who apprehend it, understand by it?
When I tried to search the meaning of the word, the English dictionary which we often used to turn to when we were young and belonged to a non-internet age have now been turned into web pages. So I “google-d it”. The web search came with a billion results in 0.46 seconds.
It describes character as:-
- the mental and moral qualities distinctive to an individual.
- a person in a novel, play, or film.
After trying to understand the meaning of the juxtaposed words in English I became more perplexed and went into mini amnesia phase. I came back to my senses a little while later; still trying to get a gasp of what it means?
It might seem stupefying to those who are reading this post as to what kind of a silly question is this. It’s not that I don’t know what it means or haven’t come across this word ever in my life. But trying to explain the most elementary question is sometimes very hard.
Up until now, being to a society where relations means a lot more than your own self it seems ‘Character’ means As if a commodity which if you lose will not come back. It involves an irreversible process where if you do anything bad to OTHERS ,will not go back to being normal. It is a part and parcel of one’s attitude, feelings, morals and even life. But the social stigma of the belief of people around me which is inadvertently rich in cultural heritage, “IT” in a simple mathematical equation would denote;
CHARACTER = SEXUAL STATUS
Our society judge us on the basis of our sexual maturity. And mind you I’m not just talking about any particular culture or group, I’m speaking about all the societies in general. For a girl who have loads of ‘friends who are boys’ is seen with a demeaning eye. If someone loses her virginity before marriage then, you have lost your character mate. You have sinned! And hence you will be adorned with immense humiliation as atonement. Justice by those who have sinned to bring you in this world. Fair enough, isn’t it?
Sex before marriage is a BAD word. We are taught this since a very young age. But suddenly after marriage sleeping with a stranger (if you happen to have done arrange marriage) is a ceremonial ritual. Being a virgin is indispensable for life. For it will lead to a happy and successful life.
If that is the case then why don’t government pay us some allowances to maintain our sanctity? Why don’t the authorities in our society give us a special quota for being a virgin?
I’m not trying to question the issue of why sexual intimacy is interlinked to one’s personality. Well it is a case but it’s not what I seem to wrap my head around neither can I change it. I can’t change people’s centuries long beliefs.
But I just want to ask one thing though. All these years I was taught to fight the battles of life physically. Never ever anyone taught me about the emotional trauma. No one told me what happens when your heart breaks. No one warned me that if you don’t want to live a life others want you to live, you will literally go nowhere. Nobody told me what would happen if I lost my virginity to depression. What happens when you lose your innocence of your thoughts? What happens when only feelings you are left with are the thoughts of giving up on life? What happens to you when you have no goal and no will to stick by and live for? No one told me what how I should deal with the treasonous mind of mine. No one taught me how to silent the incessant natter of the inner child within me. Everyone can give you tips on sexual pleasure, but there is nobody giving any advice on inner gratification and peace.
We have innumerous number of schools and colleges around the globe to educate us, to make us literate with variety of subjects to choose from but maugre of that, Why no one teaches us how, what and when to THINK?
Why aren’t we taught all this at an early age?
Why don’t they do that?
Is it my fault or is it theirs?
I don’t know no more who to blame…