Theodore Rubin, an American psychiatrist has said, “The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem.”
There is a much ignored viral threat in our world today, which seems to be getting the least attention. It is the bite of depression which is leading many a seemingly happy people to self destruction.
Recently there have been two Page 3 personality suicides in news; that of the Madhya Pradesh spiritual leader Bhaiyyu Maharaj and the renowned television personality and chef, Anthony Bourdain. Both these limelight personalities in spite of having all that a common man would love to possess had gloom hanging over their heads which the glitter of their lives hid from all who saw and admired their popularity. May be death was an easy release for them from the burden of some guilt; the fault of having it all and yet missing out on something crucial. If life is a journey, then they chose a simpler way to cross it; due to the erroneous belief that it would be easier to die than to live. Of course, this is the teaching of the world; which reiterates that life is very complicated to live, and death brings freedom from strife. What better understanding can one expect from a world that thrives on wars? This is a world that promotes isolation and partition rather than closeness and unity. This is a world that follows the law of chastisement and not of improvement. Unless this world changes, quick deaths will continue to be the norm; there are however less chances of the world changing and so the next option is to change oneself; but the question looms, ‘How?’
The answer can be found in the book of wisdom - The Bible; with the stories of two sinners namely Judas who betrayed Jesus for just a few coins and Peter who denied Jesus three times out of fear of condemnation. Yes Peter sinned out of fright and denied his master but after his third denial of having anything to do with him, he felt regret and looked towards his master for help and it says, “the Lord turned and looked upon Peter.” It was that look of forgiveness and tender pity in spite of all its sadness that helped Peter to survive unlike Judas. It was a glance not of anger but of sorrow for the mistake committed. This story is recorded in every Gospel because Peter never shrunk from letting everybody know of his guilt and cowardly conduct; but instead wanted the world to read in his life, proof of mercy and pity.
The story of Judas however, speaks more about the world in which Judas lived than about Judas. “Then Judas, His betrayer, seeing that He had been condemned, was remorseful and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, ‘I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.’ And they said, ‘What is that to us? You see to it!’” Matthew 27:3-4
There isn’t much difference in denial and betrayal. Both are terrible and both Peter and Judas repented and were sorry but Judas received the preaching of the world which said ‘Save yourself’. There was no comfort in this saving; only neglect. The preachers of that world like ours were not bothered about the death of an innocent man; the only botheration they faced was in whose bank account would the money be deposited in.
A world that is fake to the core can get to a man sometime or the other like it did with Judas then and now with Bhaiyyu Maharaj and Anthony Bourdain. May be, like Judas who had invested in the glory of the world and sought relief from it, they too with all their enrichment of the world, searched for help from it. But a world that itself is helpless could of course be of no assistance to them.