What comes to our mind when we think of the word ‘Patriotism’? Probably that it is the love for one’s nation or willingness to do anything to the extent of sacrificing one’s life for one’s motherland. However, this is only a limited definition. However, being patriotic is not restricted to sacrificing one’s life for the country. It means to serve the nation with unconditional love and devotion.
In the modern era, it is difficult to abide by theoretical patriotism. I am pretty sure that all of us use western products. These western companies do have Indian employees who help in providing world-class products to the consumers. Since most people have been using western products for a very long time now, I don’t that there is anything bad in doing so as long as they are generating employment for Indians too. Had we gone along with the theoretical definition of patriotism we would be termed as a quisling. So, what can patriotism mean in the 21st century? After much deliberation, I have thought of the following.
We must have heard this phrase very often- ‘Pehle Desh Phir Pradesh.’ I have never been to Switzerland. Yet, I truly believe that Kashmir is the most beautiful place on this planet. Its beauty is matchless. No wonder so many poets and writers have termed Kashmir as Paradise on Earth. Patriotism is usually associated with people who serve in the armed forces and protect our nation from any external threats. I sincerely salute all those brave hearts who stand at the border just so that we get a sound sleep at night, who sacrifice so just for the well-being of its citizens. However, one does not always have to be a part of the armed forces to showcase patriotism. For example, students are increasing our nation’s literacy rate, the industrialists are adding to the country’s GDP by producing various products. Even the doctors are risking their health and saving someone’s life. Entrepreneurs, teachers, and other professionals are also contributing to the nation’s development. Their love for their nation cannot be undermined.
To become a patriot, we don’t have to take far-reaching steps at once. We can start with keeping our surroundings and colonies clean. It also includes following the traffic rules, making efforts to keep our monuments clean, taking up the responsibility to plant more trees, and start paying regular taxes. We know that environmental pollution is on the rise in our country. All of us know that the usage of plastic products is harmful to our environment and our industries should be treating the harmful effluents before dumping them into the rivers. However, most of us turn a blind eye when it comes to abiding by these principles. The manufacturing industries are still expelling toxic substances into the water bodies. To achieve an improvement in the surroundings, we must ensure that this is stopped.
Patriotism in the present era is not a very strong sentiment among the youth. Most of them aim to go overseas in search of opportunities and work. There are very few of them who think of working for the betterment of the nation they grew up in? Most of them are of the notion that moving out to a foreign country will improve their social status drastically. Upon growing up they seem to forget that working for their motherland will aid their country’s title so that it takes off higher. Jose Rizal aptly said, “The youth is the hope of our future”. If the youth play an active role in basic tasks like organizing society meetings to keep the spirit of unity alive and discussing ways to eliminate social divisions, our country will be a much better place to live in. Giving small donations to the needy will also help improve the economic status of the people who have been trapped in the never-ending cycle of poverty and have a positive impact on the development parameters of our country at large. A true patriot is always there for his fellow citizens in the hour of need.
Being an admirer of Indian culture, I feel that it is exquisite. The diverse qualities of our nation make it unique. Sadly, my thoughts do not match the views of the people who are drawn towards western culture and fail to appreciate the beauty of the country we live in. It appears as if they have overlooked the extravagant history of our nation. Our country has the foremost overflowing folklores and is typically something we ought to be proud of. We have all heard about the stories of Mahatma Gandhi, Chandrashekhar Azad, Bhagat Singh, and numerous other valiant freedom warriors. We cannot disregard the penances made by these nationalists. Our history incorporates the disclosure of decimals, the numeric framework, discoveries of mathematicians and astronomers like Aryabhata, and so on. There is a need to retell these tales to the citizens of our country to show how culturally rich India is.
That is not all, our country has many more accomplishments to be talked about. For example, folk dances, folk music, classical dances, and music. These are the treasures of our country. One should work to preserve them as well as promote them. Also, we have prominent 22 prominent languages in India-there is so much diversity in our country that it is inexpressible in words. Real patriotism is when we encourage and foster our culture and maintain UNITY in DIVERSITY.
Indian citizens must be encouraged to read novels and short stories written by Indian novelists and authors. Amish Tripathi, who is very popular with his mythological series, is often referred to as the Paulo Coelho of the east. Not only English novels, but the people must also be told to read novels written in Hindi as well. For example, Nirmala by Munshi Premchand, Madhushala by Harivansh Rai Bachchan, and many more. Not only Hindi literature but also the novels written in regional dialects have beautiful stories that we often ignore.
In conclusion, patriotism is the most sublime feeling that comes from the heart. We should be fulfilling those dreams which our freedom fighters saw. For example, Mahatma Gandhi said that no one should go to bed hungry, and Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru talked about wiping every tear from everyone's eye. On 15th August, everyone shows the emotion of love for their country. But patriotism should not be restricted to a specific day. It is above all kinds of devotion and sacrifices; it is a way of life for us Indians!