The tragic tale
Ruchi Jaggi | 24 Mar 2007

Tragedy. Whenever I think of this word an array of thoughts cross my mind. The word acquires a visual dimension and a plethora of images start hitting my imagination in various ways. It is impossible to define a tragedy because it means different things to different people. It is an amalgam of experiences, impacts and resilience.  All of us have an individual sense of perception and reaction.


We see a multitude of tragedies unfold at traffic signals everyday in the form of little kids and hapless old folks struggling to survive. If this could be dismissed by some of the evolved species as a cliché with no repeat value, it is another tragedy of sorts. Death might be a tragedy for most, while waiting for it might be another tragedy for someone who is suffering every day. Think of an infant born with an incurable ailment who does not understand his tragedy at all. But it is an inconsolable tragedy for his parents, whose misfortune is so disturbing, yet so perplexing. The baby’s faint smile or just a pale twinkle in his eye might just let them get over this tragedy, though for a few moments may be.


Then there are people who have immense talent, but unfortunately not enough resources to translate this talent into fortune. The tragedy is quite understandable and there is a way out of it. But there is another category where talent and resources are not an issue. There is bankruptcy of vision. This becomes one of the greatest tragedies if vision is not re-stored. And it gets worse when the will to get back on the path dies.


Defining and restricting tragedies to domains closed for others is another tragedy. Because whatever may be the DNA of every tragedy, they are all connected by a common thread. They change lives, sometimes forever. And most of us want to get over them irrespective of our success. So there are two bright spots, resistance and resilience that relate individuals to each other.


The underlying sentiment is the same. Everyone wants to disentangle from this mesh of depression and sorrow. Sympathy and more often than not, empathy drives people to connect with each other. The reasons might be different. But the effect is the same. And so is the urge to disencumber from the baggage. May be that is why people share feelings to shed this burden and feel better and freer.


Tragedies might be setbacks. But they have great potential to motivate people sometimes. The motivation might be an impossible repercussion at the first stance, but if consequential it can change lives and that too forever. As a nation also, we are experiencing many tragedies simultaneously. The feat lies in turning them into real motivators, getting together to look at them in face and fight them out.


Look again at those little tragedies at the traffic signal. May be you would find many more like you wanting to turn those tragedies into beautiful lives!