My interpretation of what interests and confounds me ....
Sunday, March 31, 2019
The Noblest of them All ...
This piece was written as an after-thought, on the recent occasion of the graduation of a friend's daughter (Drishty Sen), from the Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Pune, one among the most credentialed medical institutes in the country. My dear friend of long-standing, Captain (IN) Sudeep Sen, had the proud privilege of witnessing his next generation being commissioned into the exalted wing of the armed forces - the Army Medical Corps (AMC). I wish Lieutenant Drishty Sen, the diligent daughter-doctor, dollops of doughtiness to do her duty.
Every profession, that contributes to the improvement, growth or development of the world, is honourable. Teaching builds the next generation by making them learn to think rationally, logically, ethically and morally, so that the world order moves on a progressive path. Civil engineering helps build structures, houses, bridges, airports, power plants, etc., for people to advance in their endeavours. Ditto, for other branches of engineering. Designers, scientists and technologists help conceive a future generation of tools and solutions for sustainable development. Accountants, analysts, bankers and consultants help build personal, enterprise and national wealth. Performing artists, painters, movie-makers, musicians, and their ilk, supply an endless stream of fantasies and illusions, that help us to indulge in our imaginative world, unrestricted by reality, providing a sort of an escape route to a temporary oasis, that helps people momentarily forget the drudgery and humdrum lives that they usually lead.
While all of the above professions, and many, many more that I haven't listed here (fir want of time and space) are indeed dignified, what separates these from the noble professions, is the fact that the latter saves lives, the most valued and precious commodity that humankind has. The picture that immediately springs to ones mind, when we talk of saving lives, is that of a medical practitioner (doctors, nurses, assistants, etc, but most often, a doctor). She/he is at it (saving lives, that is), 24X7, very often at one's own discomfort, many a time in critical cases, stressed out by the inevitability of not being able to live up to the expectations of patients and their relatives, who fervently hope for Lord Almighty to dispense a miracle routed through the doctor, a deux-ex-machina as it were.
The demands of this profession are unbearably high. It calls for a heavy dose of diligence, perseverance, altruism, industriousness and above all, a relentless passion to hammer away at the ills that plague one's patients. No wonder, the practitioners of this profession are considered demi-gods.
There is yet another ennobling profession - soldiering - that saves lives, in this case, in an abstract manner. A soldier is entrusted with the task of protecting national security. It is always a passion, an intense emotion, possibly an irresistible desire (bordering on the irrational, at times), to save the lives of your countrymen and protect the nation's sovereignty against adversary's machinations. While this profession, as like many others, demand a high degree of dedication or devotion, determination and discipline, what separates soldiering from other professions, is the need, at times, to offer the ultimate sacrifice - one's life. No other profession offers *martyrdom*.
In most other professions, the accolades that you win are for yourself, and you would more often than not, be able to participate in the festivities associated with your achievement. In soldiering, the laurels that one wins, is for one's motherland, and many a time, the attendance of the dramatis persona, at the ceremony to celebrate it, is posthumous.
So, Drishty, be proud of the fact that you're not only a doctor, but an armed forces one at that. It's a double privilege that not many would be fortunate to enjoy. In fact, in your case, it's a triple privilege, being a "lady" "armed forces" "doctor" (I'll save the gender part, the glass ceiling for ladies and such other stuff for a piece later). Ad interim, live up to the beatified status that your profession accords, and serve your motherland and patients with glory (in that order). God bless and fair winds!!!