मुट्ठियों में ख़ाक लेकर दोस्त आये वक़्त-ए-दफ्न,
ज़ीन्दगी भर की मुहब्बत का सीला देने लगे.
[Mut_thiyoN meiN khaak lekar dost aaye waqt-e-dafn,
zindagi bhar ki muhabbat ka sila dene lage. ]
Let me see how well I can translate it.
At the time of burial my friends came up with dirt in their fists,
and started to pay me back for a lifetime of love.
Sad and cynical though it may sound but that is the reality. This is all that is left at the end - a handful of people with a handful of dirt.
In India, and I think this is common in other countries too, there are two major events in a person's life when his friends, relatives and acquaintances gather around him - wedding and funeral. Having made no plans for marriage, that leaves one for me. (Hey, hey, I said I have no plans! I might get married, I might not. But I am not planning for either. Jeez! You sound like my mother!). Well, so anyway, the whole issue of who will cry when I die. Not who will come to my funeral but who will feel sad, how many people will shed a tear for the departure of one Sunil Goswami?
Why do I care?
There is a saying in Hindi - "Aap mare jag parlay", when you are dead the world has eneded! As far as I am concerned the caring is not for the actual moment when I die and people hear of it, but for now, I need to count that number now and see what value, if any, I am adding to the world. How many lives have I changed? How many smiles would not be there without me? How many moments I have made easier for others? Those questions need to be answered now! And the answer to those questions will lead to the answer to the main question.
I have always had delusions of grandeur (every dream is a delusion until you prove it with your own sweat and blood), and if you ask me, I'd like the newsreaders to cry when they announce my death. Oh yes, it'll be a big enough news item to feature in the international news!
So, as I was saying, this one seemingly frivolous and idle question can prove to be a good barometer to measure the "success" of your life.
But that's just my take on it, what do you think?