is all about relationships. The moment a child is born in the world he is
connected to different types of relationships. He is connected to his mother,
father and other immediate family members.
many types of relationships. Our relationships with our parents and other
family members are based on ties of blood. We have biological connections with
them. Nobody can alter their status nor be selective in this matter. One has to
accept these relationships as they are, without question.
and Maintaining a relationship
there are other types of relationships where everyone is free to create and
connect. This includes relationships with work colleagues, community members,
friends, neighbours and other individuals. Society thus becomes a web of
relationships. The more closely we are connected to these relationships, the
happier and more satisfied we feel in life.
relationships act like a magnet attracting people to them, thus creating a more
united, peaceful and cohesive society. Hence no society exists without
relationships which, in fact, facilitate society. Nurturing, maintaining and
strengthening relationships leads to peace as people become mutually
Are Much Like the Weather.
relationships are important as far as the worldly life is concerned. Albeit in
the Hereafter, regarding the Day of Judgement the Quran says “That Day shall a
man flee from his brother. And from his mother and his father. And from his
wife and his children” (80:34-37).
material life, the Quran is very emphatic about maintaining all relationships.
It says “…And do not forget Liberality between yourselves. For Allah sees
well all that ye do,”(2:237). At another place it says “So give what is
due to kindred. …” (30:38). Therefore, it is incumbent upon every believer
to accord full respect and dignity to all these relationships.
constantly maintaining cordiality and warmth in these relationships is an
uphill task because at times, they are volatile in nature. Like no rose is
without a thorn, similarly no relationship exists without a challenge. Some
major challenges in maintaining relationships come from the very fact that
every person has a different source of income, a different lifestyle, a
different level of understanding. Each person thinks according to his own
perspective and weighs relationships keeping in view his own interest.
an opulent lifestyle plays a detrimental role in deciding the nature of these
relationships as it has also been observed that affluent families often turn a
blind eye to those relatives who do not match their ‘standard’.
many people enter into relationships with self-centred motives to get worldly
benefits. Usually, all near and distant relatives come closer to one who gets
some attractive political position, wealth, power and influence in society; it
is like flies attracted to some sweet matter, while in difficult phases of life
all kith and kin can become strangers.
way a relationship lasts is if one observes a selfless approach. One has to be
upright with an attitude to forget and forgive to keep relations warm and
lasting. In the absence of such an attitude, relationships suffer from
uncertainties. These may not stand the test of time but remain asymmetrical,
incongruent and transient.
some other factors that can result in a relationship cooling. For instance,
people move from one place to other, they change their residence, profession
and also interests. As time goes by, relations with old friends and relatives
lose warmth, while new friends are made. For example, after Partition,
thousands of people were divided. They maintained contacts with some of their
friends and relatives in the ‘old country’, but as time went by their
relationships became weaker.
stresses of modern life have also affected relationships more than anything
else. It has made people too busy and self-centred. The traditional joint
family system has been replaced by the nuclear family. This has made many
senior members of society lonely and their relationships with their near and
dear ones have also come under pressure.
relationships do not remain static. They are much like the weather. Sometimes
they are bright, at other times they are dull. Similarly, in relationships
there may be periods of warmth, but these can be punctuated by the shadow of
mutual distrust. Thus, there are times when one witnesses fluctuations in
relationships with others. Perhaps these are necessary for dynamism in life.
Otherwise, life would be a plateau and we would be living like robots.
relationships are neither permanent nor of sufficient interest to keep a person
happy all through life. One must have something else to turn to. This need may
express itself in the form of art, scientific studies or mysticism but more
often it takes the form of a search for a higher purpose in life.
Valliani is an educationist with an interest in religion.
Headline: Ties that bind
Source: The Dawn, Pakistan
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