'... ask what you can do for your country'
Our readers share that every drop counts, so loving one’s country doesn’t mean that one has to do great or big deeds. Actions like keeping the city clean, being courteous to one another, helping each other ... these all help a nation in the path of betterment
The Late US president John F Kennedy had said, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” A small effort from every person can really change the entire shape of a country. Nowadays a feeling of belongingness is felt in Nepalis. Carpooling is the best example these days. This shows Nepalis are full of love, kindness, and compassion. In Nepal, if anybody needs help, there will be thousands of hands ready to help. There is a saying in our society ‘Bhai futteye gabar luttey’ (when there is fight among brothers, others will exploit that for their benefit). In order to strengthen our relation, we should not show our conflicts to others. As for me, I sometimes help blind people cross roads and sometimes I leave the seat for old people and mothers carrying babies in public vehicles.
— Nirmal Aryal, Jitpurfedi, Tarkeshwor-7, Kathmandu
To be honest, I haven’t been able to contribute towards my motherland. I’m hoping that the problems of Nepal such as poverty, inequality, unemployment, lack of education, environmental pollution, natural disasters and the so-called blockade will come to an end. For it to happen, political instability should end permanently. I think that political parties should be both ready and eager to solve this problem with devotion and focus.
When it comes to showing love for the country, there’s no need for us to do something special or be crazily patriotic. Love, respect, care, mercy, and devotion for the country has to come from within because they are such feelings which are enough to prove that one loves his/her country. I’m in search of an opportunity to serve my country in the best way possible without demanding anything in return.
— Pratik Shrestha, Buddhanagar, Baneshwor
Everyone loves one’s country in one or the other way but to keep one’s respect intact is more important. It initially begins from holding optimistic thoughts and beliefs about one’s country’s betterment. I believe, to truly love one’s country, is to shed every drop of perspiration for one’s motherland and to be proud of one’s identity, of being ‘who you are’ which is endowed to you by your native land. For me, adopting some good habits of not littering around, changing the mindset or lending a hand to people in need are a few things that can be done to lead the country towards peaceful development.
— Sonam Lama, Bouddha
Nationalism is devotion to the interests or culture of one’s nation, in other words love for your country. How can you show your nationalism? It is easy if you do it with your heart. You can show your nationalism by respecting the flag and respecting the national anthem. You can also show your love for your country by being honest, like paying taxes on time, obeying the laws in your country is also showing nationalism towards it. You can also show your love for your country by making your country a better place to live in. Be an active citizen; actively demonstrate your love for your country by being a part of its political process. Continually strive for a better country for all.
You can show your love for your country by sacrificing yourself. Actually, you can do it in various ways. If you plan to get higher education, then instead of thinking to going abroad, stay here and study no matter what the obstacle. This will be considered you being a true citizen of your nation.
— Bidyaaz, Kathmandu
Words and violence solely cannot represent the love for one’s nation. I think truly loving our nation means being patriotic by accomplishing our duties as a citizen and bringing people together for the common good. We must be responsible citizens by voting, respecting property, being considerate of the privacy of others and obeying the laws of the land. Loving the nation does not only mean fulfilling responsibilities but we must also celebrate our nation. We must celebrate holidays like Shaheed Diwas, Loktantra Diwas, which shows great appreciation for our country.
I have contributed to my nation by embodying the Nepali spirit — embracing our art, culture, and values. I have prioritised visiting our own beautiful places before travelling to other countries. I listen to traditional Nepali music and I study history of our nation regarding different subjects. I have also been a part of charity, no matter how substantial or minimal. I have actively demonstrated love for my nation by being part of political process like voting that plays a vital role in the overall development of the nation.
— Thirendra Kumar Subedi, Kalyan-5, Surkhet
Love for a place where an individual is born is referred to as motherland can be looked upon as a strong human emotion that has possibly existed from time immemorial. In the primitive world, when humans were still evolving, this sense of attachment towards one’s birthplace could have developed through the intense urge for protecting premier hunting and foraging grounds, which later transformed into urge for protecting agricultural lands. However, during the medieval and modern history of human race, such territoriality or passion for native land has been transformed into a proactive movement called nationalism. Nationalism is a great patriotic ideology on the surface, but has much deeper roots towards unconscious racism, separatism, and anarchism. Often several political groups have routed the anger and frustrations of the common people by promoting radical expression of nationalistic ideas to shift the focus of the mass for their long term personal gains. All the wars fought to date represents jingoism that has brought great harm to the mass in the name of love and passion for the motherland. True love for motherland is reflected only in personal sacrifices for the betterment of others.
— Saikat Kumar Basu, Lethbridge AB, Canada
We know that our motherland burns day-by-day due to Tarai stir, and people are directly affected. They do not get public vehicles to reach their destination, especially those who daily travel by local transportation. Fuel scarcity, rotation of odd and even number plate vehicles are some problems that has hit public life. Being civilised and to be a good human being is the biggest love for any country.
— Rabindra Kr Neupane, Butwal
Patriotism is a sacred feeling that comes from the heart. Though there are several means to express love and devotion towards one’s nation, using rough and foul words and cursing others with violent activities is the most ridiculous one. With the rise in the use of social networking sites, revealing one’s love, hatred, emotions, sentiments towards anything or anyone have been somehow easier than in the past. But the meaning and the message those carry or the impact it creates outside that particular means should be equally considered beforehand.
Loving one’s country is simply loving oneself or loving its citizens. Possessing qualities like integrity, impartiality and strong unity itself proves that you truly love your country. Besides, commitment towards your duty and respecting your rights shows how much love you have for your country.
— Bhawana Poudel, Baneshwor, Kathmandu
Ma mare pani, mero desh banchi rakhos — a beautiful song by Yogeshowr Amatya depicts the love for one’s country. Loving one’s country is not only about creating a profile picture in Facebook stating, I LOVE NEPAL; it means contributing to nation’s development in whatever ways one can — helping one’s fellow citizen in need, using one’s civic sense for cleanliness, protesting the wrong doings, being rational, electing the righteous person who really can make a difference and so forth. As remarked by JF Kennedy, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country’ encourages every citizen to rise in hard times, face the unprecedented challenges, unite and resolve the conflict and pave the way towards a prosperous nation.
I was ineligible to cast vote in the previous election. However, for the next election I’m enthusiastic to cast my vote to select right person concerned for the country’s development — one who focuses on action than promise. Moreover, I have written a khandakabya to help preserve Nepali language and literature. I have also taken part in several art competitions portraying Nepal’s natural beauty in promoting tourism. Beside these, I am a member of our college group Empirical Nepal, which is preparing a short movie concerning the youth and their decisions to go abroad.
— Pawan Bhandari, Satdobato
Everyone loves their country. In the case of our country, all people will unite if there is any issue against our motherland. We Nepalis are emotional when patriotism is concerned. We are ready to die than bear insult against our country. Yes, love for a country is not only shown by words and violence. One can exhibit his/her affection towards country by getting involved in civic activities, making our environment healthier and cleaner, reducing crime through community programmes, et cetera.
Yes I agree, one can show empathy for the country through words/violence but it is not the only way. With the country now in crisis, Nepali citizens are helping each other in many ways. Different Facebook groups like Men’s Room Reloaded and Carpool Kathmandu et cetera are helping people.
Because of the fuel shortage, the number of vehicles are disappearing by the day. Being a Nepali citizen, I am helping the old and incapable people to reach their destination. I love my country very much. The relationship of brotherhood ties all in Nepal. I always respect our flag and national anthem. I went to clean Bagmati River every Saturday continuously for two months. Next week, I am also organising a blood donation programme. Hence, along with words, actions shows love and devotion for the country.
— Binod Bibash, Kushmisera-1, Baglung
Truly loving one’s country in my view is to be loyal towards your country. I am a student and being a student not only me, but everyone has done something for one’s country.
Some months ago we students and citizens from Tarai region collected some relief materials for earthquake victims. I was surprised to see that a rikshaw puller donated some amount from his savings. It showed me that you don’t need a lot of money or power to do something for your country, all you need is the intention.
Now if we see the current situation of our country, it is so confusing. People are burning the flags of other countries. Before getting respect, we should know how to respect others. I cannot explain in words how much I love my country but I am a Nepali and will always be proud to be a Nepali.
— Kajal Beriwal, Adarshnagar, Birgunj
A man may remember his darling in his happiest and satisfied moment. He may search his colleagues or companion on romantic occasion. A man, however, pronounces the word aama when he faces an accident. The motherland is synonymous for mother where we are born and brought up.
We are facing difficulties now due to vested interests of certain sections. We must work along with our fellowmen so that these illnesses might be removed. Therefore, we are offering lift in our vehicle in emergencies and travelling with a sense of humanity in overloaded transportation.
Patriotism doesn’t mean simply using poetical expressions about the motherland. We should love what is good in us but we should accept what is good in others too. Neighbours cannot exploit us for their good.
— Padam Raj Awasthi
Words are not enough to pay back our motherland. Nowadays there is a trend that if people do some trivial things for the needy, they just exaggerate it and publicise it by posting on the social media. I mean their act is praiseworthy, but I detest people who seek credit for doing so. There have been scores of people who are providing shelter for old people, people who are granting free education to the needy, people who have helped the victims of natural disasters like earthquake, landslides, drought and so on. But their contribution and identity is in the shade. The country has not recognised their positive effort neither does the world know about it. It means that we, without any expectations, should contribute for our nation whether it be supporting the needy, making our city clean, providing water to passersby, helping the old and poor and so on.
Whenever depressing and saddening moments has occurred in our country, we have stood for our nation joining hands together. At that time, we do not see ourselves as belonging to different race, caste and gender, which shows how much we love our country.
All children love their mother so yes, we do love our motherland as well. This is because we probably spend our whole life here. Even after death, we get buried or mix in the soil as ashes in our motherland. Actually, there aren’t any rigid rules or systems to depict love for our motherland, even the smallest behaviour and action of ours may make a big difference and may show how much we are concerned about our motherland. Every single behaviour and activity counts and they have their own significance. For instance, giving a lift in current times to solve the problem of petroleum crisis shows that one is concerned about the problem of other countrymen.
Words and violence don’t exactly prove love for the motherland. These are not the solutions to the existing problems. Violence may make the situation even worse. Protesting, strikes or bandhs are the perfect examples. People think they are doing these things for the sake of good but these activities give rise to the problems. The existing violence in our country denotes that people are not protesting for the betterment of the motherland, instead they are taking the wrong path for getting their demands fulfilled at any cost, which directly influences other countrymen. The outcomes of their activities have made the life of other citizens difficult.
The major contribution for the love of our country is to make the best effort to present oneself as a civilised citizen through one’s activities for the country’s benefit and those efforts may be simple. One can make efforts at cleanliness, show gratitude towards other people, stop violence, bandhs et cetera, increase literacy rate, make people aware about the bad habits, utilise one’s knowledge to solve the existing problem, work together as one... Regarding these things, for the sake of my motherland I have done things like helping people in need, showing gratitude towards people, making effort for cleanliness, trying to increase literacy rate by educating children, supporting unity and other such activities that aren’t great deeds.
— Sujata Bajracharya, Gongabu-6
QUESTION OF THE WEEK
With the country reeling under the fuel shortage and no sign of an end in sight, it is the common man who is hit the hardest. With shortages of not only fuel but everything else looming large, every common man has his own struggle that he is coping with. How are you dealing with this current problem? Illustrate with an example.
Send your replies in not more than 200 words by Friday, October 16 by 2:00 pm to Features, The Himalayan Times, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org