An Indian Civilizational Perspective

Death on Facebook!

Facebook is an interesting platform for one to keep in touch with friends and family, specifically the extended one. And since it even suggests people’s birthdays so one can always be on time. And the person who is wished is happy that s/he is getting greeted from the world over and often by people who would have not, in the usual course of things, sent their greetings. But this morning was different.

As usual, I clicked on the names of people who had their birthdays today so I could wish them. As I went to the page of one of them – of an alumni of my high school (much junior to me) and a very bright kid (judging from his top class credentials ITBU and IIM-L) – I just stopped!

The profile pic had a garland around it. In India this is done for someone who is dead. And then I saw messages on the wall of wishing him birthday. Posthumously!

I don’t know when he died… but in my contacts he was still alive and interacting with the world.

A wall which he would have written on, sharing his life with all was now sharing other’s love after his life. That wall will forever remain in my memory. Stark reminder.

The person had a small kid and a very young wife, from the pictures and his age. He was a a thoughtful person and father as he had registered domain names for his kid and wife. I wanted to go back to see how he had gone, but the birthday messages were so many that page after page, I kept going on.

After a few pages I realized, it was probably not important to know how he had died, because it was fairly obvious how well he had lived for however few years he had with him.

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