WINTER AS A BLESSING


WINTER

WINTER AS A BLESSING

The little African boy plays in the sand...

He builds little cave houses with sand and mud covering his tiny feet.

The doors to the houses emanate from the exit of his little feet Scantily-clad or naked to the skin he finds his fun in little things. The open air and the warmth of nature’s sun are taken for granted by all and sundry. The scantily-clad little boy knows no spring, summer, fall or winter The tranquility of the environment may not be counted as part of the gifts of nature. The insect bites on his neck, his hands and his feet elicit sympathy unknown to the little boy.

But tranquility and stability in nature make for abundance of life, not only of humans. Mosquitoes, flies, all forms of insects and vermin also thrive Each blossoms and flourishes and the environment is rife with life. But the little challenges from harshness of nature breed their own challenges. The need to invent and wedge a war against nature easily disappear with satiety in man... Absence of challenges makes for contentment with mere basics of nature. So the African child develops and thrives with the basics of nature as fully to him supplied.

He that fears no frost bite from cold is content to go without stockings or shoes. He that is not threatened by cold has no need to harness the wool or fur. He that is not threatened by blizzards has no need for shields for the eyes or face. He that is not threatened by winter storms has no need for the measures that winter stirs. He that is over-pampered by nature is thus indirectly cursed by nature. In the midst of backwardness that satiety brings one may then ask, “Between the sand and mud little caves of the African child that gives the former all the fun... And the cold snow man of the child in the West which is fitted with eyes and little ears, Which one between the two is better and which gives the greater fun?

The snow man of the West will crumble just as the sand and mud wall of the African child. Today we behold and eulogize the glories of man but tomorrow these glories also wither. All that lasts is love for fellow humans which though non-palpable even the blind can see. Which one that is better therefore is the one that gives the greater fun. One that enriches the soul of man and brings laughter to his eyes. The fun that is sought is the same for every little child. If we can bring laughter to any little soul we would have greatly enriched our little world. The fun that lightens the little face is that gentle act that knows no border, color or religion... That fun and that fun alone is the one that matters at every point in time.

The heat that I felt all year in Africa’s tropical heat was more than mere discomfort... And the cold that I feel in Massachusetts’ winter months certainly gives some jitters and certainly many challenges.

The one gives physical and ecological stability but abundant political and developmental challenges. The other gives physical challenges but creates the environment for abundant human and mental development... Which one between the two is better is a matter of opinion of the beholder.

One gets used to the humid heat for mere consolation one might say Bundling up caters for the winter’s cold another will readily say In either situation the enterprising man will find a worthy answer. What cannot be wished away must usually be accepted in some way. Every cloud has its silver lining one may readily say But does the silver lining translate in equal ways in terms of challenges? Do abundance of nature’s resources with lots of human challenges and a multitude of physical challenges with enabling environment yield equal dividends? Technological advancement is largely a product of challenges. The benevolence of nature may thus easily turn into the curse of Nature. Advancement in the West is a product of deprivations and challenges An over-pampered little child may become lacking in more ways than one. Bountiful blessings of Nature often lead to prosperity-nakedness in later years... Deprivations and harshness of winter must therefore be seen for what they are.

It is part of the engine of prosperity for the man of the West.