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Doubts and Parents Responsibility

Why fires go upwards? What is the difference between aroma and fragrance? Why we wake up with bad breath? Why women weep more openly? Why sometimes we find sand in the newly purchased imported blue jeans?

When children raise these doubts, parents normally shut their enthusiasm with a standard remark “Don’t ask silly questions”. In Telugu they are called ‘choppadantu prasnalu’. Elders should never kill the eagerness of a child. Here is an example from my life experience.

Ravan the movie:

Abhishek Bachhan kidnaps the wife of in the police station. When I read the synopsis of this film, I recalled my childhood doubt. a police officer to take revenge for his innocent sister’s rape and death

This story is inspired from the greatest all-time epic Ramayana but the director deviates from the original with regard to hero’s sister character. In Ramayana her name is Surpanaka, who is neither raped nor killed. In fact she gets punished for expressing her love.

When I was twelve years old I was confused. Why a person like Laxmana with such high ethical standards, should slash Surpanaka’s ears and nose? My father also could not clarify but later found the answer from “Ramayana Kalpavrisham” by Jnanpeet awardee Viswanadha Satyanarayana.

When the demon lady proposes, Laxmana asks how he, being a normal human, can feed her giant belly and massive hunger. She says, “Don’t worry. I have special virtues. From any distance my ears can sense the footstep sounds of any animal. My nose is so powerful that when I take deep breath, those creatures either rabbit or elephant fly and fall before me.”

Laxamana reveals: “There is a purpose for our stay in the forest for past thirteen years. It is to save innocent animals and holy Saints from evil forces like you. Being a lady I don’t kill you but relieve you from your powers” and slashes her ears and nose.

I still remember after fifty years how my father enquired, found and clarified, instead of calling it a ‘choppadantu prasna’. Some of the children’s doubts may be silly but many of them have scientific or logical reasoning. We may not find answers for all but no harm in trying through Google etc. It enhances our knowledge

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