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THE REAL SUPERHERO by Parthiv Shah

July 17, 2014

THE REAL SUPERHERO 

800px-India_poor

There are three types of people.

1. Those who believe that they are heroes.

2. Those who try to imitate the above mentioned.

3. Those that are the non-heroic elements── anti-heroes to be precise.

Then I met the 4th type today.

A middle-aged beggar who was dying of hunger, weak and limping, and could barely lisp a few words, was standing outside a temple where I often go to pray. All of us have this strange tendency to remember God only when we are somewhere deep, buried beneath the burden of troubles. Mine was to score good marks in my examinations like every other child of my age. I had hardly entered the temple, when I saw this beggar. I have always prized myself on being a very good person, who does his homework on time, gets time for fun, scores good marks, and also makes his parents happy. Apart from that, I’m very kind too. Given all that, you must be thinking of how awesome I actually am. Here’s what happened.

I gave a hundred rupee note to the beggar and told him to have some food. But then I saw his condition, and got some bananas, apples, and half a litre of milk for him, myself. I was just waiting for him to say, “Thank you child, you have saved me from hunger today.” Before I could even react, he smiled at me, took the food, and gave it to an 8 year old kid, who was crying because of hunger. On questioning him, I found out that he did not even know the kid, who had hurriedly thanked the man and skipped away happily with the food. He told me that the kid was mumbling about his old grandfather being sick, and the money being spent on the medicines, and it wasn’t too hard to figure out that was little money left for basic amenities like food. Needless to say, the beggar gave him all the fruits and the milk.

That day I realized something. The 4th type was finally discovered. That day, I met a real superhero. Not the one who wear a cape, or have some hi-fi electronic gadgets or the one who does some magic and saves the world. That day, I discovered the value of every single thing that we don’t value. Funny as it may seem, from the fan in our houses to the majestic air conditioner, the cheap low-light bulb to the magnificent lamp shades of exotic variety, from mom’s Khichri to McDonald’s burger, we all take it for granted.

Coming back, the man I met today was just an ordinary human being. Like you. Like me. But his actions proved otherwise. We don’t need to boast about our good actions. Neither should we expect. That’s the true hallmark of a superhero. The man was not a beggar. I felt like a beggar in front of his deed. I was dumbfounded, and it took me a couple of minutes to regain my composure. I asked him, “How could you do this anyway? You’re hungry, worn out and a bit sick yourself!” He gave me a simple yet convincing answer. “The ultimate happiness is watching someone being happy, and you being a part of his happiness.” I finally realized the difference between me being a very good person and this man’s actions. I am “good” till a certain boundary, a limit. That is my family, friends and studies. What about society? What about people?

My friends, there is a hero in each one of you. We need to realize this. We need to upgrade ourselves from the 1st type to the 4th type. We just need to look inside ourselves. A real superhero is selfless, unyielding, enduring, and AWESOME. Don’t forget AWESOME. That man was awesome and will remain awesome for the rest of my life. If you’re wondering what he’s doing now, he’s working as a watchman in a big society. Yes, I thought of narrating the episode to my father, who, being resourceful, gave him some monetary support and got him this job.  He is hale and hearty now, and I do meet him regularly too. Now, now, stop chuckling, I’m not boasting at all.

Copyright 2014 Parthiv Shah

Image courtesy (for representative purpose only): 

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