Herald: Blood thicker than water?
Blood thicker than water?
With the second wave of Covid-19 hitting the country harder, stories of stigma and trauma as well as stories of bravery and heroism come to the fore. In these difficult times, many are abandoning their loved ones infected with Covid for fear of infection. Corona virus victims are stigmatized by their own friends and relatives and go through trauma. Nowadays, many Organizations volunteer to help those who are abandoned by their loved ones so that they do not go through a shameful phase.
In Chandigarh, a person contacted an NGO to help a woman with Covid-19. Her husband neither admitted her to the hospital nor provided her with food and medicine at home for fear of infection. The NGO came to her rescue by taking her to the hospital and she received much needed treatment. Some people are unwilling to accept their loved ones at home after hospital, even after they have tested negative. Many bodies are awaiting burial or cremation because family members do not want to claim them. Pathetic were the scenes of bodies scattered on the banks of the Ganges or floating in the river as their loved ones did not want to give them a decent funeral. Their relatives preferred to retreat into the cocoon of self-preservation and security. Has the blood relationship lost its soul? A country known for its family values no longer exudes warmth.
The trend started last year as cases of Covid-19 skyrocketed and the country began to shut down, people abroad began to return home. But their relatives did not want to welcome them into their own homes. The adage “Blood is thicker than water” seems to have lost its meaning during the Covid era.
Although relatives and extended family of Covid patients were not ready to accept it, help began to come from unknown and invisible strangers, neighbors and social workers. These are the Good Samaritans. The culture of genuine human bonds transcends lineage, religion, caste, color and regionalism. It is a new account of human relations.
In the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus speaks of a (Jewish) man who was stripped, beaten and left half-dead by thieves on his way from Jerusalem to Jericho. He was helped by a Samaritan who had compassion for him. Previously, two Jews, a priest and a Levite who saw him pass to the other side without coming to his aid (cf. Lk 10: 25-37). It is an example of the human relationship that transcends racial discrimination. Love for each other is ingrained in our hearts.
We all belong to the “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” (Universal Family of God) and are called to live in love and unity as brothers and sisters transcending all differences. Covid-19 has given us a new tale of recognizing every person next door as our brother or sister and coming to their aid when their lives are in danger.
Let’s raise a toast in honor of our key workers: doctors, nurses, pharmacists, paramedics, journalists, police officers, drivers and social workers who are on the front line during this Corona virus pandemic and as such are exposed to different dangers that put their lives in danger.