Recently, His Excellency Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam was at Columbia University to receive the Hoover medal for his contribution to public service. It was such a privilege and honor to be a part of the team that put the event together. Other notable dignitaries included Nobel Laureates like John Nash (Economics 1994, you may remember him from the movie A Beautiful Mind or Nash Equilibrium), Martin Chalfie (Chemistry 2009). Also Pundit Jasraj, Prof. Jagdish Bhagwati etc etc graced the occasion.
Being in the presence of a person like Kalam Sir, so innocent, energetic, humble and natural; fills you up with loads of positive energy. He was at his best during the whole event, quoting Thiruvellar and Patanjali at equal ease. The best part was when a lady asked a question and started looking somewhere else, he pointed out to her on microphone “Madam I am talking to you so kindly pay attention”. Jokes apart, one of his poems was so deep and beautiful that I was not able to hold myself to share it with everyone. Here it goes:
“Where there is righteousness in the heart
There is beauty in the character.
When there is beauty in the character,
there is harmony in the home.
When there is harmony in the home.
There is an order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation,
There is peace in the world.”
True, if you want peace in the world we have to work at individual level than society, as it is the individuals who make the society not the other way round.
To be continued…