Saturday, February 5, 2011

They All Made A Sacrifice

Title : They All Made a Sacrifice

Author : FJB

Author's Note : Some stories one reads or hears get somehow interconnected and intertwined. Here's a view on the many meanings of the word - SACRIFICE. Very noir towards the end.

In the receding light, two men - one young and the other old, made their way through a cluster of hutments towards a thatched hut.

Reaching the hut, the young man went towards a woman sitting outside the hut, her face creased with lines that time had etched on it. The young man spoke first. "Amma, this man here has organised a band of brave young men, pledged for the freedom of the Motherland. I came here with him, only to seek your permission.

The old man thought that the woman would surely faint or break down at such a blow as this. For, did he not know how a mother feels to let her son go on a path leading to death or gaol? But she surprised him by saying "The mother has given him to me. Why should I grudge giving him back to her?"

The night was bleak. The news was bleaker. The young man had died serving the Motherland. The mother was not not even allowed to give her son a decent burial.

A mother had made a sacrifice. And mankind hailed her for it.


Kaikeyi was sleeping peacefully in her shayankhand when Manthara sneaked upto her, very excited and upset over something. Kaikeyi asked her what the matter was and why was she agonized
at such a joyful time. Manthara said "O Queen! You have surely turned blind. The King has sent away your son Bharat to faraway lands and is preparing for Ram's coronation."

The taunt found its mark and stung the Queen in the manner it was intended to. From that moment on, the palace was in a grip of chaos. The King was made to remember an old promise made to Kaikeyi, and what did she ask for? A kingdom for Bharat, an exile for Ram.

She had sacrificed one son for another son's sake, and mankind despised her for it.


The godman had come in for tea and stayed on for dinner. At the family's insistence of course. And why not, for he was telling them about hidden treasures. This was the chance of a lifetime. Their years of poverty and suffering seemed to be coming to an end.

Of course to lay their hands on this fabulous treasure and untold riches, they would have to appease the gods. And they could only be appeased by a sacrifice. The gaze of all three, the godman, the father and the mother shifted to the one month old sleeping peacefully in the cradle made of the mother's saree.

The mother resisted, but the father readily agreed. He was too drunk in by the talk of the riches awaiting him, to think of anything else. He would have gladly sacrificed the whole world to obtain the treasure.

He snatched the baby from the cradle and followed the godman along with his wife, the cries of the baby piercing the peaceful night air. Reaching the clearing in the forest where he carried out his tantric rites, the godman placed the baby on the altar and handed the dagger to the mother...

.... The altar was thoroughly washed and not a trace remained of the ghastly and dastardly act that had taken place there.

She had made a sacrifice and mankind never knew a thing about it.


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FJB Blogs by Fakhruddin J Bandukwala is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.