The old man NOT in Aleppo!

DISCLAIMERThis write up will end up talking about two different yet relatable things. That has been done intentionally.

What can be the worst nightmare of a human being? For me it’s dying. But recently my perception changed. I didn’t know there is a higher level to that nightmare. And that is – you are told that you are going to die, but not about the moment when it will hit you. I mean just imagine, there is this very general statement that you are going to die soon. That is it!

A few days back, a link on Facebook caught my eye. It said SYRIANs from Aleppo are posting farewell messages saying – ‘They are waiting to die’. It really was emotional. All synonyms to grief – sadness, anguish, sorrow, everything gathered within me, constricting my throat after reading the content and watching some videos. This made me wonder what led to this war’s breakout. Okay. I am not much into news, though have improved a lot recently. After doing some not-so-extensive research for around one hour, it took me another hour to digest a fact. A fact that it was a graffiti, a mere graffiti by some school teens marked the origination to this war. It sparked this raging fire in Syria. How that graffiti got those teens arrested, which made their parents and many others to get onto roads protesting in Daraa, then the gradual extension of these protests in other places like Homs, Damascus and which eventually and gradually made Syria a living hell for almost everyone living being over there.

This reads – Your turn Doctor. According to the sources, doctor refer to the ‘President’ of Syria, Dr. Bashar al-Assad

I went through the interviews of those school kids too, of whom not all are alive. They never knew that one small act, which for them was fun and not at-all intended to draw the world’s attention towards them, will turn their lives and their nation’s future upside down. I also read a lot of write-ups and interviews of Syrians who are held captive in their own nation. How they are forced to live in the worst conditions. They don’t have access to even one time’s meal of the day, let alone clean drinking water.

There is hardly any place left where one can go if gets injured. In a place which is amidst a war zone, this is one of the worst scenarios to put into the picture. Hospitals have been bombarded, all that is left is huge mass of rubble over there. The medical help that is being provided underground is also restricted till making anybody’s bleeding stop. Once doctor or nurse or whosoever makes your bleeding stop, he/she asks you to leave the place. There is nothing more they can do for you.

All this is the very brief part of what all I read. In addition to all this, there were pictures of deserted homes, bombarded acres of land, injured people; all in all I saw everything that is way more than enough to make anybody’s heart sink and eyes moist. It was then when I thought ‘Why God? Why these innocent people?’ I was feeling helpless. Those faces of Syrians, the geographical condition of their nation, everything kept on revolving around me for quite some time. As an empathetic human being I was so much moved by whatever I read and saw, I wished I was there in Syria helping out those children, women and men.

The image below explains it all. Aleppo in 2010 verses 2016,

Though the evacuation has been started in Aleppo, but it still will take number of days to evacuate the whole place. I pray and hope for the war in Syria to come to an end which will bring surcease to their living nightmares. It gives me chills to even think of those innocent faces, dead bodies lying on the streets and rubble all around.

And just like that I happen to pen this post down.

What bothered me the most was not what I read about Syria. But this,

Just two days back while I was heading towards my home, I saw an old man, extremely thin and weak, hunkered down at the side of the road opposite to the one I was walking. He was shivering, maybe because of cold weather. I noticed him helplessly for about a few seconds and went ahead on my way. But was I really helpless? Just like Syria’s case, was it not possible for me to help that man?

I wanted to help him. If not much I could have offered him some food and a warm piece of clothing, anything.

Though there are different reasons which make us, me included, hesitant in helping out these people, given the records of how for many of them it’s a business and how they pretend to be one of those helpless people. But that man, he had a very distressed face and the way his body was shivering, it was actually asking for some warmth. For some reason his misery and helplessness seemed genuine to me. But I preferred standing at a far distance, feeling pity for him, and then get away with it. It’s not that I couldn’t help him but I didn’t. Did I do it on purpose? Probably not. But I got too busy in thinking about the condition of the old man that I couldn’t think of doing something for him.

It must have happened with lot of us, maybe, and a lot of times. We care enough about others that we lose the vision of actually helping them out.

I realized I need not to torment myself being unable to do something for those in Aleppo, rather help someone instead of feeling pity for him/her from a distant corner.

As they say,

Helping hands are better than praying lips.

No credits for images and quote used.
Copyright © 2016 by Idle Muser. All rights reserved.


33 thoughts on “The old man NOT in Aleppo!

  1. This is soo true that it hurts?!!
    Lately my cousin who works as journalist for a magazine got me few pics of devastated Syria, and told me stories about how people are barely living…..
    And your post, I just relived all that….
    It’s Painful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Their dire state can make any heart cringe. And now, in 2018, it’s Ghouta. Terrifying and chilling accounts of civilians living there make me feel so grateful for whatever I have and, of course, extremely helpless for the suffering Syrians.
      I don’t know how did I miss replying to your comment, Shaggy. Apologies for such delayed response.


  2. Rightly said and a very well written blog.I remember as children we would give beggars, suffering on streets , money in the hope and feeling happy to help them with our small share.But as we grew older we realised it did no good.The suffering we saw back then and made our hearts sad, now retorts back feeling dejected and angry. Nevertheless an empathetic person always tries helping, to ease others suffering.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My God, you mirror my sentiments about helping others in times of need. My very first blog post was about this as well – how I encountered a woman who needed help from anyone and yet no one, me included did anything, because, I call it apathy, has seeped far too much into our systems to be provoked by any amount of tragedy in our neighbourhood. More’s the pity. I sought to atone myself by writing about that incident on my blog. You seem to do the same. Lovely post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh! I had missed that post of yours too. Will go through it.
      Though my write-ups are more of a mixture of fiction and reality, and you cannot really know which part belongs to which genre. I like to keep it that way for some reason. 😀
      Even in this write-up, Aleppo was the real part, while the old man-not the exact real, neither complete fiction. But yes, it is real close to being real, and that is why I chose to jot it down.
      I hope there comes a day when we realize the emotions of being sympathetic and helpful.
      Thank you for reading this Pradita. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. As politicians weigh courses of action against their political agendas the death toll weighs heavy on the conscience of the world. The once vibrant Syrian streets are now haunted by the souls of the innocent and the historic monuments that told of an unrivalled Arab civilisation no longer stand tall.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s sad. It’s horrifying actually, to know how human is keen to slash off human for the interests manifested within him by other ‘more’ brutal devils.
      If you say Syria in today’s date, the only term that comes in one’s mind is WAR!😐


  5. Poignant….not commentating on aleppo…as you said what’s is there in comments when we can’t really do anything…. Atleast let us act on instead of praying for the sufferers who are there around us…

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Superb Aditi. Really appreciate for throwing light on this weakness of “Wanting to help but doesn’t do, when the need or opportunity arises’. But there are also few, who doesn’t seems to be bothered or care for human suffering, which they read in News Papers but they help, when they see a near & dear suffer. Just a thought. Is this because – “The far sighted people are very comfortable to a long term vision and they are uncomfortable, when they have to act immediately”. To be honest, I too belong to this tribe. Absolutely fearless about future & want to build the new world; but exercises caution for today and postpones difficult decisions for tomorrow.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Sir.
      You elaborated the whole thing in a brilliant way. Some think and act; some neither think nor act; while some don’t think, simply act. The last category of people is what we need.
      I hope we all, far sighted people, just stand up for evil or wrong, and act when required.
      Thanks again for your wonderful feedback, Sir.


  7. I would like to know one simple thing. What is there to achieve from all this? A beautiful heritage city reduced to dirt, innocent people killed, displaced, handicapped and scarred for life, families broken and all this is done to prove some point….that even a fun prank is enough to offend the ones in power and lead to a nationwide human and property demolition drive?
    UN proves helpless in most cases. They comfortably sit in the safety of their offices when people need them to rise up to the violence with some solid steps.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If only we could achieve anything from all this. But not even one’s wildest dreams, one can think of any benefit he/she can impart from all this.
      Destructing, murdering, killing has never got anyone anywhere. Sadly, don’t know when we will really understand this!
      Though situation has improved now in Aleppo, but the lifetime scares that people have on their mind and hearts are beyond any remedy.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Just recently, I was watching some show on ‘Channel HISTORY’ in which they were mentioning “The world’s top ten heritage places and also the oldest”. One was Aleppo. That time, in the show, they said -“Aleppo counts in one of most beautiful heritage places to visit. It is one of the oldest, too!”. It is extremely disturbing that now the statement has almost been converted into “It WAS one of the oldest heritage places to visit”. The evils have destroyed it all. You know, the worst part? This hints us about something -about the fact that even ‘UN -UNITED NATIONS’ is helpless in doing anything. The peace maintaining forces are helpless-clueless. This hints us that a little increase in the number of devils and this world won’t be a safe place to live in. We gotta find some place else. We so need to.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is a new piece of information and it hurts more to know how something beautiful has been demolished.
      Ananaya, I feel we are already living in an UNsafe world. Devils are all around us. The more careful you are, the better are your chances to stay safe.
      All we can do is stay safe and help the ones who share the same vision as ours, of a safe and peaceful world.
      Thanks you for sharing your views. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Aleppo news has been flashing in media from last few days and is the worst tragedy for human kind till now. They are depriving the civilian trapped in war zone from medical and relief facilities which is a inhumane act.
    You said it so rightly in your last paragraph and I do completely agree with you. Everyday we get many chances to help someone in need, but we don’t help, not because we can’t but we don’t do it because we choose not to. We fill our heart with compassion, sorrow and pity for that needy guy but we don’t really reach out to help them. It is tragedy which we need to finish and help whole heartedly to every one we can.
    As I said in one of my post we must insist our leaders to come together and finish off this middle east crisis as soon as possible. A huge step must be taken by citizen of every country for the peace of the whole world.
    Lovely post.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I so agree with you Vishal. This is high time that every country needs to not just stand up but productively do something to prevent Middle East from more distruction. But, sadly, there is no non-violent solution to it. They don’t listen to anyone. They are way too brutal. A solution to it is the peace keeping forces enter into their states. But that’ll sure lead to war. And that would result in the killing of the innocents too! I thought a lot about it but till date, couldn’t find a proper solution to it.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Felt so better to know that you gave thought to this issue, most of the people in our country in fact all over the world are turning deaf ears on this issue. Yes the immediate, effective solution is not possible, but with the resources available to our global leaders and super power countries, surely they can find a immediate solution to it, only if they want and we must insist our respective country leaders to do that. That is what I think, we must make everyone aware that is war is going in our backyard and I find it quite probable that it has capabilities spread all over Asia.
        So lets do for us!!!

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Thank you so much Vishal.
      Helping Aleppo is beyond our control. But what about the ones around us? That needs a real thinking.
      Other than that, it’s not in one country’s hand to cease middle-east crisis. It is impossible. So all the nations, who want a peaceful future should come together before it gets too late, real late.
      I would love to read your post too. Please share the link with me. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It really is Radhika. 😦
      Those pictures are just a glimpse of an enormous destruction.
      Situation has improved in Aleppo, many are rescued, but the permanent scars that they hold within, I doubt that they can ever be cured.

      Liked by 1 person

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