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May Day (Reblogged with a few additions)

1st May…

Happy May Day!

Happy Workers Day!

Happy Maharashtra Day!

Many of you might have felt that why begin with wishes for May Day first and Maharashtra Day the last! Cause that answer lies in its history.

My kid today morning asked me, “Pappa what is the importance of this day? Why is it celebrated as international workers day and Maharashtra day?”

An unexpected question from a 7 year old made me think. I did explain to him about the socialist revolution and their fight for the cause of workers. A lot of workers blood was shed while fighting for their rights. And how 1st May was chosen to be International Workers’ Day to commemorate the 1886 Haymarket affair in Chicago. In that year, on 1st May, there was a general strike in favour of the eight hour work day. On 4th May, the police acted to disperse a public assembly in support of the strike when an unidentified person threw a bomb. The police responded by firing on the workers. The event lead to the death of eight and injury of sixty police officers as well as an unknown number of civilian killed or wounded. Hundreds of labour leaders and sympathizers were later rounded-up and four were executed by hanging, after a trial that was seen as a miscarriage of justice.

And also how India after independence was divided into linguistic states. How Maharashtra and Gujarat were born! How there was bloodshed for the same! Some politicians just for their own selfish motives dividing India on basis of language. India after being divided on basis of caste, class, kingdoms (small and large), religion; now was Her turn to be divided on basis of language. The deep scars this division has left is still taking time to heal. Today, when the country is in electoral mode and see people thinking with only a narrow minded view of their own state, it saddens me! Did we become independent from the British for all this? Is this what freedom truly is? Is this what our grandfathers fought for? And as I write today, do not know how many times more will She be divided and on what basis and with what context!

While explaining all this I was lead to think that, is this the only reason to celebrate / commemorate 1st May? Or is there some other reason too? Can our human history be so narrow-minded? So took to the internet to find my answers. And I am delighted to be proved right! History is always broad minded, not like humans who write it.

Sharing a few excerpts of what I found on the internet.

“The earliest May Day celebrations appeared with the Floralia, festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers, held on April 27 during the Roman Republic era, and with the Walpurgis Night celebrations of the Germanic countries.

The day was a traditional summer holiday in many European pagan cultures.

While February 1 was the first day of spring, May 1 was the first day of summer; hence, the summer solstice on June 25 (now June 21) was Midsummer.

As Europe became Christianised, the pagan holidays lost their religious character and May Day changed into a popular secular celebration.

A significant celebration of May Day occurs in Germany where it is one of several days on which St. Walburga, credited with bringing Christianity to Germany, is celebrated.

The secular versions of May Day, observed in Europe and North America, may be best known for their traditions of dancing around the maypole and crowning the Queen of May.

Fading in popularity since the late 20th century is the giving of May baskets, small baskets of sweets or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbours doorsteps.

(Source – Wikipedia).

I hope this clarifies the question that must have come to your mind, my dear reader for wishing May Day first and Maharashtra Day last.

Humans have been naturalists from the very beginning. The last few centuries have made them more aggressive towards nature and environment. The scientific attitude of finding answers to the different phenomenon happening around him, have also led to the thought of taking over nature and ruling it. Science wanted to find and give answers, and reveal the secrets of nature, which it did. But at the same time, a few regressive researchers went a step forward to find a way to interfere with it. This has led to disastrous effects which humanity has realised today and is finding ways to correct its mistakes.

On this very day, let us all pledge to take care of our environment and love the nature.

Let’s save Mother Earth not out of necessity. She is our mother and takes care of Her Children without any expectations. Let us coexist and thrive to achieve what the Creator would want us too.

Happy May Day!

Author:

Am a teacher by profession. A student of History and international politics. Believe that Bhakti (Devotion) and Humanism can only save Humanity. Revere all creation. My thoughts are influenced by His Holiness Pandurang Shashtriji Athavale

36 thoughts on “May Day (Reblogged with a few additions)

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