Kartavya (November 2014)


“No, please don’t say thanks! It was my duty.” (“Nahin, nahin. Yeh to mera kartavya tha.”)

We observe such exchanges on regular basis in movies and storybooks – and sparingly in real life. Even though it sounds fine, do we really understand the true meaning of the term Kartavya? Hasn’t the word “kartavya” become a cliché, which nobody wants to use? In the Hinduism, a code of conduct is defined for every role we play in life; this code of conduct is Kartavya. This month’s assignment and a point to pay attention in our day-to-day life until the next hawan is Kartavya (Duties).


As part of the assignment, the kids will focus on the following three points:

–          The  true meaning of the term Kartavya (Duties).

–          That, the duties are tied to the roles of a person – and not the person himself/herself. For example, it is possible for a boy, who has a set of duties as a brother, to have a different set of duties as a son and an altogether different set of duties as a student.

–          The benefits of fulfilling one’s duties. This is the key part of the assignment. In today’s world, where selfishness is viewed as an advantage, it is difficult for kids – and perhaps adults, too – to appreciate the significance of the duties. Unfortunately, it is not difficult to see undesirable behaviors or examples around us where adults aren’t fulfilling their duties – be it as a son, a brother, or a citizen. Knowing it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to change the behavior after a certain age, let’s take this month’s assignment as an opportunity to have heart-to-heart discussions with our kids on this topic. It is also the time for us parents to reflect on whether we are performing all those duties that we want our kids to follow.


We hope to hear the kids’ hearts and real-life stories in this month’s hawan.


Harsh Mendiratta