Today is an important day because it is the day when Salman Khan’s new film Ek Tha Tiger is out. No, I’m joking! Today is an important day because the world celebrates two mothers: Mother India and Jesus’s Mother, Mary.
My Name is Marie:
On the 15th of August, Catholics celebrate Mary’s Assumption; she was taken to Heaven after resurrection. It is a really important day for the Catholics, especially in Corsica, my childhood area where I go on summer holiday and where religion used to be very important. By the way, many women have their names starting with Marie there: Marie-Pierre, Marie-Françoise, Marie-Jeanne and so on. Myself, my first name is Marie-Laetitia. But for my blog, it’s Marilay.
So, yesterday, I went to the church because we celebrated Mary. Strangely enough, I wasn’t christened when I was a baby, so now I am considered as an atheist. When your parents are Hindu, you become Hindu naturally as soon as you are alive. In Catholicism, it’s different. Of course, I can join the Catholic Religion but I have to study for two years before being allowed to be christened. So, you must be very motivated! I can also choose another religion like Islam or Buddhism. But my culture is Christian and my parents are catholic, so I sometimes follow them when they go to the church.
I have no religion but I love religions. That’s why I love India because there are plenty of religions and believers. Spirituality still exists in India and it is part of people’s lives. In France, it’s different; I sometimes feel that religion can be practiced only in churches, mosques, temples… But once you are outside, religion is nowhere to be seen.
Some people say that religions are bad but I think they’re wrong. People are bad, but religions, never. Religion is a tool; human beings have to use it the proper way. That’s all. I wish I were religious. But it is difficult to believe in God when you have never been educated in religion. I remember this quotation by Mohandas Gandhi: Faith is not something to grasp, it is a state to grow into. I totally agree with it!
So during the mass, yesterday, I read a text from the Bible: I was really nervous because I was alone before the village people and the priest and I had to read a complicated text about resurrection and it was the first time I had done that. I also sang in the chore with the ladies from the village. It wasn’t very good but what is important is to do something for the village. It is not X Factor!
So today, it is Mary’s day. It is my day. My relatives are supposed to kiss me and give me presents. So if you are called Marie, Mary or Maria…, I wish you a good day!
I also wish a good Independence Day to Indian people, of course. This day in 1947 when India became free from the British is celebrated everywhere in India and in the media. I didn’t know how to celebrate this event apart from publishing a Youtube thing or flags or anything else. There are so many things about Independence Day everywhere! So, I have found this picture of a sculpture by Philippe Ramette: The Installation (Inner Public Square), 2011. I took this picture at the famous exhibition at Beaubourg ( Paris-Delhi-Bombay). It is an Indian young woman who is climbing up to a pedestal. I found it was a great symbol of independent India but also the symbol of the status of women in India which is changing; the woman is climbing slowly to a place where only men used to be; the woman is climbing to independence and to freedom from the patriarchal rule.
As an Indian Catholic(who now lives in the west) your post bought back childhood memories of going from early morning mass(during which I served as an altar boy) to the Flag-hoisting(Independence Day) ceremony at school, which was right next door to the Church(since the school was run by the priests).
My kid brain was often addled as to whether Aug. 15 was Independence Day because it was the Feast of Assumption or vice versa(esp. with references to ‘Mother’ India/’Mother’ Mary floating around). A real chicken and egg problem it was… 😉
As an aside, I wasn’t aware you were Corsican – I’ve always wanted to visit. The culture seems intriguing, to say the least. Oh well, some day… *sigh*
Thank you for sharing these memories!
I like this idea of the two mothers. I was very happy, almost proud, when I heard the signature of India’s independence was the same day as Mary’s Day. And I knew I would be easy to remember! 😉
I lived in Corsica for years and I still go there on holiday. You are right, the culture, especially, people are “intriguing” even for me, but to be sincere I find most of Corsicans quite nice. And the landscapes are really really beautiful. I’ll post a few pictures soon.
Who is the artist of madonna and baby Jesus?