To buy or give on Akshaya Trithiya?

As I was watching the afternoon news on Sun TV, I got a start at the non-stop screeching of the doorbell. Who could it be at this hottest part of the day, I wondered, and reluctantly went to open the door. There stood Savitha holding huge packets in both her hands, appearing fully drenched in sweat. Huffing and puffing she went past me literally pushing me aside and slumped in the chair which was placed right under the fan.

Where have you been in this hot sun? I said. 

She took quite a while to compose herself and only after gulping the cool drink that I had offered she was able to answer my question.

Don’t you know today is Akshaya Thritiya, an auspicious day to buy gold and jewellery? she said.

Well, yes, I know, that but I wouldn’t venture in the hot sun even if it would mean…

Savitha interrupted me saying, “This day will never come again, till a year. That’s why I was keen on purchasing the yellow metal as well as the white metal.”

But you could have gone in the evening when it would have cooled down a little, I said.

Impossible, I would have got sandwiched in all that crowd. In fact, after last year’s bitter experience, I decided never to shop during evening hours on Akshaya Thritiya, she said, stressing the words ‘impossible’ and ‘bitter’.

I could see her point. I asked her whether buying gold the previous year made her more prosperous .

Of course, it made me more prosperous as I have added to my collection of jewellery with every purchase, otherwise, I wouldn’t be buying it year after year for the past three years, she emphasised. “Also I bought a few sarees as well this time just to see if my wardrobe would enlarge,” she added.

But Savitha, doesn’t this auspicious day signify something else, probably something more important? I asked.

What is that? she asked raising her eyebrows.

That, whatever good you do today, the result will be doubled, I said.

Like what?

For instance, if you gift something in cash or kind to the needy or deserving or participate in religious activities such as group chanting or…

Before I could say anything more, Savitha interrupted, saying, but Meera, I feel all that you suggest will only have a diminishing effect as it would mean money is going out of your pocket to spend on others. But if you buy gold, you are spending on yourself, don’t you see, she reasoned.

I saw her point but knew she would never be able to see mine.

N Meera Raghavendra Rao

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4 thoughts on “To buy or give on Akshaya Trithiya?

  1. Prof.V.N.K.Kumar

    Why Savitha would never be able to see your point is simple. Unlike you, she didn’t have a mother to teach her the value of voluntary simplicity nor did she have a MIL to teach her the value of Altruism.

    How Altruism makes us happy :

    1. Helping others trigger feel-good hormones. The brain’s pleasure-linked chemicals such as Dopamine and various Endorphins are released into the blood stream, when we engage in helpful behaviour, creating euphoric energy called “Helper’s High”, similar to “Runner’s high”.

    2. A research study has identified high levels of the hormone “Oxytocin” in people who are generous. The hormone Oxytocin is best known for its role in preparing mothers for motherhood – to induce contractions, but it is present both in males and females.

    Unlike Adrenalin which causes “Fight or Flight” behaviour in response to threats, Oxytocin causes ” Tend & Befriend” behaviour which prompts us to manage stress by affiliating with others and working co-operatively.

    3. Helping others raises our self-esteem and enables us to forgive our own mistakes, failings and shortcomings according to a controlled study. This self-forgiveness is the key to a sense of well-being.

    4. Some people are reluctant to help others because they are pre-occupied with their own problems. Yet after you start to help others, you may find that your pre-occupation with your own problems recedes and with it, the anxiety that can block your happiness.

  2. Everyone has his/her own logic. Like how gold is doubled when bought on an Akshyatritiya day, spending (loss of money from her hand) also is doubled.

    But I like the Professor’s write up about the bringing up very much. Prasad

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