Today is World Hand Washing Day. Hand washing with soap is said to be the vaccine that prevents infections by rinsing away the germs of many physical diseases, thus saving many a lives. But what about the dirt which is too strong to be cleansed away with ordinary soap? - the grime of the slap it (the hand) gave to an innocent child; the sting of pushing aside others to move ahead; the smudge of someone’s tears which it could not wipe; the stink of public money which it unabashedly siphoned off. Can we wash all this away too and resolve not to tarnish our hands again with them. It is time to give our souls a spirited rinse. The fragrant balm of love, piety, respect and honesty will spruce up our mental health by wiping off the filth of hatred, contempt, anger and insensitivity which has infiltrated the marrows of our entire being. Happy hand (and soul) washing day! May we all remain healthy in body and mind.
(Shobha Shukla, firstname.lastname@example.org)