FOR MY SINGLE, COUPLED AND MARRIED FRIENDS
Love has no bounds. Indeed, its a relationship of caring between husband and wife, mother and son, father and daughter, mother daughter, brother sister, brothers, sisters, friends, uncles, aunties, Granpa and Gramma, friends, and any one you care about. Valentine's day has moved from an exclusive rendezvous between two lovers to an universal meaningful expression of caring between any two people, and as a futurist, I see this morphing into a universal affection day within a decade.
Please feel free to say happy valentine's day to your sister, mother, brother, daughter, dad, uncle or a friend. It is a much bigger word now than it started out to be. Take them out for dinner and send them flowers to let them know that you care if you are the only one for them at this point in life.
While we Americans express it by presenting red roses to our loved ones, the Filipinos will break another record; the number of people kissing at the same time, Brazil will have another major festival on her beaches celebrating love. You are welcome to share other such expressions.
On the other side of the world, a few frustrated ones will go to the other extreme. A handful of Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshi Hindus and Muslims will go on bashing and harassing the people who want to spend their time in peace. They ransack shops that sell the cards, and have a record of beating up couples in restaurants. If I were a peacemaker, pundit or an Imam, I would actively seek these men to respect the otherness of others, and ask them to join for tea and laddus (dessert) at the Temples, Mosques or other places of worship and have them fall in love with God, and sing songs praising the lord, instead of bullying others on the street. We need to pave the way for people to respect the "otherness" of others.
Sadly, some of you are going to feel lonely, if you miss the love in your life; you have an opportunity to fulfill it. There is plenty in you that you can give by feeding the homeless, visiting lonely patients in the hospitals or nursing homes, disadvantaged women and children, our veterans... share whatever little you have with them including the time and just listening to them. When a homeless person asks, give whatever you can, that is the most affectionate thing to do, you will enrich yourselves far greater by sharing.
There is nothing more peaceful than knowing yourselves, consider appreciating what ever you have, and accepting the way you are without wishing to be something and someone else. You don't need to compare with any one on the earth, there is none like you, you are one in 7 billion; you have your own unique thumb print, eye print, dna, taste bud, colors, foods, smells, sights... by God, you are your own model! When you accept that you are unique with your problems and joy, you will find peace and love.
Don't forget, if your love makes you humble, you become the honey and attract good friendships, on the other hand if you become arrogant that others are inferior to you, you stink, and repel like hell and no one would want to be friends with you.
I dedicate these three songs to Yasmeen, my dear wife.
Kenny Roger's, you decorated my life: I particularly like the line which says, there is no rhyme or reason that is what love is all about. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gJkPFSt326c
Ronnie Milsap's, what a difference you made in my life,
Muhammad Rafi's ai Husn Zara Jaag in Urdu/ Hindi,
and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's, aap say mil kay in Urdu/Hindi
My expressions would be incomplete without honoring the poet of love, Mirza Ghalib, one of the greatest romantic poets of all times who composed his poetry in Urdu/Hindi and Farsi.
Ishk per zor nahin, hai a o aatish ghalib
Ke lagaye na lege, bujhaye no bujhe.
Affection is that flame O Ghalib,
you cannot lit or extinguish it deliberately, it just happens.
There is a beautiful Hindi/ Urdu song for the people who are platonic friends, it is one of my top ten favorites! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9oufp_mc30
I have seen the twinkle in those eyes,
let love remain love, and not give a name to it,
leave it alone and don't label a relationship to it,
Happy Valentine's Day.