Altogether your investment of yourself into the project is getting to be a magnificent obsession which is very commendable but deserves caution. So what is it I wonder that so relentlessly drives you. I am trying to understand were the words written by someone I dearly respect. He went on to say: The scope of Project Why is exponential. This is what is concerning me. Is there an indication for rationalising the endeavour. I wonder. If your father was alive what advise would he have proffered.
The words would have irked me had they come form anyone else. But the person who wrote them was someone I cherish dearly, someone I know cares deeply for me. And moreover it is someone who was very close to Ram, my father. So somehow a simple email metamorphosed into a message from the heavens, one that needed to be deciphered gently.
So let us begin by trying to find out what it is it that relentlessly drives me? The answer is not hard to find. For me it is inconceivable to sit doing nothing when faced with disturbing whys, be it a Manu begging on the street or a troubling statistic like the one that states that a child does of malnutrition every 8.7 minutes, be it the sight of a child made to beg on the streets when s/he should be in school or the plight of a woman used and abused, be it the pain of a parent running helter-skelter to garner the money to save its child or the sadness in the eyes of children of a lesser god that no one cares for. Can trying to seek answers to any of these whys be termed as a magnificent obsession or is it simply the only option. I tend to think it is the latter: simply the only road that one can travel. So what drives me is no magnificent obsession: I simply see, hear and care.
But there is more in the mail that needs answers. Yes the growth of pwhy is exponential but that is simply because whys keep coming our way, almost as if they were guided to by an invisible hand. This is what I have felt right from the outset. The feeling that this time, no matter what I may seem to others, I am not in charge. A first for me who has always liked being in the drivers seat. But not this time. From the day I first walked the tiny street where Manu was born and where the first stone of pwhy was subsequently laid, I intuitively felt a presence gently propelling me forward. And there was no looking back, with each why that was thrown my way, came an answer that miraculously worked. Pwhy had wings of its own on which I had scant control!
So what was the message. The words caution and rationalising perturbed me. Where we going or growing too fast? Was planet why too big a venture for me to handle? Did I have the required skills? And did rationalising mean slowing down, pruning the project, finding another sustainability plan that was less onerous? And yet as I have said time and again planet why seemed to have a life of its own, each time we have been close to giving it up, something has occurred to save it. 2011 is the last year we are giving to the project so if the God of Lesser Beings want to see it happen, then he needs to conjure a miracle fast. In spite of my best efforts I have been unable to dictate what happens at pwhy. Pwhy grows organically. One just tends to it with care and heed.
And last but not the least, what advise would my father have proffered. Knowing him he would have encouraged me to continue on the path I have chosen without doubt. True he would have, like any caring parent, been concerned about me, but would have always advised me to carry on hearing, seeing and caring.