Jul 7, 2007

Atithee Devo Bhava!

Our Indian culture and tradition puts a great deal of emphasis and importance to guests. Guests are next to God, they say – Atithee Devo Bhava. With changing times, its time to sit back and ponder if guests really is an equivalent word for God!

Over so many years of my life, I have discovered that there are many types of guests who can visit you.
1) Genuine guests: These are the fine breed of relatives/friends who are genuinely happy to meet you, who genuinely want to spend time with you, who would not snoop around your things or your talks, who would help you out with your increased work. Rightfully speaking, they are not exactly guests, they become part and parcel of your family.
2) Snoopy guests: This is the lousiest breed. Before they come, you have to double check all your valuables and put them under lock and key. You have to even lock your mouth shut. You have to be on your guards lest you give out something which will get twisted and forwarded!
3) Invader guests: These guests are staunch supporters of communalism. They will barge into your bedrooms without feeling even sorry about it. Would sit coolly sipping their coffee while their young ones have already converted your home into something resembling a tsunami-effected area! They will not even feel sorry when they mess up your precious Music System or get your Pc virus-ed!
4) Short-term guests: These are the guests who come for a few hours. So, you can just put up your best behavior and try to impress them. On second thoughts, do you really want to impress?
5) Long-term guests: They stay put for a long time till you start wondering, which is the politest way to bid them bye. Mostly this clan is a close relative whose son/daughter needs some place to stay in your city for “some time”.
6) Demanding guests: Some guests need and demand good amount of pampering. They demand a pickup and drop from the airport or station. They would not mind handing you the menu for the day. They would make sure they disappear when its time to cook. They would coolly leave their kids for you to baby-sit while they run away shopping. They would even borrow some of your dresses!

Well well well! I certainly am all for Atithees but then has Kaliyug changed the meaning of Atithee or has it changed me?


~nm July 9, 2007 at 11:06 AM  

I think you can add guests who "take-you-for-granted" - who do not even bother to call beore coming so see if you don't have any other plans for the day or days in case they are here for a few days. I've a few such people and it kind of irritates me.

I think not only the meaning of "atithi" have changed in kalyug, but also the attitudes of "aitithi" havae also changed drastically.

Swati July 9, 2007 at 1:56 PM  

So true ..so apt. :-)
BTW linked you ..hope thats okay ?

WhatsInAName July 9, 2007 at 3:26 PM  

NM :)
Absolutely! I am glad you mentioned them.
After posting this, I was feeling confused whether I am being a loner and do not have the right spirit to entertain. I feel better with you agreeing on this.

Swati :)
Oh please! I feel honoured that you have linked me. Good to find likeminded people around :)

Just like that July 9, 2007 at 4:22 PM  

Indeed you're not anti-social.

There are guests who can make you feel like a guest in your own home, sometimes, and make you want to run away, as they won't leave! But thankfully, these are a rare species.

I can liken them to rain- sometimes, they are very very refreshing, and you wait for it to rain again.
And sometimes, it POURS and does untold damage, and you dread them coming again.

dame's diary July 9, 2007 at 5:16 PM  


Very funny and true!!!

WhatsInAName July 10, 2007 at 3:13 PM  

You are so right. At times, I yearn for guests and feel good and still there are times I am tearing my hair out. All in the game :)

Good to see you here :)

karmickids July 31, 2007 at 10:46 AM  

Long term, invader, demanding. These are our guests. As a result I hate living at anyone;s home when we go to another city, but it becomes such a family politics issue...would rather stay in a hotel and at peace...

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