The Oman Daily Observer of Sunday January 13th 2013
Between Us Only!
Or Material Deprivisation!
- The children simply cannot concentrate on their studies – because they have not eaten the whole day before! – Kenyan Teacher
My heart really broke into smithereens and pieces in watching this heart rending topic in Al Jazeera Television Programme Counting The Cost showing the increasing relative poverty – or as also known as material deprivatisation – in Europe now due to the current economic woes and stagnation.
The part that really pained me was to hear this female Doctor saying that in all her life she had thought of volunteering to go outside her country to help others in other countries more in need. She had never ever imagined that one day she would be required and it was necessary to help in her own country to those less fortunate – or in other words suffering from ‘relative poverty’ or ‘material deprivisation’!
Poverty Face 1
Despite some being worse off than others – the religion plays a role in their lives – and they group and help each other – despite all odds against them – and a shinning example and beacon to others!
What is relative poverty?
- Relative poverty is a poverty measure based on a poor standard of living or a low income person to the rest of society.
- It does not necessarily imply that physical human necessities of nutrition, health and shelter cannot be met.
- Instead it suggests that the lack of access to many of the goods and services expected by the rest of the society leads to social exclusion and damaging results for the individuals and families in relative poverty.
- Relative Poverty is when people are poor when compared to others around them – but may still have enough money to survive.
- It is based on the cultural environment around them, not on a basic amount necessary for all humans to survive.
- Relative poverty is also defined as the possession of less money than others in the same society, or the inability to afford the standard of living of more comfortable individuals or that is believed to be possible or appropriate.
- According to relative poverty, if you live in an expensive neighborhood, and you have everything you need to get by, but do not own luxurious things, you could still be said to be in poverty when compared to the people around you, even though you have everything you need.
It really hurts and pains me a lot to see such people that were once proud and able to manage their own affairs – and ways and means of life go down these ways! To the extent that some had opted out the easy way of committing suicides! I could emphatise with them – having myself gone through the motions – to result in my life turning over to become instead as a Writer, Columnist and Author instead!
All The Faces of Poverty and Distress
In all my life dealings – I have always liked these people to be overall nice, decent and gentlemanly people – but sadly they are now being hijacked by few but fast rising extreme right wingers that blame immigrants and foreigners for their condition and state of affairs now! The ‘blame game’ is now all over the world to find scape goats in others! History is full of such incidents – all over the world!
In that distant land – a long time ago – my late mother-in-law was frantic and erratic – because there was this incessantly unending baby cries from her house neighbours. So she could not keep to herself – and ventured to go and ask ‘what was the matter?’ She got the response that the mother of the baby was sick and had no milk in her – and the baby could eat solid food yet. In other words – whilst we had tins and tins of powdered milk that was hardly used and only in rare emergency case – the neighbour’s child was literally starving in front of our very eyes!
No place to go to!
I have written about this in my earlier articles – when long time ago – a family member from the interior came to our house – and the children were so excited and happy for the first time to have eaten ‘fast foods’! I cried that night – and that is why I had always aimed in my life to assist and help others – as much as I possibly can as being my focus, ambition and motto in life. Thank God that those children are now in good decent jobs and positions – and they always ‘tease me’ on this when seeing me!
If you think you need more – think of these!
I think The Religious Leaders and The Scholars are doing good jobs in lecturing, advising and counselling the youth especially – but I think they – and parents, relatives and The Society as a whole – we must do more – and we must impart life’s true bitter and painful experiences that you simply cannot win all the time – when you want and to get more always – always a win-win thing – because there are others worse off than you – that too deserve a chance and break too – just like you!
There is a need to be grateful for what we have – and come to our senses – and see reality and truth on a level so as to make us better people – and as observing people in our faith and in beliefs – and in our history, culture, heritage, habits, customs and traditions! It is time not just to look far in advance – and demand for more – but to see how many others are still far behind the rest of us yet!
May Allah God Always direct us in the right ways and path – Amin Amen.
By Majid Al Suleimany