Father's Day

Just as mother is a symbol of compassion, kindness, benevolence and selfless love, father embodies protection, security and struggle for the family he creates.

A consciencious father acts like an umbrella to cover the family from all the vagaries of unforeseen events. The modern father is a provider, a disciplinarian, a role model, a confidant, an educator, and a mentor. But most importantly, he is a dad. In Hindu ethos father has a place at a much higher pedestal in the family.

If we visit any traditionalist family in South India, one can invariably find a son or daughter touching the feet of his/her father soon after they open their eyes, early morning. This tradition continues in most of the upper caste families till date. Origin of Father's Day: After the celebration of the mother's day became a ritual, attempts were made to earmark a day for the father, in the begining of the 20th century. Despite these early movements, a woman from Spokane, Washington, named Sonora Smart Dodd, came up with the idea for Father's Day, during a Mother's Day celebration in 1909. A year later Spokane celebrated its first Father's Day. The holiday had attracted attention of President Wilson to participate in Spokane's Father's Day celebration, in 1916. Another President, Calvin Coolidge, lent his support to Father's Day by calling for all the states to hold Father's Day celebration in 1924. It, however, took more than forty years before the holiday was first nationally recognised in 1966 with the good offices of President Johnson. Finally, in 1972, Congress formally recognised Father's Day as an official holiday and fixed the day of its observance as the third Sunday in June.

Some of the quotes which follow, will help us remember how our own fathers have developed relationships with us, served as role models for us, and imparted wisdom to us. These are some of the most important things a father can do, and on Father's Day, which will be celebrated on Sunday, June 17, we should respect and honour fathers for what they've done for us. What you should do on this day:

  • Visit your father wherever he is and surprise him by telling him, you still remember how he used to care for you.
  • Send him a card or flowers with a poem, especially written for him or befitting him Take him to dinner or cook for him.
  • Surprise him by making breakfast or lunch this Sunday.Surprise him by putting in, some cash into his pocket or purse. Think of any one man, other than your own father, who has been a father figure to you, and surprise him by visiting him with a carton of sweets.
  • A father may be a celebrity or a President or just a regular person, but above all he is a role model for his children. On his father's role
    • Abraham Lincoln once remarked:
      "My father taught me to work; he did not teach me to love it". " I just owe almost everything to my own father....He brought me up to believe all the things that I do believe."
    • Margaret Thatcher. "MY father used to play with my brother and me in the yard. Mother would come out and say,'you're tearing up the grass.' 'We're not raising grass,' Dad would reply, We're raising boys.'---
    • Harmon Killerbrew. " I'm a soldier and take pride in that fact, but I am prouder, infinitely prouder, to be a father."----
    • Douglas MacArthur. "Certain is it that there is no kind of affection so purely angelic as of a father to a daughter."

As we celebrate Father's Day, it is important to remember the father's evolving role in today's society. Even as times change , fathers will remain vitally important to their children and to society as a whole. The religious leader Billy Graham once remarked : " A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, and unnoticed, yet one of the most valuable assets in our society."

*Dr. Tej K. Munshi, is Ex. Professor, Deptt. of Applied Sciences, NIT (J&K)
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