“He not busy being born is busy dying”
Popular American songwriter Bob Dylan once sang this to inscribe the true meaning of being born throughout the life rather than being busy dying. Life for its innate nature has spectacular virtues. The catch is to be born throughout one’s life to experience the novelty that it has to offer. Many of us remain busy to pursue larger goals in life. There is nothing wrong in it but, at times, we may fail to rejoice at the brilliance of our lives, of the people around us, of the society that we live in, the small celebrations in our daily lives and the unknown. There are only a few amongst us, who are always busy being born, rather than busy dying. Not many of us know how we can strive to born innumerous times before we die. Arun Saharia, fondly known as Tapan, is one of them. Tapan Khura always lived to born again as he celebrated youth by remaining forever young at heart.
His 72 years story in his heart was alive till the time he died on April 24, 2013. Always opened to newer shores, newer dreams, and blue skies, Khura knew how to breathe the fresh air, celebrate his experiences and make merry with memories as he stayed forever young. Born into a vibrant family and a progressive neighborhood in Laban, Shillong, he was a person with whom we lived their childhood, in a time that was devoid of materialistic bliss of today, and a time that was struggle at every turn of the day, and may be a time when people truly smiled. And, he recounted how they celebrated the buying ofa ticket to cinema by selling old newspapers, how they let their dreams fly sky high with their kites, how they run amock in the neighborhood with their sling shots, how they would celebrate the Durga Puja at the illustrious & historical Laban Naamghar, his stories from his days in St. Edmund’s College in Shillong or Regional Engineering College in Rourkella, his arguments as a senior technocrat & learned man or a man of his generation debating why new is better yet old is gold. I tried to live that innocence through his eyes, which lit up when they show me those lost frames from their childhood; through his engaging voice, that egged me to leap in joy with excitement like that small boy in him. His rich generation taught us this craft of busy being born and we shall continue to celebrate your life, your smile, your voice, and your memories.
A people’s man, Tapan Khura was always to be found among people: talking, sharing, experiencing. His humane touch was felt, deep and wide, when he left us recently after illness. The love that he invested among people, the care that he provided to people, the moments that he shared with people came back to comfort his beloved ones during this critical hour of his departure. For his immaculate ability to swiftly tell the day, date from a particular year, for his spick and span intelligence, for his beliefs in logic & reasoning, for his advocacy of shedding age old superstitions, he taught us how to celebrate life. A heavenly soul, a smiling face, a fruity voice, our tall & handsome Tapan Khura departed from the physical world. But, yes, you have born again. You are inside us with your stories, with your arguments, with your experiences, with your beliefs; for your love for us, for your blessings for us. You are inside our hearts; nice and warm. We knew that you will born again even after your death in our thoughts, our memories enriched with your story. Death is the final reality but life is the truth that we live.
Tapan Khura, you are busy being born again as you never knew to die. ‘May you stay forever young!’