My father

My father Karsanbhai Alabhai Kodiatar was an extra ordinary person.
He was very famous in his time and generation. He lived from 1903 to 1995
and was born and raised in a Rabari community where he faced so much
discrimination by the society. Even with the obstacles in his way, he did not
stop growing and achieving.

He was a pioneer of education in the Rabari community. He spent years fighting
against blind faith. Priests of our community would take advantage of the
illiterate people of the community and often threaten them by using the name of
God to get power and money. My father was very courageous and put his life at
risk to go against leaders of blind faith. He was the first to file a law suit
against the priests for this kind of wrong doing. He was the first man to plant
mango trees in the Gir forest where lions would often roam around.  He was the
first in our community in Saurastra to send his daughters (I am proud to be one
of them) to an institution for higher education. He was amazingly tuned in with
nature including animals such as tigers, lions, snakes, birds, and others. I had
never seen any kind of fear in him for any creature on earth. When he died, even
the birds and animals on our farm felt sadness and expressed so through making
different noises reflecting their pain. He had extraordinary willpower. His life
experiences are no less valuable than any great man on earth. I never got to
hear him tell his stories, but where ever I introduce myself as his daughter, I
hear about his kindness and how he had made a difference in so many lives. Some
day I wish to write a book about him. His hospitality was well known in the
area. Prime ministers, officers, saints, common people, and untouchables would
get equal attention from him and this was important to him. He was a very big
hearted, passionate man. No evil could stand him. I hope to learn many things
from his life. He loved his enemies just as much as his friends. He always said
to his enemies that he was not against them but against what they were doing. He
certainly had a rare personality. He was very open minded. I am very proud to be
his daughter.

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16 Responses to My father

  1. Digvijay Hirabhai Ghanghar (Dhrangadhra), Gujarat કહે છે:

    Proud rabari lad !!!
    Always excited to hear accomplishments made by rabari. The one which i read on the trail is extra ordinary. Education is the only key to civilization. We, Rabari, should motivate more of the youth by telling them about the live examples of fortune makers from rabari community and inspire them to roll on the track of education, come what may be. My father and uncle’s faced hardship and struggled too but education and sports helped them out of the crisis. Today, Their sports records in gujarat and India speaks for them. Of all, I felt very emotional reading here the life of a senior from my community who was much more intellectual and with modern approach to life.

    At the age of 26, I might be considered bit novice to rabari culture and tradition but i think we need reforms at various levels- education, child marriages, marriage expenses, religious myths etc…. I request the torch bearers of our community to take initiative and bring reform in our community, which will help the progress and success rate of rabari individual by doubles.

  2. Dhiren Savdharia કહે છે:

    રેખા,
    લીના અને તારા બાપુજી ને મારી ઓળખ, ૧૯૫૪માં, શીયાણી ગામે થઇ. પ્રસંગ દુઃખદ હતો, મારા બાપુજી (નાથાલાલ ૨ત્નાભાઇ સાવધરીયા) ના કારજ નો. પરંતુ ઇશ્ર્વરે અમારા જોડાણની શુભ શરૂઆત આ પ્રસંગે જ કરી. એટલું જ નહી પણ તેમની જીવનયાત્રામાં હું (૧૧ વર્ષનો બાળક) જોડાવું તેવી તેમને ઇચ્છા થઇ. ૧૯૬૦માં અમદાવાદમાં મારી યોગ્યતાની બુધ્દિગમ્ય પ્રશ્ર્નો પુછી પરીક્ષા લીધી. પરીક્ષા નુ પરીણામ ૧૯૬૫માં, અમારા શુભલગ્ન. તેમણે કન્યાદાન કર્યુ અને ખુબજ સ્નેહભાવ, આનંદથી તમારા કુટુમ્બમાં મને પુત્રનું સ્થાન આપ્યું.
    બન્ને બાપુજીના વ્યક્તીત્વ, કાર્યક્ષમતા, વિચારશરણી, નિપુણ મિત્રો, સ્નેહભાવ માં ઘણી જ સમાનતા છે અને તેથી જ તેઓ મારા માટે પિતા તુલ્ય નહી પણ પિતા જ છે.
    મારી તેમની સાથેની મુલાકાતો ફ્ક્ત ૧૨ જ હતી. ૧૯૬૮માં મારા વિદેશગમનનાં પ્રસંગે તેમનાં મુખ પર આનંદ, પ્રસંન્નતાં અને ગૌરવ ની જે ચમક હતી તે આજે પણ નજર સમક્ષ તરવરે છે.
    દરેક મુલાકાત સ્નેહભાવથી ભરપુર અને પ્રેરણાદાઇ હતી. તેમનાં બુધ્દિગમ્ય પ્રશ્ર્નો, સુચનો, અને મુક્ત મને દરેક વિષયમાં કરેલી ચર્ચા અને વાર્તાલાપ, અમુલ્ય અને ક્દી ભુલાય નહી તેવો છે. તેઓ સામાજીક રીત રીવાજ કરતાં સત્ય અને ન્યાયી શું છે તેનો સત્વરે વિચાર કરી ગમે તેવા કઠીન પ્રશ્ર્નો નો ઉકેલ વિના વિલંબે લાવતાં હતાં.
    તેમની જોવા જાણવાની ઉત્સુક્ત્તા અને પ્રશ્ર્નો એક વૈજ્ઞાનિકના જેવા હતાં. ૧૯૮૮માં તેઓ અમારે ઘરે ફુલર્ટન, કેલીફોર્નીયા આવ્યા ત્યારે તેમની આ ઉત્સુક્ત્તા નિહાળવાનો પ્રત્યક્ષ અનુભવ થયો. આંખ અને કાન ની ક્ચાસ હોવા છત્તાં, માલીબું મંદીરનું વાતાવરણ સૌરાષટ્ર્નાં દરિયા કીનારા જેવું અનુભવી શક્યા.
    ૧૯૯૨માં મારી તેમની અંતીમ મુલાકત રહી. કાન ની ક્ચાસ હોવાથી તેઓને મારા શબ્દો સમજવામાં તકલીફ પડતી હતી. એટલે મે તેમને વિનંતી કરી કે તમે જ મને પ્રશ્ર્નો પુછો. તેમનો પ્રત્યુતર “મારે હવે (આ જીવનમાં) કોઇ પ્રશ્ર્ન જ નથી.

  3. Lina Savdharia કહે છે:

    Dear Rekha,
    Ours father:
    He lost his mother before sweet image of his mother can embed in his brain, just like me.
    He lived like every day was his day.
    He was opened minded.
    Nothing was difficult for him.
    He was fast thinker.
    His thought process was sharp.
    He developed a good solution for almost every problem
    He had American humors.
    His most important goals were education, good life partner for each of his children, well being of them even after marriage.
    His legacy: be truthful, be bold, be frank, respect and preserve God given relationships.

    My sweet memories:
    My first separation was emotional for both of us, because first time one of his daughter, was going far away, from Veraval to Ahmedabad (unknown territory).
    When I was about to go for USA, first time, his happiness and proud was beyond words, but at the same time his biggest worry was language barrier. He wanted me to say a few words in English so that he can have confidence that I will survive in America.
    His first and last visit with pujya Ba to California was enjoyable and fulfilled each other’s desire.
    We all missed him.

  4. Aditi Sindhal કહે છે:

    I am sure Bapuji would be so proud to read about all of your accomplishments if he were still here. I agree with Nina that it would have been great to talk to him and learn from him directly. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Niharika કહે છે:

    Hi Rekha-Masi, this is a really sweet idea. I was very young when Bapuji past away and that is something i’m really unforunate for. But I am lucky to have be surrounded bye people have seen his amazing ,life-changing work and are able to share their stories about him. So that they can be with me and be shared and past on from generation to generation. And I really wish I was able to hear these amazing stories from my own grandfather who made them happen. And I honestly believe that all of us, would not be where we are if it wasn’t for our grandfather and everything he has accomplished in life. His spirit lives on and will continue to.

    My grandfather’s name is Karsanbhai Alabhai Kodiater and I am more than honored and proud to be his Grand-daughter.

    Thanks Rekha-Masi for sharing,
    ~Niharika R.~

  6. Akta કહે છે:

    Pu. Bapunji had been a light house for many lost ships and showed them a way to the shore. He continues to live amongst us in every obstacle we achieve individually and as a community.

    I am proud to be Karsanbhai Alabhai Kodiater’s Grand-daughter.

    Luv u Ma!
    ~Akta

  7. e mail કહે છે:

    Thank you Rekhaben!
    Yesterday we had a pleasant surprise from the Temple.
    They specially invited our family to celebrate Father’s Day with others.
    Ours is the only family in this area where 4 generations are living. My dad who is 98 was very pleased.
    To morrow there is a drama “Sathvaro shri Radheshyamno 2” organized by GCA.

    Thanks for your note and it is too late for me to tell Happy Father’s day!

    Pravin Mehta

  8. DR. CHANDRAVADAN MISTRY કહે છે:

    Rekhaben….
    Nice to know about your FATHER !!!
    My SALUTATIONS to a GREAT PERSON !!!
    HAPPY FATHER’S DAY !!!
    DR. CHANDRAVADAN MISTRY (Chandrapukar)
    http://www.chandrapukar.wordpress.com
    Rekhaben…Hope to see you on Chandrapukar !….After your Profile ….more Posts !!

  9. nilam doshi કહે છે:

    તેમના વિશે તારી પાસેથી રૂબરૂ ઘણી વાત સાંભળેલી..અહીં વાંચીને ફરી એ યાદો તાજી થઇ…તેમને સલામ

  10. e mail કહે છે:

    Ma. Good job! He would be very happy to read your writing and words both in this writing and in your past and future ones.

    Love you,
    -Aditi

  11. e mail કહે છે:

    Rekha
    Happy Father’s day
    It was very nice to get your e-mail about Pujya Bapuji on Father’s Day. Thanks for e-mail.
    talk with you later
    Bye
    Vijay

  12. e mail કહે છે:

    Rekhaben,
    Very nice to know about your father. He sounds like a great man and father to the community.

    happy father’s day to Pratapbhai.

    Jayesh

  13. e mail કહે છે:

    રેખાજી- તમારી શુભેચ્છાઓ બદલ આભાર. હવે મારે મારા બાપુજી તરફ ન જોતાં બાળકો તરફ જોવાનો વખત છે-મેં તો મારા બાળકોને મારું પુસ્તક “સુશીલા” અર્પણ કર્યું છે- તમારા બાપુજીનો સંદેશો અને શિખામણ સુંદર છે-હું મારા બાળકોને કહું છું કે દુનિયામાં બનવાકાળ બધું બન્યા કરે છે- આપણે કેવી રીતે તે સંજોગોમાં વર્તીએ છીએ તેના પર આધાર છે.
    ફરીથી-આભાર- તમે પણ આજનો દિવસ આનંદો- અમે મારી દીકરીને ત્યાં જમવા જઇએ છીએ.
    હરનિશ.

  14. e mail કહે છે:

    This is great! I am proud. Thanks for sharing. Even though our parents, grandparents may not have education like we did, but they have good values and gave us good sanskars. I always admire our parents and like to pass on good values I rec’d from them to my children..

    Mahendra.

    On Sun, Jun 20, 2010 at 11:24 AM,

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