Edhi : Greatest Of The Great, Warmest Of The Warm!


This is [ Pakistan] a good country. It’s just run by bad people  Abdul Sattar Edhi

The most fundamental question every human being at least one time in life will ask himself/herself is – ‘what is the meaning of the life?’ There is no fixed answer to this question but in fact, the answer is itself is a representation of humanity.  This inquisition is unique to everyone till the end of their life. This is the most fundamental question on which  one should never compromise with anyone, but unfortunately, practical life tells us that with most – it is just the opposite while mocking the system of  natural justice.

Many are still searching for the meaning! Then they will produce the result in their way on the basis of their understanding and experiences. Everybody will have their own justification for what they have done. Doesn’t matter whether it is  destructive or productive, as long as your justification, the legitimacy and the power you exercise are not in conflict. Then you can systematically assassin  the core notion of accountability and transparency.

Once one cheats him or herself, then, that person subconsciously or consciously  will cheat whoever crossed his/her path. But interesting thing is, he/she  will  articulate “philosophy” to justify his/her action. At this juncture, he/she deliberately ignores the principles, while expecting greater silence within the inner circle. He may be an illusion in thinking that  greater silence is mandatory acceptance of what he has been doing.

But this is much more than that. At this point, evil plays the major role, which will lead to  ultimate self-destruction . Goodwill leaves you , bad will overruns your spirit. Actions speak much stronger than words. Actions sharpened the world much stronger than the thousands of pages you have been produced in writing.

Let’s take the sage words of Camus,  “those who lack the courage will always find a philosophy to justify it”. At this point, many will have a screaming story to lament on, “how they have been cheated?”

When the day to day life is suppressing you how could you put your moral values and will power to the realm of life? Is there anyone who has not cheated himself. Yes, there are. The hope of candle in the hopelessness of darkness represents those splendid human beings. They lighten the world. They gave hope to mankind.

Edhi who passed away a few days ago in Pakistan has explained this very deep life experience in noble actions. The true man of principles was behind the relief ringing number of 115 in Pakistan. The decent man who  stood up beside the street and begged for resources to develop what later became one of the largest social work networks in the world.

Abdul Sattar Edhi, an icon of humanity has left us after leading  us to  experience spectacular events and rare history of humanity.  Edhi, a philanthropic giant is bigger than his life, a rare personality who struggled for a noble cause of humanity.

The iconic figure taught us by action how to find the meaning of Life –  Life without boundaries, he taught us. Help the helpless when they need help, he taught us. Go to the people and interact with them, he taught us. Let the people understand the bona fide in your action, he taught us. Let not the  eagerness  for someone to award you influence you , but continue what you ought to do, he taught us. The list goes on and on and on.

Let me reproduced the answers he gave in one of the interviews with the Local media in Pakistan,

What does Edhi Mean?

It is my caste, my tribe; not an ideology

What were you like in your childhood?

I was really mischievous, used to tease the poor and the needy

How do you spend your day?

I wake up at 3 or 4 in the morning and usually no one is around at the time. I lie here all alone. I think about this world, human beings and oppressed people. I keep lying here; whiling away my time

How did you start all of this?

I didn’t have a single penny; so, I stood at roadsides and collected (begged) alms. I always say be good and make others good. If I was not doing this, I wouldn’t be doing anything

Did you even want to quit?

I never thought about it. It was my destiny,  my cause, my intention. So I kept working

Do you think you have achieved your goal?

The cause ( Serving) of humanity is too big; Unfortunately, I couldn’t achieve it … I couldn’t eliminate poverty

Can you recount an incident you’ll never forget?

There was a woman who committed suicide by  jumping into the sea along with her six children. I was really saddened while giving them ghusl (bath) as part of the funeral ritual

Do you wonder why you haven’t won the Nobel Peace Prize?

I don’t care about it. The Nobel Prize doesn’t mean anything to me. I want these people. I want humanity

Edhi has physically left us, which is something we all will do eventually. But what he taught us is not merely the lengthy boring talks which contain nothing more than jargon, but in actions based on true principles, will remain. Let’s salute, and be united to continue with what he has strengthened.

Edhi the best!

Nilantha Ilangamuwa edits the Sri Lanka Guardian, an online daily newspaper, and he also an editor of the Torture: Asian and Global Perspectives, bi-monthly print magazine. He is the author of the just released non-fictions, “Nagna Balaya” (The Naked Power), in Sinhalese and “The Conflation”, in English. He can be reached at [email protected]


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