Donít know about you but we find
the name Nachiketa ek dum fascinating and we simply had to search for its
origin. Look what we found!
The Kathoponishad narrates a story,
the protagonist of which is a young Brahmin boy named Nachiketa.
On seeing a king perform a false
sacrifice by giving away his useless belongings, Nachiketa experiences
a kind of awakening. He realizes that all this is pretence and what one
needs to possess is shradhha towards what one must do. Immediately, he
realizes he is different from the ordinary people around him. The boy tells
himself: "I am superior to many, inferior to a few, but nowhere am I the
last, I can do something worthwhile." And as his boldness increases, he
becomes determined to solve a problem that has been persisting in his mind
for long, that of death.
He pesters his father for the answer
and an irritated father tells him that the answer could be given only by
going to the house of Death. And to the house of Death, the young boy goes.
Yama, The Lord of Death, first amused, then He gets angry, then He offers
Nachiketa any wealth the latter desires to possess if he desists from asking
that one question- What is death?
But the young boy's shradhha is
intense. He persists in his quest for the Truth, he waits for three days
at the entrance of the kingdom of Death, without food and sleep. Yama relents
and teaches the boy the unknowable Truth- a question to which only He knows
the answer. And the boy returned from where no man had returned before.
Here and now, we have another Nachiketa.
He is Flight Lieutenant, and he flew to the skies, too , to solve his,
and the Nation's Problem.-that of the Death and the destruction of Pakistani
backed Mercenaries who had infiltrated into India. This Nachiketa too went
to the kingdom of death. And this Nachiketa too had returned from Death.
Who doubts that he has seen death from such close quarters? Thanks for
Living up to your name, Fl. Lt. Nachiketa.
By S. Raghotham in The Backbeat
section, Times of India, June 7th 1999.