How youths complement the elderly people

Wasfia Nazreen, the first Bangladeshi mountaineer to summit K2, speaks at a press conference at Sheraton hotel in Dhaka on Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022 upon her return from the second highest mountain in the world Wasfia Nazreen, the first Bangladeshi mountaineer to summit K2, speaks at a press conference at Sheraton hotel in Dhaka on Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022 upon her return from the second highest mountain in the world

Youth has its own beauty, so does the old age. They are the two facets of human life. Although the younger generation in general continues to celebrate youth, the wise old men and women do not remain preoccupied with old age. It's because they had to cross the turbulent youth before entering their present age. They know what the youths' privileges and pitfalls are. As part of a universal rule, the old people look at the young with love and compassion. It has been the norm since long. Thanks to the youths' propensity to defy and fight against the monoliths of the social order and look into the future, many in the older generation keep a safe distance from them. The saner segments of society find this conflict to be useless. In spite of this age-old youth-prompted dissent against the prevailing order, many in the younger generation are also in support of revering their future guides. For, a large number of youths continue to discover in the elderly their role-models. 

As has been seen in the past and will be seen in the future, there are no reasons for the elderly and the young to be hostile forces. The older generation's success and failure are things of the past. There is no use indulging in retrospection.  Befitting their age and newer ventures, youths can only look forward. In this state, the wise old groups have few things to do except blessing them and wishing them a grand success in their new undertakings. According to the proponents of youthfulness, the young can only look forward. For the time being they can pause awhile to realise if their journey is headlong. In these moments, many look around for a reassuring support. It's there. As has been seen through the ages, today's youths will one day be in the role of the elderly. They know it from the wise sayings.  Alongside the youths' impatience and restlessness, most of them possess two gifts --- creativity and innovation. These two also help them solve many of their existential problems. It's these two virtues which find the youths on the driving seat of many a venturesome mission.

In the modern age, youths are making forays into all segments of life. Thanks to their courage and indomitable spirit, they hardly taste defeat. The developed societies, thanks to their all-round development spree, do not identify youths as a separate force. Sensing their untapped potential for nation building, the developing countries discover in them the right force needed in critical times. The youth force has, thus, been proved a distinctive one for these nations. To speak on the mundane plane, in spite of its reverence for the senior citizens, Bangladesh these days does not hesitate to spend generously on the youth-centred programmes and projects. Youths of both urban and rural areas reap their benefit.

The concept of start-up has been floated targeting the young mainly. While the micro-finance projects have made strong inroads into the youths' plight in both the villages and cities, many are engaged in trying their luck in self-innovated projects in areas different from the formal sector. These innovative outlets range from scientific innovations to activities in the world of the greater arts. The former include many amateur scientific ventures that display the youths' flair for science. Of late the country's youths with scientifically bent minds have begun thinking high about their involvement robotics. Already many groups have invented their small robots and showcased them at different displays. A few of them have earned accolades from experts in the field. Long ago, the arts and humanities were considered areas that suit mediocre students. This wrong and biased concept has proved wrong in the country. Youths in large numbers are pursuing their careers in these two areas. Teaching at universities and colleges has emerged as a respectable job. However, it's only the youths with brilliant results at their Higher Secondary; and Honours and Masters who are eligible for the teaching professions. Nowadays, mere good performances in passing these exams are not enough. Many universities including the public ones require PhD, and other higher degrees, for teaching jobs at these seats of higher learning. After finishing the university studies, many go for the civil service or bureaucracy. Many go to journalism.  A large number of the students passing out of the universities these days have long been joining the banking service or trade and business.

In this country, a misconception reigns regarding the academic qualifications of the youths in the world of the greater arts. Contrary to the common belief, most of the young film makers, the crew and the performers are academically qualified, and know their trade. Those days are gone when the 'non-matriculates' would rule the roost in the audio-visual world. This genre is mostly undermined. Few have any clear idea that many youths in the greater film discipline are highly educated; and many of them have turned down lucrative job offers coming from the traditional sources. A vast area of opportunities pursues the youths. As years and decades wear on, more and more career outlets keep opening in different spheres. Many of them are tailor-made for people who love to remain encased in the age-old conventions. They are also youths --- with no drives or bold missions of life. In spite of being young, they love to kowtow, on occasions, to the elderly in unalloyed passion. But the genuine youth ought to be bold, consummately daredevil --- but also humble, in his or her attitude towards life. In this category, we can place the seven-summit conqueror Wasfia Nazreen who reached the peaks of the world's seven highest mountains. Nazreen belongs to that group of youths who represent both the heroic and reflective nature of the Bengalees. Their deeds have surpassed that of their forerunners, which is a universal rule.

The elderly and the young have never been in permanent conflict with each other. It's because their outward discord doesn't go much deeper. What is surprising, the two age-groups' different outlooks on life notwithstanding, at the end they make amends for the differences. Sensible youths never fail to realise that all their roads lead to old age. Likewise, the elderly people understand that they can't do without the youths' warm company.

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