TAKE MY CHILDHOOD BUT NOT MY CHILDISHNESS A four-year-old kid asks his grandpa - Grandpa was you always old? Grandpa- I was not always old. I used to be young just like you and someday you too will become an old man like me, and we will take rebirth as a child again. Grandson -good, we can share clothes then. As a child, it never came to our mind that someday we will also become old and die like people around us. The point is at what age do we realize that someday we will also become old and die? Prince Siddharth realized it at the age of 25 or so by which time he had a wife and a son named Rahul. Many took to Sanyasa at a very young age. Many took to renunciation very late in life. A great majority do not think on this line till their retirement from active life. A few are ever too young and never think that they are old and shall die one day, not at least in the open. They keep a brave face till the end. Our scriptures have divided life into four Ashramas- 1. Brahmcharya (student) - birth to 25 years. 2. Grihastha (householder)- 26 to 50 years. 3. Vanaprastha(retired)-51 to 75 years. 4. Sanyasa ( renunciation)- after 75 years. However, that was then. Considering the time needed for employable education, late marriages, late children, and late freedom from family obligations, suitable amendments may be in order. That will leave less or no years for Sanyasa but can't be helped. When is time to say goodbye to childhood (some people never grow), goodbye to adulthood (some get old too early in life because of responsibilities), goodbye to old age which is also called - the return of childhood and (as Gulzar says -take my childhood but not my childishness) say goodbye to life which, in any case, is not in our hands. STAY CHILDISH!