TEETH TO TIRTHAS Our Ancestors were very wise and divided human life into four stages based on age: 1 - 25 Brahmacharya, 26- 50 Grihastha, 51-75 Vanprashtha, and 76 and above Sanyasa. They however passed on one very important duty on my shoulders and that is to unveil the secret of dental wisdom to the general masses. Now, if I say I am a very knowledgeable person, that will not be hyperbole because I also know, as every wise person should, that one needs the services of sycophants to spread the achievement stories of people however big achievers they may be. But, as you all know, almost every achiever, big or small, is out in the market to seek and pay for the services of these sycophants and they are demanding high prices as always happens in a market situation where dead exceeds supply. For this very reason, I have decided to beat my drums. Okay, where was I? Yeah, I was unveiling the secret of dental wisdom. This is a sort of scientific truth. The problem with scientists is that they always experiment on others, not on themselves. Those others could be rats, pigs, monkeys, or poor humans who come under the same category. One stupid scientist tried to experiment on himself and see what happened. It so happened that he wanted to record what goes on in the journey of the effect of poison from the time it is taken to the time it takes life. So, the good-for-nothing fellow kept the notebook on his right, took a pen in his right hand, and for emergency kept an injection close to inject himself and nullify the effect of the poison, just in case. He poured the poison in his mouth and before he could lift the pen to record on the notebook, he passed out poison in, life out. Thankfully, he kept a signed note also stating what he was unto and that if anything goes wrong, he alone was responsible for it. Do not even think, I am a scientist, far from that. But like every other human, I have the experience of dental travel and by that count, I am a scientist. So what that scientist could not do, I am in a position to do. After a few years on this planet, I came to know that all humans take birth without teeth. God does have a plan. If babies would have born with teeth, moms would have lost theirs as a result of the acute pain the milk-sucking babies could have done by biting their boobs. This should have been explained by the parents and included in the curriculum of primary education but we will leave it because it is not good to digress from the main subject. After a year or so, teeth start growing and by five years the frontal starts gleaming. Then, these milky teeth start falling one after the other and growing again not, particularly in that sequence. What is the use of sucking such milk that grows teeth to fall rather than teeth to stay for life? It looks like the teeth would have any way grown, milk or no milk. We will leave this for the scientists to explain as they have all the time on earth sitting at home, during the Covid times. No one can tame time. As we grow, new teeth get added by the time we are twenty or so, the wisdom tooth also comes up. There is no guarantee that a wisdom tooth brings wisdom also. Now we have a mouthful of teeth, 16 upper, 16 lower, a total of 32. Take a count. Each point has to be explained in detail and if done, the post has become too long and if not, the post is not authentic. OK. This is the age when we think of doing something great but this also is the age when wisdom leaves us. We start doing things that should not be done. From school to college, college to professional institutions, and then search for well-paying jobs. Those with the family business, have no such compulsion. They attend college for fun and show their brightened teeth on nay silly jokes. Those in search of jobs may have to leave their homes also. With luck and resources, one may land a posh job, or else you know what happens. Life moves on. In the fight for survival, the cost of living takes over worrying about teeth. Still, teeth have to be maintained. A variety of kinds of toothpaste, whiteners, toothpicks, flossing, etc are up on the market to keep teeth healthy. Love travels through the stomach as the saying goes and healthy teeth are needed even for chewing that food full of love. This is also the time to change the world but two families huddle together and spoil the show. I mean, getting married with or without the family huddle.We will leave it to sociologists to explain if marriages have saved the world or if we would have been happier otherwise. Personally speaking, there would have been no different. In the hope of changing the world, changing self would have been more practical. After marriage, family, kids, a roof over the head, children's education, and a race with neighbors for accumulating all essentials and nonessentials at home. There is everything and at the same time, something is wanting. By the age of 50, most of the teeth remain intact, barring one or two. So far eating by chewing is no problem-fistfuls with dates and other dry fruits, plateful Chicken leg kababs, and so on. At 65, retired. Responsibilities towards children are mostly over and if pension or retirement fund is okay, life moves on except, of course, teeth. By now, most teeth, if not all start shaking. The dentist extracts some, fills some, and treats some with route canal and crowing. And finally dentures. The time has come to reflect. A life spent in purposeless pursuits. The world is a stage, we are the actors. Nothing that we accumulated will go with us. The most loved ones will also return after the funeral. We forgot the ONE who sent us to this planet. Get detached and remember him now. It is not too late. There is still time. Spend time with religious and spiritual people. List the Tirthas. End of the journey from teeth to Tirthas.