Since 1950, ‘World Health Day’ is celebrated annually on 7 April to raise awareness on the importance of global health. Battling Covid-19 in the past year has highlighted this importance – the interdependence of our own physical health and the well-being of others, and how devastating it can be should we be careless or indifferent. Thus, we can also see that while the virus affects everyone regardless of race or religion, the communities that place higher emphasis on caring for one another have been able to weather the pandemic most effectively.
The Buddha had echoed this sentiment two and a half millennia ago, declaring “arogyaparama labha”; health is the greatest gain. It is only with health that we can build our livelihood and pursue personal endeavours smoothly. While health can be gained, it can also be lost at any time. Hence, it is important for us to take care of ourselves and determine how well we fare both in mind and matter.
Physically, we gain good health by maintaining a moderate and proper diet, resting sufficiently, and performing appropriate exercises. Mentally, we can develop virtues such as patience, compassion and kindness which enables us to be calmer, forgiving and free from anxiety. To help health workers and front-liners who work tenaciously every day to care and heal those in need, we should do what we can to keep ourselves well and healthy to lighten the strain on our healthcare system.
Nalanda salutes and thank all health workers everywhere for your contributions. We will not forget your unrelenting sacrifices and selflessness in putting others’ needs above that of yours. Let us ensure we play our part to support front-liners by adhering to SOPs which keep us and our loved ones safe. Together, we will overcome this challenge. May all beings be well, safe and secure.