I am sure all those using social media have come across this incident…
Chiquinho Scarpa, a 62-year-old wealthy Brazilian businessman, recently stirred a wave of negative reactions when he announced on his Facebook page that he has plans to bury his £310,000 (nearly 3 crore) Bentley car, so that he would be able to drive it in the afterlife. To give credentials to his claim, he even posted photos of himself digging a hole for the car in the yard of his mansion, triggering a wide range of reactions on the social media. Obviously, most of the reactions were negative towards the eccentric act, labelling him as a crazy person who wants to do something absurd instead of donating the costly car for charity.
However, later the story took a very different twist when he posted a photo of him at a press conference promoting Brazil’s National Week of Organ Donation. With a banner behind him that read “It’s absurd to bury something much more valuable than a Bentley: your organs. I have not buried my car, but everyone thought it absurd when I said I’d do it. It is absurd to bury one’s bodies, which can save many lives. Nothing is more valuable. Be a donor, tell your family”. Indeed, the whole episode was an ingenious publicity stunt with a noble cause – to promote Organ Donation. “
When I came across this incident, my thoughts took a leap back to 5 years when I was longing to donate one of my kidneys. I remember, I too had to face severe criticism and objections from all quarters – from family members, business associates and society at large; the medical and ethical checks and balances that discourage me all the way… I’m happy I got a chance to describe all these difficulties and the final deep sense of satisfaction of having donated, in my recently published book “The Gift” (available at all major book stalls and on Kindle! #kochouseph#chittilappilly https://t.co/dogtDyndDz via @amazonIN).
Back then even the cadaver organ donation scenario in Kerala, a state which takes pride for being the most literate and advanced state in various human resources spectrum, was totally different. In 2012, the total number of cadaveric organ donation was just a few to be counted on your fingers. By 2015 it rose to 217. Today after-death cadaver donation has become rather common. At heart I feel a sense of contentment for having been a reason to spread organ donation, especially after death organ donation especially in the state of Kerala. Let this momentum continue.
Well, coming back to Mr. Chiquinho Scarpa, he has made a priceless point – a trigger to realize the amazing possibility of not ‘wasting’ our life at death; rather making death a possibility to help others lead fuller lives. Let’s not waste our precious bodies to get rote or to be burned uselessly.
Le’s donate and live on..!