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It is very common to every human to be recognized that he or she exists regardless of what and where. However, there is an inner drive in every human to prove beyond the mere existence (objectification) to that of more significant way of being in the world by asserting what each one has. This assertion of what one has is not complete unless one is not able to recognize the existential surroundings with multitude of beings around. Whether the individual find the ‘freedom to be’ depends on his or her ability to go beyond objectification of the self to accept the one-self and others as subjects. This subjectification of the existential beings is possible by realizing one’s potentials in the real world of beings where the pangs of being – love, pain, happiness, depression, hurt-feelings, forgiveness, etc are shared.
The realization of the potentials will be possible in a world where each one communicates to the other in a meaningful way. This meaningful communication becomes impractical if there is no tangible togetherness – being with. Hence, in our normal living environment we continue to search for meaning in a group, or community or society.
The failure to reach out to such tangibles would plunge us into deeper levels of loneliness and depression. It is this inner drive for meaningful life that forces us all to communicate to the other and thereby remain as a subject.
The Syro Malabar Society or Syms has been able to provide its members and others a platform for coming together and enter into meaningful communication. It has been one of enriching and encouraging environments through its various activities, programmes and projects.
The Syms had humble origin of limited aims and objectives of seeking monoliguistic prayers and groupings. It first found its germ of existence in the mind of few people like Mr Joseph K Thomas, Mr Jacob Vazhapilly and a few others. Soon they were involved in communicating to others about the need of coming together as group for experiencing the traditional modes of prayers and festivities in a region which extraneous to their cultures and traditions. The group was named Syro Malabar Cultural Association in 2000 as the basic aspirations were related to the spiritual traditions of the Syro Malabar Church. The first officer bearers were Mr Joseph K Thomas, (Coordinator) Mr P. J Varghese (Coordinator), Joseph PT, Joby thaliath (Secretary), Benny John (Treasurer) Mr Jacob Vazhapilly, Vincent Cheeran, Shajan Chandy, and Boban Varghese.
The SMCA started with a few get-togethers for prayers and religious festivities. It had no registration, no headquarters, and no official formalities. However, a strong desire to be established kept them moving in spite of the demon of doubtful eyes of ‘the differently spirited religious’ people of same entity being cast on them and sometimes its venomous spit tarnishing their names but not the spirit.
The essential communication to the well-wishers continued. Some new members like, Mr Roy C. Antony, Job C. Antony, Francis Thekkineth, Berlin Michael, Phyous C.R, Philip Thomas, Joshy Kakassery, Mr.Byju Payappilly, Mr. Thomas C.J.,Mr Chakkunni P.P, Mr Raphy C. Antony, Mr Savi Mathunni, Mr Raju P Joseph, Varghese Karackal, T.O Joy, M.T Joseph, Raphy Tharakan, Jose Pulikottil etc joined the SMCA. Thereafter, the efforts to get the Society some credibility was initiated with the help of the new members, especially Mr Raphy C. Antony were started. During this period, the group showed extraordinary will power and conviction to go beyond the objections from some individuals to get it registered with the Gov. of Bahrain. After the tireless communications with the Ministry of Social Development and meetings with the officials, the Society was ultimately registered with a new name the Syro Malabar Society in February 2010.
A new birth
It was a new life for the Society in its entire look: a constitution was drafted with new aims and objectives and in line with the laws of the Ministry of Social Development, Kingdom of Bahrain. A new administrative body – the Board of Directors, was formed with Mr Joseph K Thomas as the first president and Mr Jacob Vazhapilly as it first General Secretary and P.P Chakkunni (Vice President) Raju P Joseph (Treasurer), Savi Mathunni, Vincent Cheeran, Raphy C Antony, T.A Varghese, Roy C. Antony and Tony Nellikan were the other members of the Board.