#StoryOfTheMonth August 2018 by Anindita Chatterjee

Mark Twain had once remarked that ‘Truth is stranger than fiction because we don’t meet it as often’, and this is best exemplified in Aparna Mondal’s story “True Story of a Miracle’. The story is based on a real-life experience of a daughter-in-law who recounts how her father-in-law was about to lose vision in one eye due to some strange unexplained medical disorder. The ailment was diagnosed prior to his admission in Royal College of Surgeons in UK where he was supposed to join after finishing his studies in a medical college of Kolkata. The sudden diagnosis almost made him a handicap for there was no cure for his unexplained malady. People advised him to visit temples and pray to God to bolster his faith and hoped that some miracle would occur to him for a surgeon without vision was an absolute non-entity altogether. But he refused to believe that there could be an almighty power beyond the cure provided by science and medicine that would relieve him of his physical condition. He knew that his profession would demand a precision of vision and focus that he would not be able to provide owing to his sudden physical debility and this thought of failure tormented him and led to profound mental agony and depression. But still he did not give up that battle entirely. He went to London holding on to his will and courage. Strangely enough one day he realised that he had recovered his lost vision. It reappeared in the same sudden way as it was lost. He checked with an eye specialist who supervised his medical history but it was a surprise to the doctor for he could not understand what had happened to him earlier. In fact, the specialist felt that the reports did not coincide with his present medical condition in any way. The surgeon was relieved to hear it, and it resulted in the birth of a strong faith in the power of miracle and divinity, one that he had not much idea or belief in until then. The specialist examined him with utmost care and certified that his eye was normal in every possible way and there was no issue of concern of worry whatsoever. The surgeon went on with his life but deep inside his heart he found his faith pinned on to Balaji, the God of Tirupati for he was convinced in the magical power of divine miracles. However, he preserved the earlier reports with utmost care. The story ends with the woman narrator recounting how her 89-year-old father in law still lives without any eye problem. He had never parted with his reports since the magical discovery of his recovery. The story entitled ‘Miracle’ comes as a pointer that there are many things in the God’s universe that happen without any reason or cause, and this makes us believe that there lies an invisible super power beyond our control or comprehension that secretly and silently rule and guide our lives.