Topsy Turvy

Nature has it’s own ways to defy human-made conventions. Pre-COVID, certain functions of life that looked a blessing now seem to be a curse. Conversely, a few which were seen as a curse have transformed into a blessing.

Prior to COVID, life style of the Westerners seemed enviable. They had practically all blessings one could dream of. They would enjoy life on monthly basis and never felt a need to save for the rainy days. Infact they had altogether lost the sense of rainy days.

Surprisingly, in face of COVID those who couldn’t enjoy luxurious lives are displaying better immunity system and defence against virus. While, those who were blessed with luxuries are suffering due to weak immunity system. Those living in developed world have lived in a disease free environment which has weakened their immune system. In face of pandemic they are displaying weak resistance. And those who have lived in diseased environment are coping well with the virus.

At state level, low exports were seen as a curse for state economy. Whereas in face of COVID, economy of states with low exports seems insulated against financial shock given by COVID.

Spring used to be most colourful and lively season of the year. This time around, spring looks more like autum.

God may take us out of this situation sooner than later. Amen

A Springtumn

Spring and autum are two opposing seasons. While spring signifies growth and development, autum speaks of fall and retraction. Spring is the season of new beginnings. It’s the most colourful season where nature is at it’s best. Fresh buds sprout and the mother Earth seems to come to life again. New trees are planted and all around there is happiness.

Contrarily autumn represents the preservation of life and spells gloominess. During this time, animals prepare for the winter by storing food and creating cozy hibernation spaces. Farmers work on their fall harvest by collecting a reserve of crops. We also tend to retreat indoors and focus on cultivating a safe and comforting home. In a way, the autumn season offers us a chance to reconnect with ourselves as we preserve our safe havens.

Spring is historically a time for celebrations, rejoicing and festivals. In many cultures spring is welcome through celebrations like NAUROZ. However, this time round a rare thing is happening. The spring has become modular. It has different meanings for different modules of life. All that was created by mother nature for service of human beings is rejuvenating, recuperating, blossoming as part of the spring but homosapeins have retracted like autum and are gloomy. How strange that for the planet Earth it is season of spring whereas the beneficiary of spring ie Humans are locked down. For humans it is autum where as for rest all living and non living organisms it is spring.

This combination of two seasons may look bizarre but it is eye-opening too. For centuries we were accustomed to distinct spring and autumn but this is power of nature that it can merge the seasons, put these upside-down or anything which we cannot even contemplate. God doesn’t feel that we deserve to enjoy a season, He had created for us. We shall see blossoming flowers through our windows but we shall not be able to touch and feel them. First time in centuries Netherlands known for Tulips and flowers has decided to demolish all pots and nurseries.

While we have retracted under compulsion, we should reconnect with our Creator and let mother planet recoup and refresh from the damages we have inflicted onto it in centuries.

While we are confined we should reflect and contemplate, on; not to abuse the Mother Earth, not to waste resources available on the surface of Mother Earth by living on NEEDS and not on DESIRES. For example, if oil is used with same lavishness, we shall starve in 100 years. In this rush of life we should find time for our Creator, our selves and our dear ones. All humans must live in harmony regardless of race colour or religious inclinations.

It is for sure that “this too shall pass” but it will for sure leave behind new lessons. Allah may bless all.

A God’s Convo

In an unprecedented environment, the God calls for an urgent meeting of His deputies. On the stipulated day, God assumes His throne and His key deputies take their positions. God opens the convo with a melancholy never witnessed before. He says, look we had created humans and blessed them a planet so that they may enjoy their lives and be grateful to Us. Contrarily, you see how they have devastated My masterpiece planet; Earth. The most confidant disciple, scaringly intervenes and quips, Oh my Lord, I feel, homosapiens have made a few improvements also. Indeed, you are right replies the God, however, what ever improvements they have made have made them haughty. They are calling themselves as Homo-Deus. They started challenging mother nature. You all are very well aware that, mother nature does what is good for its creations, it never does what is liked by them. We bestowed intelligence upon the humans so that they may explore nature but they started challenging and contesting nature.

God continued His convo and said, look, mother nature always made interventions whenever humans went astray. Interventions included benevolence as well as wrath. Benevolence was in the form of My prophets that I descended on to them. Wrath was in the form of catastrophies to make them realise. You see, just about a millennia ago, I sent them my dearest and last prophet; Muhamamd. He taught them the best code for leading life. You may have noticed that even his followers have betrayed his teachings. I met him other day. Even, he is utterly dissatisfied with his followers. Conduct of Muslims is diametrically opposite to what they were taught by him.

The senior most and the oldest disciple supporting the point of view of God said that, indeed humans have created mayhem on planet earth. They are ruthlessly trampling rights of fellow sapiens. They are crushing the weak instead of caring for them. The rulers are self-serving and do not act as viceroy assigned by You. On going bloodshed is blemishing the face of Earth. Even women, innocent children and elderly are not being spared. They are polluting thoughts, rivers, environment, behaviours and all the systems. Their minuscule inventions have made them proud. You see, my Lord, their eminent scientist: Stephen Hawking even dared to say that, “laws of physics are good enough to run the universe, God is redundant”. We had to call him up here to correct his thoughts. Oh my Lord, I am sure Your majesty will recall once you created humans, a few of us objected to it and opined that humans will create mayhem on earth. Iblis was even punished for his unflinching resistance. He further said, “we admit that Iblis was grossly wrong and he earned Your wrath. But Oh my Lord, it is a fact that humans are testing your patience”.

God replied emphatically, you all are unaware of my designs. Iblis rightly earned my wrath. I very well know limitations of my creations. Humans are my best creation but they too are not free of ills. Indeed, humans have turned to be the most dangerous specie on planet Earth. They are a danger to all other species, to nature, to universe and to their own dwelling ie planet Earth. But you all just relax, the measures to tame this beast are also part of my design.

God continued His convo with furious looks and said, “I have decided to make an intervention”. Its essentially required, now. Humans have earned it. Lest it gets too late, I need to make corrections to their path. You see, one of the segments of homo-sapiens do not even accept my existence. In the world they are called, atheists or whatever. Look at their dietary habits. They damn well eat every moving thing. I created various species with a definite purpose. I ordained some of them not to be eaten so that these are spared to perform their assigned role. Humans on the whole are creating a serious imbalance in animal kingdom of the world in particular and all other systems in general.

You recall some time ago, We noticed waywardness in sexual behaviour of humans and we sent down disease of AIDS to put them right. Now is another time for My wrath. A couple of kind hearted disciples begged the God for mercy and benevolence. God replied, no one can love My creatures more than I do. This is also part of My love that I mete punishments to bring them to right path. If I let them go astray, it would mean I dont love them.

God said, one thing is for sure that the time is up. I want you to send down my wrath to bring them back to basics. To make them realise that what ever they achieve, they are still subservient to Us. Let’s initiate the wrath from those who are extremely wayward in dietary habits. Make them realise to spare certain species for the purpose they have been created for. Do it through a tiniest organism to make sapiens realise their worth.

I also want, God said, that, humans should be made to retract. Movement should cease and humans should get confined to their dwellings. On one hand humans will learn to be humble, spend greater time in reflections and on other hand mother planet will get time to recoup.

God passed His injunctions and called off the meeting.

Inverse FUTURE SHOCK

The self confinement imposed by COVID-19 reminds me of 1984 book Future Shock authored by Alvin Toffler.

He coined and used the term “Future Shock” to describe, “the psychological and physiological effects that occur when the base of a culture moves faster than the ideological superstructure; it causes cultural anxiety. More narrowly it was understood that new technology was outpacing the understanding of it that could occur. An individual experiencing future shock can feel like an alien in their own territory”.

COVID-19, I believe has brought in its wake an ‘Inverse Future Shock’. It is not caused by super technologies rather it is being caused by inaptness and ineffectiveness of super technologies. Technological pronouncements of mighty SAPIENS have been laid threadbare. Mighty Sapiens trying to conquer Mars have been rendered helpless infront of a micro-micro organism. It speaks of absolute subservience of human being infront of mother nature.

COVID-19 is teaching us new protocols. How we meet?, how we socialise?, how we move? and how we conduct our lives? all is being altered. The book Future Shock basically focused on element of ‘change’ which occures in our lives. The author described nature of a society alongwith probable rate of change. He first talked of agrarian society, where an individual faces minimal change. Round the clock, he interacts with small coterie. Minimal move, minimal change and minimal pressures. Then he talked about semi-developed society. In this case after couple of years the individual is relocated to a new place. He is faced with more frequent movement, more change and more pressures. Finally he talked about super-industrialised society. In this case there is tremendous movement, very high rate of change and very high pressures. Owing to mutiple factors like industrial progress, prosperity and materialism; human’s life had become maddening race. We were overpowered by events thus by high rate of change. Unwittingly, we seemingly struggle to keep pace with demands of life. COVID-19, besides numerous ill-effects has brought a welcome change too. We are confined to our homes. We are giving greater time to families. We are moving less. We are in no hassle. We are not overpowered by events. In nutshell there is a soothing and calming effect on agitated, frustrated and excited Sapiens. If we manage to throw out fear and scare of COVID-19, I feel life won’t be bad. Although, for sure very soon this pandemic will be over and once again we shall board, ‘bullet train’ of life and start running again. Till then enjoy please.

Churchill made a profound statement during World War 2 ”Never let a good crisis go waste”. Very meaningful and thought provoking. Isn’t it?

COVID-19

Nature has it’s own ways to impose caution on our wayward behaviours and also teach us lessons. It has happened with previous generations and it is happening with us too. COVID-19 has emerged and created panic on the globe. It has brought in its wake; financial as well as social crisis. Age old practices of socialising, travelling, hugging and hand shake are being abandoned. I hope its temporary but that’s how it is. The nature is teaching us importance of hygiene and sanitation. Taking a cue from Allama Iqbal, Mahmood (the elite) as well as Ayyaz (the commoners) are equally getting exposed to this pandemic. People like Tom Hanks, spouse of Justin Trudeau and Ronaldo have contracted/ suspected of this virus. Though it isnt as deadly as being perceived. However, in Post-Truth era, perceptions matter more than reality and the former drive the decisions and not the later. That’s what is happening. There are contrasting predictions vis, 70 percent of population on the globe will contract the virus within 2020 and COVID-19 will settle as temperatures rise. I subscribe more to second prediction. There are a few thought provoking patterns. Virus spreading along Latitude 40°

Is it related to temperatures? Is it a strange pattern? Are thoughts which come to mind

There are three major blobs of spread ie China, Europe and North America. Again a strange pattern. Is it related to dietary waywardness? Are these countries eating wrong animals?

One hopes and prays that global efforts succeed in quelling this pandemic. China and South Korea are making better progress than few other countries. It’s a change and those who are better prepared to meet this change will fare better and those who are be- fooling themselves will cut a sorry figure. COVID-19 can also serve as tool in hands of inimical forces to create mayhem, disorder, chaos and harm to people.

A Way to Go Down in Glory

I won’t die in an accident, I will go down in glory #NomanAkram

Last decade and a half we have been daily losing our sons. Nation’s success against War on Terror is attributable to blood offered by young sons of this motherland. Officer to men ratio of laying down lives is highest in Pakistan’s war against terror in comparison to any other war of history of mankind. Our youth isn’t shying away, in any way from meeting the challenge. I feel youth of this nation is telling enemies of motherland that they should stop dreaming of damaging Pakistan. We shall rise to any level to beat their designs. Allah be willing.

Last two days we faced news of enviable martyrdom of two sons of soil. Col Mujeeb ur Rehman and Wing Commander Noman Akram. What a pain it gives to see them departing. 12 year old son of Col Mujeeb ur Rehman requesting an uncle at funeral not to tell his younger siblings as to what had happened to their father. Oh my God even thought of such a request by a juvenile is so unbearable. Tears filling eyes is involuntary. Particularly, Wing Commander Noman Akram was like to son to me. 1994, his father (then Lt Col) Muhammad Akram Khan was commanding my regiment. I had seen him as a promising young lad. He was brought up infront of us. He joined Pakistan Air Force to pursue his passion. He was a daring man. He gave his life like a hero. Death is inevitable, it’s only the form of death which makes one distinct from another. There is no better death than a martyrdom and that of a hero. It can be called a blessed death. The loss of a life is irreparable, particularly in view of family and children he or she leaves behind. However, there are deaths which leave them proud. The way Wing Commander Noman Akram laid down his life while saving others’ is an epitome of supreme sacrifice. Its only greatest people who rise to this level.

Allah may bless souls of Col Mujeeb ur Rehman and Wing Commander Noman Akram. Allah may also save us from seeing our sons departing. Allah may also bless us a resolve to support the bereaved families. Ameen

World Women Day

Today, on HER day, I accompanied my spouse to Presidency for an event organised by Federal Ombudswoman Ms Kashmala Tariq. President of Pakistan Mr Arif Alvi graced the occasion. I shall term it as a huge success for meeting the intended objectives. Felicitations to FOSPAH for celebrating this day in such a befitting manner. While roads of our major cities were occupied by a bit controversial Aurat March, there was a decent dialogue at Presidency to build awareness against harassment of women. Ms Kashmala gave a balanced speech highlighting contibutions of her secretariat in last 10 years. Dr Zafar Mirza advisor to PM brought-to-fore with statistics; discrimination faced by women. Ms Sania Nishter also highlighted how important it is to give rightful place to women of Pakistan. In the end the President made an emphatic speech on importance of empowerment of women. He quoted Quaide Azam who had said, “power of women is greater than the pen and sword”. He spoke at length on inadequacies of inheritance law of Pakistan. His pursuits speak of him being one of the best President Pakistan has had.

We all must stand up for the oppressed. There is no doubt that women and children are oppressed in our society and they face heinous crimes. Each day we are a shamefaced due to crimes against women and chidern. Notwithstanding, controversy over Aurat March, there is a definite need to fight for emancipation and empowerment of women. Good mothers give a good nation. Within overall need of human resource development; Pakistan needs to focus on mothers and children. Pakistan cannot prosper without giving rightful place to women.

Aurat March

https://sammilogger.blog/2018/06/19/women-rights-in-pakistan/

Sensitive topics are difficult to touch upon, due to fear that one may not cross the line on either side. As I see my beloved mother land in grip of yet another issue, I come to overpower my hesitation of not speaking. I, for one have always been ardent supporter of emancipation and empowerment of women. Men are being alleged for usurping rights of women. Indeed that’s true to a great deal, however, in my above referred blog I highlighted a contradiction whereby women themselves belittle women. Aurat March is fully supported and a great idea for highlighting injustices against women but run up to this presumably well intended campaign is highly painful. Qamar-Marvi episode, demeaning sloganeering and fake posters doing rounds on social media are disgusting to say the least. This is yet another episode where modalities have killed the spirit of event. Qamar-Marvi episode has left important lessons. Qamar got so much of popularity in last couple of weeks that he could not absorb it and went overboard in his reaction. On other hand Marvi with a tainted past also tried to champion the cause over exuberantly. Both stooped below decency. In the age of social media I feel women by opting for this march have also rendered themselves vulnerable to mudslinging. Its painful to see fake, demeaning, immoral and salacious posters.

I feel the organisers lacked vision and control over events. Whatever noble intent they might have had, ironically their march stands high jacked by ultra liberal component and bad intended people. It has become a mean of division and discord in a society already fragmented. However, on the whole this evolutionary process is highly essential and will do good to the society.

Panic Stricken World

We are living in age of social media. Smallest of the incidents get reported and news accumulately create scare and panic. Very recently the world has come out of war on terror. Once the war was on, there was generally a feeling that the whole world is on fire. Contrarily, in his 2011 book The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined, Harvard University psychologist and famed intellect Steven Pinker argued that humans were living in the most peaceful era in the history of their species.

Likewise the on going issue of Noval CoronaVirus has been blown out of proportion by social media. The numbers are being misperceived and there is a panic and scare. Above clip refutes emphatically as regards threat of this virus. In country like Pakistan, two odd suspected cases has brought up a storm. Price of masks goes skyrocketing. Ordinarily in such a situation we should display empathy and compassion. However, we always think of self interests and people are exploiting need for masks and the panic which is prevailing. We should jointly help to educate people and get back to displaying trust in Allah as regards finality of death. Corona or no Corona, whose time is up will fly off.

Our Contradictions

کالک ملنے کا وقت ہوا چاہتا ہے

راولپنڈی میں جس چودہ سالہ لڑکی کے ساتھ محلے کے لڑکے مسلسل زیادتی کرتے رہے اس نے آج ایک بچے کو جنم دے دیا ہے۔
وہ بچہ جس نے بظاہر ایک نام نہاد حلالی معاشرے میں آنکھ کھولی ہے اب اسی معاشرے کی طرف سے حرامی کا لقب پائے گا اور اسکی ماں فاحشہ کہلائے گی۔
اور جن لڑکوں نے یہ حرکت کی ہے وہ پاکستان کے شاندار عدالتی نظام سے ضمانتیں پا کر شادیاں کریں گے اور حلالی بچے پیدا کریں گے۔
آئیے ہم سب مل کر اپنے چہرے پر کالک مل کے ماتم کرتے ہیں.

A thought of writing on our contradictions was lurking in my mind since long. Above Urdu text implored me to get to pen. Our social as as well as management sectors are fraught with serious contradictions. A society apparently built on Islamic injunctions is infact in disarray. I shall identify a few:

– Teachers are builders of a nation. Our worldly teacher treats education as a business and our religious teacher has no qualifications. Every other discipline of education demands 16-20 years of formal education. To be a religious teacher you need merely 5 years of religious diploma. Misfit of any other field becomes a religious teacher.

– Girls are future mothers and groomer of future generations. But today’s mothers focus more on boys (seeing them as their bread earner) and relegate grooming of girls to second priority.

– Judges play a pivotal role in rule of law in any society. There are no qualifications needed to be a judge. Political masters can designate any one serving their interests to this position.

– Legislators ought to be educated and visionary. Any body and every body endowed with wealth can become a legislator.

– Leader ought to have immaculate character. Character is first ingredient of good leadership. Even in this case wealth is good enough to buy a certificate of character.

– Qualifications are preferred more than education becuase qualifications get us jobs and being a human isnt a high priority.

Unless as a society we do not eradicate these contradictions we shall not be able to rise as a nation.