Monthly Archives: March 2012

There is an expectation that…

There is an expectation that we can talk about sins but no one must be identified as a sinner: newspapers love to describe words or deeds as “racially charged” even in those cases when it would be more honest to say “racist”; we agree that there is rampant misogyny, but misogynists are nowhere to be found; homophobia is a problem but no one is homophobic. One cumulative effect of this policed language is that when someone dares to point out something as obvious as white privilege, it is seen as unduly provocative. Marginalized voices in America have fewer and fewer avenues to speak plainly about what they suffer; the effect of this enforced civility is that those voices are falsified or blocked entirely from the discourse.

Teju Cole – The White Savior Industry Complex

I’ve shared this article on my other blog, Facebook, and through email. However, this quote could stand entirely on its own. This is truth, and I wanted to put it somewhere where I can find it easily. (The entire article is absolutely brilliant)

Dr. Abdul Latif Minhas with Faiz Ahmed Faiz

My grandfather with Faiz Ahmed Faiz. According to my aunt and father they were ‘friends.’ I tried getting them to define what that meant in this specific relationship, and from what I can guess they had a more ‘intellectual’ relationship than what someone would say is a friendship. I can’t imagine, at least from the little I’ve been told, that my father would invite Faiz Ahmed Faiz to parties.

I also asked my father if Dada was a socialist. He said no. A capitalist? No. Papa said that Dada simply enjoyed the company of intellectuals, and would learn from every source possible. I wish I could find out more…

A boy, Jinnah, and pork sausages

As we were drinking our coffee and enjoying our sausages, in came an old, bearded Muslim with a young boy of about ten years of age, probably his grandson. They came and sat down near Jinnah. It was obvious that they had been directed from Town Hall… I then saw the boy’s hand reaching out slowly but irresistibly towards the plate of pork sausages. After some hesitation, he picked up one, put it in his mouth, munched it and seemed to enjoy it tremendously. I watched this uneasily… After some time they left and Jinnah turned to me, and said angrily: “Chagla, you should be ashamed of yourself.” I said: ” What did I do?” Jinnah asked: “How dare you allow the young boy to eat pork sausages?” I said: “Look, Jinnah, I had to use all my mental faculties to come to a quick decision. The question was: should I let Jinnah lose his election or should I let the boy go to eternal damnation? I chose in your favour.”

– M.C. Chagla, Roses in December, as quoted in Jinnah of Pakistan by Stanley Wolpert

I find it very hard to hold Muhammad Ali Jinnah in the same reverence that so many other Pakistanis seem to be able to. I read this book a year ago, and this is the one excerpt that remains embedded in my mind. There’s no secret that in politics religion is to be used to your advantage, but for some reason it annoys me that Jinnah wasn’t very good at being a hypocrite.

Anyway, Pakistaniat made a very interesting post a few years ago about President/General Zia trying to convince Wolpert to censor parts of his book that talked about Jinnah eating pork and drinking alcohol so it could be mandatory reading for all undergraduate students. Wolpert refused to have passages from his book censored, even after being given the promise of ‘making millions’ off the book.

A completely random video one will find if one youtube’s Razia Sultana. aha

Aurut by Muhammad Iqbal

Wujood-e-Zan Se Hai Tasveer-e-Kainat Mein Rang

The picture that this world presents from woman gets its tints and scents:
Issi Ke Saaz Se Hai Zindagi Ka Souz-e-Darun

She is the lyre that can impart pathos and warmth to human heart.
Sharaf Mein Barh Ke Sureya Se Musht-e-Khak Iss Ki

Her handful clay is superior far to Pleiades that so higher are
Ke Har Sharaf Hai Issi Durj Ka Dur-e-Makoon

For every man with knowledge vast, Like gem out of her cask is cast.
Makalat-e-Falatoon Na Likh Saki, Lekin

Like Plato can not hold discourse, Nor can with thunderous voice declaim:
Issi Ke Shole Se Toota Sharaar-e-Aflatoon

But Plato was a spark that broke from her fire that blazed like flame.

Translation from Allama Iqbal Poetry

Another translation for the first two lines:

It is the existence of the woman that gives the universe its colors. She is the leading instrument in the grand orchestra of life itself

My friend who is trying to get me to convert to full on Pakistani (compared to my current state of super Americanized Pakistani-American) sent me this on International Women’s Day.  I loved this quote and found the entire poem through a quick google search.

Privacy and Publicity

I’ve noticed most of my posts have been private, due to the fact that I’m still not comfortable with displaying my thoughts on the Internet so publicly. Anonymous blogs are easier to keep. Even though I am sure this blog has no chance of gaining any traffic, my superficial and not very well-thought out posts are something of an embarrassment to myself. I’m embarrassed with what I write, and what I think. The posts that are more well-thought out I keep private, since they aren’t the kind that I want anyone to think I think about anyway.

So here we are with a silly dilemma, I, someone who has no chance of making any headline (or more simply put the victim of an individual’s need to stalk me through social media) in any way, am afraid of being Googled.

My sister was the one who encouraged me to write under my real name. Was it a good idea to listen to her suggestion? People are really mean online, and there seems to be no limit to their rudeness.  Why should I display my thoughts so publicly in an arena filled with hate?

I guess another one of my problems is that my best thoughts seem to only occur when I do not have access to a computer, which over time slowly erode to the thoughts that are eventually publicly displayed on this blog.

Shall I continue or shall I give up?

I do have another post that I thought of this morning…