Enter: Freedom; Leave: Respect – A Rant

We all hear stories of how our parents and grandparents and the people around them, and people in general, of older times were ‘better’ to each other, there was respect, and equality.

Why isn’t it so anymore?

With the rise of consumerism, and with people gaining consciousness of the amount of freedom each person can exert to their liking, how do you control such a revolution, so it isn’t damaging in the long run for the same people.

How does one person lose grip of their conscience.

With freedom, one could say, people start behaving in certain ways. And since not everyone is mentally and emotionally mature, they will use their freedom in a negative and damaging way, for themselves and others.

With consumerism, then, people starting sizing each other up by the amount of wealth they had accumulated or what kind of things that person has regardless, in most cases, of what the person is actually like. This is also why people get tired of city life, since everything revolves around money there. Like, a month in Islamabad, Pakistan, is so stressful that I genuinely cannot wait to go back to my country-house. Starting from dawn to dusk, people are running around trying to earn more and more money, much more than they need.

With consumerism spreading all over the world, all our wants have taken a hundred-fold rise and we just cant stop. Ad campaigns, businesses, business schools, even scientists now are creating things that will somehow sell. Everything is about money, and that sure as hell is tiring and pathetic.

I know so many people who are so rich that it’s mind-boggling, but what has become of them as people? Have they become some supreme human beings? Do they know more about this universe? Are they trying to fix things? Do they know of the purpose of life? Are they searching for it?

Honestly, we have many reasons now not to respect other people. But we know, that respecting others is very important for many reasons  – one of them could be that it makes that person feel good. We also know that some people actually do deserve it, and some dont. So what do we base our respect on?

Let me quote Quran here, and you shouldn’t have a problem with it even if you aren’t Muslim because one should respect each other:

A good action and a bad action are not the same. Repel the bad with something better and, if there is enmity between you and someone else, he will be like a bosom friend.” (Quran, chapter 41, verse 34)

And on other religions:

“…If God had willed, He would have made you all in one nation and one religion), but that He (God) left you in different religions to compete in good deeds and society benefits. The return of all of you is to God; then He (God) will inform you about that in which you differ” (Quran, Chapter 5, Verse 48)

And:

“Those who spend (freely), whether in prosperity, or in adversity; who restrain anger, and pardon (all) men; for Allah loves those who do good.   (The Noble Quran, 3:134)”


And:

“And when they hear vain talk, they turn away therefrom and say: ‘To us our deeds, and to you yours; peace be to you: we seek not the ignorant.’   (The Noble Quran, 28:55)”

And there are many other verses on how to treat others. But it all comes down to character and if one is aware.

You may even have noticed how in America now they are very much encouraging people to stop using these ‘formalities’ since they are inefficient and a thing of the slower nations and of the past. They think if you want to grow faster and get to the point quicker, then Mr/Mrs./Ms. wont do, you must say Tom, John, Kate, and just directly say their name. Life is too short.

Is life too short for these pleasurable formalities that do nothing but make others feel good and valued? Most of internet hate will go out the window if we start respecting each other on the basis of merit and character. 

Honestly, and personally, I am sick and tired of having to point out basic things like how to eat and how to walk so that it doesn’t pain the eyes or the ears. Just because we are ‘free’ individuals does not mean you can slurp, and be obnoxious. It is very annoying, and I am very sure you feel the same way when others do it. And there are many many other examples to add here, by the by.

This is more of a rant, and I apologize if it was offensive in any way, even the writing. More on this loverly topic later. Peace.
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Uncertain Courses

It has come to my sentimental notice that my life is to change course soon. I have no idea what the course is, and am absolutely terrified to find out eventually; the anticipation of it is genuinely overwhelming, but nonetheless, like the good Muslim girl that I am, I shall pay no heed to something that might change me completely and take it in stride. Totally.

For weeks now, dreams (literally) of change and instability have been entertaining me at nights. Falling from stairs (which means instability and insecurity… No sh*t, Sherlock!), and travelling in cars are like second nature to my subconscious. But what my fear is of the unknown – which is of everyone’s, I know. I could draw a million likely changes that my life could take, and where I would lead it from there. Life can be so random that you can literally, literally expect anything. And that is freaky.

On a side note, there is another very important and likely possibility that is worth mentioning since it probably is attracting millions of people, consciously or not: the need for your soul to be on the straight and right path. If you, like me , believe in an afterlife, and that the only thing we will take from here with us is our personality’s imprint on our souls, then you want to bloody concentrate on having the best imprint out there so you end up with a good start-up for your next, and very much real, life ahead.

It could be that our souls are yearning for some purpose in life, to have a goal, an aim for our minds to work towards. Be it going to the moon, or finding a cure for the common cold, we all need a purpose. We all have questions regarding the reason of our existence the minute we enter gain consciousness of the raw world, usually during our teens, if not earlier. Now it solely depends on the human being what shape it wants to give to these thoughts. Wont blame you if you decide to ignore them and carry on with your everyday life, thinking its too much of a hassle to look for a meaning behind all this; millions have done it before you, and millions will do after, no biggie. Or is it?

Right now, there are many things I would like to adapt into my person and bring about some tangible changes, as well as in my personal being. But what if this change, which I keep dreaming of and my subconscious – or soul, if you may – keeps warning me about is too great, too far-reached for me. What if cowardice takes place; what if the change is so minor that I don’t even notice it, and hence, don’t get a chance to foster it. The fact that our souls are like proofs, and somewhat windows, to the life beyond is freaky, and especially unnecessary right now since all I can think of, and worry about, is the sodded change of direction my life is to take — that is if we were take dreams as seriously as that — which may or may not even take place soon, or at all for that matter!

In this life, the unknown, and the [unquestionable] fear of it are somethings that everyone has to deal with everyday. Hell, we don’t even know if we are going to sleep through the night without any doubts of physical insecurities. Day in and day out the only thing we have under our control is our own decisions, whose reactions and effects are still unknown to us. Even if you worry every second of every day, all your life, you will still never ever know what is not known to you at the time. It will reveal itself in time – maybe even posthumously – depending on many, many things of which most will also be unknown to you. But that insecurity that something might go wrong, the unshakable feeling that you might not be successful, maybe your decision was not correct, will feed on your insides with no solutions or answers to replace that information retrieving void in the decision-making part of your brain. So you will always be functioning with some [very much] variable factors of the situation unknown to you, maybe even during the decision is in effect; it could also be that you never, in the duration of your life, earn awareness of the millions of events that had taken place (in total) when it came to the decision of that one single, maybe even small, question.

Enter faith, religion, and other, worthy beliefs.

Life Stories: The Swap

At the moment, we have two people working to help maintain this house. A housekeeper and a guard. The guard is the housekeeper’s father, white beard and the like, but really nice. The housekeeper’s daughter used to work for us as well, who is now 16 and about to get married and is pretty happy.

The housekeeper, Shaheena, is not happy in her marriage. Although her husband is really nice, as a person, but pretty selfish. For example, he does work, labour work usually, but all the money he earns he spends on himself, giving the family close to nothing out of that. So, naturally the wife had to start working in other people’s homes and even involved one of her daughters into it, but she didnt realise that that daughter will get spoiled and start having affairs around.

In any case, Shaheena, when 16 herself, went through an unfortunate event, some 22 years back. Her mother had passed away when she was really young, and he father couldnt keep around 4 kids all by himself, so he decided he needed to marry. His ex-wife’s brother’s daughter seemed pretty good, also raising 4 kids on her own, she was also a good woman. Now here, this woman’s father asked Shaheena’s father that in order to marry their daughter, he would have to marry Shaheena to their son, aka the single woman’s brother. Shaheena’s father agreed. The women were swapped, leaving Shaheena very unhappy till now.

When Shaheena was telling me this story, she was sad, you could see it in her eyes, but pride would not let her demand sympathy, instead she hid her pain by cracking jokes, about how now her father was technically her cousin’s husband.

This isnt unknown in the Pathan culture, we take marriages the union of two people irrespective of relation, except of siblings.

Now she is educating her kids. Shazeenay, the 16 year old is getting married and very happy about it. My dad promised to employ her husband in a more permanent position and well paid. Her father is content.

And even after all this, Shaheena is thankful to Allah, and grateful for whatever she has and has had.

This short story is not fictitious at all, rather a documentation. 

But the point is, are all the girls who are victim to such unfair treatment at such an early age happy and grateful for what they have? Even if they do end up happy, does it mean its fair? Certainly not. 

Spread the word. In Pakistan surprisingly this phenomenon is not as wide-spread as some other countries. I would know living in a Pathan village. 

When people say that Islam encourages such behavior, I don’t blame them for thinking so. The image that Muslims have spread across the world concerning themselves and Islam will induce emotions and thoughts like that. Our people say, oh don’t look at us, look at our idea! Right, isn’t one’s idea supposed to represent him, and vice versa?

Islam does not support marrying underage girls. Maulvis might, the messed up ones.