Religion

The Touch of a Destiny

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At times, destiny and fate are not considered as one. One can surely very uniquely distinguish fate from destiny. It would be just a matter of some delicately placed synonymous words and there you will be standing with two different definitions in your hand. At a later time, someone else would define luck as the third stake holder of the market. But we all are aware of the essence of these words. We all are well familiar with the feelings these words convey. It one of those things when people have different names for the same thing in different geographical regions.

It is one of those things when people refer to the Divine by different names, namely Allah (in Islam), Jesus (in Christianity), Bhagwaan (in Hindi) and certain other terminologies are present in different religions. It is just a matter of delicately placed synonymous words and there you will be standing with the two different definitions in your hand.

But we all are aware of the essence of these words. We all have experienced it in our lives at one time or another. We all have listened to the religious myths and we all have believed/disbelieved those at one time in our lives or the others. In one way or another we all are waiting for that glorious end to arrive and reach us, like when watching of the movie, you just keep watching so to end it. We all know the essence of these things.

We are the people of the new era and we can write destinies with our own hands. We manipulate the stars, we talk to the skies, we challenge the horizons, we construct history, we foresee the future, we prepare for the unexpected, we dream what we want and we do what we desire just because we are the people of the new ear and we can write destinies with our own hands.

We have long left the stone-age customs behind us. We have long forgotten the older religions. We are well equipped and perfectly capable of controlling each and everything. We are the people of a global village who can fly to mars. Why shouldn’t we claim to write our own destinies with the inks of our intellect?

I used to be one of those believing that my destiny doesn’t lie in the mere pattern of the lines in my hands. I used to be one of those setting very high targets. I used to be one of those enjoying a high sense of achievement when a difficult task is successfully completed. But in some scenarios, I realized that no matter how much effort I put in, the situation remains the same. In some scenarios, I realized that while achieving all the things, I was just there in the right place, at the right time when a click of destiny pulled me upwards. I realized I am not the one controlling systems and humans.

When you’re very tired from a losing race, it’s then you start the analysis. It then you truly evaluate the underlying factors behind your previous success. It’s then you start questioning your abilities. It’s then you tell yourself to have been a fool for taking that illusion as reality when the reality was something else. It’s then the reality comes to you and tells you that He is sitting up in the skies, watching you very closely, Who can limit you any moment He desires or can take you upwards anytime. It’s just He, who has been in command in the previous ages and in the ages we are to embrace next. At times, He tries you make you realize his presence via your successes and when you don’t realize that, He can turn the table around any time He wants.

This is when i get back to wondering about the beauty and authority of saying of ALI (RA):

I HAVE RECOGNIZED ALLAH THROUGH THE BREAKING OF MY INTENTIONS.

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Lifelong Independence

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Today on 14th of August 2014, it’s the birthday of Islamic Democratic Pakistan. They say that the country was founded 68 years ago on the very same day. They say that the nation got free 68 years ago on the very same day. They say that a new country was born, which was much more than just a piece of land, 68 years ago on the very same day. They say that the foundation of Islamic Democratic of Pakistan is based on the rigid structure and traditions of the marvelous Muslim Society and of the supreme religion, Islam. They say to the new generation that we all are breathing in a free, fair, peaceful and prosperous society which wasn’t so about 68 years ago.

History for the struggle of freedom is full of the list of martyred for a new country, is full of the sacrifices people made for the establishment of the country, is full of the struggle of millions for a separate homeland, Is full of the emotions connected to the vision for a new country, is full of the dreams people had when talking about this land and that history for the struggle of freedom is written on the pages of time with the blood of the Muslims when the Muslim nation dreamed of becoming a separate and independent ‘nation’.

This is the history as we have been taught throughout our lives, this is the history that is repeated every year on Independence Day, debates are held every time refreshing the memories of ‘nation’ about the past and this is the history we are supposed to remember for the rest of our life. There was a vision behind the establishment of Islamic Democratic of Pakistan which had its unique aroma that made the ‘Muslim Nation’ prominent amongst other nations of sub-continent. Muslims had their own social and cultural values, Muslims had their own ways of living this life, Muslims had their own complete religion to follow and Muslims had their own morals. This vision enabled the Muslims of the sub-continent to achieve a separate country.

While studying the history, I used to tell myself that there were ‘Muslims’ in sub-continent in older times, I used to tell myself that there was a ‘Muslim Nation’ in sub-continent in older times, I used to tell myself that there used to be a ‘vision’ for the establishment of Islamic Democratic Pakistan and I used to tell myself that there was once a Pakistan and that one day we all will migrate to that newly established fort of the Muslim world namely Islamic Democratic Pakistan. It was very unfortunate and shocking to realize that I have been living in the same country. I never found things like vision, justice, peace, prosperity and freedom in the piece of land we live in. I never witnessed the practice of the true spirit of religion rather I could never find the ‘correct version of religion’ in this piece of land. I never noticed the practices of cultural and religious values, I never witnessed the rule of law, I never witness justice being awarded on equality and impartial basis and I never witnessed the aroma of being a part of one so called ‘nation’.

Even today, overflowing with the brotherhood of being a part of a single magnificent Muslim nation, one political party is having a long march against the government towards Islamabad, the capital of Islamic Democratic Pakistan. A leader of a religious sect is holding a Revolutionary March alongside of the same political party towards the same destination. Most magnificently the govt. of Islamic Democratic Pakistan, the representatives of the Muslim Society and the rulers of the Muslim Fort are doing all they can do to suppress the rebellion. State police has been set up against the opposition, cities have being sealed, roads have been blocked with containers, any sort of movement is prohibited, and people have been dying to reach out to pharmacies and hospitals.

And they say that the new generation is breathing in a ‘free air’, they say that Islamic rules and regulations have been practicing in this country, they say that Islamic Democratic Pakistan has its own aroma that distinguishes it from other nations, they say that cultural values can be seen very easily, they say that human beings are being respected in this newly founded country, they say that the vision behind the establishment of Islamic Democratic Pakistan is being fully practiced here and they say that this is the same country that was separately founded for the Muslims of the sub-continent, ending my search and quest of migration to a free, fair and square Islamic Democratic Pakistan in despair.

I wonder which revolution would prove be last one before Pakistan becomes Islamic Democratic Pakistan.

Freeing yourself was one thing, claiming ownership of that freed self was another. (And in our case, freeing this nation was one thing and the ownership of that freed nation was another.)

Gravity of Unity

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“Everything in this universe attracts others with a force which is proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance in between.”

Every item of this entire universe is attracting the others but according to the myth the force of attraction keeps on decreasing as things keep on becoming distant. I was in my high school when I first read this law and I remember myself asking me the very obvious question that if I am being attracted by the objects around, why don’t I feel that attraction? Apparently the forces tend to cancel out each other being equal in magnitude and opposite in direction.  But I completely neglected one very obvious part of the myth.

It was the night of 27th of Ramadan and religiously it’s considered to be a very precious night. People tend to worship the entire night and ask for forgiveness, success, love, money and happiness believing that all the things would be granted to them for just worshipping one single night. Seeing all the people getting busy in their worships, I always ask myself how should I worship or after reward of what service should I be asking for missing and shuffled pieces of my life.

I was sitting in my room when my cousin called me and informed that he’s picking me up on his way to Badshahi Mosque, a highly ranked Mughal heritage of subcontinent situated in Pakistan. I don’t happen to be a conventionally religious person and tried to resist it but eventually had to give up. A lot of other people also came there to religiously celebrate and spend the night in worship. Not everyone was worshipping, some were just roaming around like me enjoying the beautiful mosque, the amazing interiors and a beautiful architecture telling the story of hundreds of years.

While roaming around when I looked at all the people, I felt a strange and a strong bond between all the children, men and women. They weren’t there for any personal reason, they weren’t there because they had any business with each other, they weren’t forced to get there rather they were there for something bigger than the materialistic needs. They were all there to celebrate some sacred moments, though separately but like the flow of individual particles which seem to make a bigger united flow when they are seen from some distance. Like individual drops of water travelling in the same direction unaware of the fact that they are the flow of one single ocean.

For all the Muslims, it’s compulsory to perform Pilgrimage atleast once in a lifetime, which happen to be the largest and the most marvelous and sacred gathering of people in one place in Mecca and people often tell that the journey changed them and their lives altogether putting them in entirely different dimension. And I always used to question the authority of that statement. But that day I realized that it could be true because that day I probably discovered the neglected part of the myth of attraction between objects of the universe that says that attraction goes on decreasing as the distance increases. I had never been closer to those people but when I got a bit closer, it felt different and probably the people performing Pilgrimage speak true when they describe the journey as a marvelous spiritual journey and probably people speak true of loving each other when they get closer to each other because the myth dictates that force of attraction dominates in these circumstances.

Whether it is good or evil, whether life in itself is pain or pleasure, whether it is uncertain-that it may perhaps be this is not important-but the unity of the world, the coherence of all events, the embracing of the big and the small from the same stream, from the same law of cause, of becoming and dying.

Short Life of Moments In Spirituality

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The entire Muslim World is celebrating the month of Ramadan which is the most holy of all the months according to beliefs of us Muslims. Homo-sapiens happen to be a very weak species amongst the race of species yet it enjoys the due credits of being the blessed of all. When I was a child, I used to think that the car which stops first at the signal is the winner of the race that just ended at the signal, I used to ask myself that whether the superior one is the one who’s stronger, I used to wonder if I wasn’t born in this world or in this family, where would I be right now and I was always skeptical whether everyone sees for the answers to the same questions.

 
The concept of religion has always been of particular interest to human beings. As said earlier, homo-sapiens happen to be very weak and mankind has always been in search of some superior force to rely on. This is the place in the journey of history where religion got introduced. Several gods, goddesses and supernatural powers were introduced as being a source of power, courage and guidance to the human beings and the chain is still in progress and like everything else, religions are also under consideration and under modification process.

 
When it comes to religion, irrespective of the religion we’re talking about, the first thing that attains my utmost attention is common to every religion and that is spirituality. Every religion has some chapters dedicated to the subject matter and I have always been skeptical about what spirituality is. Is it like the software that runs the hardware, is it like the determination you have inside your brain prior to performing a task, is it like the music you hear in the background when you see your loved one, is it like the gratitude when you feel lucky or is it like the rules of nature when you observe different phenomena being operated in complete harmony?

 
We Muslims fast the entire day forbidding ourselves from food, loose tongue and all the harmful deeds related to one’s eyes, hands, tongue and thoughts just for God. I have experienced spirituality in all the ordinary ways but when it concerns to the matters regarding religion, I don’t know how to define and identify spirituality. Is it the satisfaction of my heart, is it the submission of my will to the will of the One I worship or is it my rebellion against my own desires?

 
Spirituality lies is becoming content to what’s been awarded to us and being equally content to what’s not been awarded. Spirituality lies in knowing oneself better for the better understanding of this universe and its creator. Spirituality lies in self-training and self-conquer which is perhaps the most difficult of all the things. I may have and may be will spend some moments of spirituality in this holy month of Ramadan but for me the life of the moments spent in spirituality is always too short to be felt, recognized, classified and recorded.

When i visited a Hospital

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A couple of days ago, I had an appointment for eyes examination. I had been experiencing floaters since the last couple of months. Although this is perfectly normal to experience these but since eyes are precious, I thought to consult the doctor about that. I reached the hospital a little earlier and sat in the waiting room. When you sit in such place, when you see the misery of people, when you see people lying unconscious being taken to different places in the hospital, when you see the pain in the faces of patient’s family members, it’s then you realize how lucky you are for sitting there with nothing major to worry about.

As I sat there, a person was waiting with his father, sitting in the wheel chair, for the staff to take him to the x-ray room. Though his father, who was about in his late 70’s or early 80’s, had lived a life but the guy looked extremely worried about him, holding his hand again and again hoping to suck this pain out of his body. All those years of his life now would have been like yesterday’s dream with the present slipping out of the hand like tiny grains of sand.

In this situation, I realized that I had been constantly ignoring a medium loud but very sharp sound coming continuously into my ears and unconsciously it’s bothering me continuously. I looked at the LCD but it was mute, where the sound was coming from then. Sitting in the same hall, I found a person with a beard holding his cell phone in his hand laughing and gossiping with the person sitting by and continuously playing ‘Naats’ ( the verses you use to praise the Holy Prophet) and reciting a Naat is of course thought to be a good deed as far as religion is concerned. Alhamdulillah I, being a Muslim, listen to Naats and but when I looked around, a hall full of patients, waiting for their turn for the examination to their respective doctor, someone might be diabetic, someone might have hepatitis, someone might have surgical examination, someone might have been suffering from a stroke and when I looked at the worried faces of  family members of those patients and I just knew that what this guy is doing is not a religious good deed rather he’s disturbing the hospital, which should be listed under bad deeds, a sin actually irrespective of the fact that whether he knew it or not.

For a while, I thought to get up and tell him to use a little common sense and turn his cell phone off but as a citizen of Islamic Democratic Pakistan, where when a person wants to murder someone, he says that he insulted the religion and he should be killed, I certainly didn’t want to be a martyred. Bottom line is, I could not stand up and go to that guy. Why, because I’m scared of these people and I’m sick of this sick mentality. Others might have been disturbed as well but like me, no one dared to stand up to say anything. If he wanted to worship, if he wanted to listen to naats, he could have used a head phone.

Reciting Quran and listening to Naats is a good deed, no Muslim can deny it neither am I trying to deny it but Muslims don’t do it for their 24 hours. The Muslim doctors don’t recite verses when they examine a patient, they listen to the patient, concentrate on the treatment of the disease and they don’t turn on their vcd’s or cell phones recording of Naats. This is what I know despite the fact that I am not a genius but you do not need the brain of Einstein to understand that a hospital is not the place for making such noises. People are suffering, if you can’t help them, you don’t increase to their worries. But being a citizen of Islamic Democratic Pakistan, I could not inform that guy of this very little piece of information because I’m scared and I absolutely do not have any idea what version of Islam is being followed here.

And someone’s saying felt very true that:

We can give life for religion, we can take life for religion but we cannot act upon religion.