Struggle

The Digital Spirituality

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When talking about spirituality, the word spirit pops up. Used very often for versatile tasks, having different meanings for different media but nevertheless we all use that. Sometimes some of us don’t even know what it actually means and at others, all of us don’t know what it means. Other than just being a linguistic term, the spirit has a spirit of its own. We borrow the spirit from the word and put it into whatsoever we are dealing with. Without having being proven scientifically, it’s always there in shining in its eternal glory.

 

Times are changing. With every second passing by, we hear that time is changing. Nothing in this universe is the same as the older second that just left the platform. It’s always a brand new second, a brand day, a brand new month, a brand new year and a brand new start. But in some of the newer days, everything around us is getting digitalized. Everything is connected to the other creating this codec massive chaos, where one thing is manipulating the other. Somewhere in the ancient tales, there used to be a species having those interlinked interrelations and we hear that the species was the homo-sapiens.

 

In some of the ancient tales that I happen to remember, people used to come up with masterpieces, claiming to have injected their spirits into those masterpieces, whether that be Mona Lisa, Taj Mahal, The Great Wall of China, Pyramids of Egypt, Religions like Islam and Christianity and the list goes on. Spirituality is always exhibited by the monument that stands beside you, claiming its eternal glory. And now, well, the times are changing. The monuments today are these digital codes, interconnected devices, 3-D visions and virtual realities.

 

It’s very difficult for me to digest that an electronically written program can exhibit a spirit being put into it. For me the idea of something spiritual is somewhere you can walk into, a magnificent height and a nirvana exhibiting monument. Somehow I never got the idea of a mechanical spirit, of a digital spirit, a spirit exhibited into a code, a spirit exhibited by a giant compressor, a rocket or even a sky scraper for that matter. A spirit needs to be simple, elegant and soothing. Through an era, I have been thinking that its all about money, but it simply is not.

 

It is about passion, about dignity, about recognition and to some extent about offering services to the mankind. Money, multinationals and billionaire personalities and glories are just the side benefits that come along. There must be some people who can make a difference with their bare hands and a vision. Those are the new spiritual people we are going to find abundantly and I guess with everything revolutionized, the franchise of spirituality has launched another brand entitled Digital Spirituality because after all the following is very much true:

People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road, doesn’t mean that they are lost.

Goodbye Comfort Shed

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Comfort Zone

The other day I was talking to one of my very dear friends. Who’s from a distant country and is going to be a world renowned programmer and a part time stage comedian someday. We were laughing at his joke when he said:
A little knowledge is dangerous. With the exclamation: And I don’t know who said that.

Friends are there to listen to what you have to say, friends are there to see what you are going through. Friends are there to comfort you if you’re in trouble. If the scene in front of your eyes gets blurred, friends are there to analyze the situation for you, to help you understand what are you actually going through and what should be your step ahead. But friends can do only this much. It is you who has to take the step, it is you who has to cover your assigned journey and it’s you who has to spend this life till the end. And this is your choice how much control of your life you keep in your own hands and how much of it you trade with someone else for some unwanted, unnecessary pain.

Well they say if you have to grow, you have to get out of your comfort zone. They say it is only then you understand life when you have the courage to take initiatives, when you decide the destination you want arrive to, when you set your own aims, when you start living the moment, when you get spontaneous and when you experiment with the unknown. It is only then you learn what is this all about, it is only then you start living and it is then you start your journey towards your success.

We come across charming persons sharing the stories of their wonderful success and it seems as if everything was put automatically in order for them to arrive there and ring the bell. Hollywood makes us believe that a person is going to rise to the occasion in his single shot, the moment one sets his mind towards his destined goal, everything in this universe gets in harmony with his intentions, people can sense his determination and start offering their assistance and within a time span of hour and a half his life gets fixed. Every other person leaving the cinema hall, is as enthusiastic, as determined and as hopeful as the characters of the movie. I wonder why depression is overspreading then.

As a matter of fact, life’s not a movie nor is it a fictional novel. Magic doesn’t exist and people don’t assist. World is cruel and life’s not fair. If you decide to get something, you have to set the parameters for achieving it. You have to fail in a lot of plans before you find the plan that works for you. You have to suffer the pain in your path but you have to keep moving. You have to get out of your comfort shell, bear the disappointments, tolerate all the pain, accept the unfair nature of life, deal with the selfishness ahead and have that charming smile on your face. After you do all that, you have to keep telling yourself that you might not succeed even after doing all that. You have to analyze the mistakes, find out what you have done incorrect, get back there, fix it and start it from the very beginning.

This is a hideous process but often the pill that would heal you, is very bitter in taste.
Somewhere I read the most beautiful curve on a woman’s body is her smile. I strongly disagree with that. The most beautiful curve on any person’s body is the smile. Why women only? And they say life begins at the end of your comfort zone. Couldn’t agree more. Let’s begin then and be the type of person you want to meet.

Moonwalking with Einstein

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Hearing the word ‘moonwalk’ triggers the memory of Michael Jackson performing the illusion of going backwards while actually moving forward. However Moonwalking with Einstein triggers a question like what the hell are we exactly talking about?

This triggering game is a very classic of mind’s games. While discussing something with a group of people around, I actually tell my brain to trigger the correct names, dates, locations and sequences. At times, it presents the contents right in time while at others, well hats off to smartphones, laptops and availability of internet.

But taking assistance for something you should have at your fingertips feels like using a cheat code while playing some game. You read some book and by the time you finish all the detailed chapters, it happens sometimes, all you are left with is just an overview synopsis of the entire story. When it happens to me, I ask myself just to read the overview from now on. What’s the point of reading the entire detailed book when in the end all I will be left with is just the overview of the entire story?

Luckily I didn’t quit reading when one day I read a title Moonwalking with Einstein. The ‘overview’ said that it’s about an ordinary journalist who happened to cover the mnemonic competition held at Oxford University got inspired by some geeks expert in remembering and recalling anything and everything in no time and he ended up winning the championship.

The idea of remembering and recalling anything and everything glared my brain and I started reading the book. Though the book was more like the autobiography of the author but in the end it came clear to me that if I have to be good to at making my mind obeying the orders of triggering memories, I must really practice the following advice.

None of the techniques of memory sharpening will work unless you start ‘Paying Attention’ to what you are going through. 😀

The Blink of a Moment

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Today, we all live a life of ultimate busy routine. We have things onto the tip of our fingers all the time and thanks to even more updated gadgets onto our wrists and glasses. They do all the functions from translating for us to getting us connected to our loved ones. Technology today offers everything at its best ease but only at the cost of your life. You have to lose your days to get all the money to spend to make your life a luxury. It’s a tricky question whether you consume your money or your money indeed consumes you. Whether you manage your time or your time manages you.

For an entire year, I’ve been planning a vacation but because of a list of undone tasks, unattended matters and unfinished projects that family vacation is being postponed. Every month, I hold that list in my hands and try to make time for the vacation and in the end, it’s always the next month. This day-night routine goes on so goes on the life and I am being consumed by these moments bit by bit like everyone else who is living or who has lived on earth.

Today, as usual, I was driving in hurry constantly organizing the list of tasks to be completed when I saw some people standing on the opposite lane around a body lying on the road. When I pulled the breaks, I saw blood flowing out of the head of the person lying there. People gathered around to offer any help, people always do the same. They just stand there to watch what’s happening and do not do anything because they’re afraid of legal inquiries and stuff.

A heavy vehicle hit three men on a bike, two were lucky to stand there alive but the third one was badly injured. The cracked head was telling he has lived all the moments granted to him. Like me, like everybody else in hurry, probably he was also organizing his unfinished tasks, postponing unimportant stuff, trying to finish the most important tasks first when the time ended. Just a moment blinked and a person was a part of history. He just lived for a couple of minutes and died right away on the spot. The incidence was very regretfully sad and I felt sorry for the person and for his family & relatives. I use the same road everyday and the incidence scared the hell out of me.

In older times and also currently in rural areas of Pakistan, carts are used for transportation. When I was a child, I often used to notice some dog going beneath some cart. The dog walked beneath the cart, then used to get out of it randomly from left or the right side, used to walk some distance out of the cart and then used to get beneath it once again. When I asked my grandfather about it, he told me that the dog thinks that he’s driving the cart. He gets out from either side to make sure that the cart is on the track correctly and when he gets assured, he gets beneath it once again.

Sometimes I feel that the busy humans are exactly like the dog. They think that they are driving the cart of this life, they waste their moments in making sure that the life is on the right track as if they didn’t do this, the system on earth would collapse. And often it doesn’t make any difference at all to this system when their moment blinks making them a chapter of history and right then another dog gets himself ready to look after the cart of life.

After today, I felt that one probably shouldn’t make himself as much a fool as the dog driving a cart. One probably shouldn’t manipulate the system on earth. One probably shouldn’t control the evolution of life. One probably shouldn’t make the sun rise and set in time. One probably shouldn’t make the moon shine on the sky everynight. Because one simply can’t do so like the dog can’t drive the cart.

And one definitely shouldn’t postpone a family trip because one never knows when his moment would blink making him a chapter of the past depriving him of a wonderful quality time which is indeed the essence of life.

Nobel Prize— for Destruction

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Nobel Prize is considered to be the most prestigious prize in respected fields and the ultimate dream of every person working in the relevant field. The fields into which Nobel Prize is awarded include Chemistry, Physics, Medicine, Peace, Literature and Economics. The story of any Nobel Prize Award starts with the devotion of a person conducting research in any of the respected fields and willingly trades his time, efforts, abilities, attributes and life for a glory that he might not even live to see, enjoy and receive. But the gamble’s a successful one, it’s worth it and has been played by many names written in golden in the book of history. The story started with Alfred Nobel, who donated his entire wealth to award prizes to the ones who become the greatest relief to mankind through their work in their field. After the name of Nobel Alfred, the prize was named Nobel Prize.

The approach behind the creation of Nobel Prize was also very noble. The prize admires the efforts of the persons that become the greatest relief to humanity and mankind through their work. It’s worth mentioning that one Pakistani scientist, Dr. Abdul Islam also received a Nobel Prize for his work in Physics. Though the international scientific and intellectual community recognized his services for science and mankind, the person unfortunately could not receive that level of affection from his homeland because of being a part of a condemned religious sect.

The process of evolution has been playing its role in each and every aspect of our lives, ranging from sciences to religion, from peace to war, from emotions of love to feelings of hatred and from ways of living life to ceremonies of death. Mankind has always been resisting to accept a change without its strong efforts of rejecting it and Nobel Prize is no exception. With the passage of time, the cause of creation of Nobel Prize, ‘services to mankind’ evolved in its interpretation by common public and different nations. Different societies claimed their own sense of this cause, like different version of the same religion a conflicted erupted.

The United States of America came forward to serve humanity by gaining dominion to the so called third world, ‘rich in oil’ countries at first and then simultaneously increased attempts against Chinese invasion onto the horizons of the international economics. The manipulation of internal affairs and politics of third world countries is also loaded with the holy spirit of services to humanity and mankind. Israel felt very deprived and restless and then came forward to save this earth from Palestinians. They say that history keeps on repeating itself and probably this is why mankind keeps on resisting the changes of evolution. I wonder why the caretakers of the Nobel Prize awarding committees have been neglecting the efforts of the two renowned states and why didn’t they introduce a new category to the Nobel Prizes, the Nobel Prize in the field of Destruction.

I am pretty much sure that a lot of stakeholders of this newly proposed category are very anxiously waiting of being awarded a Nobel Prize worldwide and that this category would win prizes more than any other and I wonder this is why the caretakers are being reluctant to launch this new category, so to save the prize money.

This reminds me of the words of Pop Francis:

Even today, we raise our hand against our brother.. We have perfected our weapons, our conscious has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal. We continue to sow destruction, pain and death.

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.)

A Tide of Two Banks

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Few things in the world are more powerful than a positive push. A smile, a word of optimism and hope. A ‘you can do it’ when things are tough.

They say that there is always a way. They say you can reach there if you really wanted to get there. They say that impossible says that ‘I Am Possible’. And they say that the approach is the optimistic approach. It’s just the glass is always half filled and there’s always a shine after a night’s thunder storm.

There’s another factual saying:

My practicality consists in this, in the knowledge that if you beat your head against the wall it is your head which breaks and not the wall.

I have always been swinging between the two twin banks of the lake known as optimism and pessimism. As an optimist, I believe that there is always a way, the glass is half filled and there always will be another chance. But when I get close to the other bank, the glass seems half emptied, an opportunity has been missed and there doesn’t seem to be another probable chance.

Irrespective of the debate of ‘the better approach’ of the two, these two banks go parallel to each other but these two cross each other at some points leaving you with a question about the consequences of your developed hopes and about your approach. There’s always this tide that shifts you to one of the banks and that tide is the reaction to your attempts.

You constantly keep on calculating the odds of finding something good ignoring the fact that there might not be any possible way for you to get there. There might not be any place for you to fit in. She might not be standing there for anxiously welcoming you. You might be just another agent knocking on the door, with high hopes though, offering something that is not desired at the moment.

This is when the two banks cross each other and that tide of harshness takes you into the zone of the pessimistic bank. And that’s when the practicality informs you that you have been beating the wall with your head, expecting that something meaningful will come out, you’re not doing the right thing!!