About Injustice

Source: theviewspaper.net

Source: theviewspaper.net

Injustice is a human invention.

 

A matter of social sophistication and intellectual aesthetics.

It is non-existent in the natural world. It is arguably incompatible with the principles of evolution over billions of years.

 

There is no such thing as injustice. It is not the absence of something.

Just another false promise. A utopian dream, for one thing.

 

It is just an abstraction. It is just an expectation.

A fragment of your imagination.

 

But perhaps not.

 

Injustice is just another word for the condition of life.

 

Why the Society Absolutely Needs the Council of Islamic Ideology

Source: Pakistan Today

Source: Pakistan Today

Although it is needless to emphasize the importance of the prestigious institute of the Council of Islamic Ideology, considering the kind of constitution and state we have in Pakistan, still it would be a good idea for the Pakistani youth to evaluate the kind of ideas they are putting forth. For their guidance, of course.

I have to offer some counter recommendations to the proposals they have presented only a few days ago. Accepting these recommendations, however, are up to the able people and government of Pakistan.

The Blasphemy Law should not be amended in order to protect minorities. 

Now this is an absolutely valid recommendation. In what other way could the minority religious groups would possibly feel safe if they were not told what to say and what to do? They should actually be prosecuted and indicted more frequently under the Blasphemy Law, so they can feel safer and happier under the infallible protection and shelter of the state. Their homes certainly are unsafe places for them, as we have seen time and time again.

Source: Abid Nawaz/Express

Source: Abid Nawaz/Express

Human Cloning is forbidden under the Shariah. 

There can hardly be a second opinion to this. What could be more horrific than reproducing another human being? Rather recreating. Are not such claims synonymous to challenging Allah that we can do just as good as you do. Indeed, secular scientists only use “medical research” as an excuse to indulge in this immoral and totally unnecessary act. I propose that cloning must be dealt with under the provisions of the Blasphemy Law. This should put such Satanic ideas to rest for good.

DNA shall not be considered primary evidence in rape cases. It can only be used as a secondary or supporting evidence.

Considering that adultery/fornication is a crime of as horrific proportions as rape, especially when done on the sidewalks, the prime evidence condition of four male witnesses should be upheld, and must have precedence over all other forms of evidence. This is why women are recommended to accompany at least four men, acquainted or not, with them at all times and under all circumstances, especially when wearing provocative clothing, so that they do not feel unsafe should a rapist attempt to approach them with malicious intentions.

Furthermore, why would a sane and righteous judge want to trust a woman’s testament which only has half as much weight as that of the accused?

Surely, she could wrongfully accuse an honorable man of faith. Through science, we do know now that all human DNA is 99.99999997% identical, so she could produce someone else’s DNA as effortlessly as if it was the real deal and the honorable courts would not be able to tell the difference. Besides, using DNA as prime evidence would trigger more indictments in rape cases, which would mean more stoned-to-death men and which would mean lesser chances of reproduction for men looking to increase the population of the followers of the Prophet.

What the hell are all the liberal people and feminists complaining about?

The Rectification of the secular translations of terms “Allah”, “Rasool” and “Masjid” as “God”, “Messenger” and “Mosque” or “Place of Worship”. 

This is a much needed recommendation in order to nullify the vile actions of a certain minority in the country that is hellbent to secularize things which are not even meant to be secular. However, there should be a certain exception to the rule, before it is blindly put into effect.

You would not want the Ahmedi community to be using the term “Masjid”, would you?

The Love of Dust

How much do you love dust?

Oh, for the love of God, I am not talking about the germs and all the crazy microscopic creatures that we are told share the same space as ours. How unromantic.

Why not take it as the inseparable, sticky particles of the Motherland that reminds you that you are only going to be reduced to it one day?

Or perhaps a golden opportunity to reconnect to nature? Oh wait, Mother Nature.

Or even an opportunity to recreate and relish the environs of an Arabian Desert in order to stimulate piety?

Where I am sitting right now, or living right now, is a great bowl of dust.

It’s as if I am back in time in the American Great Depression and am in the middle of the Dust Bowl.

Well, watch what you wish for, because it actually is the case.

Miserable economy, unemployment, power cuts, misery, poverty, frustration, dry country, no breadlines but all sorts of other terrible lines, and most importantly, dust. It could not be more perfect.

I have heard that history repeats itself. But I never thought that it would be true in such a horrific manner.

But hey, let us see the lighter side of things. After all, what cannot be cured, must be endured.

I have dust particles in my mouth.

Isn’t that amazing? Isn’t that simply divine?

I just went to the roof of my house in order to write better while being closer to the stars. The cloud of dust in my neighborhood was so thick, I could hardly make out any bright dots in the blackish brownish what-appeared-to-be-the-sky. Despite the fact that it was pitch dark all around. Power cuts, mind you.

What is even worse, I could smell the dust.

Ah, the divine, maternal smell of the earth you belong to. One of the most disturbing and irritating feelings in the world.

And you know what is even crazier?

I seem to be the only person who has a problem with it.

It has been raining inches of dust on my part of the town for the past few weeks and it seems that there is no end to it.

And what is ironical, all that has occurred in the name of developmental construction, whatever that is.

OK, I’ll tell you what I think it could mean. It means vote for dust.

What is the most disturbing aspect about it is that it ruins the outdoor environment and you are greatly deterred to even step out of your house. Not that it would help you escape dust any better, but somewhat at least. You must hope to stay alive, while eating dust with your food and drinking dust with your drink.

For all the lamentation about the dusty air I breathe, let me inform you that I am a person who is accused of having a pretty dusty room myself, and partially rightly so. I do not usually appreciate foreign interferences in form of excessive dusting of my room, which through experience, I have often found counterproductive for a myriad of reasons, both in terms of time and the energy that keeps you patient.

Still by my shabby standards of living, the current unending storm of dust has succeeded in getting under my skin. It now seems as if I have developed a completely new sub-layer of skin which is made out of dust particles. Proving the Koranic revelation that “we made you out of dust”.

Wish they hadn’t.

But this disaster of a dust bowl surrounding my habitat is anything but divine, unless by divine, you mean manmade. And this colossal effort has been put forth in order to connect the misguided, naïve and degenerate people of my neighborhood to the soil of their Motherland.

And fortunately, people seem to be loving it. They are thanking the architects of these majestic pillars of dust every minute by ritually circling around them, celebrating their love of dust by not giving a fuck.

As much as I find it repulsive, it is about time I give in and announce my love of dust too.

Oh, how lovely it is to have its particles meet the taste buds on my tongue.

I can hardly tell the difference anymore.

Humiliating for a Living

Source: Dawn

Source: Dawn

There is sufficient evidence to suggest that human beings, as a species (for the sake of emphasis), take great pleasure in humiliating their fellow beings. Evidence so overwhelming that it hardly needs a demonstation for a proof, as it almost defines our lifestyle.

There is no greater dimension of social life to demonstrate this fact than politics. While there is no culture in the world, from the United States to India, where people would not have bitter resentment for their political rivals to the point of seeing them grovel, but in Pakistan, we have invented new fabulous ways for it which were never heard of before.

The newest innovation in this regard has been the qualification check or “scrutiny” from the election commission’s returning officers receiving the nomination papers based on the Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

While in another country, they would be asking the candidates about their understanding of the law and the constitution, the Pakistani returning officer is interested in everything about the married life of the candidate to his or her knowledge of the religous rituals, funeral rites and of Islam. I wounder if they have asked them about their circumcised penises as well.

Basically, the idea is that these officials are verifying if the morality of the candidates is in line with the religious, traditional and conservative values of the culture. As a matter of fact, the eloquent PML-N MP Ayaz Amir was recently declared disqualified, only later to be declared qualified, on the basis of his column questioning the ideology of Pakistan. So much for freedom of speech.

Source: Dawn

Source: Dawn

But one thing is for sure. These returning officers seem to be biased in favor of religious parties because if these questions are asked to their candidates, they would, or are supposed to have answers memorized like the back of their hands.

But obviously, this piece of news was a great source of entertainment for the Pakistani media, because incidentally a lot of candidates failed to dodge the loaded questions of the returning officers. Questions which ranged from the demand of recital of the funeral prayer to enquiring about the reason for marrying a second time.

Here I am not implying that any such idiocy be banned, which many often conclude when you voice such criticism. But nevertheless, it is an embarrassing state of affairs. Even the Lahore High Court, known for its youtube moralism, was embarrassed and condemned it.

Musarrat Shaheen - Source: journalismpakistan.com

Mussarat Shaheen – Source: journalismpakistan.com

But come on, it did put up a great show. Entertained the nation for a week or two.

For example, the sheer delight of Mussarat Shaheen, a Dera Ismail Khan dancer-actress turned politician candidate who I publicly and shamelessly support by the way (the more women in the parliament, the better for their own good. Besides she kicks Maulana’s ass), reciting Ayat-ul-Kursi or Verse of the Chair or Throne (2:255) from the second chapter of the Koran. (A Koranic mantra usually chanted to ward off evil spirits)

And the ecstasy of watching an older-than-middle-age woman shedding tears on the TV screen for being unable to recall some nonsense from Islamic or Pakistan Studies teachings.

Not long ago, the media came up with a clip which showed Senator Rehman Malik being unable to fluently recite in Arabic, which is by no maens his first language, the Sura-e-Ikhlaas  or the 114th chapter of the Koran, which is certainly a matter to be laughed at.

As if being able to recite the Koranic verses is imperative to qualify you not only for public office, but for public respect. And vice versa.

Source: CNBC Pakistan

Source: CNBC Pakistan

But apparently it is. And despite Rehman Malik’s apologies to the nation for the failure of the parliament to remove Articles 62 and 63 from the constitution, it was his party and none else who laid the foundation for that fanatic madness.

Though I consider his statement about Sadiqs and Ameens pretty heroic and very wise in the end. He said that only people named Sadiq and Ameen are the ones who are Sadiq and Ameen in Pakistan, clarifying the actual status of these Arab adjective-names taken for holy characteristics of the ideal Muslim. A lot of people mock him for his stupidity, but they would not have half the courage to utter this undeniable fact.

Source: International Islamic University Islamabad

Source: International Islamic University Islamabad

This rather reminds me of my days in the International Islamic University Islamabad, where you could not earn the degree without reciting one of the verses from the last 40 chapters of the Koran, whichever asked.

I, despite putting up with this ridiculous regulation, was openly against it. However, my classmates, without any exceptions whatsoever, all of them devout and pious Sunni and Shia Muslims, saw nothing wrong with it. They were pretty cheerful about it actually, making me doubt my motives as I was pretty bad at it.

Of course, what could possibly be more charming than being able to recite the good Word of God at a minute’s notice. Sadly, many a fanatic Muslims destroy and abuse the childhood years of their offspring who guarantee paradise for their seven ancestors through this glorious virtue.

What more could you possibly ask for?

But coming back to the most necessary provision of Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, and why criticizing which does not amount to treason, I fail to comprehend.

However, these provisions simply send out a message to the Christians, Hinuds, Sikhs, Parsis and other religious minorities of Pakistan that they do not have any business living and flourishing in this country.

Oh wait, I got it wrong. They have their rights as provided by the constitution.

It actually suggests that any one who is non-religious and supports secularism has no business living in this country, let alone take part in the public affairs.

As for the humiliation part, why complain?

That is probably all that our species derives its entertainment from.

Why not make a living out of it?

A Note on Parenting

Source: newstalk.ie

Source: newstalk.ie

I know you probably can’t or should not really make an observation about parenting unless you become a parent yourself, but here is one anyway. Though I am not sure if I would ever want to be a parent, but this is what I think about it as of March 31, 2013. As you can’t tell how much your views would change in the future.

Whenever I hear about parents being disappointed with what their child has turned out to be, in terms of becoming something in life, I find it rather disappointing. I can’t help but wonder if they even understand them as unique persons responsible for their own lives and the choices they make, especially when they blame themselves for their miserable condition.

And I can’t help thinking about it when they want to control their lives, especially in Eastern cultures like India. Though I am sure it is true to some extent for every culture. But for cultures like Pakistan, we have conservative parents who would raise their daughters in Britain or America, but would want them to return home as soon as they come to age in order to prevent them from having freedom of choices in their sex lives.

This is when you would be compelled to think that many parents hardly even understand what, and I hope you don’t mind my using the word “what” over here, their children are. The traditional view makes parents presume that they have some sort of a right over the child’s way of life and they end up getting depressed when it does not turn out to be like that.

I find this the greatest flaw with the conservative upbringing, not that liberal upbringing would be any better, though they would offer you a lot of arguments to support both.

I know bringing up a child is one of the most heated debates, rather a dilemma, everywhere in the world. I don’t know what is the right way to bring up a child, which is why I personally consider it a rather scary predicament that I would not want to see myself in. Scary and maybe wonderful at the same time.

A child can be one of the most dangerous weapons in the world, in many ways. If you consider that, you may never become a parent, ever.

So while people cannot agree on the best way to bring up a child, at least some parents can start with considering their children distinct individuals with personalities and preferences.

Source: Columbia Pictures (under fair use)

Death as Tooth Decay

Source: topnews.ae

Every step we take is a step towards death. We long for it.

Every little action, every biochemical reaction, every poison we take in, every word we speak and get to hear in response to it, contributes to our ultimate, impending demise.

Have you ever wondered what dying and death would feel like?

As a matter of fact, nature has given us several clues into that. In terms of consciously perceiving it.

Forget about seeing the other person die. That is simply too distant for a physical being to experience death, despite the emotional pain.

But after observing the decaying death of a couple of my own teeth, it struck me with how analogous it was to death itself.

It is, apart from the skin, one of the few organs in the human body that dies within the normal course of a human life. That is, excluding accidents and more horrendous injuries from the possibilities.

The way the root hurts and the way it is taken care of is a great example of the transition from life to death.

And surely it is the transition that must hurt the most.

As Woody Allen said, I am not afraid of dying. I just don’t want to be there when it’s happening.

Well that precisely elaborates the inescapable predicament.

Life is precious, yes, but the act of dying seems to be the very inseparable part of it.

Dying almost seems like a function of life.

And hardly any other occurrence within our bodies exemplifies it better than tooth decay and extraction.

The ultimate tension, the electric shocks, the soul wrenching pull, when the tooth is pulled out and the ultimate peace and void when it is gone.

Or a tooth can even hang between life and death, even perpetually. Or at least for a very long time.

I don’t know about it and I can’t be sure, but I can tell that it must be representative of a life condition as well.

Or perhaps it is representative of the very condition that our lives are in. You know, the state of somewhere hanging between our lives and deaths.

With our souls longing to be somewhere else than the body, or so it seems. Or perhaps our bodily chemicals hating what we are doing to ourselves or are made to do to ourselves.

A tooth is like a tiny version of ourselves, the one we hardly know or feel, and the one which we can even afford to live without. Which dies away without leaving a trace, and which is replaceable, at least in its function, with a prosthetic replica.

I am not even sure if we can replace people with a prosthetic replica. We do, but not the people we love.

Just the people we need and can never meet or have.

Thoughts on November Gaza Strikes and the Middle East Conflict

Source: AP/Washington Post

You can’t expect people to act rationally or logically when they are being bombed, Israeli or Palestinian. If you think they do, then you know very little about humans. Though there are people out there who are paid to do so.

That’s why I think it’d take really smart people to handle the fragile Middle East situation. This is why I am worried that the Israeli policies could actually harm the Jewish people, even though they are designed to protect them, or offer the perception of protecting them.

Using force as a deterrent is probably a necessity there, especially in the early years when the memory of antisemitic fascist regimes was still fresh. It is relevant even today, but considering that Gaza does not enjoy that luxury would make you very concerned about their security too.

I believe the people living on the both sides have the same fears and desires. But thinking again from the Israeli perspective, I would be very concerned as an Israeli citiizen or diplomat about the image of the nation around the world. I know a lot of Israelis would prefer better security over a better world image. Who wouldn’t? I would too. Anyone would.

But this is something for the leaders to think about because it concerns the future. Unless we are hellbent to enact the Biblical or Hadith Apocalypse.

People often mention the wounded and the killed Israeli and Palestinian children and the propaganda about them. It’s not a question of whether a Jewish child dies or an Arab child dies. The question to ask is whether we would want a child to live in such a hostile environment.

Seriously, I would do whatever I can to prevent a child from living in a warzone (ideally anyone but why add more misery by forcing new people to suffer by shoving them into this world, though true in any other situation too). But can I, or can we? No.

If the Hamas regime is irresponsible, which I am convinced that they are, to the point that their policies don’t really reflect any sympathy for the security of their own people (if you ignore the fact that they are badly repressed by the Israelis), then what could be better ways to deal with them?

To a cynic, maybe build global consensus before bombing Gaza City. To a more rational person, maybe Israel and the US should stop blocking full Palestinian membership in the UN like civilized nations and lift the Gaza blockade and grant their states completely autonomous status like soveirgn countries and maybe give them a chance to prove their civilty once again.

But still if Palestinians are sensible, they would know that the intifadas are largely a lost cause today because the rest of the Arab world would rather really support Israel over them any time. Then again, is it a coincidence that the Palestinian resistance looks towards Iran? The enemy of your enemy is your friend.

I do think the Palestinian leaders could have done a lot more to ensure peace and are largely responsible for a lot of deaths over the years (Not because they should have as per their principles but because they lack political resources to fight Israel). But that’s politics. If only they were not obsessed with Jerusalem. Not that the Israelis are not.

The growing West Bank settlements and the policy of gradual Palestinian deprivation may have worked well for the Israeli occupation, but make a very poor case for Israeli peace efforts. In any case you would really want the violence to stop regardless of the political consequences. But in politics, land and power are more precious than life. Then again, there is liberty.

But the recent November strikes on Gaza have made an impact in some other way. The international community and media noticing the cruelty of the Israeli attack on Gaza this time for a change is significant. The image of the BBC photojournalist as posted above has shaken the West. Accussations of biased media coverage from both sides do not change the facts and the misery that both the affected people go through.

Therefore, both Israelis and Palestinians need to learn their lessons fast. Good luck to both of them for peace.

I know it almost sounds superficial, especially after these words echoing the conference halls on the conclusion of countless meaningless accords, but just in the memory of Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, let us agree to stop the madness and say:

Shalom. Salaam. Peace.

Then again, it’s not important. Is it?