2012 in Review!


The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,100 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 4 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Abandoning Our Homeland


I recently participated in a National event called CMA MEDIA CHRONICLES. It included various competitions such as 3D Modeling, Poster Designing, Public Speaking, Live Sketching, Photo Essay, Short Film/TVC and Skits/Theater. The unique aspect was that all the competitions were conducted under one broad theme “Our Dreams, Our Future”. I took part in Public Speaking, based on the theme, I came up with the topic ‘Abandoning Our homeland‘ for my speech. The idea was to make our Pakistani youth realize that ‘Our Dreams and Our Future’ not necessarily lies in a foreign land (as this has become a common perception in our society). Here is what I prepared….

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“OMG! Finally the dream of my life is going to be fulfilled! Got my visa and soon I will be flying to UK where my future is.”

This was my friend’s Facebook status a few weeks ago who recently graduated. It got 300 likes and 250 comments to be exact (quite a hit status!). Not just her, I actually know quite a lot of fresh graduates who plan to go abroad for further studies. Good! But the unfortunate part is that most don’t intend coming back as they plan to settle abroad. Ladies and gentlemen, this has become a common and rising trend. We start searching and applying for the universities abroad even before getting our degrees. Why is that so? Why does today’s youth dream to settle abroad? Why do they believe that their future will be brighter in a foreign land but not here in Pakistan? Why do we tend to grab any opportunity that comes our way to escape? And why are we so quick to accept a new country, a new culture, but not even slightly hesitant in abandoning our own?  As I ask myself these questions, I also hear a lone voice giving me the answers: This country has no future! This country is not worth living in!  This country’s government and system is corrupted! This country has not given me anything! Surprised at the familiarity of these answers?  Well, don’t be!! We! say these words all the time!!

But now as I think about it I feel mortified. How can I say that this country has not given me anything when I know It gave me a unique identity in the world. It made me understand the true meaning of “Freedom” and it nourished me. I grew up here, got an education here,  and now!!!  When I have become competent and independent I simply decide that this place is good for nothing? I want to abandon it and go serve some other country with the skills that I learned here, ignoring the fact that my own country needs me more??

When we become independent and start earning, we don’t want to leave our parents because they have grown old and weak, and now they depend on us! Then WHY is it… that we don’t even feel a slight aversion in leaving our SIXTY-FIVE YEARS OLD MOTHERLAND…PAKISTAN??? Isn’t this old and rather weakening motherland also reliant on us? My friends, aren’t WE being just as selfish, as those corrupted politicians and leaders we condemn all the time? Have we ever tried to understand whose fault all this really is?

We blame the government but who elects it? It’s you and I. We blame the system… but who runs the system? People like You and I. And is the government and the system to be blamed only? Of course not! We, in our individual spaces, are equally responsible for making Pakistan “not worth living in” and earning it a bad name. Why? Because we believe that laws are meant to be broken. We don’t like to pay our taxes. We steal electricity. We indulge in bribery. We cheat, we lie, and we promote the negative image of Pakistan through our own media. Above all, we just talk about problems but we do nothing… NOTHING at all to resolve them. We even have the solutions but somehow…we are hesitant to take the initiative. Let us ask ourselves that what role did we play towards the betterment of our country? Especially us, the Youth? I think we only complain, don’t we?

Take a look at Tunisia. They wanted to free themselves from dictatorship; they achieved their goal and created HISTORY! They didn’t run away from their responsibilities by abandoning their homeland. They all stood together, strove towards their dream and made them HAPPEN! And lets not forget, it was their youth who played a major role in the revolution, the same as in the freedom movement of our own history. Then why can’t we do it now?? We just need to believe in Pakistan and channelize our dreams in the right direction. Rather than planning our ‘individual’ prosperous future, lets us dream together to have a flourishing Pakistan and just like the Tunisians, let us too turn our dream into a reality!

Let us understand our responsibilities; Let us EDUCATE ourselves. Yes! we shall not give up on our dreams of foreign education but we will do so only to come back here to our country, to our Pakistan and serve it because if Pakistan prospers, We prosper!

So as of today, my Dream is a ‘Prosperous Pakistan’, my Future is ONLY PAKISTAN! 🙂

“EVERGREEN”


This song always makes me energetic and happy. ‘I’m Evergreen’ means no matter what happens, how hard and complicated life becomes I’ll always be the way I am. I will laugh at the face of problems because I know that can and I will survive it. ‘I am every Color, I am Evergreen’; I am happy, I am sad, I am a failure, I am a winner, I am envious, I am kind, I love, I hate….I am every color, I am evergreen.

“To Draw You Must Close Your Eyes and Sing” – Picasso


Hedy Lamarr has rightly said:  “A good painting to me has always been like a friend. It keeps me company, comforts and inspires.”  It doesn’t really matter if you can understand art well or not but whenever you see a good painting or any form of drawing you just feel like appreciating it. And if the painting speaks for itself and you can find a connection to it then you feel inspired. I am also that kind of person who may not have much knowledge about art but I never hesitate to appreciate any inspiring art work and most importantly ‘creative work”.  

Today I will show you some brilliant and spectacular sketches of my friend and colleague, Nyla Talpur, that will leave your jaws hanging down. Nyla is a student of BBA(H) at Institute of Business Management(IoBM). Although pursuing her career as a business student she has immense interest in drawing and painting. She says:

“As a kid, drawing to me was like escaping from the reality that I didn’t like. And even today I like to express my emotions and feelings through drawing and painting. When I hold a pencil or paint brush in my hand with a canvas in front of me I drift away into some other kind of world;  which is more real and better to me.” 

Here are some magnificent sketches by Nayla Talpur:

A portrait of herself which depicts her a rebellious person who doesn’t believe in any kinds of feudal, Waderas and religious sects. Moreover, the Ajrak work on her sleeves represents her identity as a sindhi that shows that she desires to freed her land (Sindh) from all such people.

She captured this image in her camera while she was out with family for dinner. She was waiting for the dinner to come when a small kid was playing near her table with his father. Later, she sketched the picture. This sketch portrays the beautiful relationship between a father and his son.

This sketch is titled as “Ecstasy” which means an intense emotion of joy or happiness in which one feels carried beyond rational thought and self-control. She has depicted that when she draws she takes a state of ecstasy which is divine and beautiful. Dance is also a form of art and a form expressing oneself; this dancer is also experiencing the state of Ecstasy.

This portrait is of a Sindhi Alghozo player , Akbar Khamisu Khan. This pictures depicts what our real culture is like; full or arts , music and Sufism.

Here is what she says about this: this sketch wasn’t really planned. I was just venting out my frustration. I think john pollock has rightly said that a painting has a life of its own . It just comes by itself, and we are just a medium. This depicts how every other person is actually not living one life ,as a one person , but every person is a split personality to some extent .

I bet your jaws are hanging down (just like I promised) 😉 I really can’t think of proper words of appreciation. I think she’s just marvelous in what she does and her drawings can connect to our hearts.

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.” – Thomas Merton

A TRUE SUPERSTAR


There are a great number of musicians in the world whose work is admired by millions of people around the globe. The world has seen many brilliant stars that come on the world’s stage, perform, rule over theirs fan’s hearts and go by leaving their memories behind. However, there are only few stars that succeed in securing a special place in people’s heart. They remain in their hearts forever and continue to influence lives even after they die. That is they become an icon…they become a Legend. This universe also had one such “inspirational star”. He was a singer, a lyricist and a composer. He was an incredible dancer, a unique entertainer and an absolute Fashion icon. He is often referred as “The King of Pop”, he has won many prestigious awards and his name is there in the “Hollywood Walk of Fame”. Yes you got it right….he is “Michael Jackson” (MJ); one true Superstar that the world had ever seen.

Michael Jackson is a name which is not alien to anyone in the world; his popularity is spread-out wide across the globe. He has given the world some incredible dance moves and greatest hits of all time. His music albums had broken all the records and remain unbeatable till today. He soared to unimaginable heights with his talent; with his every new song and music video, his stardom boosted to an entire new level. Whether it is a ten-year old kid or a sixty year old man, everyone was his die heart fan and Michael ruled their hearts.

It might seem to you that all these words are coming out from one of the MJ’s die heart fans. Well then it might be disappointing for you to know that it is not so. I am not a big MJ fan but this doesn’t mean I don’t like him. In fact to tell you the truth, it was after Michael’s death that I became fond of him. Previously, Michael Jackson to me was just some awfully famous star of Hollywood who dressed differently, looked differently, danced and sang differently. Everything about him was just weirdly different to me. I had not listened to his songs except for “Dangerous” and “Heal the World”. And I used to wonder that what on earth does anyone sees in him!! I didn’t like him back then because his appearances on TV just made me…. dislike him. That was the mistake I did. The mistake that we all often do i.e. judging people from the way they look. Last year, I was doing some research on “Illuminaties” and I got to know that they were responsible for MJ’s death. My curiosity led me to few documentaries and shows related to Michael Jackson and all of a sudden I became his fan.

Earlier I said that MJ was a true superstar. Now who is a true superstar? A true superstar is one who can influence people, who can touch people’s lives and continue to live in their hearts forever. They become immortal. Although, MJ has been into many controversies like child molestation, there have been numerous tabloids but his fan following never saw a decline. Michael gained that fan loyalty because he did touched many lives and influenced others to great extent. There are many singing sensational today e.g. Rihana, Coldplay, Akon, Lady Gaga etc who delight and entertain their fans with all kinds of fun and party songs. But MJ was different. Maintaining the title of “The King of Pop” he also taught many important lessons of life to his fans through his songs. Michael was aware of his huge fan following. He knew he inspired people and they just loved him like crazy; his concerts were an evidence of this. To many, Michael Jackson was the one and only role model in life; as a dancer, as a singer and as an entertainer. This meant that MJ had the power to move people, to control their minds and their hearts. And as it is said that “with great power comes great responsibility, MJ did take his responsibility. He made beautiful songs to spread the message of love and equality. At the same time his songs and music videos were also an eye opener to the conspiracies of the world.

Michael believed that the world speaks and understands only one language and that was the language of love. His songs like “Heal the World”, “We are the World, We are the Children” and “The Earth song”, all talk about loving and taking care of each other, making this world a better place for living especially for the children and for the generations to come. MJ showed his distress about people dying in wars and about our role in destroying the planet earth. He gave the message of being united, of respecting every culture and every religion, of shunning racial discrimination and accepting others the way they are. He gave this message of equality in his song “Black or White”. Then he tried to show his fans the real face of our governments and the truth about this world. In his hit song “They don’t really care about us” he told how government and system manipulate people and how they cause human suffering. There were other songs like “Bad” and “Leave me alone” in which MJ hinted how “Illuminaties” are creating conspiracies against him (see Illuminaties and Michael Jackson). Not only his songs but his music videos and stage performances also gave similar messages. During his last years of life, Michael talked a lot about saving this world from the big ongoing conspiracy in his numerous interviews. And it is also said that in his concert “This is it”, which was supposed to be his life’s last concert, Michael was to reveal something big. However, the concert never happened because Michael died before that. But a short film “This is it” which is actually the recorded rehearsals and preparations of the concert does proof that MJ was up to something.

“To give someone a piece of your heart , is worth more than all the wealth in the world.” __ Michael Jackson

Michael had always been in the spotlight even if he was not performing; different tabloids and conspiracies always kept him in the limelight. He was also given the label of “Jacko the Wacko”. Again, I don’t know for sure whether all of it was some scheme to give MJ a bad name or they were MJ’s own creation for continuous publicity as many people say. However, I do feel that the conspiracies were not true. A superstar like Michael Jackson doesn’t need any bunch of conspiracies for publicity or fame. People would follow him anywhere. What does he do, where does he go, his public appearances were just enough for that purpose. Secondly, his songs (especially the ones mentioned above) do have the soul in them and does give useful lessons of life. I don’t see any superstar of music industry presently creating such beautiful songs about saving earth and humanity. A musician who can compose such deep and sensitive songs, who being at the peak of fame and popularity can still feel the pain of people dying in wars and who constantly give the message of peace and love is not “Jacko the Wacko” to me at least.

Yes I am a fan of Michael Jackson. I like his beautiful and soulful songs, I like his expressive videos, I respect him for the love he had for the mankind, I respect him for the concern he had to save the world and I am his fan because to me he was a good human being, and trust me that is all that actually matters. Like thousands of people, I was also inspired by Michael Jackson and he did touch my life too but what surprises me is that he did so by not even being alive. Indeed that shows the immortality of a star….a True Superstar.

A True Superstar who continues to live in millions of hearts…

Here is video of his song “The Earth”: