Let’s Catch Up

As promised previously, this post will be all about the things I have been up to since the last time I blogged (which was two whole years ago, yikes!) I am going to make list of things I have done since then, and the list will include some achievements and some failures. Let’s get started, yes?

  • I finished my LLB-that’s a big achievement, if I say so myself;
  • I fed my soul by doing some travelling- I went to Kashmir which was absolutely stunning;
  • I made some great friends;
  • I fell out with some of these new friends (I am not sure if that’s an achievement or a failure?)
  • I got into the whole healthy eating, healthy living thing-disclaimer: my lifestyle is still far from green, but I do try to eat healthier and use some organic products. Baby steps, guys!
  • I started working out without hating it. In fact, I actually like working out now. Shocking! But I am working a little everyday to a healthier me;
  • I discovered my true love- MAKEUP! I am a makeup hogger; I love watching YouTube Makeup Tutorials-they are like a calming ritual for me; and I am really excited for doing makeup/fashion related posts from now on. Whoop whoop!
  • I learned how to cook-guess who can make a trillion different types of pasta now? (Hint: She’s writing this post)
  • Finally, I have now learned prioritize myself over anyone else-although I struggle not crossing the fine line which lies between that and being selfish.

So that’s it for now. I am just ecstatic to be back to blogging and I am going to go do a little happy dance now. Happy reading peeps!

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It’s Been A While

My last blog post was two years ago. I cannot believe it has actually been that long, but I am back and I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon!

I have missed writing so much. Now that I am back to it, I realize how much penning down my thoughts helped me with sorting out my thoughts. I am going to let you readers in on an underrated secret; writing truly is therapeutic. So if any of you has been suffering from the all too common ailment known as ‘over-thinking’, just give writing a shot.

It really doesn’t mean you need to start your own blog (if you do though that would be brilliant); just take a piece of paper and a pen and just jot down whatever you are feeling at the moment. Trust me, it will help.

This post is going to be a short one but I am working on a new post, in which I will recap whatever I have been up to in the last two years (when I went AWOL).

Here’s to the rebirth of my blog (gosh I always end up being a tad over-dramatic). Cheers, my lovelies!

 

When Did We Stop Being Tolerant?

The last thing that made me mad? That’s a no-brainer: When a friend did everything he could to trivialize my beliefs about spirituality and religion. 

Now would be a good time to make it clear that I come from an Islamic country (Pakistan), although a majority of the Muslim population here are simply ‘cultural’ Muslims (but take no time turning into the pious momin when they want to comment on someone’s lifestyle which seems unfitting for their version of Islam).

Yes, we are all entitled to our belief and we don’t have to agree with each other. But does that mean we have the right to trivialize someone else’s faith? I would think not. 

I am not religious; I consider myself spiritual (something I discovered quite recently, but more on that later). I do believe in God, but not in the God most of my Muslim friends and the majority of Pakistani Muslims seem to believe in. I really don’t think God is sitting up there racking his brain trying to figure out new ways to unleash his wrath on all the unbelievers. Nor do I believe that God would disown me if I didn’t dress “appropriately”, or had a tattoo, or loved someone from the same sex. I wouldn’t want to believe in such a superficial, sexist, and unbelievably unreasonable God. 

This friend of mine, however, has different views. He seems to believe in such a God, and seems quite adamant to impose his beliefs on those who hold a different opinion, and if he can’t succeed there then he will try his incompetent best to belittle the other person by ridiculing and trivializing their values and beliefs.

He is entitled believe in whatever he wants. But so am I. And I should be able to do just that, without the fear of others trivializing my faith. That is completely unacceptable, is it not? 

I like nothing more than an intelligent, thought-provoking debate on (quite) controversial topics such as God, spirituality and feminism. But the difference is, whenever I have had these debates with friends or family, I always found myself to be the only one willing to keep an open mind and explore all avenues, while the other party was hell-bent on trying to shove their beliefs down my throat. 

I have no stead-fast rules on God or faith-which is one of the reasons why I really hesitate in introducing myself as a religious person because, frankly, all they seem to be is stubbornly, and quite stupidly, might I add, stuck on a view with no intention of budging even slightly. 

It will never cease to amaze me how, in the society I come from, people refuse to even try to look at anything-especially something as sensitive as religion and God- from another point of view, but will never fail to avail an opportunity to ridicule, mock and-most infuriating of all, trivialize the beliefs of anyone which is dissimilar to their own. These are intolerant, narrow-minded bigots who claim to be the followers of one of the most humane and tolerant religions in the world. I know many of you might not agree with the statement about Islam-I didn’t either, until recently- but I will hopefully put up another post soon related to this.  

The cliche live and let live has never seemed more apt.

Things I want to cross of my Bucket List before I am 24

What do I want to do before I’m 24? Here’s my list of random things that popped in my head right now, which makes this list honest, I guess. 

  1. Travel to a new country (my fourth, yay!)
  2. Dine and Dash (oh, and get rid of my “Goody-Two Shoes image)
  3. Learn to make at least 10 different hairstyles
  4. Grow out my hair 
  5. Graduate
  6. Learn how to cook? 
  7. Attend a best friend’s wedding 
  8. Be able to read Rumi in Farsi
  9. Get a tattoo (said by the girl who was afraid of getting her ears pierced..)
  10. Learn to swim
  11. Do at least one thing out of my comfort zone
  12. Take that vacation with friends which has been planned since 9th Grade 
  13. Stop taking myself, and life, so seriously

Unfashionably Late

Unfashionably Late

I know I have been horribly irresponsible towards my blog within the last few weeks. Hence, I would like to extend an olive-branch to my readers (if I have any left) with this picture.

May I never ignore the art of blogging again-Amen.

-A mosque’s minaret captured by me.

The Little Things That Count

You know how we keep hearing the phrase “sometimes it’s the little things that count?”

Well, today I think I actually understood what the extremely profound people with the happy-go-lucky attitude are trying to say.

Tonight, as I was sitting with my father and drafting an email for him, it suddenly hit me that this might be one of those moments that I’ll remember him by in the hopefully very very far future. As I was writing his words, I saw his personality shine through, I saw how he chooses his words and how he creates his sentences. As I was typing away, my heart filled a little more with love for him with every sentence.

I love my father very much. No, I am sure you do too, but I think I love him to the point where it almost hurts. He is my mother and my father, my teacher and yes, maybe my best friend too. When I say he is one of the good people, I’m not being biased (you’ll know what I mean if you meet him once).

This is probably the first of my many post to come about my father. I have so much to talk about him, and I will use my blog to do so.

What we lack is what we need

Paralyzed with fear, she watched them force their way on the bus, carrying guns. They started checking the I.D cards of the men present, in order to determine their identity, thus their race. There were four of them, four monsters and they moved forward to mercilessly kill; just because someone did not belong to their race, just because someone was different. They killed and they left. As the last one was stepping off the bus, she dared to glance at him; his face, like the rest of them, was wrapped in a dirty scarf, revealing only the eyes which reflected one dominant sentiment; hate.

The fictional (yet based on true events) paragraph above only describes one of the many situations in Pakistan where hatred possesses people and makes them commit the most horrendous, most unspeakable of crimes. Discrimination and intolerance are damaging our society just as a cancer destroys a human being. Lack of tolerance can destroy a community, and regrettably all kinds of divisions exist in my society. It is the unfortunate yet undeniable truth that people in this society love to hate.

I wake up listening to reports of people targeted and killed because they are from a different race or ethnic origin; I sleep listening to news bulletins of suicide bombings in schools, shrines and mosques because certain people want to spread what is their idea of Islam. We have a society where those who dare to speak up for what they believe in and against what they do not are killed because there are people present that refuse to accept that others may have differing views.

Why? This one-word question is what I have been asking myself for quite some time now. Why would someone despise the next person for simply not having the same belief? Why would someone believe that only his caste/creed/race deserves to live, while the rest deserve to die? Why would someone think that their being, their existence is most valuable but the next person has no right to live, simply for not being exactly like them? The answer to all these questions is one: intolerance of others, which has stemmed from extreme loathing for all that which is different from us. We fear the unknown, and we will continue to fear them unless we open our minds to education and learn about new things. The masses need to be educated in order to rid themselves of the intolerant and bigoted beliefs, which stems from the fear of the unknown. 

We as a nation need to realize that our strength lies in the fact that our country has so many ethnic communities. We need to understand that this variety can make life multidimensional so that we emerge as self-sustaining and a mature community; caring and cooperative where the most common sentiment would be that of love for one another, regardless of one’s race or religion. 

The fact is that it is high time we acknowledge these issues and act upon them. We need to step out of our bubble and realize that the world, at least the one we live in, is not rose-colored; there are serious issues in our country that need to be addressed and the initial as well as the paramount step towards attempting at resolving our problems is educating the public.

If our society is literate and our minds have been exposed to education about different things, only then will we be able to view things logically and make rational decisions. What wars, guns and hostility cannot solve, education will. Education about different cultures, about History and Sociology, about Math and Physics, will allow us to comprehend things in a rational manner. Only then will we realize that someone is not beneath us just because they are Shia or Christian, that it’s okay to have people with different faiths, different beliefs in our society, that we can live in harmony with them. Societies which have progressed are those where there is no prejudice on the basis of sex, color, creed or ethnic origin. It’s time for a change, for a revolution. Education about different things will teach us to accept and be tolerant of different things. We need education to liberate minds, to at least give our population a chance at making rational decisions on their own, and we need it now.