Category Archives: ancient civilisations

At least we are not Dubai

Among all the gloom about our country, we tend to forget the richness and the diversity of our cities and culture. We have a lot to achieve, but we overlook a lot more that we possess. George Fulton expresses his disdain for Dubai, a ritzy burgeoning middle eastern city that portrays itself as a coastal quasi-western city of choice for businesses and tourists. We may not fully agree with George’s assessment of Dubai as just a glamorous and materialistic cosmopolitan. Yet his comparison of Karachi or Lahore (with their rich culture, traditions, intelligentsia, linguistic pluraity and democracy) with a drab city (run by an autocratic dynasty and inhabited by empty fops looking for relatively quick riches) do ring a loud bell. (AZW)

 

 

By George Fulton, The Express Tribune

http://tribune.com.pk/story/7950/at-least-we-are-not-dubai/

We haven’t got a lot to be thankful for these days in Pakistan.

But at least we are not Dubai.

Fed up with loadshedding, bombs, and TV cynicism pervading Pakistan, I recently escaped to Dubai for a holiday. Big mistake. Huge. Ten days later I returned, gasping for Karachi’s polluted, but far sweeter, air. Dubai may have the world’s tallest building and the world’s largest shopping mall, but it also has the world’s tiniest soul. It’s a plastic city built in steel and glass.

It has imported all the worst aspects of western culture (excessive consumption, environmental defilement) without importing any of its benefits (democracy, art). This is a city designed for instant gratification a hedonistic paradise for gluttons to indulge in fast food, fast living and fast women. It’s Las Vegas in a dish dash. You want to eat a gold leaf date? Munch away.

You want to drink a Dhs 3,000 bottle of champagne? Bottoms up. You want a UN selection of hookers at your fingertips? Tres bien. Let’s start with the malls. These cathedrals of capitalism, these mosques of materialism are mausoleums of the living dead. Slack jawed zombies roam around consuming food, clothes and electronics in a desperate attempt to fill the emptiness of their existence.

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Filed under ancient civilisations, Architecture, culture, Democracy, Karachi, Lahore, New Writers, Pakistan, Politics, public policy, Society, UAE

The Human Journey

The mystery of Universe and the journeys taken by humans has had an immense impact upon different civilizations of the time. How humans have traversed from one civilization to another; how languages were developed and their attributes transferred to others. How architecture, culture, and everything that defines the very “fabric of civilization” created the need to survive, to transfer the knowledge and wisdom through the feathers of time. The modern times and era owes everything to the past – the struggles and its determination of those people and the times they lived in. In the course of time, some civilizations were to leave lasting impressions and some momentarily but their intrinsic nature remained to create something through the intellect and the learning endowed upon by them by nature. How history has captured those pages of time and its passages for its very need to determine how we have all evolved as humans in our ways and cultures. In various fields of science and in fields of arts and new technologies owes portion of their success to all that is left behind- some have been preserved by those who realized that very need to remain intact  and some lie there in the wilderness for all of us to learn what mankind achieved and lost.

In the end, each fleeting moment becomes part of history and the times we live in. The search still continues by the mankind- the very search and quest for who we are the very purpose of our existence and life. It is these questions – the very fuel and catalyst that drives us forward and it is that process of living we become part of those different cultures and languages. There may be many civilizations pertinent to different times but human civilization and its journey remains one in search for truth and purpose. The ways we attain those answers may be different and diverse; but the purpose remains the same. It is this journey of mankind through not the landscapes of time and buildings and architecture but through the human need to strive and struggle to find the purpose of life and its meaning.

Kashkin

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Civilizations (Mirrors of Our Existence)

From years of our travel
We look back
Upon these civilizations,
From years of adventure
We look back
Upon these civilizations
From days of our inheritance
The lands and its cultures
The old forms of languages
The mystery of Universe
The old journey taken
By humans and nature together
As they traverse
From place one to another,
In harmony and disarray
As we born and die
From on to another,
As we love and hate
The old circumstances
And situation, intertwined
Through languages and its art,
The trails, lost and visible
As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence

As transference takes place
From one culture to another,
The old social composition, in view
The old need to survive and preserve
Through the feathers of time, curious!
All what we do, all what we gain
There is past, it carries the stains
Of our existence, into the future
To the people and the times they lived
Of lasting impressions and moments
The old intrinsic nature remains,
To pursue, through intellect and reason
The nature’s gift, to exercise
As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence

As we evolve, as we discover
Ourselves, in paint and paper
Through fields of literature and art,
In science and technology
Owe we all portion of our success
To this past, to these trials of humanity
Lie there in the wilderness,
The old landmarks, hidden
To what we lost, and how we lost
As with each fleeting moments
Remains this search to refine
Our history and times we live in;
Those episodes of mankind
Of their gains and losses
In display, throughout the pages of time
As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence

Remain the search, remains in place
The old journey to discover
To seek answers to these questions
The very fuel and catalyst
Driving us forward,
Of languages and cultures
The journey is one,
For truth and purpose,
Some seek it through art,
Some with hands of science
And some through spirituality
To reunite with ourselves
To discover purpose of our creation
Through the landscapes of time
As they learn to strive in their endeavor
Through the old blocks to the new
As we find ourselves on these trails
Of humanity dispersed in wars
And through famine and disease
As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence

As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence
Not the landmarks or the time
The old metaphors of this correlation
But the humans and the journey
Through pain and despair
Through elation of whispered butterflies
To find what is theirs, to discover
What lies, as the hands turn to gold
From the old manuscripts to new
As the earth shifts its burden
As the old clocks go backwards
As we look back
Upon these civilizations
The old mirrors of our existence!

Kashkin

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Pakistaniat : The Crisis of Identity

Bradistan Calling

 

What can I give to Pakistan as a present on its 62nd Birthday, What else than an article on its chequered history and identity. Bertrand Russell famously said,” There are three great civilisations in East i.e. India, China and Islam”. Pakistan is blessed to be located at the crossroads of all these great civilisations. In my humble opinion this is the biggest strength of Pakistani identity. Continue reading

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Will we need to close the door to Pakistan’s dispossessed?

Our leaders are losing sleep over the Taliban’s advance and what that could spell for Britain

I would like to welcome Zahid Abdullah to Britain. He is a Pakistani student of English literature, rather than the snarling prose of the theocrats who threaten his country, and suffered the keenest blow a lover of books can take when he lost his sight. Undeterred, Abdullah divided his spare time between producing talking books for the blind and supporting the Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives, a pressure group that campaigns for the classic liberal causes of human rights, freedom of information and freedom from “barbaric acts of terrorism”. Continue reading

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The White Tiger of Pakistan

The White Tiger of Pakistan

If Billo Halwai Lived in Pakistan

You Chinese are far ahead of us in every respect, except that you don’t have entrepreneurs and our nation- though it has no drinking water, electricity, sewage system, public transportation, sense of hygiene, discipline, courtesy or punctuality- does have entrepreneurs. Thousands and hundreds of thousands of them, especially in the field of technology and these have setup all these outsourcing companies that virtually run America now.

Only three nations have never let themselves be ruled by foreigners: china, Afghanistan and Abyssinia .these are the only three nations I admire.
My country is the kind where it pays to play it both ways. The entrepreneur has to be straight and crooked, mocking and believing, sly and sincere at the same time so I am closing my eyes, folding my hands in a reverence and praying to God/Allah/Ishvar orYahweh and Judah to shine light on my dark story. Continue reading

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Poem: Waris Shah Vs Aitzaz Ahsan

by Bradistan

Waris Shah Vs. Aitzaz Ahsan

(In the Court of Supreme Judge ALLAH The Almighty)

A Tribute to Late Amrita Pritam

aaj aakhaaN Aitzaz nuuN

aaj aakhaN AITZAZ AHSAN nuuN, kitoN Chamber vichchoN bol,

te aaj kitab-e -Knoon daa koii aglaa varkaa phol

ik Uthyaa sii Wada Kanoon Daan, tuuN likh likh maare Byaan,

aaj SWAT DE Dhiyaan rondiaa, tainuN Aitzaz Ahsan nuN kahen

Jaag dardmandaaN diaa dardiaa, Jaag Pakistani Jaag Continue reading

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