Archive for the ‘ideology’ Category

ISI – The New Sita White


As the public turns immune to the old and deceased Sita White, hunt for a new one was religiously and fervently going on. The campaign proved to be a triumphant one. The timing; perfect. Making the emergence of ISI as the new Ms White. The association, regardless of being true or false, has been fallaciously established now. With local, and particularly media abroad, conscientiously co-relating Imran Khan and ISI together now.

seemingly, due to stasis in Pakistan’s political thought process, lack of insight and out-of-the-box thinking, hardly anyone is looking at two fundamental, emerging “intelligent” agencies that is, the youth of Pakistan and the overseas Pakistanis.

First “Intelligent” agency the youth, with their number, bubbling energy, equipped with modern thought, rejecting the old political customs is as influential and a winning source as ISI. Whosoever manages to break in warrants a win.

Second, fundamental “Intelligent” agency – the Pakistanis abroad. They are an eminent funding source, with their budget in total, many folds relative to the military. A force so powerful, that it is maintaining a hefty pool in this economic shutdown by their remittances and possesses immense capability. Whosoever they choose to fund, need not have any other funding source.

Nawaz Sharif’s un-timely tirade looks very timely for his own personal gains, but undeniably not national interests. Killing two birds with one stone, clever! One; any one having a glimpse of foreign media in the last few months can contemplate the campaign for maligning and discrediting armed forces, despite their tireless contribution in WOT (the security lapses by frustrated and fatigued  ISI of course added fuel to the fire) but, who is NS trying to please actually? Two; his fear, and apprehensions that, though, power corridors today go through US, yet an enraged ISI can still turn tables by bringing forward agency supported leadership, allegedly Imran Khan.

Morally speaking, the perfect timing for Kargil inquiry, and NS maltreatment by military top brass, just like BB murder inquiry, was immediately after post-mush 2008 elections, with NS in coalition govt. The next ideal timing was later after their grand chief justice restoration world cup win. Moreover, while NS had a reputation of playing with, sacking, forced resigning military top brass, why Musharaf was not forced to resign post-Kargil?

Probability is, Sharifs’ and the rest might get ISI under pressure and mull them for support, like old times, but they lack the insight and aptitude to get the attention of two fundamental emerging “Intelligent” agencies i.e., the youth and the professionals overseas – Pakistan’s gold-diggers.

Governance today in Pakistan is not simply about sewage reforms, overhead bridges, and extra-judicial dictatorial terminations. The country needs factual serious fixing, not merely in foreign policy, but health, education, and social reforms as well. That formulates vision and will, credibility and higher moral ground, as the only savior.

Politicians exploiting intel agencies is as harmful as agencies using politicians. The sole immediate resolution of the current military debacle is that the fine line between the surgeons and the physicians be rationally drawn. To begin with, the Over-stretched, PTSD afflicted, and bushed military should be sent back to barracks without more ado, after a 10-year long nonsensical and unwinnable war.

Hitherto, the classic example of civil-military equilibrium is the Ankara model, where the most skeptic of the military (having a constitutional role) becomes the most successful, sweeping a third term, this week. With a GDP growth of 8.9%, leading Europe in economic growth, a contemporary education policy, reforms, vision and will, Erdogan and his justice party maintains the moral high ground.

Only a democratic reform with an Ankara epitome and not what Washington orders can save Islamabad now. Meanwhile, relish the new Ms White, instead of giving the allegations any more significance and applaud the contenders’ efforts and limited foresight!

Posted @ DailyLahorePost

Two in one budget friendly education reform


Posted @ DailyLahorePost

Quite a lot of ideologies are being coached in one country, eventually culminating in a clash of civilization like situation in the same civilization it seems. The political turmoil within and an unwinnable war at the border has highlighted the flaws in our education system more than ever. Now approaching a threshold, it has turned into a matter of survival and a pragmatic solution is imperative. Beyond the poor and the elite, today there are several social and religious classes depending upon the school or madrassa one has attended. No wonder a depiction of collapsing education system. The only solution is declaration of education emergency and provision of one sallybas for all.

Irony is that, every school of thought here has its own schooling system. Substantial resources are spent and scores of children pass out each year with top grades from the best-known schools but desolately there is dearth of ample knowledge as regards our ideology, Islam, and Islamic history. On the other side of the spectrum, we have madrasas producing unskilled, futile pupil with distorted Islamic ideology, a degree not acknowledged even in their own country and categorically no hope of enrolling into even the lowest ranked professional institutes. In spite of tall claims, not much has been done in context with the madrassa reforms. Instead, education in public schools has further deteriorated. Nonetheless, a fare number has never been to any kind of school.

Indeed a state responsibility, but keeping political will aside, an emergency state demands pressing measures and for that matter, relying exclusively on government would not be enough. Even, the finest of the authorities will now struggle to clear the mess. Presumably, private sector, particularly corporate schools must come forward. Objective must be a uniform modernized curriculum which ‘d not only turn children into proficient professionals but also install strong moral values, flawless character and develop deep rooted love, comfort and awareness of their origin, values, ideology of Pakistan and Islam.


How to muddle through nominal capital is the core issue. There is a model productively functional in our very own country for decades- the missionary convent schools. For constructive community edifice, I suppose there is something beneficial to gain from them. They have this convent school for the privileged and an adjacent associated school, usually called the “urdu school” for the indigent Christian minority run by the same admin. In addition to backing, income generated by the convent school covers the Urdu school overheads as well. Lodging facility is presented to some of them in the form of a convent. Education provided in the Urdu school if not of the convent standard is still adequate and perhaps better than many state schools. There is reduced disparity between the two. Pupils from the Urdu school have a reasonable chance of later getting into professional institutes unlike our madrasas fellows.

We can adopt an “Elite School-Madrasa” relationship based on “Convent-Urdu School” model for madrasa reforms, where one generates funding and the other is a beneficiary. A portion of income generated from the elite schools can be used to reform and uplift an affiliated madrasa or build new lodging facility, boarding school, sheltered accommodation etc. It will be like a self-sustained, self-sufficient system. Once the emergency settles, alternatives may be adopted.

Several elite school systems operative in Pakistan have their branches in every nook and corner of the country making mammoth wealth. If they adopt one madrasa for every school they have for a specified period, such a model can be designed. The hefty charges will not make them starve, I bet!

If doctors and hospitals are expected to serve humanity, why not schools. Alternatively, the state can enforce it or perhaps, the philanthropists, the patriots, and the civil society should come forward and form such two in one budget friendly schooling systems.

Orphan, destitute, and underprivileged seeking shelter in madrasa needs to be accommodated before the enemy does. Already delayed, still if disowned, this vicious circle of revulsion and exploitation will not end.

Kashmir awaits flotilla


While 20% of Pakistan is submerged in water and Pakistanis are facing the worst and most widespread natural disaster in the living history. There, on the western border, we are stuck in an exigent WOT. Superadded to this now is the rapidly changing dynamics in the Indian occupied Kashmir.

For the last 3 months, freedom struggle in Kashmir has escalated, resulting in killing of more than 100 since June. As a consequence of “Mass graves” and thousands of “Missing persons “over the years, now more women and children than ever, actually widows and orphans of those martyred or abducted by Indian army are marching on the streets in Kashmir. The Indian military has blocked all sorts of telecommunication means and Kashmir has been barricaded. However, the overwhelming resistance that the largest military occupation force in the world is experiencing at this moment is unforeseen and Indian junta for the first time appears to be helpless.

Palestine and Kashmir has scores of similarities. Both conflicts originated in 1948 because of illegal occupation of their territories and barely surviving the clasp of two superlative militaries ever since. It is the 4th generation of these two nations suffering and fighting for justice. Both, erupted huge wars in Arab and Indian sub-continent during the last 60 years, resulting in the emergence of three nuclear powers; Israel, India & Pakistan. In both the places, stonepelters are retorted with bullets and freedom fighters are considered terrorists, and, both are eminent for the beauty of their inhabitants.

While the Arabs have successfully projected the Palestinian issue (not that it is resolved, but at least the world is aware), Pakistan and Pakistanis never highlighted it in that manner, hence the world recognizes Gaza, but is oblivious to Kashmir blockade. A trivial attack in Gaza and the whole world knows, but as regards Kashmir, they remain uninformed. Though, oppression and massacre of any kind and anywhere is unjustified and must be condemned. But the point is, it only indicates far better lobbying on part of Arabs as compared to Kashmiris or Pakistanis.

Had there been a daring government in Pakistan at this point of time, this could have been a wonderful opportunity to take Kashmir issue to a higher ground, and perhaps, solving it entirely to free Kashmiris from the ruthless Indian forces, allowing them to live in accordance to their will. But lets not blame the state all the time, even the Pakistani nation, as well as immigrant Kashmiris settled all over the world have not done their homework over the decades. Had they accentuated the issue over the years, than expectantly today in spite of a spineless ruling elite, they could have evoked a fervent response, enough to grab the attention of the world towards the massacre.

I recall these immigrant Palestinian class fellows, literally crying for carnage in Palestine, I remember this half-Palestinian, half-British girl, who had never been to Palestine, but respecting her roots, she urged everyone to help and raise voice for Palestine, literally every time she met. Only recently, we all witnessed March of flotillas, air force being airborne, zealous Protestants on social networking sites and ardent demonstrations all over the world.

This is the spirit I am talking about, that is seriously lacking amongst Pakistanis, and, particularly a huge number of Kashmiri immigrants living lavish life abroad as well as in Pakistan. My perspective is, particularly as a Pakistani, we might not be pardoned for Kashmir, as they have historical links and deeper social ties with us. I wonder, if the Indian lobby is stronger than the Jewish, or whether nuclear Pakistan is weaker than Palestine. Why, we have never been pro-active as regards Kashmir? Kashmir needs flotillas today. Common at least raise voice, it does not even cost anything!

Linked @GlobalVoices

“Enlightened Moderation” is the foundation of Islam


While pursuing my quest to dig up the truth, I comprehend; we can equitably consider ourselves liberal and liberated, modern and enlightened. I ll tell you how. Precisely, the foundation of Islam is “enlightened moderation”; not Mushi,s much loved enlightened moderation! I wish someone should have taught him Iqbal!

Iqbal

Allama Iqbal,s reasoning of religious reconstruction, supplemented by his contemporary, progressive & forward-looking approach is enlightened moderation in its concrete wisdom to me. Iqbal perfectly eradicates qualms of the Islamophobes & outline design to moderate radicalization. We do not have to look like barbarians, promote outdated punishments, & hence create islamophobes, neither do we have to claim to be secular in an attempt to project a modern outlook coherent with 21st century.

The main purpose of the Quran is to awaken in man the higher consciousness of his manifold relations with God and the universe “he goes …and the individual achieves a free personality, not by releasing himself from the fetters of the law, but by discovering the ultimate source of the law within the depths of his own consciousness.

Iqbals, enlightened moderation, unlike Musharaf,s could give us precise guidance and can bridge gap between extremists and liberals. It is a solution to religious sectarianism and can unite us on one platform regarding religious orientation. We appreciate him as a thinker, mystic and a mentor. But where are the principals he advocated being practiced? Irony is that, he was never understood & followed till to date, hence confusion over religion persists.

To begin with, “Eternal principal”- that is Toheed & spirituality, is the essence of enlightened moderation and the keystone to religious enterprise. Spirituality by no means mean taweez, dhumal, amil baba-the mehboob qudmoon mein type!pasand ke shadi mintoon mein! Frankly, in our society today we are more accustomed with the negative aspects of spirituality than the positive influence. Thanks to our Gaddi-nashhens and fake fakeers for distorting the impression of spirituality & thanks to mullas for overlooking it altogether. People especially from villages, though many educated ones as well who have faith in mysticism go in search of babas & fakirs, and end up with fake fakirs, turning them into superstitious and apprehensive beings.
In reality, spirituality is probity, morality, honor, and character molding to man’s ideal nature. It is meditation, purification and surrendering oneself to one Allah. It is about reviving and utilizing man’s hidden powers of khudi. As Paulo coehlo tweets “Spirituality is not all about meditation & praying, you have to act it!” To whom is it more significant today than us? The ultimate solution to the turmoil around.

” Islam demands loyalty to God, not to thrones. and since god is the ultimate spiritual basis of all life, loyalty to God virtually amounts to man,s loyalty to his own ideal nature –says Iqbal

Nonetheless, Iqbal,s vision is not even  traditional Sufism , in fact he rejects ascetic Sufism calling it medieval mysticism. He blames “total “other-worldliness” as obscuring one,s vision as regard islam as a social polity” one reason for arrest in evolution of islam in last few centuries. Imperative point here is that, his idea is rather of a dynamic Sufism. His Sufi is worldly wise, more practical & pragmatic. Concisely, he is a hermit at night and a knight in the day!!

It is the lot of man to share in the deeper aspirations of the universe around him and to shape his own destiny as well as that of the universe, now by adjusting himself to its forces, now by putting the whole of his energy to mould its forces to his own ends and purposes. And in this process of progressive change God becomes a co-worker with him, provided man takes the initiative.

if he does not take the initiative, if he does not evolve the inner richness of his being, if he ceases to feel the inward push of advancing life, then the spirit within him hardens into stone and he is reduced to the level of dead matter.

In order to groom ourselves into enlightened religious beings, first credentials “eternal principal” & Khudi is utterly important. We should possess intuit of innovation & creativity. We should have grasp of religious knowledge as well as should be well versed in worldly matters. All rounders-it seems!

Posted @ PakistanFirst

http://pak1stanfirst.com/201009202689/articles/letter-to-editor/enlightened-moderation-is-the-foundation-of-islam.html

“Is religion possible?”


This was a question raised by Allama Muhammad Iqbal almost a century ago & he himself than gave a clear and precise answer & presented with clear-cut guidelines to make it possible in the modern world.

Iqbal perfectly eradicates qualms of the Islamophobes & outline design to moderate radicalization. Seculars, liberals & wannabe/ pretentious liberals (another class I have noticed!), extremists &fundamentalists should leave their stubbornness and settle somewhere in the middle. Why can’t we settle for a Modern, Moderate, non-theocratic, Islamic Republic?

“Quran embodies an essentially dynamic outlook on life” he goes. “Quran considers it necessary to unite religion and state, ethics and politics in a single revelation much in the same way as Plato does in his Republic.”

We don’t need to be secular to have a modern outlook coherent with 21st century. Neither do we have to adopt radical approach, follow unsuited, inconsistent & irreconcilable laws, in order to prove faithful, practicing Muslims. Iqbal has a way out of it!

Iqbal has deep inspiration from the Turkish religio-political thought process. His Turkish inspiration is not limited to Rumi but he’s also moved by their religious reconstruction course and their willingness to move to fresh religious interpretations.  To date we can specifically see that Turkey is one Muslim state which is nominally secular, but practically Islamic!

I perceive, he advocates drastic changes in the existing Islamic schools of thought as he defies & criticizes older laws & revives the concept of Ijtehad & Ijma with a view to rebuild the laws of shariah in the light of modern thought and experience. As he says, “Equipped with penetrative thought and fresh experience the world of Islam should courageously proceed to the work of reconstruction before them”. I am sure this is the Pakistan he meant, when he gave the idea of a separate Muslim ideological, ideal state. “Conservatism is as bad in religion as in any other department of human activity” he goes.

Imperative point here is, Ijtehad must only be done by “khudi” indoctrinated; enlightened scholars & intellectuals open to innovation. Frankly, such individuals are scanty in the world today. (Imp: Along with other credentials, khudi essentially includes surrender to one God & ultimate love for his Prophet(PBUH).Islam cant get away without Muhammad(PBUH), it seems, I m sorry!!)

Iqbal,s panislamic concept is not precisely what mullahs have portrayed for years. Iqbal understands the veracity & politics around. His concept is simple & pragmatic. He sensed that Muslim countries are too week to be combined together to build a caliphate. Instead, as step-1, they should up-grade themselves independently. His impression of caliphate is that of “league of nations” i.e., somewhat similar to a UN body or say EU of our times. In his own words, “For the present every Muslim nation must sink into her own deeper self; temporarily focus her vision on herself alone, until all are strong and powerful to form a living family of republics”

“It seems to me that God is slowly bringing home to us the truth that Islam is neither Nationalism or Imperialism but a League of Nations which recognizes artificial boundaries and racial distinctions for facility of reference only, and not for restricting the social horizons of its members”

Unlike mullahs “ameer-ul-momineen” monarchic dogma, he advocates caliphate to be a Republican type of government with power shared by one assembly, and not overruled by one person. Albeit, Supremacy lies with God.

His concept of democracy is a “Spiritual Democracy”. “As two hundred thick brains altogether cannot yield what a single visionary can”. He advocates spiritual enterprise as a fundamental leadership credential. Like Paulo Coelho rightly tweets, “Spirituality is not all about meditation & prayer, you have to act it!”. Following Iqbal, if we make nobility, integrity & honesty the criteria to choose our leaders instead of lingo-provincial based sectarianism, we can readily get out of this political turmoil for good and can have provident & farsighted men as leaders.

Nonetheless, all this sounds very idealistic & dreamy. But, than what else do you want a separate state for? And, at least we have been given an objective to accomplish, a challenge to encounter & an impossible to achieve.

This is peanuts, compared to what is encoded in his message. Pakistani intelligentsia, having degrees from the best uni,s all around the globe should  build their self-esteem and come out of Islamophobia.  They should understand the real spirit of Islam & for that understand Iqbal to counter extremist thought process. If we aren’t doing it, who will?

However individual responsibility aside, but more than that it is the responsibility of the state to understand & dispense the right message & provide healthy, ambulant & yielding religious environment. And, if the government is not doing it, than change the govt!! And, If we aren’t doing it, who will!!

Posted @ Pakistanfirst http://pak1stanfirst.com/201007232547/articles/letter-to-editor/is-religion-possible.html

Pak spectator

Jinnah: SECULAR or ISLAMIST??


Jinnah ,s Ideology is unwantedly muddled between secular & Islamic.

Jinnah is Labeled secular based on extracts from his first speech. Here’s one of his last speeches on the occasion of inauguration of state bank of Pakistan (2 months before his death in July 1948). He is cynical of  the western economic & banking model & instead suggests a model based on true Islamic concepts. Apparently this speech has never been related.

I would say, rational interpretation of Jinnah,s speeches is indicative of Pakistan as a Modern Islamic ( non-theocratic) state & not a secular one.

Quaid-i-Azam’s Speech On the occasion of the Opening Ceremony of the State Bank of Pakistan on

1st July, 1948.

“I shall watch with keenness the work of your Research Organization in evolving banking practices compatible with Islamic ideas of social and economic life. The economic system of the West has created almost insoluble problems for humanity and to many of us it appears that only a miracle can save it from disaster that is not facing the world. It has failed to do justice between man and man and to eradicate friction from the international field. On the contrary, it was largely responsible for the two world wars in the last half century. The Western world, in spite of its advantages, of mechanization and industrial efficiency is today in a worse mess than ever before in history. The adoption of Western economic theory and practice will not help us in achieving our goal of creating a happy and contended people.  We must work our destiny in our own way and present to the world an economic system based on true Islamic concept of equality of manhood and social justice. We will thereby be fulfilling our mission as Muslims and giving to humanity the message of peace which alone can save it and secure the welfare, happiness and prosperity of mankind.”

Mr. Jinnah’s presidential address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan

August 11, 1947

“You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the State. As you know, history shows that in England, conditions, some time ago, were much worse than those prevailing in India today. The Roman Catholics and the Protestants persecuted each other. Even now there are some States in existence where there are discriminations made and bars imposed against a particular class. Thank God, we are not starting in those days. We are starting in the days where there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State.

Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of the State.”

UPDATED:

I wouldn’t use quotes anymore to prove my point, and tailor his vision just like Mullahs have done with Islam & Shariah. Twisting it in accordance to their taste – discarding the fundamental principals. Lets use the rare commonsense!

There are attributes where there is definite consensus. Certainly, he was definitely never a Sycophant! Moreover, did not want a bootlicking future lead! His vision of social justice, a welfare state, and self-reliance is altogether ignored by a fruitless discourse about whether he was Islamic or secular. His selflessness, possession of high self-esteem, integrity, & dignity- the fundamental traits he designated for his nation are rightly rejected. That is, the foundation has been discarded.

The world has changed. Let us admit to that. Even the secular Turkey, (not yet included in EU, while meager Romania is!) is leaning towards non-secular values. Hence, forget a secular Pakistan is ever possible. So what is the fruitless, impractical discourse for?

The intelligentsia’s obsession over superficial secular/Islamic Jinnah should end now. Lets move on. The question should rather be “what Islamic Pakistan did he mean?” …and here, Iqbal comes to the rescue. (Only if someone is really willing to understand and find the answers in the real spirit of it)

“Liberal or liberated?” -Iqbal guides you. “Jinnah -Iqbal -Islam” triad and hence Pakistan for me is liberated.

Fundamentalism cannot be culminated by counter-fundamentalism, but by brining better Islamic orientation in the real spirit of it and in consistent with the Modern world, rightly elaborated by Iqbal. His work on religious reconstruction needs interpretation and implementation. This job needs to be done by the best-educated Pakistanis acquainted with the west as well. I suggest reading it once in a lifetime!

Unfortunately, both right and the left are in a host-guest relationship, needing each other to run their kitchens, oblivious to the national interest and needs. In case the sterile brains refuse to be used, the least that can be done is follow Turks.

PS: A Muslim can speak English, have sophisticated & polished manners, western resemblance in life-style and can still be a Muslim and for that matter a Muslim leader. There are millions of Caucasian Muslims in west.



%d bloggers like this: