Pay Attention

There are things that are not very important in our lives... but then they do make a lot of difference, we should pay attention to them

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Tuesday, March 8, 2016

of Rekhta and Patari

i discovered these both sites last year and there is no turning back.

Rekhta is a website that has a wide collection of urdu poetry in urdu, hindi and english formats and it has become my go to site if i am looking for any ghazal or nazam on a short notice. i can't seem to get it out of my mind.

it is amazingly designed and has some awesome feature. like the one where u click on a word to look for its translation. :D

so if you love urdu poetry, do check out rekhta!

the second website that i discovered was Patari. Patari is an awesome collection of Pakistani music, it has everything from Pakistani pop, to folk to classical to regional. i dunno, i can't even describe what exactly it has. it has those wonderful categories and playlists. my favorite so far has been 'focus' and 'indie pop' Wow!!!!

every time i want to focus at work and shut down the noise, earphones in, 'focus' on and the world takes a back seat. it is my work and soothing instrumentals that make up 'focus'!!!!

the must recommended websites!!!


Demise of Shelfari

I started using shelfari in 2007, but i truly got addicted to it after it introduced 'books to read this year' feature, where i could just put in a number and just add the date i finished it on to add it towards the goal. amazing feature.

and it had a great contribution in making me a binge reader i am today. i discovered the group '50 books challenge' who were trying to defy steve jobs comment on people not finding time for reading books. [i am not sure about the quote] so i started with reading 15 books and then 20, 25 and finally 50. the year [2014] my goal was to read 50 books, i ended up reading 62 books and that was my biggest achievement of life!!! [like seriously, more than graduating from university, or getting my first job, or getting my dream job etc]

and now shelfari is being shut down by it's owner. though they are providing a substitute but i don't think that i would be able to build the relationship with the substitute the way i built it with shelfari. it was so nice, sleek and well techie. :)

Dear Shelfari you will be sourly missed!!!


if left on my own devices

so i am always told to do things [though i don't mostly do them] because if i am left to my own devices, i might not be what a normal person should be. that made me think what would i actually do if left to my own devices. . .

so here are the few things that i came up with.

  1. eat breakfast for every meal. like seriously, corn flakes, pancakes, omelettes, french toast, anything that is conventionally a breakfast dish would be part of my meal.
  2. stop seeing people. Everyone. Period.
  3. Read. well i do that most of the time, but if i am left on my own, i'll keep reading until my eyes and brain and arms and neck refuse to cooperate with each other and myself.
  4. Cross Stitch. and when i am tired of reading, cross stitch until there is no more aida, thread, or u know energy!
  5. Knit. Ah! in the grand scheme of things who can forget knitting, when i am left on my own, i would never, ever turn the heater on. [i am too lazy] so the answer to my cold would be layers and layers of hand knitted sweaters, blankets and well whatever else i'd be able to knit.
  6. stop talking. that sounds impossible given the fact that i talk all the time, but seriously i would like to go quiet and see how it effects the environment around me.
  7. stay up all night. yeah seriously, what better way to stop seeing people, listen to music, read and eat in peace!
so basically, if left on my own devices i'll turn into a social recluse. a person who would shun all pretense of normalcy and functionality. so i'll take my dear friend's advice today to shut up and refrain from commenting all the time, because nobody is asking for it!


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Why do we stay?

in the normal world, you are advised to leave people alone when they ask to be left alone. when they are busy and are doing seemingly important work. When they tell you to go away, you should go away. When they don't want to talk. You are told to go away and leave people alone.

but then we don't. We stay when are told to leave and talk when no one wants to listen to and when our words are deemed useless and not needed. we stay and talk.

because in your stupid anger tantrum, and busy schedule you might not want to say what you say. you might need help and can't ask for it. you might want the company and solace of lunatics. and you are too busy to realize that. you might be are too arrogant to ask for it. You might be a total pusillanimous to ask at all.

So we the unegoist; the shameless; and whatever you think of us - stay! we stay to go through with you whatever you are going through. we stay to comfort you and protect you from your own madness and your craze for destroying yourself by burying yourself in too much work and ego!

that's why we stay. you could always tell us to leave, but we will stay!


Friday, September 4, 2015

Bringing Change - One Experiment at a time!

I came to know about Ilm jo Sojhro back in 2011 through a student of mine. Her mother used to volunteer there. Ilm jo Sojhro is a charity school that cater to the poorest class of our society. It is a primary school during day and a vocational training center in the evenings for adults and whoever is interested!


the school was started by Shahana Bhurgri in her courtyard a long time back and then they kept growing and moving until they stopped where they are! It is an amazing place, I felt that something good was coming out of it.

They have done various things, summer camps for students, eid celebrations, diwali celebrations, azadi celebrations, mango festivals and what not! They take their students to picnics, to places that I have not even seen, beaches, lakes, ancient sites, museums ... They are fun people to be with.

their latest idea is "LoppeMarkeder" the second hand market. Funds is needed for running of everything, even a charity school and this is a wonderful idea of collecting funds and giving people a sense of ownership and building their self respect. It works like this . . . the school sends requests for used things - clothes, shoes, accessories, crockery, utensils, furniture, old bags, toys - anything that you don't need or people around you don't need. and they put a price tag on it, starting from Rs 10 going till 1500 - depending on the condition of the item and then they are displayed at a pre-announced time in the school premises on the holidays and everyone from around - those who can't afford anything, those who can't afford to buy new things and those who need help but can't ask for it - and let the shopping begin. The result: The people get what they want in the range they could afford and the school gets to collect the funds it needs to run itself.

Such a win win situation. the one that leaves everyone happy  :D


Monday, July 20, 2015

Eid, Peshawar Attack and other thoughts...

Well, i have been too lazy to write. in fact laziest i have ever been. i am doing lots of things and i want say lots of things but there is no desire to do anything, anyway who cares about it?

But Eid Mubarak :). Eid always makes me happy for no particular at all

After Peshawar attack, life seems to be empty. what kind of nation are we that we could not protect our kids? and when they died we were questioning each other's methods of mourning and labeling each other different things and playing politics and news on dead bodies... what a shame!!!!

i don't think i'll ever get over peshawar attack, yes the edges have blurred and the pain has dulled, but will it ever go away? i don't think so, i don't want it to...

I see all these pages on facebook and the news and stuff they are doing for the children, who died and i really appreciate it, but a piece of news a few weeks back in which the surviving children and their parents held a press conference in Lahore complaining about the neglect that they are facing at the hands of government made me wonder what about those who have become crippled, depressed and unhealthy in result of this attack? what about the survivors. I always think that dying is the easiest thing, because one becomes oblivious of what happens behind. who suffers? who cleans up and who does what is non of the concern of the dead. but surviving is the difficult part. you need to be there to clean up, to pick up the pieces and to put things back together. you need to overcome the loss, the pain, the suffering. and i see nothing on social media or conventional media about those who survived the attack. how r they doing? what happened to them? are they able to get over their pain and suffering? are they still traumatized? what about the follow up?

no news. if you know something about this, i am greatly curious.

Cyril Almeida tweeted this. "I will go on a hunger strike in protest if Altaf doesn't go on his hunger strike protest"


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Urdu Shairy [poetry]

i am typing this while listening to Madam Noor Jehan sing Faiz Ahmed Faiz's 'aa ke wabista hein tujh se' a poem dedicated to the other lover of the beloved, which tells the story of why the person in question spent his time after such a love.

urdu poetry has always provided me the words to say things which i thought were impossible to say. be it the times of loss, sadness, failure or time of triumph and rejoicing and hope, urdu poetry was always there. i dare say that i have never read anything as beautiful as urdu ghazal anywhere...

i was eleven years old when i heard a class fellow practice a 'nazm' of Iqbal and i went to her and told her that if you understand what it says, it'll become easier to sing it [i can't sing even if my life depended on it!!!] and that was the day when i realized that this is a poem and i understand it. and i have never seen back since. during that time [1996-97] Nasir Kazmi's 'ghum hai ya khushi hai tu' was aired frequently on PTV sung by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and it was amazing. the utmost sadness 'go-to' tune.

During grade 9th my friend and I just fell in love with urdu poetry head over heels, gone was the time when understood it merely and now we were writing it and enjoying it and memorizing couplets [ashaar] by heart and looking for the ghazals and nazms to memories. my grade 9th urdu book played a vital role in this with Bahadur Shah Zafar's ghazal

"Na thi haal ki jab apni khabar, rahay daikhtay auron ke aib-o-hunr
pari apni buraiyon pe jab nazar, tou nigah mein koi bura na raha"

[when i was unaware of my own follies, i kept looking at others and pointing their faults out, but when i realized my shortcomings, i don't find anyone bad anymore]

and then it was "Sahir Ludhyanivi, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ahmed Faraz, Perveen Shakir, Meer Taqi Meer, Ghalib and whoever you can name. We spent hours talking to each other in poetry and dictating it to each other and maintaining volumes of the poetry.

And then came "bait Bazi" competition at school and it gave us whatever encouragement we needed to spend more time with poetry.

Urdu poetry gives me a thrill every time i hear something very grand said in very few words like this couplet that i discovered other day

"misl-e-parwana nahi kuch zar-o-maal apnay pass
hum tum pe faqat fida karnay ko jaan rakhtay hein"

[just like a moth i own nothing but the life that i could give for you]

and Faiz Ahmed Faiz's "Khuda Woh Waqt Na Laye" and Noon Meem Rashid's "Admi Se Dartay Ho" and the poems by Ibn-e-Insha

"Farz Karo hum ahl-e-wafa hon, farz karo deewanay hon
farz karo yeh dono batein jhooti hon afsanay hoon
farz karo yeh nain tumharay such mukh ke mekhanay hon
farz karo tumhein khush karnay ke dhoonday hum ne bahanay hon"

there is the revolutionary poems of Jalib, Faiz, Sahir and so on...

there is Nasir Kazmi, Qateel Shifai, Amjad Islam Amjad, Ahmed Faraz, Ada Jaffery and Kishwar Naheed.

There is an unending list of poets and my favorite poems, there is also an unending list of topics that urdu poetry covers, and emotions and ideas that it gives voice to .

i leave here tonight with a wonderful website of Urdu Poetry "Rekhta" the language is set to Urdu but there is an option of English and Hindi.