Thursday, January 31, 2013

Romantic Pashto Lines

This used to be a "page" on my blog (a tab at the top of the front page of this blog), but since I had too many tabs there, I decided to make some of them "posts." So here!
I love romantic Pashto songs and poetry. Like many other easterners, Pashto poets and lyricists express love in their writing in a very subtle and deep way. And, yet, even though this romance is so subtle, it's so suggestive! To express it that way takes talent. Now, the way poets and thinkers write and think reveals much about their culture and their society. For instance, one learns a great deal about how romantic relations, or relations between males and females who love and desire each other, are conducted; one also gets a strong sense of the beauty ideals as understood by the particular society. Note in the verses below, for example, the special significance given to (the female's) eyes and hair; note also how much rain is yearned for and appreciated.

Below, I post some romantic lines from Pashto poetry/songs that are either my personal favorites or that my Twitter buddies find beautiful. Feel free to add more, as this is not intended to be comprehensive. They are in no particular order - just the order in which they came to our mind.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Words of Wisdom

This post below used to be a "page" on this blog (i.e., a tab at the top of the blog), but I need to lessen those tabs so am making posts out of some of them. Will still try to update this post frequently to add in more "words of wisdom" in it!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Discussion Questions for Gender/Sexuality/Islam Course - Week 9

From last semester's course, Gender/Sexuality and Islam.
For previous discussion questions for the same class, see Week 2 and Week 3.

The readings for the week were: “Living on the Extreme Margin” by Sharful Islam Khan, et al.; “Boys’ Love Thrives in Conservative Indonesia” by Yamila Abraham; and “Muslim Women and Foreign Prostitutes” by Christine Jacobsen, et al

Choose 2 of the following questions to answer.

4. Comment on the methodology of the study in “Living on the Extreme Margin.” Is it trustworthy completely, or does it have any gaps that may debunk at least some of the conclusions of the study? What is an SEKN model?

5. What is meant by “social exclusion”? Be sure to discuss it in the context of the hijras of Bangladesh, emphasizing the social/cultural, political, and economic ramifications of being a hijra in this specific society.

Friday, January 4, 2013

45 Life Lessons, by Regina Brett

Important reminders to us all. The entire thing below is being copied from here.

Regina Brett's 45 life lessons and 5 to grow on

By Regina Brett of The Plain Dealer Newspaper, Cleveland, Ohio:

To celebrate growing older, I wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most requested column I've ever written.

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.

3. Life is too short - enjoy it.

4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and family will.

5. Pay off your credit cards every month.

6. You don't have to win every argument. Stay true to yourself.

7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.

8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.

10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.

13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.

15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.

16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful. Clutter weighs you down in many ways.

18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.

19. It's never too late to be happy. But it's all up to you and no one else.

20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.

21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.

22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.

23 Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.

24. The most important sex organ is the brain.

25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: 'In five years, will this matter?'

27. Always choose life.

28. Forgive but don't forget.

29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.

31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

33. Believe in miracles.

34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.

35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.

36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.

37. Your children get only one childhood.

38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.

41. Envy is a waste of time. Accept what you already have not what you think you need.

42. The best is yet to come.

43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

44. Yield.

45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Maulana Bijlighar, his Political Background, and His Disrespect for Women

Maulana Bijlighar
Maulana Bijlighar has passed away. I wasn't a regular listener of his--and if I had been, it would not have been to get a laugh (I don't think sexist jokes or mockery of women is something to laugh about) or to increase my little knowledge of Islam; it would've been to understand what it is that makes Mullah Bijlighar so popular and appealing to his listeners, or something like this. I do this with Zakir Naik, too. Preachers and the idea of preaching fascinate me, you know.

On Dec. 30th, 2012, famous Pashtun preacher Mohammad Amir, popularly known as "Bijlighar Mullah" (also known as Mullah Bijlighar and Maulana Bijlighar), passed away at age 85. Thousands are reported to have attended the funeral. He was named after his village, Bijlighar, in Charsadda, although his main base and appreciation was in the Peshawar Valley. His sermons are shared widely on DVDs, CDs, flash drives, and now Youtube.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year 2013, All!

Dear everyone,

I'd like to wish us all a wonderful new year ahead! May it bring with itself much love, peace, joy, and success worldwide for everyone! In setting new goals and resolutions--and in looking forward to our accomplishments--for the next year, let's not forget to reflect on the wrongs we may have committed in the previous and consider any lessons we may be able to learn from them so as to avoid repeating any mistakes. Importantly also, let's not forget to recognize all the good we may have committed so as to be motivated to improve ourselves. 

The idea of "new year's resolutions" doesn't really interest me. I've tried it a few times, but half way into January, I forget that I'd set any resolutions and have asked myself many a times why I have to wait for an entirely "new" year to become a better person or to improve any flaws in myself. Why not start the moment I realize my flaws? So no such thing as resolutions for me. Still, goal-setting and the determination to accomplish them is a good habit for anyone who is disciplined enough to actually follow them.

O'rightie - here's to another wonderful chance! :) Happy New Year!

~ the q

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