Sunday, March 30, 2008



Argument- to me is the inimitable yet simplest philosophy of learning things around. They say argument leads to ignorance but to me, in a larger extent the only way one can learn is to keep nudging others mentally and keep absorbing the gut-feelings of one's intellectual rival.

Remember, you can not explore new avenues of knowledge unless or until you show contrasting approach of a person next to you. But let not allow those arguments switch into a verbal duel followed by a physical brawl. One can not broaden his mental horizon agreeing upon others merely using the words … yes, exactly, you are right. So to me, clash of mind is one of the blessings that facilitate us to think beyond our rational thoughts.

My cousin Nomi is a person to whom I'm engrossed all the time with exchange of my limited thoughts and ideas. Fortunately, we both have the patience and knowledge to counter each other aspirations and dreams ranging from socio-economic to religio-politcal aspects to disseminate with tete a tete. And I am with no pang in admitting, Nomi is one of my inspiration in life, not because of his dedicated contribution and laudable services when Moazzam bhai was on his death bed but I find this gentle boy every time with selflessness at its extreme in the herd of selfish people. Moazzam bhai had a strange reverence for this soft spoken lad, always calling him… Nomi bhai. With the sudden death of Moazzam bhai, Nomi quite a lot of
time questioned me in melancholic gesture, "Is there anyone NOW, who can call me.. NOMI BHAI?" with tears in his eyes. And every time he found no reply from my side. Nomi remained quite literally a shadow of Moazzam bhai during those 14 months. One day bhai wrote in his diary….

Aye dost mein to dasht-e-tamanna ka phool hoon
Girnay ka mujhko darr nahi teri kitaab say

Nomi used to ask me, "What is the most important part of your body"? Through the ages I would take a guess at what I thought was the correct answer. When I was in my teens, I thought sound was very important to us as a human being, so I promptly replied, "my ears". He said, "No, many people are deaf on this planet". But you keep thinking about it & I will ask you soon about the same. Several months passed by before he asked me the same question. Since making my first attempt, I had contemplated the correct answer. So this time, I told him, "yar, sight is very important to every individual, so it must be our eyes". Nomi looked into my eyes and smilingly said, "Nahi Mahtab..You are learning fast but still far away because there are so many people who have no judge of colors, they are blind." Stumped again, however I continue my quest of knowledge. Over the months, Nomi asked this question couple more times and always his counter reply to me was, "No.., but you are getting smarter every month, my brother".

At the beginning of 2008 when Moazzam Bhai breathed his last, Nomi was the first person to whom I hugged in my darkest moment of life with the words, "Tum bhi kuch nahi kar sakay, yar" and he replied with watered eyes,
"mein kuch nahi kar saka, may nakaam ho gia hoon, Mahtab, may nakaam ho gia hoon".

Everybody was devastated. Nomi looked at me and repeated the same question, "Do you know the most important body part yet, my dear"? I was shocked when
he asked me this question as I thought it was a game between me and him. He saw the confusion on my face and told me this question is very important, Mahtab. It shows that you have really lived in your life. For every body part you gave me in the past, I considered wrong and given you example, why? But today is the moment; you need to learn this important lesson, he stared at me gently as only he can. I saw his eyes well up with tears as he continued to whisper, "My dear, the most important body part is your shoulder". I swiftly questioned, is it because it holds up my head"? "No, it is because it can hold the head of a friend, relative or a loved one when they cry. Everyone needs a shoulder to cry on when you really need it." Nomi concluded.

Then and there I knew the most important part of body is not a selfish. A shoulder is a symbol of sympathy against the pain of others. People will forget what you say, people will forget what you do, but people will NEVER forget how you made them feel. True or not, you have all the rights to argue. But this piece of writing makes you pause and think. Be blessed. Be a blessing. Get your shoulder always ready.

Allow me to hum few lines from the glorious ABBA:

Chiquitita, tell me the truth
I'm a shoulder you can cry on
Your best friend, I'm the one you must rely on
You were always sure of yourself
Now I see you've broken a feather
I hope you can patch it up together.

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Farhat from Islamabad emails':
Mar 31, 2008 4:27 PM
that is excellent mehtaab..
Farhat Akram
Assistant Research Officer
Islamabad Policy Research Institute
House no 2, Street 15,
Main Marglla Road ,F 7/2 ,
Islamabad 44000 Pakistan