New year message
So we are losing one more year
WORDS WITHIN BY FIRDOUS SYED
Today is January the first; New Year 2011. The beginning of a new decade. Time flies. A decade has passed by unnoticeably. It seems it was just the other day when world with great gusto celebrated the beginning of millennium 2000. Copycatting the Western customs, we too have developed the habit of exchanging the New Year greetings--- and it is no harm in extending happy New Year to the esteemed readers of the Greater Kashmir. However celebrating the beginning of a new year arouses two pertinent questions. One is universal but philosophical and the second more local and practical one keeping in view the hopeless conditions in Kashmir. Life consists of time, beginning of a new year only indicates a year in a personís lifetime has passed by. Shall we celebrate the shortened lifespan or ripening of the age? Philosophical problems are never easy to sort-out. Itís like chicken and egg problem---- what came first? Coming back to the practical question what is there in Kashmir to celebrate about and to wish happy New Year?
Will year 2011, be different than the blood soaked 2010 or for that matter all these years of mayhem and unrest since 1990? Will there ever be a time to rejoice in Kashmir? Or Kashmiri nation is doomed forever and we are only destined to experience absence of peace and live in an atmosphere of persistent fear? Are we predestined to undergo the wretchedness of violence, chaos, confusion and treachery? A normal reaction to all these questions triggers a long winding debate and a discussion on the geo-politics of the region and some habitual sceptics start hurling accusations conveniently at India and Pakistan. More enterprising may even find fault with United States of America for our present horrible plight. Then there is no end to the chest-thumping, wailing, whining and finding fault with others. And we reach a conclusion, when all the powers are busy conniving against the hapless people of Kashmir, how on earth we can have a moment of respite, leave aside attaining the cherished dream of Azadi?
Indeed there are nations and societies around us collaborating to keep Kashmiri nation subjugated, forever. But it is also true that Kashmiri is the worst enemy of his own. If we are able to overcome the enemy within, it will be easier to defeat the enemy outside. Time has come to knockout the skeletons in our cupboard and overcome the collective inhibitions and individual failings. If we are able to free ourselves from the tyranny of the self, freedom is not beyond our grasp. And if we remain to be slave of our deficiencies, idea of freedom though still enticing will ever to be elusive.
But why every debate in Kashmir boils downs to the idea of Azadi? Canít we imagine of a normal and peaceful life without chasing the much Ďillusiveí dream of Azadi--- Aur Bhi Gum Hain Zamane Main Azadi Key Sewa? No not at all it is simply not possible. Since 1931, five generations have heavily sacrificed, and currently sixth one is paying the price; all our socio, political and economic problems originates from the decades old political unrest engulfing Kashmir. As people of Jammu, Leh, Muzafferabad and Gilgit have settled and are more than ready to merge or integrate fully with two respective dominions of India and Pakistan, and are also ready to accept their present political realities as a fait accompli. Likewise, if people of the Valley and parts of Jammu would have reconciled or for the matter at least had resigned to their fate, it was possible for the peace to prevail in this part of J&K also as people of Jammu and areas of the state under Pakistanís control comparatively experience. Obviously struggling people are paying the price of waging a struggle against the mighty and controlling power. As a matter of fact, resistance against injustice is completely just. Nobody can deny the suppressed their right to resist. Whenever resistance dies injustice prevails.
Our continued sufferings originate from our undying courage of saying---- No to injustice. Yet in the process of the struggle some profound contradictions have also crept-in. Fundamental weaknesses in our collective character, irrespective of the debate whether they have been systematically infused by the controlling powers or moral decaying is inherent to present governing and economic systems, not only deepens but have also prolonged our subjugation. It has been time and again emphasised and we tend to agree also that despite making huge sacrifices, widespread erosion of value systems is the real reason for our repeated failures. What are the lessons to be learned; till the time we attain our cherished goal Kashmiri will continue to make sacrifices. And at the same time, if we are not able to overcome the collective and individual moral contradictions, we will be never able to attain Azadi. Therefore real struggle for Azadi is first to struggle against the moral contradictions---- without achieving moral empowerment political empowerment is simply not possible.
Resistance against self and the system is a continuum. It is not possible that we strive against the system but continue to nourish worst moral decadence within own self. Few things one learns better from oneís own experience. Saying of holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (P.B.U.H.) after returning from a war that we have returned from small jihad to bigger jihad many a time evokes sharp reaction from the people having superficial knowledge of Islam. They say as to how is it possible that dying and killing in the way of Allah is to be smaller Jihad and Tazkya-Nafas--- overcoming the fallacy of self is the bigger Jihad? Based on this argument, they declare the above mentioned saying of Prophet (P.B.U.H.) as Zaeef--- Active Jihad for all practical purposes is superior to all the struggles. Without going further into the details of this controversy and certainly the idea is not to create a fresh one. My humble life experience guides me to only one conclusion that this saying of the Prophet of Islam (P.B.U.H.) is absolutely true--- for us struggle in the battlefield and even dying was always easy than be able to control oneís own self. This is another issue that people wanting to discard struggle altogether have tried to find refuge in this saying of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.). This saying is very simple and straightforward. If one is not able to control and rise above his own self he will not be able to succeed in any kind of struggle is the clear message. That is exactly what has happened with us, without overcoming our moral contradictions we will never be able to win a war. Likewise truth is also a continuum. We cannot expect truth to prevail through untruthful means. Struggle for justice is a resistance based upon truth. If truth has to prevail; proponents of the truth for all practical purposes will have to be truthful. Then there is more forceful absolute truth, objective truth will ultimately lead to the eternal truth. And we believers of the absolute truth---oneness of the God, are to be asked a question, can glory be attained without the Almighty guiding our success. Can we invoke the blessings of Almighty the eternal truth, when truth is missing from our lives?
What truth has to do with the worldly and political issues and how it will change the objective realities of the tyranny? Are we struggling for our political rights or we want to claim a moral victory over our adversary? These questions are completely irrelevant. India is not an enemy; invisible enemy is within but it is not invincible. India is victim of its own insecurities. A true movement in Kashmir based upon compassion, justice, love and truth will have to free India from its bondage, which will ultimately take us to the shores of real freedom. The schism of Ďus and themí is to be shunned and hate driven ideas of victory and defeat need to be discarded. The notion of self righteousness is self-defeating. Truth has not only to triumph, but it has also to be all encompassing, even removing the distinction of subjugated and subjugator.
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Lastupdate on : Fri, 31 Dec 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 31 Dec 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 Jan 2011 00:00:00 IST
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