Light Within

All this and you are not even worried! Will it help?

How Loneliness Kills

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Lubna Khalid

Mrs Saeed is a 74-year-old widow with a big family. She lives in Karachi with her two married sons and five grandchildren. She should not have any reason to feel lonely, right? Think again! Her sons come to her before going to work, remain standing and keep looking at the watch, and after a cursory 'how are you this morning' and 'do you need something' and depart for work. Her grandchildren go to schools and colleges, and have no time to spare for an old woman who tries to instill moral values in them.

They come home and with a 'salam dadi jaan' then rush to their rooms. Her daughters-in-law do not treat her badly, but dislike giving her company. So, it is TV and prayers for her. It has been this way for years now. "When my husband was alive, at least we had each other's company, though we often had fights. Since he died 12 years ago, I feel a strange emptiness. I often stay silent for hours at a stretch because there is no one to talk to. Everyone told me I would stop missing him and time is the best healer, but I miss him more and more day by day. You see, he always had time for me."
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Monday, February 10, 2020, ,

Mandi Bahauddin Mein

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Originally Mandi Bahauddin was a village called as Chak number 51. It started expanding after the completion of Rasul Hydroelectric Power Station on Upper Jhelum Canal in 1901. Today, Mandi Bahauddin is an over crowded market town famous for its agricultural markets (Grain Market, Vegetable Market and Livestock Market) and local industry of making colourful bed legs.

The name Mandi Bahauddin originates from two sources: Mandi (market) was prefixed because it was a flourishing grain market and Bahauddin was borrowed from nearby old village Pindi Bahauddin, which has now become part of the town. After the partition, thousands of refugees from India rehabilitated on the evacuee property of Sikh and Hindu landlords. Lately, after the construction of Rasul Barrage, people from the belt along southern edge of Salt Range up to Pind Dadan Khan and other areas across the River Jhelum came settling in the town. Due to migrations and increase in business activities, the town has expanded in all directions. The result is that more than half of the population is living outside municipal limits without any civic amenities. More unplanned localities and kachi abadies are coming up everyday. The tendency to move from rural areas to urban centres is on the increase.
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Thursday, February 06, 2020, ,

Light Within

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This is one of the oldest Light Within banners that was used on this blog in 2004

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Wednesday, February 05, 2020, ,

Din Mein Charagh

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Books have been bringing changes in human relationships and making difference in the lives of people. The power of worlds has caused people to loose their existence or to better them. Abbas Khan spends lot of time in reading. He reads philosophy to understand how varying points of view about existence are presented and psychology to know how philosophers come up with those points of view, Greek mythology to learn about their strong love of nature and Roman history to explore what they gave to the world.

For this he has explored annals of history, philosophies, biographies, autobiographies, and literature spread over centuries. He has mediated upon what he finds life building and has put them up in his eleventh book entitled Din Main Charagh for readers to benefit. His other published work includes three novels and seven short story books: Zakham Gawah Hain, Tu Aur Tu and Mein Aur Umrao Jan Ada (novels), Dharti Binam Akash, Tensikh-e-Insan, Qalam, Kursi Aur Wardi, U’s Adalat Men, Jism Ka Johar (short story books) and Reza Reza Keenat and Pal Pal (afsancha -- shortest story books).
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Friday, January 03, 2020, ,

Gogera, Dipalpur and Pakpattan trilogy

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The first thought that came into my mind after visiting Okara can be described by four words: milk, butter, mammals and farms. Peers also told me the same. Besides Harappan ruins, I did not know the area. But one thing I did know, though, was that I should be happy to say goodbye to the place. Two years later, I felt drawn to the area and its people and it was very hard for me to part. There is so much to be seen, so much to be done. Above all, it has spirited, sincere and full-of-love people living in Gogera, Dipalpur and Pakpattan historic trilogy. The distances in the hinterland are short but the landscape is so enormous that it had to be studied in parts like a large mural seen by a child.
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Thursday, January 02, 2020, ,

Gentleman Cadet Shirazi, Number 14811 from Khalid – 4, Don't Move

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Good man Jalal Hameed Bahtti is documenting the biographical history of Khalid 4 (55 PMA Long Course platoon). Those who don’t know, Jalal is also running a website for the course where he has been putting up everything regarding the course. Every member of the 55 PMA family (and their children) are there on that site.


Other day, Jalal sent the script of Khalid -4 for Lahore based Khalid 4 members to see and add if there was anything missing. Nouman, Khalid Javed, Tasawwar, Younus and I got together and the whole script was read. And let me confess, it was reliving the past. There was nothing missing. Jalal has done a wonderful job. Very well done! But why you couldn’t find anything to write about me. may be there wasn't any thing.

And we all know Nuaman moderates very well (no one else speaks when he is there. He has so much (interesting) to tell.

I can hear, "Gentleman Cadet Shirazi sahib, number 14811 from Khalid – 4 standing in the last row, mat hillen (don’t move)."

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Wednesday, January 01, 2020, ,

How I write and self publish

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Every body has a book in his mind, as they say. But, everybody trying to write one is a different thing, and self-publishing one is yet another. There are lots of considerations that induce people into writing about various things: people, events, ideas, issues, passions, observation, noble causes, problems and more. Some of these are pricked by their strong sense of right and wrong to raise their voice for or against a cause of their own or of their community's interest, while some others do it to cover up some disrepute and or misdemeanors. There are those who do it for amusement. And the ones for whom writing is a career. Of the many other classifications, there is a class of writers and it is a very well populated fraternity that takes its writings as a means to achieve an end. The end, of course, varies from person to person, but the mercenary passion with which the community members market (yes, market) themselves remains constant.

As a sub category of this specie there are among them the innocent writers who keep visiting publishing houses simply in a hope that some day someone will be convinced about the great idea presented by them and will be willing to invest on the publication of their work. The writer whom I am going to profile here is a commoner. That seems to be his first problem. When the first time he took the draft of his book to a well-reputed publishing house, the owner of a publishing house enlightened him to go do something else instead of writing. My writer friend was surprised with how the owner had given his opinion even without setting an eye on the draft of his life long labour of love.
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Wednesday, January 01, 2020, ,

Children are never satisfied

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Sheik Manzoor Ilahi was commissioner Bahawalpur when Nawab of Bahawalpur was alive and Nawab of Kalabagh was the Governor.


Sheik Manzoor Ilahi writes: I was going to attend Commissioners’ Conference in Lahore when the Nawab of Bahawalpur sent for me and asked to convey to the Governor that the agricultural reforms should not be imposed upon Abbasi family in his life because he knows better how to look after the interests of his protegee  I got the chance to approach the Governor in a dinner hoisted by him at the end of the conference. Nawab of Kalabagh was sitting sandwiched between American Council General and the British Deputy High Commissioner when I overheard the Governor telling them, “I have told Mr. President so many times that no kind of democracy is feasible in this country.”

Ahan, so the Governor was opposed to the democracy which President Ayub Khan was about to give to the masses through 1962 constitution. When I gave him the message of the Nawab of Bahawalpur, the Governor spontaneously said, “Please tell Nawab Sahib to leave the issue alone. Children are never thankful what ever the parents do for them.” 

I was surprised.

Now one knows what destiny has in store for any one. Nature was speaking through the mouth of the Governor it seems (The Governor was murdered by his son.)

Extract from Light Within by Abbas Khan

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Wednesday, December 25, 2019, ,

This may happen in Pakistan

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Mukhtar Masood, author of Awaz-e-Dost, Safar Naseeb, and Loh-e-Ayyam, writes that north western part of Persia was called Media and it comprised of small regions in 350 B.C. Keqabad was ruler in one of the constituencies. He was famous for his fairness so much so that people from other districts used to bring their feuds to him. He used to hear the cases and decide notwithstanding where the parties belonged.

With time justice seekers from other counties grew and it had to be announced that only those cases will be decided in which parties involved were from areas directly under his command. Masses were so fed up from their own rulers that they declared Keqabad as a king of entire Media.

If the rulers are incapable of delivering justice, populace can choose new. The countries where justice is not mated out, natives may merge it with another.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Monday, December 23, 2019, ,

When dreams come true

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The first thing that I saw hung on the wall of his office was a framed verse of revered Pushto poet Khushal Khan Khattak. It said, "Right you love me deeply and immensely but what should I do that it still is not enough for me." Gulzar is a newspaper forwarding agent who works on contracts with different publishing houses to dispatch their publications to the newspaper agencies, which further arrange their mass circulation. I first met him in his office cum residence a decade ago. That was a place from where he arranges the dispatch of newspaper and periodicals to the agencies in over 200 stations (including remote villages, towns and small cities). He uses railways, road transport and airlines of that purpose. He has employed 11 workers, one motor rickshaw and a Suzuki pick up for the job. He has two telephones in the office and of course carries a cell phone.

It takes a lot far a man to admit but over a period of 10 long years of our associations, Gulzar Baig has displayed a great courage in revealing the emotional trauma of his childhood, contempt and malice with which he had been treated and his undying obsessions.
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posted by S A J Shirazi @ Sunday, December 22, 2019, ,


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