RIP Humanity

When I was leaving Karachi two weeks ago, the country was abuzz with the daylight massacre at Ahmadi mosques in Lahore. A week ago, I got news about a friend who was murdered in district Khuzdar (Balochistan), reportedly by the BLA, because he was perceived as a “traitor.” Soon after, I was told about blasts which paralysed railways all over Sindh. Today, I woke up to news of three suicide blasts at Daata Derbar, Lahore. At least 40 dead. At least 170 injured. My soul lies tattered today. I am angry, and I grieve for the innate humanity that my country of birth has quite obviously lost.

My country of birth breaks my heart every day. News from there is almost always depressing. I’ve been advised to ‘take it in stride’, but I wonder if I’ll ever be able to do that — if I’ll ever be able to stop caring. I want to stop giving a shit. I’ve shed enough tears for the country I was born in. I don’t want to cry anymore. I really don’t. I don’t want to wake up to news of innocent people being murdered in cold blood at one of the biggest Sufi shrines of the country — on a Thursday night, no less (Thursday nights are especially busy at Sufi shrines in Pakistan; I’m not sure if this is the case elsewhere too). I don’t want news of friends being murdered for their political beliefs. I don’t want to be told about religious and social minorities being persecuted. I don’t want to hear about women being murdered for seeking the basic human right of freedom of choice. I’ve had it.

My country of birth may be populated with humans, but a large section of it distinctly lacks humanism now. Many insist that the bombs and attacks are carried out by ‘fringe groups of lunatics.’ That may be true, but are these lunatics really a fringe group when college-educated, urban people rejoiced in the aftermath of the massacre at Ahmadi mosques? Or when people leave comments such as, “First attack on a right place. Thanks to Allah that now people will realize that hajveri cannot help anyone. These bomb blasts proved it,” on youtube videos of the blasts at Daata Darbar? Or when state ministers threaten gang-rape survivors to drop their cases, and then accuse them of toeing an ‘anti-Islam agenda’ when they seek justice? Mere verbal diarrhoea? I think not. All of these are symptoms of a very deep-rooted disease which is now threatening to rot the very fabric of my country of birth.

Back in Pakistan, self-righteous morons regularly tried to lecture me about ‘our culture’ which, according to them, ‘values modesty,’ etc — in other words, their parochial, patriarchal worldview. But that is NOT my culture. MY culture comes from the Indus Valley civilisation — a matriarchal society which worshipped the Shiva Linga and the Mother Goddess. MY culture was high on art, music and dance. MY culture was peace and humanity. The culture you, self-righteous morons, speak of is one that comes from the tribalism of the Arabian deserts. The culture that you speak of is NOT my culture. MY culture is that of the Sufis who are under attack today (as is everyone who does not agree with you). I am an atheist, but even the Islam that my people knew was that of Shah Inayat and Bhittai. YOU have declared war on MY culture, not vice versa. Please take your crap and SHOVE IT. Thank you.

I will stop ranting now, and try my best to internalise this pain — like I do every time I get news from Pakistan. Daata Darbar lies in tatters today; so do my heart and my soul. RIP Humanity.

  1. beenasarwar
    August 2, 2010 at 13:36

    You spoke my heart.

  2. TLW
    July 25, 2010 at 01:58

    Nicely written Uzi.

    How about we see this in print rather than just on the internet?

    • Bolshevik
      August 2, 2010 at 11:26

      I’m not in Pakistan anymore. Not sure who’ll print it, if at all. :-)

  3. TLW
    July 25, 2010 at 01:58

    Nicely written Uzi.

  4. Haseeb
    July 2, 2010 at 20:10

    You just wrote down my feelings…
    I live a very peaceful life in Sweden. Nice weather, music, dance happy and beautiful faces all around. I also want to stop giving a shit about what happens in Pakistan esp. when i know its people of Pakistan who brought it upon themselves, BUT I just cant help it. I want to change it but I cant even change my relatives, instead my efforts earn me prayers that “May Allah protect your faith that u r losing” :S.

  5. Priyanka
    July 2, 2010 at 19:31

    Your post made me tear up.

  6. July 2, 2010 at 16:15

    What else could be expected off a nation that was rallied about a religious check post 63 years ago and where state strategies and policies continue to be defined, deeply entwined with religion. I once read a remark made by some person at the time of indepedence. He predicted that a country founded solely upon a certain religion will give rise to very fundamental forms of that religion’s factions. The prediction stands so true for us! We continue to use religion as the obvious rationale in everything and anything contrary is a blasphemy.
    It’s not a person or a faction or a small majority. It’s in the very fabric of Pakistani society. Religious dogmatism essentially has such connotations and we are unfortunate enough to face them today!

  7. July 2, 2010 at 16:00

    Urooj it befuddles me to see such frequent bombings in Pakistan. Just 60 years ago, we were one country and then the Partition took place. Why is there such a contrast in the destiny of the two nations? Same people… Same culture … Not to say that India does not have its own problems! Here also we have a BJP which has no qualms about murdering minorities again and again, and they have massive support.

    Is it Constitution… is it the idea of secularism and liberalism …

    Recently, I saw that some terrorists had taken over a mosque in Pakistan (you might have mentioned the same in your blog, I’ve been in my own little world these past months so don’t remember the name), and my blood boiled! I can imagine how it must feel when this happens in your own country! There’s no lack of humanity … its just a failure of nation building… A perverted State in place for 60 years…

  8. July 2, 2010 at 14:56

    Well and bravely spoken Uzi. Pakistan is my adopted country. I live here…I’m not a tourist. It grieves me to see the country I once knew descend into being a slaughterhouse every week. And you are right…there may only be a relatively small number of people who carry out these dreadful acts but there are countless millions who sympathise with them. This is a failure of the moral compass on an epic scale, and a failure that I do not think we will survive.

  9. Jareer
    July 2, 2010 at 14:53

    I don’t know why but i was reminded of this by Rumi:

    Though every way I try
    His whim to satisfy,
    His every answering word
    Is a pointed sword.

    See how the blood drips
    From His finger-tips;
    Why does He find it good
    To wash in my blood?

    Indeed, RIP Humanity!

  1. July 2, 2010 at 16:45

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