Beyond what ifs…

Life

There are times in our lives when we rewind what has happened before again and again. We all do that. We do it in every moment of grief. We do it in every bit of regret. We keep on pressing replay button under the tag of “what if”. What if the events unfolded a little differently and delivered very opposite outcomes. What if I knew that before. What if I had said yes. What if…

What if I stop rewinding time again and again, and start embracing the reality? What if I forgive myself and move on? What if we all begin from zero all over again? Isnt it time to move beyond what ifs?

Reality is a strange phenomenon which stands right in front of us, yet hide behind the wall of what ifs and whys. This wall is the biggest hurdle in our way to accept present, and…

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A Ridiculous World

Whats wrong with this world?

Today’s modern life, if viewed through a lens which is not time-bound or worldly-measures-bound, presents an absurd or even a ridiculous sight in many ways. We, the human beings, well most of us spend whole of our lives aimlessly and meaninglessly. Yes, we do! Most of us spend our lives working for something which we do not believe in. We are slaves of the seven day cycle of a week. We wake up every morning, go to work purposelessly, eat undirectedly, talk pointlessly, go to bed at night and repeat next day again. And yet, we say we are living! We are an absurd species.

We face difficulty in trusting people standing right in front of us, yet we believe in whatever media says- social or mainstream. Our economists measure our happiness, our elites form policies for the poor, our teachers sell knowledge, our doctors have turned into businessmen, and our neighbors have become strangers. As cliched as it sounds, but that is a fact that we live in a connected globalized small village yet we are alienated and isolated in our loneliness. Gathering goods instead of being good has become the ultimate goal of life. Does not it sound extremely ridiculous?

 

 

Jacob Bronowski: Lower than the Angels

Abagond

Altamira

“The Ascent of Man” (1973) was a BBC series, Jacob Bronowski’s take on the history of science and invention. I saw it in the 1980s on the cable channel of the City College of New York. I would love to see it again. In the meantime I will have to make do with the book, which I picked up the other day for two dollars at a used book sale. I will do a chapter a week:

Man is part animal, part angel. To call him just an animal or just an ape would be a misleading understatement. Unlike other animals, man has an imagination. He can imagine the future and create it:

Every animal leaves traces of what it was; man alone leaves traces of what he created.

The gazelles for all their beauty and grace can never leave the grasslands of Africa. Should the grasslands ever disappear…

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Beyond what ifs…

There are times in our lives when we rewind what has happened before again and again. We all do that. We do it in every moment of grief. We do it in every bit of regret. We keep on pressing replay button under the tag of “what if”. What if the events unfolded a little differently and delivered very opposite outcomes. What if I knew that before. What if I had said yes. What if…

What if I stop rewinding time again and again, and start embracing the reality? What if I forgive myself and move on? What if we all begin from zero all over again? Isnt it time to move beyond what ifs?

Reality is a strange phenomenon which stands right in front of us, yet hide behind the wall of what ifs and whys. This wall is the biggest hurdle in our way to accept present, and to stop rewinding the clock placed at our side tables in our sleepless nights. This wall is perishable, yet quite strong. This wall is purely psychological and stands upon the foundation of a brick named “what if”. And these what ifs are unlimited and boundless. Beyond “what ifs” lie “what iss”. We need to move beyond what if and reach to what is, and realize that “what iss” are also unlimited and boundless. Its time to realize and accept that all what ifs are answer-less. All what ifs are just a deception which we gladly become part of. All what ifs are mere walls in the ways of our happiness. So lets renounce upon what ifs and focus on what is. Accept what is. Envision what is. And be grateful for what is.

Beauty hidden in the valleys of Pakistan

Paye Lake

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Sunrise at Abbottabad.

Sunrise at Abbottabad.

The river Kunhar

The River Kunhar.

A young woman watches the sun set in Paye

A young woman watches the sun set in Paye.

Paye Meadows

Paye meadow.

Paye meadow.

The road to Kaghan valley.

The road to Kaghan valley.

Views of Nanga Parbat from Babusar Pass.

A view of Nanga Parbat from Babusar Pass.

A view of Nanga Parbat from Babusar Pass.

A village in Naran Valley.

A village in Naran Valley.

The Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation motel in Naran.

The Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation motel in Naran.

The Dudipatsar Lake.

The Dudipatsar Lake.

The Lulusar Lake.

The Lulusar Lake.

Babusar Pass and Gaitidas.

Babusar Pass and Gaitidas.

Babusar Pass in the winter.

Babusar Pass in the winter.

An evening in Babusar.

An evening in Babusar.

The frozen Lake Saif-ul-Malook.

The frozen Lake Saif-ul-Malook.

Hotels near the Lake Saif-ul-Malook.

Hotels near the Lake Saif-ul-Malook.

Lake Saif-ul-Malook in summertime.

Lake Saif-ul-Malook in summertime.

Lake Saif-ul-Malook in summertime.

A frozen Lake Saif-ul-Malook under the moon.

A frozen Lake Saif-ul-Malook under the moon.

Camp in Paye — Not a five-star but a five billion-star hotel.

My camp in Paye — Not a five-star but a five billion-star hotel.

What makes a good writer?

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Writing is a way to express oneself via words. As eyes are windows to soul, writing is a path towards soul. It enables one to translate his or her emotions, experiences and thoughts into words and share them with the world. But writing is not limited to putting ideas on paper, rather its the name of a whole cognitive process which comes down to life and takes place through language. It is often asked what does it take to be a good writer.
When a writer writes, its not just writing, rather its writing to an audience which makes this process a social act, that carries a social responsibility in itself. Those who understand this basic phenomenon tend to be good writers. Moreover, good writing takes concrete writing, focused goal, organization of ideas, logical arguments, relevant instances, smoothness, appropriate tone and flow. However, all of these essential qualities work only when the writer recognizes the needs, expectations and interests of his or her audience and explores new connections. A good writer is the one who deeply connects with the readers, reveals new ideas, keeps their interest till the last line, and carries them with him through the whole journey of discovery.
Along with that, there is requirement of maintaining clarity and coherence in writing while expressing one’s ideas. When a writer is in the process of writing, ideas do not come to him or her in linear order rather its usually a hunch of thoughts that come in disorderly manner. Now its upon the writer how he manages thoughts and places them in order while writing. Good writers know this skill of management of ideas and their placement in order quite well, which makes their writing clear and coherent.
One of the most significant elements to make writing readable is editing. While we write we constantly erase and rewrite. This is not only natural but also important part of writing process which needs to be done effectively. Editing brings brevity to writing, shapes arguments and makes it more relevant.
Writing is all about discovering new ideas, themes, wisdom and essentially one’s self. It is said, “I don’t know what I think until I read what I’ve said”. Therefore, good writing provides a site not only to the readers but also to the writer to discover the mystery and reveal new ideas and knowledge.