How far is too far!

Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

Our traditions are dying a slow death, we must wake up!

By: Umar Farooq Masoodi

I choose to live by choice not by chance, to make changes not excuses, to be motivated not manipulated, to excel not compete, I choose self-esteem not self-pity, I choose to listen to my inner voice not the random opinion of others. I choose the best helping hands that are at the end of my own arms. So, if I couldn’t handle things I put my hands together and pray to Allah Almighty who is the most helpful and the most merciful.

It is true that a single stick can be broken easily but to break a bundle of sticks is really difficult or even impossible. Thus, we can realize the value of unity and harmony. Our first and foremost duty is to maintain harmony in our lives because we cannot live a single day without the help of others.

We all want to help one another, human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness, not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned souls; has barricaded the world with hate; has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed.

We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge as made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness because without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost. The Aeroplane and the internet have brought us closer together but the very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in man; cries out for universal brotherhood; for the unity of us all.

Today our society is dying due to plague of social evils, which are turning our once proud and God fearing society into a soulless entity. The slow decay of our collective consciousness is affecting every one of us. Pertinently, social evil is the willful disregard of the norms of society in ways that cause suffering, destruction, or death. These social evils are issues or matters that directly or indirectly affect each one of us. It is a harsh fact that social evils are destructive to the peace and harmony of our community. In modern society, with special reference to the valley of Kashmir, it is important to note that a number of evils have grappled our society in its iron claws and now it seems impossible to get out of its tentacles.  Today, our society faces multi-dimensional social evils in the form of growing suicides, dowry, molestation, lavish marriages, drug addiction and moral degradation.

The traditional social norms, customs, cultural ethos and religious fervor present in the Kashmiri society have now been nearly lost in the blind race of materialism. This unique culture offered a check against these kinds of evils from taking root in the society. The role of the individual in Islam is not limited to fulfilling the five pillars. Muslims in an Islamic community have greater responsibilities than what is usually understood.

Rather than debating or fighting over petty issues and get divided into sections, we must unite to free our society from the darkness of evils. No religion or sub-sect of a religion has ever approved any evil. But unfortunately, what we see presently is sheer deviation. According to the Holy Quran 124,000 messengers of God were sent on earth- all of them with one message and the message was that the Almighty wanted us to be human beings rather than intelligent animals. Animals that believe in might is right and survival of the fittest, where as human beings have compassion and justice and Muslims were supposed to be and should be the community that sets examples by being compassionate.

Then, why should we allow these evils to prevail in our society and divide our society in sections? Our religious and cultural values accept other communities and other religions. We all know that Islam believes in plurality, Muslims have lived with people belonging to other faiths and our religion preaches plurality and all we are asked is to be better human beings. We, the people have the power, the power to create happiness and end the sufferings of the poor and downtrodden. We, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure. We have the power to do away with national barriers! To do away with greed, with hate and intolerance! Let us fight for a world of peace, a world where humanity will lead to all men’s happiness.

And while fighting on political fronts one cannot ignore many other vital issues essential for the very survival of our identity. What is the fate of our language, dress code, marriages—all are directed rather designed by alien cultures. Have you people ever pondered upon the fact that who is responsible for these deadly social evils and the slow death of our Culture? Leave the social evils aside for a while. Nelson Mandela has rightly said, “If you talk to a person in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language that goes to his heart”.  But Parents here stress their children to speak in Urdu or English. This is the mentality that has grown within our community. Parents thinking of building the personality of their children by neglecting the mother tongue are actually building the trouble for them. The fact is that these traits later in the life turn out to be a burden for a grown up, as he/she finds it really difficult to interact in his/her own mother tongue, ultimately resulting in lower self-esteem and lack of confidence.

The blame is not primarily theirs, but of our system, of our society as a whole. It is not only our language which is dying a slow death but same is the case with our culture and traditions. We have forgotten Mehjoor, Haba Khatoon and replaced them with Bohemia and Bob Marley.

The writer is a Student of School Of Law, Kashmir University

Email – [email protected]


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *