THE BALANCE

In the human life where relationship helps you building self-confidence,self-awareness, self-esteem and provides you an opportunity to feel about oneself, there it also needs a lot of hard work from two people holding it. The bridge of emotionality and rationality has a lot to do in maintaining the quality and substance in it.
The constant fears, past experiences , schemas, and stereotypical templates in our mind cause the emotionality lever to be heavy all the time and thus it tends to lead one’s mind , life, and motivations. The sentimental drive diminishes the capacities of reason and masks the presence of facts through cognitive bias and inferential errors. The hurdles in human interaction come from our insecure ends. We end up creating conflicts in our relationships when we lose the equilibrium between logic and fervor.

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The adequate practice of mindfulness (to be aware of one’s feeling and the ability to deal with the negative emotions with acknowledgment of triggers) offers acceptance which eventually reduces the emotional jolt and brings back the reasoning resources.
Repeated reminders that “we are in a tough moment and our reactions are understandable” and positive self-talk about the unacceptable situations can also decrease the negativity of emotions and feelings.

THE BEAUTY OF KASHMIR

The environmental décor in the form of trees, waterfalls, mountains and the river can easily influence and refresh one’s mind and body for long. The Green landscape has its own soothing impact on mental and physiological health. The attraction of nature’s beauty is beyond the impact of any terror, chaos, and turmoil present at any given place.

Although, Pakistan’s image has been forwarded to the world by the international media as the terrorized and corrupt country with high rates of crime. It has inculcated a lot more fear among those tourists who are fervor admirers of wildlife’s beauty. The scenic beauty of nature has embellished many remote, forgotten and peaceful places of Pakistan.

The valleys of Azad Kashmir are famous enrapturing sights of divinity on earth. The tour to Kashmir, if organize well can be the most awesome journey of one’s lifetime.

 

We have started our tour from the capital city, Islamabad. From where we have taken a car ride to Muzaffarabad. It is a fabulous place to start with. Tall trees, great mountains, and flowing river sight ornament the whole view . The swirling roads and twisted ends may make your excursion adventurous and risky too. Here, one may need a local and expert driver.

The stay at altitude has become an exquisite experience to have where mountainside guesthouse provided marvelous sights to see and visit. The drizzling and silence in the night have filled us with ecstasy; the joy was further added by the open-air barbeque dinner served with lentils, yoghurt, onion and tomato salad and fresh water from the waterfalls.

 

Next day, we woke up early to have a morning walk in mountainous trees and jungle. Roads were foggy and the air was filled with the chirping sounds of different birds.

After our breakfast, we moved to Neelum valley the most beautiful place of Kashmir, it is famous for the scenic beauty of mountains in parallel with the gushing river flow, waterfalls and dense network of trees around. In Neelam valley, we stayed in a guesthouse for a night and in the evening we sat on mountains to watch the river flow and greenery over the hills.

We have moved to Kel the next day. It was a breathtaking splendor vision. This place was full of lush green trees all over the mountains and flowing rivulets, streaming in the middle of the hills.

 

The great hiking point is beyond Kel, it is called as Arang Kel, where one can only go via chairlift services. Arand Kel is a spiral track on high mountains. This track extends to the top of the hill. When you reach on topmost site, you would find wide green meadows over there and on walking further another hill would come across. It is a picturesque show.

Hiking takes 30 to 45 minutes on Arang Kel mountains; slow-paced hiking doubles the joy by allowing one to gaze at nature’s display around in the form of bushes, flowers and (dispersed) stones of different colors, shapes, and sizes.

 

This journey has tired us and after 5 hours of stay in Arang Kel, we have moved back to Kel. After having hot tea in a cold weather, we have embarked on our expedition to Sharda valley. It was a glory in its own right. We resided at the riverside guesthouse. We enjoyed our dinner and breakfast by the riverside, under a tree on the wood benches which were placed across the scenery.

Such a delightful tour continued till our way back to Muzaffarabad from where we have travelled back to Islamabad to catch our evening flight.

The seizing moments of our tour included fresh and pure air to breathe on high altitudes, the silence of mountains along with trickling stream sound of water (where we have meditated too) made this journey memorable and remarkable for us.

Eid …! What Eid?

This blood stained Ramadan has left all of us in pain, sorrow, anger and loss. The wave of terror, which has travelled from Orlando and passed through turkey, Bangladesh, Dhaka and eventually the heart of a Muslim center, city of Medina is mind-boggling and heart-wrenching for all of us. We as a bearer of such situations throughout years from last many decades look forward to occasions like Eid, where we can celebrate and pour out the frustration, anger and sadness by celebrating, sharing and enjoying the feast and moment. The pre-Eid series of terror, killings and assassinations deprive us of the joy of such events.

We Muslims as a nation, are in middle of a double-edged sword, where on one hand we are losing our dearest brothers, sisters and beloved ones due to Daesh and ISIS brutal impact and plotting, and on the other hand; we are facing career hindrances, movement to safer areas and lifetime opportunities due to stricter immigration policies, restricted resources and limited avenues of exploration. These groups (Daesh or ISIS, TTP and Taliban) claimed to be Muslims and by no means any single measure taken by them seems to be in line with the teachings of Islam.

In this era of confusion where a common Muslim facing racism, humiliation and bigotry, is paralyzed with the emotion of helplessness when we are killed, attacked, condemned and harmed by the same people with whom we are said to have strong ties.

It is very hard to survive as a Muslim today. The teachings of prophet Muhammad (PBUH), which include compassion, harmony, justice and humility, have become myths. People under the intense and constant influence of media, out of ignorance and due to poor knowledge hardly believe that these components are the basic tenets of Islam, which clearly illustrate and mention that ‘there is no force in religion’.

The destruction and havoc run by few individuals have attracted the media and centralised people to think that these groups are representatives of Islam and their values are Islamic values. This is the most painful thought and feeling for a Muslim in this era.

When these groups put up the Quranic verses out of context and propagate the message of terror and brutality forward, it sabotages the whole structure of Islamic teaching. For a Muslim, it is the most painful moment to have.

The younger brains and hearts are entering into the conscious circle with perplexity, ambiguity and ill-defined ideas and thoughts regarding religion and identity. At one side, the world believes on a false picture being projected to them (by these deviant groups) and on the other side is the teaching and scripture where the message is totally different to what is projected and understood. This sheer incoherence is producing confusion, disharmony, agitation, anger and a feeling of being lost. Unfortunately, time and facts do not seem to resolve matters in future too.

THE NEW LOW IN THE CULTURE

To no one’s utter surprise the social etiquette and interaction in Pakistan have achieved a new low in the holiest month of Ramadan. Not only the mockery that we see pre, peri- and post-iftar as well as seher is amazingly ridiculous for (few) people but quite shocking too. Why for few people? Because if most of the people are attending, watching and listening to such kind of broadcastings then they must be enjoying too. The new low is not only limited to the media genre but the local interaction and related communication that take place between groups and individuals is also a hallmark of intellectual scarcity which is increasing day by day.

The intellectual debates are merely utilised as ego-inflating tools rather than learning others views let alone respecting them. The rising trend to embellish and augment manifested aspects of life (dress, appearance, outlook, living standards) is another clue towards inner emptiness.

Rapidly deteriorating rates of literacy and intellectual insight among people are not only hazardous but also dangerous for the long-term survival of a society. The basic ingredients of rescue can be observed by abiding some common strategies, which have been followed by fallen nations to rescue their culture, traditions, values and morality.

Among those strategies, one is the need of education emergency, which is a crucial prerequisite. The overview of history is the indispensable aspect of one’s education to avoid common mistakes of survival in discriminated, prejudiced and disintegrated realms. The habit of reading and culture of innovation have to be propagated and inculcated in youngers’ minds to eliminate bias from their perspectives, opinions, and decisions.

The resources and avenues, which we have at this point, can we think to utilise them for incorporating or developing habits of learning and attaining knowledge for youngsters? The gossip-filled, mock-ridden TV shows can demonstrate, establish an environment of learning to its viewers through the quiz, competitions, debates and scholarly contests.

The sheer ignorance of our nation towards the learning aspect of younger minds and inefficient efforts to develop such environment will impact our future, society, system and generation in the most adverse way.