Evolution of the Chinese Woman

15 10 2008

Here is a somewhat un-Jahandost like picture. What is the theme of the day you ask? Indifference.

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The Epiphany of Jahandost

17 02 2008

Perhaps it is not the case that the meaning of life is to be derived by reconciling all the ideas in one’s head but rather the meaning of life is to be derived from constant struggle with oneself. These are two visions of life, neither of these is ‘correct’ and neither of these is ‘wrong.’ Different people are meant to follow different paths. I have tried reconciliation for the longest time until I realized that is not meant to be. Some things and some people are not meant to be at rest. With these words, Jahandost will end his self-imposed exile.





Ten Thousand Miles (Part III)

10 02 2008

Count: Its cold here.
Esther: The firewood is out.
Count: I presume we will have to wait till morning to fix this problem.
Esther:Perhaps but what about the electric heater in the basement.
Count: I am feeling lazy right now. Perhaps you should get it.
Esther:You know, you do not have monopoly on laziness.
Count: Yes. (smiles)
Esther:Why? Out of all the places, why did you decide to come here. In the wilderness, in the middle of nowhere, in a small hut? You could have been a big shot. People were also getting to know you also.
Count: I don’t know. I do not know how to explain this. I was just looking for a small corner to call my own. I felt ill at ease with all these people.
Esther:So you left? So you left all of them?
Count: Not all of them. Just some of them … Migrating from one place to another. Each time leaving someone behind until I came here.
Esther:Did you ever regret leaving someone behind?
Count: There was one. I still have occasional contact with them but haven’t told the person where I am.
Esther:Why not?
Count: I don’t know. Perhaps I want them to ask the perennial question or perhaps I just want to be left alone.
Relish in misery?
Count: Well. No. This place is peaceful.
Esther:It is.
Count: One could stay here for some time.
Esther:Away from everyone else?
Count: Yes, away from everyone else.
Esther:This is not what you want, is it? And yet you force yourself.
Count: I don’t know. I do not know anymore.





Raped? With Four Witnesses?

22 11 2007

Here is another story that I wrote sometime ago. I thought it would be (unfortunately) appropriate to post it now because of what has been going on in KSA lately. And you know what I really hate? I really hate when otherwise sensible people (Some Muslims in this case) say nonsense things like, “In KSA they have a sharia system. They never go against Islam. It is the Western media distorting the news. blah blah.” When you try to reason with them then they accuse you of being a Western stooge directly or indirectly. These are the same people have no problem in believing in outlandish conspiracy theories.

Also this is off topic but please pray for the victims of the cyclone in Bangladesh.

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Raped? With Four Witnesses?

by Jahandost

It was an unremarkable village, the only thing different about it was that it was surrounded by mountains on three sides so that its main connection to the outside world was a pass. It was somewhat far from other centers of population, so for the purpose of this story it does not matter when this story took place, it could have taken place today, yesterday, a year ago, five years ago, a hundred or even five hundred years ago. The location is also of no consequence.

On that fateful day Fatima, the daughter of a poor farmer, got separated from the rest of her group while coming back from the fields. While trying to find her way back to the village she came across a group of men who had less than noble intentions. She cried for help and struggled but there is no person who could help her. After desecrating her body the men left her for dead. After many hours of searching her father and the village folk came across her and took her back. Fatima and her family were traumatized, but not completely broken even though people were saying ‘things’ and pointing fingers at her. She knew who were assailants were – the powerful and the influential in the community but she had faith in justice. The case was presented before the judge, the accused of course feigned ignorance and innocence. The qadi (judge) declared that Fatima should produce four witnesses otherwise the court has no doubt that she was involved in adultery and the society must be cleaned of her abominable presence. As expected, the two aggressors were set free by the qadi. Fatima insisted that this law was unislamic and that they were twisting the laws for their own benefit but her voice fell on deaf years.

Fatima was thus condemned to death by the court and abandoned by her family since it was now clear to everyone that she had dishonored her family and there is no other way for them to reclaim their honor. The next day she was brought to the main square to be stoned. She expected justice from men but men are imperfect and often times their justice is also imperfect. Dejected and wronged by her people Fatima turned to God, the only one who can deliver perfect justice and so right before breathing her last she asked God if the perpetrators of this crime would face the same humiliation that she had to face so that in the future men will think a million times before even thinking about desecrating a woman.

After the death of Fatima the village life came back to normal. It was winter time, it snowed this time of the year but this year it snowed unusually heavily so that the pass was closed, that’s when strange things started to happen. The two men who had desecrated Fatima became sick, at first the village doctor could not figure out what the problem was and there was no way to get doctors from the city since the village was now effectively cut off from the rest of the work. Then the qadi became sick as well, it was not after a few weeks that the puzzle was solved but it was bizarre – all three men had become pregnant! People could not explain it, some even called it a miracle. Then it happened again, another woman was raped and she was again asked to provide four witnesses but in her case the court proceedings took some time and the man who was accused was raping her became pregnant instead of her becoming pregnant. The court proceedings were stopped altogether, people wanted to make sense of what was going on in the world. It seemed that in case of married couples, the natural law still prevailed – The woman still became pregnant and their husbands would not become pregnant. Many weeks passed, a few more cases – the same pattern it was always the accused in rape cases that the became pregnant i.e., the men.

The village was still cut off from the outside world even after many months, although the winter should have ended some time ago. Consequently the village was running short on food and other vital provisions. It was then the people realized that it was not just a miracle but rather warning from God. People repented, they finally saw the obvious that the accused in all the cases were guilty. Menfolk had twisted the laws of God for their own benefit and now they had to pay the price. God was punishing them. Only repentance for their crime of denying justice to rape victims could redeem them. The villagers stayed up for a few days, prayed, begged God for mercy and promised that they will not deny justice to women in the future. The women in all the cases were set free, their honor restored and no blame was put on them. It was decided that the accused men would be put to death after the termination of the pregnancy. That night the village went to sleep and the next day when they woke up, all the male pregnancies had disappeared all of a sudden and snow had also melted overnight.

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Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “People, beware of injustice, for injustice shall be darkness on the Day of Judgment.”

Saheeh Al-Bukhari, #2447, Mosnad Ahmad, #5798





72 Virgins: A Thought Experiment

18 10 2007

This is a short story that I wrote a while back. It was first posted on Eteraz.org.

72 Virgins: A Thought Experiment

by Jahandost

Some called the new invention Descartes’ evil daemon, others called it Satan’s workshop. Then there were those who thought that this was the greatest invention of all time although even its inventors were not quite sure about how it worked. Regardless of whatever people thought about the invention, it was the talk of the town for it allowed one to experience a world of virtual reality distilled from the unconsciouses of a community or many communities that one had come across in one’s life. It was called the Neural-calibrator or neuro-cal for short. Most people in the world had not used it but those who had used it found it disturbing to put it mildly. Dr. Akbar Baihisab was perhaps the only person of Muslim background who was associated with the this invention but he had never tried it until that fateful night. Most of the people had left early that day, Christmas was approaching so people were getting busy in other activities. Around midnight Akbar saw the opportunity and went into the control room. After calibrating the neuro-cal he plugged in the wire coming from it to the brain-computer interface at the back of his head and sat down on a chair to experience what happens. Nothing happened for a minute or two and then all of a sudden he sensed that something was terribly wrong because instead of seeing visions he felt powerless and weary, his vital stats began to drop. He could see his head bleeding but strangely did not feel any pain. The end was nigh and the whole world grew dark. When Akbar opened his eyes he saw himself in a large, lavish and brightly lit room sleeping on the most comfortable bed imaginable. “Could this be afterlife?” he wondered.

He rose and noticed for the first time that he was attired in extravagant clothing. “This must be it? May be I should ask someone if someone is here.” He said to himself and took a few steps when he saw a silhouette of a person from a distance. He approached the person, it was woman and not just any woman but the most beautiful woman that he had ever seen. She was well built, smelled like rose and seductively attired i.e., scantly clad. He asked her where he was and she replied, “You are in heaven, master.” She came closer and placed her hand on his shoulder. “Where are the others?” He inquired, to which she replied, “All of us are here for your pleasure master.” And the next instant a whole group of women was visible on the other side of the wall, one more beautiful than the other. He was somewhat taken aback but further inquired, “I mean other people from Earth.” “Aren’t you Glad that you have us. How shall I please thee today?” she replied. He was almost speechless and as she proceeded to give him a hug, he told her to stay back and she obliged to his command. He felt disoriented. He remembered hearing about such visions of heaven from the time when he was a teenager and people in his mosque still talked about visions of heaven in such explicit details and now that he was actually in heaven he felt as if something is not right. He proceeded to the hallway he came across the group of women that he had seen through the wall, scattered here and there. They were similarly attired in came in all colors and hues. He inquired about other people but they never really answered his question and so a seductive smile was usually their answer; then he asked one of them, “How many of you are there?” and she replied. “72 of course master. All virgins!”

Many days passed, he tried to make conversation with these women but it seemed that it was not possible to have a conversation with them since they could not answer most of his questions and just smiled like Barbie dolls when they did not have an answer. All that the women did was to be in their stations all day long and would be ready for any types of physical intimacy that he desired but he was not really interested in that so he never asked anyone. There were lush gardens and wonderful creatures but it did not feel right. He longed for closeness with God. He forbade all the virgins to come near him and spent most of his time in one of the rooms contemplating the meaning of life and the rewards and blessings that God had given him while he was alive. He repented until one night he realized what he had done wrong in his life. That night he prayed and asked Allah for forgiveness, he made a promise to himself that he will stop worshiping houris, heaven, his Sheikhs etc and start worshiping Allah – the most Gracious, the most Merciful. For the first time in many weeks he fell asleep.

“Akbar, can you hear us?” He hared someone calling his name. “Where am I?” He asked. You are in the neuro-cal room. “How long has it been, how long was I out?” He seemed somewhat confused. Then someone replied, “What do u mean, I am guessing that you plugged yourself into the machine right around midnight, so it must have been just five hours I suppose.”

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“the mullah’s Paradise is eating and sleeping and singing,
the lover’s Paradise is the contemplation of Being.”

– Muhammad Iqbal in Javed Nama





Jahandost

27 09 2007

So we meet here in this theater known as the blogsphere, its a place where one can be incarnated again and again until one achieves nirvana. In blogsphere one can even be incarnated in multiple avatars. Jahandost set off on a quest a long time ago looking for himself, until one day I had the realization that I have looked everywhere except myself. I wrestled with the grandest of questions without realizing that what is the use of such questions if they cannot alleviate human suffering. So I am here, distributing  the wine of love. Thus spoke the sage Rumi.

Reason is powerless in the expression of Love.
Love alone is capable of revealing the truth of Love and being a Lover.
The way of our prophets is the way of Truth.
If you want to live, die in Love;
die in Love if you want to remain alive.