Guiding luminescence

luminescence

I fear the unknown, nor the unseen,

I only fear the unceasing evanescence,

Of the hopes & dreams, that I daily weave,

Each thread strengthening, my inner sense,

Turning the darkest demons, with every stitch,

To an imperishable ray of fluorescence,

It shall guide me, through the labyrinth,

Of life, from adolescence to senescence.

~~~

Image credits: http://www.ctvnews.ca/polopoly_fs/1.2201801.1421975854!/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_620/image.jpg

3 questions do the trick, to know them real quick!

three

The tips and tricks of playing with mind are a part of psychological studies. But what I believe is, that no matter which field you belong to, either you’re a doctor, or an engineer or some artist, you should be aware of these tricks and apply them in your daily routines. They’ll make your life a little easier, if not entirely, and can help you achieve your targets with better results.

Over the time, I have met new people via internet or in real life and you must’ve too. The first word that pops up in your mind, whenever you meet a new person, is stranger. And living in this cursed & cruel society, it is obviously a hugely important task to determine if a person is worth trusting or not and whether you should make further interactions with them in future, or not. Well of course, people can be great at hiding their true selves, but there are some trick questions that can give you a pretty good insight about a personality and can show you a rough outline of their minds and hearts.

Before I tell you those questions, I want you to understand that I give you no 100% guarantees that whatever they answer can give you a vague image of that person because, it obviously depends on your psychological interpretations too. Secondly, I came up with these questions when once, a friend asked me what would be those three questions I’d ask someone to make a rough sketch in my mind about his/her personality. I thought about it for a few minutes, I asked those questions and I used them over the time and I’ve certainly found it easy to understand people after that.

Q1: Who are you closest to, the most, in your life and why?

A very basic question, which can give you a clear picture about their family background. The most acceptable answers would be father, mother, siblings, or even grandparents. But if a person says they’re close to some uncle/aunt or a childhood friend, then this can arise a few questions. It means they weren’t close to their family and those who aren’t close to their family have a disturbed mind because they face a tough time at home. You’re also asking them “why”, which they might or might not answer. Either way, you’ll get to know that they have a rough family history. You’d have to be a bit cautious with such people. They might be aggressive or easily offended, sensitive, hardworking and many a times, they are independent.

Q2: Do you have any regrets? If yes, what are they and how’d you rectify them?

This may seem like a personal opinion, but I believe each and every one of us has some regrets in our lives. It can be something as tiny as spending our savings on a crappy guitar or  something as grave and serious as choosing the wrong life-partner. Anyway, this question gives you a vague idea about their darkest secrets. They might regret the career they’ve chosen, or they might regret not ditching the person who gave them a hard time. The next question, how they’d rectify their mistake, gives you a clear picture of how they’d cope with difficulty, their problem solving skills, or their power to face hard-ships or finding solutions. They might just shrug and say never thought about it, which might raise new questions.

Q3: Love or money?

The most easiest way to learn if a person is your type or not. If you’re romantic, or you value friendships, relationships or any sort of acquaintanceship more than money, then you’d better talk to those who choose love. Because they’d have more in common with your personality. Such people are highly sensitive, love hungry, emotional, they might be courageous or they might be very fragile, they’ll usually be the people you can easily trust. And if they choose money, you might find them a bit intimidating, determined, materialistic, goal oriented, strategic, power hungry and they’ll seldom value emotions.

If you find these questions useful, do try them out, the next time you meet someone new. They might be great ice-breakers or help you break down iron walls guarding a person. Heh. And let me know what your views are. Cheers! 🙂

P.S: Be careful who you are asking these questions from. Sometimes, people might find it offending that you’re asking them personal questions. So make sure they are easy about it. If not, try to take them in your confidence first.

***

Image credits: http://s3.amazonaws.com/kajabi-media/assets/projects/31135/assets_bag/original/QuestionMarks.jpg?1422931310

Care is in the air, but are you aware?

Maybe, they do care about you. But, they’re afraid to make it obvious and don’t dare to make their move. You know why? Because you’re already surrounded by trillions of others, who are pretending that they care about you. And those pretentious ones, somehow, make those who truly care about you, feel unwanted and a waste. And why not? You’re already happy with the ones you have around yourself, you’re drowned in their flattery, you’re blinded by their fake smiles, so yes, the ones who do care about you truly, feel that you’re satisfied and thus, stay away from you. They can’t bear to look at you among the pseudo-adorers but they are afraid to show you their reality, at the same time. They are afraid you’d take them wrong and annihilate every chance they’ve, to be a part of your life and to make it better in some way, by throwing just one cold glance in their direction.
And they are right, in doing so.

Yearning for ecstasy (Part 2)

NOTE

Part 2 is here! Feedback means a lot, honestly. I would love to know your views about this story. I am trying my best to sketch the picture of a typical Pakistani family, with my words. Please do read it till the end (the last three paragraphs contain words which I was dying to share in some way). Image credits have been mentioned in the end. Cheers!

***

fam

I walked to where they were all sitting, at a very slow pace. I sat at a lone chair, with the unknown family at my right and my own at the left. So every eye was on me now, naturally. Very comfortable. My mom was the first to break the awkward silence. “This is Maria, my daughter and Maria, they are our new neighbors. This is Arham,” she gestured towards the boy, “and they are Mr. & Mrs. Naveed.” “Hey everyone.” I suck at greetings. “So Mrs. Farhan left?” She was our old neighbor and honestly, she was a nightmare. I posed this question at mom. “Yeah.” She raised her eyebrows. Okay, no more questions, got the hint. “Your mom tells me you’re a…psychologist.” The pause was so pronounced, I actually thought Mrs. Naveed was struggling to say it in the most respectable manner. “Yes.” “It must be a tough job.” Mr. Naveed made an assumption, chewing a biscuit he had just picked up. I noticed my mom had put my favorite ones in front of these unknown guests. God. “Not much, I enjoy it.” I could actually hear what was going through their minds at the moment. It was evident from their expressions that Mr. & Mrs. Naveed were dying to say “WHAT THE HELL?!” “You enjoy being a psychologist?” Okay, I had totally forgotten about Arham. I glanced at him. His eyes were brown, wheatish skin tone and dark brown hair, totally messed up. And there was something else. A playful smile on his lips and curiosity, which he was trying so hard to hide through that smile, shining in his eyes. “Yeah I do.” I stood up. “I’ve got to do some work, so please excuse me now.” I hope I didn’t sound too rude. “And welcome to the neighborhood.” I added with a smile, looking at Mr. & Mrs. Naveed. I presumed that they were actually the ones who needed to be convinced that we were not a freaky family, after all & that their choice was good. Arham, I guess he wouldn’t have any problem in adjusting here. I walked to my room. Unfortunately, it opened to the lounge and whenever I open the door of my room, I always come face to face with whoever was sitting there. Sucks, big time, when you’ve to say hi to dad’s boring friends and there is no way of avoiding it. As I was about to close the door, my eyes, involuntarily (I swear), traced their path to Arham. He was marveling a painting I got ages ago, hanged in the lounge. Thank God, no awkward eye contact. I closed the door as softly as I could. At that very instant, my cell phone rang. It was my brother calling and oh shit, I forgot to call him when I had promised that next time, it would be me who’d call him. Sigh. “Hey Ali.” “Do I even have a sister?” Sarcasm, it runs in our blood. “Unlike you, dear brocteria, I am a busy person. Job all good?” He lives abroad and works in the field of microbiology. So now you know why I called him brocteria. “Yes. I heard Mrs. Farhan left. Is it true?” News move faster than light, in our neighborhood. I wonder who told Ali though. “Yeah. Was it reTina who spread the news? Did she tell you about the new family too?” Tina is our maid. ReTina, well, biology is fun. And my bro has her number, don’t even ask me how he got it. “No, I called mom yesterday. She told me everything. And while we’re talking about mom now, let’s discuss the real reason behind this call. She is worried about you. Why are you working on weekends?” Talk about being a brother who is only a couple of years older. “You know why. I enjoy working there. Why do you guys have to ask me the same question every time?” There was a pause; he wasn’t satisfied. “I like listening to them & you know that.” “I know that alright but this is not good. Take out some time for your own self, Maria. You can’t treat your special ones your whole life. You deserve a break.” I knew it wouldn’t do any good but I had nothing else to say, “I am honestly doing fine Ali, stop worrying yourself about me or anyone here. Mom’s getting carried away with her usual paranoia that I’m over stressing myself, I’ll talk to her.” After talking for a few more minutes, the call ended abruptly. Batter ended. I put my phone on charge, freshened myself up and made it to the kitchen. By now, the other family had gone. “So now you are good chums with her?” I asked my mom at the dinner table. “No, of course not, we don’t know them entirely, but they seem very well-educated and nothing like Mrs. Farhan.” I noticed the edge but let it go. “It was very obvious that they were judging me on the basis of my profession. Well-educated much?” God, this vegetable salad is so good. “Well, it’s a bit unusual. They don’t come across psychologists that often in Pakistan. And you know this yourself. So don’t fret over it. Their views will probably change with time.” Trust dad to be all positive. “Right.” For the rest of the dinner, we were discussing my brother, his work, the food, my mom’s suspicions about my work, etc. As for me, I was contemplating the importance & blessing of having a family. A number of my special ones, never had the chance to know what it’s like to have a good, decent, rules-oriented family. They had siblings to whom they had never even talked to or lost all contacts with them. Parents, who hardly cared about their children, or children, who lived with their parents but only wished them morning and night. Teenagers, who complained constantly of never having anyone in their family to talk to about their general “teenage affairs.” Or families, who had never had a meal together. It was so hard to hear these bitter stories, they literally brought tears to my eyes at times. How can families be torn apart like this? How can people let the usual demands of life get in the way of themselves & their family? How can people stop caring about the people they have a blood relation? How can people just kill these eternal, special and strong bonds? When ever I looked into the eyes of my special ones, I never saw them dreaming about money or riches or wealth or clothes or huge mansions. What I saw in their eyes was something which could be only brought to them by a miracle. Something, for which they would’ve to keep fighting and even then, they couldn’t be sure whether they would earn it or not, in the end. Something, which required patience, not only for a day or two, but sometimes, for their whole lives. They dreamed of happiness. They wanted to experience elation. They yearned for ecstasy. They wanted to feel loved. They wanted to know what it was like to have a life like I had right now. For them, this was the real happiness. For them, this was paradise. This was the miracle they were looking for. This was the miracle they would die for.

***

Thank you for reading! 🙂 Image credits: https://law.marquette.edu/programs-degrees/family-law

Hold it, you’re a “kill joy”

99

 

You’re a kill joy.

Yes YOU.

Why do you have to just butt in with sickeningly depressive verbal thoughts every time someone shares their happiness with you?

Why do you have to decapitate their moment of glory and bliss with the axe of melancholia?

Why do you act like the black-magic trick that vanishes their open mouthed smiles by punctuating what they tell you with your never ending sighs?

Why do you have to brandish your hate, possible ill-fate at their face & block their cheerfulness with morbidity every time they try to take a turn in life?

There is a special place in- , nah, I’m not even going to tell you where you belong. Doesn’t matter to you anyway, does it? As if it’ll ever change you.

You know what I think? People like you are God’s test for us. Yeah. You’re just born for our “use”. And we know how to deal with dirt like you. We won’t scrub you. We will ignore you even exist. We will ignore your unkind uttering and keep patience close to us. That would rot your insides even more. That would actually burn you up, then at last, maybe, you’ll know where you’ll end up after we’re through with you.

We will surely do so. And just keep this secure in that brainless skull of yours: if you even once dare say “the world doesn’t care about me…” that would only mean ‘more burning.’

Rant # 3

I have always loved reading magazines. Whenever I went to some relative’s house or a clinic, I’d search for a magazine and start flipping through it. Even now, if I ever come across a good magazine, I HAVE to buy it. There was a time, when I had this huge crush on “Young Times” (don’t confuse it with “Young World”, totally different), but all of a sudden, the hawker said they were not getting it anymore. I was devastated (honestly!). Then someone introduced me to “Smash” (I hope you’ve heard of it). It was a great mag. Typically for teenagers. I was entering university life but still, I was addicted to it.

It was 2012. One day, I came across this article about different e-mags in Pakistan and a little introduction about them. I instantly fell for one. I opened their website, filled up their joining form and started waiting. Few days later, I got the e-mail and I got in! It was pure volunteer work. Naturally, people around me were like “What? You’ll work for them FOR FREE? Pagal. Gadhi. Psycho.” Whatever. I never cared. I just wanted to be a part of them.

They were my second family. I met LOADS of people there who are great friends of mine. I was initially their ambassador (promotion stuff) and their graphic designer (you know what they do, right? Drawing and stuff).

Ab asal kahani yahan se shuru hoti hai.

I knew as much stuff about graphic designing as a doctor knows about engineering. Seriously. I only knew the basic programs used like PhotoShop, Devian art, Photoscape etc but nothing else. I started working on them, day in and night out. I actually made many graphical stuff for my own self, judging my own self and then I chose the best ones and sent them to the heads. They usually loved it. Alot. They used to get featured and I can’t tell you k us se mera kitna khoon barh jata tha. It was honestly a miracle.
Months went by. I left graphic designing because it was taking up a lot of time and I had to focus on my studies as well. So I switched as their columnist and events reporter (they used to be the media partners and then I as a reporter had to cover that event). It was fun.

So one day, our head sent us to an event. It was a big one, held in the National Museum. There, I met this girl, whom I had never ever met in my life. She introduced herself as the head of a volunteer group that organized events and said “Are you Sabika? You are their graphic designer, right? God, I love your work.”

And that was the moment when I had to literally control my tears. A few others came up and told me they knew me. Still, whenever I think about that day, I can’t believe it actually happened. (people coming up to you, telling you they love your work, honestly, me? Ha-ha)

The whole point of this story is not that I’m bragging or wanted to tell you how good I can be at graphic designing (which of course I am not), but my point is, that if you seriously believe in yourself, you can absolutely do it, no matter how many people smirk at you, no matter how irrelevant it is to your career, if it’s something which you are enjoying doing, then it won’t be a fuck up. My second point is, that each and every one of you (yes, you there, with a dark complexion and you, with dandruff filled hair and also you, shorty), all of you have talents. All you need to do is realize what your strengths are and play up to it. And then, you’ll find the whole world congratulating you on your success. Seriously guys, all it takes is a strong belief in your own self, confidence and dedication.

“You can’t be good at everything, but you can NEVER be good at nothing.”

(this is a quote by me, it isn’t anonymous, okay?)

So yeah, after reading this, take a moment (or think about it while you’re in the washroom), thoroughly analyze yourself and find what you’re good at and start working on it. Then share your story with others. 🙂

Be a “real friend”, get a “real friend”

friends

Most of the people you come across nowadays are often whining about monetary issues, bosses, families and what not. This is all usual. We can expect ‘absurdities’ when it comes to these things. But the most recent grumblings which compelled me to compose this blog were “I don’t have any real friends” or “Only if I had some good friends…”

First of all, everybody has a friend. Full stop. There should be zero arguments about this. There is no question that you can survive in this drastic world without somebody by your side. This friend might be your sibling, a neighbor, someone from your institute, a colleague or some e-friend.

Secondly, who exactly do you consider your ‘real friend’? Someone who cooks for you daily? Someone who buys expensive gifts on your birthday? Someone who plans midnight surprises on your birthday? Someone who helps you dispose off a body of a person you just murdered?

If the answer to any one (or, to my utter horror, all) of the above questions is affirmative, then you, my dear, are entirely at fault. You might be just shoving your real friends away by being selfish or expecting a lot, I repeat, ‘a lot’.

Before I say anything on my own, let’s see what lessons Hazrat Ali (A.S) has taught us regarding friends:

1
“A true friend is one who upon seeing a fault gives you advice and who defends you in your absence.”

No doubt!

11
“Ask your heart about the condition of friendship, because it is such a witness that does not accept a bribe.”

So beautifully stated, isn’t it?

You see guys, you can’t have everything you wish for. You can’t expect to have a superbly intelligent nerd who helps you to secure at least a B in every test by constantly coaxing you for group studies, as your friend and at the same time expect him/her to go with you for a game five times a week or shopping (whatever suits the gender). You need to realize that “perfect personalities don’t exist, at all.”

Following are some points which can a) make you a good friend for others & b) help you realize who your true friends are. Chances are that they might just be lurking around you and you only need a nudge from me to see them.

  • Simply, lower your expectations, for a start.
  • Don’t be materialistic, it’s obviously not an attractive personality trait.
  • Try to cherish your moments with your buddy by having a good laugh, a good gossip or talking about some serious issues concerning your/their life.
  • Be a good listener as well as a good speaker. Mutual interests are extremely necessary to be good friends with someone.
  • Once in a while, engage in a talk that concerns families. The more you talk about people close to your friend, the more he/she will trust you. And obviously, vice versa.
  • Presents are important, yes, but not as effective as sweet and sincere words. Your gifts should never indicate that you’re impressing or flaunting neither they should show that you’re gifting grudgingly. But a sincere wish, will too, go a long way. It’ll be etched in their minds.
  • While we’re discussing wishes another important point to keep in mind is to make sure you convince them that you’re genuinely concerned about their happiness and life.
  • Never compare your own riches or money with your friend. NEVER.
  • Be sincerely happy at their achievements.
  • Relationships can distance you from your friends. If this is the case, do let them know you want to help them and then give your friend the desired space. If he/she comes to you, great! If not, he/she never did consider you a friend.
  • Occasionally, sharing personal secrets is healthy for your friendship.
  • Avoid backbiting. Entirely. This cracks the basis of trust.
  • Help them in their time of need. The thing is, there might come a point in your life when either of you may not be available for each other at the time of need. No worries, if the friendship is strong, you will find at least a moment to inquire about them through a simple phone call. Even that is enough.
  • Friendship is not about going to lavish restaurants for lunches. It’s about making your own lunch and watching a badass movie in your room together. (Oh and washing dishes later).
  • Better is, not to discuss your friendship matters with strangers.
  • Your real friend won’t go on 3 days in a row without talking you. Bear that in mind!

Your friend won’t have a tattoo on their forehead to prove to you that he/she is your friend. There is no test for proving the strength of friendship. It depends on your own notions. You’ll just feel a connection.

Friends are necessary. Your parents and siblings will not be around forever. Relatives, are a totally different story. During your rough times, when even your closest cousins might scarper, only your real friends shall be there. Make sure you cherish your friends, be a good companion and find good companions for your own selves.

Cheers!