Monday, May 10, 2010
Late 60's and 70's, as seen from our parents pictures and anecdotes were modern times. The country boasted of casino's, cinema's and public parties with booze. The armed forces in particular were considered extremely emancipated, promoting the club culture which the British rule had introduced in this part of the world. Those times were extremely religiously tolerant as well, many castes be it sunni's, sheas's, ahmedi's lived and interacted with each other, many inter caste marriages took place as well.
Come the 80's and the start of the Zia era, came the Allah Hafiz culture. From a secular society, we started transforming into an Islamic one where everything started and ended with Islam. The women became very active and shifted from coffee parties to milaads and dars. The core concept of these events remained the same, to dress up in your finest,socialize and gossip to death but it was done in an Islamic manner with a Quran Khawani or with reciting ayats or naats. The women who did not attend were considered going astray from God's path. More and more men started growing long beards and Jameet e Islami became the saviour of Islam and its practices. It became common knowledge hearing about couples sitting innocently in Uni or college campuses, to be threatened or the boy beaten up and warned to stay away from each other. Gradually we closed our minds and limited our vision.
Standing in 2010 today, we have numerous religious channels where uneducated maulvi's lecture our nation about right and wrong. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing bad about having channels solely for religious purposes but the content is absolutely absurd. The viewers of such channels, their vision doesn't go beyond the end their nose. The Q&A session, where people call in to ask the Islamic expert, is amazingly hilarious. Q's like can i paint my nails and pray? can i marry off my gay son? is working in a call center allowed in Islam etc etc. The list is endless and gets funnier. We are deeply entrenched and have fallen far far down in this pit which is eating us up,a nation which has produced highly enlightened individuals still remembered by the world.