Treat yo soul!

Hi there everybody! 🙂

Have you ever FELT the speed at which the snow falls? Have you experienced the bliss of your breath syncing with the falling snowflake? I spent this weekend in the Naran Valley and saw the first snowfall of the season. I want to describe it to you- we’ve all seen it in cartoons and movies but how it feels, we can only fathom when we’re in the midst of that heavenly shower. It’s like a winter party and snowflakes are God’s confetti. I rejoiced with my 4 year old cousin and jumped around in the extreme cold with my numb toes but I couldn’t get tired of it.

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I had some fun moments and we even made a snow baby xD It had always been my fantasy to do that when I watched Cartoon Network’s Christmas special with the snowmen and snowball fights and layers and layers of warm clothing (things that a Karachiite kid could only dream of).

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This is my second post about traveling, guys. I truly HAVE developed wanderlust- it brings out the child inside me. There were some profound moments in this trip too. Things that help me in my recovery, things that show me the light at the end of the tunnel that I’m going through. I bought a postcard recently, with the picture of The Afghan Girl (Yes, the famous National Geographic photograph) and I had always wondered why people paint or take pictures of plain expressions. During this trip, we saw an old man carrying logs on his fragile back down the steep road that we were ascending. My mamoo (maternal uncle) reversed the car to give him some money and he stood still, staring at us with his happy eyes but his expression remained stolid but I could see his faith in humanity getting restored in that moment. I could see him thinking to himself, thanking His Lord for my mamoo’s generosity. Kindness is highly underrated, readers! Always try to be nice when you talk to people, look in their eyes and notice their expressions, respond calmly 🙂

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When one is close to nature, one’s own nature starts to resonate. And from within my mind’s chaos emerged a calm feminine spirit voice that talked to me and told me a theory in terms of Newton’s Third Law (every action has an equal and opposite reaction); suppose the pain of suffering is ‘F’ and it is pulling you. As a reaction, a second force, R, is pulling you in the opposite direction. This force, R, is the force of goodness, of your soul’s strength and your self’s hope. If F=R, then you are just surviving, you are neither happy nor sad. Going about your daily rut, you become trapped in this balance, you become numb after some time and when that happens, either F takes over or R does. If I manage to be myself and not drown in the quicksand of hardships, I can be the real me, I can be the person God wants me to be. ‘We are diamonds, taking shape’ (Adventure of a lifetime, Coldplay). I know you guys must have heard this a lot, but the simple illustration helps me get of bed. It’s a tug of war match and I have to pull so that R>F. If F>R, I won’t even be writing this blog, I wouldn’t even have the self confidence to do that. I’m glad I have you guys! 🙂

Peace out!

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Of One Republic and vacation

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“I know I could lie but I’m telling the truth

Wherever I go there’s a shadow of you

I know I could try looking for something new

But wherever I go, I’ll be looking for you”

-Wherever I go, One Republic

If you’ve seen the video of the new One Republic song I quoted above, you’ll understand what I’m going to talk about. When people come back from vacation, they usually talk about new things- visions and ideas that were novel to them- I experienced a different kind of pleasure from this summer’s travel. I saw myself… in the velvet-like plains of tea, in the skyscrapers, in the colors of the fish that swam at Aquaria, in all the temples that I saw. Happiness lies in loving yourself for who you are, and knowing oneself is a business that spans over a lifetime. So just like the man in the video who starts a flash mob at his workplace, travelling is an escape from the rut I was escaped in.

I am an unfinished puzzle and the pieces are lying all over the world. Wherever I go, I find those pieces and I become a little more complete.

I guess I’ve developed wanderlust. Here’s to travelling! Cheers! ^_^

My Neighbour Totoro- Movie review

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Watching this wonderful Miyazako creation, I felt like I was diving
into a Roald Dahl novel. With adorable, original characters, My
Neighbour Totoro took me on a journey to the little me, the little
Aisha. The kid who believed in imagination and that something Unseen was
saving me. Something that was only mine. Although the movie
was idyllic and slow with a not-so-amazing plot, and I haven’t
read or watched anything from the ‘Children’s’ genre for a long
time, I still felt like focusing my attention was rewarding in the
end.

Satsuki and Mei are cute little girls and how they love each other
through the ups and downs made me smile. Satsuki tries to be a
constant support for Mei and Mei’s incessant imitation of Satsuki’s
words shows she depends on her supervision and love. These
free spirited girls roam around and explore the forest around
their new house and going on this adventure would remind
everyone of that childhood curiosity we all contain. The movie is
usually silent which makes one sink deeper into the scenery and
characters. Totoro is an intriguing monster at first but the girls
very quickly create a bond with him which is almost intuitive. The
magical part of the whole thing and the BFG feels reminded me of
the power of imagination and how it defines us in times of distress.

If you’re looking for a movie with a roller-coaster ride kind of plot,
you may not like this. The real pull of this movie is the lull and
charms of childhood fantasies, which it excellently portrays.

Candle 


​Hi! I’m a melting candle and I give you light in load shedding. When I left home, my friend said that when you’ll melt, you’ll look ugly and people won’t like you. I told her helping people is not about getting liked, it’s about fulfilling your purpose. So I’m a melting candle and I love to give you light ☺ 

A to de

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Hi guys! I’ll be putting up my art on this blog when I get the urge to draw. Drawing and coloring is incredibly therapeutic! A to de is Japanese for ‘Leave for later’, this is a gentle reminder for all those suffering from depression. No, you are NOT procrastinating, you are caring for yourself. Depression corrodes our self esteem so much that we forget to take care of ourselves. It’s okay to take a break, believe me, you will come out stronger after the break.
May you all find inner peace!

Wade not when you have a boat

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Photo courtesy: seewhatinspires.tumblr.com

I couldn’t breathe, I was drowning, grasping air for support. Sinking, thrashing in the world’s turmoil. I held so tightly the twig I found in my way, all the while thrashing in the water, struggling to breathe. “Why do you wade, my child?”, a voice called out and I lost my hold on the beloved twig. I could see my death. I could see my end when suddenly, a boat appeared and the voice said, “Why do you wade, my child, if I have a boat for you?”

Sometimes we hold on to toxic, unhealthy relationships and people because we think that they are the twig and we will drown without them but God has given us a boat to live through these thrashing waves. Trust your instincts, trust your soul. Your boat is your soul. You need nothing else.

Hijab to me

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Image courtesy: hijabhappiness.tumblr.com

 

 

I am taken aback by the ghastly comments like the title of this recent blog post on the Tribune Blogs-Satan would urinate in your hair? Why do we scare little girls about sexual predators when they ask us about wearing the hijab? Why is it considered a symbol of oppression? A foreigner is inclined to label it a symbol of oppression if we force little 6 year old girls to wear them and to always conceal, conceal, conceal! Children’s movies like Mulan, Brave and Frozen spread messages of women empowerment and self-determination; imagine what goes on in the mind of that little child growing up? She wants to explore and run freely without the thought of someone ogling at her weighing down her individualism. Unsatisfactory responses towards the concept of hijab left me with ever-morphing beliefs about wrapping my head.

So after some introspection, an Umrah (which was a very big blessing, Alhamdolillah!) and reading this wonderful book called From My Sister’s Lips, I came to believe the beautiful part of this concept. The 13 year old me could not have grasped the serenity that came with embracing the hijab. I no longer wore the hijab as an imposition but as a sacred part of my identity. I used to wait for weddings and parties at school where I would flaunt my hair-dos but even if that desire still lives inside me, I no longer chase that desire. This sacrificial belief comes from a deeper attachment with one’s spirituality (which, in most cases, does not exist in one’s teenage). I do make mistakes, here and there. I’m not perfect. I forget to pin it properly sometimes, I wear a shorter red hijab just because the blue one wasn’t matching with my clothes. I’m still learning, and not preaching. There are so many versions of hijab out there and there is no mention of a specific type of clothing for women in the Ahadith or Quran so I respect everyone’s version of modesty.

Hijab to me is a wonderful way of expressing the spiritual revolution that I went through (it wasn’t abrupt, it was a slow, thoughtful process to challenge the dogmas created inside my mind against all mentions of hijab– I perceived it as a patriarchal idea). Most of my understanding was intuitive and there is no scientific explanation of this concept. It’s just that I do it for myself now. I don’t think guys stare at me lesser because of my hijab, I also haven’t even felt like I look ugly in it.

I feel liberated from the fears of being judged for not wearing a hijab and from the fear of someone harassing me for not wearing a hijab.

So no, I’m not wearing it with the weak belief of someone who thinks that Satan will urinate in her hair if she doesn’t.