Dakhan

The trek is tough especially if you choose the western side. The track is very steep at the bottom and the slope gradually decreases as the travel advances. The house is not located at the top of the hill but slightly below towards east so that the sun sets early on the house making Panjal even more beautiful during evenings when the color changes from striking white to saffron. The winds too aren’t strong here. It is at the periphery of what seems like a bunch of trees from far, but I think their number is strong enough to call them a forest. The house is surrounded by trees that bear fruits of every kind making summers even more memorable.  There are innumerable plump trees and no one cares much about them because of their numbers of course. Plumps aren’t very tasty either, I find them sour and hard to digest. All other wild fruits are hard to digest too but their taste attracts you towards them and you end up on the tree all day long. One such fruit is a relative of plump, the yellow ones with a lot of juice that would spill out if you don’t know how to place one on the lip and bite it not very hard and then just squeeze it with fingers for the sweetest juice you have ever tasted. Then there’s variety of pears with all strange local names. Some of them could really mess up your stomach. Oh, the apple trees most prized possession .  Scarecrows defend these and hence hardly any bird other than parrots flies near it. Parrots are smart birds after all. The walnut trees stand tallest at least among the fruit trees with its long branches and the fragrance that refreshes all of the senses. I like its smooth polished  bark. It makes them harder to get on though. There were some bushes of blackberry too. No raspberry but.
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Philosophy as an Art of Dying

Dying for an idea” is the stuff of martyrdom — “philosophic martyrdom.” For martyrdom to be possible, however, one’s death, spectacular as it may be, is not enough. Dying is just half of the job; the other half is weaving a good narrative of martyrdom and finding an audience for it. A philosopher’s death would be in vain without the right narrator, as well as the guilty conscience of a receptive audience. A sense of collective guilt can do wonders for a narrative of martyrdom about to emerge.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/12/philosophy-as-an-art-of-dying/ 

The Mountains Are Coming Closer

When the USSR left Afghanistan in 1989, Pakistan diverted its men and machines engaged there towards Kashmir. Now, the US is going to get out of Afghanistan very soon. And Pakistan will have to give the mujahideen another cause. The road to Kashmir, everyone in this paradise-turned-hell will tell you, goes through Kabul. The mountains are coming closer indeed.

http://www.sunday-guardian.com/investigation/walk-through-melancholy-in-downtown-srinagar 

Fikr-E-Insan

Here’s one to another Pakistani Artist.
He has his musical roots in Croatia where he spent 13 years and produced two albums of solely Irish music. He was first seen in Coke Studio reciting “Husn-e-Haqiqi”. He was part of season 3 with “Na Raindi Hai”.So to speak, he has unique style of his own that makes his music different and transcending. Arieb Azhar has redefined Sufi music scenario with his jeans and t-shirt, goateed and shaved head covered in a bandana.

Yeah, the music. It is all encompassing and connects with one’s inner self, exactly what you expect out of a sufi. He has recorded an album besides some solos.

Ghoom Charkhaya.
If you are Pathana Khan fan, you would be familiar with the song. I heard the Khan’s version first.

Saif Malook
I have more than ten versions of this song by various artists. This one sure is among top three.

Name of his album is Wajj and it is spectacular. Jindri Luthi, Make Gayan, well each track is incredible.

Coke and Uth

I would always argue Pakistan has a much better music industry than India. They don’t rely only upon Lollywood but have some very awesome bands. And just to prove my point

This is a song of hope and pride for me. Its much more than the optimism that it represents. And Wali Orakzai did a woderful job. I still wonder why is it called “Yasir and Jawad”.

Palestine and Kashmir

So the burden of non-violent protest in India and Israel has fallen almost entirely on the victims of the occupation. Indeed, many liberal commentators try to condone their passivity by deploring the absence of non-violent protests in Kashmir and Palestine (never mind the fact that the first intifadas in both places in the late 1980s turned violent only after being savagely suppressed).

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jun/06/india-israel-obama-non-violence