Aur hum nay kia kiya! (And what did we do!)

Another chauda ag’gust (14th August) passed us by full of riot and hooliganism on the streets; forced ceremonies in offices and a tender few remembrances from the bleeding nationalist hearts.

I am not a cynic; rather a foolish optimist. I suppose this stems from the fact that the country I belong to, was built on idealism and I cannot do otherwise. My grandparents migrated in the exodus of 1947; I have grown up with those stories, with my grandfather standing up to the national anthem even in his failing days of Parkinson’s disease – the unwaan (title). And on the 13th August at my office while the anthem played; my colleagues and I were gossiping while lolling on the rainy grass – the daastan (the tale).

We have come a long way from red hot patriotism to cold blasé disconnect from the very term ‘Pakistani’. I wonder at us. Where are we heading because to my eyes we have no direction. Then we knew that we wanted a homeland for peace and equality in coexistence – according to the Islamic way of life – the unwaa(n). And we are stuck in pseudo-reality of the modern enlightened progressive generation - the daastan.

This could very well become a ramble and lecture on value systems and morality; social systems and cultural confusions – but in my mind the problem is our lack of knowledge. I fear this: “History became legend. Legend became myth.” (LOTR), and there is no belief when it comes to myths. My generation does not try to learn who we were, what did we stand for. Our exposure is simply to the Western stimulus, and frankly, to baseline propaganda. Laying the blame would open an avenue of argument that is needed but is not the solution.

Being twenty-something, I think my actions and intent are my own more than dictated. Then why don’t I choose to find out “Why Pakistan” before jumping onto the bandwagon called “Mistake Pakistan”. Objectivity over sensationalism – maturity over pop-opinions. If we try to learn the legacy we represent perhaps we might find what we have lost. We just might find that we can still be the daastan that bleeds love, harmony, peace and honour – a daastan deserving the unwaan “Pakistan”.