Syed Owais Shah
Zahid and Parker used to sit for long after school and discuss almost everything. There was very little which the duo didn’t share. They considered each other to be brothers in flesh if not blood. Onlookers would often say that nothing could tear them apart, and it didn’t. Though they were torn apart, their parts laid together. The officials removed their remnants with extreme difficulty, the explosion had left a crater behind it.
Why should a harmless friendship be turned to ashes? Simply, because the suicidal maniacs don’t make distinctions or relaxations. They give no warnings and catch their victims by surprise.
Death has become so cheap that it is distributed for free. ‘Anyone with a gun in his hand and power in his head’ can become a headline like Shahrukh Jataoi.
Intolerance resides in the attitude; it is not restricted to a single territory, not connected to country’s progress, not fostered by any specific religion, race or state; the phenomenon of intolerance is certainly universal.
The demon of intolerance haunts us in many guises, you name it and it appears. The mass killings of innocent children of Army Public School or the attack on prime buildings at red zones of the country, the honor killings or sexual assaults, the brutal acid attacks or to manslaughter for acquisition of land, rebellion against state by religious clerics or the massacre against rebellion by the state, are stark runners of intolerance.
The religion of amnesty now has most intolerant followers. ‘Kharajites’, actually known as extremists, who had actually fallen out of ambit of Islam and were declared as dogs of hell, seem to be the face of Islam now. The sigil or protests seems to be our solution for every issue. But how far will the mantra ‘Dharna hoga, marna hoga’ be successful? How low do we have to fall before we realize that aggression destroys rather than mend!
A common myth declared that if we destroy all weapons, people shall use their limbs, if we amputate their limbs they shall still use their tongues. The armies of world just love to fight. I beg to differ. We all crave for peace, for a good night sleep, to return home safe and sound and to leave without a fear of abnormal contingencies which have become a routine now. We wish to die a natural death. We want our women to be respected. We want harmony in family. The organs of media have sensitized every news, the result being that we don’t feel anything. Previously we were happy till our own backyard is on fire, now we our happy till our own selves are on fire. We lack sympathy, empathy is obviously too far-fetched.
We need to rest, take a deep breath, control our anger and use cognition along with affective component of attitude. The dusty social mirror is not fit for use anymore, the society at large need to become tolerant and accommodating. Stephen Covey in his book, ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’, stated that the animal lack ability to project themselves and are not self-aware and thus differ from humans. According to me, the said humans themselves don’t differ much from animals. We let our animalistic desires rule us. Please for once, think, think well before you leap!
The contributor is an MBA student at IoBM, Karachi.