I stand alone in the Colosseum of life. The mood I am in is immeasurable caressing the infinity of time and space. Transgressing into a multidimensional realm of the physical, emotional and spiritual orbit of my life is not a permanent state of my mind, but as I have chosen to dwell on this subject it seems that I am heaved into this momentary position. I will attempt to expound the ups, downs, bends and long unending stretches of roads disappearing into the horizon of time. Heartaches, moments of happiness and joy all are in a state of fusion with colors of nature and its blessings. The zero milestone is not a physical one but that which resides in my vaguest of memories, which rekindle now and then and therein lies the pleasures of the life of whatever its worth for me. The process of remembering is a blessing of nature. Imagine if this is taken away from us there will be an upheaval in our lives. Some faded ones and some etched deeply in my mind are the unforgettable ones. They are part of the convention of so many emotions. Memories are thus, in my opinion, a blessing it keeps you connected with something which does not exist, but only in another dimension. Some people can let go of them. For me which I have let go has not been because of anything but only because they do not exist anymore in any form to affect me or those around me. I am reminded of Mark Twain’s quote who says that sign of a poor memory is for those who have a clear conscience; I am still trying perceptively apply it on myself, not necessarily that I may expound on that thought right now. When you are immersed in a state of mind as I am now I wonder if one should lead his life with the signposts of life. Many times in my journey of 68 years, I do not remember being at a crossroad of making a decision, but now I can say without any declaration of guilt with the benefit of hindsight except two happenings which I feel I could have made a better value of time, though with a feeling of regret. I guess we all have them when from the perspective of the passage of these long years where age is the teacher. Having said that I have never ever considered myself inadequate to venture into passions which either was dormant or the mind was not ready to start that particular journey. Two days ago I received a call from a very senior retired officer of the Army who had a glittering career both when he was in the Army and after retirement. Someone had told me he is a good painter. I chose to ask him about his unknown talent. Being myself into the journey where I did not allow time to dictate me of my erudition of playing with knife and brushes, he took me by bewilderment when he told me that he started learning Calligraphy at the age of 70 years and published a book with exhibitions in Pakistan and abroad. He was generous to present me with a copy of his book “ALIF” Quest of The Devine. Looking back at our deprivations and dispossessions, in my opinion, is a very parlous state of mind which should never be allowed to persist. I never do that. I know for so many it must have been a trammel to capitulate into nothingness, where the will is set into hermitic existence. Everyone’s journey can never be as of mine, We all have latent ambitions, I did not let mine die with the circumstances surrounding me or how many miles I covered in my journey of life. Many people have affected my thinking, and in so many ways, they were simply few words which set me in a motion of my attitudes, views and how I let myself be guided by them. They were not extreme thought provoking but simply uncomplicated words and ideas. One needs to be receptive to happenings around us. Personally, the chart of my milestones and signposts have been simple and straightforward. I never take time to take a decision which has allowed me more positions of an advantage than otherwise. For me, the significance of milestones in my life have had minimal relevance and to be honest have not been a moot point whatsoever. I am a collector of few things. I regret missing so many things which could have been now my prized possessions, they are the lost milestones never to be seen or touched. In the exuberance of our youth, we tend to take things for granted, an extra weight to carry. well, past is past I have looked forward. The pieces are enough to remember not necessarily as they were, the vagueness is beautiful, this is how I think, not forgetting what Mark Twain said. I will not compromise on my conscience. I am neither a writer nor a literary person. I write what I feel at that point. Does not mean that I sway too much in my principles, simply I chose to follow the moment. It must bring out the best of me – some say you are innocent in your views, others would categorize me as a scrambler galloping on an unchartered moment of the moment itself. The MOMENT we all have. Enjoy it. Cherish it.
The first time I left home was at the age of twenty. My destination; The Pakistan Military Academy. Since that day for the next 16 years, my father and I wrote hundreds of letters to each other. His letters were a source of encouragement, guidance, inducements, pointers and true gift on military life and the way I should lead my life. His emphasis on his vigorous principles powerfully embedded in which his personality and way of life revolved, were a beacon of hope and light for me also. Most of the inspirations I drew from his unshakable principles to which he stood for all his life till he breathed his last came in form of his letters written to me. Letter writing is an old-fashioned art which I feel is gradually dying; at least in my circle of near and dear ones, its importance I only realized once I lost my elder son, who like his grandfather wrote to me, the only difference that he communicated through emails extensively. One thing which I learned from my father is to catalog and keep a record of all his prized possessions which mostly were his vast collection of books and handwritten papers and journals which he did not write very regularly but was more into writing about his childhood. The journal I so much desire to read again, but my younger brother who I have not met for over 40 years has them as he lives abroad. It is in Urdu, Farsi, and English and is in his own handwriting. One day perhaps if I live long I hope to read it all again. Much after his passing away I sifted all his handwritten letters logged and chronicled them. In this post, I will put down some of the excerpts of those letters. There are many other letters and notes which my colleagues and acquaintances wrote to me I have kept, they are not of any sentimental value but I do enjoy reading them for their style, feelings, thoughts, and choice of words. Which I pend for another time.
I watch a lot of movies and have always enjoyed listening to letters being read in a background voice of the person who wrote those letters. I find myself engrossed and consumed with the flavor and artistry of the writer when reading in his own voice which gives me the archaic nature of the passages being read and which excites me of the natural wealth the letters provide. It takes me to the point where I feel like writing my self to someone I care about. It gives me a feeling of eternal life. Letters immortalize you to a large extent. ‘Love Letters of Khalil Gibran’, The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, Jane Austin Letters to name a few books. The letter allows you to be conventional and informal and yet also permits you the vastness of expressions to choose from. There was a time when initially replying to my father was a burden as I could not think of anything to write. It gradually became an urge and infatuation with words and yearning to just write always no matter what, yet the urge was unstoppable. The internet and email never affected me, though I longed for the traditional fountain pen with ink and charm of the letter could not be recreated. I love my handwriting. My teachers and instructors always said that they loved my handwriting. My father had a very good hand as well. ” To write is human, to get mail is divine, love this short quote by Susan Lendroth.
I am not going to follow the first letter but randomly choose to put my own thoughts and those of who wrote to me but will start from my father, which seems natural. I have browsed through so many letters, I am beginning to feel that I would be digressing from the purpose the blog, that is, share some thoughts of all the precious people in my life. Some of these lines and paragraphs you will read today would be the first time as I have not shared these with anyone till now. So let me take a recess and try to choreograph my collections. I am sure I will be writing many more posts on this one after this one.
Excerpts from Letters from My Father
When I joined PMA on 12 May 1971 I received my father’s letter of 19 May 71. He wrote, “so far I have received three letters from you – the other day I received a letter addressed to you, I opened the same much against my wishes and principles – the day you left we remembered you almost every hour”. ” — never give in, soldiers and Pathans never give in, this is their pride. The main requirement is willpower and guts and you have them both”. “Never criticize food”. “Never try to test the ability of your instructors and remember no one knows everything about everything”. “Always remember God nothing but God, he is the only Protector, Almighty, Greatest and Merciful. What he wants is always done and NO ONE ON EARTH CAN COME IN HIS WAY. This must be your Faith”
” I have been a good walker all my life. When I was in school during Xmas holidays about 5 of us walked from Lahore to Kasur 32 miles away from Lahore. We had our beddings with us. Having reached there we played a Hockey match i.e. five of us against eleven and we won by two goals”
“Powder-cream and hair oil and perfumes are not used by soldiers”
” Suspect everything and everybody has been my motto all my life. When I was young, my friend’s father who used to be in Indian Police during pre-partition days had told me and I made it my motto. a second nature”.
“Everything BENDS before an IRON WILLED MAN”.
“ — Time passes but memories remain. I lost my mother when I was 8 Years old – It was because of the kindness of my grandfather that I passed my matriculation, of course, he was instrumental in not allowing me to give up studies. I used to get a stipend of Rs 18/- per month from the British Government as Afghan Refugee. With that amount, my school expenses were met, the rest naturally not my money. When I joined the college and when I was in FA second year this stipend was stopped. As my college expenses, etc could not be borne by anyone I had to give up studies. I was left in the lurch, till the treatment of my family members compelled me to leave home, which I left in 1933. I struggled all my life, and only by God’s grace, I was successful to get a commission during the Second World War. When these people came to know everybody started owning me. Even then I did not have any grudges against anyone because I knew that when fortune was against me no one could help me. By this time I lost my Grandfather, Grandmother and sisters were married, thrown in different hells against my wishes. And thus the time passed.”
The last quote below before I write about Moody’s letters. More on my Father in another blog another day. I have just touched the surface though. In his letter of 23 Jan 1977, over 10 years before his death, he wrote” A time will come when one feels that his entire life, this world and everything in it is meaningless. Happy moments are only those which one spends to remember God. There is no other happiness in this world. In fact, the more time passes the more wretched people under the Sun become”. ” More than Kisses, Letters mingle souls” a quote
Letters from my son Nasir Mahmood
“I have devoured my day in the usual mantle of shorts and t-shirt. The myth of rising sun for many is a globe to advent on the fresh vernacular of ideas and for some of us the stillness of night thriving thoughts on the zenith of a belated bedtime. I struggle to sum my sentences, arrange and rearrange my thoughts in appropriate drawers. I was winking and working till four in the proverbial limelight of bulb and books. Our refrigerator is loaded with bakery boxes and every now and then I plaudit my appetite with charcoal of percolating coffee and munch on crumbling biscuits underneath my carnivore edges of teeth. Often? Indeed.Free? Yes.—“
“Life is full of happiness. There is no ego because LOVE is victorious”
A prelude to his poem REASON! ” Today when I sat down to REASON with myself I thought I would never make pass one line but slowly kept reasoning and finally managed to reach somewhere. ART OF WAR and SEIZE THE MOMENT are nice books especially the former is really state of the art. Today was productive day working out my mind muscle reasoning and reading. There is a very good line quoted by Frederic the Great in Nixon’s Book ” He who defends everywhere defends nothing”. Guess, when I sit down to write my war, is with the word of topic on top of the poem.”
A paragraph from his Motivation Letter written to the Australian National University “I have a voracious appetite ecstatically devoted to reading books on history, philosophy, poetry, current affairs, magazines and on weekends a touchstone in the sand and on greens of Golf Course. Occasionally, I also muse me with a chord of words but my resolution is writing only poetry. My linguistic skills are Russian and Deutsche”.
A colleague from UNMIL Frances in Liberia wrote this for him. “IN LOVING MEMORY FOR NOW AND FOREVER MORE OF NASIR MAHMOOD. GOD BLESS HIS SOUL. THE SUN SHALL NOT SMITE HIM BY DAY, NOR THE MOON BY NIGHT”
There is so much to write which I only realized when I stacked up all the letters and many more which still lie in boxes and cupboards. I realize that I would not be able to do justice to my loved ones not only in this blog post but many more would be required. I know what I have to do now. Till then, please take pleasure in reading about the corners I touched in my life.
“If I never see you again
I will always carry you
on my fingertips
and at brain edges
and in centers
of what I am of
― Charles Bukowski
Emerson once said, “be the opener of doors”. Other writers believed that there will always be a time when the doors will open, others said if there is no opportunity build a door. The topic I have given to my page has not been the result of too much of deliberation. It just happened as has been always this way. Flashes and waves of my mind always allow stumbling to subjects such as this -A Door Always Opens. Frankly whenever I choose to write I allow too much of randomness to take better of me. I may during the course of creation of this page ramble from one to another event by no single event preferred over the other. Ideas, people, and places bounce in my head like never before. Please turn a blind eye if there is something amiss, I do not expect myself to be perfect every time. I am not a Penman. But I am now in these last years crossing 60 is fun. You are no more worried by this, that, if, who, where and what. Who says you cannot break walls and cross those taboos and have no fear of excommunication. Doors will open, doors always open. Since childhood, my father has been a beacon, a guiding light. A man with whom I remember not conversing too much. His aura, his undertone, and overtone petrified all the siblings. There was something in him which enthralled us, it was like we were ceremoniously preserved, his mercurial and incalculable mood swings was something he could never have full control over. He had two very stark personas, his magnetism was extremely strong. He was a superstar at one time who was well organized polished and a self-assured personality. Whilst at another extreme he was fanatical, extremist with outrageous temperament. We were growing up in a household full of vibrations of life which were coming from a man who had a very austere life with unbending and unyielding character. He did not believe that losing of temper he will lose he believed more in ‘satisfaction’ of his heart no matter how many odds were pitched against him. His unpredictable nature was repeatedly reflected in his military appraisals and he could not come to terms with it. Though he died trying to find out what was against him. He was always apprehensive of conspiracy being weaved against him, even decades after his retirement. He died not ever knowing about those reports, something I read much after his passing away. The details I reserve for some other day and hour.
Right now there is a deluge of ideas, stories, and events, nothing to do with philosophical ruminations. The memories of one such story which was narrated to me back in 1995 have gradually moved around full circle opening a number of doors if you come to think of that. I am glad I did not set them free too soon. The time is now to write the full hoop as the door has revolved full circle. For the seclusion of the hero behind the Door, I have chosen to call him Snow Leopard or ‘Ess Ell‘. I saw him first time on the assumption of command after I was my promoted. Ess Ell a Captain then with a countryman appearance with few nicotine stains on his teeth was one of my Staff Officer. His accent heightened his rural background image. The outgoing commander perhaps did not ever try to know more of Ess Ell, instead, with his opinion about him tried to put him in a disadvantageous position to me. I stopped him for doing that. I believed always I should myself be the judge with my professional experience of who is what. Soon I was able to know much more of him than what I would have known through the flawed approach of the gentleman who tried to fill me up with Ess Ell’s abilities. At times we can be a poor judge of men. Senior Leaders should be wary of this very important attribute and not be swayed by personal appearances alone. As we got along we settled down to discuss various non-professional matters, give our opinion and thoughts. I now could see how the young captain viewed things in life which was of his own. I found them interesting and original. On first appearance he looked rustic, a man with no outward force of personality. His spoken English was laden with native Punjabi accent, which betrayed his personality more than was necessary. To be fair to him he could not help himself on that score. That is how Ess Ell was chiseled. A small opening in the door I gave to Ess Ell allowed me to gauge gradually prowess of his mental superiority and excellence. I soon realized that the young man was much more than running an eye over. Now he conversed with ease with me. He spoke more as I began to listen.
Ess Ell came from a needy family. He had his major misfortune at an early age when he lost his father while he was in school. He struggled with his problems which exacerbated with the death of his father. He applied to different colleges in Islamabad but failed to get an admission. Appeared as a private student. Sometimes worked as a laborer during the day, crushing stones with bare hands, lifting them at different construction sites, and other times on meager pay in different factories of Islamabad Industrial Area. At night he huddled along with other fellow students in over crowded flats earning just barely to make his modest ends meet. He took his examinations as a private student. One day resting on a mat on the floor he glanced through the first page of the paper and went to work. His colleagues and fellow laborers considered him as a misfit in even their circle of work. They found him an odd man out who worked during the day, remained aloof as he studied at night. It was a queer situation, untypical of a laborer, they thought. After he came back Ess Ell picked the newspaper and started reading again. He was thrilled and his animated movements got better of him. People gazed at him in wonderment. laborers with whom he worked called him “Baghi” (Rebel). I remembered James Dean movie A REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE. Ess Ell was not that. He had a cause and an ambition, a dream which was getting closer to fulfillment. They knew something extraordinary had happened for they had never seen him like that before. Soon he broke the news to those who really would not have understood the true meaning of his achievement. Another Door had flung open for Ess Ell. He had topped his examination not only amongst the batch of private students but the whole lot of appeared students for that examination. At first, he could not fathom the significance of his achievement but initially also did not believe it to be true. He went to buy the Result Supplement to confirm his accomplishment. He got a scholarship which eventually resulted in his successful graduation. His odd jobs did not cease which he continued.
Ess Ell then applied for the commission in the Army. He failed the induction test but persistent as he was he applied again and got selected. A Door had opened wide this time. Self-analytical as he was, he did not let failures to dash his hopes. He had no strings and he never complained about non-fulfillment of his dreams. Ess Ell has risen to a One Star General in the Army. He also did his Masters in Strategic Security Studies with HUMAN SECURITY as a special subject from NDU USA. The University offered him to stay and teach which he politely declined. Ess Ell has now recently completed his Ph.D. on “Human Security in Gilgit Baltistan. Role of Geography in Human Security – Case Study of Gilgit. He has also written a book on HUMAN SECURITY. I am proud to have a copy of his book duly endorsed by him. During his command in Northern Areas, he applied his concept of Human Security successfully.
As I ponder over the yester years I am really lost for words to chronicle his achievements. He humbly calls me as his mentor, but I never thought like that. He is a self-made man his doors were difficult to open but he opened them with his sheer hard-work and perseverance. When I started writing I thought I will narrate more than this event in my life. I will write again as a sequel to this page at a later time.
“When God Opens a door no one will shut when he shuts no one will open”
Lailah Gifty Akita. (A Ghanian and an Author of Think Great)
A daughter is beauty at its finest.
Heart of an angel, soul so pure, and sweet.
Daughters are one of God’s most precious gifts that he has bestowed upon the world.
Angels in Heaven do not compare to thine beauty, and grace my ever so beautiful, and lovely daughter.
Seeing you at birth brought more joy to me
than all the money in the world could ever do.
You are morning, bright, and shining,
you are noon, you reside at the highest point in my heart,
you are the dew kissed night.
You are my daughter, heart, and soul.
It is 0235 hrs past midnight the 6th of Nov 2016 and not a wink of sleep. Finished watching Season 12 Episode 5 of CRIMINAL MINDs. I am watching this TV Series since 2005. I have never missed an episode being one of my favorite Season Series; it has crime stories based on the detectives who solve complex and complicated crimes with interesting twist and turns of the plot. Each episode is weaved and spun around characters based on their behaviour pattern. The detectives are part of BAU – Behaviour Analysis Unit of the FBI. The most interesting part of all the episodes is the narration of a quote in the beginning and mostly at the end of each episode. Today’s quote from the episode, which I finished, watching, was of Euripides- “To a father growing old nothing is dearer than a daughter”. The quote has a power of recall. It has beamed me to fields of the vastness of my past occurrences. I cannot help but be filled with intense sentiments, tenderness, and love. The quote of Euripides, which dates back to 408 BC, still holds good today. Euripides writings were also a subject of Moody’s passion of reading books of famous philosophers. As I clicked for more quotes I stumbled upon all the quotes of Criminal Minds since it’s screening. I picked up few for my Facebook status and posted them. As browsing continued I pulled out the exact quote of Euripides “ –To a father waxing old Nothing is dearer than a daughter; sons have spirits of a higher pitch, but less inclined to sweet endearing fondness”. Since millennia this unbreakable bond has existed between father and a daughter. I cannot even comprehend how parents without daughters grow as one, not without children but without daughters. My daughter is a blessing who loves, caring and sister to three brothers of whom one has left this world. I feel the pain. Mariam has had three names since she was born. We started with Nadia. That we were told is not a good name as it meant the one who calls. We changed her name when she was only a year old. The second name is Rabiya. I say ‘is’ because I still call her by that name. I like the name. The third and present name she chose herself– Mariam. This name is documented. I have never been able to call her Mariam, only her colleagues and friends call her that. Adnan my dear friend of 17 years always thought that I had two daughters till late, Rabiya and Mariam.
Rabiya has had a very tough life and as a father, it has been very hard and strenuous for me too. At times I see her and feel out of sorts and blue. Sometimes I wonder and do not know what is going on in her mind. She is a fighter beyond any question and doubt. Health issues personal ups and downs and right in midst of keeping the balance of home and studies she has struggled and now is a Ph.D. Scholar, a testimony to her unwavering resolve to set her goals and achieve them. Determined and clear-headed she knows her clearly defined goals. I am very happy and content for that. What goes in my heart is matter of my heart. I as a parent have struggled to define and grade myself. Moody who studied Euripides, Herodotus, Socrates and Plato and other great scholars and philosophers of the past knew how to express himself. He did that with a powerful and potent choice of words. His words resonate in form of his powerful poems. Rabiya has different ways of expressing herself. I call her my doctor. She tells me what medicines I must take when I need them. She is our family dream catcher – a dream seen and she gets a call. I do not remember what I dream and those I do she would expound and illuminate it for me in a few well-chosen words. She goes crazy when she sees a Palmist. She would force me that I must show my palm. I have not except once or twice just to listen to her. Palmists have not been able to read my palm, perhaps my lines of heart and head do not speak loudly. Rabiya definitely knows what goes on inside me she would not say. My kids are not expressive and never have used words I love you. Their way of saying that are more in deeds than in words. The older she gets the friendlier she gets. I must end with an Irish proverb ‘ A son is a son till he takes him a wife, a daughter is a daughter all of her life’
Rabiya may Allah be always be with you – Ameen.
BACKGROUND to this post. I used to contribute to a website squidoo.com. But then Squidoo people decided to close down and asked me to transfer all my stories to Hub Pages. Sadly, I was not able to transfer all of them. This was a blow as I lost all of them. I was also not prepared to write them all over. I could not be in the same mood and spirit. The choice of words and the thought process could not be recreated . The post below is a cut and paste and hence, the reader would note that I have not changed either the tense or the format.
Words of Wisdom
Knowledge and Wisdom
Woody Allen, actor, and director confessed that he was thrown out of New York University for cheating on meta-physics examination. He said he was caught cheating for looking into the soul of the guy sitting beside him. He said that this was a joke he made. The treatise I am going to share with you today is not a joke. It is a fairly large written material written by my son who was bipolar and his story I have already shared on Squidoo and if read in conjunction with that will give this reading a special meaning and understanding. Read Here. The words which swirled out of Moody’s mind was at the time when he was passing through a highly elevated bipolar condition. Bipolar’s also fell in love, and when they have a fierce and passionate ability to express themselves, you will be able to see clear reflections of pearls of wisdom which flow in their writings of the subject matter. When I was studying in high school a long time ago as part of out English literature curriculum we studied E.M. Forster’s novel ” Where Angels Fear to Tread.” It is about falling in love. This novel has been named from a proverb by Alexander Pope an English Poet and it was ” Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread.” The context of my lens has a bearing to this quotation. It is said that wise men do not fall in love. It is also well known that this phrase has been used many times by different scholars, writers and critics. However, in my lens, this connection may not be excessively visible in those exact words of the quote, nor I think was my son Moody making any connection when he wrote it. I am with the benefit of hindsight as well as being his father find it convenient to do so. I am not saying he was a fool. When this quote was coined fool was not considered a derogatory word as it is now. For the benefit of those who may not have read the poem I would only quote last six verses of the poem by Alexander Pope to put it in the right perspective: Name a play and he’s the Poets Friend, Nay sow’d his faults – but when would poets mend? No place so Sacred from such Fops is barr’d, Nor is Paul’s church more safe than Paul’s Church-yard; Nay fly to Altars; there they talk you dead; For fools rush in where Angels fear to tread. The following 3 modules I will share Moody’s take on Wisdom and how he felt troubled in the following module. Gives a clear view of what was going on in his mind; a bipolar mind. Please bear with the length of both I would benefit from a maximum permissible limit of the modules.
Meaning of Wisdom by a Bipolar Mind
My son MOODY’s favourite word was Wisdom and I will quote it here before you start reading his thoughts. These words are also inscribed on his Grave Stone in his eternal resting place
“Wisdom is my most favourite word and to spend life seeking reverence for it is of loss none but being lost to a life most sublime. It is mostly overgrowing troubled tooth for all human beings ever since, but, surfaced only in the best philosophical mind”
A profound word to find but attire is full description
Speak it softly so others may understand and if audience is not audible then know that you have some wisdom to find in yourself before being misunderstood without full wise consideration
It has no similar meaning to be understood but is all meaning within to spring right from the man he who must speak only his inside
You will not hear ever wisdom be spoken in your manner till you have heard all that is meant to have said
There is immense irony about being able to see it wisely and if explanation is not laconic then wisdom has not rendered anything
Wisdom has part what distinguishes man and whole that made him distinct but to avail are both must still not be dismayed
If you wish to feel wisdom entirely then life is not as easy because a lot went comfortably till came wisdom and shouldered your entire burden
It will sleep like an atom residing for centuries in the nucleus of man’s one small blood cell but fires only for some when time is right but to remain forever awakened
You cannot live its form to be sensible because wisdom knows how to empower itself to relive your life wisely and once you have seen how wise visualizes a way then astray cannot your foresight from it
For if you see what others cannot say then must speak it but surrender not credit to have reflected wisely of someone
You cannot pluck the fossil of wisdom from mind and resilience is to drown in more trouble till you reconcile to accept that it exists with extreme resistance
Wisdom then is meaning that man makes and gives all meaning to further his endeavors to wise ends
It includes everything with no vice for men, spoken without hesitation and, said to everyone
Seeing clear is one step to climb its stair and to share its pinnacle is man wise dissipating heightened wisdom again
If there is no wisdom then life is without avail and achievement is wisdom not worthy and meaningful when use is least in this world or if there is life next
Wisdom then elongates the expanse of circle to inclusion but bother none if effects remain invisible since you pass it wisely without withholding to the carried lesson because wisdom needs love only your observation
If your attempt is to manifold wisdom then argument your discussion without care of well-deserved reputation, count not what has wisdom recollected but time you have spared to think over it and then take account of what you were negligent than to have been thoughtful
Wisdom is light, of all truth but it takes no flame from it because wise in itself is the enkindled truth. You might differ truth to have felt it bitterly but if you had it your way then wisdom knocks not the door of opinion with that you differ wisely
You can say the unseen by seeing the difference in existence of something and when you have succeeded the seeming complexity then you have wisely dealt the simple, knowable, favors outcome from all available and when seen wisely the hidden is bound to unveil your wise appearance
Wisdom is then age to have reasoned what has bygone before you and to see what must be done and that must mean only in time to come
The eye begins seeing the wise among things and reason start to probe grounds to gain favor and give further wisdom
Does wisdom then not proceed one more time after reasoned its reason wisely?
Wisdom is to emerge over learnt possibilities and head forward by becoming learned and discern all acquired answers like does the unlearned
The wise must need passion to put efforts for plentiful wisdom because passion is putting life to test for wisdom.
Life is not tumult to seek importance for wisdom because a life rested is time wasted without given any good to anything wisely
Be wise to act with anticipation such as if your act is none other but only to have performed without emotive acts and to choose what renders not damage but is the best only available choice
And thereon to cherish every act wisely and worrying not the sum existing beyond its source
Say what speaks sensory but hear everything that is seemingly wise so that if wisdom is there then it should flow by passage as words its way
Wisdom is not to imagine the best of words but to cease loose time not to have lettered wisely
Wisdom is dialectic with no numbered multiples but has discoursed men from time since Socrates
If you think wisdom need no explanation then wait just a few, more seconds
Wisdom is unlike repented over anything but more like what you live up to own
And then if you are a man hospitable then treat not wisdom as guest over for a while but as if you waited for ages impatiently to give away your sole entitlement to it
But it is importance, which is not envied but brightness that becharms even who is blinded of knowing wisdom
If you ever find yourself amid moments to figure out the wisest way then know if when there is no option there subsists this way to figure wisely another one
Then wisdom is existence of what is concealed right before you and steals your attention when you did not care much to take care of it
But care is not the person wise because worrying deprives initiative of one to acknowledge having thought of wisdom
It is lesson indeed tough but so is life since unaware is man what to expect next
And what to expect from expectation when wisdom is sufficiency in being content within yourself
It is not seeing the satisfactory when self-satisfied but to seek the stimuli external to us
Wisdom is to think of course in possibilities but reducing fullness from probable
More wisdom then gets carried away and to stress rapidly is not the necessary advance to it
Then patience is more thorough pursuing wisdom because it has more thoroughness to seek resources To speak thoughtfully but only after given thorough thoughts over it
Wisdom is all full passage saying whatever without the need to say it and what of need if wisdom is not all aim within
Then wisdom is always less because it says too much for itself and takes a while to understand
When contribution is suggestive then desired is wisdom in conscience for the sake only to understand
So if you think that wisdom is the thing stated simple then you have reduced its precision because it is just when you thought the difference between fact unstated that wisdom was drawn upon a bigger statement because difference among things is finding wise facts but also deliberating their varied effects
Wisdom is to symbolize every stationed matter but without waving from your signified position Wisdom is pain devoid and wantonness taken but to see signifying the relative fragments
Wisdom is to change in a causal chain for chances undertaken and to have brought about improved changes
It is traveling farthest for conclusions but knowing how further is the unknown in things
So wisdom is seeking logic of facts but dealing raw to refine its matter but redefined repetitively
Usage subsists none use unless wisdom is the ideal produced by dealing unconditionally every condition wisely dealt
Wisdom is my most favorite word and to spend life seeking reverence for it is of loss none but being lost to a life most sublime
It is mostly overgrowing troubled tooth for all human beings ever since, but, surfaced only in the best philosophical mind
Sunday, July 8, 2012
Meet Tahir—Interview from Across the World!
Today I have a very special interview from one of my readers who recently reached out to me on a post about creativity. Muhammad Tahir is his name, he’s a courageous father who’s living through the tragic loss of his oldest son who suffered from bipolar disorder. Blessed with an amazing ability to write poetry, his son, Nasir Mahmood lost his life to suicide 5 years ago. Today, Tahir has decided to open up about his son and his illness with hopes to reach the many parents like him and children like his son so he can make a positive change. Please welcome Tahir and if you’re moved to do so, please leave any messages you may have for him in the comment section below, he hopes to hear from you!
Welcome Tahir, I’m so touched that you wanted to share your story with us. I know this wasn’t an easy decision and I want you to know that I’m so grateful for your courage. I along with my readers are reading with open hearts with a hope to learn from your family.
To start the interview, can you introduce yourself and share a little about who you are and where you’re from?
Let me from the very outset thank you for providing me a forum where I can talk about this tragedy which has struck me and my family. Very briefly who I am. I am a retired Major General from Pakistan Army. I am presently living in Islamabad where I build my own house after my retirement from the Army in 2008. I served at different places and varying appointments of the army.
I now have two sons and a daughter after Nasir Mahmood whom we all called “Moody” left us. He was the eldest and was born on March 21, 1975. We did not call him “Moody” because he was moody, it was his last name “Mahmood” that we changed to “Moody”.
I served for 38 years in the military. I served abroad as Lieutenant Colonel in Somalia from November 1993 to March 1995. And again as a Major General in Liberia UN mission as a Deputy Force Commander. My elder son, Muhammad Ali, is currently in Australia and my younger son, Muhammad Bilal, lives with us and is studying Law. Mariam is elder to Bilal and is married and has two kids, Eimaan who is 11 years old and Mustafa who is 7 years old.
Nasir Mahmood, “Moody”, Tahir’s son who died on May 4, 2007 of suicide. This picture was taken in 2004 in Dubai where he worked for 5 months or so. My wife says, “Though Moody is smiling in this picture, she sees pain in his eyes.” This was the time frame when Moody’s illness started to take shape and in his workplace he started secluding himself by reading all the time.
Can you tell us about your son Moody?
Nasir Mahmood, alias “Moody”, was born in Lahore on March 21, 1975. He was a quiet child and not naughty like some children are. There was nothing extraordinary which I should have noticed or bring out at this point. Yes, he was fond of dressing well. He was not bright in studies and like many parents I had to constantly keep telling him to study.
When he was about 17 years old, I now recall in hindsight that he was a moody guy. He would take on something and would pursue relentlessly.
When he was 19 years old, he wanted to do hotel management and decided he should go to Russia and do his studies for 3-4 years. I sent him there and he arrived at a university in St. Petersburg. He was required to do his year long course of Russian language. I was worried about him being alone.
After earning his Russian Diploma, he called me and said that he does not want to pursue his studies and would like to return. He came back to Pakistan. Back home we did not know what he’ll do next, so he started preparing for his Bachelors Degree. Then he fell in love with a girl who we did not know.
In Eastern culture the parents will never allow this kind of relationship and neither the children will share such flings. I am not sure, but his love affair may have caused him to hit rock bottom. I was in Somalia when my wife told me that he had cut his wrist perhaps because she rejected him. He survived this first suicide attempt.
After two years, he told us that he wanted to marry Sonia (I don’t know if this was the same girl). I did not approve as he was too young with nothing to show for—no job, no back up. The girl was a year or two older than him. She was rich but her reputation was tainted and some people raised eyebrows about her lifestyle. Moody and Sonia were madly in love. They decided that either they will marry each other or they won’t marry at all.
Then one day he said that he was getting married tomorrow and wanted us to join. We were shocked when we found out that he told the girl’s parents that he and his parents have agreed. They issued invitation cards for the marriage.
When I told him that he should go ahead and marry but count me out as I never agreed to him marrying this girl in the first place and this was not my decision but a family decision. Anyway he did not go and I do not know what happened. The girl Sonia broke up and I later came to know she went to the US.
During this time he did start a job in Lahore away from us. He earned well. He started to play golf and went crazy with it and became very good. He would swing and swing for hours and would proudly tell me that he was driving the ball over 300 Meters. Day in and out it was only golf. He went crazy for the game. Bought expensive golf clubs. Always selected the best things for himself no matter what the price tag was. This lasted for some time till he started reading books. He was reading hours and hours and finished book after book staying up all night. Little did I know he was going through an amazing metamorphosis. I noticed that whatever he did he would pursue it madly for few months and perfect it. This was now year 2003.
Then came another brain wave. He wanted to go to Germany to study in a German University. I told him without German Language it was a no go. I never thought that he would learn German. He perfected his language skills to an extent that he read and memorised Shakespeare’s Hamlet in German. He caught me by complete surprise, something I never expected would happen. As parents, we sometimes fail so badly to know our children.
Then one day we had a disagreement on his choice of University abroad which was beyond my means. There was no way I could afford it. He tore all his forms and left home. We did not speak for a month.
Then a friend of mine called me and told me that my son does not speak with anyone and I should take him to a psychologist. I asked Moody and told him about this. He laughed and said that he reads books in his spare time when he’s not working and he can see that other people’s mental level is too low and different and that they do not have enough knowledge to discuss issues with him.
Asking my son to go to a psychologist was like telling him he was crazy. In Pakistan it is a taboo and there are not many people pursuing this medical profession. Anyways, he started reading books and I realized that he was writing poems which were very intense and I found it difficult to understand at times. He wrote me letters and we did not notice anything alarming. His new found love for reading books made me happy and I bought quite a number for him. All he did was write and read.
In the end of 2004, Moody’s younger brother Ali got admission in Australia. I advised Moody to go to the same university as his brother was studying. But he wanted the best university and eventually managed admission in ANU, Australian National University. This is where he started showing his first signs of mental illness that I know. He slided fast within 5–6 months which ultimately lead to his death.
Moody in 2006. Notice his beard—he never shaved it till he died. Notice his younger brother Bilal in orange t-shirt (in photo below)—he has that same beard and never shaves it off. Bilal was the first to see Moody after he killed himself. He was very attached to his brother.
Can you share with us the type of symptoms you saw?
My son was never shown to a doctor. It was when he was in Australia and doing his masters in Australia that through his letters which he wrote he started saying that he had a hole on top of his head and had been captured by two spirits. One had taken control of his right arm and the other his neck. He also felt something strike him hard in the groins.
Now when he was sending all these stories I misjudged the whole state of affairs and thought that he would like to extricate himself from the university because he could not do accounting. I insisted that he stay and finish his studies since I had already spent $25–30 thousand dollars.
Between father and son we exchanged many letters. He wrote a total of 22 poems. His writing skills made a 360 degrees turn and something about the quality of his thought and expression surprised me. It was so sudden that for some time I thought it was not his original work.
Here is a sample of Moody’s writings describing his spirits and how they affected him:
I started experiencing tapping on my arms, shoulders, feet, legs and sometimes my thumb or other fingers would flicker momentarily especially when I am writing. Every muscle of my body responds. Even right now I am experiencing this writing to you. But gradually he has started to become more resilient. He communicates with me through words spoken on TV, while I am reading, when I am writing my office work, during conversations with people. I can’t even begin to explain you how difficult living has become when someone is being distracted after every few seconds and is corrected each time. Imagine as if someone grabs me from behind my neck and moves it around to look at certain objects, as he desires me. I try to not move and stay still but I cannot do that because he strangles me by the neck. If I could feel his hand then I can move it away because it is physically possible. My life is living hell in every true sense of my sentences. He is living and acknowledging my thoughts. The sort of thoughts those are mute. No shrink in the world can help me and no medicine can cure it.
After losing another relationship, Moody said that he was returning home. His condition was very bad, he would go barefoot out to Canberra Grave yard. I sent his brother Ali from Sydney to go and see him. He said that he was unwell. Ali boarded him on plane and saw him off.
When he came home he complained about what was wrong with all of us and why everyone was acting strange. He was shown to a doctor who did not tell us much except that he was in depression and then the doctor gave him medication. I had no idea what bipolar disorder was and whether or not he had it. The meds which were prescribed brought him back within 2–3 weeks.
What other unusual symptoms or behaviors did you noticed?
He started reading a lot in Arabi’s book on The Self-Disclosure of God and would watch the movie The Last Temptation of Christ. He believed that the spirits had gained control of his body and that these were Muslim Spirits who were not leaving him alone. One day he wrote me a letter to tell me that he was converting to Christianity. He thought that if he did that, the spirits would leave him alone. This did not happen and in his last letter before he committed suicide he mentioned this fact.
What type of treatment did your son have to treat his illness?
Sadly, my deepest regret and guilt is that I failed to go all out for him. As I was in Liberia, I could not monitor his medication. He stopped taking them and told his mother that the medications were making him slow and despite our best efforts, he skipped medications. I know he must have seen all the side effects of these medications on the computer and also I believe he knew about his disease. He spent all day long in his room and read books. He stopped writing.
You mentioned to me that in your culture, seeking help for mental illness isn’t done and that careers in the mental health field aren’t even pursued because of the stigma. Can you share more about this and how this stigma impacted your son’s life?
It had an impact on us and him as well. At times, Moody would would sit and stare and just smile. One day, he returned after meeting his friends and told his mother that now his friends are also laughing at him. He stopped going out too much. He would not even go to the doctor and my wife who was the only elder at home had absolutely no idea what was going on inside his mind.
I read online in one of your posts that you have guilt about your son’s death. Can you share where this comes from?
First, I was not there for him. Second, I did not gauge the gravity of the situation and allowed him to slide fast. The mere fact that I came to know about bipolar disorder after his death is enough guilt. I have tears in my eyes as I write these lines. I wish that I could revert time. It has impacted my wife and younger son too much as they were the ones who saw him in his room where he killed himself.
Looking back, what would you have done differently?
Oh a lot of things, as you can see it is so obvious. As I was not present, I could not physically follow him. My wife says that, “the children should be listened to”. She thinks his suicide was triggered by him not getting married to Sonia. And she says that he decided to take his life after he came to know that Sonia had gotten married and had a child. That broke the camels back. She repents for not getting him married.
What would you teach other parents based on your experience?
Personally, I think we as parents make lot of mistakes in raising kids. We fail to recognise the true potential of our children. I’m not talking about exceptions. I’m talking run of the mill. My culture and that of the West is very different in raising kids. We keep family together, more of joint family. There is a lot of respect for parents and marriages are mostly arranged through the consent of boy and girl. The children tell you so much without saying and we fail to notice things which are right in front of our eyes. We take things for granted. We do not heed to what children want, sometimes their demands are excessive and sometimes we replicate what our parents did and behaved with us. Sometimes we’re over protective and sometimes we do not care. A middle ground is the best.
What would you say to someone who was suffering with mental illness but was afraid of treatment because of the stigma or social impact of a diagnosis?
I would tell him first and foremost about the great men and women, the achievers of so many varied things in history, in every field, who have also suffered and yet achieved. We need to tell them that, “yes we know you suffer in moods, but everything is okay.” I believe most people with bipolar disorder are not listened to, when they tell us about their problems, we brush it aside. We become intolerant of their mood swings. We need a big sympathetic heart and open mind to listen and bear with them.
As a final word, what message would you leave with us?
The last word is, never take anything for granted.
I will close after telling what Moody did before he killed himself.
I was in Liberia and it was about 5:00 in the evening. My wife was just lying on her bed when Moody came and sat on the bed besides her and said, “Mama do you pray for me?” She said, “what kind of question is this, I pray for all of you!” he repeated his question at least three more times.
In his last days, he was very quiet, soft and low tone.
After 20–25 minutes of discussion, he got up and started going towards the door. My wife Tallat said to him, “Moody we will look for a girl for you to marry.”
He said, “Mama it is no use, these spirits do not let me live and they will ruin my marriage, no use, it’s too late.” He said this and left while my wife offered up her evening prayers.
Bilal, my youngest son, went to the computer and saw the letter Moody just emailed me. It actually started by this line “AGHA this is my last letter to you in this life ———.
Bilal ran to his mom and shared this. My wife took a minute to finish her prayers and said to Bilal that today, again, Moody is not in his right mind.
Moody’s room was in the far corner of the house. When they entered his room, Moody was bleeding and the pistol was on the floor and his head was backwards. All hell broke loose. Bilal dragged his mother out of the room. The driver was called and he was taken quickly to the hospital emergency. It was too late, he had already left us.
Earlier that evening, after sending me his final email, Moody came and sat in the TV lounge with me. We did not talk, he sat for a few minutes and went to his room. After 20 minutes, on my way to the airport, I told my wife Moody had gone to sleep as I do not see light in his room.
I left and then while at the airport, I was told he came looking for me and told my wife he was awake. I called him and we exchanged goodbyes. I told him I will call him as soon as I reach Liberia. Those were my last words I spoke to him.
BUT I MUST TELL YOU SOMETHING! Something strange I felt, especially when I was on my last journey from Accra to Monrovia, I felt something in my heart—I was sad for not meeting him. THIS WAS EXACTLY the time he committed suicide. That pain I still feel in my heart. It does not let me go.
Thank you for patiently reading my story everyone. You must read my lens on Squidoo about Moody’s writings (see link below).
Tahir with his family today. Son Bilal in orange t-shirt, wife Tallat,
daughter Mariam with her children Eimaan and Mustafa April 2011.
Missing in the picture is elder son Ali who is studying in Australia
Tahir posted a poem Moody wrote to his brother Bilal in 2005.
Bilal later, in 2009, wrote his first two poems
in honor of his brother’s memory.
* * *
I know that Tahir is anxiously awaiting your responses to his interview, please leave him a message, comment or question below, he would love to hear from you!
You might also like:
Interviewing Mama Bear
Meet San—Daughter with Bipolar Disorder
Posted by Mama Bear at 9:41 PM
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Labels: interview, suicide
HeatherJuly 8, 2012 at 10:02 PM
Thanks so much for sharing your story. I’m glad that you are reaching out across cultural boundaries and beyond the stigma of talking about mental illness to share what your family and your son Moody went through. I’m so sorry that you had to lose him to this illness. My prayers are with you.
TahirJuly 10, 2012 at 2:20 AM
Heather, Thank you for your comments, which are highly appreciated.
Jess MJuly 9, 2012 at 5:47 AM
Thank you for sharing your story. I’m terribly sorry for your loss. It is clear by your words alone how much you love your children. They are very lucky to have you.
KimJuly 9, 2012 at 9:41 AM
Thank you for sharing your story. My father has bipolar disorder, so I have experienced growing up with a parent with mental illness, but not a child. I have 2 sons and sometimes worry that they may have bipolar, as I know it often does not become apparent until a person is in his/her 20s.
I was brought to tears by your story and so appreciate your openness, especially since there is still such a stigma about mental illness in your culture. I know when my father began showing symptoms, in the mid 1970s, there was much more stigma here in the US than there is now, and that made it even more difficult for my parents to get the support they needed.
Thank you again. I’m certain your story will help others.
TahirJuly 10, 2012 at 2:22 AM
Kim, Thank you very much. I hope in you your father has a strong support beside him. Such is life and it goes on.
MegJuly 9, 2012 at 10:12 AM
What a tough story. I am so sorry for your loss and for your son’s struggle with his mind. Thanks for sharing.
AnonymousJuly 9, 2012 at 10:34 AM
As a parent of child with BP illness I am grateful for your story and your generosity in sharing it. Everytime a story is told and we realize that this affects people form all cultures, social and economics standings, race, creed, sex, it chips away at the stigma and every chip gets us closer to acceptance and understanding.
Thank you for your unselfishness and honesty!
AnonymousJuly 9, 2012 at 8:30 PM
Thank you, Tahir and family, for sharing your story. My deepest condolences to your family for losing your precious son to this illness. So many of us are going through the same thing with our loved ones. God bless you.
AnonymousJuly 9, 2012 at 9:01 PM
Thank you for sharing such a difficult story, yet I feel so honored to have read it and to learn about your amazing son, Moody. I am so sorry for all the pain you have suffered, but please know that you have encouraged me to be a better parent to my young daughter who is struggling with possible bi-polar illness. I will take nothing for granted, as you said, and I will continue to learn from her and grow with her. What our children struggle with makes then the bravest people in the world. You are a tremendous father and I am honored to know your story. Despite all the miles that separate us and the cultural differences, we can understand that watching your child suffer is horrible. We embrace you and understand. Thank you!
TahirJuly 10, 2012 at 2:25 AM
Cathy thank you for your kind words. My prayers are for your daughter and whole family.
ShariJuly 10, 2012 at 2:05 AM
Thank you for sharing such a moving story. I am so sorry for the loss of your son, Moody! You are not alone in the pain you are suffering.
I have Bipolar Disorder and my nine-year old son also has Bipolar Disorder. He is getting as much help as possible for being a child and he is struggling but doing better. I am stable and doing good with the illness.
I am honored to have read your story and I appreciate your openness and honesty. I have often wondered how other cultures deal with mental illnesses. I would love to try and learn about others from different cultures so we can support one another.
TahirJuly 10, 2012 at 12:01 PM
I have all my prayers for you and your son. I am sure you will keep solid and face everything. Resolve is important. The best thing all the cultures have in common are human feelings, they transcend caste, colour, creed and religion. Thank you for your comments and thank you Mama Bear
AnonymousJuly 10, 2012 at 9:12 AM
Hello, Mama Bear! Someday I will figure out how to reset my account and write on your wall. Until then, I appreciate you taking e-mails!
Please let Tahir know I appreciate him sharing his story. The signs of depression are there, with my oldest son. (He is 12.) After reading about Tahir’s family and their son Moody, I will take nothing for granted. He reminded me to really listen, to my son, and act on what I hear. Too often, I give him a hug and brush those feelings aside, thinking all will be O.K. My son internalizes his feelings. By the time I realize something might be wrong, he is depressed.
Sometimes, I need to be reminded to check in with him and to always listen, really listen and share with him how to handle his emotions. Tahir sharing his story has already made a difference. Thank you, Mama Bear, for giving him this outlet.
TahirJuly 10, 2012 at 11:58 AM
I have no words to express myself when I read all these comments. I may not be replying to every one but I can see there are so many all over and every person who writes anything has already started to make difference to their lives and those near and dear to them. These are not ordinary situations and we must act well above the ordinary. Thank you Mama bEar you will be rewarded both here and hereafter, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind. I will copy and past my feelings on a couple of more comments.
EJuly 10, 2012 at 4:56 PM
Thanks you for sharing, Tahir-the love of our children who suffer binds us all. I have learned from you and your experience and will pray for you and your family.
Majid EhsanJuly 11, 2012 at 4:49 AM
Thanks for sharing your story so candidly and truthfully. May Almighty Allah grant you and your entire family patience and fortitude to withstand this shock (ameen). I can understand how difficult it would have had been for you to speak about such a tragic and extremely private issue just for others to learn. I can also understand how challenging it would have been for you to select the words best suited to express your inner feelings. But sir, the type and level of assistance and guidance you have provided to parents of teen aged children like me through this story is unparalleled indeed.
Thanks a lot. May Allah bless you for this good deed.
TahirJuly 11, 2012 at 12:00 PM
Thank you so much Majid. You should visit when you are in Islamabad we will chat old times.
AnonymousJuly 11, 2012 at 6:05 PM
Tahir, thank you so much for sharing your story. I can’t imagine the courage it took for you to tell it. My son has borderline autism and anxiety. It is a struggle every day. I am moved by what you have learned and are willing to share with us..despite a culture that is not open to these things. Your wife’s words in particular struck me very hard, ” We must listen to our children.” I will remember those words and your story.
Please know, that Moody has renewed my commitment to my son. I get so tired some times. I feel the pressure of time. My son in 10. I want him to be a resilient adult. But, I must listen to him more often…as your wife said. Moody is helping me now help my son and every time I look at my son, I will think of Moody and how precious they all are. I will also remember that no matter how much we love them…sometimes we cannot save them.
May you find some peace. With deepest gratitude to you and your family.
AnonymousJuly 11, 2012 at 6:10 PM
Dear Tahir, I just wrote you about my 10 year old above ..I forgot to add how much I enjoyed the pictures of you family. You’re grandchildren are beautiful. Thank you and your family for allowing us to learn and grow from all of you.
TahirJuly 12, 2012 at 10:55 AM
Thank you so much. When I read comments from people such as you and others I feel satisfied and in a way happy that because of Moody there is change parents have realised. What else do I want. Thank you gain and my best wishes for your son.
MareJuly 12, 2012 at 2:47 PM
Since the first time we communicated online and you told me about Moody, and I read his suicide note, I wept terribly. I still keep all of you in my prayers, and I know that your stories will be a blessing to many many others.
TahirJuly 13, 2012 at 2:08 AM
Thank you Mare and I would like here to your courage and fortitude, you are one strong woman who has borne so much and done so much for your kids your husband and also your own problems of eye. Thank you and my prayers for you
Brig Jehanzeb Raja (Retd), Pakistan ArmyJuly 12, 2012 at 11:09 PM
I know Tahir for 41 years now. We were cadets in PMA together, he the tallest, me the shortest in the platoon. The bond of friendship never left us, we met each other’s families, children on all occasions when visiting our home town in Rawalpindi.There is still a very strong bond between us, warm at heart, and ever reaching.
In between the rush of profession, race to promotion, personal committments we tend to ignore our children and fail to see their inner desires and hopes. I think most military fathers go through this in their lives, but very few see the devastation of the loss of a son, like Tahir has gone through.
I know that beneath the veneer of determination, faith and a stoic poise towards the world to put up a brave face, Tahir has a very warm and generous heart, he is open and forgiving, a very good father who only wanted the best for his children. For this to happen to him, is an irony indeed, but such are the impacts of fate, destiny and life.I will always remain your friend, no matter what, and pray that Allah in his mercy will give you the strength to carry on and be proud of what you have done.
TahirJuly 13, 2012 at 1:40 AM
My friend Jingo, these words coming from you speak volumes and I will cherish them like always with bottom of my heart. As you can see from the comments above we have all have our joys and sadness to keep and share but when you can make some difference with words they are very powerful medium and medicine. Thank you once again my friend; my prayers and blessings to you and your family.
AnonymousJuly 13, 2012 at 10:14 AM
Both my boys and their dad have Bi Polar. To this day their lives have been extremely difficult. For me it was very painful and I don’t like to look back because they have come such a very long way. All are on medications. But I will help others if they want. I don’t mine sharing.
AnonymousJuly 13, 2012 at 10:15 AM
I just finished reading your story, thank you so much for having shared it with me!
I feel truthfully grateful and honored because it has given me a deeper insight about what all what you went through… I am really moved because it happened when we were in Liberia and I was not aware of anything when we met! I thought it happened long a go, but it was so recent!
I must say, i admire your strength during that time…
Again thank you for sharing, truly moving…
Enjoy your grandchildren, laugh as much as you can, and all the best for you and your family
Jessica BAugust 22, 2012 at 9:42 AM
I pray for peace for you and your family. You are not alone. Although all of our stories are slightly different,they all contain much heartache and contain a lot of common themes. Your story can help many people and I appreciate how open you are with it.
I can relate to your pain. I too have a son with a mood disorder. He is almost 17 and we have been through a lot since the age of 3. We have two other boys that are “dealing” with this situation. My husband was also diagnosed with bipolar about 10 years ago. On top of that my father attempted to commit suicide 12 years ago. He has struggled with depression since my parent’s divorce. To make things even more complicated, I began having grand mal seizures about 8 years ago and extreme stress tends to trigger them.
To help cope with all the negative, I try not to dwell in the past, but focus on the positive moments in a day. Even if it’s a simple as walking outside and feeling a breeze across my cheek and taking a breath. It isn’t always that easy, but each moment is a gift.
Love your family, their quirks, their smiles, and their presence good or bad.
Know you are not alone…there are others out there that feel your pain and know their is always hope. I pray peace overcome you and your family! Love one another every day!
kanwalkhanMarch 12, 2014 at 2:40 PM
I literally have tears in my eyes after reading this.I am a psychology student and just taught mood disorders. It is highly genetic as well so it needs to be kept an eyes upon. I want to do something good for mental health of mankind. You are very right in saying that psychology or psychiatry studies are a taboo in our society and we need to change it up. may Allah give you and your family patience. you people are really strong and courageous. Remember In prayers Uncle.
AnonymousDecember 5, 2014 at 3:12 PM
dear tahir sir,
i am a med doctor and came across this blog. i am shattered to hear the story. sir u were our Chairman board of Governors of cck when you were commanding a division in kohat . may Allah bless u. please if u have any e mail id do share it with me would like to talk to you
DR abdul M Bangash
2. “In our village, folks say God crumbles up the old moon into stars.”
—Alexander Solzhenitsyn, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
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3. “She wasn’t doing a thing that I could see, except standing there leaning on the balcony railing, holding the universe together.”
—J. D. Salinger, “A Girl I Knew”
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4. “I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart; I am, I am, I am.”
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6. “Beauty is an enormous, unmerited gift given randomly, stupidly.”
—Khaled Hosseini, And the Mountains Echoed
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7. “Sometimes I can feel my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living.”
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11. “The curves of your lips rewrite history.”
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12. “A dream, all a dream, that ends in nothing, and leaves the sleeper where he lay down, but I wish you to know that you inspired it.”
—Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities
14. “As Estha stirred the thick jam he thought Two Thoughts and the Two Thoughts he thought were these: a) Anything can happen to anyone. and b) It is best to be prepared.”
—Arundhati Roy, The God of Small Things
Suggested by Alyssa P., via Facebook
15. “If equal affection cannot be, let the more loving one be me.”
—W. H. Auden, “The More Loving One”
Suggested by Blake M., via Facebook
16. “And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.”
—John Steinbeck, East of Eden
18. “There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
—William Shakespeare, Hamlet
Suggested by Emily F., via Facebook
19. “America, I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing.”
—Allen Ginsburg, “America”
Suggested by Jimmy C., via Facebook
20. “It might be that to surrender to happiness was to accept defeat, but it was a defeat better than many victories.”
—W. Somerset Maugham, Of Human Bondage
22. “At the still point, there the dance is.”
—T. S. Eliot, “Four Quartets”
Suggested by vkanicka
23. “Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering.”
—Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
Suggested by Sam H., via Facebook
24. “In spite of everything, I still believe people are really good at heart.”
—Anne Frank, The Diary of Anne Frank
26. “The pieces I am, she gather them and gave them back to me in all the right order.”
—Toni Morrison, Beloved
Suggested by lisah4b5176fb6
27. “How wild it was, to let it be.”
—Cheryl Strayed, Wild
Suggested by Natalie P., via Facebook
28. “Do I dare / Disturb the universe?”
—T. S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”
30. “She was lost in her longing to understand.”
—Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Love in the Time of Cholera
Suggested by melibellel
31. “She was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world.”
—Kate Chopin, “The Awakening”
Suggested by Madeline M., via Facebook
32. “We cross our bridges as we come to them and burn them behind us, with nothing to show for our progress except a memory of the smell of smoke, and the presumption that once our eyes watered.”
—Tom Stoppard, Rosencratz and Guildenstern Are Dead
34. “The half life of love is forever.”
—Junot Diaz, This Is How You Lose Her
Suggested by xxx
35. “I celebrate myself, and sing myself.”
—Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
Suggested by Alyssa M., via Facebook
36. “There are darknesses in life and there are lights, and you are one of the lights, the light of all lights.”
—Bram Stroker, Dracula
37. “Tomorrow is always fresh, with no mistakes in it yet.”
—L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
Suggested by Stacy W., via Facebook
38. “I could hear the human noise we sat there making, not one of us moving, not even when the room went dark.”
—Raymond Carver, “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love”
Suggested by Savey S., via Facebook
39. “I would always rather be happy than dignified.”
—Charlotte Brontë , Jane Eyre
41. “I have spread my dreams under your feet; / Tread softly because you tread on my dreams”
—W. B. Yeats, “Aedh Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven”
Suggested by niamhmdd
42. “It frightened him to think what must have gone to the making of her eyes.”
—Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence
Suggested by uncnicole
43. “For poems are like rainbows; they escape you quickly.”
—Langston Hughes, The Big Sea
45. “I wondered if that was how forgiveness budded; not with the fanfare of epiphany, but with pain gathering its things, packing up, and slipping away unannounced in the middle of the night.”
—Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner
Suggested by Maria K., via Facebook
46. “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”
–F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Suggested by carlyh3
47. “Journeys end in lovers meeting.”
—William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night
49. “It does not do well to dwell on dreams and forget to live, remember that.”
—J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Suggested by Tatiana H., via Facebook
50. “Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt.”
—Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five
Suggested by Sara S., via Facebook
51. “One must be careful of books, and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.”
—Cassandra Clare, The Infernal Devices