Planning For Success!

ASAD was feeling proud as he showed his test copies to his parents. He had scored the highest marks in all the tests during the first monthly tests of the new academic session.

The teachers’ remarks were encouraging and he wore a confident look on his face, totally opposite to the crestfallen one when he had got his last annual report card. Being one of the best in his class in mathematics, his annual result was a big disappointment for him and his parents.

Asad was one of those students who are not deterred by failure. He was inspired by the famous quote of Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.” Instead of losing confidence, he sat down to list the reasons why he had failed to achieve the grades which were so usual for him. He realised that his overconfidence had let him down as he had not worked hard enough for the mathematics exam.

After the paper, he had hurriedly submitted his answer copy, instead of rechecking it carefully. And most of his marks had been deducted because of careless mistakes. After carefully assessing the reasons for his poor performance, he resolved to make his failure the recipe for future success and this set him on the right path!

Often in our school life, we have to face such disappointments. These are the years when we are preparing ourselves for the future. A positive approach makes a drastic difference in what our personality and career will be once we finish education. The manner in which we react to failures and chalk out our future plans to overcome them, prove to be stepping stones which lead us to a successful practical life we have to enter after our student years are over.

Friends, failure does not mean that we cannot succeed at all. Often we have to accept failure as a challenge and make it a recipe for success.

Here are some tips which may help you to attain your goals and lead you to the road to success.

A positive approach

Instead of losing confidence and giving up if you cannot achieve the grades you had set your heart upon, try to ponder upon the reasons of your failure. Resolve to overcome these shortcomings. Hard work, patience and a positive frame of mind almost always lead to the road to success. There may be difficulties in the beginning but with endurance and dedication, they will ease out with time.

Practice for perfection

At times you may feel that you know everything that has been taught in class. Even then, do not stop revising. Soon you will realize that there are some fields in which you can improve your grades. Practice your math exercises daily. For other subjects, writing down answers to questions you think you have learnt, will make you identify and overcome the small mistakes that you make.

Seek help when needed

Never hesitate to seek help if you feel you require it. In school, if you do not understand a lesson your teacher is explaining; do not feel shy to speak out! If something is not clear to you, you must know that it is your right to request your teacher to clarify it again! And if some of you are slower than your peers in picking up a new lesson, you should not feel ashamed about it. Often teachers give extra time to such students after school or during recess, so that the rest of the class does not slow down. If the problem persists, you can discuss with your parents, your siblings or get a tutor to help you out.

Set a timetable

Always make a timetable in which you expect yourself to finish a certain lesson. This will keep you more organised in doing your homework and preparing for your tests. And be sure to follow the routine you have set for yourself.

But the rule is to plan practically and not to be too harsh on yourself. A timetable which you can follow steadily will always bring better results.

Aim high!

Set goals for yourself and keep on moving towards them with dedication and hard work. If at times you cannot attain a goal within the time you gave yourself to achieve it, do not be disheartened. Be realistic in your approach. Maybe you are pushing yourself too hard. Readjust your priorities and try to find out where and how you went wrong.

Long hours of study after school will slow you down after some days because we all need some time to relax! Once you are back from school, be sure to create a good balance between work, play and rest.

Friends, there are times in life when we come across new opportunities and options. Our attitude towards success and failure determines whether we will take these opportunities or cringe away from them. The fear of failing often hampers our journey on the road to success, and unless we realise that when we resolve firmly and plunge into something with determination, no amount of failures will keep us away from attaining our goal.

To achieve success, you have to keep in mind the prospect of failure. Even if you fail in the beginning, you will learn more about your strengths and talents, in this way be better prepared for the next challenge.

It is very important that you create a balance between overconfidence and doubts! Knowing your strong points and working on your weaknesses, plus a firm belief that you can overcome your shortcomings, will go a far way to lead you towards success in life!

In the end I would like to quote the American author, H. Stanley Judd when he so wisely says, “Don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t waste energy trying to cover up failure. Learn from your failures and go on to the next challenge. It’s okay to fail. If you’re not failing, you’re not growing!”

زیست کی بساط

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زیست کی بساط پر کھاتے رہے یوں مات ہم
کہ دنیا والوں کی طرح جینا ہمیں نہ آئیگا

کس کو ہماری چاہ ہے کس کو دکھائیں ناز ہم
جو روٹھ جائیں ہم کبھی کون ہمیں منائیگا

کس کو بتائوں میں یہاں کہ دل پہ کتنے زخم ہیں
ہے کون چاہ گر مرا، کون مرھم لگایئگا

راہِ وفا کیسی عجب، راہی بھی ہم، راہبر بھی ہم
بھٹک گئے جو ہم کبھی،صحیح راہ کون دکھائیگا 

مرنے کے بعد جو مرے، ذکرچھڑ گیا مرا
مرا خیال دل پہ ترے اک بوجھ سا بن جائیگا

انکہی سی اک بات جو سننے کو منتظر ہوں میں 
گزر گیا جو وقت یہ، پھر لوٹ کر نہ آیئگا

AND THEN THERE WERE NONE!

3-10-2015…….I posted this blog two years back, hence readres may note a difference in the days mentioned. I still feel the lessons of Eid ul Azha should be re learnt, not only by children but also by grown ups like me!

My house is strangely quiet for the last two or three days! In fact, the street I live on has also lost its extra ordinary hustle and bustle. The happy kids, enjoying the glorious days before Eid ul Azha, are no more to be seen as they are back to their school and home work regimes.

The city was bustling with activity till last Tuesday! Cows and goats were the most sought out living beings treading the earth in our part of the world. Discussions revolved around them, prices and sizes being the most important issues! Mothers had thrown caution to the wind as children came and went out of their homes without any restrictions. Gates which are usually kept tightly closed due to the uncertain conditions in the city were left open, as the kids had to dash in and out at their whims. Sometimes they needed to feed the animals, and at others they just hopped in for a quick snack which most mothers kept handy, as they knew how hard pressed for time their little ones were!

Temporary sheds or tents had been put up in front of various houses to keep the sacrificial animals comfortable and safe from the scorching sun. Goats could be seen strolling around with the kids who also enacted an occasional race, while the cows were usually taken for a walk after the men came back from their workplaces. The bleating of the goats, the mooing of the cows, together with the tinkling of the bells round their necks and the happy laughter and shouts of the kids sounded like music to the ear.

Wednesday being the first day of the three sacrificial days, a major part of the animals were slaughterd as the kids could be seen looking a bit sad, but trying to hide their depression in the Eid merriments and feasting. The second day saw majority of the animals gone, with only one or two goats left in a few houses to be slaughtered on the third day. And finally on Friday all signs of these animals that remained were the adornments and pieces of ropes lying outside houses.

In the three hectic days, meat was distributed amongst the needy, stored in freezers by the home makers and barbecues held or planned by the kabab lovers. Majority of the people were busy in Eid get togethers, lunches, dinners and social visits which are all part of this big Muslim festival.

But now that Eid and all the activities and the excitement related to it is finally over, the street seems quieter than usual! Though the kids still seem to be gripped with the memories of their beloved animals, they have to be pulled back to their normal routines. Mothers are busy arranging and re arranging freezers and always in search for new recipes for the sacrificial meat they have saved! The makeshift comfort zones for the cows and goats have disappeared and on the whole life seems to move back to normal again.

But in all these hectic activities, how many of us remembered to tell our children the true reason behind the sacrifice of these animals? The lessons of obedience, sacrifice and total submission to the will of Allah have to be learned and re learned every year, and as parents it is our duty to teach our young generation about the true spirit of  Eid ul Azha!

The story of Hazrat Ibrahim A.S and Hazrat Ismail, the son who was granted to him in quite an old age, should prove to be an inspiration in obedience for our youngsters. Allah liked the act of total submission to His will by His prophet so much that He made it obligatory for all affluent Muslims to sacrifice animals in His name on that day every year.

Then, when the son reached the age of serious work with him, he said: “O my son! I see in vision that I offer you in sacrifice: now say what is your view!” The son said “O my father! Do as you are commanded: you will find me , if Allah so wills, one practicing patience and consistency!”

So when they had both submitted their wills to Allah, and he laid him prostrate on his forehead for sacrifice, We called out to him “O Ibrahim! You have already fulfilled the vision!” thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For this was obviously a trial, and We ransomed him with a momentous sacrifice: And We left this blessing for him among generations to come in later times.

Sura As-Saffat 102-108

EID UL AZHA… A YEARLY REMINDER

(This article was published in Young World today. But I feel that the grown ups need these lessons more than the children do!)

ONCE upon a time, long long ago, there lived an old man whose wife was also quite old. They did not have any children, but never gave up faith and kept praying to Allah for a child. It was quite late in life when their prayers were answered and they were blessed with a son. But the Almighty, who keeps on showering His bounties on us, can also take them back when He wishes to do so!

One day, the old man had a dream in which he was asked to sacrifice his young and most cherished son. As the saying goes, ‘Like father, like son!’, when he mentioned this dream to his son, the young lad was all willing to lay down his life to fulfil Allah’s command. But our most Merciful Creator was only testing the obedience of the old man — a test which he passed with flying colours! As he was about to sacrifice his beloved son, an angel arrived and replaced the little boy with a ram.

Friends, this is the true story of the prophet Hazrat Ibrahim A.S and his son Ismail A.S. Allah was so pleased with their obedience and willingness to sacrifice just to fulfil His command, that Allah has made it obligatory for all affluent Muslims to sacrifice animals in His name on the Eid-ul-Azha.

This second major Islamic festival is just round the corner. Soon we will see that the city has taken a festive mood, which both children and older ones will heartily enjoy. Children, especially boys, will be after their fathers, requesting them to take them to animal markets to purchase an animal of their choice. Those who will get their sacrificial animals earlier than their neighbouring friends will wear a triumphant look, as they will proudly display their prized possession for all to see!

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During these days, temporary tents are usually put up on roadsides and alleys, as most houses do not have enough space to keep the animals inside. Cows, goats, sheep and an occasional camel will be pampered with all kinds of fodder goodies. Stalls selling food for animals and all kinds of adornments (which the kids proudly call jewellery for their prized animals) will spring up in every nook and corner of the city.

Children will be seen comparing the size and rates of the animals with each other, and the question, “How much did yours cost?” is perhaps the most widely asked one these days. Those who would have bought expensive animals will have a proud look on their faces, while the others will appear a bit apologetic because theirs would be less expensive.

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Goat and cow races are common, and we hear happy shouts as children enjoy conducting them on a daily basis! But there are times when the goat, sheep or even cow, proves stronger than the child. A furore is then created as desperate children frantically try to control the runaway animal, and usually have to seek the help of an older passer-by!

The enjoyment continues until the Eid Day, but on the night before Eid, reality starts setting in! Everyone finally realises that their love affair with the sacrificial animal is about to be over! And when the butcher arrives, some of us move away from the place where the animals would be slaughtered. Some soft-hearted even break down in tears. But soon this depression is over as they have to help out in distributing and storing the meat. When mummy lays down the table with tempting dishes prepared with the sacrificial meat, they eat their favourite dishes to their heart’s delight.

But friends, is this all there is to Eid-ul-Azha? Amongst the merriment and enjoying don’t we forget the real message of this big day? This festival teaches us the lesson of obedience. It reminds us that we should bow to the Will of Allah, under all circumstances and without questioning! It also teaches us about sharing our bounties with people who are not as blessed as we are!

Every year at Eid-ul-Azha, I come across people who so sadly declare, “This is the only time of the year when we get to eat meat! With the rising cost of living, we can hardly afford three meals a day, so buying meat is totally beyond our means.”

Eid-ul-Azha comes each year to give us lessons of sacrifice, obedience, discipline and sharing our blessings. But I feel sad to say that over the years we have forgotten the true spirit of this great Muslim festival. Our superficial values have changed it into an occasion to show off our riches and enter into a race of who can buy the largest number of animals and the most expensive one. In addition to celebrating, enjoying and feasting this Eid, let’s vow this year to make this festival a reminder of its true essence!

 

 
 

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DHOKA!

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Aaj ghar jo aaye ho ae dost

Chup chup se yoon kyun bethe ho?

Kuch poochna chahte ho jaise

Aankhon mein kyun hai uljhan si

Kuch poochna chahti hon jaise

Kya khojte ho tum yun har su

Aaj aayo dikhaayum mein khud tum ko

Kya mein ne juma kar rakha hai

Ye dil ke mere tukre hain

Wo kirchi kirchi khwaab mre

Kuch umeedein tooti tooti see

Aur ashkon ki eik mala hai

Wo ashaaon ke hain deep bujhe

Aur yaadon ke bikhre moti hain

Kyun aankh hui purnum teri

Chehra kyun hua ghum se bojhal?

Ye mera qeemti sarmaaya

Jeewan ki kumaai ye meri

Tum ko pasand kya aayi nahin?

Hairat se mujhe kyun takte ho!

Kya khaaya hai dhoka tum ne?

Tum dhoondhne aaye thei khushyaan

Kuch khushkun baatein khushkun lamhe?

Kyun dosh tumhein mein doon ae dost

Dhoka tou mera chehra hai

Rehti hai jis pe jhooti hansi

Dard dil mein chupa ke rakhti hoon

Aaj aayo bataaun mein tum ko

Ye roop kyun mein ne dhaara hai

Hai tabyat meri khuddaar bohat

Hamdardi bheek si lagti hai!

Jab jab ye dunya dukh deti hai

Jab jab mein is pe hansti hoon

Mein bant ti phirti hoon khushyaan

Ghum dil mein chupa ke rakhti hoon

Par dard jab hadd se barh jaata hai

Tou chupke se ro leti hoon!

 

 

 

 

دھوکا

dhoka

 

آج گھرجو آئے ہواے دوست

چپ چپ سےیوں کیوں بیٹھے ہو

کچھ پوچھنا چاہتے ہو جیسے

آنکھوں میں کیوں ہے الجھن سی

کچھ ڈحونڈھ رہی ہوں جیسے!

کیا کھوجتے ہو تم یوں ہر سو؟

کیا پوچھنا چاہتے ہو جیسے

آج آئو بتائوں میں خود تم کو

کیا میں نے جمع کر رکھا ہے

یہ دل کے میرے ٹکرے ہیں

وہ کرچی کرچی خواب مرے

کچھ امیدیں ٹوٹی ٹوٹی سی

اور اشکوں کی یہ اک مالا ہے

وہ آشائوں کے ہیں دیپ بجھے

اور یادوں کے بکھرے موتی ہیں

کیوں آنکھ ہوئی پرنم تیری

چہرہ کیوں ہوا غم سے بوجھل

یہ میرا قیمتی سرمایا

جیون کی کمائی یہ میری

تم کو پسند کیا آئی نہیں؟

حیرت سے مجھے کیوں تکتے ہو!

کیا کھایا ہے دھوکا تم نے؟

تم ڈھونڈنے آئے تھے خوشیاں!

خوش کن باتیں، خوش کن لمحے

کیوں دوش تمہیں میں دوں اے دوست

دھوکا تو میرا چہرہ ہے

رہتی ہے جس پہ جھوٹی ہنسی

درد دل میں چھپا کے رکھتی ہوں

آج آئو بتائوں میں تم کو

یہ روپ کیوں میں نے دھارا ہے؟

ہےطبیعت مری خوددار بہت

ہمدردی بھیک سی لگتی ہے

جب جب دنیا دکھ دیتی ہے

جب جب میں اس پہ ہنستی ہوں

میں بانٹتی پھرتی ہوں خوشیاں

غم دل میں چھپا کے رکھتی ہوں

پردردجب حد سے بڑھ جاتا ہے

تو چپکے سے رو لیتی ہوں!