Ok, so here’s this man, you probably have heard of him. He was an American politician. He:
failed at business at the ripe age of twenty one.
ran for politics and was defeated, at the still-ripe age of twenty two.
tried and failed again at business at the age of twenty four.
had a nervous breakdown at age twenty seven.
ran again for politics when he was 34. Lost.
lost again at age 36.
lost again at age 45!
ran for the office of the vice-president at the age of 47. Failed again.
Lost a race for a seat in the senate, at the age of 49.
Was elected president of the United States at the age of 52.
That’s Abraham Lincoln. Imagine him giving up at about the age of 36?
Do not be afraid of failure. In fact, pluck the word ‘failure’ right out of your dictionary. There is no failure, only results. What does this mean? It means that if you are overweight, you did not fail at being healthy, you just got a result of obesity by doing a certain set of actions.
Do not look at your outcomes in terms of successes and failures, but as wanted and unwanted results.
Thomas Edison, the inventor of rap (and the light bulb too), famously failed 9,999 times at perfecting the electric light bulb. When asked if he is willing to fail a 10,000th time, he simply answered, “I didn’t fail. I just discovered another way not to invent the electric light bulb”. He probably rhymed it while his assistance beat boxed in the background, but you know how stories go, distorted over time and all…
The Weekly Wrap
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A post on Context hopefully shows just how important our surroundings are.
The article on The Five Lies Of Success was written after some considerable research. From the lie of ‘knowing everything’ to the lie of ‘information overload’, the article hopes to serve a clear purpose: to get people thinking about success in real, doable, actionable terms.
Internet Marketing 101: Backlinking explained. This is a *ahem* excerpt from the ebook mentioned above.
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As the drama right after Salman Taseer’s murder unfolded on GeoTV here, I tried to explain to Akhtar (the servant watching the TV with me), how this Qadri has tried to punish a supposed blasphemer (as of course, nothing Mr Taseer said could be put within the realm of blasphemy).
I tried to explain to him, in as plain a language as I can muster, that the Prophet PBUH lead his beautiful life by example, by showing compassion where no one thought compassion and patience was possible.
How can someone claiming to be his follower, the follower of the great Prophet PBUH, how can that someone actually take a human life with such callousness? From where does his narrative come from?
Who injects his blood with calm intolerance and volcanic rage on matters like these?
But I already know the answer to this. You know the answer to this. It is what our ‘mullah’ tells us and it is us who listen and nod to whatever he says.
No one tells me what God wants from me!
It will be unfair on my part to calmly accept what one tells me is from God. How can I? I need sources, I need verification, I need semblance of rationale, I need coherence; I need all that to qualify anything into the wonderful world of Faith.
How can a mullah, or my Mother, or Father or Brother tell me how it is? When it comes to matters of God and His Godliness, there is none but Him.
It is quite a sorry situation to be in, when all you’ve got to do is think about thinking.
Thinking about God, because He just has to be there. It makes more sense that way. If you still fall for the elitist ‘religion is opium for the masses’ crap, then that’s your ego getting in your way. Ego has a habit of doing that. But then that gets me thinking about us, us as in you and me and this country and this world. OK rewind back a bit, let’s stick with the country bit for a while.
I’ve been thinking about our country and agendas, to be more precise. Consider:
There has been a recent unceremoniousexit of the much famed Mr. Zaid Hamid from the public conscious, although it may be temporary. Quite a personality, this Mr. Hamid. He is a complete study in the art of public speaking, much like Dr Israr Ahmad is. Both are great public speakers, with a great stage presence and both say things that rile up a crowd, get their emotions pumping like a Ford Mustang on heat and then what? What’s their agenda? Knowing the agenda is essential for sanity to prevail and you to decide either to listen to someone or not. Dr Israr wants you to join his political non-political party, that his agenda. Sorry, not for me. And Mr Zaid Hamid wants to make you angry. But that’s pretty much all that Mr Zaid Hamid and Dr Israr has in common. While Dr Israr, although insisting that we should either join his party or make our own, tells us to go back to the sources of the Quran and Hadith, Mr Zaid Hamid tell us to be angry at India, Israel, Zionists bastards and the USA. Bastards all of them, I am sure. I fear a lot of people, including Mr Zaid Hamid, uses language a bit too loosely. When you say that ‘Jews are the enemy,’ then you mean that Jews are the enemy, not ‘only those Jews that subscribe to the Zionist school of thought’. I understand where you are coming from, Mr Hamid, but language is a powerful tool and you of all the people, know it.
It is the hatred that gets to be preached, day in day out, that rots the society at its core. I hate them because I have been told they want to kill my family. I do not bother to ‘verify’, I do not bother to ‘go to the sources’, finding it intellectually easy to just ‘listen to the guy on the TV’. That is pretty much human nature right there, this intellectual laziness. That is why we have teachers in all facets of life and at all stages of a human knowledge. But without verifying from the sources, you are not being a good student. If you do not have the patience and tenacity to keep your beak shut till you have verified from the root, then you probably still need to learn how to learn. It is pure injustice to not only yourself, but everyone around you, to be considered learned if you have missed out on the first thing of learning i.e. to be shut up and work (mostly to verify).
Speaking of injustices, then there is a problem of justice. Not the chief justice, but justice in general. It is my understanding that all hell that is upon Pakistan, all the hours spent in darkness, all the times shivering starting at cold heaters, all the shivers down your spine because this bomb was way closer to your house than the one a few days ago, all of this and the drones, the mega corruption, the presidents and the law ministers and more, all these problems can be tracked back to the inability of our powers-to-be to provide justice. Plain and simple, that’s the truth. But justice do get delivered, but only late and for the wrong reasons. Consider the case of Mr Zaid Hamid again. I have had a problem with Mr Hamid’s monologues for quite some time, purely because it is my belief that we as a nation do not need emotional tirades, we need a zen-like approach to problems, much like what Javed Ghamidi and his cool-as-a-cucumber-on-ice-in-a-freezer-in-the-Antartic methods. I see Mr Zaid Hamid as a great debater but only on the wrong side of the motion, if you’ve ever been into speeches and debates. That was and is my only problem with Zaid Hamid sahib and that is that I do not know his agenda. He first does what I don’t think is right, get people all emotional using some wrong notions – wrong because I verified them. But that is not the reason Zaid Hamid sahib gets so much heat from the ‘free media’ i.e. bloggers and channels with half a brain and a dictionary. What is the ‘problem’ that most people quote about Zaid Hamid? That Zaid Hamid was a ‘khalifah’ for the false prophet Yusuf Kazzab. After watching a very concise rebuttal by Mr Zaid Hamid himself, I was aptly convinced that the case of Mr Yusuf Ali was nothing but that of justice mangled and skewered on the fires of corruption and plain ol’ greed (those interested, search for Yusuf Ali and Zaid Hamid on YouTube). As things stand now, I had no knowledge of the case of Yusuf Ali, nor of Zaid Hamid’s connections with him, but only what I have read on blogs here and there. Then I see Mr Hamid quoting judgments and articles. To me now, it seems that the case built up against Yusuf Ali, and hence against Zaid Hamid for supporting a false prophet, is pretty much hogwash. I can, of course, be wrong in this assumption as well. So what of all the people trying to tell you that ‘do not listen to Zaid Hamid, he is a supporter of a false prophet”? The moment one finds out that the allegations against Yusuf Ali were false, your case against Zaid Hamid crumbles with it. Because given the dire nature of the accusation, you have used the association of Zaid Hamid with a false prophet to your advantage, not even bothering to research the truth. The moment you do that, you realize that there is no case. But the damage has already been done, and now all your other points, that may or may not hold water, are not considered by anyone, because you built your case on a false, ill-researched proposition. It’s like bringing down Capone on charges of tax evasion, although they really wanted him for all the murders and smuggling the guy had allegedly done. If there is no justice in a society, then people use non-just ways of bringing you down, which further goes to prove that the society on the whole in unjust. The cycle not only continues, but algorithmically intensifies.
Intensity then gets me thinking about solar power. I have been working on solar power for the past few weeks. It is very much a possibility, that much everyone knows so I won’t bore you with that. I will bore you with the fact that it is now somewhat within reach. Consider: you can ‘solarize’ your house, except the Air Conditioner and the Freezer, for less than eight hundred thousand rupees. Anything that has a compressor in it, apart from that, all things run on FREE POWER for 24 hours a day, seven friggin’ days a week. You can now kiss WAPDA and load shedding good bye (more of a shove and slap than a kiss, but figurative speech sucks anyways).
Speaking of kisses and shoves and slaps, wonder what our government is doing about the ‘American’ situation. Obama’s in Af-Pak (wait, it’s still not a place). Will he come here? Will I go to the side of the road to welcome him, like they show in the movies? Ha! They’d close down Pakistan for three days so Obama can zip across the Mall to pay homage to Data Darbar. And Zardari sahib will probably trim his mustaches too this time.
The idea to reduce poverty through self-employment is of course not a new one. You would not be alone to think that a good idea on poverty reduction methods would be a good start. But you’d be wrong. There is no dearth of ideas, and if you can put away your bag of cynicism and sarcasm away for a while, then this availability of ideas is a very good place to start. The problem is the doing bit. There is absence of that ever-illusive political will to really provide sustainable methods of employment, hence poverty reduction.
Now, behold, as I present to you an idea that has already been tested in the field by the likes of Malik Hanif, and have so far seen success and nothing but. Are you beholding? Good, let’s begin.
No, he doesn’t have one. And if he does, he has not been public about it.
Obama set the standards for using the new media in a Political context to its fullest. Facebook account, Youtube account, Twitter account and what have you… everywhere you saw a Obama presence. But that was before he got elected and it was neatly pulled off, this image of ‘newness’ that Obama so dearly held on to. I wonder what would our politicians do online. How many of the Zardaris and the Sharifs would it take to explain to the ‘ruling class’ what an online presence really means.
“No sir, no one called you a Twitter, it is this application … er… it is this website, this page that on which you tell your followers what you are doing. Yes sir, you can have followers. They may or may not vote for you. No sir, the fact that you have followers does not make you a leader.”
I get a kick out of imagining say, Zardari or Nawaz Sharif, updating his twitter status. What would he say and what could he possibly be doing?
Whatever new trend crops up, our politicians are usually the last to know, much like parents. And like parents, they do give a damn about us. This is not unconditional love, like parents, but their love is directly tied to our capability to vote for them. You can’t vote, you don’t get no love baby. Welcome to democracy.