Desi in DC

April 24, 2017

Road trip season

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcdesi @ 2:39 am

Summer’s round the bend. It’s time to start planning road trips in North America.

 

My favourite ones have been

1)Montreal to PEI and Nova Scotia in Canada ( you should only attempt this in the summer, to make good use of the beautiful Canadian summer) ( 13-15 hours)

2) Palm Beach Fl to the Florida Keys ( definitely prefer doing this in the winters when the rest of North America is too cold)

3) Charlottesville to Savannah Georgia via Charleston ( though I’d rather do this in the spring and fall)

4) Montreal or Boston to Bar Harbour, Maine ( 6 to 8 hours)

5) Northern Virginia to Chincoteague Island ( 5 hours)

6) Northern Virginia to Toronto or back ( 8 to 10 hours)

7) Toronto to Tobermory (4 to 5 hours)

8) Boston to Vermont or Montreal to New Hampshire and Vermont (btw 3 to 5 hours) ( I prefer doing this trip in the fall when the foliage is in its best colours)

I know I should write the ones on the west coast, unfortunately the last time we attempted it, had to cancel it at the last minute.

We have covered the East Coast from Nova Scotia in Canada all the way down to the Florida Keys in the US.  We have done these road-trips with kids, we have done them without kids, we have done them after a month worth of planning and again within just 2 days of planning. We have done the road trips with all the stops identified, we have done the road trips picking hotels at 10 pm at night.

so all in all… been there done that..

ping us some of your favourite road trips.

 

Back to square one

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcdesi @ 1:22 am

After travelling and moving.. and then moving some more.. I kept finding the name of the blog too restrictive.. but then I realized it allowed me to write about my travel, my desiness or politics and what else could one want.. so happy reading.. will be a lot more regular now then I have been in the past.

 

April 15, 2017

Mardan and the death of forgiveness and education

And we call ourselves Muslims? When did it become ok to lynch mob and kill a student or anyone for that matter? What happened to if you save a life you save all of humanity and if you kill a person it’s like you killed all of humanity?

What worries me and concerns me is that the mob killing of Mashal Khan happened in Abdul Wali Khan University. Three to four thousand university “students” were apparently involved as part of the mob. University students means they have received at least a high school education most likely even a bachelors before gaining admission to the university. In Urdu students are called Talib-e-ilm ie “seekers of knowledge”.  An education is meant to open your hearts and minds, it allows you to ask questions rather than just believing in rumours. This act highlights the problem of our education system were rote learning is rampant and rote learning is rewarded over actual understanding. Are we removing the capacity of our youth to think and ask questions so that they can no longer question authority and like robots believe anything that is said to them? Are we not required to use our brains to seek out answers?

We also seem to have lost the message of forgiveness. First of all there was no conclusive proof of what this young student had done, there were only rumours. In fact media sources report that Mashal was an active and vocal voice on the campus and someone had recently created a fake social media account in his name. Even if, for arguments sake, we assume he was guilty of blasphemy (for which there is no proof) what happened to forgiveness. We didn’t even give him a chance to defend himself.

The Quran says

“Keep to forgiveness and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant” (Surah 7, Verse199).

And again

“”If you take retribution, then do so in proportion to the wrong done to you. But if you can bear such conduct with patience, indeed that is best for the steadfast.” Surah 16, verse number 126[1]

Blasphemy is an act best left for God to judge. We as humans and Muslims must not judge these actions especially since the Quran does not prescribe a punishment for it in this world[2]. Instead, we must persevere patiently and with forgiveness as prescribed in the Quran, and exemplified by the Prophet.

For all those involved in the mob, I wonder how they plan on answering to God when the question arises who were they to judge whose live should or should not be taken

 

[1] This translation has been taken from Zafar Ansari’s English Translation of Mawdudi’s Translation of the Quran in order to have an easier understanding of this verse.

[2] Kamali, Mohammad Hashim, Freedom of Expression in Islam

 

 

 

 

 

 

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