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Continued from Previous……

We know that Corona is far from being over. But we also know it will be over sooner or later InshaAllah. I would conclude this series at 10th part. And start anew with part of today’s post which is already about looking ahead.

It is not based on misplaced optimism; it is rooted in real life which shall go on.

Till today, almost entire world has been enveloped by COVID19. The broad patterns of spread are visible and are being analyzed every day. The morbidity and mortality figures are collected from all over and analyzed for greater understanding. Every life is precious and must be protected and preserved. Fortunately, the morbidity and mortality is lower than some other viral conditions and is encouraging.

Preventive measures have been understood and standardized. People have gained fair understanding about these and are protecting themselves and others. Some deviants are always found in all situations, so is the case here. Protective tools have become available again and are being used.

Our focus is obviously Pakistan where the debate is about the authenticity of number of new cases. There is usual distrust on government figures and apprehensions that low number of testing is showing a smaller number of positive cases. While this sounds logical, it may not be possible to do more testing, given our resources.

Economy of people is in tatters. People have resorted to sitting on the roads with families to seek help from those who can. We can’t say who is genuine and who is not, but come to think of it, even the professional beggars have gone out of business. Fruit vendors on various roads, who were always busy, are standing almost idle. No one wants to stop to buy fruit because right a few feet ahead some people are sitting to get help. It is embarrassing to not give them and rather buy fruit which is not essential commodity. Fruit being a perishable item, the roadside vendors may also go out of business in the next few days. Small businesses which are just like daily wagers, are also workless.

Those who can and want to share their good fortune with others do not know where to start. It is easy to say that we should look for deserving people close to our homes, but it is difficult to do. For years, we have opted to keep aloof from what is happening in the neighborhood. How can we now go and knock the door and ask, ‘Do you need help?’

Our worship places are closed, and it bleeds our hearts. Harmain Shareefain are also closed. Where can we go to find solace? We feel lost.

We could go on painting the bleak scenarios which happen to be real also. It is good to keep our feet on ground. However, starting from today however, I would like to lift my heels and try to peek over the horizon, to see beyond the darkness.

Every Beginning has an End – Nothing lasts forever. Corona is not immortal; it will die down. Yes, it may leave a trail of destroyed economy and heartbreaking personal tragedies, but it will be over, and life shall return to usual, not normal though. I have no doubt about it, and I don’t think anyone would disagree with it. There may be debate on length of time and extent of damage. When usual life resumes, almost everyone will rush to do more and more to compensate for the losses. This drive shall surely reduce the time to recovery. I believe that the largest majority will run on the first signal to go. I have great belief that this spirit will lift us out of the depth of calamity.

Resilience – Human beings are one of the most, probably the most resilient creature on earth. For thousands of years, it has endured and survived apocalypses of enormous proportions. Allah has ordained human race to remain here and has gifted it with resilience. Our resilience theme encourages us to get up after falling down, rebuild after destruction, and raise hope after despair. We must trust our ability to withstand and stand again. I already see people getting jittery; itching to do something. Right now, the time may not be on our side, but as soon as we get the slightest opportunity, we shall move quickly. Human history is filled with such events where humans have risen out of ashes and rebuilt homes, cities, countries and kingdoms.

A piece I wrote long ago said, “Things fall apart, and so do people. Then they gather their pieces and put them together piece by piece. The rebuilt product may have some small flaws, but it is workable by all means. The glue which we use to put us together again is EGO. Our ego determines how well and how quickly we shall be back to working order. Our ego determines if we would work more than ever to make our lives again, or we shall choose to carry the begging bowl and stand on the roadside. It is my firm belief that our ego is mostly healthy, positive and in command. And that is why most of us rise again,”

And then of course, we have the ever-optimist poet of our time, Faiz Ahmad Faiz. He wrote it for beloved country. I dedicate these lines to life.

Gar aaj tujhse judaa hain to kal baham honge
Yeh raat bhar ki judaai to koi baat nahin
Gar aaj auj pe hai taal
ai-e-raqib to kya
Yeh chaar din ki khudaai to koi baat nahin
Jo tujhse ahd-e-wafaa ustawar rakhte hain
Ilaaj-e-gardish-e-lail-o-nahar rakhte hain

If we are apart today, tomorrow we will be one.
This night of separation is nothing, this too shall pass.
What if our very adversaries celebrate victory today?
They have four days of power, which too shall pass.
Look to the steadfast few, their constancy is the cure
for every adversity, wrought by darkness and by light.

(Translation and transliteration © 2019 Mustansir Dalvi, All rights reserved)


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