Category: The World and I.


Postcard Designs: Pakistan


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Thought I’d share my drawings. It’s part of the project to raise funds for Pakistan Floods.

I took the pictures from webcam so quality isn’t so great, but well at least it adds colour.

The picture with children says:” The Brilliance of their eyes, showed eternal light” These children were photograph by Pakistan Youth Alliance’s members who have made several deliveries to the effected areas.

The mother and child photo: “She smiled at the heavens, for sparing the diamonds in her arms.”

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Existence


Carved with mud
Air blown into lungs
Driven by the dogma
Abandoned soul within
Heart plays a melody
Life spreads through my veins
Mind set to unravel creation
Distracted by a chaotic display
Yearning to break the chains
And fly
Invisible wings
built upon me
I would shine on this world
The dream is still alive
But in everyday scenario
People struggle to survive
Ego is sky high
Yet I don’t know why
And where to start
Love and equality
A truth that seldom exists
In the book of God
Dusted under sands of time
Information overload
Religious practice one minute
Material in the other
Determined momentarily
Distracted for days
Temporary jubilation
Prayer keeps me going
Surrounds a stage
A touch of destruction
Desires held strong
Faith held weak
Leaping to catch
A ghostly object
Visit the grave
My right arm crosses
Over my heart
The left crosses over that
I close my eyes
Death can be imagined
A minute later
Heat and suffocation
Pull the covers back down
What am I
An existing form
Till I breathe
Skull and bones
When I die.
What lives on, is not I
Just a flame within me
that would let go
when the heart beats
its final.


”We were in the hotel watching television, when the phone rang. And it was this kid saying ‘Mr Dundee, my name is Cassius Marcellus Clay; I’m the Golden Gloves champion of Louisville, Kentocky. And he gave me a long list of championships he was planning to win, including the olympics and the heavyweight championship of the world, and then he said he wanted to come up to the room to meet us. I put my hand on the mouthpiece and said to Willie, There’s a nut on the phone; he wants to meet you.’

(Angelo Dundee, who later became his trainter)

…I’m king of the world, I’m pretty, I’m pretty

If there was a man who knew how to live, it is Muhammad Ali, who gave us unforgettable phrases like ‘float like a butterfly sting like a bee’. He wasn’t just a boxer, Muhammed Ali represented a different paradigm: he didnot become what others wanted him to be, he conquered all aspects of life, making his own decisions, choosing his own ways and giving his opponents one hell of a beat.

 After his rise in boxing career, under extreme pressure, he did not fail to express his political views, he did not fail to take a stand against war in vietnam, and he proudly converted to Islam even though he was contniuously attacked by corporates due to this. Most of all, he put a smile on people’s face by singing, dancing and not shutting up. No, he never shut up, because:

”I’m the onliest fighter who goes from corner to corner and club to club debating with fans. I’ve recieved more publicity than any fighter in history. I talk to reporters till their fingers are sore.’

Los Anegeles, Novermber 15, 1962:

Archie’s been living off the fat of the land,

I’m here to give him his pension plan.

When you come to fight, Don’t block the halls and

don’t block the door,

Cause ya all going home after Round Four.

Archie Moore Fell in Four.

Ali vs. Sonny Liston

I have to share the story of this fight, it makes me laugh at how Mohammed Ali ( who was a 22 year old Cassius Clay at this time) handle this fight. His opponent, Liston, a 29 year old, a brute, former leg-breaker for the mafia who dispatched people with a violence that frightened and entranced observers. Clay was seen as all mouth, someone who’d be lucky to make it to the hospital in one piece after the fight.

It was obvius for everyone, a young over-confident boxer about to fight a  boxer who was known to shrink his opponents to just two feet tall and fight like hell.

Cassius must be kidding. If he isn’t he’s crazy to consider entering the ring against a virtually indestructible and demonstrably deadly fighting machine. Clay’s style is made to order for a massacre. (sports commentator)

Clay as a matter of fact, promoted himself even more, infact he made a poem for Liston:

Clay comes out to meet Liston

And Liston starts to retreat

If Liston goes back any further

He’ll end up in a ringside seat.

Clay swings with a left,

Clay swings with a right,

Look at young cassius

Carry the fight.

Liston keeps backing

But there’s not enough room

It’s a matter of time.

There, Clay lowers the boom.

Now Clay swings with a right,

What a beautiful swing,

And the punch raises the bear,

Clear out of the ring,

Liston is still rising

And the ref wears a frown,

For he can’t start counting

Till Sonny comes down.

Now Liston disappears from view.

The crowd is getting frantic,

But our radar stations have picked him up

He’s somewhere over the Atlantic.

Who would have thought

When they came to the fight

That they’d witness the launching

Of a human satellite?

Yes, the crowd did not dream

When they laid down their money

That they would see

A total eclipse of the Sonny!

Clay kept irritating Liston psychologically. As Liston didn’t have a birth certificate and grew up in poverty Cassius said, ‘You’re 40 years old if you are a day, and you don’t belong in a ring with Cassius Clay.’

Liston responded as, ‘I think I’m gonna have to hurt that boy bad’, since he was not a fan of fancy talk.

But realistically Clay was completely terrified by the idea of fighting Liston, so he irritated Liston to the height. It seems all this helped Clay to become mentally prepared for it. Like they say, your brain takes what you say like an order, so say postive things, think postive.

So Liston came into Miami for training, where Ali screamed infront of the reporters ‘Chump! You big ugly bear! I’m gonna whup you right now!” Clay followed Liston’s car, aggravating Liston to the point of pulling off the road, getting out of the car and threatening Cassius, in a cold low voice.

Clay as a matter of fact, had people with him to conveniently pull him away while he shouted ”Come on Punk! This ain’t no joke! Right Now!”

Clay kept sending people to Liston’s training sessions sayin things like ‘Bear Huntin’, ‘March on Liston’s camp’.

During the wiegh in Clay re-entered (after having his turn) into the room, where Liston appeared.

”I’m ready to rumble now,’ he screamed, ‘I can beat you any time chump! Somebody’s gonna die at ringside tonight! You’re scared chump! You ain’t no giant! I’m gonna eat you alive.’ Some people held onto Clay as he seemed ready to attack Liston any moment.

Everyone suggested the Clay needed a psychiatrist.

Clay was fined $2500 on the spot. His pulse rate and heart beat was checked, and what did the doctor find out? ”This young man might be scared to death… If this is his pulse rate at fight time (120 beat/min [normal =54) the whole thing is off.

Ali later said ‘I didn’t want nobody thinking nothing except that I was a joke.’

Nobody could read this kid. He was either the carziest kid you ever saw, or the smartest.

During the fight, Liston tried to catch Clay in the first two rounds and he missed Clay like a Pitcher with a wide fastball. Liston got frustrated. He got out of shape and resorted to an old trick of rubbing a gel on his gloves, which blinded Clay for two rounds.

However, the big ugly bear quit on his stool, after the seventh, avoiding the ignominy of going down in Clay’s redicted eight round.

Mohammed Ali shook the world. However the fight was threatened by promoter’s concerns at the very religious transformation from which Clay drew his strength to hunt Liston down.

Malcolm X was there, to fully support him and to make him believe that his victory was inevitable. That he will win. Later the news broke; Cassius Clay had accepted Islam.

Charity money?


There has been a great load of disasters in the past few years. The recent one being the haiti earthquake in 2010, and there was a massive earthquake in pakistan in 2005, then there was the tsunami in 2004.  Overall there is continous flooding occuring through many countries, due to the rise of global warming and increasing sea levels. These are the times when humanity seems united under one umbrella, yet these are the times where corruption exposes itself more haughtily than ever.

Everytime we donate many of us wonder whether this money will actually be utilised in the correct manner, whether we will actually be saving lives and not filling up the stomachs of fat selfish men who empower the rest, who claim the money, who promise to help out their people.

The truth is, little money is actually used approriately and this mostly happens from smaller charity organisations that have actually hired workers to do the delivery of goods and they certainly dedicate all their life to bringing about a change. The problem is you still cannot be sure if some of them have taken a few pictures of a truck load of goods and kept rest in their pockets, or to pay for their leaflets and new cars.

It is hard to imagine how much money is spent in the charity sector by people all around the world, to save lifes and eradicate poverty. However very little input is shown by many organisations, while so much money is being donated, what sort of management has been set up to answer the basic needs of people. While a bag of goodies may ease one family’s hunger for a while, what about the next day, and the day after? The problem is, that no network of contnious supply of people’s necessities is being created.

It worries me that we don’t know how the money is dealt with, who is it handed to and why we still see people starving even though hundred millions of pounds/dollars etc are given away every year in this sector. These organisations ought to be revised and kept a check on, these governements who claim the money of the poor (such as paksitan’s and kenya’s) and are free to roam about need to be dealt with otherwise there will never be enough money to help the people who have lost their homes, their food and their loved ones. There will never be enough as long as such a corrupt system keeps running.

And as for the people who cut out on their expenditures to make donations, even if it is small; make sure the charity organisation you pay for is genuine and has given valuable evidence of their previous work. Keep donating and and working for each other, to make the world a better place.

Music of the East


There is no match of this voice, this style of the east. A song that has so much originality and passion put into the words. While a westerner would find it really odd, even funny at times where the vocalist tends to lengthen his words in the tune. But if you listen you will, perhaps be able to have a glimpse of beauty of these vocals. Whenever Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan is listened to I tend to drift away from present grounds and fly away to the east, to hot weathers and golden mornings, to the scent of spices and jasmines.

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, a legend of Pakistan, created many masterpieces, his music and voice revives the heritage of the East, of true love and its true meanings, of the pain of letting go of your loved one, the ecstacy of being in love, and the illusions that it creates. It’s difficult to pick another one of my favourites from his collection since all of them are memorable and almost equally as moving as the previous one.

It’s a great concern for many to see this sort of music and style fade away in the East now, while there is an on-growing love to western music, of the pop culture, rap and music. Rap is enjoyable, though it would be nice if the rappers talked about something more intelligent than going to clubs and getting drunk n checking out girls with tight ass jeans. One is feeling the need to post an article specifically for rappers now =)

So coming back to the present ground, Eastern music should be preserved and practiced because it carries its own vibe, seperate from everything else, the music, the sounds represent an amazing culture, a diverse culture so very different from everything else, so close to my heart, It is ever-living. I hope Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s style is adapted and held dearly to.  I hope the East never lets go of its origins, be it classical, qawwalis, folk music, etc. Because diversity is beautfiul.