Friday, June 15, 2012

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Just now I finished the book “the perks of being a wallflower”. A few days early I was just randomly searching on the internet where I found a trailer of a movie named “The perks of being a wallflower”. After reading some details I found out that the film is an adoption of a novel by Stephen Chboskey. The film is directed by the same author and stars Logan Lerman and Emma Watson. I have never read a book that has been adapted into a movie. Out of curiosity I just searched for its .pdf file and fortunately found it and started reading. The lingual style of the book is real simple and it is written in such a flow that it simply captured my attention. So, I started reading it.
The book is in fact a series of letters that have been written by central character of the novel ‘Charlie’ to a person he has never met or talked or knew. He is a very nervous kid who is in search of friends after the demise of his very best friend Michael.
Following things just came into my mind and I thought that I should do little scribbling myself. What I felt after reading this book is right here and it is you people who have to tell me what does this book really depicts…
It’s a book about things “books, music and girls”. At some places it is more than that. It gives you an inside of a kid who ‘thinks too much’ and gets ‘panicky’. It outlines the life of a first year student of high school and things he comes up with and cannot run away. The book teaches us to participate in life but it feels to be more of sarcasm then what has been put into the book, because it teaches us so many things other than participating. Like being there for friends and what friendship really means. Charlie, protagonist of the novel is actually a person who is always caring for others and is giving a helping hand to whatever his friends are coping with. This thing does affect his relationship with Sam but I think it is the innocence in his character that really makes this novel worthwhile to read.
The book teaches us through Charlie little things which go unnoticed by us ‘the common people’ and how they affect the moral structure of the society and how Charlie always tries to not think all of this but it keeps coming to his mind. The good, bad and the ugly experiences he enjoys with people and how different things upset him. If we think in our world these things do matter to us and affect us in different ways. Like many of us feel like to have someone by their side in distress and tension who can pacify our sorrows and ease our pain, and that many of us don’t find that ‘someone’ by our side. It is like people here care no more for others than they do for themselves and this is what makes Charlie special. This is what a wallflower really does; provides you with a sense of serenity while not drawing any attention to you.
The book also touches some morbid and worrying aspects like the lives of 16 year olds who are taking drugs, vine and other stuff and getting high. Things like having sex in this age of adolescence and the feelings it imparts in the kids. The guilt they feel when they masturbate for the first time and how they are always talking and thinking about girls and partying and ‘living’ life. They don’t care about what is happening in the world and what is their role in it or what they can do to better the society in which they live in. The book actually has no moral sentiments from which to draw any values, rather it is the depiction of this these moralities in the thinking and feelings of Charlie.
The relationship of Charlie with his family is shown to be too remote because he is always running for his friends whenever something came up in his mind and he just wanted to know that his family loves him and he loves his family and that’s it. His dad is busy in his work and when he does come home, he sees hockey game without his son because “he asks too many questions”. He did not attend any party with his family except for thanksgiving and Easter and some other traditional parties. The family didn’t go for any outing. I didn’t notice any time when the mother asked to his son that what is really happening with him and why is his attitude like this and he never found his family worthy enough to share his inside passions or feelings with them.
It tells us the story of Don Juan that Sam’s (a friend of Charlie) boyfriend was hiding from her. I don’t how much this book represents family and social structure of West but it feels so strange to read all the details. (It is you guys who have to enlighten me on this very fact). May be because here (in Pakistan) people don’t think about their actions and ‘living their lives’ more than the hardships they bear in catering the bread and butter for their family. And in contrast to this worried and hard environment they still smile and ‘live’ what they really want to live. This difference I am feeling after reading this book might be because of the completely different social structure that I have been brought up and I think I would not have been different if I have been born there. And I thank Allah very much for this that I am not born so much blinded by the perks of this world.
Overall the book has taught me in many ways and I hope that it does this to other readers also.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Magnum Opus

Chirping of hummingbirds, indefinable boundaries of blue sky, that first drop of rain in summer, those cold evenings in winter, explicit beauty in aromatic springs, those grey leaves in autumn, that bliss of coldness in scenic valleys, soothing waters of the streams, those indefinite sands in deserts, fires, floods, lightening, auroras, are an integrate part of the Grandeur of our Creator.
Those warm tears sprinkling from the eyes of a son at her mother’s demise, those merry moments of one’s prestige, those gutty feelings of doing things for the first time, that unconditional love of father for his child, that innocent look on novel face of a juvenile little girl, love, dedication, sacrifice and satisfaction, serenity, joy and felicity, dignity and morality, rage in frustration, confusion in turmoil, and fear of unknown also reflect mastery of the Sustainer. But there is a line that divides God’s Creations; the ones with brains and the ones with not.
In the vastness of this mighty picturesque of universe, we are like a tiny speck of sand in the ocean. But it is us who can think and choose and pacify or activate things. No other creation can have notions or intuitions. They don’t have the burden of sacrificing. They don’t feel happiness. They don’t break down or hang over. They don’t have to repay their debts. They don’t have to invent or to discover. They don’t have to repent or be sincere in any relationship. They don’t question other’s sentiments.
So, these are the most exuberant, vivacious and convoluted creation of our God. That eats, sleeps, and has kids as well. Albeit, it is the only creation with wisdom and soul, it still culminates qualities of many of other creations of God; rage is like a burning fire, love is like a bird in flight, care is like soft whisper of the wind, sacrifice is like a seed that buries beneath the earth, lust is like a vicious ravenous tiger; ambition like an eagle souring above all other.
It is in fact a higher form of creation that God has created and it has a purpose, similar to other creations, but with a mortal physical being. It seems like every other creation is made for us; humans. Rains for crops, animals for food, iron to build, fuel to run our engines on, and what not have we used for our benefit? We still continue our legacy of discovering new elements and utilizing them in a better way. But yes it is us who have the burden of choice that we have to make in every single passing moment of our lives.
After decades of development and persistence what we have discovered is that we live on 1 of the 170 billion galaxies and we exist in a solar system with a star that is 1 in 300 billion; such little is our existence in contrast to the Magnum Opus of our creator.
We have become arrogant of the little knowledge we have acquired through the course of history and in our arrogance we have renounced God. We have dejected His existence. And we aspire to be the ‘commander of our own destiny’. So petty is our presence in the vastness of this universe and still we stand up to God, while actually we cannot. This aura of our race is in fact also a creation of Allah.
It is a dire need for us to understand our place in the grand scheme of Allah who is the Almighty. There is no running away from what He has decided for us. But it is our choices that result in the projection of our destiny. The peace inside of us can only be achieved if we embrace our destiny. It is the need of our conscience to understand our place in this magnum opera of our creator without which we will not be able to bring our rightful place and purpose to fruition.
We are cynical about the good that is left in us. We no more have time for others. We are promulgating macabre vices of our kind and our higher and once inveterate qualities have faded into the looming darkness of liberty; Liberty that extracts every possible characteristic innate in humans, creating chaos if not tamed by shackles of our conscience and moralities. It is this inner captivity of one’s self that can evolve into a beautiful amalgam of diversity in harmony amongst each other that can result in peace and serenity of every one on this planet. That can solve our gravest problems of today like these economic depressions, strategic relations of nations, world wars, indecency, and vanishing values. It can give us the solution to the place of women in society. It can outline the true human rights and can give voice to the unheard.
He causes the night to enter the day, and He causes the day to enter the night and has subjected the sun and the moon - each running [its course] for a specified term. That is Allah, your Lord; to Him belongs sovereignty. And those whom you invoke other than Him do not possess [as much as] the membrane of a date seed.
[Quran 35:13]