Living in times when the world and especially Pakistan is going through a state of contradictions in every sphere of life. Contradictions based on egos, materials, or perhaps ideology of so-called need or self-righteousness. Look around and one would find contradictions everywhere, may it be religious, political, social, or communal.
The same bigotry is now deep-rooted and has become a habit for most people. The stories are narrated how conservative and devout thinking served the generations who failed the society but they were successful in persevering their own interests. These contradictions have marred thinking in general and have created jumbled-up behaviors and ethics all around.
There is no clear thinking on any of the main issues or questions
Most of the population wants part of orthodoxy, part justice, part modernization and part of the traditional play to serve their personal agendas. It appears that layers of contradictions are entrenched deeply in the society and there is no universal truth or ethical values which can be applied in a holistic way. There prevails confusion in every walk of life. The hypocritic contradictions evident in a political democratic system is one of the stark examples. There is little or no belief in the democratic system even by the politicians themselves what to talk about establishment or other players.
The leaders whose lifestyle and approach are completely westernized, their education and their ambition to educate and settle their children in the west try everything in their power to appease these bigots.
Look around and see if there is any democratic system that has been laid for local governments or is there any democratic system in any of the so-called family or personality-based political parties. The politicians are scared they will lose control if there exists local bodies or competent democrats in their parties. While they are willing to live with colonial district management bureaucrats or hybrid governance of establishment. There seems no effort in creating any awareness or education about true democracy at the grassroots level.
The so-called Mullah, custodian of the religious bigotry is scared that if people are enlightened about the religious beliefs, they will not support the certain sect, madrassah, or specific cult. Hence selective teachings and practices are pushed. While they preach to kill the blasphemous, no one teaches humanity and forgiveness which religion overwhelmingly educates. The hypocritic incongruities suit the businesses of these merchants but the irony is that even the leaders and legislators have given in to these bigots. They are scared by the Fatwas of these Mullahs as they understand their own weakness of not enlightening masses and using the same Mullahs for their petty personal gains from time to time.
Women who want equality and empowerment live in the deep state of contradictions and train their son’s same old heritage where women have no value and must be treated as second fiddle. Women ensure through their behavior in various capacities that sons are more precious than daughters and take no substantive measures to overcome this century-old thinking.
Double standards are the basis of this society, may it be language, fashion, or ideology. Society is stuck between modernity and orthodoxy tradition. While most of the youth want to adapt to western ethics and lifestyle, they at the same time are being blackmailed for not upholding traditions and customs. They are constantly being taught that the orthodox rules are only applicable to others and can not be used against them. The ruling elite understands that no law is applicable to them as they own this country through their contacts, money and power.
Society lost its values of goodness and feelings of empathy
The responsibility of these religious-social contradictory values is our leadership and establishment narratives which probably they required to use youth as gun fodder for the Afghan, Kashmir, or other misadventures. The orthodox fabricated religious narrative while may have served a few but has destroyed the fabric of society and created a blurred and egoistic society. The society which lost the ability to question, the society which lost creativity, innovation and passion. The society which just became busy in protecting their own interests at any cost or should it be said at anyone’s cost.
These contradictions made the society heartless and materialistic as they found out that people can be exploited by pushing religious, ethnic, or pecuniary buttons. Morality became scarce and honesty became a symbol of foolishness. The crooked or corrupt got the status of wise and smart. There remain those shrewd souls who continue to take benefit out of this compromised culture.
The question remains will these contradictions will go on? will the majority will not become hostage to the dark customs, will the enlightened voice ever be listened and prevail. Will our leadership change the narrative to modern nationalism from religious doctrine? Will the green flag become a symbol of clear-headedness and straightforwardness? Will the green flag become a symbol of humanity, principled justice and equality? Will the green flag become the symbol of real freedom? Freedom to ask questions, freedom to choose modernity and progressive thinking? Freedom to choose equality among genders? Freedom to live with civility? Or all of this will be Camelot of a Cynic!
Moied Javeed is a senior telecom executive in Pakistan and can be reached at email@example.com. The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.