Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
i got off once we reached the site, and a blast of desert air hit me. the sky was blue, it was very hot. and in front of me was this stunning breathtaking beautiful four story bright red building. rising out of the desert where there was nothing for miles.
next to it were some very small mud huts, and a few children in uniform were nearby.
i couldn't speak. to have this amazing piece of architecture here. it spoke of love. every wall, every curve of the staircase, every window, was designed with aspect of beauty but sustainability and functionality as well. The classrooms were full of light and air. Perfect.
I didn't know Arshad sb at all, I have probably met him two or three times in the time i have worked at tbc. however, i feel like i know him through his work, through the 500 school buildings he's designed as a labor of love across Pakistan. And I feel privileged to have come across them. You are all extremely lucky to have known and shared a life with him. He has left his legacy, and a great one at that. May God bless his soul. Ameen.
I'm sorry to interrupt the proceedings. I didn't know A at all, I have probably met him two or three times in the time i have worked at here. however, i feel like i know him through his work, through the 500 buildings he's designed across Pakistan.
my first day at tbc i went to yousuf sahib khan goth an hour so out of karachi. we were on this road destroyed by wheel deep sewage, and then we turned off into the jharis. there was matti everywhere, all sand no buildings for as far as the eye could see. there was a building in the distance, and because there was no road to speak off, we were making our way through the bushes any way we pleased.
i got off once we reached the site, and a blast of desert air hit me. the sky was blue, it was very hot. and in front of me was this stunning - no breathtaking - beautiful four story bright red building. rising out of the desert where there was nothing for miles.
next to it were some very small mud huts, and a few children in uniform were nearby.
i couldn't speak. to have this amazing piece of architecture here. it spoke of love. every wall, every curve of the staircase, every piece of tile. it spoke so much of how much he has left behind, so for those loved ones today, I would urge you to think of all the wealth he left behind, the long lasting legacy, and be re-assured that he will live on in his work. Thank you.
Friday, August 21, 2009
027.016 And Solomon was David's heir. He said: "O ye people! We have been taught the speech of birds, and on us has been bestowed (a little) of all things: this is indeed Grace manifest (from God.)"
027.017 And before Solomon were marshalled his hosts,- of Jinns and men and birds, and they were all kept in order and ranks.
027.018 At length, when they came to a (lowly) valley of ants, one of the ants said: "O ye ants, get into your habitations, lest Solomon and his hosts crush you (under foot) without knowing it."
027.019 So he smiled, amused at her speech; and he said: "O my Lord! so order me that I may be grateful for Thy favours, which thou hast bestowed on me and on my parents, and that I may work the righteousness that will please Thee: And admit me, by Thy Grace, to the ranks of Thy righteous Servants."
027.020 And he took a muster of the Birds; and he said: "Why is it I see not the Hoopoe? Or is he among the absentees?
027.021 "I will certainly punish him with a severe penalty, or execute him, unless he bring me a clear reason (for absence)."
027.022 But the Hoopoe tarried not far: he (came up and) said: "I have compassed (territory) which thou hast not compassed, and I have come to thee from Saba with tidings true.
027.023 "I found (there) a woman ruling over them and provided with every requisite; and she has a magnificent throne.
027.024 "I found her and her people worshipping the sun besides God: Satan has made their deeds seem pleasing in their eyes, and has kept them away from the Path,- so they receive no guidance,-
027.025 "(Kept them away from the Path), that they should not worship God, Who brings to light what is hidden in the heavens and the earth, and knows what ye hide and what ye reveal.
027.026 "God!- there is no god but He!- Lord of the Throne Supreme!"
027.027 (Solomon) said: "Soon shall we see whether thou hast told the truth or lied!
027.028 "Go thou, with this letter of mine, and deliver it to them: then draw back from them, and (wait to) see what answer they return"...
027.029 (The queen) said: "Ye chiefs! here is delivered to me - a letter worthy of respect.
027.030 "It is from Solomon, and is (as follows): 'In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful:
027.031 "'Be ye not arrogant against me, but come to me in submission (to the true Religion).'"
027.032 She said: "Ye chiefs! advise me in (this) my affair: no affair have I decided except in your presence."
027.033 They said: "We are endued with strength, and given to vehement war: but the command is with thee; so consider what thou wilt command."
027.034 She said: "Kings, when they enter a country, despoil it, and make the noblest of its people its meanest thus do they behave.
027.035 "But I am going to send him a present, and (wait) to see with what (answer) return (my) ambassadors."
027.036 Now when (the embassy) came to Solomon, he said: "Will ye give me abundance in wealth? But that which God has given me is better than that which He has given you! Nay it is ye who rejoice in your gift!
027.037 "Go back to them, and be sure we shall come to them with such hosts as they will never be able to meet: We shall expel them from there in disgrace, and they will feel humbled (indeed)."
027.038 He said (to his own men): "Ye chiefs! which of you can bring me her throne before they come to me in submission?"
027.039 Said an 'Ifrit, of the Jinns: "I will bring it to thee before thou rise from thy council: indeed I have full strength for the purpose, and may be trusted."
027.040 Said one who had knowledge of the Book: "I will bring it to thee within the twinkling of an eye!" Then when (Solomon) saw it placed firmly before him, he said: "This is by the Grace of my Lord!- to test me whether I am grateful or ungrateful! and if any is grateful, truly his gratitude is (a gain) for his own soul; but if any is ungrateful, truly my Lord is Free of all Needs, Supreme in Honour !"
027.041 He said: "Transform her throne out of all recognition by her: let us see whether she is guided (to the truth) or is one of those who receive no guidance."
027.042 So when she arrived, she was asked, "Is this thy throne?" She said, "It was just like this; and knowledge was bestowed on us in advance of this, and we have submitted to God (in Islam)."
027.043 And he diverted her from the worship of others besides God: for she was (sprung) of a people that had no faith.
027.044 She was asked to enter the lofty Palace: but when she saw it, she thought it was a lake of water, and she (tucked up her skirts), uncovering her legs. He said: "This is but a palace paved smooth with slabs of glass." She said: "O my Lord! I have indeed wronged my soul: I do (now) submit (in Islam), with Solomon, to the Lord of the Worlds."
- Surah Al Naml
Monday, July 20, 2009
by the time the light changes and we drive off, i am a little awed, a little scandalized, and mostly feeling fat and very very covered.
i'm so used to being polite and smiley, i automatically wave a thank you to the car that stops as i pass it on the zebra crossing. the man stops, puts the car in park, rolls down the window, says something terribly sleazy, and whistles (like in the comic books) for the next 20 unbearable seconds it takes me to reach the end of the street. i hope no one else notices, but i am the only one jay walking and the crowd on both sides watches me walk the guantlet in indifferent amusement.
we're in a bus in a meaner city, i'm with my mother and her friend who is baby sitting us today. a man asks "hey are those real diamonds on your sunglasses?". my good old city girl reflex screams that the man wants to rob me, so i politely but firmly say "no no" and tense for combat. even when he says "whachu doin later tonight?" i'm still poised for pepper spraying him, and very honestly say "i'm with my mother right there" and there is ami beaming oblivious to our interchange in all her mommy-esque glory. his jaw drops slightly, looks at me and thats when i realize he was trying for witty repartee and not telling me to hand over my wallet.
it takes me two stops more before i see the humor in that foiled conversation.