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Monthly Archives: May 2008

Hard hearing guys

Click here to read in Gujarati 

“Hey! Are you going to watch a movie?”

“No! I am going to watch a movie.”

“Oh! I thought you are going to watch a movie!”

– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.: May 19, 2008

Notes:-

(1) In literature, many wonderful and challenging experiments have been done by the Writers; like “6 – word biography”, “2 – liner story” etcetera.

(2) Here, I have written a funny Play containing only three dialogues with two characters, un-named.

(3) The Play is untitled, meanwhile; but, I invite my Readers to suggest any title in Comment Box.

(4) Any appropriate title will be accepted and put in place of my temporary title

 

 
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Posted by on May 19, 2008 in Humor, MB, Short Story

 

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Image

Lady with the lantern!

Click here to read in Gujarati


The Square World - IIIIn the field of medical profession, the name of Florence Nightingale is very popular. She was Italian born (1820), but grew up and studied in England, heard her inner voice calling her to services to the sick and adopted nursing by ignoring unwillingness of her parents. She was from an upper class family and nursing, in those days, was considered to be an occupation with some little respect. But, association of Florence with this profession changed the concept of the people throughout the world. She was devoted to her work and took care of the patients even at night moving about here and there with a lamp in her hand. The patients were so grateful with her services that they gave her the affectionate title of ‘Lady with the Lamp’.

My Readers will, perhaps, mind to read ‘lantern’ in place of ‘lamp’ in my title, but I am going to talk about another woman who was a local Nightingale of our village, some decades ago. Just before some days, when I had gone to the local graveyard to perform my religious services for the peace to the souls of the deceased people, the grave of the Personality of this Article was being renovated. I recalled her memories which have inspired me and I am trying to offer my homage to the soul of the Late through this Article in brief.

With consent of her successors, I don’t hesitate to disclose her name. She was Hajiyani Avalben w/o Seth (big merchant of repute) Haji Noorbhai Mamjibhai Mukhi, author’s cousin. She kept lantern while going to houses to render her services to women in childbed (confinement). I myself have thought out the title ‘Lady with the lantern’ similar to that of conferred on Florence Nightingale for the reason that many similarities are there in both these Nightingales, no doubt, with some exceptions. According to Alfred Adler’s quote “To be human means to feel inferior.”, both were gentle ladies and therefore they considered themselves and others as human first. The field of nursing for Florence was wide to attend all kinds of patients and moreover she was qualified in her profession, but the Late Avalben’s field was limited to maternity only and she had acquired the knowledge through her skill, intellect, intuition and profound experience under her senior elders.

Those were the days when medical facilities were rare, maternity homes not available and female gynecologists found nowhere. Besides, women disliked to be attended upon by a male doctor in confinement. Midwives (દાયણ) were the most common attendants everywhere. It was the tendency of the women to deliver the child in a natural and normal process at home. Particularly, in rural and remote areas, midwifery has proved to be a boon for women in such days when death seems to be just a span away. My Aval Bhabhee (brother’s wife) was the soul-mate of the wealthiest man of the time and was not in need of any earning. Moreover, as being a Sethanee (Mistress of Seth), she might not have ordinarily preferred such filthy and troublesome work, but she did prefer it; for, she said such as, “I have not chosen midwifery, midwifery has chosen me!” What a great thinking of a noble woman, totally illiterate!

The village of Kanodar was of some 1500 families of all communities with Muslims in majority. My Bhabhee rendered her services to all without any discrimination of creed, cast, religion and economical status. She undertook the responsibilities of only such cases which seemed to be normal at first sight. In complicated cases, she advised them to have a physician’s assistance. She attended the women in confinement fully and remained present until the process of delivery ended successfully. She kept her watchful eye minute to minute and offered sensitive support and encouragement particularly to those women who were experiencing their first motherhood.

Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine and a Greek Physician wrote that “Nature is the best physician and that it should be allowed to function without the intrusion of meddlesome interference.” Accordingly, Avalben followed strictly the natural process of delivery ignoring the worries of the assisting women and labor pain of the woman in confinement. As soon as the critical task of labor got over, she never missed to tell the mother of the child in somewhat like these words as “Giving a birth to a baby is not the end of your journey, but it is just a beginning.” She never hurried to cut the umbilical cord.

She recommended the rest ladies of the household to allow her full rest for at least 40 days, not even to ask her for laundry work of both child and herself. She suggested the recipe of food for the mother for her early recovery of health and decoctions (ઉકાળો) also. She stayed a few hours more after the birth of the child to make sure that both mother and baby were stable and fine. While bidding goodbye to all like a Village Mother, she counseled the baby’s mother to continue to breastfeed the baby as long as the Almighty God produces the natural nutrition (milk) in her chest and to ignore maintenance of figure of her body as the child is initially like the Prophet of the God (અર્થાત્ બાલગોપાલ), quite innocent and sinless.

Before reaching my conclusion, I cannot withhold myself to mention the painful miracle or irony of my Bhabhee Maa’s hard luck, whatever you may call it, that she had given the births of three sons subsequently one by one and each son just before reaching the age of a year died in the same modus (style) of his fate or destiny. During the first monsoon of each son’s birth, while raining heavily in those years with loud thunder and lightning, the ends of the cradle cloth disconnected, the child fell down on the floor and died on the spot. These mysterious happenings inspired her to think over the will of the Almighty Creator positively. Her motherhood got diversion and she devoted her whole life to see uncountable mothers happy with their offspring.

Sheikh Saadi, a Persian man of literature, has said, “The beloved of the Almighty are: the rich who have the humility of the poor, and the poor who have the magnanimity of the rich.” We should always remember that service to the human kind is service to God. The Late Avalben, over and above her Midwifery services, helped the poor women in confinement financially with the funds of her own family and who-so-ever offered her willingly. Let us pray to the Almighty Creator to bless the soul of the Late Avalben in heaven for eternal peace with patronage and recommendations of the Infallibles (AS) and in the words of the recitations of holy verses of the individual Readers as per their own faith and creed.

Hope this Article be read particularly by those ladies who, with the grace of the God, have been lucky enough to enjoy motherhood and also those my daughters and sisters who, now or later on, are going to be mothers.

With deepest affections,

– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.: May 11, 2008

Note: My Readers may visit http://vijayshah.wordpress.com for Gujarati version.

 
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Posted by on May 12, 2008 in Article, લેખ, Humanity, MB

 

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Lose and long on life long

Click here to read in Gujarati
My today’s Article has a link with my earlier post ‘No honor in honor killing’, not as full, but in part connected to my preamble. Most of my Gujarati Readers might have read ‘Zaverchand Kalidas Meghani’ who was honored with the title of ‘Rashtriya Shaayar’ (National Poet) by Mahatma Gandhi. His popular works are many, but I want to represent here one of his poems, perhaps very little known to people, that has impressed me great. It is just a tragic folk-song (
લોકગીત), based on an English song “Fair flowers in the valley”. It can be sung very emotionally and effectively. Its refrain (Burden line) is as “Vanaraa-maa.n Gal Raataa.n Phooladaa.n” – “વનરામાંગલરાતાંફૂલડાં”.

Let us have the brief summary of this folk-song for my purpose to justify the title of this post and also enter my subject. It is a song on a married but barren (childless) woman who goes to a temple to worship the deity by observing the fast of Ekadashi (11th day of lunar fortnight) with a hope of blessings to have a child in her lap. While on her way in greenery all around, there have blossomed plenty of red colored flowers. Amidst these flowers, an aborted fetus (a fully developed child of womb), as if it is alive, appears before her eyes.

It is the same helpless child that was killed by this woman when she had become a virgin mother just to preserve her honor in the society. The child reminds her that cursed day when she had committed the capital sin of killing it. The God had already favored her with the gift of a child to play in her lap, but she had deliberately lost it. Here is the tragedy of a woman who had kicked her fortune of motherhood, and now she longs a child born to her.

My efforts in this some lengthy preface will be over with the tragic and satiric words of the child as “I am swinging in the lap of Jashoda Maa (Nursing mother of Lord Krishna), but, there are the flames of fire in your lap. How can I take my rebirth and be your child again? Don’t you remember the day when you had cruelly strangled me by twisting my neck with your left hand and covering your eyes with right palm?”

Now, I presume that my Readers would have understood what I go for in this Article.

It is said that to err is human. Such sayings of wisdom are nothing but just as the tools for consoling our minds. In psychological term, we can define such arguments as defense mechanism. Let us examine two words ‘Error’ and ‘Blunder’. They look like having same meanings, but they are different. Error is committed unknowingly and innocently, but blunder is backed by strong intension and sometimes hasty thoughtlessness for doing so. What it may be, but such actions committed blindly ignoring their future impacts on life are unforgivable.

Now, whether to forgive or not is the secondary matter, but the blunderer or sinner has to pay a great price sooner or later. Offspring, wealth, opportunity, power etc. are such blessings from the God which are expected to be enjoyed or utilized with restraint. These blessings may prove to be the causes of our ethical downfall and lead us to  proudness. A shallow minded person with all such blessings may go astray and become tyrant. I have included offspring in my above statement owing to my thinking that the offspring is the future of the parents and it is upon them how to build or shape own future.

Generally, some wealthy people enjoy their golden time of good days of their prosperity. It is the time for them not merely to buy leisure and comforts, but to maintain wisdom also. They should try to be helpful to needy and poor people. A Swedish proverb is as “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half sorrow.” Wealth is not such a permanent boon that may remain with the particular family for generations to come. Sometimes during one’s own lifetime, the situation takes turn in such a way when today’s multimillionaire may become a mendicant (penniless) tomorrow. – (કૌનજાનેકિસઘડી, વક્તકાબદલેમિજાજ!) – Nobody knows when the time changes its mood!

In such miserable situation, the person repents for the lost wealth and starts longing to have it again; and, if bad luck is there, the fellow has to long on life long for the same. Thus, the lost fortune is like those things which never come back; the spent arrow, the spoken word and the lost opportunity. Sometimes, ‘earning money’ is easy, but ‘to digest it’ is difficult. An unworthy man gets a lot of wealth all of a sudden by chance or luck, but he wastes the wealth so prodigally that he has to come back to his original state within the lapse of a very few years and repent. – (અબપછતાયેહોતક્યા, જબચીડિયાંચૂગગઈખેત!) – It is meaningless to repent after the birds have picked and eaten grains of corn with their beaks in the farm. “A balanced life is the only key to preserve the prosperity for a long time”, somebody has said and it is true.

Every object has three dimensions; but for a man, in literary term, the time is his fourth dimension. This dimension is invisible but it is always with the man. It depends on how this dimension, the time, is utilized for progression or degression.     William George Plunkett has quoted, “You will never have any more time than you have today.” Our life is like a game of cricket where the batsman has to strike the ball with time judgement and, same way, we have to utilize the time with vision and action in our life. We should also bear it very well in our minds that the only vision without action is like daydreams and the only action without vision is also like nightmares. Opportunity is such iron which is red with heat and the hammer should be there at your hand reach. Without wasting a single moment, you have to hit to the hot iron timely to bring your intended shape. Mind well that opportunity never knocks twice at your door. Moreover, they never bear any fixed values stamped upon them. One should also recognize the opportunities as they, sometimes, come open-faced and, sometimes, disguised.

As in above all, the power to rule is also an opportunity. This power is a strong weapon but equally risky and dangerous also for the user. You might possess the power as a ruler, an administrator or in any other status; whatever, it should be used for the benefits of the rightful and entitled to. History witnesses that whoever has oppressed others has to pay a terrible price and get ruined at long last. A poet has said, “Where are the kings and where the rest? / They have gone with all their pomp and show!” How appropriate these lines for those people of powers are who have at long last been compelled to live a common life without any office and sometimes forced for banishment or hanged to death  under court trials or public revolutions!

Our life as a human itself is an opportunity bestowed upon us from God. We have to pass through this world only once. We should do good that we can and should show kindness to human being that we also can as we are not going to pass this way again. Our life is perishable with no any surety of surviving for certain years. Our temptations and efforts to gather the whole world within our arms or under our feet are futile just as a hen tries to gather her chicks, wandering here and there, under her wings.

– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.:
May 07, 2008

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2008 in Article, લેખ, MB

 

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Life and Literature

Click here to read in Gujarati
In Sanskrit, there is a verse (Shloka)
asसाहित्य संगीत कला विहीन, साक्षात् पशु, पूच्छविश्नहीन” (Sahitya sangeet-kala vihin, sakshat pashu poochchh vishna-hin). Its translation is as “A man, not interested in Literature, Music (Classical – as it is the ancient verse) or any Art, is just like an animal without a tail and horns.” Here, I am going to discuss only literature in context to human life. Literature is an indispensable necessity of human life. It is an eye opener, a driving force to mould our life and a preacher to understand human life, human love, human nature and overall to say humanism. The literature helps a man to come out from animalism and adopt humanism. Gift of intellect from God to a man makes him different and superior to all other creatures. The study of literature, inclusive of religious ones and other sciences, not only sharpens the intellect of a human; but also provides him inspiration and aptitude to know everything, visible or disguise, in the universe. With reading the works of poets, philosophers and intellectuals and also religious literature of spirituality, divinity and mysteries of the universe and its Creator, a man can become capable to uplift himself to be a super human from simply a human. The literature feeds the human mind and soul such a food with which it can enrich own thoughts to make own life successful and think for the good of the whole mankind of the universe.

A matured man or woman who remains indifferent towards literature is just like a kid of a famous poem of Rabindranath Tagore titled as ‘Authorship’. I know that to spare more space for this side reference in my brief essay is not appropriate, but I can’t withhold myself as I am sure that the poor level of the kid of the poem to understand literature will compel my Readers to admit that the people, matured but passive towards literature, are like this kid unable to understand literature with the only difference that they people do not play with toys and swing in cradles. Let us enjoy some pieces of thoughts of the kid of above poem here below.

The child complains to its mother with some charges put upon its father, an author. Firstly, it says that the father writes a lot of books but what he writes is beyond its (kid’s) understanding. It tries to make its mother agree with that she is also in same position unable to understand what he writes. The child considers the mother superior to the father as she can tell nice stories which the father can’t write. A very cute question is asked whether he has not heard the stories of giants, fairies and princesses from his own mother or has forgotten them all. Further, the child says that the father is crazy towards writing books as if he plays at making books. The child complains also that she does not allow it to make the slightest noise in the house that may disturb him. In child’s view, the writing of books is nothing more than its own writing of the alphabets just as a..b..c..d..e in its notebook. We can see the humorous argument of the child in a climax that the father wastes heaps and heaps of papers and she does not allow it (kid) to take a single sheet of paper to make a boat with. Here, my summary of the poem is over but I recommend to my Readers to read original text of the said poem to enjoy it nicely.

Now, I once again come to my main track of the theme of my essay. Today, the Reading of literature has decreased to a considerable rate. Two factors have played their rolls in this regard; one, other forms of entertainment such as TV, Movie, Sports etc. have become popular and, two, human life has become strenuous in gaining money for survival of the family. In such situation, the Reading is going to become a lost art and that is not a good sign for the future of the world.

Modern means of entertainment which have taken place of Reading of literature are merely aimed to give pleasure, luxury and time-pass only. They are far away from teachings of any moral lessons or developing any wisdom in the minds and souls of the people. No doubt, all these are the various forms of an Art, but they are deficient and imperfect for cultural advancement of the people.

For centuries, a debate on art, divided into two schools of thought as ‘Art for art’s sake’ and ‘Art for life’, has been going on without any conclusion. Concept of ‘Art for art’s sake’ may be good for artists themselves as they are the monopoly holders of saving art, but the common men need something more that may uplift them in all aspects of their lives, something that may empower them to strengthen their inner thoughts, something that may realize them the realities of life rather than flying high in the sky of imaginations. Any art whether it may be even literature must have the aim of bringing some change in human behaviors and morals. Modern popular arts such as western noisy music, vulgar performance of dance, nude painting and photography, violent and sexy movies and TV serials are just like slow poisons for the new generation capable enough to throw them deep down into the valley of decline. We can distinguish the basic difference between literature and other arts in a very simple way that literature teaches us what to enjoy and other arts teach us how to enjoy.

Literature opens the windows of our mind through which we can gaze towards the unknown inner and outer world which we have not yet seen. The works of great writers have changed the thinking directions of the people with their writings. They have sown the seeds of social awareness and ethical reformation in the minds of the people and many revolutions such as developing ideas of democracy, abolishing slavery and hatred towards so called untouchables, avoiding discriminations of all kinds, uplifting the status of a woman in society etc. have been possible covering the most part of the world and its numerous communities. It is the role of literature that has changed the most of the false traditions throughout the globe. To maintain the size of my Article, I cannot catalogue all those books both literary and religious which have played a vital role in changing the values of human life.

Literature is capable to change our beliefs if they have been falsely hammered into our minds. It makes us a mentally matured person to grow high towards understanding. An American historian and author – Barbara W. Tuchman quotes on books of literature as “Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled (lame), thought and speculation at a standstill.” For expansion of horizons of knowledge, no any alternative other than books can be so effective and result oriented.

My humble request and counseling to parents worldwide is that they should encourage their children to read some good books or cultural magazines. In modern social system, birthdays of children are celebrated by giving them various gifts. Should we not add at least a single good book to the list of gifts?

– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.:
May 5, 2008

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2008 in Article, લેખ, MB

 

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1st Anniversary of “William’s Tales”


Today – May 5, 2008 – is the one-year anniversary of my blog “William’s Tales”. A year ago on this day, I had stepped into this amazing blog-sphere, and started my activity of publishing my Articles. The whole year remained full of wonder and pleasure to me. With the technical support of Munish Musa, my nephew at Canada; I could concentrate fully towards my creative work. Thus, the real credit for the success of this blog goes to him.

It was really very difficult for me to predict the future of my blog. By observing certain etiquettes and protocols of a Blogger and Blogging, I have made the least efforts from my end to promote the viewership of my Blog. Some friends, my Blog referrers and many well-wishers have done their best to bring my Blog to the knowledge of the people worldwide on my behalf. I am at loss of words to thank them for their valuable support in this regard.

Through new dashboard of ‘Wordpress’, I have collected some statistics of my blog which I am thrilled to share with my viewers.

  • Categories – 80 & Tags – 144.
  • Classification of Articles:
     

    • Short Essays – 15
    • Articles – 21
    • Short Stories – 15
    • Poetry – 7
    • Misc. – 3

Extracts from some Comments:

Troy Morrison says, “I very much enjoyed the way you put it together.” (Character and Reputation)

Ash Dude says, “I have read your blog with interest and would urge you to publish a book as well… (About me)

Arvind Joshi says, “I liked your spread in the sky with imagination of Kanta.” (My better-half, a Gujarati story)

Anisa Musa says, “I hope you willpost more about him (Late Dr. Ali Musa), as I enjoyed reading those two.” (Not All Doctors Money Hungry)

Suzanne Langley says, “I have visited this site on many an occasion, but this post is the 1st one that I have ever commented on.” (A man’s household foes!)

Krishnamoorthy A. N. says, “It is a very interesting and thought provoking. It opened my vistasfor my son who also embarked on commerce stream.” (Power of Determination)

Alex says, “Very nicely put. I completely agree with you on sex selectiveabortionit should be considered as conscious attempt/crime to murder.” (Mercy Killing or Merciful Death – A Debate)

Zohrin says, “This article might bring smile on their face.”(Mercy Killing or Merciful Death –A Debate)

Roohi Payala says, “I totally agree with u, but I can’t understand 1 line we can reach a truth, but we cannot reach the truth. What do u mean by this line?” (Mercy Killing or Merciful Death – A Debate)

I have received some requests from my Readers that some Essays related to character building, human behavior, social life, spirituality, family, education etc. might be translated into Gujarati and re-posted for Gujarati Readers. I, very regretfully and politely, dishonor the request with the only reason that it is a time consuming process and my new creation might be affected adversely. Even though, I have got published two translated Essays (1) Honesty; and (2) Divorce – Legal, but Undesirable, as a guest blogger on “vijayshah.wordpress.com”, a Gujarati web site of my friend Mr. Vijaykumar Shah of Houston (USA). My viewers may visit this site for its rest quality publishing(s) also. In future, as and when it is possible, I’ll try my best to honor the above request; but, I cannot assure firmly.

Last but not the least, I thank you, my Readers around the globe, for visiting my blog, leaving comments, encouraging me by mail and telephone and making my blog more and more flourished day by day. My special thanks to ‘wordpress’ also that has provided me a platform to perform my role as a blogger, reach distant areas of the world through my authorship and have a number of new contacts of the people worldwide. The list of many others who have contributed, in one way or another, to build a very little hut of my small success of “William’s Tales” is fairly lengthy. I thank to all them for their moral support extended to my works and me, open or disguised.

I can be e-mailed at musawilliam@gmail.com for any communications.

Thanking you, once again

-Valibhai Musa
Dtd.:
5th May, 2008

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2008 in Article, લેખ

 

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