اردو(Urdu) English(English) عربي(Arabic) پښتو(Pashto) سنڌي(Sindhi) বাংলা(Bengali) Türkçe(Turkish) Русский(Russian) हिन्दी(Hindi) 中国人(Chinese) Deutsch(German)
Saturday, July 20, 2024 15:23
Finding the Balance – Population Growth and Water Conservation Enabling Tomorrow: Unveiling Pakistan’s Digital Sisterhood Initiatives Mariam Malik – A Promising Squash Player Women’s Mental Health in Pakistan Muscle Spasms: Causes and Management Benefits of Adding Fish to Your Menu The Art of Table Setting for Formal Dinners Mastering the Morning Rush: A Guide to Effortless Dressing for Work Fun Activities for Chilly Winter Evenings Enhancing Facial Features with Precision and Grace Editor’s Note Dysfunctional Family Dynamics and Women Glow from Within by Nourishing Your Skin with DIY Skincare Elixirs Managing Glass Waste: An Eco-Friendly Approach Meal Planning for Beginners Mental Detox – A Break from Social Media Positive Psychology – Minimizing and Maximizing Preventing Parental Burnout Recipes Sister Zeph :A Saint of Education for the Underprivileged Strategies for Reducing Energy Consumption in Pakistan The Chimera of Freedom of Speech: India’s Suppression of Women Journalists in IIOJK Women of Conflict: Life and Struggles of the Women of IIOJK Editor's Note March 23, 1940: Reminiscing the Past For a Bright Future Accelerating Gender Equality through Economic Empowerment Investing in Women: A Catalyst for Progress Navigating Trials and Triumphs of Military Life The Iron Lady (Poem) Isra Arif: An Aspiring Pakistani Watchmaker Rethinking the Educational Landscape and Pakistani Women Eliminate Paper Clutter and Organize Your Life Digitally Fashion to Filters: Impact of Social Media on Body Image 12 Ways to Navigate the Professional Landscape Balanced Diet in Pregnancy Relaxation After Workday – a Need or a Want DIY Face Masks for Radiant Skin Recipes Editor's Note Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade A Powerful Potrayal of the Indomitable Spirit of Women Empowerment Rise of Women-led Health Startups Within Pakistan Achieving Harmony: Prioritizing Women’s Mental and Physical Wellbeing Breaking Barriers: A Woman’s Inspiring Journey to Becoming a Lieutenant Colonel To Daughters of the Nation Overcoming Challenges and Fulfilling Aspirations Beyond Boundaries: Improving Female Mobility in Pakistan’s Public Transport Networks Career Transitions: Navigating Change and Reinventing Yourself Teaching Empathy and Social Skills to Kids Dietary Fiber: Why It Is Beneficial for You Composting: How to Reduce Food Waste at Home Spring 2024: A Fresh Makeup Palette fot the Season Ahead Editor's Note Challenges of Motherhood for Working Women My Beloved Daughter A Walk Down the Memory Lane: UN Mission in Congo Everlasting Memories Unlocking Women’s Potential Through Skills’ Development Arooj Bashir A Comb of Lies: Female Targeted Disinformation Ovarian Cancer – Its Symptoms and Prevention Building Resilience and Grit in Your Children Minimalist Lifestyle: There Can Be More with Less Healthy Aging and Lifestyle Choices What Makes Reading Most Relevant Today Editor's Note SIFC Broadens Women-led Tech Horizons Womenomics and Pakistan: Analyzing Female Labor Participation in Pakistan’s Economy MINUSCA–The Voyage of a CIMIC Peacekeeper Debunking Weight Lose Myths Importance of Understanding & Managing Screen Time in Childern Zero Waste: Single-Use Product and Waste Management Lifestyle with Her Breathing is Exercising Navigating Chaos with Chai and a Smile Style with Her Acne; Breaking the Break–out Cycle Overnight Roast Leg (Parsi Style) Editor's Note Burgeoning Divorce Rate: Analysing Trends and Causes Marriage: The Second Time Around An Emblem of Merit & National Representation (Tête-à-tête with Brigadier Helen Mary Roberts) The Military Move Cord Blood Awareness Month: Celebrating Potential and Progress Freelancing: Cruising Against the Flow The Art of Becoming Your Child’s Best Friend Rediscovering Pakistan Skincare Guide for the Monsoon Season Slay All Day Recipes

Hilal Her

Jinnah’s Vision for Harmony in Pakistan

December 2021

“You are free to go to your temples; you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place of worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed — that has nothing to do with the business of the State.”

Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah
Presidential Address to the Constituent Assembly, August 11, 1947

Partition of India came with an influx of Muslims in the newly born state of Pakistan, with millions migrating to India to merge with the Hindu majority. While many wanted to be a part of communities where they would feel safer, some also decided to stay where they were while holding on to their religious identities. This decision was largely influenced by Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s repeated assertions that Pakistan is, and will always be a free state for all. Thus, despite being a Muslim majority state, Pakistan has been a hub of diverse religious minorities geographically spread across all parts of Pakistan. Far-sighted as he was, the founder of Pakistan, Muhammad Ali Jinnah laid out a vision for a state where various religious and cultural minorities could coexist in harmony. In fact, he expressed his vision for a free state by announcing the freedom its citizens must celebrate in the newly born state in his Presidential Address to the Constituent Assembly, August 11, 1947.
With the increasing transparency of boundaries, we need to understand the wisdom behind the Quaid’s ideology that promotes interfaith harmony. The Quaid dreamed of engendering a spirit of brotherhood which heavily relies on our ability to extend our embrace to all communities by respecting the values that they hold dear. Honouring each other’s festivities helps us create a stronger bond. For instance, we easily connect to the Muslim world around us due to the festivities we share. While it is true that the tangible culture varies, the association of the Muslim world at the level of the intangible culture brings people together. Festivals like Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha, though varying in cultural manifestations, unite Muslims around the world. Not only are we enjoying these as religious feasts, but also as cultural feasts. The essence and the spirit of both the festivals unite us in a spirit of brotherhood, bringing us all together. If we can unite with people all over the world and feel the union, we can also strengthen the bond with people of our own nation. 
Winter with cold winds and fast approaching nights, marks two important festivals for religious minorities in Pakistan; Christians celebrate Christmas whereas Sikhs celebrate Gurunanak’s birthday. Another important event of the month is Quaid’s birthday ­— an event that ought to refresh his vision of a harmonious state in our minds in order for us to respect the celebrations in our surroundings. Our Sikh brothers hold Gurunanak in high esteem, for he is the founding father of Sikhism. Being first of the ten Sikh gurus, his teachings have taken root in the hearts of our Sikh brothers as the foundational ideologies upon which everything is built. As Sikhs celebrate Gurunanak’s birthday, Pakistanis need to revitalize the relationship we have with our Sikh brothers by inculcating tolerance for diverse religious festivities in the minds of our own children. The more our children learn to embrace the difference, the more they will learn the strength of harmony. Moreover, as Pakistanis, it is our responsibility to let all our brethren feel safe in their own homeland, for our Quaid fought hard for a land that is free of the chaos emerging out of difference. 
While the Sikh community celebrates the birth of Gurunanak, Christians also celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. On 25th December each year, they light up their houses, place ornamented trees, and go to Church to stand in a spirit of togetherness. As they embrace each other and celebrate their day, the rest of the Pakistanis can proffer various goodwill gestures to become a part of the festivity in some way. Such gestures can enkindle the feelings of tolerance in our future generations, resulting in a state free of chaotic outbursts against people with differing religious beliefs. Such clashes can be brought to a minimum if we merely understand and respect the diversity around us, leading us to materialize Quaid’s vision of a harmonious state. 
Quaid’s vision is deep-rooted in his religious idea of evolution, which he believed was necessary for the growth of his nation. What he was looking forward to was a progressive state, not a stagnant one. If we hold ourselves back from evolution, we will remain stuck with the geographical and cultural boundaries that categorize us. As Muslims, we need to escape the classifications that keep us apart from those around us. For instance, in Pakistan, the various provinces are hubs to different cultures. The dress code serves as an example of how culture is contributing towards harmony and peace in the society. Today, the advancement in media and technology has allowed us to be a part of all the cultures from the comfort of our couches; we have learnt to appreciate the various sub-cultures within Pakistan. Christians, Hindus, Sikh and other minorities in Pakistan also embrace these cultures and proudly wear the dresses that hold cultural values for the rest of Pakistanis. As Pakistanis then, no matter what our religion, it is our primary responsibility to respect the religious and cultural values that our fellow citizens of other religions celebrate. If anything, such acceptance of tangible cultural aspects is only bringing us closer.
Ever since modernism started, the relativity in the world has increased. The world is full of opinions and the difference in opinions sometimes leads to a sense of hatred. It would be wrong to blame religion for this; only if we choose to consider our religion above every other, we are sure to nurture this sense of hatred. As responsible citizens, we should allow our differences to bring us closer by finding a point of connection. If we understand Quaid’s vision, we can understand the binding power of acceptance, and through that apprehension, we can surely bring peace and harmony in the world. HH

Email:[email protected]