چڑیل | The Witch

October 8th, 2018 / 4:49 PM

I came across a book while roaming the old bazaar. A book about witches, or better, a book on the subject of witches. The subject has existed in almost every culture, religion, and region though the ideas, beliefs, myths, and ideologies about evil under the guise of a woman differ. Even the one I was born and raised in has a lot to say about this fascinating subject. From folk tales, dramas, contemporary literature, modern writings to informal gossip, proverbs, urban myths, and those evening warnings dadi used to say when we kids wanted to go to the neighborhood park, she existed.

As I grew up, so did that churail (چڑیل). She has lost that horrifying makeover from my earliest perceptions. Maybe those perceptions came into existence from all that was spoken about her. No more exist her hard reptilian skin or her beastly nails. The glowing white or black-hole dark eyes are gone too. She doesn’t levitate in the air or walk on the ground with those inverted feet of hers. The horrifying mask of her has fallen. Out has come to the appearance I had never expected. Organic. Staple. And normal. Like any other non-witch being. Only a master with the skill and experience might be able to spot her. The fools of men would never be able to do so, even with a thousand eyes. Perhaps that is the reason why she mixes herself so well in the crowd and ordinary mortals fail to spot her truer self.

Not all definitions one starts believing in exist in the dictionary. Not all ideas one follows are taught at a school. The experience is, after all, the best teacher. It is that very same experience that helped craft definitions for hard and impossible to define concepts including those of life, death, love, divine, and the witch. Out from the hideous and centuries-old reptilian skin has come a normal and organic witch who looks like any other woman one would come across. In her definition, she has been to the universities and beyond. She has a social media presence that she uses, very aptly, for two of the most nefarious purposes – propaganda and stalking. Beyond her apparent modernist ideologies exists a centuries-old soul, if the soul has something to do with her. Her beliefs do not bend with the fevers of the present era. Men of the modern age would not stand a moment before her ancient powers.

Two of the short stories in my book are inspired by this topic. This number does not do justice as the number of witches that helped define her is higher. I know this because at least a few of them would surely read these words. Yes, this is for your eyes. You are the witch for you know what lives under your skin better than any mortal ever can. A few of the witches were kind enough. They didn’t suck blood even after biting. None of them had inverted feet even when some had feet that incited the foot fetish and helped it evolve to new heights. I always wondered what if one day she reveals her true nature and her feet bend backward, would my fetish stay the same or disappear? What if her horrendous scary skin was not what she removed but the skin was something she just wore on to mix among her human preys? A few witches kept saying that men are dogs. I am not sure of others but had I been one, I would have seen her true self. I was told dogs see what humans cannot. Maybe the inner dog found a bone in this book bazaar. I look forward to a new definition this book might help craft.

Aamir Bilal

WESTWORLD – 2

June 24th, 2018 / 4:00 AM

WestWorld’s season two comes to an end. But as it has become a successful franchise, the producers will keep skimming profit from making sequels and spinoffs. The first season Made me watch the very first movie from which the season was inspired in the first. I found the plot of the first season very similar to the original movie which had pretty lame special effects as compared to the modern time. Everybody was talking about the second season but it was not released in a way Netflix releases its Originals. All the episodes were not released on the first day which is why I was waiting for the day when the last episode gets aired and then I can watch the entire season peacefully without any breaks. 

A good idea when always leave some marks on your mind even when you don’t want any.
The similarity shown in the drama with that of religious preachings and what effect religion and Society has on the life of a person cannot be missed once you start thinking about the analogy  shown in the drama. Higher intelligent beings create a park for their own dark fantasies which they cannot satisfy easily in their everyday world. To populate that park they create inferior mechanical beings which are posted to play their own roles following repeated narratives. From ancient Greece to the Pharaohs and from the ancient recorded religions to the modern interpretations of Christianity and Islam, the two major religions in the modern day world, this similarity cannot be overlooked. Movies have talked about it, stories exist about it and now another drama which I was waiting for to end also exists about it. Some higher intelligent beings created humans but to keep a check on humans and to keep them human in the first place they introduced the concept of death. So no matter how intelligent or rich you are, in the end you die. No matter how good or bad you are, your life has an end. No matter how famous and how wanted you are, you cannot escape death. Never!

I recently came across the quotation which states that death was introduced by God to keep men from not becoming God. This triggers another that whether the first person to crack the mystery of death and to live beyond the phenomenon of death was a mere mortal who achieved eternal life and became God. But even then that does not give him the superpowers need for creating the entire universe.

There has always existed a curiosity in men from all eras about knowing the creator. Westworld makes you think about the creation of man. A similarity between those Hosts who are merely toys for the satisfaction of those who created them is a scream.  What if the person who is writing this is a toy and the person who is reading it is another and we are just following a story line created by the creator. Then we die and the next day we wake up again with no memory of who we were in our previous lives. I hope this thought and this idea pollutes your mind for the time to come and the creator doesn’t reset you before the next role. 

بھولی باتیں

June 8th, 2018 / 02:42 AM 

اپنی ڈائری میں لکھی ہوئی کچھ باتیں دوبارہ پڑھیں تو بہت حیرت ہوئی. مجھے کچھ یاد نہیں کہ یہ سب میں نے کب لکھا .لیکن جوں جوں ایک ایک لفظ میری آنکھوں کے سامنے سے گزرا ہر پرانی چیزتازہ ہوگی. لوگوں کی کی ہوئی مہربانیاں بھی. اور دوستوں کی کی ہوئی نا انصافیاں بھی . نہ جانے میں نے یہ سب کب لکھا . اتنی پرانی باتیں پڑھ کر لگتا ہے کہ شاید وہ کوئی دوسری زندگی تھی. لیکن میں تو تب بھی میں ہی تھا

301

June 2nd, 2018 / 6:51 PM
These days of Ramadan are riddled with hot and unbearably long days. These fasts are not for the faint of the heart. In this life, I don’t have the perks to take an entire week off. Still, I am VERY happy with this path of life instead of the other side. After waking up, I either have too little energy to write anything down. I feel falling short on finishing the books and graphic novels that I started. This is my 301st post that I intended to publish. I spent last week reading old parchments and collecting them all in a workflow to push them here. Internet is where I hope they outlive my biological life and their paper life. Some scribbles have become irrelevant. Some are too personal. Some are broken. Some trigger regrets. This is the price of nostalgia. It brings not only the happy feelings. This isn’t the first post that I have pushed today. Work is happening since the first of Ramadan. I hope to get this done soon. I want to place my diaries back in the locker as soon as I can. But as I look back into the older days, a time machine states to work. Three weeks of collecting notes and newspapers (for visual additions along posts) while having long summer fasts is no easy task. Reading old time is reliving in a way. You can live the same day for more than once, only if it is better documented.

Unplugged

April 14th, 2018 / 07:38 AM

It is not easy to keep an eye on someone. It is expensive and gets even more expensive as time passes. We all have our reasons, some nasty and some genuine, to keep an eye on someone. A mother keeps her eye on her children. We know why she does so but why would a clingy ex keep an eye on someone. Years ago I was searching for a place to post writings at. I came across a service that allowed posting using SMS. That service was Twitter. Over the years I found myself in a love-hate relationship with it. Eventually, I stopped using it some years ago for which I had my reasons. Luckily, a few of them are now married. Still, marriage is no guarantee to not keep an eye on someone. It itself brings a heap of responsibilities that everybody is not able to carry. It explains some of the reasons which at their core are still the same while their appearances have become motherly.

I made a new Twitter ID that was anonymous. My primary intent was to interact with new people because at times I needed new people to talk to and the only new people that I was talking to in those days were the patients. The hospital environment is no party. I used to think that a social space like Twitter however is, to some extent at least. Twitter has become a swimming pool of shit and piss but it is full of random people. That absolute random talk exists there. Even if one doesn’t want to join them, one can be a silent observer and witness a conversation fold out. I thought that if I had a new ID, that would serve as a mask. The anonymity would help me vent energy to learn something new. Even today I don’t think that what I did was religiously, morally, culturally, or socially wrong. You can be anyone on the internet. I once became a Muslim Vampire. It was short-lived. But it wasn’t wrong. The vampire did not hurt anyone. It could not be as wrong as keeping an eye on someone especially after the person you are keeping an eye on is no longer relevant to you. Maybe some people have no good left in their lives. Somehow two once-amazing ladies found out that it was me who was behind that ID. It is true that I always felt genes of a sniffer inside them but I thought that they were in lesser amount. Boy, I was wrong. 

It was not my first attempt at making an anonymous ID and using that as a mask of anonymity to interact with people. In 2017 I made one more attempt at a new online life. That made my total number of attempts reach five. Out of these five, only twice was I wearing the persona of a girl. Every time I was behind an avatar of a girl, I thought that it logically ruled me out of the possibility that someone would think that it was me. In heels and mascara, I followed boys. I stayed kind to a few of them. I became harsh to a few of them. I lured a few to their untimely regrets. One positive aspect of it was the growing number of screenshots that I took and have saved even to this date. All those screenshots were no less than inspiration for dialogues and for stories that I created at a later time. The dilemma was that I was not a girl on the inside which is why those accounts became stagnant very soon and died eventually.

One of the clingy ladies found out about one of those IDs too. Twitter’s algorithm works in some crazy way and brings disasters to the front seats. In those days I used to draw pictures after coming back from the hospital. That is why I took the mask of an illustrator in made my second last anonymous ID. But even that adventure was also short-lived. 

I know that she knows that Aamir is aware of her knowledge of Aamir’s anonymous account.

I know that she knows that Aamir is aware of her knowledge that why Aamir doesn’t use that ID anymore.

I confess that I started liking that illustrator’s identity because the main fuel for it was those pictures that I used to draw on paper and later as digital drawings. An interesting thing happened afterward. A girl interacted who allegedly lived in Rawalpindi. I never asked her what she did but she used to interact liking almost every tweet that I posted. And one day we had an interaction beyond just liking the tweets. It was like any other harmless interaction that happens on Twitter. Harmless and halal for any curious mind. The interactions never grew beyond a certain point. Then one day she asked me to draw a picture of hers like my other drawings. Even at that point, I had not told her anything about the real me. She had no idea who the actual person was behind that account. This is what I used to believe. I was wrong. Very wrong. Because later on the account of that girl ceased to exist. And even before I had started drawing her, I came to the realization that the account I was to draw a picture of never belong to a real person. The same strong feeling exists even today. That ID that interacted with my anonymous ID of illustrator was one of the many sleeper probes the two clingy women have developed over the years. My tweets kept coming after that event but something was changed. The digital existence seemed liked an emotionless space I was swimming through waiting to get fished.

The last and the final attempt that I made of living an unknown being occurred in the February of 2018. So far nobody has either claimed of discovering me or any ripples are created from my tweets. Such ripples eventually reach me and make me realize the leaks that exist. What can Aamir possibly talk about? Poetry, books, medicine, painting, movies, graphic novels, nostalgia, Punjabi music, and flirting. He would never talk about Chinese food, artificial jewelry, cruel in-laws, and political Gods. These are a few things that the sleepers use to make wild but good guesses. Very intelligent guesses. They cannot guess anymore now. A win for them is a loss too. 

Today marks the day when I have closed all the accounts that I have operated in other names. Each one of them except for my original account has been shut down. I am a lazy soul. I intend to start posting over the original account soon. But what the stalkers would guess about now? The memoirs channels @LahoreDiaries and original ones @AamirBilal @AamirAliBilal live on. I still visit my old town from time to time and see a few familiar faces who have changed with the time that has shown its colors on them. But on the inside, they are still the same.

Some sadist.

Some hopeless.

And some are still emitting only negative energy because that is the only energy they have.

It fills me with extreme happiness that an ID that I had been using since 2010 has crossed 70000 posts. I write down very honest feelings there. It is like a notebook. I didn’t expect that one day it would grow to this milestone. We know that diaries can be lost or stolen and as I had lost diaries in the past, that is why I am extremely careful with this one. I have already downloaded and printed a copy of all the tweets that I have posted on the ID from as early as 2010. I have zero following and zero followers and 70058 tweets as of this writing. 

A part of me still loves Twitter but that part of me is very afraid of what Twitter has created and also of what Twitter the people have created now. 

There are some decisions in life for which I always applauded myself. And keeping a lock on my oldest Twitter account is one of those decisions. There only I myself keep an eye on myself and it is not expensive either.

All the leaks are closed. 

Carnage

March 17, 2018 / 10:59 PM

Many memories that are connected with Lahore are quite explosive, a few of them quite literally. For every man, love is no less than an explosion. Everyone talks about how they happen to be present only a few hundred yards away from the site of unrest. In reality, no one wants to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.  I woke up to the sad news of an explosion that took the lives of 7 policemen who were stationed at the entrance of a gathering of religious fanatics. Many rituals serve to keep the lights on for a handful of mullahs and have nothing to do with religion in the first place. Seriously, if you want to preach something why not preach your religion to a person who is of the opposite belief instead of singing the same song to someone who sings the same or even might be able to sing a lot better than the mullah. Whether a person is of your belief or not, it does not justify that they are targeted in any way. The religion that was taught to me teaches tolerance at all levels. However, the religion being preached at most corners nowadays is full of hate and violence the ripples of which reached the place of gathering today. Nobody likes policemen yet those who lost their lives today are also from the same society and very human. Our hearts and prayers go out for them. As an observer and as a citizen, I cannot stop from looking at one obvious fact – why does the wave of trouble rise just before the election. Twice can be a coincidence but more than twice he is way more than a mere coincidence. But we have become so blind by our everyday tragedies and our everyday addiction that in less than 24 hours we fail to evolve ourselves as a nation instead of a mass blinded by our own tiny beliefs and led by monsters in beards. I thought that I was being biased but the feeling faded when I saw the pictures of mullahs in the next morning’s newspaper. They all belonged to different sects but they were standing unanimously and asking the people to vote for them in the upcoming elections. YouTube is an excellent repository for finding videos as proof of hate speech by many of these mullahs who for sure would never even bother to offer their prayers in the mosque of another sect. Do you think religion is that crazy to divide people? It is the people who are crazy that they let themselves be divided. This divide is the first step that leads to such explosive tragedies. Lahore bleeds again and this makes me sad. 

Djinn

March 13th, 2018 / 05:43 PM

The subject of paranormal and Ghosts have fascinated people from across cultures. I have come across a new graphic novel. That is the reason why a lot of recent commercially successful movies and dramas are of the genre of paranormal and unexplained. Events of 1947 have divided a bigger piece of land But from my perspective I think that the border is separating people who have different beliefs about ghosts. Sadly the more closer you are towards that border the more possibility of getting contaminated from the beliefs of the opposite side exist. Just look at the people from across the border. A lot of them believe that if somebody is wrongfully murdered and their Aatma comes to take revenge.  I had this question since I was a child whose mind was Somewhat damaged because of these beliefs shown in the movies. So if an Atma comes and murders a man then the Aatma of that man will continue to do the same and eventually everybody on this planet would die. That is one way of saying how the human race will perish and frankly it is a very boring possibility which I cannot believe even if I was living on the opposite side of the border. But all the great religions of the world have talked about the extension of life beyond the moment everybody believes as death. There are many books and debate about what life is and what that actually means. Nobody from the other side has ever called back and told anybody about what and how the other side looks like. Besides it is this obscurity of truth  which takes the hold of fascination of man and pushes him to write about the subject of peculiar. almost one third of the books that I have read revolve around the topics of mystery and paranormal. Many people don’t know that there is a dedicated streaming service  for horror movies only. just like Netflix, we have the matchless service called shudder. it is no less than a blessing for somebody who likes horror and paranormal. religion is something majority of people living in Pakistan are very sentimental about. a lot of people have been killed just because their religious beliefs were different.And religion talks about the world hereafter and death which is why our writers and philosophers have polluted the stories they have created with the beliefs they follow. a Pakistani writer always brings someone from the mosque to clear A Haunted House. Who would a Christian man bring in Philippines if a house is Haunted?Just like humans are divided into groups religions and cultures, so are the ghost and all the hideous monsters who appear in our books and movies. When I heard about the graphic novel Djinn, I was a little sceptical because I was raised in a country seeing people fight over language, colour and religion and I thought that the ghost mentioned in the book would be as extremist as the people who created them. Created by Jean Dufaux, Djinn is a story of a girl, Kim who travels to Istanbul in search of answers about her grandmother’s shadowy past. She soon learns that during the declining days of the Ottoman Empire, her grandmother was a harem girl, and the favorite of the Sultan. As she finds more evidence, the mystery thickens and she finds herself dealing with crooked characters and determined paramours in bookshops, baths, and bedchambers all over the ancient city. 

March 9th, 2018 / 06:11 PM

دل کو توفیق زیاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے
زہر غم بادہ چکاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

فکر تپ تپ کے نکھرتی رہے کندن کی طرح 
آگ سینے کی جواں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

دھیمی دھیمی سی نوا سلسلہ جنبان ابد 
پردۂ جاں میں نہاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

دھڑکنیں صورت الفاظ بکھرتی جائیں 
دل معانی کی زباں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

آنچ مٹی کے کھلونوں کی طرح ملتی جائے 
ذہن خوابوں سے تپاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

روزن ماہ سے پچھلے پہر اک شوخ لقا 
جانب دل نگراں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

روح شب اپنی اداؤں کی تب و تاب لیے 
خلوت آرائے بیاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

ایک سیال کسک جادہ کشائے تخلیق 
فن کی نبضوں میں رواں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے 

تجربے درد کی شبنم میں نہائیں حرمتؔ 
گل فشاں شعلۂ جاں ہو تو غزل ہوتی ہے
حرمت الااکرام
 

Inspiration

March 7th, 2018 / 06:26 PM

Art and crime. It is true that over the years my interests have cooled down. Every colour fades which is why we all become silent and more life accepting as we grow old. But it would be a crime itself if someone gives up his core interests that define him. I know friend who is a poet. She is a lot of other things too including a patriot a daughter and a doctor etc., But one defining element of your life is the ability God bestow upon her of being a poet. I tried to create equally balancing lines but I failed. That experiment made me realise that not everybody is equally God gifted. Life has made a few robbers and a few policemen. I guess that is a balance of the universe. If there is somebody who can write then there must be somebody who can draw. If there is somebody who can create music then there must be someone who can make the words wear that music. She is one such person. Poetry close out of her. Her words will surely outlive her life. But what if one day she decides that she wants to stop poetry because she feels old and faded. Now that would be a crime. Over years we all develop interests that come and go. But a few interests are the ones that develop us. And we take so dedicated steps in achieving our liking towards those interests that an observer can easily pinpoint our dedication for the interest. A few of the still surviving interests that I have is drawing. Yes it’s also a fact that I don’t upload any creation in the public domain now as much as I used to in the past. But it does not mean that I have stopped doing anything that gives me happiness drawing and photography being the two of them. My last post was about newspapers and the crime section they have. Last night and inspiration hit me very strong and hard. I came across a news which is giving me an itch to create something. In fact as I type this the rough outline of that inspiration is born on paper. People who keep their eyes and ears open for learning knowledge and inspiration and not just for stalking someone and finding out if somebody has created a Facebook or Twitter page are the people who can pass on what they have learnt. But I guess for mothers who have nothing better to do at home after changing the diapers of the kids it is easy to stalk the men they flirted with before either their child wakes up or their husband returns from work. There must be one such section in the newspapers too.

Crime

March 6th, 2018 / 05:01 PM

One of the few pages I never fail to skip in every newspaper are the crimes and court section. My daily start of the day involve five newspapers that I read. No I am not a journalist And every time I have tried to find why I am still addicted to this old medium of news in the age of Twitter especially when it’s polluted by many classless desis. Twitter was one of my most favourite social spaces but with time I have only found it to be declining and declining. The old screenshots that I have from earlier days show that Twitter used to have a better population which created a better space. It was reflected in the hashtags of that time. But stop whatever you are doing and just look at the hashtags from Pakistan now. The quality has deteriorated to a point that you would not want to waste your creative energy flowing through the sewage called Twitter. After stopping my presence and all these social places I am able to finish more than 50 books every year for the last 3 years in a row. But even after all this debacle my love for newspapers still exist. But instead of going for the more traditional medium of paper I am able to read 5 of them online and 3 as their digital editions. All these newspapers a section that I never failed to read is the crime and courts section. The people who commit crimes are humans. Everyone is quick enough to judge them and even prosecute them to the point where the are bound to spend times of your life behind bars. But nobody raises the question of wire crime was done in the first place. Every cube of news from even the remotest parts of the country that bring such news of crime always knock some portions of my mind and make me ask myself why a person who did that did so in the first place? It is very hard to look inside the heart and mind of a person. That is the reason why we judge others based on their actions and based on what they say and if the two things don’t converge, enable the person under our judgement as unworthy. Our words and our actions are just reflections of our mind and our feelings and our intentions. But sometimes no matter how much gold someone has buried inside them what the other see just me and knife made out of gold which was used to murder someone. It is not one person who gets murdered but a part of the social fabric is torn each and every time someone breaks the law. From my earliest memories to the current ones whenever I have read such crime and Courts news I feel as nothing is changed over decades. Man is as Savage as he was many years ago. Would you guarantee that a person who has been to a university or has any sort of higher formal education not capable of any crime or not capable of breaking any law? I was thinking about this when I saw a person in a very expensive car and very expensive suit driving his car in the wrong direction. He might have been a driver but I know that he was not because he is the head of the department where I work. I would suggest everyone to start reading this one section of any newspaper they can get on a daily basis. Trust me it is an inspiration to write fiction. You need truths to tell a lie. And you need to create a lie to tell a few truths.