Wednesday February 6th 2013
Between Us Only!
Let Us Pray!
Continuing on the series from last one of Family Pressures! This time – Let Us Pray!
The other day I got a missed phone call from one person outside Oman. I did not receive the call and it went missed. The people there have a tendency of calling you in ‘missed call’ format – and expect you to call back! I did not recognise the number – and typical I nowadays just did not bother to call back. The next day the number was still there – again missed.
Whilst I was debating with myself whether I should call back – the number rang – and this time incessantly and long! So I gathered enough courage and sort of said Hello. He replied to me in Arabic – which was really unusual – and just said – please call me back – without saying who he was!
Again I ignored the call. Then a message came through – again strangely in Arabic. Please call me. I am your Uncle… but no name given! This time I was determined and was about to switch off my mobile when as if he knew what I was asking – said who he was! A sort of uncle in ranks – being a close friend of my late father when we were there! I had no alternative – except to call – and finding already what excuse and ruse to use this time to say I had no money to send – which is the truth anyway! But people simply cannot believe that this can happen to an Author!
If you do not believe me – come to the house and see the boxes and boxes of books of books returned from the bookshops – with the tags still on! I cannot blame them – they have been extra nice and patient with me to keep on storing my books – but the time had come to part ways. The shock was ‘we are now only storing novels, magazines and sweets – because people simply do not buy now serious books – and no one (or few) buy any book that goes over OMR 5 – yes – that is the cut out rate in our literacy drive!
Anyway – poor Uncle related – asks me if I know of a certain family now in Oman? I ask him why? He retorts – do you or don’t you? Thank God to our upbringing – I keep my manners and respect on! Then he tells me! This family has ignored their relative here that is dying in hospital. He is calling out for them when he could speak! Now he is in a coma – and is not expected to recover! I have heard those stories before – and people did recover! I have also heard of the story of one old lady recovering and doing well – only to hear she died next morning!
Just imagine how God loves us! He has not given us the secret of when, how and where we will die – otherwise the world will turn turtle – upside down – and moving from one house to another in saying goodbyes! And perhaps few would even venture to build or invest? Or could it be the opposite? I do not know – I am just like you – not knowing either these secrets!
Then he says – please tell them to come and see him! Then I ask him – Uncle why they do not want to come? He goes silent – you can almost hear the debate going on! Then he goes Religious – about talking on someone – backbiting – and he is not there to defend himself!
The real reasons are not important. But let us say they may be at least 60% strong reasons for not wanting to do so! There is still 40% – being your parent – and your blood too! The East Africans say continuously too – blood is thicker than water! Would one still be very angry with your parent – that he is dying and being looked by others – even if related – but you related – and even more related – do not want still go and see him – even as he is dying – he has begged you to forgive him – and see him before he breathes his last?
Where are our hearts now – all turned to stones! I have heard of these things happening – but never realised that they are real – and can happen in real life too! That is why our Religious Leaders should talk more on our everyday lives – and its aspects – and how to live in this world with the others – even from different faiths and places too!
That family and child that ended in you being insulted by your boss – suffered all kinds of insults and ridicules – subjugation and controls – yet there is simply no guarantee or security for you in the future – especially if you become very sick – and dependent on others – as a pariah and as a parasite!
The problems that the world is facing now are this determination and will to impose one’s measurements and outlooks on others! So-called Religious people have become Politicians – and the Politicians have become religious! Everyone is correct, ethical, The other is ‘branding and name-calling’ of others – and as if ‘butter will not melt’ in themselves of their mouths fiascos – ‘angels, good and nice peoples’ – whilst others are not!
That is why we are in so much troubles and problems now! The situation has gone so bad that materialism, individualism, subjectiveness, consumerism and selfishness have stepped in. Hearts have just turned to stones – solid ones too! Including lack of care, feelings – touch and humanity even! That is why as I had said before – Let Us Pray! Amin Amen!
By Majid Al Suleimany