• 22 Sep - 28 Sep, 2018
  • Ayesha Adil
  • Fiction

If Karl Marx was alive now I’m sure he would be in agreement with me that we live in a virtually created world and almost nothing is for real. And this suits capitalism. Keep them in their falsely created bubble of “perfection”. Feed them the lies. They will not revolt. They think life is too good, as it is.

In a rush to create the perfect picture, to exceed our followers on Instagram, to get more likes on Facebook, we have forgotten that there is a real, beating heart out there that is tangible, beyond our lens and imagination. There is hunger, death, disease, as well as discovery, pleasure and health out there. Just because my camera did not catch it, it doesn’t mean that it is non-existent.

Many months ago, I was reconnected with a student of mine. She had finished her Bachelor’s degree in media sciences and was currently a very successful film producer working with the most sought after production house in the Pakistani film industry. I was more than reasonably impressed, to say the least. During the course of our classes, I helped her prepare for her upcoming IELTS examination; I learnt more about her work closely.

And I found out how dark and sinister the world really is. Not that it was only through her admission that I would be aware of this reality, but being swamped in the things that are virtual and somewhat make-believe, one tends to forget.

Stories of human torture and strife awakened my senses and being a teacher, I thought of how I could make my students, my loved ones and my family understand the damage of living in a virtual world.

Just by sharing it on Instagram doesn’t make it real. Just because your post of child labour got 200 likes doesn’t make that problem go away. Did you get up and fix the issue? What did you do physically to solve the problem?

At least this young girl, my student was doing something about it. At least she was adding reality to our lives through her work creating documentaries that would change the lives of many who were suffering silently.

As I sat at my window seat this fine summer morning with dark clouds and impending rainy weather – the first in Karachi for this summer – I thought about what I could do. How could I make a difference? How could I help heal this world? Could I do something through my writing? I could definitely make a difference through my teaching.

But up until I didn’t do anything about it, no one would take me seriously.

If I didn’t talk the talk and walk the walk, then I was just as useless as the next person surfing the internet and sharing and really not making any significant change in the world.

So I went to my true and tested Google, and researched.

I put in all the key terms and found at least two noteworthy places where I knew I could make a difference. I downloaded and printed the community service form.

I filled it up. I could easily put in two to three hours each day and get my share of social service done for that day. Even if I couldn’t reach the far flung regions of the world where people needed my help, I could make a difference in the lives of people closer to home. I could finally make a difference.

I would do this for Noor. God decided that I would not be a mother just yet for a reason. Another child would receive my love and I would give them all my love and attention.

As soon as my form was filled I felt better. Tomorrow, I would register and take paying it forward to the next level. I would be helping others and that would be far more meaningful than helping to get paid at the end of the day. I already felt better.

My loss would now be another person’s gain. Depression could only be fought by my healthy choices to find ways of giving other people happiness. This was how the world works.

Get out of the virtual and start living life for heaven sakes. Even if you are simply living for your family do it with a happy outlook on life. No one’s life is perfect. We make it perfect by finding peace within ourselves and making life peaceful for everyone around us.

So once I was fixed on the outside, courtesy of my friend Saman, I could now fix myself on the inside. Another journey was about to be taken. I knew I was doing the right thing!