Friday, November 2, 2012

Prologue to 2017

2017 published by
Libredux, UK
Dear friends, 
The clouds of war linger over the East and while some people there may suspect the hand of "Western powers", the people in the "West" are themselves harrowed by myriad problems, some of which are essentially similar to those elsewhere. Is it not the time for taking the first practical step towards a meaningful action based on the certainty that regardless of the odds, the intentions may not, would not and cannot fail eventually?
It is not possible for any individual to outline the course for such action, but the first step towards discovering it collectively has to be a common understanding about our past - a simple and optimistic overview of the recent history of humanity highlighting some ideals on which nations have already agreed and may cooperate in future. 
This is the aim of this serialization of my recent publication, 2017, which will appear in weekly instalments on this blog on Fridays, so that input may be gathered from everyone as "comments", and possibly also related posts on other blogs. 
The first instalment is just an attempt to raise the question: can we reclaim the goal of "an age of plenty" for "all the nations" that was a commonly held dream in a recent past?
Khurram Ali Shafique 

On March 5 1946, British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill visited Westminster College in Missouri, USA. In his speech, which later became famous for several reasons, he said:
The United Nations Organisation must immediately begin to be equipped with an international armed force… It would nevertheless be wrong and imprudent to entrust the secret knowledge or experience of the atomic bomb, which the United States, Great Britain, and Canada now share, to the world organisation, while it is still in its infancy… Ultimately, when the essential brotherhood of man is truly embodied and expressed in a world organisation with all the necessary practical safeguards to make it effective, these powers would naturally be confided to that world organisation [i.e. the United Nations].
…If the dangers of war and tyranny are removed, there is no doubt that science and co-operation can bring in the next few years to the world, certainly in the next few decades newly taught in the sharpening school of war, an expansion of material well-being beyond anything that has yet occurred in human experience… there is no reason except human folly or sub-human crime which should deny to all the nations the inauguration and enjoyment of an age of plenty.
Churchill may have been stamping his authority as a world power rather than making a prediction, but the  dreams embedded in his words were being dreamt by so many at that time, even more ubiquitously outside the English-speaking world of the British Prime Minister. Less than seventy years later, those dreams not only seem to have failed but also to be forgotten. It was said that only folly or sub-human crime could prevent an age of plenty.

Instead, we now find ourselves to be in an age where even the remembrance of such promises seems to be sub-human folly, if not also crime. 
The promised paradise may not have happened until now, but can it be reclaimed soon? Why or why not? Post your answers as comments.
Further "reading":


  1. Greetings,

    Thank you for this post.

    I suspect that this material unity has occurred due to a deeper unity. With this in mind, I think there is every reason to believe that we can experience this unity in bigger long as we don't give up hope in believing in ourselves.

    All good wishes,


  2. The promised paradise will only appear when human being start thinking in the light of Qur'an.

    Iqbal: Hay ager koi Kharer mujh ko to is ummat say hay (Iblees ki Majlis-e-Shu'ara)

  3. The promised paradise I believe can happen as long as we co-operate with each other.To be able to achieve the dream of paradise,humanity should collectively aim for it.
    Let us think for a moment the condition of the sub-continent when it was occupied by foreign rulers. The politicians,the poets,the educated people had one aim in mind,to drive the foreigners and take back their country.It didn't happen instantly,those people had to collectively strive for it .Although it took a long time but it came to fruition.Similarly the task before us is not easy,one thing which we need to do is believe in ourselves.We God willing can get back the age of plenty and have a paradise on earth.Negative thinking can achieve nothing. If we think of ourselves and our education.We had to work for it.No one came and handed it to us,we put in the effort to get the desired results.Think about yourself,Mr.Shafique how hard you are working to be successful in achieving your goal.Insha Allah you are on the road to success.You did not get it overnight,you have devoted years to come to this point.
    How can we just sit there and hope to get paradise without working for it.It has been said,we can get anything if we try.
    A few days ago I was trying to do a translation of Tagore's poem.Everytime I typed it I was not satisfied.I trashed it five times,I wrote it in my book few more times.I was about to give up and then the poem,King Bruce Of Scotland reminded me,to try few more times,between asking for God's help and some much needed encouragement from my friend I was able to do it.I am not saying I have produced something so spectacular that Tagore himself will come down and congratulate me.I am just saying I did not give up.The task before us is million times more difficult,this is the reason we all should seriously put our heads together for paradise and we will be successful because we should not let things get any worse than it is now.