Explore the Beauty of Hinduism


g9·

·

A 12 Days Pakistan Hindu Heritage Tour

·

By WoP ResearchDesk

·

Bhakti or devotion to God and the gods of Hinduism is an integral part of the Hindu faith. It is an entire realm of knowledge and practice unto itself – ranging from the childlike wonder of the unknown and the mysterious to the deep reverence which comes with understanding of esoteric inter-workings of the three worlds.

Hinduism views existence as composed of three worlds. The First World is the physical universe; the Second World is the subtle astral or mental plane of existence in which the devas, angels and spirits live; and the Third World is the spiritual universe of the Mahadevas, “great shining beings,” the Hindu Gods.

Hinduism is the harmonious working together of these three worlds.

Lord Ganesha is such a being. He can think just as we can think. He can see and understand and make decisions – so vast in their implications and complexity that we could never comprehend them with our human faculties and understanding.

“Great indeed are the gods who have sprung out of Brahman.”
-Atharva Veda

What is a Yatra?

Yatra is self-purification. It increases one’s proximity to the Lord and therefore one is to go on a pilgrimage’. Yatra is an important part of Hindu ritual, and many annual yatras in the subcontinent are part of Hindus’ historical adherence to their faith that has existed since the birth of the human civilization to the present day, when technical superiority has enabled man to enjoy worldly comforts never seen before in history, yet at the same time has engulfed him in confusions, frustration and depressions.

In this ever going tussle between physical comforts and spiritual confusions comes the Hindu concept of yatras that relieves one of the burden of doing bad things and indulging into a world of noble, sublime deeds done in the service of the Supreme Being and its various manifestations.. As per Hindu tradition, it is desirable to perform yatra to various Hindu places. However it is not mandatory and hence yatra belongs to Kamya ritual.

Yatra and its Association with Hindu Scriptures

In the Hindu religion, a pilgrimage site is the one that oozes with spiritual and religious vibrations, special powers, knowledge and even miraculous capacities. In the subcontinent, the confluence of sacred rivers, places linked to Puranic stories like Samudra manthan (churning of the great ocean) and Hindu legends like Mahabharata and Ramayana have now become most visited pilgrimages.   

In many Hindu scriptures like Rigveda (1500 BC) wanderers are tremendously praised. Various other epics of the later age including Mahabharata (300 BC – 300 AD), Puranas (300 BC – 750 AD) and many vernacular scriptures have also mentioned particular sites that grant boons including sound health, wealth, prosperity, progeny, and moksha (salvation). Religious scriptures also guide Hindus to perform the last rites of the deceased kin in a pilgrimage site.   

The Concept of Tirth Yatra

Pilgrimages which are performed collectively in a group are called tirtha yatras. As mentioned in the Hindu Dharma Shastra, a tirth yatra is generally executed bare footed without vehicles or comforts. The concept of tirth yatra is mentioned in many scriptures like Skhanda Purana, Sthala PuranaMaha Bhagavatha, Sri Venkatachala Mahatmiya, Maha Bharatha, Brahma Purana, Matsya Purana, and Brahmanda Purana. 

As mentioned in Sthala Purana, great sages in the ancient days specially used to perform tapas (meditation) and other spiritual activities in these sacred tirth places. Hence, these sites are guided by spiritual forces that can wipe out one’s evil tendencies and take him towards the path gyan (knowledge), bhakti (devotion) and self-realization.

With this scared duty in mind, we offer our Hindu guests our immaculate arrangements to undertake the holy journeys across Pakistan. 

Day 1 Karachi
We meet you on your arrival in Karachi. Transfer to Hotel, Overnight at hotel.

Day 2 Karachi
Next day in the morning, we will begin our tour visiting the Old Shiva temple of Clifton. Then we visit the National Museum of Pakistan learning briefly about the history of the country. Later view the rich Hindu heritage gallery in the museum that houses some of the best and the oldest objects of Hindu religion.

Afternoon is free for shopping, evening dinner outside, overnight at hotel

Day 3 Karachi
Early morning at 6 a.m. will be driving to Las Bela to see the Asthan of Hinglaj Matajee, one of the most important Tirthas in the subcontinent.

Hinglaj is a holy shrine, located about 250km North West of Karachi, on the banks of River Hingol on the Makran coast of Balochistan. The holy site of pilgrimage is situated in a mountain cave “Hinglaj” on river bank of “Hinghol” at the foothills of “Kheerthar” mountains in Lyari district of the Balochistan province.

Hinglaj is one of the famous and biggest “Tirthas” of Indo Pak subcontinent. One reaches there by road via main Karachi – Quetta Highway upto Zero Point for about 75 miles and then by road towards the west via Lyari town and then towards the signal Fauji Camp Stop, crossing Aghore River – passing through Goongi River and then finally stopping at Asha Pura Sarai (inn) worship spots.

The worship spots for Ganesha, Kalika Mata, Guru Gorakh Nath Dooni, Brahma Kundh, Tir Kundh, Gurunanak Kharao, Ramjarokha Bethak, Aneel Kundh located at Chorasi Mountain, Chandra Goop, Khari river and Aghore Pooja are the main pilgrimages (Tirthasthan) for devotees of Mata Hinglaj.

Will return to Karachi late in the evening, overnight at hotel 

Day 4 Hyderabad
Early morning breakfast is at hotel. Drive to Hyderabad via Thatta, en route will visit the Chaukundi necropolis from 15th to 18th century rectangular shaped Muslim graves depicting beautiful geometrical, floral & pictorial designs carved in sandstone. Men’s graves have intricately designed turbans on top and those of ladies have jewelry carved on them.

We shall then visit Banbhore where we will see the temple of Daibal. Banbhore was the first city from where Arabs first entered India. Its also known as the gateway of Islam.

Later will be driving onward to Makli, to watch the famous architecture of the mausoleums, which are similar to the architecture of Fatehpur Sikri. We will also visit a Hindu temple said to be from early 12th century. Later shall visit Shahjehan Mosque built 2 years after Taj Mahal by Shahjehan. Drive back to Hyderabad. Overnight at hotel. 

Day 5 Hyderabad
Full day tour of Hyderabad, visit the famous Pakka Qila and Shahi bazaar and also visit the Museum of Sindhology & Museum of Sindh both of which present excellent ethnological galleries. Overnight at hotel.

Day 6 Larkana
Today we will drive along the west bank of the River Indus to Larkana, en-route we will visit the Shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar and Manchar lake. Overnight at hotel. 

Day 7 Sukkur
Early morning Drive to visit the Moen Jo daro Museum, later visit area rich residential are of Moen Jo daro both sites will be visited. We will then move on to the Archeological Site museum which carries artifacts from the Stone Age to pre-Moen Jo daro culture to peak Moen Jo Daro period. .

Later will be driving to Sukkur where boats will be ready to take us to the island of Sadh Belo in River Indus. The temple is built at the point where Baba Bankhandi,

(a sadhu who left the worldly luxuries and made “Bun” or Jungle his abode). It is said that Mata Sarsawai had appeared here to give her Darshan to the Sadhu and still pays visits.

We will see different aspects of this temple and Hindus can do the rituals. Special permission will be arranged from The Government of Sindh for this. Then visit the Town of Sukkur Overnight at hotel.

Day 8 Multan
Today we will drive to Multan. Arrive in Multan in the evening. Overnight at hotel 

Day 9 Lahore
Early Breakfast at hotel. Drive to Lahore, en route visit Harrppa the sister city of Mohen Jo Daro. Harrappa was excavated in 1911 and a huge mass of artifacts from the Indus civilization was found here. You will see the Harrappa site and museum in detail. Evening Special Dinner at the famous food street in Lahore, Overnight at hotel 

Day 10 Lahore 
Full day tour of Lahore, visit Lahore Fort, witness the Hindu influence on the architecture of Akbar, Visit the Sikh Gallery to see the articles from Raja Ranjeet Singh period and the majestic Badshahi mosque. . Evening Drive to Wahgah to witness the flag ceremony at the Pak-India border. Overnight at hotel 

Day 11 Lahore 
Full day visit & a full day Excursion to Chakwal to see the temple of Katasaraj. Overnight at hotel (Lahore).
Day 12 Airport
Morning drive to Wagah border for journey back into India/air port.

Included in tour package:

  • AC transportation
  • Hotel 
  • Meals (vegetarian)

Package Price per person:

  • Pak Rs. 1, 15,000, 00 (1 lakh & 15 thousand only)
  • Air tickets Lahore–Karachi–Lahore not included.

Related Articles: 

1. I too want to go on Hinglaj  2. Traveling through Pakistan – The Katas Raj Temple 3. KATAS – A Paradise Lost and a Paradise Regained! 4. Hinglaj, the Hindu holy shrine in Hingol, Balochistan
Advertisements

Reminiscences of a visit to Bhaun (2 /2)


13581119

·
 About 12 kms south of Chakwal lies the historical town of Bhaun, formerly known as Bhavan, famous for its splendid temples, highly-revered shrines and Havelis with exquisitely carved doors and remarkably built wooden balconies indicating the owners’ affluence and aesthetic sense.
The Hindus predominantly concentrated the town before partition. But, later they migrated to India, while Muslim immigrants from India settled in their Havelis and mansions.
Bhaun was a very important trade centre and the Hindus ruled the roost in this town. They left behind a host of temples and Havelis, having a simple architecture, which was a blend of local and Kashmiri style, with very little ornamentation. These temples are different from those at Ketas and Malot that have Kashmiri style of architecture and are lavishly ornamented. Some of the temples at Bhaun are adorned with paintings, while some are immensely towering and conspicuous from a distance.

·

THE TEMPLE TOWN BHAUN

·

Note for WoP readers: The following write up is based on content taken from the worldwide web (mainly the source has been great-chakwal.blogspot.com). Neither do I own this article nor do I vouch for its authenticity. Although I tried my level best to get some authentic info on Bhaun and its history, its heritage, yet I couldn’t find much on this subject.

I will, however, update all readers of this blog any further authentic info on Bhaun (whenever am able to get it) with valid references and images if possible. (Nayyar).

*****

Bhaun is small, yet an enthralling place, with many of the most attractive and unchanged spots in the town, and these spots can be explored while walking. As you take a step further, by turn of every street, every pathway there are so many tiny lanes and narrow alleyways, each ready to divulge its history to you, its magnificent past, its meteoric rise and its gradual fall.

sztmad

Marble Plate fixed at the former Arya Samaj Bhaun which is now a Govt Primary School.

In pre-partition days Bhaun used to be a village, inhabited mainly by the Sikhs and the Hindus. The village had 5 Mandirs 2 Gurdwaras, 5 water ponds and many many other points sacred to the Hindus.

4643627655_0d4876efbe_b

But the history of the erstwhile tiny village of Bhaun cannot be completed without a mention of Bhaun’s great son Mohan Singh Oberoi.  Oberoi was born here and when he was a mere six months old babe, his father, a contractor in Peshawar, died― leaving his mother with few resources. After attending school in his village and nearby Rawalpindi, he passed the Intermediate Examination in Lahore, but was unable to continue attending classes because a lack of finances.

1606869_10202366073126143_405849362_n

Instead, he learned typing and shorthand and, in 1922 started his hotel career with an income as low as Rs50 as a billing clerk at Shimla’s the Cecil.

While working there, within two years he motivated and helped Cecil’s manager, Ernest Clarke in purchasing the Carlton Hotel (renamed Clarkes) in Shimla. Ten years later in 1934, upon Clarke’s retirement, he gathered all the family resources to purchase the same hotel.  

He was a quick learner and took many additional responsibilities. The manager of Cecil, Mr. Clarke and his wife Gertrude took a great liking to the honesty of a hardworking young Mohan Singh Oberoi and decided to hand over the responsibility of managing Hotel Carlton now renamed as Clarkes to this impressive young man.

During their six months absence, M. S. Oberoi doubled up the occupancy to eighty percent which gave them enough reason to offer the hotel – on a decided amount to him as they wanted to return to England.

After continuous hard work for five years, on 14 August 1934, Oberoi became the sole and absolute owner of Hotel Carlton, Shimla. He subsequently named it after his boss Mr. Ernest Clarke. Young Oberoi could not have hoped for a better present at his thirty fourth birthday.

After India’s independence, Oberoi built additional hotels, while expanding his base holdings.

 In 1948, he established East India Hotels, now known as EIH Ltd., whose first acquisition was the Oberoi Grand Hotel in Calcutta. In April 1955 he was elected President of the Federation of Hotel and Restaurant Associations of India, and in 1960 was named President of Honour of the Federation for life.

oberoigrandhotelkolkata_gobeirne

 Oberoi also participated in legislative politics by winning elections to India’s Rajya Sabha for two terms, from April 1962 to March 1968 and from April 1972 to April 1978. He was elected to the fourth Lok Sabha (Lower House) in April 1968, and remained a Member of that House till December 1970.

In 1965, in partnership with international hotel chains, he opened the Oberoi Intercontinental in Delhi, India’s first modern five-star, world-class hotel.

Calling Rai Bahadur M.S. Oberoi, a ‘great entrepreneur’, president of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) said, “He was a living legend and an extraordinary titan in his field. An icon, an institution and an inspiration to first generation entrepreneurs. He built his empire brick by brick. Apart from a great charming personality, he commanded a lot of respect.”

 Back to Bhaun’s not that well recorded history:

In his booklet ‘An Historical Introduction of the Bhaun Town’, Safdar Faizi writes, “General Cunningham visited Bhaun during 1870-80 after which he compiled a report for the Archeological Survey of India. During his visit to the town, he recovered 285 old coins which provided the evidence that the town had existed since many centuries before. General Cunningham also wrote in his report that Bhaun was on the way when you enter Punjab from the northern side i.e. from Attock District and then after crossing River Sawan in Neela, you reach Bhaun and then to Bhera.

During British rule and prior to the creation of Pakistan in 1947, the majority of the population in Bhaun were Muslims, yet the economic and social hold was in the hands of the Hindus. There are still ten Hindu temples in the town which remind us of the town’s Hindu past.

Pre-partition the town was centre of economic activities and though not declared yet as a Mandi. It was  a big trading centre for Dhan, Vanhar and Soon areas. A special judge with the powers of Magistrate used to hold his court in Bhaun and even it was functioning in 1857.

In an article titled “Bhaun losing its architectural heritage” published in the daily Dawn dated 29 Jul 2003, Zulfiqar Ali Kalhoro writes, “About 12 kms south of Chakwal lies the historical town of Bhaun, formerly known as Bhavan, famous for its splendid temples, highly-revered shrines and Havelis with exquisitely carved doors and remarkably built wooden balconies indicating the owners’ affluence and aesthetic.

In 1947, the Hindus left the town leaving behind a host of temples and mansions (Havelis), having an architecture which is a blend of local and Kashmiri style, with very little ornamentation. The temples are different from those at Ketas and Malot which are lavishly ornamented. Yet some of these are adorned with paintings, while some are immensely towering and conspicuous from a distance.

Due to neglect by the authorities as well as by the general public all the temples, the gems of our heritage, are in shambles. Two temples in Chaddran Mohalla are in dilapidated condition. In one of the temples, Kashmiri immigrants are living. They have damaged the temple by defacing some of the figures depicted on the walls, while its western wall has caved in. Then a nearby temple is being used as a store where household belongings are kept.

A furlong or so from these temples is the temple of Madho Sain Kalan, which is fast coming apart. Ironically, the temple has been turned into a cattle pen. As soon as you enter the temple, you find cows, buffaloes and goats in its courtyard. One also finds heaps of haystacks stored for the livestock. Regretfully the people have taken away the ornately carved door of the temple.

Apart from the temple of Madho Sain Kalan, two temples are located in Madho Wali Ban (Talaab). These were damaged after the Babri Mosque incident. Traces of the paintings can still be found on both temples. In addition to these, there are more than four temples still in and around Bhaun.

There is a dire need that the authorities concerned make concerted efforts to save these fabulous pieces of architecture from further decay. The restoration of these temples and Havelis’ will help our younger generation to see the past glory of our Hindu heritage in Pakistan.

If the authorities concerned do take some pains, they can also make this place a stopover for tourists heading towards Kallar Kahar and Ketas.

Tourism has attained the status of an industry abroad, and countries chalk out strategies for its promotion. In some very prominent countries in western Europe such as Austria, Switzerland and Italy, their economies depend on tourism. But, unfortunately, it is the most neglected sector in our country. 

In another article Mr Kalhoro writes:

TEMPLES TELL A TALE OF NEGLECT

Two temples situated at Madh Wali Ban (pond) in Bhaun, are attributed to Shri Hanuman, a Hindu monkey god. The temple on the bank of the pond is huge and fast coming apart. It is bigger than the nearby temple, which lies behind the government primary school. Both temples were built in 1894.

According to eminent expert Prof Anwar Beg Awan, the temples were built in the same period Ram Das built a temple in Chddaran Mohalla. The temple that is more towering was greatly damaged by fanatics after the Babri Mosque incident. It was noted for its paintings, which were destroyed when the people set it on fire. Exteriorly, panels were created on each side to depict a pair of fish, which is the special characteristic of the Hanuman temples. The traces of the paintings on the each side are still visible.

According to Prof Awan, there also exited a complex, which could not withstand the vagaries of the weather. The complex included the houses of the caretaker of temple and of a Sadhu. There was also a Mahman khana (guest house) attached to the temple.

Apart from this temple, there lies another temple behind the government primary school. Though small in size, it is beautifully built, but is in a derelict condition. This temple also contains separate panels created for depicting a pair of fish on each of its sides. From inside, it is decorated with paintings, some of which depict Hanuman with his disciples.

A closer look at the paintings shows repeated depiction of peacock and parrot. On one of the panels, parrots are seen drinking water. On the other panel, one can see Hanuman playing Sitar that demonstrates his keen interest in the music. On the same panel, one finds Hanuman sailing with his adherents. Another one shows peacocks.

According to Prof Awan, the distinctive features of the Hanuman paintings are the depictions of the peacocks, parrots, lions and fish that could be found on all the temples located in Bhaun. It is also interesting to find the illustration of the palm date tree. Barring the figurative representation, the temple also features floral design. (published in the daily Dawn dtd 25-08-03)

In another article published on Sep 27, 2009 (Name of the author could not be traced, however, his email address is mentioned at the end. It is titled “Bhaun’s fading vestiges of its Hindu Past”. Bhaun formerly known as Bhavan (meaning house or mansion) was predominantly a Hindu town before Partition. Its temples, Gurdwaras, shrines and havelis with their exquisite doors and wooden balconies still bear testimony to its religious past.

However, our Muslim brothers who moved in after the Hindus left, have  tried to disown our country’s prestigious heritage by defacing and damaging the vestiges of a past which is part of our history.

Bhaun, 12 kilometers south of Chakwal, used to be a very important mandi (market) town dominated by the Hindus. They built temples and havelis of great architectural value presenting a blend of local and Kashmiri style, with very little graphic decoration. These temples are different from those at Ketas and Malot that in pure Kashmiri style are rich in adornment. Some of the temples are adorned with paintings.

There are 10 temples in and around the town of which eight are attributed to Hanuman, a Hindu god. Two temples located in Chaddran Mohalla date back to 1894 and are in a shambles. One of the temples, built by Ram Das, is now occupied by Kashmiri immigrants who have defaced some of the figure paintings on the walls. Its western wall has caved in. The facade of the temple bears the image of Hanuman. A nearby temple is being used as a store where household belongings are kept. A furlong or so from these temples is the Madh Sain Lokan temple that is in a poor condition. Apart from these, there are two temples at Madh Wali Ban, both devoted to Hanuman. One of them is a very tall one.

When the Babri Mosque was felled by Hindu fanatics, our local fanatics set it on fire damaging its painted interior completely. The temple used to be famous for its paintings. On its exterior panels depictions of a pair of fish showed its Vishnuite attributes. The traces of paintings on each side are still visible. There used to be a wall around it that was also destroyed by people venting their anger on brick and mortar. There is another temple behind the government primary school. Though small in size, it is beautifully built but, like the temples discussed above, is in a poor condition. It contains separate panels created for depicting a pair of fish on each of its sides. On the inside, it is decorated with paintings, some of which depict Hanuman with his disciples.

A closer look at the paintings reveals repeated depiction of peacocks and parrots. On one of the panels, parrots are seen drinking water. On the other panel, one can see Hanuman playing the sitar and sailing with his disciples. It is also interesting to find the illustration of the date palm tree, an essentially Muslim feature. These temples also have floral designs. Like the temples, the havelis and mansions belonging to the Sikh and Hindu communities still dominate the landscape of the town.

Almost every narrow alley in the town boasts of buildings of historical significance. One such building near the Qazian Wali Mosque, locally known as Marri, is noted for its elegant balconies. This three-storey building was built by Rai Bahadur Sardar Jai Singh who worked as a contractor in Iranian city Zahidan during the rule of Mohammed Reza Shah Pahlavi I from 1925 to 1941. One can safely say that it could have been built in 1930. Architecturally, the building is divided into three storeys or parts, of which the ground floor was used as veranda with a row of richly carved columns running all around it. In front of the veranda there is a courtyard mainly used by women for dishwashing, laundry and drying grain? Men used it as a place for sleeping in dry weather.

The first floor was reserved for junior members of the family and some visitors. The second floor was used by the senior members of the family or by married couples, while the third floor was occasionally used whenever there was a long spell of dry weather. It had a pavilion for enjoying the evening breeze. Marri housed a total of 14 small and big rooms, some of which were discreetly decorated. The remarkable feature of Marri was its balconies, one each on the western and southern faces.

In addition to this magnificent structure, there lies another one behind the Ram Das temple in Chaddran Mohalla known as Janj Ghar (a building reserved for marriage gatherings). A person called Bikarma Jeet built it in the early 19th century. Janj Ghar had about 18 rooms. There is a need to preserve and renovate these fading vestiges of glorious past.

The writer is Staff Anthropologist at PIDE and Ph.D Scholar at Taxila Institute of Asian Civilizations, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. He may be contacted at: zulfi04@hotmail.com published in the daily Dawn dated September 27, 2009 (END of article).

According to an old historical treatise named Chach Nama originally written in Arabic and then translated into English, Sindhi and Urdu languages, it is believed that this town is named after Raja Bhaun, who was the grandson of Raja Dahir, who was defeated by Muhammad Bin Qasim in Sindh. Name of the son of Raja Dahir was Jai Sina. After death and defeat of his father he fled to Kashmir with his family.

He was a relative of Raja of Kashmir whose name was Muktapida (Lalitaditya I) the younger brother of Chandrapida and Tarapida. Datt (as mentioned in the book Rajatarangini on Kashmir history by Pundit Kalhana. There he complained to the Kashmir Raja about severe cold unbearable to the Sindhis. So the King gave him a Jagir in area of lower Kashmir. At that time lower Kashmir included the present Rawalpindi Division of Punjab as well..

From Kashmir Jai Sina son of Raja Dahir came to Dhani area with his family and other relatives including  one Raja Bhaun. The book “Ratta Romal by Safdar Faizi” describes the whole detail of that event which also includes other important historical events of the town i.e. about the reigns of Mehmood Ghaznavi, Jalal-ud-Din Khawarzam Shah, Shamas-ud-Din Altamash and Saif-ud-Din Hassan Qarlugh.

Bhaun remained the capital of seven kings of Qarlagh dynasty. Qarlagh sultans (Kings) also built here a strong fort. Until the end of Sikh regime that fort remained functioning and till date traces of the fort walls can be found.

The great Sikh ruler Raja Ranjeet Singh is reported to have come to Bhaun during 1810. Here he made some arrangements for collection of revenues from Dhani area Chaudhries. He also got a good lot of horses.

During Sikh period, several names of the Muslim scholars are found who belonged to Bhaun. One of them was Qazi Mohzam, a great Muffassir of the Holy Quran. Unfortunately his book could not be preserved, for in an incident of fire caused by the Sikhs, the holy book in Persian was burnt.

··Previous: Reminiscences of a visit to Bhaun 1/2

Related Articles:
1. Traveling through Pakistan – The Katas Raj Temple 2. KATAS – A Paradise Lost and a Paradise Regained! 3. Hinglaj, the Hindu holy shrine in Hingol, Balochistan

·YOUR COMMENT IS IMPORTANT

DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF YOUR COMMENT

·We at Wonders of Pakistan use copyrighted material the use of which may not have always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We make such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” only. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.

Published in: on 19/01/2017 at 7:31 pm  Leave a Comment  

‘I am sorry, O Prophet…’


·

NOTORIOUS DUTCH ISLAMOPHOBE 

EMBRACES ISLAM

·

BY MAJED AL-SUGAIRI

·

Former Dutch Islamophobe and a former leading member of far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders’ party Arnoud Van Doorn visited the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah to pray and say sorry for becoming part of a blasphemous film.

Doorn was among the Freedom Party leaders who produced the blasphemous film, Fitna. Last month he reverted to Islam after an extensive study about the religion and the Prophet (peace be upon him).

He said that the worldwide outrage against the film made him study about the Prophet (pbuh) and that eventually led to his conversion.

He headed for Makkah to perform Umrah after meeting the two imams of the Prophet’s Mosque, Sheikh Ali Al-Hudaifi and Sheikh Salah Al-Badar, who enlightened him on how to lead the life of a good Muslim and confront challenges facing Islam in the West.

A member of the Dutch parliament and The Hague City Council, Doorn announced his decision to accept Islam on his Twitter profile. He also posted a tweet in Arabic declaring that “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his Prophet.

To continue reading, visit : http://wondersofpakistan.com/?p=1440

Wonders of Pakistan supports freedom of expression and this commitment extends to our readers as well. Constraints however, apply in case of a violation of WoP Comments Policy. We also moderate hate speech, libel and gratuitous insults.
Published in: on 25/04/2013 at 5:41 pm  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , ,

Why I converted to Islam


The Swiss minaret controversy began in a small municipality in the northern part of Switzerland in 2005. The contention involved the Turkish Cultural Association in Wangen bei Olten, which applied for a construction permit to erect a 6-metre-high minaret on the roof of its Islamic community centre. The project faced opposition from surrounding residents, who had formed a group to prevent the tower’s erection. The 6-metre (20 ft)-high minaret was eventually erected in July 2009.
·

BY NAYYAR HASHMEY

·

Some years ago there were news that a Swiss politician Daniel Streich, a former member of the Swiss People’s Party, a Protestant by confession converted to Catholicism and then to Islam. Consequetly Streich left his party which was spearheading the campaign to impose a national ban on minarets in Switzerland.

Streich was a founding member and president of the Gruyères section of the party from 2003 to 2007. His embraced Islam in 2005, before which he was a devout Catholic. On his conversion to Islam said Streich “my religion offeres me logical answers to important life questions”.

daniel streich

In 2007 Streich stated that he had “many Muslim friends” yet did not make public his personal conversion to Islam until early November 2009, when he left the Swiss People’s Party. He then participated in setting up the Conservative Democratic Party cantonal section.

The ban on the construction of minarets in Switzerland has had a very interesting side story. Streich, a member of the SPP, a party that pushed for the minaret ban, announced that their cantonal head had become a Muslim. Outside of Switzerland, the mainstream media ignored this. Muslims around the world, however, picked up on the story, circulating it on blogs and on Facebook.

To continue reading, visit :http://wondersofpakistan.com/?p=1477

Wonders of Pakistan supports freedom of expression and this commitment extends to our readers as well. Constraints however, apply in case of a violation of WoP Comments Policy. We also moderate hate speech, libel and gratuitous insults.

Bishop Anthony Theodore Lobo


Bishop Anthony Theodore Lobo became Bishop of Islamabad-Rawalpindi in 1993. After a distinguished academic career at the Universities of Karachi, Harvard and Paris he decided to devote his entire life to improve the quality of education in Pakistan.
At a very young age he was appointed as the principal of St. Lawrence’s Boys School in Karachi and later took charge of the St. Patrick’s High School in the same city. He was the founder of the St. Michael’s Convent School also and an author of many books.
·

BISHOP LOBO, A GREAT SON OF PAKISTAN, LEAVES FOR HEAVENLY ABODE

·

by Brig Samson S Sharaf

·

Bishop Anthony Theodore Lobo, Bishop Emeritus of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rawalpindi passed away in the early hours of 18 February 2013. He fought his last battle of prolonged illness lasting over five years in spirituality, meditation, reading, writing and serving his community.

He was a Pakistani through thick and thin and a national icon the people must know about.

On his death, Imran Khan paid glowing tributes to him and his services to Pakistan.

The late Bishop was a reputed and respected figure. His passion, commitments and educational excellence cut across religious divides in Pakistan. From a young priest in charge of St. Patrick’s High School Karachi he had the singular honour of being on the senate of four National Universities ie Forman Christian College University Lahore, Kinnaird College University Lahore, Shah Abdul Latif University Khairpur and Sindh University Jamshoro. He leaves behind a legacy of highly accomplished students and admirers that can make any Pakistani proud. His services in the field of education were recognised by the President of Pakistan who conferred on him the President’s “Pride of Performance” Award in 1990. (more…)

%d bloggers like this: