Monday, 20 February 2012

The eleventh hindrance

'May you never be tired, Uncle!' they shouted in unison as they recognised Dawa Khan. They were laughing as the greeting was given. 'May you never be weary,' responded Dawa. There was acute disappointment in his voice. He came up here every year hoping that the boys would take to wearing shalwars, signifying their having grown up, so that he could avenge his cousin. The Pastun wali, the traditional code of the Pashtuns, was clear that revenge could not be visited on women and children. The wearing of a shalwar signified a transition into manhood, yet year after year the boys cheated him by refusing to wear trousers. For all he knew, these perfidious Kakars might well refuse to wear shalwars in his lifetime.
The Wandering Falcon Jamil Ahmad
To interpret the world is to change it irrevocably. But if all interpretative acts are constitutive then they are also always instinctive, prejudiced and capricious. The resultant worlds are not foreseen or intended.