In Pursuit of Achieving the Legend

By: Muhammad Zaeem Zahid 

With an atmosphere of growing frustration, saturation, falling job market, and failed business ventures, Pakistan’s knowledge economy seems to have picked up a route for itself which might only lead to aggravated heights of depression, brain drain, and increased youth with great potential, but with no value. Sometimes, it feels right to say that the nation is a Xerox copy of Pakistan’s history model; a country born with sky-high morale, but with empty treasure, and circumscribed budget, just like Pakistan’s youth with big dreams, but without deep pockets, and support to achieve them, thus; it all turned them into men of lower mindset with entrapped potentials. However, Pakistan ‘Eppur si Muove’ – yet it moves, and so does the people of Pakistan, as is said by Anatol Lieven, the writer of the book, Pakistan: A Hard Country.

The colonialist parenting mindset, chanting the old mantra of becoming a doctor, an engineer, an IT professional or a government servant has belittled the vast mind frames of our children and for now, has closed the chapter of attaining the epitome of oneself.

Iqbal, a poet of the East, a social thinker and a reformer produced an epic poetic piece called, Asrar-e-Khudi, to enlighten human brains; push them beyond their capacities, guide them a pathway for self-actualization, and to unlock the legend within themselves. Unfortunately, the youth which Iqbal has referred to as his Hawks are divided into two categories. One which finds peace in driving Uber, grabbing easy jobs, making a few rupees, and collectively wasting it all in developing biceps at a local gym whilst the other lot is either depressed of not achieving their potential; has low self-esteem, is waiting for a magical door to open or is flying abroad, resulting to high levels of brain drain – The reasons are many, but majorly involves a couple of failed parenting strategies, an unorganized youth, and verily, incompetent teams of the incumbent and previous governments who have had consistently failed in achieving educational uniformity and policy reforms.

How ironical is it to see a country like Pakistan, whose founding father is Quaid-e-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, a man with political acumen, vision; and freedom of thought, yet to have people with an orthodox mindset, and limited approach toward life. Jinnah’s model of Pakistan was that of a welfare state, deeply institutionalized; and a breeding ground for people of high character, integrity, and vision – A mirror of his personality. We certainly can say that Jinnah’s pursuit to his legend is yet to be achieved, and will only be attained when Pakistanis will become a model of his might.

The colonialist parenting mindset, chanting the old mantra of becoming a doctor, an engineer, an IT professional or a government servant has belittled the vast mind frames of our children and for now, has closed the chapter of attaining the epitome of oneself. The transferred attitude of chasing the bread rather than passion has set the youth on a track of deprivation and a mediocre mindset – one of the reasons, why Pakistan has only a handful of internationally acclaimed scientists, physicists, researchers, entrepreneurs, writers, authors, diplomats, and leaders.

Also, the nation fails to have visionaries at the upper echelons of our state machinery which have only added to the misery.

A complete transformation at the individual level is required to achieve the might which our Quaid once envisaged of us.

It might not be wrong to say that our legend is locked up inside us, and winning the pursuit of it is only a ‘Change of Mindset’ away.

The writer is an Ex-GC of the Pakistan Military Academy and currently a student at the Institute of Communication Studies, PU, Lahore. He can be reached at [email protected]