THE VAMPIRE LADY

“Her soul was too deep to explore by those who always swam in the shallow end.”

            It is said that women are the most beautiful creatures of this world. And these beautiful creatures are often seen beautifying themselves even more. But what if they are seen modifying themselves in unconventional ways?

This reminded me of a sentence I read somewhere; “We are all stories in the end!”

            The only difference is, some of us remain unheard, unseen & unknown for life. While few of us decide to be the story’s hero & end up being known for the attempt of surviving through the odds!

            The Vampire Lady is one such lady who decided to be her own hero. Maria Jose Cristerna Mendez is a Mexican lady who is famous for the most tattoos & body modifications. She holds the Guinness World Record for female with the most tattoos & body modifications. She has 49 body modifications which almost covers more than 90% of her body with tattoos, ink, piercings & titanium horns & fangs implants. Maria is a 36 years old, former lawyer, mother of 4 children, belonging from a Christian Catholic family, currently a professional video jockey, also a lecturer in women’s support group, awareness raiser, speaker & helper against domestic violence.


Before & After
Before & After

            The question arises, why would a woman modify or recreate herself like that? There must be something that must be going on in her mind, something that made her to be like that. People know her for her terrifying looks that are associated with a devil or vampire. But few people know what made her like that… An abusive & drug addict life partner!

            Maria lived for 10 years with an abusive & drug addicted husband until she found the courage to take their 4 children & leave him. The 10 years or living with a mentally & physically abusing person changed her internally & her perspective for self & the world. Dwelling in a society which is known for strong gang culture & different sorts of abuse on women, she spent a long time period with a spouse who was abusive & violent, felt helpless but finally build courage to help herself & others going through the same situation.  According to her, the piercing & tattoos is a way of expressing herself which symbolizes the 10 years of suffering & a different way of recovering from the trauma of abuse.

             In spite of her looks, even today she says that she is a traditional woman like the other who look after her family. Currently she is married to another man namely David who has accepted her the way she is. They have been living together for 10 years together now. He has also helped Maria in opening & managing the tattoo parlour & a boutique offering Goth clothing & accessories. Maria is now spending a normal life just like other woman. She cooks, takes care of her family & does whatever she likes.

            Women belonging from any race, society or culture is directly or indirectly affected by their husband’s behaviour. This is not only seen in the Asian culture where women are considered to be more dependent on their spouse, but almost in every race, religion, culture, etc. Marriage is a sacred relation which bonds two different people in beautiful threads of respect, love, care & trust. If it is mishandled things fall apart, either of the partner or both maybe adversely effected by it. It was a man who changed her perspective for her own self, life & the world around her. It is a man who is supporting her in recovering from the trauma, apart from her own will power. It takes a real man to realize that he made a mistake but an even better one to try to make things right.  But most importantly for a woman her entire life can change. The society ends up judging & pointing out the woman which makes it even harder for a woman to move on. This is just one story that is bought forward, but there millions of real life stories where women have been living in abusive relationships. But there are few people who choose to be their own hero. But the fact is that every tragic incident or even a moment of suffering leaves a huge impact on the person. This is more prominently seen in case of women. Maria Jose Christine is just one example. There are many unheard & unseen examples that we do not know about. And we should be respecting the people who fight for themselves in spite of all odds without judging them, especially in case of women.

“I like stories where women save themselves!”

I WANT TO DO SOMETHING… BUT WHAT SHOULD I DO? (5 STEPS TO SET & ACHIEVE A GOAL)


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I see youngsters saying “I want to do something… But what should I do?” It is good to do something productive apart from your field of study & professional career, using the talents & skills you possess. Once you realize you have the will to do something on your own, you can actually do anything you want. All you need is a little motivation & determination. When you have the talent to do something, you can use it to do several different productive things. But you need to sit & talk to yourself, that what you are good at. You can have a talk with a friend who understands you & has the same interests as you. This will help you come up with several different ideas. You need to figure out what is manageable & best for you.

            When it comes to achieving your goals & doing something, everything might sound tough & sometimes unrealistic. In our daily lives, we end up procrastinating due to work load, which makes it even harder to achieve our goals & we end up believing we cannot do it.

  1. You need to sit down & list a couple of things that you would love to do. How? Why? May be the skills you have learnt up till now in your life. Once you figure out that you could enjoy doing every day.

            Sit down take some time. Think… Yes I am a good artist, photographer, singer, writer or think of skills like that. Once you have certain things that you can do.

  1. Ask yourself, what you can envision yourself doing everyday if money was no option. For me, I chose writing. I questioned myself; “Can I write on different topics every day, if money was no option?” Oh yes, absolutely. I love writing. I love to express my viewpoint. I love to spread positivity with my words around. So this is an important part. What you can actually see yourself doing every single day, all the time that personally makes you happy. It’s like figuring out what you are good at & then taking that thing along with you.

            You learn little lessons & skills from things you do on day to day basis in life. And you never know those little things can turn out being your entire career.

  1. There are things that stops you from doing what you want to do. Whether it’s your home life or lack of finances or anything. There is always something between you & your goal but you can’t let it stop you from accomplishing your goals. Initially at younger age everyone has money problems.

            You can actually sit down & think about things that are keeping you from your goals. You need to list down & understand the things that are stopping you from achieving your goal. This way it is easier to have a brighter side about all the barriers & you can’t let them stop you. Because there is always something bad & you need to find good from that & once you stay focused on something that you really enjoy, then good will come from it. Because once you do what your heart wants you to do, you will realize how easier it is to be happy. Also it won’t be work, it will be something you’ll enjoy doing.

  1. Things that you can change in your own personal life that will help you achieve your goals. For instance, what can you do yourself to achieve your goal? You don’t have to rely on other people, you don’t have to blame other people for anything. You have to know for yourself that what you can change, because change is good & obviously when you want to achieve something, a change is necessary. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over & over again & expecting different results. You have to avoid insanity, bring change.

            People talk about things, people talk about change over & over again. It’s easy to talk about things over & over again but it’s actually hard to actually change, bring a change & accept the change. When it actually comes to doing something besides saying it. There is never any action. That is bad. Because if you want to change you need to take an action for that.

  1. You need to set time for yourself that how long is it going to take to achieve your goal? If you don’t set a time you might not be able to do as good as you could. You keep putting it off & then nothing really happens. For setting a goal, time frame is really important. Think about the times when you talked about something you have already achieved now. You must have an estimated time frame in your mind that how long the things will take to work. It’s scary to bump into something all of a sudden without preparing yourself completely. You need time to set up things & make them work the way you want. It’s important to have a time frame because it will help you to prioritize things & stay organized & you need to remember that what you need to achieve the goal & what you need to stay away from.

            It is going to be really hard in the beginning. It might take days, months or years. You might even feel that it is really going nowhere but as long as you don’t lose sight of what is important. You need to stay positive & be able to envision it for yourself.

            Like 5 years from now you want to picture yourself, that what you want to do. Then you need not to lose sight of that & it will happen.

            Don’t tell yourself that you will try to do it. But challenge yourself to do it. Tell yourself you can actually do it. If you are giving yourself the option to not succeed at it then you are already setting yourself for the failure. Tell yourself you can do it & you are really going to do it. Success & happiness can only come from that.

            You decide to do something & after couple of weeks or months you are not happy with it. Guess what? You tried it. Now you can add something to the list of things you tried. And at this point you don’t have to be demotivated. You have to start it over again or maybe start with something new.

            You need something to be happy about & to have something you can spend your time on. There is already a lot of nonsense in the world & you need to focus on what matters. It is important to be surrounded by people who are as motivated as you are. Because negative people put you down whereas positive & motivated people show you a clear picture of your own path. And if you don’t have such friends find people who share same interests as yours, motivate them & they will be your motivation. But remember one thing, in the end… You are your own motivation!

FUN WAYS TO STAY POSITIVE – DIY


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Here we bring the Tumblr inspired do it yourself way to stay positive. All you need to do is, create a box storage jar where if something good happens to you, you can write it down & put it in. That way at the end of the year you can open it up & see all the good things that happened to you. You can get a jar, shoe box, tissue box or use anything you like. Get some stickers that you like or make your own cute little quote stickers to stick on the jar. The reason for decorating the jar is to make it look pretty & that every time you look at it, it will put you in a good mood.

            The reason for doing this is a lot of good things happen & you are excited about it & happy about life. And then one bad thing happens & it often shuts you down & descends your mood & you tend to forget all the good things that happened to you.

            When something good happens to you, you can quickly write it down & put it in the jar. If you are having a harder time & you want to go from a month to month you can even do that.


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            The best way to change your mood during bad times is to do stuff that reminds you of all the good old days that you have had. Doing this can actually help you to remember & have your memories saved forever. It is a way to remind you that bad things happen to everyone. Times can be really really hard. That there is good & little good things do matter the most.

“Enjoy the little things in life… For one day you’ll look back & realize they were big things.”


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            Not just this… You can even write your dreams, goals & wishes. So that months from now when you open the jar/box you should know that back in the days “I wanted to do this with my life & I have accomplished … things.” Your accomplishments will obviously make you happy.


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            Everyone has ups & downs in their lives. If you try to focus on what’s positive in your life & what’s good in your life you will be okay. Anyone who needs more positivity in their life or something that may help to keep their mind off should definitely do this.

            You don’t need to wait the whole year. You can even stick to it completely & try for 2-3 weeks. Write about the good things that happened to you & if you are having a bad day just open the jar & look at all the positive things & this will help bring a smile to your face & will make you bad day better.

Remember, if you lead out positive energy then positive things will happen to you. If you are not happy the way your life is going then be sure it’s time to make some changes. This little jar won’t solve the world’s problems but if this can help you be a better person then surely go for it. Because we need to start from ourselves.

“May you be happy always & enjoy the little things!”

MUSTAFA RAZA SHAIKH


Mustafa Raza Shaikh (1994 – Forever)

Mustafa Raza Shaikh, 22 years old, lived a life for those in need, smiled to cheer up gloomy faces, a brave & inspiring human being. Many of you may not know him but you must have heard about him. He was not one of those famous ones he is certainly one of those who are the most missed ones. If you meet the people who knew him, they would tell you how he touched them all. People who have known him for years or have had just a couple of minutes interaction, he won them all, with his intriguing personality & honest fiber. His looks, his words, his actions were spellbound. One cannot expect such wisdom & salt from such a tender age.

Mustafa Raza Shaikh, an amazing soul, an enduring personality, a born leader was born on 10th January 1994. Since childhood Mustafa decided to be the driver of his life rather than a passenger who gives control of his decisions into someone else’s hands, be it a small pick or a life changing verdict. When he was 8 years old, he told his father that he wanted to be a Hafiz-e-Quran. He completed this glorious task within 4 years. He finished his intermediate in commerce & joined SZABIST Hyderabad for a professional business administration degree, considering his open ended creative capabilities & ownership skills. He gave hand to one of his friends in starting his own business of dispensing clean water known as “Crystal Spring” to the city of Hyderabad. He possessed an entrepreneurial mind set & his biggest talent was the power of execution, which is hardly found in people of his age. Having the knowledge learned from his education & possessing an adapt eye on the cares, he started his own business, named “Car Exchange” which is quite well known in Hyderabad. Through his actions he proved that relations are not made by blood but by emotions & respect. Even his friends claim that in different points in life his actions showed his dedication towards their friendship. He knew how to treat & serve his relations in the best possible ways.

But it is heart breaking when media & other institutions of our so called society calls his death an accident or suicide. Police says it is carbon monoxide poisoning, then why they are not telling it to the parents that how & when it happened. How can it be a suicide? A person who used to be light for others in dark times can never himself choose a dark path. His postmortem’s chemical reports show no poisonous substance found in his body which clearly proves that whatever those defiled people & unauthentic media reports are declaring is wrong. There are many questions that need to be answered & loopholes in the police investigation & unsatisfactory attitude of doctors who examined him. This case is a responsibility of our authorities & if this case becomes just another file then there will be such a wrath caused by the natural principles of Allah, that no one would ever be able to save his belongings or blood.

It is said that good people leave this world early, but to be very honest this was too early to leave, Mustafa! His life will always be a source of inspiration & learning.

“The most painful goodbyes are the ones that are never said & never explained!”

May Allah (S.W.T) grant him the highest place in Jannah!

YOU CAN NOT BEAT HER LIGHTLY!


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The Council of Islamic Ideology recently proposed a model on the women’s protection bill which has gained a lot of attention on media these days. “You can beat her lightly” has made it the center of attention & discussion these days.

Living in a male dominant society like Pakistan where it is believed that men are always right; “You can beat her lightly” has adversely effected the minds of people of Pakistan where a huge number of population is either illiterate or less literate to differentiate & differentiate between right or wrong. I see news & posts on social media that show men physically torturing their wives just because “you can beat her lightly.”

Conveying partial information is dangerous. It makes people believe they know enough to take a decision. Here is the Ayah quoted that states the complete details regarding “you can beat her lightly” under which conditions:

“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard. As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (next), refuse to share their beds, (last) beat them (lightly); but if they return to obedience, seek not against them Means (of annoyance): For Allah is Most High, great (above you all).”
– The Holy Quran; 4:34-36

Wife beating is prohibited in Islam, until & unless she is disloyal. Even the kind of beating has been specified .i.e. that doesn’t leave bruises on her body. Islam permits men & women to divorce each other, therefore setting the ways apart is a better option than domestic violence.

Narrated by Mu’awiyah al-Qushayri:
“I went to the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) & asked him; what do you say (command) about our wives? He replied; give them food what you have for yourself & clothe them by which you clothe yourself & do not beat them & do not revile them.”
– Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2139

If we look back to the years even before Islam existed, women had no respect no value. Daughters were buried alive. But after Islam came women were given a value, respect & honor. Then how can Islam permit wife beating.

Islam justifies wife beating as wrong. So, YOU CAN NOT BEAT HER LIGHTLY!

“The best of you are those who are best to their wives!”
Narrated by Al-Tirmidhi, 3895; Ibn Maajah, 1977; classed as saheeh by Al-Albaani in Saheeh Al-Tirmidhi.