In the perpetual race to become ‘high-achievers’, many of us abandon our dreams

‘Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid’ – Albert Einstein

There’s a law of nature that distinguishes us from each other – the very unique competence we hold that makes us who we really are. Our own artistry, dexterity and the exclusive experiences we walk through that makes us individually beautiful. Everyone is powerful in his or her own ways but as bitter as society can be, skills are weighted against each other – some are considered respectful and others are labeled as nothing more than a ‘hobby’, so much so that one is compelled to stop dreaming and get a ‘respectable’ job. A society so hypocritical that whoever bends to its monarchy is hailed as successful and those who rebel face never-ending shaming and eventually live out their days in poverty.

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What have we done to ourselves? Why did we carve out our better edges into something socially acceptable? Why did we cut our wings to walk with those who cannot fly? Why don’t reality cascade upon us and so we realize that artists give a nation its status, character and its very identity. You don’t have to be a basic duplicate of what the society regards as perfect. Everyone is perfect in his or her own sense, make no mistake – there’s a universe inside of everyone.

The education system of Pakistan, does it allow any room for creativity? How come you can judge one’s intelligence according to the number of words he can memorize? You cannot possibly bound a student to your absurd methods and mark them as high achievers or failures – it destroys the very way to innovatively successful roads and slips the graduates into average professionals, just making enough money to keep their houses warm. It doesn’t benefit anyone but barely fuels their own self-esteems. They are not better than any of those who were unsuccessful, as they have done nothing extraordinary that it is unprecedented. They are not creative; the result only showed that they’re better at impractical skills such as memorizing and bending down to the most illogical educational scheme there is.

Pakistan is undoubtedly the greatest country in the whole world. The artists, the skilled, the dreamers, the hustlers – talent circulates in their diligently determined bloodstreams. No one can forget the legendary Sadequain, the world-renowned calligrapher and painter who transformed the traditional romantic paintings into something consequentially purposeful, so much so that the popular painters of his time started copying him. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan – the greatest musician to ever walk the Earth. Credited as one of the progenitors of world music, his talent for improvisation and sheer intensity was unsurpassed. Many acknowledged artists like A. R. Rehman, Sam Harris and Gaudi considered Nusrat as the sole unparalleled and perfect singer to ever live. Amjad Sabri, Nazia Hussain – the breaker of stereotypes and the queen of pop. The elegantly terrific Noor Jehan. Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Abida Parveen and Mehdi Hassan are just a drop of the ever-talented Pakistani artists.

Artists establish nations, civilizations and cities over cities furthermore they endow the unique culture that shapes the architecture, literature, traditions and everything that forms the foundation of a particular society. Generations on generations feed and grow up on what their culture teaches them. Europe broke out of timeless shadows of deterioration when they started respecting their artists and thus they attained the unprecedented heights of success, which lasts to the current day. And those who overshadowed their artists were bound to destruction. The Egyptian faced inevitable decline when they stopped encouraging their artists. The Mughal Empire came to an end as a result of continued succession wars, which completely destroyed the artist community. History tells us everything but the thing about people is that they don’t learn from history and thus are bound to become one.

Creativity may be any ability to do something exceptional so much so that you’re unrivalled in your own way. Just because you failed to score the highest grades doesn’t mean you’re worthless. You’re not supposed to go with the flow of water; you’re made to fly the highest sky. You were created to do something rare that these basic high-achievers cannot even think of thinking. So hush little dreamer, you are what you are. You’re an artist, you’ve to change the course of time. Why walk among people when you can talk to God?

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