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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Pervez Hoodbhoy, SuperStar

One problem of being associated with T2F is that I have been hesitant to blog about the events too frequently, lest it be seen as a 'plug' for Sabeen's café-plus-mind_share_space. but I guess it's ok as long as I stick to the event and make it anecdotal and talk less of the ambience. In fact, I think I'll try and recap some of the earlier events in my next few post[s], since there's an audience outside of Karachi that may enjoy hearing about them, too. OK. So, this one's about the recent talk by Pervez Hoodbhoy, part of a monthly series to be hosted at T2F under the title Science ka Adda (SKA from now on on this blog). You can read more about the series at the site, so lemme move on. The space, usually laid out café-style, seats 44 ... though events have always required creating more room by moving things around. Tee-M's 60's rock evening and Saad's OpenMic night shot the audience to around 100±. But that was to be expected. It's a 'Pop' world. However, Pervez Hoodbhoy's audience surpassed both evenings. While his youthful looks still draws sighs from young girls (I heard two that night!), the majority was there for the love of the subject. You may wish to watch a small-sized QT-based slideshow featuring that evening's guests ... or prefer to click the image above to see the crowd, made up of young and old, artists, singers, dancers, architects, writers, conservative, rebellious, religious, atheists, fundos, freethinkers, doctors and students. Wow! Yes, Science can be fascinating, if the issues are seen in the context of our lives, away from the technical, jargon-filled research that most of us realize is essential but find incomprehensible. Like many who attended, I am certainly looking forward to hearing others - after PH's illuminating talk (From Quarks to Humans) on the Origins of the Universe and his 'attempts' to answer a range of questions. We need to have public discussions on Science and Ethics (questions of Stem-Cell research, Genetic Manipulation, Gender Manipulation, Euthanasia, GM Foods --- all are in the news these days) and a lot more. BTW, when I said PH's attempts at answering questions, I was in no way implying that he was unable to do so for lack of knowledge. Some - on the more specific technical areas - required more time (and, a few were answered post-talk in small groups); others - such as those grounded purely on religious dogma - require an eternity and a more tolerant society. For those who lingered on after the event for their own friendly discussions, over coffee and snacks, there was a special treat:

The fabulous Tina Sani decided to delight her self-confessed-fan Pervez and the rest with an impromptu rendition of Rabba Sachcheya - one of my favourites. The absence of any intrusive musical accompaniment made it all the more beautiful for me. I captured it on a small handheld recorder and sent the file to her last night, seeking permission to share it on my blog. This what she sent by SMS today: "Seriously? What Fun! It's Faiz ... Let it roll!" Thanks, Tina. Oh, and Sheema, since you are at these evenings often, don't forget to carry ghungroos in your purse the next time :-)

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Anonymous the olive ream said...

Of all the events so far on t2f, this is the one I absolutely wanted to attend. I had emailed Sabeen about how upset I was at missing it.

I'm SO glad you've decided to cover the events in t2f on your blog. It is the only hope for losers like me who can't be in Karachi all the time to attend such great evenings.

Tina Sani's impromptu rendition of Rabba Sachcheya was beautiful! Dil khush kar dita!

ZAK, please let me know in advance of July's event schedule..hopefully I will be in Karachi next month to catch one of these great evenings.

Look forward to your other t2f posts.

25 June, 2007 15:53

Blogger Fawad said...


Tina Sani's rendition of Rabba Sachcheya transported me. You are absolutely right: the lack of instrumental accompaniment gives this rendition greater power and a beautifully mournful poignancy.

Please keep blogging about the T2F events for those of us who are unlikely to benefit from in-person attendance. Maybe at some point these events can be recorded and put on the T2F site or on youtube for a larger audience. Thanks again.

25 June, 2007 23:50

Anonymous Blogistani said...

This is odd, but it's the first time in my life that I've been made to feel like a moron for asking a question at an event. All I was interested in was finding out whether the Islamic view on creation is the same as the Christian Intelligent Design one. And people have been reacting as if I unleashed the Four Horses of the Apocalypse...

26 June, 2007 20:02

Blogger Zakintosh said...

there is nothing wrong with asking any question, religious or not.

i don't know why you were made to feel like a moron or by whom (haven't seen any such comments on this post), but i do feel that this society has become so intolerant that a response which does not conform rigidly to someone's nutty interpretation of islam is likely to mean trouble for the person answering the question. we have seen this in the blasphemy charges unleashed at professors at educational institutions ... something that has curtailed the level of discourse and debate at institutions of higher learning.


on the basis of the various arguments presented at the recent kansas court case on the teaching of 'i.d.' by its proponents, the universe was created by a designer who may or may not be god.

those among them who hold a 'christian'view of it do believe that their god (as in jesus - the father) is the creator. many of them are, in fact, followers of creationism - a belief that 'i.d.' tries to sneak in under the guise of science.

the islamic view, of course, is categorical in its belief that the universe was created by allah.

26 June, 2007 20:05

Blogger Sidhusaaheb said...

I really am not competent enough to comment on any of the intellectual stuff, but thank you so much for posting that mp3 here!


27 June, 2007 01:15

Blogger Blogistani said...

Thanks Zak! That does answer my question very easily. I do believe Allah created the universe. However I don't think this can ever be proved by science and it seems useless for science to concern itself with that to begin with. Still, I'm happy to believe that evolution fits in somewhere in the picture. Now if only everyone else were as easily pleased as me! Love to you.

27 June, 2007 14:56

Blogger Maleeha said...

astounding performance. the super clear recording is brilliant. Thanks for sharing.

05 July, 2007 05:05

Blogger saqi said...

but i cant find the recording

where's the link


30 May, 2010 13:43

Blogger saqi said...

ooh got it


with all due appologies

m publishing with your courtesy at

30 May, 2010 13:53

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