Thursday, January 14, 2010

Bandra East Syed e Sajjad Juloos 2009

I am a hardcore fan of Maulana Hasnain Karari , and it has been several years since I have been shooting him at this very venue ,however I have just started speaking to him from the time he began reciting majlis at my house, Maulana Hasnain Karari is a powerful convincing orator..he is also my familys spiritual guide , a fact I never knew but my wife seeks his advice on certain issues of marriage and other matters time and again.

We were keen on his auspicious presence at Saifs wedding but he was in UK those days.Saif is my young son who got married last year.

And than Maulana Hasnain Karari is my very dear friend Razi Rizvi Saabs brother in law too..all those who came to my House Majlis were impressed with his sermon on Heaven and the powerful presence of a Heaven beneath the feet of a Mother.

I have tried not to miss the Bandra East Juloos all these years, and there are friends who mean a lot to me who attend this juloos far from far flung place , Hadi from Mumbara , Mairaj ,Razi Kallu Bqaqr Nassar , Habib had left much before I came here,
and so many others.I did miss Cheena Bhai another great supporter of this juloos but his son was there scourging his back fiercely.

This was perhaps the first time I did not shoot the happenings in the open compound that houses the Shia event close to the Sai Baba Temple , and I was always fascinated by this mutual respect and tolerance of diverse faith in unity of prayer.

This is Mumbai , the city that touches us all, the city that is our souls protective armor too keeping us in total command of our selves in our respective religiosity.

Yes dont just see my pictures merely as Shia related blogs , I shoot the soul of my city via my faith and your faith too.Yes this is Amchi Mumbai yours as much as mine and our children's legacy...

I always shot the Sai Baba temple as I shot the events of this juloos to show you a compatibility that is a Mumbaikars way of life.. the most important aspect of spirituality is giving each other space , godliness does not mean dominance , godliness and this is my personal view means humility..a sculpted silence in solace and serenity invoking the humility of man towards divinity.
Be he a Shia Sunni Hindu Christian Dalit or anyone ..he is Human and we reiterate time and again Hussain is All Humanity.

Har Kaum Pukaregi Hamare Hain Hussain.

Bandra East Syed e Sajjad Juloos 2009

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The Bandra East area where this event takes place was totally jam packed .. women children families sit on the streets, as soon as the majlis gets over , the alams , the taboot and the zuljana come into the front and hardcore sword matam kama matam and zanjir mataam takes place.

My wife and Marziya left the juloos before all this could start.. I caught up with them at home..

Juloos Syed e Sajjad - Bandra East 2009

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I start a new series at Flickr - the Bandra East Juloos known as Syed e Sajjad Juloos that is an important event in the ives of the Shias of this area , the Shia influence and population is miniscule in this commercial cosmopolitan hub.

But the juloos has been kept alive since almost 20 years, and this has nothing to do with religious sectarian politics, this juloos is about sacrifice of Imam Hussain and his family and a message of peace, Shiasm is nothing but a protest against spiritual terrorism , hegemony of hate and oppression against Humanity.

Maulana Hasnain Karari who translates our side of the Battle of Karbala talks of mutual coexistence , brotherhood among all Muslim factions including Hindus and other communities.So I tell most of my Shia friends in town , this is one place they must gather to propagate this message of Peace.

And I will digress , with a very personal thought on the subject of peace brotherhood and tolerance , before I was to come here to this juloos , I was waiting for my wife , and I got a call from Mr Salman Khan , asking me to come to his house urgently , he had some urgent work for me , I told him I was going to an important juloos with my wife , but he requested me to come for a few minutes , so I took my wife and Marziya my 2 year old grand daughter to his house, and here I must add Salman Khan his family specially his father Salim Khan epitomize Peace without bigotry , without hate , the very message of Peace and human bonding that Maualana Saab explicitly cited in his sermon to all of us.

Whether Salman Khan goes to Lal Bagh Cha Raja to pay respect does not take away the basic sense of propriety of respecting our culture our country and our people.

I shoot all religion , and it is this mutual respect that my birth in a Shia household taught religious beliefs may differ from the next man , but the next man is still my brother..and the only time I reserve this right is when it offends my faith by people who call us heretics..the so called puritans who preachify hate on the Soul of Islam and the soul of Humanity.

When I came to the juloos Maulana Saab was on the mimber about to start his sermon I made Marziya and my wife sit on the sidewalk of Bandra East with the other Shia woman as I went to shoot this event.

How Pictures Touch Us All ...

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This is Marziya in the last picture of the series and she is asking God with her mimd and soul almost all the things her grand mother might have asked and this is Marziyas mind a little board on the doorway says Access Denied..Somethings are only shared by God and Marziya and Marziya and God, third party Facebook applications are not required on Marziyas minds home page so to speak , tongue and cheek.

I received a message from a dear friend that touched me deeply I share it with all of you..

Dear Firoze,
How grateful I am for your facebook friendship. Your images have helped me understand haunting memories from my first trip to India in 1970-71. While wandering the streets of Bombay (in the vicinity of Chor Bazzar), I witnessed a procession of Devotional Pain without knowing for whose sake and for what reason these men were beating themselves bloody. Your text and pictures have given meaning to a memory.

The last 3 weeks have been wonderful. I am in an enchanted place, very remote, and I have used the winter break from school to travel throughout India by viewing your photographs. School starts again next Monday, and I will have limited time on line to enjoy your pictures once classes begin. You have been an inspiration to me to begin posting some pictures. Until I saw your way of photoblogging everything, I had not even posted a profile picture of myself. By your efforts, other people may find courage. I know I have.

Thank you very kindly for your friendship. I want you to know how much I have enjoyed your pictures. You have a beautiful life, a beautiful wife, a beautiful grand daughter, and I am so grateful for your generosity in sharing your point of view. I will check in as often as possible.

Best Wishes for your continued success and well being ,

May you be well, happy, peaceful and free from trouble and suffering...

I have removed her name for obvious reasons ..this is what a picture does when it plasters itself as Hope on another persons heart , this is Photo blogging where the human heart requires no instruction manual as to how it works..

Marziya and God Face To Face

head bowed
she reaches
the doors
of his holy place
marziya and god
face to face
as he showers
his bounty
on the soul
of divinity
the human race
a spiritual
frozen moment
in embrace
the maker
through his
the call of
the muezzin
the heart
is a mosque
Allah be praised
a mosque
that with
with sectarian violence
misplaced martyrdom
bloodshed we have
disgraced defaced