Friday, October 2, 2015
on the basis of a
rumor a thought
that stinks silence
on the soul of our
muslims yet want
our fingers to be
inked to vote them
to power when such
a barbaric incident
happens they go
silent their eyes
dont blink ..
this is certainly
not the good days
think netaji think
humanity on the
edge of a brink
as we become
abyss we sink
He was my mothers favorite nephew son of her step brother , my mother loved him like her own son ..she called him Huzoor Miya and she would pamper him when he visited Mumbai when she was alive ,,she was equally fond of his sister Hamida ,,
Huzoor Miyas dad was seriously ill when she was young , and he stayed during his illness at the house of the Durannis , it was here she served him ..and would talk about the old days her aunt Phupi Jan sister of her father erstwhile Daroga Nabban Sab of Thwai Tola Imliwali Gali Pata Nala descendant of poet Mir Anis ,,
Daroga Nabban Sab had married his brothers widow .Nazmi Begum she had one daughter from his brother and three children from Nabban Sab.. my mother Begum being one of them.
My mother held to the past firmly till she was alive , and her fathers first family relocated to Pakistan but her mother and some members remained back in Lucknow ,, my mother kept in touch with her step family in Pakistan..
Huzoor Miya was the apple of my mothers eye and we were young and we watched with fascination as she took care of him , feelings you hardly see in extended families anymore ,,
We called Huzoor Miya Bhaisab he was there when I got married in Lucknow in 1977 to his adopted daughter my wife , my wifes family and Bhaisabs uncle and aunt lived in the same place that belonged to her grandfather Dr Matin Qazilbash..
Bhaisab visited our house when he was playing the role of the Mahatma for an ad film being shot in Mumbai , he is erudite a noted Urdu scholar and highly well read but totally down to earth ..he is very fond of my wife as he bought her up when she was young ,,
Bhaisab and my Bhabi his wife are a very closely knit family settled in Delhi .. I visited their house first time in my life to take part in Moharam in 2007 and later in 2012
They have two daughters as bright witty as their father Kulsoom and Lubna ,,
And a son the famous photojournalist Adnan Abidi of Reuters
Thinking of Gandhiji made me think of Huzoor Miya Ashraf Ali Abidi.
My brother Firdaus M Shakir has been the closest to Bhaisab having lived in Delhi with them ..he and Bhaisab get along like bread and cheese ,,,
Why do I shoot pictures ..what does one see when one views my Flickr timeline the source river bed of all my pictures ..I shoot all religions faith that make up my composite collective ethos of India I as a Muslim would never shoot a picture to hurt my Hindu brother or my Christian brother ,and this does not come because I am a photographer but because my parentage my upbringing respected culture ,, my mother would never call another person a kaffir we are are products of that mother ..and this applies to my brothers sisters too .
My sister in law is a Hindu and my mother treated her on par , but with more love as she honored us by accepting our family ,we did not ask her to convert ,,this was the beauty of my mother ..she bequeathed us a love that was unique .
I have been shooting Hinduism since the time I first took the camera in my hands and my Hindu friends invite me to their feasts and Devendra and Velu the high priest of Marriammen Temple Juhu Nehru Nagar never forget me and I shoot their rituals I become a Hindu Tamil like them ,, I get repect because I respect them all.
My Tamil friends Shanmugham Sundar invite me t to Madraswadi Worli every year to shoot their Marriammen feast and they treat me like their own brother this can only happen in Mumbai ,,so Uttar Pradesh the beef lynching scares me I mean how polarized are the Hindus Muslims out there shocks me.. its alien to my thought my ethos completely ,
I have shot Sufism I shoot the Ajmer Urus every year and I promote the peace brotherhood as preached by the Holy Saint Khwajah Garib Nawaz a great lover of Imam Hussain..yes Hussain is Humanity ,,
I shoot Christianity Lent Easter Xmas Adoration , Parsi New Year , Jain Michami Dukhadam, all Hindu feasts in our calendar .. and every year I dont miss Pitru Paksha at Banganga Walkeshwar I shoot all feasts barefeet .
I dont commercialize or sell my pictures I use them as Photo Blogs ..tapestry of India..I shot the Maha Kumbh Nasikh Kumbh twice thanks to my Naga Guru Shree Vijay Giri Maharaj Juna Akhara ..
354000 photo blogs at Flickr ,is my tribute to India ,, I shoot garbage too much before Mr Modi gave his Swach Bharat clarion call,. and garbage in Bandra Bazar is here to stay outlive us all.
Its of late I started shooting videos ,,430 videos on You Tube .
About Pitru Paksha
Pitru Paksha (Sanskrit: पितृ पक्ष), also spelt as Pitr paksha or Pitri paksha, (literally "fortnight of the ancestors") is a 16-lunar day period when Hindus pay homage to their ancestors (Pitrs), especially by food offerings. This death rite is known as Shraddha or tarpan and is considered as an inauspicious ceremony. In southern and western India, it falls in the Hindu lunar month of Bhadrapada (September-October), beginning with the full moon day (Purnima) that occurs immediately after Ganesh festival and ending with the new moon day known as Sarvapitri amavasya or Mahalaya amavasya. In North India and Nepal, this period corresponds to the dark fortnight of the month Ashwin, instead of Bhadrapada.
The period is also known as Sola Shraddha ("sixteen shraddhas"), Kanagat, Jitiya, Mahalaya and Apara paksha.
According to Hindu mythology, the souls of three preceding generations of one's ancestor reside in Pitru-loka, a realm between heaven and earth - governed by Yama, the god of death - who takes the soul of a dying man from earth to Pitru-loka. When a person of the next generation dies, the first generation shifts to heaven and unites with God and are thus not given Shraddha offerings. Thus, only the three generations in Pitru-loka are given Shraddha rites, in which Yama plays a significant role. According to the sacred Hindu epics (Itihasa), at the beginning of Pitru Paksha, the sun enters the zodiac sign Virgo (Kanya) and at this time, it is the believed that the spirits leave Pitru-loka and reside in their descendants' homes a month until the sun enters the next zodiac Scorpio (Vrichchhika) - the next full moon. Hindus are expected to propitiate the ancestors in the first half - the dark fortnight.
When the legendary donor Karna died in the epic Mahabharata war, his soul transcended to heaven where he was offered gold and jewels as food, but Karna needed real food to eat in heaven. He asked the lord of heaven, Indra the reason for serving gold as food. Indra said that Karna had donated gold all his life, and never donated food to his ancestors in Shraddha. Karna replied since he was unaware of his ancestors, he never donated anything in their memory. Karna was allowed to return to earth for a 16-day period, when he performed Shraddha and donated food and water in their memory. This period is now known as Pitru Paksha.
Shraddha by a son in Pitru Paksha is considered a must for the ancestor soul to attain heaven. In this context, the scripture Garuda Purana says "there is no salvation for a man without a son". The scriptures preach that a householder propitiate ancestors (Pitris) along with the gods (devas), ghosts (bhutas) and guests. The scripture Markandeya Purana says if the ancestors are happy with the shraddhas, they will bestow upon the performer health, wealth, knowledge and longevity and ultimately heaven and salvation (moksha).
Shraddha performed on Sarvapitri amavasya can also compensate for a forgotten or neglected annual shraddha ceremony, to be held on death anniversary of the deceased. According to Sharma, the ceremony is central to the concept of lineages. Shraddha involves oblations to three preceding generations, by reciting their names as well as to the mythical lineage ancestor (gotra), thus a person in his life gets to know the names of six generations in his life: three precding generation, his own and two succeeding generations - his sons and grandsons. Usha Menon presents a similar idea: pitru paksha emphasizes the fact that the ancestors and the current generation and their next unborn generation are connected with blood ties. The current generation repays their debt to the ancestors in pitru paksha. This debt is considered of utmost importance along with a person's debt to his gurus and his parents.
 Rules of shraddha
 When and where
Shraddha is performed on the specific lunar day in Pitru Paksha, when the ancestor (usually parents or paternal grandparents) was deceased. There are exceptions to the lunar day rule, special days are allotted for people who died by a particular death or their status before death:
* Chautha Bharani and Bharani Panchami - the fourth and fifth lunar day respectively - is allocated for people deceased in the past year.
* Avidhava navami ("Unwidowed ninth") - the ninth lunar day is for married women, who died before their husband. Widowers invite Brahmin women as guests for their wife's shraddha.
* The twelfth lunar day for children and ascetics, who had renounced the worldly pleasures
* Ghata chaturdashi or Ghayala chaturdashi - the fourteenth for people killed by arms, in a war or suffered a violet death
* Sarvapitri amavasya - ("all father's new moon day") is meant for all ancestors, irrespective the lunar day they died. It is the most important day of the Pitru Paksha and those who forgotten to perform shraddha, can do so on this day. The shraddha done on this day is considered as fruitful as one done in the holy city of Gaya.
* Matamaha ("Mother's father") or Dauhitra ("Daughter's son"): It is the first day of the month of Ashwin and beginning of the bright fortnight. It is assigned for shraddha of the maternal grandfather by the grandson.
The ritual is also held on the death anniversary of the ancestor. The shraddha is performed only at noon, usually on bank of a river or lake or at one's own house. Families may also journey pilgrimage places like Varanasi and Gaya to perform Shraddha. Gaya considered sacred to perform shraddhas, holds a fair in Pitru Paksha.
 Who and for whom
Shraddha has to performed by the son (usually the eldest son) or male relative for paternal section family, limited to preceding three generations, however on Sarvapitri amavasya or matamaha, the daughter's son can offer Shraddha for his maternal side of the family if a male heir is absent in his mother's family. Some castes only perform the shraddha for one generation. The male who would perform the rite, should have undergone the sacred thread ceremony. Since the ceremony is considered inauspicious, in the royal family of Kutch, the king or heirs of the throne are prohibited to conduct Shraddha.
The food offering to the ancestors is usually cooked in silver or copper vessels. It is usaully on a banana leaf or cups made of dried leaves. The food must include rice Kheer - a sweet made of rice and milk, lapsi - a sweet porridge made of wheat grains, rice, dal - lentils and the vegetable of spring bean (guar) and yellow gourd (pumpkin).
 Rites of shraddha
The male who performs the shraddha, should be purified by a bath and is excepted to wear a dhoti. He wears a ring of darbha grass, in which the ancestors are invoked to reside. The shraddha usually is performed bare chested, as the position of the sacred thread worn as the person has to be changed a number of times in the ceremony. The shraddha involves pinda-daan - offering of pindas (cooked rice and barley flour balls mixed with ghee and black sesame seeds) with the release of water from the hand - to the ancestors. It is followed by the worship of gods Vishnu in form of the darbha grass, a gold image or Shaligram stone and Yama. This is followed by offering the food, specially cooked for the ceremony, on the roof. The offering is considered as accepted if a crow arrives and eats the food. The crow is considered a messenger of Yama or the spirit of the ancestors. A cow and a dog is also fed. Brahmin priests are offered food and then after the ancestors (crow) and the Brahmins have eaten, the family members have lunch.
Mahalaya marks the formal beginning of the Durga Puja festival
Mahalaya (Bengali: মহালয়া), is the last day of the previous fortnight Pitri Pokkho (Bengali: পিতৃ পক্ষ, ‘Fortnight of the Forefathers’, the day is marked by recitation of Devi Mahatmyam (Chandi Path), and signifies the beginning of Durga Puja festivities. Bengalis traditionally wake up at 4 in the morning on Mahalaya day to listen to Mahisasura Mardini in the enchanting voice of the late Birendra Krishna Bhadra and the late Pankaj Kumar Mullick on All India Radio as they recite hymns from the scriptures from the Devi Mahatmyam or Chandi. 
 Other practices
Some families also conduct ritual recitals of scriptures like the Bhagavat Purana and the Bhagavad Gita. Some families also perform charity in name of the deceased, give gifts to Brahmin priests or pay Brahmins to recite prayers for the ancestor's well-being.
I made sure my granddaughter Marziya Shakir and Nerjis Asif Shakir shot him too , while he was being sculpted , and both were 2 year old respectively ,they could barely hold the camera but I guided them.. the most important aspect of photography they learnt was placing the camera strap round their neck before taking the camera from me ,
Marziya is 7 Nerjis is 4 ,, both have shot the Ganesha pandals and the eyelids of the third eye of Shiva are Ganesha and Parvati ,, I use Hindu interpretation symbolism.. and for me that is the essence of my photography and all my 3 Gurus were Hindus ,, most of my photographer friends who pushed me deep into photography were Hindus ,, and so I promoted Hinduism through my images and my Hindu Blogs as Hope And Hindutva a Message of Universal Peace ..I am a victim of the 93 Hindu Muslim riots but it has not come in the way of my life ,.. it changed me certainly , it made me wary of politicians of all communities , most politicians only use the divide in religion to divide us as Indians ,..
Photography binds us all.. the camera gives conviction to our dreams ,, our imagery ,, and I am not a professional photographer .. a hobbyist poet photographer passionately mystically involved with photography..
Photography has kept me poor it did not make me rich like commercial photographers ,, but it gave me the richness of the poor , it gave me the wealth of their enduring pain.. it made me strong it changed me incredibly ,,
Yes I shot Ganesha ,, through the Third Eye of Shiva embedded in my camera consciousness ,, he had to be different ,, metaphoric and larger than life ,, and if my friend Vinay Parelkar had not bought me to Girgaum Chowpatty I could have never shot this huge tapestry of devotees the lashing waves and the soothing fury of the Gods ,,
वक्रतुण्ड महाकाय सूर्यकोटि समप्रभ
निर्विघ्नं कुरु मे देव सर्वकार्येषु सर्वदा
Vakra-Tunndda Maha-Kaaya Suurya-Kotti Samaprabha
Nirvighnam Kuru Me Deva Sarva-Kaaryessu Sarvadaa
1: O Lord Ganesha, of Curved Trunk, Large Body, and with the Brilliance of a Million Suns,
2: Please Make all my Works Free of Obstacles, Always.
Such juvenile poor choice of pictures that it makes me throw up, and there is a galaxy of some of the most profound prolific photographers ..and we learn from them.. I am disappointed with the curator on Twitter ,, he or she needs to be a photographer or is it a robot ,, like their customer care ,,, I hope they recover and I am not in the league of those photographers stalwarts veterans .. I have been pimping my Flickr timeline much before Flickr came on Twitter , I promote Flickr too my Twitter timeline is photo based and mostly with my links from Flickr ,,
I was returning by bus from Santacruz,, and when the bus dropped me at Bandra SV Road I decided to pay a visit to my friends Kassim Bhai Nabi bhai .. earcleaners both brothers have been cleaning wax from the ears for 40 years .
In the early days of their career as earcleaners they used to charge one anna ,,, now they charge Rs 20 but sometimes they are happy if they get Rs 10...business is really bad they were telling me ..between them they had 5 clients ,, so I sat with Nabi to get my ears cleaned and shot two videos ,,
My earcleaner videos are the most viewed on You Tube ,,
I gave both of them 20 bucks each and listened to their tale of rising prices , hardships , they are originally from a farming background , but failure of crop and hard times made them earcleaners like their father a farmer turned earcleaner ,.
Kassim Bhai is the eldest his sons were into farming but now they word as kadia ,, masons at a construction site in Karnataka close to Gulbarga ,, one of their relative takes care of their farm.
The earcleaners will soon be evicted from Bandra Talao their street working space once the Bandra Talao is fully renovated , than they will sit outside on the road and ply their trade ,,, they dont know any other work only proficiently prolifically cleaning out wax from the ears ,,
Shah-e-Mardan Sher-e-Yazdan Quwat-e-Parwardigar Lafata Ila Ali La Saif Ila Zulfiqar , originally uploaded by firoze shakir photographerno1 ....
Ek Shahenshah Ne Banake Yeh Haseen Tajmahal Ham Gareebon Ki Mohabbat Ka Udaya Hai Mazak.. , a photo by firoze shakir photographerno1 on Fli...