Archive for the ‘Authors’ Category

“Every new beginning broke my heart but also, ironically, led me deeper down my own singular path”: Glenna Luschei

Glenna Luschei

Interlitq publishes “Mr. Tambourine Man” (Chapter 16) of Three Rivers: A Memoir by Glenna Luschei, the U.S. author and editor and a Vice-President of Interlitq.

Extract from “Mr. Tambourine Man”:

“Only the familiar paintings on my walls and the poems dear to me help me when it comes to being uprooted from one home to another. I am a monumental failure at adjusting to change, yet I married a man whose work led to frequent relocations. Every new beginning broke my heart but also, ironically, led me deeper down my own singular path.”

Read “Seahorses and Mermaids” (Chapter 25) of Three Rivers: A Memoir by Glenna Luschei.

Read “Orchids” (Chapter 21) of Three Rivers: A Memoir by Glenna Luschei.

Read “Joan of Arc Becomes the Girl Next Door” (Chapter 23) of Three Rivers: A Memoir by Glenna Luschei,

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Iris Murdoch “is becoming harder to understand, now that the process of sanctification is under way”: Peter Conrad

Iris Murdoch

Reviewing Iris Murdoch: A Life by Peter J. Conradi, Peter Conrad writes:

Conradi traces the protean facility of her metamorphoses back to Canetti’s theory of Verwandlungen, which celebrated the individual’s fission into a quarrelsome company of personae. At first, this seemed like a deviously magical power: Canetti, as Conradi demonstrates, is the prototype for the devilish enchanters in her novels. Yet it also entailed a Shakespearean self-negation which made it a sacred grace rather than a devious profane talent. Canetti, Iris said, had enough selves to stock a ‘Hindu pantheon’ (and, like those randy polymorphous gods, a goodly supply of willing houris).

Covering the transition between sex and spirit, she called Canetti an ‘angel-demon’. All of Iris herself is in that shaky, splicing hyphen. She is becoming harder to understand, now that the process of sanctification is under way: in a forthcoming film, she is impersonated by Judi Dench, the English epitome of sweet, fubsy domestic cosiness. All her life, people deified her. At Oxford, Denis Healey called the communistic Iris a ‘latter-day Joan of Arc’. But, as she told her lover Frank Thompson when reporting that she had lost her virginity while he was away at the war (in which he was killed), ‘I’m not a Blessed Damozel you know.’

No, indeed: in the reminiscences of others, she often resembles Lilith, Lucifera, Salome and their fatal mythic sisters. Olivier Todd, who knew her at Cambridge after the war, could not decide whether her aura was redolent of roses or sulphur. She cast her Oxford tutor Donald Mackinnon – a famously disincarnated brain, on whom Tom Stoppard partly modelled the philosopher in Jumpers – as Christ, and called herself the penitent harlot Mary Magdalene. Mackinnon, whose marriage frayed as a result of their intense but cerebral liaison, denounced her in 1992, declaring ‘there was real evil there’.

About Iris Murdoch

About Peter J. Conradi

About Peter Conrad

“Islam teaches Love For All, Hatred For None” by Imam Marwan Gill, Interlitq’s Islamic Affairs Editor

Imam Marwan Gill at the Ricardo Gutierrez Children’s Hospital in Buenos Aires, Argentina,, where he and other members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community gave gifts to children over the Christmas period.

 “Islam teaches Love For All, Hatred For None”

by Imam Marwan Gill.

It might at first appear strange to discover that, over Christmas, a Muslim distributed toys at a Buenos Aires children´s hospital. Some of you might think that such an idea is pure fiction and, indeed, this was the initial reaction of one of my friends. In any case, I am quite sure that a great many people will be perplexed as to why a Muslim would engage in such an activity when Islam does not celebrate Christmas as a religious festival.

On the day of my visit, I could detect this same sense of bafflement on the faces of some parents when they saw a Muslim woman in a hijab and a Muslim man in a T-shirt with the message “Love For All, Hatred For None” distributing toys in the Ricardo Gutierrez children’s hospital. And yet this kind of near-incredulity is uncalled-for because, while it is true that as a Muslim I do not celebrate Christmas, it is nonetheless the case that I follow a religion which teaches “Love For All, Hatred For None”. The ultimate goal of Islam is to bring man into communion with God, His Creator. In order to attain this goal, it is essential for a Muslim to serve all of God’s creatures. In the very first chapter of the Holy Quran, God lays down the golden principle of serving mankind without distinction, by referring to Himself as the Lord of all the worlds. (Chapter 1:2)

Hence, if God’s mercy and favours are not limited to any religion or nation but rather encompass the whole of mankind, it is therefore the responsibility of a Muslim to display kindness to God’s entire creation. The qualities of forgiveness, charity, providing education, the giving of alms and a wide spectrum of social services fall into this uplifting category.

For Muslims the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the founder of Islam and the role model for all Muslims, was the exemplar of these above-mentioned qualities and the greatest servant of mankind, being sent not only as a mercy to Muslims but,  according to the Quran, rather as a salvation for the whole of mankind. (Chapter 21:108)

On one occasion, addressing Muslims regarding service to mankind the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:

Verily, Allah will say to his slave when He will be taking account of him on the Day of Judgement:

 ‘O son of Adam, I was hungry and you did not feed me?’  Man will answer: ‘How could I feed you? You are the Lord of the worlds!’  Allah will say: ‘Did you not know that my slave so and so felt hunger, and you did not feed him. Alas, had you fed him you would have found that reward with Me.

‘O son of Adam, I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink.’ Man will reply: ‘How could I give You drink? You are the Lord of the worlds!’ Allah will say: ‘Did you not know that my slave so and so felt thirsty and you did not give him drink. Alas, if you had given him, you would have found that reward with me.

O son of Adam, I became sick and you did not visit Me.’ Man will answer: ‘How can I visit You? You are the Lord of the worlds!’ Allah will say: ‘Did you not know that my slave so and so became sick and you did not visit him. Alas, had you visited him, you would have found Me with him.” (Sahih Muslim)

Therefore, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, which is united worldwide under the spiritual guidance of the Caliph and His Holiness Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, sets out to serve mankind irrespective of religion or background. Working with our resources, which are limited, we have been successful in founding hundreds of schools and many hospitals in remote parts of the world. We also provide water and electricity in the most remote of villages and towns. In the pursuit of these tasks, we do not seek any praise or benefit as, intent on pleasing Allah the Almighty, our sole motivation is humanitarian.

In this connection, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in 1889 and claimed to be the Promised Messiah, writes:

Be kind and merciful to humanity, for all are His (God’s) creatures; do not oppress them with your tongue, or hands, or in any other way. Always work for the good of mankind…Be humble in spirit, kind and gentle, and forgiving, sympathetic towards all and wishing them well, so that you should be accepted.

And so, distributing toys, over Christmas, in a children´s hospital in Buenos Aires does not in any way contradict Islam but in fact constitutes a loyal expression of Islamic teaching, which seeks throughout to build bridges of mutual harmony and love. On that most memorable of days, it was heart-warming to see that very small gestures, having the power to touch hearts, can put a huge smile on the faces of so many people.

 

Read “My journey as a Muslim in Argentina” by Imam Marwan Gill.

Read “Why do Muslims not celebrate Christmas?” by Imam Marwan Gill.

Imam Marwan Gill appointed Interlitq’s Islamic Affairs Editor.

Alejandra Pizarnik en 80 citas

Alejandra Pizarnik

Laura Verdile y Gustavo Yuste escriben:

Alejandra Pizarnik representa una figura mítica en la literatura nacional. Su obra dejó un legado que trascendió generaciones y que aún hoy sigue representando un terreno fértil para quienes tienen sus primeros contactos con el campo poético argentino. En La Primera Piedra, seleccionamos 80 citas para recorrer la potencia y la singularidad de una voz que ocupó un lugar vital entre los escritores de su época.

 

Jane Austen desi-style: A Pakistani perspective on ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and more (Book Review)

Title: Austenistan; Author: Laaleen Sukhera (editor);

Publisher: Publishers: Pages: 288 Price: Rs 350

Could Elizabeth Bennet (of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”), or even her mother, have their equivalents in Islamabad, or (the heroine of Austen’s eponymous novel) be as likely to be found in as  And then to be gender-balanced, can only thrive in English climes?

Quite possibly, for “it is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife”. Pakistani women — and their mothers and close friends — know this truth very well, as Laaleen and her Pakistani (and one Sri Lankan) collaborators show in this anthology.

Read more about Laaleen Sukhera