Essay No. 214:
Gifts: A gift means a thing given to someone in recognition of abiding feelings of love one cherishes for someone. Gifts are a token of goodwill and deep sentiments that one has for one’s relatives, friends and dearly loved ones. If a gentleman or a girl achieves a measure of success in life, that is celebrated by parents and the near relatives and friends.
On such occasions gifts are presented, followed by the clapping of hands and cutting of icing-cakes etc. the presentation of gifts adds grace to such like occasions. On the eve of marriages, gifts are offered both to the bride and the bridegroom. Snaps are taken which act as souvenirs in life.
The bridegroom in his first meeting with the bride, presents a gift to her in the form of a necklace or anything precious. If the bridegroom comes of a well-to-do family, he will present a valuable gift to his wife. This custom has taken roots in our society. Even the poor present some low quality of gift to the married girls. It may be in the form of roll-gold ornaments.
The economic position of families determines the nature of gifts to be given to the girls / boys. Some landlords present horses / cattle, land, cars as gift to their daughters. By doing so they demonstrates their riches, wealth for the lower strata of society to be caught in frustration permanently. Our society suffers from this sociological tendency.
According to Bacon, gifts should be proportionate to the needs of the recipients. One should not spend money for ostentation and show. Gifts small are gifts, because it is the spirit underlying them that counts in life. Book is the best gift that one could give to one’s friends and relatives on the eve of their birthday celebrations.
Books on history, literature, economics, political science, religion, are the repository of man’s accumulated wisdom on the social disciplines. Reading of books opens new vistas of thinking to man and that leads to the enrichment of human mind. Lovers of books are seen hovering around bookshops.
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The old brand of politicians like Mushtaq Ahmad Gurmani, Mumtaz Daultana, were ferocious readers. They were knowledgeable personalities. The thirst for knowledge seems to have dried on the part of politicians, whose energies now have dried on the part of politicians, whose energies now are channeled in acquiring the latest techniques of Machiavelli’s to keep themselves in power in time to come.
Books are good gifts as compared to material gifts. The latter wear out in course of time, but not the ideas gained through he study of books. It is ideas that often usher in revolutions in human societies for the good (or bad) of mankind.
There is a saying of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H.) that Muslim believers should exchange gifts with one another, as they can promote human goodwill and understanding. Hence there is nothing wrong in presenting gifts to ones dearly loved relations. Gifts may be of high or small value measured in terms of money. One should value a gift irrespective of it’s material value; as it is the embodiment of human sentiments.
The industrialists, the elites offer gifts to bureaucrat’s politicians in order to obtain certain advantages. One may call such ‘bribery gifts’ which are intended to yield certain uncalled for advantages to the givers of gifts. Mundane motives underlie such gifts. Such gifts need to be discouraged as they are meant to secure certain advantages for the givers of prizes.
Pakistan is a prize of God, which we must preserve. The best way is to follow the recipe of the Quaid by acting on the motto: unity, faith, discipline.