Afghaniyat

“Afghaniyat: Afghan-ness; the essence of being Afghan; identifying with Afghan-hood.” (blog)

“Subject: Afghaniyat Principles and Duties” (website)

“Afghaniyat Listserver is based on the idea of discovering, fostering, and implementing the concepts of Afghaniyat (Afghan-hood).” (listserve)

Man! I have really missed the boat on this one. Speak of being left behind!
I really hope I can find somebody versed enough in the foundational ethos and basic principles of Afghaniyat to help me get back to my true self. If there is any of you reading this, please, this is a desperate plea for help. Help me understand “Afghaniyat” -because god knows I have not the inkling of an idea as to what it stands for. And it is driving me to the point of a crisis of identity -nay, an existential crisis. Who knows how many unseemly and un-Afghan acts I have committed in my total oblivion of this crucial concept of Afghanhood.

True, I did grow up in Afghanistan and have lived there for most of my life -but the unfortunate fact is that I have somehow been excluded from the circles that shared in the esoteric wisdom of Afghaniyat. I swear, no one told me about it. And still whenever I hear it in a group of fellow Afghans, it is always assumed that those present understand what it means, and there is no need to explain it in detail. Out of shame I never aske for an explanation. I do not want to disappoint my ‘more Afghan’ compatriots.

But it is becoming unbearable. Somebody please help this lost sheep. As it is, I wallow in the large and undefined company that is Adamiyat and Insaniyat -and I am sick and tired of it. It just does not feel right. I know I am missing a part my myself. I know I am supposed to find my truer, more essential self. I just don’t know what it is. I mean I know it is Afghaniyat that I am missing, I just don’t know what this means.
Somebody help!

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3 Responses to Afghaniyat

  1. Q says:

    I’m wiping the sarcasm crusted over my tearducts like sleep from my eyes right now. That wasn’t even cynicism…straight sarcasm. Though I’m somewhat disappointed, this will suffice as an answer to the question I hurled your way on my blog. OK, not disappointed, as I appreciate the larger stance, or should I say “wallowing”, you take, but still hoping for a more concrete or particular definition of the above identity, from you or from others.

  2. safrang says:

    # Hatif says: (pasted comment)

    I liked your previous post on Afghaniyat. Hey, you embarassed me too! it is easy: Afghaniyat is a frequent occurance of a situation where you can’t explain some thing that does not exist in any form and you still strongly believe in it!
    to my understanding, Afghaniyat is a disciplinary concept (the way Foucault uses discipline)to subordinate the so-called minorities while letting them forge a false identity for themselves that is nowhere and everywhere– inexplicable but supressingly functional.

    # safrang Says:
    November 15th, 2006 at 3:07 am e

    As Ali G would say, Respect.
    Anybody who would drops the ‘Foucault bomb,’ respect. Believe it or not, I had Foucault in mind when writing this piece on Afghaniyat. I have him in mind often -it is a necessity of having a skeptical mind. Or at least when not himself, such categories as power and governamentality, and the intriguing concept of discursive meaning. I agree with you, these frames and card-borad-boxes are all instruments that are devised to limit, prohibit, discipline, and regulate. Part of their power is their mystique and not surrendering to definition. They are defining categories, not subject to definition themselves. That detracts from their power.

  3. safrang says:

    @Q,
    As I mention in reply to Hatif, part of the disciplinary power of the concept of Afghaniyat is its mystique and lack of define-ability. One would often hear “that is unAfghan”, or “you have no Afghaniyat left in you” -and that suffices in itself to empower the speaker and disarm the

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