This I Believe

Farooki, Nazrat


  • Nazrat Farooki, Art teacher at Punjab University, recalls her father's and grandfather's constant search for knowledge and how she now shares this passion. She also adds why she believes that learning and understanding can lead to peace and securtiy in the world.
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And now, This I Believe. Here is Edward R. Murrow.
This I Believe. Nazrat Farooki is a painter and a teacher of art from Pakistan. She has been in the United States representing her country under the International Arts Program. A graduate of Punjab University, where she was ranked among the most promising young artists of the area, she later joined the faculty of that university. Here now is the personal philosophy of Mrs. Nazrat Farooki.
At present, my life is devoted to the seeking of knowledge. I believe knowledge is a spark which can light up the whole soul. It is something which lifts man to the heights of humanity, which God destined man to be. My mother has always idealized my father. And now that I am far away from them, I say she was not wrong. People respect his knowledge, his righteousness, and his helpfulness. He used to read till late every night. He read not only what he believed himself, but also different points of view with equal enthusiasm. With an open mind, he tried to get an unbiased perspective. This habit of extensive reading made him a man of great knowledge. It was his knowledge and his spirit of humility which ennobled him in the eyes of other people.
Being away from home is very hard and lonesome at times. And at such moments, my thoughts turn back to my home, my family. My white-bearded grandfather is 125 years old, still healthy and strong by the power of his belief. I have the example of his life before me, the example of his undaunted faith in God. And I know his source of happiness is his strong trust in God. I will never forget when he bid me goodbye and blessed me, saying that he was happy, for I was going to seek knowledge. The happiness made his eyes shine. He was thinking it was too late for him to go, but someone so dear to him was going to do what he liked so much. He told me, “Never lose heart, and trust in God.” A new strength showed in his face when he said these words.
This simple little incident recurs to me again and again, and in my weaker moments holds me up and reminds me of the unfailing help.
In my own humble way, I seek and learn. I have stepped into this world with hope and trust in my heart. I believe we should analyze ourselves in order to gain the understanding of self, which makes it possible to understand others. I think my stay in this country will give me a better understanding of things and people. It may also give others an understanding of the ways of my country and people.
One can find among all people and all religions the same love of truth and of freedom which leads towards peace. I, therefore, believe that through mutual understanding and fellowship will come universal brotherhood. I believe in removing the mental barriers between peoples and bringing them close to each other’s heart. Common fear and mistrust only come from ignorance, and the gulf can be bridged only by knowledge. I believe greater knowledge can create new bonds of trust and friendship among all peoples.
Those were the beliefs of Nazrat Farooki, a painter and teacher of art from Karachi, Pakistan.