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The movable, the immovable and those that move



There was pin-drop silence and then the clock chimed thrice. As if on cue, a hand appeared over my shoulder with a warm glass of milk. This is the same hand that rocked my cradle, when I was an infant, not entitled to autonomy. This hand was of the same person, who stayed up for nights, only to look after me, like a veracious guardian. This was the same hand, that helped me in times of severe jingoism, between my outer self, and my deep-rooted ego. This was the same hand, that occasionally found it’s way over my head-as a soothing gesture-to pacify my insatiable soul. As I found myself interspersed between an array of thoughts, I realised that this hand was of the same person who often said ” Beta don’t worry: everything will be alright”.

My relationship with my mother-which I never truly embraced-was one filled with a plethora of apices and troughs. In times of uncertainty, I’d always turn back to my mother because she understood me like no one else. She was someone who could distinguish between my highs and my lows. I still remember it like yesterday, when my mum would stand up against my father (who was initially against the idea of me pursuing tennis), to assure everyone how important it was, to allow the children to grow with a free mind. In times like these, I can only imagine how hard it would’ve been, for a single person, to metaphorically fight these fisticuffs against an insular and patriarchal society. I could probably jabber on for ages, but the point is: my mother was always a vehement supporter of allowing her children to excel in whichever field they desired.

Minutes turned into hours, hours turned into days, and days turned into years. Eighteen years, and here I am; the world record holder for the most number of A*s in O levels-a feat previously perceived as “impossible”. It would not have been possible, had my mum not spent countless nights tutoring me, pacifying my agitated soul.

My dad was always an academics fanatic, and so, expected me to live up to his expectations as well. Initially, he would get upset when he would compare my academic performance with that of other students of my age. This feeling was, however, ephemeral. With persistent efforts, I was even able to convince my dad, to let me play tennis.

My parents have always acted wisely, in times of uncertainty. It would not be wrong to say, that they used tennis as my weakness, to positively exploit my untapped academic talents as well! I still remember how my dad would tell me that he would increase my lesson time with my coach, if I attained certain marks in certain subjects of mine. Consequently, I did work hard to get those marks, so I could play tennis. It is more like I earned the hours that I spent on the court.

As I grew older, I started to appreciate the path that my parents had chosen for me. After my trip to the junior tennis champions centre in America, I could quite clearly discern that my parents would never let me leave behind studies-even temporarily-to pursue tennis. This was by far the hardest time that I have ever seen. I cried a lot, for I had been an artisan who had carefully woven a dream. And to watch that dream slip away from my hands, like water-without any control has been the gloomiest and the most disparaging scene that I have ever seen.

The good part is though, that I have learned to accept things just the way they are. I always wanted to be a tennis player, but so what? It is not the end of life. I have learned to face life with a new burst of zeal, regardless of whatever it throws at me.

Even though I gave up on a big dream, what I learned from my experience overall, was far superior to what I had ever imagined to learn. I did not let go of the dream to make myself exceptional, so that my name would echo on the streets of Pakistan, long after I have departed.

Dear readers, I would not be wrong in saying that I’ve tried my best, to make a mark. I have tried my level best to promote the reputation of our beloved country, to higher levels.

Last month, when I got the award of excellence from the British House of Lords, it was a dream-come-true sort of a situation for me. It was ethereal; I was uniquely elated to a level I never thought was even possible. However, I realised something more important that day; I realised that whenever someone would call out my name, the chants of ‘Pakistan’ would always cling to it. At this moment, I was proud, now more than ever, to be part of a nation as great as Pakistan.

Dear readers, although I hope that my future career is in medicine, the journey has already be extremely wonderful. Achieving the impossible has become the spark of my intellectual curiosity. My parents, my family, my friends and my teachers are highly revered. I am what I am, due to their persistent  and conscientious efforts.

I have made a mark; I have at least tried to pay a millionth part of what Pakistan gave me, back to it. So, dear readers, are you ready? Are you all ready to help your country out in austere times like these?

This is future of our own Pakistan that we are talking about. No excuses.

by Talal Almas 
Harvard University

Times of Youth is an International Youth Magazine read by the youth of more than 82 countries. Times of Youth brings the latest Youth Opportunities, News, Interviews, Fully Funded Scholarships, Paid Internships, Future Stars, Rising Stars, etc. For further details you can email us at: [email protected]

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Heartbroken bride throws feast for the homeless after wedding called off



A woman who called off her $30,000 wedding has invited homeless people to come and eat the food prepared for the reception.

Sarah Cummins, 25, broke off her wedding, then realised that her sit-down reception dinner for 170 at the Ritz Charles was non-refundable.

Feeling “really sick” about throwing away the food she had ordered for the reception, she began contacting local homeless shelters and has invited people to come along.

“We’re doing all the same stuff, just arranging the tables differently, so there’s no head table for the bridal party, no cake table or gift table,” Cummins told Media.

Purdue University pharmacy student Sarah Cummins, 25, has spent the past few years planning her dream wedding. She’s spent years saving and working overtime to pay for the $30,000 extravaganza.

Cummins arranged for two buses to pick up about 170 residents and their families.

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“Failure isn’t fatal, but failure to change might be”



The most dreadful word a Pakistani student can hear in his student life is ‘fail’. Although Pakistani’s have proved to show the world, their extraordinary talent in an assortment of fields- be it education, politics and many others there are students in Pakistan that persist to struggle to achieve preferred positions, designations and most of all grades. We all know how concerned our parents are about our grades, and not so providentially some students who could not grab the utmost of their scores and grades they live their sophomore years with the constant ranting by the society. Not only does the society blame them, but their parents too are ashamed of them?

So does a failure in grades means that the person is a total failure? Well absolutely not, Pakistani students need to realize this. FAILING in itself demands us to; give it another go for least a statistically significant number. What if you fail? A failure helps us shape us our dreams and aspirations and work hard for them. Talk about JK Rowling, Bill Gates and the element if failure has made their success worth it. Talking about a few of their success stories we might get a better insight on what made them work hard even after the failures. This way, many people can know, as a matter of fact that how necessary it is to continue with the same zeal and zest even after you have failed once. You need to have faith in God, and believe that your capabilities will make you, find your way through it.

J. K. Rowling; We owe that woman for Harry Potter, don’t we? Rowling may be undulating in a lot of Harry Potter  today, but before she published the series of novels she was nearly penniless, severely depressed, divorced, trying to raise a child on her own while attending school and writing a novel. Rowling went from depending on welfare to survive to being one of the richest women in the world in a span of only five years through her hard work and determination.

Oprah Winfrey; Most people know Oprah as one of the most iconic faces on TV as well as one of the richest and most successful women in the world. Oprah faced a hard road to get to that position, however, enduring a uneven and often abusive childhood as well as numerous career setbacks.

Bill Gates; Gates didn’t seem like a shoe-in for success after dropping out of Harvard and starting a failed first business with Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen called Traf-O-Data. While this early idea didn’t work, Gates’ later work did, creating the global empire that is Microsoft.

Albert Einstein; Most of us take Einstein’s name as synonymous with genius, but he didn’t always show such promise. Einstein did not speak until he was four and did not read until he was seven, causing his teachers and parents to think he was mentally handicapped, slow and anti-social. Eventually, he was expelled from school and was refused admittance to the Zurich Polytechnic School. It might have taken him a bit longer, but most people would agree that he caught on pretty well in the end, winning the Nobel Prize and changing the face of modern physics.

Isaac Newton; was undoubtedly a genius when it came to math, but he had some failings early on. He never did particularly well in school and when put in charge of running the family farm, he failed miserably, so poorly in fact that an uncle took charge and sent him off to Cambridge where he finally became into the scholar we know today.

The reason for providing you with the history of their stories and all is to stimulate courage inside of you and optimism will help many people around the world to continue to have success stories after failures. Going through these failures and successes is what makes you work passionately for your preferred profession or career.

Rida Kamal
Beaconhouse School System

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Life as we know it and how we should take it!



There are several ways in which people describe it- good, sad, tension free, stressful, busy, frustrating, etc. But have we been looking at it the way it really is? Well, few of us do, few of us don’t. Somewhere deep inside we all do know that life of this world is nothing but temporary and we fail to realize it often.

Let me tell you some secrets which you know, but still needs some brushing to actually realize.

Nobody really understands life much but yes, everyone is at his own different level of experiencing, enhancing and living it. Life of this world is doubtlessly temporary, so how can your problems be permanent? Some people move on with the problems, some don’t and for the rest of it, giving up seems easy. Its easy to blame it all on life and luck, etc. instead for seeing through it because it gives a temporary fix to your problems. Let’s face it,we all fool ourselves to an extent that we stop seeing the reality at some point. Though its quite sad, but may be it’s now an evolutionary change in human behavior.

Problems, however, are meant to make us strong, change our mind set,increase our tolerance and patience basically. Remember only you can make you happy. Every thing comes with positivity and negativity and it is on us how we take it in, so get through it. No wonder there is a term ”depression” in our society. Half of the people self diagnose themselves as depressed ,frustrated, etc.’ which is kind of bad because they start losing hope. There is no way to know your strength and ability if you cry over your problems and run from it or them. Once you start seeing a positive side of a mere situation you will learn and grow. All your scars wont heal until you let go. Best way of not being bothered by certain issues is to simply ignore them when you can while you can. Once you start telling yourself the truth you will grow stronger and be more stable.

There is a lot this life has to offer. Smile a lot and often. Well that doesn’t hurt or does it? Not facing issues will only pile them up for later. Its like doing homework; just finish it off in time so that you don’t need to think of it ever again. The main problem comes when we start ignoring the truth about ourselves. We know it, that’s why it is hard to accept and move ahead. Problems are like weak chains we are held in, once you are confident enough that you are stronger than those chains, just break through. Don’t give your problem the power to control you.

When you feel you are nothing, or that you can’t do something and such random thoughts float through your brain, which by the way was made for much more efficient work than just thinking absolute nonsense which we are prone to these days, just remember we were born alone except though in case of twins and so on which makes it unreasonable. So yeah, we were born alone and we will die alone, a thought which is always buzzing in our ears is somehow true and hard to accept for people like me who believe in ‘carpe diem’ . But yes, when you feel alone this is what you should tell yourself- You are good the way you are and always have been. We don’t need people or particular person to tell us that we are capable of this and that. We know who we are. We only have to believe in ourselves for once and it will be easy. There is a lot that can be written over this, but it all points towards the same thing and that is ”BELIEVE AND BECOME”.

Learn to be alone, positive and yet like it. There’s nothing more freeing and empowering than learning to like your company and moving forth in life with a renewed zeal always.

Firdos Rehman
MGM Medical College

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Too Deteremined To Be Defeated



No goal is ever met without a little sweat. Well, in the case of Daniel Cabrera, a Filipino boy from Mandaue City, it wasn’t little but quite a lot of sweat.

Daniel belongs to a poverty-stricken family. He was deprived of all necessities that one should have in life; home, quality education, even his father who died leaving his mother as the sole caretaker of her five children. Fate tested them a lot; their house was burned down and they had to live in the store where Daniel’s mother worked for an inadequate amount of pay. Forced by the cruel hands of poverty, Daniel was often seeing begging in the streets for the obvious purpose of gathering some money.

But then patience is always bitter; but its fruit is sweet. This boy, in spite of all the thorns he faced in his dry life, is oozing with determination and hopefulness. He didn’t give up on all of it, he continued. He didn’t give up when his father died. He didn’t become desperate when his house burned down and even now, he didn’t stop just because fate was testing him. Daniel studied on a sidewalk beside McDonald’s, benefiting from the light the restaurant gave.

And then…social media to the rescue! Daniel was captured studying at the place and his photo was uploaded on Facebook by a medical technology student. People from all around the world responded to the photo and it went viral. This world isn’t totally cruel yet; because of that photo, Daniel and his family received plenty of donations and help from many people. Before the photo, he only had a single pencil after one of his fellow students stole his second pencil from him. That viral photo went much farther than just likes and comments and shares; Daniel was granted a major educational scholarship from the Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement & Support party that will be enough to help him through his way to college. Cherry on top; a scholarship from McDonald’s Philippines – a basic educational scholarship that covers his school expenses, supplies and uniform up to grade 12.

Every single person that came to know about his story encouraged his persistence. Kenneth Yang, McDonald’s Philippines president and CEO said: ”As Filipinos, we are proud to meet a boy so determined to succeed in life. It is with an open heart that we grant him a scholarship to help him achieve his goals.” Through the scholarship, Daniel will get a monthly allowance as well. He vowed to study even harder, now that so many people have provided him help.

Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) has taken this chain of good deeds a step farther. RHMC has started an initiative, Ronald McDonald Read to Learn, which will benefit more than 400 first graders of Daniel’s school; including his younger brother, Gabriel. Daniel’s mother is also grateful to all the people who stepped out to help. ”Our family can’t be more thankful for all the support given to us,” she said, according to the release. “As a mother, my main priority is really for my children to finish their studies.”

A determined today leads to a successful tomorrow. Daniel aims to be a policeman. We all wish him best of luck. Indeed, he has given an inspirational message to the entire world.

Razzan Sehar
Angels International College  

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Homeless Jacob Lewis Gets Place in Cambridge University



Jacob Lewis, 22 years of age, had quite a hard time with quite a lot of hard work which eventually paid off. Being homeless and extremely poor, Jacob had to go through a lot to turn his dream into reality; to get elite education without any support from his family. He was dropped out of college at the age of 17 and then returned to his studies as a mature student, after he felt the need to when his friends and mates were seen graduating.

“At the start of this year I was working 24 hours a week to support my studies and make ends meet, I was barely eating.”

Jacob, after a fall-out with his family, was left with no roof over his head. Jacob was forced into sleeping on friends’ sofas – but spent every waking hour at the college. He lost his zero-hours contract with a nightclub after he asked to take time off for the sake of giving his exams. But he didn’t give up.

 “I was on a zero-hours contract and my employer wouldn’t let me have time off for an exam,” he recalled. “I had never missed a shift and I wasn’t prepared to jeopardize my A-levels for £6.50 an hour.” “It was a challenge; but not an impossible one.”

He also gave some credit of his success to his college who gave him benefit through its student hardship fund; Coleg y Cymoedd is the largest A level provider in Caerphilly and Rhondda Cynon Taf with over 500 learners receiving results. Jacob said he put an extreme effort to make his results outstanding; he spent 12 hours a day in the library. After seeing his result, this effort was worth it.

Jacob obtained 4A*s in his A levels – in the subjects of history, law, sociology and the Welsh Baccalaureate.  He acquired 100% both in history and overall in law. Jacob is his college’s first student to be placed in the Cambridge University. He stated: “I’m absolutely delighted with my results and I hope this shows Welsh students that with hard work and dedication this can be done and dreams can come true.”

Jacob said he didn’t have any firm career or future plans ready after he finishes his education. But he has a sincere “commitment to try and make the world a better place.”

Furthermore, Jacob’s college’s principal Judith Evans stated that she is too extremely proud of all the success Jacob received. “We are so proud of him and are delighted to have been part of his journey.”

Razzan Sehar
Angels International College

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Muslim rickshaw driver shows exemplary honesty



“In a world of universal deceit, simply telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

The above mentioned saying is applicable to our present contemporary world too. We live on a planet where deceptions, lies, betrayal and bitterness are so common that its discouraging to see how many people are shocked by honesty, but not by deceit.Honesty is precious, but rare. Example of such rarity was seen in the city of Jaipur, India where a Muslim rickshaw driver showed marvelous honesty, when he could have easily obtained a huge (but temporary) gain.

Abid Qureshi, a man with a minute income with a wife and a baby girl to feed, found a bag with money inside it worth one lac seventeen  thousand rupees. He could have easily, very very easily taken this amount home, told his wife about it and perhaps would have started a better life which was not possible with the few rupees he received everyday by driving people to their destinations in his ordinary rickshaw. He could have started a life with that one lac seventeen thousand; he could have given his small family better clothes, better food to eat or perhaps a better house to live and a new business to look after. But no. He didn’t do it.

He didn’t bring that amount home, he didn’t look with greedy eyes upon that money that wasn’t his at all, he didn’t think about giving his daughter and wife those clothes, that food, that house, that business which was all triggered by something that wasn’t permitted; neither in his religion, nor in the moral rules that a respectable person should abide by.

So ladies and gentlemen, this man waited 6 hours for the real owner of this money, but to no avail. Even then in those 6 hours, when he could’ve decided to hide that money in his home, he didn’t think about possessing something that clearly wasn’t his and was ‘haraam’ (forbidden).

His wife, Amina, and he decided that honesty is better than sugar-coated crap. They, without any form of greed, handed over the money to the police station.

We still don’t know whether that money would be returned to its respective owner. Maybe somewhere in the way, some person will have his greed overcome his honesty. Maybe somewhere in the way poverty will force a person’s honesty to wane, eventually causing deceit to win. But the thing here is that honest hearts produce honest actions.

The rickshaw driver did his part. He earned respect, appreciation, trust, and surely, his loyalty will be returned. Indeed, no legacy is as rich as honesty.

Razzan Sehar 
Angels International College

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The science behind Love



When we think of the scientific basis of how love works on our body, we often tend to think a few questions, for example- Why do you fantasize someone? What does ‘love’ do to your body, and is falling in love just nature’s way to make our species survive? Well, by the end of this post, all such queries shall be answered.

When in love…
Its not uncommon to find flushed cheeks, a racing heart beat and clammy hands as open signs of being ‘in love’. Everyone calls it ‘love’, the most exhilarating of all human emotions is probably nature’s beautiful way of keeping the human species alive and reproducing.
When it comes to love it seems we are at the mercy of our biochemistry. In the body, there are sure-shot chemical signs when that cupid has seemingly fired his red arrow. With an unimaginable mix of biochemicals, our brain entices us to go ahead with this silly but ecstatic thing. A person believes that they’re choosing a potential partner. But they may be mere crazy victims of the Almighty’s amazing plan.
How does it really happen?
It’s not about what you speak or do.
Psychologists noticed that it takes between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to figure out if you like someone ‘that way’.
Research has shown this has little to do with what is said, rather
55% is via body language.
38% is the speech tone and speed.
Only 7% was through what they said.
When a person is attracted to somebody, it could be because subconsciously their genes look appealing. Smell could be implicated as well, when it comes to the X-factor. There’s something very endearing about the look and fragrance of people who are most like our kins.
The 3 stages of love.
One cool research in this field has been done by a certain Dr. Helen Fisher of Rutgers University, New Jersey. She proposed that humans fall in love in three stages, each involving different body hormones.

Stage 1: Lust
This first stage of love is driven by the sex hormones, testosterone and oestrogen in both sexes.

Stage 2: Attraction
When you are truly love-struck and can think of little else, its a feeling of being on cloud 9. Scientists figured that three predominant neurotransmitters involved in this stage are adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin.

A) Adrenaline
The initial stages of falling in love activates the innate fight or flight response, increasing levels of adrenalin and cortisol in blood. This has the funny effect that when you unexpectedly bump into your new love, you start to sweat, heart beats faster and mouth goes dry.

B) Dopamine
Helen Fisher made newly ‘love struck’ couples to get examined and discovered they have high levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine. This chemical stimulates ‘desire and reward’ feeling by triggering an intense rush of pleasure with increased energy, less need for sleep or food, focused attention and exquisite delight in smallest details of this new found feeling. It has a similar effect on the brain as taking some narcotic drug!

C) Serotonin
Undoubtedly, one of love’s most important chemicals that may explain why when you’re ‘falling in love’, your new lover keeps flashing on and off in every little while in your thoughts like strobe lights.
Stage 3: Attachment
Attachment is the bond that keeps couples together long enough for them to have and raise progeny. Scientists think there might be role of two main hormones in this; oxytocin and vasopressin.

A) Oxytocin
This so called ‘cuddle hormone’ is a powerful hormone released by men and women while orgasm. It may deepens the feelings of attachment and makes couples feel much closer to one another after they have sexual intercourse. There’s also a hypothesis that it deepens the bond after each sexual act. It otherwise functions to assist natural childbirth process, and later is released for breastfeeding and to help cement the strong bond between mother and baby.

B) Vasopressin
Another important hormone in the long-term commitment stage and is released after sex.
Does love change the way you think?
A pioneer experiment in Pisa, Italy showed that initially, love (the attraction phase) does change the manner in which you may otherwise normally think.

Psychiatrist Dr. Donatella Marazziti at the University of Pisa called twenty couples who were ‘madly’ in love in less than past six months to see if the brain mechanisms that cause them to constantly think about their lover, were anyway related to the brain mechanisms of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). On studying blood samples from the lovers, she discovered that their serotonin levels were equivalent to the low serotonin levels of OCD patients.

Does Love needs to be blind?
Honestly, yes! Psychiatrists stated that truly smitten lovers, who are new to all this madness, often idealise their partners by magnifying their virtues and sidelining their flaws. They even exalt their relationship itself. Its common to think they have a relationship that’s closer and more special than anyone else’s. Psychologists think this rosy view is really needed to makes us want to stay together and finally want commitment.
Role of genes?
When it comes to choosing ‘the one’, we seem to be have to just rely on our subconscious. Researchers studying the science of attraction have tried to explain how humans pick their mates. When we look at a potential mate, we are assessing whether we would like our children to have their traits. There are two ways of doing this that are currently being studied, pheromones and appearance.
In the end, depends on our choice to judge and mate with somebody with the best possible genes. In a way, its an added advantage as only the chosen genes will then be passed on to our children, somewhat ensuring that we have good kids, who will in turn pass down the familial genes to our future generations.
Albeit there are many benefits of being single, there is no denying that truly falling in love is an intense emotion, and one that most of us find ecstatic. So, the next time someone you know starts to comment on the outdoors being more fragrant and refreshing than usual, or you notice that they smile often, especially when staring at a screen while reading messages of someone, they are definitely dating or may be they are possibly ‘falling in love’. Yet, discretion is always advised!
Dr Aafreen Kotadiya
MGM University

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Humanity came to the rescue for a Brooklyn Jew Man straight from Bangladesh.



Who would’ve thought that a simple holiday greeting could get a person bashed up! But there’s still hope, thanks to people who still believe that humanity comes first!

An incident of Brooklyn narrates that a man had simply wished “Happy Hanukkah” to a random group of people when this greeting landed him in the hospital at the hands of a gang of Antisemitic goons aboard a packed train. He could’ve even lost his life in the scuffle if it wasn’t for a modest Muslim from Bangladesh, a complete stranger, who came to his rescue.

It all began when Adler, his girlfriend, Maria Parsheva, and two other pals boarded the subway at Canal Street bound for Brooklyn and someone in another group wished them “Merry Christmas.” Adler and his pal Angelica Krischanovich responded: “Happy Hanukkah.” Just at that instant it all began and so soon, that all they could realize was that whatever is coming next is not going to be good! The group of about 14 men and women then allegedly began taunting Adler and his pals as “dirty Jews” and “Jew bitches.” Amid a huge scrum, Askari jumped in and got bashed up too. He pulled the emergency brake right before entering the DeKalb Avenue station.
Walter Adler, a 23 years honors student at Hunter College, was touched when Hassan Askari who is studying to be an accountant, jumped to his aid. He recalls, “A random Muslim guy jumped in and helped me, a Jewish guy on Hanukkah – that’s a miracle,” said Adler, “He’s basically a hero. Hassan jumped in to help us despite of being a stranger.” Modest Askari shrugged off the praises, “I just did what I had to do,” he claimed. “My parents raised me that way.”
Later, Police came aboard and arrested 10 people, charging six with assault and four with unlawful assembly. Ten people were arrested in the underground attack on Friday night – including two men who have been arrested for race crimes before. None of the suspects had been charged with a hate crime in the Q train attack as of last night, but the Brooklyn DA’s Civil Rights Bureau is handling the case.
Later, Adler invited his new found friend over to celebrate the Festival of Lights.
The two new pals – the victim with a broken nose and a swollen lip, and the saviour, with two black eyes – had meal together and laughed off the bruises and the night of futile fisticuffs. But, alls well that ends well. And such incidents are a proof that humanity is all but lost! There’s still hope for love, friendship and bonding despite of differences, if only we try!
Dr Aafreen Kotadiya
MGM University

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