Moments of melancholy aren't always dark
Added: (Tue Apr 03 2018)
Pressbox (Press Release) -
Syed Ulfat Ahmed
In human lives, divinity and spirituality are always important. It is said in Zohar, a Jewish spiritual book - darkness aren't the end of everything. Instead, the beginning of everything starts from the darkness. We had been in the womb of our mother, which were dark too. But, within that absolute darkness, lives were being shaped into humanbeings. Let's look into the sky above our heads. Is that dark? Is may look dark, bit, actually zillions of lights actually are hidden behind this darkness. Scientists Stephen Hawkins said, there are universes just at the other end of the black holes. It doesn't mean, black holes are just mere traps where anything entering would ultimately get vanished. Instead, black holes are the pathways to another universe. In this worldly life, whenever we encounter agonies or difficult times, many of us lose hope. We surrender ourselves much before seeing the ultimate result. Some foolish people even commit suicide for getting rid of the adversities in their lives. They certainly do not understand a simple math - nothing is rigid - nothing permanent in our lives. Neither happiness nor sorrows and sufferings. People with the power of divinity and wisdom would never get frustrated with any episodes in their lives. They learn the marvelous art of smiling - during good or worst times. With patience they wait wait for the upcoming days.
In my own life, I met a magnificent individual, who is blessed with the extraordinary qualities to be known as a man of rarest virtue. He never loses hope, even in the period of absolute melancholy. People like him have definitely learnt them art of living and even dreaming during extreme adversities. That makes this man so much special to me. His name is Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury. Since 2003, he has been facing extreme odds and adversities in Bangladesh, a country, which has been terribly ruthless on him, for his 'crimes' of confronting radical Islam and militancy; for denouncing antisemitism and holocaust denial; for defending Israel; and for promoting interfaith harmony. He has been arrested a number of times, tortured in the custody of the law enforcing agencies, released on bail and arrested again. Since 2012, he has been languishing in prison, serving rigorous imprisonment for the 'crimes' I already mentioned. His office were bombed by an Islamist militancy outfit named KhatmeyNabuwat, and he even had been physically assaulted by the ruling party thugs. Still, he is strong, undeterred and facing the devils of radical Islam, with his signature smile.
Months back, a friend of mine met this maverick in prison office. The visitor was stunned seeing Mr. Choudhury smiling and his eyed filled with hope, although during these years, his health condition had deteriorated.
Only a man of rarest virtue may have such divine qualities.
Mr. Choudhury told the visitor, whenever pains and sufferings become unbearable, he thinks of the Jewish people, who had endured unimaginable brutalities of Adolph Hitler and his Nazi devils. He thinks, he too is still alive in the concentration camp (a maximum security jail in Bangladesh).
Most of his Jewish brothers and sisters, but a few virtuous individuals like Avrohom Simon or his mother Nicole Simon, had forgotten or abandoned him long ago. Many of them had also misunderstood him or even mocking him as 'an unfathomable friend of the Jews and the West'. Still, Mr. Choudhury said, "I have no complain. Possibly I am guilty, and most definitely I feel extremely repented for some of my mistakes in the past. I did apologise to my Jewish brothers, sisters and friends, and if they don't forgive me - I don't have complain against anyone.
"I couldn't hold my tear when my family brought me a cooy of a nasty propaganda against me, published in Times of Israel. This defamatory article was catered by Israeli official news agency - Jewish Telegraph Agency. Writer of this propaganda, Larry Luxner visited Bangladesh in 2012 at the invitation of Bangladesh government. He was heavily paid by anti Israel forces and that made him a desparate crusader, whose lone mission was to eliminate any trace of pro-Israel forces in Bangladesh. His article titled 'Unmasking an unfathomable friend of the West' speaks clearly that he was just meeting the evil desire of his masters, who brought him in Bangladesh, hosted him at five-star Ruposhi Bangla Hotel, paid him hugely, and then let him go into a rampage on me and every other pro-Israel individuals in here. He even denied the existence of Jews in Bangladesh, similarly as the Bangladesh authorities.
"I hate to be nasty on people, but now I think it is time to tell the world, who this Larry Luxner is. O. his arrival in Dhaka, Larry contacted me. I thought he was another Jewish friend. When I met him at Ruposhi Bangla Hotel alongwith my younger brother Sohail Choudhury, Larry Luxner asked for helping him with a mobile phone. I gave a new set with pleasure alongwith a local number. On receiving the set, Larry Luxner said, he is here to write on my works and he needed a car. I provided my own car to him. Then he asked for fifty thousand dollars in cash as fees for his media support. Just imagine! How in the world, I could pay such a huge amount to this man? That made Larry Luxner mad! Larer I came to know, he received US$ 100k from an antisemitic member of the Bangladesh government to destroy my relations with the Jewish conmunity. Larry did serve the purpose like an obedient dog.
"I don't generally bad-mouth against anyone. But this nasty and crook Larry Luxner deserves more than that.
"He even contacted my brother Dr. Richard Benkin hoping of some unjust cpmments on me. But, my brother knows me well and in response to crook Larry's question. Here is what Larry wrote: 'Belkin [Richard Benkin], who runs a website that exposes alleged Muslim ethnic cleansing of minority Hindus in Bangladesh, has not spoken to Choudhury in several years. Asked why by JTA [Jewish Telegraph Agency], he declined to explain. Nevertheless, Belkin expressed nothing but admiration for the man he helped rescue.
“While Shoaib and I are no longer working together, nor have we been in contact for some time, he retains a place in my heart for his personal courage and for the ground he broke,” Belkin told JTA in an email from Chicago. “Shoaib and I have taken separate paths since our struggles with Islamists and their water carriers, but those efforts revealed a man who willingly put himself in danger for a principle.”
"With tears I silent said, thank you very much my dearest brother Richard! Kol Hakavod and Mazel Tov! You have been on Bangladesh and you have seen my family, the house we live. Brother, Israel doesn't need any Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury. Instead, they're delightedly giving space to crooks like Larry Luxner.
"Have I supported Israel for money? Did I endure pains and agonies just to be branded as uunfathomable by Israeli official news agency, JTA? Is this called friendship? My dearest brother Richard, I am terribly shocked!"
Is he going to abandon what he has been doing since 2002 in defence of Israel and against radical Islam, once he gets released? That was a question from the visitor. Mr. Choudhury smiled and said, "Why shall I? Am I doing these for making money? Why should I? My life was smooth and happy before I began my journey into this crucial path. Ask anyone in Bangladesh. I had a comfortable and even luxurious lifestyle. But now, because of my dedication into what I have been doing - I am suffering - my wife and children are suffering.
"I am making a call to the world through you with all my heart, Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel and every country should move their embassies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In my opinion, the so-called statehood of the Palestinians already is lifeless. No decent nation can deal with Hamas, a mega terrorist group, or the Palestinian stabbers and stone throwers.
"My battle is against radical Islam, and I am delighted fighting that evil force right inside the battleground - here in Bangladesh - a country, that unfortunately considers Israel as an 'enemy' state."
The author is a freelance columnist in Bangladesh. To reach him:firstname.lastname@example.org