Why Chitralis hate hard work?-2

Published on: 26/05/2022 | Comments: 2 comments 

.. Prof Rahmat Karim Baig 

The title  was included in a previous online Issue which had drawn a number of critical views. This is the 2nd of the series to know some other aspects of the title as it has not got one reason but many others. The History of Chitral has got so many paradoxical features starting from the early Kho times to the end of the ruling family of Chitral. The number of tribes also confuses the students of history. Let’s see what is the 2nd and 3rd reason of  hating hard work.

The first has already been in the papers and the next one could be the hold of ecclesiastical offices- that is the clergy who ruled the minds of the inhabitants of Chitral in the shadows of the mountains where they imagined ghosts, fairies, urchins, evil spirits, Nahangs etc and in order to be safe from such imaginary creatures they sought the protection of the Faith which was held by the clergy both Sunny and Ismaily. The theologians of both the sects wanted to rule the people at the same time  called ‘piri milk’ – spiritual domain. The priests led the funerals, framed talisman for morbidity, possessions, taught Verses of the Holy Quran, led congregational prayers, delivered speeches on Fridays and Eids, cut and tailored shrouds etc. etc. This presence of the priests did make their figures prominent. The people in return went to do their farm work, grazed their flocks, gave grain in charity after reaping and threshing their crops, assisted them in so many other ways and their children assumed that they were not to do any kind of work and a circle of idlers became prominent that became an example for other young men of the society.

Another cause, in my view, was the presence of the upper class ‘ gentlemen’ who had serfs and tenants and they did all the work for the particular family and the young men of that class enjoyed sports and hunting and hated work of any kind. This was another feature of the beginning of the hatred of hard work. It thus led to mislead other young men of the society. The two types mentioned above motivated their young friends from the middle classes. It was an outcome of the class consciousness that made a good section of the population to abhor work, let alone, hard work. When the agricultural slaves and the tenants left their duties the upper class had to face great problems and they could not accept the new strata of the society for quite sometime as they were not mentally prepared to accept the sudden change, but when it was finally clear and became  a fact, they had lost control over their offspring. It was before the arrival of Tractor and threshing machines. At that stage a wide scale of desertification of cultivated plots had been seen that could not be remedied. Then it was the phase of schools and education that interrupted the will of farm work added by arrival of modern technology in various forms. Anyone can add to these reasons from his own observation. .. Prof. Rahmat Karim Baig, Chitral 26 May 2022

2 thoughts on “Why Chitralis hate hard work?-2

  1. Prof, nice discussion about the society of Chitral in a historical perspective. I think we love hard work though we are physically not so strongest. The reason for that is because we lived in a prison of poverty till recently. Living in such closed,tribal society – hard work is a requirement for survival. We used to walk three-four days to Chitral town and more than that to cross the mighty Lowari pass for a job or to study. Yes, during princely state, different tribes and social classes had different roles and statuses – and this naturally effected the social relationships as well as their social and economic mobility. -Similarly the mazhabi folks, per usual, stressed on fatalism- a well known social belief in most Eastern societies.

  2. The learned writer has very rightly highlighted the causes. In some of the areas, these factors are still dominant factors affecting the Chitrali doing hard work.

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