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Saquib Mehmood's Blog

I am the least likely person to write a few words about myself, not because I am overly secretive about my great life, but because I am simply lazy. It's an effort to think up good things to write about oneself so I will instead stick with the truth. I believe in evolution not creation, I believe in reason not in the mindless ramblings of some unknown god, I think love trumps reason, I believe that humanity has come far beyond all that was good and beautiful in this world and what is left behind is the foul stench of accumulated sweat formed by a thousand millennia of wasted effort, I believe 'hope' and 'goodness' are words used by aliens probably while having forbidden sex on their far off planets, I think "love" is a dark ritual performed by some lost tribe in Amazon and people will do everything in their power to prevent it from infiltrating into the heart of their rotten civilization, I think people will kill you for thinking differently, I believe that eccentrics are the best hope for humanity and arrogance is the only way of dealing with fools, I believe that when the time comes calling one should stand up and fight and fall and stand up and fight again till there is nothing left, I believe that one should not be scared of death and calamity and adversity as they seek the one who is afraid, I believe that 'prudence' is a refuge of sycophants who are afraid of the consequences of honesty, and yes I dream that one day I will take off on a space ship to some far off galaxy and will never turn back...

Currently reading

Rumi: Bridge to the Soul: Journeys into the Music and Silence of the Heart
Rumi, Coleman Barks (Translator), With A. J. Arberry, With Nevit Ergin

The Stranger

The Stranger - Albert Camus,  Matthew    Ward
What I have read in fact is a translation by Stuart Gilbert, and I don't feel that anything perceptible was lost in translation. 

You have to read this book very carefully to get Camus' point. It perpetuates a certain motif of existential philosophy that many readers may not be familiar with and, therefore, prone to make errors of judgement about the merit of the work, which is nothing less than ground breaking and brilliant.
Meursault is accused of a crime which he has in fact committed. Camus does not invite anyone to make judgements on his culpability. He intends only to expose the source of collective morality as it prejudices human judgement. The source keeps shifting, for Meursault, it was the societal indignation at his way of life and his core beliefs. He could have escaped the punishment, had he not been perceived to be such a monster. This is the heart of the matter in fact. Existential thought patterns would ultimately lead one to concede the supremacy of indifference prevailing in the workings of the universe. Moralists, on the other hand, lose the very foundation of their beliefs, if they allow this point of view. So poor Meursault, face your end with the same "supreme indifference that guides the benign hand of universe!"
I had deliberately avoided reading this book for a long time because I never wanted to face the intellectual conundrums that it raises. But eventually it turned out that I faced the conundrums regardless, so why not read the book!