“Are we losing Kashmir?” An international headline asks. “Is the alienation of the Kashmiri youth total? We still have Kashmir territorially but not emotionally and psychologically anymore.” An expert laments on national media.
Kashmir is a festering wound that has not healed. But why? What is it about Kashmir that is unique and defies any attempt at healing?
“What cannot be talked about can also not be put to rest. And if it’s not, the wounds continue to fester from generation to generation,” said Bruno Bettelheim, world renowned psychologist, talking about people and societies that don’t find closure from trauma.
What hasn’t got talked about is the story of persecution, massacre and historical wrongs in Kashmir and the systematic extermination of those whose only crime was that they wanted to carry on with their faith in peace. To understand the present wound in Kashmir, one has to understand the trauma of a society that goes back to many generations.
Read my novel “The Infidel next door” a story on why the wound in Kashmir has not healed till today and causes one of the deepest fear of the present times as seen through the eyes of its characters. Read as to why the present generation stares down an abyss whose script may have been written long ago but still believe in a future that holds a mirror for change.
An excerpt from the book
…Aditya said, “I only have one more question. Is the history of a people different from the memory they carry of their past?”
Professor Baig smiled. “History, Aditya, dies a thousand deaths, but not memory. Memory holds us together and gives us hope when wars, massacres tear our continuity apart. It is our memory that keeps alive the sacrifice of our heroes.”
“You are a historian. Don’t you find it a problem to trust memory over history?”
“No, their conflict is eternal. It is our memory that heals us, not history, from injustices of the past. History puts a blind on us, making us believe that we are prisoners. History is like an empress, angry with a whip in hand, who demands obedience to the written word. Memory is the mother who holds us in embrace, protecting us when our soul needs answers.”…