Afghan proverbs help charities

صد زدن زرگر یک زدن آهنگر

  • Transliteration: “Sad zadan zargar yak zadan ahangar.”
  • Literal Translation: The Goldsmith hits one hundred times, the Blacksmith once.
  • English equivalent: If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

 

Afghans love to use proverbs to colour  their conversation and emphasise a point.  Indeed this is an admirable skill, much lost in Europe.   A welcome  collection of Afghan proverbs  is the  book  ‘Zarbul Masalha : 151 Afghan Dari Proverbs’, as  brought together by US  Naval Captain  Edward  Zellem, as explained here.  The book was  popular  at the 5th Afghan Cultural Festival  at Gunnersbury Park, West London, on Sunday 24th July 2016. It brought people together as they discussed  their  favourite proverbs.

The annual Afghan Cultural Festival is run by  charity ‘Paiwand’ [‘Paiwand’ = ‘Unity’]  whose aim is the support of the Afghan community  and others (those long here as well as new arrivals) in their new UK homeland. The charity’s  excellent website includes its exemplary Annual Reports. It’s hoped that in some small way ‘Zarbul Masalha’ has helped towards the Festival’s continuing success.

 

Here are three warm ‘proverb’ stories from Festival 2016:

Story One: 

Mayor Patricia Walker of Ealing and Mayor Ajmer Grewal of Hounslow prepare to learn some Afghan proverbs.

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A young lady Dari speaker reads some proverbs to Mayor Patricia Walker of Ealing and Mayor Ajmer Grewal of Hounslow. The proverbs bring everyone together as they show that life’s experiences are universal.

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Story Two: 

Writer Shabibi Shah Nala talked of her fearful times in Afghanistan before escaping and eventually settling in UK.  She tells her story in her first book  “Where Do  I Belong?”  Her second book  [2014]   ‘Innocent Deception’ tells the stories of others similarly forced to flee their homeland.  She felt that a well chosen proverb could  do much to relieve a difficult situation.

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Story Three: 

Daanish Foundation  aims to provide young Afghans with the education that war and poverty denies so many. The Foundation  has recently restored a school wrecked by bomb damage. So the Foundation very much admired how the students  of Marefat High School, Kabul had illustrated the proverbs for  ‘Zarbul Masalha : 151 Afghan Dari Proverbs’.

‘Daanish’ means ‘Knowledge’ or ‘Wisdom’.  It  can be used as a  Muslim child’s name.

We wish Daanish Foundation every success.

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Dannish Foundation has a great Facebook page with videos of the day – here. 

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A Daanish Foundation T-shirt  on the road !

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صد زدن زرگر یک زدن آهنگر

  • Transliteration: “Sad zadan zargar yak zadan ahangar.”
  • English Translation: The Goldsmith hits one hundred times, the blacksmith once.
  • English equivalent : If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

[Proverb number 4 from  ‘Zarbul Masalha : 151 Afghan Dari Proverbs‘]

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