Tahmena Bokhari Speaks at BMSD Conference

Tahmena Bokhari Speaks at BMSD Conference to Revive the Arts in the Muslims World

Tahmena Bokhari, social worker, educator, and activist who won Mrs Pakistan World 2010 off to London, England.

Tahmena Bokhari, Mrs Pakistan World, 2010 joins other speakers in London, England on February 16th to encourage Muslims to reclaim their artistic and cultural heritage. Children in certain Muslim homes are increasingly discouraged from participating in drama, art and music. A conference organised by British Muslims for Secula...r Democracy (bmsd) and supported by the British Council will address this problem and the consequences. “Free Muslims: Autonomy and Creativity” challenges those who seek to close down the Muslim mind by claiming Islam forbids artistic expression, leisure and cultural activities.

This is aligned with Ms. Bokhari’s overall message that we must work to develop positive and healthy communities around the world. Having a personal passion for the arts, as she hobbies as a photographer, fashion designer, painter and writer, she firmly believes that creative outlets are a necessary part of a healthy life. She has also used art in providing forms of therapy as a social worker with her clients and children in countries such as Pakistan and Cambodia. This premise of this conference is also insync with the motto of the Mrs. Pakistan World organization on building a modern Pakistan. Ms. Bokhari believes that developing these outlets in all countries, but especially in places like Pakistan, can be a method of redirecting youth from violence and involvement with gangs and terrorist groups.

Professor Tahmena Bokhari commented that, “A sign of healthy children and communities around the world is access to positive outlets for emotional and physical energy, such as the creative arts including poetry, literature, painting, dance, music and so on. Creativity is considered to be a divine blessing in Islam. Islam furnishes us with numerous examples of Muslim creativity, from calligraphy in the Golden Age to Sami Yusuf’s debut album ‘al-Mu’allim’. We must ensure fourteen hundred years of Islamic contributions to art, culture, literature, and history are not pushed aside in favour of a hardline interpretation of the Muslim faith.”

So far, the debate on extremist ideologies has focused on politics and theology, but the cultural side has been ignored. BMSD are organising a half-day open conversation to explore this in further detail, with support from the British Council. It is hugely stifling to deny so many people – especially children – access to the arts and humanities, and this has serious implications for their personal and social development.

Various artists and cultural commentators will be invited from Britain and other parts of the world. In addition to Prof. Bokhari speakers include...

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
Saira Khan
Ayesha Tammy Haq
Razia Iqbal
Joan Smith
Anwar Akhtar

No comments:

Post a Comment