Sunday, February 12, 2012

Introduction to PhilAsify (About Me)

In the name of God, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful.

Whether you have stumbled upon this page by some bizarre accident, or I myself begged you to click this link, I would like to humbly welcome you to PhilAsify 101! I know the first peculiarity you might have noticed is the title of this blog and the odd way that I chose to have it spelled. When I first planned to create a blog for myself, I thought it would be clever to put my name somewhere in the title as a pun while at the same time making it relevant to the overall theme by taking a well-known subject of human knowledge and discussion (Philosophy) and put my own individual stamp on it. Frankly, and I'm sure you're thinking this, it may just be a pathetic attempt at being vain. Regardless, I thought it was cool and I'm sticking with it for the time being (But I do at least deserve some credit in the creativity realm when you take into account how difficult it is to make my name rhyme or sync with any word in the English language.)

Anyhoo, before I outline the objective of this blog, I would like to touch a little bit about myself. As you may have already figured out, my name is Asif. I'm a first-generation Muslim American of Pakistani descent. My parents emigrated to America with the hopes and dreams of having their future children place their mark in the land of opportunity. A cliche story I know, but admirable nevertheless. I, along with my 4 siblings, were born and raised in Houston, Texas, a city known for its ethnic diversity. We were all brought up in the American public school system (dun dun dun!) where we had to deal with issues of fitting in and balancing our culture and faith while mixing with the society we lived in. Because of financial difficulties, we had to move a lot in my childhood which resulted in my experience with many different type of communities ranging from suburban middle to upper class all the way to the urban ghetto areas of Houston. Despite the influences and pressures of being a part of the US Public school system, I did manage to maintain good grades and conduct and took my education seriously.

In 2010, I graduated from the University of St. Thomas with a BA in Communications and a minor in creative writing. I have also developed a media/video production background with a focus in pre-production (screenwriting). At a young age, I always loved to tell stories and entertain people of all ages, be it my younger brothers, my friends or adults so it was only natural that my calling in life was to be a writer. Unfortunately for me, a combination of laziness and lack of focus caused me to slip away from my writing, leaving behind what I have been told by college professors and the like, "untapped literary potential". In my time withdrawn from my craft, I have proclaimed myself as "Asif - the writer who doesn't write".

So this blog is an honest and somewhat desperate attempt to snap out of my productivity hibernation and do like Hollywood screenwriter and instructor Dov Simens has popularly said in his screenwriting course, "Move your fingers!". Most of the content on this blog is just going to be my thoughts at the time on various subjects, so there will be something for everyone here. Being a Muslim that strives to uphold his faith to the best of his ability, some blogs would cover Islamic topics but are not limited to that because I will give my own personal commentaries and insight on everything from productivity, politics, the media industry, sports, and just thoughts on life in general coming from a young Muslim American trying to live and stay sane in this crazy world.

Whether this blog reaches millions with the help of Allah Almighty or a handful, my first intention of PhilAsify 101 is to use the craft that I believe God blessed me with, to write. These postings essentially are to make sure that I don't stop doing what I love and that is to write to both entertain and enlighten. If I am able to do that and gather a following because of it, it'll be a bonus. So please sit back and enjoy the ride as I hit you with some of my PhilAsify in the coming days, weeks, months and years, InshaAllah (God willing).

Til next time,
Take care.

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