“A Mirror to the Blind” is an autobiography book of Pakistani philanthropist, and humanitarian Abdul Sattar Edhi, who is also the founder of Edhi Foundation.
This book is written by Tehmina Durrani. She is a women’s rights activist and author. Her first book was “My Feudal Lord” which was her autobiography.
Before starting a review, let me share one thing that I really love the persona of Edhi Sahib, and to follow his path I decided few things on which I will implement soon.
I don’t like to read books, although I’m a student of Journalism, but it was an assignment that to read any history or autobiography book, and it took 1 month to search a book. But when one of my friends suggested this book, I said ok but when I brought this book from my friend, so I became shocked to see book-length because I was searching for a book that should be shorter in length. But no I decided to read it afterwards, and the reason behind is Edhi Sahib. We all know a bit about Edhi Sahib, same as I. But it was just before reading this book, after reading it my knowledge has really been increased.
Following are the details of the book,
- Name: Edhi! A Mirror to the Blind
- Type: Autobiography
- Author: Tehmina Durrani
- Genre: Non-Fiction
- Table of Contents: 12 Chapters
- Cover: Nice and Attractive (Edhi Sahib’s Picture on the cover)
- Pages: 370
- Wordings: Easy
- Price: 150 PKR
- Publication: A. Sattar Edhi Foundation
- Ratings: 6.5/10
There are 370 pages in a book with 12 chapters. Each chapter contains 20 to 50 pages. It is an autobiography book, written by Tehmina Durrani. This book is her first edition, after this, she wrote 5 more editions.
From chapter 1 to chapter 12, the inspiration that we can take from His life was at its peak. When I started reading chapter 1, it was about Gujrat rail attack and the death of his grandson Bilal. I thought what it is, where the beginning is, and why these things are being discussed here in chapter 1. But as I have done with it, now it’s time for chapter 2 from where the beginning of Edhi Sahib’s life started. But still, the question was the same.
Well, chapter 2 and 3 are the chapters which I loved the most throughout the book. Chapter 2 is all about His childhood, and since His childhood, He started giving charity and that was the moment when he started loving humanity because every day his mother used to give him 2 penny with a piece of advice that 1 penny spends on you while 1 penny on those who really need it. And after returning back from school, she used to inquire, and he refused to tell lie and being as a true kid he used to answer that sometimes he finds poor so spend on him while sometime couldn’t find any poor.
Chapter 3 is about migration India to Pakistan, and since migration, her mother became so weak, ill, and she became paralyzed. And at one moment while reading this chapter, a continuous flow of water started falling from my eyes. Because the lines were so touchy that he said to his mom while given her bath because she was paralyzed.
While reading chapter 4, 1 question raised in my mind, which I would like to share with you all.
Can we clean manholes of our streets?
Obviously not, we can’t even imagine but Edhi Sahib did it! And at that time his age would be 22 to 26, while at this age we think about only for ourselves but he was totally opposite and always used to think for others.
Edhi Sahib proposed 10 to 13 girls before proposing Bilquise. But he always has gotten fail, and the nurses whom he proposed they used to reject him by saying, you’re poor, what would I do with you, my life will become hell etc.
In Chapter 5, he finally got married to Bilquise on 23rd March 1966. After marriage, Bilquise used to tease him on the name of Amina (the girl whom he first proposed). A strong bond produced between them, while a Miyani beach incident was also discussed in this chapter.
In chapter 6; the era of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Edhi Sahib stood as an independent candidate, but unfortunately, he couldn’t win the elections. They performed Hajj, and travelled by roads along with other pilgrims, it was the first time after the marriage that they went together for any journey.
While travelling to Rahimyar khan along with his wife and son to transfer one of the dead body at its home town, Edhi Sahib got an accident and the news spread like a fire in all over the country that Edhi is dead, Edhi has gone, Edhi has left us.
In chapter 7, Edhi Sahib became the head of the Islamic Shura Council. Even after becoming head he still strongly believed in simplicity and rejected all the luxuries of government.
In chapter 8, he received an invitation to receive President Suharto of Indonesia, at Karachi airport. A group of journalist became against him and started publishing negative news of Edhi Sahib, but he kept ignoring, as he was doing it since the start of his mission.
In chapter 9, Edhi Sahib was awarded “Prestigious Magsaysay Award” by the Philippine government in the year 1986. When he returned to Pakistan he was sad because his country not even care about what he is serving them, but he’s being awarded from another country.
While in chapter 10, 11 & 12; Edhi Sahib’s father got died, and he kept recalling his words and memories of childhood till few days after death, but then again he back to his mission. Bilquise started gotten weak day by day, and one day she got a heart attack, and this was the point when Edhi Sahib decided to build a burial place for himself and Bilquise. Edhi Sahib also became one of the first public figures in the Muslim World.
From chapter 1 to 12, I’ve shared few things. Although whatever I’ve shared its equivalent to salt in wheat. Well, not possible to share all or all important things otherwise no need will remain to read this book.
From start to end, the tempo was not the same, if sometimes your interest goes up so sometimes it goes down. Since it was an autobiographical book, so it happens usually but if an author wanted so she can make it more creative and attractive. From chapter 1 to chapter 5, the interest level was at peak but then it was not the same afterwards. And that’s the reason behind I’ve rated this book 6.5/10. But I must say 1 thing due to this book your knowledge will highly increase, and you’ll have much to say about “Father Teresa” or “Angel of Mercy.”
Here I’m sharing few of the inspiring, and motivating quotes from the book,
“Too many dialogues scatter and waste, say a little so that your words are remembered”
“Empty words and long phrases do not impress Him. Show Him your faith by deeds, otherwise why should He believe you?”
“Simplicity is the only beneficial way of life”
“I can begin small, but why should I think small”
“The only way to fight back is to ignore them, and the only way to win is to forge ahead against them”
“Practical work should be your weapon, nothing else can make them retreat from this battlefield”
“In times of need treat a donkey like a father. It is clever to move with the times. Then you will remain on the track”
“You are the most insignificant of all creatures, but can become most significant if you contribute towards God’s people”
“People should not worry about heaven and hell, that is not their business”
“My religion is humanitarianism, which is the basis of every religion in the world”
“Simplicity rises respect and counters the poverty”
Edhi Sahib always wanted to make Pakistan a Welfare State and wanted people to donate whatever they can even a single penny. As a youth, we can continue Edhi Sahib’s mission by following his path, by being the helping hand, by giving charity, and by loving humanity.