Pashto lessons (Pashto learning)

June 14, 2011

Hello everyone!

Here is a series of new Pashto lessons:


Translating into Pashto: Some Common Mistakes

July 24, 2009

Some people think that Pashto is a very complicated and hard-to-learn language. The reason behind this perception is a lack of knowledge and inaccessibility to the resources of this ancient yet live and interesting language.

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Afghan Adabi Baheer: The Writers’ Association of Afghanistan

June 30, 2009

 ‘My name is Ameenullah Watanpal. I have just arrived from Kandahar,’ announced the young enthusiastic poet, about 24, after he was invited to the stage to read his poem to the Afghan Adabi Baheer’s weekly gathering at a local school. Afghan Adabi Baheer, or the Writers’ Association of Afghanistan, has been a platform for Afghan poets, writers, and intellectuals to read their poems, short stories and research papers, express their views on national and international issues, and discuss contemporary literary trends since it was established in Peshawar, Pakistan, some 15 years back. Its meetings are held every Friday regularly from the first day of its establishment, but now in Kabul instead of Peshawar.

 The young poet, Mr Watanpal, then read his poem titled ‘Peace’:

 ‘We need peace, O Lord! Yes, we need peace.

My young eyes, from the day they were opened to see this world,

have seen nothing but corpses, wounds, the war.

These eyes have seen their mother dying,

they don’t know how a father loves his child,

and this because of this unending war!

 The war has took away the opportunity of being educated from me.

The war has stolen from me the opportunity of being an engineer.

The war has deprived me of becoming a doctor, a teacher.

So, I am the most affected victim of the war, O Lord!

We beg you, O Lord! We now need peace, stop the war….


 Undoubtedly, peace and security is the major, say the first, demand of all the people of Afghanistan and that is the reason the young poet wanted to condemn war and praise peace, as well as spread the message of love. In the same way, Aman Musherey, or ‘Peace Poetry Gatherings’ are common these days in Afghanistan, mostly held in provinces, in which the poets spread the message of love and peace, and condemn war and conflict in their poems, thus inviting and encouraging youths to embrace peace and reject extremism and militancy.

 In the beginning, the aim of establishing this forum, the Afghan Adabi Baheer, was to give a platform to Afghan writers and poets, who were living as refugees in Pakistan, to express their thoughts and feelings. It was then the only and a respectable source of entertainment for the Afghan youths. After the Taliban government was toppled in Kabul, and when the refugees started returning to their country, Afghan Adabi Baheer also was shifted to Kabul where it turned to be the central forum for Afghan poets and writers across the Afghanistan. Since then, the association has not only directly and indirectly trained and encouraged many young writers and journalists, who now work on top government posts or with different national and international media organizations, but has also inspired the establishment of many more similar institutions such as Merman Kulturiz-Tolaniz Baheer, or The Afghan Women Writers’ Association, which now has branches in some of the provinces where a high number of female writers, poets, and intellectuals take part in its regular weekly meetings. Both the associations have contributed a great deal to the modern Pashto literature and preserve the right to be acknowledged nationally and internationally.

 Unfortunately, the government of Afghanistan,  which has a whole ministry for cultural affairs, has completely ignored this important institution. During the association’s last meeting, in which more than fifty poets read their poems and a short story was read out for general discussion, it was announced in the end that the Baheer had no place for its next meeting. Previously its members used to gather in a hall of a non-governmental organization, but recently the organization told the Baheer that they needed the hall and were no more able to give it for its weekly e can give it for its gathe ral discussion, ssues, ears back.gatherings. The members of the association were so frustrated with the government’s apathy and unresponsiveness that they did not consider to ask it for help. Later, a private university offered its hall on temporary base.

 In the world of literature, there are associations and organizations that charge a membership fee and then provide their members with these and some other facilities. But Baheerwals, as they like to be called, I think that that system would not work in Afghanistan. The reasons are valid:

 1)      Afghanistan is a war-torn country and people are living under the line of poverty. Even in Kabul, the capital, the government is facing several challenges. Besides security, there are no roads, health facilities, electricity, and clean water in areas just outside the main city.

2)      There is no market for Pashto literature. Due to the high ratio of illiteracy in Pashto-speaking areas, and the indifference of both (Afghanistan and Pakistan) governments towards the language, very few people buy Pashto books. You can’t find even one publisher that publish Pashto books and pay the authors royalties. If an author wants to publish his book, he pays the publisher, and then distributes his book free. Only few authors can afford this. Most of the poets and writers just go to the regular weekly gatherings and read their writings there. The gatherings are the major source for them to express their views.

 In this case, who will ask members of a literary association to pay membership fee? But keeping the importance of their role in the society in mind, I think the only way is that the government does provide them a place free of cost.

 Just to remind, Afghan Adabi Baheer holds its weekly literary meetings in Kabul, and poets and writers attend these meetings from provinces as far as Kandahar, Zabul, Nangrahar, Helmand, Kanduz, Mazar-e-Shari, though they have similar gatherings in their provinces as well.

Articles and Photos of Afghanistan, Pakistan

July 4, 2008

Some articles, photos and videos, written and taken by the writer of this blog, can be found here. The articles, photos, and videos are related to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Pashto and the people of Pashtunkhwa. Click here.

Learn Pashto Writing and Speaking

March 4, 2008

As a language learner need so much and different resources to learn fleunt writing and speaking, unfortunately, there is a lack of these much resources on the internet to learn Pashto. Some websites and softwares are available as I have written about in my previous posts, yet a learner, beginner and advance level, needs real practice.

I have started to teach Pashto through regular lessons by email, chat on skype and  phone conversations for low fees. For those who want to improve their reading and writing skill want to practice their speaking skills can contact anytime.

Also contact for translating books, phmaplets, documents, ads, etc from English into Pashto and Urdu and vice versa. And other information on Pashto, Pashtoons, Pashto books and Pashto literature.

For more details please contact on

On Knowledge

August 7, 2007


عالمان دي روښنايي ددې دنيا
عالمان دي د تمام جهان پېشوا

Lights in the world are those, who know,
Guides of mankind are those, who know

که څوک لار غواړي و خداى ته و رسول ته
عالمان دي ددې لارې رهنما

When looking for the road to God
And prophet, ask from those, who know

کيمياگر که د کيميا په طلب گرځي
همدمي د عالمانو ده کيميا

The alchemist in his research
Finds sympathy with those, who know

په مجلس  د عالمانو به سرۀ زر شي
که څوک کاڼى وي که لُوټه د صحرا

A desert stone will turn to gold
In company with those, who know

جاهلان دي په مثال د مرده گانو
عالمان دي په مثال د مسيحا

An ignorant is like a corpse,
Like Jesus Christ are those, who know

چې مرده يې له نفسه ژوندي کېږي
عالمان دي واړه هسې اوليا

For by His breath the dead arose,
The saintly breath of those, who know

هر سړى چې رتبه نۀ لري د علم
سړى نۀ دى خالي نقش دى گويا

Those are not humans, only shells,
The empty ones, who do not know

زه رحمان حلقه بگوش د هر عالم يم
که اعلٰى دى که اوسط دى که ادنىٰ

No matter to which low degree,
REHMAN will serve the ones, who know

(Translated by Jens Enevoldsen. The Nightingale of Peshawar: Selection from Rehman Baba. Published by InterLit Foundation, Peshawar)

Agony of love

July 24, 2007

Poem by Rehman Baba

ته چې ماته وايې چې په څه کوې ژړا
نه درمعلومېږي دغه خپل جور و جفا
ته جور و جفا کړې زه ژړا کوم دلبره
ستا که دغه نه وى دا به هم نه وى زما

You ask, my love, about my tears
But don’t you recognize the fears
That agonize my heart?
Were not your infidelity
Torturing me so cruelly
My sorrows would depart

څه ښادي به کاندي طايفه د عاشقانو
رسم د بتانو که همدا وي لکه ستا
دا خصلت چې ستا دى که هم تل په دغه شان وي
نه رامعلومېږي د دردمند د زړه دوا

How can your lovers joyful be
If practicing idolatry
Is just like loving you?
If this your real nature is
What wounded heart can find release?
What medicine will do?

يو دا ستا ماڼى شو بل غرور د رقيبانو
وار په وار مې وژني کله هغه کله دا
هر چې عاشقي کا که په قطع افلاطون وي
زه خو يې مجنون ګڼم که نن وي که سبا

I sense, that you have turned aside
I suffer from my rivals’ pride
I’m killed in either way,
If one makes love to Plato’s tune
To me he’ll always be Manjun
Tomorrow as today

سپى هم په عذاب د جدايۍ د وژلو نه دى
زه خو ګوندې ستا د کوڅې سپى شوم په وېنا
هيڅ يې پکار نه دي رحمان تا غواړي دلبره
دا زما رضا ده باقي هر چې ستا رضا

No dog is subject to such pain
I’m like a watchdog in your lane
And yet I suffer still,
A dog wants naught, RAHMAN wants you
This single goal I must pursue
Whatever be your will

(Translated by Jens Enevoldsen, from the book The Nightingale of Peshawar: Selected Poems of Rehman Baba)