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Salient Features of Pakistani Culture

Salient Features of Pakistani Culture

Definition of Culture

Culture may be defined as behaviour peculiar to human beings, together with material objects use d. Culture consists of language, ideas, beliefs, customs, codes, institution, tools, techniques, works of arts, ceremonies and so on. According to Allama Iqbal:

“Culture encompasses all the mental, spiritual and physical activities of a nation. It includes the basic beliefs and faith, values and literature, art and architecture, music and mode of dress, manners and customs prevalent in a given society.”

Pakistani Culture is a Islamic Culture

Pakistan is an ideological Islamic State. Its very existence is due to Islam, so the Pakistani culture is primarily based on the Islamic way of life. All other ingredients of culture are inspired by Islam. Pakistani culture is highlighted by its grandeur, simplicity, firm convictions and noble deeds and ideas.

Salient Features of Pakistani Culture

The main characteristics of Pakistani culture are as follows:

1.    Religious Uniformity

Pakistan came into existence to provide its people a system of life based on Islam. The people, in spite of some differences of languages, customs and traditions commonly follow one religion of Islam. This is the religion, which is practiced by all people of Pakistan.

2.    Language

A number of languages are spoken in Pakistan. Some of them are Punjabi, Sindhi, Pushto and Baluchi. But Urdu is spoken and understand in all parts of Pakistan. Being the official language, it is the media of communication between all regions of Pakistan.

3.    Literature and Poetry

Literature is an important aspect of our cultural life. Most of our poets reflect Islamic code and trend in their poetry. They gave the message of love and brotherhood. Similarity of thought amongst poets and writers of all regions is an important factor of our cultural life.

4.    Dress and Diet

Dress is an important manifestation of culture. The regional dresses of Pakistan under go changes in the light of local traditions, economic conditions, way of living and wealth in the region. But in all Provinces people generally wear Shalwar Kameez.

Our eating habits, foods and social etiquette are strictly in conformity with Islamic principles.

5.    Mixed Culture

Pakistani culture is a mixed culture although majority of people are Muslims by birth and faith. But there is great influence of Hindu and British culture on the present Pakistani society.

6.    Male Dominated Society

In Pakistani culture, the male member of the family enjoys the key position. Family is headed by a male member and in most cases, he is the sole source of income for other members of the family.

7.    Arts and Architecture

The iconoclasm of Islam has given a characteristic form and pattern in the use of elegant designs, based on geometric figures and floral forms borrowed from nature. The Shah Jahan Masjid, Shalimar Garden, Badshahi Masjid, Shahi Qila and many such graceful buildings are a living proof of the excellent Mughal architecture.

8.    Handicrafts

Embroidery, leather works, glazed pottery, wood work, carpet making, metal crafts, ivory are the essential parts of our culture. Pakistani craftsmen are considered as the best in their craftsmanship. They are known for the high quality works which is very popular in foreign countries.

9.    Recreational Activities – Sports

The recreational activities all over the Pakistan are common. The games like wrestling, hockey, cricket, football, squash Kabaddi etc are popular in every part of our country. These games reflect our cultural identity.

10.           Education

Education contributes a great deal in developing national character. Educational system plays a vital role in the formation of culture, Unity and solidarity of a nation. It is, therefore, important that the entire syllabi right from the lower to higher level should be placed in accordance with the ideology of Pakistan.

11.           Religious Festivals

Festivals play an important part of our culture. Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Azha are our two main religious festivals. They are celebrated with great happiness throughout the country.

12.           Ulema, Mushaikh and Sufi Poets

Ulema, Mushaikh and Sufi Poets occupy an honoured place in our cultural aspect of life. Sufis like Lal Shahbaz, Data Ganj Baksh, Shah Abdul Latif, Sachal Sarmast, Hazrat Sultan Bahu and Waris Shah rendered meritorious services for the spread of Islam in the Sub Continent.

Conclusion

Culture which includes religion, literature art, architecture, dresses, music, manners and customs has its roots in the Islamic culture. Islam has described the rights and duties of every individual. Even in drinking, eating and dressing, we have to observe certain rules prescribed by Islam. So it may be said that Pakistani culture represents the true picture of Islamic culture.

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