While watching an interview of Bano Qudsia and Ashfaq Ahmad, the renowned writers of Urdu literature, one question to Ashfaq Ahmad by Bano Qudsia appealed me. She said to Ashfaq Ahmad, her husband, “I want to ask one question today. You are a big name in your domain, an authority, a benchmark in your writings. Don’t you think you have overshadowed those who reside at your home especially the offspring? Have you left any chances of growth for them? You have trimmed the stem of their growth. Being a brand name has taken a heavy toll from them. No? What do you say?”
“Well, honestly, I haven’t thought about it. Perhaps it’s the toughest question to answer in my life. I genuinely don’t have its answer”, said Ashfaq Ahmad.
The question made me think about the harms of branding especially in the places where a brand stands out in a particular domain. It grows in a specific dimension and curtails the paths of others especially in its circles. The life of those who are under or around him gets tougher and they pay the price of its growth, the brand. And thus, a brand brings miseries for those who do not share its bounties but are doomed to pay the price.
A brand should not be a Banyan tree (Bargad). It stands 70 to 100 feet tall and spreads itself in all dimensions, the density of branches and leaves can stop a heavy rain from coming down. Fully grown, it sheds thin and fiber-like beard shaping like curtains all around it hindering the sunlight. A desire of self-decor limits the air, water, and sunlight leaving no chances for the other plants to grow up. Not even the Junior Banyans!
Be a Brand, not a Banyan tree!
Sunlight, air, and water are essential for every plant around you!!