Peace and blessings!

I have a PhD in Islamic Studies, and I teach courses in religion and/or gender.

P.S. Before you contact me to ask for help and resources, please see here.

53 thoughts on “About

  1. little boring post for non pukhtoons,,But I had a very generous old aged (friend) pushto muslim chacha (uncle- you can say) when I was working in Saudi Arabia….Only because of his generosity and love for fellow human being I read this whole post .

    Thank you and Jazakallah if you totally (not partly – as I read some of your posts) believe in Qur’an and Sunnah.


    • Thank you for dropping by and commenting, KnowTheTruth! You’re welcome to read as much or as little of my posts as you’d like; there’s absolutely no obligation upon you whatsoever to read the whole thing.


    • I’ve deleted your follow-up comment (in which you wrote, “Then can I have your number?”). I shouldn’t even have said I appreciate the sentiment when you commented on my looks when there are a million other nice things you could’ve said that I would’ve actually appreciated. I actually don’t appreciate men’s compliments on my body/looks/outer appearance; I find them disgusting. (I said “thank you” out of politeness, but I see now that you obviously thought that meant I was interested in you. Next time around, I’ll be sure to tell you go to hell with such comments.) Women aren’t objects put up for display for you to comment on, whether it’s good stuff or bad. Especially when you expect a certain kind of response for being “nice” to them.

      I don’t care how well-meaning you are when you comment on a person’s looks. Don’t reduce them, especially women, to their appearance. We expect and demand better.


  2. Ionno if this is where i can request an article but….
    Do an Article on Pashtun communities that don’t speak Pashto anymore. Like the communities in Hazarawal division of Pakistan where you’ll find alot people from Pashtun lineages like Dilazak and Swati but speak Hindko instead of Pashto, or a few Niazi people settled along the edge of Punjab who speak Saraiki, or Pashtun in Afghanistan who speak Persian or Pashtuns in India that speak Hindi or w/e instead of pashto or probably some Kohistanis that speak Pashayi but come from Pashtun tribes…

    Ionno it that’s possible, to have an article devoted to “assimilated” pashtun communities or call it that, like Pashtuns who still kept to eachother but somehow had their language switch from Pashto to something else …….. because it depends on where concrete and reliable sources exist… or the disctinct identity of such Pashtuns….

    I mean, there are those who are pure Pashtun by lineage but would speak Hindi/Urdu for reasons i said above. In Karachi, I find some among Muhajirs and they are mixing outside of their communitie with other ethnicities…. Maybe they were Rajput Muslims with ambiguous origin claims….


    • Like Shah Rukh Khan, alot of Bollywood people, and the infamous…. Hindko speaking Ayub Khan Tareen…


    • there are many misconceptions about who is Pashtun. They said Khaljis were Turks, Kapoors were Pashtuns but they were really Rajput and Dilip Kumar being an Awan instead of a Yusufzai Pashtun…….. mysteries …
      Probably pressured by Muslim conquerers to make Indian converts to forget their indian past by assuming an identity of Turks, Persians or Pashtuns where were muslim in earlier times..


    • You’re welcome to make any suggestions for topics for me to write on; I welcome them, and I try to write them sooner than later when they don’t require too much time and research. The idea you’re suggesting is going to require research and probably physical fieldwork, not something that can be done with virtual sources. Still, I’ll see what I can do.

      Thank you!


  3. Do a blog in about the issue of non-Pashto Words borrowed into the Pashto language.

    For example Arabic, Farsi, Turkish, Hindi and Even English or Russian words that exist in Pashto due to borrowing…. and in some cases, replace Pashto words, such as the word Shukria completely replacing manana…

    A blog about Pashto purification,


    • @orbala, if you find, difficult to know the meaning of Hindi word KASHT, then my asking about “why URDU is missing”? to Mr/miss VoltTackle is justified and not so very Mushkil.(URDU WORD) to understand.


    • Why you so bothered? Urdu is half Hindi and half Persian, and almost all the Urdu words used in Pashto are actually Persian, so VT covered “Urdu” when he said “Farsi” (and Hindi).


    • Urdu isn’t even a language? Seriously? Do you have any idea of how the construction, development, and evolution of languages work? I find Urdu to be one of the most beautiful languages ever. There’s no such thing as a unique and pure language, since all have borrowed words, phrases, constructions, etc. from other languages. Urdu is no exception. I prefer not to speak it for reasons to do with identity and politics, but I find the language to be simply stunning.

      Example, I’ll say “Main Safed hoon”, meanign i am White, but erase Safed and you can use Chitah which Pakistani people still use… but if you remove Sanskrit, then what are you going to replace “main” or “hoon” with? you can’t cause those are the backbone words..

      Why would you do that, though? Why would you remove “hoon” (an essential part of the sentence above)? If you can do that with Urdu, can you also not do that with every single other language out there? That would give you no languages out there, period. That’s just how languages work, and that’s why I find them beautiful.


    • You folks need to read some literature on how languages work. There’s no such thing as a language that has not borrowed from or been influenced by others. Urdu, especially given its short age, is a remarkably developed language.

      Urdu is a mixture of Hindi and Farsi. I find it amazing that a mix of simply two major languages can create a wholly new language like Urdu.

      Pashto, however, while having borrowed from and been influenced by many other languages (as have all languages), is not comparable to Urdu because it’s not mix of other languages. It merely has similarities with others, such as in some grammar rules (Persian) and some terms (Arabic, Persian, Sanskrit). Also, Arabic has influenced virtually every language spoken by majority-Muslim communities. But we can’t claim that those languages are like Urdu – empty if we take out certain terms, constructions, etc.


    • What do you mean it was made under no identity?
      And why does that have to be a criterion in which language should be respected?


  4. Pashtun girls in Pakistan

    1. Wearing Pakistani clothing over traditional pakhtana clothing. In AFghanistan, You can tell apart races on the type of dresses their women wear becaue their designs are distinct…..
    2. Piercing their noses, a mark among indian-Pakistani people. I suppose Tajik and Hazara women don’t pierce their noses….
    3. wear pakistani or indian bridal dresses while getting married, not Pakhtun dresses…
    4. Marrying Punjabi boys because Punjabi boys are more successful than Pakhtuns

    Pashtuns girls in AFghanistan
    1. Wear their own Afghan clothing…. same with Tajiks and HAzaras
    2. Don’t pierce their noses.
    3. In there marriage, ther’es a trend of Afghans adopting white clothing for bridge, black suit for groom, amanullah khan prolly introduced that. A Traditional Hazara and Tajik wedding, i did not see yet..
    4. Marrying anyone. Tajik or Hazara, i don’t mind. We are all Afghans, Pashtun, Uzbek, Hazaras are the same . We are not enemies,we are family, our true enemy is Pakistan!

    and alot more things….


    • She has made her point clear… She does want Pashtuns to gain independence but will respect opinion of many KPK Pashtuns who want to stay Pakistani and defend Pakistan even if she does not like it herself but that KPK Pashtuns care ….

      Pakistani Bashing is not welcome, please and thank you, and comeback when you get your wish though please get lost !


    • @ Paradice: What’s your point about the comparison? I’m missing something.

      Also, untrue stuff about piercings, not that it matters at all. And a lot of your other statements.


    • He;s trying to show how much culture and traditions Pakistan has taken from Pakistani Pashtun people….

      i don’t know if nose piercing is even a part of Pashtun culture because it was popular among the indian subcontinent..

      the premesis?

      Pashtuns are not part of the Indian subcontinent and have nothing to do with Indian/Pakistani people….


    • Yah, but I *really* don’t care what he thinks.
      Also, nose piercings didn’t originate in any one culture and doesn’t belong to any one culture or ethnicity or region.


  5. I know you accused me of ‘harassment’, which isn’t true cause i only asked you twice and the second time was the only one i gave you my fb profile so you could make a better judgement, so now that you said NO, i respect that and won’t ‘harass’ you now…

    Oh and idk why you and feminists think compliments are bad, women give compliments to men too, and just cause some guy gives you a nice compliment doesn’t mean he sees you as object or that he only sees your body/face, many of us men don’t know better so for us compliment is easy of breaking ice or showing interest but feminist love to turn everything thing into misogyny and judge the motives of wellmeaning men behaving the way we were raised, but nooooo we just objectify you and whatnot wow……..smh

    I know you say you hate compliments and all and you it is “disgusting” and men should go to HELL just for finding you attractive :O , so idk why you hate us men.

    Anyway i saw ur pic and i noticed that you looked really Beautiful, it’s not my fault that your face and smile is like that, in the 20 years of my life, you’re definitely one of prettiest girls i’ve seen but don’t take this wrongly, i’m not asking you for anything……this is my last comment here, i just want to tell you that for no reason whatsoever.

    I’ll do better things with my time now than fantasize about you..which was like bad for my health

    khuda hafiz.


    • Some women don’t like “compliments” that reduce them to their looks. I’m a blogger; I’ve written about some of the most imp topics ever, and the only good thing you could find to say to me had to be about my looks? That’s why we don’t like it. It’s not flattering. We know you mean well – but that doesn’t matter. If you had more to say than about my looks, sure, I wouldn’t have been annoyed. But nope. You focused only on my looks. That’s not appreciated.

      I’m glad you learned something from this exchange!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, and about harassment: Once a girl says no, you say fine and leave it; don’t try further. If you really want to interact with her without annoying her, do the kinds of things she’d appreciate so she can respond more positively and appreciate you if she wants to. Otherwise, simply let it go.
      Yes, some men see compliments as an ice-breaker, but again, why not comment on a woman’s intelligence? Wit, maybe? Anything but “You’re really pretty!” Or, as someone else tried once, “You’re the hottest girl on campus” – for which I’d recommend seeing my blog post on female friendships. I don’t need to be compared to other women, be declared prettier or hotter or even smarter than other women to be appreciated. That’s putting another woman down to lift me up, and that’s not cool.

      Anyway. Now you understand that next time around, depending on the woman’s character, you should prioritize better qualities than looks, unless she won’t take offense.

      Liked by 1 person

    • CJ, there is a clear difference between a woman saying “Yo! Looking fine as hell man” to her male best friend and a drunken guy saying “that’s a fine pair you got there sweetheart” to a random woman. What you see in TV dramas is not reality.

      orbala explained everything else so Im not writing further.


  6. You said :——-> you should prioritize better qualities than looks, unless she won’t take offense.

    ME: He can see your looks on your pic, not your better qualities I think


    • If he can’t see my other qualities (the ones that I’ve actually worked for), he doesn’t have any reason to be complimenting me for. This is a blog. I’m a smart woman, and he has nothing other than “you’re pretty” to say to me?
      So, actually, yes, he (and all other readers) can see so much of me in this blog alone, let alone on my twitter–where he said he saw my photos–and all a man can tell me is that I’m pretty? Again, no one who’ll reduce me to my beautiful looks is worth any attention from me.


    • Thanks to the author for writing this article! I agree with him.
      Yeah, I saw the study he’s referring to years ago when it first came out – and I think it’s a joke. Its methodology is so flawed, especially regarding its definition of “racism.” Racism works differently in all countries, and the researchers of this study seem not to realize that. There are so many different shades of racism (no pun intended, ha!) in Pakistan that to prefer to believe that it’s just simple as “hey, are you racist?” or “hey, would you have a neighbor who doesn’t belong to your race?” is, quite simply, ignorant.
      There are linguistic, ethnic, class, and sectarian issues in Pakistan. They’re all tied together, of course, since a lack of education speaks of a person’s class (the poorer you are, the less like you are to go to school, and chances are that you’re poor because you are institutionally marginalized and discriminated against by the system because of your ethnicity/language/sect/class/etc). And so on.


  7. my dear little or elder siser, nice to see ur blog, but importantly ur paper, which still needs back from many arguments in order to justify ur claim. i little know about the perspectives in Islamic studies, which don’t support ur idea. further u need in depth search to present a better argument. regards, khan


  8. Hello Orbala, I was wondering if you could recommend some good books or paper (less journalistic, more academic) about Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Pakhtuns in Pakistan after 1947 ? Would greatly appreciate it.



  9. As salamu Alaykum, dear!
    Congratulations!! I’ve been reading your blog for a long time ago… almost one year lol :p :p
    I was your secret admirer but now I’m no longer so secret so hahaha
    I have a number of points to share with you about marriages in tribal cultures but Im a little bit ashamed to talk about it so , how can I say… openly. Unfortunately I think it is a delicated issue.
    If you don’t feel uncomfortable with this kind of topics.. I’d like to contact you by e-mail..
    One more time, congratulations!!!


  10. Salaam Orbala,

    I’m Hazara and came across your blog, I’m pretty intrigued by your articles on history and politics, and more importantly Pashtun history, but I wanted to ask you if you knew about a very important part of Pashtun history which is not often talked about neither by society or the media nor is taught in text books – the Hazara genocide that occured between 1890 to 1915 where millions of my brethren were massacred and uprooted in our native homeland of Hazarajat (central Afghanistan today). I have no ill will towards ordinary Pashtuns like you but it baffles me that our genocide has not been acknowledged neither by Afghanistan nor the Pashtun community nor have there been any apology or reparations and what hurts is that to this day thousands of Hazaras have slaughtered in Afghanistan and western Pakistan by terrorists who don’t like the way we look, our language or sect. I feel like more needs to be done to prevent our genocide but also acknowledgement of one of the worlds worst genocides in recent history where more than 60% of the Hazara population was wiped out, executed, gone forever and our demographics have never been the same. So I really I would like to know what an educated Pashtun intellectual like yourself has to say about the Hazara genocide and what you think the Pashtun community should do? I have been an active student activist when I was in Quetta and spoke to Pashtun nationalist leaders who have always been in denial of our genocide and either angered or perplexed at my questions. They tell us Hazaras to move on and forget about the past or call us Iranian puppets, I haven’t seen any remorse and apology made.Today Hazara population has gone down by 100,000+ in Quetta while Afghan population has grown, and Hazaras are forced to live in only two areas of Quetta (Hazara town and Alamdar road), while most of Quetta/ North Balochistan is a no go zone for us. Would like to hear your perspective?




    • W/S, Zarghun. Thank you for your comment and for your readership!

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the treatment of your people. I am aware of some (not most or all) of the genocides against the Hazara people, and I absolutely do not support any killings against any group of people. I know Pashtuns have been brutal throughout history with certain peoples, and I do not deny that part of our history at all.

      The many massacres and genicides that Pakistan has committed against Pashtuns (& others, including, of course, the Hazara and Bengalis) that it does not acknowledge at all breaks my heart especially because it forces me as a Pashtun to acknowledge the pain that those whom we have massacred must feel.

      I do not represent Pashtuns politically, so any apology of mine will be useless on their behalf, but please know that I pray for your and your people’s well-being and safety.

      Also, if you’d like, please feel free to write an article (of whatever length) about the genocides you speak of, express your opinion as you’d like, and I can publish it on this blog as you’d like it to appear to the public.


    • What’s so shocking about it? There’s some misinformation abt Islam there (she thinks abortion is haraam in Islam; it’s actually totally allowed), but none of this shocks me, esp Pakistan’s hypocrisy & the double standards for men & women in our culture.


  11. Hi, I read your blog “Another Male-Dominated Muslim Event: Mercy Mission Twins of Faith Annual Islamic Conference”, because this kind of conferences are quite popular in malaysia. I like the way you think in modern, non traditional approach of islamic teaching. That’s how I admire the woman. Glad there still a muslim that able to think active and critically, instead just become passive listener that happy to be brainwashed. I hope your spirit to keep fighting for good and for woman rights never die. Because I’m a muslim and a man 🙂


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