Basic Greetings in Pashto

Posted on 04. Feb, 2014 by in Culture, language

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Welcome to our guide to Afghanistan.  You may be going to Afghanistan on business, for a visit or even hosting Afghani colleagues or clients in your own country. Remember this is only a very basic level introduction and is not meant to stereotype all Afghanis you may meet. untitled222

When meeting someone the handshake is the most common form of greeting. You will also see people place their hands over their hearts and nod slightly. One should always inquire about things like a person’s health, business, family, etc. Women and men will never shake hands let alone speak directly to one another. Eye contact should also be avoided between men and women. Between men eye contact is acceptable as long as it is not prolonged – it is best to only occasionally look someone in the eyes.

Hospitality is an essential aspect of Afghan culture, no matter whom you are, if you visit a home you will be given the best the family has. This relates back to the idea of gaining honour; if you are invited for tea, which you inevitably will be, you will be offered snacks and your tea glass will be constantly filled. When you have had enough cover the glass with your hand and say “bus” (meaning ‘enough’).

1-      Ahmad: Hello

احمد: اسلام علیکم

2-      Mahmud: Hello, How are you? Are you good?

محمود: وعلیکم سلام څنګه یاست؟ ښه یاست؟

3-      Ahmad: Thanks to God, (I am good) How about you?

احمد: شکر دی. تاسی څنګه یاست؟

4-      Mahmud: Thanks, I am good.

محمود: مننه ښه یم

5-      Ahmad: What is your name?

احمد: ستاسو نوم څه دی؟

6-      Mahmud: My name is Mahmud.

محمود: زما نوم محمود

7-      Ahmad: Mahmud, My name is Ahmad, nice to meet you.

احمد: محمود، زما نوم احمد دی. خوشحاله شوم

8-      Mahmud: nice to meet you too. Where are you from?

محمود: زه هم خوشحاله شوم. تاسی د کوم ځای یاست؟

9-      Ahmad: I am from America.

احمد: زه د امریکا یمه

10-  Mahmud: I am an Afghan.                                                        محمود: زه افغان یم

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TABLA, Afghan Musical Bass Beat:

Posted on 14. Jan, 2014 by in Basic, Culture, language

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Tabla is the most famous percussion music instrument in Afghanistan. It is most commonly used in Afghanistan classical music (موسيقي), but its versatility in all musical styles (عبارتونو) has enabled it to become the most popular percussion instrument. The level of sophistication and tonal beauty (ښايست) it possesses has elevated the instrument to an unmatched status in the world of percussion. Tabla, a set of two drums, is the modern caretaker (غمخوري) of an ancient rhythmic tradition (دود او دستور) that is perhaps 5000 years old in a part of the world that is considered a birthplace (پيدايښ ځائي) of civilization.

History (تاريخچه)

The history of classical music in Afghanistan is considered to be at least 500 – (۵۰۰) years (کال) old as represented by a continuum of musicians passing the music down in the oral tradition. As one of the oldest musical traditions in the world (نړۍ), there are qualities that many feel bridge (پول) the gap from the divine aspect (اړخ) of the creation of sound itself to musical expression (څرگندۍ). Tabla were invented(پيدا کړه) in the first half of the 18th century (about 1738) by a drummer named Amir Khusru, who was instructed to develop a more subtle and melodic (خوږژبى) percussion instrument that could accompany the new style of music called Khayal. That style, with tabla accompaniment, is the basis of the modern performances (اداکول) of Afghanistan classical music.

 Description of Tabla (د طبلی سپړنه  )

The tabla is a set of two (دوه) drums that are played while sitting on the floor (ځمکه). The larger drum, called Bam (بم), was originally made from clay, but is now constructed of metal (bras, steel, or copper). The right-hand drum is called the Zeal (ذیل), and is made of a seasoned hard wood. Each drum has two layers of goatskin (پوستكې وزه) stretched across its top to provide a playing surface. The top layer is cut in a circle around the rim, and the bottom layer stretches across the entire drum. The most unique (بې سارې) aspect of tabla construction is the application of an iron and rice paste that is placed in a circle on top of the drum head. That black paste is called the Shyahi (سیاهی/ توری) and, once it is dried, it allows for sound possibilities that are not found on any other drum in the world.

Tabla Sounds (د طبلې غږ)

Na, Tin, Tun, Tete, Ge, Ki or Ke, Na + Ge = Dha, Tin + Ge = Dhin, Dheretere

Please see the video below. (in this video they explain some parts of Tabla in Hindi)

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The Afghan Flag

Posted on 25. Apr, 2013 by in Basic, Uncategorized

 

The Afghan flag

Throughout history there have been many different flags in Afghanistan. It is probably the first country to have so many different flags since its establishment. One of the reasons that there have been so many different flags used by the government of Afghanistan throughout the history of Afghanistan is that almost every regime changed the national flag and shows the diverse ideologies of the people or the political groups. For example Habibullah Kalakani, also known as Bacha-e-Saqaw (son of a water carrier) who was the emir of Afghanistan in the year 1929, changed the flag during his rule which was less than a year. Looking back at the recent history of Afghanistan you can see a competation of flag changing.

For this post, we will introduce you to the current official flag of Afghanistan. Based on the article nineteen of the constitution of Afghanistan, the current flag of Afghanistan is comprised of three equal strips of black, red, and green. This current flag was adopted in 2004 and is still in use. In the center of the flag is the national emblem of Afghanistan. At the top of the emblem is the Shahada or declaration of faith which is translated as “There is no God but Allah, Muhammad is his messenger.” In the center of the emblem is a mosque with two flags of Afghanistan. Below the mosque is the date in solar Islamic colander showing the year 1298 which is the year Afghanistan got its independence.

The color of the tree strips are interpreted as follow: The black strip means the ages of darkness when Afghanistan was not independent. The red stripe means fighting for independence and bloodshed that accord during all the years before achieving the independence. The last green strip means prosperity, and independence.

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