Instructor: RL Malcolm
Illinois Central College
January 22, 2013
He is Nazmus
One page, or even two pages, or three pages cannot fully describe a person, a human being, a creature with a character so complex. One can argue that one whole book cannot justly describe a person. However, one does not have the pleasure of holding an endless scroll of a person’s biography. Therefore, this short piece does not intend to describe Nazmus Shakib Khdnaker. Rather, this piece focuses on the three main characteristics that can give an overall impression of any individual. Nazmus is, like any other human being, an unique individual who is characterized by his typical “Indian” looks, with a strange taste in glasses, a personality revolving around the Creator of all things, and busy residence history, all of which, perhaps, makes Nazmus who he is.
Just by looking at Nazmus, one might immediately assume, quite naturally so, that he is a typical Indian man. His skin features the same shade of brown as seen typically on people of southeastern Asia. He has natural black hair and wears a short goatee. His facial complexion makes his face look long, and his height is what would be considered average by today’s standard, being around five feet and ten inches. Aside from his physical looks, one would recognize him by his consistent style of glasses. Nazmus has serious visual impairment, but he refuses to wear contacts. Rather, he prefers glasses, citing comfort, ease of use, and style as being the primary reason. In terms of style, he always wears glasses that are small and oval shaped, as he feels any other kind of frames make him look, to describe blatantly, hideous. However, being picky of the looks of the frames might, perhaps, be as far as his fashions go. Nazmus notes that he could care less of what he wears as long as it’s clean, modest, and appropriate. Simple, casual, clothing fills Nazmus’s fashion needs amply, and, hence, he dreads formal events, in which he is require to dress up a little bit more. Unlike his light taste in clothing, however, his philosophy and character holds more weight.
Nazmus’s personality revolves strictly around his fundamental belief in the one and only one God as his Creator and the Creator of all things that exist. Nazmus is a practicing Muslim. Islam is an Arabic word that means to submit to the one God, and Muslim means one who submits to the one God. With the belief in God, he follows the message of God, which, as he believes, was revealed though messengers and recorded in books, such as the Torah, Bible, and Qur’an. God’s message tells him of the Day of Judgment in which every one will be justly tried for what they did in this world. With that in mind, he is constantly trying be mindful of his actions. He knows he must strive for good causes to benefit the society, help and respect other fellow human beings, respect his parents, be educated and educate others, remember God, treat others in a Just manner, and etcetera. Nazmus admits that he is only human and that he makes mistakes by not always making the right choices. Hence, Nazmus regularly asks God for forgiveness and guidance for he believes that God is most gracious and most merciful. Aside from remembering God and striving to be a good human being, Nazmus holds a personal philosophy of being open minded. He notes that the easiest way to be open minded is to admit that there is a good chance that he is wrong, as he is only human. He hopes that this will help him not be arrogant and treat others’ opinion with respect. Perhaps this open mindedness of Nazmus resulted from him living in completely different cultures.
Nazmus was born on the opposite side of the world from where he resides at the time of this writing. He was born in Bangladesh, which is a very tiny country surrounded on three sides by the, much larger, India. He lived in Bangladesh for over ten years before moving to Canada. The living conditions of Bangladesh are vastly different than it is, for obvious reasons, in North America. Nazmus clearly remembers spending many nights under heavy rain that made loud noises as they fell on his grandparent’s house made of tin. In fact, he recalls that the sound of the rain hitting the tin roof acted as a soothing “white nose” that helped him sleep cozily beside his grandpa. He remembers running around the small villages what were full of cows, elephants, and dirt roads. Some houses were built using mud while most were made using tin. Very few actually had concrete walls. He remembers playing with his cousins on ponds, watching his uncle milk cows, and running around the farmlands. That all changed when he moved to Canada at the age of ten. He learned to adapt to a completely new culture while still holding the good things of his old culture. When he first moved to Canada, he knew no English, and, yet, he considers English to be his first language today (although he is still very fluent in Bangla). Nazmus had to live in Toronto and in Montreal while in Canada, exposing him to both an English and French cultures. After just over five years in Canada, he moved, once again, to a new country, the USA. Today, he finished high school in the US and is studying at a US community college. Nazmus notes that while these transitions had been challenging at times, he would not trade it for a “static” living.
By living in three different countries, exposing himself to different cultures and people, and devoting himself to the one God, Nazmus holds a purposeful and humble Character. Like any human being, his physical looks may be less unique as his personality, but he does try to distinguish himself through his glasses, as strange as it may be. This essay can only gives an overview of the man Nazmus is.