Rasim Garaja. Advantages of existing from non-existence. Manifesto Mədəniyyət
Advantages of existing from non-existence
In the period of independence Azerbaijani people dropped in emptiness of idealessness (existential vacuum) immediately and unexpectedly and in my opinion it is still in this emptiness in subconscious researching. The question ‘Who are we?’ is afloat in the wind like a nightmare, there is not a decent answer of political parties, social organisations and independent intellectuals for this question. Are we Turk, Muslim, Azerbaijani? How do we have fitted together three colours which are in our flag? Where do we come from, where are we going? What is our mission in the stage of history? How did it happen we have combined such many prosperities in ourselves which are in contradiction each other? Answers are not definitive and cannot be, because we are multiparameter New Nation.
What is the ideal of this New Nation, what can it be? We don’t see throwing occur of this question during passing 25 years, we don’t encounter a fundamental research about ‘Azerbaijanerness’ except some retort-like rough copies. Whereas, ideals create projection of future, if a people has progressive ideal, it can make itself existed from non-existence, otherwise cannot. We have lived it once in our experience, - “creating a flag from nothing we presented it to the next generations” – said the creator of this ideal. We have to be careful in the issue of existing from nothing. The occurrence as a nation of a community which has not its national identity, define itself as Muslim till yesterday, is existing from nothing exactly. We have to get our first deduction from this. We’ve appeared as the New Nation in the stage of history. In other words, we had been able to strip ourselves from this gelatine named history. But this nation would come on consistency in scalding forging furnace during 70 years, the scars which history have made on it would cure entirely and would become a really New Nation which wouldn’t have a way back. We had been able to go a step further than Turks of Iran and Turkey, separating from them whom we had been connected with historical links and had verified ourselves in the new formation. In the final of the First World War the story of this self-verification was resembling to frenzy of an adventurer very much. In fact historical conditions were not permitting for sustaining of first parliamentary republic in the East. But the “New Nation” had been founded. Azerbaijan had been existed already and her existence would be forever. Thus, to exist from nothing and to occur like a new nation is the first substantial point we are going to remember.
Beginning from 1920 her identity was modified in all levels in the result of kinky experiments conducted on this new nation. There is not any sample like this: 1.Alphabet is changed, 2. Religion is prohibited, atheism is official ideology, 3. Name of nation is changed and geographical name is given to the nation, 4. The connections are cut from Iran and Turkey, and entirely from the East where had been linked to with all her vessels, the borders are closed, Turks are declared ‘alien’ totally (The great poet of new period writes: “When Turks came and ransacked our fatherland, the brotherly hands of Russian people caught our hands”), 5. Knowledge which is needed for a people knows itself is prohibited and falsified, 6. Basing translation from Russian new language is formed, 7. Orthography reforms are applied, 8. Women take off the veil massively, 9. Intelligentsia are repressed massively, 10. Nation is forced to live a culture which is strange it totally etc. It is experiencing such an identity-modifying practice what is not happened in other soviet republics. And this identity is modified. Is it a tragedy? I think it is not. We have to accept this situation as an advantage.
Although it was fictional, the people have an ideal named communism till yesterday, and this ideal, being official government ideology, was carrying on itself healthy seeds, was based on Carl Marx’s immense scientific theory. This theory which is opposite to capitalism and imperialism changed cultural picture of the world fundamentally. It has to be considered our chance to live Marxism which is the progressive ideology of that period, though it was compulsory, to gain experience of Marxism. A theory that threw us front of the era, modernized, gave scientific outlook. Marxism. Every Azerbaijani has to perceive the experienced Marxist practice and be aware of the vestiges it has made: 1. Marxism was the most courageous experiment of human being history, in the base of this ideology is standing the position of the labour class. In the Muslim East Azerbaijan – I exclude Central Asian republics where capitalist relationships had not been formed at that time – is the only Marxist republic where we see there are labourers and peasants who is attending in the revolution process. 2. Marxism had high ideological pathos and the spirit of progress and foundership was ruling in the societies which this ideology was ruling. Now we live depression of post-Marxist epoch. There are not greater ideals which would inspire people to future and any thought linked to an ideal is met with pessimism. Inference: Marxist thought have an important role in the formation of Azerbaijani identity.
Money, as one of ideals of new period. The bankruptcy of Marxist ideal, naturally, occurred its opposite pole. The capital, what was been negating till yesterday, was turned new ideal of society. Riches, accumulation of capital became people’s major motivating factor. Negating everything, divinifying the money. Money means everything and everything could be bought with money, one of the ideals of new period is such – thought of ‘money - no matter what the expense’. An ideal that exchange rate could go down in every moment and bankrupt that how it happened. (Give an attention, a country where the economy is depending from raw material, like Azerbaijan, how personality of a person, who make accumulation of capital his/her own ideal, must be slippery, as national currency loses its value he/she also will lose his/her value, as it is slippery, he/she will be slippery.)
Beyond Money, there is also another else ideal of new generational Azerbaijani in the vacuum of idealessness – Allah. The citizens of a country where religion was prohibited officially in state level, atheism was propagate largely, considered reason of all misfortunes have happened was ‘turning away from Allah’ and after compulsory seventy-year-separation they cuddled to their own Allah with longing. Like in all post-soviet countries rate of religiousness is continuing to increase steadily also in Azerbaijan in 25th year of independence. But Azerbaijan society cannot become religious entirely, on the contrary, according to my observations here religious people cannot stop the incessant process of internal inquiry. The sect models which exported from abroad cannot cling here. In the result, it has been shaped the unique model of Islam religion in Azerbaijan. Everybody has Koran at home, though he/she doesn’t read, says ‘bismillah’ (with the name of Allah – tr.), though he/she doesn’t pray etc. Average Azerbaijani doesn’t accept radical Islam, but he/she is not irreligious totally. He/she has the unique relationship with Allah, I would say, he/she has a free relationship. Baku is the only capital city in the world here it is erected a monument to a woman taking off her veil in the centre of the city. At the same time, we cannot call irreligious these women who taken off their veils. It wouldn’t be properly prohibition of religion in Azerbaijan. Human has spiritual-esoteric needs being natural existence, it is his/her natural right encountering these needs, otherwise we will see occurrence of radical forms of these needs. For instance, there is the ideal conditions in Azerbaijan differing from Turkey and Iran for inquiring of religion, taking no heed of it, subjecting it to criticism. It could be prepared a contemporary Islam model under the terms of Azerbaijan with attending of the State in this issue. Theoretically, it is possible bringing forward esoteric sides of Islam religion, accepting it every individual’s own question of conscience, but making it free of customs became ancient, sharia sentences which is improper to the time. All of these could become reality with opening discussion of the theme of religion. It is not possible new Azerbaijani, who has unstacked from custom, again becomes religious in classic meaning. Because the history has shaken and waken him/her, changed the ideologies like a mask and eventually he/she has become himself/herself. The human who has become himself/herself, will not want to become another again.
Another else ideological shelter is Turkism that followers of this idea are few and far between, according a belief among people, it is in hopes of a group of idea speculator and Turkism trader. These three ideological shelter are interesting for Azerbaijani then if they are dealing subject, otherwise he/she is always ready to slough away them. Seventy-year Soviet period has fraternized the people who live in these lands, nobody is Turkish, Kurdish, Lazgish, Talysh, Lezgin, and everybody is Azerbaijani. There is not the separation of religious in our country and pork is been selling in markets freely. It ought to be encountered positively changing of “Turkish language” statement which applied in the first years of independence to “Azerbaijani Language”.
What could be our ideal being a society? – I’m trying to deliver the opinions briefly and by the author’s pen which has been engaging my thoughts for years. Those who are engaged in politics, intellectuals, those who gave himself/herself the right to talk to society were had had to find this ideal and present to youth up to this day. (Why to youth? Because these ideals are necessary for them, they will be builder of future society). However, that ideal there was, there is now too and there will be every time. Only necessity was taking that ancient lamp from ground, to clean and polish it. Our nation which, already, living moral decline, searching its own future without any ideal, will covered in human brilliance. What is this ideal? The state and the nation of Azerbaijan is unique! And the main reason conditioning this uniqueness is being DISCONNECTED FROM CUSTOM of the people who live in this geography. Azerbaijan people is disconnected from its historical identity and thousand-year traditions, sc. saying in Arabian “anana”s. It is a tragedy, do you think? I think it is not. We should accept it superior dignity. While some nations glory in their ancient history, we dump the history de novo, because there is not anything except enmity and blood in it. We should glory and pride in our being a new nation. Not-being sticking in customs is our advantage and it is opening extraordinary horizons. Being broken the cords which tying us to nastiness of history is the chance the same history have given us. We should live the pleasure of how much far we will be able to go, hot how much far we have come from. Let’s, try to see the positives in this tragedy what happened: instead of all what we have lost the history acquitted us a chance to be a young nation. We cannot rotate the wheels of history back. But we are forced to build a future from the ruin material remained in hand. It is possible to resemble Azerbaijan Republic to America which was out of Civil War, Ataturk‘s Turkey, Japan which had learned from Hiroshima and Herzl’s Israel. I don’t know how much successful the comparisons are. I want to say a nation creating from zero. We have disconnected from our own 30-million cognate who live in Iran, from Turks of Turkey, from Muslim East, consequentially, from our historical roots. Now we are either like them, or not like them. We should able to see this as an advantage. We should able to call ourselves new nation, how Turks who born in Germany say about themselves ‘we are new nation’. The young descendant of the Old East – Azerbaijan. The history is not a shackle on our legs. It means that, our chance for development is bigger and we can be more dynamical being a nation. Look! This unsticking from traditions, our being national young could be count our ideal.
What should we know as starting from this idea?
Firstly, all traditional attributes what we’re trying to catch as historical value which their age is over 100, should be released. The history is our history, the value is our value, and we don’t negate it, but the feature which is defined our identity are not they. In the start point of historical formation of this new nation are standing M.F.Akhundovs, N.Vazirovs, Sabirs, Mirza Jalils, Uzeyir Hajibekovs. Her religion is Republic, her prophet is Mammad Amin Rasulzade! Others, Nizami, Nasimi, Fizuli, Khatai, Vaqif and also including Tufarqanli Abbas, should be declared FNV – sc. Free National Value. The common values which are the values of other nations at the same time are the free nation values in this way, they are left aside from the proses of formation of our being new nation.
Every Azerbaijani should be aware of this extraordinary potential what is given him/her by the historical coincidence and should concretize his/her attitude against traditional thought. She/he should perceive herself/himself as the new nation, be aware of the priority which gives her/him being new nation, and understand that she/he is standing on the threshold of the highest successes.
Azerbaijan is a futuristic space, Azerbaijani is the descendant of cosmic chaos.
Translated: Elvin Bashirli
In the period of independence Azerbaijani people dropped in emptiness of idealessness (exis">