Thursday, May 28, 2009

"The Excited States of America" ...

“And we must face the fact that the United States is neither omnipotent or omniscient—that we are only 6 percent of the world’s population—that we cannot impose our will upon the other 94 percent of mankind—that we cannot right every wrong or reverse every adversity—and that therefore there cannot be an American solution to every world problem."

- John F. Kennedy, U.S. President

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bahlul, the wise fool, happened to meet the caliph Harun al-Rashid.

'Where are you coming from like this ya Bahlul?' the ruler asked him.

'From Hell' was the prompt reply.

'What were you doing there?'

Bahlul explained, 'Fire was needed, Sire, so I thought of going to Hell to ask if they could spare a little. But the fellow in charge there said 'We have no fire here.' Of course I asked him, 'How Come? Isn't Hell the place of fire?

He answered 'I tell you, there really is no fire down here. Everybody brings his own fire with him when he comes'

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sunnah of the Beloved ...By Dr. Khaled Abou El Fadl ...

If envy is a sin, then I am the incurable sinner, for I envy every eye that ever caught a glimpse of you. I envy the waves that carried your voice and the air that touched your cheeks. I envy even the ground that once served you, and I confess to you that despite my indulgent sins, my shameful whimsies, and my ugly flimsies I confess to you, "I love you."

My confessions are as silly as my muted words. You have been loved by so many more substantial than I, and what good does my silence or confession possibly do?

So many moments have I sat sheltered by the night in the midst of these books, my mind fulfilled but my heart calling for you. Only my shame restrains my words from filling pages of books and from whimpering into the night, "I long for you."

This Conference of the Books, in countless days and nights, ignited by your memory, calls upon the world to ponder your legacy. Despite the citations, the arguments, and refutations, nothing equals a blissful moment spent engulfed in your adoration. For all the enlightenment of books, the brilliance of beauty, and the purification of light coalesced in the moments of time that hosted your life - Muhammad, Ahmad, Abu al-Qasim, al-Nabi al-Amin, the Messenger of God.

Permit me, my Prophet, my own beloved Prophet, to tell you that I do not know you from the majestic debates of this Conference. I do not know you from the lectures of learned teachers, nor from some infatuated delusional dream. No, I do not know you from the books full of sayings you reportedly said, and I even do not know you from all the reports about your life and about your likes and dislikes. I know you from a moment in time in which I fell in love with you.

Friday, May 22, 2009

In the outside world,
wind sets the trees in motion.
On the inside,
remembrance rustles the leaves of the heart.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words
than words without a heart.

- Mahatma Gandhi

Being Human Rules ...

10 Rules for Being Human
by Cherie Carter-Scott

1. You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it’s yours to keep for the entire period.

2. You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called, “life.”

3. There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is a process of trial, error, and experimentation. The “failed” experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiments that ultimately “work.”

4. Lessons are repeated until they are learned. A lesson will be presented to you in various forms until you have learned it. When you have learned it, you can go on to the next lesson.

5. Learning lessons does not end. There’s no part of life that doesn’t contain its lessons. If you’re alive, that means there are still lessons to be learned.

6. “There” is no better a place than “here.” When your “there” has become a “here”, you will simply obtain another “there” that will again look better than “here.”

7. Other people are merely mirrors of you. You cannot love or hate something about another person unless it reflects to you something you love or hate about yourself.

8. What you make of your life is up to you. You have all the tools and resources you need. What you do with them is up to you. The choice is yours.

9. Your answers lie within you. The answers to life’s questions lie within you. All you need to do is look, listen, and trust.

10. You will forget all this.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Lap Of The Morning ... By Jafar Alam

Lying in the lap of the morning
The dawn has just arrived.
She tries to find
The heart of her dream
She touches, squeezing,
Only the surface of hope
She takes a long deep breath
Along the brink of the valley
Of passion
That has blown away with the wind.
Amongst the leaves that become
As gray as dust
The mist of an old, lost love
Is felt shivering for a moment.
She stands on the green grass.
A breeze rises up
She turns away. (c)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Nabila ... By Jafar Alam ...

A poem for my aunt.
I write,because the page is empty.
She is greater than these words .

Her eyes
misty and wet,
Tell a story ...

She tells me the words in her heart.
Dark clouds follow her.
Her life is a gloom.
She refuses to let go of the wheel.

In living
there is hope.

Within this woman
lives a child
that calls me on days
where we talk for hours
about nothing.

We eat waffles
and tease each other.
In those moments,
we forget the world.
Only to come back to a reality
too hard to swallow at times.

She is a believer.

We have a bond
that is inexplainable.

Her face is luminous
giving light to darkness.
She gives colour to a world full of black and white.
A face,
salted by the sea of tears
everytime she saw the nature of the world.

Her eyes are like
violet stones.

She has four lives
she won't desert a single one.
A deserter will always be deserted.

Fear is taught.

Love is natural.

I asked her:
"What do you want your four lives to be?"

She said:"I want them to be alive"

O my heart,
in this darkness we are a prayer
that when she reads what this hand writes,
writes out of love for her.

She is strength.
She is patience.
She is love.
She is a mother.
She is not alone.
She ...
is reserved for Heaven. (c)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Sweet Release of Death ... By Jafar Alam ...

Almond eyed girl is singing
A sad song in a far away place.
A boy is lonely on the harbour, because
Of those who forgot to be happy.

Her voice going higher and higher
We who listen, watch the dim moonlight
Kiss and caress her cheek
And her peach dress, like something in a dream.
Listen to the padding of her feet on the floor.
She is beauty in motion.

We're sure happiness will come.
Praying for the sweet release of death. (c)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Ahmed ... By Jafar Alam ...

I had a friend
who died.
He reminded me of God.
I met him once in a dream.
He hurt me, then hugged me.
He still reminds me of God.
He died with a broken heart.
The world was designed to break your heart.
And I feel hollow inside.
Friends have become acquaintances,
Reflection my companion.
I want to start over again with my mother.
I know love now.
Now I want love to know me. (c)

( Dedicated to my late friend Ahmed Hussain )