Archive for September, 2003

of walls of Allah

Saturday, September 13th, 2003

Yaser’s imagery brings back memories-
-of mosques that I have loved and places where I enjoyed to just sit down and worship Allah.

There was the one in my senior year in highschool, that small tiny thing behind it. It was visited mostly only by manual laborers.
The wudu area was made to just function, simply. The water wasn’t temperature regulated, and the water tank sat out all day. Zuhr wudu scalded, fajr wudu made brittle bones; each one cleansed like no other bath. Our wet feet would gather dust and stick to us by the time we reached the masjid itself, a single room that sat on temporary bases. Inside, the two air conditioners worked, coughing momentarily when started, startled. The room cradled inside it a few shelves that held dog-eared copies of the Quran, tattered covers with pages stained from turning itself. The carpet design laid out the pattern for us to stand at, lined with alternating colors. The carpet itself was worn out, starved from hard work, a character built relentlessly and modestly. The sensations the air carried were priceless; they lacked all and any ostentatiousnes that many a mosque nowadays leek of. The air breathed of honesty, of no deceptions, of a reality where laughs and conversations were built out of sincerity.
The imam was randomly chosen from amongst us. And the salat contained no arrogance. We prayed, because it was to be done, it was the right thing to do. We prayed as ourselves, to a Creator as Himself.

Years later, I went back, to find that mosque again. I drove past the street, my eyes searching for a small portable housing unit, converted to a mosque for many. It was gone but not lost.

This was one. There are others.

What about yours?

chop suey

Friday, September 12th, 2003

Is it possible to cut your mind into two? or three?
A personality appealing, one for you. one for me.
A whole new identity when you’re here. then there.
Each part of a package larger, but where, o where.
Each one loved, cherished by those who care. for what?
That the sum of them whole is hidden, from all, even lost.
Till one day a soul sees through you clear, untainted.
And you realize you’ve lived a lie, carefree but foolish.
Then pray and plead that the soul be yours, not theirs.

just call me bhindi of the morning

Wednesday, September 10th, 2003

Walking to campus, I am plagued with insane thoughts and ideas. It is a struggle every day to remember that other people cannot hear my thoughts nor do I have the ability to radiate them into the minds of others.

In the middle of class today, I was astounded when my fellow classmates showed no recognition of the vegetable ocra. After asking several students, only to my dismay, my german professor came to my rescue and admitted to the existence of one such edible item. Amen.

&

A whilst ago, me and A.A. figured out an innovative evolution in higher education. In each class, one single student should be picked to be the human student meter. The professor will finally be held responsible for the teaching of the material. If the professor fails to engage the student meter’s attention suffciently and the meter falls asleep, then the entire class is no longer responsible for the material taught that period and cannot be tested on it anymore, due to the fault of the instructor. Society itself will have to change, with new dorms being created for the chosen human meters, to protect them from being pre-drugged by others in efforts to not learn class material. Silk pajama’s made by grandma silk worms will be flown in daily from China, for the comfort of meter students. The opinion of these semster based human meters would change the course of politics and nations. Most likely though, the instructor will have to work harder in making subjects more interesting and catchy just to not get fired. School, will be our playground again.
“Anthropology: The 18th century bloody geek wars”
“The sensual sinusodial mathematic curves”
“Appendix: the dangerous poison within”
“Psychotic Psychology of Ultra Stupid People”
“Sociology comparision of monkeys and people you don’t like”

Imagine the new era.

Feel free to list your own suggestions

the apple seed itself

Tuesday, September 9th, 2003

“Basically, I think that deep inside, the core of all religions, stripped away are the same.” he said to me as I ate dinner.

I thought about this statement and informed my dear colleague that I disagreed. What is the purpose of religion, and ultimately, man himself? The subject of all religions, the object in focus, is the survival of mankind on this planet. Be it spiritual, or otherwise, each religion dictates the lifestyle to be adopted for optimal environment settings.

Don instead of your emerald glasses, mine. You’ll see then that religion can also be viewed through two inter-dependant classifications:
1) the relationship between man and the Creator
2) the relationship between man and the created

The former differs in many religions. Hinduism views matter to be part of its Creator, Christianity views the Creator in the form a trinity and Islam views matter to be distinct from the Creator and the Creator himself a unique entity, like no other imaginable. To say that all religions in their core are equal is a statement that is not only false but perhaps, given the context of the phrase in most cases, more likely inadequate.
God is not perceived the same in any of the major religions of this planet and therefore, half of the equation (and possibly even more) is already lost, tainted.

It is the latter statement that most people contextualize when they debate such a speech. Don’t almost all religions preach values such as: Be good to your neighbors, treat family well, don’t kill or steal. Refrain from adultery, work hard and honestly and raise your children to set right to wrongs. These basic human values are indeed common to all religions and thus can be easily agreed upon.

But to me, to agree on this portion of the equation is lacking. To agree on only the other one, would also be insufficient. After a while of being muslim, you realize that you cannot swallow one without the other. More to it, the latter is because and only because of the former.

To get to the seed, the apple seed itself perhaps, you first need to chew on the meat of things. Tiny, tossed aside, and spit out so easily nowadays, it is the reason for being, the core itself.

note: Anything I’ve said here wrong comes from me and me alone. All that is right and proper is from Allah. Also, by no means do I discriminate friendships on the basis of religion. I am in no position to judge others. Decide what we mortals may, in the end, Allah knows best.

and not a leaf falls, that He knows not about

Monday, September 8th, 2003

To be in the midst of change is beautiful. Not the bloody revolution heads chopped off kinda change, but rather a weather change, when the clouds come over the sun, when the pattern of birds chirping shifts as they sense prior to us the movement afoot. It’s a breathtaking drama that unfolds above us, unknown to any of us. The embrace of old friends as they take up seats above to watch the sunlight arrive gloriously. Soon the skies fill up, passer-by clouds curious as to why so many of their brethren gather today.

“And all the little ants are marching
Red and black antennas waving.” – dmb

Last night, mom and dad sat out in the back, mom in the hot-tub, dad just sitting beside her as they simply enjoyed the evening. I instead sat inside and watched MASH the movie on dvd. I didn’t know why I did that, to just sit inside watching something I was only half-interested in. I sat through the entire movie by myself, trying to appreciate the artwork of director Robert Altman in this dark sattire comedy.

But I wanted to be outside, lying on the grass, letting myself be mesmerized by the glittering velvet of a night sky, to play connect the dots in my head and find Mars again.

Today, as I walked to campus, I woefully thought that dreamers are people who are never fully awake. But those who are fully awake never learn to dream.

run waleed run

Saturday, September 6th, 2003

I was never much of a runner. I actually never liked it. I don’t. I don’t like running, I don’t like the motion of it, I don’t like the “thrill” of it, or the challenge of it. I don’t like that your clothes go all over the place, that you just run aimlessly.
Unless I was being chased, then yes I would run, run like hell, if hell had a beard, short hair and wore khaki’s all the time.

Yet still somehow I have managed to convice a dear friend’s mother that yes, yes, I am the chosen one for her partner in power-walking 4 miles.

Do I give off this vibe to people that says “pick me! pick me! i want physical pain and torture!”. Because if I do, I really need to get a new vibe. Something along the lines of “don’t hurt me please” or “I really like chicken, got any?”.

Or not.

all sorts of cake

Friday, September 5th, 2003

Well, this is new to me. Because even in the middle of furious paper writing, it’s hard to not overhear lyrics which say the following:

As soon as you’re born you start dyin’
So you might as well have a good time
CHORUS
Sheep go to heaven
Goats go to hell
Sheep go to heaven
Goats…go to hell
-Cake’s, ‘Sheep go to heaven’

THR3E

Thursday, September 4th, 2003

Within each serious romantic relationship exists three essential elements.

Without dependence, what reason do you have for coming back the next day?
Without independence, do you even remember who you are anymore?
Without interdependence, well, aren’t you just kidding yourselves?

-italarican

of fishing for dreams

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2003

We sat in the mall, FC and me. I had last seen him during Ramadan last.
His newly born son, Taha, is beautiful. Dark green eyes, hercules strength and a love overflowing to strangers in one single glance.

We drank our ice caramel mocha’s.
“Tell me, if you had sufficient funds, what would your dreams be? Let me put it this away. What do you want to achieve in life Waleed?”

The depth of such a question begs the questioned speed walk through the background of the questioner. So I looked him over. He was my first college room-mate. I recall the nights we spent just talking, our cooking gone bad halfway before it even became edible. I recall our jokes, our rooms, our eccentricities. He has a son now, married, responsibilities that I have heard of but never been in. His speech has changed, a slight shift of reality, his reality, overlapping into mine. now.

I couldn’t answer him immediately. What do I want. I want my PhD. I want my knowledge of deen. I want to see my parents live with me and I want to see me be patient with them. I want to go for Hajj, for umrah’s unlimited. I want to go breathe the various airs of Spain, Turkey and Scotland. I want to find a job, I want to earn a living, I want to hold my earnings upto my father and tell him
‘look, look, I earned this. I worked hard too dad. Just like you taught me to. Just for you. Just like you’.
I want to be able to live a life where I can think for more then a passing glance. I want to save up money for my kids, just as you taught me dad. I want to be able to let you finally live a dream or two of yours, though I know you have four dreams that exist, tangible. I know. I want to help out my local muslim community, I want to help out my far out muslim community. I want to sponsor a child. I want to feed orphans, widows, and the less fortunate.

But the thing of the matter of is, all these dreams, all such dreams, are just that. A jumble of dreams, a haystack of ideas, a crumple of notes.

We all have such dreams, a half hazy smoke that exists momentarily in our minds, and then uncurls, unfurls, rings of smokes that dissappates and fades away as it passes through us, memories of it but the slight shade of coloring on the walls of your mind. But in order to contain that smoke of a dream in our minds, we first need a container. To have a container we need to have empty boxes in the backroom first. To have such empty boxes you need to create them, label them and then go fishing for smoke. Comprendez-vous?

I’m try to be more organized, more efficient, efficient-er if you will. In order to be so, I believe my Allah guides me helps me pick out ways to do so. A nudge here, a glance there, a realization within and an enlightenment throughout. Like a rush of blood through dry vessels.

may you find some comfort here

Monday, September 1st, 2003

O Lord, I ask You for the fear of You in public and in private, and I ask You for (the ability to speak) the word of truth in tranquility and in anger, and I ask You for frugality in wealth and in poverty, and I ask You for happiness which is never exhausted, and I ask You for pleasure which is never-ending, and I ask You for contentment with your decisions, and I ask You for the finer life after death, and I ask You for the pleasure of looking upon Your face, and meeting You without ever having undergone great suffering, and without ever having been subjected to misleading temptation. Our Lord, adorn us with the adornment of faith, and make of us guides who are rightly guided.

Amen.

(ps: thank you kind source).