In my post no.848, I urged you to dream and get outside your comfort zone. However, after watching this video (released yesterday by Sandra Nashaat), I have to admin that Egyptians re-defined this concept, as the comfort zone itself is a dream for most of them.
I will leave you to watch, listen, feel, and hopefully act to help them to dream, and get their dreams come true ...
On the same day 20 years ago (24.4.1994), I and some distinguished friends established a small student organization that grew really fast till winning the best Club at the AUC (American University in Cairo) and extended its chapters to 2 local Universities in Egypt (Ain Shams, & Helwan), and 3 International ones in Europe (Switzerland), North America (Canada), and Asia (Bahrain). It extended to have subsidiaries like the Pro-Action Team for Development, Arab Cultral Integration Conference, Publications (like CIFA, Thursday in Cairo,..etc), and mega projects (like Cairo Anniversary, Cairo Cultural Trips, ..etc) that attracted students and graduates from all over Egypt.
To all those who once took part in any of CFA activities in its golden age (1994-2000) including Pro-Action Team, Arab Cultural Integration Conference, CFA Egypt, or CIFA, I would like to deeeeeply thank you for your precious and sincere contributions that made us have such successful experience.
Special Thanks to CFA & its subsidiaries' icons: Yasmine Fahmy, Al Moataz Selmy, Karam El Tobgy,Sherif Saleh, Lana Gad, Mohamed Farag, Tamer Breakah, Mohamed Badran, Amr Youssef, Khaled Helmy, Rhonad Kotb, Nermine Abdel-Fattah, Noha Hatata, Mohamed El Batta, Noha Nasrat, Marwa Nosohy, Ahmed Farrag, Reham Farouk, Randa Hamza, Zaki Zahran, Tarek Genina, Mohamed El Ammamy, Nehal El Naggar, Waad El Hadidi, Mohamed Khamis, Khalil El Bawab, Ahmed Hafez, Kareem Farahat, Lana Malky, Tamer Mahdy and a lot more :)
I can say proudly that these days were some of the best days of my life.
I think that William Shakespeare would have written it this way if he had a simple walk in the streets of Cairo, and had witnessed himself the view, smell, and feeling of "Pee" allover the walls, sidewalks, bushes, alleys, ...etc.
The scene of people peeing in the streets is becoming quite normal, something I almost see every other day. The last time I did was yesterday when a Taxi driver pulled over beside a 5 starts hotel and went to the other side of the car, opened the door, unzipped his pants, and simply peed between the passenger door and the car !
Although it seems disgusting, but insisting always to put myself in others shoes instead of framing or judging makes me think that most of the time people do that because there are no practical alternatives (
a decent or even functioning public toilet) specially if they are using public transportation or just walking. It gets even worse if you are a female.
I tried it myself, and walked for 2.5 kilometers thinking about something I wanna do work, and I had all that walk without finding one single public toilet, and wondered, what if I really cant hold it anymore during that walk, what should I have done?! So instead of thinking strategically about "being" or not "being", I turned out to be thinking about "peeing" or not "peeing".
Couple of days ago I was chatting with a dear old friend and she asked me if I have loved before, and I said that Love is a multi-dimensional word and I am not sure that I have covered all its dimensions. So she asked me to define that, and I said:
"Love to be fully felt and understood it has to contain -randomly- respect, desire, itching, power & weakness, bitterness, missing, sharing, caring, lust, possession and sacrifice (willingly), mutual understanding and appreciation, common plans and chaos ... It is something that you cant see or touch, but can feel its effect on everything within you and around you, it takes you to another dimension ... and it just doesn't happen, it accumulates till you one day realize that you r way deep in love and u cant tell when did it start and how will it end..."
We think that we know what they know, but the reality is that they don't know if they really know; hence, we actually don't know that they don't know, and accordingly no one knows who really know. So we should stop acting as if we know while we don't know because in order to know, we have to realize that we actually don't know! Do you know? M.O.H.@.L.Y
Today marks the 7th birthday -my lucky number- of my blog ... yeah it has been 6 month since my last post, and that is the longest period ever I stopped publishing on my blog, but in 7 years, that is not that much time.
It was a weird feeling not to be able to express myself through writings as I used to over all these years. It was something like a mental / psychological block that kept me not able of putting any thought on paper during that period.
This is coinciding with getting into the late 30s and soonly moving to 40s, where I am stopping before a huge and massive milestone & checking not only if I am still on the right track, but if it is the right track in the first place.
I traveled to many places in 3 different continents during these 6 months, thought a lot about it, and realized that some dreams deserve to die for while other dreams are to be kept in that wonderful golden fluffy cage somewhere in your mind.
On the public front, lots of disappointments and frustrations over the last 3 years, and I still have hope that by staying in Egypt and helping in changing of the mindset of the younger generations, we can change the culture in the future ... I am still working on it, but awaaaaay from politics.
On the mental / career front, things are not going as good as it was before the revolution(s) in business, but I am still challenging myself to focus on quality not pursue money to compensate for the lost business. Yet, I had to let go of some expensive dreams and replace them with more practical ones.
On the emotional front I am still fighting and struggling to find "the best friend for the rest of my life" to be my life partner rather than settling for the increasing urge of companionship and increasing pressures from family and society. I am also getting back to physically meet my close friends in person after falling into the virtual trap for a long time and losing the taste real friendships.
On the spiritual front, although my practices are not getting any better - except on the moral part-, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, I can feel the greatness of God in everything, and I am so grateful more than ever. I am sure I will reach that level of purity I wanna reach someday ISA. I am still still struggling with the dual-faced society that focuses on the practices and looks rather than the faith and actions.
On the phyiscal front, my health is fine, and I am almost sustaining a regular workout practice to keep myself of gaining weight, get more fit, and lead a healthy life-style (I gotta be trained from now, not when I am old).
So more or less, I realized that life is a continuous non-ending struggle with myself and others, and as much as the hardships of these struggles, as much as it is the essence of its beauty till reaching my destination ... The secret is feeling grateful for what I have, ambitious about what I wanna have, and not regretful for what I haven't had.
With all what happened and is still happening in Egypt during the past 30 months, I have almost reached a conviction that co-existence became something next to Impossible specially between Civil / Liberal and Theological streams. I have written a long article about it, and was about to publish today, but after seeing all that blood shed, I just deleted the article. I still see that Ekhwan and Islamists were and are a major catalyst in splitting Egypt this way, and I have reached the following conclusion:
Co-Existence--: An imaginary word that is used by politicians in 3rd world countries regarding different ideologies living together and accepting each other, but doesn't have any meaning in reality. Is there is still a chance to co-exist?! M.O.H.@.L.Y
If I asked you : Do you really love your mother? Most probably you gonna say: Of course, are you kidding me, who doesn't?! However, if I asked a lot of Egyptians who are in their 30s or even late 20s, and still living with their mothers about the obstacles they are facing or the people whom they cant really communicate with, you will find them answering: "Of course my mother, are you kidding me, who doesn't?" and here comes the dilemma :)
The problem is that at a certain age or stage of life, we start feeling that we and our mothers are living in the same place but in a different dimension where even words have different meaning and interpretation for each. The challenge or the inner fight comes because we do love our mothers so much for all what they did and still doing for us, but at the same time we feel the extreme need for independence and being in full control of our decision regardless of how other people will see it (and that is something mothers do care a lot about ... الناس هاتقول إيه).
Although I don't have a certain solution for such problem, but let's agree on some of the facts
They love us more than we love ourselves.
They are trying to do what they think will make us happy.
They rarely listen to us.
They do listen to others a lot.
They wont change no matter what.
They need our love and care at this stage as much as we need it from them or even more.
Hence, I guess the way out is:
To give them extreme care and love, all the time.
Avoid debating about minor stuff that will just waste energy and time.
Talk with them about one topic at a time without revealing differences as much as pointing out similarities.
Focusing on end results -that may be common- rather than the process -that may be controversial.
Make them feel that we still need them a lot and they can count on us at the same time..
If you can afford, move out till you get married (if you will ever do).
God bless our mothers, and give us the patience to keep them satisfied..
With such picture, I don't think I need to write much ... These men-of-ice are representing us in life ... Everyday passing melts part of us, till at a point in time, we are unable to hold ourselves and collapse. If we sit still doing nothing, it is just a matter of time and no matter how nice we look, we will just melt. Life is simply the accumulation of TIME, so we would rather pay attention to what we are doing with it before we melt and vaporize. M.O.H.@.L.Y
and then his life comes to an end ...
but is it an end or just another beginning? ...
is life just one life, or different phases each one takes you to the other? ...
is it about when, or about how it will end?!
was he living in the first place? if so, how can he make sure that he is? ...
and then his life comes to an end ...
I have always thought highly of freedom, and I have always had it on the top of my personal values.
Seriously, I do realize now that Freedom is the most precious gift God has given us, and we have to use it wisely in order to keep & preserve. Excessive use of freedom can make us risk loosing it, while not using it turns us into half-humans imprisoned within our own soles.
I have just witnessed -and still witnessing- such terrible experience of loosing freedom for someone very close to me, and the thought of loosing it is really scaring me to death. I can't even think clearly to write about it properly. I am sorry.
ذهب يهودي إلى الحاخام يشكو له حياته التي لا تطاق في غرفة وحيدة يسكنها هو وزوجته وأمه وأبوه وعشرة أبناء. استمع الحاخام إلى شكوى اليهودي إلى النهاية، ثم صمت قليلاً وكأنه ينتظر الوحي وأخيراً قال: الحل أن تربي خنزيراً معكم في الغرفة.
دهش اليهودي وقال: عجباً يا سيدنا! أقول لك إن الحياة لا تطاق ، وأننا 14 شخصاً في غرفة، فتنصحني بأن أضيف إلى ساكني الغرفة خنزيراً!!؟ في هدوء وحزم قال الحاخام: اسمع الكلام يا رجل. ولأن اليهودي يعرف أن الحاخام يمتلك من الحكمة وبُعد النظر ما لا يتأتى لشخص من العامة مثله أن يدركه، فقد امتثل على الفور لأمر الحاخام.
في المساء دخل اليهودي على أسرته المندهشة ومعه خنزير. وقبل أن يتم الخنزير أسبوعاً مع الأسرة البائسة كانت الحياة قد أصبحت لا تطاق، وصارت أسوأ بكثير مما كانت عليه سابقاً. أحدث الخنزير قدراً كبيراً من الفوضى في الغرفة، فكان يقلب الأثاث ويحطم الأطباق ويبرطع هائجاً في الغرفة، فضلاً عن فضلاته التي كان يخلفها وراءه في كل مكان. باختصار: أصبحت الحياة جحيماً بكل معنى الكلمة في وجود الخنزير.
ذهب اليهودي إلى الحاخام وحكى له عن مأساته التي تفاقمت بعد أن نفذ فتواه. نظر إليه الحاخام وقال له في بساطة: الآن حان الوقت للتخلص من الخنزير. تخلص من الخنزير يا بني ثم أخبرني بالنتيجة. في اليوم التالي ذهب اليهودي إلى الحاخام وقال له في ارتياح شديد: صدقت يا سيدنا... الحياة أصبحت الآن أفضل بكثير بلا خنزير. أنت رائع يا سيدي الحاخام.
أى تطابق بين القصة و الواقع الذى نعيشه ليست من قبيل المصادفة و لكنها مقصوده تماما.
فى ضوء قراءتك للفقرة السابقة، أجب عن الأسئلة الاّتيه:
1. من المقصود بالخنزير فى هذه القصة؟
2. كيف نتخلص من الخنزير؟
3. ماذا بعد أن نتخلص من الخنزير؟
مع العلم إن التخلص من الخنزير ليس هو الهدف لإنه ليس حلا لأى من المشاكل الموجودة من قبل مجىء الخنزير.
This week I wanna share with you a video that can help you in understanding why many people -including you perhaps- are reacting the way they do, and sticking to their comfort zone. . Now after watching it, you should be doing the following: . 1. Establish how your time is spent: Look back through your diary or log-sheet to work out how you spend your time. If you have not done so, log your activities for a period of a month to see where your time is going. 2. Determine your problem areas: What is making you use your life inefficiently? Externally, and Internally. 3. Be clear on your objectives and priorities: Agree your precise role, objectives and targets in your work and life so that everyone knows what is expected of you, and put this in writing. 4. Tackle the enemy within you: By Planning your strategies, Prioritizing your actions, Delegating stuff that aren't that important anymore, Reviewing and evaluating yourself, and always allocating enough time to explore and play.
So do you dare to go to the Magic Zone?
فى إعتقادى إن التركيز على صندوق الإنتخاب ما هو
إلا إمتداد لثقافة التركيز على الإمتحان كهدف و ليس كأداة تقييم، و التى
كانت أحد الأسباب الرئيسية فى إنحراف منظمومة التعليم عن أهدافها و رسالتها.سي
ليس غاية و لا حتى وسيلة للديمقراطية... صندوق الإنتخاب ما هو إلا اّليه من اّليات
الديمقراطية.. هدف أى حزب شريف و وطنى هو إحساس الناس بالفارق الإيجابى لوجوده
بالحكم حتى لو كانوا معارضين لحكمه، و بهذا يستطيع أن يكسب أرضية و إحترام أكبر فى
التى تربت على إعتبار إمتحان أخر السنة هو الهدف من الصعب إقناعها إن تحصيل العلم
و التغيير الإيجابى فى شخصية المتعلم و قدرتة على توظيف العلم هى الغاية، و ليست هى
النجاح فى الإمتحان حتى لو بحشر المعلومات أو بالغش. و هذا للأسف إنعكس على
الممارسات الإنتخابية كإهتمام و مساعدةالمواطنين لأيام أو أسابيع قبل الإنتخابات ، و المحاولة بكل الطرق
المشروعة و غير المشروعة الفوز بها.
Why don't we take a break from politics and serious issues, and talk about one of the most popular yet trivial subjects in this blog; Miss Egypt. This is the picture of Miss Egypt in the latest contest that took place in China. I can see that Miss Egypt representation in the International Miss World Contests is getting more and more REVEALING.
Remember the famous post (585) I had here 4 years ago wondering "howa fee eih; what's wrong?" and then again with a video in post (685). I guess my question is still valid, and my lower jaw is still dropping ;)
Run after Money .... spend your whole youth piling it up ... over work, sacrifice time, relations, and anything to have more of it ..... why??! ... To enjoy your life when you are older and cant work ..... GIVE ME A BREAK.
Money is like drugs, it just gives an instant feeling of euphoria and owning the world, but no matter how much you have or get, you will always need more and your whole life will revolve around it. Do you think that keeping on possessing things will make you happy? Do you really think that if you own a yacht, a plane, 10 cars, ...etc will make you happy? ... I guess not, it will make you more worried about maintaining them and getting better ones. I'd rather earn enough money that makes me able to spend a week in a luxurious place twice a year than owning and worrying about it for the rest of the year. This doesn't mean I hate making money, of course NOT. What I hate is making it a goal not a result. I work to make a difference, feel satisfied, and when I do that right, I should get money; sometimes a lot (Corporate), sometimes few (Academic), and sometimes none (Social Responsibility Work). But it only appears in my short term goals to maintain functioning properly, while life-time goals have no trace of it. What really makes me happy is seeing a positive difference happening with people whether I took part in it or not. What makes me happy is seeing a talent recognized, an effort appreciated, and a passion respected. What makes me happy is freedom, justice, simplicity, and above all LOVE. This is a long lasting happiness money can't afford it. Why do you lead a PENDING life running after a mirage while you can actually live it to the max with you already have? M.O.H.@.L.Y
قديما قال إيليا أبو ماضى : "كن جميلا ترى الوجود
جميلا" .. و الاّن إسمحوا لى أن أضيف : "كن بسيطا ترى الوجود بسيطا". الإنسان دائما يضع لنفسه صعوبات وعواقب ولا يلتفت
إلى ما هو بسيط في حياته. فحياة الإنسان تكون بسيطة بالتفكير البسيط فيها وتكون صعبة عندما يستصعب الإنسان الحياة.
القصة الاّتيه تعبر عن هذا المعنى بوضوح
أحد السجناء في عصر لويس الرابع عشر محكوم عليه بالإعدام
ومسجون في جناح قلعة. هذا السجين لم يبق على موعد إعدامه سوى ليله واحده. ويروى عن
لويس الرابع عشر ابتكاره لحيل وتصرفات غريبة.
وفي تلك الليلة فوجئ السجين بباب الزنزانة يفتح ولويس
يدخل عليه مع حرسه ليقول له :أعطيك فرصة إن نجحت في استغلالها فبإمكانك إن تنجو ، هناك
مخرج موجود في جناحك بدون حراسة إن تمكنت من العثور عليه يمكنك الخروج وان لم تتمكن
فان الحراس سيأتون غدا مع شروق الشمس لأخذك لحكم الإعدام.
غادر الحراس الزنزانة مع الإمبراطوربعد أن فكوا سلاسله.
وبدأت المحاولات وبدأ يفتش في الجناح الذي سجن فيه والذي يحتوي على عده غرف وزوايا
ولاح له الأمل عندما اكتشف غطاء فتحة مغطاة بسجادة بالية على الأرض وما إن فتحها حتى
وجدها تؤدّي إلى سلّم، نزل إلى سرداب سفلي ويليه سلم أخر يصعد مرة أخرى وظل يصعد إلى
أن بدأ يحس بتسلل نسيم الهواء الخارجي مما بث في نفسه الأمل إلى أن وجد نفسه في النهاية
في برج القلعة الشاهق والأرض لايكاد يراها
عاد أدراجه حزينا منهكا ولكنه واثق أن الامبراطور
لايخدعه. وبينما هو ملقى على الأرض مهموم ومنهك ضرب بقدمه الحائط وإذابه يحس بالحجر
الذي يضع عليه قدمه يتزحزح فقفز وبدأ يختبر الحجر فوجد بالإمكان تحريكه وما إن أزاحه
وإذا به يجد سردابا ضيّقا لايكاد يتسع للزحف ، فبدأ يزحف الى ان بدأ يسمع صوت خرير
مياه وأحس بالأمل لعلمه إن القلعة تطل على نهر لكنه في النهاية وجد نافذة مغلقة بالحديد
أمكنه أن يرى النهر من خلالها
عاد يختبر كل حجر وبقعة في السجن ربما كان فيه مفتاح
حجر آخر لكن كل محاولاته ضاعت سدى ، والليل يمضي واستمر يحاول ويفتش ، وفي كل مرة يكتشف
أملا جديدا فمرة ينتهي إلى نافذة حديدية ومرة إلى سرداب طويل ذو تعرجات لا نهاية لها
ليجد السرداب أعاده لنفس الزنزانة. وهكذا ظل طوال الليل يلهث في محاولات وبوادر أمل
تلوح له مرة من هنا و مرة من هناك وكلها توحي له بالأمل في أول الأمر لكنها في النهاية
انقضت ليلة السجين كلها ولاحت له الشمس من خلال النافذة ووجد وجه الإمبراطور يطل عليه
له : أراك لازلت هنا !!
السجين : كنت أتوقع انك صادق معي أيها الإمبراطور
له الإمبراطور : لقد كنت صادقا
السجين : لم اترك بقعة في الجناح لم
أحاول فيها ، فأين المخرج الذي قلت لي!!
له الإمبراطور : لقدكان باب الزنزانة مفتوحا وغير مغلق!!
إعرف أولوياتك و بسط الحياة فهى كما قال الشعراوى:
" أهم من أن تنسى و لكنها أتفه من أن تكون غابة."
It is that time of the year where I celebrate the anniversary of most precious companion "MOH@LYICS" that was "born" on February 27th 2007; i.e. it has just turned 6 !
This blog has played an important role in my life during the past 6 years, it is one of the reasons that I am still keeping my mental and psychological sanity -so far-. It has started after some major incidents on the personal and the professional level accompanied by lots of challenges that was either beaten or contributed to whom I am today.
Since then the blog has witnessed some of the major incidents in my life and in the country as well. It became like a wife that I haven't got married to, a son that I haven't had, a real best friend that I haven't got, and a psychiatrist that help me to get through life. It penetrated deep within me with all its discussions, genuine feelings, thoughts, guides, ...etc. It is ALIVE.
Although the number of posts are getting much less as I am only posting one a week (usually on Saturdays), but I can feel the amount of interaction, depth of conversation, and overall benefit is getting much deeper. This wouldn't have happened except with the great contribution of the blog FAMILY.
Many readers have joined and commented in the blog, and some of them had real impact on it; like Tamer Mokhtar who was the one who pushed me to publish my thoughts, Spot Local Team, Group 61 AUC, Lubna, Asmaa, Nermeen, Sarah, Ibrahim, Yasmine(s), Fatima, the unforgettable Mona, and many others who kept coming and going over the years. However, there is one reader whom I consider the 2nd Establisher of the Blog, someone who challenged me to get the best out of me, a reader whom without her I would have stopped writing in 2012; the year that witnessed my greatest depression ever and where I stopped writing for more than 3 months. I think it is not hard to guess who she is .... Maryam :)
Happy Anniversary my lovely blog family, and I am sorry that I thought of closing it one day..
P.S. Still Miss Egypt in Bikinis -posted in 2009- having by far the highest viewership ever ... Mafeesh fayda, you can't ever compete with a post with some nudity, no matter how important the other posts are about !