As a human being it’s so hard to see acts of terror and oppression churn out the products of their vicious cycle nearly every day.
 
As a Muslim, it has come to the point that with every attack on other innocent lives is a prayer to not let it be perpetrated by another ignorant fool excusing his/her inhumane acts by invoking the name of Islam. Each time is another countdown before news breaks, and once again Muslims around the world who have nothing to do with these extremists have to explain and defend their faith and dare I say, humanity, again and again.
 
But instead, I realized that this state is also a grave symptom of how much disconnected to the essence of Islam the majority of Muslims are, that these terrorist groups hold the megaphone to gain the world’s attention. It’s not the true love of God that has caused this state of ours, rather it’s the lack of it. The grave disconnect due to the lack of literacy and lack of true understanding from the founding principles of Islam and the example of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is the root of this all.
 
And this, is a major example of how faith can never be inherited. One “born into a Muslim family” can never automatically equal to “one who truly knows, understands, and believes in Islam.” The same can be said for other faiths.
 
On the flip side, this is also why as human beings cannot be left alone to our own devices and impulses. Left alone, we stray and go to extremes. The dying animals, and polluted rivers, and increasingly toxic air is testimony of how mankind cannot just function without Guidance.
 
God has never asked us to be perfect. But He has always asked only that we continuously seek to understand and live a rightly guided life…
 
But it is our duty to ourselves to admit our faults, and to be brave enough to break the status quo. It is our duty to find the Truth that unifies us with the balance of the entire cosmos, with every living and “non-living” thing. We owe it to our souls, to our loved ones, to the generations that will follow us.
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Introspect: On Life, in General

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

 

We all have different stories. I realized that even when people may be related, their stories may be connected but still, each has experienced life slightly differently. But at the end of these moments, we each have something within us that helps us understand the similarities much better. And that’s when we understand each other, to some significant degree.

We understand, when we open ourselves to listening to another’s story.

We understand deeper, when we learn to place ourselves in the shoes of another; when we listen to their story and feel it as if it was our own. Mind and heart is at work, as we picture the experiences they shared and feel the importance of those moments with our heart.

It’s then we realize that no matter how much abundant one may be or decrepit than another, no one has ever lived life without experiencing pain.

What makes things different is how we each react to our pain.

So…the purpose of life can’t just be “to be always happy.”

Or maybe…living a happy life doesn’t mean a pain-free one.

It’s gotta be something greater. Greater, that it push us to keep swimming in moments of pain until we can the meaning behind them.

 

 

 

GT

Resolution

There is a sadness that can’t be healed away, while in this world

 

There are wounds that will always reopen…

Always, always…no matter how much you put into something, to some…to many, what and how you are will not always be enough.

 

And always, always…there will be people ahead of you in their journey, as there will always be people who need time longer than you needed to make theirs.

 

There will be times that souls from afar will be able to give your own the solace it needs, better than those closest to you…

And there will be times that those closest to you will hold you with great doubt…

 

This is life.

 

This is what it’s like to be on a journey. The path is not always pleasing, and never free from any level of struggle.

I resolved to remind myself of these. No matter what.

For I found it my utmost responsibility – my fate.

 

To find peace despite the struggle, and accepting that I will always have to ’til my last breath, in different forms; rest coming only in moments – that is what I’ve learnt in my journey in Faith.

 

Faith…Islam, it what has always kept me going. The only “force” that has kept me from putting down my hands and letting the void take me whole.

 

I have done a crappy job in living out it’s principles…but I cannot give up.

 

 

Even when I am lacking to the entire world to see…

 

“If I stop, and give in to hopelessness…

 

Then what is left of me?”

 

When I am buried, and the angels write down the final lines to my story…I hope, with all my soul is this:

 

“She failed countless times; she had carelessly fell and tainted her own pages; she never gave up Hope, and gave her last breath for that Hope.”

My own wish that I have resolved to strive for, is this…

She’s Dreaming: A VERY Short Story

 

Once upon a time, there was a little girl who dreamed to become a writer of inspiring stories.

Everyday, as she grew up, the little girl’s world revolved around the stories she wrote in her little notebook. But she was never confident enough to share her stories, and so she kept them to herself.

One day, on her thirteenth birthday, the girl had a dream she could never forget. It was about a world, she never knew she would want to help build until that night. She could remember not only the shiny buildings but, even more, the people who shone even brighter.

Because of that, she realized the story she wanted to write. In time, she would learn that this story, would take a lifetime to complete.

Because of that, she realized that to write this story, she needed to live beyond the world inside her little notebook.

Until finally, when she felt she could finally rest from writing, she shared the story that she had lived and that started with a dream.

 

Recharge

I’ve been wanting to write again here.

But honestly, it has been difficult even to write a simple journal for me.

It’s been difficult to write at work where I’m expected to craft speeches for the head of the office, in a field heavy with technicality.

How is a person, who writes from thoughts, emotions, philosophies and experiences aught to adjust to such requirements?

And so I had to set aside how I conduct myself as a writer, for what worked in the office.

But now that what worked isn’t doing so anymore, I find myself floating in a void.

Like a lost prisoner fumbling in the absolute darkness, I flounder about in murky waters for the familiar rope that could guide me back to the familiar riverbanks of home. Trying to sight once again the spark that enabled me to do what I loved, and shared that love.

This blog was meant to be one of the many places where healthy discourse to the many things about life can take place. Where reflections shared could hopefully give light to many who have chosen to read it. Where those searching for hope could find at least a spark of here.

I guess, I have been failing a whole lot.

If anyone still reads this blog, and finds worth in it, I pray that you bear with me. And I apologize for the awful quality of content found here. The lack direction and spirit. I never had been the one who could write without reflecting the state of what is real within me.

But who am I to stop and quit completely? We all have our own struggles, don’t we? We all have our battles and monsters to deal with, yes?

And no matter our failures, we owe it to ourselves not to lose the one thing the darkness of this world seeks to rob us of –  Hope. Purpose.

 

And I pray to the Giver of Life that no matter, what we find it and never lose it.

This is For You

For you who have now stepped out of confines of university…

From the classroom made of four walls, now you step into the greater classroom of Life

I only pray that you won’t let go of the strength that has taken you this far…

It wasn’t easy, right? It really wasn’t, but with faith and perseverance you made it here.

You who did not give up: do not give up in the future.

I will not promise it will get easier. Life, especially today, has never been without difficulty.

Always remember you are not without purpose. And though it may not be clear to you today…

To give up, will only mean to lose the chance to see everything clearly someday…

And that day will come. All that is asked of us is that we persevere.

 

Dedicated to my dear friend Denise, and all of the graduates of this year. Also a reminder I guess for those like me who have also passed that time.
I apologize for the lack of content. I must say that I cannot have imagined the number of email subscribers that I got notified of. Things have been convoluted on my part, and I had withheld most from writing because…writing is the best thing I feel I could give back. And I am in no state to write what should be a gift for all who get to read whatever post I have here. Soon, I hope to give direction and purpose that this blog was intended to have. Thank you for reading.

 

 

G.T.

Fallen Leaves: Of Time and Memories

Lord, said David, since you do not need us,
why did you create these two worlds?

Reality replied: O prisoner of time,
I was a secret treasure of kindness and generosity,
and I wished this treasure to be known,
so I created a mirror: its shining face, the heart;
its darkened back, the world;
The back would please you if you’ve never seen the face.

Has anyone ever produced a mirror out of mud and straw?
Yet clean away the mud and straw,
and a mirror might be revealed.

Until the juice ferments a while in the cask,
it isn’t wine. If you wish your heart to be bright,
you must do a little work.

My King addressed the soul of my flesh:
You return just as you left.
Where are the traces of my gifts?

-snippet from Be Lost in the Call, Rumi

“I’m so sad….How can I be happy?” my dear friend asked.

“Remember the good things that has happened despite the bad,” was my reply.

It must be prospect of a huge challenge that kept me in spirits of anticipation. Maybe the coffee too.

My friend let out another sad sigh. “Memories. It all just ends up in memories.”

I don’t know what hit me, but my body flew into action. No.

“Memories are carried on to create anew. They aren’t the end,” was all I could say in that moment, collecting myself as my mother’s words days ago began to sink into me.

My mother had called our attention that late afternoon, as she segregated the peelings and cuttings of various fruits and vegetables that she prepared. She was very enthusiastic and commanded our attention.

She said she was just astounded how much learning about permaculture and composting has taught her so much.

“Can you imagine? We eat these fruits and vegetables. Then we return them to the soil. And from the plants that grow from the soil, we eat. We put them back inside our bodies. What we give the soil, it gives us back. But nowadays, most  of us plant for the sake of a huge harvest or money, using chemicals forgetting that we eat what we harvest. It made me think about life. What does that tell you two? Do you understand what I’m trying to say?”

I guiltily remember how I was slow to catch on the depth of what she was trying to say.

We are prisoners of time.

The moments of happiness, the moments of sadness pass by us. Time does not stay still. They leave us but not without leaving a mark on us, in form of memories. And with Time, even these memories become cloudy until, most, fade into nothingness.

But do they really?

A leaf, full of color once, dries up and falls to the ground. Time passes, there’s no more of the leaf. All that is left is the soil or dust. If we think of it that way, then surely…it is all for naught…depressing.

But! But! It doesn’t happen that way!

The “dead leaves” along with another “depressing” thing called rain,  actually nurture life into the soil. They are, with proper care in special cases like in cities (for example), what bear the healthy ground that is healthy enough for new plants to spring. And with a extra effort, those new plants can even be healthier than the “plants or leaves that came before them.”

 

Just like memories.

5678517-Autumnal-texture-fallen-leaves-Stock-Photo

G.T.