300 Muslim

Finally I had the chance to watch the 300 movie. Like everyone, I loved the cinematic animation scenes (they are brilliant), but I have also loved the story as well.

Before watching the movie, I have read some good reviews about it on various blogs. Roba gave a good review about the movie in general while Vas talked about Hollywood politics and the Greek history and methodoly moda. Marie linked the spirit of the Spartan warriors to the definition of the Warriors of light in Paulo Coelho’s novel.

For me, I couldn’t help but to link the story of the 300 with all the heroic stories of the early Islam battles that they taught us at school.

Whenever Leonaides (The Spartan King) shouted Spartans, to encourage his warriors, I heard it Muslims.

The story of the 300 is just too similar to the story of Khaled Bin Al Waleed in Ajnadayn or Yarmouk battles, or The battle of Badr or other battles in the Islamic history where a few bunch of men where able to fight others who were much more in number and win.

It became clear to me that every nation has its own fabricated heroism stories in order to bring up the morals of its people.

The reason for fights were always honor, freedom and glory. Every nation claims the superiority of morals. Every nation claims to be the light who fights the forces of darkness for the sake of humanity.

The days of the 300 are not over. It was just recently that George Bush lead a war on Iraq, the country who he considered a part of the axis of evil in the name of protecting the free world. It was just recently that Al-Qaeda are bombing everywhere in the name of freeing the Islamic world.

The culture of sacrificing one’s self for the sake of other is not explicit to our Arab culture. People in the west who are boggled by the logic of suicide bombers can understand it by watching 300. It is exacly like what Vas said about US current politics and propaganda.

We – human beings – are the masters of deception. We have invented honor, glory and freedom as high values to legitamize killing each other. Our history full of blood shed, it is always honorable at the side you read the story from. Unfortuantly it is still going on, and doesn’t seem that is ending in the near future.

King Abdullah II pushing for peace

I have been watching the movement of King Abdullah II in the past few months and his persistance and constant pushing towards coming up with a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Every day or two you read the headlines in the Jordanian newspapers about the efforts of the king to push this matter forward. Whether it is a meeting with high officials of the US administrator, a press conference or release to the American/Arabic or Iseraeli median, or even constant talks with Arab leaders, the efforts of the King has never worn out.

King Abdullah has been reminding the world for months now that it is the time to solve this conflict. With his position and responsibiliy as an Arabic leader, he seems to have a vision of improving the life of the people of Arab world in general, and the people of Jordan and Palestine in particular. Unfortunatly this can not be done without finding a solution for the conflict that has worn out the whole region for the past 60 years.

Since he claimed his position as the king of Jordan. King Abdullah and accompanied with Queen Rania, have been working in parallel to improve most of the sectors that form the Jordanian economy. While their job has showed its fruits with the measured improvement on the Jordanian economy and accomplishment, it has been strained by the conflicts taking place in the region.

The Palesitian-Israeli conflict are percieved to be the major set back of any imporvement of life for the people living in this region. King Abdullah is very aware of that, and seems to be focused to solve it in a time where the majority of people from both sides including the Palestinian and Israeli leaders have reached dispair.

A single voice with such strength of this young king can made a change. He does give me a hope for a brighter future where we can put aside the fear of war and concentrate of imrpoving our lives. If anyone can make, then it is our King.

In a region full of darkness, I feel that we, Jordanians, are very lucky to have this ray of light born to warm us, then spread around us to cover our brothers around the neighbourhood.

I am loveable

Inspite of the opposite stand most of the commenters on my yesterday’s post took of not likeing to hear anyone talking loudly about a good quality in him, I still see that sometimes it is good to talk about someone’s own goodness.

I feel myself a loveable person. I don’t know whether my perception of myself being loveable is due to me loving the person I am where I assume that other people love me, or is it because of my love to myself I make people love me, or is it that I am living in my own world where I assume that people love me where most of them don’t and those who show me love are only pretending, or is it something in between where there are people who love me and there are those who don’t.

I believe that the life of a person depends on how he sees it. A person who hates himself would percieve life in general as a dark entity where everything look clouded and sad, while a person who loves himself would look at life as a colorful place where people love each other and everything is shiny.

I also believe strongly in the saying that one can’t love anything else untill he loves himself and that one can’t help anyone else untill he helps himself.

It is not that I am trying to flaunt here, and it isn’t like talking about a quality in me to exaggerate it or make people see what they weren’t seeing. It is merely an acknowledgment of how I feel about myself.

Along with a lot of boundaries we put upon ourselves, we let what we think can be inappropriate hold us from celebrating the goodness in ourselves. I stand firmly with what I posted yesterday. There is no harm in complimenting one’s self as long as you are not doing it at some other one’s expense.

One who compliments himself isn’t always a liar

“One who compliments himself is a liar”, this is the translation of the Arabic proverb “Made7 nafso kazzab”. My friend Haitham always reminds me of this whevever I acknowledge something good in me.

For instance, he would say “They love you”, then I say “yeah, I am loveable”. He would groan and say “Made7 nafso Kazzab”!

It isn’t just Haitham, it is a general matter where it seems that we have developed a sense of not believing those who talk good about themselves because usually people who do talk much about their qualities are the ones who lack them.

But why wouldn’t I acknowledge my own qualities just in fear of people misinterpret me with others who lie?

Acknowledgement doesn’t mean to keep on bringing it every single time I talk with anyone else, or exaggerating it, or even gloating in front of others about some qualities that I have where others don’t. It means to be able to state that yes, I do have those qualities, and that yes, I am proud of it, and that yes, you can seem me in a better light if you are aware that I have them.

One has to develop a good amount of social/emotional intelligence in order to know when it is appropriate to talk about himself in a good way and when just to stay silent and let others praise him.

When I usually acknowledge a quality in me in front of another person. I try to ground my face expression so that it wont look as if I am gloating or something. Some other times, when I am into a teasing mood and head to head with a friend, I do exaggerate my qualities and give my face a gloating expression.

I recommend you people not to shy from stating the good in you. You just have to do it appropiatly.

The race bond

Recently I have met several young men/women from different Arab countries. In my trip to Dubai I have met the fashion designers who participated in Mission Fashion last year, and who came from different the Arab countries to compete for the Lancome Award in Dubai. Last week, a nice young woman from Tunis came to Jordan for a visit where I had the chance to interact with her and know her better as a good friend. Last year a good friendship was built between me and another two Arab guys where one came lebanon while the other came from Iraq.

While we all speak Arabic, when interacting with Arabs from different Arabic countries, one can recognize the differences in our dialect languages. We all speak Arabic, but we all have our ways in speaking out the words and giving those words different meanings.

Despite what looks as major differences between us as of for instance women living in Tunis versus women living in Saudi Arabia, or different mentalities regarding the set of beliefs for every single one of us, or even if you look at religion beleifs, or even class differences. One can still feel the bond between us as Arabs.

I used to look at Saudi women who have to cover their bodies with black whereever they go outside their homes, I used to stereotype them of having a kind of mentality that would make it hard for me to get along with. It isn’t the kind of prejudice where I think of them as bad or something (maybe a bit of sympathy), but I had a feeling of staying away because of my perception of the black cover as to minimize the women interaction with men.

when I met Solafa – The Saudi Designer – in Dubai, I was surprised of how close I felt to her. I was surprised of the ease of communication between us. We didn’t go deep into discussing each other way of thinking, but we were able to realize nice things in each other.

In fact, I am surprised of the amout of comfort I feel dealing with all the Arabs I met recently. Their seem to be a bond between us. Regardless of our differencece, I can see much commonolity. From the language we speak, and the history we share, to the current exposure of the same media. Even the looks of each one of us, and despite of the variations, you can still feel that their is something that makes us close to each other, maybe it is the blood as they say.

I have always considered my self a humanitarian. I have always felt the bond between me and any other fellow human being. But recently I came to feel the warm of the race bond.

It does make me feel that I love being an Arab.

And to be proud of it.

Easter and its altruism meaning

No matter how much of faith I still have in the bible/church’s story of Jesus crusification for the salvation of us – all human beings, I can’t deny the effect of this story and the values it injected in me and in many other Christians.

The idea of giving someone’s life for the sake of others out of love had a deep effect on the way I percieve life. Maybe for me it does give double the effect because of the meaning of the name that I am holding.

Some people do believe in the effect of names on people’s characters. For me, I think that yes it can, my name itself has affected the way I think of myself, of life, and of my character in general.

‘Al Fadi’ is one of the characteristics of Jesus Christ. In Arabic it means the one who gives his life for the sake of others. Since I realized what does my name means, a feeling of connection between me and the value of Jesus death has been built inside of me.

I am not saying that I do have the strength or the courage to give my own life in order to help other people to live happily, but I am saying that the altruism idea has a special place in my heart.

Altruistic behaviour is good to the evolution and surviving of human beings as much as self protection instinct.

Maybe Jesus altruistic behaviour model has injected a global love into my heart, which is what really matters as the outcome of this story regarless of how much effort some people try to prove/disprove the credibility of it and the divinity aspect of the Christ.

Easter means to me the celebration of all people around the world who has been devoting their own lifes for the sake of others. Starting from fathers and mothers who work day and night in order to provide a better life for their kids, passing through children who give up much of their lives to take their of their elderly parents or relatives, people who do give much of their effort to help orphans, people who do work in helping other poor people, peopl who work wih disabled people, people who work with addicted people, and evey other human being who gives from himself to help another one, even you bloggers who give from yourself even just as words that can change other people’s lifes.

Happy Easter for you all…

Happy Anniversary to The Arab Observer

I haven’t celebrated my blog anniversary yet! I started it in March last year and it is April now. I guess that it is not fair to my blog not to celebrate it’s anniversay knowing that it has been the home of my thoughts in the past year. A home where it did not only recieved the various ideas and feelings I had in the past year but also pushed me to read and think more in order to bring new substance to my blog readers.

My blog has created another mean of communicating with other people online. Now in addition to my personal friends, my chat friends, my email friend, and my phone friends, I have many blog friends.

Looking back at the past years posts, I find it hard to pick the best one. I love most of what I have written although there are some posts that I wish that I didn’t wrote.

I like mostly the posts that has a sense of me, an incident happened to me, or a feeling that I felt, or a thought that passed in my head. I pick among them:

1. Trust your washing machine
2. A product of nature missing piece
3. We are Destined and Immortal!
4. My land?
5. Young old man short story
6. Social Pressure short story
7. Ommak Madonna!
8. I love my “won’t be” born son
9. The Nude man short story
10. The Alley Conscience
11. My heart beats
12. The moment of being alive
13. My role in life

I want to thank all the readers of my blog. Those who comment and those who don’t.

I also would like to ask a small favour from each one who read this post. I want a comment from each reader just for this post today telling me his/her name/id, how long has he/she been reading my blog, what is his/her favourite post, and any other thing he/she would like to tell me. Anonymous readers are welcome to comment as well, just add a simple id and give me your feedback.

Thank you all.

Happy Anniversary to The Arab Observer.