Struggling with Surrender

I wanted to say I surrender. I surrender to the higher power. I surrender to the Will of God. The truth is, I’m still struggling. I’m still trying to swim upstream, still questioning, still doubting, and still so profoundly unsatisfied. Even after all this time. Even after all the knowledge I have been blessed with. It seems I have forgotten, or maybe I never truly knew what I thought I knew.

There was a time, when it seemed so simple to manifest my desires. I simply had to “sing the song and do nothing” as Maharishi said, and poof! Doors would open, the people I need would just pop into my life out of nowhere, and before I knew it, I would be blessed with what I desired. There were no doors shut in my face, no rejections, and no disappointments.

Things are different now. The wheels of manifestation are not running so smoothly anymore. I am being met with rejections and disappointments, to the point where I am losing interest. I am becoming apathetic. I am becoming jaded. I am struggling with doubt. I suppose it is an inevitable stop in our journey. Even Jesus had his doubts…

“Doubt is useful for a while. We must all pass through the garden of Gethsemane.

If Christ played with doubt so must we. If Christ spent an anguished night in prayer, if He burst out from the Cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” then surely we are also permitted doubt.

But we must move on. To choose doubt as a philosophy of life is akin to choosing immobility as a means of transportation.” Yann Martel – Life of Pi.

I have wasted enough time and energy worrying about things that are beyond my control. I know God/the Universe has my best interest at heart, I just forget that sometimes. I must return to the Self. I must be grateful. I must surrender.

To surrender is not to be complacent, nor is it a free pass to stop striving for success, love, happiness, and other desires. I will still work my hands to the bone manifesting my larger than life dreams. I will just do so with the awareness that things tend to work out for the best, even if I don’t see it at the time.


My Nationality, My Right

My brother and I were always treated equally by our parents. We were both loved the same, and given the best my parents could give. We both got the same education opportunities, the same quality of clothes, toys, and travel opportunities. We were both expected to be responsible, respectful adults and we were both supported and respected equally. With my parents’ upbringing and our hard work, we have both grown to be successful, and accomplished adults. Thankfully, we have both made our parents equally proud.

But my brother and I are not treated equally by the Lebanese government, because he has the right to pass on the Lebanese Nationality to his children and I do not. To them, our respective genitalia are far more important than our education and achievements. In what dictionary is this any representation of basic human rights which the Lebanese government claims to uphold? “The Switzerland of the Middle East” is nothing more than a fallacy if the Lebanese government doesn’t grant 51% of its population the basic human rights of citizenship and nationality.

I consider myself to be a very patriotic Lebanese citizen. I love my country to my very core. This is why I am enraged by this latest decision that refuses Sameera Swaidan the basic human right to give her children the Lebanese Nationality. And threatening her, a Lebanese citizen, with deportation, for not paying the Residency fees of her children because her Egyptian husband has passed away, is unbelievable.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights clearly states that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights (Article 1) and everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status (Article 2) This was written in 1948 so Lebanon has still not upheld this Declaration even after 62 years.

The case of Sameera Swaidan is another example of how outdated the Lebanese law is, and how badly it needs to be reviewed and amended. It also shows how we, the Lebanese people, get so preoccupied with meaningless political parties and idolizing Warlord political leaders and upholding sectarian prejudices that we forget to fight for the important issues that affect us all.

Coffee Black and Egg White

As I was standing in line in the cafeteria at work waiting to buy a pack of blue Extra gum, this guy standing next to me pointed at the Marlboro Lights pack and told the cashier to hand him the Green Marlboro Menthol pack. So I asked him, “Sorry, do you see that pack as green?” To which he replied, “I’m colorblind so it looked like it could be green.” We got to talking and he was a nice guy working in another department, and it turns out we had some friends in common.

The encounter made me realize two things:

1. If reality is only what we perceive, then we can change reality by changing our perception.

2. We take many daily blessings for granted. We must always be grateful, for the small stuff, and for the big stuff.

Lights Out!

“Lights Out!” The prelude to pitch blackness. The dark amplifies the whimperings and mutterings of the night. The overflow of reflection, of regret, of despair. The cell door shuts with certainty. A blunt reminder of being on the bottom; the ultimate failure. My head gently plops on the cool, hard pillow. My eyes get heavy. I drift off to sleep as I twirl the cell keys around my fingers. Maybe tomorrow.

إنا لله وإنا إليه راجعون

نعي من بلدة التفاح وفاة المرحوم أيبود كلاسك إثنين و ثلاثون ج.ب. المأسوف على شبابه. يتم إستقبال التعازي قبل عرض جريس أناتومي في منزل والدته على رأس التلة (شدو طلوع). تعليقا على هذه المصيبة، قالت والدة المرحوم: ” كان عم يمشي وما أحلاه وفجأة خلصت بطريتو ومن حكيم لحكيم وما كن يصح. شو بدنا نعمل هيدي إرادة ستيف جوبس

ملحق: وردنا الآن الخبر التالي: ولد في بلدة التفاح أي بود توش ٣٢ ج.ب في البيت على رأس التلة (شدو طلوع). يتم إستقبال التهاني بعد التعازي و قبل عرض جريس أناتومي فا بليز خفوها

ملاحظة: سبيشيال ثانكس تو جمهورية الحمص فور إنسبيرنغ مي تو بلوغ بالعربي المشبرح

Fuck it.

Fuck the economy. Fuck the corporate world. Fuck money. Fuck capitalism. Fuck consumerism. Fuck materialism. Fuck the government. Fuck censorship. Fuck oppression. Fuck war. Fuck nuclear weapons. Fuck confinement. Fuck tradition. Fuck the norm. Fuck appearances. Fuck the media. Fuck global warming. Fuck pollution. Fuck toxins. Fuck synthetic fibers. Fuck landfills. Fuck stupidity. Fuck poverty. Fuck hunger. Fuck the police. Fuck sexism. Fuck racism. Fuck extremism. Fuck violence. Fuck the desert. Fuck anger. Fuck hate. Fuck pain. Fuck fear. Fuck misery. Fuck deception. Fuck betrayal. Fuck greed. Fuck insecurity. Fuck uncertainty. Fuck loneliness. Fuck despair.

If At First You Don’t Succeed…

…try try again. That’s how the old saying goes. Or as Aaliya, may she R.I.P, put it: pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and try again. So here I am, 3 years later, reviving my blog. Hopefully, I will be successful and stick with it this time. I must remember that I am my own worst enemy because I set my own limitations.

If at first you don’t succeed, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and try again. It’s a very profound statement sung to a phat dance beat. Over the years, I have come to realize that there is something more important than talent, intelligence, or skills, and that is tenacity. Pure stubbornness. How many legends have failed time and again, before they finally got it and succeeded? Where would we be without their successes? Many of them seem to have one trait in common: They keep getting up after they’ve been kicked down so many times they’ve lost count. When everyone else says no, they say yes. No wonder the legends are a minority.

It’s easy to give up and say that’s it, I’m done! I will just be happy and content with 8-5 mediocrity, expect less, and live for the weekends; it works for most people. But there’s always that lingering what if? What if I do the unreasonable and have a chance of happiness and great success? What if I live 7 days a week instead of 2?

The pursuit of happiness is not as easy as the term implies. First, there’s that pesky business of figuring out what you want. If you were writing the story of your life, what would it look like? Where would you live? What would you be doing? Who is sleeping beside you? Now the obvious thing would be to say “I’m rich and famous and I live in Madrid/Paris/Caribbean Island/Playboy Mansion with Haifa Wehbe/Brad Pitt” but the answer should start with your core values; what are the most important things to you? Family? Career? Love? Money? Fame? Beauty? Happiness? What would you do for free for the rest of your life? What would your ideal mate be like?

Figuring out what you want is the first challenge. Then, there are all the other responsibilities and fears we have that hold us back from going on a happiness quest. “I can’t because I have to…..” or “I can’t because he/she won’t let me” or even “I can’t because I can’t risk failure” statements. Sometimes they are legitimate and sometimes they are just excuses to compensate for our own fears. The fear of failure is very real. It is possible that you will fail the first time, the second time, and even the 17th time. But what if you succeed? What if the only thing stopping you from being happy, is yourself?

So blame your parents, blame society, or blame your flat feet. In the end, life is what you make of it. Time is shorter than we imagine so let’s live like we’re dying.