Category Archives: Life

أدون لك يا أردن – #B4Jo

Explosions are occurring in different parts of the world, some bring nuclear disaster while others bring democracy and justice. Explosions, ignited by natural disasters or by natural heroes, all changing the course of this world. Today I stand, a proud Arab. I am proud of what Arabs have accomplished, starting with Tunis, overthrowing Hosni Mubarak in Egypt and the various standings for rights in Bahrain, Yemen, Oman etc. I am proud to have witnessed an Arab revolution in my lifetime, Arabs standing for their rights, an Arab victory.

I am proud, yet still anguished by my own country. I am profoundly furious that we still need to ask for political reform over and over again while we get fed bullshit. We change PMs like we change underwear and we still get nowhere. His majesty King Abdullah II, in his 12 year reign, has done this 8 times. Today we stand, a pressured bystander to the ongoing changing regiemes and wonder, will we be next? Dozens have marched vowing loyalty to our beloved King. It is not the kindgom we want overthrown, we’re just fighting for our constitutional right.

To avoid being thrown in jail, I’ll avoid my long list of comparison between ’52 and ’99.

Social media has brought our attention to what matters, the voice of the people. An online platform that has branched into every part of our life, has become a powerful weapon that has brought justice to many, awareness to the world. We are no longer living in the shadows, each one of us has become a candle in the darkness. With respect to the Jordanian social media sphere, we’ve witnessed the hashtags #ReformJo and #WhatJoWants trending locally as people express what it is we want out of this reform, but is anybody listening?


I will try not to be pessimistic, but I shall be nothing but honest. Let’s take a few desired reforms into consideration.

1. “#ReformJo means there is no difference between a Jordanian & a Palestinian.”

The reality has been and always will be, that racial segregation is not something that our country can or even wants to get rid of. E.g. Refugees live in camps, away from the general population: something that will not change. Jordan’s football “Classico”, Al Faisaly vs. Al Wehdat will almost always end in bloodshed and struggle, no matter who wins, because that’s how it is. Racial segregation, although not apparent on the surface, still exists as strongly as it does between Negros and Whites in the US. It will not change because people have long been indoctrinated with a sense of segregation, whether it’s racially, religiously or otherwise. The majority will always teach their children that you are better than person X because you have more money, have a “better” religion or are a true citizen of this country, unlike person Y.

2. “#ReformJo means I will not litter my streets.”

“Sha3ebna ma bimshe ila bil dareb.” is a statement that is unfortunately, unvarnished. If you get a 30JD ticket for parking on a bridge, chances are you won’t park there again. Let’s take a fellow arab country, to make a slight comparison. In Dubai, simply throwing a cigarette butt out of your car window gets you fined 100JDs. Enforcing more strict rules on littering is what is needed, not a cleaning campaign nor otherwise. You enforce it on shops that tend to throw their garbage out on the streets in bags that are leaking with oil and grease. You enforce every neighborhood have a proper garbage disposal area, architecturally integrated into every street, not a rusted old tin can placed in the middle of the alley. The only way our streets will ever be clean is by slapping the wrist of those who blunder.

3. “#ReformJo means there is no segregation based on which tribe you’re from.”

Again, details and examples go beyond the political correctness of this post, but this is something you cannot change. You want to change the beliefs of a tribe that amounts to one sixth of our entire population?

Many more examples exists, but the point of this post is not to criticize each and every desired reform.

We live in a country with no natural resources at all, the only thing that we have is ourselves, the first thing we should reform should be our own selves. I can sit here all day and speak of how beautiful our country is, how beautiful Jordan is, but that would not bring about change. I have made a pact with myself, I have started an initiative myself (details of that will be brought about in future posts), I have decided to take things into my own hands. I will not sit aimlessly, watching as we’re fed lies about change and reform when all I see is different asses on the same old seats.

I blog for Jordan, because I love Jordan. I blog for Jordan, because I want to see a better Jordan. I blog for Jordan, because I aspire to be that change. We’re taught to be the change we want to see in the world and we’re blabbering about reform when we’re not reformed ourselves. It all starts with us.

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Travelling thoughts.

I am a big fan of explosm.net and I’ve been viewing their comics ever since the first one came out in 2005. Today’s comic was one that awe-struck me. First, here’s the comic:

What’s weird is the conversation that had occurred a day earlier with my friend at a local cafe.

*Sitting next to each other smoking argeeleh and watching the TV that’s on MBC 4*

*The program goes to adverts and the “Kinder Bueno” ad comes up*

In the ad, the child is imitating his older brother’s every move and at the end of the advert, they’re sitting on the same couch when the child takes a “Kinder Bueno” out of shirt pocket and the older brother asks for a piece and the child hands it to him.

As I sat there, the old “Twix” commercial scans through my cortex really quickly.

Shadi: “Do you notice how different this commercial is from the Twix one?”

Friend: “How so?”

Shadi: “Well basically, Twix teaches you to be a selfish asshole while Bueno teaches us that sharing is caring.”

*Pause as friend scratches his head*

Shadi: “God damn fucking subliminal messaging.”

Seriously? Out of the billions of thoughts for a comic strip, explosm.net steals the joke right out of my head on the same exact day? Weird, no?

Which makes me wonder, is it mere coincidence or does everything happen for a reason?

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Filed under Caricature, Life, Myself & I, Oh my Philosophy, Random thoughts

Cancer Pledge

To help support those less fortunate than ourselves, we have pledged, supported by the King Hussein Cancer Foundation, to help raise funds for one of their needy cancer patients. Our target for his immediate treatment is JD 15,000, please read below to know details of why I pledged and how you can support me and our pledge.

Please follow the followings links for official KHCF details.

http://cancerpledges.com/pledges.htm

http://www.cancerpledges.com/SelectPledge.aspx?P_ID=5

Cancer Pledge:

I would like to thank you all, first and foremost, for taking the time to read this, I would like to send my best regards to you all, up front.
During my first year of clinical practice, passing through 7 different hospitals, I have been touched by cancer many a times. I have sat down at, unfortunately, some of their death beds and had extensive talks and interviews with patients of both a chronic and acute nature, both equally struggling with the malignant disease.I have learnt to accept the fact that my power as a physician cannot reverse the power of the creator, I cannot manipulate a system that is meant to work perfectly to sustain a balance in this world, for one day, we are all meant to pass on to whatever is waiting for us after we part the planet Earth.
The word physician, doctor, whatever you may call what I do, does not make me a healer. My ability to better the life of those in need, is what drives me. The motivation I gain, is from every person I meet that is in need of making, simply, a cough or a runny nose go away, to resecting a cystic fibroma when he’s lying down on the operating table. I have many years to go, so now I intend to do anything I can to help those who are less fortunate.
I was blessed with the abilities, blessed with a beautiful family and blessed with a solid heart and around me, I see people who are not so fortunate. I uptook my pledge for that reason exactly, because since I still cannot hold a scalpel and operate an open-heart surgery, I can still make a difference. I have done it before, through my other volunteering opportunites, and it is one of the most liberating experiences I have ever had. One man may not be strong enough to make a difference on his own, but one man can be strong enough to start a wave of differences, a wave of change. I would highly appreciate that you join my wave, help and help me make a change.
Ayman is not only a cancer patient, but a struggling father. My pledge, along with a few other members, will not only help with his immediate treatment, but will also uplift his strength so that he can work again, and support his family. Helping him would be a benefit to his whole family, not just Ayman.
Below is the pledge website, offered on the King Hussein Cancer Foundation, that we have all signed to be part of a team to support and raise funds for Ayman’s treatment.

http://www.cancerpledges.com/SelectPledge.aspx?P_ID=5

If we cannot live life perfectly, we must strive to live it to the fullest, capture every moment and be part of every second. Never let time pass you by, knowing you can become a better person, knowing that you can help the less fortunate, knowing you can make this seemingly non-perfect world, one step closer to being perfect.

I will also be running in the Amman International Marathon as support for the treatment of cancer under the slogan “Run For Life”, so the more donations I recieve, the more money will be going to help those with cancer.

The pledge target is JD 15,000 for Ayman’s immediate need for treatment. A thermometer of our achievment target can be found on Ali Dahmash’s blog, my fellow pledger and friend.

Method of Payment:

1. Pay online by using credit cards at KHCF’s official website (check here)

2. Western Union

3. Passing by the KHCF office in Um Uthaina and mentioning the pledge “Shadi Haddad”.

*For expanded details on any of the above 3 methods, please include your email in a comment below and I will get back to you ASAP.

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The power of a positive mind

The power of a positive mind teaches self-fulfillment, the acceptance of who you are at any one time. Look at yourself at this point in time, forget the past and forget what you aspire to be; this is who you are. You are not a human, you are a soul disguised as a human being carrying out your daily chores. You are a soul, a free form of energy, floating in the atmosphere of power, subsided by nothing but your ego. Your ego is your most powerful enemy. An entity unlike no other, it masks your authenticity. Call it fear, pride, vanity; call it what you will call it, it will enslave you either/or.

Being positive is not about unicorns and rainbows, pooping butterflies or winning the lottery. Being positive is about having the ability to say: “I am happy.” Regardless of where you are, what you own, who you know and where you go; being positive is a state of reality. You often wonder if you’re happy, what happiness means, how do you achieve it. We look for answers beyond ourselves because we believe what we want is something intangible. “I’m going to travel to *insert ostentatious name of domination* because nothing I want is here.” Bullshit will travel with you, it’s not offered by one place of residence and omitted from another. You can live in the middle of the desert or on the plains of the Dominican Republic and still be as happy as a child who receives a lollipop when he’s been frantically begging for candy. Being positive is a state of mind, if you don’t have it, build it.

I hate following rules, following agendas, following a series of steps but somehow the human race has conformed to the fallacy of regulation so I will adopt this misconception for the greater good. I do not intend to spill out a list of demands, a guideline if you may say, to the means to reach happiness but I will place a few points that have always gotten me through the roughest of times. I am no preacher, no saint, no God and no philosopher but I am a simpleton who believes he can change the word. Call me a dreamer but I know that I am happy because of how I live my life.

1. There is no secret to happiness.

It’s true, there is no secret to achieving happiness, you just work hard at it. I don’t mean you have to work hard to get to that point called “happiness”, because that point does not exist. To me, happiness is sustaining a balance of the four identities of your own personal being: Emotionally, Physically, Psychologically & Energy-bound. Your own perception of happiness is the best and only real way to smile from the inside, out.

2. Your energy is for you to control.

Imagine your energy as a container filled with a unstable material. At any one point the substance may become volatile, evaporate into thin air, lessening the volume. At another point your energy might overflow, react, top it’s maximum level and eventually become too much to handle. The balance of your energy is a song played best solo. Adopt your own path to the renewal of your energy container. How? Again, that’s for you to find out. People, books, other people’s experiences can only help you so much, you have to figure out what makes you tick, what tops up and what empties your container of energy.

3. Never be afraid to vent.

Venting is a normal human experience, a politically correct term for “bitching”; we all do it and we all feel better, a load lifted off our shoulder. We don’t actually abolish the problem, but bottling up is not our better option. Bitching doesn’t bring any negative energy into your life, neither does it make you a negative person. Getting rid of the clutter in your brain, rearranging the garbage to make the shit look better. You’re just bringing order to chaos, if that makes any sense to you. Vent, bitch, let it out, but never wait for a solution. The solution is yours to figure out, the other side is only a means to listen, not offer solutions. [This is if you’re on the other side of the phone.]

4. If something’s not right, drop it.

You’re playing with a tennis ball, tossing it up and down. The tennis ball catches on fire by means of Satan’s evil magic, and you drop the ball, play with it no more. It’s as simple as that, if something hurts you, let it go. By hurt, I encompass everything from a person you can’t get over, to a friend who stabbed you in the back and right down to the jerk who cuts you off in traffic. Each and every person or event that causes you the least bit of an energy imbalance towards negativity, is not worth spending more energy on. Your energy container is turning volatile [Wala3at el 6ase] and you’re expending more energy in the wrong direction. Always channel your energy into that of which the return is good, great or null. Never into something that will put you down.

5. You are only as strong as you tell yourself you are.

Motivation is a self-extinguishing fire. A fire that dies out when you don’t feed it, or feed it inappropriately. Do not feed your motivation vanity, it will not flourish. Do not feed your motivation lies, it will only last it so long. Feed your motivation more motivation, build your fire from a stick and keep throwing in sticks till you’re up to a bonfire. “You are only as strong as you tell yourself you are.” Try it, wake up every single day, take a deep breath and tell yourself: “I am strong.” Tell yourself: “I am happy.” You are the strongest person, regardless of whether a stronger person is standing right next to you. I burst my ego bubble when I figured out that I am always going to find someone smarter and stronger than I am. You, compared to no body but yourself, are number one.

6. Do not be afraid of being alone.

Enjoying the company of yourself is a gift, an ability not all of us possess. When you learn to accept that you can have dinner on your own, go out by yourself, take yourself out then you have achieved an essential part of happiness. Believing that you need someone there to be happy or have fun, is believing that you are not complete. No one completes you, that’s a Disney fallacy portrayed by rolling credits after a “They lived happily ever after” marquee. You are complete, because you are one. One is a complete, well rounded number. Two is a pair, a couple, so you’re only complete if you can become one. Here’s an exercise I’ve come to love: Once a month, or week, whatever sounds more sane to you, take yourself out to dinner and a movie. Treat yourself, let your soul take out your body and have a wonderful time. Don’t be afraid of people staring at the “man eating alone” or the “woman watching a movie by herself”, for in reality, the above two acts are not supposed to involve other people. I visit a restaurant to eat, not chat, that’s my only purpose. I don’t need a partner at the movies, the irony in shushing a loose whisper after you chatter the initial trailers away with your buddy. Being alone is accepting that you are happy with yourself, nothing is needed to complete you.

I’m not trying to lecture anybody. Half of those who started reading this article pressed the magic “X” half way through it because it was too “long and philosophical”. I’m not preaching nor offering happiness, I’m trying to share a piece of my mind, my two cents on my personal experience of being happy.

Always smile, work in teams and always learn to accept criticism, it’s the only thing that builds your character, be it positive or negative. The second you learn to turn the negative into positive, you learn to take life as it’s supposed to be, sweet and simple.

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Filed under Life, Myself & I, Oh my Philosophy

My inner child – Writing IV

My inner child is the title to my last 3 posts for a reason. I started out believing that my inner child was the little boy who wanted to know everything, wanted to explore the world. The little boy who wanted to know how the ice-cream he enjoys is made, how my digestive system breaks it down to produce my love handles and how the man behind the counter could spend 365 days a year scooping up a ball of strawberry-flavored to place on my cone.

I came to realize, starting last week, after the enormous amount of stress from my exams and problems scattered here and there, that my inner child is also something else. My inner child is the little boy who’s scared when the room goes dark, when his mom travels away and he’s stuck in a house by himself. My inner child is the purest of hearts, betrayed by the cunning wolf to steal his lunch basket. My inner child is the most idiotic of them all, the one who believes life comes in an assortment of rainbows, unicorns and butterflies.

For what are we but children, mere children who walk on Earth. What are we but the embryos of an ever evolving and ever developing world. Cocoons that need years to grow into butterflies, but most of us emerge with no magic dust on our wings, to fall flat on your face. Others are swiped off the Earth as worms, by chirping early birds who first get their game. Who are we to not fear what we don’t know, to not be scared of a world that is not what it seems to be.

“I do not fear anything but God.” A statement that ticks me off, really makes my blood boil. You should be scared of what you don’t know, and before you fear nothing but God, take a good look around you and figure out what you do not know. I always used to be naive, as a child, thinking I’d always know everything. Times have changed, and what we know now is but the teachings of a school boy, a young ignorant child who first learns the colors of the rainbow, not knowing that what you see is mere junk to the colors that exist.

We all should be scared of everything around us. We should all fear the dark, the light, the sky and the oceans below. We should fear our neighbors, our friends, our enemies.

The little boy, the child, the potential senior citizen should mostly fear himself, for without fear of yourself, you will never appreciate what or who you are. You will never appreciate your maker, your destroyer and the path you are on. Fear yourself to ask yourself more, to figure out more about what goes on in your brain, your mind and your body. Ask yourself, who am I? Fear not that you will perish, but that you will perish not knowing who you are.

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Filed under Myself & I, Oh my Philosophy, Personal, Struggling with the unknown

My inner child – Writing I

We take the world for granted every day. Whether it’s people, or the mere fact that planet Earth is a viable enough medium for us to flourish in, we forget what matters, who matters and we never stop to ask “Why?”.

Why we communicate the way we do, or fail to. Why we drive to school or work every day. Why you can read what I’m reading and why my hands are typing figures that shape into letters that shape into words that shape into legible sentences that you can both read and comprehend. Why? Why can we do that?

All of you that are going “Pssht, it’s a habit.” have lost the “faculty of wonder”. That amazing inner child that smiles every time spring flowers bloom, not out of recognition of it’s beauty, but out of sheer amazement to the thawing of winter, thereafter the emergence of that beauty.

For the rest of you that have either stared at your screen, or your mouse, or just thought about the way life is, ask yourself the simple question of “Why?” and stop taking anything for granted.

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Filed under I wrote this for you, Life, Myself & I, Saving the world

On Mother’s Day

On mother’s day, I simply say thank you to mom, for who she is and will always be, the jewel of my heart. I’d just like to share with you a little message I sent her at 12:00 a.m. For the first time, I tried my luck out writing something in Arabic, so don’t make fun of it.

تسعة اشهر حملتيني
على ظهرك لا حركة
لا افا ولا صرخة
وانا في بطنك يتوسع
علقة ثم مضغة ثم ايدي وأرجل
وبعد عناء خرج وهو يصرخ
فرحت بقدومي، سعدت بملاقاتك
أمي، انتي هي؟
ووضعتني على صدرك
وبالحليب الدافء اطعمتني
احبك كثير الحب
انتي قلبي وحياتي
احبك

To every mother out there, every girl who wishes one day to be a mother, I say Happy Mother’s Day 🙂 may you all stay blessed.

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