Category Archives: Struggling with the unknown

My inner child – Writing V

My inner child enjoys music. The tapping beats of a percussion solo. The sweet melodic rhythm an acoustic gibson creates. The harsh riffs of my Ibanez. The enchanting jazz solos of the likes of B.B. King. All tasteful notes that ring in my ear.

I sat online yesterday, trying to find something to play on my electric. Finally, I remembered this song a friend suggested a while ago, for a band called “Iron & Wine”. The guitar playing is basically repetitive, although it took me a half hour to learn it just right. What really got me going were the lyrics. Never have so few lyrics made me interpret a song in 3,000 possible ways.

A boy with a coin he found in the weeds
With bullets and pages of trade magazines
Close to a car that flipped on the turn
When God left the ground to circle the world

A girl with a bird she found in the snow
Then flew up her gown and that’s how she knows
If God made her eyes for crying at birth
Then left the ground to circle the earth

A boy with a coin he crammed in his jeans
Then making a wish he tossed in the sea
Walked to a town that all of us burn
When God left the ground to circle the world

[Link to the song]

My interpretation of the song spans on life & death. Pretty white dresses, wishing wells and ocean views. The delivery room of a hospital, the balance of the world. Does anybody watch over us? Is all what we have, all what we go through written? Do we have the luxury of free will? All questions going through my mind.

What’s your interpretation of the song?

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Filed under Oh my Philosophy, Struggling with the unknown

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 III

I’ve been going to the ER a lot lately, learning everything from how to suture patients, to Glasgow-Coma scales, to how to handle situations under pressure. We had a patient fall dead last night, when I was there after 2 AM. He came in with a cardiac arrhythmia and didn’t respond to shock. It wasn’t the first time I see a patient drop dead in front of me, but for some reason it made me think of how little appreciation we give to life.

Look around you, let the closest person to your heart pop into your head. Now imagine him dropping dead right in front of you, or in the room next to you. Imagine his very existence wiped from the universe. His soul begins to disintegrate into thin air. His body lunch for our friendly earth worm. His mind shot into a trance of, wait, nothingness? He’s supposed to float around waiting for the armageddon? Seriously?

We take our friendships, our relationships and our very own existence for granted every single day. I’m not talking about what we’re blessed with and I don’t want you to google Somalia. I want you to look inside of you and ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Who am I?
  2. Why am I here?
  3. What does being alive mean?
  4. Do you believe in a God?
  5. When you die, what happens to you?

Many of you will struggle from question number 1, and realize that many of us do not know our own self. Some of you will have no problem answering who you are, but will fall short of the answer to why you’re here. Why are we all here? Our purpose, be it constructive or destructive, means what?

When you’ve passed those questions, ask yourself what’s going to happen when you exist no more. Can you imagine your inner self, the person reading this, not being able to sleep on your bed, walk to the supermarket, or even use a laptop. Can you imagine your ability to exist be taken away from you? Do you truly believe you’re going to die and become a pile of patience to a road to paradise? A place where everything you need is handed to you on a silver platter? Or do you believe God, the almighty lover of human kind, is going to burn the fuck out of your skin and bones because you chose to disagree with a few of “his” 10 commandments?

How often do we get the chance to discover ourselves, on our own. Meditate into a world of the unknown, seeking our true purpose. We are not droids sent to work, eat and get fat waiting for the day that atherosclerosis clogs up a major artery and we drop dead, we are more than that. I don’t think I’m going to die and then wait 1,000 years while my energy, my soul floats around aimlessly killing time by doing nothing at all. If that’s the case then we’re all going to suffer really bad before we meet his holiness.

When was the last time you thought about what you did, who you are or what your purpose in this life is? If you haven’t try answering the above 5 questions properly. Tell me down in the comments what you answered, I’d love to know.

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Filed under Oh my Philosophy, Struggling with the unknown

My inner child – Writing II

Look at your wrist and read the time. If you’re not wearing a watch, look at one of the corners of your laptop/desktop and read the time. [It’s 5:54:10 PM as I write this.] Time, is what you just read. Now define time, in your own words. You can come up with the most pedantic definition ever, hence:

time (n.): A nonspatial continuum in which events occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future.

or a more philosophical definition such as:

time(n.): The period of hours, days, weeks, months or years separating one from his own extinction.

You can come up with whatever definition you want and you’ll still land straight on your ass trying to explaining it to a five-year-old child. “Why can’t we just divide the whole year into 365 & a quarter days and then start counting years every time that last quarter gives up?” Seriously, why can’t we? Chaos? The world is full of chaos everywhere we look. The random scatter of atoms constantly bumping into each other, turning solids into liquids and liquids into evaporating gases, you believe we are more organized than atomic particles and sub-particles?

Time is a system, within a larger system called life. A detailed spec of the surrounding chaos being bagged up individually to make our life seem like it means much more, or much less than it does. “It’s 6:30 AM, I have to head to the bathroom for my morning shower” to you might be a 5 minute snooze for your next door neighbor who can give less of a shit to personal hygiene. Why must be entangled by the basics that we grew upon to become drones, unaware of the beauty of a ticking clock, passing numbers that regenerate every 12 hours to give us the exact same pattern but change the ante to post meridiem (The Latin phrases corresponding to AM and PM respectively). Why do we overlook the real meaning of time, and substitute the magnificence of it by numbers corresponding to the sun rising and setting or the period in which we kneel down to pray or the sequence of series on your electron-emitting tube called a television.

Why does my biological clock alter when my time zones change? Why are people sleeping in China? Why can’t the whole world be awake when it’s just THAT specific time, regardless of what your night stand alarm clock says it is?

Time is of the essence. Time is money. Time is another term for rules, regulations and the ability for you and me to sleep and wake up when we are supposed to. Curfews, bed time stories, how long it takes to run to the supermarket and back. The real meaning of time we all miss. We are endeavored in our own little world that we forget to ask why, every single time, why does the sun rise from the East and why isn’t the earth rotating clockwise (Yes, the Earth rotates counter-clockwise towards the East and the sun rises from the East) but why is a flaming ball of chemical explosions the reason I tune my alarm clock to 6 AM every day?

Whether time is a period or a series of events, the next time you look at your alarm clock ask yourself why it rotates to the right, and why the number look so familiar.

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

Words he cannot see

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Out the womb we exit, our lungs inflate, we breath. Out the womb we exit, to welcome the sights, the sounds, the smells and our mothers. On her nipple you feed, a source of joy and nourishment, unlike the 9 months of feeding down a cord, the monotony broken by the most primitive of reflexes. Take a minute to realize, the blessing in your life, I urge you now to close your eyes for 10 seconds, and tell me what you see. Darkness, spots, shadows? A dream unlike reality, in our world we most don’t see.

He’s 7 this kid I speak off, 7 years that is. Most of you were learning to skip, jump and scream. He lies in bed, waiting for his next dose, his next infection around the corner, waiting to appear on a black and white photograph, unlike the ones we keep as memories, this album he does not enjoy. I write not so you pity, but you empathize. I write to remember him always, his strength miraculous as he fights, fights were we have most given up. Fights to sit on his bed another day, seeing but mere shadows move around, hearing voices of doctors, nurses and his mom. I don’t want you to imagine you’re in his place, I just want you to understand, if he can fight then why can’t we? Why do we give up on the simplest of tasks, when he fights to live another day of sickness?

In the other room lies a boy aged 12, face shaped like a moon from the steroids they’ve been pumping into his system since he was 5, he’s grown resistant to the drug, I say why him? Why not you, me or anyone else? His luck lay less on the clover leaf meter? Maybe.

Life is not so complex, when you look at it the way I have the past 6 weeks. I walk in and out of rooms, where patients can barely stand. I nag over the quality of food, when she’s got a tube going into her nose, down to her stomach so she can eat.

I know we all have problems, some bigger than others, some really huge. I’m not writing this to make you feel bad, or say you’re supposed to think about these people every single day of your life and feel bad and not do anything, but I write this for me. I write this for him. I write this for all of you. I write this for the world. I write this for her.

I leave you with my kindest regards, my farewell I bid to the world. I’m dying today, or a part of me is, it’s fading, fading away. You don’t know who I am, you don’t know I exist. In each and every soul I reside, waiting to escape, I often do and relapse soon again. I am the anger inside you all, the obliterator of peace. The dark side to the moon, the sunset when we need light. I am the Ebola to this country, the ticks to a dog’s back. I am the obliterator of peace, the anger inside you all.

My gift to you, as this year ends, a box of peace I bring. Peace with yourself I ask, to make before the world. Nor Gaza, nor Iraq nor Africa, it does not start there. It starts in that part dying, in each and every one of you, I swear.

Happy holidays.

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Filed under Myself & I, Saving the world, Struggling with the unknown

To a friend…

Happiness from deep within, I look around and find myself, again.

Challenges, walls of concrete I break, I do not hesitate.

Tears, stream down my cheeks, a breeze scatters them across my face

I know, I kneel, I hold on to that belief in myself, I cry.

Withered roses, petals dry and crunchy, in the box I place them, now

I cover it, the details in the beauty, I do not see

candle_0

The real deal, the sky, the ground, the people around me.

I yell, I shiver, in the cold I wither, I crack

A cover, a blanket, I take off and now I’m naked.

Exposed, I am exposed.

With rope, with glue, with clamps and screws

I bind it all together

My might, my heart, my own desires, fluctuate in the dark

A candle, with no match it cannot light.

My inner flame I call, asking for that spark

I know, I know, it hides with bitter silence

Now I know, silence with no light, I tell myself the same.

Excruciating pain, no morphine in a drip, I challenge

Myself and all the folks around me, look

I light my path without the wax

I light my path, hold on.

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Filed under I wrote this for you, Life, Struggling with the unknown

Time travel

I frantically twist and turn the knobs on my control panel, my palms sweating like the back of a marathon runner, not sure what year to forward or go back to. A spark I want to rekindle, a memory I wish to relive. A future I long to see, a scalpel I wish to hold.

big_red_button

I remember a simpler time, a time when my biggest fear was my upcoming mathematics test, a gigantic table of numbers multiplied, divided and complexed in a way only God knew was possible. I remember a time of GI-joe action figures, power ranger lunch boxes and fighting over who got possession of the football in my school’s playground. Like I said, a simpler time, when we were scraping elbows and eating dirt.

I look now at a more complicated time, an uglier time. I see friendships no longer being made by sharing candy bars, relationships destroyed by morals unfolded and life stomping the crap out of you. I see bullies not stealing your lunch money, but stealing your dignity. I see people with power, once then your English teacher sending you off to detention, now humiliating you and ransacking you of your dreams. I see competition turn into feuds, it’s every man for himself. I look now and chills runs down my spine, where have I ended up in?

My hands shiver now, setting the dials to 10 years back. I want to kick the ball around, fall on my chin and go to the nurses office, have her stick a Scooby-Doo band-aid on the cut and go right back out only to find it gone a few minutes later, my shirt all bloody from the habit that drove mom crazy, wiping my face with my sleeve. I want to call Hisham, my cousin who I spent hours on the phone with, either copying or giving homework to. I want to call Dina, tell her to get her coloring book tomorrow cause the teacher said we’re going to draw and color in class. I want to fall asleep at 8 p.m, while watching re-runs on cartoon network. I want mom to take me out of my school clothes, the white bloody t-shirt and the grey pants, which I never took off after coming home from school, tuck me in bed and kiss my forehead.

But I don’t press the big red button on the control panel, a drop of sweat now running off my palm and on to it. My life-long competition with my cousin Hisham turned me into his enemy. Dina’s married :). I don’t watch TV anymore. My mom’s back in Dubai, I get to see her twice a year.

I still wipe my face with my sleeve…

I wipe the drop of sweat off, making sure not to press the big red button, and I turn the dials 10 years forward from today. Here’s where I don’t see everything clearly. I see shades of a clinic or a hospital. I see the outlines of a man in a suit. I see a wall with certificates, too hazy to tell the writings. I see people waiting on rugged remains of chairs. I see kids scurrying around, following each other. I see something, yet I don’t see it clearly.

It scares me, yet it intrigues me. It makes me think, believe and have hope yet it makes my hands sweat even more, circles of sweat now form around my arm pits. I feel a bead trickle down my back and pop on the elastic band of my briefs. I feel a rush, a glimmer of light and once again, the button I do not push.

I live my life in the present, as I sit in the time machine looking backward and forward on what could and what can be. I life my life now to the fullest, lessons learnt, feuds put aside, hatred buried and dreams in the making. I work, study, eat and thrive. I play, for Johnny is not a dull boy. I settle my past, now engraved in stone, I cannot alter who I was. I long for my future, yet I think little of it for my hammer and burin cannot draw forward in time.

The light now glistens off my forehead, I wipe away the perspiration with my sleeve. I step out, the red button left intact. The dials read October the 12th, 2009. My time machine will lay at rest, not moving nor going, just lay at rest.

“When you’re stripped naked of all the ties, bonds, relations and artifacts, all that remains is yourself.” – Shadi H.

The complications that unfold as we grow an extra inch seem to grow an extra mile. The hatred seems to exponentiate, the faith seems to disappear. Dreams seem to shatter and wounds don’t seem to heal. The responsibility you can’t bear anymore as the tasks you cannot heave. I encourage you all to lift yourselves up, with nothing and no one but yourself. God created you in his finest image, and unless you’re a conjoined twin, he created you separated from all other mortals. He gave you your own heart, to love with yours alone. He gave you your own brain, to think with it when you can. He gave you your own set of hands and legs, to move yourself in any direction you please. He gave you your own soul, yours to have alone. You can share them all with people, but you can never give them away. At the end of the day, you chose to be content with what He gave you, or miserable longing for someone else’s items.

Mixed ideas, thoughts and memories, thought they’d make for a nice post. Tell me what you think :).

Cheers.

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Filed under Life, Myself & I, Struggling with the unknown