My views, observations, questions about everything in this world ....and that country they call Egypt.

29 January 2007

I Won't Judge

The Creator created the year old puzzle. Before the puzzle, the Creator was not a creator. So in a way, the puzzle created the Creator just as the Creator created the puzzle. You’ve met the Creator shortly before the puzzle was created though you’ve heard of the Creator long before that. What you know of the Creator is part of the puzzle. Well, everything seems to be part of the puzzle.

The search for an answer to the puzzle has consumed you. It has been eating away at your brain this last year. What is the solution? Can anything possible fully explain all parts of this puzzle? But you know that whether or not a solution exists is also part of the puzzle. You obviously can think of a few possible solutions to the puzzle, but none of them seem to answer all the questions to your satisfaction. You always reach a point where you’re left with a missing piece, or an extra piece. Something is wrong.

Are you obsessed with the Creator or with the puzzle? Or is obsession even the right word? The puzzle was created bit by bit, built up. You were there as it was getting tougher and tougher, as it grew bigger and as new pieces were added. After all, this puzzle is for no one else but you. The puzzle was made, purposefully or not, for you. You were there as every piece of this puzzle was laid out. Its rules defined. Its questions multiplied.

It is a slap on the face, the fact that the puzzle baffles you. And so is the fact that you cannot forget that fact. Why are there so many extra pieces yet so many gaps? You know that the right thing to do is to forget the puzzle. Let it go. But you’ve tried time and time again with no avail. It’s always there, like a splinter in your mind. The echo of the unanswered questions still lingers in the back of your mind even when you’re busy with something else. You tell yourself that it is not your nature to let go of an unsolved puzzle. You have to free yourself and find the solution.

You cannot find the solution with what you know now. There are many possible reasons for this. Maybe you do not know all the pieces. Maybe you are trying to fit the wrong pieces. Maybe you are too stupid to find it on your own. Maybe you are inexperienced. You have promised yourself not to judge the Creator until you know the solution. After all, isn’t the Creator part of the puzzle?

But the Creator must know the answers. Yes, the Creator knows the answers… that you are certain of. Though whether or not the Creator is oblivious to the creation of the puzzle is also part of the puzzle. But even if the Creator is not aware of the existence of the puzzle, the solution must be with the Creator. The Creator has to know.

You know where the true solution is. You know where the answers to all the whys are. The Creator is the key. The Creator has all that you long for. The problem, is that the Creator does not return calls. The Creator is elusive, hard to get a hold of. The Creator sends messages every once in a while though. Yet these messages do not hint as to what the solution is, not with great certainty anyways. The last time you saw the Creator, you were quite literally in bliss! And that was by pure chance, you had not planned it. And that was the only time you’ve seen the Creator since the puzzle was created.

The only way to find the true solution is to meet the Creator, again. And you know where to find the Creator. You will wait for the right moment before facing the Creator. The Creator will not expect it, but it is the only way. You only need a few minutes to get what you want. Something tells you that you’ll be able to see the answers in her eyes!

24 January 2007

But Someone's Listening In

There’s an Egyptian blogger who is being accused of “insulting the president”, “inciting sedition”, “disrespect of religions”, and "harming national unity". More information can be found in found on Freedom For Egyptians' post. Karim Amer's blog is in Arabic. I’m sure this news makes Egyptian bloggers a little uneasy. That’s the whole point isn’t it? To make bloggers think twice before hitting that publish button. It does make me a little uneasy. And it makes me sad knowing that Egypt is still that far behind on human rights.

We have no choice but to voice our opinions anyway, regardless of whether or not it is well received with those who have power. If this news makes us bloggers resort to self-censorship then there is no point in writing. Whatever your opinion is, speak it! If my opinion insults the president, so be it. If it incites sedition, so be it. If it disrespects religions, so be it. If it harms national unity, so be it. I just promise that it won’t be baseless. The difference between saying “you are stupid” and “it was stupid to make this decision, because…” is never very fine. But I promise to be more on the latter’s side than the first.

The concept of free speech, on certain topics, seems to be non-existent in Egypt. Freedom of speech is constantly challenged by the government, the Muslim Brotherhood, or the people themselves. You can ask Abdelwahab about how his last masterpiece, Men Gheir Leh, was banned for its lyrics. You can ask Mahfuz about his novel Children of the Alley. You can ask Farag Foda. Now it looks like the Egyptian blogger Karim Amer is being accused of speaking his mind on religion, the government, and minorities, which are no-nos in this country.

I was not very familiar with what Karim wrote before I heard of this news. I read his last post before he was detained, and I have to say it’s very powerful. I have respect for anyone who speaks their mind when the price could be as high as their life. That is what separates heroes from bloggers like you and me. How far are you willing to take what you believe in? Fortunately, you don’t have to pay such a high price for saying your opinion; publishing your opinions on an anonymous blog should be safe.

It is very important that Karim does not spend the next 9 years of his life in jail because he exercised basic human rights; to think, question, and speak. One thing that we can do is get this some media attention. If you can think of ways to do this, why not take it to action? It won’t cost you much, but could mean a lot to a brave man.

18 January 2007

There Are Two Colors In My Head

So Volks is a best friend. I’ve known him for such a long time and I adore the guy. But before I tell you about our conversation the other day, I gotta first tell you about his 5-year relationship.

Volks dated a nice girl called Ann for 5 whole years. They were generally very good together except for a few hiccups near the end. He put a lot into this relationship, and so did she. They broke up while they were still in love. The break up was a year ago. The experience changed him; he became somewhat cynical with a bleak outlook on life.

I personally thought they were different people. He loved Egypt, she didn’t. He loved Um Kalthoum, she didn’t. She loved Oprah, he didn’t. But I still thought they were a great couple and would have made it, had it not been for the situation they were in.

To this day he often brings up Ann and how they were together. We were at a café two days ago when he pointed out to me how the girl sitting across from us resembles Ann. “Look at her… she looks just like Ann. The way she plays with her hair… the way her ring finger goes up when she holds out her hand,” he said. I could see it in his eyes. He’s still hurt; a year wasn’t enough to heal the scar. I’ve talked to him many times before about this telling him it’s time he started getting over this, for his own good.

Anyways, so this girl that resembles Ann at the table cross brought up the whole subject again. Here’s the last part of our conversation:

Volks: You know what I miss most about Ann?
Me: What?
I was about to give him my usual spiel about how he should try to forget Ann a little and pay attention to his current girlfriend. He is going steady with this current girlfriend and things look serious yet he always compares her to Ann, something which I’ve constantly advised him against.
Volks: She was such a hottie! (in Arabic: “kanet mozza awy”)

I laughed very hard, tables around us started looking. Ah… guys will be guys.

15 January 2007

Moses And Ramses

Interesting! I got sick again for the second time in two weeks. Anyways, I've been busy but I'll promise I'll return with good stuff very soon. Till then, you should watch this great video. Please do not take any religious messages from it. I'm not endorsing anything other than the music here.