Five Lessons from Years of Activism

1) Your priorities for struggle arise out of the deepest aspirations, hopes, needs of the people with who you are united. These deeply felt needs and aspirations provide the powerful energy for revolutionary struggle, and they offer greatest capacity for generating qualitative change in social conditions.

2) Work with those most severely injured by the recklessness of imperialism and the effects of the global economy as we are experiencing them currently. With our brothers and sisters who are suffering most, we will be able to correctly identify the priorities of our work.

3) Respect the cultural, religious and spiritual realities and allegiances of the people with whom you are working. These important characteristics of the community will influence the forms the struggle will take. Stay true to those cultural realities. Stay indigenous, stay local. Remain rooted in the culture(s) of the people with whom you are working. This rootedness and deep understanding of the struggles of the community where you are will prepare you to be truly in solidarity with distant, international struggles. Avoid imposing imported ideas/formations from other situations. Then watch closely to see how in your daily practice established cultural patterns will be modified, will evolve into new forms that respond to the current needs of the community. Study the new genres and directions being created by the youth. Examine with them which new directions lead toward a higher humanity, which do not.

4) Work for balance in your personal life and in your community. Don’t wreck your health by assuming that you have to do more than you can manage. However, when you commit, try to follow through. Be reliable.

5) Love and protect those who stand by you, and send out love to universe through affirmations, and by living mindfully, aware of our relation to and dependence upon the natural world. The love will come right back.

 

#Hearts4Humanity

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#HeartsforHumanity                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Estimated Reading Time: 1.5 minutes.

Someone once said no one leaves their home unless their home is the mouth of a shark. This is especially true in the recent case of the Syrian Refugee Crisis. World Vision has labeled the Syrian refugee crisis as the worst humanitarian crisis, not falling short from The World War II refugee crisis. It’s funny how history seems to repeat itself  again and again, yet we do nothing. We just watch and wait for someone much greater and more powerful to make a difference. The truth is you can make a difference.

I have dedicated my last 2 years of high school to provide the proper physical and emotional necessities needed by the refugees. I have also written a 20 page research-based essay and drafted a bill, which is in progress of being introduced to the Texas Government. You may ask, “Why are you doing this if you are not Syrian or Arab?” Why am I going out my own way to care for someone I might never meet? The answer is quite simple. I’m human and they are too.

“ True believers are those who shelter and help the refugees, and (as for) those who believed and fled and struggled hard in Allah’s way, and those who gave shelter and helped, these are the believers truly; they shall have forgiveness and honorable provision.[8.74]

Heart of Humanity is a new initiative that uses former tactics to raise funds and shed light on the Syrian Refugee Crisis. With your help we are able to help the needs of the Syrian refugees! You can either go on your Facebook and share those sad videos or you can make a change now by getting your local MSA and greater community involved!

So, ready, set, go!

For more information on #HeartsforHumanity, click HERE.

Hearts for Humanity

I remember in 10th grade watching the Syrian refugee crisis unfold right before my own eyes on to the media’s center stage: thousands of Syrians forced to leave their country, children dying, bombs being bombarded into homes. I could not believe that something like this could happen in the 21st century. I was interested in dissecting the crisis, but I did not reflect on the extent of the problem. I decided the only way to better understand the crisis was to work with the people behind the scene of the resettlement programs. After my time with The Refugee Services of Texas, I still felt disconnected. I wanted to do more with my Service Learning than to just work in my cubical and organize papers for my case worker. I wanted to interact with the refugees and hear their stories. Though my Service Learning did not keep me satisfied, I still enjoyed the people who surrounded me. The summer before my senior year, I pitched an idea to an non profit organization involving the local refugees and a Christian organization. After weeks of planning, we managed to attract over 250 plus refugees. Even more amazing was that two religious organizations were able to work together and put their differences aside in order to help the refugees. I wanted to show living proof to my community that we could work together with other faiths and make a difference in somebody’s life so I used my camera to film the event. I linked the final product on to our Facebook page and within two days we had over 3,000 views and hundreds of comments from all walks of life asking how they could get involved including a priest and a rabbi.

The Syrian Refugee Crisis is the largest ongoing humanitarian crisis (World Vision 1). The uprising began in Syria of 2011. The crisis started in rural area of Damascus but then moved on to most of Syria which lead to the uprising against the Al-Assad regime. The people of Syria wanted a more democratic system and to be part of the political world (Omer 5). This led to over 250,000 deaths and 9 million Syrians forced to flee their homes since the outbreak of civil war in March 2011. Out of the 9 million, 6.5 million are internally displaced within Syria (De Bel-Air 2). Upon my research I examined the role of the United States during the crisis and what aid they hope to provide to incoming refugees. I had originally proposed the question to what would be the justification for U.S intervention in the Syrian refugee crisis and what benefits could serve the America Government in helping the Syrian refugees, but I realized my problem was much deeper than that I needed to analyze the situation in a different perspective. The only way refugees will be welcomed with open arms and minds by the United States is by taking away the fear of Islam and Muslims. 

Humanitarian organizations such as the one I have worked with are in need of help in creating a better and safer system for refugee children to grow and learn. As humans we should go beyond our civil duty to help these children as a community (Richard 7). The children are forced to grow up and hold adult responsibilities and pressure causing them to lose their childhood overnight.  The effect the war has had on the children, of Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, Central African Republic, and South Sudan, has dramatically impacted them, “Children who have escaped violence in Syria and Iraq speak of the brutality-losing parents, loved ones, and friends-and being displaced and out of school,”(Omer 6). The end of Syrian war could be near, but, nevertheless, over 6.5 million refugees still displaced and do not have a place to call home. The justification for U.S. intervention in the Syrian refugee crisis could cause more harm than good, but the benefit of aiding the Syrian refugees here in the United States could serve to strengthen the Abrahamic faiths. In order to aid the people coming from the war torn area, we need to make sure that our society can take away their differences by embracing and learning from each other’s faith. A facilitation for an interfaith dialogue to enhance a mutual understanding and respect for religious differences among the community and encourage them to welcome refugees coming into the United States.

Play Ball

I attended a Dallas Mavericks game a couple days ago and I wanted to observe the way people reacted in a fun and loud environment. Along with that I wanted to see if there were any change of behavior in different levels of the stadium. Starting off at the very top and making my way to the bottom of the stadium. I attended the game with my youth group. I sat next to my friend. I noticed there were a lot people looking around like they were waiting for something to happen but once the game started everyone’s focus was on the game. The excitement was sky rocketed at the start of the game but slowly died out towards the end. The environment was open and free but supervised. The stadium carried thousands of audience screaming and yelling from all different ends. Everyone seemed happy to be there but others seemed uninterested by the game.

 

The age ranged I focused on were from 25-40 years old. There were a greater number of guys than girls but I noticed girls were usually accompanied by another female and guys were accompanied by a male. I also noticed that everyone was just there to have fun and did not know much about either teams. Something that triggered my attention was a guy next to me and my friend, he kept smiling really awkwardly, numerous times to us. We felt suspicious because he kept looking at us throughout the game. After the second quarter there was a half time show and we moved out of our seats and sat at the lower level next to our youth group. During this time I realized everyone was pretty chatty and there was a lot of movement going around. Some people were getting food, others using the restrooms and some people watching the actually half time show. As time passed I realized people were slightly drunk which affected their behavior. I took my focus on one particular couple who were extremely drunk at the game. Their speech was unbalanced and slurred which slowed their motor skills, they also slightly had a temper. I also noticed the girl was a little oblivion and unknowing, I’m not sure if she was trying to flirt with him by acting dumb and when they stood up to walk right they tended to fall over a lot, if they drank just a little more they would have puked. They also did things they normally wouldn’t, they talked differently, could not text on their phone properly without stumbling type. I soon realized when you’re drunk your attitude changes. Which causes dizziness, slurred speech, and impaired judgment.

 

Human behavior is absolutely fascinating.  Observing people and trying to predict what they will do next can provide a real learning experience.  Human behavior is quite predictable in many instances. There is a strange phenomenon that makes people act the way they do. This especially true when one person is surrounded by other people. You are influenced by the people you surround yourself. When one encounters a situation like mine, they tend to communicate with the surrounding people. Yet, when there is just one person present, their behavior is completely different. Unfortunately, human behavior is so complex; it is hard to narrow down the exact reason. Personalities can be extremely complex but there are areas that can be understood with a high degree of accuracy.

 

After observing several people I realized I was caught red handed by my subjects.  Instantly they became more reserved and aware of their behavior. Some even went on their phone to leave the awkwardness.

 

During this experience I learned that humans are adaptable creatures who can accommodate to their environment. As I read the body language and movement patterns around me I then discovered what people are really thinking. I learned many patterns and every time I was observing I tried to identify those characteristics in other people. My greatest struggle was keeping my eyes open every time, especially in the beginning I had to keep my attention on the movements of others. I also had to be careful not to be too focused while observing others because I would occasionally give the impression of a spy. My favorite part was hearing what other people would say in order to make correlations between their movements and their words. The body language consists of two major parts. The movement of the body (hands, legs, posture etc.) and the facial expressions.

 

30

30 lives. 30 lives they will never see their child grow up. 30 different lives. 30 lives that will never be a fathers. 30 lives slaughter like animals. 30 lives that never said goodbye. 30 lives that never tasted freedom. 30 lives that will never see their future. 30 young lives striped away with a blink of an eye. 30 mothers who never said goodbye. Millions who have lost their friends. Loved ones. Brothers. Uncles. Sons. Husbands. Fathers. Cousins.

She

Tears flow down her swollen eye. She lives in a world of suffering and pain. Her mother’s tea might fix her sullen face but never repair the damage her eyes has seen. Her face marked her years of agony. Just yesterday she was dancing to her favorite song. Now their nothing left but her and her broken soul. She’s faithless with herself. Nevertheless she has hope that someday she will get out of this mess but for now she has let God do his job as she lays on the cold concrete of the Addis’s streets.

#4/22/15

Etiquette on being the best human possible

Be truthful in everything, don’t lie.
Be sincere and straightforward, don’t be hypocritical.
Be honest, don’t be corrupt.
Be humble, don’t be boastful.
Be moderate, don’t be excessive.
Be reserved, don’t be garrulous.
Be soft-spoken, don’t be loud.
Be refined and gentle in speech, don’t curse and use foul language.
Be loving and solicitous to others, don’t be unmindful of them.
Be considerate and compassionate, don’t be harsh.
Be polite and respectful to people, don’t be insulting or disrespectful.
Be generous and charitable, don’t be selfish and miserly.
Be good natured and forgiving, don’t be bitter and resentful.
Share and be content with what Allah has given you, don’t be greedy.
Be cheerful and pleasant, don’t be irritable and morose.
Be chaste and pure, don’t be lustful.
Be alert and aware of the world around you, don’t be absent-minded.
Be dignified and decent, don’t be graceless.
Be optimistic and hopeful, don’t be cynical or pessimistic.
Be confident and have deep faith, don’t be doubtful and wavering.
Be spiritually oriented and not materialistic.
Be confident of the mercy of Allah, don’t be despairing and lose heart.
Be diligent and vigilant of your duties, don’t be negligent.
Be thankful to Allah and constantly pray to Him, don’t be forgetful of His innumerable blessings.

What is Love?

Love is a powerful, compelling emotion. It can make you laugh and it can make you cry. It can lift you up to the clouds and it can hurl you into an abyss. An interesting study was conducted comparing drug users to people who claimed to be “madly in love.” They found that brain scans showed people who are in the first stages of love and people who are high on cocaine have the same areas of the brain stimulated while looking at a picture of their “beloved”. In other words, being in the first stage of love is similar to being high on drugs! With drugs, you are not in love with the powder itself – you are in love with the feelings that it gives you. Similarly, the thing that we love is the special attention, the butterflies in the stomach, the acknowledgment that someone cares about us in a special way, looks at us in a special way, and thinks about us in a special way – the constant day dreaming about the future and daily scenarios. So it is not that this person is perfect, it is that this person allows us to feel all these emotions which are addictive. In reality we are not in love with the person, we are in love with Love itself.

“America The Great”

Killing myself in the American dream
How does it feel?…
UnReal!
Drowning in “Deals
and value-less “Value” meals
Endless maybes
and assembly line babies
The wombs
have become tombs!
The unborn much better off
than the living-Dead!
Most have replaced a computer
for a head
Digitized humans!
What’s your Social Insecurity number?
My complexion looks pale
I’m just another sale
Using me to make your commission
Selling me off without my permission!
Numbing myself with fads
Feeding false hopes with catalogs, commercials and ads
Everywhere you look is a commercial
and an attempted persuasion
Even the sky is raped
on occasion!
Everything is hurried
do I even have time to be buried!
Or just dumped out with the morning trash?
then replaced in a flash
What is happening to this endangered species?
Human waste is not feces
But a wasted human
that has mutilated its own soul
For the American Dream!
How do you REALLY feel!
Like a piece of MEAT!?
When is the last TIME you listened
to your own heart beat?
Listen real close and you will hear……
..tick-tock..Tick-Tock!
The sound of the Great Clock
of the Great Machine!
Dark veins…
pumping nothing but OIL!
Waiting for God to come and spoil
this splendid NIGHTMARE!!!
That I am having every single day!
The children no longer
come out to play
Because they’re all adults
Adults by the age of 5 !
Never experiencing
what it means to be alive!
An imagination destroyed
by a Virtual Void!
The natural barrier around curiosity
has been Blown to bits and pieces,
By Full-disclosure media
and instant hormonal releases!
Our laughter
is now a growl
We no longer clap to cheer
but bark and howl!
Howling like the animals we want
so badly to be
Not wanting to be tamed
just roaming free
To do what ever we want
to satiate insatiable desires
Are we the Children of Adam?
or children of the Fire?
What corrupted
the sacred semen?
Intercourse with
a demon?
Or negligence in loving
the One worthy of ALL love!
The Originator
of all creation
The One of whom
even the animals make glorification
As they struggle to maintain the balance
in the midst of the New World Order
But the American Dream
rapidly encroaches upon its border!
Threatening to end once and for all
this last great reminder…
That the Great American Dream
is nothing but a BLINDER………
how do you Realy feel?