I Love Her

I first saw her in 1995. She was so beautiful, charming, but beaten. She was harsh, a bit bitter, and poor. But there was something magical about her. She was graceful in her own way.

In 1995 I was only able to see skin deep. I couldn’t see beyond her beaten beauty. I couldn’t see the elegance beyond the surface. Her beauty can only be appreciated if you are well cultured, well travelled. You could only appreciate her beauty if you paid attention to her delicate grace, her charming personality, and to her diversified background.

I couldn’t connect with her at the time. I didn’t see her eye to eye although I spent few days in her presence.

Fifteen years later I met her again. My heart skipped a beat when I saw her. Her beauty was so clear to me now. I was enchanted and mesmerized by her magical appearance, by her whispers, and by her aura. I immediately fell in love with her. She was my lost love that only a change in my heart could make possible.

I rejoiced in her presence. This time I saw her for 3 days but it was enough to know that she will be forever in my heart. Her memories will always be engraved in my mind and soul. When I left her, a void was left in my heart.

I am with her now and can’t think of anything but her. It’s only Marackesh that can compete for my heart. I love you Istanbul.

حمار فن

في كل زمان تخرج صيحة او موضة يتوجه اليها الناس بجميع أطيافهم ، بعض هذه الصيحات تثير الشفقة وتجعل العالم أسواء وبعضها يضيف على عالمنا الجمال والأمل ، الا وهو الفن قديمه وحديثه

وهنا أتكلم عن مبادرة 21,39 التي أطلقها بعض المهتمين بالفن في السعودية والذين بتواضع منهم أشركوني معهم اعتقادا خاطئ منهم بأنني افهم هذا العلم رغم انني حمار فن

ان اجمل مافي هذه المبادرة ليس الاعمال الفنية ولا العشوات الفخمة ولا الفزلكة الفنية الفلسفية التي تصل الى حد الخنفشارية، وإنما روح الحب للعمل الذي يرتقي بالمجتمع، ان اكثر ما أثّر في نفسي هو ان هذه المبادرة قامت بأكملها على دعم من بعض أهالي جدة كهدية لمدينتهم الغالية، تلك العروس التي لاقت واحتملت الكثير وكأنهم يقولوا لها، نحن نعلم صبرك ونحن معك

اما الفن فهو لغة عالمية يقرب وجهات النظر اما بالنسبة لي فقد تعلمت في هذه المبادرة ان الحمار الوحشي يطلق عليه فنان وبالتالي فكوني حمار فن، فهذا يعني انني ليس فقط افهم في الفن بل انني فنان في الفن

شكرًا لكل من تعلمت منهم في هذه المجموعة التي جمعها حبهم لمدينتهم والفن

عيسى عبد الوهاب بوقري

You Are Not Suppose to Die!

Oum Saif,

You are not suppose to die. You are young. You are a live. You have not even reached the magical age of 40.

You are not suppose to die. You have two sons that need you, how can they go on without a mom. The world is tough and it will be tougher without you around.

You are not suppose to die. You are an angle and angels do not die. Why are the rules changing?

You are not suppose to die because we are waiting for you to come back. You said you will and I trust you. Why are you not back till now?

You are not suppose to die. It’s too soon. We have not prepared for this. You were suppose to get old. I always wanted to see a stubborn old Sara around.

You are not suppose to die. The world needs your laughter, your gentle soul, your beauty, and your kindness. The world is drying up of goodness. Please do not die!

But,

I am a man of faith and know that fate has chosen you because heaven could not wait to meet you. The angles missed their sister and wanted her now.

I am a believer and I have to accept that Saif and Hamza are going to be stronger without you and your absence will be filled with the presence of God.

I am a Muslim and know that death is the beginning of an eternal life, a life that you deserve and you chose to go there before us. You have always wanted to be first. You are there now.

I know you can hear me. I know you can see us. I know that you are smiling and saying, “heaven is amazing, it is more than I expected. It’s a joyful ride. You can do anything. You can even eat your popcorn with hot sauce, like you did in that place you called life.”

We will miss you gentle soul, we will miss your laughter. We will always remember you. Please talk  about us in your realm. I am sure you are with Him, a prophet you have loved. Please pass our Salam to Him. Tell him how much we miss him, love him and in time, we will all be together in the hereafter which is now.

Goodbye Oum Saif,

Your Brother and neighbor,

Eissa A. Bougary

بابا

التف عليه أهله جميعا، وامصاباه، انها ابنته الوحيدة، لا يملك في الدنيا سواها… تنهار الدموع من عيناه والأم تنظر اليه واحشائها تتقطع، كيف يكون هذا أخر يوم ارى فيه ابنتي، أربعة عشر عاما مضت في لمح البصر

وبدأ شريط العمر يدور في ذكراهم اول ابتسامة وهي نائمة وكأنهم يرونها وعمرها سبعة ايام، اول مرة تنطق بابا، اول يوم تأخذ خطوتها نحو الحياة، حياة تنتهي اليوم، اول يوم في المدرسة، كيف كان اول يوم اختبارات وأي اختبار هو اليوم التي تنتهي فيه حياتها، شريط عمرها يدور وليس في اليد حول ولا قوة ، اي ابتلاء هذا الذي سيأخذ ابنتهم بين أيديهم بهذة البشاعة

يحملها ويمضي والأم تصرخ، بنتي، ردو الي بنتي… لا أستطيع ان أتحمل، سأموت بعدها تحاول ان توقف أباها ولكن يحول بينها الأهل والأقارب ، “انه امر الله، اصبري وأحتسبي الأجر” فتخور صرعة من هول الامر وترتجف أرضا ، “ياالله” يرددن أمهاتن حولها ذاقوا ألم ما تمر به هذه الأم ولكنه امر الله

يمضي الأب حامل ابنته التي لا تستطيع رجليها ان تحملها من هول الأمر، ينظر اليها وتنظر اليه نظر المودع، تنهال دموعهم وتختلط، تنظر اليه وتقول، “ابي، افعل ما تؤمر ستجدني ان شاء الله من الصابرين” فأفاق من نومه على قبلة ابنته وهي تهنئة بعيد الأضحى المبارك

يقوم ويقبل ابنته ويحتضنها بقوة أب كاد ان يفقد ابنته، ويذهب الى النافذة وينظر الى خروف العيد الذي اشتراه مربوط في الشجرة وهناك اولاد يأذونه، فيفتح النافذة ويصرخ بأعلى صوته، اتركوه وأكرموه… انه الفدأ الأعظم

اكرموا خروف العيد واعلموا معناه، فهو رحمة الله بكم

Break The Rules

I learned a lesson from someone wise today. There is huge difference between rules and beliefs. Rules are external guidelines that someone sets for you. Hence, you have this temptation to break them. We all know, “rules are made to be broken.” Rules limit us because they manifest someones else’s’ opinion. They are skin deep. Yet, every parent, every school, every company, and every country puts rules. They believe it is the way out of chaos and into the “rule” of law.

 

However, they got the whole point wrong. As human species, we can never accept rules. It’s our nature to be free. Rules limit freedom.

 

Rules should be replaced with beliefs. They can not be broken because they are ingrained deep in our hearts. To break them, we break our own existence. As a species, we strive to survive and therefore we will never break our beliefs because it means we break ourselves. We should be putting beliefs in our homes, schools, companies, and even countries. Let beliefs rule us! Not rules.

 

Beliefs make us survive. Rules limit our prosperity

Warning: Could Cause Brain Damage

it’s at least 40° degrees. The sun is scorching hot, burning up the rocky hills and mountains of this holy city where once lived and preached the best educator humanity has ever seen. However, today, the picture is different. More than 35 students are cramped into classroom “Alef 14.” The stench of the class can be felt from a 100 meters away; a mix of human odor and a variety of human gasses, the result of ill-prepared sandwiches the students eat during the middle break, “fos7a.” The celling fan is propelling at maximum speed, in a failed attempt to cool down the “samoom” air entering from the broken glass on the classroom windows. It’s stirring up all kinds of smell and pushing it through the nostrils of students who are semiconscious and eager to leave this hell. This was the scene in Al Zahra Elementary School in Makkah, 1975.

The disaster lies not in these horrendous conditions. Generations before us studied in far worse environments. The tragedy are the “educators” that existed in 1975 and still exist today. Although classrooms have now less students, air conditioned, equipped with air fresheners, have state of the art technology, and beautiful buildings, the teacher is still as stupid as he/she was 30 years ago, if not more stupid! I meant to use a harsh word to illustrate the suffering I endured to bring myself up from teachers and an education system that worked so hard to dumb me down! My creativity was put on hold for 12 years in the Public School System of Saudi Arabia. That was the bad news! I , with the grace of Allah, have prevailed and beat the system, at least I think so. But the question is, what about a generation that was dumbed down. Look around and smell the “egg sandwiches.”

The good news is that I hear things are going to change! Those who know me, will tell you I am not an optimist. However, for the sake of argument and for the objective of this appeal, I will have a rosy picture.

I am going to state the obvious. The key to change and the drive for a great society is the teacher. You can build great schools. Import the best curriculum from the most advanced eduction systems in the world. You can create state of the art technology schools, even use iPads for textbooks (a trend from the future). If the teacher remains stupid, we are doomed. But this can change (the optimist me is coming out).

DEMAND. GET INVOLVED. CREATE. Demand good teachers. Do not accept substandard teachers. Make noise and you will be heard! Get involved as a parent. Do not let the teacher cheat your kid out of a promising future. It’s happening everyday. Create an environment for your kid that encourages thinking, creativity and challenge to oneself. I have seen first hand the damage caused from killing creativity. It takes a long time to reverse the damage.

Take these 3 steps and the future could have less stench.

DISCLAIMER: I am not an expert on education. I wrote this article because of an education system that failed me. I see the constant struggle with kids and parents. I feel the challenge as an employer in a highly creative field, constantly looking for talent.

Revolt

So, with the Arab spring, everyone wants to create their own revolution. I have never seen a more beautiful, energetic, and an inspiring view like the millions of people who took out to Tahrir square demanding freedom, social justice, and basic human rights. From there on, every Arab Spring has been revolting, sickening, and out right nauseating.

Look at Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Tunis, and Syria today. They are more a mess than they have ever been. In the same time, look at Morocco. If you ask me, I would say, the most peaceful, organized and productive revolution has been the Moroccan one.

Every Arab Spring quickly moved from a demand for freedom to a power struggle between people who are power hungry, blood thirsty, and religiously arrogant.

There are two main victims in the so called Arab Spring

1. Islam
2. The people who demanded freedom.

The winners are

1. Special interest
2. Other governments who used the Arab S**t to tell their people how bad it is to demand freedom.

The question is why two years later, the Arab Spring is still struggling? The simple answer: people are religiously charged and believe that religion is the solution for everything and if you don’t have religion, nothing will work. They have no comprehension of what a Civil rule means. They can’t differentiate between Islam and power hungry Islamist.

The victims have become the victimizer. But they are now more dangerous because They use religion as their ammunition

Islam does not feed you, does not clothe you, does not build your economy, and does not empower you. People do, no matter what their religion is. It’s time to be civilized.