to live with an old dream of yours
and then suddenly ,without any expectation, you see part of your dream reflected on the reality
this is what i call miracle
yesterday, i invited Dr.baher to come to PSU and give ( an introduction to psychology ) to saudi students .
in fact, i have an old perception about my soceity (saudi), it is that we don’t value reading and knowledge as much as soccer and video games
anyway, when the Dr.baher came to the room, he saw me alone waiting for him and then he look at my face asking.. is there anybody coming!!
“i never count on any body,,but helpfully there will be
more than two listening to your lecture” i said
before he started the lecture, two saudi entered the room
then we became 4
then we reached the number 9
no place in the earth could carry my happiness at that moment
i used to see maximum of 4 saudi attending the lectures that announced in the past
i checked hand everyone of them saying thank you
it is just wonderful to see people coming to you with hopes and dreams that are similar to yours
they eagrily asked me to prepare for an upcoming event like this one
helpfully, we keep the number growing :))
Love, dreams and hopes.. got all the bloggers together into one family.
updates from Aysha’s blog:
April 21, 8 pm pacific, arwa, “hadeel is breathing on her own, she was given water and accepted it.”
April 22, 1 am pacific, father, “hadeel is not breathing on her own, she is still in a coma, and soon to be assessed by a medical group.”
May 16, 2 am pacific, Hadeel has passed away.
I.”I have been hoping that one day i can meet a person who can listen to my life’s story without emotion or judgment. A listener that can take everything inside me and leave with no coming back!!” (an anonymous girl responding to me when i said that i trust strangers more than my friends)
Last week, we had a meeting with a high school students about the culture, the religion and the society of Saudi Arabia.
We started our programs by playing a movie that gives an exploration of Saudi Arabia. To be honest, I watch the movie as I am watching something that is totally new to me. I didn’t recognize some of the places. I saw women exposing their face without any distraction of any body. That is so beautiful but ,, is that real? i don’t really know what would happen to my sister if she walks in the Riyadh’s streets without covering her face fully!!
Anyway, i sat with students in the table and they started shooting me questions.
Tough questions that i have never thought about before !!
i don’t remember their questions literally but it goes around this
Q: Do you recognize all the places in the Movie?
not really, my country is big and i haven’t travelled that much.
Q: where do you live?
I live in the eastern part of Saudi Arabia. My city is close to Daharan. the main city of Oil. also, i wanna add that each part of Saudi Arabia has a different culture and life style.
Q: what about Sunni and Shiia in Saudi Arabia? are they in fight with each other like Iraqi?
Not really, i am Shia and i have so many sunni friends, i have never gotten in fight with any of them because of what they believe.
The difference between Sunni and Shiia is much smaller than the difference between Catholic and protestants Christian. Our problem doesn’t come from religion. It comes from not listening to each other. as you know, when we don’t listen to each other, we become more likely to misunderstand and misconceive each other.
Anyway, I am very optimistic with the change that comes out from King Abduallah. Both group are getting in dialogue to resolve their misunderstanding.
Q: can you talk a little bit about women in Saudi Arabia? are they forced to wear the Abaya?
We have a a great respect for women in our society. There are so many women who got scholarship to come and study here. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any incidents where women are treated unequal. yes, they are forced to wear the Abaya. yes, they can’t work without a permission of their parents or husband. yes, they can’t drive cars. and yes i agree with you that these things have to be changed but how, this is the question. Saudi Arabia is in process of change. These things can’t be changed at once. we are living in a society where tradition is greatly valued. i think we need to change gradually and from the down to up so we minimize any damage of that change
Q: Is saudi Arabia %100 muslims? and what would happen if someone convert to another religion?
they said that it is %100 muslims but i don’t think that is true. It is impossible for any country be all muslims or all christen. There has to be people who has a different belief than we are and that is the nature of life. Even in the time of prophet Mohammed, there were christena and jews. i think there are Christian and Jews minorities at some part of my country. However, i don’t think that they practice their believe in public.
as for converting, if any muslims convert to any of other religion, he would be killed according to my country law. I am totally against that. I believe strongly that everyone has a right to believe in whatever they want and that they should not be forced to believe in Islam.
by the way, you need to differentiate between Islam and muslims. Muslims in many times do things that are totally against the teaching of islam and the problem is that they justify what the do by covering it under islamic law!
Q: i have read an article that talks about homosexuality in Saudi Arabia! It said that there are many guys who practice sex with each other and that is because they don’t get an opportunity to have a sex with women unless they married?
i didn’t give a good answer for the students at that time. all i say is that yes, homosexuality exist in everywhere!
but when i came back and thought of the question again, i found a different answer.
it is the following:
any body who doesn’t fulfill his sexual needs, will try to find any possible alternatives to do so.
It is like if you were starving, you would eat whatever around you. ant, dog, cat, anything! you wouldn’t care, would you?
psychologically speaking, the desire for sex become so strong and devastated when our emotional needs aren’t fulfilled enough.
you need to know that people don’t practice sex just for the orgasm of 11 minutes. Some people, feel that sex is a temporary solution for some of their problems. The guy who lost his job, want something that can give him the security. The girls who lost all her beloved one wants something can make her forget all of her pains.
i think ( and that is my opinion) our problems in Saudi Arabia is that our emotional needs aren’t fulfilled well enough. What i see is that people are really shy of saying I love you. You don’t hear these 3 words very often in family !
Q: Do you guys drink Alcoholic in back home?
no, we don’t drink because drinking would affect and damage our brain.
Before i left my room today, i picked quickly Hawthorne’s short stories. I thought that this book would be an easy one to read in the max.
i went to Pioneer Square and waited few minutes in the max station until the max arrived.
with a deep breath and big smile, i start reading the book.
i read the introduction and didn’t understand anything.. not even a single word.
i moved from one chapter to another trying to find a story that i can easily understand but i found nothing. At this moment, i began to feel like crazy. two and a half years in America and yet couldn’t understand even a complete sentence of this book.
Two american guys behind me in the max notice my frustration and knew that my frustration come from this book.
One of them asked me : ” Excuse me, are you reading the Hawthorne’s book for a class?”
” no, i am reading it for fun, i got it from one of my best friend” i replied.
” Really!! i am surprised. Hawthorne books aren’t easy to understand even for english speaker! Hawthorne use the language of 18th century. anyway,i am glad that you gave the book a chance. ” he said
His words were a huge relieve to me. He made me feel that all my work in these last two years didn’t go away.
There are many thing that i love in American society. one of them is that American people always give you new hope, different encouragement, big support and motivation. They give it you regardless of who you were and who you are. They give it you with a smile regardless of your religion and ethnicity. It wouldn’t make a difference to them if they knew that you a muslim or christen, conservative or liberal, unlike the people in my country where small differences in religion divides us into hated groups.
i closed my eyes and then opened the book again with a new attitude. the first paragraph that came out to me is the following :
” How often is it the case that, when impossibilities have come to pass and dreams have condensed their misty substance into tangible realities, we find ourselves calm, and even coldly self-possessed, amid circumstances which it would have been a delirium of joy and agony to anticipate! Fate delights to thwart us thus. Passion will choose his own time to rush upon the scene…” page 194
what a surprise!!, this paragraph came in a time when i really need it 🙂
Especial thanks for the one who gave me this book