"To the impartial eye, the world not only seems an unlikely one-off phenomenon, but a constant strain on reason. If reason exists, that is, if a neutral reason exists. So speaks the voice from within. So speaks Joker's voice." - Jostein Gaarder

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

An Identity Crisis, or rather Identity of Crisis

Everytime I talk about our identity crisis, as Middle Easterns, Levantines, Arabs, or particularly Syrians, everytime I tell them about all the psychological burden that we carry around excellently -The one we call our History- to almost, everyone... I get a look, of, understanding, they understand "me", but, behind that, I see a thousand question marks, of, irrelevance. and I don't blame them, they might never understand that, unless they are fortunate enough -or unfortunate for that matter- to actually live in that hub, The Middle East.

How, can u present the full depth, of a personality, an Identity shaped with an extreme feeling of superiority, the feeling of superiority we've been fed, by the monuments, by the streets, books, sights and smells… by the sheer names of our cities.

A superiority, that soon begins a never-ending fight with another complex. A complex of inferiority, towards a winner West a brutally developed and civilized West.

I don't understand it neither, I can just feel it, I try to put it to words… I try to explain the power of symbolism in area that has nothing left but symbols anymore. The wealth, the philosophy, the greatness, the pride… they're all long gone… what's left, is us, the people, who will still cling on to life, they all have all these things inside [as any other human, for that matter…], at least I hope we still do… and monuments, ruins, memoirs, of a past… What's also left? The bitter truth, that we might never catch up, the bitter feeling of humiliation, of victimization, of being stepped on every single day, by our fathers, our policemen, our presidents, and everybody else…

I try to write, about the Crusades, How they still live inside every Levantine, how u can see them in the family names of people. The Crusades, probably were the absolute turning point, where we went down, towards a West that ascended on a way up… the absolute feeling of victimization that we've felt since then… towards those barbaric, monsters of darkness and witch hunting, who disrupted the wealthy, sophisticated, civilization of ours… and, drove it… here.

It goes way beyond that, further than that. It's way before Muhammad [PBUH], before we even discovered that the poems of "Omro' al-Kais" are masterpieces. Before that, even before, Princess Europe of Phoenicia sailed from Byblos, to give Europe its name… before that…

When I write about, my Human Identity, when I write about my Syrian Identity, when I write about me, the sum of all these little things, what I eat, what I write, what I do, who am I… where did I grow up, and where am living… when I try to un-define myself, rather than define it with a single identity… I'm only trying to loosen up, this burden, this history. But the only way I can ever seem to do that, is through that very same history.

This Middle East needs people who are willing to forsake an unbeaten vicious circle. Willing to put off our complexes, to read the History, as a book… as a text book that is. And even more, He needs Faith in these people… all the faith that we've given to all the gods who were born here, to all of them who passed and stayed here…

I, for one, have not yet been able to. Not Yet, that is.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Another kind of love affairs...

It's amazing when something u've been practicing/feeling for the whole of ur life gets manifested in a very simple form, very few, definitive words. like, I'm obsessed with Symmetry.

Simple and plain, yet, it took me more than 20 years, and flights back and forth to as far as Tokyo, to discover it, in an empty train from Chofu-station to Tobitakyu-station.

I'm obsessed with symmetry, lines, things... it makes me happy to see parallel lines of anything... parallel lines of hand holders in a train... or just a symmetric line of trees.

When I read a web page, a consensual reflex is to double click the word exactly in the middle of the line am reading... so that it gets highlighted.

When I read a book, half an eye is always looking for the word that makes a perfect symmetry in the line...

It was as if i had just re-discovered fire.. as silly and unimportant it may seem... it was one of the few discoveries about myself lately that didn't depress me, but rather cheered me up.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Highlights from Syria



I laughed,
I loved,
I sighed,

And I did each of these like I've never before.

No highlights. I found out that I can't express myself with things that overwhelm me.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

And It Begins, Again...

I still need to gather up my thoughts about the last 3 weeks...

A lot has happened for 3 weeks.

When you realize the importance of something, or someone, you'll try to get the best out of every second you can get. And you'll feel it going through your blood just like caffeine or drugs... and you'll enjoy it... It happened in Egypt last summer... and again in Syria this winter...

I had some of my most endearing moments this winter.

You can check the photos on my flickr [if u havent noticed the HUGE link in the sidebar yet... then click HERE]...

This Movie, speaks for itself... I owe so much, to so many people.

Take 1: Bad Director...


Take 2: Ouch, that DID hurt...


Take 3: There it is...

Friday, January 05, 2007

Leaving again...

It's always hard to leave the car at 5.30am when the ride is over,
It's always hard to accept a bad ending to a good movie,
It's always hard to let go of the moment, and not hold on to the future,
It's always hard to accept an end to a love story,
It's always hard to accept that us can fall, even momentarily,
It's always hard to let go of a dream, to watch it tear you apart,
It's always hard to skip a ripped off page in a book you learned to love,

It's so much easier to feel love, when it had already stormed you away.

I'm a very impulsive person, and for that, I owe my apologies.

I'm not disappointed. Never.
I'm just sad.

Eventually, life breaks down into the very primal feelings...