return of the blog

January 27, 2008

Hello, for those of you who have just joined us, I started this blog roughly a year ago with no real purpose in mind. That is still true.
I was just trying to experiment with a different form of therapy.


Allah’s got you covered

October 15, 2007

I thought this was crazy.

On the last Sunday night of Ramadan the local masjid was doing its fundraiser between the Isha and Taraweeh prayers. The Imam speaking to the crowd went row by row from the front to the end of the prayer asking for donations of $1000. The line after mine, a man stood up next to the Imam and spoke into the microphone:

“My mother is very sick and my son is very sick also. I really need this $1000 but I am going to give it to the masjid for the cause of Allah.”

The Imam backed up the man’s plea saying that we can take this also as an encouragement to give. And the Imam continued down the rows.

As the man began filling out the form, another man came and sat next to him and said, “I will pay the $1000 in your name.”


conclusion: one and the same

September 24, 2007

Interesting project.

free educational opportunity

September 24, 2007

So I just had to share this because last Wednesday I felt special. The V.P. of our group at work is in town this week along with my boss and some other director level folks, and he wanted to take everyone out to dinner. Now you know how Americans eat dinner early, like 6 o’clock unlike us from the Middle East our Southeast Asia that eat dinner around 9. But its Ramadan, so when the sun goes down, its time to chow down. Anyway, our V.P. had originally set it up that we meet at the restaurant for happy hour time so people could get their drink on, and we would eat at 6pm. When he found out that I was fasting and I couldn’t eat till sunset (because I told him I couldn’t make it, to which he asked ‘why?’ to which I replied because I am fasting and I must abstain till sunset), he pushed back the invitation to the group and arranged it with the restaurant that we would all get our food right when the sunset, around 7:20ish. Of our group of 14, I was by far the youngest, and lowest in rank on the group’s totem pole. But it opened a door to be a great opportunity to talk about Ramadan and its significance with my fellow coworkers and superiors. And now I know how to say “Ramadan” in Mandarin Chinese. “Tchai jei uey”. I am sure that many Muslims partaking in the fasting shy away during this month from our non-Muslim friends and coworkers; not wanting to get into the whole explanation of fasting (that its not 30 days straight of no food or water, but 30 days of abstinence during the daylight hours only), or the pity comments, (What, no food or water all day?!??! man, I would DIE!!).

Ramadan in America, post college, is still a great educational opportunity.

tactical advice

September 19, 2007

I found this valuable. For both my Muslim and non-Muslim friends.

you know ramadan is around the corner when….

September 13, 2007

This post is not about moonsighting. It is a reflection. Right before the blessed month of Ramadan I go numb. My weaknesses get the best of me. But now I can write about it! (But I am wondering if any one else feels the same?)

1. women start looking better. like WAY better.

The other day I had lunch with a friend at his company’s cafeteria. It’s a prestigious tech company known for putting out good products, but not known for having great looking women. It took me an hour and a half to finish my burrito. You see, my eyes were like ping-pong balls, bouncing from one bodacious babe to another. MashaAllah….what….beauty? Shake it off. My friend told me later that on the way back to his desk, he saw really pretty ladies he’d never seen before. Where did they come from?

2. the urge to splurge increases

Yesterday I went to Best Buy. I stopped in mid-strut in front of the new releases section and did a quick scan of the rack. The Kanye West album “Graduation” and the 50 Cent album “Curtis”. I couldn’t decide which one I should pick up. So I picked up both. Why did I do that?

I’ve been looking around for a viable alternative and upgrade to Apple’s music production software Garageband. Apple somehow read my mind. Logic Studio out today from the Apple store. Only $499! Why am I itching like a beagle with fleas to buy this ASAP??

And don’t even talk to me about clothes.

3. sucky music sounds better

Now I know the Kanye album has more creative lyrics, production, and overall depth to it. Its funkier no doubt. So why do I still have the “Fitty” album bumpin’ in my trunk? The line, “I’m laughing straight to the bank wit dis” is stuck in my head.

4. sleeping in is a better option. and i think sleeping is for wimps.

The last couple of days I rolled into work around 11:00-11:30 am. Not a good look.

5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. personal (this post aint a confession)

No, its not a confession. Im human. I got issues. And so do you. The first few days before Ramadan I am reminded about how human I really am. And how much I need this blessed month to help me conquer my vices better. May Allah make it easy for us conquer ourselves. Ramadan kareem!

the merchant and the parrot

August 23, 2007

There once was a merchant, and he had a parrot,
imprisoned in a cage, a pretty parrot.

When the merchant prepared for a journey and was about
to travel to India,

Because of his generosity he said to each male slave and each handmaid (and asked), out of generosity, “What shall I bring (back) for you? Tell me quickly!”

Each one asked him for something they wished, and that good man
gave his promise to them all.

Then he said to the parrot, “What present from the journey do
you want, so that I may bring it to you from the land of India.”

The parrot answered him, “When you see the parrots there,
explain my situation and say,

“Such and such parrot who is yearning to see you, is in my
prison by the destiny of Heaven.

“She sends you greetings of peace and wants justice, and desires
a remedy and the path of right guidance.

“Is it proper that I, in such a state of yearning,
should give up my life here and die in separation?

“Is it right that I should be in such strict bondage, while
you are sometimes on the green grass and sometimes on the

. . . . . . .

The man of trade accepted this message and agreed that he
would deliver the greeting from her to her own kind.

When he reached the farthest regions of India, he saw some
parrots in a wilderness.

He held back his mount from going, then gave a shout: he
delivered the greeting and returned that which he had been given
in trust.

Among those parrots, one parrot trembled greatly, fell, died, and
stopped breathing.

The merchant became sorry about telling such news, and
he said, “I went in destruction of that animal.

“Is this one, perhaps, a relative of that little parrot? Or was
this, perhaps, a case of two bodies and one spirit?

“Why did I do this? Why did I deliver the message and burn
up the helpless creature by means of this crude speech?”

. . . . . . .

The merchant finished his trading and returned to his
home, satisfying the best hopes of his friends.

He brought a present to each male slave and gave a share to
each housemaid.

The parrot said, “Where is this slave’s present? Tell what you
saw and said!”

The merchant replied, “No. I am myself very sorry about that,
and am chewing my hands and biting my fingers over it.

“Why did I foolishly bring such a crude message out of
ignorance and thoughtlessness?”

The parrot said, “O master, why are you so regretful? What is
it that calls for all this anger and sorrow?”

He replied, “I told your complaints to a group of your
fellow parrots.

“That one parrot– her heart broke from getting wind of your pain,
and she trembled and died.

“I became regretful and thought, ‘Why was the use of
saying this?’ But since I had already spoken, what was the benefit
of remorse?”

. . . . . . .

When she heard about what that parrot did, she then
trembled, fell, and became cold.

When the master saw her fallen like this, he jumped up and hurled
his cap on the ground.

And when the master saw her with this appearance and
condition, he leaped up and tore the upper front of his robe.

He said, “O beautiful and sweet-crying parrot, what happened to
you? Why did you become like this?

“Oh what sorrow! My sweet-sounding bird! Oh what misery!
My close companion and confidant!

“Oh what regret! My sweet-singing bird! The wine of my spirit,
my garden, and my sweet basil!

“If Solomon could have had a bird like you, he never would
have become occupied with all those (other) birds.

“Oh what a pity! The bird which I got so cheaply! Yet how
quickly I turned my face away from her face!

“O tongue! You are a great injury to mankind! But since you
are talking, what can I say to you?

“O tongue! You are both the fire and the harvest stack. How
long will you set fire to this harvest stack?

“My soul is lamenting in secret because of you, even
though it keeps doing everything you tell it to do.”

. . . . . . .

The merchant, in a state of burning, and agony, and
yearning, kept saying a hundred scattered and disturbed things
such as this.
. . . . . . .

After that, he threw her out of the cage. The little parrot flew
to a high branch–

The dead parrot made such a swift flight,
as when the orient sun rushed onward.

The merchant became bewildered by the bird’s action. All of a
sudden, still without understanding, he saw that there were
secrets involving the bird.

He raised his head and said, “O nightingale, share a portion of
wisdom with us in explanation of the situation.

“What did that parrot do so that you learned something,
prepared a trick, and burned us with sorrow?”

The parrot answered, “She gave me advice by her very
action, meaning, ‘Escape from attachment to elegance of voice
and joyful expansion of your breast in song.

“‘Because your voice is keeping you in shackles.’ She herself
acted dead for the sake of sending me this advice,

“Meaning, ‘O you who have become a singer to both
commoners and the elite: become “dead” like me so that you may
find deliverance!'”

from the Masnavi (Book I) of Mawlana Jalal ad-Din Rumi