Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Oh children of Palestine

Palestinians run following what police said was an Israeli air strike on a house in Gaza city July 9, 2014. (Reuters / Majdi Fathi)

Since the events of the past days, my news feed has been full of truly disturbing, heartbreaking images. Of dying little kids and adults, of parents bathed in their children's blood as they hang on the corpses of their children. Images so graphic that my first response is wanting to quickly scroll down so my brain doesn't replay these scenes in my head again and again. So I don’t have to think or feel, but that is exactly what we have to do, to let ourselves feel their pain, let ourselves feel the agony of holding your dying child/sibling/parent/friend in your arms. As a mom my heart absolutely weeps, just like any parents' would, or any human being's for that matter. What makes human lives, children’s lives more valuable in certain areas and less so in others? Whatever the political situation is, no humans, and specially no babies and kids, deserve to die like this.

Tonight as I lay with my daughter in bed, I lingered a little longer after she fell asleep, stroked her hair and just felt her little arms and legs under my hands. I stared at her sleeping face and kissed her with a tears in my eyes as my mind reconstructed the tragic images my eyes have been seeing the past few days. It is so hard to imagine the hatred that kills little children on an almost daily basis, the moms and dads that have held their dying kids in their arms. And it was too much for me to take. I said a quick prayer for them, shook my head and chose to think of other things as I left her room. But to truly realize the injustice, the heartbreak, the cruelty, whichever religion or state we belong to, we need to let ourselves feel this discomfort.

I will not post one of these tragic pictures up here because I really am not brave enough. But I urge those that have only heard the one-sided media coverage of this blatant human rights violation, to go see some of these images. To take a minute and truly look at these heartbreaking pictures, feel the pain in their faces, and put yourselves in their feet and imagine their world. In today's day and age if we think we can close our eyes to it, that is not possible. Whatever reasons the media has for turning a blind eye to the suffering of one side of this war, we have no excuse to stay ignorant. Get your facts, open your eyes, let your hearts feel, and at least speak up.

Thanks for reading.






FYI

Two news sources to get more accurate coverage on the region are RT and Al Jazeera.

A history of the Israel-Palestine crisis. 

A graphical representation of historical facts relating to the crisis.

Statistics of casualties on both sides.

Also important to remember that just as all Muslims are not terrorists, all Jews are not on the same side. Read Testimonies from Israeli soldiers who have served in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem. and Why she wants to give up her Israeli passport. So do not hate indiscriminately. 

Some famous people that have spoken up include Einstein, Stephen Hawkings, Christian Ronaldo, Roger Waters, Stevie Wonders, Elvis Costello

Dr Norman Finkelstein responds to the Holocaust argument.

One of the biggest voices from the western world on this issue, George Galloway’s address in Vancouver.

Jon Stewart perfectly sums up the situation in Gaza

The child victims of Palestine, a disturbing collection of these innocent victims. To realize the suffering, I believe it is important to view these and question the wars that do this.

It is also interesting to read what Muhammad taught us about war-times and the rules that are needed to be followed.

As we speak out about this human rights violation, it is also important to remember the injustices around us, in our own societies. From atrocities against Shias, minorities, Ahmadis, Christians, Hazaras, killings in the name of honor and the massacres by ISIS and the many other terrorist organizations in the Muslim world. As we stand with the Palestinian victims, make sure you are not being silent about the many victims in your own societies.

And as important as it is to raise awareness on this situation, please consider donating for the victims too.



Thursday, July 10, 2014

IN PICTURES: May/June

I know its almost mid July already but here’s a picture story from the last two months. Hopefully I’ll be more prompt next time;) Enjoy!

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Enjoying these longer evenings and watching the first stars as they start appearing every night.

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These girls bonding over pretend play, toddler talk and anything sweet. Driving through the rain singing at the top of our voices and stopping on the way for ice cream and pictures.

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Healthy dinner experiments and trying to practice some food photography.

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Lots of flowers in vases as the weather changes, wildflowers collected from fields and brought back from walks along.


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Babysat these sweet girls and loved the giggles and chatter of three girls running around and having fun.


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Been doing a lot of photography related work recently. Love how sweet my clients are.

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A day trip on mother day weekend and enjoying dusk on the way back. More here.

20140604-20140604-IMG_4376June began with some grilling. Grilled tandoori Salmon by the husband makes for some yummy and healthy dinners.

20140615-20140615-IMG_5513A last minute fathers day activity/craft with Anya, inspired by some I saw on Pinterest.

20140616-20140616-IMG_553220140620-20140620-IMG_5548Long days mean reading in the sunshine as daddy gets home. (Above) Reading one of my own childhood books that I brought back from Pakistan, to her baba when he gets home from work. (Bottom) A sweet little read my friend brought for Anya.

20140626-20140626-IMG_6402A university friend was visiting the area, and absolutely enjoyed having our families meet up.

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Celebrating on Skype with my Mom and sister.

Thanks for reading and stopping by!

Monday, July 7, 2014

This Ramadan.

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Hey my sweet readers. Looks like I have been totally missing on the blog since before Ramadan started. But now that the first week of fasting has gone by, I might be getting the hang of things, somewhat. Happy Ramadan to all of my Muslim readers. Wishing this month brings peace, blessings, and Allah’s guidance your way. Ameen.

Just wanted to share some Ramadan related links that have been inspiring me.

Loving this Back2Quran series where they are adding summaries of Quranic Surahs.
- This post by Aisha Saeed about supporting books on Ramadan and Eid for children.
- 30 days of beautiful Ramadan inspirations via Times.
- Love the tips shared on Productive Muslim to have a Productive Ramadan.
- Enjoying daily Ramadan reflections via Huffington Post by Imam Khalid Latif
- Loved President Obama’s message to Muslims on beginning of Ramadan. Here’s a link to the video too.

Plus for new readers, more Ramadan posts from the past.

- When I remembered all those Ramadans spent back in Pakistan
- When I shared ideas on making your own Ramadan traditions and memories.

And throughout this month I will be pinning inspiring ideas and articles here. Check them out.

Thanks for reading and stopping by. Stay inspired and have a lovely Ramadan.