Feb 23, 2009

The fears all things and NOTHING.

Man as a supreme being has this thought and emotion of fear. This is a basic instinct which, since evolution started, enabled him to survive in the wilderness, reproduce, live among groups and still hold this innate feeling.

Man fears all physical things around him. He fears fire, and windstorms. He fears tornados and earthquakes. Man also fears wild animals or unpredictable human behaviours. But at the same time how can man fear something that only exists in his mind such as death.
Not a long time ago, it came to me that the fear of death is only a matter of religious phantasms that turned man’s life upside down. It chained his life and his thoughts. And everything he/she does turned back to that one matter.

I admit that weren’t this phenomenon weird in the Man’s eyes, he wouldn’t have thought about it. But many matters were weirder such as fire, procreation, sickness and many others. They confused Man at first but their regular occurrences taught Man to accept and react upon them. Hence, storms, no matter how intense they are, became part of his daily life. Still though the wonder of death which turned into ultimate fear and rejection because of the element of the unknown. However, what was unknown few centuries ago is now a scientific truth. And who says that one of these days with all the current technological development Man wouldn’t come to reveal the secrets beyond death. Humanity decoded the riddles of fire, lightning, thunder, animal behaviour and I can presume that the same would happen to the death matter.

This nothingness beyond life shouldn’t scare us. For, if we were meant to live beyond our current existence, we would have done so. Who’d ever thought that Man could fly in the sky like birds do, or live under water like fish do? Centuries ago, all missions outside the earth or inside of it were matters of science fiction (Jules Verne’s novels: Around the earth in 80 days, From the Earth to the Moon, Journey to the Center of the Earth or even Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea). Today, the fictious machines described in these novels are the necessities in our daily life, whether it's a jet plane or a rocket ship, a submarine or else. Therefore, I shall conclude this post by saying that I believe that someday, maybe soon or maybe during the days of our grandsons and daughters, Man shall reveal the truths he cares about or at least those still hidden secrets.

Feb 17, 2009

Playing with divine powers.

What if our world is a myth? What if all our beliefs are legends? What if all of our holy books are plagiarisms of one or two older sources of rituals and historical beliefs? I’ve always asked myself about the sole creator. Who is he or she? Why do we have to blindly believe in him/her? Why has never anyone found real and concrete proof of it? I’ve asked a lot of people: clergy men, thinkers, I’ve researched most philosophers and I found no answer. No one can ever define this power or find its origin. Therefore, I began my own research. I went back in time to the first rituals ever made by Man. I retraced his thought and i had few keys to work with. For instance, it was peculiar enough to see that the only civilisations that have ever thought of gods as similar to humnas are the Greeks. In Edith Hamilton’s book 'mythology', it was said that the Greek poets and artists thought of man so great, so splendid and strong that he became their fulfilment of their search for beauty. Thus, the Greeks realized that they didn’t need an unknown and paralyzing omnipotent power. Their gods were as humans as us. They had our characteristics and our flaws. ('Zeus, trying to hide his love affair form his wife who was the stock character of a typical jealous wife...') all these made the Greek gods closer to man but of course they were to be feared for they were very powerful and dangerous when angry...then Greece might have freed people from the monstrous idea of the un-human supreme over the human (myth1). Humans, I guess, always needed this mysterious power that justifies all things in the world. Man needed something to revert to as a purging source when he made mistakes, he needed a supreme power behind which he would hide or try and explain or understand nature around him. I’m not trying hereby to prove or deny the existence of any god or gods. This is just an attempt to understanding why did we need the creation of such force(s). Man is so an intelligent being. Why would he deny himself the belief in his/her unconscious? Why wouldn’t he credit himself for procreation? I, personally, believe that no power is greater than the one each human being holds within. To me it’s the feeling of relief with one’s self is the key to open the door to one’s sublimity and divinity.

Ø Myth1: Edith Hamilton, MYTHOLOGY: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes (1969), §16-17-19

Feb 16, 2009

Students of the main stream education in Lebanon.

Lebanese students suffer a lot to acquire their education. Since kindergarten, they are expected to fulfil all requirements of intelligence and stand out from the crowd. So far, I’ve realized how unhealthy this demanding view upon them is. I’ve recently had the opportunity to be a substitute teacher at my former school. Believe me when I say that I was devastated and nearly shocked to what I’ve experienced. Children either tend to become teachers’ pets or fade in the classroom background or get all the blame for the classroom noise. What I witnessed behind the walls of that school was beyond my comprehension. I never thought that I was brought up and educated in such an environment. There the teachers have more than 15 years of experience in the field of education but none of them caters for the needs of his/her class. When I first entered a grade 8, I was afraid to face such chaos and disturbance. The students were nearly savages. The principal would enter the class every day before my arrival, threatens them, screams at their faces, then turns her back and head back to her office. Has it never occurred to her mind that such an attitude with such a delicate age would create more revolutionary acts on behalf of the class than some peace and quiet? Has she never taken into consideration the option of communicating with them and trying to locate a common path for a classroom harmony?
From that day on, I realized that my task of replacing another teacher was ever going to hard and time consuming. But, that was no problem. I dedicated myself to open a route for that class in particular. I thought that if I was going to succeed in my mission, I needed to perceive every student’s character and somehow study his personality so I can fit my lesson plan to the classroom’s atmosphere.
That year, the school’s program was based upon succeeding to get an accreditation from the French embassy so that French students can manage to study in Lebanon the French program. Every day, you’d feel like you’re walking in to a bee hive: all the tension and the hustle of the teachers translated into strain and pressure inside the classrooms. Since I was teaching in a French educational school, English language is a second language learning class and so all students would lessen of its importance in the face of the French language which would take all their energy, for the teachers gave all in order to show the embassy excellent results. I would enter my classes after the principal’s harsh speech of every day and see the disgust in my students’ eyes. I had a big challenge ahead: I should fulfil the curriculum’s objective but personally I wanted my class to be relieved and happy to learn the language. My next step then was to throw my perfect lesson plans away and create new ones. I added the free time option. It’s the first 5-10 minutes of class time where I can tell my class jokes or charades that would introduce my lesson whether in grammar or reading. I also added the time-out option which is applicable once per week, where students would evaluate the week’s class work and individual work. And so, little by little, my students became less agitated, more relaxed and of course more productive in class. They would even compete among themselves around who’d get the best joke or charade, who’d be the first to show his research topics or even to tell his friends about his latest online discovery.
With few twists in a lesson plan, patience for classroom work and a lot of love and understanding for students, I managed to fulfil the school’s demanding syllabus, got students to work more and from the bottom of their hearts and I also build that unbreakable bridge between a teacher and his students... I was their friend within some limits but most of all now, when I meet them, they tell me how much of a guide I was to them. This, my friends is the truest and most sincere recommendation I could ever have. It isn’t your knowledge that makes you a good teacher but it’s your love for this mission, and your readiness for change in all weathers.

A long time ago was the truth...

A long time ago, there lived a girl whose mind no one understood. She fought hard and she fought badly and all was lost inside her head. Then on one winter night, she left her family, and she gave up on the world that never satisfied her thirst for knowledge. Carrying her dreams, her insights and her only realm of pain, she headed outside town, up to the mountains high. The road was smooth and ever easy. That confused her mind, but ever risky she continued to pave her way through the hardships of her journey. The cold breeze was washing her tears, singing away her aches and her fears. The silence of death that roamed around broke her stillness and quenched her hunger. The lost world she feared to face came to her and bowed with grace. Under her feet sang the angels, and around her body they danced in awe.
The story I told is the story of me, an innocent little girl who was never supposed to be all learned about the cruelty of the word, the brutality of her world.
In the world I live in, all freedom ceases to be. The law clearly protects one’s freedom of speech and thought. However, in a conservative and religious world we are living in, the law is brainwashed somehow in the citizens’ minds. A few are allowed to say what things really are. But knowing how close death can be, these thinkers shut their doors and live in isolation for better or for worse.
Today, I want to speak up my mind and say what I mind and what I don’t. Today, I want to raise the stakes of my life; I want to raise the bar for those whose voices were lost and never found. Citizens of the world wake up and hear my call. Your brains are being shut by powerful forces of darkness. These forces induce your thoughts to sleep and in the end you’re turning out to be marching robots for unmarked purposes of sheer consumerism.
Whatever you do nowadays doesn’t matter the least in the heart of your community. We have become programmed societies living on video. Humanity has never been a free one; man has never tasted freedom because simply it doesn’t exist. This thinking animal, with his great ability to create, anointed himself with an everlasting life which he lost upon socializing. Meeting others, living with them and interacting in a certain environment and other social gathering have given nothing but a mere place in a faded background where one is bound to act and think according to the group he/she belongs to. I would really call upon you, readers to try for once and speak up your mind in a gathering. I bet you would think a hundred times about your sentence so it fits the proper talking of a society before you throw your thought away. However, since we are talking about freedom, let’s set one thing straight that it does not and it will never exist. Why search for the elixir of life? Why bind your existence to a concept drawn into people’s minds so long ago? Wake up and smell the smoking fires burning your brains!
Want me to move on? No, I will stop here today. I will make your rest and think about what was said. Tomorrow maybe I will give you more hints on how to realize that freedom is like the ‘god’ theory, where everyone is given to believe in the existence of a creator, an all-knowing someone/something that moves us all and where we are bound to it till the day we die and beyond. And so is freedom: a belief in the existence of a so-called power that has the ability to change your life.
N.B.: there is no tomorrow we only live in the present or else we wouldn’t exist.
... Good NIGHT...