Blessed by a Sufi !

I finally met a real Sufi! 
I had an honor to meet an inspiring Sufi, in an event called "One Light, different Windows" where a Jewish Rabbi, a Christian Reverend were also guests to this event.

Thanks to Sadiq, I had an opportunity to have a short conversation with this brave and courageous Sufi who is the world head of the Naqshbandi-Haqqani Sufi order, and who has been an outspoken leader against Muslim extremism for many many years.  Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani is the Chariman of Islamic Supreme Council of America and has been a controversial figure because he is not afraid to talk about what Muslim fanatics are doing to ruin the religion. He has been warning the world about Wahhabism and he alerted the State department about Bin Laden's danger way before 9/11.  

There was beautiful music and singing in this event ( which I've never seen before in a Muslim prayer event), and I found Shaykh not only inspirational but also someone with a great sense of humor, he was actually funny!
Here is a quote from  his speech,
"Religions' goal is to bring love, if a  religion does not do that, it isn't a religion. Religion must be like a musical instrument where the sole purpose is to bring joy and express love."
He called all religions to come together and become one.  He said, "we all are from the same tree with each of the religions representing a different branch." 

I hope and pray, for the world sake, that Shaykh Kabbani's message will win over the extremism.

Watch his complete speech to US State Department. Part1, Part2, part3, part4, part5, part6, part7


Beware! what you read!

Here is a great story about how easily people get fooled by the news they read and perceive to be the "truth" just because it is reported by a magazine.

"You may already have already seen this picture of the stunning observation deck that is to be built around the top of the Eiffel Tower to mark the 120th anniversary of the Paris monument next year. The photographs flashed around the world after a Paris architectural firm won a contest staged by the tower's management. The New York Times and the London Guardian have already reported the story.

The trouble is that the tale is false. It was just a publicity stunt but it does offer a nice lesson in the power of the internet to disseminate nonsense and the danger that this poses for traditional media. In our business dog is not suppposed to eat dog. We don't like criticising one-another. But I'll make an exception. None of my Paris colleagues were involved."
A big oooppps!!!


Poetic Bodyworlds

I love going to the field trips with my sons.  Last week, we went to see BodyWorlds exhibition, which is an anatomical exhibition of real human bodies.  Wow! it was just amazing, please make sure to see and take your kids to see them too.  I loved how they had arranged the room with many interesting quotes that made the whole show more poetic !  Here is some of my favorites that I read:

"Faith is an oasis in the heart which will never be reached by the caravan of thinking."  ~Khalil Gibran

"Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back.  Those who wish to sing always find a song." ~ Plato

"Those who don't know how to weep with their whole heart, don't know how to laugh either." ~ Golen Meir

Please go and get inspired and moved by our own bodies that we still know so little about.


A Nurse and her Inspiring story

Take a pin, stick it in a map of the world and chances are Simin Marefat has been there. A San Francisco nurse and health care volunteer, she's been to 62 countries - mostly in the Third World. She's fed children and changed diapers in Rwandan orphanages. Delivered babies in Zambia and Zimbabwe. Educated sex workers on HIV prevention in Thailand. Vaccinated children in Pakistani refugee camps. Taught EKG and the care of open-heart patients in her native Iran.

Usually she travels alone and plans nothing in advance. "I would just go and I'd be like, 'I'm a nurse practicing in the United States. I'm here to offer my services.' And they would put me to work."

Read more here


Prize for Uniting Science and Religion

Michael Heller, 72, a Polish Roman Catholic priest and cosmologist whose intellectual and religious life has been grounded in the insights of both science and religion, has won the 2008 Templeton Prize ($1.6 million), believed to be the largest yearly monetary award given to a single individual.

In a statement prepared for the news conference, Heller described his position as follows:

Various processes in the universe can be displayed as a succession of states in such a way that the preceding state is a cause of the succeeding one… (and) there is always a dynamical law prescribing how one state should generate another state. But dynamical laws are expressed in the form of mathematical equations, and if we ask about the cause of the universe we should ask about a cause of mathematical laws. By doing so we are back in the Great Blueprint of God's thinking the universe, the question on ultimate causality…: "Why is there something rather than nothing?" When asking this question, we are not asking about a cause like all other causes. We are asking about the root of all possible causes.

Heller plans to dedicate the Templeton Prize money to help create the Copernicus Center in conjunction with Jagiellonian University and the Pontifical Academy of Theology in Cracow to further research and education in science and theology as an academic discipline.

Also at the press conference, the foundation noted that Heller's selection as the 2008 Templeton Prize Laureate will launch a broad, online discussion of the question, "Does the Universe need to have a cause?” at its website www.templeton.org.


Can't change the wind, But!

"You can't change the wind, but you can change the direction of your sail"

Sometimes you get a great advice from a strange places.  I read the above statement from reading my horoscope today!  

The coffee shop I go everyday has this daily horoscope placed on their counter and I've come to love reading this particular horoscope.  The author, Holiday Mathis ,is not your typical astrologer, she is an absolutely wise lady.  She doesn't give you, the typical predictions, but often has deep and wise comments regardless of your birth sign.  

So, the funny thing is , I usually read them all.  There is usually a little gem in each sign she write for.  Here is the link .

Here is another wise advise I read a couple of days ago:
"Love is not blind. Infatuation is blind, but that's not what you're in now. Love sees more. It sees both what is and the potential of what will be."
I am telling you she is not your typical astrologer!


"People travel to wonder at the height of the mountains, at the huge waves of the seas, at the long course of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars, and yet they pass by themselves without wondering."

St. Augustine, 354-430
Early Christian Priest, Author

Have you listened to your inner voice lately? Sometime we are so loud with our own actions, dramas, expectations, and noise that we hardly have time to be quite and just ponder to our own inner wonder!


Prediction from our modern day "Edison"

Meet a man who aims to live forever. Really...Ray Kurzweil, who some call him our modern day Edison, who sees human intelligence not only conquering its biological limits, including death, but completely mastering the natural world.

He's a recipient of the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT prize, which is billed as a sort of Academy Award for inventors, and he won the 1999 National Medal of Technology Award. He has written on the emergence of intelligent machines. He was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame in 2002.

He is a fascinating and inspiring character, I am currently reading his book called,The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology. If you get a chance read about him, he is the guy who predicted the fall of the Soviet Union and he also predicted the explosive spread of the Internet and wireless access. And now he is predicting that solar power will produce all the energy needs of Earth's people in 20 years. You heard here first!

Get free stuff and save the landfills!

I want to introduce you to a non-profit business called freecycle.

The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,271 groups with 4,597,000 members across the globe. It's a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It's all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. Membership is free. Visit their site and have fun with it!


Earth As You've Never Seen It !

Isn't this wonderful? To see an awe-inspiring images of our planet, visit this site and make sure to click to see all images.