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Occupation 101 May 14, 2011

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Palestine.
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“Occupation 101” – this award-winning film about Palestine is very powerful & factual.. exposes many myths about Palestinian-Israeli conflict that westerners are made to believe. Its target audience are Americans, but I found it very useful to watch myself.

يلم وثائقي رائع يعرض تاريخ القضية الفلسطينية ويلخّص وقائعها في تسلسل منطقي وشهادات شخصيات من مختلف الجهات…هدفه الأساسي شرح الانتهاكات الاسرائيلية للمواطن الغربيّ المغيّب عن هذه الانتهاكات وهذه الحقائق.. لكنني اكتشفت انني أيضاً في جهل عن بعضها.. أنصح بشدة بمشاهدتهّّ !!

A brilliant documentary which provides insight into why the Palestinian people have to resort to violence in order to live a normal life. People in the world need to imagine what it would be like in their own countries if they didn’t have access to basic services and were subject to checkpoints throughout their own land. The Palestinians are the INDIGENOUS people of this land and the Israelites had no right to take over a land that does not belong to them. Long live Palestine! 

63 Yrs Occupation May 14, 2011

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Palestine.
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Eh wallah zhe2na!!

“Enty min wain?” April 20, 2011

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Egypt, Middleast, Uncategorized.
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Having small-talk with a fellow Arab these days is very easy.  

Just use the starter: “So, where are you from?”, despite actually being able to guess the answer to that, 99% of the time.. oh yeah, seriously (at least for someone who has lived in the Middleast long enough; I have negligible failure rates in telling a Masry from a Khaliji from a Falasteeny or a Soory). Anyways, no matter where they’re from, they’re either from an Arabic country that had a revolution, is living a revolution, or is expected to have a revolution.

Yummy falafel sandwich (aka Tamiyah in Egypt)

I decided to try out my first falafel (طعمية بالمصري..فلافل بالشاميّ) sandwich here in Toronto.  “Where are you from?”, asked me the friendly lady at the restaurant. We spent few minutes talking about the Egyptian revolution. I asked her back the same question, turns out she’s from Yemen. We spent another few minutes discussing the events in Yemen that day. The same is repeating almost everywhere.  Middleast revolutions are reshaping the region. Something we’ve been waiting for, for decades. Some Arabs here might be less enthusiastic about this change, having spent most of their lives, if not all of it, distant from the Middleast.. unlike myself.  Many of whom I’ve spoken to were quite morally engaged & excited about the change taking place in the middleast, not only in their homelands, but anywhere in the region. I find the Arabic unity and harmony very inspiring.  

I’m watching Aljazeera TV online as I write this post.  Updates on the revolution aftermath in Egypt.   Before that, were news from Misurata, Libya. And before that, were updates from Ta’iz, Yemen.  No matter where you are, sincere Arabs seeking liberty, my middleastern heart beats for you.

So where am I from? .. The Middleast, indeed.

أنا بنت الشرق الأوســــــط  

Tahrir. April 20, 2011

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Egypt, Middleast.
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Copyright: Unknown.

….when their brains were thinking outside the dark box that mubarak’s regime enforced on them for 30 yrs, their hearts were fully engaged in a revolution that showed the world the most inspiring images of courage, creativity, faith, compassion, and of course, an amazing sense of humor.   I think Egyptians took ‘thinking outside the box’ to a whole new level.

On Feb 11th, 2011, the people of Egypt wrote an amazing chapter in history.    Never before have I been this much proud of being an Egyptian.

الشعب العظيم….أسقط النظام

إذا الشعب لم يرد الحياة! February 6, 2011

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Arabic, Arabic Poetry, Egypt.
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My message to the brave people of Egypt. Please keep asking for a decent, free life. You deserve it!

قالوا إذا الشعبُ يوماً أرادَ الحياة..

فلا بدّ أن يستجيب القدرْ.

قلنا..

وإن لمْ يردْ؟

قالوا وأنّى لهُ؟

وبالأمس القريب..

كانَ “يومُ غضبْ”!

في ساحة التحرير..

من كل ركنٍ بعيدٍ،

جاء الشعبُ، وللحقّ انتفضْ.

يطلب الحرية..

يريدُ اسقاطَ النظام..

بعد أن تجبّر في الأرضِ أعواماً..

فعاش الشعبُ في كبَدْ!

أما كانتْ بالأمسِ، “جمعة غضبْ”؟

في ساحة التحرير..

سجدت الجباه..

وخفضت الأصوات..

وخشعتْ القلوبُ لله وبكتْ؟

قلنا..

وإن لمْ يردْ؟

وإنْ شنّ عليهِ النظامُ حرباً..

بعد يومِ الغضبْ؟

فأرسل البلطجيّة..

وفرسانَ الخيلِ والجمال

فسالَ الدمُ في ساحة التحرير..

وتسلّل في النفوسِ عَتبْ؟

قالوا..

ولمَ العتبْ؟

ألم يكنْ الشعب يريدُ الحياةَ؟

ألم يرفض العنفَ مراراً..

وبالسِّلمِ رَغِبْ؟

قلنا..

لقدْ بثّ النظامُ سمومَهُ..

فأوهمَ الشعبَ أنّ ساحة التحرير…

لعِبْ!!

وأنّ طلب الحريّة..

شَغَبْ !!

قالوا.. ما لشعب الكنانةِ..

أن يصدّق هذا الكذبْ.

أما كان بالأمس

“جمعة الرحيلٍ”

وبالغَدِ صُمودٌ..وجَلَدْ؟

قلنا..

ان شاء الله يكونْ.

حتّى وإن طالَ الأمدْ.

فالشعب إذا لمْ يرد الحياة يوماً..

فلا خيرَ فيها.. ولا سَعَدْ!

كتب في 5 فبراير 2011

Meh. December 2, 2010

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Arabic, Arabic Poetry.
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أينَ وكيعُ لأشكو إليهِ سوءَ حفظي….ومَنْ ذا يُعينني على ترْكِ المَعَاصِي؟

وأنّى لنورِ اللهِ أنْ يُهدى إليَّ……وفي القَلبِ سَقمٌ، والغَفْلةُ دَائِي؟

Sincerely. November 24, 2010

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Uncategorized.
2 comments

Call me insensitive, but I don’t miss you.

Or don’t call me at all.

After all, I don’t miss you.

I cherish our memories,

but I don’t miss you.

Don’t judge me.  Just answer me.

How did your company, inspire me?

how did your words, enlighten me?

have you ever challenged my mind;

had it up all night,

prospering,  comprehending,

or thinking of solutions,

to a nation so left behind

or how that reflects, on you and me?

Have you ever nurtured my soul?

enriched my spirituality,

took me one step closer to decent levels of serenity?

Don’t blame me because I don’t miss you.

Just give me a good reason,  to miss you.

Tell me what I learned from you.

Show me,

how the lack of your company,  harms me.

Surely, you being there, sometimes helped me.

But with all sincerity, I still don’t miss you.

Seriously.

Give me better, stronger reasons to miss you.

Take my address, and send me,

a box of  blueberry muffins

maybe then, just maybe,

I’ll have one good reason,

to miss you.

Toronto, Eh? October 8, 2010

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Uncategorized.
7 comments

Academia VS Industria March 19, 2010

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Uncategorized.
6 comments

First of all, there is no such thing as Industria. I just made it up. But it does sound catchy though…

So anyways.. we’re done with master’s. Kuwait University has officially issued our graduation certifices – a year later. What next?

There seems to be a common confusion among master’s degree holders.

To Academics, or To Not Academics..

Between pursuing an academic oriented career, such as working on a Phd degree and/or working in research jobs, and, working in the industry, which in our case translates to: developers, programmers, web administrators, system administrators, network administrators, database administrators, or, perhaps heading to a management oriented career, etc.

I’ve discussed this topic with many friends of mine over the past year. Clearly each decision encloses a number of pros & cons. Which of these pros do you like more, and which cons are you willing to undertake for one choice more than the other, is not the only factor on which you make such a decision, but it’s an important one.

Academia vs Football

Checklist..

I’ve compiled this humble checklist that might shed some light on the matter, of course take notice that these points are stemmed from my own personal experience and may not apply to many industry jobs/academia circumstances.

A. Questions More Related to Academia..

  1. Do you enjoy researching a topic of your interest (for 25 years :p)?
  2. You might find yourself going in-depth into theoretical issues, are you OK with that? Or are you seeking real-time applications development only?  (maybe not applicable for all areas of interest)
  3. Do you like having to work within a unified theme (aka area of interest), or would you prefer a career that might possibly transition you from one area to another, according to market need, as long as you’re learning a new technology?
  4. Which imposes the question: in terms of learning new things, would you rather learn a new technology or a new way to improve the underlying algorithm complexity of some process out there?
  5. Are you a good reader – don’t mind reading lengthy papers?
  6. Do you acquire good writing skills or find yourself willing to do that, and don’t mind writing lengthy reports/papers/articles/proposals, etc?  (sometimes applies for industry though)
  7. Are you in favor of individual-work or group-work? OK, I know that research involves group-work but overall I think it involves lot more individuality than does industry.
  8. Would you rather spend your weekends writing the first few lines of a paper introduction or go out and have fun with friends?  :P
  9. Do you have good teaching skills? Do you not resent the idea of having to teach one day, besides researching?
  10. Does research inspire you?  Does Google Scholar mean anything to you? Does the hard work of other researchers out there strongly motivate you and inspire you to become a part of a real, huge, worldwide research community?
  11. Do you have a life?  Like do you really really need to go to the gym or go out with friends? Or can you give that up for the upcoming..say..35 years?
  12. :P

B. Questions More Related to Industria (within IT)…

  1. Do you find yourself capable of handling the IT tension? For example, are you the type that panics easily if the system crashed? & How do you handle bugs?  Especially your own? ;)
  2. Is your mind-set fit to absorb IT architectures/frameworks?
  3. Do you find yourself eager to learn more about what you’re doing; expand your knowledge in the line of development that you’ve undertaken, or does it bore you easily?  Do you think that switching to another line of career might help?
  4. Do you like dealing with IT people: managers, co-workers, trainees, CEOs, admins, DBAs?  OK Sorry let me rephrase that: Are you capable of dealing with them, or would you prefer to be working in a research lab where your audience are somehow more limited..
  5. Do you see yourself where you are, 10 years from now? Do you have a well studied plan to advance in the hierarchy of IT jobs: perhaps a team leader, then a project manager, etc?
  6. Do you see yourself regretting not joining the line of Academics, 5 years from now?
  7. Are you comfortable working in IT?
  8. Do you like cheese?
  9. If Donald Duck and Robin Hood had a fight, who would win?
  10. Are you still reading these questions? I ran out of them and I’m just saying anything..

I think the most important question of all can be the following.. Where do you see yourself excelling more? In which area will you be more capable of serving the world, your nation, yourself, better?  What is it out there that triggers your hidden talents and pushes you to work at your optimum levels?

Please, if you have any other questions in mind that might help, do raise them here. I know a lot of people, including myself, who will appreciate it!

A Forgotten Blessing March 13, 2010

Posted by Khawarizmiya in Islam.
7 comments

I met her two days ago. An out-going, kind, friendly British girl in her early 20s. With a beautiful Islamic scarf on her head, she talked to me a little about her story with Islam. She told me how it started on September 11th, 2001. After hearing so much about how those terrorists embraced a radical religion, Islam; a religion that undermines women’s rights and invites its followers to attack people and murder them brutally. She started digging around, reading for 3 years about this mysterious Religion, strongly impressed by how what she read turned out to be the opposite of what she had heard — especially regarding “women’s rights”.

 

"اليوم أكملت لكم دينكم و اتممت عليكم نعمتي و رضيت لكم الاسلام دينا"

 

“Bless him”, she said, as she started talking about prophet Mu7ammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم). “People say we need a prophet these days, I say how can someone so pure live amongst all this corruption? Bless him”.

“We used to be taught that we need to expose our bodies and look physically attractive in order to get guys’ attention. I always felt wrong doing that. Why should my beauty be exposed to all those men? How can their judgment of me be so shallow?  “Hijab” made so much sense to me. Yes. It’s lovely. Hiding my beauty and only showing it to my husband just made sense”.

There were many people from different origins sitting around us. She looked around, smiling as she described another blessing she felt when she came into Islam. “Sisterhood. A lovely bond. I just can’t describe how blessed I feel”. At this point, our conversation came to an end as we had to leave.

I rewinded our conversation as we parted, thinking: Do we really know how blessed we are? I’ve been living in this great blessing -Islam- for all my life, I have nothing else to compare it to. Maybe if I had, I would’ve appreciated more how Allah spared me the suffering of struggling hard to find Him, by guiding me to his Book, his Prophet (PBUH), his way.  Yes, I’m not a good follower, but I have “answers”. I know why I’ve been created. I know why I’m wearing this beautiful 7ijab on my head. I know what afterlife is all about. I know that exposing my body is not freedom but slavery.  I know that women were given their rights fully in Islam when no other religion or constitution ever been any fair to them. I don’t know everything, but I have Allah’s book in my hands.

Is Islam a forgotten blessing that we rarely thank Allah for, nor even feel it, as does this young, beautiful lady? Seeing her eyes glow as she speaks of the happiness and serenity she’s thankful for, triggered this question in my mind all night..

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