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What will I do you ask,
Like the rain, I will shower you, but with love
Like the sun, I will warm you, but with passion
Like the moon, I will brighten your night, but with laughter
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It is best to let go of it all when it is no longer fun
As image still counts more than what you have done
You can only try to fix what is broken for so long
I cannot taste that flavor nor can I play along
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For the first time in years, my beloved hometown made the news. Everyone has heard or read about the violent unrest recently in Sefrou over the Moroccan government’s latest increases in the price of basic food commodities. A march was called for and organized by the local chapter of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights. I was shocked to see protesters clashing with police, cars torched, buildings damaged, and people injured and being arrested. We are accustomed to seeing these kinds of demonstrations in the big cities like Casablanca, Rabat, or Fez, but not in my sleepy hometown.
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I was still recovering from an acute sore throat infection on the day of the 5K Race for the Cure. In spite of not feeling good, and not having done any physical workout for a week, I decided to run. I was under the impression that 5K should be a walk in the park for someone who runs 12 to 15 miles a week. I was wrong!
The race started as a walk for the first few hundreds yards, then the big crowd started breaking up, giving who ever needed it some room for speeding up a bit. Not me! I was comfortable with the pace of my run (a quick walk actually). Suddenly, someone bumped into my back and passed me, as if she were saying:”get out of the way! I have a race to finish!”.
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A group of Minnesota women and I spent time with my family, and then we visited Casablanca before heading south to Marrakech. We had the privilege to visit the biggest mosque in the world -- Hassan II Mosque -- which was built half on land and half on the sea. It is a jewel of Moroccan architecture. The first day in Marrakech, some of us visited the ancient part of the city, which is colorful, rich and abundant with merchandise of all kinds: spices, olives, almonds, pottery, brass ornaments, carpets, clothing, shoes and much more. We walked all morning and finally stopped to have lunch in a two-story restaurant on the roof overlooking the ancient place of Jamaa El Fenaa. Oh, the food was among the greatest enjoyments of the lands of Morocco. Mostly grown organicly, the food was served in much smaller portions, but it was so tasty. It was the middle of the day. The temperature was hot, yet feeling good.
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If I did, I would be Enlightened already!
I wrestle with myself,
I know most of the time what I ought to do.
However, I don’t yet know how to get myself to do it.
I go from one teacher to another,
Like a sponge I am ready to absorb,
All and every wisdom they want to share with me
I get up and leave their classrooms,
Feeling that I am better than before,
Yet, I am still not free.
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It is inside of you that it needs to be resolved not in the outside.
You have no control over how others feel,
You have no control over what others do,
You have no control over how others react,
You have no control over what others believe;
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What if all your pain is from it?
What if it so easy to change it?
What if you are supposed to change it?
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But why argue back and forth,
Let us learn to state how we feel as is,
Let us make no apologies because we are alive,
Let us say we don’t know, when we don’t,
Let us ask questions when we don’t understand,
Let us stop being compliant out of habit,
Let us allow ourselves to be seekers of truth,
Let us not pretend that we hold the ultimate truth,
Let us put out there our request to the universe,
That we feel this way or that way, without restraint,
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Don’t hold your ship in the middle of a storm,
And blame the storm, the sea, and the sharks,
Don’t make Darkness your dwelling,
And blame the night, the stars, and the moon,
It is not easy to step out of the cycle of old habits,
It is not easy to break the shackles of familiar thoughts,
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I dream of a world filled with bliss,
A world that is not afraid,
Neither of the Gods,
Nor of human kind,
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I am thankful for our interactions, I am grateful for our connections,
I am thankful that you are here, I am grateful that it is now,
I am thankful to be alive, I am grateful you are alive,
I am thankful for this experience, I am grateful for my inexperience,
I am thankful for the lands I walk on, I am grateful for the skies I look upon,
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Furious and outraged!
For all the ignorance,
All the misinterpretations,
Misreading of religion,
All that I was told,
By God! How dare you!
How dare you!