There was a time when feelings floated along the surface, fading as quickly as the rain clouds vanished after a storm. Never lasting more than a few moments in time. Emotions were never so deeply embedded. Seconds were never given their due importance and time just swept along, mindlessly spent as the days drew to a close.
Over the years all that has changed as drastically as the seasons come and go. Memories are now so preciously stored, and life which once so precariously balanced on the edge is savoured and cherished.
Distance has taught the hardest lesson of all. Fondness for those who are absent has increased so out of proportion that words are often insufficient to explain the explosion of feelings experienced.
The value of people and the difference they make in your life, the way a person touches you from the inside making them so impossibly hard to let go of, and the very fragility of life are all emotions so anew and foreign.
But perhaps the hardest lesson of all is that of attachment. Of how an attachment can break you down, confuse you beyond belief and suck the very life out of you when mishandled. How the obsessive thoughts of one person or people can render you incompetent. How your heart can become plagued by them, causing a deep-rooted dissatisfaction.
Above all, how dangerous an attachment can be. How hard it becomes to rid yourself of it and begin life all over.. For nothing can cause pain, like that of giving up a part of yourself you wanted to keep as yours alone forever.. but can undoubtedly never have.
A few weekends back (22 June-24 June) I attended a seminar. You know one of those boring long lecture’s where you go and sit, make yourself comfortable and then the lecturer enters the room, mounts the podium and mumbles away for hours while making random motions towards the projector screen spread out behind him. I’m sure most university students are familiar with the scenario, despite often using that very time to catch up on their sleep-Yes university has taught me to sleep with my eyes open! Except THIS seminar was not boring. It was a completely unique experience which left me in awe of the speaker and his intelligence.
The seminar took place at the Grange Hotels in London and stretched over the complete weekend, starting from 10 a.m. till around 7.30 p.m. in the evening. The event was extremely well organised, well-coordinated and pre-planned to the utmost detail.
Each individual was given a pen,purple wrist band,note pad and booklet containing all the main pointers and power point slides! Not bad eh?! 😀
The speaker was a very intelligent young Egyptian man by the name of Dr. Reda Bedeir. He spoke for an hour at a time, after which there was a ten minute interval. The “coffee and bathroom break” as I called it. (I must confess I drank so much coffee, that by the end of the day I had lost track of how much caffeine I had consumed-but Hey, who says no to freebies right? Okay now I’m grinning guiltily)
The hall in which the seminar was held and my pretty purple wrist band for the event!
Freebies aside, what inspired and left me completely enthused was the beautiful speech delivered by Dr.Reda Bedeir over the three days. This has made me realise how important it is to focus on the bigger picture and to live each moment with the very thought that it may surely be my last.
My memory isn’t exactly as sharp as I would like it to be, and despite making notes throughout the seminar, I may have missed out quite a large chunk of it. However, I will share all I learnt from this man, in a summarised list below, in the very hopes that someone out there will be motivated to take what life offers and give it their best shot. So here goes:
God created Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve. I found this point rather amusing. These days’ people are not only denying their true origins but have also completely drifted from the true balance of life. The way he explained this was not only cleverly put together but also had a hint of humour encompassed in it, and was a great way of captivating the audience’s attention.
Outer appearance is important but the most crucial of all is the beautification of the heart. In today’s world people concentrate so much on their outward looks, the embellishment of their clothing and other such petty matters that they forget what really counts. A beautiful character and a pure heart is what really beautifies a person. In contrast looking well maintained and smart is also imperative but a balance between the two is what really matters.
Man has been given free will. And for those people who believe in destiny and the fact that all is pre-written cannot use this as an excuse to do whatever the hell they please. Some people use destiny as an excuse. They argue that since man’s destiny is already written, they have no say in what crimes they commit or whatever wrong action they perform since it is their fate. However Dr.Reda helped us understand this through a practical example: We were asked to stand up and slap the person next to us. Now this was the point where we could choose to slap the person or not, it was our OWN decision. God didn’t come down and force us to slap the person standing beside us. This very example helps negate the view that man has been programmed to function according to a set plan. In fact the very opposite of this is true, we are all free to do as we please, and are each accountable for our own actions.
The concept of what a real man should be like has been distorted to the point that people can no longer differentiate between what’s essential, looks or character. Today people believe that a stud with huge biceps, a booming voice and commanding and controlling nature is what an ideal man should be. That Hollywood image of the well sculpted hunk, with a perfectly toned hairless body is not what a true man is. Understanding this very point is important. A man is defined by the way he behaves, his nature, life goals, attitude and most importantly the very way in which he treats his family and the respect he shows them. Looks are important too, I agree. But only to a certain limit. They shouldn’t take precedence over character because anyone could tone their body to a great shape but also remember that with time that empty shell will soon grow old but that pure heart and love will only grow stronger. A real man acts the same way behind closed doors as he does in front of people and doesn’t need a pocket full of cash and a pretty girl on each arm to feel complete.
Our life will be over in a matter of minutes, in a single blink of an eye. If you close your eyes and try to picture your complete life until now, be it twenty, thirty, forty, fifty even sixty or seventy years, the longest it will take you to back track and preview all your life’s events will be around 70 to 80 seconds, give or take a few. That’s exactly how miniscule our life is. That’s why it’s so important to not only focus on what counts but to try to do as much good as possible and make that difference be it as tiny as cheering someone up (or so I tell myself).
Our heart is capable of loving, it is divided into a number of compartments which filter out and love each individual element up to a certain degree and in the order we place them. The order of our love is a key issue. Be it the love of God, his prophets, your Holy book, your parents, your spouse, your children, your wealth, your homes, your relatives, your job, or your car. All things should be in perspective and in the right order. For example loving your job more than your spouse will only bring disharmony in the relationship. Hence getting those priorities set in the right order is crucial.
Last but not least, the root of all evil in this world starts off with DENIAL. Be it denial of good, denial of doing the right thing, denial of the truth etc.Denial is that very action, that very word which can make or break everything that counts and realising that will help us through all that awaits us be it good or bad.