Sunday, March 25, 2012


What I felt today at the retreat: joy.

God is resembled through everything and everyone; to accept and respect everyone's understanding.
To keep the channel that God flows through cleanse.

This is indeed a happily structured world.  It is only through this life that we get to learn to love Him.
To be content with God is to know it is all from Him; and anything from Him is a blessing.
Pain and sickness ... sent to us by God.  All is beautiful.
To love God is to Love those who talk us down.
To be aware of the afflictions of our hearts and ask God to be the witness to them.
There is a time to be near, there is a time to be far; to accept our humane aspects in this life and within this Love.
I think I am typing what resembled with my heart the most, and what I can share.
I had the honor to hear Cemalnour a few years ago; back then I thought I understood what she said.  Then on Saturday she repeated some of the stories and meanings she had shared with us back then and I realized I had not understood the meaning back then, as my realization was different this time.  So, I am sure I didn't fully comprehend her this time.   This is a happy realization.  I am not dead, I am still growing.  This is part of my growth I hope, and because I am a human, a faulty human who will never become perfect, but strives for it.

Yaa Hu

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Becoming Fully Nothing

It was a majestic night, in the arms of the Beloved, in presence of all these great men and women of God.

My life in front of my eyes. As though all the talks were a response to a prayer, a yearning, a question.

Being there with my friends of the heart and the true and worldly teachers was a true blessing.

All the below notes are quotations from the discussions:

Being a Human is: Letting go of intellect and becoming intimate. Being told off by another person, the question why, and the response from Mathnawi that to become really clean one needs to get wet. Becoming purely nothing to reflect the real beauty. The world is truly a happy place; our perceptions make the idea of suffering. Our happiness and well being does not require things to be in a certain way. Becoming fully human is to be; and to close the eye that sees the bad in others. Everyone is a manifestation of God, so whom can we hate? Real modesty is not to be angry at people who talk behind our back. And He is with you wherever you are.

Yaa Hu

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Happy Spring!

With all the best wishes for a happy, healthy, wealthy, and successful Persian New Year for all!

It was a nice New Year celebration with my family this year.

Like years before we took a haft-seen to A's school.  He had a blast conducting the introductions with me.  He seemed to enjoy being in charge of the class for 20 minutes.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Weekend Commute

She was watching outside the window from her window seat.  The train was going west toward the woods.
It seemed to be raining in the woods on top of the hills, she could tell with the dark shadows on the trees out there.
She put on her iPod and opened her book but continued watching outside her window.
She was smiling, listening to the "On The Beautiful Blue Danube" Waltz, swaying slightly at her neck and shoulders with the rhythm.  Closed her eyes.  Da raa raa raam raa raam ...
She felt a slight force to open her eyes; there was a young looking man sitting on the opposite sit on the other side of the train staring directly at her with a slight smile.  She smiled back and looked down on her book to find herself forced to look up again. He was still staring at her with the same smile.  Oh!  Strange she thought, and looked out the window, sheepishly lowered the volume on her iPod.  But it was the crescendo; the excitement was unbearable; she tapped her foot on the floor still looking outside the window.
The train was approaching a station.  Silent in her ears.  Next song.
She was looking outside at the station; what she was listening to was a classic concerto; what she was looking at was a modern station she thought.
As soon as she turned away from the window she found the man standing by her seat. "May I?" he asked.  Shockingly she looked at him and shook her head.  Polite, she thought.
He was carrying a book himself, and a shoulder bag which he put down on the floor in front of his feet.  What she was listening to was conducted by a great man at a majestic music hall; whom she was looking at was a curious weekend commuter she thought.
He sat down and opened his book.  She turned toward the window again.  "Pieces de Viole".
It was raining now.
He reached down and grabbed something from his bag.  "Chocolate?" he asked.  She looked down at the wrapping.  "Masala chocolate".  A blue-eyed blond man having a masala flavored chocolate bar in a train on a rainy weekend day??!  "Sure!  Thanks!!"
She cracked a piece and brought it to her nose.  Chocolaty, spicy, creamy.
"May I ask what you were listening to?"  "Oh!  When?  I am not sure."  She unplugged the earpieces and gave him the iPod.  He shuffled around.  Paused at a couple of the songs on her "classic" collection.  Smiled again, his eyebrows were raised.
"Neat!" he exclaimed.  And returned the iPod.  Then opened his book, took out the bookmark, and put it beside him in between them.  She put on her music again and watched out of the window.  It was darker outside.  She could see her reflection on it; she brought one finger to her lower lip, it felt as soft as it looked in her reflection she thought.  A soft symphony.
"See you later!".  He was standing up to leave.  They were at a station.  She looked up and shook her head.
Next song.
How come they didn't talk more than a few words?  She was preoccupied with her music, that is why.  But it was because of her music that he wanted to talk to her in the first place, no?  Who was he anyway?  Masala chocolate and a shoulder bag on a Saturday.
Her stop.  She put away all her belongings into her bag.  She looked around.  His bookmark on the seat beside her.  A business card.  His business card?
She stepped out of the train.  It was raining indeed in the woods.

Friday, March 16, 2012

New People; New Self Vision

Meeting new people provides the opportunity to see oneself from another angle.
May be that is one reason I like meeting new people and mingling with new crowds.  Especially out of the work environment, beyond the politics and competition.
People see you in a new light and usually during the first couple meetings people are likely to share their opinions about you.  Usually these are positive opinions; otherwise, if the perception is not positive, I would think they wouldn't be meeting again beyond the first or second meeting.
I realized how I had lost touch with this new people vision from other angle recently.  Partly because I was too entangled with recent events in my life that I was not expanding beyond the events and I was not opening up to new opportunities.
Indeed I like meeting new people; it boosts my energy and self realization; may be that is why I am very comfortable with meeting new people in the planes or at new places.  I admit though, I always prefer to take the second step not the first.
I am enjoying my recent reviews from the recent acquaintances.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

End of The Winter Thoughts

With every pain there is a new birth they say.
May be the earth is aching right now.
The morning are the freshest; all the buds, flowers, blossoms, lawns.
The wild flowers abound at the sides of the highways.
All is fresh.  New.

I am cherishing my recent accomplishments; I am thriving with having my feelings at check, observing them, recognizing them, cherishing them.  It was beautiful our discussion in The Circle last Saturday.  How we need to be observant of our thoughts and desires at every moment.
My accomplishments with regards to A and M; how to deal with their needs and emotions.
My accomplishments at work; my recent prize and upcoming trip to South Africa.  I feel excited about it.  Very much so.  I anticipate that the two-day stay in the bush will be very different; looking at the part of the world I never had the chance to witness.  I have had several thank you notes and well done pats in the back from the higher management lately and I am grateful for the attention.  To be honest, I do not think I am doing things differently, I just have been granted the opportunity to present me, and it has been, thank God, received very nicely.

When I am in the midst of it all, I find life very complex sometimes, with all the people, all their motifs, all their feelings, all their politics.
Yet, when I sit back in my head or heart and observe what is happening in front of my eyes, I find the scenery quite simple, mundane sometimes.  Like observing a busy playground.

I do miss my parents as we get closer to Nowruz.  I cannot say I am missing the Nowruz holidays, I have almost forgotten how it was to be on holidays for almost two weeks; it feels too far away.  But I still wish I could visit my parents for the new year.  And my family really.

It is a beautiful spring, I have a feeling that it will be nice year full of growth. With every pain there is a new birth they say, and birth shall follow growth.  Amen!

Monday, March 5, 2012

A Proud Mommy Moment

We went for a late afternoon hike yesterday in Vasona Park. A had decided to ride his scooter since we had proposed the hiking idea to him. We were walking by the lake and he was scooting along. Then there was this off-ramp he had to go down. The steep road ended into a main road with bikes and pedestrians zooming along and then there was the lake itself.  Daddy warned him to slow down but it was too late, he was already speeding.  He had to act quick and think even quicker. He was speeding and I could hear him say aaa ... aaa ... .  He got very close to the end of the road where he had to turn right and merge into the main road otherwise, the lake. Daddy was already running down after him with the desperate hope to catch him before he falls. I was just walking down trying to think what he should be thinking.  Surprisingly, he managed to turn right!  Two feet to the bottom and he managed to turn tight! Wow! And just a second after that his scooter whirled and he lost control. He got thrown off of his scooter. The scooter went left and he flew  on to the ground with a after shock when his chick bumped on the ground. Ouch! My heart ached for his pain! Daddy got there with wide open eyes and completely worried look, tried to help him get up. A turned his head back, I could see in his eyes that he was more shocked than hurt. He was not sure  if to cry. I got down smiling "it was just like skiing wasn't it?". "yeah" he responded and his eyes sparkled. Daddy straightened the scooter and rode it himself to try the break. It was working. He then reminded him how to use it. A heard him, got on and zoomed away! His chick was completely red and scratched. In the next stop we compressed his skin with the iced water bottles we had brought from home. After an hour of playing in the play ground and scooting around we were walking back when we got to the same off-road steep ramp. To my utmost surprise and honor he claimed "I wanna see if I can manage this time" and he walked his scooter up the ramp. Of course daddy and I were staying down to catch him if needed. This time, he had a complete and honorary landing! Oh! Was I proud!

Saturday, March 3, 2012


"Rules are less important than exceptions in chess" say Dr Kroger to Helene, in Queen to Play (2009).
I watched the for the first time two years ago in my trip back from Toronto.  I remember after it ended I watched it again.  I am watching it yet again now in the 30-minute intervals I spend on the Elliptical every other day.
This woman, Helene (Sandrine Bonnaire) is playing the role of an obedient punctual desire-less house-wife in a working-class family.  His husband, although handsome in her eyes, is all about work and manly leisure.  The wife is trapped within this imagery she has made of herself:  This selfless obedient punctual desire-less working house-wife.  But she is brave enough to realize that she is unhappy.  She knows she can do more.  But she has her doubts.  Can she do something for herself for a change?
She is a maid in a beautiful hotel overlooking a beautiful sea; she rides her bike to the hotel every day to clean and tidy the rooms.  One day, cleaning a room, she observes a seemingly happy and satisfied couple playing chess in the trace of their hotel room, absorbed in their game and glancing over each other lustfully.  It is as if they are in a platonic foreplay the only physical act of which is their interlacing fingers.
Full of doubts she decides to give chess a try.  Her husband is no way near being interested and her girlfriends do not know how to play.  Her only game mate becomes Dr Kroger (Kevin Klein), a lonely and cranky American who lives in that village and Helene cleans his house once a week.
"In small but significant ways, “Queen to Play” defies expectations. It dangles the possibility of an affair between Hélène and Kröger in games that the film likens to courtship rituals in a classic screwball comedy. But their flirtation is never physically consummated."
She doubts herself, yet she is brave enough to quietly continue with her game.  She gives up once because of her husbands jealousy over her game and her spent time at Korger's.  But through her daughters encouragement even her husband starts admiring and supporting her.  Her satisfaction transforms her dull relationship with her husband and daughter.  But above all, her relationship with her true self.
"Rules are less important than exceptions in chess".