April 2, 2009 at 8:52 am (Love & Marriage)
Tags: Allah, Betrayal, Broken Heart, Fairy Tale, God, Heartbreak, House of Wisdom, Love, Marriage, pain, Poetry, Reason, Revelation, Romance, Separation, Sorrow
March 22, 2009 at 7:29 am (Poetry)
Tags: Abraham, Beloved, Checkpoint, Dervish, Discrimination, Gaza, IDF, Islam, Islamophobia, Israel, Jewish, Muslim, Occupation, Palestine, Palestinian, Persecution, Separation, sufi, Terrorist, War, War Crime, Zionism
You watch me closely
With your sniper rifle
A weapon you call security
An instrument I call fear
I show that I am weaponless
As I pass through your checkpoint
Spinning like a whirling dervish
Fearless in this worldly separation
I want to open your eyes
So you can see the unjust persecution
I want you to look into my soul
And listen to the endless cries of desperation
I want you to watch my heart bleed
Every time I pray for Abraham’s children
I want you to hear me gasp for air
Every time a face and name is forgotten
Why are we, brothers and sisters, so torn apart?
Here I cross again, spinning in my Sufi dance
And dancing to the song of yearning
That plays forever in my heart
Like planets dancing around the sun
This is the dance of the celestial heavens
Where even the gunman is invited
No uniforms, no flags, no bombs, no guns
As you watch, I want you to listen:
My Beloved is Here
My Love is Here
My Home is Here
October 28, 2008 at 11:16 pm (Mysticism, Poetry)
Tags: Afghanistan, Arabian, Human, Iran, Iraq, Islam, Kashmir, Lebanon, Love, Muslim, Pakistan, Palestine, Peace, Persian, Saracen, Separation, Shabistari, Soul, War
UPON the lonely minaret
She sat and watched as the moon wept in sorrow
Cowardly armies marching on her beautiful fields
Colonizing her land, frightening her people
Brandishing their swords, pounding their shields
Beheading sweetly scented tulips
Ignorant to the ancient history beneath their feet
They are deceived by the mission
The agenda of modern-century Crusaders
Blessed is the poetess
Who lived her joyous years
With the company of romantics and storytellers
Sharing the smiles and easing the fears
Giving peace and displaying wisdom
Like Shabistari’s Rose Garden
Radiating and shining with timeless Beauty
She brings light upon the lonely faces,
And like petals dancing in the wind
Her words gently float and glide
Landing upon even the darkest of places
Where a cold-hearted stranger runs into the street
And becomes maddened with song and dance
But war erupted one night
And mayhem surrounded our innocent friend
She saw the army roam through the land
And soar through the sky
She feared for her Loved ones
Frightened by the thought of never seeing them again
She ran from village to village just to stay alive
But nothing in her power would stop the invasion
She will never forget the day
When she heard the explosion
When olive trees and peaceful cities were blown to pieces
When she held her murdered father in her arms
What does this army know about her story?
What do they know about her family?
They march over the blood stained hills
Obedient to the orders of their leaders
Hunting for labels
They once said “Saracen” and “Barbarian”
They say “Towel-head” and “Terrorist” now
Ya Insaan (O People!) when will you tear down the flags?
So-called Muslims, Jews, and Christians
When will you start believing?
When will you have the courage to journey within
And listen to the Soul that sings: Human Being?
When will you have the courage
To burn down the walls of separation?
Behold, the courage to believe:
She kisses her father’s grave farewell
And marches to the front lines
She says: I am not a knight in shining armor!
They won’t allow me on the battlefield
With my Persian drums and flowers
So I will charge into the crossfire
And bring with me an orchestra
One like that of a mystic song
Enigmatic horns, passion drums, Arabian strings
Gregorian chant, wailing of Souls, ancient tongues
A symphony of Angels, fantasia bells, cinematic splendor
Words like shooting stars and exploding into musical rapture!
And when she stood before a thousand soldiers
She was unarmed and fearless
Snipers cannot fire upon such a display of Love
Bullets cannot kill what cannot be seen
Leaders cannot defeat such devotion to ideas
“Who are you?” they ask
And she responds:
I am Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan
I am Kashmir, Chechnya, and Bosnia
I am Lebanon, Palestine, and Pakistan
Point your rifles at me as long as you want
I don’t care
Because I know, and God knows:
You have no right
You have no right
~ Broken Mystic ~
September 21, 2008 at 3:43 am (Entertainment, Film, Mysticism)
Tags: Anakin Skywalker, Ewan McGregor, Film, Friendship, Hayden Christensen, How to Save a Life, Jedi, Love, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Separation, Star Wars, The Fray
So this got me a little teary-eyed. As many of you know, I am a huge “Star Wars” fan, and even plan on making another “Star Wars” fan film after I complete three original films. My little cousins inspired this decision of mine since they were so captivated by some of my earlier “Star Wars” fan films. Before leaving, one of my cousins said to me, “when are you going to make another ‘Star Wars’ movie?” The magic and excitement in his eyes were impossible to ignore. It reminded me how I would Love to make a few films especially for children. Like I said, I have three films — which are all original — that I want to complete first, and then for fun, I want to just make another “Star Wars” fan film especially for my cousin. I want to make it soon too because he could grow out of it when he hits his teens (I know I didn’t grow out of it, lol, but it varies from person to person).
Anyway, I found this video on YouTube while I was searching for the song, “How to Save a Life,” and what do you know, I happened to find one with “Star Wars” footage. I think this video is brilliantly edited. The song and lyrics fit the visuals perfectly. It shows the tragedy of a really wonderful friendship between Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) and Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen). “Star Wars” is one of those rare films/stories where I can actually get emotionally involved with the characters, but I can also relate it to my own life. I’m sure a lot of us have lost friends — either because of heartbreak, arguments, death, or even distance.
If you haven’t seen the “Star Wars” films (particularly Episodes 1-3), this video pretty much tells the whole story in visuals. It shows Anakin Skywalker as an innocent 10 year-old (as seen in Episode 1) and then how he matures into a Jedi Knight (as seen in Episode 2), and finally, falls to the Dark Side and becomes Darth Vader (as seen in Episode 3).
Since I am making a film right now about friendship (more details on that soon! I’m almost wrapped up with it!), I know there are things in life that separate us from other people. Sometimes, we have to separate from these people and we suffer from a lot of pain. I believe that friendship is strong enough to best the storms and overcome the differences. I know there have been times when I asked myself, “where did I go wrong?” How can such a beautiful friendship fall to darkness? You have all these flashbacks and still can’t believe what happened. Anakin was suffering from inner conflict and pain, but he didn’t tell Obi-Wan about it. He didn’t open himself up to his friend, and instead, darkness overwhelmed him and clouded his mind. It made him think that Obi-Wan was his enemy. When we have arguments with our friends, we sometimes think that they are the problem. We think that we are always right, and they are wrong.
I want to be there for my friends. Without our friends, we would not be the same person that we are today. I don’t like being separated. I want them all to know that I Love them and if they ever want to talk to me about anything or need anything, I am always here. If you are lost, tell me, and we can be lost together. We can find our way together. We can stay up all night and work things out. Encouragement and emotional support is so important and it means so much to people. Arguments and differences are inevitable, but that doesn’t mean there is no more Love. There is always Love. We just have to remember that.
I am not Malayali, and I do not speak Malayalam
Yet I am singing with the mystics in this tongue
These words, Mind does not understand
But Soul dances to the tune of mystery!
They show us maps, borders, and dividers
Grasp a hold of your sanity, they say!
China does not need the tongue of Senegal
Egyptians do not sing Japanese!
The Pashtun does not read in Hebrew!
Mongolians do not understand Lebanese
What purpose do you have in this song?
Ya insaan (O humankind), with your prejudices
No wonder you do not see the Soul’s gift of colors
Deaf to the music, you dwell in your prison
Walled off from beauty in your ethno-centricism
O Soul, the Mind says you are mad
But all you want is to dance freely in the wind
And tonight, the Song of the Soul is Malayali
And so I sing:
He kuruvaani kiliyae-aeee!
Kukkuru kurukuru koovik kurugik kunnimanaththai
Ooyal aadi kooduvagukkik koottu vilikkunnae
Maaran ninnaik koogik kurugik koottu vilikkunnae-aeeee!
~ Broken Mystic~
(Malayalam lyrics from “Jiya Jale” by A.R. Rahman and Gulzar)
My review for the latest “Niyaz” album has been long overdue, but I promise I will write it very soon. From the album, I discovered an amazing poet who lived in the Indian Subcontinent during the 13th century: Amir Khusrau. He wrote primarily in Persian (Farsi), but also in Urdu. Azam Ali sings two of his Persian poems on the latest “Niyaz” album, “Nine Heavens.” Although this is not one of them, I had to share it because as soon as I read it, I reflected on my own separation from a dear friend of mine. Yesterday, I broke into tears because I played an old song that was special to both of us. Sometimes I’m still shocked that we’re separated. After the shock, I get the memories, and after the memories, I feel sad and miserable. I just wonder if things will ever be as beautiful as it was before. I suppose the answer is in having a positive and open heart, and to have faith in the True Friend — The One who will never turn away from us. I know deep down I have faith things will get better, Insha’Allah.
Abr mi barad-o man shovm-e az yar-e-judaa
Choon kunam dil becheneen roz zedildar judaa
Abr baraan wa man-o yar satadah ba-widaa’
Man judaa girya kunaan, abr judaa, yaar judaa…
The cloud weeps, and I become separated from my friend
How can I separate my heart from my heart’s friend on such a day
The cloud weeping — and I and the friend standing, bidding farewell
I weeping separately, the clouds separately, the friend separately…
~ Amir Khusrau, 13th Century Indian Sufi
This is an old poem I wrote a few years ago. I felt like sharing it here. It was written for no one in particular, just for my fellow companions in this world. I’ve written this many times before, but we live in a world where there is more individuality and less community. It is important to establish independence, but at the same time, we shouldn’t feel that relying on our friends and Loved ones is a bad thing. On the contrary, we were created as social beings; we are all on this journey together and we need each other.
A Vision of the Universe awakens the Soul
Life soars, dives, spins, and rolls
Discover how small we are
Yet how precious at the same time
Sparkling dust reveals splendid gems
Leave your world behind
And pass through the Rose Portal
For it is Love from which you stem
Your world is of duality
People of colors, races, and genders divided
Ours is a world of unity
It is here where you feel alive!
Here, we do not say black or white
Here, we do not argue and fight
Here, we celebrate diversity
How wonderfully this delights the King!
Do not crush Flowers by saying “man” or “woman”
We believe in no such division!
The Prophet preached we are One
Fill your heart with this Truth and witness Divine union
After challenges, Lovers rest in arms, young
They listen to the mourning violin
And how it longs for the reward of patience
They are reminded of music they once strummed
By the Heavenly Rivers, they will marry
They will merge into a single Spirit
This is your destiny too, dear companions
To here, the Angels will carry
Beyond this Glorious Universe, we transcend
We can discover its blessed Secrets
Take my hand, I beg you, friend
And pass through this Portal with me
Let us become One
~ Broken Mystic~
Strayed into myself
To find this sort of faint star
That shone even in this divide
Of where I’d come to be displaced
But maybe here, where time is fleeting
I’ll try to fly, but not to stray
Cause we face the tides
Of will and divine
Though we mystify
What we flee and feel today
Strained by overgrown dreams
Rooted in disillusionment
But in the hour fate flaws
I know I’m not alone
And fall, it’s the way I know
And fall, it’s the way I’ll grow
Cause we face the tides
Of will and divine
Though we mystify
What we flee and feel today
And why, when there’s a way
Above the fire that fears of drought fill,
Do I crawl
~ Lyrics by Azam Ali
From the Album: Elysium for the Brave