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Make Peace or… Kibbeh!!!

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wpid-Easy-Kibbeh-For-Ramadan I was helping my mom make some Kibbeh. For those who never tried it, Kibbeh is a famous Lebanese dish, made of meat and Burghul, a type of grain, molded into an oval and stuffed with meat. I am drooling at the mere description. Anyway, at some point I had to mince the whole mix, about four pounds, in a cup-sized chopper. A task I was so happy to do, while my husband was trying to keep the kids entertained and happy. No need to say how that went!

As I started filling up the chopper and emptying it, I started to enjoy the little space my brain had to think of anything I chose. You don’t get to do that often as a mom of three kids under the age of four. I was contemplating the world we live in, where each group is struggling to exist, coexist or survive. Muslims want to be self-expressed. Women want their rights. Minorities want a voice. Ethnic groups want equality… It seemed to me like something has gotten this world predefined and left people fighting over redefining it.

When we demand our rights, it automatically means someone has taken them away. When we fight for peace, we are actually fighting, not making peace. When we reject discrimination we are in fact creating a front. It seemed to me like we are all in a defensive position, waiting to be cued.

Are we the reason for creating a troublesome world? Why is it a struggle to belong? to fit in? to stand out? or speak up?

I wasn’t able to dig deeper into my thoughts as my little grinding task was over, and I looked really weird standing in the corner pretending there is still something to do. I went back to being the chore processing machine I was just before my little promenade, content with the peace within.

By the time Iftar was up, the time by which Muslims break their fast. I was pretty indulged in eating those delicious Kibbeh and the whole world seemed just perfect the way it is.

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In dependence

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It is the 4th of July and almost time for fireworks in Minnesota. The kids are sleeping, two of them with fever bugs on their foreheads. This year we are celebrating at home. It is Ramadan, Muslims’ Holy month, and breaking our fast in the park will be hard without swallowing some mosquitoes on the way. I usually love this Holiday. People gather in the park with one great spirit, despite all the differences, smiling and having fun. everybody belongs together. It is truly a unique occasion.

As our house is situated near a big celebration area, we were able to hear the heavy bombarding noise of the fireworks but unfortunately unable to see any of the startling effects. The earth beneath my feet was trembling. The noise started to sound familiar, in a very scary way. I could not escape the horrifying memories I have as a child that survived multiple wars in my home country.

As I take a deep breath of relief, thanking God for the blessings in being safe and surrounded with my loved ones, I remembered old friends, some families we know in the less fortunate side of the world, that are going through unimaginable hardships in Syria and Palestine. I closed my eyes with anguish, but not despair, hoping everyone is safe. Those noises for them are real, and even though their eyes are fixed on the sky, what they are expecting is much more impactful than some sparkles.

My heart goes out to my people, the hungry, the scared, the one in pain and the one making quiet prayers. And all my sincere wishes are sent out to my other people, the ones I live with and live around, in celebrating one great Holiday. A day on which all hearts are as one.

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