Dreams

We all dream while sleeping even though we sometimes can remember nothing but this does not change the fact that we dream. Our brains are indeed miraculous! And we cannot deny this fact either. Have you ever think about your dreams? I usually think in two ways.

The first is that dreams are a reflection of what we have been experiencing during a whole day, week or month that has disturbed, upset or delighted us most.  In this case; dreams reflect one’s deeds, endeavours, and even thoughts and feelings. This means that if my son was watching a horror movie at night, he would probably have a nightmare and I would say; ‘this is because you have watched such a scary movie at night.’ Logical thinking!

The second way is that dreams reflect what the unconscious has better known than the limited conscious circle inside our brains. Actually I believe that this is true too. This is clearly explained when dreams have a significance in real life. In other words, when we understand what they symbolise and see how they turn into reality! This also explains why we might have a dream about something which we think we have never got any idea about or people who we think we have never met or known just a little about. This looks like a psychiatric job now!

One day, I went shopping with a new friend. It was the first time we went out. At that day, her mobile was ringing and she looked a bit worried and hesitated not to answer it. Then she said; ‘today is the result of my exam.’ I understood then why she did not want to answer the call. But at the same time, I remembered that I once had seen her in my dream looking very happy buying some new clothes. I had no idea that she was studying for an exam at that time.  I did not know what to say but I advised her to answer the call saying: ‘why not answering it? This would be fine.’ What do you guess?  She passed her exam and was extremely happy.  I then told her about my dream. Though I told her that I had totally forgotten about it, which was true, I did not say that I did not know why I had such a dream as I did not consider her as a friend at that time. We then started joking about my dream. She said: ‘you have special powers’ and I said:’ you have to get me a present for every good dream I would see for you.’ Definitely, I do not have any special thing and when I think about that dream now, I can see that its interpretation simply refers to the beginning of our friendship. We all dream:  the noble and the villain, the poor and the rich, the weak and the strong, the old and the young, etc. I believe it’s just something we all created with, something that we may not pay that much attention though we need to because in our dreams we can see guidance, warnings, encouragements, and true things about ourselves as well as others.

When I was writing this post I remembered the dream of Fir’awn or the Egyptian Pharaoh at the time when Prophet Musa (Moses) was born. Actually it was a nightmare! And I really wonder why, though got the right interpretation by his wise administrators, he participated in the suffering and ending of his life as well as others. He saw an enormous fire that surrounded Egypt and burned all the Copts. In his dream, it was only the Israelites who were saved. Did he think why? The answer is NO. He saw the same dream several times. Again, did he think why? And again the answer is NO. He just wanted a significant interpretation which he was given by his wise advisers. They interpreted it with the birth of a precious boy among the people of Israel who would cause the end of his life and kingdom. Again instead of thinking WHY? He though HOW? How to challenge that dream? Later and after many years that dream turned into reality. It was not just a dream! It was his unconscious sending him that divine warning in case he would listen.

Sweet dreams everyone! but do not forget to think about them too.

With all best wishes,

Nahla

 

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Community

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When I was young, I knew the names of most of our neighbours and their children’s names. I know where they live and their flat numbers. I used to go to the nearby shop even if it was a bit late to get what I need and may pay later when my father visited the shop to pay for the shopping list we got without paying! There was a trust, safety, and intimacy; these concepts I had felt and known even before learning them at school.

But for my parents, this was nothing in comparison to their own days as they were raised up in the countryside where they did not just know about their neighbours’ names but also their family history. They told us how people used to support one another in good and bad times, how they shared their food, how their doors were always opened to all, how they did not worry about their old parents or small children because they were all close, and how the poor were sure they would get what they had asked for. I will never forget how my mother was very delighted when we spent the summer holiday at my grandparents’. She did not worry about anything even about us; her children, because everybody had known her and she had known everyone. She would always find someone around to give her a hand at any time!

This does not mean that life was perfect; of course it was not. There was all of these social vices that would exist in any society, modern or traditional, though in different context; e.g. poverty, ignorance, crime, superstition, etc. But this means that life was different; people think they were belonging not just to the place but more important to each other! Their daily interaction as well as cooperation regardless their differences make them happy.

Is this the meaning of COMMUNITY? I think; yes it is!

I experienced the meaning of community when I moved to live in the UK.  At the beginning, we lived in the university accommodation where I met with different people from different background; each one had different plans, thoughts and beliefs but we cooperate and do our best to help each other. We were remarkably happy which again does not mean that there were no problems or we all were wonderful friends; of course No. I think we just understood consciously or unconsciously that we need each other and we need to cooperate and to accept our differences to enjoy those years.

What happened then? Lots of my friends, living in different parts of the world, say the same thing; “We do not know our neighbours and sometimes do not even see them!” “We do not expect others to contact or visit except in social occasions!” “If we get a call from others it is not because they care but because they either have to or want something.” May be the life rhythm has become too fast, too rough, too technical, too expensive and too superficial to create the community that reflects the image of one body with its different parts. May be it is the rigid individualism or ego centered world that has cloaked this pure sense of community! I do not know! But what I know for definite is that there is no such joy as that experienced when living in a healthy community.
By the way, what inspired me to write about community was the new hijri year 1439. Yesterday was the first day of Muharram; the first month in the Islamic calendar. It’s a wonderful occasion to remember the image of community at Madinah. They too were from different backgrounds, different shapes, sizes, and colours may be different dialects and languages as well as different beliefs as Jews and Christians were living there too. But they cooperated to create that community that would enable them to enjoy their differences while living safe, happy and strong. And they made it!

Happy New Hijri Year!

And have a lovely weekend!

With my best wishes,

Nahla

 

School is Tomorrow!

 

 

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”Have a nice holiday!”

” We should arrange to meet up one day during the holidays.”

This was how the summer holiday started when parents usually exchange their best wishes at school gate. But; can you believe that this was a month and a half ago! Time really flies!

Time goes too fast as if we are getting the fastest high speed train in the world where we get on and off according to the different stages that we experience in our life. A month and a half ago, we got off at “School holiday” . Soon, we were getting on again to continue our life express train journey and to get off again but this time at “Back to school.”

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In between these two stops; wouldn’t it be great to close our eyes for a while and think! What can we see? What thoughts do we have? Holidays are wonderful opportunity for family time and taking photos to save those happy moments but please don’t forget to think about them too!

Let’s think about the last stop” School holiday”:

For me;

I can see how my children though have become more independent but also become closer to us (their parents).

I can see how it made my day when I met with new people or received kind words from old or new acquaintances even if it was online.

I can see how kindness is always rewarded by more kindness even if it’s just a swing!

I can see how happiness is so simple! even if there is No Internet Zone

I can see how if you think you know everything, you know nothing! A lesson from Penguins!

I can see how celebrations are not merely to have new stuff, go out, and pay more. We can not fully enjoy our celebrations without understanding their significance! This is Why do we celebrate Eid?

I can see that most of the time when reading other’s thoughts, I realise how we do share lots of common things. Actually, similarities are more than differences!

I can see lots of other things but that would be too much for You; my readers.

What about you? What can you see?

Now we are approaching a new Stop: ” Back to school.”

Let’s see how fast it would go and what thoughts would inspire us this year?

I wish all of our children a pleasant and successful school year!

With my best wishes,

Nahla

 

It’s Friday

Today is Friday and it’s the summer holiday so the whole family can go to pray Jumu’ah or Friday prayer.

Today also I have been thinking about something to write but could not decide what, until I started shouting at my boys to get ready to go to the mosque. Then I said; that’s it.  It’s Friday!

I was born in Egypt and grew up there and Friday has been very special for me! On Thursdays, I was always excited and extremely happy because I had finished that long school week and my father had got at last day off from work. On Friday, we got up late, had an Egyptian family breakfast and watched our favourite TV programs. Sometimes relatives and friends came and visited us and we enjoyed having dinner together. Sometimes we visited and spent the day with family or friends.

The first thing that has been so special about Friday is Friday prayer. Friday prayer is a compulsory congregational prayer for Adult men unless they are exempted for urgent reasons; e.g illness or travelling. Women have the option either to join or not but it is better to go and share the pleasure of this prayer. And children are always welcome! Being so attached to my father, I usually joined him. I do not know and have never asked my mother why she did not think about going to the mosque when we were young. But apparently, she would say it was not for women. But it was! And I remember that women’s section in the mosque was usually full and women there had been really kind and keen to take part in this prayer.

On our way back from the mosque, we usually got some fruits to share at home. We expected the best yummy dinner and desert, all homemade, with nice smell and taste. Even poor families used to cook the best meals on Fridays.

What else were we looking for on Fridays? Of course some rest and peace. But it was not always a peaceful day! Children’s gatherings usually mean lots of troubles. We would fight, smash things “accidentally” or get upset because that was not the food we expected!

Honestly; it was not only children who would spoil the peacefulness of that day, grown-ups had their share too! Sometimes, they would argue and argue till no one would feel like talking any more. Sometimes they would turn their faces to the clock to plan their excuses for an early leave. They might also give some unpleasant comments, questions or enquiries that add more embarrassing moments during that day!

In the evening, if we were during school days, we usually started doing or finishing our loads of school homework, getting our school uniform washed and ironed and getting ready to start the new week. If it was our school holidays, we either went to play with our friends, having them over or enjoyed a family time watching a programme or a movie at home.

Nice memories!

Have a lovely weekend!

Nahla