East meets West…

20151230_110140-1

I wanted to share a picture of my recent breakfast. Much to my dismay, I may soon have to start watching my waistline!

My favorite breakfast has often consisted of a couple of blueberry waffles and a cheese omelet (my cousin Abdulsalaam can verify this…). I like to stuff my omelet with mild shredded cheddar cheese, some green peppers and tomatoes. I will often add a slice of pastrami or some turkey bacon to give it a little more heft!

Lately my wife’s personal touch has been added to this initial meal each morning. Today my meal was supplemented with noodles, cabbage and some beef. I usually add a little vinegar and soy sauce to give it flavoring more suitable to my taste.

I am grateful each morning for this wonderful breakfast. It is one of my attempts at blending cultures and fulfilling what I believe is one of God’s edicts, “O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).” Surah al-Hujurat (49:13)

I continue to believe that if we can sit a share a good meal together, there is the possibility that we can make a little more progress in resolving our differences. I am not naive in thinking this way. If we share the best of intentions, all things are possible…

Islam, Karma and the Seven Flies

I was making myself breakfast today just as any other day when I noticed that there were seven flies in the kitchen. Normally, the kitchen is bug free but there they were flying around the ceiling about to make a nuisance of themselves. I saw that one of the windows was slightly cracked open and postured that this was the way they entered the kitchen.

I wanted to eat my meal without having to experience the annoyance of these insects. Warily, I consumed my meal and watched them with the precision of a Hawk! It seemed as if they wanted to leave the kitchen but had lost their way. They flew close to the window’s opening but I wondered if perhaps if they perceived it too narrow to exit? I proceeded to open the window slightly more. Eventually all seven flies flew out the window.

I thought about this with great introspection as I finished my meal. It tasted wonderful! Allah (SWT) is Creator of all things, great and tiny. He tests and challenges us all the time. There are lessons everywhere! I believe there are Signs all around us. We must clear our minds and open our hearts to see them. I also believe that one should never give up hope. “As one window closes, a thousand more may open.” We must continue to persevere.

There are times when we may relinquish just when victory or salvation may be just around the corner! The flies were so close to the opening of the window but it seemed as if they choose not to venture out. My gesture of opening the window a little wider enabled them to escape unharmed on this particular day.

My actions cost me nothing but created harmony around me in that brief moment. Perhaps, that is a lesson as well…