Skip to content

The greatest sin

July 14, 2015

It’s Ramadan, a season my social timelines get flooded with prayers, and devotion. “A Blessed Month”, where (some) people fast during the day from food and water, yet almost no one fasts from sin.

The past few days have been personally very aggravating. I look around and everything about humanity appalls me. The timelines full of ad-hoc worshippers, fake compassion, every form of -ism possible, criticism of everything and anything with pulse, just all of it.

The greatest sin, is not what the “books” dictate, ban or taboo. It’s an attitude that has managed to become the norm of society, lurks among all ranks (financial, educative and otherwise). It really is all the “seven deadly sins”:
To treat you body, soul, mind, resources and environment (natural and social) like there is no other but you.

To waste resources, because you can steal electricity
To waste water because your building has a well
To waste petrol because your dad’s company pays for it
To waste food, because you will not eat it reheated
To waste time because you can
To waste your youth because you can
To lose your soul because you’re busy on whatsapp with your 7th “significant other” (just in case the first 6 don’t fulfill)
To waste your brain on chatter, gossip and spinning lies
To waste people’s blood because we can’t stop to think before we act.
The list is endless.

Waste

Today I saw a young man, spill a full bottle of water on the floor (not the plant pot next to him) because a beggar would not leave the sidewalk of the mosque he was at (guarding it outside ofcourse, not praying in it). He spilled it with a yell and smirk as the woman felt insulted. A woman old enough to be his grandma. A boy not worthy of a drop of the water he spilled.

The sentence “there are kids in Africa that don’t have food” may be overused. But, it is true! More so, There are people in Africa, Asia, Europe, Americas and Australia that don’t have food, water or electricity to get them through the day. They did not choose their life. But we can choose our actions. There are Refugees (Syrian and otherwise) in camps dying of hunger. There many Lebanese that are slaving in their own country trying and grasping to make ends meet.

Ofcourse these are registered refugees, not reflective of the real numbers

Ofcourse these are registered refugees, not reflective of the real numbers

Recycling, preserving, optimizing and minimizing, are all not too difficult to implement. They are a conscious decision to be present.

Media

The Ramadan prank shows of this year have revealed new lows that TV stations care willing to go for ratings. Yet alot of the people criticizing them continue to watch, everyday, criticize and watch. Has anyone stopped to think that that is the whole point! They don’t give a crap if you like the show or not, as long as your sets and eyeballs are glued, THAT is the only metric that sells!

Have you ever stopped to think, should i watch that video of the journalist being decapitated. What would the 5 minutes i waste on that show be better spent on? Your job, kids, saving what little respect for human life we still have in our souls, friends, errands? Anything! ISIS is a media conglomerate, we consume every video, every picture without a thought!

I have never played, shared or posted ISIS generated media out of a very deep conscious decision to not support their virality by adding my view counts, every one of those millions of views is one of you, us, humans, individual souls that refuse to think!

article-2661007-1EE6FA3F00000578-287_634x786

It’s a media game. Wouldn’t your MBs be better spent somewhere else?

BDS

If I had a penny for everytime someone mocked BDS in life or online, we’d have enough money to end apartheid. The repulsive idea that a cup of coffee is more important than a human soul, regardless of where that soul may be, is utterly disgusting!
Here’s the common (nauseating) debate: You still have Intel chips in your computer, use Google (they have Israeli HQ) and others!
Well here’s the difference.
You don’t NEED soda or sparkling water that supports hate, you can (and should for health reasons) give them up. They are NOT a necessity and the alternatives are EVERYWHERE.

It takes the same amount of time for you to look at the price tag and nutritional info on a product to decide: Is this product good for me, can i afford it, has it been tested on animals, will it’s $$$ be used to kill.

That three seconds more that you may waste on candy crush, is all it takes. Don’t pick up arms. Don’t post it on instagram, don’t snapchat it to the world. You don’t even need to jeopardize your “coolness” by telling anyone. Just do it.

Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 2.36.03 AM

A little thought goes a long way.

Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 2.35.31 AM

BDS is not a joke. It never was.

Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 2.34.20 AM

If it requires a reaction, it is a significant action to start with!

Those that pretend to live in “peace”
Your life is NOT isolated from the world! (regardless of how thick-skinned your bubble is)
Every cent you spend is part of an intricate network on money that rules the world.
Every drop you waste is part of that 70% that exist on the earth.
Every action you do, trickles…
People may lose jobs, but others will gain them.
Artists may be hated. But that will show your children that humans are not just boobs, abs and a show.
Being Good is a real. Everyone is responsible for making the world a little better everyday.

A smile, a gesture of good will, a breath before you yell at an elderly, a moment of silence. A meal for the hungry. Kind words when financial support is tough.

A good deed, not for God, not for Karma, just for you, as a chromosome on this planet.
So please, instead of filling my timeline (alone) with your prayers, make yourself, the conscious one, a part of your existence on this planet without the need of an after-life to justify it.

If you want to sin, go ahead. Just don’t make utter apathy your greatest sin.

P.S. Accepting others and respecting their opinions is one of the most beautiful things you can give. Especially in today’s opinionated discriminative jungle.

نحن والقمر جيران – Nehna wel Amar wel Jiran Festival

July 7, 2015

Summer is the season of life in Lebanon. A staple of Music festivals, dazzling art shows and performances, food, sun, sand, beach, mountain and pure awakening of senses.

Yet, we crave for more to fill our narrow alleys and wide hearts with colors.

Collectif Kahraba

“is a performing arts company comprised of artists from different backgrounds that are engaged in the artistic scene in Lebanon. Our network of actors, writers, film and stage directors, photographers, puppeteers and dancers has progressively formed around the shared needs to exchange tools and art practices, to meet the audience, and to continue questioning the world in which we grow”

… is planning a concert 28-30 August on the Vendome Stairs in Mar Mikhael. You have the chance to make this happen here:

نحن والقمر جيران

 

Letter to ICANN, July 2015

July 3, 2015

Letter to ICANN, July 2015.

Lebanon should learn from Alibaba

May 10, 2015

I probably have a few drafts and rants on inefficient government operations in Lebanon, across all government entities i was forced to deal with. It’s tough to develop a more efficient government with staff that refuses to embrace technology (yes there are computers everywhere… no one uses them!!) and with a leadership that is stone-age.

This is not about the actual years these people have lived, it’s about the era that they refuse to get out of. (in the case of our 80+ MPs, yes, it’s about your age! The parliament is not your retirement fund!) This make sit apply to even younger generations within these institutes that are enjoying the status-quo of in-efficient and redundant operations.

Maybe we can learn something from the private-sector, enforce retirement (and pay retirement salaries), it may sound like a cost, but it’s not. It’s merely a small fast forward into the future, our future.

Benefits:
Allow more experience generations to supervise, train and advice
Create job opportunities for younger generations (it’s no secret we have a massive unemployment problem)
Solve alot of wastage in resources and time at multiple levels
Open the door for innovative problem solving and optimization, as well as, much needed new talents.

Born in the ’70s  Jack Ma’s Memo to Alibaba Employees on Management Shuffle   Digits   WSJ

Born in the ’70s Jack Ma’s Memo to Alibaba Employees on Management Shuffle — http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2015/05/07/born-in-the-70s-jack-mas-memo-to-alibaba-employees-on-management-shuffle/

P.S. Our current “Minister of State for Administrative Development” has extensive experience in breeding cows, not computers, nor processes! The previous one (2009-2014) was a military man, and it gets more dismal as we go back. 

We’ll be back

March 5, 2015

This blog is currently in comma, it is not dead, It micro-blogs on on twitter http://twitter.com/lebanesevoices and facebook http://www.facebook.com/lebanesevoices. The archive is below and on the right of the screen, you can check out what I’m reading on the right below (goodreads)

I will be blogging soon *fingers crossed* – yes there is a folder of drafts waiting to become posts lurking in the CMS.

Here’s a kitten to keep you company while waiting

random cute kitten meme

random cute kitten

Also this blog is 5 years old now! If it were a human, it would have witnessed, Protests across the region, the fall of three dictators, the emergence of opposition across more than 10 countries in the region and many more abroad. Dozens Genocides and assaults, three full fledged wars on Gaza from Israel, presidential gaps, a devastating decrease in literacy rates in the MENA region. Syrians becoming the largest refugee nation in the world. Israel faces war crime allegations. Lebanon still sinking in an abyss of the unkown. Smartphones dominating the world, and technology invading every aspect of our lives. This five year old is set for a very confused psyche.

The Names & Faces of Lebanese Army Soldiers Who Died Defending Us Against ISIS In The Beqaa

January 25, 2015

تي:

May their souls rest in peace.
Soldiers betrayed by our disgusting failure of a parliament that is being hijacked by corrupt warlords are falling everyday.

Originally posted on A Separate State of Mind | A Lebanese Blog:

A lot of the Lebanese populace will be spending this weekend either skiing their days away at resorts or clubbing the nights at various parties across the country, or, ironically, watching the “heroics” of an “American Sniper” at our cinemas.

As that “joie de vivre” manifests, however, the country will be burying 8 soldiers that passed away yesterday defending everyone against a looming threat at our borders, and whose heroics will fail to register with most.

Why did those 8 army soldiers die? Well, for one reason it’s because they live in a country led by so-called leaders who aren’t up to their title as they fail every single moment they “lead” to make the much-needed decisions that such times require.

Today, Lebanon is in an official state of mourning. No, it’s not mourning any of these 8 heroes who gave up their lives, not thinking of their families, of their children and…

View original 168 more words

Lebanon and Arab Countries on the Global Open Data Index

December 12, 2014

“Knowledge economy” will probably overtake the “entrepreneurship” as the buzz word for the next decade. Not that i find either words bad for the economy!
Saying that one thing that continues to be an obstacle to nurturing impactful digital progress and increasing efficiency is the lack of document and open data.

I emphasize on documented, because in many scenarios the data itself does not exist, as it is sitting in physical archives, hand written and badly maintained.

The Global Open Data index currently features 97 ranks, of which Lebanon is #85. Frankly I’m surprised Lebanon is on the list to start with, so although some may find this a bashing point, it shows that we are at least trying. Good job ;)

Lebanon on the Global Open Data Index

Lebanon on the Global Open Data Index

The index measures based on the following metrics:

Breakdown of Metrics of the Global Data Index, Lebanon

The #1 ranked country is the UK, they are definitely doing an amazing job with their Open Data programs. Other Arab countries on the list with their rankings are:
#63 Tunisia
#74 Saudi
#79 Egypt & Morocco
#85 Lebanon (for reference)
#93 Oman

I’m also surprised some “leading, world-class”-PR-manic countries are not even on the list. Well I’m not really surprised, but it goes to show…

Back to Lebanon:
The above shows us that we need more transparent government spending and budgeting is necessary, but also that there are problems hindering our progress, like functional addresses, postal codes and maps that work. (thank you Zawarib)

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 6,775 other followers