Anti Social

Welcome back everybody,

A short-ish post this week, after last week’s long-winded discussion.

I used to consider myself a socialist. Used to. Past tense. That was up to a few years ago and for the right reasons. I thought it was the best system available when you consider the piggishness, aggressiveness and chauvinism of capitalism as well as the inherent flaws of communism (namely the fact that we’re talking about a human society).

Socialism was a nice little balancing act between the freedom to pursue happiness and financial success on the one hand, and the responsibility of a country (by its proxy – the government) to take care of the less fortunate.

Leaving aside – for the time being – the issue of it being a system and as such an open invitation for exploitation, there is another problem, and that is… these are all systems that seem to put forth a structure for a society.

After much consideration, I decided that these don’t work for me.

That is not to say I give up and stop being a part of society. It simply comes to state that I am somewhat of an anti-social individual. Not in the “Get off of my lawn!” kind of way. It is my belief (and I’m well aware that it may be flawed) that systems that aim to put forth a structure for a society are bound to fail.

Society is too big. The bigger it is, the less chances any system – be it socialism, capitalism, communism or any ism – would work. At least not in any fair way.

That goes also for other aspects of life.

There’s a nice little adage that goes something like “Put ten Israelis in a room and you get a 100 opinions.”

How can society feel any sense of unity or shared purpose, having millions of people, each with different life experiences, backgrounds and upbringing? I know the answer, but I don’t like it… it’s possible when you have a common enemy.

Well, that is one sick society…

Homo Sapiens might be the peak of evolution – though I’m not entirely sold on that one just yet – but we are still part of the Animalia kingdom. Show me another species that flock in the millions (and don’t say bees until we figure out how they do it). We aren’t supposed to be loners, but I suspect we’re also not supposed to live in such huge masses.

We’re all raised to be contributing members to society. Prisoners get paroled when they’re deemed fit to re-join society.

I’d say we should be living in communities. And I don’t mean a gated neighborhood with home owner association taxes. I mean communities who can provide support to each other. Communities that may support themselves I dare say… communities that don’t need laws, because guess what – they care about their well-being. Communities that don’t need politicians to tell them what’s good for them.

These are the bare-bones of my current ism. It’s one that empowers the people and doesn’t rely on others. I don’t know how feasible it is, considering the direction mankind took and the pace we moved in that direction. I also don’t know for sure how well it would work, but I believe it would be far more in tune with who and what we are.

Just consider cultures who survived thousands of years without joining the rest of society. In Africa, parts of the middle east (the quieter, less reported on parts) and even new attempts to create these communities, especially in Scandinavia.

It could work, I tells ya!

And until next time, feel free to join this community and share, comment and like.

P.S. Look at what popped up on my Facbook Wall. Pretty funny huh?

Another perspective about Socialism right HERE.

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When the cannons roar some people aren’t silenced

Welcome all.

Today, a midst the darkness that descends on the middle east yet again, while the spirits are low and the nerves are irritated, I wanted to share a few small, but significant rays of light.

It’s very easy to despair. It’s very cozy when you’re entrenched in traditional paradigms.

But even when the cannons roar, one must remember that one is never alone. Even when it seems from one’s small corner of the globe that everyone hates the other, this is not the case. Even when the bombs are falling, it’s important to remember Martin Luther King’s simple, but so true quote:

We must learn to live together like brothers, or perish together as fools.

In the past few days and weeks, every facebook account in Israel and Gazza is filled with anger, hate, despair.

But I wanted to show that there are those who still believe that war is not the answer. People who refuse to view their neighbors as enemies. People who will not surrender to hate and despair, and are looking to reach out and touch people “on the other side”.

I highly recommend visting the links at the bottom of this post. I also wanted to share a few examples (out of many) of people who reach out to their so-called-enemies with love and compassion. I wanted to show that not all hope is lost and that people as opposed to politicians are sick of war, death and suffering.

joujou

 

roni3

anat3

 

PLI1

PLI2

Musical

As I wrote above, these are but a few examples.

The people in the middle east, the “silent majority” for the most part, want to live and let live. These folks are not silent. They speak up so Israelis and Palestinians know they are not alone. We all suffer from war and we all could only benefit peace.

Here’s what we are all asking our leaders:

ceasefire1

halas

Some interesting articles about the Peace Factory:

Promote peace:

 

Better than a thousand hollow words

Welcome back folks. It’s nice of you to drop by again.

Today, I want to share a conversation with you. Just a normal Q&A, back and forth, chitchat between two people.

One of them is me. The other one, we will call M.I.F for reasons which will become apparent as you read.

This conversation took place in Facebook, as many these days do. Between two friends who have never met in real life. In light of this, the nature of the conversation is of course, trying to understand who the other person is. What he likes, dislikes and to try and get a peek into his views of the world. Just 2 guys talking here. Also, please excuse some grammar and spelling errors. Both of us speak English as second language.

Here goes:

Gil: Please recommend three places to visit in your country.

M.I.F: To Americans, Israelis and perhaps British, I recommend the following. I said America and Israel cause they have a bad image (perception) of Iran. Not all of them but I know many of them do. These three countries can meet the real Iran. We like guests. We’d especially welcome Israeli people, because in the past, before the Islamic revolution of 1979 many Jews lived in iran and also thousand years ago there was a really good relationship between Persians and Jewish people. Even now in Iran, there are many Jews, Muslims, Christians, many atheists and then Zarathustra live in Iran. We want peace with America and Israel, don’t listen to the media outlets, maybe about 70% Iranians are the friends of peace and they do not agree with this Islamic republic of Iran, and about 70% of Iranians disagree with these Islamic rules and this regime in Iran. They are not happy with that because before 1979 Iran was a free country like the west and we NEVER, EVER had any Islamic rules in Iran and these Islamic rules came to my country from Arabic countries. You can read about this also and make sure my words are correct. Any way, I would welcome all guests to Iran and i hope to see a good relation again between Iran, Israel and America.

Gil: What kind of music do you like? Any favorite artists?

M.I.F: I love sonati (traditional Persian music). I listen to rap, rock, Reggae, and all kinds of music. I don’t hate any kind of music, If that music gives me a good feeling i will listen to it (lol). My favorite artist is Homayoun Shajarian, a Persian singer who sings sonati, and also the Persian rapper (hichkas). I like 50 cent, Bob Marley, Eminem, and many other artists.

Gil: What sports do you like (If you do)? Any favorite teams? Athletes?

M.I.F: I love cycling as I was a cyclist, cars racing, swimming and many kinds of sport, my favorite team is the biking team of Astana, lotto, Columbia htc team etc. My favorite athletes are Marco Pantani, Alberto Contador, Mark Cavendish, Lance Armstrong etc.

Gil: What was the last movie you watched? Would you recommend it?

M.I.F: As i love comedies, my favorite movies were Dictator, Ted, The hangover, American pie etc. I recommend these movies if you didn’t see them (lol).

Gil: The lonely island scenario. What book would you take with you?

M.I.F: (lol) Weird question. If i was there, I think i wouldn’t need Quran(koran) or any holy book cause there is no Allah or god in that time to help me or any different god from different religion. This is my belief. I’d want a book about: how can i live in The lonely island and what can I do and what do I need and how can I run away from this hell (lol). Also, to spend my time with other books, I prefer to read the beautiful Persian poems from Maulana Rumi, Saadi, Hafiz, Omar Khayyam, Ferdowsi etc. I love Omar Khayyam and I think his book is good to spend my time. Let me write one of his poems:

 Khayyam, if you are intoxicated with wine, enjoy! If you are seated with a lover of thine, enjoy! In the end, the Void the whole world employ Imagine thou art not, while waiting in line, enjoy!

Meaning: In life devote yourself to joy and love Behold the beauty of the peaceful dove Those who live, in the end must all perish Live as if you are already in heavens above

Gil: Who was (or is) your greatest inspiration?

M.I.F: My inspiration person is Cyrus the great father of Persia (Iran) from 2600 years ago. When he said respect to all people with any beliefs and anyone is free to choose his/her religion or way and many beautiful words he said on his first charter of human rights in the world about 2600 years ago. He was a great man. I also love Maulana Rumi the Persian (Iranian) poet when he said: Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu Buddhist, Sufi, or Zen. Not any religion or cultural system. I am not from the East or the West, not out of the ocean or up from the ground, not natural or ethereal, not composed of elements at all. I do not exist, am not an entity in this world or in the next, did not descend from Adam and Eve or any origin story. My place is placeless, a trace of the traceless. Neither body or soul. I belong to the beloved, have seen the two worlds as one and that one call to and know, first, last, outer, inner, only that breath breathing human being. or one of other poems of him is:I profess the religion of love, Love is my religion and my faith. My mother is love My father is love My prophet is love My God is love I am a child of love I have come only to speak of love. Etc.

Gil: What did you (or do you still) want to be when you grow up?

M.I.F: Well I am happy with what I have and so it should be. I have my 2 shops as I’m 21 years old. It’s true, we say people have many dreams to have all they want and each one of us has different wishes. Some can and their dreams will come true as they work hard for their wishes and some can’t because they didn’t try, or maybe their life changed by other things and they couldn’t do something to make their dreams come true. This world is too weird. My dream is peace between everyone. Each one of us, different countries, and I’m trying to help this world to be in peace. A big/hard wish but I hope slowly this wish will come true too, and many wishes I have which are not just about myself, but rather about the world or even my land Iran. I’m not selfish so i don’t have too much dreams for myself. I am happy with my life.

Gil: If a movie was made about you, who would be playing your part?

M.I.F: I’d prefer that I act in that movie (lol) because I think I can be a good actor and that movie will be more appealing, as it’s my life and I can act all feeling so true, and it will be just the true feeling in each part of my life in that movie.

Gil: What do you value the most about your friends?

M.I.F: Friends always help each other. With my good friend, we help each other, we have fun, When he or she is sad I’m sad, the valued thing with the real friends is that they don’t leave you alone and in the lonely moments they are with you.

Gil: What do you consider the most important lesson life taught you?

M.I.F:As I’m silly sometimes, I do stupid things. Don’t  laugh (lol). I’m sure you did too because we are all human and each one of us do the wrong things sometimes. All of humans, even the biggest persons. Experience – that’s what we get, sometimes. When I make mistakes, I will not be sad about it, maybe you can’t believe that, but I will be happy because it will be experience and is like a medal for me. Or an achievement (lol). It’s true and I’m not kidding. We should never be sad for making mistakes because any mistake is a step towards victory. I believe that we should never give up.

M.I.F: Which places do you like to visit? which place you choose for living (except the place you living now)?

Gil: I appreciate the greatness of nature Vs. the contrasting humbleness of men. For that reason, places that interest me are places where that contrast is evident. Examples include the grand Canyon in the US, the Amazon, Antarctica. I will likely not make it to most of these, but would be happy to see some. If there’s one place I’d like to live it’s the Golan Heights at the north of Israel. A beautiful place.

M.I.F: Which pet would you like to have? which pet wouldn’t you like?

Gil: As far as pets, I’m a dog person. I had a few and loved them. Currently taking a break from pets as I have enough on my plate. I don’t particularly like cats (Sorry internet :)) and I’d never keep a wild animal captive.

M.I.F: Out of the books you read, what are your favorite books?

Gil: Good thing you asked in the plural form, as I have quite a few. The books that really had an impact of me include: 1984/George Orwell, The Man In The Maze/Robert Silverberg, Lord Of The Rings/JRR Tolkien, Otherland/Tad Williams and Foundation/Isaac Asimov among others.

M.I.F: Which behavior don’t you like with people?

Gil: I will phrase it that way, people who do not have capacity for compassion. I feel sad for these folks. No matter what happens in our lives, there’s always someone who might have it less fortunate.

M.I.F: Which person is your biggest inspiration person? and why?

Gil: I’d have to say that on a personal level, my father was and still is my biggest inspiration. A person who’s done his best to be positive, honest and hard-working, who put his family’s needs ahead of his own. A person who fought Cancer for years, so he can see his kids reach a stage in their life where he could let go. A person who did not need anyone’s approval to be a good person. Another person who I’ve always thought highly of is Martin Luther King who showed that non-violence can achieve great things and overcome great wrongs.

M.I.F: What kind of music do you like to hear?

Gil: I love Rock music of many kinds. Some of my favorites include Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Bruce Springsteen, Nirvana and many many more. I’m also a big fan of Israeli singers who mix rock, and other western styles with middle eastern influences. Look up ‘Ehud Banai’ (Who I believe is from a Persian descent) in YouTube 🙂 Another Persian Israeli singer is Rita. Whether I like her style or not, her voice is simply amazing.

M.I.F: What are your dreams and wishes?

Gil: I am very modest in that regard. I believe I share the great dream of being happy. I do my best to be happy at all times, regardless of circumstances. I find that negative feelings tend to invite more such feelings into our lives. Outside of myself, I hope that people will find a way to live with each other in peace. So many lives, so much energy, money and resources are directed towards hate… it makes me wonder how can we not see that directing these to peaceful and productive existence would make this world so much better.

M.I.F: What is your purpose in life? And tell me about ultimate goal in your life.

Gil: This is a question I am still trying to answer myself 🙂 My ultimate goal in life is to try to live in peace with myself and others.

M.I.F: Which person did you want to be? and why?

Gil: As a youngster I wanted to be a DJ on the radio. I love music and always wanted to be the one to share it with people. These days I just want to be the best me I can possibly be.

M.I.F: Tell me about the biggest and important thing you learned from this world.

Gil: There are many great lessons I learned (and I have plenty of room for more). Perhaps the most important thing I learned was to understand that I’m responsible for everything in my life. To realize that nothing in the past could be changed and that the future is not here yet, therefore, I can only change what I do in the present. Because of that realization, I choose to avoid falling into the pitfall called regret, forgive myself and others and do my best at present time.

I hope you enjoyed our conversation. To complete Buddha’s quote in the title

Better than a thousand hollow words, is one word that brings peace.

I hope you did not find any of these word hollow. Each one of these, and so many more that are spoken every day, are meant to bring about the goal of many in the middle east – Peace.

My Iranian Friend could not be named in this forum to avoid persecution in his homeland.

I’m grateful for your cooperation my friend!

We both met on Facebook as part of the Israel-Love-Iran group and one of the goals of this group is to encourage communication between people of these two countries. I wanted to share this, and encourage others to have more of these! We are not our leaders, we are not politicians, we’re people and as you could see above, we have no problem with each other.

Feel free to share this post, spread the word. Hopefully one day, we could meet in Tel Aviv or in Tehran and chat over some coffee. Until then, Peace, Shalom, man solh raa arezou mikonam.

Come on and ride on the peace train!

What have you done for Peace lately?

Until next time,

Save lives, Don’t Shoot!

Hello everyone and welcome to the dot-com.

As of today, we’re still awaiting the verdict with regards to Syria, the possible attack and what it all means for the rest of the middle east and as it stands, the rest of the world.

My instinctive response to the news of chemical weapons use in Syria were outrage, disgust, fear and sadness. As many of us, I thought that this is something that cannot go unpunished. I thought of my ancestors who were in concentration and death camps in Europe during the holocaust, and my blood boiled. Surely the world can’t ignore the Syrian people‘s suffering.

Then, I thought of a few other things.

Impact. Should Syria be attacked by the USA or the UK, they would be under pressure to retaliate. Since they don’t have the military option to hit back at the superpowers, the obvious response would be to hit anything that’s associated with America in the neighborhood – Israel. So now we’re thinking about initiating an attack that might result in Israeli casualties? Is that a decision that would be taken by… whom?

Impact. Russia is sending warships to the Mediterranean sea. Iran speaks up. Hezbollah threatens. Who’s bluffing? Who’s serious? Who blinks first? More importantly, do we want to find out?

Impact. Syria. Yes, that same country in question is in the midst of a bloody struggle and so many lives were already lost. Just saying.

Still, I stand by my initial statement. Use of chemical weapons, especially against civilians, kids, women… this cannot just go past us. It is outrageous. The international community has to stand up and DO something!

Then I saw Russel Brand.

In addition to being a hilarious comedian, it turns out that Russel is a very intelligent guy (not that comedians are normally not…).

So what should the international community do?

Take care of the living, that’s what.

Help the refugees, heal the wounded, feed the weak.

Attacking Syria will result in one thing. More loss of life. Who will suffer? Likely some people who deserve to be punished. Along with many more innocent bystanders and people who had nothing to do with this conflict to begin with.

What do we do about the chemical substance that was used (and here I disagree with Brand’s comparison, I believe we have solid proof that it was indeed used)? I honestly don’t have an answer for that. I can only speculate that Russia and the USA can work together to ensure that this never happens again. I can only speculate that the US armed forces have ways to take care of these weapons in a more “elegant” way (can’t think of a better word).

My hopes are that the Syrian people will find peace soon. I hope that common sense will prevail and the people of Syria go back to normal (as they define it).

Check out this Facebook page, I support their message.

Peace out.