Bar Bahar/ In Between – a film by Maysaloun Hamoud

I haven’t seen this film yet, though I’ve heard it received good reviews, and for once the Arabic woman stereotype is broken. For god’s sake, people around the world think that Arab women are supposed to be of one kind, but in this film, as it appears in the trailer, Arab women can live on their own, party, be successful, and still be women, just like any other woman in the whole world.

I can’t wait to watch this movie. It sounds great, maybe you should also watch it. Plus, my good friend Shaden is in it.

عابدي اللحمة (The worshipers of meat)

English follows:

قال بقرفو من الصراصير وبموتو برب القريدس .
زي كيف بالهند بعبدو البقرة، احنا منحب الكلاب. وبالصين بوكلو الكلاب.قبل متحكمو، حاسبو حالكو قبل. شعب موجهن.

واللي برجع بقول عن حالو نباتي وبوكل سمك بدي اصفقو كف.

 

They’re disgusted by cockroaches, but adore shrimps.

Like in India they worships cows, we love dogs. But in China they do eat dogs. Don’t judge others based on their traditions. That’s hypocritical.

And, if I hear someone say they’re vegetarian and still eat fish, I’m going to smack them in the face.

 

Thank you 🙂

قصة حيفا ترويها شواهدها

شعر كتبه صديقي العزيز الشّاعر والكاتب والصّحفي شاهين نصّار
شعر عن مدينة حيفا، لمن عرفها وسكن بها، عرف قيمتها
a poem written by m y dear friend, the poet, writer and journalist Shahin Nassar. A poem about Haifa, the city that only those who know it(her) and lived in it (her) knows how much it is worth.

مش عادي

في حيفا قصص كثيرة يحاكيها الزمان 

وروايات أخرى مخفية عن الأعيان

هناك حكايا مخبأة بين الأزقة والجدران

إنها لمدينة يعجب لها القادم من أي مكان

في حيفا، حدائق معلقة أنماها إنسان

جنة على الأرض ملأها الحنان

ويقين أنها كونية في كل زمان

لكن في مقابرها تخفي شجن

على ماضٍ كان لها مرصوص البنيان

ومجد تليدٍ يولد من قلب الدمار

  • * * * * *

شواهد حيفا تحكي أحداثا لا تعرف البدء

والنكبة لم تضع لها حدا ولا إنتهاء

تقصّ على مرآى العابرين منها افتراء

النظام السياسي الجديد الذي حطّ وسط الصحراء

بمعايير عصرنا شواهد قلّة قبل الاجتراء

ورغم شحّتهم، يزهو فيها الأبطال الشهداء

وعميدهم القسّام في بلد الشيخ يأبى الدمار

  • * * * * *

هناك لن يبكي الطفل على جد الجدِّ

ولن يعثر الباحث عن أسلافه بجدِّ

على إجابة عمّا حلّ بمصير الأعيادِ

ومع ذلك، قد يجد هناك من يشهدِ

على ازدهارٍ نما من قلب الدمار

  • * * *…

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A song that stuck in my mind – Akherto Lahen Hazeen

Akher Zapheer – Akherto Lahen Hazeen اخر زفير – اخرتو لحن حزين

Akher Zapheer is a Jordanian Grunge Punk, Arabic Rock band from Amman.

For some reasons, this song is stuck in my mind this week. It’ll pass.

 

On Love – Al Saher&Gibran

I watched it few weeks ago on TV and I’ve forgotten to share it on my blog. This is just way too beautiful.

The text by the great Lebanese Poet/writer Gibran Khalil Gibran (source):

When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.
And when he speaks to you believe in him,
Though his voice may shatter your dreams
as the north wind lays waste the garden.

For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you. Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning.
Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun,
So shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth.

Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself.
He threshes you to make you naked.
He sifts you to free you from your husks.
He grinds you to whiteness.
He kneads you until you are pliant;
And then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God’s sacred feast.

All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of Life’s heart.

But if in your fear you would seek only love’s peace and love’s pleasure,
Then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love’s threshing-floor,
Into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears.
Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself.
Love possesses not nor would it be possessed;
For love is sufficient unto love.

When you love you should not say, “God is in my heart,” but rather, “I am in the heart of God.”
And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course.

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love’s ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.

Adele, Fairouz, and the Arab World

The new song “Hello” by Adele came out and everyone fell completely in love with it. Some others were annoyed by people’s obsession and decided to complain each time they hear it or see it on their Facebook feed.

I personally liked the song and I think Adele has an amazing voice. Reasons why people are so obsessed with this song are because Adele is one of top singers to follow these days and people like to listen to emotional music and feel the lyrics apply to their feelings. We’re all sad and emotional and want to experience our feelings through new music. This is what I think anyway.

So, the moment came and we saw on Youtube a Mashup for this song with Fairouz’s famous song “Kifak Enta” sung by a girl, called Noel Kharman from Haifa. The singing is very nice and the combination is beautiful. And somehow makes sense.

Though the original singing of Adele and Fairouz are superior to the performance to the girl in the video, it does not take away the beauty of listening to the two songs combined. It’s beautiful and nice.

A lot of people argue that the girl’s performance and talent will never live up to Adele’s, or Fairouz’s, And then the argument evolves and people start comparing Adele to Fairouz. Being a legend, Fairouz has a different style and basically Arab people prefer her performance over others. I’m not going to get in depth with this argument as it’s irrelevant for the topic I want to present.

Everywhere this mashup cover is shared there are comments and I’m basically interested in hearing people’s opinion, especially because you make one mistake of looking at one comment and discovering how far the argument can go. First the performer Noel Kharman is from Haifa and she identifies herself as a Palestinian. By seeing her dressed up like an ordinary girl (with no cover and hijab, etc) people immediately assume she’s Lebanese, Because apparently only Lebanese women are the only women in the Arab world who are allowed to look modern and dress up like other women in the Western world. It may come as a shock: to see an Arab woman looking the same as any woman in Europe or the western world.

And let’s not forget how the Israeli people automatically respond to seeing a Palestinian girl from Haifa: “Haifa is not Palestine. It’s Israel.” Of course, Haifa is one of the most well known occupied Palestinian Cities and may I add one of the most beautiful. Jews and Palestinians live in the city and though some Palestinians lost their identity, many still hold it proudly and relate to it as the most beautiful Palestinian city. While many other Palestinian refugees and Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza dream about the end of the occupation to have the liberty to come and visit Haifa.

The Israeli Palestinian conflict doesn’t stop here. The Arab people around the Arab world (or the entire world) step in and start. The most important thing is her dressing. They have to point out to her belly, her exposed belly, as if no woman on this earth can be seen without being covered, entirely. It is entirely unacceptable for a woman to dress up like that. She looks like a prostitute to them. The song, the music, the voice and her performance,  they all become irrelevant when it comes to her dressing. They blame the occupation and how the Palestinians in Israel now try to look like Jews, while most of the Palestinians actually do is live and adapt a life style that suits the modern  and normal world. Because it is a modern society we live in, not the middle ages (as seen now in the Islamic countries).

Look at Noel. Does she look like she’s trying too hard to expose her body? I cannot see that myself. All I can see is a beautiful woman, dressed up nicely, and singing a beautiful song.

But no, she’s an Arab, she cannot dress up like that, she is obligated to dress up like all Arabs we see in the Islamic countries. And she cannot, in any position, have her belly shown like that. But “She’s a christian after all.” as one commentator says.

“Why is it that the Western world comments on her signing, voice and performance, while the Arab world only comments on her clothes,” and her belly in particular. Is that the furthest thing the Arab World can reach? And we still wonder why we cannot evolve and be like the rest of the world.

‪#‎Who_You_R‬

I would like to share a revolutionary song from Palestine. About sexism in our Arab society, and most other societies.

Nothing to add, just the video. Click on settings and CC for English subtitles.

Click on this link too for an article about single/ hit and the campaign #Who_You_R

For the International Women’s day

Translation in English follows:

Originally posted on Facebook.

اجا على بالي اكتب ستاتوس ليوم المرأة العالمي.
رسالة لكل النساء العربيات ( عشان الستاتوس بالعربي) …
كوني انت. كوني شو مبدك تكوني.
مش معناتو انك صرتي اكتر من عشرين وخلصتي لقب او قربتي تخلصي يعني لازم تتجوزي. ومش عشان تجوزتي لازم تجيبي ولاد.
ساوي اللي بدك اياتو. بدك تجيبي ولاد او عمرك بدكيش ولاد . ساوي الل بدك اياتو… تسمعيش حدا وترديش على المجتمع.
ومش عشان خلصتي لقب لازم تبني اسا اسا الك مهنة بالموضوع اللي تعلمتي. واسا اسا لازم تبلشي او تخلصي لقب تاني. على شو مستعجلة؟ ( عشان تجيبي ولاد كمان سنة؟).
انت ابني الك هدفك بالحياة. هاي حياتك انت. شخصيتك انت. عالمك انت.
تأذيش حدا ولا تأذي نفسك.
مش مرتاحة، غيري واتركي. كوني شجاعة شوي وحبي حالك وحبي حياتك. تكونيش شجاعة عشان تثبتي حالك لغيرك.
عيشي. اعرفي انك حرة. حرة تساوي اللي بدك اياته. حرة تساوي الاشياء التقليدية وحرة تساويش الاشياء التقليدية. انت بتنقي مش غيرك.
واذا مجتمعنا او البيئة اللي حوليكي صعب/ة تسمحلك تعيشي كيف انت بدك، تيأسيش دايماً في طريقة تلاقي مجال تعيشي بدون هاي القيود.
اهم اشي تنسيش ان انت مش بس مرأة، انت انسان حر… وحر بكل معنى الكلمة.

 

I thought of writing a status for the international Women’s day.

A message to all Arab women (because the FB status was mainly written in Arabic).

Be yourself. Be whatever you want to be.

It doesn’t mean that when you become in your twenties and you have finished your BA you need to get married. And it doesn’t mean that when you get married you must have kids.

Do whatever you want, whether it’s having kids or never having kids, do whatever you want. Don’t listen to anyone, and don’t do what society expects you to do.

And because you have finished your degree it means that you have to build your career right now in your field. And now you have to do your masters. Why are you in a hurry? So you can easily have kids next year?

Build your own goals in life. This is your life. Your personality . Your own world.

Don’t hurt anyone and don’t hurt yourself.

IF you’re not comfortable enough, change the reality around you or leave. Be brave enough and love yourself and your life. Don’t be brave to prove yourself to others.

Live. Know that you’re free. Free to do whatever you want. Free to do the traditional things or the non-traditional things. You’re the one to choose, not others.

And if the society around  you (or your own environment) does not allow you to live the way you want to live, then don’t give up and know that you can always find a way to live without those boundaries

And most importantly, do not forget that you’re not only a woman, you’re a free person, in every aspect.

To Our Countries – لبلادي

Music and prose that brought me to tears.

English subtitles are included.

 

We sing and we speak for our countries,
for our lands, for our people, dreams and love.

We sing and speak for our enemies,
who slaughtered us and deprived us from our dignity.

And we live. With those songs and words.

The Bullet – الرصاصة

A true story.

Words of a child. His resistance against the occupation and the price he, his friend and many others have to pay, simply because they’re Palestinians.

This happens everyday, and it will keep on happening, because so many people close their eyes and say “The state of Israel has the right to defend itself.”  And “The Jewish people deserve a land of their own.”

A land that’s not their land. While defending themselves against rocks thrown  by little children, resisting and fighting for their freedom.

“لما الله خلق آدم اكتشف انو مش راح يدبّر حالُه عشان هيك خلقلُه حوّا” – ستّي

“When God created Adam he realized that Adam would never handle anything, so he created Eve.” – My Grandma

Who’s The Terrorist? (Meen Erhabi?)

A more than 10 year old song by Dam band asks the question of who’s the terrorist?

“Who’s the terrorist?
I’m the terrorist?
How I am the terrorist
When you’ve taken my land?!”

The song comes with lyrics in English.