It has been said that the chains that bind us are mostly self-manufactured by our own self-esteem and pride. Personal development is an uncomfortable journey upward and into the unknown, if only we dare.
Day 54 of 365~
Image taken in the entrance to the old tea house in Kashgar, Xinjiang
One of the greatest fears might be to one day realize one is insignificant. To have lived a life that touched no one deeply, to not have loved passionately, to not have given for the sake of giving and not to have believed in something much greater than oneself. And scarier even than all of that is to have lived without ever meeting or knowing who we are.
Day 39 of 365~
Image taken somewhere in New York
Every morning I wake up, I get the same feeling: “today it can all be rewritten”. I was never one to believe in a determined destiny or a life already preplanned, or at least I was always questioning the process and processing the question.
Today, the first day of 2018 of all days, I decided to begin a new commitment, a daily heartbeat, a photo and a thought every day till 2019. It is not written but here I am attempting to write it.
Let the journey begin.
I took these images this morning on a drive that I took to reflect on the new year, somewhere in Germany, where I happen to find myself these days.
day 1 of 365
to rise above the level of lost
preparing for a clean slate
holding up the sky
back to basics
destiny waits for no one
the unrelenting ghost of yesterday
things can only look up from down here
those hands of fate
the spirit of winter
memories laced with teardrops
juggling life and its twists and turns
Sometimes life invites us into a brief interlude between the folds of time. There we see beyond the obvious, we feel more deeply and we re-evaluate our lives and where our importances lie. The past month has been just such a life changing happening and as I emerge trying to find the end of a thread I let go of, I find that a whole new selection of threads present themselves to me. I pray that I may choose wisely where to get back on the train we call destiny.
Photographs taken during the past month in Germany, Lebanon and China
More images on my instagram feed
We find ourselves on a planet of duality; where there is day, there is also night; we wake up only to then sleep; we feel happiness only to be followed by sadness; and where there is life, there most certainly will be death.
And we feel that life is sometimes unfair, unjust and we wonder why the timings are all wrong and the big question rises in us: “what if?”. We desperately try to reverse time, to wish we had taken one step differently, that we had made a different decision, and it leaves us wondering if destiny is pre-written. We turn to religion for answers, we question our creator, we get desperately angry, then we sink into a bottomless pit of sadness, only to surrender and then move on trying to lift our head high and catch the thread of life we tossed to the side when tragedy met us.
And looking back at my posts from the week before my beautiful young brother died in his tragic accident, there were most definitely subtle signs to prepare me for this. The titles and natures of my images spoke volumes to me before the event.
“It’s later than you think” whispered the ghost of tomorrows lost~
“our fragile strengths”
This post is in honor of George Kheir, my departed young brother, a wonderfully warm, humorous, bursting with life and generous man who left a kind and beautiful family behind. May his soul rest in peace and go to where it was destined to be.
The ones we connect with~ Shanghai
On a planet of over 7 billion people, we end up connecting with a minute fraction of humans throughout our lives. The parents we are born to, the family around us, the friends we make at school, the spouses we end up with and a handful of others along the way. Is any of it destined? Do events lead us to meet who we were meant to meet or is it all random? Do certain people sing our tune? Is chemistry involved? Are there invisible silver threads between us and a few others?
Another piece fo the fascinating puzzle we call human life…
along the yellow line~ Seoul
I remember walking as a very young child in our small mountain village in Lebanon, and just as I passed the old movie theater that used to only play Indian tragedies, an English word popped in my head. At that time, English was quite foreign to me and my vocabulary was extremely limited, yet somehow an adult word appeared: “determined”. I never forgot that word and I only learned its meaning years later as a teenager. It was one of those strange life moments that are very difficult to explain. This little story brings me back always to ‘the way’, and for me there is a way that I know I need to follow if I listen carefully to the same nudging that introduced the word “determined” to me. And as with all good things, the way is never the easy one…
the walk of selective focus~ Duesseldorf~ Germany
In our now, every event that happens seems to be of vital importance, every step we take, every little thing we see, every person we meet, all that we touch, smell, come across; but then we move into our future and most of these small significances begin to slowly blur into oblivion. What we are left with are very few salient moments that remain vivid in our minds and hearts for so many different reasons. But what lies hidden in the blur carries so much significance. It may lay dormant in our unconscious, but it is very much part of who and what we are today isn’t it?
no it is not~Dayangjie~ Yunnan
We may all be human, but our lots are not the same and nor are our destinies. The more people I meet, the further I travel, I realize that life does not deal us all the same cards. Isn’t humanity knowing this and having compassion for those who have less?
early morning on a Hanoi pavement
It has been a challenge to keep the daily posts on time during this trip. Arrived in Beirut on July 5th to find a national internet power down, so here, doing the best I can.
One of the great struggles a street photographer has while walking in a new city is trying not to be overwhelmed by the flood of new impressions. In a city like Hanoi, you see so much that you wish to capture and in some cases too much of a good thing has its adverse effects. At times like this, I just stop, slow down and look around with my eyes quietly to let them lead me to my next shot. I was very much caught by this woman at the early morning hours as she set up her portable fruit stand on the pavement and was getting herself ready for her day’s work. I reflected on her life and how in this life we had different lots, different destinies, and I wonder at all the events that caused things to be this way…