Day Three~ February 3rd~ Lebanon

martyrs' square

“The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” Khalil Gibran

Designed by the Italian sculptor Renato Marino Mazzacurati and placed in downtown Beirut in 1960, this statue stands witness to the horrors of the civil war in Lebanon with its many bullet holes that are left as a reminder of what has been. On this very square a revolt against the occupying Turks resulted in the hanging of some of Lebanon’s best intelectual figures in 1916.

War, pain and struggle have had a permanent home in Lebanon throughout history and when you hear that you would expect to meet sad and broken people. But somehow Lebanese people come out on the other side of the spectrum, the joyful side. Love of life rules the day and happiness bubbles in their hearts and explodes in their faces transforming them into smiling phoenixes that rise again and again from the ashes of disaster.

There is a magical way about Lebanese people that can simply make you addicted to them, to the country, to the land, and to their bright faces.

joy

bursting with joy

Day Forty Eight, March 11, 2011

passing through life, one must strive to leave a trace

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

– Albert Einstein

My biggest fear in life is if I were to one day lose the awe of being alive. If that were ever to happen then life would brutally change from the rich multidimensional wonder that it is, to a flat world like that of  ‘Flatland’ by Edwin Abbott Abbott.

This photo was taken this morning at the wonderful ‘1933’ building in Shanghai’s Hongkou district. A wonder in art deco architecture and completed in 1933 by a British architect, it still stands in full magnificence of light, shadow, motifs, bridges, and unique design elements. Once an abattoir (slaughterhouse), this gem of a building restored from the communist Era of Shanghai is a must see if you are in Shanghai.

Day Forty Two, March 5, 2011

 

It rained tonight on my window

You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” —Mark Twain

Today was a day of looking at balances, re-arranging thoughts, deep contemplations, and searching for rhythms. There is a rhythm in the rain that can lull you to sleep if it falls gently, there is also rhythm in the city lights that pass by your window as you sail through the busy streets. Rhythm is everywhere, in our heartbeat, in the days, in the nights, in the tides and in the birth and death of every living thing.