Thursday, May 24, 2012

New Flavors and Family

Our newest family member, Houcine, is cooking lunch for us today, a Moroccan dish. I am not sure of all his secret ingredients, but I know he is using fresh rosemary, Turkish bay leaves and other herbs, as well as onion and tomato. Put all of it together with, sirloin steak and peas, and it smells like a piece of heaven!

Having a fairly devout Muslim in the family has been interesting. We eat beef hot dogs now, for one! Houcine eats a good amount of bread, which has suited me fine, though not suited my waistline. I do love bread, though!
He has his own semi-private room. Remember, we live in a two bedroom apartment with a six year old, and my two teenage sons visit on weekends. It is a little crowded and noisy at times, but Houcine takes it in stride.

I have noticed something about most Muslims-they are incredibly patient people. Now, I say "Muslims" as if I were not one, because I have not been very good at it. I converted from Christianity to Islam in September of 2010. I have not, however, been devout. This is probably why I am not among the patient ones! Those who are born in to this faith, or convert to it with all their heart and soul, have a peace about them that I sometimes envy. That is truly what drew me toward it in the first place. But, I have always struggled with spiritual matters and organized religion, specifically. I have never seemed able to fit any mold I tried, always the square peg in the round hole.



That being said, what I have learned is that every faith has something good to offer us. I still rely very much on the teachings of Jesus/Isa(peace be upon him), those I learned all my life in the traditional Four Gospels. I have tried to live my life by the Ten Commandments, handed down to Moses/Moussa(pbuh). I am still trying to learn more about the prophet Muhammad(pbuh) but what I know of his teachings has confirmed what the previous prophets taught.

There is, especially in the West, a wariness about Muslims. The attacks of 9/11 seemed to grip us with a fear of an entire religion, based on the rantings of a few unstable people. That is truly unfortunate, for I have found that if we look at any religion, we find a handful of these characters within each of them. If you are not sure about that, I will be providing several links for you to check out. They may shock you, but they are more than reliable.

My husband and I were having a discussion a few days ago about world population growth. It is mind boggling to think that in just the last eighty years, it has gone from two billion to seven billion people! If the current rate of growth continues, our planet will have over fifteen billion people on it by the end of this century. The total carrying capacity of the earth is only a little over twelve billion. Carrying capacity refers to how many people can actually survive on a planet, given its resources.



One has to step back a moment and think, why do we fight over something such as religion, when we are slowly(or maybe quickly) driving ourselves to the brink of extinction? Do we honestly have the luxury of using resources to make weapons of war and hate? I do not believe so. My opinion is that we all better  learn to savor new flavors, enjoy one another as family members and in doing so, we may survive.

As always, from America, you have all my love....

Resources:
http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report  (Southern Poverty Law Center)

http://www.religioustolerance.org/cr_ident.htm  (Religious Tolerance)

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/the-racist-entity-that-is-taking-over-israel-must-be-toppled-1.345929  (Regarding, "The King's Torah")

http://www.veteransforpeace.org/  (Veterans For Peace Homepage)





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