Antithesis [Archives:2008/1163/Community]

May 12 2008

By: Hanan Abdulrahman
A fortune cookie once told me that in dealing with the big bad world in each of our lives, we're the pirates of our own vessel. Have we been put to the ultimate sailing test when we become part of the divine depths, tiny vessels floating in a larger expanse?

As far as one can tell, I guess the answer is yes because nothing in life is a piece of cake – not even the cake itself because sweetness always has some bitterness about it.

Life is just such a struggle because nothing we experience can give us ultimate joy and satisfaction. There's always an impediment along the way, no matter how smooth it seems to be, but I assume this is how life was divinely designed. Good things come, along with their complete opposites, in order to give them that much more value.

Ironically, it seems that we've adapted to such contrast quite well, actually, even learning to be in contrast with ourselves regarding the fundamental values and principles for which we claim to stand. How creative of us!

Antithesis has become a part of everything. Think about it: war versus peace, faith and terrorism, wealth and famine, democracy versus dictatorship, law versus government It's impressive, right?

Aren't humans the best manipulators in a universe filled with millions upon millions of organisms? Among all of them, they should be awarded for their impeccable skills in making everyone believe their lies.

I'm sure everyone is familiar with the international facade the rich and powerful have created to rule and wallow in luxury. You know, taking advantage of every possible circumstance for their personal benefit.

So many terms they carefully make up to back up their games: legislation, politics, democracy, justice, civil rights, etc. Isn't it funny? How beautifully they decorate their words to fool the fools so that they can take what doesn't belong to them and pave paths of gold for their rich, filthy feet to walk.

But wait, haven't you noticed that the word “powerful” is always attached to the word “rich,” like they're best friends or something? So, I guess all one has to do is make good money and then you'll receive power for free – two for the price of one. Or is it the other way around? I'm confused.

Anyway, sometimes when I'm listening to them, I'm almost inclined to believe that we're all supposed to be guarded by rights, regardless of our ethnicity, color or religion, and that it's their duty to offer us and protect these rights.

For a few moments, I start thinking that maybe there's some good left in the systems that run our lives, but then I flip the channel, turn on the news and there it is – reality hitting me right in the face!

The brave and honest no longer are found. Children in many countries are oblivious to the word “innocence;” it hasn't made it into their vocabulary, possibly because they've suffered more than one lifetime can endure.

Families are estranged in the most heart wrenching ways covering the horizon with a blanket of sadness. While one is throwing away perfectly edible food, another is staring at a bakery window wishing he could have a bite of what he knows he can't afford.

Children working at age 7 or under are deprived of basic education, while some travel the world and change their cars twice a year.

There's a contrast alright, but it's not the kind God intended. It's not a good type of contrast that helps us appreciate things in life. This is downright injustice created by human hands – or at least allowed by them.

The balance of life as it should be has flipped and the world makes little if no sense to me anymore. It's a mess and as an ordinary citizen who doesn't have all that much money or power, I feel helpless.

All we can do is watch in anger, maybe protest, boycott or pen a complaint while everything spirals downward. However, nothing changes nd it hasn't in a long time.

So, where are the ones in authority who can make a change? They're too busy doing other things. What things? Don't ask.