May 7, 2012
A few minutes after I wrote the last post I went to take a shower and get ready to start the day. By the time I was finished, things went horribly wrong; it’s like someone set the entire country on fire and I ended up staying home all day following what’s happening on television and social media websites. For those of you who don’t know, my country, Egypt has been going through difficult times since January of last year. The crisis ended well enough, but it reminded me of something I want to share with you.
Remember when we were little and we’d sit in a storm or a blackout and play cards or scrabble and have the time of our lives. I’m sure we all have many memories like that. Although children can get scared pretty easily and for things us adults would consider stupid, they also feel safe easily; just the presence of mom and dad is enough. A teddy bear is all the comfort in the world.
Unfortunately, when we grow up we lose this quality, we’re no longer afraid of the dark or the monster under the bed, but we have bigger fears and they’re more difficult to appease.
Once upon a time a great king held a contest between the two biggest artists in the land to paint him a picture that symbolizes peace and tranquility. Some days later his trusted counselor brings him both paintings. One of them depicts a beautiful sunset beyond a quiet lake surrounded by trees, very serene very beautiful. Both the counselor and the king admire the painting and how it makes them feel very peaceful. The counselor then presented the other painting saying ”my lord, there is nothing peaceful about this painting, perhaps the artist misunderstood the purpose of the contest.” The picture closely depicts a huge waterfall; violent and roaring. The king ordered the artist to appear in front of the royal court. The artist came, and the king demanded and explanation for his mistake. The artist replied ”your majesty there was no mistake. If you look more closely behind the waterfall you can see a hole in the rocks and inside it a bird peacefully sleeping in its nest not caring about the splashing torrent around it.” The king thought for a minute and then said ”this painting wins the contest, true peace and tranquility doesn’t come from the surroundings but from within. Peace is a feeling not a circumstance!”