03 February 2005

Knowingly on unknowingly all beings have within themselves the desire to praise.

Following from last weeks email-
“…we first need to learn that working in a multi-national company or making a lot of money is not what was meant to be our nature of existence."
This is a quote from some mail I received a few weeks ago.
What was meant to be our nature of existence? Is it possible to work in a multi-national company with good intentions and accomplish something worthwhile in life?
I believe that a justifiable reason for working in these places is so that we can acquire skills and master the ‘system’ with the intention of eventually bringing about change. The danger here is that you could get caught up and the next thing you know, it’s all over!
That’s why I’m keen on this idea of getting young Muslim professionals to network- to have some sort of long term plan will make things easier. But are we fooling ourselves- is it really our duty to change the world!
Changing the world may sound far fetched (and the first step is changing ourselves) but if we don’t dream big will we ever achieve it!

For lighter reading, here’s ‘The Life, Times, Thoughts and Other of Bilal’:

For the second time in my life I heard somebody use the word “yesterday” as an exclamation. It wasn’t the ‘yaasterdai’ that we had heard our Durban buddy using, but a more feminine ‘yistedey’ used by a chukette at work. Apparently the word has been in chucky’s vocab for generations! Normally used when wanting to express surprise or shock at something.

Wed is the best day of my week- board course the whole day so no work! But I’m getting worried now, times running out and I haven’t been able to get into full study mode- there’s just no time (yup, caught up in the ‘system’) and when there is, you just soo tired! Staring seriously from today ;-(

Thurs night I went for a MSA meeting. My first this year and it made me realise that it might appear to be different, but students and student work is the same everywhere… Don’t think I can do much here with work and everything, but it feels good to spend some time doing something worthwhile…

Fri we went to visit Laily who had just come back from hajj. Apparently the Saudis made the jamraats (shaytaans) bigger, wanaoozubillah! He gave us his whole story and ‘epic’ is the only word to describe it. He went as a guide so had a really unique experience- think I’m going to try and save up and go next year, InshaAllah. There’s a guy that might be going through Africa- sounds exciting! Wonder whether they’ll need an accountant on the journey…

Sat- my granny was here and had to take her to a function. It was the launch of a book on Ahmed Timol- He was an anti-apartheid activist who was thrown from the window of the police station at John Vorster Square. The cops at that time joked about it and said, “Koolis can’t fly!” I regret not staying for the function, but will make a point of getting the book. It’s a shame that many of us don’t know about him or have even heard the name before. It’s people like this who we should take lessons from.

Sat night went to the airport with all the guys. The night was really fun- been a long time since I laughed so hard and so much. These guys are really great company- Irfan, Ghoor, Zubair Habib, Zubair Laher, Ashfaq and Laily. After the airport we went for coffee to Melrose Arch (joburgs Milky Lane). All the Indians from lenz, benoni and a group of Mayfair clevers frequent this place. Don’t know why we went there- must be the ingrained Indian congregating mentality! Hooked another group of guys and played charades till late- probably looked like a bunch of idiots, but it was great fun!

Sunday morning had to wake up earlierish:( and take gran visiting. It’s amazing how many people she knows- thought it will never end! Met this really cool guy- his parents are my grannys friends so I was having a chat with him while she was visiting- he studied medicine in Egypt with my uncle for a while and then moved to UK where he studied English literature. He spent time in Russia and then Cuba studying politics. He is 40, has a gold earring and pony tail, has lived in a dozen countries and has never married! What a cool character- he is leaving for the Far East for a few months to assist with Tsunami relief efforts! Would be really cool spending more time chatting with him… He has no assets to his name and lives with his parents when he’s in SA, but he has lived an amazing life! Lucky guy! Or not?

Raed the Jordanian is here, done with his dissertation and heading back home. Met him Sunday night for supper, he is staying at Turkish house for a few weeks and writing some English exam. I was quite chaffed to see my name in his dissertation under ‘acknowledgements’. And I thought if an Arab, who hardly speaks English, can write a book then why can’t I!

Monday morning was just crap- woke up late, car hassled, mad traffic till work and when I get there, the client I was supposed to go to was postponed! Wasn’t too bad because then had most of the morning free. Met Moe Jada (Road trip-PE) for coffee and then a 2nd year took me out for lunch. Was a little worried about getting caught out for doing no work the whole day but nobody seemed to care!

Well, that’s what my last week has been like. For those who haven’t seen received this before- as you can see, you haven’t been missing out on much!

A regular email will be nice if you can find the time…

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