Friday, January 16, 2009

From Sami Awad:

In this period I did not take on an opportunity to travel to the peace research village in Tamera Portugal and be with a group of close friends that are engaging in a deep process to build what will be a Peace Research Village (PRV) in the Middle East…. For many reasons I was not able to travel, today I sent them the following reflection:

Dear beloved, dear community…

… I acknowledge that I am doing nothing and acknowledge that my presence here is not providing any relief to those in Gaza who are suffering or in the West Bank who are growing in hopelessness.

My presence here is mostly important for my internal development and growth and in preparing for the future, a future where real opportunities for peaceful coexistence based on equality are made available to all. Since this war on Gaza began, I have been in a deep process to distinguish my own emotions and reactions and even interpretations and identity from the reality, but more important it has been a process to distinguish the nails in my feet from my responsibilities for the future.

I hear and sense the pain and my heart breaks with the cry of every mother or father that lost a child or a child that lost a parent. At one point every time I saw a child from Gaza on television I saw the face of my daughters, Layaar or Larina.

The emotion is there, but I can not, and do not, allow it to take over my being as I also can not, and do not, allow for my ego to do the same. I have no answers to deal with the “now”; I have no ability to prevent a bomb from falling on a house “now”; I can blame and complain and grow deeper in pity and hopelessness, but that will only place me back in the cocoon of victimization and powerlessness. I can come up with an analysis on who started it and who is responsible, but that will only relief me from my responsibility, as a human… as a being.

I will not ask why? Why only creates more questions than answers… I will only ask: what can I do to create deep and real transformation in healing? Not only to heal the victim but the victimizer as well.

I get emails and calls from all around the world from people, who in the best of intentions are sharing their sympathy, disgust, pity, sadness, rage, hopelessness or anger to what is happening. So many people ask me “what can we do to help now?” I have no answer for them as I have no answer for myself that I can put in a public conversation and would make sense. My answers are now in my own internal process and internal conversation and in me declaring that I am fully responsible for what is happening.

The answer lies in the things that I know; and I have begun to distinguish them in my own self. The answer also lies in the things I know that I don’t know and I seek deeper knowledge in these things… This said I also acknowledge that that greatest answers are in what I truly seek to discover; the things that I don’t know I don’t know…

All I know is that we need to continue building our models… models of leadership that are committed to a future that goes beyond everyone’s imagination, models of relationships that break all barriers and identities, models of self organizing community living that are truly based on creating relationships of deep trust, respect and transparency at all levels and in all circumstances.

There is no easy path but there is no impossible path as well. My prayers are with you and my heart is full of joy in knowing that the future is always ready for us to paint our drawings on it in the colors we chose.

In peace and love,


As I completed this letter I got a call from my uncle (mother’s brother) in Gaza. He has his wife, three children and another aunt living with him. The fighting is now in the street where they live and their building is under attack. They are not able to escape. I heard a cousin crying in the background. I stay and live and am in hope.

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