The Simple Act Is Not So Simple

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

By the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


Simple acts, according to my experience, are descriptive of a person’s inner thoughts, provided the right time and surroundings. I will try to prove it to you– as logically as possible.

     This may sound familiar if you ever read “the Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell.  I only read the chapter of “Broken Window Theory,” which was required for some class in college. I had a different experience, regarding this idea, than most of the students in the class, as well as the instructor. Combining the idea with my experience, I came to argue against the whole class that the theory suggests that people are intrinsically bad and evil, and they only want to find an escape. People liked the theory, but they hated what I said. What happened was what classically happens; the crowd of idiots wins. I had a difficulty explaining my position, partially because of I wasn’t given enough time to talk, but also because I developed this thought with very little words—mostly by relations and imaginary experiments. If I sound crazy for you already, don’t try to understand me; just, may be, try to understand what I say.

Capturing some of those unworded thoughts, I find it interesting how a human being can test himself against the odds of life before they ever happen. Even if they never happen, they can be passed on to next generations of thinkers. Standing in a neighborhood where a house with a broken window is found, a man is not “forced” to steal and break other windows. The man is solely liberated from the shackles of blame for doing something immoral. At that point it is the man’s choice what to do. There is no triggering of a behavior, as people say. It is actually a triggering of a quick thought and an examination of the surroundings. The man, afterwards, advances with whatever his person tells him to do.

The elements of the environment that triggers those quick thoughts and drops some of the shackles of moral obligations are not necessarily limited to broken windows. The amount of liberation is not also maximized every time. Those elements (or perhaps the states of those elements) can be cars, crowd motions, amount of people surrounding them, day of time, another human being and how they look, or even the amount of power in the man’s hand. The amount of liberation is can range from complete freedom to commit every single major sin in the book of Allah, Almighty,  to merely the use of your brother’s laptop without asking permission. Now that I think about it, the state of elements can also place extra shackles on the person experiencing them; like becoming shy, perhaps.

So far I have claimed that the theory is falsely attributed to triggering of a behavior not a triggering of a thought, that the severity of the behavioral change–that results from the thought– can be insignificant and can be extreme, and that the elements that trigger the thoughts can be any elements of any states in the environment. This is a generalization and abstraction of the theory, that allows me to transition to my point. What I have came to is that we can find indicators of a person’s inner thoughts based on their reaction of to certain event, or their observation of a certain elements. Those thoughts, as a result, can describe the person’s character, but not necessarily accurately. But they allow us to think about the human being as a thinker, not a reactor. People think, even if they are “unconscious” of their quick thoughts. I am not claiming anything. Thoughts can be very quick that, if you don’t take your time to question yourself, you might not know ever that you were actually thinking; hence not unconscious.

This thought is very interesting and useful. It aids me in many ways in understanding people around me, which is a thing that I do and I cannot help it. I should note that people’s eyes and bodies speak. I knew that, and I have used it. But some one put me in a very difficult situation that I came to wonder whether I am a sane person or actually completely out of my mind (I think I’m in the middle, if I may say).  That person drove me crazy. I fell in a sea of thoughts. Before I go insane (and get hemorrhoid from sitting all day), I decided to go out for a walk. It was 12:15 am. I got out of my building, and noticed an overcast of a woman (or a girl, if you will), walking on the curb, 300 feet away, through the dim light of the street. The light was dim; so, I could merely see a general morph and reminiscent of her. As a Muslim, you may know, I didn’t stare at her, either, because I am not allowed to. Anyways, I walked towards my car, to take some water out of the trunk. I looked back at her general direction, intending to walk at the direction she is coming from. When she came close to me, she looked at me, and scratched her head. This is a simple act, but the way she scratched her head and timing indicate that she is in trouble or scared from something; running from something. I almost asked, “what’s wrong?” But that wasn’t of my business. Beside, I might be really delusional as that person said or implied. So, I walk. At the corner of the street, I see a guy rushing left and right, with worry all over his face. I know it was him that she was running from. I stopped, before crossing the street. But he was quicker to ask me, “bro, did you see a skinny girl walking this way?” and pointed in the direction I came from. I stood their for good three seconds, then said, “yes.” I don’t know whether she stole something from him or if he is trying to kidnap her. But I don’t remember the guy’s face– nor the girl’s on that note. I thought for few seconds, and realized that he didn’t know where she was going. I tried to run after them, but they disappeared. Anyways; I was not delusional as I was told.
My theory really works. Thanks to Allah, who made me go through this incident. I am not delusional. I am smart enough to infer some unuttered things–not everything, but somethings. That person who called me delusional is wrong; and they know it.

I don’t mean to be arrogant, even if it comes like it. I welcome criticism and advice, anytime and all the time.

If made a mistake, then it is solely mine and the shaytan’s. If I said something correct, it is from the support and guidance of Allah.

AlhamduliEllah

-Mutaz

“A Shooting Star Is the Only Sign,” They Say

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

By the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

     It is a habit of mine that sometimes, if I wanted to talk to someone, I imagine how the conversation would go. I keep running the conversation in my mind. A while ago I realized something. I kept imagining a conversation, and as much I talked, there was no response. I projected some scenarios, but none of them makes sense. I didn’t know that person well, unfortunately. I’ve never talked to that person or to anyone who knows them—at least not about them. They would just be their silent, staring at me while I’m talking once and once again; every time—no response. I guess I am not smart enough nor crazy enough. It made me think, nonetheless,:

Some people don’t hesitate to make assumptions about what God, with all of his wisdom and collective knowledge, would do in response to what they say. The simplest example is when they say, if God was here, He should send a shooting star right away. But how they know? They don’t. It is just their arrogance that makes them say so. Many signs exist just behind the corner of their ego. It doesn’t only seem inappropriate, but also illogical. I cannot fathom another human’s thoughts, but they claim to have a comprehensive knowledge of God’s ways—without even having a connection with Him. Well, it’s absurd. It is also fundamentally idiotic if you calculate the consequences.

However, it is just like Allah said, in Surat Al-Hajj,

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يُجَادِلُ فِي اللَّهِ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ وَلَا هُدًى وَلَا كِتَابٍ مُّنِيرٍ (8)
ثَانِيَ عِطْفِهِ لِيُضِلَّ عَن سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ ۖ لَهُ فِي الدُّنْيَا خِزْيٌ ۖ وَنُذِيقُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ عَذَابَ الْحَرِيقِ (9)

Which means, according to Saheeh International’s translation of the meaning of the Qura’an,

8. And of the people is he who disputes about Allah without knowledge or guidance or an enlightening book [from Him],

9. Twisting his neck [in arrogance] to mislead [people] from the way of Allah. For him in the world is disgrace, and We will make him taste on the Day of Resurrection the punishment of the Burning Fire [while it is said],

     Nothing to be said after what Allah said. So, I close here by confessing that no falsehood has been said in here but from myself and the shaytan. And no correct thing has been said except by the support and guidance of Allah.

AlhamduliEllah.

-Mutaz

What is beauty?

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

By the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

     I look at the blue vast sky, and I think it is beautiful. I wonder why I think that. I read a piece of writing, awhile ago, where the author argued that aesthetics are standardized, just like scientific facts are. Guess what? I disagree. Aesthetics and beauties are not standardized. May be there are ideas that people agree on, but they are not standards. Some people look at a piece of art and speaks to them; it tells them a story, and reminds them with an experience that they have been through. Others look at them and think, “what a piece of trash.” Both things happened to me.

I was finishing my homework in applied math course, where we had to draw the phase diagram of some differential equation, which is just a graph if you want to know. It was ugly and unpleasant to the eyes–wavy lines and arrows that are scrambled together– but only from one angle. From the other angle, it is a beautiful piece of art that represents a seemingly lifeless equation; it was also the off spring of my mind, the product of my efforts, and the end of my pursuit. I felt happy, regardless of its insignificance–well I’m childish, and I don’t care. But that gets the mind thinking, “why is the blue sky beautiful?” I think because it represents life and freedom. Everybody loves to be free and alive. I guess that is it. Ideas that are provoked, consciously or not, are what makes beautiful things beautiful. I went one step ahead of myself. To see where that can go from here.

I have ugly friends. Not all of them are ugly, but I do have some. I’m, too; I’m ugly. However, when I see them, they are beautiful–not really, but I’m very happy to see them. I guess that what happens. When we love someone, they become the standard of beauty. They are beautiful, perfect, and flawless. Whatever isn’t them, is not as beautiful. Yes, we would see flaws in them, sometimes,  and try to correct them, but upon a glance, there is nothing but beauty. This is how I examine whether I love someone or not. If they have a clear flaw that my little brain can see, I conclude I don’t love them. But, hey, most people are beautiful–to an extent. I guess I love them all–to an extent. That reminds me with something else. There is am Arab poet who once said something that is along the lines of “If you love, love to an extent; for you don’t know if you are tearing it out. If you hate, hate for an extent; for you don’t know if you come back.” So, be careful whom you love. You don’t want to beautify an evil thing.

If I made a mistake, it’s due to me and the shaytan. If I was correct, it’s due to Allah.
In fact, all thanks are due to Allah, the Merciful.

-Mutaz

A Theory about Movies, by Consumed Mind.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

By the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

     Acting is one admirable field. It is intriguing how a person can impersonate a different character and takes them to the extreme. It is a very admirable ability to be able to lose every reminiscence of yourself and take a different form. That is something I don’t know if I can do. However, this is not my problem with movies. The problem I see in movies is that there is, for a lack of better expression, a barrier between what happens in the movies and the viewers’ thoughts and beliefs. A viewer is given the perspective of the main characters. The editing of the scenes makes the view support this perspective, even if they think that, in reality, the main character is evil. They make the viewer roots for them, and there is no way you can change what is happening inside the movie. As absurd as it might be, most of the people do not have the ability to question what they see, especially kids.

I am not trying to talk about the dangers of movies on kids, but I am trying to establish a thought on how we consume movies. A popular saying on the internet is “I finished watching a series, and now I don’t know what to do with my life.” Hahah–we laughed. But actually, there is a fundamental observation that lies in here. As a person who experienced depression, not severely alhamduliEllah,  I could see some angle of it. I used to watch movies to experience other people’s life. I watched movies to be able to add to my experiences without having to leave home. I watched one after the other, and I watched series too.  I saw a seen that I morally completely disagree with. The movie showed the seen as moral and desirable. Then I thought about it. I realized that watching movies has not only exhausted me spiritually and morally. It consumed me intellectually, and hindered me socially. Many ideas were forced on me through watching single-lens movies. I started watching the movies with open eyes. Guess what? It is not as fun. It is still enjoyable when you relax and not think about it. You can see that a good majority of the ideas in those movies are based on false beliefs and dangerous ideals.

Here is a conversation that might be related.

I talked to a classmate whom some people ridiculed for being careless about classes. I got concerned because I know where this might come from, but I said nothing.  I talked to him at the end of the semester, and it turned out he suffered from kind of depression. I hope it is not sever. After exams, I contacted him to see how he was doing, he told me “great”. I said, “don’t watch movies”. He asked, “did I tell you I watch a lot of movies? Because I do.” I told him, “no  you didn’t. You didn’t have to; I know how it feels.” He said, “yes, it is like an escape from reality,” which I agreed on. I found that writing thoughts and arranging them are way better than avoiding them. Those thoughts might come handy late in life, at least in helping a colleague.

 

May Allah grants us all guidance. If I made a mistake, it is from myself and the shaytan (satan), and if I was correct it is surely from Allah.

AlhamduliEllah.

 

-Mutaz

An Outlet for My Thoughts

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

By the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

“I think, therefore, I am,” said René. I want to be. Therefore, I think. Therefore, I am. One issue was present in the my conquest of thoughts. It gets crowded sometimes up there, in my brain. Lots of thoughts collapse to create advanced ones–others cancel out each others’. It is good to be able to shovel those thoughts. How to display them to the people is another matter that needs different types of skills other than clever observations and critical analysis. When I used to talk to people, my thoughts are best describe like my face: tolerable but unattractive. ‘cuz da beauty im de heart.  I don’t know where I’m going with this, I didn’t think about this one. Tomorrow I’ll comeback much stronger– if Allah wills of course.

One more thing, tolerate my thoughts. Question them, but don’t call them bad boys. I love them, they are my little pets. 😦

Thanks to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds

-Mutaz