Thursday, 26 January 2012

Carrying the torch through

"While Scaf has the guns as well as the power of state media and de facto authority, and the Islamists have their grassroots appeal through their religiously charged rhetoric, the revolutionaries have nothing but their dogged determination and their unwavering conviction that justice will in the end prevail. As such, they are decidedly a force that cannot be ignored. The new parliament will soon have to choose on which side it will finally be."
Amira Nowaira
Read more: 

(Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images) 

Egyptian protesters hold up an obelisk with the names of those killed during last year's uprising, at a huge rally in Tahrir Square on January 25, 2012, marking the first anniversary of the uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak as a debate raged over whether the rally was a celebration or a second push for change.  
Mustafa el Salmawy 

And so the 25th January 2012 ~ an unerring perseverence to carry the obelisk and light up the square not unlike an Olympic torch that must not be put out before it reaches its rightful destination.

Extreme Islamists, having coaxed the poor with provisions and promises through their charitable work in the hope of gaining votes went a step further in an attempt to form a coalition with the army who is presently not in favour due to its betrayal of the protestors. Consequently the majority of the people marching through the city ignored the more or less cordoned areas the party  'Justice and Freedom' had engaged and proceeded in their millions to walk the length of the greater part of the city from El-Mansheya to destination point Sidi Gaber Military Headquarters.
photo by Ahmed Ali Ghoneim Fares

a giddy angle of the march. evocative of the perseverence and enthusiasm among the people celebrating and avering their stance since 25th Januray 2011

The revolution will not fail
The malice and spite of the people who try to hijack its cry for personal gain will not be tolerated for longer than need be. The hope shines through in spirits that are untainted, in attitudes that battle against adulterated compromise.

all march with heads held high

Friday, 20 January 2012

Ta7reer flame kept alight

People need nourishment; FACT. But along with that fact we remain aware that 'nutriment' alone cannot fulfill their need. The children depicted starving in Africa over the past decades keep on doing so. There are reasons that go beyond food that contribute to this unbearable, evil aspect of humanity. It has been noted, not only in such decrepit conditions but even in the most prestigiously wealthy ones in the world that a child requires not only nourishment through food but very significantly through nurture. Nurture involves the stomach as does nourishment; organs of the body will gather strength and health through well-being and wholesome emotion or more tritely put through 'heart and soul'. 
Similarly, greater than physical strength is the awakening of a spirit and the resilience it bears within to remain so.

Bread feeds the body, indeed, but flowers feed also the soul." - The Koran

When spiritual growth, within or without particular religious parameters can be allowed to express itself and when tolerance is commended rather than tossed aside, the world as we know it might indeed be closer to heaven than hell.

But with spiritual decline manifesting itself in extreme reactions on both sides of religious argument, propaganda finds cause to thrive. In the age we live, we are all individually defined as either for or against religion regardless of essence and all anyone can do is hope to tap into their own personal sanctuary for  balanced thought and inner equilibrium.
"An angry man is not fit to pray." Yiddish Proverb.
"Anger is as a stone cast into a wasp's nest." Malabar Proverb

       Expression, skilled or otherwise are all part of our human propensity and it is this very need and ability that propels us forward as human beings. 
In the words of John Keats:
"The poetry of the earth is never dead."
We cannot put too high a price on any expression that finds its way into lifting the human spirit.
But for wings to sprout, dreams must be kept alive and like moonlit stars lift the darkness of night.

Should Egypt appear to stray it will somehow get back on track and it will continue to reach for the stars. The depraved economy and the currents that fight against its development and progress may well continue to present devastating scenarios and it is for this very reason that the spirit of the nation has to be kept sunlit and watered so as to survive.

Perhaps Egypt has, to its great advantage, valuable lessons in history, but these are often buried in the subconscious of a nation. When the threads of memory surface to combine with aspiration, the song only then  may begin to feel complete.
Reem Kelani

And for a peek into portrayal through Spanish eyes, namely Miguel Angel Sanchez's, here's the perspectively enhanced interview between eminently acclaimed journalists Alexandre Buccianti and Yossri Fouda:

Art itself may be said to live in spite of all attempts to stifle it and returns the favour by keeping us

photos: amiraT

Respect the Spring bud ...

.. that grows in the desert.
Just like thinking outside the box allows ideas to breathe it also helps ideologies continue to pulsate.
Conventional negative responses may fill us with despondency and yet they are wherever we turn. For every person wishing Egypt maintain its dignity and grow in strength there must be at least the equivalent if not ten-fold who believe it is far cleverer to assume the worst. This observation is not restricted to outsiders but applies to individuals and constituents in Egypt itself, many who believe it their right to pilfer from the state for services rendered. 
And yet the revolution did occur, sparked by an unadulterated cry for change. May it remain unforgotten, undismissed. Respect for its source must remain.
In a most insightful article in the Guardian, titled: 
'Egypt's revolution has been misread', Khaled Abdullah writes:
"There are three main poles of power in Egypt: the army, the Islamists and the revolution. No single event is powerful enough to obliterate the influence of any one of them. Only time can. The real question is: whose ideology is most resilient?"
"As people take their seats in parliament on 23 January, deep down they will know that it is blood that got them there."...

Astutely, those who have tapped into directing efforts into helping the starving and deprived are perhaps those who may well impose religious sanctions upon the nation if they were ever to find themselves in a position of firmly established power. Moderately inclined political members must indeed begin to focus or lose out ~ in the short term at the very least.

"If the Islamists can bring that future in one choppy parliament, expect the future to be theirs, deservedly. But presuming they can't; it will be civil society that writes the future, as the street finds ways to organise itself and build its vision"  
Read more:
photo: amiraT
The Egyptian spirit has always had an integral sense of  directing energy towards aiding the most down and out through community spirit and good old-fashioned methods of direct donation and support. This would appear to have been on the decline in recent years and the Ta7reer episodes of affirmed unison served as acute reminders; innate expressions of visible support and thereby laying emphasis on infinite possibilities for change.
But now in the aftermath and sense of limbo felt nationwide there appears to remain the ongoing antithesis of this very ideal. With the sudden surges of apparent great wealth preceding the revolution; grand statements in the public domain still appear to claim precedence over any other national enterprise. This fake aggrandisement does little more than add to the already substantial confusion and bewilderment among those struggling most. Simplicity is abandoned in favour of pomp, contributing  nothing to the basic upholding edifices of the nation. These serve as mere distractions; imported costly frills depleting even further a struggling economy. Currents that fight against conscientious development and progress may well bring about more devastating scenarios than the country has ever known and it is for this very reason that the spirit of the revolution must remain strong in order to survive.

photo: amiraT
Egypt has a very long way to go. With hardship and insecurity the more self-serving in a community care less for its spirit and the echoing after-shocks of revolution are but hindrances. All would be lost were there not a counteracting force, a spirit greater and more resilient that still spurts feverishly through; perhaps most visible in spontaneous expression, a flourish of art, in all its forms, uninhibited creative thinking outside the box.

  And like the common garden plant that leans towards the sun and reaches for the rain, without expression of thought, dreams and hopes, a nation would be little more cherishable than a barren piece of land. 

When a heart is grateful it is also replenished. Here is a cheerful 'thank you' of sweet sorrow. 'Shukran' from a duo depicting Egyptian spirit. Thanks to those who have passed, those present and with a hopeful look to the future, a light-hearted rendering, poignantly illustrative: Mohamed Abdel-3al Mado and Wael 3amer.