The Ismaili Centre Dubai. Photo: Gary Otte
A week ago I promised readers a story of one of my friends , who works in the same building as me, about the experience she had in Dubai during the March Darbar so here it is....
Yasmin's (name changed at her request) wish was to attend the original rumored December Dubai Darbar. She works for a division of Air Canada and so she planned to take a week off and use her passes to make her way to the much anticipated event. As it turned out December is a busy month and she could not get the time off and was given the alternative week of March spring break. Well as we all know that proved to be prescient as the actual Dubai visit and Darbar fell exactly on the days she was on holidays. She then got lucky with flights in March at an unbelievable rate on the internet - March Spring Break is virtually impossible for airline employees to use their passes - for her and daughter, who is pursuing a career in Early Childhood Education - this is important so remember this.
After the Darbar Yasmin was travelling in a car with a local Ismaili friend and as they were crossing a bridge he pointed at a structure saying it was the Ismaili Centre which MHI has opened earlier with the Dubai rulers. Though it was closed to visitors that day she made her friend drive there to take some pictures. She asked the guard to allow her to take some pictures and his reply was that he had to go ask a higher authority for permission. More negotiations followed and a second guard came and went back to ask his superior. On his return he looked her in the eye and said the only person who could authorize her entrance said to bring this lady and her daughter immediately inside and to boot, give them a full tour as they had travelled thousands of miles.
After the standard tour Yasmin and her daughter were taken to a different floor, from what I understand not part of the regular tour, where it looked like classrooms - as it turned out they were standing at the exact location where the Early Childhood Education program is to be delivered - Yasmin noticed her daughter eyes filled with tears and after probing her the young lady's first words were:
' Mom - I know exactly why we came here and I have decided what I want to do in my life is to one day teach right here'.
Now everyone in their own life has had some experience that confirms their faith and moreso strenghtens it and after listening to Yasmin - yes she was filled with emotion and sobbing uncontrollably - it is without a doubt, in my opinion, that Allah in his own way keeps reminding us mere mortals that he is in our hearts and that we simply need to allow him and his grace to enter our existence - whether it is when we are alone facing our own daily struggles and challenges or whether he is in spirit playing Dandia Raas with us.
So today's punch line is that why do we fear when faced with the unknown when the answers are simply within us - all you need is to find the light shining within yourself and look at life for what it is - a gift from Allah to be lived fully and with gusto.
Yesterday I met a gentleman who I know from my JK who has undergone 6 - count them six - surgeries for Cancer. I know him to be a very positive person and so I asked him how he manages to view life as such and without a blink he said:
' It is my faith - no matter how many challenges I am faced with I know fully in my heart that I am blessed by the grace of Allah and I have submitted completely to the will of the Almighty and that he knows the best road for me and will guide me accordingly - fear is not in my vocabulary'
I didn't ask him any more questions !!!
I think I'm becoming a Waezeen - anyhow let me know if you are ok with my thoughts on life though for those that know me you know I also love to enjoy the Duniya side of it...
I also met a couple in LA - Salim and Shabira are friends from Calgary - who have also been blessed with Allah's touch and have done something very special - call it giving back or call it generosity - either way it will warm your heart and you'll hear their story in a few days.
Zee's notes: I have never been to Dubai though it is probably the Number #1 destination in the world and for many it is at the top of their 'Things to do in my life' list - have a look at what has transpired there over the past decade...simply amazing !!!