When Worth Is Questioned

Assessing a Lifetime Core Value

I would like first to thank all the friends who were supporting me during my low mood episode. Admitting I am moody person, whose happiness is highly linked to his surrounds, I admit too my mood fluctuation are commonly unjustified to most of people. It is the poet deep inside me. No matter how much I try being rational, he always win with his dominant nature over the man, the warrior and the social philosopher in me.

My low wave was triggered by a discussion here, it was not about what anyone commented, the comments of one of my friends here were the trigger. A back-wave that pulled me into deep thoughts, then the thoughts was deepening and extending until sorrows prevailed. Only when I started to question a lifetime value I lived with, a very precious one, that is LOVE. Not in its narrow meaning, but in the widest one. Loving people in general, loving everyone until otherwise gets proved. The style of getting attached to people swiftly and sympathizing with them fast enough to create their doubts. I started to question the worth of this value, and when I looked back in history, I found a heritage of tragedy. The tragedy of men, who loved their nation and their country, and happened to be Egyptians, or semi-Egyptians.

Flashback 1: Cairo, 15th of April, 1517 AD
After he lost the majority of his army in "Wardan" battle, the Mameluke Sultan "Tuman Bai" decided to escape to Behira. Wherein he had a good Egyptian friend who is a local community leader in his village. The Sultan who accepted the sultanate in a very critical time, and who fought as a courageous knight in "Raydania" and "Wardan", defending Egypt against the creeping Turkish army lead by "Selim the First", decided to trust his Egyptian friend. He then escaped to Behira, where he attended to a local village leader named "Hussein Mari'e". The later welcomed him first, then sent a secret message to "Selim the First", betraying his guest, and the man who defended him and his nation. The Egyptian betrayed the foreign courageous Mameluke. How shameful!! And we all know the destiny of "Tuman Bai" hanging on Zewila gate of old Cairo.
Flashback 2: Cairo in 1835 AD. Remila Square
An old man stands tied-up to a pillar in the middle of Remila square, only before the well targeted guns of the French troops of Bonaparte. The man is "Muhammad Kurayem", the governor of Alexandria, who was a wealthy man, spent his wealth preparing to resist the French armies invasion to his city. Once Alexandria, then Cairo were captured by French armies, they brought him from Alexandria to Cairo, fake a court whereby the judge gave a death penalty to the patriot leader, only with an option to pay a small fortune as a tribute against his life. The man who spent his own fortune supporting resistance was first happy with this. He thought his people will never give-him-up, they will pay him back. Accordingly he asked to meet the nationalists' leader, Shiekh "Ahmed Mahrouky", asking him to collect the tribute required to save his life. Unsurprisingly, "Mahrouky" failed to collect the money. The poor "Kurayem" called for help for a long two weeks until the probation period granted to him was gone.

Then, he was brought to Remila square to face his destiny. And until the last moment, the poor "Kurayem" was trying with the flood of people, those who clustered to witness his execution, saying to them "Buy me O' Muslims, Buy me O' Egyptians". Sadly no one was interested to go for this deal, buying a man who paid his last penny to his nation welfare. "Kurayem" then, received 6 shots right in his chest. After it, they beheaded him, then displayed his cut-off head in Cairo streets for hours. "Kurayem" died, only because he loved this nation, spent his fortune supporting it, and saved nothing to secure his neck. If you asked a young man today, who is "Muhammad Kurayem", he will surely confuse him with that singer boy whose name is closed when written in Arabic. Right?
Flashback 3: Tall-Kebier, Sharqia, 13th of September, 1882 AD
"Ahmed Pasha Orabi". The revolution leader to whom we owe the first Egyptian Constitution and the first mango tree!! In that particular day, he was preparing his army in Tall Kebier desert of Sharqia, trying to face the invading British army. Shamefully, his Arab desert guide, "Said Tahawy" was bribed by British army, and at the promised night, he told "Orabi" that British troops were 2 nights away from him. While "Orabi" was praying his sunrise prayer, and while the Egyptian army was relaxed, the British attacked with the first light. "Orabi" was amazed, how "Sultan Pacha", the Commander of Sawari who was in advance position did not resist their flow as planned, and did not send an alarm to "Orabi" as planned also? He did not know that Sultan got 10,000 golden pounds from the British army to runaway with his troops toward north, leaving the passage to the army open. He did not realize also that "Ali Khonfis" lead the British to the entrances of his own camp valley against 2000 golden pounds! Betrayal is a constant behavior among some people in all nations, and this was not what amazed me in Orabi's case.

When Kedeve allied with British army, he got a "Fatwa" from Istanbul, stating that "Orabi" as a "Kafer" who fought against the Caliph of Apostle and against Islam army!! Oh, that old is the idolatry accusation of patriots?!! At that early time they considered British troops to be Mujahedeen while "Orabi" is an idolater? Only like when we give the title "Mujahedeen" to Afghani militias trained by CIA. And until today, some idiot mongols claim the Turks empire to be Caliphate and the Sultans to be the viceroys of Apostle!! Anyway, this was expected from Caliph and his son of a bitch Kedeve, to protect their asses. What was shameful, is having some Egyptian farmers, receiving "Orabi" after he came back from his exile in Ceylon, carrying the first mango tree, receiving him with stones!! Yes, they had thrown stones at him. Isn't he an Idolater? Other sophisticated cowards, blamed "Orabi" as his movement resulted in British occupation, they did not blame Caliph, Kedeve, or the betraying officers. They blamed the patriot who was broken. Only like we blame Nasser today for 1965, Yemen, and 1967 wars. We do not blame the Arab monarchies pimping activities, allying with the Satan himself against Nasser in these wars!!!

Flashback 4: Cairo, September 1970.
Upon death of President Nasser, "Tawfiq Hakiem" launched an initiative. He published an article in Ahram daily press, calling Egyptians to donate small trivial, every family might donate 1 pound, in order to craft a statue of the deceased national hero. To be placed in Tahrir square, or over the base of De Lesseps statue, on Suez Canal entrance from Port-Said. Ahram dedicated an account for this purpose, and Hakiem started by himself paying 50 L.E. as a donation. Later-on, 3,000,000 L.E. were donated from Egyptian families in that account to memorize the legendary hero. Later, handed from Ahram to the account of National Socialist Attorney Office. Needless to mention, the statue had never been crafted, and De Lesseps base remained empty, to witness our ungratefulness. If the couple of successors after Nasser were men enough, they would not have feared the glory of a dead man. Moreover, a decision was taken by National Assembly in October 1970, to transform Nasser's "own" house in Manshiet Bakery to a museum for him. His family did not accept to get any money for the house, they donated it. Today, where is the museum?
Catastrophically, in 2004, the government decided to sell the single statue we had for Nasser, a small one donated by "Gamal Seginy" after his death. They decided to sell it in an auction!!! Fortunately,"Riad Essa", who is a Nationalist writer bought the statue before the scandal of an auction takes place.

The Value:
I do not claim any nobility here. I do not love people because I am a "giving person by nature" or a "saving angel". Neither I am the one who you can express as "sharing and caring". Justly, I have a hobby, this hobby is people. I adore the magnificent humankind that God invented to crown his hierarchy of creatures and his universes. By loving people, I meant I love to know them, analyze them, talk to them, mingle with them and-whenever possible- help them. Again and again, I do not do this out of nobility, I do this because I enjoy it. I do it for self satisfaction, i.e. selfish deeds. OK?

I love to see people happy, because this makes me happy myself. I seek my pleasure through pleasing others. Whatever you call, it is a God damn nature I have and I can not change...so far at least. Although, whenever necessary I can be tough sometimes, I tend generally to make people around me pleased as far as possible, and enjoy being with happy ones. I try doing this at home, work, with friends, in social gatherings...etc. I do it using my words, deeds, touches and support. However, I admit on-other-hand, I turn into a wounding sword with people who loose my respect or trigger my madness.
The Confusion:
My problem with this loving attitude is very simple, it did not do me any good! Yes, I get usually a momentary happiness, but on long term, I get doubts, misunderstandings, hatred and sometimes embarrassing situations, up to spending a night in jail!! huh. I am sure some of you had experienced such situations. When you are being kind to any one. First, he wonders, why this guy is kind to me? Once he realizes you have no possible benefits, this does not resolute the matter. He starts to hate the fact you are helping him. Unconsciously, this makes him feels weak and needy. He hates this, and accordingly, hates you.

Concomitant with the discussions about Nasser here, I had some events in business, that proved to me the necessity of revising my policies in people management, those built since years over the base of trusting and empowering others. When you treat someone superbly and find him trying to stab you in the back, it gets you a hill of pain. Even if he could not complete his stab, and even if you managed to get him a strong knock-out. Before both, mental and business incidences, a dear friend, upon his marriage from a fanatic Coptic lady, he vanished away from his secular Muslim friend. I understand her motive and her way of thinking, and can never blame her. But I had never understood him, as he used to be a friend with whom I shared a wide foreground of ideology and principles. Friendship and ideology are all gone with the wind for a woman!! Most confusing, in the few times my positive feeling and attitude toward others paid-back positively, the other part were NON Egyptians !!! I thought alot about what links our society to imperfections reacting to positive attitudes, and did not find a curing and comforting explanation till now. Then, if loving a nation payback negatively, loving people gets you blames and hatred, loving friends ends in your lonliness, and loving a woman ends in pain. Then why you should insist to love others? Why not to learn enjoying yourlife alone?!! Or learn to live it apart from a society that you can not mingle with? Anyone who reads this article, will be amazed the author of it, is the same Nasserist man who was oneday very touchy when anyone criticize his country or his people. To an extent of asking a lady oneday, upon her verbal insult to Egypt, to apologize to all the Egyptians there or leave the car to the middle of Sinai desert!! To what extent can age and people change the good sides within us? I really wish to know.

Finally, I know I am generalizing and looking on the empty half allover this post. Yet, I wanted to share with you my feelings as raw as it is. Without making it up with logical limitations. I surely know there are alot of good people in our country still. But how good they are? How far they will keep being good? This is the matter.


mahmoud said...

Dear Dr. Eyad,
your article couldn't have come in a more appropriate time for me.! now I'm really depressed.
setting here on the other side of the Atlantic thinking of the same thing.
why do we insist in loving others?!
excellent question..
after reading your profile I was about to ask you that very question, only to find out after reading your post that we are in the same boat..and it seems to be a very very big boat because we have a big company here.
the troubling news is..it is not exclusive to Egypt or Egyptians.
dear Eyad, here they say the grass is always greener on the other side.
but when you get there you will find out it,s just as bad or worse.
I,m coming to a conclusion now
its probably me who is at fault may be I'm looking for idealism that only exist in my head or may be I'm selfish and ask for too much..may be people don't want me to be good to them, may be I should change my ways, may be may be may be, I don't know anymore.
tell me you are the doctor.
please accept my best regards

ايوية said...

مقتطفات من التاريخ حول الخيانة
لية مجرد سوال فية فى تاريخنا ما هو اعظم من ذلك

Dr. Eyad Harfoush said...

Dear Mahmoud,
Very sorry to initiate your depression... I am sorry, really sometimes one must not spread his agonies. I do not expect a paradise, specially in the US. But, the times I had a gratitute from the other were all with Europeans fellows. I have no explanation of that. It can be only the chance.

Dr. Eyad Harfoush said...

عزيزتي أيوية
التاريخ فعلا مليء بالتضحيات و العظمة ، لكن نحن ، ماذا قعلنا لنكرم العظماء و نرد الجميل؟ هل قعلنا ما فيه الكفاية؟ هل خصصنا أرض سيناء المميزة مثلا لأسر الشهداء الأمجاد الذين بذلوا الدم على رمالها؟ تحياتي و تقديري

Arabic ID said...

Dr. Eyad

I understand your feelings, actually giving people are very sensitive ones, as they expose their hearts to the factors of life and to the hands of others, but what made us is that, even we gathered pain, we will look in the other side and find grateful people who without mention respects and understands our loving nature, didn't this happen to you?, if so it is a problem might need seeking and searching from you, but in a lot of cases you have to find those grateful people who waits to pay back your favours to them even it was a moment of sharing.

I hope your post means that the black thoughts are cleared and you are now in a better mood , I hope.

please accept my best regards, sorry for the latence.

Dr. Eyad Harfoush said...

Dear Great Friend Arabic ID,
Thank you for your touching comment. And yes, the low mood is now passing away. It is a feeling best expressed in a piece of poems

فلا أدري إذا وجهت وجها ...أريد الخير أيهما يليني
ألخير الذي أنا أبتغيه ؟ أم الشر الذي هو يبتغيني

تحياتي و تقديري و شكري ، أتمنى أن يسعدني الحظ بلقائك في الحياة يوما، شكرا لك

Arabic ID said...

قصورا أبنيها
من ركام الأفكار
أنقاضا تنهدم
تهزها رجوم الأقدار
تعنينى بالوحدة
ولا أرث من الفرحة
غير الأخطار
نهر غامض وتيار
شلال يدعونى للأنهيار
نحو الأقدار
وأسفل ركام منهار
أتداعى متنازلا عنى
وأفر حاملا فكرى
ولا أنهار
لا أختار الأخطار
ولا تخطئنى الأقدار
I wrote it here



Dr. Eyad Harfoush said...

عزيزي Arabic ID

رائعة ، حاولت التعليق عليها على المدونة و لم أتمكن ؟ لا أعلم لماذا؟ خاصة الأولى من الثلاثية التي كتبتها هنا شديدة العمق

تحياتي و تقديري