Who I Want

When the issue of “love” is brought up to me
I listen to their words in confusion.
Why do I have to open up to love?
My physical heart may be the size of my fist,
(the fist I sent flying to the arms of people)
but my spiritual heart is infinite.
Love to me is defined by care, kindness, helping,
a clear connection with another being;
no walls, guards, or expecting only fun,
therefore it makes no sense to limit it to one.
My Love is not a vessel or a barrel.
My Love is the ocean that fills our world.

So, I love everybody. My ears work,
my hands open, and my smile available.
What I believe they want me to “open up” to,
is romance. Not love. I already have love.
Their idea of love means devoting self to a man,
sharing bodies, toothpaste, fries,
an umbrella, …life.

I did not go to Manila to watch a concert

It must’ve been a surprise for people who just knew me recently that I would fly across the South China Sea to watch a concert. Especially when I’m now ‘known’ as somebody who wrote about Sufism in her book. Those who had known me for a while might be surprised too, thinking “she’s not over him.”

I’ve also read about people judging Muslimahs in hijab acting non-Islamically at concerts, so I had that as a priority. I was an obvious Muslimah who was wearing her religion on her head, in a country where a province was just liberated from terrorists the day I arrived. That was first in my mind, that I acted according to my beliefs.

It wasn’t difficult. I just had to be me. Who I am is in line with my beliefs, and David Archuleta plays a big part in that. He’s not Muslim, yet he radiates light. He’s not Muslim, yet in his speech and mannerisms, he’s more Muslim than the Muslim boys I’ve met. That’s when I realised that it’s not your religion, or how much you know about your religion that makes you a good person. It’s when you know who you are, that whatever you do, the rocky boat shakes you, you come back to who you are. I supported him for that, and I still do.

By the way, Sufism is the mystical, spiritual part of Islam. Sufis are not concerned with the outer aspects of the religion, but on the relationship with The Source. They work on the inside-out.

No longer do I have huge pictures of him on my wall, neither do I know about all of his new songs. I was obsessed as a teenager, but I find it impossible to be crazy for him now I’ve earned a real, deep, respect for who he is as a person. I still have a crush on him, but who wouldn’t? He’s such a wholesome, great guy.

If I had gone to Manila to watch a concert, I would have bought front row. I know you know I know I can. In fact, a TV producer told me “I would’ve given you front row concert tickets if I knew you were up there all alone!” How the heck did I know a TV producer in a foreign country, whereas in my own country I don’t follow anything on TV? I have no idea. Just going with the flow.

I did not go to Manila to watch a concert. I went to experience this light everybody has, but keeps it hidden in their own shadows. David’s light has dimmed and shined over the years I saw him, but this time he was illuminating.

Open your windows, let the air in, and you will shine as well.

“If you are irritated by every rub, how will your mirror be polished?” – Rumi