AS I SEE IT… This is how it is!

common_tables_logo_gold_123c__3__copy_pprfRam Dass once said
“As long as you have certain desires about how it ought to be you can’t see how it is.”
In the past months, there has been more and more discussion for the want of a better word, about the increasing scare mongering amongst fringe religious groups in regard to Sharia Law and Muslims in general. I’m no expert in this field, but have seen the damage these groups are causing within communities.. Citing Walid Shoebat as one example and a host of radical videos on You Tube another.. Goggling websites that are there for one purpose to scare you into believing everything they say is correct..
They are not!
Sharia Law is not going to take over the mainstream Governments in the Western World.. Normal citizens will not be forced to pray toward Mecca or (officially: Makkah al-Mukarramah;) Women will not be forced to wear the Berka. As a matter of interest,wearing the berka’, or niqab, or forehead veil by Muslim woman is not an obligation.. It is a matter of local traditions and cultures. In other words, it is found to be popular in some countries while not in others, according to a specific area and their tradition. As for the Traditional Islamic belief, it is to be favored only if a woman fears to be harmed or to cause harm for others if she is very beautiful, for example.
It doesn’t have a specific shape or form, every woman can have her own style, neither a specific fabric is recommended, even a soft transparent cloth is fine. In effect, the aim is to make face expressions not so apparent, but without hindering the woman’s ability to look, talk, and breathe.
When I was in the Middle East last year, I spent a good deal of time with some very beautiful people… I learned a great deal from the locals about their religion and culture.. I was also surprised to see a number of women in the hotel I was staying at, sharing their breakfast and discarding their veil.
Sadly we have been indoctrinated by these few misguided radical groups and they have managed, like most other cultist groups to install fear into many of us. It is sad, because once again in every situation it comes back to religion..
Here’s the thing, I do not support terrorism in any way manner shape or form, just as I do not support domestic violence, abuse or discrimination of any kind. Unfortunately, there will always be radical groups, ready to seize any opportunity then they pounce..
All they need is one person, yes, that’s right…one person to look at their website, listen to their message and boom…they are off.. You know the saying…”1 tells 1 tells 2 tells 4 tells 8″ etc. I’m pretty sure you get the idea!!
The biggest coupe for these radical miscreants has been Social Media…it’s like bees to a honey pot.. They have a new and powerful platform..Cell Phones, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook etc…
My dear friend Hassan will tell of a very different story.. He owns a small Kebab shop. His wife and their sons, who are studying at the local University, one to become a Doctor, the other, a Marine Biologist, work long hours to pay their way in this country…They fled from their war torn remains, fleeing the corruption and desolation that surrounded them..
Under the rule of the Ayatollah Khomeini, life was never to be the same..a nationwide referendum resulted in a massive vote in favor of the establishment of an Islamic Republic. Ayatollah Khomeini proclaimed the next day, April 1, 1979, as the “first day of God’s government”. It took a number of attempts and much planning for Hassan to get his family out of their country..They did it with the help of friends and family and are now settled here.. The scars run deep and every day they are reminded of the pain of leaving loved ones behind..
Sadly, we have no concept of what their life has really been like.. Yes, we see what we see and read into it what we will, but at the end of the day we don’t see how it is..we have certain desires as how it ought to be and that is it..
The point is this..we are all so wrapped up within our comfort zones.. (cotton wool or what ever)and the minute there is a post or a media report about an attack or coupe we react.. Sad thing here is, every hour of every day there is some attack or gun fired somewhere on this mortal coil.. A child molested, a wife bashed,an Indigenous person berated, a child going hungry because dad, or mum spent the lunch money on the pokies or cigarettes. Another homeless person forced from their shelter because the Church does not like them sleeping in the foyer.. and so it goes…
Just stop for one moment and look at your surroundings.. You are probably reading this post in the warmth of your home, comfortable with a nice hot cup of tea or plate of food…relaxing and thinking about what tomorrow might bring..
You don’t spare a thought for those suffering and no doubt you will watch the news on television, read it on line or in tomorrows paper and you may or may not pass comment.. That’s fine…it’s your choice. But…think about this, my friend Hassan will once again be spat at, berated and cursed.. It continues on a daily basis..He does not react publicly, but inside, cries in pain.. He feels sadness for those that do these things to him and his family..Sad because they have no idea in reality just what they are doing They are not young kids, but mature adults… He does not call the police because he knows there is nothing they will do. These so called Christians, yes, they are Christians..spout forth sayings they have been parrot fed because they sadly believe what has been indoctrinated into them by these cultist groups. Sadly…
“As long as they have desires as to how it ought to be ….they will never see just how it is.”

Life without Limits #4 (The learning years.)

To be fair, life was not a bed of Roses.. Many things that were simply taken for granted by most people, became missions in their own right. For eg; a simple task, such as showering had to be planned… In fact the whole bathroom ablutions process had to be adapted.. I just needed to be able to work this out for myself my own way. Pride, yes, I guess there was pride. It was something I needed to to on my own…My wife was a nurse and it would not have bothered her in the slightest, but me, well I needed to be able to conquer it all alone. I did this and managed just fine in the little flat that we had.. Out and about was different. Remember, this was now 1974 and we had not yet embraced disability per se. It would be a few more years before equal rights and the rights of those with disabilities were recognised. I battled on..

Elton John was to appear at Western Springs Stadium on Feb 28th and  come hell or high water, I was going to be there.. I had no Idea how this was going to happen but it WAS going to happen. Ruth my wife was busy with her nursing career and as I was still at home, I had plenty of time to organise this. First call was to the promoter. Much easier to access in those days.. I explained that I had recently had an accident and had lost both my legs above the knee.. The young lady I spoke to was one of the promoters PA’s and from memory, it was through the Auckland City Council as they were administrators of the stadium. So… I explained the situation and she remembered my photo in the New Zealand Herald..(I was married in the day room of Ward 7, in the Auckland Hospital) The photo was spread all over the news. Well, to cut a long story short, she organised the transport to the stadium..An ambulance would pick us up, take us into the ground, front row, and collect us after the concert. Nothing short of magic. I had just proved that nothing was impossible…But I knew that already!

Throughout the following months, I learned a number of things… Don’t rely too heavily on others.. Learn patience, learn to be tolerant of another person’s view and above all retain ones pride and dignity at all times. It was a “Baptism of Fire” but I did it. It took a while as people just wanted to feel sorry for me and the last thing I wanted was their pity. Other friends were getting married and we were invited to a few weddings, but the oversight was venues that were up stairs and just not accessible. This meant that a number of these events were impossible to get to. It was a matter of just sucking it up! I continued on with the rehab process for a while, but pretty soon became frustrated with the whole charade and in my opinion, those involved were just going through the process.

It was sometime during one of these meetings that it was suggested to me that I should attend the Artificial Limb Centre and look at getting prosthetics. I agreed and thus began another journey…an uncharted one at that…It was to become another part of the humiliating rehabilitation process.

I’m not one that wanted to be ‘fussed over’, but when I arrived there initially, I was the centre of attention. The staff could not believe that some one who had lost their legs and both above the knee, could be attending “Rehab” to be assessed for artificial legs in this short time.. Well, here I was and I had to meet with the Dr in charge… Pipe smoking Mr Geoff Lamb. I liked him as he was straight to the point, no pussy-footing around. His main concern was being able to fit a prosthetic leg to the remainder of my right stump. They called it a “Hind Quarter” amputation and this type of procedure was a rarity back in those days. Still, I was up for the challenge, pigheadedness and all. Many people had concerns…First I would have to go through the stage of hardening my still very tender and healing stumps..

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