Friday, December 27, 2013
Friday, December 13, 2013
The part that amazed me most was that it can be determined that the dinosaurs went extinct in roughly two hours. It took just two hours for the world to end if this theory is right. Two hours?! I think about different ways that I spend two hours to put this into perspective. This post basically took 15 minutes. Yesterday, I spent more than two hours in meetings at work that didn't amount to anything really. Earlier this week, I spent almost 2 hours commuting to and from work in a single day. I've spent more than two hours being upset about nothing.
This reminds me that time is precious. Without warning my time may be cut short. There's right now that's for certain and that's all. Make it count Taher.
Saturday, October 19, 2013
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
It is kind of magical. So many wondrous systems are around us, like digestion which is pretty complex and cool. It's so easy to take so many amazing things for granted. Don't take things for granted.
And Nooriya way to not take this for granted. But really?! THIS is what you don't take for granted.
Friday, October 11, 2013
Wednesday, October 09, 2013
Monday, September 30, 2013
I made a goal 3 weeks ago to exercise every day after seeing someone else talk about the same goal they had that turned into years. I've passed the 3 week mark and it's routine now.
Exercise isn't the only thing that's changed. My brain and stomach have come together and I've chosen better food to eat. It wasn't really intentional to "fix" my diet, but rather it has been a...consequence.
My point isn't really about exercise or diet or anything specific really. This exercise thing is reminding me that good choices start one day at a time. Good habits and routines start from a beginning. So do bad ones. Often, too, for me good choices lead to other good choices. And probably the same for bad ones.
I'm looking around me at my wall of pictures seeing how the important people in my life have changed so much over the days, weeks, months, and years. My walls of pictures serve many purposes. One of them is to remind me that things change faster than I realize. Do good now. Be good now. Think about what you have right now. It will be easier to do/be/think tomorrow.
It's never too late to be great! (I'm a poet in my spare time:P)
Thursday, September 12, 2013
I wrote about being fascinated by the things the golden record contained in the Voyager. I am so inspired by its grandness. It opens my mind further to the giant universe we live in. At the same time and probably more importantly, it reminds me of my smallness.
I'm also reminded to reach for the stars...literally.
Monday, August 19, 2013
"I have seen the future and it's still in the future"...the future of George Jetson at least. I'm not quite sure when that quote was written originally, but it us just as relevant now.
I'm rereading a book originally written over 10 years ago that is a compilation of the previous 10 years marvelling at the technology advances in the 90's and also making light of some of our collective notions of the future back then.
As my thoughts often do, they turned toward the family. In a week Yusuf will start kindergarten which just blows my mind and Nooriya is on the verge of reading and doing so many new things.
Yusuf is asking me so many intelligent questions and Nooriya is following his lead. The questions are getting to be too hard for me and we are frequently looking things up in books and Googling. The last few months have been very transformative for me as a parent. Much of my caregiving is becoming teaching and explaining. Less is meeting their basic needs. It's awesome. I am in the best place I've ever been with Zahra too.
I feel much the same as I have for the last twenty years or so. Feeling as if I'm in and just entering the best stage of my life.
Zahra and I think about the future as in the next six months or year, but I don't really think seriously past that.
This book makes so obvious to me how fast things change. I don't know if the author's intent is to push me to dream about the future that might be. If that's the case the author has failed because it is making me focus on right now. Right now is a 'simpler time' just as two years ago was 'simpler' and six year's ago was even 'simpler' and a hundred years.... Inshallah ten years will pass and instead of longing for a 'simpler' time then I will look around and appreciate the simpleness then. And Inshallah ten years after that and ten years after that and ten years....
Monday, August 12, 2013
Thursday, July 11, 2013
It's Ramadan and every year I turn inward and think about all that's been given to me and do my best to appreciate it. I think a lot about the illusion of control and everything that really isn't in my control at all. All with the goal of trying hard to be aware of all the things in my life.
The last few weeks and this Ramadan I'm taking the opposite approach. I think so much about what isn't in my control that I forget about what is. My attitude and my intention are the two things I can think of that are truly in my control. Also gifts to be sure, but up to me how to make use of these tools.
This year, alongside remembering all the things that are in my life because of no effort of my own or at most the illusion of my effort, I will remember constantly what is in my control.
Wednesday, July 03, 2013
I'm rereading a book from the bookshelf, "Chaos". It's probably very boring to most, but I find it fascinating. The book talks about how the study of chaos began. If nothing else, I want to remember it is a study fundamentally about perspective.
Nature has this property where no matter how much you zoom in or out things look irregular. A snapshot of a coastline at 1000 feet altitude or 1 millimeter altitude will look pretty much the same. The study of chaos has the central theme that there is a "regular irregularity" to the world. Mind blown!
Reading this book has also got me remembering the painter's paradox or Gabriel's horn. Basically, it's a shape that has the property that you could fill it with paint, but never have enough paint to paint the outside. I learned about this in high school basic calculus and my reaction was probably not much deeper than "this is cool".
The point I want to takeaway from this is to remember in math and in life there are things I can and can't understand AND I need to be aware of that.
Thursday, June 27, 2013
Today, I'm thinking about what kind of trail I'm leaving and what I will continue to leave. I think it's really great that we now have a record to pass down to Yusuf, Nooriya, and next generations. I also think it's really not great that it's so easy to mold someone's digital historical record this way or that. Just the same way numbers and statistics get skewed and misinterpreted all the time, so too will our records.
A couple of stories in the news right now are taking a people's digital history and compiling them to portray them as this or that. Technically, I guess they're speaking for themselves which is great, but probably a lot out of context and over many years. A "regular" guy is a hero or a villain or a genius or a moron depending.
I think back at the last 15 years and all the things I did as a dumb kid without foresight and I'm thankful that not much of that is recorded, at least not that I know of. I have, though, recorded a bunch of stuff and am concerned that taken the wrong way and out of context. I know how I would like to be remembered and I hope whatever I leave behind doesn't get twisted into something else.
Saturday, June 15, 2013
"A prediction that the sun will rise is no more rational than a prediction the sun won't rise...don't blame nature because you are too daft to understand it"
Baye's simple description of the world is rich with philosophical implications. If you believe something 100%, no amount of evidence can convince you otherwise.
Monday, June 10, 2013
Thursday, March 28, 2013
It is amazing to think about where we are compared to were not too long ago. I am amazed by the things I now think possible that I couldn't really imagine just a little while ago. I write this as both a warning not to fall complacent and a reminder to myself to keep moving towards something. Anything is possible.
Saturday, March 23, 2013
I think back to every summer and seeing fireflies and watching them randomly flicker and remember thinking nothing of it. I then saw this video of thousands of fireflies flashing in unison. Amazing.
Among other places where fireflies live, they flashed in unison on this river in Thailand. Just discovered, maybe 50 years ago. In the dark, silent night. Amazing! and for no one to see. And they've probably been doing it for thousands of years.
And my immediate assumption is that there is "no one to see". Subtle, but I realize that my assumption that there should be someone to see, someone to understand is very presumptuous. My reaction of isn't only wonder and appreciation, it's something more and marked with hubris. I also think of my definition of the word random.
Random is a human construct, a human definition. It's an explanation for something that can't be explained. Just like fireflies who appear to flash randomly one at a time, but thousands together have a pattern. Random is just a matter of perspective. Things may appear random to me, but I shouldn't think they aren't without a purpose.