Friday, April 29, 2005

Open Your Heart-Part 1

There is a show on the Arabic satellite channel LBC called افتح قلبك or “open your heart” which I watch regularly. It is a show that teaches one of the greatest virtues of life, and that is forgiveness. The way the show works is that a person gets invited to the show by a mystery person, and the “mystery” person is usually either a friend or a relative who had done or said something against the invited person that caused a fight or tension between the two that ended in the two people not talking to each other…so the person invites his relative/friend to the show to apologize publicly in front of everyone and express how sorry he/she is for what they did. The two people with the conflict are seated at two different sides of the studio with a big white curtain separating the two sides. So, after the person hears the apology of the person who invited him/her via the television screens, he/she decides whether they want to forgive this person and thus ask for the curtain to be opened, or they can choose to keep their grudge and embarrass that person in front of millions of viewers and leave the show without the opening of the curtain. Now, I’ve only seen one or two people who choose the second option; most of the people choose to open the curtain and supposedly forgive their relative/friend.
However, when the two people leave the studio together I can tell the people who really forgave the person who invited them, and those who were just pretending in front of the cameras and wearing the “I am a forgiving person” mask. Some leave the studio with the two people walking one behind the other!!! Now if you have just forgiven someone you love so much and supposedly cleared everything up wouldn’t you at least walk NEXT to them if not be hugging them and holding on to them or something?
Anyways, the other day I was so touched by a story of two people and I was crying the whole time until they left the stage, and then I cried some more as I was recalling the story with my mom…yes it was that touching!!! Believe me you would have cried too if you had watched it, or your eyes would have gotten teary at least. I really wanted to share the story with everyone. These days, with all the destruction, violence, deaths, and other horrendous stories that we hear on a daily basis whether through the media or through stories by people, it makes us feel that there are no good, humane, kind, and compassionate people left in the world who love others (even relatives) without getting something out of the relationship. But that is not true; rest assured that these people still exist, and they are probably many in numbers too; it’s just that we seem to be intrigued more by bad and gloomy stories than ones that show human kindness. Now after you hear this story you tell me which is better, hearing such an inspiring story or hearing about death and destruction?
So without further ado here is the story:
*person 1 (P1): the person who invited his cousin to apologize
*person 2 (P2): the invited younger cousin
P1 started telling the story of how he was the oldest son of his family, and when his father died he became responsible for providing for all of his family while he was still at a fairly young age. After a few years, his uncle died too (P2’s father), and since his cousin was the oldest of his family too but was still very young, P1 took him to his house and raised him as if he was his younger brother. He taught him everything about life and most of all taught him about the business world. P2 grew up and started working and providing for his family. Then P1 found out that he was sick…one of his kidneys had completely stopped working while the other one was in a really bad shape but still functioning to a limited extent. He needed a kidney donor and fast…all of his immediate family tested but they found no matche. He didn’t tell his cousin, because he loved him so much that he didn’t want him to donate one of his kidneys even if they were a match.
One day the hospital called and told P1 that a “good Samaritan” had donated a kidney for him…when P1 inquired about whom it was, they didn’t tell him. He had his surgery and he said that he had expected his cousin P2 to be the first person he sees when he opened his eyes in the hospital because that is how close they were to each other. However, he stayed a whole month in the hospital with no sign of P2; he didn’t visit him or call him. P1 asked family members about P2’s whereabouts and every time they would tell him something like he is on a trip out of the country etc. P1 left the hospital and returned home but did not see his cousin for a whole week after that even though they were living in the same house…again, family members kept providing excuses for P2. At this time P2’s mother was sick and her health deteriorating, which further infuriated P1, and he could not figure out how the sweet boy that he knew (P2) could ignore his own mother in such a way, and change so suddenly.

Hmmm…you think you’re getting it yet?

Part 2-Coming Soon…

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