GETTING TO KNOW THE BEAUTY OF THE AFGHAN PEOPLE, PART 2

GETTING TO KNOW THE BEAUTY OF THE AFGHAN PEOPLE

PART 2

Compiled by Nancy B. Detweiler, M.Ed., M.Div.

 Afghanistan is made up of diverse tribal kingdoms.[i]   People have lived in Afghanistan since at least 7000 B.C.[ii]  As part of the ancient Persian Empire, Afghanistan has been a crossroads for travelers of many nationalities and cultural influences.  The ancient Chinese Silk Road Trade Route ran through Afghanistan on its way to the Mediterranean Sea.  Although their cultural history was rich for over 5,000 yrs, the country has been stymied culturally since the 17th century by the lack of prolonged periods of peace in which cultural pursuits are possible.

Persian Empire

The Afghan people are fiercely independent in nature.  This innate inner strength can be seen in their eyes.  The astounding beauty of the Afghan people can be seen in the children.  Look into their eyes … see them smile in circumstances that defy happiness and yet their inner light and joy shines forth.

 children carrying water

 Afghan children [iii]

 “All [human] creatures are God’s children, and those dearest to God are the ones who treat His children kindly.”

Islam.  Hadith of Baihaqi

 “You are the children of the Lord your God.”

Judaism & Christianity.  Deuteronomy 14:1

 “Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs….  And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.”  Christianity.  Mark 10:14-16

father & children

 Father & Children

 afghan-girl

http://www.afghanforums.com/showthread.php?19034-Afghans-Afghanistan/page2

 “Every child has known God,

Not the God of names,

Not the God of don’ts,

Not the God who ever does Anything weird,

But the God who only knows 4 words,

And keeps repeating them, saying,

‘Come dance with me, come dance.’” [iv]

Hafiz

Hafiz

14th century Persian mystic and poet

boy

 Hazara boy

http://pastmists.wordpress.com/2010/07/26/south-asia-iran-persia-and-afghanistan/

Hazara girl

 Hazara girl dressed in traditional green

http://www.joshuaproject.net/people-profile.php?peo3=12076&rog3=AF

Hazara girl 2

 Hazara girl

http://universalbeauty.tumblr.com/post/6467076782/hazara-girl-from-afghanistan-hazara-people

images

 Afghan boy

 http://universalbeauty.tumblr.com/post/6467076782/hazara-girl-from-afghanistan-hazara-people

  woman

Afghan woman

http://governmentagainstthepeople.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/afghan-women-being-used-for-western-propaganda/

 Shabana

Shabana Basij Rasikh

http://opengatesprogram.wordpress.com/page/2/

 “Shabana Basij Rasikh was born and raised in Kabul, Afghanistan….  In 2005, Shabana attended high school in the USA through the year-long Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program sponsored by the US State Department. Following her secondary school career, she worked as an Executive Assistant to the Country Director of American Councils for International Education in Kabul as a one year appointment. Shabana is the Executive Director of Afghan Youth Initiative. Shabana is a senior at Middlebury College, double-majoring in International Studies and Women and Gender Studies. She is a senior fellow at the Middlebury College Admissions Office. In addition, she is the President of HELA, a non-governmental organization that is raising money to build the first girls high school in Qalatik, her family’s ancestral village in Afhganistan; she was featured as in the October issue of Glamour as one of the “Top Ten College Women” for 2010.”

talking to mothers

Najiba Fazzay, far right, gives a talk on maternal health care to expectant mothers in the village of Aquachanoy near Jawjzan, Afghanistan.

http://opengatesprogram.wordpress.com/page/2/

man

 Afghan man

men hug

Afghan men hug outside of Mosque

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8265562.stm

  man traditional

Men’s traditional attire

http://www.parstimes.com/gallery/afghanistan_fundraiser/

  boy traditional attire

Boy in traditional male attire

Hazara woman

  Hazara woman in the traditional green with her baby

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Hazara+woman+with+baby&view=detail&id=AF7FD2733F1B6B1A3FD8D4EF450F6820C55AF90E&first=1http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Hazara+woman+with+baby&view=detail&id=AF7FD2733F1B6B1A3FD8D4EF450F6820C55AF90E&first=1

Dr. Samar

 Dr. Sima Samar – 1st Hazara woman to earn her medical degree

Kabul University

http://worldoregon.org/persona/sima-samar

  women

 Women of Afghanistan

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Women_of_Afghanistan.jpg

men

Afghan men

  men at dinner

Dinner with friends – Kabul, Afghanistan

http://www.traveljournals.net/pictures/87457.html

  men at lake

 Afghan men at one of the Band-e Amir Lakes

  home school

Afghan Home School near Jalalabad

http://www.d.umn.edu/cla/faculty/troufs/anth1095/Afghanistan.html#title

Women vote

  Afghan women waiting to register to vote

Kabul

http://www.payvand.com/news/04/jul/1181.html

wedding dress

  Afghan Wedding Dress

http://dilshil.com/wedding/afghan-wedding/afghan-wedding-dresses.shtml

  wedding reception

Afghan Wedding Reception

http://dilshil.com/wedding/afghan-wedding/afghan-wedding-dresses.shtml

school girls

School girls – Kabul

http://pakhto-pakhtun.blogspot.com/2011/06/afghanistan-school-girls.html

school girls 2

 Afghan school girls – Kabul

http://pakhto-pakhtun.blogspot.com/2011/06/afghanistan-school-girls.html

school girl

 Student – Kabul

Such pure beauty

http://pakhto-pakhtun.blogspot.com/2011/06/afghanistan-school-girls.html

  Naja

“Naja is from a Pushtoon tribe in a remote, desert area of Kuz-Kunar. As part of her tribe’s custom, she received tattoos on her face when she became a young woman. These tattoos are a sign of beauty in her culture.”

“What do you hope happens to Afghanistan in the future? What kind of country do you want Afghanistan to be when you grow up?”

Answer: “I want peace. We are tired of the fighting. After all these wars we still don’t have any peace and no one is helping us. When will it come?… When I grow up I want there to be jobs and schools and roads so we don’t have to take donkeys. I want Afghanistan to stand on its own, without anyone telling us how to live.”

Naja B., 12, Behsood, Kuz-Kunar District, Nangarhar Province

http://teacher.scholastic.com/scholasticnews/indepth/afghanistan/day_pics.asp?num=5

 women - rug

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afghan_rug

 Afghanistan, like Iran, is famous for its handwoven Persians rugs.

http://www.labrashefineruggallery.com/Pages/HistoryofRugs.aspx

  girl school

 Afghan Girls’ School

No wandering, bored eyes here – Afghan children are serious about their education.

http://indigohome.typepad.com/indigohome/2009/08/building-schools-in-afghanistan.html

  2011_Afghan_Youth_Voices_Festival

Afghan Youth Voices Festival

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:2011_Afghan_Youth_Voices_Festival.jpg

men at mosque

  Afghan men at Friday prayers – Mosque in Herat

  3 men

Afghan men

NOMADIC TRIBES

 The nomads are called the Kuchi.[v]  The Kuchi lead their herds of goats and sheep “to high mountain pastures in summer.  When the snow arrives in fall, they head to lower, warmer areas to spend the winter.” [vi]

caravan

Kuchi Spring Migration

http://cursor.org/stories/kuchi.html

 “Kuchis live in a delicate symbiotic relationship with peasants and environment. Traditionally, they lived by selling young animals, dairy products, wool, sheepskins, meat, or bartering those goods, for wheat grain, vegetables, fruits, and other foodstuffs. Nomads contribute importantly to the national economy in terms of meat, skins and wool. The nomads provided villagers with tea, sugar, matches, kerosene, guns, etc. as well as being moneylenders to village farmers.3 Being able to move from pasture to pasture, nomads escape the limits on size of local herds which villagers are subject to. The Afghan nomads are important for the maintenance of the marginal hilly grasslands.”   http://cursor.org/stories/kuchi.html

daughter - nomad

 Daughter of a nomadic tribe – Shamali Plains, Afghanistan

http://www.davestravelcorner.com/photos/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=2280

  father & girl

Pashtun tribesman with his daughter – Sheydayi, Afghanistan

http://www.davestravelcorner.com/photos/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=2280

“Lord, give us joy in our wives and children, and make us models for the God-fearing.”

Islam.  Qur’an 25.74

 girl Paghman

 Afghan girl – Paghman Valley

http://www.davestravelcorner.com/photos/gallery/displayimage.php?album=175&pid=2272#top_display_media

 “God is All-gentle to His servants, providing for whomsoever He will.”

Islam.  Qur’an 42.19

  Saffron 3

Gathering Saffron flowers

 “God is love.”  Christianity.  I John 4:8

  family - saffron

Afghan family

http://awwproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/afghan-family.jpg

 “The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.”

Judaism & Christianity.  Psalm 145:9

“Compassion is a mind that savors only Mercy and love for all sentinent beings.”

Buddhism.  Nagarjuna, Precious Garland 437

  father & son

Afghan Father and Son

http://www.lindanorgrovefoundation.org/about-us.htm

 “Honor your father and mother, that your days may be long in the land which the Lord your God gives you.”   Judaism & Christianity.  Exodus 20:12

father teacher

Afghan Father and Daughter

http://awwproject.org/2012/07/my-father-my-teacher/

“When I was a child, my father enrolled me at the local school. After a few months, I didn’t want to go any longer. I was only six, and school made me depressed. The teachers were mean to us when we made mistakes. They would hit us. So I quit going to school.

When my father found out he bought me gifts and spoke with my teacher, but I refused to go back to school. After that, he didn’t talk to me for one week until finally he sat down with me and explained that God created good and bad people in this world and not everyone’s behavior is how we would like it. He told me that if I did not go to school I would regret it. My peers would become successful and I would have to stay home due to being illiterate and no one would want me.

He said there is nothing more important than education. He cited the holy Qu’ran and said that God and our prophet Mohammed loved educated people. Our prophet told us, “Go and learn knowledge even if it is in the farthest place of the world.” He asked me to not give up because of little struggles along the way. This speech opened my eyes. I went back to school and since then I have worked hard at my studies.

When I was ten, I loved to draw. People said my drawings were beautiful and when my dad saw my sketchbook he was happy.  He told me, “I know my daughter will become very famous one day, and I will be proud of you.”

My father always brought me books to read. After I read one he would ask me to write down what I thought about the book. I began to read books on many different subjects. When he noticed that I had become interested in reading about women’s issues, he brought me books on women’s rights in Islam and other religions.

During the Taliban regime, I didn’t go to school and I read a lot and listened to the BBC broadcasts and debates about women’s issues. Whenever I had questions, I asked my dad. He always explained in detail and never tired of my questions.”

http://awwproject.org/2012/07/my-father-my-teacher/

May we remember the beauty of the Afghan people and work for World Peace by envisioning them living in peace!

“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”  Matthew 19:19

WE ARE ONE FAMILY OF GOD!

 ***********************************************

NOTE BY NANCY:  Recently Caroline Myss wrote the following article about her experience with an Afghani man.  Although the story was written as an illustration for a more extensive article, I am publishing the story alone to allow you to see the inner beauty of an Afghan man.

 *A LESSON IN TRUTH: ALL LIFE BREATHES TOGETHER *

 *by Caroline Myss*

 http://www.myss.com/library/dailymessage/

 The other day I flew to Newark, New Jersey, to give a benefit lecture on

behalf of the Trenton Soup Kitchen. I have been involved with the TSK for

five years now and I consider the work this charity does to be absolutely

magnificent. Anyway, I arrived midday and was met by a lovely, middle-aged

driver. Within minutes we were in his immaculate car heading to our

destination, which, according to his GPS, was an hour away. My first

reaction was, “Ugh, that’s half the flight time from Chicago.” My second

reaction was, “I hope this guy isn’t a chatterbox because I need to make

notes for my talk.”

Heading out of the airport, the driver and I both settled into our normal

routines. He got his GPS going and I pulled out my notebook. Then he asked,

“Is the temperature okay for you?” All he wanted to know was if the air in

the car was warm enough, right? That required a yes or a no and a thanks

for asking. But instead, something in me found his accent very curious.

Why? I grew up in a home in which half my relatives had foreign accents, as

did half the people in the neighborhood. People with accents are so common

in my life that I hardly notice them, but I noticed his. Then I noticed

that I needed to know where he came from – I mean I absolutely needed to

know. Why? I don’t know why.

So I asked him, “Where are you from? I am intrigued with your accent.”

He smiled and said, “Where do you think?” I looked at his face through the

driver’s mirror and the deep lines around his dark brown eyes blending in

with his warm smile told me that this was a good man, a very good man.

I said, “Persia.”

His eyes sparkled, “Very good, but not quite. Close. What’s next to Persia?”

I froze for a moment. My mind went blank. I needed to bring up the globe in

my mind’s eye. I said, “Okay, just a minute. You’re not Turkish. You must

be from Afghanistan.”

“Yes, I am Afghani. I came here when the Russians invaded my country. I had

just completed my degree at the university in Kabul. You can’t imagine how

beautiful Afghanistan was before all these wars. Now I have two sons and a

daughter here.”

I put my notebook down and we began to discuss his life, his journey, his

world. He told me how the turmoil of decades of war in Afghanistan has

affected his family and the lives of so many people he knows. And then he

told me that he lost his job when the company he was working for let go of

many of their employees. As a result, he was losing his home. That struck

him as among the more overwhelming events of his life, as he did not think

such a thing could happen in America. I told him about how many people I

knew in that same situation.

Lest you think his man was complaining about the events that had unfolded

in his life or drowning in his sorrows, that was not at all the case.

Rather, he presented these chapters of his life with a type of “matter of

fact” voice that was devoid of self-pity or anger. I was the one pressing

for more details, asking him to expand on how and why events happened as

they did in his life. I was the one picking at his wounds. If anything, he

should have dropped me off at a bus station and told me to catch the next

bus to Trenton.

Then he said, “I should be quiet now. I notice you have work to do.”

He didn’t ask me why I had come to Trenton and as I realized that, I hoped

with all my might that he would not. And then I had this overwhelming gut

feeling, that unmistakable rupture I get when I know I am right, “This man

and his wife come to the Trenton Soup Kitchen for a meal or maybe even a

few meals each week.” I knew it.

I was desperate to change the subject now. I could talk about anything –

weather, sports, Hurricane Sandy – just don’t ask me why I have come to

Trenton. Then my phone rang. It was a family member calling about another

family member who was in a very serious crisis. We were circling the

wagons, as they say. He could hear me, not because I was speaking loudly

but because I was sitting directly behind him. For fifteen minutes, I

discussed possible treatment and outcome for a beloved family member. My

voice had gotten tight. I was shutting down, withdrawing into the silence

of grief and tears. I hung up the phone, staring out the window.

This lovely Afghan man said, “You know, when my daughter was five, she was

diagnosed with this rare illness. Her female organs matured faster than her

physical body and she started to menstruate at that age. We were terrified.

We took her to a doctor and he told us that she needed to take this certain

shot once a month. It cost $1,000.00. Insurance covered that while I had my

other job but then I lost that job. I did not know what to do. I needed to

provide for my family, for my home, for their health. I was never so

frightened. I told my wife that I needed to go away for one reason. I

needed to go and be with God. I needed to be alone to take my life, my

problems directly to God. And so I went away to pray for two weeks. I had

to be alone, to do nothing but pray.

When I returned, we took my daughter to a different doctor and he said,

‘Why do you want to have her on this medication? She is perfectly healthy?’

And she is perfectly healthy. She is healed. I know that God is with me,

even through these difficult times. Yes, I am losing my home. I can replace

that. I could never replace my daughter, or my sons. And so we will grieve

the loss our own home, but for how long? Perhaps three days. But how long

would we grieve the loss of my daughter? We would grieve until the day of

our own death. And so God blessed me by showing me that he is truly with

me, with my family, and that he hears our prayers.”

By the time this wonderful man finished sharing his story, I could not stop

the tears from pouring out of my eyes.

“Do you have any water?” he asked me.

“Are you thirsty? Here, I have a bottle of water,” I said as I gave him my

water.

“No,” he said, “I am not thirsty. I am going to pray for your family member

and I am going to put those prayers into this water and you will take this

water to her. It will carry the grace and light of God’s response.”

I asked him if I could pray for his family, for his journey through

hardship and his return to right livelihood. And so, pulling up to my

friend’s house, my driver held the bottle of water in his hands and sang

prayers from the Koran. He rocked slowly back and forth in the front seat

of the car, falling deeper and deeper into an inner dialogue with God. I

closed my eyes and quietly entered into my own interior castle, holding

images of this man’s face and soul in my heart.

In the midst of this sacred ritual, I heard the sound of my friend darting

out of his home to greet me. I quickly came out of my prayer space and

signaled to him by holding up my hand, “Stay where you are. Don’t come near

this car.”

Still this dear man continued in his prayerful request that healing grace

be given to my family member. Tears now flowed from his closed eyes as his

body movements revealed that his heart beat closely with heaven’s pulse.

Finally, he opened his eyes and handed me what anyone else would take for

an ordinary bottle of Evian water. We held each other’s hands for several

seconds, thanking each other with nods of our heads and the tight grips of

our hands. Still appearing to be an ordinary Evian bottle from the outside,

I looked through the ordinary and into the extraordinary. I stared at this

bottle of water and for me it became the substance of miracles, the story

of a man’s life journey, and on the day I was picked up to do a benefit for

the homeless by a man losing his home whose very prayers I suspect may well

have contributed most to the healing of my family member. It became “holy

water.”

[All life breathes together.]


[i]   Ali, Sharifah Enayat, Afghanistan, 1995.

[ii]   Whitfield, Susan, Afghanistan, National Geographic.

[v]   Whitfield, page 37.

[vi]   Whitfield, page 37.

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GETTING TO KNOW THE BEAUTY OF AFGHANISTAN & ITS PEOPLE, PART 1

GETTING TO KNOW THE BEAUTY OF AFGHANISTAN & ITS PEOPLE

PART 1

Compiled by Nancy B. Detweiler, M.Ed., M.Div.

 

 Band-e Amir Lake in Afghanistan

“The surreal beauty of the lakes is a balm for every soul.”

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Lakes+in+Afghanistan&view=detail&id=37A3D6CE667462FDC451989941EDA5AB6EB785B2

 “I see so deeply within myself.

Not needing my eyes, I can see everything clearly.

Why would I want to bother my eyes again

Now that I see the world through His eyes?”

 —Rumi, 13th century poet

Born in 1207 in what is present day Afghanistan.

http://peacefulrivers.homestead.com/Rumipoetry1.html

 Afghanistan is land-locked, bordering Iran, Pakistan, China, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan.  Once a part of the ancient Persian Empire, Afghanistan’s culture still exhibits Persian influences.  Of interest to students of the Bible is a reminder that the Israelites were in exile in Babylon (now Iraq) when Cyrus of Persia (now Iran) took the throne.  Cyrus allowed those Israelites who desired to do so to return home to Israel and ordered that the Temple of Jerusalem be rebuilt.  (See the biblical book of Ezra)  Not all Israelites (or Jews) chose to return to Israel.  There is evidence that the lost tribes of Israel settled in Afghanistan and Kashmir.[i]  You may read the article at the referenced Endnote.  Examples of the evidence are the fact that Kashmir, or Kashahmiri is a Hebrew word and an attributive name of the Israelites—Kashahmiri Jew.  Also, the most popular mountain pass in Afghanistan is called Khyber PassKhyber is a Hebrew name meaning a Fort.[ii]

 

http://www.keyway.ca/htm2000/20000227.htm

  Kashmir is located in the northeast of Pakistan – it is a hotly disputed area.

 That the Lost Tribes of Israel settled in Afghanistan and Kashmir holds stunning significance at this point in time because the evidence leads to a reasonable conclusion that the Lost Tribes are now the Muslims of Afghanistan and Kashmir.[iii]  WE ARE TRULY ONE FAMILY OF GOD!

 Khyber Pass – the most northern and important passes between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Asia/Pakistan/West/North-West_Frontier/Khyber_Pass/photo252293.htm

 Afghanistan’s location, bordering five countries, means that its culture includes influences from a variety of nationalities.  The ancient Chinese Silk Road–a Trade Route of the 1st century B.C. connecting China with the Mediterranean Sea—also ran through Afghanistan.  The Silk Road sustained an international culture that brought together diverse groups.  Afghanistan was one of the many cosmopolitan countries in the Middle East—including Palestine during the time of Jesus—impacted culturally by the Chinese Silk Road international trade traffic.

 The Silk Road ran through 3 major cities of Afghanistan

Herat, Bamyan, & Kabul, as well as over the Hindu Kush Mountain range.

Hindu Kush Mountains

 Camel Train in Central Hindu Kush, near Hazarjat

 *************************

Needless to say, much of Afghanistan has been destroyed by decades of war.  I am choosing to focus on its natural beauty.

 *************************

 KABUL – THE CAPITAL CITY

 Kabul – the capital of Afghanistan

 Kabul – A pre-1990s photo

 Road from Kabul to Bamyan – home of the Hazara people

BAMYAN PROVINCE

 Bamyan is located on an ancient trade route between India and Central Asia; it was long a center of Buddhism.  Buddhists monks carved out the grottoes and Buddhas in the limestone mountain cliffs.  These Buddha statues are thought to be some of the world’s tallest.

http://my.englishclub.com/photo/afghanistan-bamyan-province?xg_source=activity

 BUDDHA CLIFF HANGING STATUES

  Cliff carving of Buddha in Bamyan City dating from the 3rd century A.D.

http://www.afghanchamber.com/States/Bamian.htm

 “The Great Compassionate Heart is the essence of Buddhahood.”

Buddhism.  Gandavyuha Sutra

Buddha – Cliff Carving

BLUE LAKES OF BAMYAN PROVINCE

 The Blue Lakes, located in the foothills of Hindu Kush, are incredibly deep and contain water so blue it looks like blue ink.  The deep blue color of the water is due to the clarity of the air and the purity of the water.  The high mineral content of the water also affects its varying shades of color.  These blue lakes are surrounded by towering, pink limestone cliffs. [iv]

 

 “God is beautiful and loves beauty.” 

Islam. Hadith of Muslim

 

A lake in Badakshan, Afghanistan near the Taijik border

 

 

 

 

      Village near the Band-e Amir Lakes

http://www.amusingplanet.com/2012/04/deep-blue-lakes-of-band-e-amir.html

 

Band-e Amir Lakes

http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/countries/seven-stans-photos/#/dam-of-the-amir_12281_600x450.jpg

  Ghazmi Province, Afghanistan

  Grape Fields in Ghazmi Province

HERAT CITY

 Herat is the 3rd largest city in Afghanistan, located in the valley of the Hari River. [v]

 Herat City

 Herat City

http://www.flickriver.com/photos/tags/hashmat/interesting/

 

Citadel in Herat City thought to have been built by Alexander the Great.

The presence of a citadel helped to place Herat City on the Chinese Silk Road map.

http://sjpaderborn.wordpress.com/2011/10/20/major-tourist-site-restored-in-herat-afghanistan-please-send-me-there-by-sean-mclachlan-gadling-com/

gold mine

Gold Mine in Nor Aaba, Afghanistan

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/articles/263023/20111207/gold-worth-1-trillion-buried-afghanistan-mountains.htm

Afghanistan_Minerals

 Untapped Mineral Deposits in Afghanistan estimated to be worth between $1-$3 Trillion.

http://muftah.org/hope-amid-chaos-mineral-resources-afghanistans-economic-future/

 Ruby

Fine Ruby Mineral Deposit – http://www.jewelinfo4u.com/Ruby_types.aspx

 Ruby - 2

 Afghan Ruby – http://www.gems-afghan.com/cgi-bin/aslides.pl?11&156

  Ruby 3

Ruby from Jegdalek in Kabul Province – http://www.johnbetts-fineminerals.com/jhbnyc/mineralmuseum/picshow.php?id=21644

  lapislazuli1hb1

 Lapis Lazuli

http://www.maxicep.com/konu-disi/degerli-taslar-112593.html

  95168_metals_and_minerals

 Mineral Deposits

http://fromtheleft.wordpress.com/2010/06/14/u-s-discovers-1-trillion-in-untapped-mineral-deposits-in-afghanistan/

 IRRIGATION SYSTEM

  irrigated field

IRRIGATED FARM LANDS

  grape

Grape Harvesting

  Hazara farm

Hazara Farm

 The Hazara people are distinctive unto themselves, with their own religion, mixed ethnicity, and independent nature.  They have lived in Central Afghanistan since the pre-2nd century amidst rugged mountains—nearly inaccessible—a wildly beautiful area with craggy peaks and rushing rivers, called Hazarajat.

“A talented people, the Hazara truly enjoy poetry, often memorizing it and using it to teach children, as well as storytelling and music that is distinct to their culture. They are expert rug weavers, embroiderers and calligraphers (even through most are illiterate). Wrestling and a baseball-like game are favorite physical pastimes.

Hazara women are honored in legend and folk tales. Shunning burkas, their traditional garb is bright green and red floral dresses, worn without the long under-trousers customary in Afghan culture and accessorized with heavy stockings, fur-lined boots, beaded headgear and heavy, coin strung necklaces. Independent and industrious given opportunity, many pre-Taliban Hazara women were highly educated and entered teaching or medical professions as well as serving in political roles. And, unlike other Afghan women, they fought beside Hazara men in battle.” [vi]

potato

 Potato Farming

Potato farming

 Potato Farming

http://dai-global-developments.com/afghan-farmers-investing-in-livelihoods/

  rice

 Rice Farming

  Gardeli farm

Gardeli Farm Scene

  strawberry

 Strawberry Farming – the women earn about $5 daily

  Goat_farming_Afghanistan

Goat Farming

http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Goat_farming_Afghanistan.jpg

RIVERS IN AFGHANISTAN

Only one river in Afghanistan flows into the ocean.

 Kabul River 2

Kabul River

http://www.stevebrownrotary.com/Afghanistan/AfghanistanTrips/AfghTrip2005/AfghTripJan2005-Pictures.htm

 The Kabul River flows into the Indus River, which flows into the Arabian Ocean, a part of the Indian Ocean. [vii]  The Indus River is home to river dolphins. [viii]

indus-river-dolphin

Indus River Dolphin

http://www.google.com/imgres?q=indus+river+dolphin&num=10&hl=en&biw=1280&bih=635&tbm=isch&tbnid=RrzKzrVYfztHEM:&imgrefurl=http://www.learnanimals.com/indus-river-dolphin/&docid=v1dSgGOjSmfFEM&imgurl=http://www.learnanimals.com/indus-river-dolphin/indus-river-dolphin.jpg&w=200&h=151&ei=jGZ7UMyyJeyH0QH-zIHoDA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=601&sig=106247280561685873866&sqi=2&page=1&tbnh=120&tbnw=160&start=0&ndsp=15&ved=1t:429,r:8,s:0,i:92&tx=76&ty=66

Pech River

Pech River in eastern Afghanistan – http://www.panoramio.com/photo/7213018

Salang Pass

River near Salang Pass in Northern Afghanistan

 DESERT AREA OF AFGHANISTAN

 Tashkurgan

Tashkurgan – an ancient caravan city

http://ai.stanford.edu/~latombe/mountain/photo/afghanistan/afghanistan.htm

  Balochistan

Afghan Mountains – semi-desert Baluchistan in southern Afghanistan

http://mobandmultitude.com/tag/baluchistan/

PERSIAN TEA HOUSE

  tea house

Tea House in Herat

  Pak tea

Pak Tea House

 PERSIAN GARDENS

 Babur

Garden of Babur in Kabul [ix]

These gardens are believed to have been developed in 1528.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gardens_of_Babur

  tulip_national_flower_afghanistan

 Tulips are Afghanistan’s National Flower

“This magnificent flower was originated in the Pamir and Hindu Kush mountain ranges of Afghanistan and central Asia.  In the Persian empire Tulip was named as “Laleh” and it was grown in Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey and other parts of Central Asia.”

http://www.thelovelyplanet.net/national-flowers-of-the-saarc-countries/

 FOR USE WITH FEATURE STORY KASHMIR SAFFRON.

http://centralasiaonline.com/en_GB/pakistan-articles/caii/features/pakistan/business/2011/01/11/feature-02

Saffron Harvested in Herat

Afghan farm workers gather saffrons on a farm in Herat

Saffron 3

Harvesting Saffron

http://article.wn.com/view/2011/06/17/Afghan_concern_over_saffron_price_drop/

 Saffron is being used to replace the poppies in some parts of

Afghanistan.  Saffron is used in perfumes, food coloring, and fabric dyes.  It possesses anticarcinogenic qualities.

  yellow

Colchicum Inteum – native to Afghanistan, India, & China

It flowers with the leaves as the snow melts in March – July.  It requires perfect drainage.

http://www.hillkeep.ca/bulbs%20colchicum.htm

  praying

  Praying inside Garden of Babur in Kabul

“Your Lord says, “Call on Me; I will answer your prayer.”   Islam. Qur’an 40.60

 “The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon him in truth.”   Judaism & Christianity.  Psalm 145:18

 “When My servant ask you concerning Me, I am indeed Close to them.  I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calls on Me.”  Islam.  Qur’an. 2.186

 “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you.”  Judaism & Christianity.  Psalm 55:22

Lake

Band-e Amir Lake

 “No person knows what delights of the eye are kept hidden for them—as a reward for their good deeds.”  Islam. Qur’an 32.17

“No eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him.”  Christianity.  I Corinthians 2:9

“Thou dost show me the path of life; in thy presence there is fullness of joy, in thy right hand are pleasures for evermore.”  Judaism & Christianity.  Psalm 16:11

“For those who believe and work righteousness, is blessedness, and a beautiful place of return.”  Islam. Qur’an 13.28-29

 WE ARE TRULY ONE FAMILY OF GOD!

Part 2

https://pathwaytoascension.wordpress.com/2012/10/19/getting-to-know-the-beauty-of-the-afghan-people-part-2/ 


[i]   http://www.answering-christianity.com/lost_people_of_israel.htm –  “The lost tribes of Israel are now the Muslims of Afghanistan and Kashmir.”

[ix]   More information is given regarding the reason for and construction of Persian Gardens at:  https://pathwaytoascension.wordpress.com/2012/10/08/getting-to-know-the-beauty-of-the-people-of-iran-part-ii/

THE TRUTH WILL BE HARD TO HEAR: Those who reveal truth to us are not the culprits.

THE TRUTH WILL BE HARD TO HEAR:

Those who reveal the truth to us are not the culprits.

Nancy B. Detweiler, M.Ed., M.Div.


Within the next few weeks, Earth humans will be shocked to learn just many lies we have been told—lies that have been deliberately perpetuated, some for thousands of years.

As Gaia, the great being whose physical body we call Planet Earth, moves toward her ascension, all that is of a negative nature will be brought forth and released so that healing can occur.  A spiritual, mental, emotional, or physical wound cannot heal until the venom within it is released.

The Divine Plan for Gaia and her inhabitants is for all to ascend together.  In order for this evolutionary leap to occur, all negativity must be brought into the open, forgiven,  and released.  This renders inevitable the opening of many Pandora boxes, the bringing forth of unresolved grief, and the arising of painful memories that we have sought to repress.

We Earth humans believe we know the truth of what happened in and during our lives.   Sadly, we know only the lies we have been told.  Behind the world in which we think we live exists a very different world—a sinister world characterized by manipulation, false flag events, mind control, and often torture and/or death to any who attempt to reveal the truth to the people.  The goal of this behind the store front world has been total control of this planet and its people.  It has mattered not how many people are killed or starved/tortured to death.  There is no compassion in this world.

Governments and religions have been used to pit one group against another, creating tensions that have frequently erupted into violence and hatred.  Wars are used as the solution to all problems, with false flag events created to stimulate enough fear and hatred of the designated scapegoat, i.e. enemy, to get young people to sacrifice themselves in war.  The same persons will be found to have financed both sides of a war.  Religions proclaim themselves to be a good thing, but the amount of bloodshed running through every religious history tells another story.

The lists of crimes against the people of this planet is long.  Now, in 2012, we are to learn the truth regarding these crimes.  What we must remember is that we know only what we have been taught.  We may know bits of truth or we may know nothing of truth.  Either way, our initial reaction is likely to be shock, denial, and refusal to believe that we have allowed ourselves to be so severely and completely manipulated.

We must remember that those who reveal the truth to us are not the culprits.  The behind the scenes world has a history of killing those who attempt to reveal the truth.  We, as Earth humans, need to listen … to ponder … to discern for ourselves who brings truth and who doesn’t.  Regardless of the pain involved, we need to allow truth to come forth so all can be healed.

A very important fact to keep in mind is that we do not—at this point in time—know who are the good guys and who belong to the behind the scenes world.  We are very likely to have included in our list of respected people some who truly do not deserve our respect.  Hearing the truth can create disillusionment and the feeling that we do not know who to believe.

On a much more difficult note, we may resist, even hate, the very people who are truly here to assist our planet in moving forward to ascension.  As mentioned above, national storefront leaders do not necessarily hold the reins of power.  Much can be done in their name that does not represent their true desires.  As a result, the people can be taught to hate them with no real basis to do so and the actual culprits continue their sabotage.

The truth will be hard to hear and we may tend to response as people have for thousands of years—by refusing to listen.

However, the stakes are higher now!

We are only months away from an evolutionary opportunity that can propel us into a much higher level of consciousness—if we so choose.  But first, the old must pass away and the old includes learning the truth about Earth humans’ history on this planet.

There is a Divine Plan and it is in the process of unfolding.  There are people on our planet who are here to assist.  Some are presently in leadership roles; some are not.

Earth humans—at this moment—do not know for certain those persons who are here in fulfillment of the Divine Plan.  This and many more truths will be revealed to us in the coming weeks.

I encourage all of us to listen with open, unbiased minds.  We will be shocked, surprised, and saddened; but above all, let’s not attack those who attempt to reveal truth to us.  Instead, let’s support and help them in whatever way we can!

“NO NATO, NO WAR”: US VETERANS … RETURN WAR MEDALS

“No NATO, No War”:  US Veterans of Iraq & Afghanistan Return War Medals at NATO Summit

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0ctEQqlf2xw