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Hilal Ibn Isa

Greetings all! I am happy to see that my follower count has grown. Sorry that I have been too busy lately to give you updates on my journey. If I may put the question to you, then: how have you sought betterment in your mind, body and spirit? What has made you a better person?

This week I have spent much time thinking about our connections, our friends and relationships. On the one hand I feel more connections within a community will always strengthen it, however I am nagged by the idea that my relationships at home may prevent me from being as willing to dedicate myself to causes, missions or ideals which may separate me from home. I suppose there is a balance to be struck between global and local  and this is where I must cast my efforts.

Every time I see a new crisis or disaster appear in the news, I hope that people who hear about it will use it as an opportunity to look within themselves and see how they can make the world a better place in whatever way, big or small. Yes, I would love it if that meant taking a spiritual or religious turn, but even improving the world in a secular way would be a beautiful response to tragedy. Sadly, I do not know how common this response would be.

Do I think it a sin to spend money on distractions when there is so much work to be done in the world? No. Surely being wasteful with resources is a sin against our creator and our family here on earth, but to spend money on a book or a movie or the like is not a sin. Assuming of course that such investment also comes with an investment of your time or money into improving the world or helping the poor. Spending money on entertainment is fine. Ignoring the plight of your brothers and sisters is not. 

Times of crisis reveal our true nature. As we grow and expand our role in the world, we must stay strong through every test. I am as proud of my country and my neighbors as I have ever been.

Someone has left an interesting message on one of my posts here denouncing prayer in favor of action. I would like to start by expressing my understanding in this idea. So many people around the world see people who speak endlessly about problems but do very little. They see these words and prayers as empty. And no, they do not bring water to the mouth of the thirsty and do not bring rest to the weary. But in my experience I find that these words and prayers will often lead to action. Not every time. But if a man is able to pray day after day about the problems in our world and still remain unmotivated to set foot out his door and work toward solving them... that man would never have done so. 

Lately more and more I am praying that we do not let politics and pettiness impede the improvement of thousands of lives. Think first "what would help the most people?" and there is your direction.

Spirituality grows well within a group. Daily I challenge my beliefs and expand my sight with my brothers.

Three ties to strengthen, connection to God through prayer, the world through service and yourself through exercise.

I have a moment of recreation and internet service on my trip. I thought I would let you know I am doing well. Is anyone reading the book I suggested? It is a great accompanyment to my journey.
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