The Famished Roots of Violent Extremism

by Wanda Waterman The Voice, Volume 22 Issue 41 2014-10-17 Film: Horses of God Director: Nabil Ayouch Writer: Jamal Belmahi, based on the book by Mahi Binebine “I was very interested in violence itself because I believe violence has a source. It has a reason why; it doesn’t come from the sky. I was interested in the genesis of violence.” – Nabil Ayouch “The name that can be named is not the eternal name.” – The Tao Te Ching On the 16th of May, 2003, 12 suicide bombers set off explosions in five different locations in Casablanca, Morocco—locations chosen for … Continue reading The Famished Roots of Violent Extremism

The Sound of a Soul Unfolding in the Chambers of Longing

by Wanda Waterman The Voice, Volume 22 Issue 41 2014-10-17 Album: Popular Problems Artist: Leonard Cohen “I saw some people starving There was murder, there was rape Their villages were burning They were trying to escape I couldn’t meet their glances I was staring at my shoes It was acid, it was tragic It was almost like the blues” – Leonard Cohen, “Almost Like the Blues” It’s refreshing to find humour in a Leonard Cohen album right from the clever title, not just because his songs have long been couched in a kind of nihilist twilight but also because, contrary … Continue reading The Sound of a Soul Unfolding in the Chambers of Longing

Smiling Into A Broken World

In Conversation With Resala by Wanda Waterman The Voice, Volume 22 Issue 40 2014-10-10 “Give charity without delay, for it stands in the way of calamity.” – the Prophet Mohamed, quoted by Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith 589 The Resala Charity Organization is an Egyptian charity that recruits volunteers to serve the needy. Some of its actions include caring for the elderly, orphans, the blind, the deaf, financially strapped families, and children with special needs, as well as conducting blood drives and secondhand clothing drives, recycling, medical care, tutoring, and literacy training. Recently Abdulazeez Al-saeed, the manager of the Tanta branch of Resala, … Continue reading Smiling Into A Broken World

Something More Beautiful and Human Than the Dominant Madness

The Mindful Bard: The Signal by Wanda Waterman The Voice Magazine, Volume 22 Issue 40 2014-10-10 Album: The Signal Artist: Elizabeth Shepherd “I believe in God, as mother. She’s good to me and keeps me going. I’m aware of how dysfunctional and unjust our world is, and I feel the need to use my musical platform to try to bring some joy—something more beautiful and human than the dominant madness.” – Elizabeth Shepherd in an interview with Wanda Waterman, June 2013 I first heard of singer, pianist, and composer, Elizabeth Shepherd from her publicist just before her appearance at the … Continue reading Something More Beautiful and Human Than the Dominant Madness