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I have never reblogged before because I like to post only original content on this blog, but the following post from Sharon made such a big impact on me, I wanted to share it with more people. I cried when I saw these photos and read the post. The beauty of it is that a child knows no prejudice, except that which is taught to him/her by those around them.

Humans have always feared the unknown, yet there is such beauty in acceptance. We do not have to all assimilate into one homogeneous blob, but how lovely would the world be if we accepted our differences.

I remember a particular moment while studying in France last year. Burqas, niqabs, et al. are banned in the country, and one day we were discussing Muslim immigration in our contemporary French civilization class (which had been cast in a negative light). At one point in the discussion, the professor said (in French, of course), “Isn’t it so backwards that their women cover every part of themselves?” I countered: “So what is progressive? Me running in the streets naked?” I’d been known by then in that class to make witty comments, and she nervously laughed it off, but I hope it planted a seed of thought in her. I don’t want her to have the exact same line of thought as me, but I hope through her encounters with students from other countries that she at least starts to think about some of her strongly-held beliefs.

Please enjoy Sharon’s post, and follow her if you so wish – she often posts beautifully thought-provoking words and images.

A Leaf in Springtime

This is my son in the arms of Sima, our housekeeper and my closest companion in Afghanistan. Being house bound a lot during our two years in Kabul, I spent almost everyday in the company of Sima in our old, large, rambling house in Wazir Akbar Khan.

We would sit together in the kitchen in companionable silence sorting out the day’s dusty vegetables from the market while she taught me simple Dari. Or we would all sing along to Barney being played on the CD. Sometimes we would make potato bulanie, an Afghan flat bread stuffed with vegetable filling and lightly fried on the pan. And she would tell me about her lifestory. And we would laugh and weep together.

A widow with four children, she is the sole breadwinner for her family. We come from different worlds. Our paths and life circumstances carved out for us from our births. And yet, we chattered and giggled like schoolgirls. We laughed…

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