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Looking at the locals, living in a restrictive regime where self-expression and the free propagation of ideas is not exactly what you would be inclined to do, I’m wondering how many live for a dream and what is that dream?

Travelling through tens of countries from Bangladesh to Japan and Argentina to Kenya, seeing different cultures, political systems, schemes of thinking, beliefs, religions, behavior models, my personal dream is to get to the people’s core way of being and understanding them.

Judgment can only be stopped by knowing, by documenting, by understanding, by seeing and genuinely trying to put one in the shoes of the other. We live in a globalized world that is more racist and less understanding and tolerant to other beliefs, cultures and religions than ever.

Before judging someone or something try to understand where they’re coming from, how they think and what they have to say.

I wanted this trip for years and it must be 15 years since I’ve been in a group tour, an itinerary organized by somebody else. While this is the most common route in Iran, when I come back, I have to visit Tabriz and maybe Mashad.

Mashad is a holy city in the East of Iran where Imam Reza (or Ali al-Ridha), the 8th Imam of the Twelver Islam, a section of Shia Islam, was buried.

Globalization: A Basic Text

Closing my eyes, I can see where I am on the world map. So far, yet so close. What about my mission, my life? Where am I? We’re so good with practical aspects, yet with the less tangible we still seem to struggle. At least I do and I’m unceasingly searching, searching. Sometimes I feel like a dog scratching the ground in search of something he cannot see or feel, yet his senses tell him it’s there.

It’s second day and I wished I talked less and listened more. Does human interaction scare me? Does it make me look inside? Simply cannot sleep. Does a story that resembles mine make me sad? Does my competence make me too proud? Do I not take rejection, criticism?

Travel, just like love, is meant to change us. My motto is:

If love and travel did not change you, it means you did not love enough or traveled far enough.

Love, another force that makes the world spin.

I’m working on myself without even noticing, washing away pain, learning to deal with my thoughts, at the border between acceptance and understanding. Between these two doors I walk back and forth.

It’s a long way, a long process. It means dedication to myself and meanwhile I’m trying to observe where selfishness ends and giving begins.

Personal Revolution: How to Be Happy, Change Your Life, and Do That Thing You’ve Always Wanted to Do

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January 31st 2015, Bucharest, Romania

This weekend was magical in many ways. It started with a double session and some tears at the memories of my childhood at my psychologist and it evolved into an introspection of my whole life, remembrances, thoughts, furry, loneliness.

I prayed a little and read a lot from all the books that touched me in the last 10 years stalled next to my bed and on my nightstand. Then, while watching Wadjda, a Saudi Arabia movie, about a girl wanting a bicycle in a world where it is dishonoring in every ways to ride one, I had a revelation.

Girls in these kind of societies are not desired, women’s only purpose is to give birth to sons and once they don’t another wife is found, a better woman. Why? Because she might give birth to a SON. Therefore, what would the first wife and the daughters feel? Reject, abandon, betrayal. From a psychological point of view, this gives birth to masks – dependence, domination, runner, bringing with them the characteristics of such masks: lack of confidence, dependency, stiffness…

This, together with the pressure of a conservative community and the firm beliefs of both men and women, leads to the secondary, not important role of women. At the same time, their lack of confidence will always say: no, you cannot do that, you are a girl, girls do not do that, girls are not capable, you are no good, you are not in the genealogical tree, you do not exist.

The role in the society itself, to do everything for the man and nothing for themselves, leads them to believe that girls do not exist. Only men deserve something.

How could a person who is constantly told, since the cannot even perceive this, that they are no good, they are not as good as a son, they are not wanted, they are the source of the sorrow of the father who does not have a heir and the sorrow of the mother who is feeling threatened in its social position and family life of the incapacity to give birth to a son, only to a girl, be able to at least try to accomplish something, to start something, to have initiative, to want to do something more than cooking and cleaning?

How could they even do this when they are married when they are between 5th and 8th grade (11-14 years), when they are only girlies, leading to more psychological trauma? When they become mothers at about the same age? When they are girls?

Then I continued my readings about my love Iran, this time the history of Isfahan. Same society, same story!

I gave my usual long Saturday night clubbing sessions on my books on the nightstand and I could not be happier with my choice. Winds of change are blowing my way.

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