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Welcome Spring, Easter, Passover and Ramadan

Despite the cool weather, spring is in the air. It is more a feeling than the physical temperature.  As we witness the change in nature and our clocks changing (not so easy), we feel an excitement and joy.  Like the holiday of Easter, we experience renewal all around us. People are friendlier and wave to you eagerly. Parks are filling up with parents and grandparents happily walking little munchkins around. Flowers are blooming slowly, still worried about the coolness but taking a risk anyway.  We also enjoyed the park today and Shahid captured some beautiful photos of springtime. 

The spring of 2021 also has something extra special for us- for the first time, we are beginning to see some hope as we think the pandemic will end soon. We noticed how our anxiety of walking in parks or going to stores has decreased compared to spring of 2020. As most senior citizens in New Jersey at least have been vaccinated, and younger people are also getting vaccinated we are feeling a huge sense of relief.  Some people- such as our children- feel brave enough to venture out on trips involving air travel and hotel stays, which hopefully will help those industries as well as other industries that have suffered so much.

Yet we continue to hear about disturbing variants and lockdowns in various countries. Sadly, we continue to lose family or friends- my aunt Ikram is mourning her younger brother Yusuf who succumbed to Coronavirus in Jordan…and we pray for his soul, Ameen.  Their grief will last a long time, and we have to envelop it in loving arms. 

On such occasions, I realize that we have to hold both joy and sadness together in our hearts, as they co-exist in the world.  We have to keep going even when things seem bad, and we have to celebrate what is good at the same time.  So as we enter the official spring of 2021, let’s hope for a brighter 2021, and still continue to mourn and support those who lost loved ones.  Let us hope for a world that is nicer and gentler, a bit more sober and calmer, where love prevails over hate, and people see the abundance around us and celebrate and share in it. This is what all the prophets wanted to tell us, so let us always remember this.

Wishing all my friends a peaceful Easter, Passover, and any other holidays not as well-known, and to my Muslim friends- may the upcoming month of Ramadan be a time for reflection and cleansing our souls, Ameen.

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