Sources of energy – the Home

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My home is my castle, it is my source of power and a haven for me and my family, subhanallah.
Home plays one of the most essential roles in my living; in offering me room to simply be, to gather with the people dearest to me and to centre myself to be ready for life.

I am an interior designer and architect. That’s what I studied, that’s what I professionally learned, that’s where I own a master degree. But in fact, after my studies I never really worked in that field.  With a growing family and the developing school project, life led me elsewhere, alhamdulillah, towards education, social development and entrepreneurship.

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But still and ever, deep in my heart, I am and I remain an interior creator.
I love creating and setting up rooms, I love to make people feel comfortable and at home in the world, in their body, in life. And even now, on a broader scale, I still create and design spaces where people can feel comfortable, in our school and at our campus.
Over the years, in creating spaces for the community, I learned more and more to protect and to consciously create a private space of ours. The busier and the more public our work-life gets, the more I feel the importance of privacy.
In a culture where doors often are wide open and the living is much outside and in community, this sometimes needs some courage to say “no” to the social “shoulds” and also some extra intentional adjustments to create room that is protected from exterior influences.
But after we have lived for more than four years in the middle of a busy school, we as a family felt the strong need to have a private and safe family’s sanctuary. We felt that, in order to live in peace together, to have the energy to work for and to serve society through our social business, we sometimes have to set priorities, to step back and close the world out. We felt that we have to ensure that each one of us is allowed and finds the possibility to unwind and to rest from the pressure and demands of the outside world.

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So we put a lot of time and effort in creating this haven of ours. I read books, I learned about Feng Shui and electromagnetic fields, about de-cluttering, aromatherapy and the use of healthy materials. We got inspired by magazines and traditional craftwork and we collected and repurposed beautiful, sometimes very old and used things.

I’ve already written about it  several years ago. Our home is a place we cherish and we learned to improve on a regular basis. It is a place we develop together, we change, we adjust and we re-arrange according to our feelings and needs.
That doesn’t need expensive investments.
Sometimes it just needs a cleaning or a clearing of space.
Sometimes a little repurposing project can lift up the whole scene.
Or flowers from outside in an old tin can – yes, flowers, they are my favourite, they immediately bring life and beauty.
Also a candle can change a whole room for the better.
Or a positive affirmation written with chalk on the wall.
The ideas are endless and often really do not need more than some thinking and doing…

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When I come home now, I really feel protected and nourished, subhanallah.
Every glance I make, in whatever direction or corner I look, provides me with something beautiful, comforting and healing: a beautiful picture, a handmade teacup, lovely sunlight or a soft pillow.
I learned to make sure to be every day welcomed by nice colours, fresh little flowers, a good scent and a soothing atmosphere. I make sure that eating, cooking and the chores are a pleasing thing to do, because everything around, the houseware, every material, work stuff and furniture is pleasing. I make sure that the rooms are always kind of tidy and providing place for a smooth living.

Home means to me tranquillity and feeling at peace. It’s the place where I can switch off from spotlights and the bustle of work, to gain new energy, in every corner and every room, alhamdulillah- I am very thankful for that, and I wish you peace, love and happiness in your homes!

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And Allah has made for you from your homes a place of rest and made for you from the hides of the animals tents which you find light on your day of travel and your day of encampment; and from their wool, fur and hair is furnishing and enjoyment for a time. (Qur’an 16:80)

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In setting up our house, we opt having a home that reflects and encourages our values and faith. Our main choices are made in accordance with Islam, hoping that our home invites angels and radiates with a sacred spirit.
Entertaining a peaceful home is essential for the functioning of a healthy family and thus for a healthy society. Guarding home privacy is vital in Islam to promote a tranquil and functional family structure. It is one of the significant Islamic values to have a positive vibe and atmosphere at home. The house should be a place of remembrance of Allah, a place of worship, a place that nourishes the soul on different levels. It should offer spaces for religious rituals and activities, further defined by humility through economical, earth- and human-friendly and sustainable designs. There should be no pictures on the walls that contain animate beings; no statues or anything that resembles statues; no dogs and no smoking. The Qur’an should be read out loud often and the everyday should be guided by values and manners that reflect Islam in the most beautiful way.

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Interesting further readings and articles:
Jane Alexander “The spirit of home”
Martina Goernemann – books
Article: http://www.islam21c.com/islamic-thought/propagation/is-your-home-an-islamic-home/
Article Outman, Aird, Buys : http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2095263514000740

 

Happy merry Id’el Adha!

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one of our this year’s healthy Id’ treats:

sugar-lactose-gluten-free chocolate pralines 

very dark chocolate melted
coconut flakes grounded
sesame or linseeds grounded
nuts, pumpkin seeds, chia, etc. grounded
cocoa powder
orange zest
dates, cranberries, goji berries,…
orange flower water

mix all ingredients well and press small balls in shape, put them in little paper forms – yummy!

wishing you and yours a very happy feast-day and tabark’Allah!  Id’ moubarak said! 

Embracing the New

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September – the holidays are over, summer is almost gone.
It’s the beginning of autumn;
It’s the start of a new school year ; of new plans to make and a new rhythm to find.
Back to work;  back to my dear morning quiet time routine;  back to the everyday.

Alhamdulillah, many blessings lie behind us and beautiful things await us, inchaallah.
I am thankful for two rich and fulfilled months of vacation and am looking forward now to face new challenges, to discover new adventures, to start new projects, to meet new people and to make new development;
I try to pull force and courage from success of the past and to embrace the unknown with joy. I trust in God’s paths and learn more and more to stay calm and to distinguish between my business, the others business and God’s business.

I wish you a happy autumn and a start of many blessed new experiences!
Salam aleikoum friends!

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Carnet de Voyage #3

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It’s morning, and nearly all the others are still sleeping. I enjoy these quiet moments in nature, when the day wakes up, when the first light of the sun breaks through and shines on the mountains around –  before my first coffee and before we start to a new hike and new discoveries.

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Today my legs hurt. Yesterday was hard and I really challenged myself. Until now, I maybe didn’t know what my body is capable of achieving, alhamdulillah.
We climbed a high pass of 3000 meters altitude and I really felt it, in my lungs, in my knees, everywhere. I was so occupied with myself, with my weakness, my fatigue, not able to talk or motivate the kids – but in fact they even walked quicker and less tired than I,  when I was just as slow and tired as the old donkey that accompanied us…. But I did it! We did it, mashaallah.

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Carnet de Voyage #1

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… After the high pass we walked down the hill through beautiful landscape with so many different rocks and stones in all colors and shapes.
Down, along the riverbed, were beautiful caves, and so many incredible pebbles and lovely tiny flowers everywhere – a breathtaking small microcosm that invited to focus on the little things. I saw so many heart-shaped stones and had a hard time to stop myself picking up all of them…
We met a young nomad boy who challenged my thinking. He came when we picnicked. He directly asked us for a box of tuna and then stood quiet, observing us, watched with a very intense look and did nearly not answer to any of our questions. He made me thinking what life he leads, up here in the mountains, as a nomad, no schooling, no real housing, not much thigs to eat, wandering around and caring with his family for many sheep and a big goat herd….

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Later we met a nomad woman, Fadma.  She lives near to our first camp with her children, lots of animals, also some camels and dogs. The dogs nearly attacked us, they really got angry and aggressive, barked at us until Fadma stopped them. She invited us in her little stone-house where she lives in the summer months. I was amazed by her gentleness. She was so very unassuming and I immediately felt close to her. I was very happy to be able to communicate so well in Tachelheit (Berber language) and to quickly establish a connection with her. We talked about her living, the children and how to treat some cough naturally. She showed us her living room and kitchen, the little solar bulb and her stock pile of flour and other edible things. She seemed very contented with her life, quiet and unpretentious.

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