Video Update from Wales

I am now in Wales, about to start my “hostile environments” training course before I head off to Kabul on the 10th.  I’ve spent the last 3 days in London getting to know the BBC Afghan team, seeing friends, and combatting a cold.  I’ve posted a video update above.

It’s been quite a mental rollercoaster.  One day I am feeling upbeat, looking forward to my trip, the next day I am thinking of all the awful violent images I see on the news, imagining myself in the center of such things.  I was seriously questioning myself, my decision, and my impulse to continually and adamantly unveil hope and goodness from those settings and places our society has placed at the bottom of the heap.  My fear was strong, my strength wavered.

However, it is with renewed hope and trust that I am writing this email.  My father sent me with a book of Rumi’s poems and I opened on one called “The Embryo”.  The poem reminds me that there is a deep underground current which nourishes human longing for righteousness, connection, and peace.  We can’t perceive it with our senses, I won’t get confirmation of it on CNN or FOX news; it is conveyed through actions of the heart.  I am reminded that this force is ever present – behind the media images, and deep within me.

Until later, with love ~ Kayhan


When the time comes for the embryo
to receive the spirit of life,
at that time the sun begins to help.
The embryo is brought into movement,
for the sun quickens it with spirit.

From the other stars this embryo
received only an impression,
until the sun shone upon it.
How did it become connected
with the shining sun in the womb?

By ways hidden from our senses:
the way whereby gold is nourished,
the way a common stone becomes a
and the ruby red,
the way fruit is ripened,
and the way courage comes
to one distraught
with fear.

- Rumi