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Enlightened self-interest – Mazin Qumsiyeh

I wrote this piece in 2008 on enlightened self interest and it came to mind
this week as our institute struggles to survive and grow in the midst of
challenging times. Please read it here and read some of the comments on it
posted on the same link. http://qumsiyeh.org/onenlightenedselfinterest/
 Please send me more comments and I will post them there
“We ask ourselves many questions as we struggle through this short life of
ours. What is the nature of activism?  Why do we do what we do? How much
self-sacrifice are we really willing to take?  What do those of us feel
after lost jobs, after time in jail, after being beaten and gassed by
Israeli soldiers, or after all of the above? How does one distinguish
between selfishness and enlightened self-interest? Is activism for peace
and justice the ultimate love of humanity or the triumph of optimism over
experience?  Is activism and living live simply the ultimate love of mother
nature or of God?  The following rambling thoughts do not intend to give
answers but hopefully give us time to reflect and think….” Read more at
and send your comment
I add quotes from Gandhi
“If we want to reach peace in the world we should start by educating
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
“The greatness of humanity is not in being human, but in being humane.”
“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
 “Change yourself – you are in control.”
“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.”
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
“Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make
“We need not wait to see what others do.”
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s
“Love is the strongest force the world possesses.”
“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.”
Ilan Pappe’s deep analysis of growth of racism

and refreshing clear minded and honest talk by UN rapporteur

Stay Human and keep Palestine alive

Mazin Qumsiyeh
A bedouin in cyberspace, a villager at home
Professor, Founder, and (volunteer) Director
Palestine Museum of Natural History
Palestine Institute of Biodiversity and Sustainability
Bethlehem University
Occupied Palestine
facebook pages
Personal https://www.facebook.com/mazin.qumsiyeh.9
Museum https://www.facebook.com/PIBS.PMNH
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