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Drawing solace and spirituality from the written word
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DUBAI: Trials and tribulations are not uncommon. It is how you deal with the two that is key.

Against this background, two women of differing backgrounds took to writing and are looking forward to their respective sequels.

They are Emirati Eiman Al Zaabi and Filipino-American Karen Henson Jones. They talked about their respective spiritual journeys at the session of the same title on Saturday evening during the ongoing Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature at the InterContinental in Dubai Festival City.

Addressing the audience, 99 per cent of whom were women, spiritual teacher-transformational coach Al Zaabi, author of “The Art of Surrender (A Practical Guide to Enlightened Happiness and Well-Being),” said that her book is a result of a series of panic anxieties that boomeranged with her post-partum depression from her first pregnancy.

The middle child in a family of 10 experienced the difficulties of being so. From attending a class of an Emirati energy master, Al Zaabi also enrolled in writing sessions, but shelved the idea of expressing herself through the written word.

Until motherhood came: “There was a voice deep inside me urging me to write.”

“I found God which led me to find myself and since then it is a (relationship) with the Creator.”

Al Zaabi is currently working on her “Letters from the Desert.” She said: “Our spiritual path is in the here and now. Do not escape. These will be your lessons. Do not get personal if some people disagree with you.”

Jones was a Random House (US) intern and graduated from the Cornell University and London Business School.

The former freelancing journalist had an eye-opener near-death cardiac arrest experience while vacationing in her home in Viriginia (US) from her busy career in the UK. Her realisations thereafter influenced her to reconsider her discontinued foray into writing.

“God gave you a second life. It is the examination of life. Would you still go back to your former life? There was a child I met in India (walking on all fours), he said, ‘You do not need anything because God is with you.’

These all led to the “intensity and sincerity” of her first novel “Heart of Miracles.”

In a previous email interview, Jones said that as a Filipino, she wants to impart the following: Give back—do not forget that our opportunities as global Filipinos have come from the hard work of those who have suffered economic adversity.

Help everyone. But especially do not leave the children behind. Success, class and confidence are not signalled looks, money, designer clothing or a family name.

Your behaviour, your integrity, service to others, kindness and general manner of how you conduct yourself in the world are the qualities that are truly worthy of admiration.

The spiritual teacher-meditation expert-speaker added: “When you feel crushed in life, keep placing one foot in front of the next. Believe in miracles. Life is valuable. The line between life and death can sometimes be paper thin.” Jones is writing her “Heart of Compassion.”

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