patience and perseverance

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“Shadow isn’t just the dialectical moment as opposed to the light, it’s also a psychological moment as opposed to the brightness; there is brightness and there is sorrow too.”Ferdinando Scianna

venatures of past times

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I have walked passed these trees at least 20 times in the past month and still cannot seem to get enough of them. They stand still so big and tall and so proud. They almost look like as if they were put there to hold up the sky from falling all over us beneath them. I do not even know their names, nor who donated them to Israel for what celebratory mission or else, but I feel protected under their umbrella-like leaves. Incredibly strengthened by their steadfastness. They are so venous and pliable it makes me feel they could soon come to life and take part to my runs, walks or dances around the boulevards.

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Postcards from Israel: Week 4

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I have not written much of my current experience living in Israel for the second time since “Daughters of the King” in 2012. I instead chose to let my images speak for myself allowing space for the conversation to pause. I have purposely decided not to write too much to avoid falling into futile cliques and firing-up any more commentaries relating to “the situation” or, as everyone likes to call it, “the conflict.” I am living it, I am feeling it. I am part of it one way or another. But I stay on the border of it for many reasons that apply to the way I see the role of the kind of photographer I want to be fitting my pair of shoes. I have chosen to take part in conveying it to the viewers in my own, particular way. A way that will be revealed once I come out of this “war bubble” that us photographers so well fit in and make our own for the time being anywhere we go to cover such stories of lives and deaths that are not our own.

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I have realized the temptation to jump head first into the mix of the war photographers out here is exactly where I was heading and absolutely where I would be getting stuck for the rest of my life as war is personal and intriguing and disturbingly fun and rewardingly esthetic to photograph, but this war is no war I want to continue portraying with blow-ups, blood and rocks or rockets throwing.

untitled shoot-2009smThis war, or conflict, for political correctness’s sake, is something I want to analyze, look inside-out, breath into my core essence and then spit back out to you all, at a human to human level as this is the only contribution that seems fit for me to add to the over-covered storyline coming out of this part of the Middle East. So, sit tight and wait patiently. I am having a hard time doing so, but I think in the long run, it will help a great deal not to jump start the gun any longer.

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Week 2 in Israel: Har Nof

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A kid touches bullet holes from the window of the Har Nof synagogue, Jerusalem, where five Israeli were brutally murdered  on Monday, November 17, 2014 by Palestinian hands.

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A religious man looks down at offers of tzedaka for the family who lost their loved ones.

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Girls await the main Rabbi, Rav Rubin to exit the Har Nof synagogue on Thursday afternoon.

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Women davening at the Har Nof synagogue during Mincha.

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Women praying outside of the Har Nof synagogue on Thursday afternoon.

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Two kids playing on a balcony of a house right in front of the Har Nof synagogue. “Life must go on,” community members shared their feelings.

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The Admor of Vizhnitz, Rav Israel Hager, came to share his condolences to the community of Har Nof that lost four of their members and one policeman to a terror attack by Palestinians.

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Shadows of Rabbis and kid at sunset in Har Nof.

postcards from Israel: week 1

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Man fishing on the Jaffa beach on a mid thursday morning.

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Rabbi praying during an IDF soldier’s funeral in Jerusalem.

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The mother of 20 years old Sergent Almog Shiloni lay on his coffin before he gets buried.

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Staff Shafir Labor Party member speaking to Orthodox Rabbi of Bet Shemesh who promote dialogue between religious and secular Jews during Yitzhak Rabin’s memorial in Tel Aviv.

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Protesters walk over a sing that reads “Bibi you are causing us a new war” in Rabin Square, Tel Aviv.

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Abandon couch at a garage exit on Shenkin’s street, Tel Aviv, which reads “Available Parking.”

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Sun bathing on the Tel Aviv board walk on a lunch break.

l’amore e` lento…

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“…Ascoltatemi, vuoi due: non bisogna mai sposarsi finche` si e` preda della passione, perche` dovete sapere che e` qualcosa di diverso dall’amore; la passione e` la vertigine della scoperta, l’ansia costante del possesso, l’ostinato desiderio di conoscere le forme e i segreti nascosti dell’essere verso il quale ci si sente inesorabilmente calamitati. L’amore invece richiede tempo, pacate conversazioni che consolidino l’amicizia. E’ qualcosa che sedimenta solo dopo che si e` superati determinati confini di intimità, quando si sono imparati per bene i difetti e i limiti dell’altro. Insomma quando sulla bilancia gli elementi positivi superano indiscutibilmente quelli negativi…” -Marcela Serrano- L’albergo delle donne tristi.

…and we are on the New York Times

Of all the things a cyclist could list as essentials for riding, the road is not likely to be the first to jump to mind; it is a given. But in the vineyards and rolling hills of the Chianti area of Tuscany, preserving the heritage of the white gravel roads inspired a vintage-bicycle race that has grown to more than 5,000 participants…

read the full story here

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F=ma

F=ma is Newton’s second law of motion.

The force of an object is equal to the multiplication of its mass and its acceleration.

I was first taught this equation back in college in the 2004 Algebra-based Physics II class at the University of Colorado at Boulder. I used this formula a million of times and understood everything in this class just using this formula. Whenever I had a doubt solving a problem, I would scribble down F=ma and it worked as a charm, as if the whole world of Physics was enclosed inside this little, pretty formula so simple and so contained in its explanation.

F=ma became my modus operandi and my friendly companion during the in-class office hours where we were all asked to stay in the Physics lounge to work on CAPA, the challenging homework we were assigned weekly.

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There I felt in love a bit less with F=ma and a lot more with my Physics Teacher Assistant. So this formula started equating love to me. And continued to do so for few years afterword as our teacher-student relationship progressed into a wonderful love story entirely based on the principles of such simple formula where everything was measured in equal weight and a very nice, but subtle acceleration. It worked like a scaled perfectly balanced. It was Physics 101 at its best! We were both different in mass, but our speed was similar and our force ended-up being slightly off, yet charmingly controlled.

Until one day an external energy came to disturb the whole equilibrium. And so, as Newton’s third law says-For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction- this force applied on our bodies equated to an opposite and equal force in response and the relationship and both of us felt apart in million pieces for lack of control over our own accelerations.

I guess the unpredictable move that came upon us was indeed uncontainable by the formula itself after all. Or was it and we failed at it? The point of the discussion here is not to find a solution for there could be many or none, but it is to say that although there are laws controlling our universe and although there are proof of using them just right, we must always be prepared for the unexpected and be ok with the idea that what was once perfect and moving smoothly in one and the same direction can backfire and abruptly change orientation.

No panic. No problem. Just acceptance and strength to move forward in a new direction with the same willingness of accelerating and living just as fully as we once did.

ps: the relationship ended 10 years ago and my TA and I are still the best of friends, but today I found myself thinking of F=ma while doing yoga trying to find an explanation on how to simplify the intricacies of today’s relationships. So much has changed since I was 21 years old, although it has only been 10 years. It is another world out there and fear of loving just as much as one is loved has made F=ma that much more difficult to solve. Too many excuses to feeling. Too little time dedicated to others instead than ourselves. Too little commitment to a common cause toward growth and respect for one another. Too much fuss about internet-depending relationships and too little attention given to the person next to us in the actual present time.

F=ma will always have a special meaning for me. It will always equate love.

Let see who will think the same. One day.

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