Author: Asma Q. Fischer M.D.
A wonderful opportunity came up last weekend for us to have a table booth at the OPEN HOUSE for the Islamic Community Center of Augusta Almost 8000 invitations went out to neighbors, friends, colleagues and the general public.
The public response was impressive. People flocked to view the inside of the Islamic Center, meet real live Muslims, taste the food of 34 cultures and mix and mingle. They were offered a glimpse into cultural life and visualize as well as feel the threads that weave the fabric of Islam across the world.
In this hubbub Mahmudah Institute had a table demonstrating the past events and showcasing the upcoming event on October 8, 2016.
Volunteers who had trained and practiced answering questions about the Institute or about the upcoming programs staffed the table.
When the time came for the Open House the volunteers ran the show at the table with ease of knowledge and flair of grace tinged with sincerity. All of them from the youngest to the oldest were touched by the message of the Institute connecting wellness with mindfulness with a global embrace to all faiths, creed and cultures.
The star attraction at the Mahmudah Institute (MI) table booth at the Open House was the “Touch and tell” game, which was a variation of the kindergarten game of “Show and Tell”.
The unique thing about this game was the two-step thinking process and a question about a specific outcome of everyday objects. Here is how it was played.
The visitor was asked if he or she wanted to play a game. The response was variable, the older more educated men were hesitant, the younger the person and women in general were adventurous and took the chair to start the game.
The visitor was offered a bag with multiple items and was asked to close his eyes. He was asked to reach in and identify one object (the objects in the bag varied from an orange to a battery, a Styrofoam cup, an apple or a plastic bottle.
After he had done so, he was asked how long it would take that object to decompose and become one with the earth?
A chalkboard was provided to write the answer.
The results were eye opening, for all who participated. One of the Volunteers who had expertise in environmental toxicology had prepared detailed answers for each object with a reference.
The players were college professors, housewives, teachers, children, mothers, doctors and cops. Everyone enjoyed the game and came out surprised and thoughtful at the end of it. A sampling of the objects offered and the answers will be shared on this blog.
The new program coming up on October 8, 2016 was introduced. It is titled:
Climate Change: Challenges and Solutions.
Come and join us in designing, planning and participating in the program on Climate change. If you are interested in participating please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will look forward to hearing from you all.
There was tremendous traffic in the first hour of opening, When I asked the volunteer what was drawing people to the table he said “It is the picture” pointing to the picture of the person whose name and life style is the inspiration of this Institute.
I looked up and found my mother smiling at me like Mona Lisa with the mysterious shyness in her eyes and the innocent naivete that she never lost to her dying day. She has indeed left us with many blessings!