2019 was a big year for me.
From impromptu moving, traveling the east coast for two months, starting this blog and dabbling in YouTube videos I have touched on a lot of areas that I normally would not have. I will write them all up as an overall win for 2019 in terms of improving on my mental health and self esteem. I have finally found where it is and what it is I want to do.
Of course it would be solidified at the end of the year, but only after a retreat I attended made it concrete.
Being apart of a group called Razjan and living in the same house, I have an open door to a lot of wonderful retreats in terms of finding spirituality and searching for more in my faith. However, this particular retreat was something different that they normally don’t do- at it turned out amazingly.
The retreat, which I will talk about more in depth in a later post, was about Star Wars and happened during the release weekend of December 20-22, called The Sage’s Journey, with Sheikh Ali Hussein. It was almost comically how some of the participants (including me) had never actually seen Star Wars (no, I hadn’t seen any except for 5 minutes of the original). They all showed up because of the meaning that it held. People from all over the country came SOLELY for this retreat.
For context, the Muslim community doesn’t really have retreats like this – combining pop culture and spirituality. So for this to happen was amazing. The capacity for the program was 30, but 45 people ended up coming. Most of them begged to come even for a day. We paid for 50 seats for Rise of Skywalker at our movie theatre.
At the end of it all my teacher Ali, after telling what my goals and intentions were, asked me to write down the following questions. These questions are the same of reflect the same answers I gave myself in my Reading, Relocation, and Reference post.
What is anime to you?
How do you find spirituality in anime?
How does/can manga and anime fit in with your faith?
What connects you to your faith?
I was able to answer them. That alone showed my growth. It confirmed what I wanted to do, how I wanted it done, what I wanted to talk about. It forced me to make a set schedule of what to talk about and when. What reviews to do and why.
In that post, when it comes, will have all the answers and more.
My promise to 2020, and to myself, is to find the beauty in anime, in manga, video games and comics and grow stronger in my love for them and in my faith.
As 2019 comes to a close, I thank all the blogs that I follow for giving me inspiration and motivation. I thank the people that I know for encouraging me to take the next steps. Most importantly, I thank God for giving me the opportunity to begin great projects in the future.
Cheers to a new year!