Mohammed ElSabagh*, a computer science engineer, a researcher pursuing his MSc degree in the field of cyber security and a close friend of mine.
About a week ago, he asked me to review his ‘Statement of Purpose’, a proposal submitted to universities to support your application as an eligible candidate, since he was applying for his PhD studies in one of the top ten universities in the world.
At one part of his ‘SOP’ Mohammed speaks about how his passion towards computer security was developed at the age of ten, when he managed to develop a software virus that could wipe off a hard drive! In his first year at high school, he developed a game patch (a small tool that unlocks game features, bypasses levels, gives infinite ammunition, god’s mode, etc) and published it on-line.
Years later and apart from work and academia, Mohammed volunteered in community service activities, such as Resala, an experience that changed his perception about security and made him more interested in social engineering.
A couple of days ago and after I reviewed his ‘SOP’ and passed on my comments to him, which were nothing technical, we were talking about his community service experience “This one experience has implanted inside me that humans will ever be vulnerable – there is no patch for humans…” he said.
I paused for a moment and then told him “You know what?, when you just said these words I subconsciously related them to a quote by Dr.Nabulsi saying “!اتق الله فيما تملك يكفيك ما لا تملك” (translated in English as “Adhere this that you have in hand (have control over) and God will sufficiently provide you with this that you don’t have (have not control over)”). Mohammed smiled and said “So fitting!!”
There is so much that we don’t know, so much that we cannot control, and those things that we know (or we think we know) are no more than fragments of a bigger picture, chapters of a bigger story, particles of a whole.
And we will always try to figure the picture out of the fragments, we will mistakenly try to write the missing chapters of the story, trying to figure out how the masterplan works.
And the more we try the more we come to the conclusion that we know nothing! that the universe is not only what our eyes can see, or what our minds can ponder upon. Our whole universe in itself is nothing but a speck.
Don’t you misinterpret my words, and dare limit your capabilities. We might be physically small but metaphysically we are whole. We are capable of moving mountains, speaking of dreams and watch them come true.
Don’t you stop asking question, but don’t wait on an answer for every question, because this is not how the masterplan works.
Abu Hurairah narrated that the messenger of Allah (PBUH) said (it was the 38th hadeeth Nawawi’s out of forty hadeeths narrated by Rasul Allah (PBUH) from God) :
Allah the Almighty has said: “Who soever shows enmity to a friend of Mine, I shall be at war with him. My servant does not draw near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the religious duties I have imposed upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that I shall love him. When I love him I am his hearing with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, his hand with which he strikes, and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask [something] of Me, I would surely give it to him and were he to ask Me for refuge, I would surely grant him it.”
Related by Bukhari.*
in Arabic it is:
إن الله قال: من عادى لي ولياً فقد آذنته بالحرب، وما تقرب إلي عبدي بشيء أحب إلي مما افترضت عليه، وما يزال عبدي يتقرب إلي بالنوافل حتى أحبه، فإذا أحبته كنت سمعه الذي يسمع به، وبصره الذي يبصر به، ويده التي يبطش بها، ورجله التي يمشي بها، وإن سألني لأعطينه، ولئن استعاذني لأعيذنه ”
Adhere this that you have in hand, and God will sufficiently provide you with this that you don’t have, He will unlock to you features of mastery, grant you infinite ammunition, answer your unanswered questions and reveal to you chapters of the masterplan.
May this be your Human Patch.
* You can follow Mohammed ElSabagh on, Impulsiveness