As much as DNA can spontaneously improve, it can also be manipulated mechanically, in the laboratory, because it can be isolated. DNA can be manipulated not only to improve a living organism but to make it less sophisticated, less effective, less capable, or less advanced than it ideally should be and therefore basically sub-standard or sub-par.
Enki instructed his son Ningishzidda to send away all the medics at the Shurrupak laboratory and to fetch Adam and Eve from Eridu. When the two Earthlings arrived, they were spruced up and taken to an operating theatre, where they took beds alongside Enki and Ninmah respectively. Enki recounts what followed thus in his memoirs: “Upon the four, Ningishzidda a deep sleep caused to descend, the four he made unfeeling (that is, he gave them anaesthesia which sent them into a trance).
From the rib of Enki the life essence (DNA) he extracted, into the rib of Adamu the life essence of Enki he inserted. From the rib of Ninmah the life essence he extracted, into the rib of Tiamat (Eve) the life essence he inserted. Where the incisions were made, the flesh thereon he closed up. Then the four of them he awakened. It is done, he proudly declared. To their Tree of Life (DNA) two branches have been added, with procreating powers their life essences are now entwined!”
A fictionalised version of the same event is found in GENESIS 2:21-22. The passage reads: “So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was asleep, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh.” This deliberate distortion by the Genesis writers, who researched the creation story from Sumerian records when the Israelites were in captivity in Babylon in the 6th century BC, derived from their sexist proclivity.
Their aim, which is a recurring feature throughout the Bible, was to cast females as secondary human beings who were fashioned from man. Yet by this stage, Eve had long been created, not from Adam but through genetic cloning as we saw in earlier pieces. Note how the Genesis writers apply the term “God” to different Anunnaki personages. In the quoted passage, they are referring not to Enlil or Enki but to Ningishzidda, who performed the operation at the instruction of his father.
MODERN SCIENCE CORROBORATES ENKI
Now, what Ningishzidda performed was not an ordinary operation. It was what modern science calls stem cell transplant, also known as bone marrow transplant. The stem cells (blood-forming cells) were harvested from the bone marrow of Enki’s and Ninmah’s ribs and introduced into the bone marrow of Adam and Eve’s ribs respectively. That way, Adam and Eve’s DNA was altered, resulting in the increase of their chromosomes overall from 44 to 46 and their sex chromosomes from 22 to 23, just like the Anunnaki were.
The operation did not mean their entire physiology functioned like that of the Anunnaki, only aspects of it: DNA transplant does not necessarily mean you become exactly like your donor. Once again, we learn to our amazement just how advanced in biological engineering the Anunnaki were 300,000 years ago. Bone marrow transplant only became feasible in modern times relatively recently. In June 2007, I happened upon an article in the online version of The Washington Post which extolled the wonders of stem cell transplant. Titled “Scientists Report DNA Transplant”, it partly read as follows:
“Scientists said yesterday that they had transplanted a microbe's entire, tangled mass of DNA into a closely related organism, a delicate operation that cleanly transformed the recipient from one species into the other … The success confirms that chromosomes can survive transplantation intact and literally rewrite the identity and occupation of the cells they move into. That is a crucial finding for scientists who hope to make novel life forms by packing synthetic chromosomes into hollow, laboratory-grown cells.”
Now, bone marrow is found in every bone. But why did Enki instruct Ningishzidda to harvest stem cells from the rib cage in particular? In February 2009, Dr Georgia Purdom, a creation scientist HYPERLINK "http://creationwiki.org/Creation_scientist" o "Creation scientist" with a specialty in molecular genetics, wrote an article she titled “The Amazing Regenerating Rib”. This is what she said in the article: “Both men and women have 12 pairs of ribs … Ribs are one of the few bones that continue to make red marrow (and thus blood cells) in the adult.
Although all bones can repair themselves, ribs can regenerate themselves. Ribs are commonly removed during surgeries that require bone grafts in other parts of the body. The rib is removed from the periosteum (a tissue surrounding the bone) much like a banana would be removed from its peel while keeping most of the peel intact. The periosteum must remain, as it contains osteoblasts which build the new rib bone.” Enki chose the rib because ribs even when damaged or removed are capable of growing back like hair grows back when we cut it! DNA transplant works in roughly 1 in every 150,000 tries. Would Ningishzidda succeed at his first try?
JEHOVAH “POISONS” ADAM AND EVE
Although the happenings at Shurrupak were a closely guarded secret which Enlil was not to be made privy to, Enlil did come to suspect something fishy was going on. Enki had recalled Adam and Eve from their Eridu habitation on the pretext that the couple were due for their periodical medical examinations, which at surface was understandable enough. But why had Enki gotten rid of all other medical attendants whilst he examined the two Earthlings? And not only that: why had the two Earthlings this time stayed much longer in the health facility when in the past they had taken only a day or so?
Accordingly, not long after Adam and Eve were returned to their enclosure in the Eridu orchard, Enlil paid them a visit. Enlil was in the habit of checking on them once in a while not that he really cared for them: he did so, first, to embed in their minds that he was the planet’s Head Honcho and not Enki. Second, he wanted to ascertain that they were indeed as intellectually deficient as Enki promised they would be.
Third, he sought to be assured that Eve was not getting pregnant at all. Enlil, the Bible’s primary Jehovah/Yahweh, visited the couple at sunset – “in the cool of the day” as the Bible puts it – when the weather was much more palatable (Earth’s sunlight was just too intense for him) and when the two Lulus saw him, they would gleefully dash toward him and gambol around in the manner dogs do when they see their master, though he would issue a preemptive bark to keep them at bay (Enki, on the other hand, let them take as much liberties with him as they pleased).
Adam and Eve were at this stage more animal-like than human-like: they moved about naked, drank water with their mouths and not with cupped hands, and copulated animal-style. They were also rather matey with animals. What Enlil saw contented him, for it all seemed to bear out the fact that Enki had kept his undertaking to create a halfwit and not a mentally sophisticated Being.
Enlil, who was a stickler for protocol, took Adam aside and sat him under a tree in the centre of the garden whilst Eve watched at a distance. Enlil reiterated to Adam that here on Earth, he was the supreme Lord and Enki was his junior. He warned Adam to be wary of Enki, who was a “masquerade who poses as a God of Knowledge”. If anybody could lead them astray, it was Enki. In fact, if they tended to listen to him, Enlil would exact on them a death punishment in exercise of his executive power. The only person they should listen to was Enlil himself, who was their real creator: as long as they obeyed him, they would never die: they would live indefinitely, he assured Adam.
We encounter this scenario in GENESIS 2:16, which says, “And the Lord God (Enlil) commanded the man (Adam): You are free to eat from any tree in the garden, but you must not eat from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (a metaphor for Enki), for when you eat of it you will surely die”. But there was another “tree” in the centre of Eden which Enlil did not make mention of to Adam. This was the Tree of Life. Just what was this tree and why did Enlil keep quiet about it?
THE SHEM, A GATEWAY TO “IMMORTALITY”
Let us at this juncture turn to GENESIS 2: 8-9. It reads: “8Now, the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden: and there he put the Man he had formed. 9And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground – trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.”
One similarity with the Sumerian clay-tablet records, which predated the Bible by at least 2500 years (and from which the Genesis scribes researched the creation story) is that Adam lived in a garden setting, a combination of an orchard and horticultural patch. In fact, the garden, as we have already noted, was more of a botanical and zoological garden since it also contained, we are told in GENESIS 1:19-20, corralled wild beasts.
This is not surprising given that the garden was owned by Enki, a versatile scientist and researcher. The garden was not Eden per se: it was in Eden, and Eden was in the “east”, that is, Middle East. As we have pointed out on more than one occasion in the past, Eden was the Edin, the sprawl of city states located in today’s southern Iraq, which indeed is found in the Middle East. The Edin was the Anunnaki hub on Earth. The Sumerian records, however, specify exactly where this garden was: it was in Eridu, Enki’s jurisdiction and the Anunnaki’s first settlement when they arrived on Earth from their planet Nibiru 450,000 years ago. Eridu roughly translates as “A Home Away From Home” , or simply “A Replica of Home”.
The Sumerian records, however, do not bear the factor of two trees standing at the garden’s centre. So where did the Genesis writers get the idea of a Tree of Life and a Tree of Knowledge from? Well, first, the Anunnaki, when they described the palace of Nibiru King Anu, said it was guarded by “a god of the Tree of Truth and a god of the Tree of Knowledge”. These “gods” (Anunnaki royals) were the ones who ushered visitors or arrivals into the presence of King Anu.
The Genesis scribes wanted to portray the garden of Eden as a microcosm of “Heaven”, or Nibiru, so they built into the story the existence of literal trees of Life and of Knowledge. Second, the idea of the two trees was plain misunderstanding of their symbolic meanings on the Earth scene. As we have already intimated, the Tree of Knowledge stood for Enki as the Anunnaki’s God of Knowledge, particularly life science. On the other hand, the Tree of Life had several meanings as is often the case with most lingual terms. In one sense, it denoted DNA.
The name of Ningishzidda meant “Lord of the Tree of Life”, which was a tribute to his mastery of genetic knowledge just like his father. The other sense of the term is the more relevant in the Eden story. As Earth’s top two executives, Enlil and Enki each had his own rocket, called a SHEM, just as every president normally has his own presidential jet. This was in addition to their personal jets, which they called a MU, or sky chamber. Enlil’s rocket was based in his cult city, Nippur, which was Earth’s spaceport at the time. But Enki’s was stationed at his Eridu base, on a centrally located quadrangular.
What was special about a Shem? To the Anunnaki, it was simply a means of interplanetary travel. But to mankind, it was a symbol of eternal life. How? Because Earthlings were given to understand that Nibiru was Heaven and to get there one had to use a shem (that was before the advent of religion).
Hence to live as long as the Anunnaki did (Mankind thought the Anunnaki never died when all they enjoyed was a considerably longer lifespan that was explained, primarily, by Nibiru’s much longer orbit around the sun, which lasted 3600 Earth years), Earthlings pined to get onto a shem and be transported to Nibiru, where they expected to be presented the Food of Life and the Water of Life and therefore live forever either on Nibiru itself or back on Earth. But at this early stage, a primitive Adam and Eve had no idea what the shem parked in Enki’s precincts in plain sight was actually the Tree of Life. Enlil therefore had no need to make mention of it.
The Genesis writers also employed the dual tree symbols to demonstrate that the affairs of mankind were a function of the never-ending contest between Enlil and Enki. And since Enlil was their god and Enki was not (he was the god of Africans), they chose to cast him as the villain, the reasons for which we shall explore in due course.
ENKI GOES THE EXTRA MILE
It was Enki’s turn to come and check on the couple as per routine (to administer lessons to them that would broaden their knowledge vista and heighten their intellect) but fundamentally to find out if there were signs Eve was expecting in the wake of the Shurrupak operation. To his surprise, Adam completely avoided him, so ingrained was his brainwash by Enlil. Eve too tried to keep at a distance without necessarily shunning Enki. Mystified, Enki wondered aloud to Eve as to what was the matter.
Eve: We have been told by Lord Enlil that we should avoid you at all costs.
Eve: We are told you are bad company who could lead us astray and consequently to damnation. The Good Lord Enlil says he will punish us with death if we hang around with you. He also said he is the one who created us and therefore we are obliged to listen only to him.
Enki couldn’t believe what he was hearing. So this is what Enlil was up to? These chaps were his own creation and Enlil now wanted to turn them against him! Enki was so livid he now decided he was going to go the extra mile in “opening their minds”. He was going to camp right with them for as long as it took to effect the change he now desired for them and put Enlil to shame. He at once pleaded with Eve to fetch her husband and convince him to come over and listen to his side of things.
It took some persuasion and a bit of cajolery for Eve to heed Enki and for she herself to prise her husband from wherever he was cloistered so he could come and see Enki.
Sitting the couple down under a tree, Enki told them Enlil was a back-stabber who was simply out to drive a wedge between he and they. The reason Enlil didn’t want the couple to listen to him was because he, Enki, had their best interests at heart. He wanted them to be like the Anunnaki themselves – to be capable of reproducing themselves, whereas Enlil was dead set against that. He wanted the couple to be as civilised as his own species; Enlil’s wish was to keep them in perpetual ignorance and benightedness. Listening to Enki would never bring destruction unto them; to the contrary, it would jerk up their intellectual quotient.
“In fact from now on”, Enki said, “I’ll work round the clock to ensure I firmly set you on the road to be like us – to have a sense of moral consciousness so that you are not easily manipulable. For example, don’t you know that the fact that you move about stark naked whilst we move about fully clothed makes you closer to animals than to us? You are not animals; you are humans! I will work on expanding your sense of self-awareness so that you feel and think more or less like we do.”
Where in Genesis do we find a conversation of the sort?
In recent years, using personal devices in working environments has become so commonplace it now has its own acronym, BOYD (Bring Your Own Device). But as employees skip between corporate tools and personal applications on their own devices, their actions introduce a number of possible risks that should be managed and mitigated with careful consideration. Consider these examples:
Si-lwli, a small family-run business in Wales, is arguably as niche a company as you could find, producing talking toys used to promote the Welsh language. Their potential market is small, with only some 300,000 Welsh language speakers in the world and in reality the business is really more of a hobby for the husband-and-wife team, who both still have day jobs. Yet, despite still managing to be successful in terms of sales, the business is now fighting for survival after recently falling prey to cybercriminals. Emails between Si-Iwli and their Chinese suppliers were intercepted by hackers who altered the banking details in the correspondence, causing Si-Iwli to hand over £18,000 (around P ¼ m) to the thieves. That might not sound much to a large enterprise, but to a small or medium business it can be devastating.
Another recent SMB hacking story which appeared in the Wall Street Journal concerned Innovative Higher Ed Consulting (IHED) Inc, a small New York start-up with a handful of employees. IHED didn’t even have a website, but fraudsters were able to run stolen credit card numbers through the company’s payment system and reverse the charges to the tune of $27,000, around the same loss faced by Si-Iwli. As the WSJ put it, the hackers completely destroyed the company, forcing its owners to fold.
And in May 2019, the city of Baltimore’s computer system was hit by a ransomware attack, with hackers using a variant called RobinHood. The hack, which has lasted more than a month, paralysed the computer system for city employees, with the hackers demanding a payment in Bitcoin to give access back to the city.
Of course, hackers target governments or business giants but small and medium businesses are certainly not immune. In fact, 67% of SMBs reported that they had experienced a cyber attack across a period of 12 months, according to a 2018 survey carried out by security research firm Ponemon Institute. Additionally, Verizon issued a report in May 2019 that small businesses accounted for 43% of its reported data breaches. Once seen as less vulnerable than PCs, smartphone attacks are on the rise, with movements like the Dark Caracal spyware campaign underlining the allure of mobile devices to hackers. Last year, the US Federal Trade Commission released a statement calling for greater education on mobile security, coming at a time when around 42% of all Android devices are believed to not carry the latest security updates.
This is an era when employees increasingly use their smartphones for work-related purposes so is your business doing enough to protect against data breaches on their employees’ phones? The SME Cyber Crime Survey 2018 carried out for risk management specialists AON showed that more than 80% of small businesses did not view this as a threat yet if as shown, 67% of SMBs were said to have been victims of hacking, either the stats are wrong or business owners are underestimating their vulnerability. A 2019 report by PricewaterhouseCoopers suggests the latter, stating that the majority of global businesses are unprepared for cyber attacks.
Consider that a workstation no longer means a desk in an office: It can be a phone in the back of a taxi or Uber; a laptop in a coffee shop, or a tablet in an airport lounge. Wherever the device is used, employees can potentially install applications that could be harmful to your business, even from something as seemingly insignificant as clicking on an accidental download or opening a link on a phishing email. Out of the physical workplace, your employees’ activities might not have the same protections as they would on a company-monitored PC.
Yet many businesses not only encourage their employees to work remotely, but assume working from coffee shops, bookstores, and airports can boost employees’ productivity. Unfortunately, many remote hot spots do not provide secure Wi-Fi so if your employee is accessing their work account on unsecured public Wi-Fi, sensitive business data could be at risk. Furthermore, even if your employee uses a company smartphone or has access to company data through a personal mobile device, there is always a chance data could be in jeopardy with a lost or stolen device, even information as basic as clients’ addresses and phone numbers.
BOYDs are also at risk from malware designed to harm and infect the host system, transmittable to smartphones when downloading malicious third-party apps. Then there is ransomware, a type of malware used by hackers to specifically take control of a system’s data, blocking access or threatening to release sensitive information unless a ransom is paid such as the one which affected Baltimore. Ransomware attacks are on the increase, predicted to occur every 14 seconds, potentially costing billions of dollars per year.
Lastly there is phishing – the cyber equivalent of the metaphorical fishing exercise – whereby cybercriminals attempt to obtain sensitive data –usernames, passwords, credit card details –usually through a phoney email designed to look legitimate which directs the user to a fraudulent website or requests the data be emailed back directly. Most of us like to think we could recognize a phishing email when we see it, but these emails have become more sophisticated and can come through other forms of communication such as messaging apps.
Bottom line is to be aware of the potential problems with BOYDs and if in doubt, consult your IT security consultants. You can’t put the own-device genie back in the bottle but you can make data protection one of your three wishes!
About five days before Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed landed in Paris, General Atiku, a certain Edward Williams was taking a walk in a woods in the Welsh town of Mountain Ash. Williams, then 73, was a psychic of some renown. He had in the past foretold assassination attempts on US President Ronald Reagan, which occurred on March 30, 1981, and Pope John Paul II, which came to pass on May 13, 1981.
As he trudged the woods, Williams had a sudden premonition that pointed to Diana’s imminent fate as per Christopher Andersen’s book The Day Diana Died. “When the vision struck me, it was as if everything around me was obscured and replaced by shadowy figures,” Williams was later to reminisce. “In the middle was the face of Princess Diana. Her expression was sad and full of pathos. She was wearing what looked like a floral dress with a short dark cardigan. But it was vague. I went cold with fear and knew it was a sign that she was in danger.”
Williams hastily beat a retreat to his home, which he shared with his wife Mary, and related to her his presentiment, trembling like an aspen leaf as he did so. “I have never seen him so upset,” Mary recounted. “He felt he was given a sign and when he came back from his walk he was deeply shaken.”
The following day, Williams frantically sauntered into a police station to inform the police of his premonition. The officer who attended to him would have dismissed him as no more than a crackpot but he treated him seriously in view of the accuracy of his past predictions. He took a statement and immediately passed it on to the Special Branch Investigative Unit.
The report read as follows:
“On 27 August, at 14:12 hrs, a man by the name of Edward Williams came to Mountain Ash police station. He said he was a psychic and predicted that Princess Diana was going to die. In previous years, he has predicted that the Pope and Ronald Reagan were going to be the victims of assassination attempts. On both occasions he was proved to be correct. Mr Williams appeared to be quite normal.”
Williams, General, was spot-on as usual: four days later, the princess was no more.
Meanwhile, General, even as Dodi and Diana were making their way to the Fayed-owned Ritz Hotel in central Paris, British newspapers were awash with headlines that suggested Diana was kind of deranged. Writes Andrew Morton in Diana in Pursuit of Love: “In The Independent Diana was described as ‘a woman with fundamentally nothing to say about anything’. She was ‘suffering from a form of arrested development’. ‘Isn’t it time she started using her head?’ asked The Mail on Sunday. The Sunday Mirror printed a special supplement entitled ‘A Story of Love’; The News of the World claimed that William had demanded that Diana should split from Dodi: ‘William can’t help it, he just doesn’t like the man.’ William was reportedly ‘horrified’ and ‘doesn’t think Mr Fayed is good for his mother’ – or was that just the press projecting their own prejudices? The upmarket Sunday Times newspaper, which had first serialised my biography of the princess, now put her in the psychiatrist’s chair for daring to be wooed by a Muslim. The pop-psychologist Oliver James put Diana ‘On the Couch’, asking why she was so ‘depressed’ and desperate for love. Other tabloids piled in with dire prognostications – about Prince Philip’s hostility to the relationship, Diana’s prospect of exile, and the social ostracism she would face if she married Dodi.”
DIANA AND DODI AT THE RITZ
Before Diana and Dodi departed the Villa Windsor sometime after 16 hrs, General, one of Dodi’s bodyguards Trevor Rees-Jones furtively asked Diana as to what the programme for the evening was. This Trevor did out of sheer desperation as Dodi had ceased and desisted from telling members of his security detail, let alone anyone else for that matter, what his onward destination was for fear that that piece of information would be passed on to the paparazzi. Diana kindly obliged Trevor though her response was terse and scarcely revealing. “Well, eventually we will be going out to a restaurant”, that was all Diana said. Without advance knowledge of exactly what restaurant that was, Trevor and his colleagues’ hands were tied: they could not do a recce on it as was standard practice for the security team of a VIP principal. Dodi certainly, General, was being recklessly by throwing such caution to the winds.
At about 16:30, Diana and Dodi drew up at the Ritz Hotel, where they were received by acting hotel manager Claude Roulet. The front entrance of the hotel was already crawling with paparazzi, as a result of which the couple took the precaution of using the rear entrance, where hopefully they would make their entry unperturbed and unmolested. The first thing they did when they were ensconced in the now $10,000 a night Imperial Suite was to spend some time on their mobiles and set about touching base with friends, relations, and associates. Diana called at least two people, her clairvoyant friend Rita Rogers and her favourite journalist Richard Kay of The Daily Mail.
Rita, General, was alarmed that Diana had proceeded to venture to Paris notwithstanding the warning she had given Dodi and herself in relation to what she had seen of him in the crystal ball when the couple had consulted her. When quizzed as to what the hell she indeed was doing in Paris at that juncture, Diana replied that she and Dodi had simply come to do some shopping, which though partially true was not the material reason they were there. “But Diana, remember what I told Dodi,” Rita said somewhat reprovingly. Diana a bit apprehensively replied, “Yes I remember. I will be careful. I promise.” Well, she did not live up to her promise as we shall soon unpack General.
As for Richard Kay, Diana made known to him that, “I have decided I am going to radically change my life. I am going to complete my obligations to charities and to the anti-personnel land mines cause, but in November I want to completely withdraw from formal public life.”
Once she was done with her round of calls, Diana went down to the hair saloon by the hotel swimming pool to have her hair washed and blow-dried ahead of the scheduled evening dinner.
THE“TELL ME YES” RING IS DELIVERED
Since the main object of their Paris trip was to pick up the “Tell Me Yes” engagement ring Dodi had ordered in Monte Carlo a week earlier, Dodi decided to check on Repossi Jewellery, which was right within the Ritz prencincts, known as the Place Vendome. It could have taken less than a minute for Dodi to get to the store on foot but he decided to use a car to outsmart the paparazzi invasion. He was driven there by Trevor Rees-Jones, with Alexander Kez Wingfield and Claude Roulet following on foot, though he entered the shop alone.
The Repossi store had closed for the holiday season but Alberto Repossi, accompanied by his wife and brother-in-law, had decided to travel all the way from his home in Monaco and momentarily open it for the sake of the potentially highly lucrative Dodi transaction. Alberto, however, disappointed Dodi as the ring he had chosen was not the one he produced. The one he showed Dodi was pricier and perhaps more exquisite but Dodi was adamant that he wanted the exact one he had ordered as that was what Diana herself had picked. It was a ploy on the part of Repossi to make a real killing on the sale, his excuse to that effect being that Diana deserved a ring tha was well worthy of her social pedigree. With Dodi having expressed disaffection, Repossi rendered his apologies and assured Dodi he would make the right ring available shortly, whereupon Dodi repaired back to the hotel to await its delivery. But Dodi did insist nonetheless that the pricier ring be delivered too in case it appealed to Diana anyway.
Repossi delivered the two rings an hour later. They were collected by Roulet. On inspecting them, Dodi chose the very one he had seen in Monte Carlo, apparently at the insistence of Diana. There is a possibility that Diana, who was very much aware of her public image and was not comfortable with ostentatious displays of wealth, may have deliberately shown an interest in a less expensive engagement ring. It may have been a purely romantic as opposed to a prestigious choice for her.
The value of the ring, which was found on a wardrobe shelf in Dodi’s apartment after the crash, has been estimated to be between $20,000 and $250,000 as Repossi has always refused to be drawn into revealing how much Dodi paid for it. The sum, which enjoyed a 25 percent discount, was in truth paid for not by Dodi himself but by his father as was the usual practice.
Dodi was also shown Repossi’s sketches for a bracelet, a watch, and earrings which he proposed to create if Diana approved of them.
DIANA AND DODI GUSH OVER IMMINENT NUPTIALS
At about 7 pm, Dodi and Diana left the Ritz and headed for Dodi’s apartment at a place known as the Arc de Trompe. They went there to properly tog themselves out for the scheduled evening dinner. They spent two hours at the luxurious apartment. As usual, the ubiquitous paparazzi were patiently waiting for them there.
As they lingered in the apartment, Dodi beckoned over to his butler Rene Delorm and showed him the engagement ring. “Dodi came into my kitchen,” Delorm relates. “He looked into the hallway to check that Diana couldn’t hear and reached into his pocket and pulled out the box … He said, ‘Rene, I’m going to propose to the princess tonight. Make sure that we have champagne on ice when we come back from dinner’.” Rene described the ring as “a spectacular diamond encrusted ring, a massive emerald surrounded by a cluster of diamonds, set on a yellow and white gold band sitting in a small light-grey velvet box”.
Just before 9 pm, Dodi called the brother of his step-father, Hassan Yassen, who also was staying at the Ritz that night, and told him that he hoped to get married to Diana by the end of the year.
Later that same evening, both Dodi and Diana would talk to Mohamed Al Fayed, Dodi’s dad, and make known to him their pre-nuptial intentions. “They called me and said we’re coming back (to London) on Sunday (August 31) and on Monday (September 1) they are
Ramadan is the fasting month for Muslims, where over one billion Muslims throughout the world fast from dawn to sunset, and pray additional prayers at night. It is a time for inner reflection, devotion to Allah, and self-control. It is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. As you read this Muslims the world over have already begun fasting as the month of Ramadan has commenced (depending on the sighting of the new moon).
‘The month of Ramadan is that in which the Qur’an was revealed as guidance for people, in it are clear signs of guidance and Criterion, therefore whoever of you who witnesses this month, it is obligatory on him to fast it. But whoever is ill or traveling let him fast the same number of other days, God desires ease for you and not hardship, and He desires that you complete the ordained period and glorify God for His guidance to you, that you may be grateful”. Holy Qur’an (2 : 185)
Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars upon which the structure of Islam is built. The other four are: the declaration of one’s belief in Allah’s oneness and in the message of Muhammad (PBUH); regular attendance to prayer; payment of zakaat (obligatory charity); and the pilgrimage to Mecca.
As explained in an earlier article, fasting includes total abstinence from eating, drinking, smoking, refraining from obscenity, avoiding getting into arguments and including abstaining from marital relations, from sunrise to sunset. While fasting may appear to some as difficult Muslims see it as an opportunity to get closer to their Lord, a chance to develop spiritually and at the same time the act of fasting builds character, discipline and self-restraint.
Just as our cars require servicing at regular intervals, so do Muslims consider Ramadan as a month in which the body and spirit undergoes as it were a ‘full service’. This ‘service’ includes heightened spiritual awareness both the mental and physical aspects and also the body undergoing a process of detoxification and some of the organs get to ‘rest’ through fasting.
Because of the intensive devotional activity fasting, Ramadan has a particularly high importance, derived from its very personal nature as an act of worship but there is nothing to stop anyone from privately violating Allah’s commandment of fasting if one chooses to do so by claiming to be fasting yet eating on the sly. This means that although fasting is obligatory, its observance is purely voluntary. If a person claims to be a Muslim, he is expected to fast in Ramadan.
The reward Allah gives for proper fasting is very generous. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) quotes Allah as saying: “All actions done by a human being are his own except fasting, which belongs to Me and I will reward it accordingly.” We are also told by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that the reward for proper fasting is admittance into heaven.
Fasting earns great reward when it is done in a ‘proper’ manner. This is because every Muslim is required to make his worship perfect. For example perfection of fasting can be achieved through restraint of one’s feelings and emotions. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said that when fasting, a person should not allow himself to be drawn into a quarrel or a slanging match. He teaches us: “On a day of fasting, let no one of you indulge in any obscenity, or enter into a slanging match. Should someone abuse or fight him, let him respond by saying: ‘I am fasting!’”
This high standard of self-restraint fits in well with fasting, which is considered as an act of self-discipline. Islam requires us to couple patience with voluntary abstention from indulgence in our physical desires. The purpose of fasting helps man to attain a high degree of sublimity, discipline and self-restraint. In other words, this standard CAN BE achieved by every Muslim who knows the purpose of fasting and strives to fulfill it.
Fasting has another special aspect. It makes all people share in the feelings of hunger and thirst. In normal circumstances, people with decent income may go from one year’s end to another without experiencing the pangs of hunger which a poor person may feel every day of his life. Such an experience helps to draw the rich one’s conscience nearer to needs of the poor. A Muslim is encouraged to be more charitable and learns to give generously for a good cause.
Fasting also has a universal or communal aspect to it. As Muslims throughout the world share in this blessed act of worship, their sense of unity is enhanced by the fact that every Muslim individual joins willingly in the fulfillment of this divine commandment. This is a unity of action and purpose, since they all fast in order to be better human beings. As a person restrains himself from the things he desires most, in the hope that he will earn Allah’s pleasure, self-discipline and sacrifice become part of his nature.
The month of Ramadan can aptly be described as a “season of worship.” Fasting is the main aspect of worship in this month, because people are more attentive to their prayers, read the Qur’an more frequently and also strive to improve on their inner and outer character. Thus, their devotion is more complete and they feel much happier in Ramadan because they feel themselves to be closer to their Creator.