I find it very odd how one day I can pick up a book called Pakistan: Deep Inside the World’s Most Frightening State and on the very next go to a lecture where the people of Pakistan are portrayed as some of the most compassionate, wise and perservering people I have heard about – people with traditions and stories so rich and so meaningful – full of persistence and grace and mettle. It is astounding to me. Even the militants – deemed to be some of the most evil people on earth by so much of the media – are portrayed as real people who have been affected by their life experience growing up as orphans after the Soviet invasion – people with regrets and sorrows and who are living their lives the only way they have been taught. This is something that is so curious to me and again confirms my belief in the power of individual experiences to shape our thoughts, our lives and our actions in ways we don’t even realize. It also confirms my belief in the power of individual experience to change these same thoughts, experiences and actions into something greater than we ever imagined.

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