Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Three cups of inspiration

Read. Write. Read? Write?

That was the mental dilemma on this morning's train.

I made a point to be on the 7:42 for the first time in forever to thank Richard for his fabulous Florida tips. Him and his smiling eyes were there as expected, but the regular train gang was curiously absent.

Read? Write?

With no Hot Topic for Today and just thismuch left of Three Cups of Tea, I decided to read.

Our soldiers are dieing every day in the Middle East because the U.S. is using bombs rather than books to fight terrorism.

As an American citizen, you have an obligation to read this book. To understand the root causes of terrorism. To understand that educating children - especially girls - is the only way out of this mess.

Greg Mortenson is an American who has done more to promote peace in the Middle East than all U.S. politicians throughout history - combined.

He is an inspiration.
After reading Three Cups of Tea, a boy named Jake Greenberg donated $1000 from his bar mitzvah money to Mortenson's organization, the Central Asia Institute. Here's why:

"When I heard Greg's story, I realized that, unlike me, children in the Muslim world might not have educational opportunities. It makes no difference that I'm a Jew sending money to help Muslims. We all need to work together to plant the seeds of peace."

This, from a 13 year old.
Mortenson is educating girls in the Middle East. While most of the people over there consider it a blessing of all blessings, as you might imagine, there have been a few fatwas as well. Here's another excerpt from the book to illustrate the miracles this man is working over there:

In August, 2003, when the Shariat Court issued its final ruling, it sided firmly with Mehdi Ali and Mortenson. The court declared Agha Mubarek's fatwa illegitimate and ordered him to pay for the 800 bricks his men destroyed.

"It was a very humbling victory," said Mortenson. "Here you have this Islamic court in conservative Shia Pakistan offering protection for an American, at a time when America is holding Muslims without charges in Guantanamo, Cuba, for years, under our so-called system of justice."
Here's a quote from a girl named Jahan, who is now attending high school because of Mortenson:

"Before I met you, Dr. Greg, I had no idea what education was. But now I think it is like water. It is important for everything in life."
I know. You won't read it.

No time. No interest.


I don't care if you're not a reader. I don't care if you're too busy.

You can't continue to piss and moan about the Middle East until you've read this book.

Here's the deal: I'm buying copies for everyone who wants to read Three Cups of Tea. Send an e-mail to within the next 24 hours and I will pay for your copy of this amazing book.

If you'd rather purchase it yourself, please do so here: Three Cups of Tea. That way, 7% of the proceeds from the sale will go directly to Mortenson's organization.

Since 1993, Mortenson has built nearly 60 schools in some of the most remote, impoverished and dangerous regions of the Middle East.

He's not a religious zealot. He's not a tree-hugger. And he sure as hell isn't a politician.

He's just a dude who, in his quest to climb mountains, found what all of us really want: A higher purpose.
I am listening to: The Killers - Read My Mind
I am reading: The passages I dog-eared in Three Cups
And I am: Enlightened and inspired



How about I just borrow yours, and donate to them?