This is beyond a book. This Odyssey will take your mind on a voyage in which your soul will discover its own truth. It still leaves you traveling on this journey even when the pages end...
There is a table in front of you, on it sit glass lenses. You have a choice to pick them up and put them on. Upon entering these pages, you witness before your eyes a crisp, vibrant view of what this world truly holds. You will walk beside Jasmine through an odyssey which is also your own. The narrative journeys from the heights of a throne to the deepest depths of the dark. Something within you will sense the verity of every word. Our life has phases, each presents a jewel, which you will begin to recognize. The courage taken to look beyond the surface, illuminates the facets of our being. The innate majesty within us all intertwines with what is just beyond dreams.
A window into Just Beyond Dreams...
Something came knocking at the door, requesting four things: sacrifice, understanding, love for truth, and faith in something beyond the five senses. Upon opening the door, I discovered things I never believed. I am inviting you to take this journey, as every word was written just for you. An odyssey is a “long wandering voyage usually marked by many changes of fortune,” and this story most definitely became that.
I will begin at the point of conception. I had no thoughts, interest, or desire to write a book of any sort. Life had other plans, as it does for so many of us. It all started with encouragement from someone to record certain foretelling dreams and their fine details. At first, I resisted even the notion, but then figured, “Why not? What is there to lose by simply writing down a few dreams?” I had no idea what this one small decision would entail, let alone the amount of time it would take. I surged forward, answering the call, knowing that others would find refuge within the pages.
The experiences shared in this odyssey transpired over a time span of twenty-five years. No matter if they appear dim or brightly shimmering, they are jewels. The course taken to inscribe these gems brought a roller coaster of exploration, unlocked numerous doors of greater knowledge, and swung the clockwork of time.
I am opening the door for you now. I want this narrative to pave the way for you to discover who and what you truly are. Trust in the process of life, be inspired by it, and transcend the suffering. Above all, my hope is you will gain a different perspective of what we call “reality.”
Our mind is programmed to utilize the five senses that have been masked in fear and doubt. Our soul is forgotten, even when we are trying to connect to it. You will begin to understand, as our souls evolve, we ascend to our divinity. This is the key to the magic and true fulfillment of life.
The lens looked through is crystal clear and free of bias. I am not here to judge. I am not here to point fingers. Nor am I here for sympathy. These are simply truths retold in humility and understanding, with respect for all individuals involved. Everything you read here is true. There is no exaggeration or fabrication of personalities or events. The names of the people connected to the experiences have been changed to protect their privacy, including the person narrating it. The name Jasmine has always resonated, so I chose it as the first part of the pen name. The roots of the last name came from my grandfather, and when I saw it I immediately chose it without a second thought. I came to find the capital city of Syria, the country of my birth, is known for the jasmine flower. The name Jibrael (Jibra’il) is an Arabic form of archangel Gabriel, the messenger. These are the first of many synchronicities, and you will see more reveal themselves.
The vortex of chaos enveloped the soul. The truth of this world came to find me, both in the light and the dark. Nothing in my background prepared me for the path my journey would take. Without awareness or recognition, life accumulated into a series of testaments. Not until much later, did I connect the dots. I realized the purpose was to reveal and share with others what is just beyond our dreams.
This book had a snowball effect, taking over eight years to complete. It was painstaking and involved multiple sacrifices. Many people who know me personally, would describe me as a transparent yet private person in the same breath. Therefore, I wrestled deeply and was terribly uncomfortable with having to expose so much. I cannot express to you how much I did not want to write this book. However, I had no choice. My hands were pressed to the keyboard and I literally could not move them away. I went beyond personal comfort to serve a higher purpose, to serve you.
Everyone possesses the commonality of an internal compass, pointing us in the right direction. This is part of the true source, which we cannot see, but is both outside of us and within us. This is where things come to life, rather than lingering in the dream world. The true source allows us to transcend the ugliness, to find the beauty and grace in even the most bitter and difficult circumstances.
Many of us connect in similar ways within our experiences, though the details are different. These inscribed words are about your life odyssey. The waters in the previous chapters are on the surface level, being shallow in nature. At this point, moving forward, there is a sense of vulnerability as we approach the deep end. Take a breath, extend your arms, and push off as we dive further.
Everything and everyone you have experienced made you who you are. All of this is in-sync with your timeline. The power of what is behind it, is now illuminated. The phenomena of synchronicity enters center stage. Synchronicity is a chain of related and unrelated people, events and/or occurrences that link together. It works by a series of what seem to be coincidences. These casual happenings magnetically flow one into the right place, at the right time, and with the right people. There are many forms of synchronicity. Imagine a grandfather clock, a tall free-standing device. Within it are the heavy metal components that turn, wind, and click. These mechanisms run to move the hour and minute hands right on time. Although these pieces function differently, they operate together, synchronizing seamlessly.
Many inventions are the result of synchronicity. At one point, a person took notice of a need or desire, and then a solution presented itself. A Renaissance inventor’s imagination was captivated by winged creatures in the sky. His observations of nature, specifically bats, inspired him to create a flying device. The bat’s wings and physical structure were the answer to making flight possible. We subconsciously send out signals for guidance and/or answers. The soul then creates a path of opportunities, and the mind zeros in, landing on the tracks.
Even though we are not aware of synchronized navigation, in hindsight, many times, we can see how the divine plan played out. The coming timely connections would segue to the creation of this inscription. This required higher guidance to directly step in, so everything could flawlessly occur. The angels were once in the shadows. They now took on a fully engaged and involved role. This was necessary for two reasons: My mind had to take a back seat, so the guidelines I follow could adjust. Secondly, my soul would soon be invaded. It was a blessing to have the angels more present. Unfortunately, the very fact of why they were, was not pretty. They were the sand bags against the hurricane that hit. Even with this line of defense, the storm did its damage.
Transformed over time, the modern region of Syria contained many ancient empires and kingdoms. One of the most remarkable is Queen Zenobia’s Palmyrene Empire. This third-century queen’s husband and only remaining son were killed. Unlike other rulers, she made the choice to continue their legacy instead of seeking vengeance for their deaths. In honor of them, she spread her territorial claim from Roman trade routes to the conquest of Egypt. Though short-lived, Queen Zenobia gained the title of “warrior queen,” due to her dual prowess as a ruler and a soldier. Her downfall came at the hands of the Roman Emperor Aurelian. After her capture, the fate of Queen Zenobia is not definitively known. Theories range from death to release. Personally, I prefer to believe she was granted freedom by her captor. Almost as a reflection of Queen Zenobia, the universe was molding me to encompass both the solidity of a warrior, and the regality of the queen.
Syria was movie-like, I was watching things happen as an observer, yet experiencing it in its totality. During the time in Syria and Lebanon, I took almost every photograph placed within this testament before any thoughts of writing. Taking pictures became my means of expression, a means of encapsulating the smell of the orchard, the sights of the people, the hillsides, and the night sky. I could escape all that was happening to me, around me, and to an extent, within me. The camera clicked, and the world seemed to pause for those few seconds. It let me capture things unperceived to most human eyes, and savor what my senses delightfully came upon, even if only momentarily. When it was later decided to include some of these pictures as visuals, it was amazing what appeared. The random snapshots correlated directly to these chapter titles, and to the content of this book.
A very long time ago, I came to understand life brings unexpected things, and the only part we can control is how we respond to them. Honoring this lesson, I used humor and humbleness to survive and transcend the difficult circumstances, especially in this country. My sister’s mother-in-law wanted us to visit her in Lebanon. My mother committed us and called the taxi company at 11:00 P.M. to find out the cab was scheduled to pick us up at 3:00 A.M. I sat by her as I watched her facial expression turn from cheerful to astonished. I just shook my head, unsurprised. My mother was afraid to cancel with my sister’s mother-in-law for fear she would “talk badly about us.” I was forced to wake up at 2:30 A.M. after getting only two hours of sleep. One hour into the roller coaster-like taxi ride, we came to a sudden stop. The driver asked everyone to make sure they had their Syrian visas on hand. My mother opened her purse to find she forgot hers. This meant we had to turn around and back track to the village. The entire drive back to the house involved her blaming me for this occurrence. We returned to the village at 4:00 A.M., tired to say the least. I tried to crawl into bed, and was literally dragged back to the cab by my uncle.
“You enter the story through words, but you are actually witnessing one’s
soul to another. It begins to unravel with two childhood friends and the
reality of what dreams reveal.”
“From tiny detail and storytelling to the bigger picture, Jasmine weaves
this great transformation and allows one to see that there is this
existence, this energy. You are not just reading, not simply being
inspired, something deeper happens, a transformation takes place.”
“From details and story line to expanding awareness of a powerful existence
and energy to our own selves, the reader is propelled to come to terms with
his or her own idea of fear.”
“Thumbs way way UP for this experience unlike any I have encountered thus
far! A must read for those searching for answers for what is within, as
well as external.”