Saturday, May 13, 2006
Tick, Tick, Tick, Tick, Boom!
This is quite an easy post to write because I love Egypt. It's true that of my many years on earth, I've only spent seventeen days in Egypt but still, I love the place and frequently dream of returning there.
I think one of the main reasons I loved being in Egypt was because Egypt is a Muslim country (I use that term to mean that Egypt is a country with a Muslim majority). The first time I went there I was a shiny, new Muslim, still in the closet to my family and most of my friends and work colleagues. The feeling of relief at being somewhere where having to pray five times a day is the norm rather than a oddity, at not having to consantly explain all the time was amazing. It felt like I could inhale after holding my breath.
Yet amidst all the joy at being amongst other Muslims in Egypt, hearing the athan, indulging in muhijaba-friendly shopping and alternating between embarrassment and pleasure at people's delight in meeting a real-live convert, there is one memory that stands out.
I am on horseback by the pyramids looking out across the city, when the athan for Mahgrib starts. Like an aural wave, it swept across the city as the different mueddhins made their calls. As I heard it, one word came into my head: "How?" How can a country this religious be ruled by people devoid of any goodness, spiritual or otherwise?
Masha Allah, there are brave people in Egypt doing more then asking questions but are actively fighting for change in Egypt. I am humbled by their efforts. May Allah protect them all.
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