Monday, December 28, 2009


From KY:

Isn't the fundamental problem lack in belief that a person matters and can effect change? There is no belief that an individual matters or can actually have any significant impact on their environment. In the arabic mind, you are not at all master of what happens to you because there is somewhere a superior power that has already predetermined totally your existence. All choices that you make are actually pre-determined for you ("kull halli sar ken maktub 3aleik). So, in the end, nothing you can do will matter "mbere7 kenna 3al 7adid wu halla' sorna 3al hadid"... It serves absolutely no purpose to do anything because you are not in control anyway.
Individuality not only doesn't not exist but is actually a huge negative in the arabic mind. You are never defined in terms of who you are but in terms of what you belong to (kabileh, 3aileh, din, day3a... Enta shou? Enta men wen? Enta shou aslak?...). You can not do anything that is not 'approved' by the norms of your community, family... the famous 3edet wa takalid... This severly limits any innovative thinking or risk-taking.
It is also very important to carefully understand that philosophically,terrestrial life is of significantly less importance than the afterlife in the arabic mind. Life on earth actually doesn't matter that much compared to what you can probably gain in the afterlife. In some cases it is actually much preferable to die "fi sabili lleh" or to wash your sense of honor then to continue to live. You live your life in anticipation of your death. In contrast, Judaism is 100% focused on protecting the 'Jewish Life' at all costs. Suffice it to see how much body armor protection Israeli soldiers get or to which extent Israeli are ready to make concessions to exchange bezillions of arab prisonners against one Israeli. Bottom-line: all I do in this shitty life should be geared to get me a cushy place in eternal paradise.
Also, there is a fundamental conceptual difference about the perspective on life in the arabic and western mind. The arabic mind perceives life as a circular cycle: nothing changes because you can go round and round, but you will end up at the same place where you started ("kil wa7ad byerja3 la aslo"). The western mind sees life as a linear journey: you start, you continue, you end... all along a progression on a line. You may stray left or right but you progress in your life. In the arabic mind, there is no need to exert yourself too much, because in the end you will make no progress whatsoever.
All this to say that there is no hope in sight anytime soon. Actually, the more we see, the more we see reasons for despairing.

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