Saturday 15 September 2012

Madad Ya Rasul Allah

Today, almost all the Arabic radio stations I listened to played a Nasheed praising Habib Allah, Al Mustafa, RasulAllah, Mohammed - A thousand prayers and blessings be upon him.

So I am playing one too. This one by Sheikh Hamza Shakur, Syrian master of the mystical song.


Friday 7 September 2012

Leave it to Time....

Am in an Um Kulthum mood.

You don't know who Um Kulthum is ? Tough, stick to your rap and other crap music. We don't belong to the same league.

 In a Hadith, God says to the effect -- Don't curse Time for I am Time.

 Zaman or Dahr in Arabic, is literally translated as Time, but this is not an adequate translation. Time is Wakt. Zaman or Dahr implies an active Time - the best and closest that comes to mind is a "karmic" Time. A Time that is not indifferent, a Time that counts, that weighs, that turns things and people around....

 Anyway, I love this song by Um Kulthum - Hassibak lil Zaman - I will leave you to Time.

 I am not happy with the existing translations, so I shall translate that excerpt myself.

Needless to say Arabic Tarab (the art of classical singing) - the adjective is mutarib - meaning being in a state of turbulence, in a shaken /confused/disoriented state, not oneself.  So Tarab is the art of singing and of listening. Obviously if you're not into it, you will understand nothing. Which in itself is not a bad thing, because Tarab can do without people like you.

Regrets after me
will remain inside of your heart
gnawing at it, in pain
much better than a lifetime of reproaches 
tomorrow you will wish
that I blame or reproach you
I will not blame nor reproach you
I shall leave you to Time
complain, I will never ask after you
cry, I will have no mercy for your tears
who had no mercy for me
when my heart was in your hands
days have now come back (full cycle)
against you.

I shall leave you
to the one who has no mercy
and on whom you have no power
I will not tell you, you already know what Time can/will do

Time has states 
it so often changes things
at every turn
it replaces
laughs with deep woes

Complain, I will not ask after you
cry I will have no mercy for your tears
you, you who had no mercy for me
when my heart was in your hands
days have now come back (full cycle)
against you.

Monday 3 September 2012

The Sacredness of Books.

Every time I think of my library, my heart is filled with grief…I had a unique library, with books that are all out of print now…I transported them from Paris, London, Frankfurt, Cairo…rare books, important books that cover every topic on the Arabs and Islam…I can’t even bring myself to write about it without tears flowing down my face --  it saddens me so…what happened to my books ?—— the barbarians, the ignorant barbarians destroyed years of work, of amassing, collecting, indexing this wealth, this invaluable wealth, this treasure of knowledge, of information, of history, of…..

Why has this come to mind ? It has always been on mind, it never leaves my mind…every time I think of a topic, my mind goes immediately to a book in which I know I will find an answer, a cue to my perplexed questions…

One book title has been flashing before my eyes for a month now. The book by J.Chelhod - Les Structures du Sacré chez les Arabes / The Structure of the Sacred in the Arabs. An important anthropological book…so important. Where will I find it again ? Publishers no longer print these kind of books, they are too engrossed publishing garbage on “war on terror” “jihad” and the “threat from the East”

And am desperately searching for Sacred Structures...

Saturday 1 September 2012

Time - a little Wisdom.

My grandmother may God bless her soul was a very wise woman...she was illiterate, could not read, write, so that gave her ample time to contemplate...just shows that a formal education is not necessarily conducive to beneficial knowledge.

She was some fiery character too, a rebel in her own way, within the limits imposed by her own context, environment, and she refused to accept Bullshit from anyone...she didn't care who the person in front her was...she would say what she needed to say.

I think also the fact that she was illiterate, made her very intuitively alert, she could sense people, their motives, and their intentions...towards the end of her life, she was considered some sort of misfit, she could no longer fit anywhere with anyone...but I was somehow the exception. She always had her arms wide open for I'd stay with her for many days, we would cook together, and she'd tell me stories, her lost hopes, her unfulfilled wishes, her broken desires, her smashed dreams....also other stories about people, people I knew, people who were related, her childhood, her parents, the home where she grew up, she'd describe it in great details to me....and after each of my "sessions" with her - she'd conclude with "rah el hwaya buka el kaleel" - meaning what has gone by is greater than what is left...

I suppose those who grow in age feel the same way - what is left is way less than what has gone...

Truth be Told....

You know something, us Arab, Muslim women have been brought up to be disgustingly faithful and loyal even when neither is deserved...I can't speak on behalf of other Muslim women, but am quite sure it equally applies...

Our men range from spoiled brats to downright bastards, and no there's nothing cute about them...unless you happen to be a western wannabee woman, who is into "different races" to prove to her own how open minded she is or to try to prove "how a feminist can finally change a man's mind" and /or "embrace the exotic"...

In my book, Western women don't count,. however much they "convert". Sorry--- I know the song and dance all too well and let's call it quits for just now. However if you do insist, I am all too pleased to open another chapter about "western female reverts"....but for your sake, I pray you don't push. Because trust me you will read stuff that is not much to your liking.

Did I unknowingly say it all without saying it ?

I suppose I did.

P.S: I was listening the other day to some Arab Palestinian Sheikh by the name of Adnan or the other, am bad with names (thankfully for him), who was all praise for Western "reverts" praising what piety and understanding of "Deen" / Religion they had ...Did the Sheikh not know that "reverts" did not have to bear the brunt of centuries of his/theirs "dickheadedness" like "local Muslim females "did?!