10 August 2006

travel, murder and beards...

I could smell the adventure before I left. Just me and my backpack. No real plans, no timetable, no expectations.
The guidebooks were sketchy; a map of East Africa revealed a few small ports, a lot of mangrove swamp and a road passable only in the dry season.
Googling the place names had opened enticing windows of possibility:
the ruins of a Persian city-state that had World Heritage status;
a cheap airline doing hops along the coast;
and places to stay that included a bedroom built around a baobab tree;
neat, swept streets of coral-stone cottages with shaggy thatch and a grand old German fort renovated by an Englishman.

Ibn Battuta would have been proud! Like early explorers, I explored. Inexorably drawn to those parts of the globe where few others venture…
And now back. Back to work and studying and cold weather! Detailed report of the adventure to be documented soon. *watch this space*

The world is still mad! Death toll up to over a 1000 from the 300 mentioned in my last email- the Israeli oppressors totally blasé in the unabated mass murder spree. The world mumbles occasionally and shuffles a bit but nobody has the guts or even ability to stop it. I don’t understand it!

The Palestine band I wear allowed me to have many discussions- with locals and tourists from all over the world. And every single person I spoke to and those I speak to now, are all against this bloodbath. Or any carnage for that matter! Not that many actually know what is going on or even the history behind the conflict. And I guess that’s the best place for us to start- educating ourselves and all those we come into contact with. Maybe that will help.

A friend in Sri Lanka sends word that things are quite messed up there as well. What is with the world? I remember before I left, there was some news reports about rich white kids beating and killing each other. So much ugliness just clouding up so much beauty.

50 years ago, women marched to the Union Buildings in defiance of the proposed Apartheid pass laws. A memorable event but in cynical terms- where they no women who took the hideous proposals as a sign of the Apartheid barbarians wanting to treat women as equal to men:) ok, ok- just joking!

Hash- I think you should shave your beard dude:P For your own sake. What that guy said is probably what many others are thinking anyway… But I guess him shaving his beard will not solve the problem- the problem is that this idiots slip up is an indication of how the words Muslim and Terrorist have become synonymous. Not that a beard = a Muslim, Hashim has done well to make it known that he is a good, practising, ‘orthodox’ [can that word even be used in Islam??] Muslim. Ah well, the guy has apologised…


i_am_not_who_i_am said...

did you say SHAVE HIS BEARD????????........

Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) says: "Trim closely the moustache, and let the beard flow (Grow)." - Narrated Ibn Umar (R.A.) in Muslim, Hadith no. 498

Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Umar (R.A.) relates that: "He who imitates the kuffar (non-believers) and dies in that state, he will be raised up with them on the Day of Qiyamat (Judgement

"O ye who believe! Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority among you." (Quran 4:59)

Bilal said...

oh no, not the beard debate again!
if you didnt notice, i was being sarcastic!

But since you brought it up, I believe that its better to grow a beard but fine to keep it neat-

Umar R.A, quoted the Prophet (s.a.w) as saying:
“Be distinguished from disbelievers, grow your beards, and shave your mustaches.”

In the Hadith, the Prophet (saw) related the reason for growing a beard to the necessity of distinguishing Muslims from non-Muslims. The non-Muslims referred to here are the Persians –fire worshipers - who used to shave their beards.

The Prophet (SAW) wanted to teach Muslims how to be distinguished in their appearance, AND THEIR behavior!

Sikhs- grow beards and do not trim at all.
Jews- grow lenghty, full beards.
Muslims- up to you dude!

Fatima said...

moustaches are gross.
so glad guys have to shave them off.

i_am_not_who_i_am said...

bilal: of course it has to be NEAT! .. .not like the ones were you find bits and pieces of gawd knows what LURKING inside!!!!

as far as i know . . . to distinguish between religions is one topic . . . but what about distinguishing between MEN and WOMAN!!!! . . . any man without hair on his face should be classified as a WOMAN! . . . as far as i am concerned . . .

same difference as : a nun covering her head and a muslim woman covering her head : one is seen as supressed and the other repressed . . .

islam will fall . . .islam will rise . . . it has been written . . . in the meanwhile . . just hang on!!!

fida . . .

zee said...

i have nothing 2 contribute to the beard debate - but u guys carry on with it - u all seem to be doing a good job of it.

1. just reading the 1st paragraph was enuf to get me excited bout your trip!

2. amazing how israel hides behind resolutions that prob have nothing to do with anything - just as they have done in the past

3. terrorism = muslim. no matter how u try and explain the 'civilised nation' as to how dumb that statement it is, they always seem to miss the point of the argument

Bilal said...

fida- Fida-
Islam is not about aesthetics- I think it’s a serious problem that so many ‘literalists’ think it is.
So that’s why I say don’t make the beard an issue until the other more important issues are sorted! That’s the end of this discussion: grow a beard only if you want to!

Dude, the world is messed up! Really messed up!
Trip was amazing. Do yourself a favour, buy a backpack and a plane ticket- now while you still ‘young’, wild and free

i_am_not_who_i_am said...


so you believe . . . its not whats outside . . .its what inside . . how about looking what inside the holy book and practising it .... outside of the book ....first person i heard of trying to justify and change the LAW OF THE ALMIGHTY .....to suit their needs . .


i will spare u my annoying camaraderie, and leave you the solitude of your falsehood....

and oh yeah .... please dont judge me .... its somebody elses job!!! . . ..


fida . . .

Bilal said...

fida, fida!
are you a 'literalist'? I didnt think so...

islam is beautiful- differences in opinion are allowed and respected. as shown clearly by the prophet [pbuh].

i dont judge you. or anyone else. and i think that judging someone who does not grow facial hair is wrong. thats my opinion. if you disagree, i respect and tolerate that...

'trying to justify and change the LAW OF THE ALMIGHTY'
'suit their needs'
'solitude of your falsehood'
- these can be construed to be very un-islamic statements. but i respect and tolerate your opinions...

i_am_not_who_i_am said...

@bilal : at which point did i judge anyone for not having hair on their face or say it is a compulsory factor for being a muslim? All i said was, men who dont have facial hair, look like woman?? and thats my opinion, not neccessarily the truth!...

it is a major injustice, TO BLINDLY FOLLOW. In this world, ask yourself, WHO MADE UP ALL THE RULES?. DO WE FOLLOW THEM LIKE FOOLS?. BELIEVE THEM TO BE TRUE. WE DONT EVEN CARE TO THINK THEM THROUGH?. I do not believe everything I hear or see. If it is questionable. I always ask WHY?. And if not, like for instance: Allah has clearly stated what is wrong and what is right. Then i will remain silent.

i agree that, Its pointless stating facts and ayats from the Quraan about OTHER ISSUES, when we are living in contradiction of what we do. DAILY!

This peace of mind and tranquility can only be achieved when we understand each other's duties, rights and responsibilities and then fulfil these.

unfortunately :::: seems like you the one who has JUDGED me :::: too quickly :::


fida . . .


Anonymous said...

interesting debate
just wondering...
what do you think of covering head for girls
is that also "up to you"

Bilal said...

fida, fida, fida...

i will repeat wat i said before:
-i dont judge you. or anyone else.

and i agree with you on this:
-it is a major injustice, TO BLINDLY FOLLOW.

besides, how could I JUDGE YOU:
I dont know whether you shave or not:P

what is the reasoning behind women covering up?
if you can answer that you should have your answer.
do you cover up?

i_am_not_who_i_am said...

WHY do they cover up??



fida . . .. .