April 10, 2010

Religion in Egypt!

Posted in English, Reflections at 8:56 am by Rou...

Some time ago, I was searching for facts and figures about Egypt… Googling the phrase: “Religion in Egypt”, I came across a link on Wikipedia with the same title… the first sentence that the wiki article was as follows: “Religion in Egypt controls many aspects of social life and is endorsed by law”…

See, it’s very true that religion plays the main role in most of Egyptians’ lives; but it is more or less a heritage and a tradition… I’m a Muslim because I was born in a Muslim family, my friend is Christian because s/he was born in a Christian family… may be both of us were different enough to read and understand beyond the mere name of “Islam” or “Christianity”… but trust me, I hardly ever meet people who do so… People tend to take the easy way out… they take things by its superficial meaning, and they fail to understand what’s beyond the surface…

They go on with their lives, saluting all people with “Peace” while they are full of rage towards the majority of them … Not to mention tab3an the bright slogans of hard work you hear everywhere, when laziness and corruption are what defines best our daily life… They lie, hate, steal (Yes steal!! Those who work in the gas station and don’t give you back the 25 piasters are stealing you! Ever used the underground Metro? Ever saw those who don’t wanna pay to get a ticket, so they stick to your back to pass just after you? This is steeling by the way… it’s just that people don’t get the definition!), yet funny enough they are living with full satisfaction about their way of living… are you kidding me guys… they did their homework… they did their prayers on time in a gama3a (Work delayed bcz of them? People can die like the example Dr. Monir gave? Are you crazy? Prayers are more important than people’s lives!!!)… They followed their rituals regardless of anything else they do… (Bribery? Corruption? Mmmmmm!)

Unbelievable double standards! Like a dear friend once said: “Egyptians talk about religion day and night, yet they are rated number one in the world searching for ‘Sex’ on the internet!

On a similar note to Ati’s and Camel’s stories… Let me share this incident with you…

My brother lives in el tagamo el khames, in a very quite area there… the mosque right beside his home always call for prayers in a very loud voice (normal!)… but the issue was never about the calling of prayer… the real problem is that the Imam prays while the microphone is on… so people have to bear his loud voice 5 times a day for not less than 15 minutes each (this tells you about the mess that happens in Ramadan during el qeyam prayers!)…

So, one of those days, my dear bro went to them asking them not to do the prayers while the mic is on, because it is very noisy… tab3an as expected he was faced different kinds of NOs, what the heck… bla bla bla… and nothing changed… so… he simply went to the nearest police station to submit a complaint… Do you think it got any better? Well, he faced the exact same reactions from the police officers there… Comments starting with: “Balagh ded el game3 ezay? Mayenfa3sh!”… then “mayenfa3sh te3mel shakwa ded el game3, dee sala!”… and ending with “howa 7adretak moslem??!!”… Until finally, when he insisted on submitting the complaint they asked him to wait for “Mohammed Pasha”, because he is responsible… Needless to tell you that Mohamed Pasha da was Amn Dawla! When my bro entered his office, the man was sitting with meen teftekro? The Sheikh of the mosque… Mohammed Pasha was smiling, while the Sheikh was hysterically laughing about something with a “give me 5” style… (Corruption?)… Balash nezlem el nas! 🙂

To answer your question dear Ati… No, this is not Religion… I would rather call it Abusing and Manipulating people through Religion…

I better stop here!

Have a good day,

Please have a look at the link below… it’s an old article written in 2008 by Alaa El Aswany in Al Dostoor newspaper… you would relate I promise you…




  1. ibhog said,

    I grew up in a very conservative family, and I lived through many many similar experiences, and I have countless ‘mosque’ stories. Eventually, I hated the concept’s guts and decided to pursue my own petrified version of living life right.

    I wish I could understand this society, or read where most people come from, but as long as we have all those ‘afloat’ mentalities, with no reasons whatsoever to back actions, and no moral standards to live up to .. then trying to explain anything is like shooting in the dark. It’s like we had habits stuck to us, stripped of all meaning, bare of anything humane – I mean isn’t this a twisted kind of slavery, where the mob just submits to its own ruined mentality?

    And I laughed like hell at the ‘endorsed by law’ thing, I mean .. this must explain the ‘give me 5 something’ one, lol.

    I respect Dr. Aswany, but I usually notice his incongruous (angry?) prejudices at times – minus them, he deserves salutation.

    Ah ya Masr!

  2. Rou... said,

    you know something ya Ibrahim… begad being religious has nothing to do with what people do… believe it or not ya3ny, my bro elly I mentioned above his story with the mosque, is one of the most religious people I ever came across… bass howa fahem sa7… mesh 7afez… this is the difference that people tend not to understand… nayenfa3sh teb2a taree2et el7adeeth bel deen… zay bezabt lama omm te2oool le ebnaha elsoghayar, elly mesh beyzaker beyroo7 el nar… WTF! leh lazem no7shor el deen fe kol 7aga fe 7ayatna… this is manipulating ppl using religion!

    As for “understanding” our dear society… this is a no way case… for the time being at least… you know what better describes our community eih? Some phrases that were written in Makawy Sa3eed’s Taghreedet el Baga3a that says:
    “ما زال يشغلني شاغل… من منا مريض بالشيزوفرنيا… أنا أم المجتمع؟ ولماذا أنا حائر دائماً بين مجتمع أحبه ولا أقدر على العيش فيه أو التعايش معه… ومجتمع أكرهه وألتصق به…”

    “كثيراً ما يشغلني شاغل أتحير في إيجاد أسباب له، أو حتى تبريرات… فبعد أن إستتب الغزو الوهابي على أرض مصر عن طريق حشود المدرسين والأطباء والموظفين وحتى العمال الذين عملوا لفترات طويلة بالمملكة السعودية ثم عادوا… تغيرت أنماط الحياة بمصر كثيراً. هجرنا تقريباً سماع التلاوة الرائعة الجميلة لعبد الباسط ومحمد رفعت ومحمد صديق المنشاوي وغيرهم. وصار الناس يميلون بذوق عام تم إفساده إلى أصوات مفتعلة للحزيفي والسديسي والثُميني وغيرهم… وبتنا نستمع إلى سرسعات خليجية ونهمل عبد الحليم وأم كلثوم ونجاة… وغزت مطابخنا الكبة والتبولة والمقلوبة ولم يبق لنا إلا أن نأكل الجراد والضب…”

    “الشيزوفرنيا بدأت في مجتمعي أيها الطبيب… أنا مجرد عرض لها… عبرت الزمن فجأة من عصر الميني جيب والشورت الساخن إلى الإسدال والخيام السوداء التي ترفع طرف النقاب لتدخل في فمها ملاعق الكشري أو عصا الآيس كريم…”

    As for Alaa El Aswany…. I do not like him aslan to tell you the truth… ya3ny… for me he’s a bit… hmmmm… I knwo many wouldnt like this… but he’sa bit commercial for me… However, his artciles in El Dostoor are good at times…

    I have to stop it here bardo… kefayany 3akkk today! I will only have to share your sigh/scream in my case… Ahhhh ya Masr!

  3. Lost and Found said,

    Religion does control many superficial aspects of our lives in Egypt but has the least effect on our behaviour and beliefes and this fact is 100% the opposite to how things are in other societies and that’s why Egypt will always live under emergency code….Enjoy!!

  4. Rou... said,

    Very true indeeed!

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