Showing posts with label Muslims in London. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Muslims in London. Show all posts

Monday, 14 June 2010

Part 3: Peace in the Middle East Tosos in London Monday Nights


Me, with four other Israeli Buddhist. Roshashana - The Jewish New Year- October 2008.

 Chanting for Peace inthe Middle East. This photo was taken with a group of Israelis, who also happen to be  Nicheren Buddhist,and chant a mantra ( Nam Myoho Renge Kyo), to awaken one's Buddha nature.Every Monday night, there is a tozo (an extended prayer session for more than 1 hour) for Peace in the Middle East.


Will there ever be Peace in the Middle East? Maybe not tomorrow, or the immediate future, but who knows maybe one day there will be peace in the Holy Land. The Zionist movement was created because the Jewish people have been a homeless people since the time of ancient Egypt. Israel was created in the forties right after World War 2 to create a homeland. But, Zionism started much earlier than this. If you like Literature, read Daniel Deronda (Oxford World's Classics)one of my favorite books written by George Eliot, she writes about Zionism in Victorian London. 

Perhaps,finally they will have a place to call their own without intervention from the United States, without dissension and agrimony from Palestininans. At last, Israel will at last have a harmonioius homeland.And,the Palestinians who have suffered tremendously against the very powerful force of the Israeli army, will also have PEACE. At this point, there can be no more blaming the other side. Each person, has to fight with their own fundamental darkness for there to be lasting peace, just like in your own family.

Either way, it is never a waste of time or waste of energy to do something positive for the world. To chant for PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST.You may think it's naive,a waste of time to chant for Peace in the Middle East. You can think whatever you want. You may rather watch Seinfield with your husband and wife of Monday nights,than get off your tush and chant, but I am going to keep chanting for Peace in the Middle East and so will my other friends.



Me, with Yariv Perelmuter. Yariv is an Israeli Buddhist who has been practicing Buddhism for 5 years.
He's a Comedian/ Social worker. I met him when he was on Holiday in San Francisco and we stayed in touch for about 1 1/2 years, until  I came to London and he "dumped me upon arrival". Literally, just after arriving from Heathrow airport. Well, at least he didn't string me along like so many men do.  He was a bit rude like most Israeli men, but the positive side of being rude is that the people are usually very honest and sincere. My Buddhist training has taught me to see the bright side of everything and everyone.Needless to say, I forgave him, not right away of course, or I would be lying, but after chanting a lot and turning poison into medicine, and doing beaucoup human revolution,  I realize that he was my manivator and I should appreciate him for being a catalyst and getting me to London, otherwise, I just would have procrastinated. I  wish him all the best with in his life and career. I do hopes he finds the right deodarant and learns how to wash his clothes. ( LOL !) They had this moldy smell on them like he washed them in London rain and never brought them in to dry. Whoosh! and Pewie !! (Anyway, Nothing like a bit of light hearted humor. If you are reading this, I sure hope you can take a joke. God knows you like to dish 'em out. ) If your reading this I am chanting that you find the right anti-perspirant Yariv, or a woman who  can tolerate your Middle Eastern JUNGLE smell. Anyway, Yariv is a very funny and intelligent comedian, his humor is his weapon, making jokes about world issues,he sheds  light on some of the world's heaviest topics in the name of  Kosen Rufu (World Peace.) He didn't have to serve the compulsory 2 years in the Israeli army because he's Diabetic. I told him that was his good fortune. I have a feeling that he could eventually make it as a Comedian. And, I have a feeling I'll eventually find a man that knows a thing or two about hygeine. Everybody will get what they want in the end.

Like Shakespeare said, " All well that ends well".

It's really a wonderful world !



Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Muslim Women in London


When, I first came to London I was astonished and surprised by the enormous Muslim population. It is a delicate subject for Americans because so many Iraqi's and Muslims hate Americans. Well, many people all over the world hate Americans,thanks to Bush. And, I am so relieved we have Obama in office.But, living in a Bayswater(5 Minutes to Notting Hill),a big Arabic community, I want to be the first to bridge the gap of peace. Where I frequent, the internet cafes,hoteliers, restaurants, cleaners,store owners all are owned by Iraqis. I have never been in contact with so many Iraqis and Arabs in my life.I just smile and tell them I am American, and little by little, they know who I am, and I have become friends with many of them. They are very kind and warm hearted people, and they always are very nice to me. Once in a while,the Iraqi owner of the Internet Cafe I frequent says some subtle snide comment about Americans, just enough to sting slightly.I take it with a grain of salt and just think whatever. Bush made a mess out of Iraq and maybe he doesn't like Americans because of that.I am not sure. But, I can't blame him. But,what I am sure of is that I want to debunk any kind of ideas people have about Americans.That we are all arrogant, ignorant, pushy,loud,and stupid.So, everywhere I go I try to act as an Ambassador and try to be on my best behavior.Well, I am not a saint, but I do try to remember how I behave is a Cause and it will have it's effects.



I have been fascinated by Arabic culture for a long time. I think it started with my Belly Dance Classes that I took at Berkely and the beautiful exotic Arabic music my Teacher Nana used to bring to class. I want to know much about the Arabic culture as possible.I am learning a bit of Arabic everywhere I go. After all, Spanish is about 60% Arabic. All the words beginning with al in Spanish are Arabic derived. After all,The Moors were in Spain for 700 years and with them left their legacy of culture,architecture and language. If your Spanish, chances are you probably have Arabic blood and likely to be Jewish as well, since many Jews stayed during the Inquisition.



I often find the women dressed in full hijab amazing, how do that do it. It's written in the Koran, that women are supposed to cover their head, because they don't want to tempt men. I don't understand how women do it, in full hijab, in the hottest of summers in Saudi Arabia. Speaking of Saudi Arabia, I was befriended a woman from Saudi. She was the most interesting and intelligent woman I met. She was a French translater in Saudi Arabia and originally of Lebanese descent. She told me,"Sabrina, go to Lebanon, go to Palestine, go to Egypt, go to Hell, but dont' go to Saudi Arabia." Apparently,she told me that the women are still treated very badly.It doesn't come to much surprise to me.I have always heard that,but hearing it firsthand from the horses mouth had more resonance to me. According to her,if you want to get a divorce from your husband Saudi Laws make it very difficult. She said,"Your husband could be a firstrate abusive jerk, and STILL may have a very hard time divorcing him.



Will the Laws in the 21 century in Islam ever favor women?
Are Islamic Women content with these laws? Some, I spoke to said they were.
Some said they get better treatment and more respect in Saudi Arabia than they would in London. I spoke to a few Islamic women and they ALL concurred that the Koran considers women very precious, which is why they need to cover themselves with the full hijab.In Saudi Arabia, they are not allowed to drive. The men have to drive them everywhere. I heard from one man that in Saudi Arabia the population of women is much higher than of the men, and that if the women were given power that eventually they would end up taking over the country.Anyway, I am not an authority, and I am just going by hearsay. I would not be able to tell you my real thoughts on Saudi culture,until I visited Saudi Arabia myself and learnt about the culture firsthand.




A Market on Edware Road




A Family Man shopping for food on Edware Road





A Muslim woman walking through a thick crowd by medieval London Bridge Horror museum





For some reason, I am not supposed to be taking any photos of Muslim women. So, all of these had to be taken very quickly. If your Muslim, and reading this, please don't be offended, this blog is meant to act as a breach of peace and to build understanding between cultures. And, hopefully trust and friendship.



This is my Gorgeous Goddess Dance Teacher Nana Candelaria




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