Friday, April 9, 2010

I Don't Care about Your Religion!

Lately, we seem to be witnessing a lot of religious problems among "Egyptians". Many people tend to blame the government, media or educational systems for these problems. Well, yes, many of these blames are true, but they are not ONLY the main problem. I believe the main problem lies inside us, because we tend to stereotype people according to the religion they follow, and we totally forget that we are ALL humans who live in 1 country and 1 world.

The reason I am writing this post now is because today I witnessed a situation that shocked me a bit, even though it is not the first time.

Simply, a lady driving her car was not sure whether to park it or keep going, and she was probably a bit slow that the man in the car behind her told her to "move" ("emshi ya 7agga").. After she had decided that she would park the car aside, and after the man had already left with his car, she got out of the car and I heard her so clearly say to herself, as I was directly in front of her, (He seems to be a Christian BLA BLA BLA) and went on insulting him ("da shaklo masi7i ebn **** *** **").

In a similar situation before, I have spoken, but this time I was probably too shocked to speak. I wanted to ask her many questions: Is his Christianity the reason that made her call him mean? If so, and if he is in fact Christian, what has this got to do with his meanness? And what if he is not Christian in the first place? (that is of course, aside from the fact that what the man said didn't deserve this severe aggressive reaction from her, whether he was Christian or not, because I certainly couldn't tell if he was)!

I wonder how she even realized this "important" fact that he was Christian, just with his car passing by?! I always thought a guy's religion is not easy to know, since he is neither veiled, nor wearing religious jewelery, and so on. So in just 1 second in which he passed by her car, she judged instinctively that he was Christian, and what if he is? why should it matter, to her or to anyone else? And if the man is really wrong, and if his Christianity is really bothering her, why didn't she have enough courage to insult him in the face instead of saying it to herself?

I wonder why when we deal with each others daily, we tend to relate people's ordinary and simple actions to their religions.

Last week, one of my close friends who is non Christian and non veiled was asked by someone about her religion. She later came to tell me and was wondering why anyone would care about it. I told her that she shouldn't have answered that person who asked her about her religion, because it's not his business, and because her or anyone's religion shouldn't affect people's judgement!

I do certainly confess we have many difficult religious problems, however, the main problem lies deep inside us, whether it was planted by our media, educational systems, or whatever, we have to confess that there is a real problem in the way we speak behind others' backs about their religions and beliefs, and how we relate them to their behaviours.

Why would I choose to go to a doctor or not based on his religion not his medical skills? Why would I choose to employ someone or buy from a shop according to religion? Why would a taxi or any shop choose his customers according to their religion? These are very ordinary and normal day-to-day situations that should never be related to religion or any other thing except personal skills and qualities!!

Finally, I wish that people can understand and differentiate between real religious discriminative situations and simple ordinary actions ...

related post:
I Don't Care about Your Religion! - Part II


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