It’s International waffle day!

People of the Planet Earth will unite today on International Waffle Day!

Who doesn’t like a waffle? Americans and Saudis both indulge in this divine food.

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You can eat waffles flat, with cream and jam, or rolled up filled with clotted cream, or rolled in a cone filled with ice cream.

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Waffles rule!

What’s in a beard?

Beardy tweets have sparked controversy in Saudi Arabia

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A Saudi activist said that she would sue a religious scholar after he called for putting her on trial over a tweet in which he claimed she had insulted Prophet Mohammad . Suad Al Shimmari said that Shaikh Adel Al Kalbani wronged her by claiming that she had ridiculed the Prophet by denigrating the significance of beards that men are expected to grow as required by some religious schools.

Local news site Sabq Shaik Al Kalbani said: “I call for a swift trial of Suad Al Shimmari for her offences to the Prophet and her scorns in the tweet she posted,”

Suad Al Shimmari said in her tweet:  “one of the dumbest statements is that breeding beards is to be different from the heathens. These include past and present Orientalists, Jews, priests, Communists and Marxists beards. Abu Jahl (an enemy of the Prophet) had a beard longer than that of the Prophet.”

Saudi members of Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice are seen during training course in Riyadh

In reaction to the tweet Al Kalbani prayed that Suad would lose the use of her hand and her eyesight.
Suad however rejected the charges and said they were part of a campaign to discredit her: “Those who reacted negatively to my tweet had isolated it from the other tweets raising the same theme. They maliciously clipped them to target me and to make me look as if I was scorning the Prophet,”
“I wanted to stress in my tweets that when we criticise bearded men, we do not mean to ridicule God’s teachings, verses and Messenger. In my tweet, I wanted to show that other religions also included breeding beards that are in fact longer than those that some Muslims have. This includes rabbis and clergymen,”. Buddhists in India are different from Muslims through, among other features, their beards, she added.

“The length of a beard does not define the degree of religious devotion or the piety of the person. Those who say they want to emulate the example of Prophet Mohammad should adopt his morals as well,” she said.

“I am shocked by all the insults and derogatory remarks. I wish Al Kalbani had really appreciated the significance of my tweets before rushing into cursing me,” she said. His negative attitudes have fuelled public antagonism against her according to Suad.

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Suad also said; “Al Kalbani did what he did because he wanted to gain some popular mileage and to reconcile with his group. I am now considering a law case against him for what he said against me. Islam teaches us not to rush into statements and conclusions until we are sure and certain about all the facts in order to be fair. I am responsible for what I say, but I am not responsible for what they understand or how they perceive things. I am not at all responsible about them if they want to put pressure on society or seek a deal with the state or target me because of my positions towards the Muslim Brotherhood,” .

Suad said that some people are using their beards to hide their true character behind them. “The Prophet would have never treated people unfairly or rushed into a conclusion without verifying the facts and making sure about them first. What they did is not part of the Prophet’s way of life. These people represent a political ideology hiding behind a beard to claim they are pious and live in good conditions,”.

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Read more:

Gulf News

Update:

To make the post more perfect, here is a photo of Shaik Al Kabani:

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And to make sure this post is fair to the Arab men in general, here is a really handsome bearded Arab man:

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However, being this smoulderingly hot as a man is also a problem… This adorable man and his two equally alluring, attractive and appealing friends were thrown out of last year’s Janadriya festival due to their overwhelming handsomness which the haia thought would be too much for the Saudi women to deal with.
Although I never heard any report of these men being harassed by hordes of Saudi women, apparently they were just having a good time soaking in some culture and history.

The romance of Valentine in Saudi Arabia

Valentines day, the day dedicated to the celebration of love, is forbidden in Saudi Arabia, even for married couples. In Saudi Arabia any kind of interaction between people of opposite sex are forbidden, even just talking. Any public display of affection is taboo.

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Religious police ”Anti Valentine patrols” roam the malls and shops, they confiscate any red or heart shaped items days before the infidel ‘V-day”.
All this makes Valentines day especially romantic in Saudi. Imagine the dangers, trials and tribulations, not to mention he enormous costs your loved one has gone through to get you that contraband red rose, and heart shaped box of chocolates!

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From AFP Friday 14 2014

Red roses lurk hidden in flower shop back rooms and heart-shaped chocolates are sold under the counter, but Saudis still manage to buy Valentine’s gifts and defy the religious police.

Florist Hussein came up with a simple solution to a ban on red tokens of love: he filled his window with white roses, orange irises and violet hydrangeas.
“I’ve hidden everything red in the shop, so when a religious police patrol comes along, they find nothing to complain about,” he said.
Hussein’s shop window may be blooming with white, orange and violet, but he still has the real thing — red roses — out the back.
“I’ve sold at least 350 red roses at 20 riyals ($5, 3.90 euros) a pop. Many women call us on the phone to order roses, because they fear the religious police.”

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Kumar, another florist, was persuaded by a Muttawa visit not even to consider flouting the Valentine’s Day ban. However: “We’re going to sell these to a chocolate shop,” he said, pointing to bouquets of red flowers in a back room of his store.

Confectioners do have chocolate hearts for discreet sale, but only to the right people. “Of course we have them, but the religious police came by and warned us against selling them,” said one chocolate shop owner who asked not to be identified. “We hid them because we don’t want any problems,” he added, smiling, indicating that an illicit transaction involving the chocolate contraband would be more than acceptable.

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This year in Jeddah, a city more open and relaxed than most of the rest of Saudi Arabia, some florists have been openly selling red roses, and are unafraid to give their names.
“The religious police didn’t come. We’re doing nothing wrong anyway,” said Abu Zakaria, who runs a flower shop in the north of the city.

Another man, Thamer Hussein, said some people with romantic yearnings marked the Valentine’s festival a day in advance, to ensure the experience was hassle-free. “Some young people celebrated St Valentine’s Day on Wednesday evening, with small parties and exchanges of gifts,” he said.

Read more:

 Ahram online

Clever controversy in advertisement?

ad

An advertisement campaign for  a snoring remedy, ”SnoreStop” has gained a lot of attention. Apparently because the ad shows a real life American soldier with a Muslim wife.

SnoreStop ”Be together”:

Is the ad controversial? Is it offensive? Fox talked about the ad on ”The Kelly File”:

One woman wrote that the mental state of her veteran husband with PTSD would be damaged by seeing the happy couple on the billboard.
If that is really true I suggest he remains safely locked up. In a nice place, with some trees, you know… But definitely locked up. There are more Muslim women walking around in America!

According to Fox, Florida and Texas have already said ”No” to the company in case they might want to show the billboards in these states.

The three people on the panel stated that they have no problem with the ad itself, but they do with the woman wearing niqaab on the billboard, as it being politicized and the face covering being suppressive, and it being a stereotyping of American Muslim women.

Megyn Kelly was upset because one of the billboards was on Time’s Square… some miles from ground zero!

Now I think the ad company is very clever, they are getting the kind of attention which normally only a huge outlay of money could procure. And I think that is why they choose to use a picture with the woman wearing a niqab, instead of a hijab on the billboards. On the ”The making off” video, you see some glimpses of the woman in different styles of hijab, pink top with white hijab, a pink hijab, purple hijab with black abaya and niqab, and in the video she is wearing a business type of suit and matching hijab. I think they went for he most severe style to shock people and get attention. They say they hope it will make people start talking about diversity. Of course, not just the product. Ahum.

The spokes person for SnoreStop ”There’s couples like these which do exist”:

The ad company’s video on ”the making of” the billboard:

Read more:

Mediaite

Old Mecca and the kaaba

Very little is left of the ancient city that is Mecca, and more is making way for modern buildings every year. Mecca used to be like a romantic dream city, full of beautiful elegant buildings.

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Far fewer people could make the actual journey to Mecca, so the area around the Kaaba was much smaller.

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Flash floods occurred from time to time, about every two years

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The Gold embroidered black cloth, Kiswa, which drapes the Kaaba is renewed every year,

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The kiswa used to be made in Egypt,

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The kiswa on a photo from the early 20th century, in front the crescent shaped wall, the hateem

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Saudi Arabia and women’s names

Women’s names are secret and it would be very shameful for a Saudi man if his mother’s name was publicly known, or worse, those of his sisters. For women it is customary to be nicknamed ”umm so-and so” or ”daughter of…”

Two years ago there  the hashtag ”IsmOmi” (my mother’s name) was created by those Saudis who are proud of their mothers and have no problem letting the world know their names.

Saudi tweeters see this as a way to express their love and gratitude for their mothers. It is also considered a step toward empowering Saudi women. Saudi tweeter Khalid Al-Ahmed believes the hashtag is a healthy way to break down some of the social customs that he sees have unnecessarily burdened Saudi society for decades.
”Women’s names have been the obsession of Saudi men forever. They see this as something they must protect and keep unrevealed. It is shameful for them if people know the name of their mother, sister or wife,” he said. “A Saudi man would blackmail another if he knew his mother’s name,” he added.

Saudi women are frustrated by this attitude and Saudi men should be more reasonable, according to a tweet by Abeer Hamdoun. “Refraining from mentioning your mother’s name is the first step toward undermining Saudi women’s rights. The younger generation are too shy to say their mother’s names for no reason at all,” she said.
“Our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) was not shy of his mother’s name and King Abdulaziz used to call himself Akho Noura, which is Arabic for Noura’s brother,” she added. Ahmed is a 28-year-old man who changed his Twitter name to “Omima’s son” to celebrate the love and pride of his mother.
“I don’t see anything wrong with saying my mother’s name to random people. It’s like saying any other name,” he tweeted. “Without my mom I wouldn’t be here. Her name is Omima, and you bet I’m proud to mention it,” he added.

In this Saudi tv show the interviewer asks men the name of their mother. (The name of their sister would be too dangerous?) You will hear ”Wish ism Umm?/ Wish ism  Al Walda?”.  A few men do gve the name of ther mother, the old men all do, but their mother will probably be dead. Some men answer something like ”I’m not crazy to do so” or they will say ”umm Abdullah”, or Umm Mohammed”.

Arabian greeting and kissing

When to kiss, how to kiss, whom to kiss, and how to avoid being kissed!
Enjoy this very informative video from new you-tuber Malaak on kissing like as an Arab!

If you like the video, don’t forget to go YouTube and click the ”like” button and support this YouTuber.

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