A Matter of Fate: The Concept of Fate in the Arab World As by Dalya Cohen-Mor

By Dalya Cohen-Mor

Dalya Cohen-Mor examines the evolution of the concept that of destiny within the Arab global via readings of non secular texts, poetry, fiction, and folklore. She contends that trust in destiny has retained its power and maintains to play a pivotal position within the Arabs' outlook on existence and their social psychology. Interwoven with the chapters are sixteen glossy brief tales that additional remove darkness from this interesting subject.

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Set in the village of al-Dfi ahriyya in the Delta, the work revolves around the wrongful death of al-Dabı¯sh Ara¯ is, a poor day laborer, at the hands of the police. The cause of this outburst of violence is the unfair distribution of food aid from the United States, which the corrupt local authorities have restricted to families with pregnant mothers. Frustrated that his wife is not pregnant, al-Dabı¯sh rebukes her: “From the day I married you, you’ve always been pregnant. I never needed your pregnancy.

He answered as follows: “This is an extremely recondite problem, and one which cannot be put on paper save in the language of cypher, a matter which may not be made known except as a hidden mystery: to disclose it in full would work much mischief to the people at large. ”37 With this speculation, Avicenna attempts to provide a moral rationale for predestination: human beings are forbidden to ask questions about this divine domain because doing so will disturb the existing order of the universe, which is carefully regulated by God.

Because Egyptians wronged one another, and because their rulers wronged them and disobeyed God’s commands and prohibitions, God gave the English power over them to torment them badly. 77 A similar view is expressed in Najı¯b Mahfi fu¯zfi ’s novel Love in the Rain (Al-H fi ubb tahfi ta al-matfiar, 1973). Ashma¯wı¯, the shoeshine man who works in the coffee shop al-Inshira¯hfi , offers his explanation for the Egyptian 20 A Matter of Fate defeat in the Six-Day War: “Why did what happened happen? ”78 The Concept of Fate in Arabic Literature In classical Arabic literature, which was essentially an Islamic literature, authors generally conveyed the orthodox view on fate in their writings.

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