Alexandria is a beautiful Egyptian city that lies proudly by the Mediterranean sea. Once upon a time it was the home of a great library that contained treasures of knowledge. Treasures that the were burnt hundreds of years ago. Some say it was the Romans, some say it was the Arabs. I say it doesn't matter who burnt it down...It was the result of rage and ignorance. The same ignorance that's brewing again today.
Over the past few weeks, this beautiful city has been the home to an ugly series of events. Thousands of Muslim youth congregated around a small Coptic church chanting hateful threats to its worshippers.
because the youth of that church (St. George's in Muharram Beik) have produced a play. A play that Muslims claim is blasphemous and insulting to the Islam and the Quran.
What's the play about one might wonder?
It tells the story of a young Christian man who converts to Islam. After living in his new community with other young Muslims, he decides he made a mistake and wants to return to the church. This is considered a sin in Islam and anyone who dares leave Islam is punished by death. Throughout the play, there's mention of certain practices in Islam such as Jihad, polygamy, what is called "pleasure marriages" (zawag el mot'a), certain Hadiths which incite hatred to non Muslims. These are all practices which genuinely exist in Islam and we can read about them in the Quran and other books endorsed by Al Azhar. They are not concepts manufactured by the church.
Therefore it baffles me why the Muslims thought the play was offensive. Especially that it was a play intended for private viewing by the church congregation. Meanwhile anyone can get a spot on Egyptian TV and tear the Holy Bible to shreds, proclaiming it is a fake and that Christianity is a hoax, and Christians are infidels...etc. (El Sheikh Mohammad Metwalli El Sharawi was famous for this) And no Christian would even dream about responding.
It seems the concept of freedom of expression applies in Egypt only if you're going to insult Christians, Americans or Jews. Once you try to discuss anything about Islam...HALT.
One of the Muslims congregating around St George's church stabbed a nun five times. What a shame!! What a shame that in the country that was the cradle of civilisation, and source of knowledge, young people are now blinded by hatred.
عينى عليكى يا بلدى