Islam students at LUC

Archive for February 2010

I actually enjoyed reading the Rose garden.  I believe that tales talked about a lot of good life lessons, about humility, respect and greed. Some of the stories were obscure/harsh but the end lesson was what I id attention to . I liked the story on greed and not to over indulge other wise you will only get sick/ not attain anything from the experience. Also the story on going to a friend when you have good news when they are sad is not the way to go  because it will only exaggerate their emotions even further. I agree with that  because in the past I have gone to a friend  with exciting news when they were sad, after I told them about my exciting news it did not seem exciting any more.  Im’ excited to see the plays this week, im hoping there will be some good ones.

I was thinking of reasons not to write a blog post so naturally I was inclined to review the book “On the Advantages of Silence”.  Apparently Saadi failed to include a wise anecdote commenting on blog procrastination.  However, I found one story that I really liked.  Story 11 explains that an astrologer enters his own house and sees a stranger.  The two insult each other and begin to fight.  I pious man witnesses the situation and says, “How knowest what is in the zenith of the sky if thou art not aware who is in thy house.”

At first I enjoyed this story because of its simplicity and the way it seems to undercut certain power figures.  I often times think that people who have earned titles (Ex. professor, doctor, CEO, politician etc…) use their accomplishments in one area to validate their opinions or authority in another.  However, after thinking about the story more I realized that the astrologer should not be judged because he lacks wisdom  in certain aspects of his life.  His astrological wisdom should be judged by its own merit, and not by the mans conduct in the rest of his life.  There are countless people (musicians, athletes, even politicians) that I love for their special skills while hating their personalities and life decisions.  Adulterer or not, Tiger Woods is the best golfer on the planet, why doesn’t this hold true for the astrologer?

I am really enjoying reading the Rose Garden.  I think one of the main reasons that I’m enjoying is that it relates to all different types of people.  When I read it, I feel like I am reading more of a self-help book than a religious text.  I feel that the Rose Garden gives great advise on how you should live your life to the fullest.  I think one of the greatest qualities of the book is that any person of any religion can relate to the tales and stories.  It’s not just one type of religion that really can understand the meanings and lessons learned from the tales.

The tale that really stuck out to me was from Counsel 3.  On page 190, Counsel 3 states ” However much knowledge you acquire if you do not use it you may as well be ignorant… A brainless neither knows nor cares whether its burden is firewood or books.”  Basically, if you do not use the knowledge that you have, it is useless.  You should share your knowledge to others to use it to its full capacity.

I enjoyed Book 2 tale 7. I thought it brought about a good point not to point your finger at others. Also not to compare your deeds with that of other people. It is important to focus on yourself in this aspect where not to become too self absorbed; humility is important for a well rounded person.

Also I enjoyed book 5 tale 13. I could really relate to this tale. It talked about how even though his friend had imperfections he still loved him not matter what. It was a simple situation of forgive and forget. I am such a person. Of course my friends have flaws but so do i. No one is perfect. So whenever there is an issue, which there rarely is, we work things out, forgive and then forget.

I am no going to lie when I say that I am not too excited to do these theatrical presentations. Forgive my poor acting…

Overall this book is alright. I see a bit of humor in some of the stories after the discussion in class. At first I thought the stories were rude and brash, but now I kind of see the humor in them. I do not like how he talks about women in the book. He refers to women as mere objects. One story in particular really caught my attention. I did not like the story about how this beautiful women was forced into marriage with an old man and she was very unhappy. They decided to separate and she married a handsome young man who beat her. Apparently marrying the wise old man was better although there was no attraction because the old man would treat her better. This story really disturbed me even if it was supposed to be dark humor. There were many stories like this where women are treated poorly.

So far I like The Book of Wisdom better than Rose Garden. Some of the language is difficult to understand, but overall I feel like I understand this book easier than Rose Garden. I like that it is a rather quick read, but the lessons seem easier to understand. Some of them seem to transcend culture and might apply to the understanding of God in other Abrahamic religions, not just Islam. As a Catholic, some of these reminded me of lessons about God that I learned in church and school. Some of the verses took more thought than others. For some reason it took me a while to understand what the author was talking about when he referred to expansion and contraction in people’s souls. I liked how several of the verses seemed to talk about how God is seeking a relationship with people and causes events to happen that will lead people to Him. This is a lot like what I learned in church and school about God, and I like seeing that idea in another religion. For some reason it struck me as unexpected, although looking back I’m not sure why.

In my previous post I commented on the seemingly shallow aspects of Saadi’s teachings in The Rose Garden.  However, upon discussion in class, I realized that the professor seemed to take many of these stories, regarding ugly wives with ugly voices, in a more lighthearted note.  While it makes the book make a little bit more sense, I guess I just don’t understand how you are supposed to know when the tone is serious and when the tone should be taken lightly.  How is one supposed to know?  The ambiguity is deceiving and it makes me wonder if the author really did intend for these teachings to all be taken in either a light or serious manner.

On a lighter note, Women In Business is hosting a Multi-Cultural Ball this Saturday night at 8 pm in Rambler Room.  There will be dancing, food, performances, etc.  Dress is semi-formal.  It should be a lot of fun.  Tickets are free, and we are taking donations for Haitian Relief.