Monday, March 3, 2008

Charms for a Suffering Society

For many Muslim believers, the Coran, the divine word, is supposed to have curative effects. In the Arab world, people may go to a shaykh “specialized” in Coranic medicine. Most of the times, he will “cure” psychological diseases.

If correctly used and as a way to recognize the power of God, the ruqy, the “magical incantation” of God’s words is a well known and rather accepted – if discussed – tradition in many Arab countries, especially among popular and uneducated segments of the population.

When people can’t see any solution to their difficulties, they are incline to turn to charms which can “magically” solve their problems. It is the case in Gaza where traditional “doctors” are mushrooming.

Same thing in Algeria, a country where people had to cope with dramatical events and where 10% of the population is said to suffer from psychological difficulties.

The revival of magical traditions is obviously an evidence of the suffering of many people in the Arab world.

Follow that link to read the original and more detailed post in French. Photo:

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