Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Sharon's great vision: Laying claim to the West Bank, Mecca and Cincinnati

I was just reading somewhere about the fifth pillar of Islam -- the obligation to go to Mecca; to go on the journey of Hajj. What in the world is a Hajj? Three million Muslims go on a Hajj every year. One billion Muslims dream about it. And here's me, totally clueless about what a Hajj is. So I went to the library to do some research.

I figured that if George Bush hates Muslims so badly, they must be doing SOMETHING right. Our George tends to pick the absolute worst policies humanly imaginable so if he doesn't like Islam, they must be on the right track about something....

"The Hajj is a pilgrimage," said my local librarian, a living, breathing version of Google. "Every year, 100 days after Ramadan, three million Muslims head toward Arabia. But the pilgrims don't just stop when they arrive at Mecca. First they perform their ritual obligations at the Ka'ba, a standing stone apparently built about the same time as Stonehenge. After that, they all climb on buses, go to Mina and camp in the desert...." Three million people in tents?

"After camping overnight in the desert, the pilgrims then journey to the Plain of Arafat, following the path taken by Mohammad." And Mohammad was following the path taken by Hagar and Abraham. Apparently, Hagar was a housewife in Mecca. And Abraham discussed childrearing techniques with an angel at Mina.

"Then what happens?"

"Then three million pilgrims all throw stones at Satan, have a feast and go home."

"So you are saying that Abraham and Hagar actually lived in Mecca?" If this is true, then it revolutionizes everything. Now Ariel Sharon has got first dibs on the real estate in Arabia too!

"Well, gee whiz," stated Mr. Sharon at a recent meeting of his Broad of Directors, "Abraham was in Mecca. The Bible said so. Therefore, Mecca is ours! Send for the developers. We're good to go." As project manager, Sharon's first task was to build a wall around Mina to keep the Palestinians out.

But Sharon still wasn't happy because he had just been reading about the Lost Tribe of Israel. And everybody knows that they moved off to America and became Cherokees -- or were they Apaches? I forget.

After Sharon got out his Bible and laid claim to Mecca and Mina -- throwing in Baghdad, Babylon, Mesopotamia and Egypt just to make sure -- he wanted to get it right and began making a checklist of all the places that Abraham might have made guest appearances. "Opps. I left out Cincinnati!"

What's my point? Ariel Sharon's Biblical claims to prime real estate can pretty much cover all the bases if he plays his cards right. Eventually I am sure he will figure out a way to claim Buenos Aires and Tokyo as well.

There's only one glitch that might possibly hold Sharon back. The Book of Genesis mentions the presence of an Arab tribe of Ghantanis -- so maybe the Arabs WERE in Palestine first.

PS: Ariel, would you PLEASE stop bullying the neighborhood, behave yourself and give Israel back to the Israelis so that us humble religious tourists -- Muslim, Christian and Jew -- can come back again and visit OUR Holy Land? Thanks. It would be appreciated.

From "Amy goes to Egypt": Then we went to an internet café and for ten pounds Egyptian money, I got to let everyone at home know that I was safe, having a good time and was the only one interested in an ugly camel.

December 16, 2001: 4 am. The messuin just made his call -- one hour later than in Ramadan. I guess the faithful are being allowed to sleep in. Amy is wheezing and blowing her nose and sucking on cough drops in the bed next to me. And reading The Hobbit. We have to get up at 6 am to go ride a camel to a Coptic monastery. "Maybe we should go back to sleep," said Amy. http://travelswithamy.blogspot.com/2004/04/amy-goes-to-egypt-december-3-2001-1379.html