Fes - On Wednesday, many Arabs and Muslims around the world were impatient to welcome the New Year with various types of festivities, blindly imitating Western practices, the roots of which stem from a foreign historical background to Moroccans.
Fes – On Wednesday, many Arabs and Muslims around the world were impatient to welcome the New Year with various types of festivities, blindly imitating Western practices, the roots of which stem from a foreign historical background to Moroccans.
Happy as I was enjoying dinner with my family, I thought about national and religious celebrations that are worth glorifying, too. Unfortunately, some have forgotten them; others marginalize them; few celebrate them. Our national and religious events should be celebrated radiantly to firmly assert our identity and support our culture.
There is absolutely no problem in celebrating the New Year.. Islam acknowledges and glorifies all prophets, and advocates plurality. After all, my objective is not to defend religion as much as it is to reinforce identity. The problem is our lethargy celebrating Moroccan traditions, some of which have perished while focusing on foreign customs that make many confused about who we really are. A week before the New Year, one feels an unusual change in people’s daily activities. They are getting ready for the New Year’s Eve party. At the same time, many of them discuss the religious legitimacy of celebrating the prophet’s birthday, which occurs shortly after the New Year, claiming that it is a novelty in the religion that was not celebrated by Islam’s first followers or the prophet himself.
I am utterly dismayed that Morocco’s national celebrations have become marginalized and only few people endeavor to resuscitate them. This undermines our identity, which we have to preserve and be proud of. We have to prove ourselves an independent nation that cherishes its cultural heritage and appreciates difference.
We are tolerant and ready to mingle with people from different religions backgrounds, but not at the price of making our traditions obsolete to the extent that will affect our children and transform our identity.
Worse yet, some have adopted strange habits in international celebrations like the New Year. They drink lot of alcohol until they lose control of themselves. In doing this, they imitate nobody, but follow their evil thoughts while university hospitals in Morocco receive several victims of violence and accidents because of over-drinking. This is not part of our sacred heritage and it does not reflect the principles we believe in.
If we are willing to celebrate the New Year, let it be a great opportunity to start anew with more challenging objectives and a great spirit to make Morocco a better place. However enthusiastically we celebrate, we have to be sure that we respect our society’s norms and ethics.