Regardless whether Mr. Magdi el-Agati, minister of legal affairs and parliament in the government is the one behind the law of building churches or not, the whole matter has become awfully disgusting in the broad meaning of the word… as what is the point behind causing all this disgust to people to drive them to despair of any glimpse of hope or reform…
And then many would think that the whole state is involved in such corruption and is submitted to salafists’ influence and inactive cells of muslim brotherhood… and in case you tried to negate or refute such allegations or even pretend, through following the president’s stances and political discourse, that you know he can never agree to such thing or support it, no one will believe you and the least scathing comment you will receive is that “they distribute roles… nothing more”.
The first thing to say about that law is that those who stood behind it did not consult any of the specialized in this field nor made use of experiences accumulated or debates related to this regard… they haven’t exerted a little effort to look for everyone who has experience and knows true definitions and wordings of national terms clearly defying sectarianism… and how texts should clearly express its wording away from any misunderstanding or misinterpretation that send us back to eras dating back to the pre-modern age.
I’m not a lawyer, minister or political activist, but if you ask me about those experienced and efficient people, I will tell you about some active, knowledgeable and patriotic figures that are still alive and no one dares to say a word about them… since I have always participated since the beginning of the eighties in many cultural and intellectual events that tackled and discussed these issues… and solid common stances were developed which state that we must block the way before many penetrations I believe they all hit the nation in the core.
First penetration is spreading of sectarianism vertically among society’s classes and groups, and horizontally in certain areas.
Second penetration is that the citizen do not enjoy his citizenship in his country… also state institutions withdrew from assuming their roles paving the way for other religious, factional or categorical entities to occupy their place… meaning to threaten the very existence of the state and recoil to the time preceding its establishment.
Third penetration is that some Christian clergy men and others in charge of religious education and Dawaa in the muslim side have turned into powerful centres enjoying unlimited influence in the society… impeding and negating in such way the role of authorities; whether legislative, executive or juridical, like what we all witnessed and felt deeply sorry for when people like “Hassaan” interfered to solve problems in customary sessions away from applying law!
Forth penetration is the continuous escalation in sectarian congestion by turning all economic, social and other problems into sectarian ones… consequently; any degree of political or intellectual awareness contributing to society progress is completely missed.
Fifth penetration is contributing to the collapse of our national immune system… making it easy for foreign parties to mess with the Egyptian composition… and here we quote chief of Israeli military intelligence in his Farewell ceremony saying “sectarianism-wise, we could make whatever we wanted in Egypt and no president after Mubarak will make it come back to what it was before”!
One of the biggest and most dangerous penetration is when an Egyptian citizen finds himself suffering a disgusting sectarian discrimination while his fellow citizen enjoys all his rights… it’s really disgusting when an Egyptian citizen finds his worship place governed by unjust and illogical laws and bylaws.
Honestly, we are fed up of giving examples from history like when Omar ibn el-Khattab prayed outside The Church of the Holy Sepulchre and said his famous quote... before that was Prophet Muhammed's - Peace be upon him and his family - will to take well care of Egypt's Copts... now we wonder: isn't it better if we let people have the right to worship God starting from the way they do such thing and reaching to the shape of their worship place, especially if its appearance - meaning its design - is related to the rituals they perform in their prayers?
Again we wonder: what is the harm if a single law governing building of all worship places of all religions was adopted… especially that Egypt is not less mature or developed than the UAE where freedom of worship and building worship places for all religious groups living there are guaranteed including the Buddhist, Hindu and others?
What harms me as an Egyptian if a new church is built or another rebuilt because it became smaller, dilapidated or its facilities needed renovation… or is it the greatest sin ever… the sin of arrogance… “I am better than him”… the devil once said it disobeying the divine order to kneel before Adam.
Where were muslims when the sound of a ringing bell was the sign that prophet Muhammed will receive a revelation… the first one to know that prophet Muhammed – while he was still a boy – will be sent prophet for his nation is a Christian monk named Bahiera inhabiting the outskirts of Levant’s desert… and when prophet Muhammed entered Kaaba at the opening of Mecca, he laid his cloak over a picture or statue for Mary, the Virgin and Jesus and said… “these two, you leave them to me”.
What is all this false arrogance that reveals socio-psychological illnesses known by scientists as “diseases of the majority”… what is really catastrophic is that they are empty of any meaning that might qualify them to outperform at any degree.
Let Egypt alone with its churches, mosques and synagogues… open the door for everyone who wants good for Egypt and its people… for the existence of Christians in Egypt in specific is a divine will… and if anyone wants me to elaborate on this, I’m ready.
Translated into English by: Dalia Elnaggar
Translated into English by: Dalia Elnaggar
This article was published in Almasry alyoum newspaper on August 24, 2016.
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