Egyptian Culture, Part 6: Water, Water, Everywhere

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Clay Water Jugs On A Wire Rack Attached To A Pole

In Egypt, and the Islamic world in general, water has a special importance due to the need to ritually cleanse with water prior to prayer. Praying five times a day makes the presence of water more than just a convenience, it becomes a necessity to ensure a steady, clean supply for the community. Before indoor plumbing became more common around the world, water was drawn from cisterns, wells and fountains. It was during the Ottoman Empire that drinking water fountains in Egypt became commonly installed for the public, usually as a charity offered by the wealthier citizens of the community. These public water fountains often formed the hub around which sprang up mosques, schools, libraries and hospitals.

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Clay Water Jugs Available Even In Secluded Alleys

In Egypt still today the practice of offering water by making it freely available to the public is in evidence everywhere. From the smallest village to the largest city, clean cool drinking water is amply available on every street and road. It may be as simple as a metal rack holding clay drinking vessels filled with water, a plastic water cooler like we might use while camping, or even a huge stainless steel refrigerated water dispenser with several faucets. There is a saying of the Prophet Muhammad recorded that Allah will refuse attention, on the Day of Resurrection, to “the man who, having water in excess of his needs, refuses it to a traveler…” (Abu Dawud and authenticated by Al-Albani).
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Two Children Stop For A Drink Of Water In Front Of A Blanket Store

Everywhere imaginable you will find free, fresh drinking water available. In the street markets, there are water stations supplied by shop merchants in front of their stores. On random narrow alleys you will find interesting clay jugs filled with fresh water every morning in front of colorfully painted residential buildings.
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Fresh Water Station In Front Of Colorful Building

Even on the busy highways, it is not uncommon to see a car, taxi or microbus stopped at one of these rustic shrines to the Merciful God of Free Drinking Water. The driver of a loaded microbus, or maybe one of his passengers, will be busy refilling a plastic water bottle kept in the vehicle for this use. It often gets shared communally around the microbus, refilling as necessary, until everyone is satisfied.
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A Public Drinking Water Dispenser Sits On The Curb To Service Thirsty Drivers

A refreshing, cold drink of water to quench the thirst on a hot, dry Egyptian day is definitely something to give thanks to God for!
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A Refridgerated Water Dispenser Beside The Public Scale For Farmers

Click Here to return to Egyptian Culture, Part 5: Lady Chicken Vendors Or Click Here to continue to Egyptian Culture, Part 7: Eid Al Adha Celebration

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Ok, now for a few more things to give thanks to God for! Two New Awards, and a special newsflash about a freelance writing job I just received – masha’Allah, my very first professional journalist post, great thanks to God!
Keep reading, I can’t wait to tell you all about it!

On May 21, 2014, Daily Musings of A Day In The Life nominated me for “The Most Influential Blogger” award! Awards are always something I’m excited about and thankful for, as it gives me a chance to share some more fun and appreciation and recognition with all of you! Thanks again Daily Musings!

But for this award, I’ve exercised my creativity and introduced a new award into the WordPress stream, without interrupting the flow of the original award. The design on the face of “The Most Influential Blogger” award is an eight pointed star, commonly referred to as an Islamic Star, as it’s a design very commonly found in Islamic Art. So I played with a copy of the image and replaced the text to read the name of my new award, “Muslim Blogger.”

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Without taking anything away from the current chain of “Most Influential Bloggers,” which I will list my new round of awardees for directly, I’ve started this new, “Muslim Blogger” award to share with many of you, as well. I think it might be nice for Muslims to share appreciation and recognition for each other’s efforts, and insha’Allah/God willing, many of you will enjoy this idea, too!

First, I’ll do the “Most Influential Blogger”award:

Here are the rules, amended slightly, as I flex my creative muscles and loosen things up a bit!

To accept this award, the Awardee must do the following:

● Display the Award anywhere on your Blog.

● Announce your win anywhere within a blog post and link back to the Blogger who awarded you, to thank them.

● Optional: Include an embedded video of your current favourite song (YouTube has virtually everything, just copy and paste the link into your WordPress editor). If a video is not possible you can embed a SoundCloud track. If none of this is possible, it’s not a problem, don’t even mention it!

● Optional: Present at least 10 deserving Bloggers with this Award, if you are able. If you are not able, the award is still yours – Congratulations!

● If you are able to generate another round of this award, please Link your Awardees in the post and let them know of their being awarded with a comment (or a pingback).

Here are my ten awardees for the next cycle of the “Most Influential Blogger” Award:

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1. And That’s The Way It Was ★ 2. Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed ★ 3. Greatsnaps Goodtimes and Me ★ 4. Isadora Art and Photography ★ 5. A Mom’s Blog ★ 6. Bastet’s Pixelventures ★ 7. The Hungry Artist ★ 8. Optimistic New Mom ★ 9. In The Life Of Sara Sandoval ★ 10. Janet Brugos Art

Congratulations to all of you! Your blogs are awesome, and I wish you every success! ♥♥♥ ;^)

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Next, I’ll do the “Muslim Blogger” Award:

Here are the rules for accepting this award:

● Display the Award anywhere on your Blog.

● Announce your win anywhere within a blog post and link back to the Blogger who awarded you, to thank them.

● Optional: Include an English translation of one of your favorite surahs or verses from the Quran, with Book & Verse notation

● Optional: Present at least 7 deserving Bloggers with this Award, if you are able. If you are not able, the award is still yours – Congratulations!

● If you are able to generate another round of this award, please Link your Awardees in the post and let them know of their being awarded with a comment (or a pingback).

I didn’t award this award to myself, since I don’t think that’s appropriate, but I would like to share one of my favorite surahs from the Quran, Surat ad Duha:
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English translation:
Surat ad Duha, Book 93

1. By the morning brightness
2. And the night when it covers with darkness,
3. Your Lord has not taken leave of you, nor has He detested.
4. And the Hereafter is better for you than the first.
5. And your Lord is going to give you, and you will be satisfied.
6. Did He not find you an orphan and give [you] refuge?
7. And He found you lost and guided [you]
8. And He found you poor and made [you] self-sufficient.
9. So as for the orphan, do not oppress [him].
10. And as for the petitioner, do not repel [him].
11. But as for the favor of your Lord, report [it].

Here are my 13 Awardees for the “Muslim Blogger” Award

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1. Faithiswheretheheartis ♥ 2. Flowers and Breezes ♥ 3. The Muslimah Mommy ♥ 4. AJourneyInAJournal ♥5. Rediscovery57 ♥ 6. Anchor with Keidi ♥7. Direction and Choice ♥ 8. YasSarNal Quran ♥9. Al-Ḥikmah wal Maw‘iẓah Al-Ḥasanah ♥ 10. Diariesofadarululoomboy ♥ 11. Dreams to Reality! ♥ 12. Peace Be Upon You! ♥ 13. The Revert Miyabhai

Allah bless you all with Alf Mabrouk! Masha’Allah, you all have awesome blogs, and I pray for your continued success in your efforts, ya Rabb! ♥♥♥ ;^)))

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Finally! I want to share with you all a great honor I have received in the form of a job I found listed on problogger. I’m now writing for EdenKeeper.org, an excellent organization devoted to caring for our environment from a spiritual perspective. The ideology behind EdenKeeper is that our Creator has entrusted the care of His creation in the hands of humans, and that humans will do a better job of caring for God’s creation when we hold ourselves accountable to God, using the principles of our faith to guide us.

My position with EdenKeeper is as a representative of Islam, informing readers of Islamic principles related to caring for our environment, adopting green lifestyle practices, and appreciating the need for sustainable resources. I am truly thankful to God for this amazing opportunity! My first article has already been published, “Islam and Water Rights in Egypt Today,” and God Willing my next article, “The Donkey: Egypt’s Green Machine” will also be published by the time you read this! Please come check them out at my new home on EdenKeeper.org!

♥♥♥;^)))

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71 thoughts on “Egyptian Culture, Part 6: Water, Water, Everywhere

  1. Beautiful post, Aisha!… What a nice tribute to water… 😉

    We are even made of it and so does our planet…
    I enjoyed reading about both the practical and symbolic meaning and seeing how water fountains tend to appear in public spaces in Egypt…

    ruly interesting and informative, my dearest friend…
    I hope you are having a brilliant weekend over there. Best wishes to you, always…

    Aquileana 😀

    • Thanks so much Aquileana! Yes, we learn in the Quran that God created everything from water, isnt that so amazing??!
      I love seeing the water stations here, they are so charming I just can’t help photographing them, lol like the sheep and the donkeys!
      I’ll be over today to see you, lol, lets have lunch! ♥♥♥ ;^)

  2. oh! you are a great writer .. I loved your words .. thanks a lot .. because you said a very sweet words about my country and our culture here .. even about our religion .. Allah bless you ..

  3. Thanks ever so much for the nomination Aisha, which is very kind of you. WDBWP’s which is the blog that hosts Pixelventures is an award free service blog, so I can’t accept awards, but I sure can thank you warming of thinking of me and I do! 🙂

  4. MashaAllah it was lovely to read about Egypt’s water generosity! And congratulations!! May Allah give you lots of sucess in this world and the next. Ameen!! Ad Duha is one of my favorite too ^_^
    BarakAllahu feek 🙂

    • Allah bless you and your family, dear sister, thank you so much for your kind words of support! Please forgive my oversight, and come see my updated list, insha’Allah! ♥♥♥ ;^)

  5. Reblogged this on rediscovery57 and commented:
    So I’m not sure that my theme allows me to display the image, but read on to find out what it’s all about! 🙂 Jazakillah khair to sister Aisha!
    P.S. If any of you are having trouble loading this blog (Rediscovery57) on your smartphone, please, please let me know, and if you have managed to conquer it 😉 drop a comment below!
    xoxo

    • That’s a very compassionate observation, Sarah! But in fact, Islam is a religion designed to be easy on the believers. In the case where Muslims are unable to reach water (even just sick in bed and unable to reach the bathroom, not just where there is no physical presence of water) we are allowed to make a type of ritual cleansing with no water at all! God created Islam to be easy on His worshippers, how merciful is that? Thanks for the great comment, and I’m so happy to share with you the answer! ♥♥♥ ;^)

  6. Water truly has no enemies. Congrats on your award and your new job. You deserve them. BarakAllah feek. Then jazakillah khayr for starting this award. I am honoured to be among the awardees. Keep up the good work.

    • Allah bless you and your family, too! Congrats and thanks very much, Alhamdulillah, I’m really happy to find so many excellent muslim bloggers, and I think this is a great way to help us find each other! ;^)

  7. Salaams Aisha,

    Ameen to your Duas. I really enjoyed reading your Article! I hope to visit Egypt soon, inshaAllah.

    First of all, congratulations on the new job, mashaAllah! I am sure you will be ace at your new job role. I look forward to reading your Articles, inshaAllah. 🙂

    Thank you for the Muslim Blogger Award! My Faith is a big part of my life, Alhamdulillah. I started my Blog just over a month ago; first and foremost my Blog is a continuous inspiration and guidance for myself and I am very grateful to Allah (SWT) that my Blog is inspiring others too. I feel very honored with all the appreciation and support shown! It’s a blessing from Allah (SWT) that I am continuously thankful for. May Allah (SWT) reward everyone for their efforts. Ameen.

  8. Pingback: Muslim Bloggers On The Block | The Revert Miyabhai

  9. We don’t really appreciate water until the day we turn the taps on to find no water coming out. This happens a lot in Egypt and it makes me thank God that we have running water. We couldn’t do much without it!

    • You are right, it happens for us too, so I keep extra jugs of water for emergency. We have a well, but of course it’s electric, and usually the water runs out due to extended electricity outages… all part of the fun of living in Egypt, right?;^) thanks for visiting me here!

  10. contrats on the job – and congrats on the award you got too!

    also, the new award you came up with is creative and meaningful….

    Also in this post – the photos were exceptional – and of course all that info about the water – with examples of the different ways water is shared – how refreshing and I learned much.

    Peace to you – and have a nice weekend. 🙂
    ~y.

      • thanks – and wanted to also let you know that some of your pictures resonate with me long after I move on format he computer – like the crackle curbs, the chairs outside and some of the “real life” details – and it seems you take some great street photography – and even the guy in the first photo – well 2/3 of him in the right – there is something raw and gritty about it that resonates.

        oh, and my son did keep his phone – but whew – O_o I will have to share more details later because there is an investigation under way (34 pages) and well, it is so hard to not talk about it – and as you can see I leaked it a little – but later on I will share the full scoop.

        okay, enough from moi – hope you have a great weekend too…. 🙂 ❤

        • Oh, that’s so cool of you to notice those things in the photos! Egypt is amazing to me, raw and gritty is a pretty great way to describe it, but it’s also exquisitely beautiful in charming little glimpses, like the stand of clay water vessels in the alley, or the pretty colors of the one house in the otherwise concrete grey street… thanks so much for this great comment, I love that you’re sharing this with me!
          Also, wow, what a big story, but don’t worry, I’ll wait for the post whenever you are able! I’m very happy your son is okay. ♥♥♥ ;^)

  11. Good Afternoon, Aisha
    I am just catching up to my e mail notices and comments on my posts.
    This Influential Bloggers Award is extremely appreciated. I am unfortunately
    unable to accept as most of the bloggers I follow have begun posting
    ‘No Blog Awards Please’. This makes it difficult to forward the award. I believe
    the fact that it’s hard to choose who to award them to and the exclusion of others
    has caused the No Award frenzy. Please know that I am honored and forgive my decline.
    Namaste
    Isadora

  12. What a refreshing post dear Aisha ! Water is gold to my eyes and so is your brilliant post.You have so impressively connected our highest possession/substance on Earth with the Egyptian culture and religion ! Your photos and compositions are so well selected and interesting ! The display of the clay jugs is so charming and the number of the fountains all over the public spaces and places did astonish me. All forms of living organisms die if they don’t get enough water.There are still a few things about water that science has not the answer and the more research they do about it the more they discover about this colourless and tasteless substance.I was surprised the other day when I read that water has memory and registers whatever we add to it and reacts analogously in the future.I also keep wondering about the percentage of water in our body and on Earth which is the same (70 o/o). Isn’t it noteworthy ? ? ?
    And last but not least,Kudos to you on being awarded and on your new job at the Edenkeeper.org!
    You do deserve them,you are such a prolific writer !!!! Also,the Muslim blogger award you created is really remarkable and I’m sure it will be very much appreciated !
    Wishing you every success and the best of best !!!!
    Love ♥♥♥♥ and hugs , Doda 🙂

    • Thaaaaank you, Sweet Doda, what a beautiful comment full of encouragement and interesting knowledge about water. I didn’t know that about the earth and our bodies 70% ratio, that’s fascinating! Wow, and water has memory? I don’t really understand this, it sounds amazing!
      But yes, the free, fresh water is available all over egypt, everywhere, I think you cant walk 2 meters in any direction without finding another water station, it’s really a lovely form of charity because it’s so anonymous, and so helpful! Cheers to you, my dear φιλη μου γλυκη! Καλο ταξιδη! Lol I’m probably spelling everything wrong, I haven’t studied any greek in ages! ♥♥♥ ;^)))

      • Hi there dear Aisha,
        It gives me great pleasure to read your replies to my comments because you always have some more things to say and perhaps add some more info to the related post.
        Love the way you use your Greek and your intimate responses !!!

        I know,you were amazed to read about the water’s memory,but the theory holds some water … and we shouldn’t forget that water is living matter and has energy.
        Just have a quick look to see what I mean :

        ” Living organisms and man are complex self-organizing systems. They are open, because they continually exchange substances and energy with the environment. The changes in the open systems are relatively stable in time. The stable correlation between the components in an open system is called a dissipative structure (Nikolis, Prigozhin, 1973). It has been proven experimentally that water is also a self-organizing system (Antonov, Galabova, 1992). The expectations are that changes in water as a result of an external influence will be relatively stable in time. This signifies that water “remembers” physical or chemical influences. The question about water “memory” is of exceptional interest. The first research studies, related to the memory of water, were effected by Deryagin and Churaev (1971). The durability of the results in time after an “activation” with an alternating magnetic field and upon electrolysis through a nuclear filter were performed by Minenko (1981) and Evseev (1982). Analyses have been carried out on the changes in the spectrum of natural waters (Antonov and co-authors, 1995).”
        You can find more details in the following link : http://www.o8ode.ru/article/eng/

        There is also a video,I can’t find it right now that it shows a glass of water and at the same time they play classical music and check out the changing elements of the water in the glass ….
        Look at this one :

        Has water hearing as well ? I don’t know,I give up and let science continue its reserch …
        There must be something behind ….
        All my love sweet heart ♥♥♥, Doda :-)))))))

        • Oh, so many awesome points I found in this great link, Dear Doda! First, An example of this condition are the experiments in which water molecules resemble DNA in nanotubes. American scientists led by Xiao Chen Shen managed to make an interesting experiment. At high pressure and low temperature water molecules of ice form structures resembling the double helix of DNA. Under these extreme conditions hydrogen bonds are bent.

          Wow, I beliege they are close to understanding the truth of the Quran, where God says, “And We created from water every living thing”

          Second, this amazing point:
          Life on Earth has an unified origin, because each living cell has 20 amino acids, 2 carbohydrates and 1 phosphate.

          This is another amazing and wonderful “signature” of our Creature, proving that there is only One Creator! I totally love this point!

          Third, also frim the Quran, God says He sends down “pure” water from the sky, with which He gives life to the lifeless earth – the article states something similar, “This means that natural waters carry the requisite information for living system”
          And also points out the high activity of the defrosted water, or where the deuterium has been wiped out due to freezing, e.g. in spring from snowmelt waters, but let’s not forget that much of the rain on earth starts out as ice, melting before it reaches the soil, so rain very likely has a low percentage of deuterium, too!

          Lol, I believe I’ll start drinking defrosted water!

          I also loved the point that snowflakes couldnt be formed in the lab in the presence of an earthquake.
           ” laboratory conditions, negative information (earthquake, bad acoustic vibrations for man, etc.) does not structure crystals.”
          And adding this to that:
          The origination of a living cell is possible under extreme conditions and, with time, the stabilization of said conditions, which preserves the originating structures

          And, ” The conduct of an electric bio-current and the structuring of the cellular membrane has made possible the transition from non-living to living matter.

          So I guess Creation was (possible, lol, God knows best!) first very hot, but it wasnt turbulent! And then it quickly froze, structuring the crystals to create the right organizations of structures, then the internal water systems in the individual structures memorized their “role” and voila’! Totally amazing!!!

          You can send me cool links like that anytime, Dear Doda! That is the best mind trip I’ve taken in quite some time! Do you think I got the picture right, or do you like to add any great observations? I’d love to hear your view on this, too!

          By the way, I recently wrote an article about water resource management from an Islamic point of view, using the Quran, and the practices of Saudi Arabia for examples:
          http://edenkeeper.org/2014/06/09/muslims-water-life-necessity/

          It’s not a mind blower like the link you provided, but I think you’ll appreciate the scientific corroboration!

          Thanks again, σασ ευχαριστω παρα πολυ, φιλη μου γλυκη!
          ♥♥♥ ;^))))

  13. Aisha Dear !!! I couldn’t have imagined that you would appreciate the water-link so much and I am glad you read it with great pleasure ! Thank you so much for the link with your water-related extraordinary article ! You have done very meticulous work my friend and superb presentation ! You have included big truths accepted by any culture or religion ! Kudos Aisha ! You are a great author and you deserve a big success ! All the very best,with much love and respect, Doda 🙂 xox

    • Dear Doda, the link you provided was one of the best (maybe the best) articles I’ve read in a long time! Thanks so much for your wonderful words of encouragement, I really appreciate you, dear sweet friend! I love to write, but this is my first time to really give it my full attention and I find it very enjoyable! Your words really give me a happy feeling of support, thank you so much! ♥♥♥ ;^) (((hugs to you too!)))

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