Thursday, March 15, 2007

Morals Rock

Appearances: Modernity and Post Modernity:
Blogging claims them both. It, being a new type of text, a still unclassified species of practice (documentation? soft quotidien philosophy? diary? a psychological indicator for silence and loneliness? a hybrid of them all?...), perhaps even a new genre in writing, where technology decides sometimes on details and inspires or undermines inspiration, seems to be offering new dynamics. Especially in societies in which news and analysis are not well trusted.
Beyond appearances: Reactionary Thinking:
People rush to express the most mainstream ideas, to enter again the stockyard of "legitimate" and pious thinking. So that in the end, they form clear-cut brotherhoods: the protectors of law and order and the pro-western from the other side. Some blog authors that just suggest tolerance and respect for personal choices, directly become the synonym for treason. The conspiracy theories are an obsession in this part of the world. If someone suggests that there is space for someone to talk about his/her emotions beyond the framework of marriage, this someone becomes directly an equivalent for necrophile, pedophile, zionist, drug-addict, pro-american and I do not know what. Many point at him/her with those long moral fingers. (Of course, I suspect that many of these people queue outside the Embassy of the Empire trying to submit their immigration papers, or outside the European smaller castles of Success and Promise).
Case Study: Please go through all what Qwaider managed to collect. A simple story in reality:
A young student who identifies himself as gay, asks Qwaider Planet to accept his blog in his blogroll. He promises that he will be talking basically about his emotions, and how he sees his life in Jordan, as member of this "minority". No pornography issues or profane talk are implied in his blog. Qwaider asks his readers to suggest their own point of view. The result is very interesting. The debate still unfolds very revealing ideas, complexes and excuses in the place of arguments. The mothers try to protect their children. The believers try to save the souls of the poor readers, the politicians ask us not to forget Zionism and the immoral West. The hygienists try to talk about diseases, mental or bodily.
When I was in high school, the teachers were avoiding to teach Cavafy's poems on the excuse of his homosexuality.If they did, they were doing it with the rapid, distant voices that we knew from the mathematician when he was presenting geometrical theoremata. The real reason was that they wanted to avoid tricky questions from the students, they did not want to do the great preparation that this poet demands, they did not want to put themselves in front of questions such as: "Why do I personally like this poetry?" or "Why this poetry is considered great and a turning point?"

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Anonymous Qwaider قويدر said...

Thanks Vas, feelings run deep on both sides of the isle and I can't but really get confused at times between the two
Thanks again for bringing this up

10:51 AM  
Blogger Vas said...

I understand. I do not criticize you over the decision you reached concerning his exclusion. As for me, I just felt that because it is about young people, mostly, writing and reading, one should just suggest that things could be seen from another point of view. Even just for the fun of questioning mainstream ideas.

11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vas, you seem to me as much of a reactionary as anyone else. i asked you yoru views on polygamy and incest and why do you think gay marriages are ok while polygamy and incest are wrong if they involve consenting adults and you refused to answer. fact is, you are reactionary and you write off views you don't agree with with same ease as anyone else.

3:59 PM  
Blogger No_Angel said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:44 PM  
Blogger No_Angel said...

hehe he followed you here !

well i just wanted to stop by and see where you are coming from since i was intrigued by your writting style.
What i found was an observer, and a new view that I can see through

regarding what you said in your post, not matter what the medium is it will reflect the nuances of society that is producing it.
the advantage of blogs over other mediums is its ability to open up a personal tunnel (though it might be obstructed by some noise) to another human.

It reconnects us together point to point rather than having us go through a filter.
So in a way i like having the opposing side no matter how ignorant i might think they are. atleast they are getting exposed to something they prefer to avoid.

in the end i think it is a tool on the development of localized cultural expos, where it is much easier to obtain contact with a person, some one you knew little about where he/she is coming from and being exposed to his thoughts.
That can't lead to anywhere but better understanding (please let me be optimistic on this point, i wish i could believe in it :D )
Thoroughly ENJOYED being here, keep it up

5:47 PM  
Blogger Vas said...

a. oh anonymous nothing would convince me to answer to a Frankenstein of questions that you call "moral consistence test". Go, if you please, through my posts and you will see whether I look down at arabic culture and Arab brothers or if i have any western Supremacy syndrome. It is always nice to try to know whom you r talking to... Anyway, I hope you passed the Test, "alf mabrook" if you did.
b. oh no_angel thank you for your nice comment. i was somehow optimistic myself, although I could see that the easy access to various and variable in qualities means knowledge and expression, without a kind of preparation, positive social goal and humanism in its classical sense (aesthetics, personal and broader politics) it could just become a dangerous toy. And i find it happening in all ways ways: excellent blogs, beautiful/dangerous blogs, ugly blogs. I liked your account on the same issue in your blog. It is more documented than mine.

6:32 PM  
Blogger The Observer said...

Hey vas, good post, I enjoyed reading your sum of what happened.

I guess that eventhough we have seen hatred, ignorance, and conspiracy theories advocates on those debates, it is nothing compared to what would you find in streets.

Jordan bloggers are from the minority Jordanian who are educated enough to use the internet. I find our blogsphere is much more advanced in terms of being exposed to new ideas and knowledge of the outer world.

It is sad that even with proper education, you can find silly comments that has nothing to do with logic.

The worst argument was the one attaching homosexuality to the west! That is completely absured.

8:31 AM  
Blogger Vas said...

Thanks a lot for the comment The Observer. To tell you the truth, I am not so sure that the reactions of the people in streets, as you say, would be very different. I celebrate the value of education more than anything else, because I consider it to be the only long-standing-effect of change and improvement. To the East? To the West? To something new?
But let us not get illusioned: a diploma and a PhD or a connection to the web do not guarantee that education goals are pursued and achieved. I have met people with no typical qualifications and they were open minded and open hearted. I have met full professors that could easily compete the most moron concepts of dungeon hall managers.
This goes for everything, it is not just the issue that was stirred in Qwaider's page. It could be "honor killing", "dressing code", "book market"... The other day, a young man put in his blog the photo of a beduine lady in Petra, sitting very modestly on a rock, with the innocent comment "Hey sweety". The reaction was: "how dare you saying these things about a woman who could be our mother or sister"... These things were "Hey sweety". Something I call my mother and sister all the time.

9:00 AM  
Blogger The Observer said...

I agree vas, it isnt about the certificate. What I meant to say is people's exposure to the world. Yes, some people would still close their minds no matter what they face, but it is a matter of correlation. I mean it is more likely to have more open minded people for those who experienced more.

2:21 PM  
Blogger Vas said...

...or I would rather say, for those who developped- through their society, family and personality- a good way to contemplate on what they experience. We experience already a lot, even through TV, radio, news and the morning Bus to work. But the result depends on the silent work we are capable to do, when we tink about what happened today, each day.

2:47 PM  

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