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  1. #21
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    A teacher I know who shall remain nameless because I love her in spite of our differences in philosophy routinely tells students that belly dance stems from ancient temple dances and goddess worship. Her personal mythology is no odder than the mythology of the Christians or ancient Greeks, but as history of middle eastern dance, it is certainly suspect.

    I think people write this stuff because a) they want so much to believe in something so romantic or b) fantasy sells, and they are hard nosed business people offering a product to the gullible.

    Tarik, I want a first edition of your book, addressed, "To Shanazel, Rose of the West, with all my love and admiration, Tarik the Wise."

  2. #22
    Moderator Safran's Avatar
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    Getting back to the snakes - I have actually heard several Arab girls (but mainly Christians) also describe belly dance as a snake dance. But their interpretation is a bit different than "getting power from the creatures". They just believe that snake is an animal symbolising sex. And I guess such articles don't help much to improve this kind of general perceptions.

    So, Tarik, we are all waiting for that book of yours

  3. #23
    V.I.P. Aisha Azar's Avatar
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    Dear Maariku,
    One night I was sitting a club with some of my Arab friends, when another group of young Arab guys started chanting something to the dancer. She smiled big and friendly and walked over to them, flirting outrageously, not knowing what they were saying.
    One of the men that was sitting with us began to say how he thought it was just rude when the guys did that. I was surprised by his obvious embarrassment, and asked him what was rude.
    They were chanting an Egyptian diddy, about a cobra looking for a place to hide, or something similar, that people chant in the streets in parts of Egypt when they are looking for a prostitute. I do not know if this was a passing phase or a long time trend, but there again, the sexual snake reference.
    It is not uncommon for the Arab guys to act like little jerks in the clubs. I always used to enter with a song I knew the words to so that I could sing along and mime a bit. That way they did not know if I spoke Arabic or not and it put a stop to a lot of that nonsense. (Also, having Arab friends in the crowd helped a lot because they tend to really notice who is with who.)
    Regards,
    A'isha

  4. #24
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    What a smart person you are, A'isha! Talk about an ounce of prevention!

  5. #25
    V.I.P. Aisha Azar's Avatar
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    Dear Shanazel,
    Necessity is the Mother of Invention and all that. Without the knowledge of my Arab friends, I would be less able to deal with stuff like that.. It is because of those who are willing to be honest with me that I have an idea what is going on in the first place, in order to take preventive measures!
    Regards,
    A'isha

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