Belly dance and religion

Aniseteph

New member
Lots of people who have posted on this thread aren't active here any more, and if the posts and posters on this thread are still being picked over elsewhere I would be very surprised... surely it's getting a bit old by now?
 

dinavienna

New member
Lots of people who have posted on this thread aren't active here any more, and if the posts and posters on this thread are still being picked over elsewhere I would be very surprised... surely it's getting a bit old by now?
I am not sure I have the insider knowledge to understand what you mean. This thread (my quote in this thread) has been made subject of quite slanderous "discussion" on a closed forum some time ago. I felt the need to underpin what I said with the Turkish media quote.
 

Aniseteph

New member
I am not sure I have the insider knowledge to understand what you mean. This thread (my quote in this thread) has been made subject of quite slanderous "discussion" on a closed forum some time ago. I felt the need to underpin what I said with the Turkish media quote.
That's fair enough.

You have more insider knowledge than me! I was just a) repeating what Caroline said - that the people involved in some of those discussions you mention aren't active here any more,

and b) being unable to get my head round the concept that anyone might still be getting mileage out of this thread elsewhere.
 

Harry

Member
Wow! We're getting into it, which I consider a good thing. Only through discussion can we seek to understand others' viewpoints and feelings.

For dinavienna: I certainly acknowledge that yoga, as we know it today, has much, if not all, of its origins in Hinduism. Many things that we do in this day and age have origins in some religion or other. Examples of this are discussed elsewhere, so I won't belabor the point here. I would just recall that in the book, "Autobiography of a Yogi" by Paramahansa Yogananda, a Hindu by all accounts, the author described his close friendship with another yogi, who just happened to be Christian. Would that all in this world could follow that example, celebrate religious differences in a positive manner, and move forward, each in their respective faiths.
 

dinavienna

New member
That's fair enough.

You have more insider knowledge than me! I was just a) repeating what Caroline said - that the people involved in some of those discussions you mention aren't active here any more,

and b) being unable to get my head round the concept that anyone might still be getting mileage out of this thread elsewhere.
Believe it or not, they are :lol:
 

dinavienna

New member
Wow! We're getting into it, which I consider a good thing. Only through discussion can we seek to understand others' viewpoints and feelings.

For dinavienna: I certainly acknowledge that yoga, as we know it today, has much, if not all, of its origins in Hinduism. Many things that we do in this day and age have origins in some religion or other. Examples of this are discussed elsewhere, so I won't belabor the point here. I would just recall that in the book, "Autobiography of a Yogi" by Paramahansa Yogananda, a Hindu by all accounts, the author described his close friendship with another yogi, who just happened to be Christian. Would that all in this world could follow that example, celebrate religious differences in a positive manner, and move forward, each in their respective faiths.
I agree to that very much, Harry!
And I admire a Christian who is open-minded enough to become a Yogi, and be spiritually on eye's height with a Hindu - the polytheists have been degraded by monotheists more than enough throughout our history, and for people to treat them with respect and be interested in what wisdom is in their millenia old knowledge (all whilst keeping one's own identity and faith) is something marvellous to me.
 

Harry

Member
I agree to that very much, Harry!
And I admire a Christian who is open-minded enough to become a Yogi, and be spiritually on eye's height with a Hindu - the polytheists have been degraded by monotheists more than enough throughout our history, and for people to treat them with respect and be interested in what wisdom is in their millenia old knowledge (all whilst keeping one's own identity and faith) is something marvellous to me.
Exactly... the negativism is simply not needed. My friends and associates include most faiths. We can discuss differences openly with genuine interest and absolutely no malice. It is possible through such communication to counter misconceptions.
 

dinavienna

New member
True! If all people stood for their own convictions, be they of religious or ideological nature, whilst being respectful and curious about people who may hold different convictions the world would not only be a better, more peaceful place with less vileness in the treatment of people who happen to be different, but all sides could be enriched. If only to question one's own standpoint for a second to find it confirmed rather than refuted.
 

Amulya

Moderator
Dear Rebecca and Yasmine,
While I am not sure education is the key to stopping repression, getting out of poverty, etc. ( I know a of LOT of people with good educations who repress others... in fact most world leaders of repression are well educated...), I do know that with the right kind of personality and a wider education of some sort, not necessarily academic, then people have the tools to see a bigger picture. I think, in some ways, that is what religion is all about when people are not busy using it as a weapon against their fellow human beings. I think what men like Zarathustra, Guatama, Jesus and Mohammed (Peace be on all of them) brought to the table were not a set of rules, but a unique perspective in their time and place.
Regards,
A'isha
I know I am quoting an old post, but I just started reading this thread. Regarding the text I high lighted in green from A'isha's post:

To repress people you have to have a lot of knowledge, have to be well educated, especially on the part of how psychology works so you know people's weaknesses and use that.
 

dinavienna

New member
I know I am quoting an old post, but I just started reading this thread. Regarding the text I high lighted in green from A'isha's post:

To repress people you have to have a lot of knowledge, have to be well educated, especially on the part of how psychology works so you know people's weaknesses and use that.
Some people are naturals - they have a natural talent of telling the masses what they want to hear, of power politics, of choosing the right allies and subordinates (many of them with the right education). Hitler did not even finish school (but Goebbels had a PhD); Stalin enjoyed some highschool education within the Russian clergymen system, but left it without highschool graduation, too, to become a revolutionary and party soldier.
Saddam Hussein finished highschool, but entered no higher education.
All of these men had incredible gifts and talents with spinning power networks and getting the masses on their side. Manipulating masses and allies you could say, and then oppressing them to the worst degree.

I doubt dropping out of school qualifies for the "education" we are here talking about (although of course 10 or 11 years of schooling can be seen as relatively good education compared with under developed regions and countries).

Of course intelligentsia can do as much bad as it can do good - in general I do believe critical thinking and level of education AND quality of education go hand in hand. You have to be extremely bright to come up with subversive, controversial or counter-mainstream thought in surroundings with no education on human knowledge and thinking. Education, and particularly free education without boundaries for thoughts and critique, opens the door to this wealth of knowledge, empowering people to use it for their own good.
So to speak against education for the fear of the educated ones sometimes being the worst oppressors is short sighted - education can on the other hand breed the liberators and revolutionaries to take these oppressors down, and functions as a safeguard in a society to not let their likes rise again once they are down. So it feeds both sides, and the oppressed normally outweigh the oppressors, rendering education in their hands a powerful tool AGAINST oppression (or blind submission).

Btw, no doubt religion and their founders have good intentions in the sense of making people "behave" - I believe it is no coincidence though that the higher the education level of a country, the less importance (political) religion carries.
 
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Amulya

Moderator
Thanks for your post dinavienna :).

For example, (getting off topic here!) this week there was a demonstration in Holland due to lack of proper information (might have been censored who knows, a very important part of info in news items had been left out*) some people got beaten by the military police, including one woman who only wanted to ask questions.
This wouldn't have happened if people had the access to proper information.

So it is very important for people to have access to information so they can make up their own mind.

*It might not have been like that in all the news, but maybe these people didn't read all the news, some articles might have contained the right info.
 
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maya m

New member
:)

Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
 

da Sage

New member
Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
Hello Maya M.

You sound like a troll. If you are in fact being quite serious about this, I hope you also give up all the other things that were first used by pagans - fire (no altar advent candles), wine or grape juice (communion), water (as used for infant or adult baptism).

Sincerely, da Sage
 

dinavienna

New member
Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
I find this story quite weird too. supposing it is your story and not some attempt to provoke people - firstly what you say is not true, but speculative hearsay spread all over the net by goddess worshippers (i have nothing against this type of worship but i do not like inaccuracies and falsehood being spread for one's make-belief agenda). Bellydance comes from largely muslim, and to a lesser extent christian and jewish, in short ethnic ARAB folklore. identical moves to bellydance moves can be found in folklore of the Maghreb, of Egypt, Lebanon, and the Gulf. provenly, when bellydance was invented as a stage art in the 1920s and 30s in Cairo, the key protagonists drew heavily from arab folklore in the movements, mixing it with foreign elements and modern innovations to make it exciting for the big stage. to turn it from a people's dance to a stage dance normally not done easily by someone without proper training, at least not on professional/stage level.

so your information for quitting the dance is outright wrong. and as much as i do not disapprove of paganism, i know many muslims, or arabs in general of whatever faith, would be deeply offended. like da sage rightly said, you can get rid of a whole lot of celebrations like halloween in your culture, which is directly derived from paganism. Christmas is knowingly celebrated on the occasion of the pagan sun festival, etc etc, so why keep that date for christmas, for example, if it has pagan roots?!
 

gisela

Super Moderator
Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
I am sorry that you have been so misinformed that you think you have to quit something that could have given you lots of joy.
I agree with all da Sage and DinaVienna wrote.
If you are indeed sincere and not just trying to provoke, then you should really check your sources. By all means, quit dancing if you don't want to dance, it is not for everyone, but don't do it because you think it is something that it is not.
 

Greek Bonfire

Well-known member
maya m - if you are looking to witness here, you aren't being very clear. Haven't you ever heard that St. Paul ate foods sacrificed to idols? It wasn't the meat that pollutes the soul, it's the heart and the beliefs that it holds. A pagan dance is not going to defile you as long as you use it for worship and/or your own enjoyment. But when you use it for evil or lewdness, then you have made the dance bad, not the dance itself. However, if you are not at this level in your faith, then follow your heart. I am a Christian, I have been since I was 17, and I have no problems with bellydancing and my faith at all.
 

Yame

New member
Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
This is funny. Nevermind the outright false information. There are some Christians out there who do go around preaching against things that came from pagan rituals, celebrations, etc. Like Halloween. Nevermind the fact that Christmas also has pagan roots... LOL
And if you go back far enough, doesn't *everything?*
So, to be honest with you, people like that make me laugh.
Go ahead, quit belly dancing. It's your loss :)
 

Nejmeh

New member
Hello!

I write to you with all my heart and I hope you will read this mail.
This is my story...which I offer with all my love:
I've practised belly dance for a month, and I am a Christian.
I don't have, or have ever had, any animosity to belly dance or girls who practise it. The fact that I danced it for the last month shows it. My curiosity and opeeness to other cultures got me to a belly dance class, and I just really want to share my story with other Christians. ( I really hope you will post my mail... :) I know this may sound a little fanatic, and I myself would judge the person ho would told me this a month ago, because I was in belief that I'm just celebrating the body God gave me through this great dance. But now, in my heart, I know.
All of the time I was dancing I had a feeling that the dance isn't in accordance with my faith in our Lord Jesus Christ...not because of the costumes,or the sensual moves - but because the moves and movements of the dance, I now realize, come from a pagan ritual of worshiping the goddess of Earth - the Mother Earth. It's origin is in pagan, polytheistic religion, which cannot interconnect with Cristian worship of our Lord. It is a blasphemy and idolatry for a Christian to practise this pagan ritual, because it is said: "I am the Lord thy God, Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The dance; fun, assertive and amusing as it may can be, is a violation of God's words. This is the truth. The discovery shocked me, and I've decided to quit as soon as possible. I just wanted to share with you my experience, and I repeat, I don't have ANYTHING against the belly dance itself, or the persons who practise it, OR ANY OTHER RELIGIONS. I just want to share my Christian beliefs with you.

Thank you, and God bless you.;)
Are we a religion?:think: So it even gets worse, first bd had to fight the 'goddes'origine, now bd ís a worship in itself?

Besides that, Maya, I think you need to examine your own believes a bit more first. Christianity is a religion that trives on contribution from other cultures and believes. Lighting the candles, the christmas PERIOD in whole(JC wasn`t born in december), the way and where we build churches, should i go on?
Are you that strict that you don`t have images in your house? No dolls, figurines, pictures of animals? Im pretty sure you do, so why is that ok, while God specifically forbid it? Because you don`t worship it, it`s not more then it is. I don`t know how your classes were structured, in mine we don`t first do a little raindance, and light some incense in the name of our goddes. We dance for the sake of dance, but hey, perhaps thats just us:rolleyes:
 

Nejmeh

New member
What religion is or was samia gamal or the other vintage belly dance stars?
Samia Gamal = Zaynab Ibrahim Mahfuz, so I guess she was muslim of origine. I know at least one of them was a christian, I`m tempted to say Badia Masabni, but not sure though.
 
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