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Submitted on
August 21, 2006



The WORLD wide web

Mon Aug 21, 2006, 3:50 PM
I just saw this in the sig of another deviant, and it is food for thought:

:please: I dont like using hug/kiss emotions cuz I'm a muslim woman...  :please:

The internet gives us a feeling of being one big community and it's easy to forget that there are still cultural and religious issues and taboos to be aware of.  

It reminds me of something that happened at work a few months ago.  On weekends, we have a Storytime Hour for the kids and once in a while we get in costumes of popular characters.  On this particular day, we had the pig from the story "If You Give a Pig a Pancake."  The children listened to the story and then at the end, one of the employees came out in the costume and the kids got to get their photos taken with him.  

But one mother was overheard gently telling her child "We don't pose with pigs."  I'm not sure what her religion is: our community is largely Indian and Saudi Arabian, but there is a bit of everything, really.  She wasn't rude or angry, but it was something that none of us even thought about.  

I notice a lot of religious taglines to some deviants' comments- mostly Christian or Pagan/Wiccan.  I don't know if that means that most Deviants are of those religions or if it means that people of those religions are more likely to point out their beliefs than say, Hindus or Buddhists.  (For that matter, I have only ever seen Christian and Pagan/Wiccan bumper stickers... )  Being that most people don't advertise their religion, it can be easy to offend with the most innocuous of gestures (like a hug emote.)  

There's no easy or perfect way to avoid cultural blunders in a blended community like this.  All we can do is let others know when we're uncomfortable and to apologize for any discomfort we have caused, no matter how innocently done.    It's not a matter of right and wrong, or thinking someone's cultural no-no's are ridiculous.  It's about treating each other well.

After all, there is one thing that just about every religion teaches:  treat other people the way you want to be treated.  

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Offering Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2006
i'm thinking of becoming a methylated spiritualist ..
clickypenpixieXstock Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2006  Hobbyist Artist
food for thought indeed.
its something ive never thought about really...

but theres also the slight issue that a lot of the people i know who claim pagan-ism...only do so because they think it will make them appear more "goth" or "Artistic"

its sad really.

and you cant really please everyone.
even if you are the nicest, more unselfish person in the world...
SOMEBODY out there wont like you.
somebody wont be happy with something you did.
or something you said.
or something you believe in.

people can get offended over anything.
someone once got offended because i had pink hair.
and it was "so unnatural"

heck, i work retail at the mall...
and some people get angry if you greet them at the door.

there was a maan, when i first started working there, who started screaming & cursing at me because he couldnt figure out which tshirt his kid wanted.

one of the other employees had to tell him to tone down or leave.
he was even scaring some customers away.

im sorry.
i could go on over this for hours....
about trying to please people.

why not just be a good person?
or at least try to be?
sure, theres no pleasing everyone...
but at least someone tried to do some good.

instead of being offended over little things.
syn0sure Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
I have a few Muslim friends and they have no problem being hugged. I hug my (female, mind you ^_^ii) muslim friends all the time. Female to female interaction is perfectly fine - they're even allowed to see each other without their veils, etc.
But... everyone in the world needs touch!! Tt's a scientific fact that families that touch each other via hugs, kisses, etc are healthier mentally. It relieves tension and boosts self esteem.
In some cultures, like in China (and I'm sure others) it's rare to have contact with (adult) strangers (but don't be surprised when random people pick up your baby to cuddle and hug it without your consent, even tote them away to show off), but it still exists within families affection is showered!

So you know what? I think that person needs a hug. It's an emoticon! They're obviously being a little.. over the top!
Elvishhobbit Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
I totally agree, I hangout with so many different people, and its frightful when one starts lecturing another because of religion...I guess I am guilty of using the hug emote too much, but I've never offended anyone, and normally I only send 'em to maw be honest I know a few people who made up their own religions, me and my friend might...we're uber bored...I think that I'll keep in mind those things which you have put into so clear a form so my sleeping brain can comprehend them, I am extreamly sorry to anyone I've ever offended
AinSophAur2 Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
It is not your imagination that Muslims stand out in western
society, in many respects....

I'm sorry to say, yes, "...just about every religion..."
fosters tolerance, as you mention, except,
probably Islam. I have spent some time with the Koran,
and was quite surprised at the negative tone, precepts, and specific
comments on other religions - invariably missing from
the holy books of other religions... suffice it to say, none of
what I saw in the Koran would support the concept
of the "goldern rule" that is the backbone of the Christian/Jewish/Buddhist holy writings.... don't take my word,
take any translation of the Koran, and check it it....
Islam is either grossly misunderstoood by the west, needs
different translations or reform (as several thoughtful muslims
themselves have suggested...)
darthhorus Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006  Professional General Artist
I say kill them all and let their respective gods and goddesses figure it out.
Kamrusepas Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
Interesting, I've never even thought of that before.
BlackCatsAngel Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
I live by the rule treat others as you wish to be treated... if that means hugging people because you were bought up that way, then hug away! If someone is uncomfortable with being hugged, then they will generally show it by holding the elbows of the person hugging so as not to get too intimate.... Online obviously this is a little more difficult to determine, but again, if your making comments that are making one person uncomfortable, then chances are others feel the same way too.... Things can be taken too out of context thru sms and email, therefore thinking through what one's about to say BEFORE saying it goes a long way... I personally have a Muslim friend who cannot get enough hugs from Men and Women... I guess it depends ont he individual.... I love every human being until such a time that it is shown to me that I shouldn't.... We can't see who is a terrorist until it is told to us, therefore I will continue to wear my heart on my sleeve, and learn from my mistakes.....

The world population needs to look at how life is now, and change..... Peace is the only way to live, and at the moment, life is too uncertain... why should people live like that?

I hope you are feeling better Sophie, and I hope to hear from you soon :D

Love and light,

ravynsky Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
i click here often, thanks for the food for thought!
ZoeSotet Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006  Professional Traditional Artist
Wow, that seems a bit over the top to me...
If someone gets offended because of an emoticon on the internet they need to get a grip. I'm not going to worry about what sorts of emoticons I use on the net. Frankly I think if people are that sensitive about it they shouldn't even be on the internet. The net is a big bad place with far more opportuinity for offence than emoticons.
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