Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Hasad, Envy and Evil-Eye Syndrome
I bumped into a friend the other day and chatting away about all sorts of things, I asked, as I often do, “so tell me stories … ”. To which he replied, oh I’ve got some tales to tell that are definitely for your diary (yanee blog). I was surprised cos I didn’t think he knew wat a “diary” (yanee blog) was or that I blogged!!! But then again, he does often see me with my eyes glued to my laptop!
In a village in Saudi Arabia, a man was blessed with the unfortunate gift of having the evil eye - it was totally unintentional and without any premeditation, but when he would look at a person, even his sons and even when he looked at them with love, misfortune would befall them. He tired of these ill effects he had on people and the towns-people feared him. Frustrated by this problem, he sought counsel with some tribal leaders and religious wise men. Their suggestion, though they weren't sure it would work, was rather strange but he was willing to give it a shot. They said he should go thru all the rituals of death, having ghusl(cleansing), being wrapped in the kafn (burial shrouds) and having janazah salah (burial prayer) read for him, after that, he would be rid of this wretched evil eye (ain). As his janazah was being read, a traveller happened to pass thru the village and stopped to fill petrol at the nearby garage. Upon seeing the janaza being read, he decided to do the good muslim duty and join the folks. While standing in prayer, he noticed the "dead" man winking at him. scared shitless, he ran got the hell out of that village. A year later, he happened upon the self same village and bumped into dead man walking, but didn't recognise him.... dead man looked at him and said, "i've seen u somewhere before.... have u been here before" and so the traveller related his previous “winked at by the dead” experience, to which dead man walking laughed so hard, his belly shook beneath his thobe and he confessed to being the formerly deceased and explained that the ritual in fact worked. This is the story, as told by the traveller and retold and retold until it reached desert demons ears.
Friend story teller swears this one is true and that he actually witnessed it and knows the owner of the evil eye! (Apparently he steers clear of him).
Tradition on special occasions in bedoiun tribes are such that the men sit around a huge (massive) tray laden with rice and a whole lamb (or sometimes baby camel). Each person eats from wat is in front of him on the tray and everyone always gets their fill. It happened one day that an Egyptian was an invited guest to the event. Apparently he was oblivious to the fact that it is extremely impolite to reach beyond the food that is in front of you. There he sat, gluttonously stretching across, picking away and digging at the most succulent meat. The tribal elders were disturbed by this behaviour and felt it a great insult. Amongst them was one who was known for having the power of Hasad (envy) and Ain (evil eye). Raising a brow, he warned that he would teach the uncultured visitor a lesson! Minutes later the Egyptian was being rushed to hospital, with blood gushing from his mouth. He had bit his own tongue so hard that it almost fell off! Lesson to be learnt, always abide by the etiquette of the people and places you are visiting and leave your bad habits at home, or pay the price!
Then of course there are the ‘pamphlets of the messiah'. You know those! The cure-all doctors!. Intriguing Mama Munna from the mountain Khumi, who heals everything from erectile dysfunction to evil mother-in-laws and even gets you the lotto numbers – and asthma is paired off with insanity, while she exorcises your ghosts and bottles your jinns and she even brings back lost lovers and guarantees results (or your money back)! Wonder if Mama Munna's magic miracle formula works so well, why isn't she basking in the sun on her own luxurious yacht, with an ED-free hunk and a couple of million to spare?
Now if only Mamma Munna or Mr Hasad Eyes could rub the lamp or evil eye this world gone mad and instead of guaranteeing the true love or erect penis, rather guarantee peace and an end to the massacre of children!