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Archive for the ‘Tolerance’ Category

…The divided city.
He asked me about my first impression of Jerusalem and the first impression is its beautiful, the second it’s so divided and so unfair in so many ways. I’ve asked myself the question about if woman should be protected by law for covering up and I said to myself, but so many want this … because that’s what they say when they got to be heard in interviews.

My taught now are different. Last night we walked at Mea Shea rim the orthodox Jewish street. A sign at beginning at the street tells woman to please cover themselves. They have (if you guys remember Bruno running around chased by the fashion police) some people that actually tells woman that doesn’t dress according to the code, to go away from their street. It’s not a law but it’s in the Jewish context, woman shall dress their gender, especially when married. In Europe we blame Muslims for the burke, here so far I have had more strict rules with the Jews. It feels weird for me, the man in my company only have to wear a little Jewish kippa at their head, I have to cover . (more…)

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Rooftop view

Morning company outside hostel

The holy wall

King Davids Tomb

And you can never leave the crypt ….

More to v\come att flickr when we have better internet connection

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Now when It´s getting closer to my take off for Jerusalem, I have noticed a slight increase of worries in my surroundings.
From people saying: “Are you not worried to go?” til ” I hope you get home alive!”
-Seriously people, am I not afraid enough?
Of course I am awared of the fact that things do happends in Israel. Of course I understand that it would, probably, be safer to stand home, but … I am not really afraid to travel there … should I be?

I am just saying that people that lives there, and people that traveled there comes back and tells me that: You will love it, and of course when I mention how people over here worries they say: “Yeah you should listen to the locals thy will give you recommendations if something happends, but its a city just like any other city and not. Its …. it´s … oh you just have to experience it!”

So who am I supposed to listen to.
I know things could happend.
I know the risk is increased when I travel somewhere close to conflicts.
But …
I also know that life is not certain wherever you might be.

Who says that I live tomorrow, or even four minutes from now. You could be hit by a bus, you could be stabbed to death on the u-bahn. Anything could happened to you, so tell me when am I supposed to stop and hide from doing things I want to do or visit places important for my education?

The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.
Mark Twain

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Is it possible to be tolerant? When we have freedom of speech and religion are we never allowed to mess with it? A while ago we had a Swedish minister talking about homosexuals as cancer at the human body. The opinions in that case where different whether or not he was allowed to say that be course it counted as agitation against an ethnic group, but were it?

I mean it’s a horrible thing to say, because he just show the world that he is a know-nothing-prick and doesn’t deserve to be broadcasted, but … when did he cross the line between freedom of speech and agitation against an ethnic group? He spoke his opinion, should he be judge by that, who is the one setting the line between right and wrong, and what happens with freedom of speech if we are not allowed to speak our opinions (how foolish they might be)?

It’s not an easy question. There are a bit of the same thing with another occurrence we might see now and then. When are we letting religion take too much space in society? Is it a possibility to have balance between freedom of religion and other things in society?

We have had controversies when people feel discriminated because they can’t wear their religious outfit at work. The employer tells them: We have a dress code! And the job searching person says: Yeah I respect that but I need to wear this because it’s a part of my religion.
Who is right?

Is religion really suppose to stand above other laws in our society, if so, which religion is supposed to be in highest priority? And why? Is it really fair to say that you want to wear, for instance, burka, as a police? a nurse?, bus driver, firefighter?

Yeah I know the burka is the most instantly recognizable symbol of oppression and I am not intending to make a mockery of disempowered women who have been stripped of all human dignity. But it’s still a problem when you come to a school and somebody wants to teach kinder garden kids in a burka and says it’s a part of their religion. Are we allowed to point out the fact that burkas are not ” a traditional Islamic dress,” that burkas were made-up by fanatically fundamentalists and is a sign of oppression in our westernized word, therefore we should also be careful when it comes to a point when people claim that they are allowed to things be course it’s a part of their religion.

We have to, in fact we should be obligated to question such statement when we see that people uses their religion to justify oppression. In some cases it’s hard, in some cases we have to let people do and act in a certain way even though we are loathed when we face it. But sometimes we really have to put our foot down, because we should never allow terror or oppression of any kind.

The question is who and how shall we draw the lines?

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I rarely get speechless, Ive been doing the most odd jobs during my time as a writer and also know people that have ideas, work or secrets that can be breathtakingly freakish but I held my breath when he sad thoose words out in the small room where we sat during dinner at my friend G. I looked at the guy that Ive just spent an hour talking to about political conflicts in the middle east. He was a very good looking young man, perfect body, cute little dimples, beautiful green eyes and black hair.
Then I reminded my self to bread and answered:
– You are a…what?
– A whore, oh well an escort.

What do you answer to that? Here he sat, this beautiful man telling me that he worked with something that we all learn is for people that are completely slaves to drugs and liqueur. In my prejudiced world those people are abused, wretched and mentally not very sharp. But here he was, the sharpest tool in the box, talking politics and telling me he worked as a whore.

– Why, I finally managed to say.
– Oh well, I like sex, I like guys, I can arrange my working hours when I want and…well and its good money when you study.

And then that was it. I realized that I , the one who usually have to tell people that they should not be so prejudicial when it comes to my study field(Religion-sociology) my self where very biased to an industry that I frankly knew nothing about. If someone had asked me, three months ago if I could describe a gigolo, I would have told them something like a not so intellectual, perhaps mentally broken man, probably with a desire for drugs and booze and not very respectful to himself.

Damn, I was wrong, this guy is amazing and I am honored to have become his friend.

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