EnglishWeiser NİCHT

Noah’s Pudding: Taste in the Unification of Differences*

Weiser NİCHT (Member of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Turkey, name is fake, but he is real)

Ashura: Democratic Social Order of the Foods

When I thought the developments in the Middle East region, somehow Ashura (Noah’s Pudding) came to my mind. As is known, Ashura is well-known desert and a tradition in Anatolia and the Mesopotamia.

Ashura has been celebrated since the Prophet Noah, folktale says. According to the story, when the ship went ashore after the flood, Noah brought together all food in the ship and requested to cook them. In order to remember this incident, which is accepted as a second beginning for the humanity, Ashura is cooked in Muharram, a month in the Hijri Calendar and distributed to guests and neighbors, regardless of intimacy, kinship, or acquaintance. This offer or invite is made to everybody in reach who accepts, who opens her/his door. In the Ashura week, it is offered to everybody, like people in the mosques, djemevis, public buildings, supermarkets, passengers etc.

Almost anything can be added to Ashura: pulses like wheat, chickpea, bean; sweat flavors like fig, raisin; dried nuts like hazelnut, peanut, almond; and sourish fruits orange, mandarin. And off course, pomegranate is one of the indispensables.

Although how much they are at variance with each other, these all foods and tastes come together harmoniously. Delicious tastes come out of this new mixture. In this regard, Ashura is just like democratic social order of the foods.

Abraham Table and Its Geography

How much time passed between Noah and Abraham is not known. In fact, it is not our issue here. Yet, it is almost certain that living in the same geography, Abraham became a guide for different societies in other geographies. He left behind many unifying and connective values for different cultures and civilizations. This legacy is a priceless treasure for the whole parts of society in Anatolia and the Mesopotamia.

Abraham’s Table is the name of a culture and a tradition in the southeast Turkey and Mesopotamia. It is told that Abraham was a very generous and hospitable person. He was keeping his door open for all guests expected or unexpected. And, he was calling even unknown passengers to his table. For this reason, his table has been existing as “Abraham’s Table.”

Today, Abraham’s memory, values, and legacy has respectable place in all Middle East regardless of race, nationality, color, language, or religion. So to say, all Middle Eastern peoples live under his common roof in spite of bitter conflicts and controversies.

Noah is accepted as humankind’s second ancestor. Abraham is the ancestor of three monotheistic religion which are Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. It is the source of his dignity. Who knows, maybe even humankind’s first ancestor lived in the same geography, and his children spread to all around the world.

The Course of Civilizations

Democratic social order is the best model in terms of societies’ management, peace and wealth and in terms of the history of humanity. It will be so, at least, until a better model will be designed. Best examples of this order exist in the states in North American and Europe.

Best examples of democratic social order are the countries which have succeeded this by far the best regarding their wealth. Nevertheless, even democratic social order has not yet reached intimacy, warmth and pluralistic fabric of Abraham’s Table.

The regions, like Harran, Antioch, and Cappadocia, have realized the idea of coexistence since before thousands of years, and legated it to future generations.

Winter in the Region

However, in contrast to Abraham’s Table, inhuman practices, barbarities, brutalities, and tyrannies have been experiencing in this region in recent years.

Unlawful and arbitrary trials, unidentified murders, demonstrations with no endings, operations, hundreds of toddlers who have started their life in prisons, tens of thousands of woman squeezed into prisons…

Dragging a dead body with police vehicle in Sirnak; a mother who has forced into keeping her dead child in the fridge because of curfew; forbidding one of leading dissident politician’s mother’s burial in Ankara; releasing blatantly the torture photos of peeled off and handcuffed suspects; women who gave birth by herself in detention centers; patients who are handcuffed to their beds although they have no strength to move; mothers who are arrested just after their childbirths even before seeing their toddlers for the first time; people who are dragged and handcuffed from both hands although they are old enough to not walk by themselves… These are the some examples of level of inhumanity, insanity, and intolerance in this region.

Moreover, Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Israel, Palestine which share the same Ashura culture are not so different from Turkey. In these regions which are known with their human rights violations and sorrow, humanity has never deteriorated so badly.

Only Solution is Uniting together in the Abraham’s Table

The fragmentation and violence in the region of Ashura and Abraham’s Table culture is an inconceivable phenomenon. It has to save itself from this vicious circle. Otherwise, a total destruction is looming on the horizon.

The salvation from this circle is again possible with the logic of Ashura and Abraham’s Table and legacy. The living together brotherly, peacefully, and in tranquility can help us to reach humanistic perfection. It is necessary to view different religions, languages, and cultures, and protect them instead of disintegration and alienation.

*Turkish original text has been translated into English by a couple of human rights volunteers.

Show More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Close
Close