I Am Arab

It has come to my attention that many, including Arabs who live outside the Middle East, mock the Arabs for ridiculous things that don’t even exist or no longer exists. Say, it is more of a stupid stereotype thing.

I used to hear (and still do) many irritating phrases like “Oh yeah, you are Arab” and “Because you are Arab” even from Arabs themselves. I don’t know why we Arabs are famous for such things, especially the most ridiculously stupid ones and a typical conversation happens between two or more people with at least one Arab goes like:

-Hey! Why are you always in shibshib (slippers)?
-Hmm, They are comfortable and I don’t feel like wearing shoes.
-Really? Is that the only reason or there’s something you don’t want to tell?
-No this is the only reason! Why would I hide other reasons?
-Yeah right. There is another reason actually. You are Arab”

So basically, because he is Arab, he wears slippers, has a million cousins where the majority of the males of them are named Mohammed, Ahmed, or Mahmoud. Because he’s Arab, he eats falafel and hummus every day for breakfast and/or dinner. Because he’s Arab he’s always horny and/or dirty minded. Because he’s Arab he does this and that and he’s this and that.

Because he’s Arab, he’s blamed for all the shit in the world. And if he’s Muslim, the world just collapses to his feet. If you are Arab, you are in deep shit and if you are Muslim, you are in deeper shit.

Islam, Muslims, Arabs, and Middle East have always been a problem. They ARE the problem and if you ask why, you will find out that it’s just like that like it or not. What’s even worse than all of this is when an Arab blames you for doing something or behaving in a certain way because you are Arab.

If you didn’t read history let me tell you this hopefully it will change your point of view about Arabs:

Pioneers of science

Abd al-Malik Ibn Quraib al-Asmai (740-828)
Zoology, botany, animal husbandry

Muhammad Bin Musa al-Khwarizmi (Algorizm)
(770-840)
Mathematics, astronomy, geography, (algorithm, algebra, calculus)

Abu ‘Uthman ‘Amr ibn Bakr al-Basri al-Jahiz
(776-868)
Zoology, Arabic grammar, rhetoric, lexicography

Yaqub Ibn Ishaq al-Kindi (Alkindus) (800-873)
Philosophy, physics, optics, medicine, mathematics, metallurgy

Jabir Ibn Haiyan (Geber)
(Died 803)

Thabit Ibn Qurrah (Thebit)
(836-901)
Astronomy, mechanics, geometry, anatomy

Ali Ibn Rabban al-Tabari
(838-870)
Medicine, mathematics, calligraphy, literature

Abu Abdullah al-Battani (Albategnius) (858-929)
Astronomy, mathematics, trigonometry

Abul-Abbas Ahmad al-Farghani (al-Fraganus)
(C. 860)
Astronomy, civil engineering

Muhammad Ibn Zakariya al-Razi (Rhazes)
(864-930)
Medicine, ophthalmology, smallpox, chemistry, astronomy

Abu al-Nasr al-Farabi (al-Pharabius)
(870-950)
Sociology, logic, philosophy, political science, music

‘Abbas Ibn Firnas
(Died 888)
Mechanics of flight, planetarium, artificial crystals, Also, reputedly, the first man to fly.

Abd-al Rahman al-Sufi (Azophi) (903-986)
Astronomy

Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (Albucasis)
(936-1013)
Surgery, medicine (father of modern surgery)

Abul Wafa Muhammad al-Buzjani
(940-997)
Mathematics, astronomy, geometry, trigonometry

Abul Hasan Ali al-Masu’di
(Died 957)
Geography, history

Abu Ali Hasan Ibn al-Haitham (Alhazen)
(965-1040)
Physics, optics, mathematics

Abu al-Hasan al-Mawardi (Alboacen) (972-1058)
Political science, sociology, jurisprudence, ethics

Abu Raihan al-Biruni
(973-1048)
Astronomy, mathematics. Determined the earth’s circumference

Abu Ali al-Hussain Ibn Abdallah Ibn Sina (Avicenna)
(981-1037)
Medicine, philosophy, mathematics, astronomy

Abu Ishaq Ibrahim Ibn Yahya al-Zarqali (Arzachel)
(1028-1087)
Astronomy (invented astrolabe)

Omar al-Khayyam
(1044-1123)
Mathematics, poetry

Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (Algazel)
(1058-1111)
Sociology, theology, philosophy

Abu Marwan Ibn Zuhr (Avenzoar, Abumeron)
(1091-1161)
Surgery, medicine

Abu Abdallah Muhammad al-Idrisi (1099-1166)
Geography (world map, first globe)

Abul Waleed Muhammad Ibn Rushd (Averroes)
(1128-1198)
Philosophy, law, medicine, astronomy, theology

Nasir al-Din al-Tusi
(1201-1274)
Astronomy, non-Euclidean geometry

Nur al-Din Ibn Ishaq al-Bitruji (Alpetragius)
(Died 1204)
Astronomy

Jalal al-Din Rumi
(1207)
Sociology

Ibn al-Nafis Damishqi
(1213-1288)
Anatomy

Abu Muhammad Abdallah Ibn al-Baitar
(Died 1248)
Pharmacy, botany

Mohammed Targai Ulugh Beg
(1393-1449)
Astronomy

Abd al-Rahman Ibn Muhammad Ibn Khaldun
(1332-1395)
Sociology, philosophy of history, political science

So basically, we Arab ruled the world for a long period of time and I guess you as well as everybody else is obliged to show respect to fellow Arabs. I mean, you are Arab too and you dis your Arab brother/sister for a very normal and regular habit or act? Excuse me but you have been brainwashed.

What if a non-Arab wears slippers outdoors? Or eat hummus and/or falafel? I know many non-Arabs who would kill for a hummus dish! Why don’t you come up with a stupid phrase to tell?

You don’t like it? Me and my fellow proud Arabs have two words for ya ..

Nader K.

Did you like this? Share it:

About Nader Elkhuzundar

Nader Elkhuzundar is a commentator on Palestinian affairs and Co-founder of Beyond Compromise (www.beyondcompromise.com). Elkhuzundar occasionally freelances for The Guardian, International Business Times, and others. He's a social media enthusiast and tech savvy with particular interest in new technologies and analytics, and enjoys reading over Arabic coffee and dark chocolate.
This entry was posted in Thoughts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to I Am Arab

  1. Reham says:

    Amazing writting as always 🙂

  2. Not an Arab says:

    An interesting post, I disagree with much of it because half of the people you named weren’t Arabs.

    Abd al-Malik Ibn Quraib al-Asmai was from Basrah in Iraq and was an Arab.

    Muhammad Bin Musa al-Khwarizmi was an ethnic Persian and not an Arab. His greatest contributions were in further developing already existing ideas taken from Greco-Roman, Babylonian and Hindu manuscripts on mathematics and astronomy. He did not ‘invent’ algebra, he developed and named an existing idea about solving equations, previously subordinate to practical engineering and science, into an abstract branch of mathematics its own right.

    Abu ‘Uthman ‘Amr ibn Bakr al-Basri al-Jahiz was from Basrah in Iraq and was an Arab.

    Yaqub Ibn Ishaq al-Kindi was born in Kufa in Iraq and was an Arab.

    Jabir Ibn Haiyan was born in Khorassan in Iran but it is thought that he was Arabic rather than Persian ethnically.

    Thabit Ibn Qurrah was born in Harran in what is now Turkey and was an ethnic Assyrian not an Arab. Religiously he was a Sabian rather than a Muslim.

    Ali Ibn Rabban al-Tabari was a convert to Islam, born in Merv in what is now Turkmenistan and not an Arab.

    Abu Abdullah al-Battani was born in Harran in what is now Turkey, although he was a Muslim, he was ancestrally from the Sabian religion and not an Arab.

    Abul-Abbas Ahmad al-Farghani was an ethnic Persian, not an Arab, born in what is now Uzbekistan. He is best known for translating and summarising Ancient Greek works on Astronomy.

    Muhammad Ibn Zakariya al-Razi was a Persian from Rey in Iran.

    Abu al-Nasr al-Farabi was probably an ethnic Persian, although there is a possibility he was Turkic. He was born in what is now Afghanistan and was not an Arab.

    Abbas Ibn Firnas was a Berber from al-Andalus and not an Arab. The evidence that he flew is tenuous, coming from a source written about 700 years after the event supposedly happened.

    Abd-al Rahman al-Sufi was a Persian from Isfahan in Iran and was not an Arab.

    Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi was an ethnic Arab from al-Andalus. He was a surgeon, as to the ‘Father of Modern Surgery’, that depends where you draw the line historically, the term has been applied to many others.

    Abul Wafa Muhammad al-Buzjani was an ethnic Persian from Buzhgan in Iran and not an Arab.

    Abul Hasan Ali al-Masu’di was an Arab born in Baghdad.

    Abu Ali Hasan Ibn al-Haitham was an Arab from Basrah.

    Abu al-Hasan al-Mawardi was an Arab born in Basrah.

    Abu Raihan al-Biruni was ethnic Persian born in Khwarezm in Iran and not an Arab. He may well have calculated the Earth’s circumference, but it was done first, although perhaps less accurately, by a Greek called Eratosthenes of Cyrene over a thousand years before.

    Abu Ali al-Hussain Ibn Abdallah Ibn Sina was an ethnic Persian born in Bukhara in Iran and not an Arab.

    Abu Ishaq Ibrahim Ibn Yahya al-Zarqali was a Visigoth from al-Andalus and not an Arab. He was an important astronomer but he did not invent the astrolabe as you claim. No one is really sure who invented the astrolabe, but they are pre-Islamic and were in use by the Ancient Greeks almost a thousand years before Islam.

    Omar al-Khayyam was an ethnic Persian born in Nishapur, which is in Iran, and not an Arab.

    Abu Hamid al-Ghazali was an ethnic Persian from Khorasan in Iran and not an Arab. Despite his many achievements, he rejected completely philosophy from the Greco-Roman tradition, a notion which spread and seriously harmed philosophical development because so much ‘Islamic’ philosophy had been borrowed and developed from the Greco-Roman tradition.

    Abu Marwan Ibn Zuhr was from Seville in al-Andalus but it is thought he was ethnically Arab rather than Berber or Visigothic convert.

    Abu Abdallah Muhammad al-Idrisi was an ethnic Arab who born in Ceuta in what is now Morocco during the Berber Almoravid era.

    Abul Waleed Muhammad Ibn Rushd was born in al-Andalus which had been conquered by and was ruled by Berbers, although there were Arabs amongst the general population. He is widely thought to have been Arabic but Berbers also claim him sometimes. He was tried as a ‘heretic’ and exiled, his books were burnt and his ideas were suppressed by Muslims because of his extensive use of Greek philosophy, and he was only ‘rediscovered’ in the Arab world in the 19th Century, despite his enduring fame in Europe throughout.

    Nasir al-Din al-Tusi was an ethnic Persian from Khorassan in Iran and not an Arab.

    Nur al-Din Ibn Ishaq al-Bitruji was from al-Andalus and there is no evidence as to his ethnicity, he might have been Arab or a Berber, there is not a lot of evidence either way.

    Jalal al-Din Rumi was an ethnic Persian born in what is today Afghanistan.

    Ibn al-Nafis Damishqi was an Arab from Damascus.

    Abu Muhammad Abdallah Ibn al-Baitar was from al-Andalus and his ethnicity is disputed, no one is really sure if he was Berber or Arab, but both claim him.

    Mohammed Targai Ulugh Beg was ethnically Turkic, born in Soltaniyeh in Iran and was not an Arab.

    Abd al-Rahman Ibn Muhammad Ibn Khaldun was an ethnic Arab born in Tunis to a family that had lived in al-Andalus previously.

    The non-Arabs you list often wrote in Arabic, rather than their native language, because Arabic was the language of the Caliphate and was thus used by those wishing to be widely understood. Latin, and later French, was used the same way in Europe historically. English is used this way today. Maybe that is why you have listed them as Arabs?

    Rather than arguing that Arabs deserve respect because of something that Arabs (and Persians and Berbers and others still, all of whom you seem to have Arabised) did once upon a time, evolving existing Greco-Roman, Hindu, Babylonian and pre-Islamic Persian ideas and developing new ones of their own, would it not be better to emphasise that these artistic, philosophical and scientific ideas transcend ethnicity and religion? The ‘Arabs’ you list spoke many languages, were from places as far apart as modern Spain and Afghanistan, took ideas from countless pre-Islamic civilisation in numerous languages developing them as their own. What did everyone have in common, pre-Islamic and Islamic, European, African and Asian, Arab or otherwise? They were all human. The Arabs are not distinct from humanity, they are part of humanity.

    I’ve no real idea why I bothered to type all that up, but like your tag line says: “Venting Can Be Therapeutic”. Please don’t take this as a dig, I enjoy your blog although I have never commented before, but something in this entry just struck a nerve for some reason.

Leave a Reply

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