I know my blog is entitled my life through meals and books, but today I'm going to talk about a Movie I just watched.
I live in a city that has a huge orthodox Jew population. Their is an entire part of the city that is dominated by temples, kosher delis, and Jewish bookstores. This part of town also has a restaurant that serves kimchi fried rice (delicious), so I frequent this part of town often. Growing up, I've always been taught at my mosque, at home, at my Islamic school, to respect all religions. I have had friends from all different faiths.
When I first went to this area, I saw a lot of Jewish women with head coverings, and I thought that was really cool, almost bonding us in this secret society that the outside world doesn't take a part of. I started smiling at other women as I saw them on the street. Sometimes I receive puzzled looks. I found this confusing.
I think the problem I'm facing here is that everyone is divided in their neighborhoods and groups that some people are not exposed to each other in a positive manner. Therefore, for some people, a friendly smile from a Muslim person might be weird. They probably think Muslims are supposed to hate all other religions (which is totally against our religion.) Unfortunately, due to propaganda, so called "Muslims" who misinterpret Islam and ruin it for the rest of us, many people believe that Muslims are taught to hate all other religions.
Why this long rant? Because it ties into the awesome movie I just watched called "Arranged".
The movie is about a Muslim woman and an Orthodox Jewish woman working together in an elementary school in Brooklyn. It explores their expectations from their families and the friendship they develop from sharing many of the same values. This movie was great. Why?Because the Muslims were not terrorists and beating their wives. The Jews weren't miserly and loud mouthed. Instead, it portrayed Muslims and orthodox Jews accurately and as human beings. It was authentic and heart warming, and most importantly, shows us how we can all bridge the gaps we have between people of different faiths and societies. I think everyone should watch this movie so we can understand each others cultures. More importantly, it'll encourage us to reach out with a friendly smile to people different then us and open up the doors of understanding and break down all the barriers we have built.
Go watch it!! It's on netflix. And make your friends watch it too.