Saturday, July 6, 2013

Koran by Heart

I'm on vacation, sort of, maybe not.  I'm actually working in the Extended School Year program, but I live for long weekends.  No creative posting much this month, sorry!   It's about all I can do to propel myself through the mornings, four days a week, keeping a chipper attitude.  The kids get my full attention, but there's little left for blogging.

Anyway, my daughter, Andorra, has been in Indonesia for three months now (Peace Corps).  She has now been sent to her permanent school in Madiun.  Never heard of that town?  I hadn't either.

Indonesia has the 4th largest population in the world---a fact that surprised me.  This country also has the largest Muslim population in the world, and my daughter is placed as an English teacher in a Muslim high school. The country as a whole appears moderate in terms of religious practices--Andorra does not have to wear veils or head scarves.  She does appear to have adapted to a more conservative style of dress which is the only big change I've seen. 
Her school

I  don't know much about the Muslim religion, but at our public library, I happened to stumble on an excellent documentary featuring kids from all over the world competing in a Koran reciting competition in Egypt.  This movie, Koran by Heart, featured three specific Muslim children--one from Senegal, one from the Maldives, and a boy from Tajikistan.  These kids were gifted in their ability to memorize and recite the Koran in Arabic (none of these children actually spoke or understood Arabic).  In all, over 100 children were competing, and the recitations were mesmerizing.  For a deeper review of the movie, go HERE to the NYTimes. 

Personally, I had never read much or watched many movies featuring Islam; but on many levels, I recommend this to everyone interested in gaining a deeper understanding of all cultures.  Luckily, this movie is on YouTube.

Click on this image, or watch on YouTube directly HERE.  This is one of the best movies I've seen in a while.  I highly recommend!!!


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