To My friend Khaldoun

 Mouhamed Odaymeh …the writer

tanslated by me (Tareq Neman)

My dear friend As you see I am not late, as if we were on a date. In order to discuss the subject that you mentioned in your last massage, I say without hesitation that you’re not the only one in this. Me too. This morning, I think I had unlimited feelings of exclusion, denial, and being avoided and ignored. Be sure that you are not the only one who expresses such feelings. Such feelings can’t be exclusive to certain persons or in certain persons, any one of us, both of us, can activate them and experience them, and in this case you will walk beside my table without noticing me or my table. Per contra, I will pass beside you and your table without thinking that neither you nor your table do exist. In fact, as feelings of grudge and hatred can’t be exclusive to anyone, feelings of love and recognition are neither exclusive. No, no, you are not alone in this, me too, me too! This morning I think I had unlimited feelings of love and recognition. You know more than I do that the feelings of denial and exclusion are cheaper; no need now to delve in psychology, or philosophy, to prove love and hate are two sides of same coin. You know how much philosophy troubles me in such cases, because it provides the justifying skills and thus allows you to accept and pass the principle of things and their opposites; psychology can do that too. Anyway, there is always the person who believes that love has been created only for him. And no one can practice love except him. There is always the one who believes that a poem has been created for him and no one can write poems except him. Don’t you doubt that there is no one who believes that hatred has been created for him and no one can hate except him. Yes, sure this kind of people widely exists, but they don’t express or show their feelings directly and frankly. Because hatred is not a prowess as love or a poem, but it expresses itself using the language and its expressions. That is why the one who is skillful in trading and in libeling and slandering believes that the dictionary of trade is created to be owned by him so no one can open it and use the fires that it contains except him; you will find an ocean of samples when you look to the friends shelf. The thing that you didn’t mention in your massage, which causes me insomnia, is the phenomenon of someone monopolizing many expressions, as for example, they use the word ‘freedom’ and all the ideas and likewise-colored concepts that could be drawn from it. They use it as it is their personal royalty, as if it was not made for others, as if they are the only people that seek freedom, only because they are of this color or that, or in a specific corner of the room. Most of those who use freedom in this way are a slap of the educated people who affirm that freedom is not suitable to merchants or religious men or farmers or taxi drivers, it is not for anyone except those who work in writing and theorizing. Us too. We are the workers in all fields; we need this freedom and its concepts of all colors. Who share them in this, my dear friend, are the clergy. Those who believe that words such as following, believe, devout, and dignity and more, are not suitable to anyone except them. They consider any use of such words is nothing but dissonant and in vain if it is not in the context that they had planned for, that’s what they said. For me and my friend, we are believers and followers according to the main meaning which this word has been created for, not according to the new meaning that they metaphor. You will be surprised if I tell you that this group divides such words among them, that’s why you will find the word ‘jehad’, which means fighting for God, is only for the religious currents that belong to the right side, while the word ‘nedal’, which means fighting against the enemy, belongs to the religious currents that belong to the left side. Fans of the left side will not accept to call themselves ‘mojahedyn’, which means fighters of God, while no active religious man would accept to call himelf ‘monadel’, which means fighter for the land; he considers it as an insult. It is the same for the concepts ‘rafic’ and ‘akh’, which mean comrade and brother. Imagine the difference that has evolved between the original meaning of such words and the virtual meaning that they have created for them. Imagine the way that the religious man will slap you in your face when you call him a comrade struggler, and the way the communist will slap you when you call him a brotherly warrior, although, you are using the same national Arabic language that they use. I know that this is not the point, but I am talking about the superman who can detach all useless meanings from many words, and can distinguish between the word warrior and fighter (‘moujahed’ and ‘monadel’) without using the linguistic smugness. Dear friend. We really need to release such words from the hands of wholesale and retail merchants, especially in black markets, coffee shops bars and temples, or we, me and you, will not feel this freedom … didn’t I say that the only faithful word which can’t have any other meaning is the word ‘friend’, and didn’t you admonish me for using it a lot… my friend !!!!!!


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