Monday, May 29, 2006

26 May 2006

‘Guess who’s not coming to dinner?’

Oh, the poor Uyghur people, trapped in their tiny cultural ‘box!’

We were organizing a dinner party, a going-away one for ‘Rucha’—this as we leave for eastern China on Sunday (May 28th). I picked Bai Hua Cun, a Chinese restaurant, as most of the guests were Chinese. But, I invited a few Uyghur people and one Pakistani friend, Ali, as well.

One of my functions in life is getting people, of varied groups, together—always and forever trying! In the U.S. is was black and Native Americans with white people. In Nepal it was people of different castes. Here in China it’s minorities with the Han Chinese (the ‘Anglo Saxons’ of China).

Elia brought up the issue of the restaurant being inappropriate for Uyghur people. I said, if they don’t come for whatever reason, it’s a lost opportunity for them (meeting Chinese and foreigners).

I had invited one of my Uyghur friends, a young man who speaks English and needed to be at this dinner party as it would help his career. When I informed him we’d be going to a Chinese restaurant he was instantly reticent because of ‘his religion’ (just like Elia had anticipated). I tried to explain it’s good for the Uyghur and Chinese people to get together, that he could bring his own food, or just drink tea if that was the objection. Now, I don’t think food was the issue, as he revealed some sad things about his situation… He said ‘spies’ would be there! ‘Spies,’ at a going-away party for a German woman?

It seems the Uyghur people don’t trust anyone, this young man going as far as saying he didn’t even trust his parents sometimes! I responded with, ‘But then, what good is your religion?’ Of course, he couldn’t answer, as he doesn’t really understand his own religion. He just does what he is told. And sure enough the following day, after asking his parents, he declined.

Can you imagine not trusting your own kind, particularly your parents? My God, if this is what religion is all about, we’re in a ‘heap of trouble!’ Of course, I see this on the streets of Kashigar everyday—it wasn’t a surprise actually: And guess what…? We are in a ‘heap of trouble!’

It’s the ole ‘divide and conquer’ here in Xinjiang, and it works! The Chinese and the Uyghur people… Never the twain shall meet! Thus, the tension, suspicion, and resultant segregation (lack of opportunity for the Uyghur) continues! ‘There will be spies!’

What the Uyghur people need to do is ‘get in bed with the Chinese!’ Figuratively and literally! How great if they intermarried! And what would have been the danger of coming and having fun at a dinner party? Ah, they would have realized there not so different from the Chinese!

I’m disappointed in the Uyghur people! They have stolen things from me, they are unreliable, and now this. It’s no wonder they are poor, and suffering! The worst… They don’t take care of their own! All you have to do to realize this is walk the streets of Kashigar, like I have in the last six months! There are Uyghur bodies everywhere! There are Uyghur beggars everywhere! Worst, I rarely see Uyghur people giving them money! ‘Rucha’ and I, walking the streets, give Uyghur beggars at least 100RMB every day ! And when I mention this to my Uyghur friends, that they should take care of their own, nothing, no response… silence!

‘Silence is golden,’ as a rule! But it’s also, in the response to a question, revealing! It’s admittance that they don’t know what to do. or care, or whatever… So, the Uyghurs continue to suffer in south Xinjiang!

What to do?

Sometimes the questions are more important than the answers!

What to do?

Perfect ourselves first, sacrifice for others, and don’t try to change the world! The latter… Up to God!

A slalom alaikum!

Peace be with you!


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