Essay, 3 pages (600 words)

Culture wear

Culture Wear Culture is a set of values, beliefs and ideas that a person identifies with. Sometimes, this culture gets its guidelines by the help ofthe religion that is prevalent in the society. Therefore, both these things should not be mixed. The culture of a South Asian woman would be to wear ‘shalwar kameez’ that covers their bodies sufficiently according to the codes prescribed by Islam. The religious boundaries that she has to fulfill are the covering of her essential parts of the body with anything, be it a jeans and a t-shirt or ‘hijab’. This kind of wear should not be mixed with culture. Therefore, for an individual to assimilate into a new culture, they will have to probably forget the traditions and culture of their previous culture so that they may come in cohesion with the values of beliefs of the new culture they are trying to amalgamate into.
The only misconception that the westerners and probably some of the Muslims are also carrying is that the covering of hair is not related to the culture aspects (Human Rights News, 2005). It is more of a religious obligation that every Muslim woman should follow. This head covering is also prescribed by the law of Christianity for women as well and the nuns follow it too. In the same way, other artifacts which have religious obligation for some of the sects of Islam or any other religion for that matter, are also of religious importance and cannot degrade the assimilation of one individual in a different culture. This misconception is in the minds of the people that following these rituals, behaviors or artifacts can hinder the evolution of an individual in a different culture. The religious values remain the same for those who know the importance of those values; the way of integrating them into their newly adopted culture is the real task for that individual. This kind of behavior usually results in the modification of the new culture in accordance with the rules and regulations of an individual’s religion.
An example needs to be quoted here to further clarify the difference between the cultural artifacts and their links with the religious beliefs. The ‘kara’ which is an important religious artifact for the Shia Muslims or the ‘Ahle-Bait’, can not in any way, hinder the assimilation of a Shia Muslim in a European culture. The Kara is made up of metal usually steel or silver and it is a symbol of love, affiliation and dedication towards their Imam Zain-ul-Abaden. It is not a religious code; it proves to be just a symbol. It symbolizes the pains that the Imam went through in the war of Karbala.
For everybody else, bracelets and bangles symbolize fashion, but the particular Muslim, it may have a religious importance. They why doesn’t the wearing of bangles for Christians or Jew women produce problems and hindrance in the assimilation with the European culture if the objects that are being used by both of them are the same The answer to this is the restricted manner in which the Western eye looks at the Muslim culture and traditions. Therefore, I disagree to the statement that forgetting the cultural and religious values will stop a person in assimilating with the new culture. There is a room for improvement in everything; and modifying cultural values in such a way that they are also following the religious beliefs might be the best way to counteract this situation.
Works Cited
1. Lilian Coppock (2000). The art of different Cultures. Folens Limited.
2. Human Rights News (2005). Turkey Headscarf ruling denies Women Education and Career. Retrieved April 16, 2008, from the website: http://hrw. org/english/docs/2005/11/16/turkey12038. htm
3. Polly Tonybee (2001). Behind the burka. Retrieved April 16, 2008, from the web title Guardian Unlimited Website: http://www. guardian. co. uk/Archive/Article/0, 4273, 4266035, 00. html

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