|Quranic injunction - "Lakum deen o kum, waaley ya din."|
Translation - "My religion is mine, yours is yours."
<<< To be a foreigner in the Abbasid court was not really a drawback since the culture encouraged diversity and rewarded people for speaking many langages and bringing the richness of their own backgrounds. In fact, during the AD, scholars, artists, poets,and litterateurs came from a variety of ethnic backgrounds (speaking Aramaic, Arabic, Persian and Turkish), colors (white black and mulatto), and creeds (Muslim, Christian, Jew, Sabian and Magian). It was this cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism of Baghdad that made for its enduring strength as a great center of culture.
To think that the discourse of 20th century "western" secular multiculturalism has at least some of its roots in the 7th and 8th century Islamic empires of the Ommayyid and Abbasid dynasties is indeed a sobering thought. >>>