Egyptian Hopes for a Better Tomorrow – المصريون يتطلعون إلى غدٍ أفضل

Posted on Feb 14 2011 by . Filed under: Uncategorized

Over the past several weeks, Egyptians have bravely and proudly shown the world what a people united can do to create a peaceful revolution and drive positive political change.  In that same spirit, it is now time to show each other what the same people united can do to revolutionize the way we deal with each other.  Said differently, we must ride this current tidal wave to create equally positive cultural change in Egypt.

أظهر المصريون للعالم خلال الأسابيع العدّة التي مضت و بكل شجاعة ٍ و فخر، ما الذي يمكن لاتحاد الشعب أن يفعله في سبيل خلق ثورة سلمية و الدفع باتجاه تغيير سياسي إيجابي. و بنفس الروح، فإن الوقت قد حان لنظهر لبعضنا البعض ما الذي يستطيع هذا الاتحاد القيام به، و ذلك بأن يثور على الطريقة التي نعامل بها بعضنا البعض. و بمعنى آخر، إنه علينا ركوب الموجة الحالية من المدّ و الجزر من أجل إحداث تغيير ثقافي مواز ٍ لذلك التغيير السياسي الذي يحدث في مصر.

Al Azhar Park Cairo April 2010

Hanan Heikal and George Weyman at Al Azhar Park April 2010

If we want to truly be a decent and civil society, let us abandon the previous ills that have been happening between men and women, the rich and the poor, the educated and non-educated, urban- and rural folk, the working class and the unemployed, Muslim and Christian, and younger and older generations.  Let us live the true meaning of dignity and respect for all humankind.

فإذا كنا نريد أن نبني مجتمعاً محترماً و متحضراً حقاً، فدعونا نبتعد عن العلل السابقة التي كنا نعاني منها في العلاقة بين الرجل و المرأة، بين الغني و الفقير، بين المتعلم و الغير متعلم، بين ابن المدينة و ابن الريف، بين الطبقة العاملة و العاطلين عن العمل، بين المسلمين و المسيحيين، و بين الأجيال المختلفة. دعونا نعيش المعنى الحقيقي للكرامة و احترام البشرية جمعاء.

If we want to truly be a decent and civil society, let us also abandon the previous ills on our country; ills in the form of littering our streets, spitting in public, and burning trash in residential areas.  Let us nurture our land back to health so that she can continue to give back and sustain us for generations to come.

و إذا كنا نريد أن نبني مجتمعاً محترماً و متحضراً حقاً، دعونا نبتعد أيضاً عن العلل التي كان بلدنا يعاني منه، علل ٌُ تتمثل في نثر القمامة في أرجاء الشوارع، البصق في الأماكن العامة، و حرق الفضلات في المناطق السكنيّة. دعونا نعيد إلى أرضنا صحتها من أجل أن تبقى قادرةً على العطاء و المؤازرة لأجيال قادمة.

And finally, if we want to truly be a decent and civil society, let us abandon the previous ills in our social habits such as driving dangerously, not waiting our turn in public lines, and giving or accepting bribes.  Let us create order out of chaos so that we can carry out our day-to-day activities without undue stress and hardships.

و أخيراً إذا أردنا أن نبني مجتمعاً محترماً و متحضراً ، دعونا نقلع عن عللنا الاجتماعية السابقة مثل القيادة بشكل ٍ خطر، و عدم انتظار الدور في الأماكن العامة، أيضاً إعطاء و قبول الرشاوى. دعونا نخلق النظام من الفوضى بحيث نستطيع القيام بنشاطاتنا اليومية بدون التعرض لضغوط و مشاق ٍ لا داعي لها.

From this day forward, let us hold each other accountable for the new Egypt we now want and need to build:

دعونا من الآن فصاعداً نعتبر الجميع مسئولين عن مصر الجديدة التي نريد و نحتاج إلى أن نبنيها:

  • If someone verbally or physically taunts or teases our young girls and women, kindly remind him that he has a wife/daughter/mother/sister too and that such treatment should stop.  If someone asks you to stop harassing a young girl or woman, kindly listen and do what you have been asked.
  • If you see someone littering our streets, ask them kindly to pick it up.  If someone asks you to pick up your trash, kindly listen and do what you have been asked.
  • If someone drives in a disorderly fashion, ask them kindly to adhere to traffic rules.  If someone asks you to follow traffic rules, kindly listen and do what you have been asked.
  • فإذا قام أحدٌ ما بالإساءة أو مضايقة نسائنا و شاباتنا جسدياً أو لفظياً، فقم بتذكيره بلطف ٍ أنه هو أيضاً لديه زوجة / ابنة / أم / أخت و أنّ عليه أن يتوقف عن تلك الأفعال. و إذا سألك أحدٌ ما التوقف عن التحرش بالفتيات و النساء، قم بالإصغاء لما قاله لك و نفذ ما طلبه منكَ.
  • و إذا رأيتَ شخصا ما يرمي القمامة في شوارعنا، اطلب منه بلطف التقاط الأوساخ التي قام برميها. إذا طلب أحد ما منك التقاط القمامة التي قمتَ برميها، استمع إليه برحابة صدر و نفذ ما طلبه منك.
  • و إذا رأيت البعض يقودون على نحوِ مخالف، اطلب منهم بلطف التقييد بقواعد المرور. إذا طلب منك احدٌ ما إتباع قوانين المرور. استمع إليه بلطف و نفذ ما طلبه منك.

Egypt has a glorious history; and we will always retain the many aspects of our already great culture.  However, the time has also come for Egyptians to rise up to a higher calling; one that defines, practices and upholds values of tolerance, dignity, trust, compassion and respect.  Let us say, “no more injustice upon us, no more injustice towards one another, no more injustice to our beloved land Egypt”.  No more, no more, no more….for ourselves, for our children, and for our children’s children.  Surely then, will Egypt be able to realize its many hopes for a better today and tomorrow.

إنّ لمصرَ تاريخٌ مجيد، و سوف نحتفظُ دائماً بالعديد من أوجه ثقافتنا العظيمة. و بكل الأحوال، فإن الوقت قد حان لكي يستجيب المصريون لدعواتٍ أسمى، تلك التي تعّرف، تمارس و تؤيد قيم، التسامح، الكرامة، الثقة، التعاطف و الاحترام. دعونا نقول، لا مزيد من الظلم لنا، لا مزيد من ظلم أحدنا للآخر، لا مزيد من الظلم لأرضنا الحبيبة مصر“. لا مزيد، لا مزيد، لا مزيد لأنفسنا، لأولادنا، و لأحفادنا. عندها من المؤكد أن مصر ستكون قادرة على تحقيق جميع أمانيها نحو حاضرٍ و مستقبل أفضل.

Hanan Heakal
Giza, Egypt
February 12, 2011

حنان هيكل

الجيزة، مصر

12، شباط 2011

Hanan is a member of Meedan’s Board of Directors, the views she expresses herein are her own.

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Comments

  1. Khaled H Younes says:

    Thank you for your inspiring words, I absolutely agree with you. Egyptians have changed their future seeking a better tomorrow. I hope everyone start with the same spirit in changing his/her own life first to reach the light at the end of the tunnel.

  2. HassAroussy says:

    Great initiative ya Hanan
    Agree that we all should use this to change internally towards our society

    Have a better Egypt

    Regards to the kids

    Hassan

  3. Emad Badie says:

    Thanks Hanan for those spot-on words… Sure, we tend to focus on political, economical parts of the change and forget that the root is ourselves… We need to build the internal change first and this will lead to bright future for sure. I will start to reevaluate my behaviors and talk to other about this internal change.

  4. georgeweyman says:

    It is truly remarkable to see how much Egyptians have restored their sense of hope and dignity following one of the most broad-based and peace-loving revolutions of modern times. It truly is an inspiration to all of us. I am humbled to count Egyptians among my friends – and hope all Egyptians can participate in building a better future for the country.

  5. Mkkamel says:

    Yes! Yes! Yes!….”God does not change of a society until they change themselves”. I don’t want this to be a religious inspired note, but this verse was the best to describe what MS. Hanan is telling us. We all must change; we all must remind ourselves and one another in kind words especially to those that were less fortunate than us and to those unlucky that never had the opportunity to be educated. It will take time to change, so do not give up and say these people will never learn. Europeans, and Americans gone through the same transformation, and we now consider them First world, but that took time for them to become that way. Yes, we also can…but we need to earn it…..and I know if we are persistent, then we must succeed….now we are in pursue of change and justice. We must stay the course now and forever, we showed the world that we have what it takes to prosper; we showed the world why we were back then the most civilized people. We have it deep in our roots. Egypt you have my deepest love in my heart and the hearts of ALL.

  6. Nadja Hathout says:

    Hanan you are great!
    I do agree with you and hope that everyone works on his own behavior first and helps others by reminding them of a better future as well.

  7. Tattakamel says:

    Hanan i am so proud of you ,your call for going back to our traditional manners is beautiful, it is excatlly ,not we should do but what we HAVE todo, my generation grew and lived those manners,i know how it is like when you feel that every one on the street is your sister or brother,he or she is there to help you if you need it, to protect you when you need it and to give you a hand when you reach out – there was love between all, RESPECT for all poor or rich educated or not a master or a servant- there was dignity among all ,that how EGYPT was and that is how EGYPT WILL BE inshaa ALLAH ,not only i had a dream but also and always had FAITH that EGYPT one day will recover, and force her way out of the dark tunnel they put her in, with her own youth and elder she will stand high holding her own destiny in her hands, and bring back her lost glory- I always loved EGYPT ; even during her darkest time when i left the world and came back , and i always will (MOM)

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