Christianity is an Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as described in the New Testament. Its adherents, known as Christians, believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and savior of all people, whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament. Depending on the specific denomination of Christianity, practices may include baptism, prayer, confirmation, burial rites, marriage rites and the religious education of children. Most denominations hold regular group worship services. Christianity developed during the 1st century CE as a Jewish Christian sect of Second Temple Judaism, it soon attracted Gentile God-fearers, which lead to a departure from Jewish customs, the establishment of Christianity as an independent religion. During the first centuries of its existence Christianity spread throughout the Roman Empire, to Ethiopia and some parts of Asia. Constantine the Great decriminalized it via the Edict of Milan; the First Council of Nicaea established a uniform set of beliefs across the Roman Empire.
By 380, the Roman Empire designated Christianity as the state religion. The period of the first seven ecumenical councils is sometimes referred to as the Great Church, the united full communion of the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodoxy, before their schisms. Oriental Orthodoxy split after the Council of Chalcedon over differences in Christology; the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church separated in the East–West Schism over the authority of the Pope. In 1521, Protestants split from the Catholic Church in the Protestant Reformation over Papal primacy, the nature of salvation, other ecclesiological and theological disputes. Following the Age of Discovery, Christianity was spread into the Americas, sub-Saharan Africa, the rest of the world via missionary work and colonization. There are 2.3 billion Christians in the world, or 31.4% of the global population. Today, the four largest branches of Christianity are the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church and Oriental Orthodoxy.
Christianity and Christian ethics have played a prominent role in the development of Western civilization around Europe during late antiquity and the Middle Ages. In the New Testament, the names by which the disciples were known among themselves were "brethren", "the faithful", "elect", "saints" and "believers". Early Jewish Christians referred to themselves as'The Way' coming from Isaiah 40:3, "prepare the way of the Lord." According to Acts 11:26, the term "Christian" was first used in reference to Jesus's disciples in the city of Antioch, meaning "followers of Christ," by the non-Jewish inhabitants of Antioch. The earliest recorded use of the term "Christianity" was by Ignatius of Antioch, in around 100 AD. While Christians worldwide share basic convcitions, there are differences of interpretations and opinions of the Bible and sacred traditions on which Christianity is based. Concise doctrinal statements or confessions of religious beliefs are known as creeds, they began as baptismal formulae and were expanded during the Christological controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries to become statements of faith.
The Apostles' Creed is the most accepted statement of the articles of Christian faith. It is used by a number of Christian denominations for both liturgical and catechetical purposes, most visibly by liturgical churches of Western Christian tradition, including the Latin Church of the Catholic Church, Lutheranism and Western Rite Orthodoxy, it is used by Presbyterians and Congregationalists. This particular creed was developed between the 9th centuries, its central doctrines are those of God the Creator. Each of the doctrines found in this creed can be traced to statements current in the apostolic period; the creed was used as a summary of Christian doctrine for baptismal candidates in the churches of Rome. Its main points include: Belief in God the Father, Jesus Christ as the Son of God, the Holy Spirit The death, descent into hell and ascension of Christ The holiness of the Church and the communion of saints Christ's second coming, the Day of Judgement and salvation of the faithful; the Nicene Creed was formulated in response to Arianism, at the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople in 325 and 381 and ratified as the universal creed of Christendom by the First Council of Ephesus in 431.
The Chalcedonian Definition, or Creed of Chalcedon, developed at the Council of Chalcedon in 451, though rejected by the Oriental Orthodox churches, taught Christ "to be acknowledged in two natures, unchangeably, inseparably": one divine and one human, that both natures, while perfect in themselves, are also united into one person. The Athanasian Creed, received in the Western Church as having the same status as the Nicene and Chalcedonian, says: "We worship one God in Trinity, Trinity in Unity. Many evangelical Protestants reject creeds as definitive statements of faith while agreeing with some or all of the substance of the creeds. Most Baptists do not use creeds "in that they have not sought to establish binding
Culture of Egypt
The culture of Egypt has thousands of years of recorded history. Ancient Egypt was among the earliest civilizations in Middle Africa. For millennia, Egypt maintained a strikingly unique and stable culture that influenced cultures of Europe. After the Pharaonic era, Egypt itself came under the influence of Hellenism, for a time Christianity, Christian culture. Arabic is Egypt's official language, it came to Egypt in the 7th century, the Egyptian Arabic dialect today has become the modern speech of the country. Of the many varieties of Arabic, it is the most spoken second dialect, due to the influence of Egyptian cinema and media throughout the Arabic-speaking world. Egypt's position in the heart of the Arab world has had reversed influence, adopting many words and proverbs from neighboring Arabic speaking areas such as the Maghreb area and the Mashriq. Today the daily Egyptian Arabic adopted several French, Greek, Turkish and English words to its dictionary, as well as keeping several other words from its own ancient languages such as Coptic and Demotic.
The Egyptian language, which formed a separate branch among the family of Afro-Asiatic languages, was among the first written languages and is known from the hieroglyphic inscriptions preserved on monuments and sheets of papyrus. The Coptic language, the most recent stage of Egyptian, is today the liturgical language of the Coptic Orthodox Church; the "Koiné" dialect of the Greek language was important in Hellenistic Alexandria, was used in the philosophy and science of that culture, was studied by Arabic scholars. In the lower Nile Valley, around Kom Ombo and Aswan, there are about 300,000 speakers of Nubian languages Nobiin, but Kenuzi-Dongola; the Berber languages are represented by Siwi, spoken by about 20,000 around the Siwa Oasis. Other minorities include 60,000 Greek speakers in Alexandria and Cairo as well as 10,000 Armenian speakers. Many Egyptians believed that when it came to a death of their Pharaoh, they would have to bury the Pharaoh deep inside the Pyramid; the ancient Egyptian literature dates back to the Old Kingdom, in the third millennium BC.
Religious literature is best known for its hymns to and its mortuary texts. The oldest extant Egyptian literature is the Pyramid Texts: the mythology and rituals carved around the tombs of rulers; the secular literature of ancient Egypt includes the'wisdom texts', forms of philosophical instruction. The Instruction of Ptahhotep, for example, is a collation of moral proverbs by an Egto seem to have been drawn from an elite administrative class, were celebrated and revered into the New Kingdom. In time, the Pyramid Texts became Coffin Texts, the mortuary literature produced its masterpiece, the Book of the Dead, during the New Kingdom; the Middle Kingdom was the golden age of Egyptian literature. Some notable texts include the Tale of Neferty, the Instructions of Amenemhat I, the Tale of Sinuhe, the Story of the Shipwrecked Sailor and the Story of the Eloquent Peasant. Instructions became a popular literary genre of the New Kingdom, taking the form of advice on proper behavior; the Story of Wenamun and the Instruction of Any are well-known examples from this period.
During the Greco-Roman period, Egyptian literature was translated into other languages, Greco-Roman literature fused with native art into a new style of writing. From this period comes the Rosetta Stone, which became the key to unlocking the mysteries of Egyptian writing to modern scholarship; the great city of Alexandria boasted its famous Library of half a million handwritten books during the third century BC. Alexandria's center of learning produced the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, the Septuagint. Drep During the first few centuries of the Christian era, Egypt was the ultimate source of a great deal of ascetic literature in the Coptic language. Egyptian monasteries translated many Syriac words, which are now only extant in Coptic. Under Islam, Egypt continued to be a great source of literary endeavor, now in the Arabic language. In 970, al-Azhar University was founded in Cairo, which to this day remains the most important center of Sunni Islamic learning. In 12th-century Egypt, the Jewish Talmudic scholar Maimonides produced his most important work.
In contemporary times, Egyptian novelists and poets were among the last to experiment with modern styles of Arabic-language literature, the forms they developed have been imitated. The first modern Egyptian novel Zaynab by Muhammad Husayn Haykal was published in 1913 in the Egyptian vernacular. Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz was the first Arabic-language writer to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. Many Egyptian books and films are available throughout the Middle East. Other prominent Egyptian writers include Nawal El Saadawi, well known for her feminist works and activism, Alifa Rifaat who writes about women and tradition. Vernacular poetry is said to be the most popular literary genre amongst Egyptians, represented most by Bayram el-Tunsi, Ahmed Fouad Negm, Salah Jaheen and Abdel Rahman el-Abnudi. About 75% of Egypt's population is Muslim, with a Sunni majority. About 22% of the population is Coptic Christian. Sunni Islam sees Egypt as an important part of its religion due to not only Quranic verses mentioning the country, but due to the Al-Azhar University, one of the earliest of the world universities, the longest functioning.
It was created as a school for religion works. The Egyptians were one of th
Education in Egypt
In recent years the Government of Egypt has given greater priority to improving the education system. According to the Human Development Index, Egypt is ranked 115 in the HDI, 9 in the lowest 10 HDI countries in the Middle East and Northern Africa, in 2014. With the help of the World Bank and other multilateral organizations Egypt aims to increase access in early childhood to care and education and the inclusion of Information and Communication Technology at all levels of education at the tertiary level; the government is responsible for offering free education at all levels. The current overall expenditure on education is about 12.6 percent as of 2007. Investment in education as a percentage of GDP rose to 4.8 in 2005 but fell to 3.7 in 2007. The Ministry of Education is tackling a number of issues: trying to move from a centralized system to offering more autonomy to individual institutions, thereby increasing accountability; the public education system in Egypt consists of three levels: the basic education stage for 4–14 years old: kindergarten for two years followed by primary school for six years and preparatory school for three years.
The secondary school stage is for three years, for ages 15 to 17, followed by the tertiary level. Education is made compulsory for 9 academic years between the ages of 4 and 14. Moreover, all levels of education are free within any government run schools. According to the World Bank, there are great differences in educational attainment of the rich and the poor known as the "wealth gap." Although the median years of school completed by the rich and the poor is only one or two years but the wealth gap reaches as high as nine or ten years. In the case of Egypt, the wealth gap was a modest 3 years in the mid-1990s. Overall, the composite education Index in the MENA Flagship Report: The Road Not Traveled showed promising results of the people of singers relative educational achievements. Of the 14 MENA countries analyzed, Egypt achieved the education, bad over the years. There has been a lot of attacks in their schools. Egypt launched its National Strategic Plan for Pre-University Education Reform.
The Strategic Plan mirrors Egypt's commitment to a comprehensive and collective approach towards ensuring an education of quality for all and developing a knowledge society. Its key elements are: participation. Promotional examinations are held at all levels except in grades 6 and 9 at the basic education level and the grade 12 in the secondary stage, which apply standardized regional or national exams; the Ministry of Education is responsible for making decisions about the education system with the support of three Centers: the National Center of Curricula Development, the National Center for Education Research, the National Center for Examinations and Educational Evaluation. Each center has its own focus in formulating education policies with other state level committees. On the other hand, the Ministry of Higher Education supervises the higher education system. There is a formal teacher's qualification track in place for basic and secondary education levels; the teachers are required to complete four years of pre-service courses at university to enter the teaching profession.
With respect to teacher's professional development to raise mathematics and technology teaching standards, the Professional Academy for Teachers offer several programs. Local teachers take part in the international professional training programs. Starting in 2007, the Ministries of Education and Local Development started informal discussions to experiment with the decentralization of education. Working groups were established to make more formal proposals. Proposals included ideas for starting with recurrent expenditures, using a simple and transparent formula for carrying out fiscal transfers, making sure that transfers would reach the school itself. During 2008 design was carried out, three pilot governorates were chosen, monitoring and capacity building processes and manuals were agreed upon; the formula is quite simple, includes enrolment and stage of education as drivers. During 2009 funding was decentralized all the way to the school level, schools began to receive funding; as of late 2009, the pilot showed few if any problems, the expected results were materializing quite well, in terms of stimulating community participation, allowing schools to spend more efficiently and assess their own priorities, increasing the seriousness of school-based planning by creating a means to finance such plans, among other expected results.
An informal assessment of the pilot revealed that the funding formula money precipitated an increase in community donations. The survey results show that the ratio of the median values of community donations of the pilot year to the previous year was 2.20. Parallel to these efforts in the education sector, other sectors in Egypt are planning to decentralize decision-making and spending, now nationwide, in a phased approach. Education plans to be one of the lead sectors in this process. In addition to administrative and financial decentralization, there is an increasing emphasis on involving elected local popular councils in the horizontal oversight of expenditure and planning across the decentralizing sectors
Human rights in Egypt
Most sources agree that Egypt is a gross violator of human rights. Authorities have banned protests and freedom of expression, imprisoned its opponents after unfair trials, outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood, expanded its anti-terrorism powers. Torture, forced disappearances, deaths in custody are not rare occurrences; the government continues to persecute journalists. Women and members of religious minorities are subject to discrimination. People are arrested for “debauchery” and sexual orientation. Due to an insurgency in Northern Sinai, the army has enacted curfews and evicted communities from their homes along the border with Gaza in order to restrict the flow of arms. A new constitution was adopted in January 2014; the document, in principle, improved protections for women’s rights, freedom of expression, other civil liberties. However, these rights have not been enforced in practice. There is a critical lack of accountability, with most human rights violations being committed with impunity. In a December 2016 report, a panel of UN experts concluded that: “The continuous persecution of women human rights defenders such as Azza Soliman and Mozn Hassan... establishes and reinforces a pattern of systematic repression of the Egyptian women’s rights movement, aiming to silence and intimidate those working tirelessly for justice, human rights and equality” On July 24, 2018, a hearing was held before the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, U.
S. House of Representatives, on security, human rights, reform in Egypt. Freedom House, the "independent watchdog organization that supports the expansion of freedom around the world," rated Egypt "not free" in 2011, it gave Egypt a "Political Rights Score" of 6 and "Civil Liberties Score" of 5 on a scale of 1-7, with 1 representing the highest level of freedom and 7 representing the lowest level of freedom. In 2000 the related Center for Religious Freedom placed Egypt as free at 5. Reporters Without Borders placed the Côte d'Ivoire in press freedom. See List of indices of freedom for more information on these ratings and how they are determined; the Press Law, Publications Law, the penal code regulate and govern the press. According to these, criticism of the president can be punished by fines or imprisonment. Freedom House deems Egypt to have an unfree press, although mentions they have a diversity of sources. Reporters Without Borders 2006 report indicates continued harassment and, in three cases, imprisonment, of journalists.
They place Egypt 143rd out of 167 nations on press freedoms. The two sources agree that promised reforms on the subject have been disappointingly slow or uneven in implementation. Freedomhouse had a more positive assessment indicating that an increased freedom to discuss controversial issues has occurred. According to Al Jazeera.net, "in the past few years, independent Egyptian newspapers have emerged that have proved willing to hold the rich and powerful elite to account, right up to the presidency. The old state-owned newspapers are beginning to lose their readership." In July 2006, the Egyptian parliament passed a new press law. The new law no longer allows journalists to be imprisoned for comments against the government, but continues to allow fines to be levied against such journalists; the independent press and the Muslim Brotherhood protested this law as repressive. Although the Egyptian Government bans foreign newspapers, in September 2006, Egypt banned editions of Le Figaro and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, because of their publication of articles deemed insulting to Islam.
According to Al Jazeera, the German newspaper contained an article authored by the German historian Egon Flaig, "looking at how the Prophet Muhammad, the founder of Islam, was a successful military leader during his lifetime". Al Jazeera quotes the Egyptian minister of information as saying that he, "would not allow any publication that insults the Islamic religion or calls for hatred or contempt of any religion to be distributed inside Egypt."Following the Arab Spring there was hope for greater freedom of speech in Egypt. However, as of February 2012, television journalist Tim Sebastian reported a "re-emergence of fear" in Egypt. Once again, I was told, Egyptians are starting to look over their shoulder to see who might be listening, to be careful what they say on the phone, to begin considering all over again who they can and cannot trust. “The intelligence services are active,” says a well-known commentator. The United States State Department voiced concern in August 2012 about freedom of the press in Egypt, following a move by the authorities to put two critics of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi on trial.
The State Department criticized Egypt for actions against Al-Dustour, a small independent newspaper, the Al-Faraeen channel, both of which have criticized Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. In July 2016, Egyptian security forces stormed the home of Liliana Daoud, a Lebanese-British journalist, whisked her to the airport. Without advance warning, Ms. Daoud found herself on a plane to Lebanon. Before her deportation, Ms. Daoud was fired from her job at local private channel just a few weeks after a pro-Sisi businessman bought it. In August 2018, the Egyptian government put television host Mohamed al-Ghiety on trial for interviewing an anonymous gay man, he was jailed and sente
Sufi whirling is a form of physically active meditation which originated among Sufis, and, still practiced by the Sufi Dervishes of the Mevlevi order and other orders such as the Rifa'i-Marufi. It is a customary meditation practice performed within the Sema, or worship ceremony, through which dervishes aim to reach the source of all perfection, or kamal; this is sought through abandoning one's nafs, egos or personal desires, by listening to the music, focusing on God, spinning one's body in repetitive circles, seen as a symbolic imitation of planets in the Solar System orbiting the sun. The Mevlevi practice gave rise to an Egyptian form, distinguished by the use of a multicolored skirt; this has developed into a performance dance by non-Sufis, including dancers outside the Islamic world. "In the 12th century, Sufi fraternities were first organized as an established leadership in which a member followed a prescribed discipline in service to a sheikh or master in order to establish rapport with him."
A member of such a fraternity is referred to as a Persian darwish. These turuk were responsible for organizing an Islamic expression of religious life founded by independent saints or resulted from the division of existing orders; each Sufi tariqa stems from a unique silsila, or "chain of order" in which a member must learn, as the silsila binds each member to Allah through one's chain of order. One's silsila extends through the member's individual teacher, to their teacher and so on, through time until one is connected to the Prophet and thus Allah; the Prophet himself is revered as the originator of Sufism, which has in turn been traced down through a series of saints. A dervish practices multiple rituals, the primary of, the dhikr, a remembering of Allah; the dhikr involves recitation of devotional Islamic prayer. This dhikr is coupled with physical exertions of movement dancing and whirling, in order to reach a state assumed by outsiders to be one of "ecstatic trances"; as explained by Sufis: In the symbolism of the Sema ritual, the semazen's camel's hair hat represents the tombstone of the ego.
By removing his black cloak, he is spiritually reborn to the truth. At the beginning of the Sema, by holding his arms crosswise, the semazen appears to represent the number one, thus testifying to God's unity. While whirling, his arms are open: his right arm is directed to the sky, ready to receive God's beneficence; the semazen conveys God's spiritual gift to those. Revolving from right to left around the heart, the semazen embraces all humanity with love; the human being has been created with love. Mevlâna Jalâluddîn Rumi says, "All loves are a bridge to Divine love. Yet, those who have not had a taste of it do not know!" Among the Mevlevi order, the practice of dhikr is performed in a traditional dress: a tennure, a sleeveless white frock, the destegul, a long sleeved jacket, a belt, a black overcoat or khirqa to be removed before the whirling begins. As the ritual dance begins, the dervish dons a felt cap, a sikke, in addition to a turban wrapped around the head, a trademark of the Mevlevi order.
The sheikh leads the ritual with strict regulations. To begin, The sheikh stands in the most honored corner of the dancing place, the dervishes pass by him three times, each time exchanging greetings, until the circling movement starts; the rotation itself is on the left foot, the center of the rotation being the ball of the left foot and the whole surface of the foot staying in contact with the floor. The impetus for the rotation is provided in a full 360-degree step. If a dervish should become too enraptured, another Sufi, in charge of the orderly performance, will touch his frock in order to curb his movement, The dance of the dervishes is one of the most impressive features of the mystical life in Islam, the music accompanying it is of exquisite beauty, beginning with the great hymn in honor of the Prophet and ending with short, enthusiastic songs, some things sung in Turkish; the Western world, having witnessed Sufi whirling through tourism, have described the various forms of dhikr as "barking, dancing, etc."
The practice of each tariqa is unique to its individual order, specific traditions and customs may differ across countries. The same tariqa in one country will not mirror that of another country as each order's ritual stresses "emotional religious life" in various forms; the Mevleviyah order, like many others, practice the dhikr by performing a whirling meditation. Accompanying the dhikr practices of whirling and prayer, the custom of sama serves to further one's "nourishment of the soul" through devotional "hearing" of the "'subtle' sounds of the hidden world or of the cosmos." In contrast to the use of sama and devotional prayer in the practice of dhikr, the tariqa orders perform Sufi whirling in addition to playing musical instruments, consuming glowing embers, live scorpions and glass, puncturing body parts with needles and spikes, or practicing clairvoyance and levitation. The dervish practice can be performed by community residents or lay members, members have been those of lower classes.
Within Islamic faith, unlike Middle Eastern law, women have equal status to men, allowing women to participate in dhikr as dervishes themselves. Women were received into a tariqa order by a male sheikh
Friday is the day of the week between Thursday and Saturday. In countries adopting the "Monday-first" convention it is the fifth day of the week. In countries that adopt the "Sunday-first" convention, it is the sixth day of the week. In some other countries, for example Saudi Arabia and the Maldives, Friday is the first day of the weekend, with Saturday the second. In Afghanistan Friday is the last day of the weekend, with Saturday as the first day of the working week. Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait followed this convention until they changed to a Friday–Saturday weekend: on 1 September 2006 in Bahrain and the UAE, a year in Kuwait. In Iran and Thursday are weekend days; the name Friday comes from the Old English Frīġedæġ, meaning the "day of Frige", a result of an old convention associating the Germanic goddess Frigg with the Roman goddess Venus, with whom the day is associated in many different cultures. The same holds for Frīatag in Old High German, Freitag in Modern German, vrijdag in Dutch.
The expected cognate name in Old Norse would be *friggjar-dagr. However, the name of Friday in Old Norse is frjá-dagr instead, indicating a loan of the week-day names from Low German; the modern Scandinavian form is Fredag in Swedish and Danish, meaning Freyja's day. The distinction between Freyja and Frigg in some Germanic mythologies is contested; the word for Friday in most Romance languages is derived from Latin dies Veneris or "day of Venus", such as vendredi in French, venres in Galician, divendres in Catalan, vennari in Corsican, venerdì in Italian, vineri in Romanian, viernes in Spanish and influencing the Filipino biyernes or byernes, the Chamorro betnes. This is reflected in the p-Celtic Welsh language as Gwener. An exception is Portuguese a Romance language, which uses the word sexta-feira, meaning "sixth day of liturgical celebration", derived from the Latin feria sexta used in religious texts where it was not allowed to consecrate days to pagan gods. In Sardinian, the word chenàpura figures as an exception among all the other Romance languages, since it is derived from Latin cena pura.
This name had been given by the Jewish community exiled to the island in order to designate the food prepared for Shabbat eve. In Arabic, Friday is الجمعة al-jumʿah, from a root meaning "congregation/gathering." In languages of Islamic countries outside the Arab world, the word for Friday is a derivation of this:. In modern Greek, four of the words for the week-days are derived from ordinals. However, the Greek word for Friday is Paraskevi and is derived from a word meaning "to prepare". Like Saturday and Sunday, Friday is named for its liturgical significance as the day of preparation before Sabbath, inherited by Greek Christian Orthodox culture from Jewish practices. Friday was a Christian fast day. In both biblical and modern Hebrew, Friday is יום שישי Yom Shishi meaning "the sixth day." In most Indian languages, Friday is Shukravāra, named for the planet Venus. In Bengali শুক্রবার or Shukrobar is the 6th day in the Bengali week of Bengali Calendar and is the beginning of the weekend is Bangladesh.
In Japanese, 金曜日 is formed from the words 金星 meaning 曜日 meaning day. In the Korean language, it is 금요일 in Korean Hangul writing, is the pronounced form of the written word 金曜日 in Chinese characters, as in Japanese. In the Nahuatl language, Friday is quetzalcōātōnal meaning "day of Quetzalcoatl". Most Slavic languages call Friday the "fifth": Belarusian пятніца – pyatnitsa, Bulgarian петък – petŭk, Croatian petak, Czech pátek, Polish piątek, Russian пятница – pyatnitsa, Serbian петак – petak, Slovak piatok, Slovene petek, Ukrainian п'ятниця – p'yatnitsya; the Hungarian word péntek is a loan from Pannonian dialect of Slavic language. The n in péntek suggests an early adoption from Slavic, when many Slavic dialects still had nasal vowels. In modern Slavic languages only Polish retained nasal vowels. Friday is considered unlucky in some cultures; this is so in maritime circles. In the 19th century, Admiral William Henry Smyth described Friday in his nautical lexicon The Sailor's Word-Book as: The Dies Infaustus, on which old seamen were desirous of not getting under weigh, as ill-omened.
This superstition is the root of the well-known urban legend of HMS Friday. In modern times, Friday the 13th is considered to be unlucky, due to the conjunction of Friday with the unlucky number thirteen; such a Friday may be called a "Black Friday". However, this superstition is not universal, notably in Scottish Gaelic culture: Though Friday has always been held an unlucky day in many Christian countries, still in the Hebrides it is supposed that it is a lucky day for sowing the seed. Good Friday in particular is a favourite day for potato planting—even strict Roman Catholics make a point of planting a bucketful on that day; the idea is that as the Resurrection followed the Crucifixion, Burial so too in the case of the seed, after death will come life? In astrology, Friday is connected with the planet Venus and is symbolized by that planet's symbol ♀. Friday is associated with the astrological signs Libra and Taurus. In Christianity, Good F
Belly dance referred to as Arabic dance, is an Arabic expressive dance which originated in Egypt and that emphasizes complex movements of the torso. It has evolved to take many different forms depending on the country and region, both in costume and dance style; the term "belly dance" is a translation of the French term "danse du ventre", applied to the dance in the Victorian era, referred to Egyptian and Middle Eastern female dances. In Arabic, the dance is known as Raqs Baladi in Egyptian Arabic. Belly dance is a torso-driven dance, with an emphasis on articulations of the hips. Unlike many Western dance forms, the focus of the dance is on isolations of the torso muscles, rather than on movements of the limbs through space. Although some of these isolations appear similar to the isolations used in jazz ballet, they are sometimes driven differently and have a different feeling or emphasis. In common with most folk dances, there is no universal naming scheme for belly dance movements; some dancers and dance schools have developed their own naming schemes, but none of these is universally recognized.
Many of the movements characteristic of belly dance can be grouped into the following categories: Percussive movements: Staccato movements, most of the hips, used to punctuate the music or accent a beat. Typical movements in this group include hip drops, vertical hip rocks, outwards hip hits, hip lifts and hip twists. Percussive movements using other parts of the body can include lifts or drops of the ribcage and shoulder accents. Fluid movements: Flowing, sinuous movements in which the body is in continuous motion, used to interpret melodic lines and lyrical sections in the music, or modulated to express complex instrumental improvisations; these movements require a great deal of abdominal muscle control. Typical movements include horizontal and vertical figures of 8 or infinity loops with the hips, horizontal or tilting hip circles, undulations of the hips and abdomen; these basic shapes may be varied and embellished to create an infinite variety of complex, textured movements. Shimmies and vibrations: Small, continuous movements of the hips or ribcage, which create an impression of texture and depth of movement.
Shimmies are layered over other movements, are used to interpret rolls on the or riq or fast strumming of the oud or qanun. There are many types of varying in size and method of generation; some common shimmies include relaxed, up and down hip shimmies, straight-legged knee-driven shimmies, tiny hip vibrations, twisting hip shimmies, bouncing'earthquake' shimmies, relaxed shoulder or ribcage shimmies. In addition to these torso movements, dancers in many styles will use level changes, travelling steps and spins; the arms are used to frame and accentuate movements of the hips, for dramatic gestures, to create beautiful lines and shapes with the body in the more balletic, Westernised styles. Other movements may be used as occasional accents, such as low kicks and arabesques and head tosses. Belly dancing is believed to have had a long history in the Middle East, but reliable evidence about its origins is scarce, accounts of its history are highly speculative. Several Greek and Roman sources including Juvenal and Martial describe dancers from Asia Minor and Spain using undulating movements, playing castanets, sinking to the floor with "quivering thighs", descriptions that are suggestive of the movements that are today associated with belly dance.
In the 18th and 19th centuries, European travellers in the Middle East such as Edward Lane and Flaubert wrote extensively of the dancers they saw there, including the Awalim and Ghawazee of Egypt. In the Ottoman Empire belly dance was performed by both women in the Sultan's palace. Belly dance in the Middle East has two distinct social contexts: as a folk or social dance, as a performance art; as a social dance, belly dance is performed at celebrations and social gatherings by ordinary people, in their ordinary clothes. In more conservative or traditional societies, these events may be gender segregated, with separate parties where men and women dance separately. Professional dance performers were the Awalim, Köçekler; the Maazin sisters may have been the last authentic performers of Ghawazi dance in Egypt, with Khayreyya Maazin still teaching and performing as of 2009. In the modern era, professional performers are not considered to be respectable in the Middle East, there is a strong social stigma attached to female performers in particular, since they display their bodies in public, considered haram in Islam.
Many bellydancers work in Cairo. The modern Egyptian belly dance style are said to have originated in Cairo's nightclubs been used in Egyptian cinema. Many of the local dancers went on to appear in Egyptian films and had a great influence on the development of the Egyptian style and became famous like Samia Gamal and Taheyya Kariokka both of whom helped attract the eyes to Egyptian style worldwide. Egyptian belly dance is noted for its precise movements. Turkish belly dance is referred to in Turkey as Oryantal Dans, or simply'Oryantal'; the Turkish style of bellydance is lively and playful, with a greater outward projection of energy than the more contained Egyptian style. Turkish dancers are known for their energetic, athletic