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Forums  >  Religion  >  east/west divide?
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at 20:44, 22 Oct 2005
Posts: 3
east/west divide?

I have just listened to your radio interview on ABC radio in Australia. I am intrigued to know more about this film and the dialogue within it.
I read Rachel's emails before writing this.
I have just returned to the West after living basically the past 7 years in the Middle East. The last 4 years of which I was living in a very loving but secretive relationship with an Arab man. I still want to be there actually, not here, but I could no longer live the double life i was leading.
We are still trying to work on his parents. He has been to hell and back trying to get them to accept me with him.
The traditional background steeped in a religion that demands one to obey one's parents has quite a hold on people brought up within that world.
Through our relationship (which developed very slowly and very carefully over time) we have have now both become different people to what we once were and we both find ourselves in a position where we can no longer go back to the people we once were before we met.
This means that I look at my society as fairly frivolous and selfish, it means he cannot blindly accept things that are asked of him by his family. It also means that I am a kinder and more compassionate person to what I once was and that he is no longer living a life where you just go along with everything that is expected of you. He has also been cast out in some ways by his family.
We have gone to "neutral" places to just be able to be freer with each other in public.
But there is no neutral. This is what I have found. I read that you use Cuba in the movie but there would still be religious restrictions such as dietary habits, prayer times, etc.
Perhaps the most "neutral" I came across was to have my father with us within his country. That allowed us to move around a bit and for him to not feel too far removed from his foundations.
I guess in your story the male character is removed from his family and he is living according to his own terms in UK. But this is rarely the case in such situations (though him being Lebanese , yes, they are more western than other Arabs) The family looms very large usually.
Anyway I have talked to much. If you have any questions, feel free to email me personally.
I am looking forward to seeing the film. I look anywhere for insights into this comlex situation I find myself in.

sally potter
at 11:40, 6 Jan 2007
Posts: 193
You are right that there is no 'neutral' , there is just different. Sometimes a change or contradiction to held assumptions can open up new ways of being, and, as you eloquently describe, two people from different backgrounds can learn from each other, and grow towards each other.
I hope your unique situation is developing in the way your heart and mind desire.
Blessings for 2007.
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