There are dozens of ordinary ‘English’ words that originally came from languages historically associated with Islam, such as Arabic, Persian and Urdu.
Muslims have never been strangers to the West; we are as inseparable from its culture, history and heritage as our words are from its languages. And our contribution to its development can be found in any dictionary.
What would the world look like without gauze? You know, that light open-weave fabric that’s made from cotton when it’s used as a medical dressing for cuts, wounds, burns, abrasions, lacerations and God knows what else? Yeah, I don’t think the world would look particularly good without it.
Sure, plenty of fabrics could be used as medical dressings. But everyone in the medical establishment uses gauze. It’s the best by far. Easy to use, cost-effective and versatile, gauze has been the best material for cleaning wounds for centuries. Countless lives have been saved thanks to medical gauze.
So who do we have to thank for this wonderful and miraculous invention? Well, the fabric’s name itself can tell you; the English word “gauze” originally comes from the name of a city famous for its skilled silk-weavers. It comes from the Arabic word “Ghazza” (“غَزَّةَ”) which in English we pronounce as “Gaza”.
Yep, according to Encyclopaedia Britannica, “gauze” is named after “Gaza”, the city that invented it centuries ago and in doing so saved countless lives all across the world.
There’s a nice poem titled “Because of Us” by someone called Em Berry on Instagram which beautifully captures the feeling of finding this out:
Oh, the irony.
You’d think that after all that the people of Gaza had done for the world, the world might just be a teeny little bit grateful.
You’d be wrong.
Instead, the world basically reacted like this:
“People of Gaza, thank you so much for healing humanity and saving countless lives. We, the nations of the world, will express our gratitude by remembering you as terrorists. Oh and we’ll also let war criminals get away with bombing your babies. You’re welcome.” (author’s impression of the world)
I mean you’d think that perhaps at least Gaza’s fellow Muslim neighbours would bother standing up for them. Surely the famous Islamic solidarity that is so often caricatured in the Western media as being some kind of medieval barbarian hivemind would make a stunning appearance. Lol, no.
Instead they reacted like this:
“People of Gaza, thank you so much for contributing to the greatness of Islam. We, the Muslims countries of the world, will express our gratitude by completely abandoning you in your hour of direst need. Don’t worry though, we’ll never stop selling oil to Israel and its allies. Otherwise, they might not be able to keep bombing your babies. You’re welcome.” (author’s impression of Muslim countries)
Alas, the people of Gaza are only good at weaving and spinning life-saving fabrics. If only they had more useful talents, like weaving false media narratives or spinning sensationalist stories. Then they might’ve stood a chance against powerful people comparing them to animals.
If the Gazans really were animals, then by God, they’d be on every animal rights activist’s endangered list. You’d hear the eco-warriors scream and yell that these creatures have done so much for humanity, we must do something to preserve them before it’s too late. Humanity must act. NOW. Unfortunately, the people of Gaza are not actually animals. They’re just human beings. So apparently it’s 100% okay to bomb them into smithereens of extinction.
Ask yourselves, for every one of the 1200 innocent Israeli civilians that were killed by Hamas on 7th October, how many more Israeli lives have been saved over the years by something invented by the ancestors of Gaza’s people? The very same inventors whose innocent descendants you are now massacring because of the crimes of a handful of extremists?
I’d like to conclude my rant by urging the people of the world to demand a complete ceasefire at once and I’ll end here by begging Allah the Almighty to please bring peace to the people of Gaza and heal them just as they have helped heal the rest of the world. Ameen.
About the Author: Mansoor Dahri is an online editor for The Review of Religions. He graduated from UCL in BA Ancient Languages.