Photos from Eid in the Square

Last Saturday, I attended the Eid in the Square, Trafalgar Square in London to be precise. I caught only the last half of it, which meant two different “nasheed” groups and one guy who did a “soulful” rendition of Tala’ al-Badru ‘alaina. You can find some official pictures on the EITS website here, strangely without any captions, or you can look at mine here. You can find a BBC report here; it’s nauseating that Boris Johnson boasted of his Muslim ancestry, when his writings have made no secret of his hostility to Muslims now.

Personally, I am not too fond of English-language commercial nasheed, and when I came across a stall selling CDs of nasheeds and Sufi qasida readings, I asked if they had any with just the qasidas and no English nasheeds or even translations of the qasidas, but they had none, because apparently the brothers in the tariqa wouldn’t buy them (and why would they, when they sing them every week?). I found the sun a bit bright, and it made taking good pictures difficult as there was a lot of contrast. However, it was nice to have so many Muslims in one public space for an afternoon.

Sacred garbageOne other thing that bothered me was the amount of litter that was left behind; once all the attendees had moved on from the steps up to the gallery, there was a whole lot of litter, including pamphlets and copies of the Muslim News, which was there for anyone to tread on. I am always careful to avoid dropping written matter on the floor, let alone treading on it, and I have heard that some Muslim cities have women who go round picking up abandoned newspapers and other written material in case they contain any sacred wording (names of Allah, extracts from the Qur’an and so on) which could be desecrated by people walking on them. Perhaps this is partly the fault of the amount of loose paper which gets handed out at all of these gatherings, but why can’t Muslims be more careful when with religious writings? If you don’t want it, either don’t take it, or recycle it or burn it.

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