Friday, October 26, 2007

Plans for Islamic cultural centre in Krakow


The usual suspects, on both sides, were at a meeting last Wednesday at Krakow’s Jagiellonian University to discuss the possibility of building an Islamic Centre, complete with prayer room, in one of Poland’s most Catholic of cities.

The Al-Fan Islamic Cultural Centre is the idea of a Krakow based artist of Albanian descent, Rahim Blak, based on plans drew up by architect Stanisław Deńko.

Someone I know who was at the meeting said proceedings started with an Imam chanting prayers as Blak theatrically drew off the cloth covering a scale model of the building, which the organizers want to build in the Zwierzyniec disctict in the heart of the old town.

Apparently, Rahim Blak said that around 500 Muslims, from 300 families, live in Krakow but the city didn’t want have a mosque. There are only around 200 Jews living in the city, on the other hand, he said, but they have a place to pray. Hmm.

The local media has been full of the usual scary type coverage, of a ‘Mosque to be built under the shadow of Wawel Castle...eeek!’ and raising fears that Krakow would turn into the new Afghanistan, and be inundated with al-Qaeda wannabe weird-beard extremists training for the Jihad and then running into the old Market Square to blow themselves up.

I am told that locals at the meeting were acting like the typical NIMBY, and saying that the cultural centre should not be built in the centre of town, but maybe on the other side of the river (and far away from built up areas, one presumes). Others couldn't understand why they were picking on Krakow to build the place in the first place.

I think it was a mistake by the originator of the idea to bring the number of Jews in Krakow into the argument – that is simply playing the multicultural numbers game – but there is already a beautiful Japanese cultural centre and museum housed on the banks of the River Wisla, so why not an Islamic Centre?

Could be good for tourism? Maybe?

And anyway, one of the symbols of Krakow is the Lajkonik - and you can’t get more Islamic than that.

More?
Don’t you think the CIA’s new logo to publicize its ‘war against terror’ - Terrorist Buster - resembles a popular 1980s movie? Are they serious?

Even more?
Mosque to be built in Krakow, thenews.pl, Oct 24

50 comments:

geez said...

Oy vey. What's gonna happen when there's a call to prayer broadcast over loudspeakers?

Will a bunch of Lajkonik's actually assemble and attack the tower at Kosciol Mariacki?

I'd hate to be the trumpeter.

Something like this happened in the former Polish immigrant enclave of Hamtramck in Detroit a few years back when a mosque started broadcasting the call to prayer on loudspeakers. Quite a stir.. I'm not sure how it all panned out:

http://www.religionnewsblog.com/7000/cultures-collide-in-diverse-hamtramck

opamp said...

What?

Source for your revelations, please.

beatroot said...

Source, at the moment is primary, from someone who was at the meeting.

Here is a report from before the meeting,

http://www.thenews.pl/archives/1549-Mosque-to-be-built-in-Krakow.html

though I now know that it is not a 'mosque' but a 'prayer centre' inside a cultural centre.

I also now think that the idea for the centre is just that - an artistic idea. I don't think they honestly think it will happen. It's more about cultural dialogue etc...

Anonymous said...

The Poles in Detroit got their way and the muezzin stopped the call to prayer. And before any one labels the Poles harsh xenophobes or Islamiphobes, they were using a taped call to prayer for each of the five prayers, not just Friday worship.
Not everyone is a morning person.

sonia said...

Mosque to be built under the shadow of Wawel Castle...eeek!

Maybe instead of Cracow, they should just built this center in Suwalki, in a region inhabited by Muslims since the 14th century.

That press reaction is sad. It suggests that Poland was more open-minded 600 years ago than today...

beatroot said...

Poland has this Tartar history. 20,000 muslims in Poland now, maybe 6,000 of them from Tartar background. Many of them in the northeast.

Poland was more open-minded 600 years ago than today...

Poland in its heyday invented European multicultural society. In the early census � 1800s � 40 percent or more were not �Roman catholic�.

It�s only since the first and second world wars � because of changes of borders and the Nazi, Soviet thing - that Poland became �mono ethnic�.

Anonymous said...

beatroot:
"In the early census � 1800s � 40 percent or more were not �Roman catholic�. "
Since 18th century Poland had little control over its borders. And
there were significant migrations when Poland was occupied and
partitioned, and later during early 19th century. For example, the
Jewish population in Warsaw increased from 9000 to over 27000 from 1807
to 1822 (source: Łukasz Gołębiowski "Opisanie historyczno-statystyczne miasta
Warszawy" 1827)

jannowak57 said...

Just a short drive outside of Sokolka is Bohoniki a small village; it was primarily a Tatar settlement. Today still a few families in the village are Tatar and Muslim. The village has wooden mosque and a Muslim cemetery.

The fine people of Krakow should be aware that they are behind the times with respect to cultural diversity, it’s nice to see them try and catch up with a small village in Podlasie.

After they get the mosque an academic centre would be in order. Something like a Centre for the Study of Mindless Superstition, they can solicit donations for the construction of the JPII wing.

geez said...

I'll be happy to contribute to the faith in the invisible hand of the "free" market wing.

strudel said...

Whom the bell tolls for ? the Moor is back !

Should the wonderful Ms.Sonia need a Christian shelter, I am ready to fight for her .
Many centuries ago most of South-East Europe was under the Arab rule. And and in that time their civilization was better, in many respects, then the Christian one. Do not deny the blood of your grand...grandfather, Abdul Al Krap.

opamp said...

I suggest that the supporters of this idea familiarize themselves with the terms Dar al-Islam, Dar al-Harb and Dar al-Dawa (Wikipedia is your friend) and their application here.

Anonymous said...

Terrorist Chemical attacks?
My wife had a phone call from a relative in Leszno an hour ago 2.30PM , whos said that TVN were reporting chemical leaks or attacks in Krakow and Poznan,but suddenly the reports were cut short. Did anyone see this reporting apart from my aunt?!

John,Poznan

Anonymous said...

"And anyway, one of the symbols of Krakow is the Lajkonik - and you can’t get more Islamic than that."

Actually Lajkonik has little to do with Islam - it commemorates 13th century Mongol invasions. 13th century Mongols were pagan shamanists, with some buddhist or even nestorian christian influence, but had nothing to do with Islam. Muslim Tartars are later phenomenon.

Anonymous said...

And - muslim or not - Lajkonik's function is to mock the frightening invaders. It is hardly a symbol of peaceful coexistence, multiculturalism or anything like that.

Anonymous said...

Poland's historical acceptance of people very different from themselves is one of the things that makes me proud of my Polish heritage. I don't know enough about current Polish life to comment much about this Muslim cultural center. Inviting others is noble, unless they have displayed a desire to destroy you, at which point, they have to work hard to prove themselves and not say "The Jews have one, so should we." Is that a true spirit of peaceful co-existance? I think not.
Radical Muslims have shown that they want to destroy Western life (of which Poland is trying so hard to perfectly mimic)and Christianity. They are also very good at using a countrys' own laws and social norms against itself. Look at what's happening in France and Detroit...this is the future of Europe.

Anonymous said...

The Polish government should allow the building of this mosque as soon as the Saudi government allows the building of a church in Riyadh. Thousands of Christians in that city have no place to pray.

geez said...

So you want the Polish government to be as pucked fup as the Saudi government?

Anonymous said...

Freedom of religion demands equal rights for Christians in Saudi Arabia as much as it demands equal rights for Muslims in Poland. Taking a principled stand against Wahabbi intolerance would be a good first step for a PO government that wants to establish a new foreign policy.

geez said...

One does not take a principled stand by aping the intolerance you want to stand against.

Renegade Eye said...

Bringing up the Saudi situation with Christians, is unrelated to the discussion. Even Iran is more democratic.

Anonymous said...

The Iranians aren't going to pay for this Mosque. I'll give you even money odds it's going to be paid for with Saudi oil money, staffed with people on the payroll of a Saudi "charity," and run with a Jew-hating, Christian-bashing, woman-oppressing ideology that comes straight out of Saudi Arabia. I say this because 80% of the Mosques built in the West ape this formula. Krakow Mosque will likely be no different.

Bibi-Aisha said...

And so the right wing winds blow across europe...

Sylwia said...

I'm afraid Kraków isn't the most cosmopolitan town in Poland, so perhaps they should rather choose Wrocław or Warsaw.

I for one would welcome such a centre in Warsaw. Although there is a mosque here, a centre would allow for promoting Islam in a broader way. Poland was a multicultural country and we are very proud of that, but I'm afraid that the effects of WWII robbed us from the openness to others that we used to show in the past centuries. This can be changed with immigration and greater familiarity with other cultures.

It doesn’t matter who pays for that. The centre can show their own program and everyone can decide for themselves if the information is convincing or not. Such a centre could be also coordinated by the university’s Islamic studies for greater objectiveness, but it certainly would add to our community rather than bring any harm.

As to conversions – I wouldn’t worry about that. Does anyone seriously believe that Poles will ever be anything else than Catholics?

Sylwia, Warsaw

-: BES -:- said...

Albaians + Terrorists = NOTHING IN COMMONN.

We support the U.S all the way.
read up...
PROUD TO BE ALBANIAN.

marry said...

Blogs are so informative where we get lots of information on any topic. Nice job keep it up!!
_____________________________

Doctoral Dissertation

Dissertation Help said...

This blog is very nice and informative. it is pretty hard task but your post and experience serve and teach me how to handle and make it more simple and manageable.
Dissertation Help | Custom Dissertation

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I begin your blog via Google while searching in the performance of earliest shelved since a marrow condemn and your brief looks vertically captivating seeing that me

διαγωνισμοι said...

Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you gain knowledge, would you mind updating your blog with extra information?

Anonymous said...

Very nice article, just what I was looking for.
Also visit my page - Work from home jobs

Anonymous said...

Quality articles is the main to attract the people
to go to see the web site, that's what this site is providing.
My site: speed up my computer

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts about orange county music lessons.
Regards
Here is my site : piano lessons

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your marvelous posting! I actually enjoyed reading it, you may be a
great author. I will always bookmark your blog and will come
back later in life. I want to encourage continue your
great work, have a nice holiday weekend!
Feel free to visit my web blog - amber leaf

Anonymous said...

Please let me know if you're looking for a article author for your weblog. You have some really great articles and I think I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I'd love
to write some material for your blog in exchange for
a link back to mine. Please send me an e-mail if interested.
Many thanks!
Here is my blog ... golden virginia tobacco

Anonymous said...

We are a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community.
Your site provided us with valuable info to
work on. You have done an impressive job and our entire community will
be thankful to you.
Also visit my homepage :: bostäder i Antalya

Anonymous said...

Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.

Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
I've been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Appreciate it
my web page - Houses for sale in Bodrum

Anonymous said...

Great blog you've got here.. It's hard to find good quality writing like yours these days.
I really appreciate individuals like you! Take care!
!
Feel free to visit my weblog Eiendom til salgs i Alanya

Anonymous said...

Fastidious answer back in return of this issue with real arguments and telling all
on the topic of that.
Also visit my homepage :: http://bostaditurkiet.net/

Anonymous said...

Magnificent beat ! I would like to apprentice at the
same time as you amend your site, how can i subscribe for a weblog web site?
The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit familiar of this your
broadcast provided vibrant transparent idea
My website :: Hus i Antalya

Anonymous said...

Hey there are using Wordpress for your site platform?
I'm new to the blog world but I'm trying to get started and
create my own. Do you require any html coding expertise to make your own blog?

Any help would be really appreciated!
Feel free to surf my blog ; Asuntoja alanyassa

Anonymous said...

You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but
I find this topic to be really something that I think I would never understand.
It seems too complicated and very broad for me. I'm looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!
Also see my web page: fastigheter i alanya

Anonymous said...

I constantly emailed this weblog post page to all
my friends, since if like to read it then my friends will too.
Check out my homepage ... ferienwohnung türkei

Anonymous said...

I for all time emailed this web site post page
to all my contacts, because if like to read it then my
links will too.
Look into my homepage : diablo 3 wizard guide

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if you ever considered changing the structure of
your site? Its very well written; I love what
youve got to say. But maybe you could a little
more in the way of content so people could connect with it better.
Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or two pictures.
Maybe you could space it out better?
Look into my homepage - Male breast Reduction

Anonymous said...

I'm impressed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that's both equally educative
and amusing, and without a doubt, you've hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about. Now i'm very happy I
found this during my hunt for something concerning this.
Feel free to visit my web page - mac baren

Anonymous said...

Appreciating the time and energy you put into your site and
detailed information you offer. It's nice to come across a blog every once in a while that isn't the same outdated rehashed material.

Fantastic read! I've saved your site and I'm including your RSS feeds to my Google
account.
Feel free to surf my web blog yourtobaccosstore.com

Anonymous said...

My partner and I stumbled over here from a different page and thought I should
check things out. I like what I see so now i am following you.

Look forward to looking at your web page repeatedly.
Here is my blog ... borkum riff

Anonymous said...

Howdy, I do think your website could be having web browser compatibility issues.
Whenever I take a look at your site in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in I.

E., it's got some overlapping issues. I simply wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Apart from that, fantastic site!
My web page :: get rid of acne at home

Anonymous said...

I’m not that much of a internet reader to be honest but your blogs really nice, keep it up!
I'll go ahead and bookmark your site to come back down the road. Cheers
Here is my web page : propertyinturkeyforsale.net

Anonymous said...

wonderful points altogether, you just won a
new reader. What may you recommend about your submit that you made
a few days ago? Any certain?
Have a look at my weblog ... get rid of acne scars fast

Anonymous said...

vastgoed in Turkije
immobilien Türkei
immobilien Alanya
wohnungen Alanya
Asunto Alanyasta
apartments in turkey
apartments in alanya
Asunto Turkista
leilighet alanya
bolig tyrkia