We get : The Qur'an applies the word "Muslim" not only to humans but also to animals and the inanimate world.
"The divine will manifests itself in the form of laws both in human society and in the world of nature."
In Islamic terminology, for example, a bee is a Muslim precisely because it lives and dies obeying the Sharia that God has prescribed for the community of bees, just as a person is a Muslim by virtue of the fact that he or she submits to the revealed Sharia ordained for humans in the Qur'an and Sunnah
The Quran strongly enjoins Muslims to treat animals with compassion and not to abuse them. The Qur'an states that all creation praises God, even if this praise is not expressed in human language.
In verse 6:38, the Qur'an applies the term ummah, generally used to mean "a human religious community", for genera of animals.
TheEncyclopaedia of the Qur'anstates that this verse has been "far reaching in its moral and ecological implications."
There is not an animal (that lives) on the earth, nor a being that flies on its wings, but (forms part of) communities like you. Nothing have we omitted from the Book, and they (all) shall be gathered to their Lord in the end.
Have the Social/Economic changes in Egypt over the last 3000 years been so great – that they may explain the high level of animal abuse throughout Egypt now – and in direct defiance of the Quran ?
We have concentrated on Horses, but as much can be easily said for the fate of donkeys, camels and other smaller animals. Each is a special case, such as with the dogs. Did you know they have a hierachy? We have studied the packs who come together at nightime on the plateau. They re-establish their bonds and superiorities before settling for the night in scratched holes, only to stir with an aweful alarm if a trespasser comes near. In the morning they set off to split up and adopt a new solitary begging technique with the tourists. From the watchmen and guards they are likely only to receive a hurled stone to chase them on their way, despite their role as guards. What contrast to Phaoronic times. We have seen dogs and their puppies far afield across the plateau. We understand that strichnine poisoned meat is still used covertly by the authorities to eradicate them, and it does not seem to matter if other feeding animals die as a result. Eventually we want to conduct an accurate official survey of the animal life on the plateau so that better judgement can be used for control.For the moment we rely on money to loosen the conversations!
Egypt is going through huge cultural change as the ordinary people reclaim their country at last. It is said that a country can be judged by its attitude to its animals. We can only hope the change will be for their betterment too. For now with tourisim rock-bottom there are changes that must be persuaded. If not, the tourist money for animal owners will dry up completely as the tourists decline to use abused animals. Do the owners not realise how much easier it would be to get tourist customers if they learned to train and ride their animals without the use of the insidious whip? So many animals can be seen scarred from this practice, especially at the hands of young riders. Don't you realise the impact to tourists when tired horses are galloped for pleasure at full speed on the Giza roads at night? Don't you realise how badly you are damaging your animal when something as simple as stirrup adjustment for each tourist is not carried out? We are tired of seeing tourists banging away on a weak animal's back with their feet flailing alongside in slack stirrups. And tourists, why don't you wake up to these things and demand it be done?
The Giza Site Rehabilitation Plan
So before we talk about our plans to make things better it is time to travel full circle and talk about this plan.
Over on the other side of the Plateau a huge amount of work has been done towards the infrastructure for the new visitor entrance and facilities. You will not however read much about the fact that the site conceals a huge underground facility. We understand it will be used by the authorities with more than one task in mind!
However as a part of the new facility we have been told there is a stable. We have been told also this will be the one limited source for tourist riding on the plateau, supplimented by stage managed electric cars on a new roadway under construction. The animal use will be strictly controlled, as will the staging/ photo shoot points for tourists. We were also told that animals will not be allowed to haphazardly criss-cross the plateau as now, and at start and finish will have to make a very long circuit of the plateau to return to their home. This has very serious implications if taken together. There will be severely limited licences, and in fact one Egyptian owner spoke for many others and told us, the licence holders will be only the few favoured by the authorities - and all the current owners will be forced out. At a stroke then, when the Rehabilitation Plan is complete; the current entrances will be reassigned, and almost certainly, thousands of horses, donkeys and camels in dozens of stables will be without work. If true, it is a scandal that has not been openly addressed.
We interviewed many handlers and they are running very scared of the prospect. As usual there is an awareness on the ground, but little knowlege further. We want to spell out the implication to the world, but first we want to scream it out to all decent animal owners in the City of Cairo and Egypt. If the Rehabilitation plan goes forward in any way like this, you will be faced with the death or slaughter of possibly thousands of animals in the future. The roads from Giza are shamefully blighted with animal corpses now. This prospect for the future is terrible to conceive.
We know since the demise of Zahi Hawass, the cash backing for the project stalled. At some stage it will inevitably be revived. It is likely that many of the officials who controlled the project will no longer be there under a new administration. Many times we were told that while there is human strife during the uprising, there will be little concern for the fate of the animals in the future. But we argue that one crisis may lead to another of huge proportion in the future if this issue is not clarified and debated by Egyptians, (and especially all animal owners and organisations right now.) Such questions are as important as any other political question for the well being of poor Egyptians and to the tourist economy generally. We will see if election candidates are asked about the future of Cairo and Giza's huge animal population and dependency!
The Giza Foundation & The Brooke Hospital
We discussed our ideas, observations with those of the Brooke Hospital. It was clear immediately we agreed on a number of specific initiatives.
Some days earlier we interviewed a young but well spoken Egyptian on the Plateau. He was maybe about 19 years old but surprised us with his wisdom. He offered this about the animals.
Many people in the village live with their animals in their houses. It is like a throwback to ancient times. But Egyptians have forgotten the values we had during Phaoronic times. They have forgotten how to treat and care for animals properly and get the best from looking after them with love. The young could be educated in the right way in school, but for the older people; they would have to be given an incentive, maybe cash, or also a change in the law to require them to adopt some better practices. Better still for the culture to be revived according to the teachings of the Qur'an and a return to the values of previous times.
We agree! And we discussed these points with Dr Naoum.
(The Brook had already instigated a programme of re-education in the schools).
We will become involved with supporting this initiative in the future.
Where able at base level we will also support the direct funding of medication and food for cases we encounter.
We pledged to carry out more intense animal survey work to sharpen the focus of help in future.
We will lobby at all levels to confirm or squash speculations such as we have reported.
(Clearly there is a lot of alarm and dispondency due simply to a lack of communication between the authorities and the villagers).
We will lobby also alongside the Brooke and others for changes in the Law to improve animal administration
Finally and most importantly we are setting ourselves a target to provide a Giza Foundation rapid response - Veterinary Ambulance which will be voluntarily run by local veterinary doctors on a rota basis.
These are noble and grand goals and they will only become reality if stable owners with greater wealth - especially in Cairo and Egypt can show the world how seriously it cares for its animals by giving us support and making a Donation please.
They will only become reality for the lives of the animals if those in the world with the same conscience, also support us.
They will only become a reality if the people generally in the world give each a small bit of support to achive the same.
We are proceding through due process right now for The Giza Foundation to be based Legally in Giza as it is in the UK
For our private pockets the cost of this process is huge and we really do need your lifeline of donated support.
We wish to sincerely thank those who have already begun the process.
Thank you all sincerely from our hearts.
Richard and Judith
The connection may take a few seconds
(We will also be adding a few beautiful heart-warming animal stories from this visit to the story page very soon)
Below you will find the Rehabilitation URL reminder and one of the evidence pages from it to study.
The abandoned Electric Car Road construction just a short distance beyond Kephren by the Helipad
RETURN TO THE INDEX PAGE