Sunday, August 19, 2007

An Islamic puzzle

Good slave was in Malaysia (being one of the popular resort for the Islamic community) enjoying the vacation hot spot with strangers from the Far East. While taking the plane from Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur, good slave encountered an Islamic puzzle which kept good slave pondered along the trip. Since the global business works with generic models, the puzzle intrigued good slave for its spatial/mathematical implications to our supposedly highly efficient-base/protocol system, a kind of gems affection that resulted in a 20 minutes of delay.

The puzzle as follows –
- The seating arrangement of the economy class is a minima/maxima model of efficiency. Accommodations, circulation spaces, human bodies and luggage are all intertwined within the same formula of efficiency in “filling” up with the volume.
- When bodies and machines become intimate, it will be inevitable to have physical contact among bodies (whether to be sitting or maneuvering inside the plane).
- According to the Sharia Law, one would not touch women whom are not his "mahram" (guardians).
- So, when the plane is filled up with good followers of Allah Almighty and non-Muslim, the situation becomes difficult. Some Muslim couples will be seated in between non-Muslim males, and some non-corporative-non-Muslim males may consider consumer rights are more important than respecting other’s culture and refuse to switch seats.

Then how do we solve the puzzle without any segregation among Muslims and non-Muslims? Good slave is sure that such confusions are common and figures may become astronomical once we add up the total time of delay worldwide. Shall we avoid even number of seats per roll? Or Non-Muslim male shall get the window seats? How do we balance out the efficient packing models to avoid delay of flight?

The distancing among bodies and bodily movement vs. efficient programming has been an age-old question for architects. However, at current years, we are very fascinated with global generic models that we seem to intertwine with the organic and the non-organic under the name of efficiency. The delay in flight schedule reflects the distancing among human bodies and their postures defines the generic models and the “otherness” is always a good gem in fine tuning of the system.

p.s. while sitting in the plane waiting for the situation to be resolved, a westerner next to good slave was concerned about the Islamic women being forced to cover up the body in public (accord with Sharia Law). However, in good slave opinion, our women are no better since everywhere we are bombarded with images imposed by the media of how women shall “expose” their body in public (with having less dress), every parts of the body has a required measurement along with a price tag to achieve those standard (either by plastic surgery, laser treatment, botox, slim fast diet). Is this taming of the male gaze as in Manet EduoardLe Dejeuner sur l’herbe or simply capitalization of women’s body?


Anonymous said...

Very interesting:)

good slave 好奴隸 said...

thank-u stranger. stay tune to enjoy more.