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saysay15's avatar

Whats the difference between being afghan and muslim?

Asked by saysay15 (79points) November 30th, 2009

my parents constantly nag me and shun me to do this and not that, because it’s our on so on…culture’s one thing..but not only afghans do it, there’s arabs, pakis, etc….so whats the i only follow the example of afghans?

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8 Answers

dpworkin's avatar

You parents have a lot of strong feelings about Afghan culture specifically, even though the other cultures you mention are co-religionists.

As hard as it will be for both you and for them, you must take what you wish from the culture and leave what doesn’t resonate for you. Very difficult, but that’s what happens to the second generation.

juwhite1's avatar

Afghan – From Afghanistan. Muslim – Subscribing to the faith of Islam. Not the same thing. One can be important to you while the other is not, or both can be important to you, or neither. Just be you.

le_inferno's avatar

Afghan = pertaining to the country Afghanistan
Muslim = pertaining to the religion of Islam

Muslim beliefs may permeate Afghan culture since it’s the dominant religion, which also may be true in Pakistan and other Middle Eastern nations. There’s certainly overlaps between the two.

janbb's avatar

And welcome to Fluther!

Darwin's avatar

There are Muslims (followers of Islam) and then there are subsets of Muslims which may be from various countries and cultures and may speak different languages. Your family apparently is part of the subset of Muslims who are from Afghanistan. While there will be some things you have in common with all other Muslims, there are some things that you do because you are from Afghanistan, not because you are Muslim. No population is homogeneous, so even all Afghans won’t follow the same customs. Afghanistan in particular is a mixed population.

In the tribal areas of South-East Afghanistan the Pashtuns practice Pashtunwali, which is a traditional cultural custom, while the Northern and Central regions of Afghanistan are culturally Persian. The Western regions of Afghanistan has a mixture of both Pashtuns and Persians. Afghanistan has been the main crossroads for Central Asia, South Asia, and the Middle East, and has influenced its culture.

Traditional Afghan clothes vary by regions and sometimes ethnicities as well as tribes. Afghan women under the Taliban were required to wear Chadaris, which is the Afghan version of the Burqa seen in other countries. The Charadi is pre-Islamic, and consists of a cap, chador, and mesh face covering and is heavily embroidered. The colors depend on religion, and location, and, if you no longer live in Afghanistan, can be influenced by the dominant culture in which you now live. For example, if a woman is going to drive a car in the US she would not be able to wear a face covering while driving.

Then there is language. There are two official languages in Afghanistan, Persian and Pashto. There are also Hazaragi, Uzbeki, Turkmen, Balochi, and even some Urdu, the language of Pakistan. But notice that none of these languages is Arabic – that is because while most are indeed Muslim, Afghans are not Arabs.

At least while you live under their roof, you should follow the example of your parents. Since your parents are apparently Afghans, you will be doing what some other Afghans do. You will also be following customs that have been built up within your family. You might also consider learning a bit about your heritage. Afghanistan is a unique country with a long and productive history, and there are many things to be proud of.

avvooooooo's avatar

One is a nationality (Afghan) and the other is a religion (Muslim). Simple as that.

Sarcasm's avatar

Don’t listen to them. One is a blanket, the other is something you eat for breakfast.

Strauss's avatar

I’m neither Afghan nor Muslim, but here’s the way I see it. The Muslim religion is so central to Afghan culture that there is no definite point where one ends and the other begins. Your parents have a strong desire to see their culture continued and carried on in spite of “westernization”, and don’t want it watered down by the presence of “world media”. The various cultures of that region are very old, and have been passed on from generation to generation, some for thousands of years. It would be a loss to the world community if yet another cultural practice were to be lost die to modernization.

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