Bridging Arts

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Dinner at the Morden Mosque

For the second year running am lucky enough to be invited to dinner at the Amadiyya Muslim mosque in Morden. This time, Amtul Kafi invited me. Amtul was a keen and wonderful participant in our embroidery classes in Tooting in the summer. Amtul is now studying at the Royal Holloway: she would like to be a doctor. This having arrived in the UK less than ten years ago from the Punjab, speaking no English.
She shows me the library where there are many books and pictures of Abdus Salam, who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1979. Abdus Salam has inspired her with words from the Koran that drove him, she says: 'Look again'. ([Al-Mulk 67:5] Aye, look again, and yet again...) Amtul keeps looking.
Amtul Kafi holding Zubaidah Shah's embroidery
(Abdus Salam was an Amadiyya Muslim. He is buried in Rabwah, Pakistan. The inscription on his grave originally read ' First Muslim Nobel Laureate'. However, due to protests by Muslims who do not recognise Amadiyya
 Muslims, the word 'Muslim' has been removed. So the inscription now apparently - absurdly  - reads ' first Nobel Laureate'.)
Was very pleased to see some embroidery by Zubaidah Shah. Amtul holds it here. Zubaidah is 83. This embroidery certainly puts anything I can produce to shame.
Embroidery by Zubaidah Shah, 83, who has been a keen participant in this project from the start
The reverse of Zubaidah's embroidery. The reverse is always revealing. In this case, as neat as the front....