Ramadan Qatari Majlis: Schools for Qatari Traditions
While Ramadan has started, life has returned to the Qatari Majlis, which represents the spirit of hospitality and open doors for everybody after Taraweeh prayers and even before Suhoor. The word “Majlis” literally means “council”, or “a place to sit”. The Majlis of Qatar is a gathering place for relatives and friends to discuss issues and share viewpoints. They are also regarded as schools where generations of Qataris have grown up, learned from, and passed on traditions and customs, preserving Qatari culture and national identity.
There is no doubt that the Majlis culture is a legacy that has been passed down and preserved through generations and influenced not just by the structure but also by the nature of the people who live there. Younger people pay attention to the elderly in the Majlis and learn how to enter this beautiful place and take the initiative to say ‘Alsalmu Alaykom’, and then the Host appears to greet their visitors with a kind welcome that makes everyone on the scene pleased. Given its accessibility to houses and different spaces that allow visitors to gather away from the more private places, the Majlis has been a major element of Qatari society over the decades.
Offering Arabic coffee is essential in Qatari and Gulf Majlis , particularly because it is the first ritual offered to visitors as soon as they arrive. There are numerous additional customs and traditions that the host must observe while in this “unique” and “genuinely Arab” place.
A Social Role:
A heritage scholar, Saleh Gharib, stressed the important social role that Qatari Majlis plays in the lives of Qatari families. He explained that since its inception, the Majlis has provided a space for families, friends, and acquaintances to meet and discuss social issues, as well as issues of public interest in the area where the Majlis is located, or in the country in general, until it has developed into a space for discussion, debate, and idea cross-fertilization.
Due to the nature of this blessed month, its religious and social characteristics, which are based on increasing rapprochement and harmony among people, and the major role it has played throughout history for individuals to meet, read the Qur’an, and have the Ramadan pre-Suhoor meal known as “Ghabga,” Gharib mentioned that attendance at the Majlis increases during the month of Ramadan.
He emphasized the importance of Majlis, both before and after the invention of contemporary communication methods, the Majlis has been a source of study, news, and conversation since its inception, he said, adding that it performs a significant religious role during Ramadan by reading and sealing the Qur’an throughout the month.
Open to People with Different Ages:
Gharib explained that the Majlis is open to people of all ages in Qatari society, not only the elderly, but also young people want to learn from their fathers and grandfathers’ experiences.
Mr. Mohammed Al Emadi, a sociological researcher, said that after being cut off from the Majlis for two years owing to the COVID-19, the Qatari People’s Majalis reopened this year to accept their visitors from Taraweeh prayers till Suhoor time. He saw their return as a glimpse of hope in all its aspects, after the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic reduced the number of visitors, so that the Majalis can continue to receive visitors throughout the year, despite an increase in demand with the arrival of the blessed month, when Qataris are keen to attend their Majalis and exchange visits and determination among each other.
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