In July of 2008 the Travel Channel aired an episode of Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” and it took place in Saudi Arabia. Well, I didn’t see the episode in 2008 when it first aired, but I did see it several weeks ago and I am sure the impact was no less.
It was wonderful for me to learn about a culture and country that is generally locked away behind a shroud. Anthony’s crew explored not only the culture of the country but also its religious heritage. It was in that exploration that I grew a great appreciation for the beauty of religion at its core. Five times a day there is prayer, five times a day there is a reminder that faith governs life, five times a day you are given the opportunity to personally reflect–for good or for bad.
Take a look at the video below and really take the time to explore the ideas presented starting at 4:10.
I will stay far away from commentary on particular aspects of their religion and culture. But I do say I respect the oneness that I can only image can be felt when an entire community/country gives pause and shares in such a moment.
Anthony Bourdain is a character and one has to grow to love him. But what you can say is that he speaks from his heart and he shares from his soul. I was pleased to get a real glimpse of that recently.