Am I a Phoenician? -- Testimonials from readers
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Testimonials from Lebanese Muslims:
"I learned more about Lebanese history through the one sitting on your site than I have my entire life."
"I am proud of my Phoenician heritage, but I am sick of having to explain it to others who think that the Lebanese are Arab, or to those who think that only Christians are Phoenician."

Message one from a Lebanese Muslim gentleman

From: Khaled
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 2005 01:48:25 EDT
To: Salim Khalaf
Subject: Re: Thank you

Hi Salim,
 
I didn't expect to hear back from you so quickly, I've just checked email and found your great email.  Many thanks, it's starting my day on a great note.
 
People like yourself who try and shine a light on established views always meet with opposition, sometimes hatred even.  The human race has a long upward hill to climb as far as being more accepting is concerned. I guess all we can do is expand on what we believe and keep an open mind as we go along our way. Just think of what life would be like if we were dissuaded from following a path every time someone got in the way!!
 
I told my mother that I learned more about Lebanese history through the one sitting on your site than I have my entire life (and I'm 38!!).  So thanks again, and please keep up the good work.  I do hope that one day your efforts are recognised for the genuine effort at presenting a new perspective on our history, amidst all the politics and prejudices.  However, I think your efforts should be self-rewarding.   You should be proud of having pulled together such a wealth of resources.
 
I'm sure there are many like me out there who will have thought the same of your site, but who didn't write; people don't always find the words.
 
Anyway, best of luck and you might just find me dropping you a note again in the future to say hi.
 
With best wishes,
 
Khaled

Message two from the same Lebanese Muslim gentleman

From: Khaled
Date: Thu, 27 Oct 2005 09:39:18 -0400
To: Salim Khalaf
Subject: Re: Thank you

Hi Salim

I'm very happy that you find my feedback useful; I know how hard it can be to reach people. You have most definitely inspired me.

I would like to add that your essay on our language has completely changed what I think of speaking 'Arabic'. I will no longer ever say I speak Arabic, or Lebanese-Arabic. If people have a problem with me saying I speak Lebanese, it is their problem :-) The comparison with Italian, Spanish and Latin etc was truly a revelation.

The funny thing is, I've always found it odd saying I speak Arabic because when I hear the news in Arabic, I don't see how that is the same language that I speak. It never made sense that I understand a language only part of the time!! The explanation on your site has completely explained that for me. Thanks for that too.

Best of luck Salim!!

I look forward to reading my email on your site :-)

All the best,

Khaled

Message from a Lebanese Muslim lady

From: Sarah
Date: Wed, 1 Mar 2006 11:21:48 -0800 (PST)
To: Salim Khalaf
Subject: Lebanese-- PHOENICIAN!! --Muslim!

Hello!
  
In your section called "Stealing the Heritage," you write that "...it lays waste the claim of the Jewish people to their Promised Land and claims Christianity false since it has its roots in Judaism."
 
This also affects Islam as well, since Islam's roots are in Judaism and Christianity. This might be too much to ask, but could you include that as well? I am a Lebanese Muslim, but we always remember our Phoenician roots in my family. It is a little hurtful to see so little mention of muslim Phoenicians, and I'm not even remotely religious, so I wonder what others must feel! (I know this is mostly due to that fact that most Muslims reject their Phoenician origin, but since we are all of the same people, it seems only right to try and pass this information on no matter what).
 
Also, on one of your pages you said that many people think being Phoenician means Maronite, but, while I know that's not true, I feel that you should mention the fact that there are many Maronites who claim that they are the only non-arabs in Lebanon, and that Lebanese Muslims are Arab. It's the same claim, this time in reverse. I think claiming your ethnicity through religion isn't right, and that we as Lebanese people should stand together and embrace our Phoenician heritage no matter what our religion. I remember editing a wikipedia article* on Lebanese people to say that "The people of Lebanon consider themselves Phoenician" and it was changed over and over again by someone else to "Lebanese Maronites are Phoenician." I gave up on changing the article, but I still wish people didn't do things like this.
 
I really love reading through this site, I just wish there was a little more said about the Lebanese Muslims. I am proud of my Phoenician heritage, but I am sick of having to explain it to others who think that the Lebanese are Arab, or to those who think that only Christians are Phoenician. If the Phoenicians converted to Christianity, why is it so hard for others to believe that some of them converted to Islam? And what about those who may have been forced to convert against their will? Not that my family has any problems with our religion now or anything, but people should think about these things instead of being so closed minded.
 
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. Next time you are able to work on this site, please think about what I have written. Phoenician Muslims are out there, and we want recognition too!
 
Sarah

* Editor's note: Wikimedia is an unreliable resource where any web users may add information without moderator, editor input or supervision.

 
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DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed in this site do not necessarily represent Phoenicia.org nor do they necessarily reflect those of the various authors, editors, and owner of this site. Consequently, parties mentioned or implied cannot be held liable or responsible for such opinions.

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