My Friend is a Palestinian Bedouin:  XII. Individualism versus Collectivism. Friendships

My Friend is a Palestinian Bedouin: XII. Individualism versus Collectivism. Friendships

11.00 PM  We sit down in my living room and have something to drink. I make sure to get the netstick.

11.30 PM  After a few calls, it turns out that Jaffer did not know anything about the whole issue and is not available. Bashar gets up and says: “Get ready, we’re going”. I realize that for him a communal issue has higher prioritization than personal issues. I also know that he does not differentiate in the same way I do between day and night. Furthermore, I understand that it is obvious to him that I will take them to the neighboring town. It is not that far; the drive will be no more than three quarters of an hour. Again, there is the issue of risk. We could get arrested. Apart from that, this is usually not a time at which I go out; certainly not if I have a workshop on the morning of the next day. I say wait: “Let’s discuss this”. Nevertheless, things are rather obvious. I will take them.

00.10 AM  During my years of acquaintance with Bashar, I got accustomed to the idea that one can go to another town to meet someone without having an address. We ask around, and I eventually drop them at the central bus station. Abdalla is supposed to live not far. They go and look for him by foot, with help of a cellular phone. They seemingly do not expect me to stay. I wonder if the reason is language, since they all speak Arabic, and my Arabic is not more than basic. Or, am I not masculine enough? There could be fighting. Do they want to protect me, or would I be experienced as a burden? Or, do they feel they are a burden on me? I say goodbye and beg them to be careful. They thank me for taking them to Lod.


Share this:

About the Author

Daniel WeishutDaniel J.N. Weishut, born in the Netherlands but living in Jerusalem, is a professional with a diverse background. He holds an MA in Clinical Psychology and an MBA in Integrative Business Administration, both from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and a PsyD in Clinical and Organizational Psychology from the Professional School of Psychology (Sacramento). He has about thirty years of experience in consultation and therapy with a wide variety of clients and issues, more than twenty years of practice in group facilitation, and over fifteen years of know-how in governance and management in various organizations. Daniel Weishut offers his services as a "Partner on the Way", while taking a world-view that people are diverse but equal. He works with a variety of clients, but his special interest is in work with those who have found themselves persecuted or otherwise in conflict with their social environment, because of their culture, identity or belief system. For example: migrants, expats, refugees, Holocaust survivors, soldiers, pacifists, and individuals from religious, cultural or sexual minorities. Daniel Weishut is a social activist and in this capacity he volunteers as Chairperson of the Israeli Association of Group Psychotherapy, as Member of the Membership Appeals Committee of Amnesty International and as forensic expert for the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel. He also is involved in raising awareness about the situation of Bedouins around Jerusalem; awareness which led among others to the writing of his dissertation "My friend is a Palestinian Bedouin: Challenges and opportunities in intercultural friendship".

View all posts by Daniel Weishut

Leave a Reply