The Silk Road was a very cool trade route that joined civilizations and cultures. It now seems it’s being revived. Aside from the physical reconstruction, you can see off to the side under “voices in our heads” a CD called “Silk Road Journeys: When Strangers Meet,” put out by the Silk Road Project. They are committed to using the cultural synthesis that defined the Silk Road to help bring people closer together. They were part of the Folklife Festival at the Smithsonian in DC in 2002. The really nice thing is that they list the major funder and creative partner as being a Muslim group, the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC). We can be involved in creation once more.
Ran across this article in the Washington Post. It deals with the Black African communities in Iraq. Reminded me of a similar article from the BBC on the Sidi community, Black Africans in Gujarat, India. It amazes me how far the contacts amongst civilizations extends, both geographically and temporally.
Tajikistan Tourism: The Tajik People Shine | Marin Magazine. The Pamiris are predominantly Ismaili Muslims, whose geographic nexus occurs in this historic region of Badakhshan, extending from southeastern Tajikistan into northern Afghanistan and Pakistan. At the core of Ismailism is Prince Aga Khan IV, the imam whose religious leadership provides a living interpretation of the Koran. The Aga Khan’s embrace of women’s rights and education has fostered a uniquely progressive orientation among the Ismailis, whose peaceful communities constitute a foundation of stability in one of the world’s most polarized regions.