Adab*: A form of Greeting

A poem

Dr. Fatima Imam

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Photo: Torontorian version of the Greeting on face time: author greeted by her children

We’re always proud of our cultures.
The sophistication endows us.
We’re also cautious about how to share our cultural traits.
Apprehensive about derision and mockery.

North Indian style of saying hello coalesces etiquette and politeness perfectly.
A hand gesture on the side of the face conveys so many messages.
Greeting young and old, respecting elders, and the non-verbal sign of appreciation.
An endearing way to express gratitude and accept thanks.

© Fatima Imam

*The term should not be confused with the Arabic term: adab. Adaab (stress on a) is a secular form of greeting practised from late eighteenth-century north India before universal hello.

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Dr. Fatima Imam

Poet, writer, artist, historian, educator, advocate of underrepresented voices, and cat lover.