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May 29, 2012



There is a hadith (well, actually a tradition of the second caliph, so not technically a hadith) that he (the second caliph) asked his daughter Hafsa (one of the wives of Mohammed) how long a woman could stay away from having sex? She said "six months" and so he ordered that all soldiers be given home leave at least every six months so they could go and service their wives....keep them away from wantonness and all that. There is no equivalent tradition about men, so maybe 7th century Arab culture also looked upon women as the randier sex...the ones less able to do without it for too long (though six months is not exactly a short time)..


A small correction to your translation: granted that the visible semen doesn't enter into the innermost etc, nevertheless the spirit, etc.


Cool article.

With this recent lexical shift, it's interesting to see how attitudes have changed regarding estrogen's physiological effects (and also its safety as a drug).

Supposedly in the 1930's, there was a good amount of data to suggest that estrogen was carcinogenic and could be used to induce cancer in animal test subjects. Even small dose therapy was considered harmful. Now, it seems to be associated with all sorts of positive traits. And perhaps the popularity of estrogen-laced food items among men (hoppy beers, for example), partially contributes to the shift.

Interesting how much you learn when you approach things from a historical perspective.

The Necromancer

Wow. Some hardcore etymology there.

Eduardo A.

@omar could you please share some link to the text about second caliph and his daughter (or perhaps just a little more information on where to find it)?


Eduardo, I just happened to see your question today. That story was in some Urdu book I read a long time ago, but in a minute with Google, I found this link:


Scroll to the bottom of the page. The event is narrated there.

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