Outside Lalemi Mosque, this slightly damaged feral cat was hanging around the water taps for worshippers.
Cats are usually my number one enemy that I avoid at all costs, as any close contact with one of them could sent me straight to the hospital in an extreme asthma crisis, but I have made an exception by paying attention to this one, as cats are emblematic of Turkey.
Turks are very much against euthanasia of dogs and cats for “population control”, as a predominantly Muslim society where cats are tolerated, even respected.
An Associated Press article from August 2010 was reporting that: “Islamic lore tells of a cat thwarting a poisonous snake that had approached the Prophet Muhammad. In another tale, the prophet found his cat sleeping on the edge of his vest. Instead of shifting the cat, the prophet cut off the portion of the vest that was free and wore it without disturbing the pet.”
Looking through history books about Islam, many mention the prophet’s love of felines and while variations on the foregoing stories exist, the overarching affection for cats has been consistent.
Indeed, a popular saying notes: “If you kill a cat, you need to build a mosque to be forgiven by God.”
As a result, wandering the streets of Istanbul you will see many small containers by the sides of buildings, and discreet food rations doled out by its inhabitants. While the cats are not adopted formally, they are taken care of by no one and everyone, a giant community network of cat caring.
Critiques | Translate
Nicou (145294) 2012-08-30 5:26
Et oui moi je suis parfois triste lorsque'on démoli de vielles maison dans le villes, mais voilà la spéculation prend le dessus.
sueprbe compo de ce chat c'est une artiste de rue, sur ce tabouret de bois charmante scène et iamge sueprbe.
$Merci et amitié
ACL1978 (7511) 2012-08-30 5:33
Wonderful portrait, Andre. The light and texture creates a sense of stillness, almost as if the cat is a statue (as cats can sometimes seem). Off-center and next to the somewhat ornate spout, it almost looks to be sitting specifically for the photo. Nice catch in a city that must offer a new photographic wonder at every turn - good for you for catching this detail that many would pass by.
holmertz (55035) 2012-08-30 7:59
Possibly the cats are aware that Islam protects them, and that's why they like to gather in the mosques. I made a similar observation in a recent picture. This cat looks so self-assured that it probably believes itself to be some kind of janitor. You found it in a fine place where the nicely shaped tap also tells us something about behaviour in a mosque.
Beware of visiting Cairo, where cats are possible even more ubiquitous than in Istanbul.
janjan1897 (2301) 2012-08-30 11:34
On dirait qu'il prend la pose pour le photographe ! Très belle composition et remarquable portrait de ce chat, gardien, pour l'occasion de la fontaine qui lui sert de décor. Une photo bien équilibrée dans son format vertical et qui ferait une très belle carte postale. Sans ta note explicative (du reste, très intéressante), j'aurais pu croire que cette photo avait été prise quelque part sur une île grecque où les chats sont légion. J'aime beaucoup.
jjcordier (79297) 2012-08-30 22:43
Une belle photo de ce chat qui prend la pose pour toi et qui illustre joliment ta très intéressante note. Toujours cette recherche du cadrage parfait et de l'harmonie des tons de l'image.
siudzi (34141) 2012-08-31 0:53
Love this shot! It's so perfectly composed and cropped. Taken with a great attention on details. Bravo!
annjackman (21899) 2012-08-31 13:45
I have the same allergic reaction to cats. This one is safely outside and posing beautifully for you. Nicely off-centre the cat doesn't obscure the view of the tap. There are some interesting textures in the wall and wooden table. A super arrangement taken with your usual skill. I enjoy this image very much.
Kind Regards, Ann
wolf38 (31296) 2012-08-31 23:34
Hello others. What an impressive cat personality - she's sitting on the table as on a throne. The background is well integrated into the overall composition. I like the photo very much. Rgds, Wolfgang.
adores (45891) 2012-09-03 18:14
A really interesting note! In fact, we can find far more cats than dogs in Islamic countries.
Good shot also! I like his proud pose, with the tap behind him and that sort of old table. I really like the composition and the light!
Suppiluliuma (3913) 2012-09-10 9:10
Superb narrative. It's refreshing to learn new things or to see one's own country thru someone else's eyes, eyes that capture, analyse with a sensitivity that abounds.
- Copyright: Andre Roberge (InasiaJones) (31566)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2012-05-19
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III, Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 USM
- Exposure: f/11, 1/320 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2012-08-30 0:46
- Favorites: 1 [view]