Saturday, 1 October 2011

Halal-certified cola and water now available in Germany:
For one of the most successful beverages of the modern era, cola has an astonishingly bad image. This has many reasons: from multinational soft drinks giants to questionable lifestyle choices and traditional, outdated production methods, cola is far from being linked to any curative effect.

In haji cola, an alternative has been created that is unique. It is not haji that is special, but rather the haji drinker. It is the long overdue alternative for enlightened people who make up their own minds and live their lives accordingly. The time for compromise is past, haji is here!

Ali Eghbal, the Hamburg businessman behind the new venture, believes the cola will act as "a bridge between East and West".

On the company's website can be found a potted history of the term 'haji':
What is behind this mysterious name haji? In its original form, Haji is a courtesy title for a Muslim who has fulfilled his religious duty and made the pilgrimage to Mecca.

Haji also stands for a person who is honest and good-tempered and whose company is
highly sought after. The term Haji is used in many countries – whether a person is Muslim or has completed his pilgrimage to Mecca or not. It is often found as part of someone’s name, conveying friendship with and respect for that person.

The word Haji can also be found in the West. In ancient Greece and Bulgaria, Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem were given the title Haji. In Iran, the Jewish minority also call members who have completed a pilgrimage to Jerusalem Haji.

In this respect, the name evokes togetherness and transcends national and religious differences. Visually, the name connects Orient and Occident and is thus the perfect symbol to represent a blending of cultures and nations. True to the original meaning, haji cola and haji water will not polarise or separate people, but build bridges and bring people together.

It seems to have escaped them, however, that coalition soldiers use the term 'haji' to refer to the local Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Sources: Bild, Haji

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