Sex life in the Middle East took a decided turn for the worse recently. Convervative officials at Al-Azhar university interfered arbitrarily with the academic freedom of an Al-Azhar cleric, Ezzat Attiya, the head of Al-Azhar's Department of Hadith. Attiya had issued a very forward looking Fatwa that ruled that adult men could breast-feed from female work colleagues as a way to avoid breaking Islamic rules that forbid men and women from being alone together. Yummy! "The work family that nurses together, stays together" seems to sum up his views.
His ruling was intended to allow women to work in close proximity to men, a practice generally forbidden in Islam. Breastfeeding of a child is considered to establish a family bond in Islamic law, such that children nursed by the same mother cannot marry. Attiya argued that if a man nursed from a co-worker, it would establish a family bond between them and allow them work side-by-side without raising suspicion of hanky-panky.
A sad day for academic freedom in the Middle East! A veritable Nakba for hanky-panky in Egypt. Not since Rabbi Ovadia Yossef ruled that the urine of women is kosher have we seen such an intelligent religious ruling.