3Ders caught wind of a report by Kuwait’s Al-Qabas newspaper recently, concerning an unusual story involving 3D printing.
Apparently, back in mid-September, the Kuwaiti authorities shut down a 3D printing store, a branch of technology company DOOB 3D, which specializes in selling life-like 3D printed figurines.
The Kuwaiti authorities have not made an official comment on the case, but the forced closure comes on the heels of a fiery sermon made by popular local cleric Sheikh Othman al-Khamis, who called for the immediate closure of the shop: “what this shop does is an abomination and more dangerous than selling alcohol because it could lead to some people making idols of their children.” Supporters of Sheikh Othman have argued “the dangers posed by these idols is great. These figurines are a means of leading people to polytheism.”
According to 3Ders, “Islamic law prohibits the worship of statues and idols.”
However, since this shop’s closure, there has been an inevitable backlash. Indeed, “the Arabic-language hashtag ‘idols in Kuwait’ has been used more than 21,000 times on Twitter.” Not all of these mentions have fallen on the side of the Sheikh, either…
Apparently, the shop’s manager is quoted as saying: “I never expected we could open a shop in the year 2018 and then have someone accuse the company of selling idols.” The manager is certainly not alone in his sentiments.
Many Arab cultural critics have taken to Twitter to protest these actions. One user “posted a picture of four toy animals – a gazelle, a whale, an orangutan, and an elephant – along with the caption ‘new animal cult.’”
Image and Quotes Courtesy of 3Ders