The cultural milieu of Saudi Arabia is highly influenced by its Islamic and Arab culture. The country is mainly highly religious, conservative, family-oriented, and deeply religious. Many fundamental beliefs and practices are centuries old, stemming from ancient Arab and Islamic heritage. This article explores the main aspects of the Saudi culture, including key players, major events, key trends, and negative aspects. The focus of this article is on the aspect of the Saudi society that is considered to be the most influential. Though this is a rapidly developing country with significant internal challenges, it has been able to preserve its traditional customs and values along with the more recently introduced developments and influences.
Culture is the main driving force behind economic development and prosperity. This aspect of life is generally accepted and respected in Saudi Arabia. For example, family law and tradition require that women get a college degree before they can marry. A Suli is a male member of the family who has the responsibility of acting as a groom for the bride. He is also responsible for the guardianship of his wife and children during their marriage and until his death.
While in Suli, foreign visitors are not allowed to drink alcohol or eat pork. It is prohibited for men to shake a camel’s horn, firecrackers, and even fireworks. Even for non-Saudis, most public places are strictly segregated by gender and arranged in specific areas to avoid disruptions by non Saudians. The public buses are always male. Most businesses follow the same rules of conduct and business meetings are usually arranged in secluded areas of the city, away from the hustle and bustle of the streets.
The most important part of the social contract between a Saudi and a Suli is to make sure that both parties behave according to the cultural traditions of the region, as well as their national laws. If non-Sulis or foreigners commit crimes against either community or break the law, both parties are legally obligated to punish their members under the Shura Council, the highest court in Saudi Arabia. When it comes to the laws and cultural traditions of Saudi Arabia and Suli, it is best for the people to just try not to break the rules, because the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Suli have a long history of tolerance and unity.
Although there are differences between the sexes, the people seem to live harmoniously. The only major social problem that you may encounter while visiting Suli is the fact that foreign women are not yet accepted into the society. There are two types of women that can be seen in Suli, women who belong to high status families and those from lower status families. Most Sulis respect other cultures and treat all people with fairness.
You will find many foreign visitors at the masjid. This is because every Saudi Arabia, or mosque, has its own imambara, or prayer area. There, you will find a gathering of people, including women and children, who pray and pay their respects to the mosque. The men, however, are usually seen outside the mosques.