May 21, 2010 - news    8 Comments

A Random Week

Salam peeps who read this blog…  I don’t really have anything of benefit to contribute this week. Just some random thoughts (rants)… so get ready…1..2…breathe…

news

On the topic of being a somewhat well-known and vocal person in the community leading some ppl to think I’m “judging them”…  I’d like to just say, here and now, forever on record, that I don’t judge any person. You could wear hijab/ not wear hijab, have a boyfriend, study basket-weaving, turn atheist, jump off a bridge, dye your hair purple and let me be honest, I don’t really care. I really don’t. AND I don’t think I’m better than you.

Every person has their own choices in their life, they have their own circumstances and their own tests. I’m not you and you are not me. I can’t say what my own choices would be, because I’m busy with my own unique set of circumstances, choices and tests.  Really, I have enough problems and issues, things I’m working on and projects and whatever, than to get involved with other people’s lives and “judge them”. Who am I going to be responsible for on the Day of J? Me. Whose actions am I worried about and responsible for? Mine and no one else’s. Who’s going to have to cross the Sirat? Me and I’ll be alone. I have my own relationship with Allah and my own sins that I thank Him every day for veiling.

I do care about the Ummah and I do see things wrong with it and things that we and other people are doing. I point these things out here on the blog or in person as social observance or as someone who writes articles bringing up various issues. Do you get what I’m saying? It’s not about “you”. There’s a huge difference between writing about actions, what’s going on in the community, trends and problems, guides and rants, reminders and admonitions; and actually judging a specific person. (Which is something better left to the Divine realm.)  So the next time you think “OMG she’s judging me, she thinks she’s better than me” just repeat “She really doesn’t care that much.” K. Thanks.

This week some people launched an event called “Draw Muhammad Day”. Now how evil are these people really. Imagine if someone launched an event called “Call an African American a Ni**** Day” or “Eat meat in front of a HIndu Day” or “Urinate on a statue of Jesus and Mary Day” or “Show Pornography to a Jewish baby Day”. Pretty despicable huh? But all in the name of “free speech and freedom”. Apparently this event’s supporters are letting everyone know it’s OK to offend Muslim sensibilities in the guise of “freedom” which is really – hate.

Well whatever, there are tons of Islam haters out there. Now the problem here is actually the Muslim response to this. Muslims just get all emotional and offended over things like this instead of responding in a strategic or civilized way. And NO, “blocking facebook for 10 days” is not strategic or of any benefit. Neither is deactivating facebook for a day which does absolutely nothing.

We’ve seen it with Salman Rushdie, with the Dutch cartoons and now this. Again, we are always reacting to the negative instead of ignoring this event and doing positive things to promote acceptance and respect of Islam. If every Muslim ignored this event as “a bunch of crazies” NO ONE and I mean no one would have heard of it. Instead they went all crazy creating groups on Facebook, making profiles, trying to organize wayward ‘boycotts’ of deactivating, etc etc. Result? Straight to the top of CNN’s top stories. “Muslims going crazy again because they are offended”. You know what image comes to peoples minds? Wild-eyed, dark haired crazy mozlims brandishing swords against freedom. Now let me ask you, who’s image is this? It’s not theirs. It’s ours – because that’s the image we put out.

A Muslim-American woman won the Miss USA contest. The media has been going crazy writing about how it’s an AYRAB AMERICAN MOZLIM that won. Can’t figure out what they’re so amazed about. And then I wonder why they’re making such a point of it. Proud that the US can exploit and sexualize Muslim women as part of the FREEDOMS that the rest of the so-called-world envies eh? Uh huh.

I listened to two Khutbahs this week on “the importance of obeying your parents”. Now I’m all for obeying the parents but we’ve been listening to this kind of stuff on repeat, for YEARS (yeah I know they were trying to drum it into us) But you know what’s totally missing? All the Khutbahs on parents oppressing their children. Which is sooo common.

What oppression you ask? Forcing them to dress a certain way, talk a certain language, meet their academic/career expectations, their behavior expectations, their “Islamic” expectations, to marry a certain person, have their life a certain way and etc. and so on. And where has it led us?? A totally messed up youth that drink, take drugs, party, have relationships, have sex,  and etc. and so on. And no, it isn’t because they “don’t obey their parents”. That’s actually a symptom and not the root! We have way more complex problems that are never addressed. And never addressed to parents. When are they/we gonna wake up? I’d like to write an open letter to parents one day as a blog maybe. Anonymously so I don’t get killed I think ;)

Lastly, I heard about how a few aunties and uncles I know are working really hard matching up this 19 year old girl I know from another city. She’s pretty, very white, thin, very quiet, and outwardly “religious”.  She’s had proposals since she was 12 (serious) and all the guys in her community like her. And I do mean ALL the guys. (She’s the “perfect girl” archetype if you’ve read my other blog posts. The one all guys like because they “think” she’s perfect.)  So anyway, yes, apparently all the girls approaching old age spinsters here that aren’t so “perfect” can just fend for themselves. I mean seriously. Out of all the people in the world that need help trying to find someone, she ain’t it!! (I actually hope they succeed because while she’s around she’s a fitnah to most of the guys. They all fall in love and get rejected and what not and they get messed up and end up marrying their cousins/girls from back home and don’t bother to consider anyone else around her.)

On the web we have new releases from all the Muslim orgs on stuff like ‘finding the right match’ or ‘getting married to the right person’. Pretty generic type lectures that are so blah, blah, blah. Another generic rinse, repeat cycle that never addresses our real problems. In the meantime, really trying to help sisters get married and addressing why they aren’t getting married is ignored.

How long are ppl going to deny that this is a problem in our Ummah. Everyone seems to shrug it off and say ‘Oh well everyone marries someone’ so why worry about it. And then they don’t bother to see the 50% divorce rate, the sisters that marry non-Muslims, rampant (and I’m going to say rampant) Zina among the youth, and all the marriages of ppl marrying the completely wrong person for them. Seems like we can’t figure out new school Halal ways of finding someone for marriage living in the west. And all these other problems are resulting. So far the only person I know that has ever addressed this issue in any real way is Imam Zaid in his article on chivalry.

Well then…an interesting week… signing off and a Jumah Mubarak and bebzi  to y’all for readin’. Ws.

8 Comments

  • Awesome. Jannah, first off, I can testify that you’ve never judged _anyone_. I know, cause you never judged me. :) For which, y’know, I’m appreciative.

    Here in Saudi, I get these young men who ask me how come I’m not out there converting all those Americans to Islam. I kinda laugh in their faces. First, I have to explain that conversion isn’t like snapping your fingers, and second, I explain that I’m too busy dealing with the state of my own deen. If they’re so fantastic, I suggest they run off and be all evangelical about it. *sigh*

    As for your points about the constant recycled speeches, I utterly agree. All parents oppress children, and while I grant that most parents want their children to do well, a blind following of everything they tell us to do is a a bad idea ™. We, as people, are responsible for ourselves. Allowing our parents to direct our every action is giving up the free will that Allah (swt) gave us, and I consider _that_ unislamic. So, there’s my .02

  • Salaam

    What does it mean to judge someone?
    Should I not give naseeha to someone or encourage the good and forbid the bad? By offering naseeha am I judging them to be sinners or something?

    This is an honest question – I didn’t grow up here so I don’t have a handle yet on this being judgmental business.

  • Also if I don’t want to be judgmental am I not allowed to have an opinion? If someone is doing X, am I not allowed to think that’s bad or that it could be done in a better way?

  • Thanks Shaari, some ppl know me better than others i believe :) It’s ironic but aren’t ppl who think i’m judging them actually judging me to be a certain type of self-righteous person that goes around judging others!!??

    So about converting… I don’t think our job is to convert anyone. It’s to show ppl the true teachings of Islam by firstly living it ourselves and then by sharing it with others. Whether they convert or not is up to them and Allah’s guidance. Honestly I would rather have a world where everyone knows what Islam truly is about and respects it. I do not ever expect everyone to become Muslim ever. There are always ppl who will not accept it for whatever reason and that is fine.

    BrownS that’s the problem. naseeha is taken as a ‘judgement’ when it’s just straight up naseeha. opinions also can be taken the wrong way.

    I think like everything u do in life, u will have ppl that love u, ppl that hate u, and the on the fence ppl. in internet world those are ur fans, ur haters and the lurkers ;-)

  • mashallah… Direct to the point.

  • Salaamu’alaikum,

    What you said about ignoring what is happening on Facebook, doesn’t hold good in this case. What we need to ignore and get excited about is EVERY OTHER person who shows hatred against muslims. No, we shouldn’t and can’t do that. It is impossible. Similarly, there are hundreds of things pervasive on the internet, speaking despicable things about Islam and our Prophet pbuh…. and we still don’t do anything about it, rather cannot and should not. Ignore them with patience and work on your da’wah unaffected. BUT, with Facebook ALLOWING such a page to exist AGAINST their terms, is something we cannot ignore. These days before we do anything else on the internet, we check our Facebook account. It’s become a rage… almost a necessity. You love facebook. You almost cannot live without it. Now, how can you continue to deal with something that gives permission for such BS about beloved prophet saws to exist? It is like you talking to someone or benefiting someone who regularly, daily insults your prophet to your face and you still ignore it? Is this how little you love your prophet? No! We know that Facebook gets profit for its members visiting it. Do you want to congratulate people and give them money for insulting our prophet? They know how sensitive this issue is and still they don’t do anything about it? There’s a hadith which says we should stop something evil with our hands, if not, then with our tongues, even if not that, then at least feel bad in your heart about it. Here, feeling bad is not enough, you should cut your ties with Facebook as a result of feeling bad about it. Because as long as you are associated with it, you accept their rubbish rule of “freedom of expression” which allows for such filthy pages to exist. There are times when you have to ignore similar things…times where you need to act! But the popular/modern opinion these days seems to be “ohh… i am not emotional, i am not going to give a knee-jerk reaction…”! This is not knee-jerk. We have first reported the page, and as a result of inaction on part of facebook, we are giving them a fitting response. This is the least that you can do. Think about it.

  • salaams jannah

    first off..i just came across your blog again after a while..this is my 2nd comment. you’ve got some really good/beneficial content up here..thanks for your service

    regarding filial piety (birr ul walidayn) there is indeed benefit in following them..even when they’re wrong in respect to non-fard matters. this is derived from the Quranic ayah “Be grateful to Me and your parents; to Me is the [final] destination.” [31: 14-15] and just about all the scholars of fiqh are on the same page regarding this. of course the time this doesn’t apply is when they prevent one from fulfilling their deen and beneficially the faraid.

    i completely agree that a lot of parents need to get their acts together..and sometimes i yearn that the same focus was placed on parents to raise their children in a wholesome islamic fashion in the same way that so much emphasis is placed on children obeying their parents – but to say in a blanket fashion that “Forcing them to dress a certain way, talk a certain language, meet their academic/career expectations, their behavior expectations, their “Islamic” expectations, to marry a certain person, have their life a certain way and etc. and so on” is oppression is a bit overreaching. i personally feel that children not adhering to their parents’ commands – even if they are wrong – is a huge factor in the dismal state of the “wild yooth” today. and yes, unfortunately it’s all indicative of deeper ailments

    again, its def not a walk in the park.. a lot of times for us here in the west our quintessential test is actually how we deal with our parents! we’re blessed enough that we don’t have to throw stones at tanks..face racist oppression at checkpoints..or be in the face of physical harm everyday just bc we’re muslims (most of us at least)..so i feel that a lot of our character defining struggles are going to be in the domestic context to separate the jannah-bound (ppl who make it through the island to the light) from those who still have work to do.

    thought i’d follow your rant with one of my own. this advice is to myself first and foremost by all means.

    keep up the great bloggin!

  • Assalaaualikum everyone,
    It is nice to read opinions of people with different minds ,upbringing,culture,place and exposure.Indeed we have freedom of expression and it is our right to execute it.But let us make sure that this very freedom of expression does not become the means to vent out our frustrations and we get away with not taking the responsibility of our views.
    It has not been unnecessarrily said that we should mind our tongue,actions and dealings with others…we are humans and not animals..in fact even animals have some innate rules within their life which they diligently follow….
    I would like to drive home the point that we cant keep doing as we like just in the name of freedom….we were,are and will be always responsible for our actions…we may or may not accept it but the fact is that what ever we do and howmuch ever we deny it… ppl around us do get effected by it.
    As our prophet (pbuh)had said that if a person even passes by the coal shop he will have some coal dust settled on him and he will become dirty,where as if a person just passes by a perfume shop he will carry some scent with him and it will be pleasing for himself and others as well….
    Bottom line is …believe in yourself and the ability Allah has given you ,try and count your blessings,(will actually no one can do as they are many…),be thankful to Him and utilise these abilities for your own selfish motve-that is gaining a place in Jannah..which I am sure every one wants..!Afterall our motive in life is to live it as a peaceful journey towards heaven…and it’s biggest reality is DEATH.We all have to face it….so let us all prepare for Death and life after that.
    Jazaakallahukhair.
    This was my random thought for the week!