Antara Lelaki dan Perempuan
Iman Dengan Cinta
Cahaya Mata; Potret Kasih Ibu dan Bapa
Taught Me Love
and White Doves
Taught Me Love
I want to first tell you, "I love you", you
are my family. I have not forgotten you. It breaks my heart that if you
do not agree with my life choice, that you have chosen to reject me. If
you do not agree with me, then at least respect my decision. If you only
knew how difficult this decision was for me, how difficult it is to be
a Muslim. Especially, a Muslim woman.
Did you ever try to imagine what kind of commitment
it takes to be a Muslim? It is not as easy as you may think. I want to
let you into my mind. I want you to look through my eyes, and just know
if only for a moment how I have felt, what I have dealt with and what it
is like to for me.
Think for one minute about something that
means so much to you, something that you feel so strongly about, that you
are willing to undergo losing your entire family and friends as you know
it. Becoming estranged to the same people that you have known all your
living years. All of a sudden, you are the outcast, the lost soul who doesnít
have enough sense to know what you are doing, everyone is telling you that
you are throwing your entire life away. Think about how strong you must
feel about the actions you are taking.
Not just any actions, mind you, but actions
that take sincerity and a firm belief. Actions that are not to be taken
lightly. Actions with consequences, which include: sacrifice, loss, humiliation,
degradation and racism, to name only a few. Continue to think about something
in your life that means this much to you. Would you be willing to sacrifice
your career? Money? Your new car? Your house? Would it be easy for you
to give up many of the pleasures that this life has to offer? Think about
your family. How would you handle losing your entire family for this something
that means so much to you. No longer are you wanted to even talk for a
while, for fear that you might mention this something that means so much
to you. You mention it, why? Because it is the something which you base
and dedicate your entire life to. Of course, if talking means to discuss
the things that means so much to others, you should not be offended, you
should only be quiet and listen. After all, it is important to them. Maybe,
they might bring up something they heard on the news, the something that
you dedicate your entire life to, but do not disagree nor tell them what
you know from hands-on research and personal experience only listen, because
the TV knows more, and so do they. You must realise, as well, that because
of this something you have chosen, you no longer have a right to discuss
or comment on any matter about the city, state or country you have spent
your whole life in, if you do you now are told (instead being respected
for an intelligent opinion) you should be expelled from the country.
Think about going to the store just to pick
up some bread. As you get in your car and drive down the road someone begins
screaming curse words at the very sight of you, dressed according to this
something that you believe so firmly about, probably they think that you
donít understand them but you do, and all too well. Just get used to it,
it happens quite often. Also, remember that you are oppressed and you are
looked at with pity and contempt, as an oppressed woman having no mind
of her own. All this, even though this something is what you chose, what
you live everyday not by force, but because you believe it is right.
Keep all of this in mind as you are driving
in your car. Walking into the store, you feel all eyes are on you all of
the sudden you hear laughing you think to yourself, they arenít laughing
at me, are they? But of course, you know better, because every time you
leave your house, people are constantly either making fun of you or cursing
you, one of the two. All because of this something you love. At the bread
aisle, you notice the grocery store security guard seems to be following
you up and down each aisle in the store, when you look in his direction,
he discreetly glares at the kitty litter boxes on sale, not wanting to
give himself away. As you get to the cashier, ready to check out you notice
how courteous the cashier is to the woman in front of you.
Donít get your hopes up, there will be none
of that when it is your turn. They really donít care, How are you doing,
today? They just take your money, and glare at you. Never mind, you are
on your way home. In your car you notice your gas gage and panic a little,
its on empty, and you need some gas, but donít chance it, do not stop if
you were to try to pay for the gas, even though you could be waving your
money, they will most likely assume that you are there to rob them. It
is better to go straight home, home is comfort. By the time you get home,
hoping for relief, you notice a crowd of kids around your house, and wonder
what they are up to. After you get in the house, someone starts knocking
at your door. You answer the door, but no one is there. You walk outside
to get the mail, and the kids run from behind the corner of your house
yelling, "You donít belong here!" A while later, the teenagers in the neighbourhood
decide to join in on the fun by standing in your driveway and cursing you,
as you are standing inside your own home. And this is only the beginning
of a day in your life, but wait, thereís so much more... Now stop and think.
Is there anything that you love so much?
Well, you may ask, is it worth it? I will
tell you without hesitation: Yes, it is. All that and more. Because this
something, Islam, is my way of life, my love, my peacefulness, and my hope.
You may think, "That doesnít sound very peaceful, being harassed and all."
But it is. Not the harassment, of course, but the purpose behind it. The
reasons that I dress as I dress, and I live in the manner I have chosen.
And I want to say again, do not think for a second I take this lightly.
I believe and know this way of life to be right and true.
If you cannot be happy for me, at least be
content to know that you have raised someone that stands firm in what she
believes. Not just a blind follower, not just one of the crowd, not someone
who will be swayed at the drop of a hat. If you cannot support me in my
decision, then be satisfied to respect me for my convictions, morals and
values. Not an immoral, vulgar, and dishonourable life. Know that what
I believe in, Islam, is not something I believe in because itís the popular
thing to do, or that it the best way to Gain Friends and Influence People.
Realise, this is not a phase I am going through and I am not an over-zealous
fanatic. I am striving to be the best Muslim that I can be. That is something
that is not easy, but I believe that it will lead me to Paradise if I strive
hard enough, and stand firm on the beliefs that "There is nothing worthy
of worship but God alone, associating no partner with Him." Where was it
that I learned that I should strive to be the best I can be, and to try
my hardest to stand firm on the things that I believe are just and truthful?
Hey, wasnít that you? Didnít you teach me that?
ó A New-Muslimahs Letter to Her Family ó