Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Islamic Hatred

Okay, not long to go now before my holiday!

I just happened to stumble across a website though and was so disturbed by it that I thought I should discuss this. The site is: http://www.islamreview.com/ and it is based on a Christian group basically just mocking Islam without ANY proof. I read the guestbook where people are constantly bringing up false facts on Islam (ie. someone said men can marry an unlimited amount of servants!) .

I would never go around mocking other people's religions. Sure, I discuss religion with friends here and there & find it interesting (although it doesn't necessarily mean I agree with them). I also tell them more about Islam as well as clear up any misconceptions they may have. But never do we EVER disrespect each other's religions in any way. That website did exactly that.

A lot of the people seem so afraid of Islam spreading and taking over the world that they feel they have to convert Muslims over to Christianity to "save them". They feel they are doing Muslims a favour. Well let me tell you - Muslims don't need converting & generally even if a Muslim is a non-practising Muslim, they will still never leave the fold of Islam (from what I have seen through various people). Deep down they are still believers. I was once approached by a lady (at a train station -- there is something with me and trains!!) who totally freaked me out. She came up and whispered to me "Jesus is Saviour". I was so irritated by that because, well for one, I'm not a fan of strangers whispering in my ear (even if I did have my headscarf protecting my ears from her), but two, I don't appreciate total stranger "preaching" to me. I have no problems discussing religion but there are certain tacts that someone must take whilst approaching such a sensitive and personal topic.

The Quran states, (2:256):

Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands
out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in God hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And God heareth and knoweth all

These Muslim-haters that claim to be people of Faith should try promoting peace and tolerance rather than religious hatred. It is people like them that start wars. There is no compulsion in religion!! We are all "People of The Book" after all. Each to their own.

Finally, you cannot force religion upon anyone. And if these Christians from that website believe they are bringing Muslims closer to Christianity by blatantly lying about Islam then they have another thing coming.

In closing, a verse from the Quran, (10:99):

Wilt thou then compel mankind, against their will,
to believe? No soul can believe, except by the Will of God....

May God bless you all.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Holiday Time!!!

I will be most likely neglecting to write any blogs over the next few weeks as I am travelling overseas for a holiday.

I am taking a diary/journal with me to jot down highlights of my trip so upon my return I will hopefully write some posts about my adventures.

Gee I am finding it hard to concentrate at work. I am doing everything BUT working. I have so much to think about right now & so many last minute things to organise.

I have heard that once people come back from long holidays they find it hard to settle back into their normal routine lifestyle...

I have a feeling I will never recover.

(I am too easily distracted!)

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Wearing Hijab (Headscarf)

A Muslim female who wears the headscarf (hijab) is often stared at in western cultures. The stares we receive are not of a sexual nature, yet more of a curious nature.

I will share some more information on my experiences with wearing hijab in my upcoming blogs. I decided to start wearing hijab 5 years ago and have experienced the most enjoyable years of my life ever since. I cover everything except for my face and hands.

For now I will provide some background on what the hijab means and why Muslim females choose to cover up rather than ‘bare all’.

The word hijab is derived from the Arabic word hijaba literally meaning to "hide from sight or view", and "to conceal". In English the word for hijab is the 'headscarf'. The appearance of a Muslim female is hidden so that her intelligence and mind are her main assets. It encourages men to respect pious women whose main focus is to worship God and obey His commands. She does not depend on her looks to get her places nor is she judged on her looks. Muslims believe that when they die they will take nothing with them except for their good & bad deeds.

There are many different versions of the hijab, yet mainly it covers a Muslim female's hair yet sometimes it includes covering ones face except for ones eyes (known as niqaab).

The hijab is worn so that Muslim females dress modestly and is a requirement of all Muslim females past the age of puberty. The Muslim holy book, the Quran states that females should dress in accordance with the hijab. Males are also required to dress modestly as well except they are not required to cover their hair (as their hair is not seen as 'attractive' as female hair is).

As it is stated in the Quran: "O Prophet! Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them. That will be better, so that they may be recognized and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful." [33:59]

To be continued.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Wacky Moments

People have weird tendencies in this world and I never thought I would be one of them until I sat down and thought it through the other day. I guess everyone has their own lil issues - perhaps it is their insecurities, them being depressed or having mood swings, a warped sense of humour, emotional upsets and sometimes even just having too much spare time can bring out the wackiest in people. Sometimes superstitious beliefs may bring on what others would claim to be 'weird' rituals. Just take 'knocking on wood' as an example. Let's just hope one day the wood doesn't knock back at them. That will really freak them out. Maybe Michael Jackson started an epidemic because it seems weird tendencies are all the rage. And if it isn't weird tendencies that people have, it may just be moments of pure insanity, annoying habits they possess or irony that occurs now and then in their lives.

Just catch a train on any line in Melbourne and you will see weirdness in all of its splendour. On my way to uni I seriously used to keep a tally in the front of my diary of how many weird people I would come across. Without fail, pretty much every day I would come across someone who was either doing or saying something extremely different to what one would say blends in with the 'norms of society'. What is it with trains though? Trains attract all walks of life. They walk, they are weird and boy oh boy are they wonderful. The weird and the wonderful come out to play. I used to claim that I hated catching trains however I think deep down I was always fascinated with my journey. The 'unknown' factor came into it with each ride. Whilst waiting on the platform in the morning I would secretly wait in anticipation for my train to pull up. Thoughts would rush through my head as to whom I would come across that day. My eyes would dart, palms sweat and head twitch in excitement. Well maybe not, however now that these days I am a non-train commuter (and now a disgruntled road-raging traffic hating environmentally damaging pollution making driver) I have more time to reflect and make it out that my train journeys used to be fun filled, dangerous and exciting. I guess they were in a way. Maybe my life is nowadays somewhat lacking the thrill of public transport. With that thought in mind, maybe I should catch a train into work tomorrow.

As to my adventures on trains, I think the worst case I came across was a lady who was in a cult who was quoting Captain Cook and his discovery of Australia. She didn't stop there. She also asked me if I thought she was crazy because she could see "men in white trench coats". She decided to sit right next to me (she said she loved my uni bag), as her eyes literally rolled around in circles as she snapped in and out of consciousness. Hmm. My mother taught me an important lesson whilst catching trains. She told me to make sure that I got on carriages that had some females on it rather than an all-male carriage with me being the only female. That played through my head a fair bit. One day I was day dreaming (as usual) then looked around the carriage to find that I was the only female on that carriage. The men looked safe enough - not a piercing or tattoo in sight yet my mother's words always outweigh any bright ideas that my mind is able to brew up. Thank you my dear mum for your sweet words but for the first time ever, I soon realised - she was wrong. I changed carriages, jumping on a carriage where there were 2 females. The carriage contained just these 2 teenage girls, myself, and the sound of my heart pounding out of my chest. The girls were talking when I got on the carriage yet as soon as I sat near them they fell silent. I was looked up and down by these girls - they eyeballed the shoes I was wearing, my jewellery and my clothes. I knew they wanted to take something off me because their dirty eyes told me so. I then did the unthinkable (or the 'thinkable!') and went against my mother's words (God forbid!). I got up in a hurry and headed back to the carriage full of men where I felt safe and sound!

There were also the many cases of people that enjoyed talking and even fighting with themselves. The sight of a one-man fight is something I would pay big money to see. It is extremely entertaining! Who needs to watch the movie Fight Club? Not me. Even if it does mean I miss out on seeing Brad Pitt, *sigh*. Trains are the real deal baby. Or the loud nutters that felt the need to introduce themselves to the whole carriage. They then went on to pick on some poor souls sitting and minding their own business. Constant questions were thrown at those poor buggers and out of sheer politeness each question was answered. It was a stranger bonding session at the least. No more stranger danger fears! These random get-to-know sessions made me feel like I knew these strangers better than I knew myself. Fortunately I wasn't picked on in that particular instance. In general though, it was like these people were drawn to me. "She looks like an easy target...why don't I sit myself next to her and rub some of my weirdness off on her?!". Well congratulations train people, it took a while but...Mission Accomplished.

I do have my own wacky tendencies, yet for the moment, I will keep those to myself :)