Thursday, August 30, 2007

Oh Kali

My cat Kali (the calico duh lol) had to go for surgery the other day to get some teeth removed. Alhamdulillah she's doing amazingly well after getting seven teeth removed, wish I could say the same for my wallet. Goodbye laptop, goodbye going to Victoria, to see my friends before I leave for Damascus. Goodbye all you can eat sushi. Alhamdulillah she's ok and when I'm gone I sure will miss my baby.
Cats, like other animals are God's wonderful, beautiful creatures. Looking at the example of the Prophet (PBUH) we can see exaclty how important it is to treat our pets with love and respect, especailly our cats. Hadith - Bukhari 3:553, Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar [Also in Muslim, Narrated Abu Huraira]
Allah's Apostle said, "A woman was tortured and was put in Hell because of a cat which she had kept locked till it died of hunger." Allah's Apostle further said, "(Allah knows better) Allah said (to the woman), 'You neither fed it nor watered when you locked it up, nor did you set it free to eat the insects of the earth.' "

Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Day (almost) With My Hijab

I've been Muslim for almost two years now, it will be two years as of September 15Th. I've worn my hijab a few times before, but I took it off, I made no excuses, I knew my obligation. My goal is to stop being a part time hijabi, and I have given myself a September 15Th deadline.

Today I had to go renew my BC ID, for those of you who are not familiar with this, it's a provincial picture ID card. I wore my hijab, I had to have something that showed I'm a Muslim. I wore a simple black scarf made of cotton, nothing special. It was early, about ten in the morning, so the line wasn't really long. I approached the clerk and handed her my old ID card, she had some trouble, she wasn't sure it was me. Then the question came: " Are you wearing that for religious reasons?" Oh boy, I hate these questions, I dread such ignorant questions. A bubbly "yes" I replied. The photo was taken and it was over phew, the little things seem so difficult when you lack confidence in yourself as a Muslim.

My mom, my husband and I sat down for coffee. Still wearing my hijab, I was playing with the small tassels at the end. I do that for comfort I think, the mall was getting busy and I didn't want someone I barely know to ask me questions about what I wore on my head. My nerves got to me, the devils whispers were loud. I went to the bathroom, hoping to be discreet, and turned my hijab into a scarf and wrapped it around my neck. I felt guilty, but I didn't feel strong enough to wear my hijab. Oh God give me strength where I am weak ameen. Errands in and around the mall took only about an hour. We all walked outside to the skytrain, it was a cold, cloudy summer day. I took my scarf and wrapped it around my head, my hijab was back on I felt a bit of relief. We all got on the skytrain, my mom got off first, while my husband and I continued to another mall that had Canada's only H&M clothing store. It just opened yesterday, I knew it was going to be busy, but there wasn't much else to do on a day when the weather makes you just want to sleep all day. We got off the skytrain seven stops later and transferred to an "express" bus. The bus ride was bumpy, and this guy a few rows in front of my husband and I wouldn't stop starring at us. I don't know if this guy was trying to be rude or just trying to figure out why this pasty white girl was dressed like a Muslim. My husband just stared intensely back at him and mumbled obscenities, I eventually did the same.
We arrived at the mall with empty stomachs, searching and searching we found the food!! So many choices we decided to walk around the circuit and see what was offered. In the corner of my eyes I saw another hijabi, I looked at her as she looked at me, waiting for a reaction, any reaction, but a salaam was what I really wanted. There was no reaction just looking, I turned my head away, I was too hungry to give it a second thought. With full bellies we headed over to the much anticipated H&M store. Walking through the mall I felt eyes on me to the right, no I'm just being silly no one's looking at me. Wrong! The eyes I felt on me was another Muslim woman again starring at me, I had enough of it, I turned my head but still felt someone looking at me. I looked back at her still looking at me, I turned away again and thought how sad. Sad because I lack the confidence to say salam to my fellow Muslims, and sad because other Muslims don't acknowledge me as a Muslim. On a brighter note however, I did feel more at ease, more "Muslim" wearing my hijab. I don't know if I'll be strong enough to wear it tomorrow, but inshAllah with each passing day I''l gain more knowledge, more confidence and more strength to fulfill my Islamic obligation.