Thursday, September 27, 2007

Cultural Dedication Creates Division???

My husband came home from the mosque tonight with news that he had been invited to yet another Ramadan event. Really I'm happy for him, it must be nice to go to these types of things. Of course, me never being invited to anything that has to do with Islam, asked what it was all about. The Saudi Club invited him, they apparently have frequent gatherings where they talk about....hmmm......I really have no idea. They told him to bring the wife, my eyes lit up when I heard this, but I was slowly disappointed. My husband goes on about how they don't speak english and that I may not feel comfortable there. Well of course I won't!! My arabic entails surah al fatiha, salaam and few other words that aren't even enough to form simple sentences. I don't know why I was even told I was allowed to come, I mean what's the point? To stare at a wall? I can do that at home. I don't know any of the women that are part of the Saudi Club and I don't know how they'd feel about me. I'm not saying they will be rude or ignore me, but I wonder should I even go to a cultural club's gathering? It appears to me that it's part of the reason why there is so much division in Islam. Seems to me people need to create Islamic clubs where everyone is allowed and we can learn first hand about other cultures. Why segregate yourself into a cultural group? Islam doesn't teach that.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Alhamdulillah today I'm another year older, I know there are people out there that are going to tell me celebrating birthdays are haram, or are an innovation. Doesn't Islam let us keep our culture unless it specifically goes against the religion?! I'm Canadian and celebrating my birthday is a part of my culture. I am not about to go in debt celebrating my birthday, dinner and flowers is all I ask for (lol only half joking). Islam is about moderation, giving thanks to Allah, and appreciating everyday we are blessed with. Depending where you go to find your information, or should I say which sites you visit, there is evidence for and against celebrating birthdays.

Islamonline states that "Islam teaches Muslim to have a unique character and to be distinguished. A Muslim is weaned on morality and avoiding blind imitation. Islam supports the celebration of a birthday if it is an expression of gratitude to Allah for His bounties, sustenance and blessings in man’s life, as long as that celebration does not include anything that may displease Allah, the Almighty." and gives the evidence that "The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was asked about fasting on Mondays, and he answered: “It is the day on which I was born.” Within the Muslim world you can see there are different styles of dress, different food and other small differences that distinguish us as being part of a certain culture.

On the other end of the spectrum there are those who are against Muslims celebrating birthdays, Islam-qa states that "Besides being bid’ah and having no basis in sharee’ah, these birthday celebrations also involve imitation of the Jews and Christians in their birthday celebrations." I personally do not see how this is following the Christians or Jews, but then again people say not to imitate the hair styles, or dress of the Christians and Jews, but what does that mean nowadays? If you shop at any department store here you'll find clothes suitable for Muslims but designed for everyone, Jew, Christian, Athiest, Hindu ect. Arab Christians and Jews say Salam as a greeting, does that mean we should stop saying salam? No, of course not.

It's not just our actions that Allah (SWT) judges, it's also our intentions. So whether or not you decide to celebrate your birthday know why your making this choice, have an understanding and full faith in your decission, don't believe everything people tell you, do your research, after all "education is incumbant upon all Muslims"

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Stress of it All

Alhamdulillah Ramadan is almost here. I'm not as excited as I was last year, I mean I am excited, but not as much. I want to be in Syria right now, I've said goodbye to my friends ( whom I will miss so so so much ) , I've been to all my appointments and I've taken care of our apartment. I just don't want to be here anymore, it's hard being around my past when I have changed so much. This sounds bad but I don't want to go to the mosque for Ramadan, where I live. I've never been accepted at the mosque and I don't want to be judged as only a "Ramadan Muslim". I've thought about going to another mosque, but the thought of being ignored or possibly judged by other Muslims makes my stomach turn. I am not strong in the Deen, I can take critism from non-Muslims, but definately not from Muslims. I'm sensitive and the slightest thing can hinder my progress, this is one of the things I am working on. InshAllah when I go to Syria no one will know me or my past (it's not really bad, just different). I will have a new start. People judge no matter what, I know that, I have to accept it. Being surrounded by a different environment, different people and my husband's family will inshAllah give me a different outlook and inshAllah will give me the support I oh so need right now.