Yes, I might not be the best person to write on the subject because half-Muslim girls do not wear short dresses and go out on solo journeys and frequent Pubs and Restaurants with boys, noh? *please note the emphasis on pub as that would’ve happened either way regardless of the italics noh*
But this post is not based my religion inclinations, oh no. Like most people on the internet and behind-the-screen heroes, my post is based on others’ observations because, that’s what some of us do best, haha.
But since everyone on the other side of the screen are more than curious on the author’s religious inclinations, let’s get that part done and over with too.
I used to once be fairly religious, yes. No, the head and legs were still uncovered, however the faith was stronger than the Mountain from Game of Thrones. Arguments were still there and questions remained to that which I did not find answers, however, the faith was strong, the practice was strong and overall I felt good.But of course none of this really mattered because the legs, head and pub situations remained the same or a tad lesser than the current degree of things. But then life happened and situations that were beyond my control got in the way to which religion did not provide answers. Or it did, but I was too stubborn to look inwards because like most humans, I found myself looking for someone else to pass the blame to. In order to stop myself from channeling this negative force towards religion that had nothing to do with it, I removed the element all together because religion did no wrong and it was I who was at fault. In retrospect, I’m glad I did what I did despite many a disagreement from the parental forces. Because in my mind, it wasn’t fair to blame something that wasn’t at fault in the first place. Do you know what I mean?
At present though, I incline towards a peaceful life governed by awareness, kindness and love to all people alike because that is what most religions would preach at the end of the day. All people except for a handful though. #BeingHuman #Om
But my story aside, this post is about others who claim to be religious. I mean no offence to any religion by the mention (or non mention) of religious places of worship, but these are the ones who live in mosques, find themselves glued to a pew and could not get enough of the lotus offerings to temples.
In Islam, we have two sources (or more, forgive me if I get my facts wrong) for religious knowledge, so to speak. One is from the Quran and the other from Hadith, which were narratives from Prophet Muhammad (sal)’s life. There was this one Hadith I recall quite well from one of my Islam classes, which was about two brothers. One was a woodcutter (I think, this was long years back) and the other was a man of unconditional devotion to God. The first brother (the woodcutter) would perform his daily prayers, fend for his family and go to work while the second brother would spend his days and nights in the mosque (I am unsure as to whether he had a family to fend for). One day, an observer asked Prophet Muhammad (sal) on who among the two brothers were the most pious and the Holy Prophet said that it was the first one. The observer was surprised and asked him why, for the second brother was constantly praying and within religious premises. The Holy Prophet then explained to him that it was not the number of hours spent in religious worship that was worthy of evaluating ones devotion but also the balance of their religious, household and other responsibilities.
When I first heard of this Hadith I was a child and work, family, career and responsibilities were distant relatives. In fact, my priorities would’ve been getting home, napping, playing Sims and finishing up homework before school the next day. However as an adult now, things fall into perspective and when I see people who fall into the first brother category, I honestly feel proud to either know them or feel tremendously happy for having sane, well-balanced individuals of that nature among us.
But what perhaps angers me the most, as a not-too-religious agnostic person are these overly devout second brother types. I, for some unfortunate reason seem to find myself surrounded by these jokers, or maybe just a few who are large, loud and supposedly-evangelical enough to create a lot of unwanted noise. While I do believe in the freedom of expression and the similar sort of religious freedoms, I also do believe in the age old saying of one’s freedom stopping with another’s nose.
My problem with the overly religious types is not their practice of religion because Heavens forbid, they can do anything with their time and money for all I care. However, my supposed intervention comes in with the overly-religious-sort-who-claims to have unconditional love for God but not for those around them. The sort who could not care if their parents are sick because a place of worship became important or dismiss an innocent child’s request because a fast or some sort of religious activity came into play.
I may not know a lot about religion, but all religions teach us kindness, compassion and to be good to one another. We were made to live with man (and woman) with God in our presence and not to live with God (oh Holier than thou – or so you think) and man (and woman) in our presence.
In this struggle to win the Mr / Ms Most Religious contest, it is important that we not forget the practices of religion and good qualities towards one another, because let’s also not forget that as adults, we have a younger generation and children looking up to us, mimicking us and wanting to be like us.
Should I ever have children to call my own, I think classic “Don’t do Drugs”, “Practice Safe Sex” slogans would change to “Don’t Forget People in the Name of Religion”, “Practice Safe Religious Practices”, lol.