Thursday, 3 May 2012
If it's not Islam - then what is it?
You know how every time something awful happens under an Islamic government / family / law - and the world rises up in arms and starts to demand explanations? And how the Muslim community respond with something along the lines of: "thats not Islam", or "there is no basis for that in the sunna" or "the Prophet (pbuh) never did that" etc etc.... Aren't you left with an empty space in your heart where deep down, you (as a Muslim person, in the community, part of the community - born, raised and grown up in the community) seriously recognize that whether its in the sunna or hadith or Quran or not - there IS a very powerful link between Islam and the acts in question? Its no joke really. We all know (especially within our respective communities) - that whatever your particular community is (be it Saudi, Moroccan, Turkish, Pakistani etc etc) you KNOW what happens. You know the rules that you grew up with and you know their consequences and you know that the reasons for them growing up is that its our religion its our religion - you know it inside out. Then you grow up. And you start reading, and you research and you study. You need to make sense of it. and you go on this roller coaster journey: this love hate kind of affair with your beliefs and your belief system and you work hard to make sense of it all. You go into conflict, you resolve. COnflict, resolve, conflict resolve and you go through this internal battle with yourself. You think things that you will never say out loud and you entertain thoughts that scare you. You keep it to yourself. There is no way anyone can ever know that thought crossed your mind: it would be like admitted something AWFUL. You worry about the consequences to your thoughts. You worry about the consequences of not thinking them. Eventually, you are tooled up with enough information to interact with the world - you have more than what your parents and your community taught you....you have real knowledge now, real reading, real stuff,. Then BANG! Shit starts kicking off all over the world and you witness and you hear many evils - all leading back to the same place: your religious community, your community abroad, your religious community domestic - and you hear yourself saying, out loud and with confidence: "thats not Islam", "thats not Islamic", "thats culture not religion" But deep down you know. You feel it - deep in that place you will never say out loud, locked tightly and hidden: you know there is a link. If its not Islam, you ask, then what is it? And you seek, and you seek and you seek. But the truth is that if these things are not Islam, but Muslims all over the world are practicing it.... then who and what are these people we keep referring to muslims, and their practice: what is it?