Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Baptism and Aqiqa

For the first time last week, I got the feeling it upsets my mom that I haven't baptized my daughter.

My parents are not practicing Catholics and they don't know I'm Muslim... They know my husband is and that Nora will be raised that way, but with the way they have reacted to things and the fact that they don't attend church themselves (not even for Christmas or Easter or other religious occaisions), I always figured this was something they didn't mind at all. But when I told my mom my cousin was baptizing her baby and asked if she was going, she answered: "If I can't even go to my own grand-daughter's baptism, I won't go to this baby's either!" I guess I am really so lucky that my parents always support me in what I decide and never try to make me feel bad or guilty about anything even if there are more than a few things I'm sure they're not 100% pleased about. They are such loving, caring parents.

The celebration of baptism made me think about the Islamic equivalent: aqiqah! I really would love to have an aqiqah for new baby after he or she is born. I'd love to invite my friends and family, all non-Muslim, into the mosque for a taste of an Islamic celebration. What do you guys think about this idea? How do you think most non-Muslims would feel about attending? There would probably be some Muslim men my husband knows and their wives (who I don't know) but other than that, I imagine it as a majoritarily non-Muslim celebration in a Muslim place... With them not even knowing that I am Muslim. lol.

Our mosque is very small and we know the people who run it personally. There is no real imam. Just a space set up to have Muslims to pray salat. I think it would be great for my feinds and family to learn about Islam and one of the rituals. Aqiqah is charity too so it's always good when they learn about a religion and associate it to charity.

My husband's mom made one for Nora that I wasn't even aware of and that Nora was not there for, but it was in her honor. It's only now that I can see how sweet and caring that was of her. My husband thinks it might be good to do it in Egypt again even if the baby wouldn't be there, or wait until we go when the baby is older, but I'd rather follow the Sunnah of doing it at 7 days (possibly 14 or 21 days) and having the baby there. One of his points is that the meat will be much better charity there than it would be here, but I suggested we send an amount of money in honor of the child to Egypt at that time.

Question though for an aqiqah here in Canada: Where do you get a sheep or lamb?! Is it possible to use packaged halal meat? If I use pre-dead meat not killed for the occaision and send enough money to Egypt for the price of a real lamb, could that compensate? What if we kill the animal in Egypt and distribute it there and have the party in Canada with other food and a webcam for her mother who could be serving the meat and giving it at the same time?

6 Comentários:

Nikki said...

I don't live in Canada, but the fact that you have packaged halal meat astounds me, lol. We don' husband and BIL go slaughter goats or sheep themselves. We have some packaged chicken, and we can get ground beef but not packaged. You tell them how much you want and the grind it up and basically hand it to you in a garbage bag. We have to put it into smaller cookable packages ourselves. :/ I grew up in a household of packaged, boneless, skinless, this and that and I have not been adjusting well to this more "rustic" way of living/eating.

As for the aqiqah, I think it sounds lovely to involve non-Muslim family, after all, it is for the baby. With that being said, I can't imagine my family (very religious) attending anything at a mosque no matter how much I pleaded. (and they know I'm Muslim...)

Anisah said...

Nothing to add, unfortunately we did not have an aqiqa. I did go to one or two, but not where they had non-Muslims. I think it's a good idea, although how about in another place other than mosque? Then non-Muslims may feel more comfortable (as well Muslims may feel uncomfortable with many non-Muslims in the mosque). You can have one in your home, or rent a hall or something, or even at a park when it is warmer.

Just my 2 cents. Let us know what you do!

Candice said...

Aaargggh! Blogger took my paragraphs! I tried to put them back twice... It's so hard to read this way! Sorry everyone...

Nikki: They don't sell it in my town other than the mosque... They get it from about an hour away but it's not bad! It could be manageable for u'd if we had a bigger freezer and got it every few weeks... We don't though and the mosque sells it to make profit to keep itself running but it's not really affordable for every day of the year I find.

My family is not at all religious but I'm not sure what people would be comfortable with... As long as my parents, brother and best couple friends attended, doesn't matter much about the others. The other aspect is the mosque feeling ok about them being there but as I said it's a tiny mosque...

Anisah: It could be an idea to do it elsewhere. If the mosque is okay with my family and the important people in my family feel okay about the mosque, I'd prefer to have it there... But if something doesn't work out I'd love to rent a place.

LK said...

Its a cute idea. Sometimes with parents they just want to have that traditional thing all their friends have gotten. They feel like they are missing out on something you know? So this might help replace that.

You will want to check with your mosque. Some mosques do not allow non muslims through the door (learned that the hard way). There are traditions that believe non muslims are unclean so they can't be in the prayer room. You'll want to make sure your mosque isn't like this. Other consideration is whether or not your women family members will be comfortable covering including scarf while there.

I hope it works out for you dear. You try so hard to blend your life. :)

Candice said...

LK: It could either make them miss baptism more or it could feel like a replacement for them... Considering they don't attend church and probably find the ceremony super boring, it might be the latter!

The local mosque allows non-Muslims. I went as a non-Muslim and I had a friend come once. And women at this mosque sometimes come in for Friday prayer without hijab and they put it on only to pray so they are open to not wearing hijab. I would tell my family and friends that I suggest and recommend that they wear it but it's not obligatory... But of course I'll need to look into everything first.

Jess said...

I definitely think you should do something! You could do a double one too, if you wanted - so your mother would also feel that Nora had something special too.

In the US, we just go out of the city to a farm and ask people if we can buy a sheep or lamb. There are a few that are known in the community and provide them for holidays (especially Eid). We got our info from a friend, but I think you can just call around (?).

I think it's a good idea to have something, non-Muslims or Muslim. It's important to include family from both sides in those special moments! :)

Good luck finding a good way to integrate your families and have a meaningful day!

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