Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Reply to a Blog Post

A person wrote a post that was a personal rant of sorts, shaming women she sees who don't dress in a way she deems appropriate for the mosque. The main idea was "Do what you want, but don't enter the mosque like that!" and the words "Shame on you" were actually used. I had written a response to that post a while ago because I felt pretty upset that people like this woman (and most people who replied) feel this way. As far as I could tell from the post itself, she doesn't act on these thoughts (meaning, they don't actually drive these women out of the mosque) but isn't it an indication of the sad state of the community when you're looking down on fellow Muslimahs based on their dress choice? What else do you know about them? NOTHING.

This relates a lot to my previous post. Actually, the quote in the previous post made me think a about this situation. Here was my reply to the post:

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Giving kind advice to a person who asks for it is great and I think it was what you were doing with that new Muslim, but the rest of this post makes me feel very uncomfortable.

I don't wear hijab outside of the mosque. I personally like to come to the mosque dressed with a long skirt and longish top and make sure I have a scarf covering my chest. Other women at my mosque wear shorter scarves but slightly more modest tops than me. Others arrive with a t-shirt and no hijab and borrow an abaya and scarf from the mosque to pray in and others wear overgarments.

Not everyone wears the hijab you describe as appropriate but some do. And still I think everyone feels welcome and comfortable overall at the mosque. As they should! There is no division between the women who don't wear hijab and those who do. A big priority of mine in my Islam is to support unity despite differences. Whether a person is wearing hijab "improperly" or not at all, or is wearing niqab or whatever she is wearing, and for whatever reason (not ready, doesn't believe it's obligatory, etc.), I can only hope they can feel just as welcome and just as "Muslim" as anyone else in the community. I extend this idea of unity towards Sunnis, Shias, progressives or any other “type” (branch, denomination, sect) and the things you say and the way you talk about the women at your mosque who you don't approve of gives NO feeling of wanting to be united with them as Muslimahs and it saddens and upsets me.

I also wanted to give a bit of positive here... I think it's likely that most people you see at your mosque are actually dressed at least a degree more modest than they would in their outside clothes and that is a really good thing in and of itself, even if you don’t believe they meet requirements. It’s also likely that they have no bad intentions in dressing like that and that they don’t mean disrespect to you or the mosque or to their God and that should count for something. Only Allah knows though.
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Here is a link to an article called "Being Religious without Being a Jerk" again from the Suhaib Webb website. This article was not something I had any intention to link to in my response to this blogger (and I am not trying to call her a jerk - I didn't decide the title of the articel!) but it fits with the theme so I think it's a good moment for me to post it.

2 Comentários:

JaLpArI - tHe MeRmAiD said...

i like you so much :)

Becky said...

Love this - really enjoyed the article as well!

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