“Islam is the only religion that retains its weltanschauung; nonetheless I wouldn’t like to live in an islamic state.”
I remember having this conversation, feeling the awkward fusion of both defensive and combative. He was the only son to a wealthy Indian family, who read both medicine and law (locally and in the UK), and had almost be deserted by the family when he married a French alien. Surely his view, at least as Malaysian, mattered. He was no longer professing any belief. So it did not matter to me if his opinion on religion may be discounted by ungodly sentiment, I was not going to impose him my belief, and he wasn’t forcing me accept his independent view whatsoever.
Otherwise I would have lectured him the peaceful tenets of our religion, as the achievement of an Islamic state (perfectly. That state bordering India need not apply) would make him and other Malaysians happy contented citizens.
But the real problem rests within the scope of understanding the religion by Muslims themselves. Oft they see themselves as untouchables. And even more so the ones with religious knowledge will use it to back up things to condone sinful things. One must always see that every step they take has consequences. And Allah knows everything.
Word of caution: I do not accept what he said, but I merely understand.
I understand his fear.
Fear of the unknown. Things that he had not understood. Things that he could see as a threat.
Don’t think any real practicing Jew would want me to feel that way.
Vice versa, but how come they see a 20 year old female as a threat?
It all has to do with politics. How the worldview has shaped who is dangerous, what to fear, who to hate. I remember a friend of mine (Muslim Malaysian female) who studied at Harvard who had came unprepared for a Halloween party. She was donning the usual scarf and blouse and a backpack. So when she was asked who she might be for Halloween costume, she jokingly said “a suicide bomber”. Later she related the story to me, I was surprise not many could see it a joke.
This is not merely asking you or anyone else to sell your belief out to others just so we all can live happily ever after. You see, living happily ever after, is an ongoing process. When no compromise can be measured with so many differences, can we atleast acknowledge it and accept that the differences are what we are? But we shall not use our upperhand (who says we have it anyway?) to suppress it. It looks ugly.
Like how ugly France looks (at least to me lah) when the Jumuah are banned from praying on the streets. Demographically, the influx of melting pots to France rests no wonder that Muslims community are quite large, but sadly, they are not respected. Their rights to profess and practice Islam beautifully and peacefully is denied. If you have Muslim French friends, ask them how they feel, and I’m sure they wished for a more acceptable authority.
Islam is a religion of peace.
Peaceful as it should be you could be rest assured that you can let guards down in the protection of Allah, when it comes with dealing with other beliefs. It is not by being forceful or overzealous or over righteousness can Islam be reflected beautifully on others, but through gentle, hikmah and wisdom.
Just like how the Prophet (sallahu alahi wasalam) did.