Islam Is Not A Trend
- Lilufa Uddin
Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world with 100,000 converts in Britain alone Now that Ramadan has begun, Lilufa calls out those who she feels are mocking the religion
Today is the first day of Ramadan and Muslims all over the world may be feeling anxious about how they will manage the next 30 days of fasting. During Ramadan, Muslims fast from dawn to sunset, abstaining not only from food and drink, but bodily pleasures. You can imagine how tough this might be, (even for a saint) right? I mean, I’m addicted to roast chicken. I can’t manage a few hours without chocolate, (Reese’s being my favourite, which I buy everyday without fail) and I love listening to DVS. But these are things I’m going to have to give up during Ramadan.
Sawm (Arabic word for fasting) is intended to encourage Muslims to empathise with the less fortunate, and as a result, become more charitable and generous. In addition, we are given the opportunity to train our mind and body to avoid temptation and become stronger individuals. This blessed month is a time, when even non-practicing Muslims make the extra effort to worship Allah and build a stronger connection with him.
What annoys me, is people that take the religion of Islam to be a fashion trend rather than a lifestyle. It is all with due respect if you are making a conscious effort to better yourself as a Muslim, but I find it offensive when people choose what parts to follow.
“How can you swear on Allah’s name just because you missed the bus?”
On Instagram there are prime examples of people who glamourise Islam, for a couple of likes and a saintly facade, rather than commitment to the religion. I have seen many male users, post sexually-related memes about women (which are degrading to say the least) and then the next post will be a meme about Islam/Ramadan. I am sick and tired of people discussing Islam without the basic understanding of the religion or without any level of commitment to the principles it promotes.
What I’ve seen a lot on Instagram particularly, is non-Muslims commenting ‘In Shaa Allah’ underneath peoples’ pictures, which means ‘God willing’ in Arabic. This is wrong and out of context, as it should be ‘Ma shaa Allah’, which means ‘Allah be praised’ and protects one from the evil eye. Seeing things like this makes me angry, as people throw these Arabic terms around without any respect for Islam. Also, I have been hearing a lot of non-Muslims repetitively use the word ‘Walahi’ (swearing oath to Allah) for the most trivial and stupid things, which I find really offensive. How can you swear on Allah’s name just because you missed the bus?
Then, you have celebrities such as Rihanna, sharing half-naked pictures, wearing the hijab in a fashionable and seductive manner. This goes against the point of wearing it which is to appear modest.
As a Muslim, I am touched when others take an interest in my religion, but it’s important that people approach with respect. If people really want to feel inclusive in the month of Ramadan, ask questions, take a genuine interest, try fasting for a day! Maybe then, you will realise Islam is not a joke.