Wednesday, August 1, 2007

If Another Person Asks Me If I Am Muslim!!! Just sell me some incense!

Once a week I get the question, "Are You Muslim?". Then the second set of questions all revolve around where I am from, where my parents are from and then are my parents Muslim. Oh and don't forget "What is your name?" Like I am impersonating a Muslim WOMAN? Like a name validates your religious beliefs I still can not see the relevance in any of the second set of questions, and I am also appalled at the first question. I am a Muslim woman who wears hijab/head cover daily. I can understand if someone sees a woman in a bun style wrap, because it is a fashion statement in some cases, and I do rock my bun at the beach. Any American who has a television and any person from another country with a television or a newspaper knows that when you see someone with a hijab wrapped around the neck..IS A MUSLIM!!!!!!!

What person who is not Muslim would wear hijab on a 94degree day, and risk people being rude and judgemental jsut 'cause. Now, this brings me to the issue. The other weekend I was in the mall with my girlfriend and we stopped at a vendor. She was obviously from a country which has Muslims. Both my friend and I were covered in the traditional hijab. My girlfriend asked the young lady, "How much for your incense?" She then replied, looking at both of us, "Are you Muslim?" We said yes, and then here is her STUPID STATEMENT. "Where are you from? I have never seen Muslims here in America before."

This chick must be STUPID WOW!!!!!!!!!! Now, why are black American Muslims always questioned about genealogy? Like that is a criteria for any religion. Nobody is asking Madonna who in her family is a Kabalist, so why does it matter that my parents are catholic native born black folks with roots in the south. Islam is a religion and a way of life not a legacy!


Umm Amirah said...

My new answer for 'Are you muslim?' is....'No, but I play on on TV'!!!
Girl it's crazy..but your right..the country and color of my parents is NO importance to my spiritual path.

Samira said...

I'm feeling this rant. Believe me. I can get creative with an hijab...but my hair and neck are almost always covered. Why did I walk into a restaurant last week with my mother (also in a scarf) and my husband (in a kufi). I looked a Muslim young woman dead in the face and said "Assalaamualaikum" as clear as day. She looked at me like I was saying "Screw you!" eyes going up and down on me like I was the craziest thing she has every seen.

Now why is it that a homeless man or a non-Muslim in the know about Islamic lingo hurries to wish me peace when they see me on the streets but a girl wearing hijab and an abaya looks at me like I am something she just scraped off her feet. Now when stuff like this happens to me I wonder if I was light-skinned or of the same ethnicity or wearing abaya would the sister greet me. I have been, right after jumuah, in a prayer outfit and entering a building when a bunch of sisters have come out in abaya and hijab. I have opened my mouth and said "Assalaamualaikum" only to be greeted with the nastiest looks. So sad.

Bottom line: Can't judge a book by its cover. People come to you in all different appearances but it is only a spirit blessed with compassion and respect that can see beyond his/her own tunnel vision. I've learned to be thankful for that stumbling homeless man or that short-skirt wearing corner dwelling teenage girl who is courteous enough to greet me with a smile and wish me peace.