By Sanniah Hassan
In times like these when the western world is largely bent upon blacklisting Muslims left right and center, for personal, political or other reasons, we need more people coming forward to deny the claims put forth by the media.
We need Muslims above all else to present their actions instead of arguments to prove that Islam is a religion of peace. In fact, that all religions are religions of peace, because no religion targets another as the enemy. It is the personal and political agendas that promote that ideology. While on the topic, I came across a YouTube channel recently, by the name of mummychannel.
This channel is maintained by Clare [the Youtuber] who posted a video discussing the lives of Muslims a few weeks back. She has spoken positively with regard to Islam and Muslims, based on her personal experience that Muslims are good, kind-hearted people. She admits that most of her views on Muslims are shaped by the actions of her husband who is a Muslim. She begins by discussing the most significant, the Muslim concept of God, “Allah” as we refer to the creator. She explains that although non-Muslims tend to confuse Allah with something other than God, for Muslims Allah is the One and only God. She then goes on to discuss, that Muslims irrespective of any reason are charitable towards others throughout the year but, especially in the holy month of Ramadan. She gives an example of a Muslim man she randomly met who helped her out when her car broke down. She says that when she tried to repay him for his kindness he refused saying that he was trying to do good things during his fast.
“One thing I learnt is that women have more power”
Furthermore, she continues by saying that it was because of that man she learned another good thing about Islam, that Muslims try to go out of their way to be helpful towards those in need especially during Ramadan. One of the most important points highlighted by her in the video is that of women’s rights in Islam. She states, “One thing I learnt is that women have more power” she elaborates by pointing out that a woman’s acceptance of the expected marriage during the nikkah [marriage] ceremony is of utmost significance compared to that of a man’s. She leads into the point by referring to the rights given to women in and by the western world as compared to their rights in Islam which were awarded to them approximately 1400 years ago. This is interesting because the rights afforded to women in today’s world though liberating are not as great a movement as in Islam because Victorian writers such as Jane Austen have also time and again mentioned in their books how women were not allowed right to property and inheritance unless there was a brother in the family in which case, the inheritance would go solely to the brother unless he wished to share with his sister(s). For instance in Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Bennet has only daughters who are expected to marry well to-do eligible bachelors if they wish to gain an inheritance because what their father has they can never own unless they marry a distant cousin who will otherwise have claim to everything.
The fourth argument she raises is the concept of “halal”. She clarifies that halal is not something only restricted to food for Muslims as is the preconceived notion of many non-Muslims. Rather as she explains from her experience of her husband, halal can also refer to ones way of dressing as well because halal is a term denoting of the fact that you can or cannot do something such you can or cannot eat so and so, or wear so and so et cetera. Her last argument; is the basis for scientific facts that are being proven today [or since the last few centuries] but, have in fact been mentioned in the Quran about 1400 years ago with the advent of Islam. To explain she discusses Prophet Muhammad (SAW) as a man who lived 1400 years ago was basically uneducated [under the standard of education in the civilized world today] had absolutely “no scientific background” yet; it was this man, the Prophet (SAW) who came out with scientific facts that are now being proven science.
Videos and message such as these should be promoted and made viral as it is people like Clare who go out of their way to prove wrong the stereotypes created by the Western media against any one religion, nation, race and people et cetera. Such people should be appreciated for their efforts in trying to take on such a heady task.