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5 Questions About Islam & Other Things

Written by Theresa Corbin

From the time I started blogging, I have always welcomed questions about Islam, Muslims, or really anything. I was naive. After spending years wading through horrifying emails and comments on this blog and other places, I have realized that many people are not looking for answers to their questions.

They may frame an intense insult, curse, or horrifying suggestion as a questions, but they are not asking anything. 

Q and A

Many askholes are simply looking to express or validate their hate and ignorance to which they so desperately cling. To these people, I would like to say, the best I can do for you is ignore you.

But every now and then a questioner comes along that I feel is sincere. And I want to celebrate those questions and questioners as the bright spot in my writing adventure because the more real questions you ask, the closer we come to understanding each other and building stronger bridges. 

So here are some real questions several different real people have asked in sincerity (edited for length) that I will attempt to answer to the best of my ability.

Q1: Why are you trying to convert everyone to Islam?

A1: I’m not. My only obligation is to convey the message and invite, not convince and coerce. It is up to each person to find the truth of God as they see it. And if they are really seeking in all earnestness, I am sure God will guide them. It is not up to me to guide, nor do I wish for that burden.

In all honesty, I could not care less if more people came to Islam. It would not matter one bit to me if more people apostate from Islam. I will still be Muslim, InshaAllah.

What other people do in their relationship with God is not my concern. My point in creating this blog and writing about Islam, was and is to, yes, convey the message of Islam.

But also, and more important to me, is to bridge the gap between what Westerners think about Islam and the Muslims and what is actually true about Islam and the Muslims. My intention was/is to fill a void, dispel myths, to bring people closer together; since I speak both American and Islamic. 😉

Q2: Abrogation is a big hurdle. Shouldn’t revelation from God apply to everyone, everywhere?

A2: Abrogation. Would you tell a newborn that he or she has to sit up at a the table and eat with a fork and knife. No, of course not. Newborns laugh in the face of orders. But in seriousness, the newborn is not ready. S/he first needs to breastfeed (or bottle feed), then needs a high chair, and so on. The same is true of spiritual growth.

The human cannot just jump into hard core worship and devotion. Sometimes it is too much. Like the Quranic order to not ingest intoxicants. It was a process of revelation, each verse abrogating the earlier one.

First, the revelation was to not come to prayer intoxicated. Then it was revealed that there is a little good in intoxicants, but the bad outweighs the good, so we should avoid it. And finally intoxicants were totally forbidden, abrogating just avoidance and making it a stronger prohibition.

It was a process because quitting intoxicants, such as alcohol, takes time. And because human beings need to be trained to do some things and not just thrown into it. This is the wisdom of God. We cannot say we think it is better or worse how God chooses to guide us to what pleases Him. Sometimes it takes steps to get humans to the right point of capability to do something. This, to me, is a mercy.

This is just one kind of abrogation that I have used as an example. You can read more about it here.

We do not abrogate a verse or cause it to be forgotten except that We bring forth [one] better than it or similar to it. Do you not know that God is over all things competent? [2:106]

Q3: Why do the women have to cover up?

A3: Modesty is a very important principle in Islam in deed and in dress. Men and women are both required to dress modestly. But they each have different areas of the body to cover because, guess what!, they have different bodies.
Each person has to make the choice to be modest in action and appearance if they wish to please their Creator. Or not, free will and stuff, ya know. More to the point of what you might be getting at, to quote Dalia Mogahed, “hijab [modest dress] privatizes women’s sexuality.” To think that women (or anyone) are oppressed by modesty or hijab, as is the mainstream rhetoric, is the same as saying women are only strong if they are sexy in public.
Now I will ask you a question. What real and actual agency have women gained by dressing in tight or less clothing?
To me, the only people gaining anything from women being less modest is men and advertising agencies who use women’s bodies to sell anything and everything.
And the more we show, the more they turn us in to objects to be measured and compared to one another, thought of as toys only for their pleasure, and dismissed as full actualize human beings. And THAT is oppression.

Q4: Western countries are rescuing and taking in Syrian refugees. But the far richer Gulf States are accepting zero. Why?

A4: The problem here is the media, and not that largely Muslim countries are not taking in refugee. They in fact were and are. Specifically in Saudi Arabia, since the start of the revolution in Syria, more than half a million Syrians have been welcomed into Saudi Arabia and provided for.

Check out what other gulf countries are doing and how Gulf States accepting zero refugees is a myth on The Huffington Post. Muslim countries have a long tradition of helping refugees. The Ottoman empire took in Jewish refugees during the Spanish inquisition. It is a Muslim duty to stop injustice and help the oppressed no matter what their religion (and sometimes we fail).

This is a huge problem of perspective when it comes to Western minds. People tend to believe that the media is fairly covering everything that happens. This is seriously just not true. The media has to make money and selling stories of Muslims doing good things just doesn’t sell, so it does not make news. And some times, like in this case, facts and figure are manipulated to fit an agenda.

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Q5: It’s fine to be outraged about injustice, but why are Muslims only outraged about personal slights when people are actually being massacred and enslaved in other parts of the world?

A5: Muslims are facing quite a bit more than just personal slights. And Muslims are outraged when injustice happens to other groups of fellow human beings. It is a tenant of our faith to help the oppressed against the oppressor. It just doesn’t get as much air time on the nightly news in the West.
And sometimes, admittedly some Muslims are self-obsessed and don’t value other people’s struggles. This is personal failing, not Islam. 
A few examples you might have missed: This anti-ISIS protest in London that was not covered by any mainstream media outlet. Or this bus attack stopped by Muslims. Or the Muslims that donated money to the churches burned down in the South.
If you have a sincere question, please feel free to ask in the comments.

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10 thoughts on “5 Questions About Islam & Other Things

  1. Loved this post! My favorite…”askholes” and “I speak American and Islamic.” hahahaa too cute. Anyways you had great answers to some very common questions. I can’t image dealing with all of that hate mail so kudos to you for staying calm and just focusing on real people with real questions 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Beautiful. Thank you. Last night I had a polite n long discussion with a fellow Sri lankan living in the mid East. By 12 on midnight I realised he was a moron.

    Living in a Muslim country with nary a fig leaf to cover his ignorance on things Islam, he freaked out when I, despite his claim of having read two translation of Quran, told him he probably never read the qurans he had as a decor at home.

    Basic knowledge he had none.

    Claimed I was some cloak n dagger kind.

    I pretty much told him all what you’ve said too.. wasn’t, couldn’t be interested in his conversion , just told him to check out if Allah exists to simply check out how his body was made up, created in d darkness of a womb n was it possible that he wasn’t created but simply thrown onto earth. ..?

    Asked if his motor car, just sprang into being. He claimed I was narrow n closed minded. I said he was so open minded that information never stayed in his brain.

    There we parted online. ..I’m a bit tired of moronic behaviour from otherwise educated people.

    Yes, Islam is a gift from Allah; share it; talk about it, n know there are morons out there with whom one says ” salams” and one simply moves on….

    Sent from Samsung Mobile

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry you had to waist your time with that foolishness. May Allah reward you. Often these kinds of people just want to start an argument or they think they are going to explain some lies about Islam. That really gets to me. It’s a total waist of time.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I have come to the same realization that people really have NO interests in learning something but want to ATTACK, TROLL, HATE on our Muslim identity and what’s more outraging is they do it with Muslim women as if we are subservient to them. Good on you to write this, don’t feel alone.
    We are sisters not just in faith only, so I will keep looking out for ya here!

    Like

    1. Thanks, sugar and the same to you. It is kind of disgusting how these trolls attack Muslim woman way more than they attack Muslim men. They have colonized minds, and have another thing coming if they think we are just going to be subservient or scared away. We haven’t come this far in our speaking out by being subservient or easily scared.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Assalamu Alaykum w.w

    Very informative post.

    Regarding the question on converting everyone:

    I feel that we as Muslims should genuinely have a concern for our fellow humans hidayat. Yes, hidayat is in the hands of Allah Ta’ala alone, yet we emulate the example of The Noblest of Creation (SAW) in propagating this message with empathy for mankind. “Perhaps, [O Muhammad], you would kill yourself with grief that they will not be believers.”

    “In all honesty, I could not care less if more people came to Islam. It would not matter one bit to me if more people apostate from Islam. I will still be Muslim, InshaAllah.”

    Secondly, perhaps I have misunderstood you, but is a muslim not naturally pleased at the embracing of Islam of a person and displeased at apostacy? Consider the response of the Sahabah(ra) at the Islam of Umar(ra), and the latter’s grief of a Muslim trader apostasizing in Syria so much so that he was willing to give up his Khilafat for the return of that one person to Islam.

    May Allah Ta’ala forgive us if we have erred in any way, and may he accept your efforts.

    Was-Salaam,

    Bilal

    Like

    1. Walaikum Asalam, Thank you for your concern, brother. What I meant by my statement is that it wouldn’t change my faith in Allah if there were more or less Muslims in the world. If someone is guided or misguided, it does not affect me and my relationship with Allah. That was the intention of my statement. Perhaps it was too strong of a statement. But honestly my only concern on this blog is if people will at least listen to the truth about Islam if Allah allows me to tell it. I am not the best of people like the sahaba and the Prophet (pbuh) who cared deeply for mankind and their guidance. Of course it would make me sad or happy if someone left Islam of came to Islam respectively, but I have learned long ago I cannot invest too much emotion in it.

      Liked by 1 person

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