There’s a lot of talk right now about “Muslim Extremists” and “Islamic Fundamentalists” vs. “Peace-Loving Muslims.”
We use phrases like “some Muslims” or “Most Muslims” or “not THAT kind of Muslim,” etc, etc.
So, it seems to me, with all the lines we’re needing to draw and clarifications we’re having to make, the word “Muslim” doesn’t really tell you much by itself. You have to dig a little deeper to figure out what people really mean by that label.
There’s a pretty big difference between the Fundamentalists and the tamer, westernized version.
Are you a Muslim who takes the Quran literally, or are you basically a Christian with a Middle Eastern name?
We all know there are terrorists who take the Quran literally when it says: “The infidels are your sworn enemies” (Sura 4:101). “Make war on The infidels who dwell around you.” (Sura 9:123) “When you meet The Infidels in the battlefield, strike off their heads.” (Sura 47:4)
But, on the other hand, a Peace-Loving Muslim would probably prefer meditating on “Love your neighbor as yourself”
…even though that particular verse comes from the Christian holy book.
What’s the one belief that ties ALL Muslims together? What is foundational to practicing Islam?
It’s tough to pin point because it could be anything on a spectrum from, “Kill The disbelievers wherever we find them” (Sura 2:191) to the belief that all humans are equally valuable–even though Mohammed himself failed to treat women and children this way.
Both murder and compassion could qualify as “Islam.”
The only thing that seems to matter is whether a person calls him/herself a Muslim. Even if you were born to Catholic parents in Kalamazoo and never stepped foot in a Mosque–if you connect with Islam on a deep level, then you get to qualify as Muslim and argue that Islam is peaceful.
You just have to say, “I’m a Muslim,” and you are one.
…which brings me to my announcement:
I’m a Muslim now, guys.
No, I’m not THAT kind of Muslim.
You don’t have to worry about me flying a plane into a building or wearing a bomb onto a loaded bus somewhere. Muslims like me believe in meekness and tolerance!
I’m a Jesus-and-Bible-loving, Modern Day Muslim.
I believe in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. (You know: basic Jesus teachings…) But I also really want to write a blog post about how my burkah causes me to suffer discrimination. And I love the idea of facing East when I pray…
So…I identify as Muslim. Obviously.
Just remember, mine is a Religion of Peace. (I have absolutely no problem ignoring the hundreds of places the Quran encourages violence.)
Would anybody in their Politically Correct mind dare question my faith?
Just call me Aamilah Rania Mahdavi.
And please don’t discriminate against my (totally peace-loving) people!