Thursday, January 09, 2014

Merry Mawled Nabawi

I don't consider myself a religious person although in my life many have called me an extremist for just simply deciding to wear the hijab. I don't like to get into Islamic debates on halal and haram because i don't feel i have enough Islamic knowledge to defend my point of view, opposed to someone who has memorized the quran and many ahadith. I fear that me not being able to answer might give the other person the feeling that they are right, therefore i will not speak of halal and haram but just something i have noticed and lived through growing up.

I remember in school days we waited for christmas, halloween, easter & i remember giving out X-mas cards each year to friends. It was the best time of the year. I was not very Islamically conscious, lets say. When i grew older and starting to learn more about islam, i loved it more and more. I may not be the best Muslim but i am now a very PROUD Muslim.

I remember Eid passed by year after year with our family gatherings eating ka3k il 3eed. I never liked ka3k then. now after years of eating it i learnt to like it. Anyway. most of the time our dresses and so neat and slightly uncomfortable. We would sit politely in our relatives house as our parents discussed politics, asked about other relatives and every once in a while they would ask 

" Keefek habeebti.. meen bet7ibii hown aktar wala Amman, wala il Kuwait" 
( what do you like better Amman Kuwait or Dubai?"

Followed by an aggressive pinch to the cheek that left my cheek in excruciating pain! as they say 
* that is a rhetorical question btw that means im so CUTE.. which BTW i am..
 but that is not the point haha

So.. we sit there bored as ever.. unless we are visiting our cousins who are our age.. then we dont want to leave.. suddenly 5 mins later  my parents say we have to go visit other elderly people.. WE start whining " LA LA LA baba we want to stay!!" Dad gives the jahra look and we run to the car becase we know what that look means"

 * dino does cut throat move :P

So.. anyhow.. EID to me was not exactly Fun.. Although i remember my mom got me the nicest fanciest dresses and i did feel like a princess.

Now As Muslim Mother. i feel it is my duty to make our children love EID, not as much as they love christmas but MORE. I want them to learn that yes we respect other religions, yes we are all brothers and sisters but we as Muslims should Celebrate our Islamic Occasions.

Year after year i look around the malls, with all the Christmas Decorations, and i feel yes it is beautiful. But what about EID? We are in a Muslim Country aren't we? I ran into store after store on EID to find decorations for the house. i barely found anything but one light in the Union Coop. In Xmas there was several stalls full of xmas decorations and cards. Playing Xmas carols all day.

If you say you dont get a little fuzzy feeling in your heart when you hear Xmas carols i wont believe you.

My dear Christian friends dont get me wrong. I respect your religion and celebrations, but my heart aches when i see Muslims forgetting about EID. Getting X-mas trees in thier homes and wearing xmas pjs the night before they open their xmas gifts. When on EID they dont do anything at all.
Our religion respects all religions and Muslim Men marry Christians and that proves that Muslims and Christians not only can live together but also start a family together. Islam urges us to be kind with all people without any kind of discrimination due to differences in faith or race. 

But in the end of the Day you have to ask yourself, What is ISLAM? What is CHristianity?What do you believe in? Do Muslims have their own identity or have they lost it ? As i looked through my FB pics i swear to God i was unsure who was Christian and who was Muslim. 

Whether you like to Admit it or not Christmas is not just fun day where people gather and share gifts harmlessly, it has a religious meaning to Christians.  Its like a christian wearing Hijab and saying its a nice Fashion statement. Its Hijab and its means something is ISLAM.

It is true that this holiday is very popular and it is extremely commercialized; nevertheless it is basically a religious holiday. Its very name and all its symbolism is Christian through and through.

Christians celebrate at Christmas what they believe to be the "day of the birth of God's Son" or what they call "God Incarnate". Thus it is not only a celebration of another religion, it is also a celebration that is based on a belief that is totally against the teachings of Islam. 

How many Christians Dont Celebrate Xmas but Fast Ramadan? How many Christians Dont Celebrate Xmas but Celebrate EID? None that i know of... i heard some fast for fun or in unity but i don't think any christian would not celebrate their own festivity to celebrate another religios one tof another religion they don't believe in.

The argument that “Christmas is, after all, Prophet Jesus' birthday and so there is no harm in celebrating Christmas” is neither logical nor Islamic. Why should Muslims celebrate Jesus' birthday? Why not the birthdays of the other 24 prophets and messengers who are mentioned in the Qur'an by name?  

For us Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is the final Prophet and Messenger of Allah, not Jesus. Therefore if i will celebrate any Prophets Birth it will be the birth of our Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) who was sent as Mercy to all creation.

For a while i was worried by saying this i would upset my christian friends but now i realized as a Muslim that stands strongly to what i believe in they should respect my point of view and not be upset if i dont celebrate thier religious occassions, they should not be upset if i express how i truely feel about Muslims who act more christian than Muslim as i know they also stand strong to what they believe in and will feel the same way if the tables were turned.

Here are two FREE designs you can print and stick on any sweet favor bags for your kids if you wanted ideas to celebrate. 

Maybe we can make this day a day to teach our kids about the greatest man that ever was.. maybe we ourselves can learn more about him. Because how can we possibly love our prophet Mohamad (pbuh) if we don't know about his life and all the great things he has achieved and been through,

اللهمَّ صلِّ على سيِّدنا محمَّد وعلى آلِه وصحبِه وسلِّم




Haitham Jafar said...

لويش بتغامزو
شو قزدك (لاحظي ال زين)
بتعملي فتنة على كوكب زمردة - قظاء بلوجر

الويل لك

سأعود بعد الصلاة

Dino$ said...

HAitham nifsi mara aqra2 comment ilak wa afhamha min ghier ma aqra2ha alf mara wa lisa bafhamhaash completely .. i know yerham jadii. . qatha2 blogger? zumorodah?

YA seedi ma its relevant to the post batalna na3raf il muslim min il masee7i these days :p

samya ayish said...

You just touched a sensitive issue, Dina, that is not only affecting our religion, but also our identity, sense of belonging...etc etc..
I have moved to the US recently with my two kids, and this issue of celebrating Christmas left me uncertain about what to do.. you could not blame a young boy for that, because he sees all his buddies at school lighting a tree and waiting for Santa Clause to get them presents. so in order not to make him feel different, we drew Christmas trees and colored them, but at the same time we drew the Hilal, and talked about Ramadan, and how brave people are when they fast.. We made Christmas cookes and decorated them, but at the same time , I made them help me with some Ka3ek, and they actually loved it.. we bought gifts, but they were not from Santa, they were rather from Daddy who is still in Dubai, and misses them so much, and wants to come on Eid to spend time with them, and that's why we love Eid, because it brings family together. I stress on what you said: our celebrations should be more fun, kids should feel they are having fun, not socially obliged to visit family, or people they are not very comfortable around. last, but not least, I love your illustrations, and for me, what you wrote is so inspirational that I want to start thinking about ways for my kids to really enjoy all our celebrations.. Allah ye7meeki ya Dina :) xxx

Dino$ said...

Dear Samia, i totally understand how you can never control what our kids see and how the love for christmas is something we grew up with. Movie after movie, songs, decorations everywhere.Santa! and its hard to stop kids from doing fun things with other kids so that they dont feel left out. But we have to make sure we teach them about islam and that this is not our celebration. We need to work twice as hard to make EID special for them. Truth is there is no Santa now,and all the videos of people spreading christmas joy and doing good, is all the doing of People not SAnta .Islam tells us to spread joy, to give, to help others in need. EID could be as joyful. We can make them wake up to a pile of gifts, do Eid crafts, Do a big celebration on EID. so many ideas we just need to work harder thats all because not much is avaialbe in strores for EID. Thank you for your comment samia.. Allah yijma3kom 3ala khier

Rita Riordan said...

I speak from the opposite camp. I was raised Catholic Christian by my very religiously conservative family. I determined that my own children should learn about ALL of the major religions of the world. My son's dearest childhood friend, Ibrahim, is Palestinian; so my blonde, blue-eyed son attended Islamic school with Brahim. I will never forget my beloved Ghada, Brahim's mother, yelling at Brahim: "Look how terrible your Arabic writing compared to Ryan's! And Ryan is not Arab!" This still makes me laugh.
We were so honored to learn about and celebrate Eid and to understand Ramadan because these were important to our Muslim friends. And, for me as a mother, it was an opportunity to point to HOW these holidays were celebrated: with family and with focus on the values taught in Islam. I de-emphasized the commercialism of Christian holidays with my children. First of all, many and nearly ALL of the Christmas symbols are actually rooted in early European non-Christian cultural traditions. Halloween is borrowed from European Celtic non-Christian celebrations of the agricultural seasons. So what we have today is the commercial exploitation of these events vs. actual religious celebrations.
The humanist beauties of Islam are rooted in the 5 Pillars. It is essential that ALL children should know these and center their values on these. Eid is a wonderful celebration to share with others, no matter what their espoused religious beliefs. I feel very blessed that my own children were able to share in the traditions of Eid with our beloved friends.