Reading or watching the news lately brings a physical ache to my heart, as if an arrow keeps piercing it. I know this is how many Muslims are feeling recently since the horrific attacks on the innocent are claimed in the name of Islam. As a Muslim mom, I feel the need to say this clearly and publicly…
“Murderers do not depict true Muslims or adhere to the ideals of Islam. They are a deviation to any true religion, a disease to society, and hypocrites who shame humanity. Above all, they don’t represent faithful Muslims who follow Prophet Muhammed’s PBUH fine example. They are lost, ignorant and delusional souls who are shrouded in a deceptive cloak of self-glory that can only be termed as insane.”
For the first time in my life, I feel defensive of my religion and robbed of the truth as a peace-loving Muslim living in America. How many people know that in Arabic the word Islam means submission or surrender? That Islam was derived from the root word “salam”, which is derived from the words “peace and safety”. The very essence of our religion is submission to God, being peaceful beings, and offering safety to others. Our biggest struggle as Muslims in this world, is to fight within ourselves from our weaknesses, to strive towards honor, morality and virtue – not fight to change the world. Yet those very tenants of our faith have become uprooted and twisted to mean the exact opposite – enslavement, violence, murder, shame and dishonor. Allah SWT says;
“O you men! Surely We have created you of a male and a female, and made you tribes and families that you may know each other; surely the most honorable of you with God is the one among you most careful (of his duty); surely God is Knowing, Aware.” (Quran 49 : 13)
But as for he who feared the standing before his Lord and restrained the soul from (his) desire, then indeed, Paradise will be his refuge.” (Qur’an 79:40-41)
The Prophet PBUH said:
“The struggler is the one who strives against his soul/self in obedience to God, the Mighty and Majestic.” (Hadith – Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah)
As a practicing Muslim, I abhor violence. I can’t watch a TV show or movie that has violence without closing my eyes. The sight of blood and killings upset and make me cringe inside. I know that many practicing Muslim women feel the same way and are very sensitive to suffering and bloodshed. As Muslims, we honor life and most of our daily intentions revolve around pleasing God, performing good deeds, being charitable to others, positively impacting communities, and raising our children righteously. A small percent of criminals have smeared the truth of what a Muslim represents and what Islam stands for, and that’s the unfairness the rest of us have to live with today. I don’t understand how the actions of a few misguided, evil beings, proclaiming affiliation with our religion, and using Arabic words with God’s Name, can cause the general population to blame an entire religion, when the majority of its followers live peacefully and in harmony with others. When placed in this context it sounds incredulous, and to be fair, we would have to profile all criminals based on their religious background and beliefs.
Just because the words that come out of these criminal’s mouths are similar to what Muslims say, or their women folk are covered, it doesn’t mean they’re Muslim or an entire religion is blamed for their actions. Educating oneself on the truth about Islam will clarify that these people are not a representation of traditional Islam in any form, nor do they follow our Prophet’s PBUH teachings. Most Muslims know this, therefore we do not feel the need to apologize for their actions. Instead, Muslims are angered even more by their crimes because Islam abhors murder, and these criminals have hijacked our religion. Let’s not forget that these “so-called Muslims” are killing more Muslims all over the world, so if they were true Muslims, where’s the sense in that? Maybe their understanding of Islam has been convoluted by oppression, tradition or propaganda – it doesn’t matter, because nothing justifies murder – nothing. At the end of the day, their crimes are their own, not from Islam, and God will be their final Judge.
Praise be to Allah, some of my morose and confusion cleared up when I was told by a learned friend that I shouldn’t fret. She reminded me that this is what our beloved Prophet PBUH had predicted as the signs to come towards the end of time. The signs do not occur all at once, they take years and will happen gradually over time. This made me refer back to Ibn Kathir’s, “The Signs Before the Day of Judgement” and that’s when I realized that the unexplained crimes performed in the name of Islam, was predicted and criticized by our Prophet PBUH more than 1400 years ago. I realized that this is all part of a bigger picture, that it was mentioned how a people will claim to be Muslim but will digress from Islam.
Hudhayfah ibn al-Yaman said people used to ask the Prophet PBUH about good things, but I used to ask him about bad things because I was afraid that they might overtake me. I said;
“O Messenger of God, we were lost in ignorance and evil, then God brought this good (Islam). Will some evil come after this good thing?’ He said, ‘Yes’. I asked, ‘And will some good come after that evil?’ He said, ‘Yes, but it will be tainted with some evil’. I asked, ‘How will it be tainted?’ He said, ‘There will be some people who will lead others on a path different from mine. You will see good and bad in them’. I asked, ‘Will some evil come after that good?’ He said, ‘Some people will be standing and calling at the gates of Hell; whoever responds to their call, they will throw him into the Fire.’ I said, ‘O Messenger of God, describe them for us.’ He said, ‘They will be from our own people, and will speak our language.’ I asked, ‘What do you advise me to do if I should live to see that?’ He said, ‘Stick to the main body of the Muslims and their leader (Imam)’. I asked, What if there is no main body and no leader?’ He said ‘Isolate yourself from all of these sects, even if you have to eat the roots of trees until death overcomes you while you are in that state.’”
As I read further, it was clear that these “so-called Muslims”, could be the deviants that our Prophet PBUH had warned us against. Upon further reading, I became more enlightened. The Prophet PBUH also said:
“Before the Hour comes, there will be years of deceit, in which a truthful person will be disbelieved and a liar will be believed; and the insignificant will have a say.” (Hadith – Ahmad)
“Just before the Hour, there will be days in which knowledge will disappear and ignorance will appear, and there will be much killing.”(Hadith Bukhari and Muslim).
“Islam began as something strange, and it will revert to being strange as it was in the beginning, so good tidings for the strangers.’ Someone asked, ‘Who are the strangers?’ He said, ‘The ones who break away from their people (tribes) for the sake of Islam.“(Hadith- Ibn Majah).
Reading the signs of the end of time, helped me to place the insanity into perspective. The happenings around us were predicted and are beyond our comprehension. It is inevitably leading somewhere we haven’t yet grasped, and we should be informed of these signs so we are aware of what lies ahead. This is not to say that we must accept the atrocities of the world, but that we cannot be blamed for them. These murderers are not only enemies of non Muslims, but enemies of true Muslims. They are not only crucifying the innocent, but a Muslim society as well.
Muslims should not despond or become disillusioned. Rather we should become proactive and increase our good deeds by doing what we can to help the oppressed. We should portray a fine example of good character like our Prophet PBUH, assist the weak and give charity to those in need. We should communicate the peaceful and true message of Islam and negate the misconceptions of Muslims whenever we can, through the platforms we use most often. We can also show patience and tolerance towards those who are misguided by the inaccuracies they believe about Islam. Most importantly, we should pray to the Lord of the Worlds with sincere intention, and ask Him to save us from the evil and corruption of this earth. Then, we must focus on raising our children, the next generation, to become righteous, pious and honorable adults, who will defend the innocent and assist the weak. In this way, we can positively impact society to cope with the ills that befall it, because a true and peaceful Islamic message starts in our homes first.
Never lose hope – hopelessness is a tool that satan uses against us. Be proactive, not reactive, and spread a real message of brotherhood and kindness by participating in acts that make a positive difference. Muslims Raise Money For San Bernardino Victims.
On behalf of Muslimommy, my deepest sympathy to those suffering around the world, and heartfelt condolences to the families who have lost loved ones, my prayers are with you.
A portion of the profits on all products sold on Muslimommy goes to The Children in Need Charity Fund to help the little ones around the world who are the victims of this oppression. Thank you for your support.