“Hey, regarding your headscarf, is it a must to wear them?”
That question came from Mr S out of the blue while we’re waiting for the tutor to come at one evening.
We take our face off the book and looked at each other, looking for the most suitable answer for him. Who will start first?
Taking the Malaysian’s multireligion and multicultural country for granted, we didn’t brace ourselves for that question. Especially at that moment. It was so sudden.
He then added,
“Is it some kind of religion thingy that you must follow? Is it a rule?”
“Yes,” my friend uttered an answer.
He nodded his head.
“Then, how come X (mentioning our classmate), she didn’t wear them? She’s a Muslim right?”
Once again, we looked at each other, startled at the question.
“Is it like a person’s choice? I mean, it is up to you whether you want to wear it or not?” he began shooting questions.
No, it’s not! I felt like telling him that. But blurting that kind of answer doesn’t seem to help in explaining the ruling of Islam.
You can imagine our situation at that moment. Awkward!
“Imagine it like driving a car, S. When driving, you must wear a seatbelt right? But some people just don’t want to obey the rule and didn’t wear them. True?”
“I see..I see,” while nodding his head. Again.
He didn’t add further. Instead, he said,
“This is a culture shock for me man. Like seriously. A very big one,”
“Why?” my friend asked.
He then started telling about his Muslim friend. How they never told him that. In fact, they even eat during the fasting month of Ramadhan…
People said, if you want to know about Islam, don’t look at its people. Instead, search for the truth in the Quran itself.
This is true especially if you’re not mingling with the ‘right’ one. Muslims are contradicting each other nowadays in all sorts of ways. At one end, one claims he is a Muslim but at the same time, drinks alcohol, holding hands with girls and didn’t pray. In the middle, a girl who says she is a Muslim, wearing hijab but her clothes are as tight as it can be, hugging her body. And at one end, one man, whose beard is as long as it can be, is called an extremist, a supporter of Osama bin Laden.
Which one is the true Muslim?
Getting afraid of the extreme one, the Non Muslims befriend the ‘non extreme’ one. Well, they have things in common. He drinks, he has girlfriend(s) and he cursed like me. And they’ll be left thinking that Islam is no more different with other religion.
One scholar once told a story; Years before he reverted, he’d read a book about Islam. In that book, he was mislead to think that Muslim worship a black box in Makkah 5 times a day!
There were lots of other confusions and media nowadays are not helping either.
As a Muslim, the least that we can do is to show a good example to them, to actually portray the Islamic teachings in our everyday’s behavior; our thoughts, the way we eat, the way we dress, the way we talk and the way we perform our prayers!
At the Day of Judgment, we’ll be taken into account of our everyday’s encounter with the non Muslims or even with Muslims. Have we made full use of that time? Have we spread the word of Islam, even an ayah?
They are looking at us, waiting to ask questions, eager to know about why we are doing the things we do. If they’re not interested, why not we become the one who start the conversation,
“Do you know about Islam?”
Yes, I am a Muslim. Ask me about Islam…
And the pen is lifted~