Friday, 18 May 2007

Which is Worse?

Can you believe that every single time I pray outside my house, some girl is waiting by to give me a cassette or give me a lecture about my hair? One girl even had the audacity (or is it the stupidity?) to ask me inside a mosque while putting on my shoes if I was a muslim. Um..well darn , you caught me! I’m really a Buddhist in disguise who came in here for the breezy atmosphere and the romantic lighting.

I should’ve asked her if she only began praying or even believing in God when she started covering her hair or maybe I should’ve just told her she was a hopeless moron. *Sigh*That’s l’esprit de l’escalier for you.

The next thing I see when I go out in the street are tons of happy happy couples. Arms around each other not a care in the world. The girls forming halves of these couples were usually girls wearing a hijab, a khemar or a 3abaya.

I’m a little confused here. So it’s not ok to leave your hair uncovered but having a guy grab you or put his arm around your waist or your neck, whisper sweet nothings into your ear and do whatever else it is you guys do together is A OK with God? I admit I maybe a little (ok VERY) uptight when it comes to PDA (public displays of affection) but shouldn’t a girl who’s so religious be just a little bit reluctant when it comes to letting a guy even hold her hand unless they’re officially married? Shouldn’t they be in the presence of their families and friends but never by themselves until they’re officially married? I’m guessing all of this goes on behind their parents’ backs as well.

I remember this professor telling us that girls should dress conservatively ( he meant wear a scarf) or else they’re figuratively letting each man passing by “have a lick”. And yes, those were his exact words. Do I understand from this rapidly spreading phenomenon that as long as you’re wearing a head cover or a 3abaya or whatever, it’s ok to give a selected few an actual “taste” before marriage (or even an engagement)?

And do the situations I’m put in make it ok for me to walk up to some random chick with a 3abaya and a guy surgically attached to her in the street and ask her if she’s a muslim because she’s got what seems to be a huge parasite (let’s call it Humanus hornyus) attached to her body? So can I, can I ?

Am I being judgemental ? Damn right I am. I tend to get that way when random people piss me off on a daily basis with their looks and their “words of wisdom”. It’s my turn, dammit!

See, I’m not against hijab or any tpe of garment a girl wears because she thinks she must in order to qualify as a good muslim as long as she’s not forced into it. I’m just sick of people preaching about appearances while everything else takes a back seat. I thought life was supposed to be about being honest with yourself rather than doing the equivalent of throwing society a bone, so they would call you a good girl and leave you alone, then sneak around and do whatever you want even though you know it’s religiously or sometimes even morally reprehensible. I thought...I thought your character was supposed to overflow on the outside instead of letting that shiny outer shell do all the work for your character or lack thereof.

Isn’t it? Or is that just not in fashion anymore?

Ma 3aleina. As one friend of mine usually says : Gayez el moftchy al OK!


greyscale said...

i completely agree. wearing the veil is a responsibility in itself. you can't wear the veil and go around hanging out with guys like that.

i wrote about a similar incident in my blog some time ago:

Akef said...

Yeah I know what you mean. But bare in mind that a lot of girls wear the veil without understanding the real reason they're wearing it, a lot of these cases are due to family and cultural pressure. Take Saudi Arabia for example, if you live there you'll realize that many of the woman wear the veil and cover their face due to what society dictates as the 'right thing to do' or 'how things should be like'. I'd imagine that it did originally start as a religious thing, and then it shifted into being a cultural one. Go on a plane leaving Riyadh heading to Egypt or Europe. Don't you just sometimes ask your self...hey...when did that girl board the plane?
Back to our main topic, yes it makes very sad when I see what you saw about boys and girls (who aren't married) in a PDA in a cafe or on top of one of the bridges on the Nile. This is what I call being a hypocrite. Unfortunately our society started taking whatever it wants from religion and leaves a lot. I'm talking about very basic things like being honest, not stealing, being good to the elder, respecting your parents, etc. One should learn how to crawl before he walks, how to walk before he runs, etc. Anyways..enough ra'3y.
Have a nice day.

spellz said...

thre's something weird
i;m 100% sure eny 3mltelek comment yesterday i dunno ra7 feen:D
it's either me hallucinating or me taking some sort of a drug behind my baq
anyways i adore ur article the bhuddist part was hillarious and i'm with u with every point althoug I'm okk with PDAs as ling as I'm not included

pink said...

a lot of people wear it coz they're forced to either by family or the society at large. When they see someone who does not, they are jealous because they want the freedom you have. So they channel their bad feelings toward you by trying to make you feel bad.

Reema said...

i totally loved the post girl. u really spoke my mind!

it's frustrating to see how many ppl r so shallow and more hung up on appearances,caring nothing for the agenda behind the appearance.

it happens here too in saudi arabia. u know we wear 3abaya and tar7a. yet, the styles of abayas vary a lot.and since most of the girls wear them for cultural reasons. not because they adore going out in black.they mostly wear stylish types of 3abaya ( me and all the ladies in my family r included in this category). and when we travel out. i and my sisters dont wear hijab. i feel it's something that should spring from inside. that's why u could see lots of saudi ladies abroad with no hijab. coz it's more like a tradition to them. a tradition that should b kept within our cultural culture. i know it might make no sense to u:) but that's how things really are!!

and guess what, in saudi arabia, ladies who wear the most miserable-lookin 3abayas ( thinking that 3abayas should look this way accordin to Islam) r most of the time stupidlu judgmental. in malls, we often get approached by a lady of them giving us her unsolicited advice.they think that since they have got the so-called " islamic appearance", they have the right to preach. they think they r flawless from all the angles. so they could advise ppl on how to be flawless like them!!

keep up the great work

Om Luji said...

It's not enough that you pray in the mosque to be Muslim! Shofto elmahzala weslet lfeen? wlessa, as long as we are welcoming extremist thoughts thinking that this will make us better muslims.
This is a very sorrowful incident. I've been subjected to lots of pressure myself in order to wear hijab. I used to be nice to people who did that, but then things have gone too far and I started answering back. Now, I'm in such peace of mind :)

Ravine85 said...

Actually,being a muslim (veil or not) ,you shouldn't go around like that, period. WEaring a veil just makes you look like an even more obvious hypocrite.

You read my mind! Exactly! Whatever happened to being honest and being respectful to your parents and your elders? All that doesn't seem to matter as long as you conform to society's superficial perception of what's religious!
A veil is basically a fashion statement being passed off as religious piety in most cases these days.
Thx for stopping by :D

Ravine85 said...

Spellz : I thought we were going to keep your recreational use of hallucinogens a secret! :P
Thx , I'm glad u liked it. I say that I'm uptight about PDA's because I don't think they're appropriate but my problem isn't as much with the PDA as it is with the hypocrisy. You should go ahead and do that poll you told me about. I think it'll be very interesting!

I think you're right because I do sometimes feel there's a significant deal of jealousy involved.

Ravine85 said...

Reema :
Glad you liked it!
What you told me about the ladies who tell you that you should all wear horrible/totally black/ awfully scary-looking 3abayas to be good Muslims reminds me of this "religious" cassette the bus driver was playing the other day. The sheikh (whoever he was) , was saying that all women should wear plain , thick, black jilbabs or 3abayas because they should all look the same. I was thinking : God created each woman different and special and down here on Earth , some men decide that we should all look like carbon copies of each other?
And what you're saying makes complete sense to me,believe me. I hate how cultural pressure can take away even the simplest freedoms like choosing how to dress.

Om Luji : Lol,'s both sad and hilarious. The thing is , they're advising me to wear hijab after I pray but not advising anyone wearing hijab to come in and pray. Of course because prayer is between you and God but hijab isn't. That's between you and society!
I imagine that at one point, I might embarass one of them badly but I keep in my mind that as one of my (veiled) friends told me "ya 7aram , they think that they have to do this".
Rabena yehdeena gamee3an!

spellz said...

i need a side for polls daroory

lol the answers fof the guys are so interstching!

Sameh Haggag said...

I'm glad that there are still people who realize that what's on the inside is much more important than what's on the outside, and that our society is currently ignoring what's on the inside, and rather than that, focuses only on what's outside.

The scene of veiled girls hanging out with boys holding each others' hands or he embracing her shoulder or both stuck to each other, this scene really gets on my nerves, this is not religion, and obviously this veil is not because of religion, it may be because of culture.

So where has Integrity, Honesty, Taqua has gone ?? and where is our real Chastity, that invovles morals and behavior, not just the highly held "virginity" ???!!!

We sure need to straighten our interiors first, and to take the lead from those whose interiors are messed, but make a good external display.

But I think that, as improving the internal is very important to please God, the external also is important, though not the most important. God declared the veil's order in Madina, not in Macca, meaning that over 13 years of Maccan Islam, sahaba women were not veiled, and were instead busy learning about Tawheed and about Praying, and about being honest and decent, being gentle and kind especially to parents......but that doesn't mean that if we're good from the inside, we don't need to make a good outside, it's all about God's directions in the end, I think we should strive to be better on the inside, and still strive to be better on the outside, that what God directs us to do, so that at least when someone of this "just external thinking" judges you, he will find you good enough for him to learn "internal things" from you, and you have the great thawab then.

I feel that our religion is currently being torn between "Religion is only external" group, and "Religion is only internal" group, whereas God wanted us to do both, and while the internal being first, it must be soon followed by the external.

I'm sorry I wrote so much, I felt I needed to clarify this point.

gjoe said...

Ravine85 said...

Sameh: I don't mind long comments at all, believe me! Your point is well taken and thx for explaining it so respectfully :D

gjoe: lol thx, I really enjoyed that and I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets annoyed by some of the stuff you wrote about ;)

nousha said...

can't agree more...

Ahmed said...

yes you can. I'll even come along and bring my little axe for moral support. should be handy in case we had to surgically detach some "cases" on the spot :P