Monday, December 01, 2008

Concerning MJ (The Other One)

The biggest headline in the Muslim world two weeks ago was Michael Jacksons apparent conversion to Islam (This week its the decan Mujahideen)

Now I say apparent conversion to Islam because for some reason I am not convinced just yet. I've spent about seven hours reading up on this and all of it can be traced back to one source - The Sun, which is the UK's biggest tabloid (heres the article that started everything). Think of the Sun as being kinda like the Sunday Times back page/ Heat Magazine/ People magazine and a Soccer magazine all rolled into one - with the one exception - The Sun has Page 3 Girls (topless models)

So right off the bat - I'm doubtful due to the sensationalist nature of the publication. (The message is only as good as the Messenger)

Also - I checked out CNN, Al Jazeera, Wikipedia, M and G etc and I couldnt find anything about the conversion. You might say - "well MJ, is it newsworthy enough for CNN to cover it". Michael Jackson is one of the most recognisable people in the history of the world. I reckon that if you put Michael, Gandhi, Ronaldinho, JFK, Kylie Minogue and Idi Amin in a police Line up - More people would know who MJ was.

Ive been searching for days trying to find any photographic evidence of the 'Shahadah ceremony'. not a scrap. If one had to read the article it really seems plausible. Dawud Wharnsby was said to have been the inspiration as well as the Da'ee responsible for guiding Michael towards Islam. But heres something I found out - Dawud was in Bradford England on the 21 of November (the day of the shahada). Also - Look at how they spelt Yusuf Islam - (Spelt Yousef) I'm not one for conspiracy theories but if you heard the interview that Yusud Islam did with Larry King in 2004 (Heres a transcript) You'l see that Islam thought that he was deported because homeland security confused him with 'Youssef Islam' who is on the FBI watch List. This story was huge in Britain and the Sun was sued for libel by Yusuf Islam at the time because they supported the deportation stating that he had links to terrorist groups. Yusuf Islam won the case and The Sun lost alot of money in an out of court settlement. Perhaps this is part of a periphery regurgitation of sorts. Hmm

But coming back to the main story - Is Michael Jackson a Muslim - I dont know. Right now im sceptical however I stand to be corrected. A dear friend told me that Michael Jacksons conversion does not change Islam for them. I'm of the same opinion.Michael Jackson being Muslim is not going to exempt us from reckoning. Neither is him not being Muslim going to exempt us either.

If he is Muslim - awesome. If he isnt - well, theres no compulsion in religion. We make dua that he gets Hidayat but at the end of the day it is Allahs will. I just hope our local Muslim print media wait until we have some concrete proof before they blast this as next months headline. Ummah newspaper - i'm talking to you - dont have to remind you guys about the Will Smith incident do I?

The funniest thing about this whole story is that people are posting youtube videos of Michael singing Nasheeds... and guess what - Its all Zain Bhikhas stuff :D


Big shout out to R (of Rhymes with Silver fame) for throwing a wonderful 21st Birthday Bash at Plaka (this greek restaurant) today. It was a bit delayed (she turned 21 two months ago) but it was awesome to see some good friends after a very long time.


Az said... doesn't really make a still doesn't solve world poverty...or fanaticism...and all other kinds of injustices.

But like you said, if he is, then good for him.

Jeremy James said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeremy James said...

Interesting Post, Very relevant too because last week i did my research too concerning MJ's conversion to Islam. I couldnt find any concrete evidence myself, and the reason why i went on a fact-finding mission was the Will Smith rumours a while back.

Nafisa said...

Lol, I remember The Sun from my stay in the UK. Those newspapers were just everywhere - guys would read them on the bus and they could be found in public places.

Regarding MJ's apparent conversion - he is listed on Wikipedia under their List of converts to Islam.

M Junaid said...

Azra - world poverty is whats closest to my heart. and just like you said - his conversiondoesnt put food in anyones mouth

Jeremy James - Remember the similar rumours after denzel played Malcolm Xin the Spike Lee adaptation?

Nafisa - Theres nothing on Michaels wikipedia page, and if one clicks on the reference of the 'list of converts page' its a link to News.Com (AU) and it goes back to the Sun. Both are owned by Rupert Murdoch.

Tazeen said...

Ah ... anything published by The Sun needs to be taken with a handful of salt, if not more.

Anonymous said...

i'm also sceptical & agree with u on points related to 'what if he did?'

listening to 'you can't take it with u when u go'

Sofi said...

nafisa: having lived in the UK for a long long time, I am yet to find The Sun scattered everywhere i go, bar the obvious places its sold in. Secondly, its true some of us non sleazy, non tabloidy people avoid it, but for all its faults and lack of credibility, it has been the first to print 'news' which is later verified and latched on to by the Big Guns everywhere else. So may be worth bearing in mind.
mj converting to islam rumours started circulating ages ago along with will s, so not entirely suprised by this latest round. Not really sure if it would straighten his uber strange image at home or abroad tho, but it may make some traditional/conservative muftis re evaluate life...

M Junaid said...

Tazeen - Very true :)

BB - that song reminds me of you :)

Sofi - Yeah - those rumours have been doing the rounds hey. How are you dude?