Thursday, August 05, 2010

Concerning Treachery

In 1929, Belgian artist, Rene Magritte painted a picture of a pipe and wrote "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" under it, which is French for 'this is not a pipe'. The point he was making is that the painting wasnt a pipe, but rather an image of a pipe. I thought about this when I saw this weeks cover of Time magazine. This is an image of Islam. Do we change the image? Or do we change the situation? I am not referring to Aisha, who is clearly the victim here. But she isnt the only victim. Islam is also a victim, held hostage by men who think that mutilating a womens face is divine justice. I dont like being reductionist, and ive read some of the opinions around this image (check out Muslimah Media watch's roundtable) and Gopal's piece in the Guardian.

Yes, the Americans have destroyed the region in their pointless nine year war, but its not like this shit wasnt happening before 9/11. Honour killings isnt a 21st century phenomenon. Its easy to blame. The invaders deserve to be blamed. but that doesnt leave the warlords blameless.

Women were treated like second class citizens during the reign of the Taliban. Things are changing, but theres a price to this change. Just because it doesn't make headlines anymore, (like Iraq) doesnt mean there isnt a war happening right now. We dont know what war is, because we haven't lived through it. Its hard to imagine suffering of others, when I am so displaced from it.

So after jumuah, we'l have this long dua in English, and the imam, in a gluttonous arab accent will start rattling off the names of some of the hotspots (never one of the African countries where Muslims are also being killed) "Afggghanistaan, Shishaan, kushmeer, Iraaqk, Filisteen", and i keep saying aameen, but its so insincere because i'm so detached from these places.

On a final note, some small church in America, is having a 'burn the quran day' event. Yes, this upsets me, but we need to respond maturely and rationally. This is a trap meant to incite muslims. I checked out the fb group last night, and was sad to see some of the Muslim responses to it. Some jackass said 'Fuck off Jesus, Islam is the greatest'. This is kufr. We revere Jesus (pbuh) as a messenger of God.

The new trend is to see 'Islam' as a cult, and not a religion. We need to address this. We need to educate people. We need to change the image. But first, we must change ourselves.


The words are 'This is not a hookah'. Inside joke for Muslim media students.


Aasia said...

Im not a head in the sand kinda girl. But I chose not to notice this. I exist in my bubble( which is rather large) however I don't want to engage with people who chose not to listen.

As for Imaams, many still see how black ummah as second class muslims or not worthy of saving. Until they change their minds, we will be "Ameen-ing" till we blue.

Brighter note, word veri "Amonfa" in the right accent it reads "I'm on Fire"

bb_aisha said...

Last night, I wrote & deleted without posting, several tweets on Bibi Aisha. Her story deserved a blog post. But I didn't know what I could add.
My immediate thought was what you expressed, that tribalism has always been there. This is nothing new.
Dawah from within needs to be done here, in Pakistan, in Sudan, Egypt,Jordan, Somalia to name a few where women are subjected to barbaric practice in the name of honour & Islam

Anonymous said...

Poverty is stranger to industry.........................................

Anonymous said...

Somethings wrong here. MJ did a serious blog post.

Jokes aside, good post, and agree with Aasia on the issue of our African brothers. I think that our South african muslims have a bit of a rascist streak in them. I get slightly miffed by the fact that almost every 3rd african brother that is a revert in south africa that I meet is named Bilaal. (is this not on a very basic level some form of rascism too?)

Anonymous said...

It's a very politicised magazine cover, and it does really taint the image of Islam - but then again, that's a common trend anyway.

The important lesson is that if Muslim PEOPLE didn't get up to crap like this - then 'they' (the media and our 'enemies') wouldn't have material/ammunition to use against us. (Or on second thoughts, maybe they'd just make things up...I've heard Orientalism was something to that effect - though I don't know much about the subject at all).

It's sick how some people have twisted Islam. I heard some weird story that in Pakistan, WOMEN have to pay dowry to MEN; and they say that that's Islam. And there's also caste-related stuff which Muslims in that part of the world have taken in - when clearly, the caste system is Hindu. (Again, I don't know much abou the subject at all - but from what i do know, I know that it's extremely far from the principles of Islam).

Things like this - twisting and abusing the religion - are the reason why you get extreme Muslim feminists who want to change the religion. They see the way some men practice it - and they think that the fault lies with the deen. But the truth is, Islam is perfect - and these people, these 'men' - are the ones who are messed up.

May Allah guide us all back and purify the Muslims from our faulty understanding of Islam.

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