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Apparently It's Good to Be an #ExMuslimBecause

Published by Huffington Post on Wed, 09 Dec 2015

It's easy to say why you left something, but to explain why you stay with something that causes you to struggle can be extremely difficult to do. I fear for my mother when she goes outside with a scarf to cover her hair because I don't know what people will think of her, say to her, or do to her. I fear for my father who sports a beard and has dark brown skin. I even fear for myself sometimes because I'm sure that to some, my light brown skin and my dark black beard sets off an alarm of potential danger. I try to be extra cautious when I travel and lug around an oversized duffel bag filled to the brim with clothing. It seems to me that I have developed a double conscious from the continuous stress of fitting the stereotypes of monsters who corrupt lands filled with innocent people thousands of miles away. My father and I could always shave, and my mother and my friends could always take off their hijabs to remove the stereotypes off of our identities. Don't get me wrong though, the struggle women face due to their hijabs is levels above the struggles us men face because of our beards. Nonetheless, it should not be very difficult to remove the symbols that categorize us into disgusting stereotypes. We could just as easily justify our humanity and peacefulness like all the users of the hashtag #ExMuslimBecause. Is there not an issue with this concept though' Is it not an issue that the very act of leaving Islam instantly elevates a person above his or her friends, colleagues, and family' I've read some of the tweets and I completely understand why some people would leave Islam and have such strong feelings against the faith. They have been exposed to situations by their countries, their governments, and even their families that always get mistaken to be components of Islam. Much of the personal oppression people have faced are cultural and political actions that have been falsely labeled as Islamic practices. But the wave of the hashtag seems to undermine Muslims who have been exposed to what true Islam according to the Qur'an and our Prophet (pbuh) should more or less be, and thus many equate us with those who have encouraged the movement of ex-Muslims. But see, the thing is, to us, the true meaning of what a Muslim is in itself humanity and peace. Our Prophet (pbuh) is the model of true and ideal humanity to such an extent that even his enemies could not deny his truthful and loving reputation. He was so peaceful that he changed the game when it came to how slaves, prisoners of war, and daughters should be treated. And before you call me out on the fact that there were slaves and the fact that there was war, know that slavery was heavily looked down upon. Slaves were in fact so hard to keep according to the principles of Islam that one was better off freeing his or her slave rather than keeping the slave. Also know that Islam is not peace itself, but rather calls for it. War is not something that can exactly be avoided when you and your loved ones are being attacked. But of course none of that changes how many in society view practicing Muslims. So we come to the question: Why stay, and why not remove our symbols' Like I said, it's hard to explain why someone would stay alongside something that causes them to struggle. Actually, let me take that back. For the ones who do stay by choice, it's quite an easy answer. We all know within ourselves that we have faith in our Lord and we trust in our Prophet (pbuh). We were promised a good afterlife just for believing in our creator, listening to his commands, and having good morals. The latter should be done regardless of whether you believe in a God or not. Now the reason why I said it's hard to explain is that, although the answer is simple to us, the difficult part is having anyone on the outside looking in believe that such an answer could be legitimate. Some say we're brainwashed, misguided, or radicalized, but honestly we're just hopeful and fearless. We are fearless because we have trust in the One who created us and we know that the symbols that victimize us as stereotypes in society only honor us in the eyes of our Lord. It's rather easy to explain why someone left something, so I get why it's so appealing to buy into #ExMuslimBecause. But with a little effort, just maybe people can start understanding #MuslimBecause. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.
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