The Personal thoughts of Kian Yit of Malaysia
I have done a research about why Islam is not acceptable to some people and I found out that it’s because they fear:
- Losing their culture
- Don’t know how to speak Arabic
- Pressure from parents, friends and society
- Praying 5 times a day
- Changing their ways
Losing Your Culture
It’s not true that you’ll lose your culture. Lots of people misunderstand this. In the West, it is thought that when somebody becomes a muslim, he becomes an Arab too. In Malaysia, which is my country, when somebody becomes a muslim, people think that he becomes a Malay just because majority of the muslims in Malaysia are Malays.
This confusion is only brought up by narrow minded people who don’t understand. Allah has made us to many races, many cultures and many languages too. It is one of the beauty of the many creations of Allah that we have our own culture and we should appreciate it.
Similarly, we shouldn’t be selfish of our own culture. We should share it between our muslim brothers and sisters. Islam is a religion, not a race. An English parent would give birth to an English child, but a muslim parent might not give birth to a muslim child.
This is something which people shouldn’t worry or get scared about. This is only an optional choice which you can decide later on. Circumcision does not make somebody a muslim, neither does it make somebody a non muslim. It is only a procedure of cleanliness which you right want to do to keep yourself clean.
It is stated in the hadith, sahih Muslim, it is a fitrah, meaning practice of the prophet. There is no compulsion to circumcision. Majority of the muslims are circumcised. However, I noticed that there are some muslims who are not circumcised too.
When a man urinates, some of the urine gets trapped on the foreskin. It is his duty to clean it with water. The foreskin traps smega, which is a smelly chesse-like substance on the foreskin. If it is left like that, infection will occur, thus making the foreskin swollen.
You must understand that Islam stresses on cleanliness and circumcision is one of the ways to preserve cleanliness. But if you can make sure your foreskin is clean by frequent washing, then circumcision is not necessary for you.
I noticed that some people don’t want to be muslims because they fear circumcision. If that is the case, you have nothing to worry about, you can still be a muslim uncircumcised, no problem at all. Circumcision is only to be done for boys before the age of puberty anyway! After reading many articles, medical journals and after doing some research, I noticed that there are some bad points as well as good points to circumcision too. Therefore, I decided to stand neutral on this topic, meaning I neither support nor condemn it. I would say that this is a personal choice. Think carefully before you decide. May Allah help you choose.
I have more articles about how circumcision prevents AIDS and other general medical benefits of circumcision, if you would like to read it.
You Don’t Know How To Speak Arabic
You don’t have to worry about that. The Arabic language has been chosen as the International language for muslims. The original form of the Quran to the humans on this earth is Arabic. So, we need to learn it in order to understand and appreciate it. It so happened that Allah chose an Arab leader, our beloved prophet Mohammed SAW to begin the mission or conveying the message of Islam to mankind. Perhaps, it’s because the Arabs are hard headed people and Allah wanted to improve them. If you notice, Moses and Jesus’ mission was to spread the religion to the Israelites. Islam at that time was in a different form and name and therefore, it was incomplete. It was only during the prophet’s time where Allah announced that on that very day, Allah has completed the religion for mankind.
Translations of the Quran and other Islamic books can be found in abundance all over the world.
Pressure From Parents, Friends and Society
Pressure is very normal but what we really want is the truth. There are lots of challenges in our lives. Lots of people want us to follow their ways, may it be good or bad. But the main thing we must realise that we are living for our own lives. If we do anything wrong, it is us that will suffer, not anybody else. So, it is most important that you make your own decision. If you make the correct decision, in the end, it will be you who benefit from it. Take it slowly, one at a time. You don’t have to tell anybody that you are a muslim if the situation is bad. Why get yourself into so much trouble? Why tell your parents when you are still young and under their financial support and get yourself scolded badly left and right? That’s not all. Words will travel to your relatives too and your relatives too will make you suffer. Allah gave us brains to think. Make use of it.
There is a reason to everything, similarly, there is a purpose for fasting. Look at the poor people. They fast even more often than us. We have a comfortable house to live in. Whenever we want food, we can easily go out to the shops to buy some. Allah wants us to feel how to poor people feel and suffer like how they suffer. You are allowed to eat when the sun is still down. But when the sun rises, you’ll have to stop eating, stop smoking and also refrain from having sex till the sun is down again. It is not difficult to do so and this is only for one month. Is it too much to ask?
The poor people are forced to do it for all their lives. Then we’ll know how lucky we are to live a comfortable live and our duty next is to help the poor.
Another explanation for this is that fasting is a very healthy practice. Our stomach has been working for 24 hours a day non stop every year. So, it’s time to give it a rest. Besides, it’ll help us slim down a bit too if we are overweight.
Islam is liberal. Travellers, the sick and pregnant women are not expected to fast. They can replace the fast when they are prepared to fast.
Praying 5 Times A Day
How would you feel if you have been invited by the ruler of your country to see him just once in your lifetime, because he wants to listen to you and solve your problems? You’ll feel honoured and great, right? But this is different.
The Creator of the universe wants to see you! He’s asking you to approach Him 5 times a day, to talk to him, so that He can help you in your life, insha-Allah. Isn’t that marvellous?
As for me, the ruler of my country has never asked me to approach him before. Who am I anyway? I don’t have a high status, neither am I rich. But look, what has the Creator of the universe has invited me to do. Praying 5 times a day is not taxing. Once you are used to it, you’ll enjoy doing it. You should know why you are praying and the meaning words which you say, then only you’ll appreciate the very essence of prayer.
Changing Their Ways
We must not be afraid to change whatever we have done wrong. Allah is merciful. He forgives as long as you sincerely repent and make sure never to repeat the same mistakes again. Allah won’t punish somebody who realize that he has done wrong about something and decides to return to the true path.
This problem usually happens to people with high status, especially teachers of religious schools. Some of them think that if they suddenly tell people that they have done wrong, and tell them the correct thing, people will look down at them, and will ask them what they have been doing all this while. This action of admitting your mistakes is not shameful but rather honourable. We are human and it’s only human nature to make mistakes. But it is our responsibility to check on ourselves and also help other people check on themselves and correct them if necessary.