Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Two Exclamation Points

As salaam alaikum,


Two exclamation points. One, I'm done with Step 2 CK! Who knows how I did, but it's done, and I am completely free from now until August 25, when I do orientation for public health school. I cannot express to you how happy I am to get to be brainless, essentially, for the upcoming months...

The second exclamation point comes from part three of the article on Altmuslimah.com about the headscarf. This article has been complete awesomeness, by the way, and answered a question that I've always had but that I've been afraid to ask: when, in Islam, we say that things are fard (obligatory), what does that mean? It's obligatory or else...what? Is Heaven and Hell at play? And this scholar just answered that question for me:

In Islam we measure outward conformities in terms of whether or not you have fulfilled an obligation, whether or not you have fulfilled something that is recommended, or neutral, or if you have done something that is disliked or forbidden. Islamic law cannot go beyond that and this is one of its redeeming features - that the law is not making moral judgments on people. It is not saying who’s going to Heaven and who’s going to Hell. It is only saying that if you want to obey God, you should do such and such. And all of us ask the forgiveness of God because there is no one among us who fulfills all the obligations.  - Dr. Umar Faruq Abd-Allah, Altmuslimah.com

Amazing! Like, you don't understand how simple it is to have a simple question and be afraid of asking it for fear of someone being like, astaghfirullah, the word that's never been pronounced in reference to something I've said or done but one that I've always desired to avoid. Of course it's not just the word...I'm just afraid of asking an inappropriate question, or what is judged to be an inappropriate question, and then not getting an answer and then feeling bad about the whole process.

He talks about how legal judgments should never be moral judgments in Islam, and it's just a concept so...foreign to me, because of how (in strict reference to khimar now) I was introduced to hijab/khimar...it was not an issue of legal anything. It was a direct moral judgment to be sure. Sisters who didn't cover, in the liberal viewpoint, were no different from ones who did, but it was clear that there was an undercurrent, a subdivision of sisters (and a not-so-subtle subdivision of brothers) who disagreed. I assumed that these obligations were moral obligations, until I barely have a schema for law in Islam...like, a law that is not a reflection of morality and spirituality? The only Islam I know is based on spirituality...

...haha, which reflects the fact that I am not, nor will I ever be, any one's scholar. Not at this rate. I'm too deep in medical school now, and yeah, various other million reasons why...


Those are my two exclamation points for the day. Later, I'll have a more extensive entry about...something else, haha, I don't know what yet.



  1. funny, I somehow got dragged into a discussion/harangue from a professor about this topic...lol...well, not quite, but a related one. It seems like a really interesting article, I will try to check it out :-)

  2. I heard about this article but have not yet read it. My brother and mother were having an argument a few days ago that unforunately they sucked me into. When I get more time I might explain it but for now I have to get going. I enjoy reading your blog and miss you on xanga! But life changes and situations change and am glad you are not completely gone from my (online) life.

  3. Salaam!

    Yes, it was four parts the last I checked in, but I recommend it. I don't agree with everything (namely, women and men being as different as night and day), but it's a thought-provoking read to be sure. And I'm glad you're able to stop by! :)