Tuesday, May 5, 2009
It's not Difficult
I have to find it! You don’t understand. I’ve been raised in Malta which is an Island in the Mediterranean. And now I’m back to it in Lebanon which touches the Mediterranean. I. Must. Be. In. That Sea! I heard of this women-only beach.
“Yeah it’s across from the Hard Rock Café. I heard there are lesbians and some like take off all their clothes to get an even body-tan”.
Ewwwwwwww! Then I’ll go to a normal beach and wear a burkini.
“Don’t forget the flippers!”
Dolpin style baby with pride.
“There are pools you can go to. There’s one at the Meridian, there’s one downtown too at this hotel. It’s above the penthouse floor on the rooftop”.
Is it only for women?
“No but it’s on the roof”.
“okay just take off your hijab. There’s nothing in your religion that says if a woman wears the scarf and then takes it off, that she’ll be punished or persecuted by religious law”.
Not that I can recall a verse. But it doesn’t matter for me. I put the hijab on because I want to. Not because I’m afraid of punishment by people.
“So if there’s nothing wrong with it in your religion, just take it off. It’s stopping you from doing so many things”.
They’re challenges I can overcome. I’ve done it before all my life. Plus I think if I take it off, it’s like taking off my skin …
…. ….. I can’t remember what else we said that day but we kept walking. I guess I should have seen that my Catholic friend was trying to help me by ‘saving’ me from what appeared to her as a problem. I’m guilty as charged. I guess I did sound like I was complaining.
Did the conversation go like this: A quest for a way to swim with a hijab = a difficulty, and a good friend would help her friend from this perceived difficulty?
Later that week, I opened a book and it said: “He (God) has chosen you, and has imposed no difficulties on you in religion”.
It makes no sense, then, to simplify life and turn it easy, because it’s not difficult. Wrong tool for the job. Just change the tool.
Some take off this or that rule in Islam so they can go do more things in life -- like swim, sunbathe, dance, exercise, explore new knowledge, eat more food and drink, or get intimate physically to know love.
Religion – Islam or otherwise – cannot be approached with the feeling that it’s difficult. Trust this.
To myself, no need to suddenly feel like I’ve had it hard all this time. All I need is my memory. Remembering. When I stood strong. Atleast once. We’ve all been solid atleast once. It’s not difficult.