This weekend in countries all over the world people have been involved/engrossed in various activities and events leading up to Monday 29th April which will conclude the Easter celebrations. In my 23 years, I have never fully understood what Easter was and what exactly the celebration is about, what happened on Good Friday? What happened on Easter Monday, why does Easter always fall on Monday? Questions I’m asking now because my circumstances have changed. You see I grew up in a Muslim household, went to an Islamic seminary and a large number of my friends were Muslim, I had little association with Christians, so I guess in that way I never involved myself in their holidays, rituals or celebration…even in a general sense.
My circumstances have changed in that I’m now in the “real ” world – a world where there is a mixture of people of different faiths and I find myself so ignorant in matters not concerning myself. You may ask why would you bother yourself on a religion that isn’t yours? Well simply that as Muslims we are used to being persecuted and judged by literally everyone because of just that – ignorance. People who do not know what our religion is about and instead use propaganda they hear to base their opinions of us. We ask people to learn more about Islam before they pass judgment but here I am, not practicing what I preach in regards to other religions. Hypocritical isn’t it?
Knowledge is power and we shouldn’t be picky about what we learn, it’ll all be useful someday. Learning about other people apart from ourselves not only bridges gaps and helps us in our understanding of others but gives us the capability to smartly debate for our religion. We see in examples of Islamic scholars who have knowledge of at least 3 major religions and use this to provide clear intelligent answers working with all sides of an argument. Now THAT is power.
So this Easter I pledge to myself to learn more about our brothers and sisters in humanity and try to be less ignorant in their affairs. Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists e.t.c we all exist in this one planet, therefore, it is always best to familiarize with each other more to understand each other better.
We are all different and these differences aren’t going anywhere it’s understanding them that will bring us closer. Let’s do it together.