Q: As-Salaamu Alaikom Imam,
I have been trying to become a better muslim sister by trying to surround myself with more muslim sister. I use to have ton of non-Muslim friends, so I try to change that by surrounding my self with more muslim sisters and joining an Islamic organization. I’m very disappointed to find that the Muslim ones gossiped, talk about boys and to boys etc all the things that I have been trying to avoid. If I wanted to be surrounded by all this I would have just stuck with my non-muslim friends. When I confront them about what they are doing they say i’m judgmental. When I see them walk around campus they do not return my Salaam. I don’t know what to do?
I suppose I am the fool for assuming that just because they wear a cloth on their head that makes them good.
Time: Wednesday March 23, 2011 at 8:12 pm
A: وعليكم السلام ورحمة الله وبركاته
I appreciate the time you have taken to send us your query. I can tell that you are wanting the best for yourself and those around you. Do not let the discussions of others affect your faith. Remain strong in the good your are doing. Here are some suggestions we could all use.
- Birds of feather flock together (or at least they should for good reasons.)
- The problem you are facing is not uncommon. Humans by design are filled urges and desires. When people are together, in order to feel great about themselves some feel they should fill the time with talking. These talks are most often is at the expense of others. When we talk about others, we forget we are giving value to people we despise. Always visualize your good deeds leaving you for the one you are talking ill.
- If your faith is not going to be affected by weak spirited friends, meet them and share a few kind words and assist them in making comments they can be proud of. Every person has some good quality we can focus upon and make mention off. When your friends gossip look for something positive to say about the one whose reputation is being tainted. This would turn your negative rewards by virtue of the environment into a positive outcome due to you not supporting the vice of unwanted chatter. Be brave and subtly assist in changing the topic to something more beneficial.
- If your ‘friends’ persist in wrongful chatter, politely excuse yourself from such a negative environment. Such removal should only be to the extent of: ‘until we meet again.’ Removing oneself entirely would isolate you and this is not the way of a believer. Total removal only must occur when the faith is jeopardized. Our belief is that we are to live in this world without accepting the pollutants getting into us. No different from a ship in water.
Your last statement was a little disconcerting. To ‘wear a cloth on their head‘ is a good thing. If it was not possibly for that ‘cloth on their head,’ matters could have been nastier. Sometimes the little good we adorn saves us from the greater evils of society. Just as you are offended with others judging one another, you and i should also not rush to judge the reason for others wearing specific garments.
As i heard my teacher repeatedly say: ‘hate the sin not the sinner.’
Allah Certainly Knows Best