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Just curious - how many muslims are on mumsnet?

(1000 Posts)
Galvanise Sat 01-Dec-12 00:21:53

Hello/Salaam,

I know mumsnet has a wide and diverse population and I tend to recognise some MN usernames as regulars. Just intrigued to know how big/small a community it may be.

Of course, I respect that there may be those who do not wish to even identify themselves for various reasons - which is fine too.

I am not asking for 'religiousness' levels or any vital stats! Nor is this a muslim-only thread or an 'no non-muslims' thread.
If you really wish to tell me that you are not a muslim, that is fine too smile

<Waves enthusiastically to all muslims and non-muslims> smile

firawla Mon 10-Dec-12 01:29:09

im muslim too, salam to everyone on the thread smile

BoerWarKids Mon 10-Dec-12 05:12:27

<creeps in and sits at the back>

Hi everyone smile

I'm not a muslim but, may I ask a couple of questions?

If a woman has no hair at all on her head (chemo, alopecia or just shaved off) does she still need to wear a headscarf in a mosque? Weird q, I know, but I've wondered this for years!

A few months ago, a Muslim friend on facebook posted that she was watching Olympics. Several people commented on her status along the lines of, "Oh, we don't watch TV during Ramadan!" It's like there was subtle oneupmanship about who's the most religious and observant.

I thought she was being attacked slightly and I wanted to write a comment in her defence, but didn't think it was my place? I guess my question here is; does this kind of thing happen to you and how would you deal with it?

Thank you to anyone who replies! envy

HardlyEverHoovers Mon 10-Dec-12 07:04:42

Salaam Firawla, and BoerWarKids.
Have no idea about your first q BWK, I suppose it would be yes, as the understanding of what needs to be covered comes partly from a hadith where the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) told a young woman that only her hands and face should show, so in that case it's not so much about covering the hair, as only showing those bits. Anyone know any different?
Regarding oneupmanship, yes I think it does exist, on a subtle and sometimes not so subtle level. I feel very fortunate to have Muslim friends who don't partake in this, we all have different levels of practise, different strengths and weaknesses, different views about some things, and accept and benefit from that. That is the true Islamic way I think.
Firefly11, wow, I think we have a lot in common, atheist rebellious stage, slightly thwarted by sneaking into religious buildings when no one was looking, philosophy stage (didn't last long, raised more questions than it answered and I met lots of weird people), yoga hippy phase (still kind of there), oh wow there is a God stage (still kind of there as well!). You're right it is liberating!

peacefuloptimist Mon 10-Dec-12 08:07:36

<creeps in with BoerWarKids and takes a seat>

Assalamalaykum.

Muslim too. Though I havent really been advertising it that much on Mumsnet as I am an occupational lurker. smile

Boer with regards to your first question. I agree with HardlyEver. I think that you would probably still have to wear it as for many muslims the first reason for wearing hijab, is that it is a command from God in the same way that praying 5 times a day is or fasting in Ramadhan is or not eating pork is.

'There are certain rulings in Islam that can change according to place, time and situation. On the other hand we have rulings which are fixed and unchangeable. The only way a change would be possible is under dire circumstances like the threat of death, harm, sickness and other things.

The hijab is identified by all the scholars [except for a few non-Orthodox scholars over the last 20 years] as a fixed obligation which cannot change unless a qualified legal scholar deems that a sister’s situation demands it. Examples of this would be the Inquisition in Spain and the recent wars in Bosnia and Rwanda. However, it should be noted that such a change is, at least most of the time, considered temporal at best as it would fall under what are known as nawazil - temporary trials whose outcomes, for the most part, are not permanent'.

My personal understanding of the reason of why you have to wear hijab is that it is less about covering hair and more about identifying yourself as a muslim. One of the reasons the Quran gives for women covering is so that they are 'known' i.e. identifiable as Muslim. You can achieve the other goal of covering, which is modesty, without wearing a headscarf, but it is the headscarf which makes it clear to others that you are not just a woman who like to dress modestly but that you are also a muslim. This is important because first of all it impacts the way people (in particular men) interact with you and secondly it impacts the way you conduct yourself. As you are now identifiable as Muslim you unwittingly also become a representative of your faith. I know for myself this makes me much more cautious about how I behave when I am out and about (for example the way I speak to people) because I dont want any indiscretions to be linked or blamed on my faith. Kind of in the same way how a conscientious police officer or a soldier when they are wearing their uniform will behave in a way that dignifies their position as they do not want to bring shame on their profession. I hope that makes sense.

With regards to your second question I think it is inevitable that you will always get this oneupmanship not just about religion but with all things that you do that people could compete with you on. I typically have three responses to it I either find it annoying, amusing or just ignore it. Islamically speaking it is very frowned upon to boast about the religious acts that you do as sincerity is an incredibly important aspect of any 'good deed'. There is a very famous hadith which states that 'Actions are judged by their intentions'. So if your intention is to show off or to make others feel inferior then we believe that God does not accept your action as you did it for other reasons rather then as a means of drawing closer to God. An action that is very small for example doing something considerate for your neighbour, if done with sincerity can be more rewardable than a big action (like donating a lot of money to charity) if you are simply doing it to show off. I hope that makes sense.

If not I am sure there are others who can give a more coherent response than I can at this time of morning after being woken up three times during the night by my recalcitrant 3 month old ds.

HardlyEverHoovers Mon 10-Dec-12 08:18:15

wali kum asalam peaceful, I certainly couldn't have given a more coherent answer than that, alhamdulillah. Were you quoting from a text int he bit you had quotation marks around? Would love to know where that is from.

peacefuloptimist Mon 10-Dec-12 08:31:58

Thanks HardlyEver. Im relieved at least one person can understand it. The quote is from a website not a text. It is from Imam Suhaib Webb's website. It was a response written to a question about whether Hijab is an obligation. It wasnt a direct answer to Boer's question but I thought it was relevant. Suhaib Webb is a contemporary American-Muslim educator, activist, and lecturer. He converted to Islam in 1992 and after many years of study in reputable Islamic Institutions including Al Azhar University in Cairo he now works as an Imam in the US.

crescentmoon Mon 10-Dec-12 12:22:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

crescentmoon Mon 10-Dec-12 12:40:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BoerWarKids Mon 10-Dec-12 13:48:02

HardlyEverHoovers and peacefuloptimist - thank you for your lovely, thoughtful responses smile

crescentmoon Tue 11-Dec-12 23:25:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HardlyEverHoovers Wed 12-Dec-12 07:27:47

Thank you crescentmoon, what a beautiful prayer.

crescentmoon Mon 17-Dec-12 13:50:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nailak Mon 17-Dec-12 14:04:04

firefly The best advice I can give you is to sincerely ask God for guidance on to the path which is right for you

sisters walaykum salaam, I guess you all know I am Muslim lol grin but not a lot of people coming out of hiding here!

Galvanise Tue 18-Dec-12 21:59:39

Salaam all,

Nice to see more people on this thread. Still guessing that there are many many more muslims lurking around....

smile

firefly11 Wed 19-Dec-12 14:32:08

Thanks nailak and everyone else who answered my questions. I have been reading up a lot.. I guess I am more attracted to the Sufi element, but am not prepared to wear a hijab (well, not in a country where most don't) or pray 5 times a day with the whole routine of wudu. I am definitely a Deist now. My belief in the existence and omnipotence of God is certain. But maybe am not cut out for Islam after all.

nailak Wed 19-Dec-12 17:02:53

what do you believe about God?

firefly11 Wed 19-Dec-12 17:21:11

oh I believe he is omnipotent. that life is predestined. I don't believe in the existence of heaven and hell. I don't also believe wholeheartedly that religious books are words of God. they are fables to me, written by man inspired by their feelings towards God. I've been questioning my beliefs a lot recently. I don't think I can subscribe too much to any particular religion for now though there are some gems found in different religious books.

firefly11 Wed 19-Dec-12 17:25:38

I suppose what I'm saying is, this whole notion of doing things because God says so, is not quite something I get. At the mo'. I believe in the Golden Rule, have always done even as an atheist. But never based it on belief. I don't think I'll make a good religious person tbh.

amirah85 Wed 19-Dec-12 17:46:13

Another one here,assalam alaycum,I think from my name its quite obvious lol :-)

nailak Wed 19-Dec-12 20:44:04

I am sure you will make a very good religious person!

God tells us things to benefit us. He created us. He knows what is best for us. He knows our nature better then we know ourselves.

firefly11 Thu 20-Dec-12 01:15:03

nailak Yes, God knows best and everything happens for a reason only God will know. That I can agree on... I pray God will show me the signs to help me choose the right path.

As for me being a good religious person, or the potential to become one in future... well, only time will tell smile

nailak Thu 20-Dec-12 09:30:43

Do you believe God is omnipresent?

crescentmoon Thu 20-Dec-12 14:21:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nailak Thu 20-Dec-12 14:26:09

so its just like singing nasheeds together?

what about the people who say it is bidah as the sahabah didnt do it?

i genuinely dont know much about sufiism.

crescentmoon Thu 20-Dec-12 14:46:31

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