Welcome to my blog!

This blog is an honest look at what life is like for this particular American convert to Islam. We're taught in Islam to cover our sins, to not air them, for fear of lessening the severity of sinning. In this blog, I may relate past indiscretions from time to time. This isn't to make light of them, but in the interest of educating Muslims and non-Muslims alike as to the realities of life as an American convert, I present my mistakes honestly. I make no excuses for them, nor do I claim that they were okay to make. I am not perfect, and I make no pretenses as to that. If others can learn from my past, know that Islam, and religion in general, is open for people no matter what mistakes they've made, then I will gladly air my sins when needed.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

In defence of purity rings.

This was brought on by my mother's friend talking about her tall, talented, georgeous daughter who wants to stay a virgin and wears a purity ring, and gets a lot of flack for it.

Purity rings get a lot of flack.  I'm guilty of that, I think.  I can't remember, but if I am, it was probably the same flack that I hear from other people: Kids can't control their sexual urges, the rings don't mean anything, they don't stop teens from having sex, and on and on and on.

I've never worn a purity ring.  I'm uninterested in partner sex, so I don't see a reason to remind myself to not do something that I don't want to do, and have no urge to do.  However, the one ring that I wear in a gold band with inset diamonds in it that my mother gave me.  I'm concerned about blood diamonds, so those are the only diamonds that I'll wear.

My moral issues with diamonds aside, I've worn that ring for the last few years, ever since Mom gave it to me.  Recently, I noticed that one diamond was chipped, so I took it in and was told that in addition, two more were loose.  I didn't want to loose any of the diamonds, so I took the ring off.  It's been two months, maybe three, and my finger still feels naked without the ring.  I'd fiddle with it when I wore it, and it reminds me of Mom every time.  Not wearing it makes me feel itchy, and sometimes I'll be looking around, wondering what's out of place, before I'll realise that my ring's not on my finger.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Listening to GaGa, thinking about God.

Lady GaGa's song topics, for the most part, and all of her outfits, aren't halal.  I'm not condoning messing round with a stranger's disco stick, or texting whilst dancing.  Her songs are mostly vapid, vacuous, and only fit for when you really don't want to think about anything and you just want something brainless to bop around to.

But I've been listening to her a lot, and it got me thinking about God.  More to the point, it got me thinking about our relationship with rhythm and how it relates to our relationship with God.  Since the first time some ancient proto-human discovered that banging rocks together could produce a rhythm, or that hollow logs of varying sizes made different noises, or that stretching their vocal chords in a certain way made a pretty noise, music has been an integral part of humanity.  A strong, deep, steady beat is one of the most primal things you can experience these days, and can serve to jazz you up far more than a pep-talk from your coach.  In fact, when my sister was at soccer practice one day, there was some sort of drum group going on and we could only hear the drums, but she herself said that it got her more enthused about practice.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Of dream jobs and housewifery.

My dream is to be an animator for Pixar.  I've always wanted to do something digital art-oriented, be it freelance work like Marta Dahlig, or animating.  But working at Pixar has been my dream since 2009, when they fulfilled a dying child's dream of seeing "Up" before she died.

That link's going to make you cry.  A lot.

Go ahead, get some tissues.  A lot of them.  Then click on the link and read it all.

It's oaky to cry.  Take some time.  I'll wait.

So that's why I --- oh, you're still sniffling?  I'm sorry.  Let me know when you're done.


Oaky.  I know, I know, I bawled my eyes out, too.  I still start crying when I tell people the story.

Deep breath.  We'll get through this together.

Monday, July 12, 2010

I can haz followerz?

I have five whole followers, guys.  Five!  Wow!  I feel special.  Thank you all.  *hugs*

I'm off to bed, but more about my dream job and wanting to be a housewife later.

Contradictory?  I'm good at that.  :P

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Well, that was a bust.

Apparently sending someone unwanted PMs and texts after they break up with you, despite them telling you repeatedly to not contact them, following them to their karaoke bar, making friends with their friends, talking to all the guys they talk to, leaving them unwanted gifts and then refusing to take them back, texting them more, leaving them alone for a couple of weeks and then starting up again ... Yeah, apparently all that isn't stalking, and if the person you're "not stalking" tells people that you're a stalker, then they're making up heinous lies about you and deserve to lose all chance at your friendship.

Gee, and I thought that after almost two years, we could move on and get over this ordeal and maybe be friends again.  I guess I was wrong.  And it irritates me that the textbook definition of stalking apparently isn't stalking, and that I'm wrong and a bad person because I could have sworn that consistent, unwanted attempts at contact despite requesting to have none, unwanted gifts, being followed around ... I could have sworn that those actions constituted stalking.  It irritates me that I finally gained the maturity and bravery to offer some peace and friendship, only to be shot down like that.

No, it doesn't matter that he doesn't want t help with my family; he's not obligated, doesn't have to.  I was trying to make amends.  I gave it my best shot.  And unlike him, I'm not going to push the issue now that it's been made clear he wants nothing to do with me.  God bless him and soften his heart.  My part here is through.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Oppressing the "oppressed."

I read a lot of comments online (I shouldn't, I know), and the people that I should be ignoring often make comments such as this:

"Free liberated women should be just that. Wherever they are. They shouldn’t hide from being photographed with backward burqa shrouded shadows, instead they should proudly present themselves as women, free, liberated and capable." (In reference to a picture of the-First Lady Laura Bush posing with three Saudi women; one in hijab, one in niqab, and one a burka)

So ... you who make these comments think that my religious attire is oppressive, yet instead of worrying about my education or health or even, at the bare minimum, asking my opinions on my religion, you do exactly what you claim my garb incites people to do, namely treat me like a non-entity?  Instead of proving that you think higher of me than you claim the men of my religion do, you use my attire as an excuse to treat me exactly like they supposedly do.

Instead of showing me through your actions that you think of me differently, that you think I'm a worthwhile human being and deserve to be treated as such, you treat me the same.  You call me backward, a shadow, assume that I'm uneducated because my face and hands are the most ok,f my flesh that you can see, and sometimes you can't even see that.  I wonder, then, would you treat me like a super-genius queen if I were to walk around naked, since you seem to think that my worth is related to how much skin you can see?  No, you would treat me like a piece of meat that you can bang however, whenever you want, regardless of my feelings on the matter.  You would call me cheap, a slut, a tramp.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

A Family Crises.


Before I converted, I briefly dated a very intelligent, thoughtful, open-minded man who happened to be a convert to Judaism.  I forget his Jewish name, but his birth-name was Steve.  We broke up for reasons unrelated to either of our religious beliefs (I was pagan or agnostic at the time; can't remember which).

Throughout our relationship, Steve was very adamant about there being a huge difference between Israeli Jews and Zionism, and the rest of the world's Jewry.  He tried to go over and volunteer in the IDF every year,  but he was still very firm in that Zionism did not equal Judaism, and once told me that Jews aren't even supposed to set foot on the Holy Land until the Messiah comes, and that even if Moses himself (peace be upon him) were chasing him, all Steve would do would be to go into Israel and Moses wouldn't be able to follow him.  Steve was upset about the Israeli-Palestinian BS, but he still respected and understood that not every Jew and every Muslim hated each other.  He knew that it was a mainly political mess that was using religion to further its cause.  Steve was also the one who told me that the word "Messiah" is talking about a political leader, not the spiritual leader that most Christians hold it to mean.