Lately, I’ve been having some difficult conversations with my two sisters. With my older sister, we recently discussed the events surrounding Mom’s illness and eventual death. I argue that Mom gave up way too early in the fight, my older sister wonders, who am I to judge. With my younger sister, we’ve been discussing religion. You see, she married a man of Pakistani decent earlier this year and as such switched to being a Muslim. Of course, she claims that she was already thinking about converting. Yeah right! Granted she is an adult and has a right to change her belief system, cannot help but feel that it’s an uninformed choice. Unlike most people who read and study and then make an educated decision, my sister is doing it backwards. After several painful conversations with her, I’ve come to the conclusion that she knows very little about the Muslim faith. Heck, she’s even admitted as much. I am trying to stay level headed about the whole thing but it’s rather difficult when I listen to her throw out one inaccurate statement after another. I find myself getting offended by the whole thing because she now views Christianity as less advanced (code word really for superior) than the Muslim religion. I’m offended as I see this as a rejection on how our Mom raised us. More importantly, whereas I think it’s important to be tolerant of other religions, my sister gets defensive about her new choice and responds with negativity about other religions. So unlike the conversation I had with my older sister where we can agree to disagree, I feel compelled to at least make her aware of the inaccuracies of her statements related to the history of both Christian, Jewish & Muslim religions. Hey, maybe I’ll get her some books for Christmas. Oh wait, even though she plans to celebrate Christmas, we can’t call it that.
December 2, 2003 at 2:02 am
yup, she has to convert in order to marry a muslim – its a prerequisite.
dear friend, get your sister to read more about islam, not just go into it simply because she’s involved with a muslim. read it with open and inquisitive mind. any religion is worth getting to know, how else would one understand others belief. but to say one religion is better that others, that’s just old school thinking.
oh, she can celebrate christmas if she wants to, with her families and friends. i do, and i’m a muslim. that’s what tolerant is all about isn’t it? at the end of the day, it’s very much between you and god 😉
December 1, 2003 at 10:30 am
The religion discussion sounds stressful indeed. I cringe just reading it.
I can see where your sis is coming from re: putting down other religions. When someone joins a new group/ideology (not necessarily religion) they get indoctrinated into the whole “We’re better than everyone else because of X” type of thing. And then they’re so excited and haven’t learned enough about it yet to be objective. Eventually though sanity does make a return 🙂
November 30, 2003 at 4:30 pm
Ursula, difficult conversations indeed. The conversation with your older sister must have been painful. The conversation with your younger sister is really curious to me. Naturally, I have a thousand and one questions…and you do too, I’m sure! Did she HAVE to convert to islam to marry this man? And why is she celebrating christmas if its no longer part of the faith she practices…even recognizes as “inferior”?
Man oh manischewitz…