By Jessica Khawam
"He who desires a religion other than Islam, never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter he/she will be among the losers." (Quran 3:85). As described in this quote Islam is a religion in which he/she has to believe in Allah or else they will be among the losers. Now a day a lot of people worldwide think that all Arabs and especially Muslims have a confusing opinion about how the Arabs have violence in them and have no peace against each other. But the word Islam means the religion of the Muslims, and “Submission” to Allah and his will. It comes from the word “Salam” meaning peace and purity. The word Islam teaches us that in order to achieve the truth and peace of mind, we must submit to Allah and live according to his Delightfully revealed law. In the Quran, Allah defines that “the only purpose for which he created mankind was to worship him”. Islam is a religion with different backgrounds morals, beliefs, respect and agreement as well as “is a religious system that begun in the 7th century by Muhammad. Muslims follow the teachings of the Qur’an and strive to keep the 5 pillars”. Some People Refer to Islam as just a religion for Arabs and not more but by looking at the amount of converts in every corner of the world especially in England and States, one can clearly see that Muslims come from many various races, groups and nationalities. Islam is known to be the quickest rising religion in the whole planet. It was a religion that came from Allah that people back then and today have to follow and respect. Also as shown in some of the researches that actually “more than 80% of Muslims are not Arabs”. It is proven that anyone who prays the 5 prayers of Islam and Worships Allah is known to be a Muslim.
The word Salam means peace but also used as a general greeting above all in Arabian countries, by Muslims, and used in other countries as well. “As-Salaam-Alaikum,” the Arabic greeting meaning "Peace be unto you," it was a routinely greeting used by everyone whenever and wherever Muslims or might say Arabs gather and interact with one another. As well as they used the reply for “Salaam-Alaikum” which was “Wa-Alaikum-Salaam,” meaning “And unto you peace,” The reason this word was chosen by me was because it was one of the 99 words that Allah listed and because it also brings peace to a person. It is a very simply word but yet very meaningful to one another it’s the word that really if a person thinks of it, it’s the only word that represents what all religions are truly about and what brings all of us together today. This word really means a lot to me “PEACE” when thinking about it, we need peace in life we are all equal, Peace stands for happiness, things we have to cherish as well as opportunities that people would want rather than judging one another because of their religion or even society. In this life we need everyone to have peace with one another in order for people to understand each other and that’s how the stereotype of every person would come to an end and everyone would live the happiness the way they want to.
My artwork is a base of design which was created by four equal white squares, then a carved laser cut into a calligraphic shape, in addition the edges was shaped into a puzzle to have an easy fit and better stability, then I used Two extra plain wood which was bought and cut the same equal size of the box. I drew on the first plain wood the word Al-Salam then I marked the word with the blade. After that I kept carving the blade through the path while applying more pressure till I reached the bottom of the wood. Since the wood had no color on I had to spray paint the wood with white color. As for the second plain of wood I had to make a whole for the lamp, so I drew a circle in the center of the wood, after I was done I spray painted the wood with white color to match the whole project. I connected the lamp by attaching the ending with a plug and got a base for the lamp to be stable at the center of the box. I finally attached the lamp from the back of the box with four nails each one on every edge, and the word Al-Salam was inverted and also attached by four nails in front of the box. When you turn on the light, the word Al-Salam will be shown on the wall with the calligraphic design shown, the reason why I chose the white color is because it is the color of peace and purity as well as I chose the yellow lamp to give the design a strong and rich look, it also gives a natural look like the sunlight. The idea of this project is because I thought of it that each specific part of this lamp represents or symbolizes something very specific the light box symbolizes the Kaaba, which is a cubic building at the center of Islam’s most sacred mosque, Al Masjid al Haram in Mecca, considered as the “House of Allah”, The yellow light that is chose represent joy and happiness. And last but not least the Engraved Calligraphy represents all the Islamic cultures as well as countries.