BY MAHA BOULFELFEL
There is a common misconception among the non-Muslims that Islam is complicated. They look at Muslims with doubt and complication. Like simple things such as “Muslims are not allowed to eat pork” or “Muslims are not allowed to drink”. When we look at the Dos and Don’ts of Islam, you will only realize that the Don’ts are there for our own safety. Yes, it is not allowed to drink, but only because it will harm us or do things that may harm others. What many may not understand that Islam is not all about: This is Haram (Forbidden), and that is Haram. As my Islamic teacher once told me, do not ever excessively use the term Haram, as Allah himself has not. Islam is about living a life as a good person with the right intentions. Prayer is there not only so you can take a moment out of your day to remember and thank Allah, but it is there so it will keep you on track. It is there to help you ask god to what you want in your life to make it more peaceful. There is something about that moment when your head touches the ground while bowing down that will make you feel better. Barely will you see a man who prays five times a day with the right intention at heart cause harm. Prayer truly sets you to have a connection with God.
This all goes back to what the world of Islam is experiencing for the last couple of years since 9/11. It is truly painful to see what some so-called Muslims do as wrong, scars the entire reputation of Islam.
President Obama once said:
“No religion is responsible for violence terrorism. People are responsible for violence and terrorism.”
This statement was said right after the terrible incident in Paris. Which basically helps serve the thought that do not hate the 1.57 billion Muslims in the world for what one group of people decided to do.
For my art piece I decided to go with a small video taking the literal meaning of the fact that the earth is your prayer mat. I mixed different random scenes from different areas, in which I used a symbolic movement of doing the first Raka’at (A half way bow, that relies on you putting your hands on your knees) in all scenes. Wearing the traditional female prayer uniform. As I intended this heavenly attitude, I started the video at a Mosque because is it the average area to pray, which then slowly fades into random areas and with another average area Muslims typically pray. And ended the video with a clip at home, to go back to the norm. The music (Soldiers of Allah - Nasheed ) is by Muhammad & Ahmed Muqit, in which I admire the choice of words. I also intended to play a recording of my father reciting the Hadith, so it would give the audience a hint of where I may have gotten inspired. I believe my audience is mainly directed to those who are confused to the true meaning of Islam. To the people feel Islam is “complex” . To those discriminating against Islam because they think Muslims are about harming others.
A prayer is a Muslim way to communicate with God. It is the area of peace, in which we drop everything and anything. No proper Muslim would ever have the nerve to go in front of God and ask for something destructive. A true Muslim concerns are much more than worrying of ways to make the world a disruptive place, rather to find all the possible ways to make the world a better place. Whether it is removing a rock off a path that may harm someone, or helping a man financially.
We pray everywhere, So peace is everywhere.