By Myriam Jandali
Islam and Muslims often get bad press in media and since I myself am a Muslim women I have been raised to know the truth behind my religion which is why I created this artwork shown above to show the true colors behind my religion. In following artwork I’ve used cement glass and a tree. There’s a reason behind each and every element used which is going to be explained below
Dimensions of the cement is 10x10 cm and the height is 5cm
The cement is used as an example to show how Islam is portrayed in media where it has been considered as a religion of cruelty, oppression, and brutality; however, it is misunderstood by millions. Islam (meaning peace and submission to God), is a religion of ethics, obedience, harmony, and is based on a faithful belief system. Since the time the religion was revealed, Islam has laid out a religiously pure belief system and has promoted advancements in several branches of science. Soon after Muslim immigration into America and other regions in the western world, Muslims have found it increasingly difficult to endure these misconceptions. The religion of Islam is not a religion of hatred and violence, but a religion of respect for all humans and God. This is the true Islam, the religion of equality, morality, and faith. To show that I’ve used the glass to represent snow and in the very middle a tree blossoms. The tree that I have used was inspired by the cherry blossom tree. The cherry blossom tree is found in japan. You might be asking yourself. How does a tree in japan represent Islam and peace; however, these flowering trees are a symbol of peace and hope, which is why I used it because I wanted to show that in the end there is hope or Islam if one could truly open their mind and see beyond media and the press. They will find how beautiful Islam is.
5 Common Myths about Islam Propagated by the Media
Female Genital Mutilation
This horrendous act is the removal of the female genitalia in order to control female sexuality. This act is rooted in patriarchal cultures of controlling the female population. There isn’t anything stated in the Quran or mentioned in the Hadiths. Such acts were eliminated under Muhammad and his early followers. Yet Fox News and other media outlets always perpetuate this action as part of Islam. In reality, according to UNICEF, 29 countries practice FGM
Jihad has become synonymous with Islam and terrorism. Thanks to the extremists like Al Qaeda and ISIS, this term has come to be portrayed as the means to the Islamic utopia of a global caliphate. The media has taken the definition of the terrorists, which represent a minute aspect of Muslims and disseminate it as if it was a Quranic definition
Stoning of adulterers is seen as a barbaric act that only exists in the Islamic world. The news media is quick to point out that the act of adultery is condemned within Islam therefore stoning is what the Quran dictates. Bill Maher and others are quick to point this out as well. They are not wrong in the sense that when they hear about a stoning it’s in Muslim nations and hence it must be part of their religion. The issue is instead taking what a few say or do as proof a religion is inherently evil or advocates ignorance and violence, they should research it instead. All Muslim countries do not practice stoning today, only a handful of these nations. Actually the punishment of stoning of adulterers is not mentioned anywhere in the Quran.
Nothing is more synonymous as an act of Islamic terrorism than suicide bombing. Suicide bombing came to us in recent history during the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The actions of the bombers were more so for national aspirations not religious purposes. Yet it has always been claimed that Islam condones these acts of terrorism and the Palestinians exhibited it. The media and commentator do a great job of portraying it as a weapon of choice amongst Muslims. It did not help when the Taliban implemented it in Afghanistan and Pakistan as well as Al Qaeda carrying it out in Iraq
Islam and Science
One thing I am sadly witnessing today is this belief that Islam contributes nothing to the world but hate, war, terrorism, and havoc. This notion that Islam is antiquated and barbaric with nothing to share but only destroys. Nothing could be further from the truth. Religion to many is a medium of hope and faith in something that allows them to lead lives of purpose. It is the basis of their moral compass. Today, the overwhelming majority of the 1.6 billion Muslims are not violent and extreme. Of course there are criminal and violent believers amongst Muslims but that number is very minute compared to what is sometimes arbitrarily attributed by the media.
We forget that Islam is one of the few religions that have been on the forefront of science, technology, and advancement. It was Islam that preserved the works of the Greeks and Romans when Europe descended into the Dark Ages. It was the Muslims who built upon that knowledge and gave us advancements in mathematics such as the concept of “0”, algebra, algorithm, advances in chemistry and medicine, which are still used to this day, optics, astronomy, etc