Meditations on Islam

(I am not an expert. I am just writing what I think.)

So I'm a Midwestern girl and after 911 I started wondering what Islam and Muslims was. At first I thought they were two separate things but now I know that's wrong. Before 911 I thought that Islam had many gods like a god of the sun/ a god of the moon/ a god of whatever. But, when I studied Islam I learned that they only have one god (Allah).

To my surprise I learned that Allah is the same as God. He's just called by a different name. That was a really big surprise to me. For me it meant that if we have God in common then we have a lot in common. I also learned that Islam is part of the Abrahmic religions. That means it descended from Abraham/Ibrahim in the desert like 4,000 years ago. So the family ties grow even closer. This mean a lot to me. Then I learned that Islam believes that Jesus (I don't know if they spell that differently). They do not believe that he was God or part of God. They just think that he was a great prophet. This I can live with. Because really I'm a bit confused what Jesus is too. How can he be both all God and all human? Anyway, I'll talk about that in another essay maybe someday. I just think it's cool that they think he's a prophet. It brings us closer together.

Here's what makes me mad and maybe this is really the point of this essay. As a Midwest girl I'm always getting told how evil and bad Islam is. I don't think that it is evil or bad. Certain people in Islam are evil and bad. But, that's true for every religion. People tell me look they make their women wear a veil or a burka. You wouldn't like that. Yes, it's true. I wouldn't like to wear a burka or a veil. But, then I'm not Muslim. They believe that it's a sign of chastity and purity. They want to be closer to Allah/God. However, I do not think women should be forced to wear the veils/burkas. This is why I admire countries like Turkey because they do not force 

women to wear the veil. Also Americans and Europeans should take care to remember that it wasn't so long ago (historically speaking) that westerners dressed for chastity's sake.

Chastity was seen in the Victorian era. Women went around in outfits which covered their entire bodies. Before that women wore hats and veils.

Point Westerners shouldn't judge other cultures and religions they don't understand. Islam (which is more close to use than most people think) needs to be looked at. Don't downgrade it. After all it is the world's biggest religion.