For the American Muslim, religious dogma is like a toxic agent. Guilt of the migrant captivates them in dogma and symbols. Much easier to fight for it than live for it. The hijab, the beard, the after school Madrassa and most important: the Pig!
The pig. After taking this undivine creature’s name, ablution becomes obligatory. Absolution by spitting the contaminated saliva out into an already contaminated world, or by saying a pious word about divine scripture. Meaning? What have they do of meaning? They aren’t a Muhammad Atta on September 11th. (He didn’t either) They are American Muslims trying to figure out whether voting is halal.
Halal? No its not some kind of genius. Its autism of a kind. An involuntary madness that compels them to take up bad words as arms. To write “halal” on water bottles! Halal: a trademark. They are still however resolving their feeling towards McDonalds. They may eat it but know they are doing something wrong. They may not wear the hijab but know they are doing something wrong. They may not keep a beard but know they are doing something wrong. They may eat gelatin sweets but know they are doing something wrong. And that is where Islam for this race lies. In knowing that they are wrong.
“Guilt is the first step towards Islam”
Coming back to the pig, it is a great moral question for an American Muslim on how to deal with Winnie the Pooh. The problem is not Pooh but his friend Piglet. Piglet, as you may have realized is a pig. A pig. A prime concern is that there aren’t many ways to purify ones self after prolonged exposure to it. Cannot feed your child in a Pooh utensil, cannot dress your child in a Pooh clothing, cannot let your child play with Pooh, cannot let them watch Pooh on TV and cannot take them to McDonalds when the toy is Pooh and Piglet.
To Pooh or not to Pooh? My question is what has morality got to do with what you consume? It does if it alters your state of mind in the long run or in the short run. So a Pig tends to eat what it defecates, but American Pigs don’t. They eat clean food, perhaps better than any cow, chicken or turkey could eat in an “Islamic state.” But a pig is the central question. It is the acid test of Islam. Not whether you eat it or not, but if you check for thiamine monosaturates in any foods you consume, and know what colors in the jelly beans have gelatin in them. Gelatin: the basted child of the evil pig.
I could as well be the boar eating Oblix and still be more moral than the holiest. If I use my brain cells to contribute to world hunger, the deteriorating ecosystem or scientific purist of some kind, rather than allocate pious ceilings for a free mankind, I got to have a fair deal in an after life. If there is an after life, that is. If heaven and hell are not figurative concepts used to define reputations and consequence.
I am beginning to think its most immoral to be a cleric in Islam. To have an Islamic party in a majority Muslim state, to wear a hijab in America, to teach kids Arabic without meaning and to keep a beard when Gillette exists. To be guilty of holding symbol and practicing dogma in the name of Islam ought to be forbidden. But who ought to forbid, the self righteous me? The Kafir? The one judged by American Muslims as non-Muslim. For I couldn’t be bothered with acid tests, or guilt. They judge by hijacking God’s many attributes for their own egos.
Feel good, you all. All you all, feel good. Begin with the discourse on nail polish and prayer, and end with the Pig, but don’t forget to spit. Like you spit when you fast in Ramadan so the fast is harder to bear. So that the verse in the book that talks of making “deen easy for you” is rendered meaningless.
I can’t leave Islam because it gives me the simplicity I seek in this complex world. Because it doesn’t give too many specifics. Because I admire Khadija’s business potential and leadership. And the man she married. Because I need not write lengthy letters after their names, and still hold reverence for the empires of justice they created. And above all, because my maker is outside Islam as much as she is within. That means there is still hope in the world.