What is Islamophobia exactly? Dislike of or prejudice against Islam or Muslims, especially as a political force. – Oxford Dictionary.
In 2015, Donald trump called for a ban on Muslim’s from entering the united states. But how many people in the US would agree with him? , well around 55 % American’s, according to the YouGov poll conducted around 55 %, American’s had an ‘unfavorable’ opinion towards Islam. It’s just not the US but many European countries more or less have the same type of attitude towards Islam or have Islamophobia.
Now those of us who have visited the US or any European country would know that it’s not like the people over there are after your life just because you’re a Muslim or hate you but its more like they are scared of Muslims which largely has to do with the media depicting Muslims or Islam as a violent religion which promotes extremism.
All on the basis of the actions of a few groups and not the majority. In the midst of all this, A young Hungarian girl living in London had the same feeling towards Muslims. In her own words, this is how she described her fear towards Muslims. ;
Before you judge me, let me tell you that I grew up in a Christian country (although I’m not Christian) and I only heard the word “Islam” and “Muslims” on TV watching the news about the most recent terror attacks. It made me scared of anything Islamic, even the name “Allah” gave me shivers.
There aren’t many Muslims in my country so I clearly remember the day when I first saw a woman wearing a hijab on the bus. My heart rate went up to about 200/minute, I started sweating and I quickly messaged my mum “I love you” in case she was a suicide bomber. I was suffering from Islamophobia.
The weird thing was that my brain knew that Muslims are not terrorists yet I couldn’t help my feelings.
I m sure she’s not the only one who felt like this. Many non-Muslim’s must go through the same feeling when they come across a Muslim. But realizing that her behavior wasn’t normal our Hungarian girl decided to make a multi cultural club on Facebook and Instagram by the name of the multi-culti club, a club which is going 12.3k followers strong and its only been a year. And decided to research more about Islam and Muslims and get rid of this fear once and for all.
Her journey in learning more about Islam took her to countries such as turkey, Morocco, Albania and most recently to Egypt in Ramadan, and to several mosques and Islamic centers in the UK and a mosque in Germany and charity balls, to a Muslim Pakistani wedding. Even more surprising was the fact that she fasted the whole month of Ramadan this and last year and celebrated Eid just to understand what does it truly mean to be a Muslim and what Islam is really about and not what the media portrays of it. Such bold steps right?
Now those of us who are Muslims by birth know how much patience is required to fast properly without losing your temper or have mood swings when you’re at work, school or at the university during a boring lecture, especially in summers. It can be hard right?. But our multi cult girl(that’s what she calls herself) went through all of this and loved fasting in Ramadan. In her non-Muslim Ramadan diary, she described her experiences during aftar and suhoor in her own words: Non-Muslim Ramadan Diary, Day 5
Suhur: 2:56am, Iftar: 9:09pm
Location: London, UK
I knew it would happen one day but I didn’t expect it so soon… I slept through my alarm last night. I woke up at 2:50 am, 5 minutes before the sun comes up. I ran to the kitchen in panic and stuffed a few dates in my mouth whilst looking in the fridge for quick bites. With a banana in one hand and a glass of milk in the other, I managed to finish Suhur with 5 dates, one banana, a glass of milk and 3 glasses of water. Not bad in 5 minutes!
There’s a verse in the Quran that I particularly like: Allah says: “O children of Adam, take your adornment to every mosque. Eat and drink, but be not excessive. Indeed, He does not like those who commit excess.” [Sûrah al-A`râf: 31]
Even though I actually remember reading this sentence, I clearly failed to obey the rules. I ate so much for iftar today I felt drunk (and I still had that massive juice to finish!).
It’s only a few days before I go to Egypt experience Ramadan in a Muslim country. I can’t wait to meet the family who is going to host me!
Last minute sehri I guess it’s safe to say that we all have been through this. She even went to Egypt in Ramadan to experience what is it like to live with a Muslim family. For a whole week. Which she loved.
Got to give credit to her in a world where people make their opinions about a certain group, person, or any topic just by getting their information from the media, she didn’t fall prey to the mainstream media like so many of us today. But rather decided to search for the truth actually strove hard for it if you ask me. It wasn’t all easy for her she had to go through a lot of criticism from her colleges and friends. She even posted about it: Non-Muslim Ramadan Diary, Day 27
Suhur: 2:38am, Iftar: 9:25pm
Location: London, UK
Yesterday I met up with a friend of mine from Hungary who was in London for work. He has never been here before so I thought I’d take him to Borough Market.
As we were walking there we tried to catch up on what we’ve missed in each other’s lives due to the distance. He knew about my trip to Egypt but he didn’t know the reason why I went there. None of my friends from Hungary know about Multi-culti and my mission to fight Islamophobia and racism. I wasn’t sure if they’d understand and I kept it as secret.
So when he asked me why I went to Egypt I decided it was the time I let him know. I told him that I started researching about Islam almost a year ago, I showed him how I searched for a Muslim family to host me via Instagram and what I learned when I was in Egypt. I told him I’m fasting too.
He didn’t call me a fool, like other non-Muslims to whom I try to explain what I’m doing. He was surprised a bit first (I think he expected me to say “I wanted to see the pyramids”) but then congratulated me on what I achieved and reassured me of his support. It makes me so happy that I have a friend from home from whom I don’t have to hide this anymore.
And you know what else? He is Jewish.
Many Muslims believe that Laylat al-Qadr is on the 27th day of Ramadan. I’ve posted about this before, whoever spends The Night of Power in prayer, their sins will be forgiven. There is a special prayer that Muslims recite on this night, it translates to: “O Allah, You are the Forgiver and you like forgiving so please forgive me”
It wasn’t at all an easy journey but she didn’t let the negativity stop her from her goal which was to beat Islamophobia.
If you want to know more about her journey follow her on