For Islam Awareness Week a post featuring the perspective of a young person
Aalia Qureshi, London
For many of us, being assertive, confident and easy-going comes naturally, almost like an instinct. But today, I am writing for those of us who feel we do not have a voice. Those of us who have to put in 20 times as much effort (so it seems) to get our voice heard and put our influences and ideas out there in the wide world. Those of us who feel our voice is worthless and insignificant.
It is unnervingly easy to feel overwhelmed by authority and social dictations in this world, which seem to ingrain rules and limits on our youthful imaginations. And often, especially in Asian-majority communities, our true feelings can be involuntary suppressed to create the outward image of happiness and delight when in reality, there are many cracks in the system. It seems there is no platform available for those of us who are perhaps hindered by anxiety or a knack for social awkwardness, especially when those words have their own taboo around them in our own communities!
I know it seems there is no hope, but truly there is. There is always hope, and today it comes in the form of Islam. In Islam, our voices are not merely words and noises, but through our voices God hears our intentions, meanings and actions. Through Islam, God allows our voices to be universally understood, with far-reaching, physical repercussions rather than merely swallowing the words of another. Through the combination of our voices and the voice of Allah, we can educate others; we can cheer others up; we can do humanitarian works or give to charities; we can recite the Holy Quran and practise the Sunnah – and these actions are what will truly lead to our positive thoughts and ideas influencing the world that we live in.
So, let us take solace in the fact that through Islam, our voice has the power to not only talk and speak words, but in fact, to take action and cause change towards a more open-thinking and optimistic world. But also, let us take heed that this is our responsibility as a Muslim – to put our skills and talent to good use in order to help those who are less fortunate than us and ultimately contribute to world peace and harmony between all of mankind.