Palestine And The Millennial Muslim Consciousness

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{Exalted is He who took His Servant by evening from al-Masjid al-Haram to al-Masjid al- Aqsa, whose environment We have blessed, to indicate him of Our indicators. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing.} (Qur’an 17:1)

It has been tough for me to articulate my emotions about Palestine nowadays. In the onslaught of graphic pictures and movies, the appeals straight from Palestinians, and the tireless work of activists, I don’t need to seem as if I’m merely leaping upon a development, or claiming to talk over those that are really struggling.

Instead, I’ve been reflecting.

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I’m, like many doubtless studying this, a Muslim millennial raised within the West. We have been raised on a combination of consciousness of social justice and the watering down of Islamic identification on the identical time, navigating being Muslim and being secure and being accepted and nonetheless being Othered, . But all of us, sooner or later or one other, have recognized about Palestine.

Palestine has been a part of my Muslim consciousness since I used to be a toddler. I bear in mind being… what, 10 years previous? and seeing the tragic, iconic picture of Jamal and Muhammad al-Durra – a father defending his terrified, screaming son from an onslaught of Israeli bullets – tacked up on the bulletin board at our native masjid. I stared at that picture many, many instances each time I used to be at that masjid, ready for my father to complete speaking to masjid uncles. That picture has eternally been emblazoned in my reminiscence. I didn’t know the complete story of it, then; I heard solely snatches, right here and there, muttered between masjid uncles, till I used to be a lot older. In truth, I solely actually acquired the complete story after I learn this piece, an interview with Talal Abu Rahma, the photographer – and I remembered the horror and disappointment and confusion that ten-year-old me felt, watching these footage for the primary time, the second time, the hundredth time. 

I grew up listening to my father bellow highly effective phrases from his minbar on Jumu’ahs, reminding the Muslims of the scenario in Palestine and the horrific evils of the Israeli colonizers, invoking Allah’s Curse upon them. He didn’t mince his phrases, ever; in consequence, I witnessed the implications: his movies posted on MEMRI TV, media instantly harassing us, hate calls and nasty voicemails left on our answering machine at residence, and worse – the censure of different Muslims, embarrassed by his phrases, throwing him underneath the bus publicly to the media and the Muslim group alike. After all, talking out too harshly meant compromising their reputation and their public picture and potential funding and their comfy relationships with the identical federal safety apparatuses that spied on our group anyway.

I grew up listening to du’a for Palestine in each Jumu’ah khutbah, in each qunoot in Ramadan. The ameen of the jamaa’ah was highly effective, each time; there was all the time weeping on the point out of Palestine, of the devastation that was wrought day in and time out. And but, the identical folks working these masaajid and group organizations would flip across the subsequent day and rush to play good with Israeli-supporting politicians and “interfaith” efforts the place Palestine was forbidden from being talked about. There was extra eagerness to appease the viciousness of B’nai Brith, which maliciously screens each point out of Israel for what does and doesn’t swimsuit their agenda than there ever was a way of walaa’ and gheerah for the honour of the Muslims in Palestine. 

Over the years, Israel stole extra land, murdered extra males, girls, and youngsters, jailed innocents, starved extra folks, bombed extra hospitals and houses, and nonetheless… Muslims did nothing. A couple of protests right here and there, perhaps; fundraisers, till these channels have been shut down for “suspicion of terrorism,” after which nobody wished to ship a penny out of concern. Muslim nations normalized political and financial ties with Israel, Muslim group leaders within the West had the gall to embark on Zionist-sponsored MLI journeys and to beg for a seat at White House iftars the place they have been mocked to their faces and instructed to simply accept Israel’s existence. Muslims policed different Muslims for being “radical” and “extremist” and accused each other of being armchair jihadis merely for talking with frustration about Palestine and Afghanistan and Kashmir and Iraq and Syria; Muslims groveled for politicians’ consideration and invited them to masaajid on Jumu’ah and ‘Eid – the identical politicians who continually reiterated their assist of Israel and ignored our existence as soon as they acquired elected. 

It has been wearying to see this over and again and again – and to say that’s in and of itself a privilege of being safely faraway from the day by day violence and devastation of Palestinian life. For so a few years, it has felt as if nothing has modified for the higher, that Muslims have been too complacent in being half-hearted bystanders. 

But maybe we’re lastly seeing a change. With the violent displacement of Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah, the assaults on Masjid al-Aqsa within the final ten nights of Ramadan, and the continued massacres in Gaza, we’ve got additionally seen social media being utilized to broadcast the violence at a grassroots degree, shattering the false narratives of mainstream media and politicians. We are seeing Muslims lastly realizing that sure, Palestine is a spiritual subject – not only a secular one. We are seeing Muslims renewing their dedication to BDS, contacting political representatives, and actively dismantling Zionist propaganda on social media. We are seeing Muslims – contemporary from Ramadan – bear in mind the significance of sustaining tahajjud and making du’a for the oppressed. Perhaps we’re lastly rising up and taking the steps in the direction of the true liberation of al-Quds.

May Allah strengthen this Ummah in religion and perseverance, and make us the technology that witnesses the liberty of Palestine from its unlawful occupiers and colonizers, ameen. 

{[They are] those that have been evicted from their properties with out proper – solely as a result of they are saying, “Our Lord is Allah .” And have been it not that Allah checks the folks, some by way of others, there would have been demolished monasteries, church buildings, synagogues, and mosques through which the identify of Allah is way talked about. And Allah will certainly assist those that assist Him. Indeed, Allah is Powerful and Exalted in Might.} (Qur’an 22:40)

Photo credit: Alisdare Hickson

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