Losing My Religion

November 21, 2018 Karminity Blog 21 Comments




Disclaimer: This is not, in any way, intended to offend anyone but merely to express my PERSONAL opinions and choices that I have decided to make based off my own experiences.
               


A lot of you may be thrown off by the title. This is not a subject that most people feel comfortable discussing because of how black and white religion is SUPPOSED to be. Some of you have chosen a religion at some point in your life while I, on the other hand, have struggled to find how religion fits into my life.


Growing up, I always remembered my Nana (grandmother) covering. She had chosen the Islamic fate before I had even been thought of. So, my beliefs and morals, growing up, were centered around the Islamic faith. Around the age of eight, my mom had chosen to go back to practicing with my Nana and I did too. I was in love with this religion. I knew this because my dad had taken me to Sunday church with him a few times and I didn’t get the same feeling I felt while listening to the Imaam (similar to a pastor at a church), at the Masjid on Fridays, for Jummah (Holy day for some Muslims similar to Sunday for some Christians). This religion had become apart of my lifestyle, I would pray five times a day, cover everything but my hands and face, learn new surahs, read hadiths, go to classes at the Masjid, learn Arabic, fast during Ramadan, celebrate the Eids, and so many more practices.



After turning 16, this love for religion stopped. I thought it was due to me being in the “wrong” religion so while still practicing Islam, I studied other religions. Nothing touched my heart the way religion did as a child. By the time I was in my senior year of High School, I had completely stopped covering and practicing Islam altogether. This was not a phase or some way of me rebelling, this was a disconnect that I truly felt in my heart. I didn’t know how to explain this to anyone at that time. I was afraid of them getting mad or in some way shunning me. What kind of explanation would I possibly give them?

Me: “Uh, hey family and friends… I am no longer Muslim.”

Family & Friends: “Really?!?! Wow! Then what are you?”

Me: “Ummm, see, I haven’t thought that far ahead yet, I just thought you should know that I’m nothing for right now.”


              Then experience the glares and hear the whispers shortly after. Just imagine the starter conversations at every event for me being, “Sooo Mia, have you found a religion yet?” I know it may seem like I’m exaggerating but seriously, think about the importance that almost everyone places on religion. Think about telling someone that you don’t have a religion anymore, how awkward will the conversation turn. Them asking you a whole bunch of questions that you don’t know the answer to? Or even them turning it into a way to bring you back to the religious side? So, I chose not to tell anyone until I could explain the disconnect for myself.

               
I realized one day while looking at pictures from my childhood, that religion gave me a sense of belonging to something larger than myself. My joy from religion came from me doing everything my religion told me to and knowing that I’d be guaranteed a place somewhere better than where I am on this earth. Then as a teen, my depression hit, and I started “acting out” because of it. Now my belief is the I am going somewhere worse than this because I keep doing “bad” things. The pressure that is placed on me as a child, going through depression, trying to find myself and where I belong in this world, was unbearable.

I had to ask myself some hard questions. It ultimately made me cry feeling like I was destined for Hell, just for feeling the way I do. I began to find comfort in the people that I met along my journey of finding my “faith”, just knowing that I wasn’t feeling or going through these feelings alone made everything 10x better. I asked them questions that I was too afraid to ask myself. Someday I would have to face these questions for my own personal sanity. I didn’t want is to be forced though, I wanted the answers to come to me naturally. Eventually, I would find them.




I was not born with clothes on so why should I be told how to dress? I was birthed by a man AND a woman, so why should the man have more control or say so? What are “womanly/wifelyduties” and “manly/husbandly duties” and why is it so unfair? I MUST get married first before sex and children? Religion chooses who I can and can’t love? What I can and can’t love? If I am a good person, does -insert religion here- still believe that I will be accepted into a better place in the hereafter even though I do not believe what they believe or worship how they worship? So many more controversial questions I asked myself. The hardest one was, do you ACTUALLY believe in God? The answer is, yes and no, I believe in something greater than myself but A GOD, I’m still not sure. I once asked my teacher, when I went to a Christian school in Utah, “How do you believe in something you cannot see?” and she responded this one-word answer that has confused me till this day, “Faith.”

                I guess I couldn’t have faith after finding out that so many things in history had been re-written or proven to be inaccurate. It’s hard for me to trust that religion involves facts and true stories. So, I believe in something higher than me, still not sure of what that is, but I know it is there. I believe in Karma (do good and receive good, do bad and receive bad), I believe in energy (being in touch with yourself and surroundings like people, nature, etc.), I believe right and wrong rather than good and sin… the difference being that I don’t believe that every sin is wrong like, fornication, bearing a child out of wedlock, being LGBTQ, wearing revealing clothes or none at all, abortion, and so many more.

                Everyone’s beliefs are based on their own heart’s calling. It is ok if you do not agree with anything I have said because you are entitled to your own opinion. We have chosen to embark upon different journeys on finding our own faith. When people ask me, nowadays, I just say that I'm spiritual rather than claiming a religion. If they have further questions about what I mean by spiritual then I let them know that I have no religious affiliation, that I believe in a high being and I choose to worship that higher being by being a good person and doing right on this earth.



If you have any more questions or would like to share your journey with me, please contact me on the following:

Instagram: Flower.of.hadiqa

Email: Karminity@gmail.com



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21 comments:

  1. Very beautiful! I enjoyed this!

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    1. Thank you so much for reading my post, I really appreciate your comment.

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  2. You would/ be surprised how/how many people irregardless of religion believe like you do. This is so raw and real. Very inspiring. I'm going to be excited to watch your spiritual journey on the blog and see your growth. Blessing (editted)

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    1. Thank you so much Kamille! Beautiful name btw! I agree, I figured this would touch those who don't feel comfortable enough to say how they truly feel regarding religion. I appreciate you commenting on my post and going on this spiritual journey with me.

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  3. Such a great article. In my opinion, it's so unfair to force people to any religion when they cannot decide on their own. We should be able to choose it when we are mature enough.

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  4. I loved this! I have struggled with all of these feelings myself and it makes me feel so much better that I am not the only one!

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  5. Religion I believe is man-made. Do what your heart wants to..

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  6. This is so insightful. Thank you for sharing your personal journey with "losing your religion". I remember going through similar feelings as a teenager, who was loosely raised Protestant Christian in Germany. It's quite powerful to see how we experience spirituality and the struggle with organized religion the same way as teenage girls - across the continents, across the decades and across the different religions! Good luck with figuring all of it out!

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  7. very inspiring esp to be true to yourself and your feelings. I am born Muslim and still have mixed feeling about religion in here. I totally feel for it but people around are making be unsure.

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  8. Religion plays an important role for so many. There are many types of spirituality, for sure.

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  9. This is very inspiring. I too was raised by a baptist family. But now older I am still trying to fit in the right religion. Its confusing

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  10. What a wonderful post! This is really thought-provoking and eye-opening, I'm glad I got to read. Thanks for sharing! :)

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  11. We are in the same boat (only different religions). I was brought up strictly catholic. I went to religious studies every Wednesday night and mass every Sunday. I even taught confirmation classes. Once I got old enough to question what I had always been told, things changed. I spent my whole youth feeling I was destined for Hell and life was just a struggle to NOT go to hell in the end. I was afraid of death because I thought I was a bad person for my doubts. When I was in college, I started to explore other religions. I missed organized religion but I knew that I was not Catholic or even Christian by what I really believed. The religion that most fit what I thought was right was Judaism. I went through the process of converting. My whole family thought it was a phase and that I would come back to Catholicism. I stopped going to any organized services when I got married because it was a constant fight with my husband, though I did raise our son with the beliefs of Judaism. We have since divorced and I remarried. I have never gone back to any organized religion. I feel that saying I am spiritual is the best fit too.

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  12. I think religion is just more than something someone can choose for you. My grandpa is a Muslim but my dad is a Christian so do I. The way of religion is just a choice. Nice post you got here

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  13. I have not thought about choosing any religion yet. My grandparents are Catholics.

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  14. I loved reading about your journey. It is thought provoking. I don't lay much importance on religion as much as my parents would like me to. I am a strong believer of karma

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  15. Wow, this is such a personal post. I'm happy for you that you are finding your own way.

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  16. I am glad you can pen down your personal religious beliefs, that really courageous and commendable.

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  17. So interesting to read about your journey with religion! Thank you for sharing something so personal!

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  18. Its really inspiring. Finding your own way is better. Religion can't do anything with personality and beliefs.

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