Edited by Yara Al Sayes
Whether you’re a sinner or a saint, you’ve probably been judged for it before. This comes as no surprise, since our society feeds off of judgments. As each day passes, the bar is quickly raised higher. We’ve reached a point of polarization where there are almost no people belonging to middle grounds. On the contrary, all that we see are extremely religious people judging those on the opposite end of the spectrum, and vice versa.
“We’ve reached a point of polarization where there are almost no people belonging to middle grounds.”
It’s a hot summer day, and a woman in a Share’i swimsuit walks onto the beach with her bearded husband, who proceeds to lay out his prayer rug to pray Duhr. Right after that, another woman walks out to the beach in her bikini, with her girl and guy friends by her side, laughing and exchanging jokes. The two women quickly exchange eye contact, looking each other up and down in disapproval.
On one end, there are beach resorts – along with other public spaces – that prevent veiled women from entering. These women are perceived as unclassy, and this belief has spilled into the minds of many people. You find these people due to such discrimination finding the courage to push the limits further and classifying those who even pray or fast as “bee2a”. Since when did following religion become something to discriminate against? Following the basic rules of religion does not make a person “bee2a”, smelly or gross. On the contrary, this person could be 10 times more stylish, wealthier, and put-together than any of us – not that this should even matter – but this point has to be made.
“Unfortunately, when we judge others, we do so based on appearances and not their hearts. Everyone is free to act and be whoever they want to be… as long as it harms no one.This is one of the basic rules of humanity, and we are failing miserably at following it.”
On the opposite end of the pole, you find religious leaders referring to women in bikinis or people who hang out in mixed groups as promiscuous, ill-mannered, sinners, and bound for hell. However, just because you pray, or fast or follow God’s basic rules to the best of your abilities, does not mean you are above those who are unlike you. Maybe these people you are judging have much cleaner hearts and much stronger spiritual connections with God than you do. Maybe you have a black spot in your heart triggered by envy, pride or hate, which cancels out all your prayers and fasted days and places you on God’s scale below these people. You never know.
In order to live in peace, move forward hand-in-hand as a united society, and avoid discrimination – which is taking a significant rise – we need to stop judging others. We are filled to the brim with faults, no matter how great we think we are. And unfortunately, when we judge others, we do so based on appearances and not their hearts. Everyone is free to act and be whoever they want to be… as long as it harms no one. This is one of the basic rules of humanity, and we are failing miserably at following it.
“Maybe these people you are judging have much cleaner hearts and much stronger spiritual connections with God than you do.”
Focus on your own faults, and let God, and God alone, do the judging.