News, nonsense, Depression, and Dawa

Just finished listening to the awesome talk by Bro. D. W. Ali, called “Building Bridges.” He’s speaking to high school and college students, but his advice is probably good for everyone. Points he makes:
1. Know yourself
2. Build bridges out of love and for the sake of Allah, as opposed to the goal of “converting/building your own team”
3. If you stand out as a Muslim–with a hijab or a kufi–do it with a smile and with humility.
4. Building a bridge means being able to share and learn–it’s a two way process as in real bridges.
5. Be friends with people.
He says these things much more eloquently of course. And that has led me to re-evaluate myself over the past semester. I am a hijabi, and often a very depressed hijabi, mostly because of the news. I used to listen to NPR–I’ve been staying away lately–during my commutes, and it can really, really cause A LOT of depression. Half of the time the news is depressing, and the other half it is hateful of other people, especially Muslims.

Lately actually, I’ve been so depressed by Iraq and ignorance and hatred, that I’ve contemplated–not seriously since I’d never leave my family–moving away, to some other place. Wishful thinking is not very helpful in relieving stress and depression, from my experience at least. So, I’d rather think about buckling down and trying to do good for other’s around me.

This is spurred on from that talk, but I’ve been thinking about how I should relate to people around me. For much of my life, I’ve lived in a very isolated community. I went to an Islamic school for the most part, I was tight with the MSA in my undergrad years, and then I taught at an Islamic school. Once I’m done with my masters, which will be in August, inshaAllah, I really want to teach in a public school. I want to put myself out there and really help people in real ways. I want to be able to relate to them and learn.

2 Responses

  1. i know what u mean .. i have a friend up there in ohio and she lives alone away from family cuz of the werk and shes picked a remedy fer it which i think is not good but still werks a ltl bit .. “being anti-social”

  2. I heard that talk–a little bit of it at least. And you’re right, it makes more sense when he said it. 😉

    Funny, but I’ve going through the same feelings–we listen to the same news no? And I got depressed enough to cry and all that.

    But then, after a rant to my mummy on how it is impossible for me to make a change for the better in the U.S.–she said that, maybe, I could leave the instutionalized corruption as it was (since there isn’t anything I can do about it). And just be helpful to those around me. Which made more sense–afterall, I can’t remember the last thing I did to help my community.

    Then–I suppose mummy talked to daddy–’cause he asked me “how are you?” I shrugged and then after prayer he said “you ought to say Alhumduillah that you’re a young bright muslim living in challenging times and that you have time to make a change in this world.”

    so alhumduillah.

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