Sunday, September 27, 2020

Should I convert to Islam?

I have never known what to think about Muslims.

I just can’t get them.

Okay, I can’t get other religions either. This is because I am not the religious type.
I am yet to be convinced that my life would change for the better if I went religious. With my current mind set, it seems I am destined for that big fire that, once and for all, deals with those who enjoyed life and never bothered to pray.

Anyway, with Muslims, I often wonder how people can pray five times a day.

I mean that is lots of time spent on telling some bloke that you love him. You mean it wouldn’t be enough if they did it just once?

I mean, doesn’t that nice man they pray to get tired. Surely he wouldn’t mind if the prayers were cut to two per day.

Back when the Prophet was walking around the desert converting heathens, it must have been easy to rest at some oasis and pray many times in between haggling over prices for the camels.

In today’s society, where so much has to be done in so little time, praying five times a day seems a mite too much.

Look, I don’t want to go to hell. That is why I am checking out the different religions that can save me from those flames.

If my Muslim friends reduce the prayers to at least two a day, I might just change my name to something exotic.

That said, I often wonder how Muslims have fun. Apparently, their religion does not allow them to partake in alcohol. This is a terrible pity. I think they need to work on getting more converts.

People like me are open to persuasion. But if they insist on a no drinking policy then I am afraid it’s a bridge too far.

I mean, if they have a problem with strong booze why not permit wine at least?
It would be nice on a hot summer afternoon, dressed in those billowing robes and that jaunty little hat, to chill with a glass of wine after Friday prayers.
I mean just how do they enjoy themselves? Do they eat cake and drink Kool aid?

I can imagine grown up men engaged in serious discussions pouring themselves Kool aid.
C’mon guys let’s work on more innovative ideas of attracting more converts.
A small matter I want resolved is that of women. The only way I am going to convert is if they unveil the women. What if I convert and they give me a wife who is ugly with her veil off?

So far from what I have seen, Muslim women who don’t wear the veil are very beautiful. Now if we agree that they are a rare species in the beauty stakes, why hide them behind the veil? I always watch Miss World contests on my television. I can tell you those girls are nothing. If they invited Muslim women to participate, it would be a no contest.

Like other religions, there are bad types and good types. I certainly wouldn’t want to associate with the group that flew those hijacked jets into New York.

As a pacifist, I abhor violence. I don’t want to be sent to training camps in some mountainous country and be instructed to return and bomb America.
You see, I love America.

I believe it is the greatest country in the world. So if I ever turn to Islam, I would join those who love the country I love. I hear there are many of them.

Actually, they vastly outnumber those who hate us, meaning America. Anyway, I got thinking about Islam and Muslims this week following a tragedy in a certain country.

For a moment, I stopped wondering where Muslims find the time to pray five times a day. I stopped wondering if the bloke they pray for is not tired of too much praying and probably wants it reduced to two sessions a day.

Heck, I stopped wondering what they do for fun. I realized that if so many of them can go through life without even a sip of the holy waters, then indeed it is possible for us to enjoy life without booze.

I mean if Muslims can eat cake, play cards and sleep early even on a Friday night; we are all capable of it.

Clearly, they are alright if they don’t chill with a glass of nice wine after Friday prayers.
This week’s tragedy informed me that the veiled women were not the most important thing. They could stay hidden behind their covers, waiting to be married off to some sucker. But there are positive aspects about Islam.

You see, for as long as I remember, whenever somebody died it would herald a big ceremony. That is how I was brought up. When a relative died, no matter their station in life they would lay in state. By this I mean it would take days before they were buried.

In the interim, the world would come to a standstill as the whole community stopped its work and paid homage to the dead person. The homage would take the form of much weeping and grieving. That would be followed by the slaughter of goats, cows and chickens. The mourners would be fed for days on end.

In the interim, they would haggle over where the deceased should be interred. Uncles and other relatives who can hardly afford a chicken would insist on the choice of casket. Amidst much feasting the absent relatives, even those reading big books overseas would arrive for the funeral.

Never mind that the deceased could be a poverty stricken cattle herder or a person of name, the ritual is all the same. My eyes were opened when the president of Nigeria decided to call it quits after a long illness.

I got the shock of my life when it was announced the man would not lie in state. Neither would he be buried in an expensive casket with the flunkies grieving over it.
I suppose I was not the only person puzzled.

Many other people in Nigeria who do not belong to the Islamic faith and were looking forward to much feasting were equally disappointed. In Islam when you die they don’t waste time. They bury you and get on with life.

They don’t waste money that would be better used by the living. This is amazing.
I think I am ready to convert to Islam.

This is a practical religion. Okay, I would convert if only they could allow us the new chaps some wine after Friday prayers.
C’mon, just a little wine!


Read this week's paper

Sunday Standard September 27 – 3 October

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 27 - 3 October, 2020.