This morning, I attended a gathering. I went without exactly knowing what the gathering was about. The only reason I went was to support my boyfriend’s interest. See, it turned out to be a small gathering of about 20 odd youngsters and a few elders as “moderators”, if you may. What they talked about was..well..religion. I have never been a big fan of religious gatherings. I couldn’t stand to hear people who goes around with the holier-than-thou attitude go around preaching to me, blabbing on and on about what can and cannot be done. That’s how I used to view people who are deeply “involved” with religion. To me they’re simple a bunch of old fogeys who judge others before getting to know them and constantly tell you no no no no no. They’re like God’s prefects and all of us seen as rule-breakers.
But then some time ago, I realized that why I couldn’t open my heart to go to religious gatherings was because they never talked about things that I could relate to. The religious teachers (if you may call them that) often spoke in a manner that made religion seem like something that is a burden, that is all a matter of saying NO! to the fun experiences of life. Why? That was the question I’ve always asked myself. Why do they have to make religion sound so negative to the young? Why is it that we should be deprived of doing normal things if we want to be good?
That was always the question. Why. And NONE of them ever attempted to give an answer that was in the least bit acceptable manner. Whatever they said was basically rapped onto our heads as “that’s the way it should be”.
If I was to say that this morning’s gathering gave me all the answers I’ve been asking all my life, that would be a bit ridiculous. But what it did show me was that most of us are asking the same wh- question. Why is this why is that. And we never had anyone who we could talk to, that would not judge us for asking these questions. The religious “people” need to realize that we ask not because we want to rebel. We ask because we want to know. Because we’re all..well..searching.
This morning, many of those who were there shared about themselves and how they and their friends have either once or more touched on the topic of religion and how they approached it in their unique way. It’s fun to hear stories such as these from young people of various walks of life. No one was judged on how much or how little they knew about their religion. At the end, I guess most of us realized that we needed to know more, in order to discuss more, and that it’s not so “uncool” to talk about Islam. Although, we could have done without this dude who went on and on and on, he’s in the education field and I guess he kind of forgot that he’s NOT in class. Sheesh. I almost fell asleep halfway thinking to myself that WHYY am I here when I could be out shopping. Thank God someone managed to cut in and turn it back into a discussion. He was turning it into his mini lecture or something.
Great effort by the organizers, a big clap to them for making this happen. Would I go again? Perhaps. We’ll see.