Why is family so important?
Sometimes I think there are lying to me. Why would they do that?
What's with the head scarves?
How can I learn more?
The family is the foundation of Islamic society. Muslim culture grew out of Arab society and Arabs have always lived in groups and they tend to do everything from a group mindset. The larger extended family makes up ones group and the gathering of all of ones relatives makes up the tribe.
The peace and security offered by a stable family unit is greatly valued and seen as essential for the spiritual growth of its members. It is quite common in the Muslim community to find large, extended families living together; providing comfort, security and support to one another.
In Muslim culture, respect and esteem increase with age. Elderly parents are respected on account of their life experiences and their hierarchic position within the family unit. The opportunity to attend to the needs of one's parents in their later years is viewed as a gift from Allah.
“If young Muslims remain convicted of their Islamic beliefs, they will be better equipped to resist the temptations. As bad as these lifestyle pitfalls are, they pale in comparison to the ultimate dishonor of abandoning Islam, especially if it means becoming a Christian. Islam is not just a set of religious beliefs. It is an all-encompassing identity. It is inconceivable to change that identity, even for those who barely practice their Islamic faith. To do so is like suicide. It kills the identity of the convert and leaves the rest of the family in a state of shameful mourning.” – Abdu Murray
“In our culture, telling the truth is right and telling lies is wrong. In the Middle East, people don’t think of lies as being right or wrong. The question is, ‘Is what is being said, honourable.’ If a lie protects the honour of a tribe or nation, then it is fine. If a lie is told for purely selfish reasons, then it is shameful.
Arab storytellers tell of a father who is working in the hot sun with two of his sons. When he needed a drink of water, he asked he older son to get him a drink. “No, I will not” the elder son replies. The father then asks the younger son who says “certainly father” but he does not actually bring any water. Which is the better of the two sons? The Arab answer is: the younger because he has saved his father’s face by not defying him.”
– Roland Muller,
Honor and Shame: Unlocking the Door
This illustrates the difference between shame/honor and right/wrong approaches to life.
Muslim women choose to wear the hijab or other coverings for a variety of reasons. Some women wear the hijab because they believe that Allah has instructed women to wear it as a means of fulfilling His commandment for modesty. For these women, wearing hijab is a personal choice that is made after puberty and is intended to reflect one’s personal devotion to Allah. In many cases, the wearing of a headscarf is often accompanied by the wearing of loose-fitting, non-revealing clothing, also referred to as hijab.
While most Muslim women wear the hijab for religious reasons, there are other Arab or Muslim women who choose to wear the hijab as an expression of their cultural identity. By wearing the hijab, Muslim women hope to communicate their political and social alliance with their country of origin and challenge the prejudice of Western conversation towards the Arabic-speaking world. In many cases, the wearing of the hijab is also used to challenge Western feminist conversation which presents hijab-wearing women as oppressed or silenced. – Source: Arabs in America