“I can’t drink coffee.”
Whaaatttttt?!?!? There may not be more frightful words in the english language, especially after a sleepless night.
There she stood, my amazing sister-in-law. I looked more closely – she looked normal. Sane. Yet she just uttered the frightful phrase above.
I find myself “chatting” with a someone I “met” through a dear sister-in-law a few months ago. Gotta love that 5 am coffee break!
This individual often shares the perspective that all religions are pretty much the same with minor differences. Ok, I’ll accept that premise. So why, then, am I petrified of learning more about Islam?
Because deep down, what if I end up wanting to convert?
There. I said it. I am afraid of wanting to convert. Not because being Muslim would be a bad thing or because I don’t want to have to explore wearing hijab (not all Muslim women do), or even because I don’t think I would find a welcoming community. I’m afraid because it would destabilize my little family.
Now before anybody thinks this is a window to say Islam doesn’t support families the destabilization would simply be because I would then be following a different religion than my immediate family. Logical, which isn’t normally the case so early in the morning.
So why is religion so important? Why would my being a different religion than my husband or children be destabilizing? That to me gets at an interesting aspect of religion and the human psyche: specifically, why do we need it at all?
If the three major religions are so similar yet different religions in one nuclear family have the potential of disrupting that essential human construct, why has the human race kept religion around for so long?