Best of both the worlds

by Saima

Almost every blog post that I read over the past few months would generate a lot of arguments if the post mentions anything about religion. Hindus would ridicule Muslims, blame them for something and the Muslims would retaliate, explain things and end up ridiculing Hindus, and vice-versa.
My nani is a devout Hindu and my dada was an extremely religious Muslim man. I remember nani teaching me excerpts from Mahabharata or Gita and narrating me some instances from these holy books(she still does it). I remember learning the Gayatri Mantra and Om Bhoor Bhuva Swaha in schools, and then coming home and chanting them in front of my proud nani. It didn’t matter to her that I am a Muslim, nor did it matter to me that I am a Muslim chanting these line. For me the meaning of these mantras was more important, rather than the fact that being a Muslim I shouldn’t chant them. I still remember them, though I don’t chant them now (school assemblies are over!!), and now I can proudly say that I know more about Hinduism than most of the Hindus I have come across.
I also remember my dada narrating instances of Holy Prophets (peace be upon him), reciting Kalmas, and offering namaz, scolding us for not praying 5 times and telling us about the fruits of being a religious and good person.

Often nani would teach me some lessons of life which pertained to one becoming a good human being and I realized that these teachings are there in Quran too. No religion teaches hatred, religion is supposed to be the guiding light of one’s life, it can never teach to kill someone. With time I realised that these religions are not that different. Basically they all teach us to be a better human being, to have a pure heart and not be consumed by hatred towards anyone else.

Life is too short to be consumed by hatred. There is absolutely no point fighting over religious issues. The British followed the divide and rule policy and succeeded to achieve their goals. If our country gets divided, it wont be long before we again get ruled by fascist elements.

I am a proud Muslim, but I am prouder of my lineage, because I get to experience the best of both the worlds.

I wish everyone starts respecting the other religions and starts following the principle of ‘live and let live.’