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September 1, 2004
Interview with Laila

by Justoju


Question: How long have you been Muslim and how old are you?
Answer: Ever since I was born. I am 14.

Question: What are the most important things in your life?
Answer: Hmm (thinks to herself), I am trying to think, I never really thought about this before…well I know it 'should' be Allah, but I dunno I just haven't reached that Islamic point yet.

Question: So, if it isn't Allah, then what are the most important things in your life other than him?
Answer: The issues that I go through. I am being totally honest.

Question: You said that it 'should' be Allah, can you tell me why it isn't?
Answer: Well (pauses), I'm a bad girl.

Question: In what way?
Answer: Because like--- (laughs) God are you writing 'everything' I say?---because somebody told me that you can figure out your standing with Allah by looking at His standing with you…and cuz I don't like pray five times a day and everything its kind of like I am ignoring Him. So I am bad in that way. I am not practicing anything, I am just there. I never had that Islamic boost to make me do it. I dunno. It's actually quite mind-boggling.

Question: So you recognize that there is a problem?
Answer: Yes

Question: How long have you known that there is a problem?
Answer: For the past year. I have been arguing with myself about it.

Question: What have you done to find answers to your arguments?
Answer: Well, nothing. Just thought about it, is all.

Question: Then if you never found answers for your arguments, then that means that those arguments were never laid to rest, right?
Answer: Yes, they are still in my head. They actually come back quite often, but when I get distracted they get blown away. Like leaves in the wind, sigh.

Question: What do you think you can do to resolve your inner conflicts?
Answer: Well, maybe I could try to get myself some Islamic boosts. I mean I could pray more. And I could turn to the Quran for boosts also. I'm not sure what else I could do…

Question: What do you define 'Islamic Boosts' as?
Answer: Islamic boosts are like glimpses into how you would be internally if you reach your one goal.

Question: What is your 'one goal' and how do you intend to reach it?
Answer: My goal is happiness and to pass this test that is life with an A or an A- at least—no matter what anyone thinks of me. I guess another goal of mine is not to care what everyone else thinks and like not to be so attached.

Question: Attached to what?
Answer: To people.

Question: In what way don't you want to be attached to people?
Answer: In that I don't want to care if they dislike me for how I am/think/believe/dress etc.

Question: How long do you think you will live?
Answer: Personally, I don't know. I think that death can happen at any moment, at any time. Phphphttt (made a sound by blowing out of closed lips) God can take me at any time; I just hope I can reach my goal before that. Death is nothing scary. Its just going back to my…my best friend.

Question: But I thought you said in the beginning of your interview that you felt like you were ignoring God? How can you now call Him you best friend?
Answer: Well, I said that I hoped to reach my goal and THEN go to my best friend. I know that He isn't right now but I really really really hope He will be because I really want a friend like that who I can count on.

Question: You said that you don't fear death. Would you fear death if you didn't have Allah as your best friend? Why?
Answer: Yes. Because I would feel like I hadn't accomplished anything. I wouldn't feel safe because I would be afraid of hell. Don't wanna go there ya know…

Question: Well, since you said you aren't at the point where you feel you have given Allah His due right over you, shouldn't you fear death right now?
Answer: I should…but…I don't know why but I don't.

Question: Why don't you?
Answer: Well, I don't know why, but one time it was snowing and I was driving in a car with my family. We skid over a huge ice patch on the highway. As we were skidding and the cars were zooming past all around us, I remember thinking, "wow, this is it." And I wasn't afraid. I was actually content...while my family was screaming…

Question: But just because you felt content doesn't explain WHY you felt that way and why you didn't fear death. Do you fear it or don't?
Answer: I don't know, I am just really jumbled up right now.

Question: If you could die at any moment, then when do you plan to reform yourself?
Answer: As soon as possible.

Question: What does that mean? What is getting in the way of it being 'possible'?
Answer: Being lazy for one. Computers, TV, friends—they all get in the way.

Question: If these things get in the way of your 'reform', then what do you plan to do about them?
Answer: I am going to cut down their time so that I can find time to do other, more productive things, like pray and read the Quran and 'Arabian Nights' and stuff.

Question: And how will you make yourself fear death?
Answer: I guess by reading up on it. I don't understand a lot of things. I am not that educated and I know it. And I admit it. And if learning about it doesn't scare me then I would build my relationship with Allah and ask Him. Maybe He can help me, I really hope so…

Epilogue

After the above interview Laila prayed her Isha and stayed up for Fajr. Two weeks have now passed and she hasnt prayed since.


of and relating to...
Talal said

Funny thing is... whether with Laila or Kareem, if you change their ages from 14 to 21 to 46 or whatever, the (il)logic found in their answers is all too prevalent in the Ummah.

on September 2, 2004 1:39 AM
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