Anyone who may have been watching CNN last Wednesday (or Tuesday Night in some places) would have seen the main story, continuously playing. “Lindsay Lohan will be spending time in jail”. Larry King had a special segment where he interviewed Lindsay’s father and his lawyer. This story was big news and even someone like me who has been out of touch with the world of celebrities suddenly found myself paying attention.
Watching this story really made me feel sad for this young woman. I remember her in “The Parent Trap”, a cute, innocent little girl, and I couldn’t help but to contemplate on all the false promises of this temporary world and the outcomes of this. This reminded me exactly why I stopped caring about Hollywood celebrities and their so-called fairytale lives.
There was a time when I did care; in fact I cared a lot. Like so many other people I was upset by the news of Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt’s divorce. I was happy when Julia Roberts finally seemed to find her soul mate. I was intrigued by the friendship of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon and thought that it was “so cool”. I had my favourite celebrity couples, and the one’s I hated together. I read about their lives and wanted to know more. They were interesting and their lives together were glamorous... Well of course that’s what they need us to think right, otherwise we’d all just lose interest in them.
Alhamdullillah my eyes began to open up to reality and soon all the “glamour” and the appeal began to reveal itself for the fake that it really is. Looking at celebrities with open eyes I could now see how sad most of them really are and how much they’ve become entrapped in a world which offers them many pleasures, but forget’s to mention that with these pleasures comes heartache, loneliness and constant worry. A world that offers no peace and privacy, and a world where a woman cannot afford to leave her home without her make-up, because if she does she’ll make entertainment headlines and everyone will be talking about how “ugly” she looks.
When I look at this and I see what Islam offers women, I feel extremely grateful that I am a Muslim woman. I may not have exquisite beauty, the perfect figure, fame, money, huge mansions, fancy cars, designer clothes, ... but I am thankful to my Allah that I do have peace of mind and self-esteem. I do not have to wonder who I really am and whether I’ll ever be accepted for just being myself. I do not have to search for anything and everything to fill my life, because despite all that I have, I still feel empty inside. No, Alhamdullillah, being a Muslim woman affords me the luxury of knowing that I am fulfilled by my faith and belief, and this is a gift that is incomparable to anything else in this world.
When I step out of my home donned in my hijab and covered modestly, I know that others may be looking at me, feeling me sorry, believing that I am oppressed, but in my heart I know the truth and my love for Allah and Islam empowers me more than anything. It makes me want to be a better person, because it reminds me that I am more than just a physical figure, I am a whole human being! People may not be making a big deal about how beautiful and popular I am, but at least I can feel free, knowing that those who do show an interest in me are genuinely interested in me as a person and not as an idolized figure.
It seems like everything regarded as glamorous in this world actually comes with a price, and I am so grateful for being a Muslim because Islam offers true beauty and there are no illusions or deception. I still believe that it is sad to see people like this who live in a society that makes them think they are free and liberated, but in reality, they seem more oppressed and trapped than I will ever be.
All praise is due to Allah for giving us Muslims the perfect way of life, one that allows us to find true peace, contentment and happiness, because as Allah reminds us in the Hold Qur’aan, “it is only in the remembrance of Allah that hearts find rest”.
Image taken from: islamicsunrays.com/tag/salat-in-strange-places/