There’s gonna be some things written here that maybe a lil’ out of line to some, or too explicit. But, it’s just that this is based upon thoughts & feelings that I harbored in my mind & heart in a particular moment in time, and it must be expressed this way, in order to portray an honest & authentic narrative-Basically, they’re necessary-evils. Please, take no offence for what you’re about to read-I apologize in advance.
In 2010, I was really excited & hyped about potentially getting married. But, then, I get this Facebook message from the Muslim girl whom I was speaking with about marriage that she doesn’t want to get married anymore. I’m not gonna lie, I was very disappointed. But, I said to myself, “Whatever Allah wills; it’s obvious that Allah doesn’t want me to marry this girl.”.
But, I really had no idea about what was about to come next, here it comes…..
She ended up telling me why she called things off, probably out of guilt, perhaps out of a sense of fairness towards me, to give me some closure, but who the hell cares?!!! Anyway, she tells me the reason why she called it off, and this really blew mines (i.e. pissed me the hell off)!!! This is what she tells me, “I called it off because you’re too religious for me.”. When I saw that as a Facebook message, I was just stunned, and said to myself, “What…the…fuck?!!!”. I was just so perplexed, as to how in the hell could someone ever consider Gareth Bryant “too-religious”.
To me, I could never…ever be religious enough. I mean it’s barely been a whole decade since I’ve stopped smoking weed & partying, and all of the rest of the Non-Islamic behavior that I used to indulge in (most of which I purposely will not reveal on this post). But, I’m just sayin’, how could this “too-religious” stuff possibly be? I look at myself as someone who’s not nearly at the Islamic level that any Muslim should be, especially considering how long I’ve been a Muslim already.
But, just like the title of this post, apparently, I’m just “Too-Religious”. So, needless to say, I was truly taken aback by that. I started to think to myself, “Of all the valid reasons to not marry me, why would anyone choose “too-religious?!!!”. Then, as only she could’ve, she added insult-to injury. She said that what turned her off to me was a conversation that her & I had about my beard. It’s very obvious, for those who know me, or have ever met me, or have seen me lately, that my beard is about 50% of my face right now…..but that’s beside the point. Basically, she had asked me whether I would ever consider cutting, shaving, or trimming my beard, of course me being me said hell no & gave all of the valid Islamic reasons why I would not. She mentioned to me that at that point in our convo, that she decided that she didn’t wanna marry me anymore.
After that, I just said to myself, “Now, ain’t this some bullshit?!!!”. Wait, it doesn’t end here. I was just thinking to myself the irony in all of this: Firstly, she had already met me like this, so it wasn’t just something brand-new to her. Secondly, she admitted it to me herself that it was my religiosity that led her to even want to approach me for marriage in the first place. Thirdly, even if I had just started to grow my beard, so what?!!! How in the hell do you just expect me to leave off something that’s already been established in the Islamic Prophetic-Tradition as being a religious obligation for men, for you?!!! That’s what I really didn’t get at all.
Yet, another irony, out of all of the Non-Muslim females that I’ve ever dealt with, they’ve never had an issue with me being a Muslim, a religious Muslim, or me having any facial hair. But, when a nigga tryin’ to do shit the right way, this one is shittin’ on me because I chose to observe a religious mandate in the Islamic Prophetic-Tradition. That was just astounding to me, really. How the hell is it that the Non-Muslim females that I used to deal with, never complained about my religiosity, yet a Muslim female calls off the prospect of marrying me because of my religiosity?!!! By, Allah, that is completely ass-backwards-If anything, it should be the other way around, where you have Non-Muslim females complaining about the beard, while Muslim females support it.
After this particular fiasco, I just said to myself, “Fuck marriage…..Imma go back to doin’ me!!!”. I was so resentful & bitter that it wasn’t even funny. That situation even began to change the way that I generally viewed Muslim women. I began to think to myself, “If this one thinks like this, then there would have to be many more Muslim women who felt and/or feel the same exact way towards myself and/or other Muslim men who choose to don the beard.” I mean, does having a beard make me look that damn repulsive, huh?!!! Like, someone let me know something!!!
This was something that has had a tremendous affect on me personally as a Muslim, and made me very edgy & self-conscious about my external appearance as a Muslim. I began thinking to myself, “Well, damn…..if this is the case, then no one will marry me.” It was a very depressing time for me. Then, through Allah’s help, I just snapped out of it, and then said to myself, “Fuck it…..I’m gonna grow my beard however long I damn-well please, and whoever doesn’t like it, fuck ’em!!!”. I decided that from then on, I would never, ever, allow anyone to make me feel that way ever again-I would never allow anyone to make me feel that because I want to be more Islamically religious that I’m doing something wrong, or against the norm, or against modernity.
The praise is for Allah, that I came back to reality, and decided that whatever opposition that I may face regarding a Muslim woman, or any woman period, not wanting to marry me as a result of my facial-hair, that I would always reserve the right to just leave them by the waste-side. If a Muslim woman loves Allah, loves His Messenger, loves Islam, then she’ll love that fact that I’ve chosen to commit myself to that which is obligatory upon me as a Muslim, and if she is not willing to do that, then it’s clear that she’s not a person that I would/should ever share my bed with, or have & raise my children with.
I close with this: To all of my Muslim brothers & sisters, who are given a hard time, just because you’re trying your very best to obey Allah & His Messenger, to the very best of your true abilities…..”Fuck the haters!!!”. Keep this as your personal motto, as I intend to keep it as my own, because anyone who doesn’t want you to become more dutiful to Allah & His Messenger is a fucking hater, period. And, if there’s anyone out there, who reads this & doesn’t like whatever I’ve written, then step to me & do something about it, I dare ya!!!
Don’t you ever let anyone make you feel that being a good Muslim isn’t trendy, or cool, or socially acceptable, or popular!!! If you’re a Muslim dude & someone mocks you for having a beard, then let it grow longer, and if you’re a Muslim female & someone mocks you for wearing a Khimar, then wear the full Hijab, if they mock you for wearing the full Hijab, then wear the Niqab. The opposition that we all face, for trying to obey Allah should encourage us to obey Him more in spite of how much people are against it-Opposition, mustn’t/shouldn’t be used as an excuse to be religious cowards & not adhere to what we know as Muslims to be correct & obligatory. Be your own person, be a leader, not a follower, allow yourself to lead yourself towards the Paradise, and do not allow others to lead you to the Fire!!!
#I’m just sayin’!!!