the power of believing

I remember my mother once told me there was no power greater than that of believing. If you believed in something, it was real; even if it didn't appear like that for the rest of the world. I trusted it.
Topping the list of things I FIRMLY believe in, is the religion. I don't see it as a certain lifestyle among a specific group of people but a whole different thing, a way of survival, a way of acceptance, a way of understanding.
I was born in a family that didn't only practice their religion but also shaped their lives around it, with ancestors who immigrated from countries to countries over centuries to keep their beliefs alive and protected. There was a power in believing, strong enough to survive the worst, beautiful enough to endure everything that prevented them from believing. 
Flash forward to this decade, I am somehow baffled how religion was twisted into political baits and personal agendas to fuel the fire that didn't only burn those at the stack, alive, but it also created smoke that blurred the view of everyone who ever tried looking past the window of the house of a religion.

I'm a Muslim, following Islam; a belief that was the first thing spoken to my ear when I was born. But after that, it was a decision I made when I was growing up. And the only thing that saved me from going insane when everything in my life was crashing down to turn into ashes. Religion didn't only give me the shelter of self-acceptance but also the way of how I wanted to live my life that lacked the rules I had been searching for.
But the thing about beliefs is that they cannot be easily talked about. It is turned and twisted under the subject of 'preaching' and before you know it, there are screams coming from people with colorless skin and stone-like eyes, blaming you out loud with profanity that would claim you didn't actually talk about your belief, you tried LURING them out of their tracks, out of the things THEY believe in. So the door closes and then, there's no going back to the building with the air that possesses the words you spoke out of affection for something you believe in.

And the life goes on.
but what made me write all these words was the urge to clean the mess up that was left inside me. Words tangled with confusion, emotions that demand hope, and a nameless whisper that promises to help with the right thing; it indeed is a mess.
Ever since the Muslim ban started flashing on the news, I wasn't only surprised but also a bit confused. A country claiming to be the master of human rights was throwing away people who were the part of their land, just because they believed in things that the rest of the people didn't approve of. It has been easier for the lot of fancy suits sitting in delicately decorated houses to label people with a sticker in the uppercase letter, neon lights sparkling off it that says 'terrorist'.
The political side of this ban is a bit too much for me to handle. I could only pray for those affected and hope to see things turning better at the very same rate they started collapsing down in millions of pieces that were tainted in the colors of misery and uncertainty.
You can label a person with as many tags as you want, press as many words on their skins till it starts losing its color, or burn the grounds where the building of their beliefs stands; what you can't do it is to make them stop believing. 
I am a normal human being who doesn't understand what world think-tanks are up to, what I do know is that peace lies in my favorite two ayaahs' from holy Quran and I can pray two raka'ahs to ask for whatever in the world I want, knowing it will be fulfilled. This is what believing is for me, in its the most beautiful form.

Believing, as religious as it goes, works differently for each of us. What isn't different is how we invest our emotions in it to become a better human being, who isn't sent to the earth for making others' lives far more miserable than they already are. You could be from any religion and as pious as the religious books state, but if the kindness doesn't dwell in your heart and the urge to make things better doesn't burn your soul, I really wonder what is the use of it all.

I hope you find peace in what you believe and it makes you do the right thing ~

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