Islam students at LUC

Archive for March 2014

This week in class, because as firefly776 noted, everyone had forgotten their Rumi: Book of Love text, we watched two films — finishing the Rwanda movie, Kinyarwanda and then started “Wadjda”. Having taken Global Issues and studying the Rwandan genocide and conflict between the Hutus and Tutsis before, I found this film to be very interesting — especially as all of the stories became intertwined. Like imah3r noted, religion did play a role in the film and a central one, I would argue. Wadjda is more difficult for me to understand exactly what is happening but I do find the depictions of Saudi Arabia to be very interesting and beneficial for me to look at — it challenges my current way of thinking to consider Saudi Arabia as a country in a modern globalized world.

In response to coolgamekid15, I agree with your assessments about the contradictions in the film — I think these are very interesting and useful in looking at when we consider the role of Islam in the film. I also find it very interesting that you mention how “women not being allowed to drive also comes from that skewed interpretation of religion”. I would like for Prof. Mozaffar to discuss more on this and where the individuals find their justification for these laws in countries that use Sharia law.

This week in class we finished the movie about the Rwandan Genocide. What I thought was interesting about the reconstruction of the nation after the genocide was their emphasis on forgiveness from both sides. The people who murdered others were responsible for seeking forgiveness from those they wronged, but those they wronged were responsible for granting it. I think that is a really powerful way to bring a country together—both acts are extremely difficult. I also liked the camaraderie between the priest and Muslims to help save all the refugees. It was really interesting to see the Muslim leaders hold a meeting about human rights and what they should do.

 

In response to lmah3r:

 

I also agree with you that I think it’s interesting the contrast of western culture in Saudia Arabia. I think although they are forced to cover up, that they still have individuality and freedom is important. I don’t agree with the government forcing women to abide by these rules, but more than the government the woman is also living with the societal expectations. Wajda’s mom is always worrying about what her father will think or do in response to certain things. She doesn’t cut her hair or work at the hospital because she is scared of what her husband will think.

This week in class we finished the film on the Rwanda genocide. I really enjoyed this film. While it was a bit confusing initially as it jumped from story to story, I liked how the film showed how all of these people’s lives were intertwined in some way. I liked the scene where they showed all the different Muslim leaders coming together to see how to protect their people after hearing about the horrible things that were happening at the churches. Initially, one of the men spoke about trying to protect the Muslims, but then one of the other leaders spoke up, saying that all the people should be protected because it would not be right to let so many innocent people suffer. It was really cool to see people, Hutus, Tutsis, Christians, and Muslims all united and fighting for their freedom together. My favorite scene was the part where the Christians and Muslims were praying side by side. It showed the unity these people felt with each other and revealed how, even though they are of different faiths, they are striving for the same things.
In response to siadat1, I agree that forgiveness was definitely a big theme in the movie. It came up in the movie in many ways. One was to be able to ask for forgiveness and to believe that you are deserving of it. Another was to be able to forgive. First, the young girl, who was feeling guilty for lying to her parents right before they were murdered, needed the reassurance of forgiveness so that she could move on with her life. She achieved this by admitting what she did to Father Bertrand. At the end of the film, the boy who killed the girl’s parents confessed and asked for forgiveness. The girl forgave him. This forgiveness was equally important for the boy who received it as it was for the girl who gave it. By receiving forgiveness, the boy is able to move on from his past and put all his efforts into building a better present and future for himself and those around him. By letting go of her pain and anger and forgiving the boy, the girl is able to find peace. I can’t remember who said it, but there’s a saying that says “forgive, not because they deserve it but because you deserve the peace”. As long as there is hatred in your heart for the person who wronged you, then you can never be at peace. By forgiving, or even just wanting to forgive or be forgiven, we can move on from whatever dark past was holding us back and truly start on the path towards a better life.

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Posted on: March 29, 2014

This week in class, because everyone forgot there book (me included) we watch two movies. First we finished the Rwanda movie. One of the most amazing things about this movie to me was the fact the girl whose parents were killed by the boy who liked next door forgave him at the end of the movie. I was really amazed by that I personally don’t think that I would have been capable of that. The second movie we started watching intrigued me because there are a few contradictions within the film. One of the major things being the actions of the principle. The actions she display show her as deeply hypocritical one such instance of this is the fact that scolds school girls for walking outside without their face and head covered while she stands out in the sun without her head covered and wearing makeup. Another is that she scolds girls for giggling while walking into school saying “a women’s voice is her nakedness” but she is speaking out in public. Another thing I find interesting is that there is such strict gender roles between men and women.

In response to safafariix3

I had a similar reaction to the gathering of the religious leaders. I thought I was significant that even while some where arguing that other religions where more corrupt because they were letting the mods in to the churches. That the most powerful argument seemed to been that god loved all people and there for no matter what a person’s religion was that the Muslim people where responsible for their protection that it was part of their duty as a member of the religious organization. And that there are good people and bad people in any religion. I believe this is what he meant at least in part when he said that the devil will always exist.

I found the second movie really funny and was surprised about all the sass that the little girl was giving. I have a hard time with reading movies but I’m getting better. I find the use of an all girl school appropriate but feel like the girl is misunderstood a lot. I also don’t appreciate her parents a lot. 

In response to lmah3r: I agree about the Rwandan genocide movie. Being in Africa for several months it was hard to see the corruption in person and then think about the effects in the movie. It really touched me and made me thankful the major genocide is over. 

This week in class, we finished watching the movie “Kinyarwanda” and then began watching the second movie “Wadjda”. The first movie was interesting because of how the movie took different perspectives in relationship to the conflict between the Hutus and Tutsis. I remember learning about this issue in high school when I watched “Hotel Rwanda”. What intrigued me more was the scene when Muslims were praying behind the Imam while the Priest is reciting his own prayers and holding his own congregational prayer. A wall was separating the both of them, yet they were simultaneously praying and respecting each other’s faith traditions. That was pretty cool to observe both practices. Another part that was interesting was when the Imams were discussing how to save all the people. there were two quotes I remembered. One was “don’t confuse the words of God with the actions of men,” and pretty much it is implying how one should not judge that the actions a man does is because his religion says so. A man may not follow every single part his religion says to.  Also said was “If I do not fight the injustice, who will?” This was the last phrase of that scene, and it reminded the other people in the meeting of the social duty they all have to fulfill: solving injustice.  

In response to pbandjtime00

I agree with you about how the female characters tell Wadjda how to act a certain way; I do not like it either. From what I noticed, they judged fairly quickly. They believed what they have seen in a split second, like the mother finding Wadjda on the rooftop as she was practicing to ride a bike, but her guy friend was there with her alone. Her mother freaking out just reminds me of how little leniency Wadjda had when she was at home. I can understand why she had been leaving so much around. And the teachers assume information as well, like with the two girls. This movie was filmed in Saudi Arabia a gave a small preview of Arabia: the culture, the important values, the lifestyle, what are priorities in both genders, and so forth. I just did not know that in a growing country, there was still inequalities between the genders and much different jobs to do. There was definitely a different level of respect between the two based on jobs they have, the responsibilities at home.