By: Aliya Aliya
Sitting in Scott Hall listening to your professor ramble on about who knows what. You told yourself this time that you are NOT going to fall asleep in lecture today, you brought back up candy and sugar filled soda to keep yourself awake-it doesn’t even matter if you’re paying attention to or not, the only goal here is for you to not fall asleep. A lot of time has passed so you look at your phone to see what time it is. 1:30. WHAT?! How is this possible, only twenty minutes of class passed by? Okay, let’s face the facts kid-you’re never gonna make it. Just go to sleep right now, you can try to not fall asleep next week.
One hour later: Wow that was a pretty long nap. I think something is wrong with you, who falls asleep for an ENTIRE lecture?! Whatever…so you pack your notebook back into your backpack and like everyone else in the lecture hall, slam your little chair desk back into its spot as loudly as possible (it helps wake up the kids who are still asleep). As you’re walking toward the exit that about a hundred other students are trying to use as well, you take a look around at your classmates.
Woah, what happened to that girl’s hair? Kind of gross-wait, ohhhh myyyy godddddd is that guy wearing yellow sneakers? Does he like never want to get married or something? Hey, is that that hijabi girl?-yeah it definitely is. But why is she talking to that sketchy boy? I KNOW she doesn’t have a brother on campus. Oh snap crackle POP-this just got scandalous. I cant wait to post all this crazy happenings on my blog.
It’s something that happens so easily, and sometimes you don’t even realize till you already made up your mind about a particular person: Judging. It’s like this routine sorting that goes on in our heads that separates people into categories, us, them (and sometimes even them*said in a really not nice tone.*) The truth is, we don’t know what’s going on in peoples lives. That girl, whose hair was all messed up, could’ve been running really late this morning and had no time to brush it. That guy wearing the yellow sneakers could just be borrowing them from his roommate because he accidently stepped into a huge puddle and ruined his shoes—or he really likes those yellow sneakers, people have their own styles. And that last example (and girls, please don’t deny that you’ve never done this): Maybe that hijabi had to talk to that boy for a class-and hey, that sketchy boy probably isn’t even that sketchy to begin with. And I cant speak for everyone, but I know if I was in a “scandalous” situation like that I would want people to give me the benefit of the doubt instead of thinking I’m some gross weird kid who talks to sketchy boys and gets made fun of because of my shoes.
It’s probably pretty clear to most of us that passing judgment on a person because they look, dress or act differently from us isn’t right. Someone may be going through a bad day, and the last thing they need is for people to go judging them without knowing what’s really going on or worst-alienating them. The prophet (SAW) said that we should make seventy excuses for our Muslim brothers and sisters before we accuse them of anything, but a lot of the times it’s hard for us to even come up with one before rushing to a conclusion.
What I was trying to get from that little opening that I wrote was that passing judgment just kind of happens sometimes….we forget to give others the benefit of the doubt and end up concentrating on the negatives of a person instead of focusing on a positive. So if you feel as if you’re gonna judge someone or something along that line, try and come up with excuses. And instead of concentrating on the “negative” of a person, pick out something positive about them instead—whatever that positive thing might be. Whether it be their shoes, hair, or personality, I think we all (myself included) need to take a step back and reevaluate how we look at the world and the people around us. Who knows…scandalous hijabi could be your new best friend..