Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas (for real this time!)

I know it's not quite Christmas for many of you yet, but it's Christmas here. Therefore...


I ask that God bless, inspire, and keep you all today and in the coming year, and that He makes us all aware of the blessings that we have. I know that my eyes have been opened, more than ever before, to the abundance of provision God has made for me. I have so much to be grateful for. Even here. Especially here.


Monday, December 13, 2010

A New Perspective.

Well.... This is very interesting. I'm intrigued. And I've learned some things in the last couple of days that make me say "Wow". I'm looking at Islam with new eyes, eyes that aren't clouded up with all the convoluted and confusing cultural things that people mistake for true Islam. And I like what I see. Who knows what the future holds? God does. All my faith in Him! : )

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Yes, I know it's early. No, I haven't lost my marbles. LOL! I just wanted to go ahead and wish you all and your families joy this Christmas season (if you celebrate Christmas. If not, I wish you a lovely December and new year.).

There's scarcely more than two weeks left until Christmas, but I must confess that it doesn't quite seem like that time of year (other than the cold, right, Amber?). This will be a very difficult Christmas for me because it will be the first time I haven't been home. If nothing else, I was always able to be with my family at this time.

I ask for all of your prayers at this time, for me and my family, and for all of you as well. I hope that the New Year finds you all healthy and happy, and pray that God bestows more blessings upon you in the coming year than last year.

The Qur'an (Koran) that I read.

This is the version of the Qur'an/Koran that I have. Well, I have several, but this is my favorite.

The translation is clear and modern English, the font is a good size, and it even has an index in the back that helps me find verses on certain topics. : )

I don't know what the general consensus is on this translation, but I like it.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Jesus and God in Islam and Christianity.

I know, I've posted about some of this before. This was in large part in response to Banana Queen, who said that you don't have to believe anything in particular about Jesus to be a Muslim -- you just have to believe the shahada, in response to my comment that I could be Muslim if it weren't for what I call "the Jesus debate". BQ, please forgive me if I don't do your very interesting comments justice! (I'm so pleased that the quiz link I posted is generating discussion! YAY!)

The belief about Jesus is most often the biggest dividing point between Islam and Christianity. As much as I love 2:136 in the Qur'an - it's a gorgeous verse, and definitely a favorite - it does place Jesus firmly in the Prophet category. While that is dandy with Christians - Jesus as prophet, agreed - in Islam the Christian view of Jesus as the Son of God (as taught by my church) or God in human form is totally off. "Worship the Creator, not the creation", etc. There are other differences, too, but Jesus' role is the biggie.

In what I think to be an interesting contradiction of...something... I do believe in the Christian faith with Jesus as the sacrifice for sin, but I also believe that God is generous in ways we can't begin to fathom, and being God, He has no limitations on what He can do, including forgiving us for our wrongdoings out of love for us, with no need for a sacrificial Lamb in order to do so. Doesn't requiring Jesus to be sacrificed in order for God to be able to forgive us for sin and allow us into Heaven impose a limitation on God -- that He can't forgive and reward whom He pleases, as He pleases, through His Own power? It seems so to me.

Regarding "Son of God" or "God as man", I've gotten the "you're going to Hell" look from people several times - especially the evangelist Pentecostal types - before when discussing religion and how my church taught that Jesus was the Son of God, not God Himself. : P

The Church of Christ isn't so much "traditional", I suppose, as it is literal. At least the one I was raised in was. That means all the scary stuff in Revelations, as well as all the other stuff sometimes taught as metaphorical in other denominations, was, is, and will be real. That there will be multi-headed dragons, etc, in a very physical sense.

Well, this was fun, but I need to be off to bed. I meant to go to sleep an hour ago, but you smart ladies lure me back to the debate. : D Continue on!

Army Basic Combat Training: The End of Sir/Ma'am

This was prompted by Susanne's love of cultural...snippets, I guess. I totally forgot the word (sorry, Susanne!), but it's a funny story. I'll continue them if you guys are interested. Feel free to ask me any questions you have about "the Army way". Chances are pretty decent I'll have a story for it. : P

Basic Combat Training: The End of Sir/Ma'am

My whole life I'd been taught by my mama that men and women who are older than me and/or in positions of authority are to be addressed as sir or ma'am. It's a Southern thing. (Yes, I am totally Southern, although maybe a little teensy more "redneck" Southern (thanks, Dad) than Scarlett O'Hara Southern.) It's The Rule and if I was a rude little brat at times and wouldn't say it as a kid, she'd tan my hide when we got home to adjust my attitude.

Anyhoo, by the time I enlisted in the Army I had over two decades of Sir/Ma'am ingrained in my brain. This would put me in an uncomfortable spot a time or two come Basic Training. Let me explain just why.

In the Army, Sir/Ma'am is a title of respect reserved strictly for officers and warrant officers. You never EVER call an enlisted person sir or ma'am.

Particularly if said enlisted person is a drill sergeant.

The general response of a drill sergeant to being called sir or ma'am goes something like as follows:

Dumb-private-who-knows-no-better: "Yes, sir/ma'am!"

Drill Sergeant: "What did you just call me, Private? What? You see any bling on my uniform? My name is Drill SERGEANT! I work for a living!" ** (The shouting gets a little louder as he/she goes on.) The joke in this is that there is a popular belief in the Army that officers don't work -- the enlisted do all the work, the officers get the pay and the recognition. Thus, by calling an enlisted Soldier "sir" or "ma'am", you are implying that they don't do any work. ** As this line was used by every single drill sergeant I've had (roughly 10 of them, at least) , I think they teach it in Drill Sergeant School as part of the curriculum. "Drill Sergeant One Liners 101".

Now, if said Private is too dumb for words ups the ante.... well. This is hilarious for everyone in the general vicinity who is not the unfortunate private with the drill sergeant's undivided attention.

Dumb-private-who-just-keeps-digging-the-hole-deeper: "Sorry, Drill Sergeant!"

Madder Drill Sergeant: "WHAT? So NOW I'm a SORRY DRILL SERGEANT???" This is usually accompanied by more shouting and general DS grumpiness and push ups for the hapless private who has drawn the drill sergeant's ire, as well as the battle buddy of said private. (Soldiers - especially in basic - never go anywhere alone, particularly to see the Drill Sergeant/Platoon Sergeant/First Sergeant/Commander, and will suffer the same punishment as their idiot buddy.)

Needless to say, a Southerner will often get in a lot of trouble for saying sir/ma'am. I had the worst time trying to break myself of the habit. : P

Interesting quiz

I found a link to this interesting quiz while browsing through the Kindle library on Amazon looking at books about Islam.

According to the results it gave me, I'm 93% - extremely compatible. If you take the quiz, would you post your results here so I can see? I'm curious, especially about all my non-Muslim sisters out there. I know all my Muslimah sisters agree already, but I have love for all of you, too. : )

You know, if it weren't for the whole Jesus debate, I could be Muslim. I really believe I could.

Happy December!

Happy December, everyone! I hope this first day of the last month of the year went well for you. To my excitement we got snow flurries today - they collected a bit, but not enough to put even a sheet's worth of blanket on the ground. I'll cross my fingers for it!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Going through airport security...

I must report that getting through airport security yesterday went much better than I'd dared hope, hijab and all! They had a line for military folks, so I zipped right through. There was one of the usual metal detectors - no issues there. The lady patted me down, but she was very professional and polite and it wasn't invasive. I felt very comfortable the whole time. The fact that she was very kind and friendly helped, too - many of the TSA agents look so cranky, it was almost odd to see a happy one. : P Then I had turkey dinner at Denny's with my friend after I arrived at my destination.

Woke up this morning to my kittens walking on me. : D So far this little vacation has been a great deal of fun. Fifteen minutes with my kittens just took away four months of stress. : ) I am much happier at this point in time.

I hope you all had a good Thanksgiving with your families, lots of good food, and aren't too tuckered out from Black Friday shopping! I avoid shopping like the plague the day after Thanksgiving (partially because I'm usually finishing up my Christmas shopping at this point, not starting it), so I've been helping my friend out at her store after lunch at our favorite Indian restaurant.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

For those of you in the US, I extend my wishes for a happy Thanksgiving. I hope that this day finds you well and with your families. For those who aren't in the US or just don't celebrate Thanksgiving, I wish you all a lovely day. : )

Friday, November 19, 2010

You won't believe this!

Something just occured to me a little while ago, so I dug around all the myriad piles of uniform stuff occupying my room (courtesy of Uncle Sam). And I found it. And tried it on.

According to the military, it is a "Fire Resistant Improved Lightweight Performance Hood", but by my calculations, it is hijab. It's hijab, and it's cold, so I can wear it outside! By golly, I'm going to wear it as often as I can get away with! That's why I'm grinning behind my hand. Because this is SO AWESOME.

On a side note, what do you gals think about the airport body scanner debate? I understand the need for tighter security measures, but at the same time, I don't like the prospect of a more invasive pat-down for those who opt out of going through the scanner. Either way, it's definitely a big invasion of privacy. You either go through the scanner and have some person - who could very likely be male, but you'd never know because the person who looks at the image is in another room - see you down to your undergarments (a mortifying thought) or you opt out and get practically strip searched as a result.

I know the TSA folks are just doing what they're told. The guy or gal running the machines and doing the searches doesn't have a say in the matter. They're little person on the totem pole. And I know that my hijab will make me a more likely target for paranoia, but not wearing it when I have the opportunity isn't an option. *sigh* This is one case where technology is more a curse than a blessing. (Unless they actually catch a bad guy would-be terrorist via this process.)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

God is God is God...

Nothing too heavy tonight, ladies. Just wanted to drop a quick note, say hello, how are all of you, etc. Feeling very mellow tonight and comfortable with God. God is God is God. He doesn't change. He's the one being I can rely on at all times.

I must admit that I have a hard time seeing God as anything but a loving, gentle Father. Granted, He has to deal out the spankings from time to time because we get to rollin' on our "terrible twos" and just don't get whatever-it-is through our heads and try to "do our own thing" (in Army speak), but that doesn't make Him any less loving.

I kinda find it hard to believe that there are people out there who don't believe in God at all. I guess it's too deeply ingrained in me... I could never NOT believe in God. That's one thing that will be consistent for me.

So...just wanted to give a shout out and say: God, I love You. I really do. Even if I am a spoiled, bratty kid sometimes.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A time to give thanks...

I was just thinking of that verse... you know, there's a time for everything. Right now is a time for me to give thanks (which I really should do more often) for all of the wonderful people and things in my life. I'm thankful for such a kind and supportive group of ladies here in the Interwebs.

It's funny. I stumbled over Amber's blog during my quest for information on headcovering - could it really be something like a year and a half ago now? It's just snowballed from there. No matter what stage of covering you happen to be in at the moment (from none to full niqab) or what religion you belong to (Christian, Islam, questioning, etc), it's nice to have somewhere to discuss and rant and vent and just have someone tell you it's okay to question or be afraid to make a change.

You've all been a source of encouragement to me as my desire and ability to cover has been affected or curtailed by outside forces, or even those within me - may God grant me the strength to cover in my search for more closeness with Him, despite what other people, even my own family, think, Ameen.

Headcovering is scary, especially when there's no one else around you doing it. But it helps to know you're not the only one who feels that urge. (Although, honestly, I like bucking the system and not allowing myself to be stuffed into a box under this label or that one.)

I have so much to be thankful for, and you ladies are high on that list for helping me to make this journey closer to God through headcovering. It's a practice I intend to resume as soon as I return from this (literal) journey I'm currently on. I ask for your continued prayers.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

New fall/winter items from HijabGirl!

I am absolutely in love with this:

I'm not usually a fan of sequins or beads, since they have an annoying tendency to fall off and leave dangling threads (or require you to handwash said article of clothing), but I think this is so cheerful and beautiful:

They've also been getting more wholesale/bulk hijabs, so you can get more at a lower cost. : ) If I were at home, I might go a wee hijab buying spree. : D That purple is just gorgeous...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Life, our plans, and God's own time.

LK recently posted something that resonated with me about love and marriage and finding "Mr. Right". The ladies who commented made some very good points -- I particularly enjoyed yours, Caraboska.

I had to laugh a little. Not AT you, dear LK. More at myself and the world at large. I've felt like that more and more often, especially as my friends from school back home have gotten bachelor's degrees and gotten married at 23 or 24 (or younger) and had kids (not necessarily in that order, of course). And where am I? Only got an associate's degree, have been out of school for nearly 6 years now, had a rather disastrous first enlistment, and got sucked back into Uncle Sam's unrelenting grasp for a lil' bit more Army - because the first ride on the merry-go-round didn't suck enough. : P

I'm also something of a disaster when it comes to romantic relationships. The last one was so much like my dad and was the biggest epic fail thus far. I thought to myself "Oh crap. I DO NOT want to be with a guy who is a control freak jerk like my dad." I know God doesn't want that for me, either. I was just trying to get God to work at my pace, rather than waiting on God like I should've, and that was a mistake. I got burned for it, but I learned from it. You can bet your last Coke that I won't be falling for any sweet talk from control freak users again. >:D

I know God has my guy waiting in the wings somewhere. God has His own plans and does things in His own time. What good comes of me trying to hurry the process along? All I've ever gotten as a result was a broken heart and bitter feelings.

So, I need to continue working on being patient in the hubby aspect of life. It is frustrating to see kids (my friends got married a few months ago at the ripe old ages of 21 and 22) being able to maintain relationships and getting married when I can't even keep a boyfriend who is actually invested in the relationship as much as I am for more than a few months at a time. How can you be that confident in another person, especially that young?

Whether God intends for me to marry or not, I'm going to live my life. I'm going to have experiences from the wild and unpredictable (this deployment) to the everyday (finding a book I didn't know I wanted at the used book store -- ha ha!) and learn and grow from all of them. I'm going to continue to cultivate my own interests, happiness, identity, and financial and career success independent of any other person.

Most of all, I'm going to take being single not as a mark against me ("What's wrong with HER that she's not married at almost 27?"), but as a wonderful and beautiful gift that gives me the opportunity to get closer to God. He is the Provider, the best of Planners, the most Loving, Compassionate, and Merciful Father. No man or woman on Earth can compare to Him!

(Sorry this turned into such a ramble. It's late and I need to get to sleep! Another long day tomorrow... le sigh.)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Is this weird?

This post has been spurred by a friend of a friend who posted a photo of her pregnant belly on Facebook. I can't hold it back anymore.

Lately I've noticed so many people are having babies. For example: I saw two pregnant women in less than five minutes while I was having lunch at the PX today. I see pregnant women everywhere I go. On post, off post...even online -- a couple of folks I know have been posting ultrasound photos of their babies and/or pictures of their stomaches on Facebook.

A couple of my friends who married a few months ago were going to have a baby, but she lost it recently. I feel sad for them, of course, but it also feels like a forced effort to be happy for anyone having kids. It's not that I don't want my friends to be happy; of course I do. It's not jealousy, either. I don't like kids very much, and have never wanted them.

My kneejerk reaction to said belly-post was "Ugh. Not another one." Is it strange for me to be somewhat revolted by the plethora of offspring in the making?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I'm currently listening to a lecture by Dawud Adib called "What Was The Religion of Christ Jesus?" on YouTube. Enjoying it very much. : ) Have any of you listened to any of his lectures?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Beautiful adhan

Just wanted to share a beautiful adhan I found on YouTube. : )

If anybody has any as good (or better) than this, please post a link so I can check it out. : )


Here's a YouTube link to a song called "Thankful". It's from Josh Groban's Christmas album "Noel", but I don't think it has to be Christmas for us to listen to Christmas music. This song is about being thankful for all the good things we have, and, if you're religious, that God has given us. I hope those of you who listen to music enjoy it. : )

All Together Now; Or, As Many As Possible

LK made a lovely and thought-provoking post about God and people insisting theirs is the "right" religion, i.e. "God loves us all, can't we just get along?" I'm paraphrasing, of course, and my brain is a little fuzzy from lack of sleep, so if I forget things or don't make much sense, please don't hold it against me. ^_^

God loves all of us. It's the one factor that we can all depend on, at any time and in any situation. Even when it seems everything else in our lives has gone to absolute poo, and we think nobody could love us and that nothing will ever go right again, God is there with a shoulder for us to cry on and to reassure us.

God is loving and faithful. Just writing that is so comforting to me. : ) So, in the great "my religion is the true one" debate, to me it would make sense that God would offer us many paths to Him, because He wants as many of us with Him as possible! These paths all have the same basic rules (the Ten Commandments, for lack of a more concise label), with the primary one being, of course, to worship and love the Lord our God.

Take no other God before Me. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with your mind, and with all your strength. That is the true path. Simple.

However all the other doctrines and miscellaneous details and quarrels between Judaism, Christianity and Islam may fall, that is the core our respective religions. It's our common thread. So we're all following that greatest commandment. We're all on the "Straight Path".

Senseless quarreling over who is "right" only causes anger and hurt feelings. Can you really claim to be loving your neighbor as yourself in circumstances like that? It's one thing to have discussions, to make your viewpoints known so that others can enrich their understanding of you/your motivations/your religion. This breeds understanding and support -- which all of you ladies are excellent in providing. It's another thing to stand on your soap box and tell someone they're wrong and going to Hell and here's all the reasons why -- which basically boils down to "You aren't Catholic/Protestant/Muslim/Jewish/etc like me."

Unfortunately, that level of intolerance is how Christians are often viewed, even in (or perhaps I should say, especially in) the U.S. So many sermons are the fire-and-brimstone type. Who wants to be part of a religion that seemingly talks about little else? Where are all the sermons on love, forgiveness, peace?

Let's just keep it simple: Love God. Love your neighbor.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Jesus: The Great Divide

Okay. I've been having some random religious-based thoughts here lately, and it kinda goes right along with what Jesus said about not bringing peace, but a sword (Matthew 10:34). This is generally understood to be a figurative sword (namely, his teachings) that would divide families. Mothers from their children, men from their wives, siblings from one another, etcetera, so on and so forth.

That division has carried on down to Islam. Christ is, to my way of thinking, the sword that divides Christianity and Islam. Not that he isn't present in both - there's no denying that - but that his role in each is so different. For me, it all hinges on Jesus. How does he really fit into God's big picture? I know what each religion says about him. Christianity: Son of God, Savior. Islam: Great Prophet and Teacher.

My problem is figuring out which of these is the honest-to-goodness truth.

It's more than a little difficult not to be biased in one direction as a result of a lifetime of religious teachings, and therein lies my trouble. Just contemplating conversion (or reversion) is extremely difficult because I'm one of those people who holds fast to what my parents taught me. It's familiar. It's safe. And I have a major tendency to guilt trip over anything that goes against that.

*sigh* Living in my head is such a minefield sometimes...

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Link, and quizzy thing from Caraboska and LK.

I have a hard copy of this pamphlet. I wanted to know what you ladies thought of it, as you are all so bright and knowledgable. I learn something new almost every time we get into a religious discussion. Anyway... Read it here:

Now, on to Caraboska and LK's survey-quizzy-thingy. : )

Books I've read recently...

1. The Holy Koran (ISBN: 978-0-976187-00-4)- currently reading

2. Pride and Prejudice - currently reading

3. The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening by L.J. Smith - currently reading

4. Seeking the Treasures of the Qur'an

5. Jesus, Interrupted by Bart Ehrman - currently reading

Songs or albums I listen to all the time...

1. All of Josh Groban's work.

2. Darren Hayes "This Delicate Thing We've Made"

3. Scissor Sisters "Night Work"

4. Tinted Windows "Tinted Windows"

5. Hanson "Underneath"

6. Lady GaGa "The Fame Monster"

I love...

1. God

2. Family

3. Friends

4. My kittens

5. Books

6. Good food

Things I've learned this year...

1. That good friends are priceless and hard to find.

2. Life is so full of surprises.

3. That religion is hard and confusing, but God is easy.

4. To appreciate my family, especially my mother.

5. Not to take quiet time at home with my kittens for granted.

New recipes I want to try and make...

1. None. I don't cook! The drive-thru at Taco Bell is my best friend. ; P

Favorite online hangouts...

1. Blogs

2. E-mail

3. Facebook

4. Amazon

Projects I need to work on...

1. Reading the books I've brought with me and culling out the ones I won't read again. Everything else will have to wait until I get out (again), get an apartment, and get my stuff out of storage. : )

Tasked out to: whoever wants to do it!

Monday, September 6, 2010

9/11 Koran burning

Granted, this hasn't happened yet. I hope it won't. Such ignorance reflects poorly upon us all, especially when it feeds right into the mass belief in the Middle East that all Americans hate Islam and Muslims. How can a "Christian" (and I say that loosely, since that type of person isn't someone I really want to be associated with) leader advocate such mindless hate and intolerance? Hmmm... Sounds like the same bigotry that those "leaders" accuse Muslims of harboring for Christians and Jews. How lame. I mean, really, really lame.

What is even harder to believe is how the guy said on tv that it would be "tragic if someone were to die" as a result of his actions. Yeah. Okay. Let's see how tragic you'd think it is if you were the one facing injury or death overseas because of the actions of a stateside pastor you'd never heard of, much less met.

*sigh* People can be such morons. Sorry, I'm not too articulate tonight. Really peeved off about this whole situation. It's so senseless. I mean, some 60 Muslims died in the WTC attacks 9 years ago. Innocent people who worked in the towers, or were EMTs, or firefighters... Americans aren't all lily-white Christians. We're all different religions, races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, we speak different languages.... and we're free to be and do so. That's what makes America so beautiful.

Also propagates the "ignorant redneck" issue that Florida (really, the South as a whole) can't seem to overcome. Thanks. Really appreciate that, guy.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Renewing the search

Hi, all! I'm doing well. How are all of you? I just got a lil' Toshiba netbook computer, so I can get online more often now! : D I'm very excited about it.

But now I have a problem. A big, unsatisfying, frustrating problem. One I thought was resolved. Namely: I'm back in the intellectual and emotional debate between Islam and Christianity. I started reading the Bible - from the beginning - and have also been reading the S.V. Mir Ahmed Ali translation of the Koran. Found a couple of interesting books about the Bible, too - "Jesus, Interrupted" and "Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the Next 1,500 Years".

Now, I am not one of those folks who believes the Bible is perfect and has never been changed by so much as a word. People have been involved with the Bible from the get-go, and we all know that people tend to screw things up (intentionally or not). After all, we aren't perfect. We make mistakes. So... I'm cool with people talking about the Bible having been changed. The two books mentioned previously are all about the influence of humans on Christianity and it's source and teachings.

But it's leading me to another spiritual crisis. I'm reading both the Koran and the Bible, and I'm realizing... as much as the uninformed person claims that Islam is a religion of violence, Christianity also has a violent history, full of mysogyny and war and all those other horrid things. The Spanish Inquisition, anyone? The way I look at it, in terms of violence, the actions of extremists in the Middle East are on par with those of the Catholic Church centuries ago and, later - to an extent, with prejudice, etc - the Protestant church. Hmmm, I didn't say that quite right, so please don't take offense. I'm trying to organize my thoughts on this topic, but I'm a bit out of practice on religious intellectual discussion.

To my way of thinking, the issues right now are what the Christian world was going through 2 or 3 or 4 centuries back. So are we really that different, after all? All I see is a difference in time, and maybe not even so much that, considering the 600 years between the foundation of Christianity and that of Islam - Christianity was suffering many of the same problems at the age that Islam is now.

I'm so confused... But I'll keep reading and praying and, with God's help, may finally rest 100% certain in the validity and rightness of my faith. Whatever that might end up being.

I wonder how my deployment will affect my questioning soul.

Biggest fear: Picking a religion, but then finding out after I die that it was the wrong one and that I'll go to hell for it.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Families, converts/non-Muslims, and hijab/niqab.

So...For those of you ladies who wear hijab/niqab (either as a convert or non-Muslim)... Do your families know? If so, how did you tell them, and how did they initially react? If not, are you planning on telling/showing them?

I don't really know how to break the hijab to my family. Let's not even get started on niqab. I don't think they'd understand. Granted, it would be some time before I'll have to deal with seeing them, but... yeah. The thought of wearing hijab around my family is kinda scary and hard.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Interesting article, and question.

Found an interesting article titled "Women in Islam vs. Women in the Judeo-Christian Tradition".

One issue with it: all verses are taken from the Old Testament or the Catholic Bible. Does anyone know of a similar article where the comparative verses are taken from the New Testament and Jesus' teachings?

I think I might look up all the verses used here and see how many are pretty accurate in their interpretation, and how many were taken out of context. You ladies know how often that occurs. One religion wants to look better than the others, so they take more negative verses out of context from the other holy books and then pick the most positive ones from theirs.

It makes studying religion objectively rather difficult to do, but religion is such a deep-seated thing that I doubt anyone could ever actually BE objective in discussing it.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Saying hello.

Hi, everyone. Just saying hi and letting you know I'm around and well. Hope the same can be said for all of you.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Busy, busy...

I'm so busy. There's quite a bit involved in all the moving prep. *sigh* I hate moving. I really do. All my beautiful books go in boxes... It makes me sad, lol!

I hope you're all doing well. I'm taking advantage of the delicious things I won't get to have for a bit -- like cotton candy sno cones. They're an awesome way to beat the heat. And they'll rot your teeth out! ; P

I got a very nice copy of "The Soldier's New Testament" to take with me. It's Army green (what I think of as "pickle suit green" -- the same color as the Army Class A uniform) bonded leather, has the Army seal on the front cover in gold. Very nice, and compact and light enough to fit in a cargo pocket. It also has little extras, like prayers written by Army Chaplains, and some basic info about the Army. : )

Kitten antics continue to keep me laughing. My babies are so funny! I'm enjoying the time left before I have to take them to stay with my friend while I'm gone.

Sure wish I could've gone home, but no time, and no money. Oh, well. : (

How are all of you doing?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Bullet" = FAIL!

LKH, you are fail. "Bullet" is fail. It is the headstone on the grave of the once-awesome "Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter" series. *weep*

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Obligations, deployments, and the Army values.

While replying to a comment Caraboska made a couple of posts ago, I decided I needed to do a little post and expound on the subject.

Conscientious objectors. We all know what that is, and I'm sure you've seen news coverage of soldiers who have filed that status in conjuction with finding out about that they're going to be deployed.

Let me tell ya - I don't want to be "that guy". Soldiers do NOT look lightly upon others who use that status. There's a level of resentment and disdain that comes with that status -- as a shirker who is fine with serving in the US, but when it comes time to do a soldier's most basic duty -- you're considered a dirtbag. You're tossing your buddy out there in your place. You've defaulted on the Army values.

The following are the seven Army Values, the guidelines that soldiers are supposed to live their lives by:

Loyalty: Bear true faith and allegiance to the U.S. constitution, the Army, your unit, and other soldiers.

Duty: Fulfill your obligations.

Respect: Treat people as they should be treated.

Selfless Service: Put the welfare of the nation, the Army, and your subordinates before your own.

Honor: Live up to all the Army values.

Integrity: Do what's right, legally and morally.

Personal Courage: Face fear, danger, or adversity (physical or moral).

Is it always like that? Of course not. The Army is made up of people. People are flawed. But these are the things to which we aspire.

You have to know what the military is and what service entails. Simple, really, but I'm continually astounded by the things that people say and do when they find out they are going to deploy. Is it such a shocker? We're at war, folks. It's not pretty, and it's not right, but that's the way things are. If you have enlisted in the last 9 1/2 years, you know it, and you voluntarily signed that paper anyway.

On a more personal note...

Have any of you ever been walking through an airport and seen a group of soldiers? Maybe there's just one or two at first, but then you see another. And then another comes along. They gravitate to one another. It's reassurance of the familiar, in unfamiliar surroundings. The uniform is a recognizable constant. They may never see each other again after that minute or hour, but they're brothers and sisters -- bound not by blood, but of the spirit. That's the bond that makes wounded soldiers wish to be back in the desert with their units, that makes old soldiers nostalgic, and keeps young ones coming back for more.

My brothers and sisters in arms have been going over there for years. Some for 3, 4, or more deployments.

There is no soldier worth his or her salt that will allow a brother or sister to deploy in their place, not when they themselves can go instead.

Am I worried and a bit scared? Yep. But would I try to get out of it?

Not on your life.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Rage Against the Niqab (and other ramblings).

My caption: Hell hath no fury like a niqabi who is told she can't choose to wear her niqab.

All this anti-niqab sentiment... I don't like it. Yes, I can see where some folks might have cause for concern -- but that's where we step in and lovingly educate them. Yes, I am against "forced Niqab" because it totally contradicts what hijab/niqab means to me -- namely, freedom. Having the choice is what makes it so beautiful.

However...given my online persona as a non-Muslim niqabi, I am totally an advocate of wearing what makes you comfortable. For some folks (like most of us), niqab and/or hijab is a level of coverage that is comfortable, in both a physical and spiritual way. My hijab/niqab are things that allow me to place more emphasis on what should be emphasized -- God and my relationship with Him.

If anything, I could use a break from the cheap, clingy fabrics and -- to me -- dubious level of "essentials coverage" that seem to dominate Western clothes. Especially those meant for women my age. But, that's why I like Avenue. It's a plus-size store for women. I got this in two colors:

I pair it with jeans, sandals, and my favorite pink scarf. : ) It's utter cuteness.

Found this little hijabi photo somewhere online. Total props to the artist. Isn't she adorable? The world needs more manga hijabis. ^_^

Preparing for the transition...again.

I've been going through all of my books and the occasional CD and plucking out what I haven't read/watched/or ever will -- after all, the less stuff I have to pack, the better. Sold a bunch of books at Hastings -- not my favorite place (because it's LAME -- what kind of establishment doesn't take regular size paperbacks in trade?), but it's the only new book store in town. I got enough in credit that I was able to get this:

I'm on a major Star Trek binge after watching the Nu!Trek film a time or 12 in the last month. ; P Watching the first season for the first time in a long time is truly Geeky Bliss. ^_^

Have any of you seen the new "Veilkinis"? I got the ad from They're pretty cute -- all sorts of different color options, and a good bit cheaper than the Burquinis from Ahiida.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Searching again...

My life has done the upheaval bit again. I had a phone interview today, though, and I'm seriously hoping for some good news.

I'm really trying to make a run for my hijab again. The whole incident, in which wearing my hijab -- as a CIVILIAN -- was in violation of the military dress code and therefore part of the total package of "getting fired"-ness, has made me step back from it for a while.

I need to wear it again, though. I need the spiritual mindset that having a physical reminder of my faith gives me, so that I can work harder at stepping up to the plate and trusting more in God and giving Him more of me. It's a constant work in progress, with varying degrees of success.

Prayers for me, and prayers for you. I need the support of my covering Christian sisters right now. You are all wonderful, generous, and a total blessing when society at large comes on a little too strong in their secularism.

And the next job I get, the hijab will be part and parcel, non-negotiable.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Not AGAIN...

Great. I have a week, or two at the most, before I'm jobless again. And I find myself in the same situation as last time -- little money saved. Except now I have a house, so I can't just up and move elsewhere. This is SO STRESSFUL. Friends have given me all sorts of good advice about making lemons into lemonade or that maybe God is putting me where he wants me to be... but I honestly can't see anything good in it. Not as a single woman with many obligations. I'm scared and worried and... yeah. Life isn't so good right now.

I started covering again last week...but that was just another thing in a list of complaints they had against me that they hadn't bothered to address with me. Just "oh, gee, we don't like you. And we told the guy in charge. So you're fired, and you can't do anything about it." Worst of all... they're right. It's legal. There's nothing I can do. I can try looking for another job in my company, but... I can't move now, so it's highly unlikely I will be able to stay with the company. I've found a couple of jobs and other stuff I'm going to try and pursue. Right now it feels like the whole universe is stacked against me...

I'm going to go home and cry. And then I'll get up tomorrow and start the job hunt all over again. Any and all prayers/good wishes/whatever would be Highly Appreciated right now.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Spring is coming...

Hi, everyone! I hope you're doing well. I've been busy and generally unable to get on the computer for a while. My own computer seems to have gotten a virus or suffered a meltdown...or something. So, hopefully that will mean either a repair or new computer in the future.

What have all of you been up to? I've been working and sleeping..and working and sleeping... ; P My house is a wreck, but cleaning it isn't much of a priority right now. Maybe tomorrow I'll do that.

I went to a great book sale yesterday and spent waaaaaay too much money, but got a ton of awesome books.

And even kitties get allergies! Did you ladies know this? Three of my four cats have allergies and are itchy and over-grooming, and have balding patches in their coats. Thankfully, the boys have an appointment with the vet next week and will be taken care of then.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Yay, taking my couch and other stuff back with me tomorrow! Long weekend party at a friend's house tonight -- it'll be fun.

My followers are up to 30. That's cool!

Almost 400 books listed on LibraryThing. : D

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Moving right along, "Life as a Prayer" book, more.

Literally and figuratively. Moving is a pain. I have too much stuff. Hence...yard sale! Eventually, anyway. *grin*

Found a super-fun website called LibraryThing. You can catalogue all of your books (okay, 200 for a free account, but as many as you want with a paid account). I'm addicted. So far I've listed over 350 books, and I know I have more than that. I know I will accumulate many, many more with my bookstore addiction. ^_^

Speaking of books, I read Michele's book "Life as a Prayer: Recapturing the Wind of Head Covering". It was really good, I thought. I kinda want to buy a few copies and give them as presents. *big grin* ...But who would I give them to?

Work is same ol', same ol'. I found the library here, so...yay! I'm going to start checking out hardcovers, since they're so expensive, and wait for my favorites to come out in paperback.

Cats + running across wood and/or ceramic tile floors = slip 'n slide FAIL. LOL One of them totally spun in a circle. Another fell on his booty. Who needs TV when you have cats? I'm constantly entertained. DVD player broke. For No. Flipping. Reason. ????? I think I'm cursed when it comes to electronics. With the exception of TVs, which seem to last forever. : )

Hope you're all doing well.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone! Have you made your resolutions? I did. I resolved to learn how to ride the Christmas present I bought myself:

It's a Trikke. Cool, huh? I've already hopped on the TrikkeTalk chat room and gotten all sorts of helpful advice from the experienced riders there. : )

I also resolved to never again date a man who wants me to take off my hijab, who treats me like his property, and complains that I "think too much". *eye roll* In case you can't tell, I've reached the "ticked off" stage in the post-break up cycle. are all of you? Sorry I haven't been around much. No computer at my house yet, but I hope to change that in the next few months.