They look at us and they see hate.

They look at us and they see oppression.

They look at us through their tainted vision and see monsters.

Us.

You and me.

Muslims.

Believers in la ilaha illa Allah.

How could that be?

If only they could see…

If only they could see us bow down in prostration to the Almighty with hearts full of gentleness.

If only they could see us raising our hands in the air, crying out to the Most Merciful.

If only they could see grown men with tears streaming down their faces from nothing but a verse from God.

If only they could see the good.

All they see is what people of power want them to see,

What the media forces them to believe.

They see ISIS,

They see oppression,

They see hate;

None of which are any part of Islam.

But, they still see it.

It is all they see.

And, we can’t blame them.

We have to blame ourselves.

Us.

Us for not showing them who we are.

Us for not following in the footsteps of our Prophet.

Us for not showcasing the mannerisms our very Islam has taught us.

It is up to us to change that,

To show them who we truly are.

Being Muslim means caring for those around us,

Helping those in need.

Being Muslim means being selfless

Courageous.

Honorable.

Being Muslim means being loved by those around us.

Being Muslim means being able to love those around us.

Let us be true Muslims.

Muslims who cannot be falsely portrayed as criminals.

Together, we can trump hate and create a world worth living in.

By Noor Zegar