A non Muslim individual marries a Muslim individual, the media picks up on the story and everyone celebrates it as a symbol of tolerance and diversity, scenes like these have been repeated time and time again ad nausuem but what if I told you, within the Muslim community this is not such a big deal, well aside from getting a plus one into the fold of Islam which is always a cause for celebration as it pushes the narrative that “Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world” and from a young age many Muslims are taught there is great rewards in the afterlife if they convince others to convert, might just be my particular madrasa (religious school).
Stories like these repeating over and over again in an attempt to show off inclusiveness within the Muslim community, because we’ve never had a problem where converts are treated differently, in fact the opposite, they’re revered.
Now imagine a Muslim and Non Muslim marries but the Muslim chooses to convert to the faith of the Non Muslim, or even chooses to allow their Non Muslim partner to retain whatever faith (or lack of), how well do you think this would fly? I would say not very well. I’m not married, I’m still living the single life however I remember the start of my sister’s relationship when at the time she was dating and eventually married to a European man. I remember the uproar that my extended family made regarding them wanting to get married about how he’s not a Muslim. So eventually he caved and did the conversion to get his Muslim papers and while they had a civil union in his home country, they had another here fully Islamized. Thing is, despite being Muslim on paper he’s not a Muslim, just like how I was Muslim on paper until the last 3 years.
So why does the media continue to push the narrative that the Muslim community is one that is so inclusive that we can look beyond race of a person that infact it’s the majority who are intolerant and racist because when a friend says “I’m getting married to a Muslim so I’m converting to Islam” and we act concerned about it, somehow this is intolerance? It’s lip service to make themselves feel good about virtue signalling and defending a “helpless minority” by throwing those who are actually vulnerable within said community under the bus and preserving the status quo that is to be expected.
A non Muslim has to convert to Islam to marry a Muslim.
This expectation needs to end because what we are teaching Muslims, from a young age, is that love is conditional, “If you love me sayang, you will abandon your heathen ways and convert to Islam” and that is not a good message to spread. Love is unconditional regardless of what faith your partner chooses to believe in or not, if you loved them you would not be demanding them to change faiths, this is what actual inclusiveness and tolerance looks like, something that is lacking within the Muslim Community because of all the conversion marriages and how the media continues to propagate this lip service towards converts.
For the record, I have nothing against Muslim converts, I think it’s great you found a peace of mind in a religion that I chose to leave because it does not align with my life’s philosophy. More power to you to practice freedom of religion and I’m sure you would agree with me too that those who chose to leave should have the freedom to leave.
I don’t like paint things with too broad of a brush, there probably are many Muslim families out there who are okay with their Muslim relative marrying a Non Muslim and that Non Muslim doesn’t convert however with the recent push towards a more Arabized Islam in Singapore whereby being a Muslim is the pinnacle of your identity, I would argue that ostracization of non conversion married couple is much more common an incident these days and this vanity of virtue signalling all in an attempt to make oneself feel good about helping out vulnerable minorities in a world rife with “islamophobia” is only enforcing the taboo of apostasy because it is not letting the Muslim community look at themselves with a critical lens and therefore doing more harm to the ones who are vulnerable within this community.
CEMSG – Contributor