What do you think Rukhsana’s mother should do, and why?
Rukhsana comes from the lower middle class and having joined a decent corporation after completing her education, she feels embarrassed to share her whereabouts with her colleagues. Leaving the 80 sq. yard house which was their own, she compels her mother to move to a rented portion of a 200 sq. yard house in a new middle class locality.
The owner of the house had demanded a year’s rent in advance but then suddenly dropped the condition. Rukhsana’s mother learns about this only after they have moved to the new house, and a hundred suspicions arise in her head. Just then, Rukhsana’s boss Tahir shows up along with a white foreigner woman and says that he had paid the advance to the owner without informing Rukhsana.
Sensing the resentment of Rukhsana’s mother at this, he apologizes and says, “You are like my mother and Rukhsana is like my sister.” Then he explains that in helping them rent the house, he was doing a favor to himself rather than them: the woman is his wife who has converted to Islam. His family doesn’t know about these developments and he wants his wife Rebecca, whose Muslim name is Ruqayya, to be properly initiated in the Islamic ways of life before she is presented to his family.
He tells Rukhsana’s mother that he has been deeply impressed by her upbringing of Rukhsana and would very much like her to train his wife in the mores and values of Islam as well. For this reason, he would like them to keep her secretly until she is ready.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
The Case of A New Convert to Islam
This case study generated an unexpected (and perhaps unprecedented) amount of discussion and debate in the session on Iqbal Sciences this Saturday. See if you would also like to join the debate: