I have a ‘solat buddy’. A prayer buddy. She’s not muslim, we are not of the same race and we don’t even speak the same language! World’s apart, this elderly aunty and I share this set of newspapers. Her to rest, me to perform my maghrib prayers. Hehe.

Every friday i need a corner to perform my maghrib prayers in a shopping mall between my lessons. My usual spot is taken away due to construction so one friday, this lady saw me pacing back n forth for a place to pray and so willingly did she get up from her newspapers, spread it out to me and gestured for me to do my prayers beside her. Ever since then, every Friday she does the same for me. She works as a cleaner at that shopping mall and takes her rest at that spot routinely. I am truly amazed and touched by this blessed act.

Islamophic? Definitely not her. We may not speak the same language, we may not be of the same religion but we are still an integral part of our society. The solution to islamophobia cannot be for us to modernise or limit the practices of islam to what seems ‘acceptable’ in the eyes of non-muslims. But it should be having a greater understanding of one another’s religion.

May Allah guide this aunty and all of us, to be better ambassadors of our faith and simply be better people.

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