In my time in the workplace, including judging from my sister’s experiences as a real estate agent, I can state without a doubt that we have both been done in by more Muslims than any other religious group. The saddest part is that these Muslims, and there’s far too many of them to even recall, were almost always blatantly and overtly in-your-face Muslims.
Muslims that maintain long beards, traditional Arab dress, hijab and/or niqab, etc. Muslims with titles of Hafez or Maulana, Aalim or Aalima. When it came to maintaining integrity and honesty in business dealings, their convictions as Muslims took a back seat and their shrewd business minds kicked in to ensure that they got the best deal possible, regardless of ethics or repercussions.
As much as we do our best to support Muslim businesses, the business ethic of most of them is despicable, looking for shortcuts and underhanded ways to avoid paying legitimate taxes, or under-cutting their fellow Muslim business competitors. And it hurts even more when I get treated with greater fairness, honesty, transparency and integrity by non-Muslim business people because it rubs salt in the wounds of those experiences that we’ve had at the hands of Muslims.
Perhaps this is partly why I oppose the blind following of others simply because they profess to be learned or scholars, because I witnessed the hypocrisy and double-standards first hand within these circles. That’s why I insist on determining the differences between a Muslim and a Mu’min. Being a Muslim determines your outer appearance, whilst being a Mu’min reflects what is in your soul.
This is unfortunately my experiences of the state of the Ummah…and having been robbed in Madinah in front of the Haram, man-handled and thrown out of Raud-ul-Jannah in the middle of my salaah, and being bullied out of the first row for salaah by the guards in Makkah, it makes it extremely difficult to take Muslims seriously when they espouse religious guidance in manners that contradict the methods and tone demonstrated in the Sunnah.
I hope to write a more detailed post about my experiences in Makkah and Madinah, if for no other reason than for the therapeutic value it may offer me in finally off loading this unfortunate burden of reality.