By Karimah Bint Dawoud Muslim Chaplain & Well Being Writer.
“Let none of you despise giving to a neighbor, even if it’s a roasted sheep’s trotters” Malik AL Muwatta, vol 58, number 4.
“The best neighbour is the one who behaves best to his neighbors” Timidhi
I had known for about a month that we would be having a party, a street party and I love street parties. A wonderful neighbour had set up a blog, petitioned the council to close the road, organized BBQ , bouncy castle and portaloos, the least we could do was get involved and take some food. It was wonderful to see other Muslim sisters with their children, sadly the absence of any Muslim men. It would have been a great opportunity to destroy negative stereo types about Muslim men. We do not have to assimilate and start drinking beer however we do have responsibility to get out and mix and show by our words and actions the Sunnah of our beloved Nabi, the Prophet Muhammad salah alaihi wa salem,who was the perfect example of how to be good to your non Muslim neighbours.
Muslim men need to make an effort to engage in peaceful conversation with non Muslim men who sometimes have very limited experience of just having a chat with them.; about fishing , football and families. They would find that they have alot in common with non Muslim family guys.
Community gatherings are important and bring communities togather in a peaceful way with joy and happiness.
I remember the Silver Jubilee fancy dress in our local village and then eating at trestle tables in the sunshine. When you are a child these memories stay and the jubilee, the joyousness stays as happy memories ; communal eating outside, there is nothing finer except going to Makkah and drinking Zam Zam water.
As a British revert with a white English mum , from Essex , I love many British things and now as a food writer I love and appreciate British produce. My dad is South African Asian which gives most of my culinary perspective that spicy twist.
We decided to make British Beetroot And Chocolate Fairy Cakes, Tabouleh , Moroccan Chicken and Guacamole. With the help of my good friend, Nazia Hussain, we achieved our goal and set out onto the street to be met with our neighbours togged up warmly in parkas telling us, they wanted to come sit down the Muslim end of the table because Muslims have the best food”, very interesting grasshopper!
A great day was had by all despite the rain, that good old let’s just get on with it spirit shone through and inshallah we’ll have another party soon.