Monday, July 09, 2007
One of the perks of working for the airlines was the opportunity to watch the receptions and departures of a myriad folks. There was always so much emotion involved, and at times it was hard to remain detached when I saw people crying over their departing loved ones, for I myself, was away from my family at the time.
Not knowing the stories behind the watched, I would spin their lives into existence in my own mind; I was never at a loss for subject matter.
It was during this time that I was introduced to the religion of Islam. I had never known anything about it. I grew up in a southern Episcopalian cocoon, but to me one of the evidentiary elements of Islam was its understanding of traveling.
I was amazed after enduring the angst from my own travels and being party to viewing countless others suffer similarly, that Islam understood the pain of traveling and even accounted for it. The Prophet, peace be upon him, said that the prayers that a traveler made for someone else would be answered; he also spoke about how to treat travelers when they came to you. Islam understood that traveling was a hardship in more than one way and made dispensation for that.
It would be one of the many amazing qualities that I had yet to discover about this religion.