Islam is the second biggest religion in the world. In Britain there is about 1.5 million British Muslims that live around the country. Living in Britain will have a great impact on their culture and traditions. This essay will focus on the Islamic culture and how living in Britain might affect a Muslims everyday life.
In Muslim culture men and women are equally worth spiritually. So, women should work along men and try to learn the knowledge and skills. However, women should be made comfortable therefore they cover their legs, arms and head. They usually cover their heads with a scarf or veil. This is called wearing a hijab and it indicated modesty in clothing and behaviour. In Britain, Muslim women try to follow their traditions as well as they can but sometimes this can be misunderstood. They might get stared or laughed at. In some extreme cases they become victims of harassment or racial discrimination.
Teenage girls from the age of twelve also have to cover their legs, arms and heads. This also shows modesty and good behaviour. Nonetheless, when at school this can be difficult especially in P.E and swimming so they might have to wear special clothing. Children sometimes misunderstand this, so it can result in bullying or them being left out because they are different.
Muslims can only eat halal meat. This means that they can only eat meat that has been killed in a certain way. For example, the blood of the animal has to be drained out; a special prayer including the name of Allah has to be said while it is being killed. They also cannot eat any meat from pigs. In some parts of the country there might not be halal butchers, which can create problems for Muslims. This is one of the reasons why most Muslims group together in one area where this facility can be provided. Sometimes going to restaurants might limit their choice in meals; for example they can mostly only have vegetarian meals.
Drinking alcohol is an issue as well, especially in young Muslims lives. Having a drink is called a Haram; this means that it is not allowed. Nevertheless in England it is a part of socialising and if someone does not drink alcohol others might isolate him or her. Consequently, they might not have many friends and in some cases they might face peer pressure.
One of the ‘pillars of Islam’ is Hajj. Hajj is a pilgrimage to Mecca that all Muslims will try to go on at least once in their lifetime. Mecca is found in Saudi Arabia, which is quite far away from England. This might create a problem, as the some people would not be able to afford this trip.
Occasionally, Muslims like to visit a mosque, which is close by to do his prayers. This may be because there is an Imam present to guide them through the Qu’ran or just to say prayers and make speeches. In some parts of Britain this is usually an inconvenience as there are not many mosques around the country. This is another reason why Muslim communities tend to live in one area. On the other hand, there are some Muslims that live quite far away from mosques, which could possibly mean they have to travel quite far away to get to a mosque. This can also be quite expensive therefore limiting the amount of times they visit the mosque.
British Muslims have many difficulties in their everyday live. Living in a mainly catholic society can affect a Muslims life, as he might face discrimination and cultural clash due to their different ways of clothing and different culture. I think that Muslims have come a long way and they are slowly integrating in the British society. However, they must be given a chance and people need to start to be more understanding and aware of their needs and traditions.