…It was yummy almond toffee flavor.
1. “In psychology, cognitive dissonance is the discomfort experienced when simultaneously holding two or more conflicting cognitions: ideas, beliefs, values or emotional reactions. In a state of dissonance, people may sometimes feel “disequilibrium”: frustration, hunger, dread, guilt, anger, embarrassment, anxiety, etc.”– Wikipedia
2. I you are experiencing cognitive dissonance then you are clearly lying to yourself about what you are and what you believe. You shouldn’t do that to yourself. It’s not healthy.
3. “Fitna (also transliterated fitnah or in the genitive case fitnat ; Arabic: فتنة, “sedition“) is an Arabic word with connotations of secession, upheaval, and chaos. It is widely used in Arabic daily language as an adjective which refers to “causing problems between people” or attempting to create a chaotic situation that tests one’s faith.” – Wikipedia
4. Oh don’t pick on me for using Wikipedia as a reference. I was a social-psychology major in college. My texts are not online, but Wikipedia’s is and it’s accurate both with my studies AND my personal experiences, so it’s good enough for me… at least in this instance.
5. I strongly suspect with an almost-certainty that the reason certain questions are frowned on by clerics in many religions is that they know full well that you might experience severe cognitive dissonance about your religion should you begin to think too deeply on the subject. Your doing so will weaken their power. They’ll tell you they’re just trying to save your soul though.
6. We exist in many worlds at once in this world alone – many different ways of perceiving and living an being – and we don’t find it easy. We constantly run afoul with one another no matter how carefully we tread. How much more difficult will be our challenges when we begin to actively and consciously interact with denizens of other worlds within worlds?
7. In the West, for instance, we think of the Middle East as the place that continuously spawns terrorists, has (Sharia) laws that are both primitive and inhumane in extreme, hates us, and disrespects our women. In the Middle East, they think of us as godless, evil, into all their affairs, and that our women are all whores. Since there is both truth and hypocrisy in all of these seeing as we have very different play books as it were, it would actually be healthier if we did not interact too closely, if at all. We cause each other no end of cognitive dissonance and fitna.
8. Cognitive dissonance and fitna are good for something, though, even if the Muslim world can not, on principal, agree: they make us rethink our worlds, our paradigms, and inspire, if not force, us towards solution and evolution.
9. I was reading about Saudi women the other day, where they are in their struggle for simple human rights there, and encounter one Saudi woman that was an author and activist in this cause. I listened awhile to a speech she gave and though much of it has by now completely slipped my mind, there was one thing she said that really stuck with me. She was giving an assurance (probably to the males that rule her very existence there) that she wasn’t attacking Islam; but rather it interpretation there that so involved subjugating women. I immediately began to wonder how Muslimah’s like here could possibly re-interpret Islam to no involve subjugating women. I know the Koran, Haddith, and Najulbalaghi pretty well in regard to the subject of women and honestly don’t see how it’s possible. Hence, I will be watching this development with great interest to put it mildly.
10. When I was still a practicing Muslimah and living in Spokane, I joined the wives of the Arab princes going to school there for the Ramathon fast breaking and brought a Koran with me. There were about 30 or so other women there and maybe one or two of them had ever seen an actual Koran before and only half of them could even read! They were so excited at the sight of it that it was swiftly appropriated from me and passed hand to hand as they eagerly looked it over.
I was baffled and asked what the excitement was about. Turned out that although some of their fathers had allowed them to learn reading and writing, only one or two of them allowed their daughters to read the Koran and none of their husbands did at all. Seeing the Koran excited them because they had questions about the way they were treated that the men wouldn’t answer and they were certain the Koran would.
Well they were right about that: the Koran DID answer many of their questions, some in a way the men would approve: the Koran fully supported men having more rights than women. Others not so much: the Koran DID give women SOME rights, albeit small ones – nowhere near like what we have in the West – but these women’s fathers and husbands hadn’t wanted them to know that!
11. I think that when people are honest with themselves and respectful of one another’s space, then the services of cognitive dissonance and fitna would no longer be required and wars, hate, intolerance, and gender friction and abuses will come abruptly to an end. If only people could learn to listen to their own inner warnings, we could all live in peace and harmony not only with the worlds within worlds on our own planet, but also with the worlds within worlds we may interact with from other planets. Until then, there’s a reason our planet is being left alone in the backwaters of the galaxy. Well, MOSTLY alone.
12. In the mean time, I would still very strong discourage Western women from travelling to the Middle East or marrying Muslim men. No matter how nice, Western, and respectful they seem beforehand, things will change dramatically afterwards. They are by and large not honest to themselves. How could they possibly be honest to anyone else? And bear in mind that they come from a cultural tradition that is very disrespecting and abusive of women when compared to how we expect to be treated. Yes, we need to face and eventually solve these differences, but marriage is the wrong place to do it. It’s too personally devastating to really be worth all the trouble. Love does NOT conquer all – especially when it’s not as real as it might look on the surface.
13. If someone loves you, they should love you for who you are; not simply for what they can shape you into.