I am studying the Muslim American Culture. There was a participation in the community organization where by I had an interview with a different group of culture .the event was on 13th May 2010 at 3.00 o’clock. That is the individuals were married but from the same culture, the man name was Sheikh Salim his wife’s names were Fatima Ali,
The mode of dressing, was the cultural factor that helped me to shape the individuals identity that is the man was in a long white robe which he preferred it as a religious attire called ‘Kanzu’, the lady was dressed in a black long attire that she also preferred it as a ‘buibui’ being a religious attire and she covered the head with a black piece of clothe which she referred it as an ‘hijarb’.
During the interview they explained on there childhood experience and there parental values in which they said that their childhood experiences entailed living with the same group of age and the same sex, that is the boys were not allowed to interact with the girls, they used to respect the different sex by staying with the same sex group they had. There parental values entails to bring there own children in the same culture they were up brought up with. There parental values will define the upbringing of the child according to the culture they were up brought up since there own culture does not change.
Memories of when they interacted with non Muslim people and people who were not devoted to any Muslim culture, there were some differences with other cultures but through understanding of the way other people lived and the other cultures understanding what there culture meant to them brought membership in a culturally- different group.
The American Muslim have a role in religion, they live everyday as a witness of their own religion and they take there religion as a way of respecting the supreme. They believe that there is the existence of God and that the religion plays a major role in there life to testify to every human being on the existence of God. The religion has also a role in shaping up there behavior and conduct in today’s life. Since there culture has been preserved differently by many countries world wide, immigration process is very difficulty due to, there culture has been misinterpreted worldwide and most of the countries do not consider taking in people of the Muslim culture in there religion, therefore there immigration experience was too complicated they had to undergo for further immigrations processes that are not undergone by other immigrates of another culture.
There school experience as a member of cultural minority was also complicated and difficult because other students could not be able to interact with them due to the perception that they have grown up with it about the Muslim culture. Many students believe that people from this culture are a terrorist which is not true. Experiences with the educational or psychological testing was both in a different perception from people as well as other students, the perception about this culture has developed a negative perception worldwide that Muslim people are terrorist, and bombers therefore they could not interact with other people due to there psychological perception about how people view there culture therefore People used to avoiding them.
There experiences with issues regarding racism and discrimination was negative, they said that racism has occurred differently since they are of different culture, they are not allowed to interact or involve themselves in some of the activities that the other cultures do, when they are found in mistakes they are more discriminated more than any other cultural group is discriminated for example in the cases of jail, they can take more imprison years than normal due to the way people grant them.
On career development/career choice experiences there are challenges that they faced during the carrier development, most of the organization could not hire them despite the fact that there culture is different, this used to discourage them. In school they were strictly advised to choose a certain carrier and strictly not allowed to choose some carriers. They further explained the experience of being culturally-different and they said that the experience of being culturally different is negative that is there culture has been developed as a culture of enemity between other cultures majority of the culture in the country does not accept any relationship with them, they took them as people who are there to destroy one another and unfriendly people, these has made them create a bad altitude to other cultures because of lack of understanding about there own culture. They preserve other cultures negatively.
The interviewees said that they have no desire to assimilate other cultural altitudes; values and lifestyle since there own culture does not allow them to intervene or inherit other cultural values or beliefs. There own culture only allows them to stay in there own culture without the assimilation of other cultural values and beliefs since they have no feeling of oppression towards other cultures they respect other cultures and what people’s culture defines them. But they get oppressed when other people interfere with there cultural values. They said that every individual should know that there are other cultures and everyone should have respect for other cultures.
Since every human being has a right to be angry they sometimes have the feeling of anger from other cultures especially when other cultures interfere with there cultural significances, they say that people should have mutual respect towards other cultures and not to interfere with there own culture. In this way the stereotypical representation of the Muslim are often manifested in the society and it has always been negative, racism has challenged there mode of life, there are people who cannot interact with them, there are specific schools that cant admit any Muslim person. Muslim are not allowed to marry from other culture, this culture has been considered as people who are bombers and terrorist therefore defining what people consider them and why people don’t interact with them, they have been considered as people who can cause death due to there religious teachings on fighting and dieing for there reason of there religion..
There are similarities between my cultural group and there own cultural group for terms of language we share the same language; there native language in America is English that makes the communication easy. They also have a belief in there religion and the same applies to our own culture, there is a supreme being that exists in both the cultures. the elements of the immersion that made me discover this type of culture was the mode of dressing, they explained the reason as to why a man has to be always in a religious attire and the reason as to why ladies have to put on such garments, they explained that for a man to put on the attire is something which is religious and for a lady it is a culture that directs them to be in such a position as an African and American person our own cultural values, beliefs have changed with time but there own culture has not yet changed they still remain in there own cultural ties and this makes the difference between me and the American Muslim.
For example their cultural ways state that a man is not supposed to interact with a woman, men are supposed to be in there own company and never to be seen with any relationship with woman, but this is different from our own n culture where by interaction is free. These brought about the difference between my culture and there own culture. Therefore it is true to say that members between my culture is more different because the way they live is very much different for example there culture allows them to marry more than one wife while in my own culture a man is only allowed to marry one wife. the mode of dressing, my cultural experience does not define any way a woman is supposed to be dressed but there culture defines a woman mode of dressing hence there cultural values behavior is more different from my own culture.
My experience and views about the Muslim American culture has been in a positive way, for example in issues regarding Muslim women freedom, I thought that they have the freedom to choose there own way of dressing, but this has been much different from what I have known, that is the culture still strict them to the mode of dressing, many Muslim couples are always polygamous that is they have more than one family without divorcing there immediate wives, my research has come to a conclusion that there culture allows them to marry more than one wife. The participation affected me emotionally and also psychologically
That is I developed some emotional feelings toward this particular group that has never changed from their own cultural beliefs, they still inherit there own culture despite the fact that the world is changing. It affected me psychologically because I was left in thoughts of are there other group of cultures that have not yet changed from there own inheritable cultures.
There acculturation levels were so demanding meaning that they could not be changed despite the fact that racism has occurred and it is in high levels. They regarded racism as a way of interfering with there own culture, and there was no way racism could change there culture, this means that they are still bound by there own culture The Muslim American have a role of religion, there own religion determines there way of life, that is it defines the way that they should live, there conduct to other people and the supreme being whom should be respected and prayed
The prejudicial beliefs in this culture is that they are much into religion and they can even go to an extent of fighting and dieing simply because of there own religion. John F (1990).Through the knowledge that I have gained I have come to realize what is expected of me in this cultural group, if I was to do counseling with the same culture then I will be able to think on what the culture expects them and be able to act according to there cultural values. I have learned on the ways of there culture especially there beliefs values and there cultural influences.
- John F. (1990) the traditional folk of the Islam culture