Dear Jasmine: Can I mix Muslim and Pagan Beliefs?

Dear Jasmine,

I am a Muslim woman and I have recently felt a calling to expand my current faith to be more earth based and in tune with my feminine side, similar to paganism. I would say it’s how connected pagans are to nature that calls me. I want to connect and be in tuned with what is such an amazing and beautiful part of life. Nature makes me feel closer to the Truth. I have been hoping to figure out a way to incorporate rituals for the seasons or even moon cycles but I don’t even know how and I want something that works for me spiritually. I am not a polytheist, and believe more in the idea of sacred feminine, rather than gods and goddesses. I believe that we need to search for balance in life and that includes balance in masculine and feminine (which exists in all the world) but for me the idea of gods and goddesses doesn’t work. I consider myself an agnostic progressive Muslim open to reinterpretation and open to bettering myself and finding peace spiritually through parts of other religions beyond Islam. This includes paganism obviously. But I guess this makes me not open to seeing things in a polytheistic way. I see everything as united and One. Think of the yin yang symbol… That’s much the way I see things. How can I blend my current faith with aspects of paganism to fit my own beliefs?

Thank You,

Crystal

Dear Crystal,

This is truly an amazing question and I first would like to thank you for asking it. I can tell that you are a very open minded individual and I am honored to take a crack at giving you the answer to help you further yourself and your path. I am partially familiar with the Muslim faith, I studied it at the college level a bit and have even been to a service at a Mosque. I also dated a Muslim man for a few weeks, so I have a basic idea of your faith, but I am not familiar with all the ins and outs in regards to the Koran and rules that you in particular follow. I want to say in advanced that I hope I can stay respectful to you and your families faith the best I can in this. I also will be referring to what I know about Christianity in this regard being as that they have allot of similarities.

Pagan in general means to be of the non-Abrahamic faiths, which are Judaism, Christianity and Islam. You will hear a lot of this in the pagan community, and do not be shocked if you hear people telling you that a blended path is an oxymoron. You can still be connected to the divine feminine and nature, while still remaining true to your faith. Lots of pagans are more of the mindset that you are in, that we all come from one source and feminine and masculine energies are all a part of this. Pagans simply honor these energies by celebrating the goddess and god in themselves, nature and the energy of the whole divine. This mindset also helps connect pagans to nature, because everything is part of the whole, every rock, plant and creature. I am a firm believer that seeing the world like this is beautiful no matter where the core of those beliefs stems from.

Honoring the divine feminine is a challenge at times. It is easy however when you realize that as a woman you are honoring yourself and the wonder of the body that the divine gave you. There is a book out there called “The Red Tent”, which focuses on biblical characters. “It is a first-person narrative that tells the story of , daughter of Jacob and sister of . She is a minor character in the Bible, but the author has broadened her story. The book’s title refers to the tent in which women of Jacob’s tribe must, according to the ancient law, take refuge while menstruating or giving birth, and in which they find mutual support and encouragement from their mothers, sisters and aunts.” (Wikipedia). Many Goddess focused pagans use this book for their own inspirations. I have heard many great things about this book and I feel it would really help you to connect to the divine feminine energies. I also wanted to point out the daughter of Muhammad, Fatima. I am sure in your culture and time in your faith that you have heard the tales of how Fatima was revered, or seen the symbol called “The Hand of Fatima”. This symbol can be used as a representation of the divine feminine as well as the 5 pillars of Islam.

Connecting to the seasons can also be fit into your families traditions and holidays. Ramadan falls this year between July 20th and August 18th. This is normally seen as a time of harvest and bounty for pagans. While you fast during the day, you can incorporate the season of bounty at night and bring in seasonal vegetables and hearty meals to represent the bounty. Using the time during the day to meditate on the bounty and the patience it takes to fast will only enhance the wonders of the feasts that night. You can work these types of energies into all different holidays throughout the year. Many pagans do this with Christmas and Halloween.

In the end its a matter of what you feel comfortable with. You can get out in nature more and connect to the seasons and your femininity all while remaining true to your beliefs. What and how much you add is up to you. You may also consider contacting or participating in practice with your local Unitarian Church, as they accept people from all faiths and beliefs. This can be a wonderful support system for you as you grow your own path.

Many blessings to you,

Jasmine

Jasmine is a 15 year veteran pagan and Wiccan High Priestess and has been a leader in her local pagan community and done spiritual counseling. To submit questions please email JasmineMoon@gmail.com.

About Jasmine LunaMadre

Jasmine is one of the founders of a The Prairie Earth Society, a local pagan group in Eastern Iowa. She is also a mother of a 3 year old son, and a wife to an agnostic. Jasmine is one of the rare pagans that can say that Paganism was her first faith. She was raised in an Italian-American, Roman-Catholic family, that decided to let her choose her own path. They were not expecting her to start studying Wicca when she was in her late teens, or to continue for over 15 years and counting. When she went on to college she studied Anthropology and Education. While there she also began studying the Gardnerian Tradition, and was initiated in 2001 at the age of 21. Jasmine was further trained about folk magic by her mentor who is a master herbalist and family traditional kitchen witch. She moved to Iowa and began to practice as a kitchen witch herself, specializing in incense making and Italian-American cuisine. She is now a 2nd degree High Priestess of Enchanted Fire Dance Grove and teacher of the Gardnerian Tradition. Jasmine is also the Author of the blog, www.TheSpiritualMother.com. Jasmine has also attended many pagan festivals over the years such as Phoenix Phyre and Pagan Spirit Gathering and numerous British Traditionalist Wiccan fests and local gatherings. She also plans local workshops and classes and runs a local New Age Book Club. She is experienced in networking and conversing with many pagans from all over the country.

  • Nicole Youngman

    These might be of use too. I find it fascinating that Islam uses a lunar calendar without any effort to synch it up with the solar one (which is why Ramadan and other holy days shift from year to year)–that might be something to explore further spiritually. Islam also has a really interesting tradition of highly valuing water and gardens (very understandable in a desert climate!).

    http://www.amazon.com/Green-Deen-Teaches-Protecting-ebook/dp/B0047O2B8Y/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1331747439&sr=8-3

    http://www.amazon.com/Islam-Ecology-Bestowed-Trust-Religions/dp/0945454392/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1331747439&sr=8-1

  • Hasan Saqib

    Dear Crystal,

    As a muslim, I hope you realize that Paganism, Wicca, and Santeria type religions are Jinn worship
    which constitutes Shirk(polytheism) in Islam. If you read about their rituals such
    as casting charms, wearing amulets, making alters, inviting gods to the
    alter, leaving food out for them, Knot Magick, you will realize that
    this is how the Shayateen(devils) trick humans into worshipping them.

    Watch these lectures for more information:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_ZWeMEBruY

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kf6lVgW6RkA

    • Casey

       Hasan,

      I think you’re lumping too many broad pagan paths into a few general types with your statement.

      I’m a shamanic pagan; my fiance is a born-Muslim and we are getting married without me converting into Islam. He has never thought or felt that I was or am worshiping Jinn or worshiping anything at all.

      Perhaps you need to let Crystal broaden her own perspectives and make her own choices after she has gained more information.

      Casey

      • Andrea

        Hi Casey- I’m Pagan and my husband is Muslim and has never said a word to me about converting.  Nice to hear of another similar couple.

        • Hasan Saqib

          Hi Andrea, 
          I advise you and anyone reading this to affirm belief in only one God and to leave the inclination, fascination, devotion to false gods. As a Muslim, their first duty is to worship the One True Creator, which in arabic is called Allah. The Muslims stay away from anything that can lead them down the path of believing in and worshipping spirits/goddesses/avatars which are really just names for Jinn, a creation of Allah. 

          • n3pla2000

            Mr. Hasan Saqib,
            I am a follower of both Pagan and Christian faiths. Your understanding of what many (not all) pagan religions believe is not correct. I believe in a single all powerful source of creation, energy and everything the universe in composed of. This is the same deity you believe in. We however of the pagan faith say that deity has no form and all forms based on the choice the of that deity. The deity I believe in does not EXIST as “we” humans define existence. If so that deity could not be present if the universe did not exist. The deity I believe in is all powerful and was present before the universe existed. That deity must therefore be present outside of the universe, and therefore does not exist in the traditional sense. When this deity chooses to communicate with his creations (us) it takes on a physical form. The “One” or “One God” is not limited to appearing as a Male, if so then the “One God” is not all powerful as I thought Muslims, Jews, Christians, Pagans, and other believe. This is why I left Christianity, yet maintain many of my Christian beliefs. I felt the big 3 religions, Islam, Judaism, and Christianity say God is “all powerful” then turn around and tell me what God can not be, can not do, and what God is not. It is obvious you think the “One God” a.k.a. Allah has limits, and can not appear in any shape or form. Christians tell God is a man, but God of the Bible appeared as a burning bush, a column of fire, and other forms, When did a burning bush or a column of fire have a gender? Pagans refer to the “One” as “God and Goddess”. The “One” may take all forms, we often see the “One” as appearing as a child, adult, or elderly. In nature, we also see the One as appearing as natural spirits in the forms of all the beasts. We see the One in the elements Earth, Fire, Water, and Air. In fact we say the 5 points of the Pentagram represent the five elements of creation Spirit, Earth, Fire, Water, and Air. My advise to Crystal is to switch to a Pagan faith but retain her Islamic beliefs, not because Islam is bad, but because Pagans will accept her mixing both faiths more than most Muslims will. I personally accept and love her no matter what faith she chooses and if she chooses to blend two or more faiths.

            Blessed Be.

      • Hasan Saqib

        Hi Casey, after re-reading Jasmine’s letter, it seems she is more inclined to the idea of connecting with the natural world rather than gods and goddesses. Like you said, pagan is a broad path of belief and I was warning her of a part of the path which Islam considers absolutely forbidden(sihr/dark magic, calling on “spirits” or jinn, etc) . However, she as well as anyone else should know that for a Muslim, their first duty is to worship the One True Creator, which in arabic is called Allah. The Muslims stay away from anything that can lead them down the path of believing in and worshipping spirits/goddesses/avatars which are really just names for Jinn, a creation of Allah. So I advise you and anyone reading this to affirm belief in only one God and to leave the inclination, fascination, devotion to false gods.

        • n3pla2000

          Mr. Hasan Saqib

          I wish to also add another piece of data to you about myself before I touch on your comments. I am a naturist. Naturism is not a path for everyone nor do I advise everyone to become a naturist. It is however my hope that everyone will one day mature enough to be a naturist. Naturism is about the following.

           * Being secure about you body and yourself.
           * Being connected with nature and Deity.
           * Being natural and being so in natural settings.

          Some say we should be Vegan or at least vegetarian, most naturists are not many feel we are intended to be omnivores. As for being natural in natural settings, that means being nude as we were in the Garden before we were cast out. We do not practice sexual activity when nude in public with our friends and associates. We feel nudity is natural, sexuality is NOT part of nudity, and is simply a lack of clothes and not a temptation unless one is not mature enough to be a naturist. My naturism has been a part of me since before even had a word for it. I knew that when I was nude and outdoors in the grass, trees, and swimming in water. My naturist feelings and tendencies led me to Paganism, but did not make me feel God/Allah if false only that God is powerful beyond what I was taught.

          Now as to spirits being Jinn. Some are, if I understand your definition of the Jinn as be evil. As with people, spirits can be evil, however I feel spirits are often the dead who have lost their way to the place dead spirits belong, at least until God sweeps us up and gives us life eternal. I also feel spirits can also be Angels or “Messengers” from God. Angels often function as messengers if you read certain texts. However, we know Lucifer was an Arch Angel, and he turned against God, so whether a spirit is a dead human spirit, or an angel, it’s tendency toward good or evil is unknown and is always to be questioned.

          Blessed Be.

  • Gaiawen

    That was a very good response. Crystal, I think you are a very brave and spiritual being that feels the need to search for the missing pieces to complete your spiritual map. Rest assured that ultimately no one can tell you what is right or wrong in matters of Faith and Spiritual Quest; this is as personal as it can be for each and all of us. I do understand your position as my own questioning of the faith I was raised on ended up not answering all my questions and I am on my Path that includes all of those things you mentioned. I don’t think for me there’s is one banner I can put myself under that satisfies me completely, so I chose to call myself a Seeker and a very broad spectrum Pagan. I wish you well in your search.

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