1. "I am sorry to tell you that grandpa has died. That means that he has left this world and gone to God. We won't see him again. But the love we had for him will stay with us forever." I was five when I heard these words – words that would haunt me forever.
2. When my mum told me about my grandfather having died I was shocked and confused. I stumbled down the stairs, to where I was greeted by family friends all sitting around the dinner table; some sobbing; some reading the Holy Quran and some having a quiet conversation. I moved away from them – I was confused by the hubbub and I wanted to be alone – in a safe place. I walked hurriedly towards the conservatory which was at the end of the dinner table, where people had gathered. I pulled the sliding door of the conservatory open and pulled it shut as I walked through the entrance. The double glazing of the conservatory door meant that the room fell silent.
3. I tried to collect my thoughts. How did he die? Why did he die? Where had he gone? Was he lying still and dead on his bed? Had his body already been thrown away and covered by a huge pile of dirt? I didn’t realise understand what was going on or what to think. I was only five. However, I was unable to control my emotions and, tears came flooding out my eyes. I felt angry. I felt hurt. I thought he would never leave me. How dare he leave me?
4. This event happened about ten years ago, yet I still think about it every day. I find my mind wondering mostly when I am at prayer, standing on a prayer mat or listening to sermon from the Imam in the mosque. From a young age I was taught that God is all seeing, all knowing and all powerful. I was told that if I submitted myself to God then he would protect me and my loved ones. Yet my grandfather died. Why would God take away the people I love if pray for my loved one’s safety? If God we are told he will protects us, then why does he put us through the pain and suffering of death. Religious scholars often pronounce that supplicating oneself to God and submitting oneself to God it will help to maintain our mental and physical wellbeing. However, I am left thinking of the uselessness of religion if God deals in hypocrisy. How can he be so benevolent and yet so malevolent so as to take someone’s life and to deprive a child of a love? I am left wondering if there is indeed a God or was religion a contrivance of a despot in years gone by in an effort to control the masses. Maybe religion is truly the opiate of the masses. Although in some respects I felt and still do...