Muslim students at Queen Mary calling for a ‘right to pray’ Watch

Pessimisterious
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Queen Mary is absolutely full of religious propaganda. Every day in library square there are stalls promoting religious stuff (mostly Islam). And I keep seeing posters about how great the bible is.

Muslims at the university don't need a place to pray, ffs. There are enough mosques in the East End, surely.

Or here's a better idea. Take a leap of faith. Stop praying. Or pray later. See what happens.

Serious question. Why do people feel the need to so dogmatically do such a thing at such a rigidly specific time anyway?
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Ggmu!
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I can think of a better way to piss money away down the drain.

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Pessimisterious
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Oh and I think if the QMUL film-watching society had a hissy fit over not being allowed to use a campus room to air a film, they'd be laughed at.

What's the difference?
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callmemorbid
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if you are really desperate, you can pray anywhere. i dont really know what i think about this
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Pessimisterious
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Sorry but I just hate the interference religion needlessly causes EVERYWHERE in society.
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WGR
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Are they trying to tell me that they can't find a mosque in Mile End?
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Iqbal007
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(Original post by Lady Comstock)
So you're telling me the ISOC, in London, can't find a suitable venue within the vicinity to rent out? Or a mosque within that area within a few minutes walk?

You say empty, but most organisations book out rooms for longer than they are needed to accommodate late arrivals, events which overrun, etc.
ISOC aren't exactly rich you know..........they only get like £50-£100 from the SU for the year.
I wrote in my previous post about the issues of local mosque, only one is in adequate distance but it can't meet the local communities demand for it, its actually overflowing....they use every little bit of space they have, the shoe area, the washing area, even their kitchen and still its not enough.

It's been regularly checked by both the isoc and QMSU.....the only one that has been used for events is for careers but that was for a week and that was in one of the halls, the other wouldn't really be used as its a theater.
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Kutta
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(Original post by Assassinn)
This. It honestly is inspirational when people do something outside the realm of comfort in the name of faith.

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(Original post by Georgiina_Tee)
I once saw some guy doing it under the stairs at my uni library, you don't have to a prayer room. When he was done he just got up and carried on revising.


Honestly, It can be done anywhere.

But i would say they should be given a room especially as winter is approaching and i think all Muslims know the pain of walking out after doing Wudu
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Vian
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(Original post by Lady Comstock)
Also, you say "adequate" distance - what's the most you're willing to walk? The East London Mosque is only 25 mins walk away... I am sure there are more nearby.
I've stated that first year engineering students (at least) wouldn't be able to do so without missing lectures, and I've heard that East London Mosque has long prayers (assuming there's even enough space inside).

(Original post by Iqbal007)
Do I know you hmmmmm
Perhaps, though I'm merely a lowly first year.
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User1310602
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#30
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(Original post by Iqbal007)
It's quite clear that the OP doesn't know the whole story.


All the ISOC is asking for is an hour of time on friday to use either of 2 large halls.......either the Octagon or the Great Hall. Thats it.

And just to clarify about the fact these rooms are booked............the uni claims that somehow every friday, during that hour its always booked, its very puzzling. Both the ISOC and Student Union at Queen mary have actually done spot checks on the halls, of which they have found the room being unused and empty.


At the current moment there are actually 2 areas to pray, the contemplation rooms in the library which can't hold friday prayers as you can barely get about 8 people in........
The other is the MFC, which too doesn't have enough space........in fact there were so many students at friday prayers, that QM got security involved and further limited the space students to pray in, and eventually have said we can only use one of the 2 MFC rooms.

Also university's provide far more than just education, they are there to develop students, look after their well being, etc not to forget that students actually pay university's to provide for their university experience.
If your saying that the university is solely for education sake.......then should they get rid of the SU, the gym, any shops on campus, cut out the uni bar, cut off societies, cut off sports facilities?



That exact bit has been mentioned quite a bit................its actually utter non-sense............the only nearby mosque within adequate walking distance and one which will do the least disruption to students inbetween their lecture is Stepheny Green Mosque which is also a school at the same time.

I have been to that mosque........that mosque can barely meet the demands of the local community who use it, its completely packed out, the few floors upstairs into the classrooms, all the way down to the basement, next to the washing facilities, right up to the entrance. If they can't even meet the demands of the local community, how can they meet the demands of the community and the students at Queen Mary. In fact its the same case with all the mosques in the area, they simply don't have space to accomodate their local communities.



The Queen Mary Islamic Society does like any other society have the right to launch a campaign, get support from QM student union, KCL student union, etc and engage with the university officials. Especially where room booking for the 2 halls have been blocked off, being told they are always in use, despite spot checks showing the halls aren't even being used.

Even if the rooms are unused and empty the university is not obliged to let them be used for prayers. Furthermore the rooms may be empty on one or two occasions during the checks but general may be in use. I doubt the university officials would purposely lie to a student society. The Isoc is being overly paranoid by assuming this.
I really doubt that catering for religious needs actually ‘develops students’ in the sameway going to the gym or joining other societies does.
I understand that attending an offsite mosque instead would be a disruption to students, but the reality is that in life we cannot meet all our demands. There are bound to be clashes. If a Muslim has to choose between attending Friday prayers and attending his lecture on time, then that’s just how it is unfortunately and it’s up to them to choose. During Ramadan many Muslim athletes had to choose between participating in sports and practicing their faith by fasting. In the United Kingdom, it is not always going to be possible to meet the demands of your religion.
Just because the mosque can’t even meet the demands of its own people (even after rinsing money off Muslims who attend), it makes no sense to take your frustration out on the university. The Islamic Society should start a campaign asking for mosques to upgrade their facilities. The mosques have a responsibility to cater for religious needs, where as universities do not.
Yes it certainly has the right to campaign, but that does NOT necessarily make the campaign a justifiable one.
In short: No, Muslims at Queen Mary can’t use the lecture theatre for Friday prayers. They need to learn to get over it.
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Iqbal007
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#31
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(Original post by Lady Comstock)
How is that the university's problem? Create a membership fee (or a higher one) and you may be able to rent out somewhere nearby.

Also, you say "adequate" distance - what's the most you're willing to walk? The East London Mosque is only 25 mins walk away... I am sure there are more nearby.

There are membership fees, which go through the union.....hence they get between £50-£100...............well it is the uni's issue considering they have blocked the isoc's booking abilities for rooms which are clearly available. And the uni has a part to play in their students welfare.

ELM ís very far away from the Queen Mary campus.......and also once again oversubscribed even with their new extension........walking there and back, takes up another hour of student time for their lectures and studies.

I know which mosques are nearby and which aren't........I actually attend QM, stepheny green is the only one thats actually nearby. The ISOC has also talked to these other mosques and all have stated already that as it is they are all oversubscribed.


So you're telling me the hall of a major university goes unused most of the time?

And if they allow the ISOC to use it on such a consistent basis, then why not the Christian societies and other non-religious societies? They can't say 'yes, ISOC you may use it... but Christian society and film society sorry you cannot use it'.
Yes........how can I say that, because of the years before and how the isoc was able to use the halls nearly every week, especially the theater hall as its not suitable for events apart from drama performances.

QM Isoc doesn't even have a dedicated prayer room.......there are times for the multi-faith room.
The Christian's have their own chaplain on campus...........plus the actual membership between such societies are much smaller than the ISOC to demand the use of such halls, plus how would they even use the halls considering the Christian society at qm does talks and meets up , they already have suitable places they use.

(Original post by Vian)
I've stated that first year engineering students (at least) wouldn't be able to do so without missing lectures, and I've heard that East London Mosque has long prayers (assuming there's even enough space inside).



Perhaps, though I'm merely a lowly first year.
hmmm Í might know you, go for it
Yep, ELM does do long surah's from some of my experience.


(Original post by shouldbestudying)

Even if the rooms are unused and empty the university is not obliged to let them be used for prayers. Furthermore the rooms may be empty on one or two occasions during the checks but general may be in use. I doubt the university officials would purposely lie to a student society. The Isoc is being overly paranoid by assuming this.

They have been regularly checking them..........its not only the isoc but the student union as well. Well they are unused rooms, the university has a room booking system which is being denied to the isoc.

I really doubt that catering for religious needs actually ‘develops students’ in the sameway going to the gym or joining other societies does.

It is exactly the same thing........they are both meeting non-educational needs of paying students...both of which are for the welfare of students and providing an experience.

I understand that attending an offsite mosque instead would be a disruption to students, but the reality is that in life we cannot meet all our demands. There are bound to be clashes. If a Muslim has to choose between attending Friday prayers and attending his lecture on time, then that’s just how it is unfortunately and it’s up to them to choose. During Ramadan many Muslim athletes had to choose between participating in sports and practicing their faith by fasting. In the United Kingdom, it is not always going to be possible to meet the demands of your religion.

It's not a demand.................the point is that in the previous years they were allowed to use the halls and suddenly the uni has decided not to provide the halls. And actually it does affect the university, especially considering that uni has the largest Muslim student population.

Just because the mosque can’t even meet the demands of its people (even after rinsing money off Muslims who attend), it makes no sense to turn your frustration onthe university. The Islamic Society should start a campaign asking for mosques to upgrade their facilities. The mosques have a responsibility to cater for religious needs, where as universities do not.

They don't rinse.........they give money to pay for the bills of the mosque...................the mosques can't upgrade their facilities, that doesn't make the space increase and its impossible for the nearby mosque, it would require millions of pound not to mention planning permission, the destruction of local homes and disruption to a key road which leads to the east end from the central London

Yes it certainly has the right to campaign, but that does NOT necessarily make the campaign a justifiable one.
In short: No, Muslims at Queen Mary can’t use the lecture theatre for Friday prayers. They need to learn to get over it.
And who are you to decide if its justifiable or not.........its simply your opinion.
It's now up to the Queen Mary university to decide whether they will put back the room booking system as ít was before.......not you.

So it's theír decision and they will decide whether the ISOC needs it or not and see whether the campaign was justified and there was an actual case.
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Vian
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#32
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(Original post by Lady Comstock)
But how is that the university's problem?
I'm not entirely sure whether I think it is or it isn't, but since everyone else is arguing against I'll try and provide a defence:

If students are forced to miss lectures, that affects their learning. If learning is affected, that's the university's problem as it directly affects their goal of educating the next generation. It's also unfair that students are paying more for their education, only for that very same education to be disrupted simply on account of being refused a supposedly empty room for an hour a week (but I'll be first to admit that I don't know if the 2 rooms are empty for sure).

Additionally, many are of the opinion that a university's role is also to assist in the personal development of the student body (if it isn't their responsibility already). I fail to see why a sermon and prayer shouldn't count just because 80% of the student body don't care for it (IIRC, QMUL has a Muslim population of around 20%). For me personally, the Friday prayer reinvigorates my enthusiasm for the coming week and makes me feel happier as a person, which (in theory) makes me a more efficient learner, as well as making me a kinder person to my fellow students and university.

It seems to me that those who go to the gym do so to gain a more aesthetically pleasing body (though I know some, if not most, do so for general fitness), so I fail to see how that counts as development. However, I understand the limitations of my knowledge and empathy, and am sure that gym-goers would mirror much of what I said about the effects of Friday prayers. Basically, just because I don't understand someone's reasons for doing an activity doesn't mean their reason or activity isn't important.

What a lot of people don't seem to realise is that, in contrast with the (as an example) film society, Muslims feel they have to pray; much the same way as most of the western world (including myself) feel we have to promote democracy. Whether or not the feelings are valid is another issue entirely, but you can't compare not being able to screen a movie to not having a chance to pray conveniently when the space is (supposedly) available.

Wow, that's more then I expected to write! I'm off to bed, so will reply later. Ciao!
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Ggmu!
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I think I've been convinced by the poster above. What is an hour a week on Friday in what MAY be an unused Hall? To be fair, i'm sure their society is very large too, we all know there are lots of Muslims at QM.

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felamaslen
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(Original post by finnthehuman)
As a muslim, they should just go out and do it on the grass or something. as allah created the whole earth as prayer area. Saves all the BS.
Why not save all the BS and quit the praying OCD all-together?
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felamaslen
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(Original post by Vian)
What a lot of people don't seem to realise is that, in contrast with the (as an example) film society, Muslims feel they have to pray; much the same way as most of the western world (including myself) feel we have to promote democracy. Whether or not the feelings are valid is another issue entirely, but you can't compare not being able to screen a movie to not having a chance to pray conveniently when the space is (supposedly) available.
Promoting democracy is equivalent to restricting coercion, since democracy is the only known form of government which is compatible with our freedom.

Forcing somebody to let you use their space to pray is actually encouraging coercion, in fact it is engaging in coercion.
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Dope411
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(Original post by shouldbestudying)
The Queen Mary University of London has seen some recent protests by its Islamic Society because university officials have refused a recent demand it has made.

From what I have heard on their Facebook page, the society is calling for a ‘right to pray’. The claim is that the prayer room is insufficient to cater for the large number of Muslim students wishing to use it on Friday evenings. The society has requested to hold prayers in a lecture theatre on Fridays but the university has refused this as the room is in use. The society is sceptical of this claim.

I personally think that everyone should have the opportunity to practicetheir faith. HOWEVER demanding that a public institution (established for the purpose of education) must cater for religion to such a great extent seems quite absurd. This is true especially in this case for several reasons. There is already an established prayer room and there are several mosques near the university that the students can attend if there is insufficient space in the prayer room. I think it is an inappropriate and unjustified campaign by the QM Islamic Society.

What’s your view on this call for a ‘right to pray’?
I think its their right as students of the university to have a peaceful demand like this met if possible and the lecture theatre is actually available. I mean they are not doing any harm and it increases the prosperity of the students (Not to mention the extortionate tuition fees they pay to the university). HOWEVER if the room is really not available then they should just leave it and like you said try different options.
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Ggmu!
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(Original post by felamaslen)
Why not save all the BS and quit the praying OCD all-together?
You're just being ridiculous. You're asking them not to practice their religion.

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felamaslen
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(Original post by Ggmu!)
You're just being ridiculous. You're asking them not to practice their religion.

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Please bear in mind that it was not intended 100% seriously. That said though, am I not allowed to express my opinion that praying constantly is a silly thing to do, and it is even more silly to want others to bend over backwards for you while you do it?
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TheGuy117
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I've heard 40% of students at QMUL are Muslim so the Islamic Society needing a hall doesn't surprise me.
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Ggmu!
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(Original post by felamaslen)
Please bear in mind that it was not intended 100% seriously. That said though, am I not allowed to express my opinion that praying constantly is a silly thing to do, and it is even more silly to want others to bend over backwards for you while you do it?
Fair enough.

If course you are and who am I to say you don't have that right? I was just saying it was ridiculous.

I don't see how anyone other than Muslims are doing any bending over. This requires probably a few punches on the keyboard and clicks of a mouse to sort out. The only person who may get annoyed is the person responsible for locking the door after its been used. But I imagine it's all electronic now anyway.

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