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  1. #1
    Limited Member GeorgeDavid's Avatar
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    Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Hello. My name is David, age 34, living in Europe. This is my first post, so I would like to say thank you for allowing me to join, and nice to meet you.

    I am currently writing a new science fiction story about interstellar travel. The year is 2268. After years of treating the planet poorly, humans have been forced to try and colonize other worlds beyond the solar system. In a desperate act, they put together a dozen space ships with either live people as passangers, or just our genetic information as part of a seed ship.

    In my story, there will be humans from all over the world, including muslims from various regions of the world.

    I want to make my story believable, and I want my characters to be authentic. If one of my characters say they are a socialist, or a muslim, or a car mechanic, I want them to sound like they really are the real deal, and not someone elses twisted opinion, rooted in their own beliefs and opinions.

    So, I wanted to ask all of you a few questions to help my research and story telling...

    1- What do you imagine Islam and the Muslim religion being like by the year 2268? would there be any new traditions of customs that have been adopted over the years? or would it remain mostly unchanged?

    2- What about islamophobia? As some of you may already know, the show Star Trek was originally made when black and white race relations were at a bad point. In Star Trek, they confronted racism by making Uhura, one of the ship's main crew members a black woman. In the year 2268, would there still be islamophobia? would a Muslim ship captain be trusted by the rest of his western and non-Muslim crew members? would his crew member even be aware of the problems going on in out time?

    3- What are some discrete ways I can let my readers know that a character is a Muslim, without having my character actually say "I am Muslim" directly. Are there any small clues that I could use so I don't have to be so obvious in my style of story telling? Maybe a copy of the Quran on his bookshelf? a silver ring from their first journet to Mecca? or a favourite food?

    Finally, I would like to ask if you can recommend some Islamic literature to me. Anything that you think would help me with my writing.

    Thanks.
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    Account Disabled aaj's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Hello David,

    welcome to the forum and thank you for reaching out to the Muslim community so to have a more authentic feel to your Muslim characters. A good writer always does his homework and that's what it looks you are doing.

    Islam will not change, it has not changed and it will not change. The orthodox faith will remain the same. The ones who follow this will also follow it as it is to be followed. What we may see is more groups emerging, calling themselves Muslims but their practices and appearance not in aligning with Islam's principles, such as your LGBT Muslims. Customs and traditions that are varied nation to nation and cultural in nature will change. Flat bed and hummus may not be the only staple food for Arab descendants, for example.

    Hatred and bigotry always rears its ugly head throughout human history with the difference being which group it is being directed at in the given time period. I do not think islamophobia will exist in that futuristic time period. Rather, given the rate others are converting to Islam, I would wager that 3 out of 5 humans will be Muslims by then where as its 1 out of 5 now. Therefore, 25% to 50% of the crew might be Muslims, especially in the medical and technical fields. So rather a Muslim captain being a rarity, would be more common and the normality. And they probably would read in the history books something like how Bannon lead Trump and his nation into a holy christian war against the Muslims in the 21st century and how that led to world war 3.

    Discrete ways to tell a Muslim would be by appearance and habits. A women wearing a hijab, a man growing his beard or wearing a cufi (small white hat), showing them doing prayer in the holodex as a group, captain reciting Bismillah(in the name of Allah) before starting his journey, Muslims using islamic phrases in their daily lifes, such as saying bismillah when about to eat, alhamdulillah (praise be to Allah) when thanking God whether it's for the food or something good going their way like promotion, etc or inshallah (if Allah wills) when intending to do something. You could also show a prayer bead in someone's hand if you want to show them more religiously committed then the other Muslims. Declining an invitation to go drink or eat pork or when being asked out for a date, stating one's faith does not allow it is another indication. Can show them doing wudu (ablution) as another crew member walks into the restroom or a hijabi fixing her hijab in the ladies restroom. Reading the Quran or showing it on the shelf is fine. Can show islamic calligraphy in the room.

    Here's some basic terms you can incorporate in your writing.
    http://mvslim.com/6-words-everyone-s...lim-slang-101/

    Here's a good PBS intro to Islam worth checking out
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHhbSvOcz4g
    Last edited by aaj; 02-24-2017 at 07:21 PM.
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    IB Oldtimer M.I.A.'s Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    i was going to write something for you but my minds gone blank..

    veeeeery strange.


    anyway, the last sci-fi "films" i watched that included muslims were.. pitch black and chronicles of riddick. "/ not what your looking for.

    maybe watch the 100 or something.

    ...or battlestar gallactica.

    edit..

    wall-e
    Last edited by M.I.A.; 02-24-2017 at 07:59 PM.
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    Eye Of The Tornado Simple_Person's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Welcome to this Forum David,

    Brother aaj, made a good comment. Although much of the current world events, doesn't look like it will be that kind of futuristic rather fallout 3/4(game) ( https://www.instant-gaming.com/image...shot/755-4.jpg ) realism.

    However, for the sake of science fiction, indeed, more sects will emerge if they are not enough this day and age. We know from hadith (naration from Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) ), that Islam will split in 73 sects, with only 1 going to paradise and 72 ending up in hell fire.

    Islamophobia, well it is rather hard to answer this question, as this all rather is going towards WW3, instead of being able to make it to another planet. But if we would follow that path, i think beside we as Muslim indeed believe by then A LOT people would already have become Muslim by choice ..Islamophobia not really would exist. For the sake of argument if majority even would not be Muslim, Islamophobia would not exist, because the world heading for destruction can't be blamed on Muslims. When such large calamities would happen, everything else for us human beings will look as if it is not worth to even mention it. With little people left, people would rather form unity to build something instead of looking at what divides us. We for example would look at what caused the chaos and destruction of this planet and will make laws to not fall in the same habits, whatever those will be. So people would rather be punished for greed and steal because of greediness for example. Or not sharing some of their wealth when poverty is a fact and poor people should be supported with some part of your money. Much of those laws, already exist within Islam, to prevent society in to collapsing.

    A good way to indicate them being Muslim is indeed clothing, but not necessarily that. Much the character it self. For example, if somebody would gossip he/she would defend the person who the gossip is all about. Saying typical Islamic things, like brother aaj said. Within Islam a lot of emphasis is put on good character. Being good to the neighbors (whatever the religion)(Hadith: the least harm a Muslim can do to his neighbor is having him smell the food your are cooking but not giving him anything), good to the parents. Greet people despite not knowing them. Treating animals with respect and dignity. If somebody would insult him, not insult back. Just be kind and leave. Not getting angry, be good to ones wife, don't look at other peoples wives or other women even though they are not married.

    Speak the truth even if it would be against you (already in the Qur'an)

    "O you who have believed, be persistently standing firm in justice, witnesses for Allah , even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives. Whether one is rich or poor, Allah is more worthy of both. So follow not [personal] inclination, lest you not be just. And if you distort [your testimony] or refuse [to give it], then indeed Allah is ever, with what you do, Acquainted." Qur'an 4:135
    Last edited by Simple_Person; 02-24-2017 at 06:36 PM.
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    Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research

    "....Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves...." Qur'an 13:11

  6. #5
    Limited Member GeorgeDavid's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Thank you all for the well thought out answers. I appreciate you taking the time.

    When I say my story is sci-fi, I do kind of imagine it a bit more like today. It is not going to be a perfect super advanced future. There will be quite a lot of new technology obviously, but there will still be lots of problems.

    I had imagined quite a dirty polluted world, with futuristic luxurious cities, surrounded by the slums of the poor. Lots of advertising for made up products, and generally quite a greedy and unfair world.

    I understand why you guys would say that Islamic doctrines and customs will not change, but do you think there could any superficial changes?

    For example, if we discovered how to make real cloth out of hologram projections, a kind of hard hologram. Do you think it would be possible to have Muslim women that use a holographic hijab? Something that looks and feels exactly like the hijabs women wear today, except it never gets dirty, it can't get broken or torn, and offers mild protection from solar radiation. Would something like that be plausible? or would it be forbidden somehow?

    Would a Muslim consider food that has been artificially generated, like the food in Star Trek, as being halal?

    I should also point out, that the story is not really about Muslims or Islam in any way. The story is more about the emotional struggles of the characters, and the technical problems of colonizing other worlds. In my story, Muslim people are just there, just doing their jobs.

    I am planning on writing it as if WW3, maybe even WW4 have already happened. The stuggle in my story is not so much war oriented, it is more about the lack of energy sources we have.

    I just want there to be Muslim characters in the book, because the scientists and doctors in my story recommend the president sends the most diverse geene pool he can to cut down on the chance of inbreeding between the collonists, and to stop them all being wiped out by a disease. So obviously you would want to select people from all over the world, and seek out all kinds of minorities and ethnicities.

    Thanks!

  7. #6
    Limited Member GeorgeDavid's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Oh, and as you have no doubt noticed I have listed my religion as atheism. I'd like to point out I don't really go round calling myself an atheist. To be honest I am usually too worried about what the government is doing to give much thought to what the various religious groups are doing.

    Atheists usually say that religion is the cause of war and problems, but it is government that has an army.
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    Full Member samirbrazendale's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Hi David

    Welcome to the forum.

    I dont understand something about your approach ( It seems to have a logical conundrum to it)

    You have stated that it is Science Fiction that you are writing. That automatically means the story is fiction.

    What is the need to portray a " possible" reality when in nature it is a fiction story.

    I feel you have been side tracked and lost focus that the point of Fiction is to portray YOUR very own perception of the future so that you can let readers into not only the Novel but the very mind of George David. The very beauty of fiction is expression. In my opinion - should that be moulded around too much of reality, then you effectively might as well just write an encyclopedia.

    Something to think about.
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    IB Oldtimer M.I.A.'s Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    ..dont get me started on star trek! lol its cool n all but the races follow racial sterotypes..

    which once you notice... you cant really un notice.

    why the klingons always mad?

    why spock.. spock?

    why the ferengi.. ferengilike?

    but once they put on the uniform they are loyal to the ship..

    it very strange.

    its almost a good way to flesh out a character.. to have subplots.. because otherwise you would have to describe superficial things which is not a great way to write..

    as it imposes its own style.

    concentrate more on mannerisms and responses to situations and dialog..

    which is entirely your own interpretation..
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    Account Disabled aaj's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeDavid View Post

    I understand why you guys would say that Islamic doctrines and customs will not change, but do you think there could any superficial changes?

    For example, if we discovered how to make real cloth out of hologram projections, a kind of hard hologram. Do you think it would be possible to have Muslim women that use a holographic hijab? Something that looks and feels exactly like the hijabs women wear today, except it never gets dirty, it can't get broken or torn, and offers mild protection from solar radiation. Would something like that be plausible? or would it be forbidden somehow?

    Would a Muslim consider food that has been artificially generated, like the food in Star Trek, as being halal?
    Superficial changes are similar to cultural changes. For example, the essence of the hijab is the same as well as the criteria of it. But how it's implemented varies culture to culture and region to region. Arabs wear the abaya (the long gown) over their clothes when going out. The pakistani/indians used to wear something like a long coast over their clothes when going outside and the Afghani women would wear the burka (one piece covering) when they went outside. In case you are wondering, here's the 6 criteria for hiijab: https://alforkan.blogspot.com/2013/0...for-hijab.html

    In terms of holographic clothing, this would be a contemporary issue that scholars of the time would have to issue a ruling(fatwa) stating such a clothing is permissible or not.


    It is scientific belief that There exists an exact amount of matter in the universe. and that matter cannot be created or destroyed, it can be converted. So if your replicator is converting matter into food then that wouldn't be a problem. But if you are taking proteins from an existing matter and adding it to your database to be replicated then that would be a different issue. For example, if you want to give me chicken or lamb to eat from your replicator. If the technology is converting some other matter into this matter of food then it would be fine as it is nothing more than protein molecules assembled together to present what is in the plate. But if we killed an animal today and stored its proteins in the database and you were replicating a dish from that to give me then the questions arises of whether that animal killed today was done in a halal manner or not. Even if the technology in your book is not at replicator level and we are artificially creating food in the lab, this would still be a contemporary issues the scholars of that time would decide the rulings on.
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    IB Oldtimer M.I.A.'s Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    and so...

    the concept of original space sin was established.

    no honestly that one threw me on a loop..

    maybe muslim crew could bring along their own replicators..

    or replicator reciepe books.

    awesome.

    the space equivalent of frozen curries at uni.

    and its a descriptive talkin point.


    ...its a risky joke.. i will abstain.
    Last edited by M.I.A.; 02-24-2017 at 10:07 PM. Reason: im a hunter gatherer!!
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    Limited Member GeorgeDavid's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Quote Originally Posted by samirbrazendale View Post
    Hi David

    Welcome to the forum.

    I dont understand something about your approach ( It seems to have a logical conundrum to it)

    You have stated that it is Science Fiction that you are writing. That automatically means the story is fiction.

    What is the need to portray a " possible" reality when in nature it is a fiction story.

    I feel you have been side tracked and lost focus that the point of Fiction is to portray YOUR very own perception of the future so that you can let readers into not only the Novel but the very mind of George David. The very beauty of fiction is expression. In my opinion - should that be moulded around too much of reality, then you effectively might as well just write an encyclopedia.

    Something to think about.
    That is a good point you raise, it is one of the struggles of writting science fiction. Half of science fiction readers will glady accept a sword can be made of light, or that people just have "the force" without much of an explanation. Usually called Science Fantasy fans. The other half insist that your story be as possible and realistic as it can. The moment you say to them that a space ship in a story can travel faster than light because it travels in "sub-space", some little nerd will jump out from behind a curtain and tell you that sub-space is not real.

    The story as a whole and what happens to the characters will be totally fictional, but I want the way things work in the story to be apeasing to people that like the technological explanations and technojargon terms.

    This means that instead of using a black hole drive, or a dark energy drive to give the ships thrust, I would use something like a hydrogen scoop, or ion drive, that has already been shows as potentially viable by mainsteam science.

    There will be many things that are not scientific, but I hope to find ways of disguising that, and at least keeping the basics as realistic as I can.

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    Limited Member GeorgeDavid's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Thanks for the well thought out responses everyone!

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    IB Oldtimer Karl's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Islam is set in stone but "Muslims" generally like to dance behind the devil, following his tune. There are liberal, Marxist, feminist "Muslims". So God knows what the average "Muslim" will be like by 2268. I shudder to think about it! Most "Muslims" come across as international liberal progressives. "Muslims" have changed radically just in the last few years or so, which is the reason I wouldn't allow most "Muslims" into my house these days.
    Last edited by Muhammad; 02-27-2017 at 04:00 PM.
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    IB Oldtimer Eric H's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Hello George, and welcome tot he forum,

    I had imagined quite a dirty polluted world, with futuristic luxurious cities, surrounded by the slums of the poor. Lots of advertising for made up products, and generally quite a greedy and unfair world.
    Where will these space ships be launched from? America will probably be bankrupt, so maybe China, Korea or India maybe?

    The wealthy and greedy will be the most powerful people, they will probably fund this venture, will they be the people choosing the passengers? Will they want their sons and daughters, mums and dads too? How are you going to justify getting a mixed gene pool on board?

    What about the people who build this ship, will they put pressure to get a place on board? What about all the ground crew, are they going to be happy staying behind?

    If wealthy and greedy people get on board, I can see constant power struggles. How will money or assets be divided out? Who will be in charge of justice, there will be crime, as you say the world is full of wealth and poverty.

    The religions of the world should be charitable, should they give up their place for someone else?

    An interesting topic for discussion might be, how will Muslims define prayer time and the time for Ramadan? The times are different in America and Europe, and the sighting of the moon is important. How will they set the times to fast, if the planet they occupy has a day that lasts four hundred hours, and it has six moons?

    Islamaphobia will have given way to Korea a phobia or maybe fear of frogs, just to keep the media happy.

    Just some random thoughts, so please feel free to ignore.
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    Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research

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    IB Oldskool sister herb's Avatar
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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Quote Originally Posted by Eric H View Post
    An interesting topic for discussion might be, how will Muslims define prayer time and the time for Ramadan? The times are different in America and Europe, and the sighting of the moon is important. How will they set the times to fast, if the planet they occupy has a day that lasts four hundred hours, and it has six moons?
    I was thinking also, how Muslim members will find qibla (direction where to pray) in the other planet or in the outer space? But here is for this already one example. Muslim astronaut and praying in the space:

    https://www.quora.com/Has-there-been...-pray-in-space
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    Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research

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    Re: Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research


    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeDavid View Post
    Hello. My name is David,
    Hi David,

    Check out the DUNE trilogy, as that follows Islamic themes across the whole trilogy and the main character is - well, have a read

    You will find this work to be quite interesting and relevant.

    It's also been made into a movie trilogy - worth checking out as research.

    Arabic and Islamic themes in Frank Herberts DUNE trilogy

    Enjoy

    Scimi
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    Science Fiction Author Needs Volunteer Muslims To Help With Research

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