Back in November last year, me and my department had to move to a brand new office building because the previous (iconic) building was proving to be a challenge to accommodate ever growing departments. So the company decided to rent a few floors in a new building just on the other side of Sydney Harbor. While this meant a better city views for us, this also meant a new struggle to start for me and some of my Coffee Crazy (or should I say Freaks) friends. We were quite used to a coffee being sold at a certain shop near our previous office building and it took us a few weeks trying various coffee shops in the surroundings of the new building to settle down with what we considered as a Good Coffee.
Surprisingly, what we settled down with is a very small shop in which hardly two or three people can fit in and its not a sit-in type of Coffee place but rather a Take Away shop. What is more interesting to note is that it is owned and managed single-handedly by a young, hard working Singaporean Girl who moved to Sydney almost 10 years ago with her parents. She lost her parents 5 years ago and inherited this coffee shop which was started by her mom and dad.
Amy is her name, she opens the coffee shop early in morning making sure its all ready to go before 7 o clock as most of the people working in downtown like to start early and grab a coffee with them while walking to their offices. She has hired a couple of helpers who are overseas university students and work for Amy on part time basis.
Just like in our Indian / Pakistani culture, making a good cup of Tea (or Chai as we call it) is an art and not everybody can make a good Chai, not everyone here in western countries is capable of making a good Coffee as well. Amy takes pride on her family tradition of making a distinctly good coffee that kinda makes her customers come back to her small back alley shop and most of her customers are loyal long term customers.
Not everyone can make a good coffee …
During the last few months, I’ve had an opportunity to know Amy more and have had some lengthy discussions with her as I realized (after brief chat with her) that she was not only a strong brave girl but also an strikingly intelligent person and our discussions kept getting longer and longer when we started discussing our common favorite Philosophers such as Kant and Nietzsche. I’ve to admit that I was taken a back when I saw a young girl talking and discussing complex philosophical topics and making her point with strong reasoning. Later, I came to know more about her.
How does believing in God or a Religion make anyone a better person ?
This made me thinking how can we define what kind of girl Amy is. I mean come on, see she is a non-believer, she doesn’t even believe in God. She is confident, intelligent, knows what she is talking about, well read, runs her own business, extra rich (considering her age) and has some ambitious business plans for next 5 to 10 years. She doesn’t give a damn about Religion and lives a healthy, clean life according to the moral values she considers right instead of trying to re-interpret some (supposedly) divine scriptures which are now a few thousand years old. She is a law abiding citizen, pays a heavy tax to the Government which is then used for not only building the better infrastructure for the people but also helps those people who are living their lives on low wages and need help from Center-link (Australian version of Social Support System). She drinks alcohol occasionally during social gatherings only and is not into any kind of drugs or other problems. Besides work, she is a regular supporter and a part-time volunteer worker for Red Cross Australia. She is in a relationship with an aspiring guy who is currently working in Information Technology Sector and they are planning to get married by the end of this year and start their family together.
I’ve constantly tried to analyze her and have failed to understand where to pick wrong things about her. What is it that she is missing in her life ? Where is she going wrong in her day-to-day life ? How is not believing in God making her life miserable and how is it making her a very bad human being that is a threat to the Society ? How (lets suppose hypothetically) becoming a Hijabi Muslim Girl will make her a better person ?