Unfortunately, people associate Islam with extremism. But it is just a myth and not a fact. A visit to Turkey will tell you just how much of a misconception it is. Turkey is predominantly a Muslim country with the majority being Sunni Muslims. But the country is extremely modern in its outlook, secular and practices tolerance towards all. Most Turks value Islam as a religion that forms their moral and spiritual base and do not tolerate extremism in any form. You do not need to worry about safety when visiting this beautiful country.
What Is It Like Being Muslim in Turkey?
When in Turkey, the one thing that you will notice is the call for prayer five times a day. Muslims are expected to stop what they are doing and offer their prayers during this time. As a non-Muslim traveller, you are just expected to respect this call and stay silent during this time. Turkish mosques are open for visiting by all. But during the prayer non-Muslims need to stand aside to let the ones praying do so peacefully.
Women are allowed to wear clothes of their choice but headscarves are expected to be worn by Muslim women. As a foreigner and non-Islamic follower, you can wear anything as long as it is decent. While the cities of Turkey are more liberal if you are planning to visit the villages and small towns, make sure you dress conservatively.
Unlike what most westerners believe, Turkish Muslim women are independent and well respected. They are highly educated and pursue various professions. Islam in Turkey is just a religion followed by Muslims and it is not imposed on anyone else.
Busting the Myths About Islam
This is one of the reasons why everyone should visit Turkey at least once. To see how Islam is a religion of peace, faith and tolerance. You will surely change your mind about Islam and Muslims once you visit Turkey and see how people of all religions live in harmony. This is another thing that adds to the beauty of this already amazing country.