Ramadan, Canadian Politics and Struggle

Ramadan is a very important month for Muslims all over the world. Every year during the Islamic month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. Although Muslims consume food or water during daylight, Muslims also cannot do anything that would be considered sinful (lying, etc.). The month is about spiritually building yourself into a better person.

Although it does sound like a struggle, it is actually a time of happiness. I’ve always seen Ramadan as a time to get together with your family and community, and to focus on yourself as a member of society.

This is why I think it’s amazing that Canadian politicians are going around making videos wishing Canadian-Muslims ‘Ramadan Kareem’ (which translates to generous Ramadan). This past election, which saw the Liberals take a majority government, was a big election for Canadian-Muslims. Groups like Canadian Muslim Vote and many others worked on getting Muslims to take part in civic engagement.

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Some thoughts on banning the Islamic Head-Scarf (and other Religious symbols)

I recently read an interesting article about a top EU Court advisor who suggested that banning the Islamic head-scarf may be justified if all religious symbols are banned as well.

This opens up a very interesting debate on banning not just Islamic symbols, but other religious symbols as well. It also opens up the debate on what we define a symbol as. Is the head-scarf, or hijab, really a symbol of Islam? Has it not been used before by other religions?

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Muslims Should Turn People In, According to Donald Trump

Donald Trump’s opinion on Muslims are always so interesting.

When Sadiq Khan became the newly elected Mayor of London, Donald Trump expressed his happiness and even offered for Khan to be the ‘exception’ to his no-Muslim rule. This, to me, came off as kind of patronizing and sounds like “if when you’ve proven you’re a nice enough Muslims you can come into the United States of America”.

Reuters/Dominic Reuter

But Donald Trump recently said in an interview with UK’s ITV that Muslims should work with the police and “turn people in”.

You know, as if all Muslim communities are like those friendly cul-de-sacs where everyone is friends with everyone and that one guy who lives in the corner house, Rasheed, is up to no good.

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is islamophobia real? – new vlog post

In an interview with Channel 4’s Jon Snow, Richard Dawkins said that Islamophobia is a non-word.

In this vlog, I try to figure to answer the question; is Islamophobia real? Check out my latest video log (or vlog for short) and watch as I try to deconstruct the issue.

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Culture Wars – The Background of #IStandWithAhmed

Imagine one morning you woke up, really excited. Today was the day you were going to show off your latest invention to your friends and teachers. It turns out that they mistake assume your invention is a threat and arrest you.

That’s exactly what happened today in Texas to a young boy named Ahmed Mohamed.

Ahmed was arrested by Dallas police when his teachers thought the clock that he built was a bomb. He was taken to a juvenile detention centre by cops, and was suspended by his school. The police say he might be charged with making a ‘hoax bomb’, even though he admitted several times that it was a clock.

Sounds absurd right? It’s actually not. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the story, Ahmed is brown.

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#MeccaLive – A Glimpse into A New World

In the last few days Snapchat’s ‘Live Story’ feature, which allows users to view clips and short videos that surround certain themes, has featured content from different cities. The app, which allows users to view content shared by friends for a limited amount of time, also allows users to view and submit content based on geographical locations. They’ve featured Tel Aviv, West Bank, and most recently Mecca.

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trees in the forest – original poem

Recently, I performed two poems I wrote at a Poetry Slam hosted by the Thaqalayn Muslim Association and the Islamic Relief at York University. It was amazing event, with some awesome and passionate talent. It was incredibly inspiring to hear other people’s work, as well as their ideas. This is the first poem that I performed.

A family of trees huddle together in the forest;
Some young, some old, both big and tall.
Birds come from far, in the forest they nest;
They know these trees, together, will never fall.

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barakat – original poem

The news has broken my heart; Deah Barakat, Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha had their lives taken away. There is nothing to even slightly justify what happened. I just hope to God that their deaths do not go in vain. This poem, which I had to write, is titled ‘Barakat’.

A blessing was robbed in the bright eyes of the sun.
Lovebirds were shot as they soared through the sky.
The gems were crushed; there was nothing to be done.
And the rivers, streamless and lost, flowed from her eyes.

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some thoughts on the recent massacre of cartoonists in france

(note: the title of this article is a satire of how certain news corporations write headlines, although I totally agree with the sentiment and the tone I’ve provided in said title.)

It was strange waking up to a message about the tragedy that occurred in Paris the other morning. I had spent the previous day writing a play that revolves around censorship for my theatre company, and the night watching videos of Bill Maher and Sam Harris discuss their views on Islam and Muslims. So the day before I was exploring themes of censorship and bigotry; the next morning, I saw what happens when they collide. It’s an absolute tragedy what happened in Paris.

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