Sad woman wearing black veil and abaya with hands over her face in du'aa or shame

Do You Have a Toxic Relationship with Your Soul?

Some time ago, a friend of mine shared with me a humorous post that was posted on the social media account of the famous artist, Cardi B. I don’t remember the exact words, but it said something to this effect: I asked God to remove all the toxic people from my life—and I almost died. Though this post gave me …

silhouette of Muslim woman by ocean at sunset

Thank God for Pain: Ten Things Suffering Taught Me

Shukr. Looking within. Trusting the pain and loss. As I step into a new year and we approach the blessed month of Ramadan, bi’idhnillah, these are the things that I’m striving to focus on and implement in my heart and life. In these past few years, I’ve worked through so much emotional wounding and spiritual turmoil that it’s difficult to …

Muslim woman in niqaab looking forward

‘But I Don’t Want Forgiveness’

The following is an excerpt from the book And Then I Gave Up: Essays About Faith and Spiritual Crisis in Islam by Umm Zakiyyah: Some years ago, I was sitting with a friend of mine and she started telling me about her struggles with hijab after becoming Muslim. She had grown up Christian and accepted Islam while she was in college. “For me, hijab was …

Yesterday, I Cried

The following is an excerpt from the book And Then I Gave Up: Essays About Faith and Spiritual Crisis in Islam by Umm Zakiyyah: Author’s Note: This was written when I lived in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and taught English at an international school. It was one of those moments when you feel the tugging at your heart and the moisture behind your …

Rainy dew image with Woman in orange hijab looking toward horizon

Entitlement and Ungratefulness Ruin Lives and Marriages

“Sometimes getting lost is the only way to find your way back home. Because before then, you didn’t even realize what was home.” —from the journal of Umm Zakiyyah So often when we are recovering from a difficult trial, we focus on what we lost. In this, we are like survivors of a severe storm returning to our home to …

photo of Umm Zakiyyah overlooking the Indian Ocean at sunrise

Ramadan Is Coming and I’m Scared

“Jannah (Paradise) is not for perfect people. It is for the sinful who, in the end, didn’t give up on themselves or their Lord.”  —from the journal of Umm Zakiyyah  Ramadan is coming and I’m scared. I know many speak of Ramadan as a month they look forward to and are welcoming with eagerness and excitement. It’s not like that …

Soul Mates in Emotional Wounding

“Abusers often operate by manipulating you with what they’ve done for you. Someone’s good deeds to you NEVER gives them the excuse to abuse you. So do not allow them to make you feel bad for removing yourself from their presence due to what they’ve done for you. All good ultimately is from God and people are simply the vector. …

God Doesn’t Hate Gay People? Find a Better Argument

“Emotional abusers are masters at turning their sins into your wrongs. Your every complaint, disagreement, or expression of concern is now about you not showing them enough love, compassion, or respect. And as soon as they fear that others will see their wrongdoing for what it is, they play victim and accuse you of hurting them in some way. These …

You’ll Be Invited To Hellfire Many Times

prayer. my lord, forgive me my lord, forgive me my heart sometimes goes numb from the pain of the little girl who lost her home because she took refuge in you —even if. The following is an excerpt of I Almost Left Islam: How I Reclaimed My Faith by Umm Zakiyyah: It takes only one shot to kill a person. …