Desi man with beard wearing sunglasses and pointing

We’re Not Muslim Just Because We Say We Are

“I’m really worried about my brother,” the Arab woman said. “He’s Muslim, but he doesn’t believe in God anymore.” Listening to her, I really didn’t know what to say. Before this moment, I’d had occasional encounters with people who labeled themselves “Muslim” but did not pray or fast or fulfill any other foundational requirements of being Muslim. However, it was …

He Apologized? We Have No Idea What an Apology Means

“An apology, if it is truly an apology, is no more than a hope and a prayer—that the damage you’ve done can be repaired, and that you will be forgiven by both your Lord and the ones you’ve wronged. An apology should never be shared for the purpose of silencing or dismissing those hurt by the original transgression. If it …

silhouette of bride and groom by water near trees and image reflection on water

How ‘Good People’ End Up Destroying Lives and Souls

“The tongue, O Allah, the tongue! Protect me from it, even as it moves in broken rhythm with my own troubled heart.” —excerpt of FAITH. From the Journal of Umm Zakiyyah “She obviously thinks it’s perfectly fine to break apart marriages, support friends backstabbing each other, and dismiss the rights of women.” The words were from a sister of mine—a …

Forced Positivity in the Abuse of Forgiveness

Some people find it hard to forgive because they were never given any other choice. Forgiveness was the noose tightened around their neck, choking their voice. After the strike to the face, the blow in the gut, and the tarnishing of their name, They were told they must forgive if they were truly good, or else live in perpetual shame. …

black and white photo of hands raised in praise in church

Everybody’s Preaching Something, Don’t Be Naive

Loss has a way of bringing so many things to light. This is what I find myself pondering as I recall so much of what I learned from my father, who passed away recently (may Allah have mercy on him). When I was growing up, my father didn’t allow my siblings or me to watch television and movies simply as …

back profile of woman holding red umbrella standing near water at night

No Calls, No Visits: A Bipolar Muslim Woman’s Story

Did you know that July is Minority Mental Health Awareness Month? The following is an excerpt from the true story, No One Taught Me the Human Side of Islam: The Muslim Hippie’s Story of Living with Bipolar Disorder: Sakinah ‘The Muslim Hippie’ says: My friend Halimah wasn’t the only one who overhead me being talked about negatively in the Muslim …

African-American man with closely cropped trimmed beard laughing, wearing earrings

We Need Leaders Protecting Us, Not Their Pride

Where are the men? They are scowling at me for my “wrong” hijab. SubhaanAllah! Where are the men? They are criticizing me for fearing Allah on my job. O Allah! Where are the men? They are making jokes about me and the suffering I’ve endured. Yaa Rabb! Where are the men? They are shaking hands and patting each other on …

African American woman with humorous expression

Ignorant People Annoy Me Too…But

“I guarantee a house on the outskirts of Paradise for one who abandons arguments even if he is right, and a house in the middle of Paradise for one who abandons lies even when joking, and a house in the highest part of Paradise for one who makes his character excellent.” —Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him (Sunan Abu Dawud …

Photo of African-American woman looking down, wearing red burgundy hijab

Nobody Cares About Black Muslims, He Said

alone. it hurts. I cannot lie to be abandoned by those who look like me because I see the other as brethren too and then to be abandoned by the other my brethren in faith. because I look like me —even if. The following is an excerpt from the book Prejudice Bones in My Body by Umm Zakiyyah: The first …