The Truth Is Scary, But I Had To Tell It

I suppose some will see it as courageous to share with the world why I almost left Islam. And maybe some will see it as the unnecessary uncovering of my faults. But for me, it wasn’t a choice. Yes, it’s humiliating and embarrassing, but due to all the stress I was under, the decision was effectively made for me. It …

Super Muslims and Religious OCD in Ramadan

In the beginning, it all seems necessary, and even praiseworthy. The questions, the doubts, the paranoia…and the endless phone calls, emails, and inquiries to the local (or overseas) scholar, imam, or sheikh. Oh my God, am I allowed to wear a colored hijab? Is the ringer on my phone a musical instrument of Shaytaan? I work in a mixed environment. …

Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number? Child Marriage and Maturity

Years ago, when television was still a part of my life, I was watching a Seinfeld episode in which the character George saw an attractive, shapely young woman and subsequently made a comment to Jerry urging him to look at her body. Jerry in response told George that the girl was fifteen years old, and he playfully scolded his friend …

Reverencing the Wombs That Broke You, a self-help book

NEW! CLICK HERE for eBook Her mother was raped. This is how Melanie was born. For years, the sight of Melanie’s face reminded her mother of the sexual assault, so Melanie herself was verbally and physically abused through childhood. But Melanie’s obligation was to love and honor her mother, she told herself. This is what Melanie believed as a Christian, …

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 …

Why I Wrote Muslim Girl: They Put Me On a Pedestal Then Punished Me For It

“The loneliest place to be is on a pedestal. No mercy lives there. No understanding. No compassion. Only the expectation of perfection. Your humanness is not accepted on a pedestal—let alone celebrated. The most precious people in my life are the ones who see all of me. The sensitive, emotional side, along with the fighter. The teacher, but also the crazy …

Pay It Forward! Give the Gift of a Book and a Smile

Introducing the first ever UZ “Pay It Forward” program. For nearly fifteen years, UZ books have touched the hearts of readers all over the world, inspiring non-Muslims to accept Islam or to understand the faith correctly for the first time, and Muslims to feel confident or more knowledgeable about their faith. In high schools, colleges, and universities in America and …

What Does Paradise Have To Do With Anything?

Why I Wrote Pain. From the Journal of Umm Zakiyyah “Well,” I said, a bit exhausted from all the back and forth, “we all have to do what we believe will earn us Paradise.” It was my final attempt at a resolution. I was visiting a friend I’d known since childhood and whom I hadn’t seen for several years, and …

‘But I Don’t Trust God’

“But I don’t trust God,” the man said. He was a neighbor of ours and had just learned that his wife was terminally ill. Though the man was Christian, my husband had advised him to turn to God in prayer and to place his trust in Him… “You cannot even begin to understand the depths of confusion caused by believing …

Got a Survival Kit? Help for Muslim Apostates

Originally published via MuslimMatters.org “I’m just calling to let you know I’m not Muslim anymore,” the woman said to me after I picked up the phone, “and I’m cutting off contact with all Muslims except you.” This was one of the most difficult conversations I’ve ever had. My heart ached for this woman; I knew her story all too well. …