Last year, I went to Pakistan after 25 years and to Lahore for the first time ever. My father was from Karachi, but since most of my relatives are here in the U.S. now, we did not have much reason to visit Pakistan. My wife’s family is from Lahore, so since we both had the time to go last year, we decided to make a last minute trip. This will be the first part in a series, chronicling my eye-opening trip to Pakistan, and I hope I can pass along some entertaining, yet useful information … [Read more...]
Does the first experience of Ramadan begin the same for everyone? It all depends on the time and where this all takes place. Consider the time to be during the year 1955 or early 1956, and the place was Oakland when I experienced my first month of fasting. I don’t remember for sure just what time of year it was since time has elapsed. The ordinary calendars said nothing about when Ramadan should begin. There was very little printed literature available, except what I received in the mail … [Read more...]
Recently, I came back from a month long trip to Lahore - the culinary capital of Pakistan. Lahore, has a wide variety of cuisine, from fancy upscale Italian restaurants to the simple Pakistani village food and everything in between. A few tips for those of you who may be traveling to Pakistan soon: 1. Get Your Shots - Before you Travel (Currently Hepatitis A, Typhoid, Polio and Malaria are the main diseases in Pakistan) 2. Don't Drink The Water - unless it's Bottled and Sealed … [Read more...]
My friend, Rahim Akbar is a Naval architect and engineer by day and an inspired artist by night. He hails from a well known Mughal family that is endowed with a rich and rare history in architectural design, woodworking, iron smith and masonry. His outstanding works which are carved in wood, may be seen gracing ceilings, walls, doors, or as stand alone pieces that invite the viewer to step into the world of the written word… or simply remind one of the beauty and serene complexity of … [Read more...]
I interviewed actor Rizwan Manji from NBC's "Outsourced" for ILLUME Magazine (www.IllumeMag.com). He talked about what its like to be Muslim in Hollywood and the importance of 'good Muslim' roles. How did you get the part of Rajiv Gidwani on NBC’s “Outsourced” ? I was sent the script for the Pilot and thought it was hilarious. As an Indian, I could relate to some of the characters who share the same culture as me, and this was the first time that I have heard of a major TV … [Read more...]
By no means am I a Bollywood (Indian Cinema) fan. I have only seen a handful in my life and never watched one in a theater - before last night when I went with my wife and a few friends to watch the King of Bollywood: Shah Rukh Khan and his new film "My Name is Khan" which is making headlines across the world because of it's "Pro-Muslim" storyline - which is a rarity in Hindu dominated Indian cinema. A majority of the film was also shot here in the San Francisco Bay Area and since a few of … [Read more...]
“Slumdog Millionaire” wins Best Picture and 6 other Oscars, including two for A.R. Rahman, for Best Original Song and Best Original Score.
I found out recently that A.R. Rahman, the Academy award winning composer of “Slumdog Millionaire” as well as many other Bollywood films, was inspired by Sufism and converted from Hinduism to Islam in 1989. His full name is Allah Rakkha Rahman. He comes from a Tamil background and said “God is Great” in Tamil after he won the first Oscar. Congratulations to A.R. Rahman as well as to the other Muslim actors in the film including Irrfan Ali Khan, who plays the police inspector, … [Read more...]