June 10, 2018

This is Day 26 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers #Ramadan series. (TRIGGER WARNING – sexual abuse, child abuse) I sat on my bed, my hand cupped over my mouth trying to stifle my sobbing; hush it up just a bit so that my kids across the hall wouldn’t hear me crying. I stopped scrolling through my Facebook feed and sat there as my nerves increasingly frayed. The  comments defending alleged sexual abusers — the name calling and victim blaming — tore… Read more

June 9, 2018

The first time I fasted in Ramadan I wasn’t a Muslim; I was a curious young woman who had recently experienced a very short but very impactful trip to Morocco during the blessed month a few years earlier. I learned that the Islamic way of fasting was quite different — detailed and comprehensive — in comparison to my Catholic upbringing, where my experience with fasting was to diligently refrain from one particularly favored item during Lent (for me it was… Read more

June 8, 2018

This is day 24 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. Assalamu’Allaykum, Ramadan is a time of reflection and connecting with Allah (swt). However, through fasting we are not just connecting with Allah (swt); we are also linked to everyone that has fasted before us. In the Quran, Allah (swt) tells us “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that you may learn God-consciousness.” (2:183). As fasting helps us to remember… Read more

June 7, 2018

This is day 23 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. Ramadan, as my husband says, is a time to “get right.” It is when we are meant to turn down the din of the world, quiet the chatter in our minds, listen to our heartbeats. Much is made of our fasting, the abstention of all food and drink from sunrise to sunset. Yet for me, through my 15 years of being Muslim, I find that the greatest challenge of Ramadan is… Read more

June 6, 2018

The White House and other government agencies have held Ramadan iftar dinners for decades, but Trump’s version will flip the previous model on its head. Many Americans don’t realize that for a few decades now, the White House, State Department and other government institutions have regularly held Ramadan iftar dinners — fast-breaking meals for Muslims observing Ramadan — for a variety of domestic and international guests. They have been seen as both a diplomatic event to break bread with dignitaries… Read more

June 6, 2018

This is Day 22 of the #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. A quarter of the world’s population, or around 1.8 billion Muslims around the world, are currently in a time of Ramadan. In Ramadan, we’re fasting during the day from sun up to sun down. In Chicago where I live, this means that from around 3:45 a.m. to around 8:15 p.m., we are refraining from water (or any liquid), food, sex and trying to be more mindful of our bad habits, our… Read more

June 5, 2018

This is Day 21 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. Sometimes I find myself missing the ways I used to love and know God as a child. Things were simple back then; I was innocent, young and so acutely aware of Allah that I felt it in my bones. Other times, I find myself banking on grace and goodness to come down the road, and happiness and confidence to saunter in along with them. In middle school, I thought high… Read more

June 4, 2018

This is Day 20 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. The holy month is a time for deepening the greatest of all love affairs It’s well after midnight and burning candles flicker in my dimly lit living room. Music hums quietly in the background. A love song carried through the vibrating cry of the reed flute. My head gently sways right to left to Oruç Güvenç’s sweet notes, and we sit, me and my Beloved, at the table overlooking the… Read more

June 3, 2018

This is Day 19 of the 2018 #30Days30Writers Ramadan series. There is probably no time of year which spurs Muslims to reflect on the passage of time the way Ramadan does. Muslims become keenly invested in the cycles of the moon more than any other lunar month, and those who are fasting can viscerally experience the loops of sunlight and moonlight down to the minute as cycles of hunger, thirst and satiation, fatigue and rest. This year Ramadan happens to… Read more

June 2, 2018

That’s both the sweetness and test of Ramadan — that no one can really know if you are indeed fasting from food and drink but Allah swt. Not your spouse, your children, not your closest friend. Just God. Read more

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