The Muslim community that broke my heart

I am not really part of the Muslim community in a real sense anymore. I do not know if I necessarily feel like part of the Atheist community either. I am not sure what an Atheist community entails at this point, I just happen to find more people that I can click with in the Atheist community. I continue to feel like I still belong to Muslim community while not really belonging in it. I am read as Muslim after… Read more

Sex Education in Pakistan.

It is an education you receive in secret, hidden places. An education you receive in subtle ways at your school when that dude harasses you and tells you his thing is x inches long and no one really cares about your discomfort with that. It is an education you receive in the religious preaching about the things you should not do. The “don’t talk to boys”, the “don’t leave your hair and chest uncovered”. Sometimes, the education is dirty jokes… Read more

Let me tell you a story about Mangoes.

There was a little girl named Sophiya whose love for mangoes pretty much preceded her love for chocolates and ice-cream and all other things little kids love. The mangoes made hot summers worth waiting for in Pakistan. She knew she was ever so lucky to have access to some of the most delicious mangoes in the world. She knew Pakistani mangoes were famous around the world. She knew they were known for their taste. She felt so privileged to be… Read more

Liberals Should Stop Talking About Boycotting the Alt-Right (Whether For or Against)

Note: I wrote this three days ago, but couldn’t post it. It’s slightly out of date. I have added two updates in the end. I’m sure that you all have heard this controversy a few times already. Whether people were angry at Trevor Noah for inviting Tomi Lahren or at Bill Maher for inviting Milo Yiannopoulos, they believe that liberals should deprive the alt-right from their programs. On the other hand, there are other people who say a systemic boycott… Read more

Male Gaze: Within religious and progressive contexts.

Our Islamic studies teacher at school would tell us, “Women must always cover their chest, and men must always lower their gaze.” I believe that instruction for men was merely my teacher’s way of making the rules of modesty look equal for both men and women (when they really aren’t). In any case, the whole thing seemed ridiculous to me, it seemed like a very rigid and conservative view of sexuality and sexual attraction. It was also heteronormative to its… Read more

The traces of religion that always stay with you.

I believed in heaven and hell even after I had stopped believing in god and religion. It wasn’t this strong, righteous, assertive belief but in some small subconscious way, I continued to believe in heaven and hell. I believed in hell much more so than heaven. Or perhaps, you could say that the fear of hell was not a thing I could quite completely shake. Hell had been my worst nightmare for about 18 years or so, it had been… Read more

4 Literary Genres Bible Is (Are Not Fairy-tales)

If we can’t call the Bible fairy-tale, here are four alternatives. Read more

Ex-Muslim Rites Of Passage: Eating That Bacon

I had bacon for the first time ever, more than three years ago. It was a crisp Summer day. It was with my then-boyfriend. At Milestones. In a burger. And was that burger fucking delicious or what. It wasn’t planned, just so you know. It wasn’t like I told my ex to take me to Milestones so I could have bacon for the first time. But when we got there and the waitress asked whether or not I wanted bacon… Read more

My interview with Trav Mamone: On Leaving Islam

Hello there, people! I hope you all are doing well. I recently had the wonderful opportunity to be interviewed by Trav Mamone on their Bi Any Means podcast. It was actually my first interview so I was kind of shy and nervous. I apologize for the weird audio quality on my end, but you can still make out most of what I am saying. I actually had fun doing this interview. I talked about my de-conversion, growing up in Pakistan,… Read more

The Iranian Godfather: Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (1934-2017)

For good or ill, no Iranian equals the influence he left in our recent history. Read more

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