From Moping to Musing: My Ramadan Roller Coaster

My conversion experience deeply informs my Muslim experience. We (converts) have varied experiences in our journeys and paths to Islam. Some have it easy—finding the transition relatively seamless—and others have a bumpy ride peppered with moments of angst and frustration. As an Egyptian-American convert, mine is the latter, driven by the disownment of my own family and the clumsy amalgamation into my husband’s Pakistani family and into an often dysfunctional spiritual family.Admittedly, I fi … [Read more...]

Building Ramadan Traditions, Then and Now

When I chose Islam, almost a decade ago, I did not have much experience with fasting. I had grown up in not a very diverse environment and my experience with the Lent was very limited, coming from a Protestant background. Still, some years we would attend weekly “soup meetings,” where different families would come together during the Lent to eat soup. While eating soup for dinner might be a real challenge for some people, for the often frugal Dutch, it is a very common Sunday meal, so it’s hardl … [Read more...]