When I was a teenager, my father (who was an ex-marine and educated in the Philippines) met my stepmother, who is Filipino. He brought her home to live with us. She and I worked in the garden, and I got along very well with her. Where I lived, it was basically a White town, and she was the first foreigner that I had met. Her son was taunted at school for being brown. When I was 16 years old, I… Read more

It’s ten minutes until sundown, and I instantly stop what I’m doing so that I can slip into the bathroom to wash up for prayer. As I finish my ritualistic cleansing, I wipe my face with a towel and silently ask God to adorn my face with Light. I exit the bathroom and head into my room, where I close the door and approach the small corner beside my bed. This is where I do my best to connect with… Read more

All Muslims are required to offer salah (obligatory prayer/worship) 5 times a day, if they are physically and mental able to do so in any capacity. It is one of the most important parts of our religion, and a major differentiation between the lifestyle of Muslims and non-Muslims. As Muslims, we are required to start praying 5 times a day starting from puberty. Many Muslims are even raised to be in the habit of praying their daily prayers from a… Read more

Dear Muslim millennial, I know how you feel. As a Muslim millennial in the West, it’s harder than ever to define who you are, what worldly success means to you, and the role Islam should play in your life. Once in a while, you just want to fit in. There is a dizzying array of options and plenty of distractions in the world. Your friends keep talking about that TV show they just binged on Netflix and you don’t want… Read more

It’s been drilled into me from a young age that in order to be strong in faith, I need to have unshakeable trust in God. And to a large extent, I agree with that. I know that trusting in Allah’s plans and the wisdom behind them is a major part of our religion. But I do still struggle with it at times, and I think that’s just a flaw that comes with being human. The human mind is limiting. We… Read more

“He answers those who believe and do good work and gives them more out of His Grace.” (Qur’an 42:26) I sit within my garden in the late afternoon. The leaves on the trees with the sun coming through look like translucent stained glass. The light is changing to orange. The green grass is glowing. In me, I can feel the growth of everything around me in my veins. When it comes to the news, I am hyper-aware. I feel the… Read more

Dear Zainab, 10 days have passed since your murder, and five days since you were found. It took me almost a week to write this, because… What does one say after an incident like this? What can be said to console your parents, who were shocked with this horrifically tragic news while visiting the House of God? What can I say to you, sweet angel, after your dignity and life were stolen from you in such a heinous way? After… Read more

You know the typical “rom-com” narrative? The one that goes, “Girl is unhappy and guy is a mess; girl meets guy, they fall in love, but they have some issues due to misunderstandings; things always work out and they end up living happily ever after.” Yeah, that one. It’s repeated so many times that the message is pretty much drilled into our minds: “Love conquers all.” And for most Muslims, “love” means “marriage.” So we start to see marriage as… Read more

Journaling is one of those endeavors which many people start, but don’t keep up. When looking through old journals, you might find a common pattern between them: the second half is empty. If your old journals look like this, or even if you have never attempted to keep a diary or journal before, don’t let this discourage you. Don’t wait! Here are 5 reasons why you should start journaling today: It Helps You Unwind The ups and downs of life,… Read more

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