I think that noise you heard was the collective mic being dropped. Adnan Syed, who’s case became world-famous as the first featured story on the podcast Serial, is officially getting the second chance his team has been fighting for. First his friend and arguably his most vocal and dedicated advocate, Rabia Chaudry, teased us by saying on Facebook, “Big news in Adnan’s case about to drop! Alhamdulillah!” And minutes later the news begin filling up all our social media feeds: A Baltimore… Read more

So how is he doing? I pause at the question, put forth to me by D’s case worker. She and I meet four times a year to chat about D’s wellbeing, our challenges, what he needs, what he is struggling with, and what kind of supports he (and all of us) could use. Yeah, he’s fine, I say. Then I pause. He’s fine is my stock response – my saying everything is ok, when in fact “ok” becomes such a… Read more

So get this – many of Halloween’s cultural practices stem from Christianity, not Paganism. And, while some Atheists are anti-theists, a great many others are not and struggle to find a way to criticize religion without being bigots. Some Evangelical Christians feel that if they weren’t Evangelical, they’d be Buddhist. And, argues one Jewish writer, the collective Jewish communal theology of victimhood and defensiveness is a “poor substitute for a brilliant galvanizing and inspiring religious vision.” These were some of… Read more

Here’s how today went thus far: Got up, overslept. Bleary-eyed, stumbled into the bathroom, then went to wake the kids. As usual, eight-year-old H fought me on getting up. With the usual mantra of hurry, hurry! Come on! You’re going to miss the bus! – I nagged H into getting himself ready, clothes on, teeth brushed. Breakfast for the kiddos, lunches packed, sent H off on the bus and A off in her carpool to middle school. Upstairs, D was… Read more

There is this: “It is He who produces gardens with trellises and without, and dates and tilth with produce of all kinds, and olives and pomegranates similar and different. Eat of their fruit in their season, but render the dues that are proper on the day that the harvest is gathered. And waste not by excess: for Allah loves not the wasters. (Quran, 6:141)” I have a friend in California who is extremely worried about the ongoing drought, what affect it… Read more

Don’t ever take your family for granted. Ever. ********** The alarm on my phone beeped to wake me to get ready for Eid prayers. I swiped it to turn it off and noticed litany of messages, as usual. One stuck out at me – my sister in law messaging a group of us to tell us there had been a stampede in the Mina camps, and hundreds of Hajjis had died. Innal lilahi wa inna lilayhi raji’oon. From God we… Read more

Editor’s Note: Raising my son D (who is autistic) and contemplating what a religious education — whether in a day school or a Sunday school — has to offer children like him is something I’ve thought a lot about. While I never considered enrolling D in our local Sunday School or religious day school (because his needs were to great for them to accommodate), I know others in my community who have struggled to get their special needs children enrolled in… Read more

Counting to ten isn’t going to help today. Maybe counting to ten thousand. I’m not sure about that either. We are affected by that which is close to us. That which we identify with. That in which we see ourselves. It’s just the way it is, which is why I struggle to get more people to care about autism and the needs and rights of those living with special needs and disabilities. We know this life inside and out. And… Read more

This past weekend I had the honor of moderating what I thought was the most important panel at the 52nd Annual Islamic Society of North American convention. Our panel was title “Finding Our Voice: Sharing our Disability Experiences to Seek Empowerment and Affect Change,” and featured Inshirah Aleem, an author and woman living with bipolar disorder, Safiyyah Amina Muhammad, a mom to five and fierce autism advocate/community leader, Sara Minkara, founder of Empowerment Through Integration, an international non-profit that integrates blind… Read more

This post is part of a short series of disability narratives shared by the speakers and moderator (me!), who will be part of a panel discussion on “Finding Our Voice: Sharing our Disability Experiences to Seek Empowerment and Affect Change” this Saturday at the Islamic Society of North America convention. We’re hoping to show how sharing our stories is a way to build community and change perceptions. By Safiyyah Amina Muhammad I feel that my story is a compelling share because,… Read more

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