This is Day 26 of the #30Days30Writers 2016 Ramadan series.
By Jameel Syed
Journey into my life as a traveler, writer, author and historical figure as I navigate through the select landscape of Muslim America, showcasing moments in a timeline across this great adventure known as Ramadan. Last year was a major paradigm shift in the fabric of my life as I transitioned from being the CEO of a marketing firm to becoming the only person in history to have raised the adhan (Islamic call to prayer) and recite the last sermon of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ across all fifty states within a record span of 35 days.
Ever since then, things haven’t been the same. Ramadan hasn’t been the same. My mode of operation used to involve calling the adhan in my local masjid, standing behind the imam for 20 rakat for 30 days straight, engaging in Quran, seerah and prayer in seclusion during one of the most timeless prophetic traditions known to our community – I’thikaf.After a year and some change, the canvas of my Ramadan routine has changed dramatically, and new core competencies centered on creating organic moments of inspiration, building bridges with the “other” and opening windows into unique experiences, communities and projects have boasted a brand new vision. It is exciting and unnerving all at the same time.
These photos represent a series of vignettes designed to highlight a variety of expressions during our holy month, showing that there is more than one way to achieve spiritual bliss. Life is a shifting paradigm, a fluid vision full of challenges. Lay it all on the line and honor this month with the best of who you are. Two rakat full of sincerity, regret, investment, hope and purity is what we are looking for on a night worth more than a thousand months. Never lose hope in yourself or those around you. The doors of mercy are all around us.
Please do click through to the end for a special video message.
All images courtesy of Jameel Syed