This is Day 29 of Hindtrospectives’ #MyMosqueMyStory series for Ramadan 2015
By Christal Williams
As a revert to Islam, and an irregular mosque-goer, I always get a slight paranoid feeling about going to the mosque in Ramadan. But there is a mosque that’s close to my heart.
There’s a really small mosque right by where I work and I love it. The ladies there are so welcoming and aren’t put off when I turn up in my “work clothes” i.e. trousers, shirt and cardigan. No one says anything and I don’t get treated as if I’m ‘exposing myself.’ But going to larger mosques is a completely different story.
Outside of Ramadan I’m happily mosqued but, inside of Ramadan I barely make it there, and when I do, I fear being given the dreaded label ‘Ramadan Muslim.’ Simply put, a Ramadan Muslim is a type of Muslim that only seems to be visible to the mosque community within Ramadan i.e. praying taraweeh (the night prayer during Ramadan) and other salah in the mosque. The comments of born Muslims about this group of Muslims and their self-entitlement to Islam is the driving force behind myself and other revert Muslims for staying away from the inner workings of the Muslim community. The thought of being called a ‘Ramadan Muslim’ really weighs heavily on my heart because I know the stigma and whisperings that come along with it.
Whether you’re mosqued or unmosqued, Ramadan Muslim or dedicated mosque goer, you shouldn’t break into a cold sweat when you approach the mosque. The Muslim Ummah is a fabric weaved from many different cloths and we need to recognise that.
I’ve been lucky enough to find a small, loving mosque community that have welcomed me with open arms, no judgements and no side eyes included. I pray this Ramadan that every revert Muslim and unmosqued brother and sister has found the same.