The Canadian Prayer Rug

What does a Canadian prayer rug look like? For this story, I interviewed the folks behind this unique project, who took it upon themselves to weave a prayer rug that was distinctly Canadian. I was impressed at how much thought went into the project, from the designs chosen to the materials used and even the techniques used to create the rug.

Read the story: A Canadian Prayer Rug Weaves Together the Stories of First Nation’s People, Muslim Immigrants, and Alberta’s Landscape

 

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I’m Not OK, Alhumdulilah

 

Rain drops against a pane of glass

“Muslims don’t get depressed.”

You may have heard this before. If you did, you probably felt irritated, upset or even more depressed. If you’re hearing this for the first time, you’re probably just as shocked and angry as I was.

If you agreed with that statement, then you are wrong. Muslims do get depressed. That’s because Muslims are people. Humans. Some battle depression on a regular basis.

Today, I’m writing about depression: what it is, why people like me have it and what my faith has to say about it.

Continue reading “I’m Not OK, Alhumdulilah”

A Heavy Light | Part 1

How I felt when I became a Muslim.

A thick candle.

People sometimes ask me, “What was it like when you converted?” and they must be expecting some kind of rapturous event where I saw the light and felt a huge burden lift off my shoulders and my heart set free. But my conversion to Islam wasn’t so much about seeing the light, but rather realizing that the light was always there. I just didn’t realize it.

And let’s be straight: that light was heavy. Continue reading “A Heavy Light | Part 1”

Homeward Bound

Skyline of Edmonton
Edmonton, any time between September and April

“Where you are was circled on a map for you.” (Rumi)

Two weeks in a strange land, with strange customs, strange currency and strange landscapes. I may not have traveled across the globe to China or Bangladesh or deepest darkest Peru, but the two weeks I spent traveling through California with three friends was the closest I’ve come to being in another world. Despite being Canada’s neighbor, everything about it felt so different, strange and exciting. But in spite of all that, I eventually found that the place I looked forward to most was home. Continue reading “Homeward Bound”

The In-Between

Old stone bridge across the river with two people on it.Being a Muslim convert means you’re almost constantly balancing this strange in-between world, living neither here nor there. On the one hand, you have your old life: your family, friends, habits, and actions that were around prior to you accepting Islam. On the other hand, you have your new life: a life of God, brotherhood, mosques, imams and worship. And to each you are, in a way, an oddity. Continue reading “The In-Between”

We Are Home

Home

Today, the mosque in the town of Cold Lake, Alberta was vandalized. Windows were smashed, and the vandals spray painted the walls. “Go home” was scrawled in crimson red. And if you were to ask the vandal what they meant by “home”, they would probably be as specific as “Saudi Arabia” or as vague as “the Middle East”. Never mind that the highest concentration of Muslims is in Indonesia, the implication is that somehow by virtue of being Muslim, our home is across the ocean, in a land many of us have never visited with people we have never met. That we are strangers due to our race and creed, foreigners in our own land.

Continue reading “We Are Home”