Welcome to my blog!

This blog is an honest look at what life is like for this particular American convert to Islam. We're taught in Islam to cover our sins, to not air them, for fear of lessening the severity of sinning. In this blog, I may relate past indiscretions from time to time. This isn't to make light of them, but in the interest of educating Muslims and non-Muslims alike as to the realities of life as an American convert, I present my mistakes honestly. I make no excuses for them, nor do I claim that they were okay to make. I am not perfect, and I make no pretenses as to that. If others can learn from my past, know that Islam, and religion in general, is open for people no matter what mistakes they've made, then I will gladly air my sins when needed.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The trials and tribulations of an American hijabi

My Jezebel friend Effie definitely helped me out with this one, so she gets co-server credit!

What, another post about Muslim women wearing hijab? I've already talked about it here, here, here, and most heart-wrenchingly (trust me, my heart was wrenched as I wrote it), here.

I've talked about my problems with loved ones not being able to come to terms with my hijab (which I believe has since happened, as there haven't been any more confrontations or talk about it from either of us), about how special and secure and comfortable hijab makes me feel, about how it's helped me to spread awareness about Islam, about how people automatically think I'm not American because of it, and about how I love that hijab makes me visibly Muslim.

But there's another side to this, a far more frustrating side, and that's what I want to discuss candidly here: how difficult it is to be a visibly Muslim woman in America.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Muslim or muslim?

Please note that yes, I am citing my sources. Why? Because I hate it when people make claims and don't cite their sources. If I'm going to claim something, I want the proof to back it up.

All the views expressed here, unless otherwise noted, are mine and mine alone. And despite occasional claims to the contrary, I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Communist Party scholar of Islam. Maybe one day. But not today. 

Capitalization errors aside, I make a distinction between someone who is Muslim and something that is muslim. This has relevance, I think, with how Muslims try to explain Islam and the definitions of "Islam" and "Muslim" to non-Muslims.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Logical Faith

Looks like Mondays and Thursdays are my scheduled posting days. We'll see how this goes. :)

I was told recently that once one knew the rules of a faith (Islam, in this case), once one knew what God wanted one to do, then one couldn't possibly apply logic to the rules, only blindly follow.

I took issue with this.

I came to Islam through a logical process. I've tried being atheist. It didn't work. Agnosticism only worked slightly better. The thought of multiple gods, though appealing at one point in my life, was no longer working. I've always felt a spiritual power in life, whether or not I identified it as such. Buddhism and Taoism, though paths that I greatly admire and respect, don't quite do it for me. It seems there's something more, something they don't quite get, to my mind. I never got the concept of the Trinity in Christianity, either.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Faith in God: I has it. Part II.

This is the second installment in the Faith in God: I Has It series. It'll last as long as my conversation with the lady on Jezebel lasts. And I might add in other parts. Who knows? Donavenesque's reply was short than I had thought, so her reply, and my return reply, are both in this post.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Faith in God: I has it. Part I.

In addition to posting Deep and Meaningful Thoughts(tm) on Facebook, I also post them in the comments on Jezebel, a feminist website.

A week or so there was a post on how some blogger supposedly overcame her rheumatoid arthritis by the power of Jesus alone, and was walking around in high heels. She also told rape/molestation survivors that all they needed to do was put their faith in Jesus, put on makeup, and wear high heels in order to overcome their trauma.

Some people were trashing on the woman for being so dismissive of, and giving such harmful and insensitive advice to, rape/molestation survivors. There were the requisite "Jesus HEELED me and saved my SOLE!" cracks. And some people were trashing on the blogger's religion.

One of the commentators posted that she was always irritated that religion only seemed to come up in derisive stories, and as she was basically Christian, would love positive, interesting stories from people of other faiths.

This is an edited-for-the-blog version of what I told her. It's going to be a series. Her reply will follow, and mine after that.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Celebrating non-Eid holidays as a Muslim.

Holidays, ranging from one's birthday to Christmas, is something that converts tend to have issues with. Do we celebrate them or not? Are they forbidden or not? Is the secular celebration of Christmas, the warmth of family and friends in the cold of winter (or heat, if you're in the southern hemisphere, I suppose), the loving exchange of gifts, something to be avoided simply because it isn't one of our celebrations? Simply because of what it means to some people, when almost every American, regardless of their religious beliefs, celebrates this holiday?