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.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

What's so bad about being unashamedly yourself?

This blog post (trigger warning for eating disorders) about Luna Lovegood and how people who are just being themselves, unashamedly, are treated when they don't fall into a socially-constructed "norm" has me thinking.

"You laughed hysterically at one of Ron’s quips and didn’t stop to excuse yourself and feel ashamed when it became clear that everyone found you strange. ... [Y]ou carried your oddness like it was the most natural thing in the world. You didn’t market your oddness as your defining feature the way some insecure teenagers do, in guise of confidence and security. And nor were you oblivious to the awkward and uncomfortable feelings your oddness provoked in others. When, unable to comprehend how you wore your oddness so honestly and unashamedly, your peers reverted to mockery and bullying, you recognised this as a reflection of their own deep-seated insecurity and calmly let them carry on, quite above your head. You weren’t trying hard to present a certain aspect of yourself that would boldly identify you in the world. And that’s when it occurred to me how bizarre and positively ridiculous it was to apply the word “weird” to describe you, when you represented the most natural and unpretentious state possible to be; you were yourself."

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Ramadan secrets

Before I begin, let me preface this post with this:

These are my thoughts and my feelings. I will not accept anyone delegitimizing or silencing them. I will not accept anyone telling me that I'm wrong, or I'm doing something wrong, or I just need to pray more/try harder/etc.

This blog is an honest look at the life of a convert in a Muslim-minority country. I post very blunt things here, in the knowledge that if I'm thinking and/or feeling them, then someone else is, too - and that someone, those someones, need to know that they're not alone.

You are not alone. Even when it feels that way. And if you feel the way that I do in this post, you are normal. There's no shame in what I'm about to post. There is shame in trying to shame people about it.

That said, I don't like Ramadan.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Advice for Converts (and Lax Muslims)

Someone on Jezebel messaged me because while they converted two years ago, they're not really practicing, and neither is their husband. They want to learn more, and asked me for advice. This is the novel I wrote in return.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Loving God and the Prophet

Gee, did I say I had a posting schedule? Oops. Sorry. About that.

Muslims are told to love Allah and love the Prophet, peace be with him, but we aren't given concrete ways to learn to have, to do, this love.

"Just love the Prophet, peace be with him."

"If you love God, you'll love the Prophet."

But how do you love God and the Prophet? How do you build that sort of relationship - any relationship?