stories

30 Days 30 Deeds: Mukhtar Mai

People amaze me. With their strength; their courage; their resilience; their tenacity; their compassion.  I think there’s nothing more powerful or empowering than feeling inspired by the personal story of another – learning from their struggles and triumphs, gaining strength from their patience and determination, feeling emboldened by their resolve…

Read More

altM introduces: altMen

altMuslimah (“altM”) will be celebrating its 6th birthday this March, on International Women’s Day. For six years, we’ve been providing cutting edge commentary on a variety of issues pertinent to gender-and-Islam, starting and normalizing discussions the community was previously afraid to broach.   As we begin our 7th year, we…

Read More

The Ramadan doldrums

For many of us residing in the northern hemisphere, Ramadan began begrudgingly. Starting last Tuesday or Wednesday or even Thursday, in some cases. We wake up at or stay up until dawn —around 3:30am —and struggle to adequately hydrate and nourish ourselves for the anticipated seventeen to nineteen hour fast in melt-your-face-off heat. We then open our fast with a quick meal before rushing to and through prayer so we can catch a few hours of sleep, only to get up and do it all over again.

Read More

Reading with Maryam – Discovering Muslim children’s books that delight and inspire

Some time ago, I complained to a friend that there were few good children’s books on Muslims or Islamic themes. I’m an American-born Muslim woman, and I was looking for books to share with my older daughter Maryam, then three. I wanted lively, upbeat bedtime books that would introduce her to our faith and identity while emphasizing universal values.
My friend, a thoughtful educator at a local Islamic school invited me to visit the school’s library. Unfortunately, that visit largely confirmed my dismal view.

Read More

The fairytales of Love

I remember the day that I first fell in love. I was thirteen, and the film Grease was playing on TV. And there he was. Cool, trendy, good looking and ready to do anything for his girl. He was of course John Travolta, and I had no doubt that he would turn up on my doorstep and ask me to marry him. Things didn’t quite work out like that – he went on to become a scientologist, and I set off on my own quest for love.

Read More