We’re in Day 8 of Ramadan and I wanted to wish all my followers a Ramadan Mubarak. I pray that Allah blesses each and every one of us to attain closeness with Him. It’s beautiful watching the Muslim Ummah come together especially in a time where negative energy is at an all time high. I mean literally every time I watch the news something horrible has happened somewhere in the world. As I mature both in years and intellectuality I’m realizing how important Ramadan is to me. Two weeks ago a few young women and I came together at my university for a Pre-Ramadan Gathering. During the gathering I shared with the sisters that as a young girl I loved Ramadan. I knew that it meant I would be fasting with my parents and other Muslims. At that time my parents would take all their children to the mosque during Iftar and we would break our fast with other Muslims. I knew it was a time where I would see old friends. And I knew that eventually after putting my all into Ramadan I would dress up for Eid and celebrate my hard work with family and friends. But as I grew older I realized that that same drive began to weaken. I didn’t know exactly what it was. I fasted. I read the Qur’an. I prayed. But Ramadan wasn’t the same. After years of pondering about this dilemma of mine I realized that I had outgrown my childhood image of “Ramadan” and now it was time to put a new meaning to what Ramadan meant to me. I knew I still had to fast, pray, do plenty of good deeds, and let’s not forget about charity but I had to connect a new image and arouse a new feeling to strengthen my passion for this beautiful Holy Month.
Just last week a mass shooting took place at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charlestown, South Carolina. Yes in the United States! Nine people were killed and another was wounded. As a young woman I look at all these tragedies happening and I ask myself what am I going to do to help change the narrative? What am I going to do to change the negativity I see around me. I was taught that sometimes you don’t need to speak when you see a dirty glass but instead just be the clean glass. Eventually what is dirty will feel shame and want to imitate cleanliness. But what happens when there’s no more shame? What happens when the good within some of our hearts is nonexistent and all that exists is evil, hate, and bitterness? That’s a question I want us all to ponder.
You might be wondering why in the world did she take us from Ramadan a time of spiritual healing to a tragic shooting? It’s important to remember that as we fast and are blessed to break our fast with varied meals some will never have that opportunity. Furthermore Ramadan is a time to work on oneself but we still live in a world where injustices happen everyday so it’s our duty to be vigilant about what happens in our communities and ask Allah for His mercy. And sadly some of you may be wondering what does a Muslim girl care about a Christian church being desecrated. I care…a lot. Because lives were taken; innocent blood was spilled; and justice seems ‘oh so far away’. The religion of Islam dictates belief in One God and furthermore to understand that He has created everything we see around us. Hence, if something happens in the Christian community it is as if it has happened in the Muslim community. So during this Holy month of Ramadan I am praying for all of my brothers and sisters whether you call yourself Muslim, Christian, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, Atheist…. All of you who are going through horrible trials and tribulations, for the children who are dying in Syria and Palestine, for the families who are in distress in Ukraine, for the young woman who only could dream of an education because she so happens to be a woman, for my people who no matter how hard they try there’s a system built to incarcerate, for those who can’t even have a full meal during Ramadan, and for those who are suffering around the block from my house, I’m praying for each and every one of you this Ramadan.
So you see I’m beginning to discover my passion. By using my talents to help myself and others I’m realizing that this in itself makes me extremely happy and satisfied. And so I pray that this Ramadan we can use our passions to help ourselves and others grow. I pray that this Ramadan Allah can ease the hearts of the innocent. But most importantly I pray that Allah strengthens us for the trying times to come.
Ramadan Kareem <3,
That Black Muslim Girl
Justice or Else.
Do Unto Others what You would have done Upon You.