Monday, August 12, 2013

From a Traveler-Reader: On Pashtuns, Homosexuality, Gender, and Marriage in the Pashtun Society

I don't check my blog email as frequently as I need to so I can respond to my blog readers more speedily, so I apologize to anyone I haven't yet responded to or who thinks I'm very slow at responding. I tend to be, and I'm very sorry about that :) Especially lately, what with all the traveling and then coming home and more traveling and then family events, so I've been a little busy. I'm going to try to be better to my readers, so bear with me, all, please. Thanks!

Below is an email I received from a reader who has some great insight into the Pashtun culture and society--and Pashtuns themselves--and, with his consent, I'm going to share much of it here. P., as we'll call him, is a "gora," as he says in the first line (lol), which means a white person. He is an Australian male who's traveled throughout Pashtunkhwa and FATA (the majority-Pashtun northwestern province of Pakistan and the tribal areas of the country) and wrote to me share his experiences, observations and some of the conversations that he had with Pashtun men there.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

On the Lack of Respect for Women in the Mosque (esp on Eid)

If you're not on my Facebook, you're missing out on this and the great responses it generated. I'm so blessed and lucky to have many intelligent friends, all of whose knowledge I'm grateful for.  

The following isn't intended as an article on the issue, or even as one of my regular blog posts; it's my Facebook status.

Eid mubarak to everyone!

So it's Eid, and I hate to have to say this on a special day, but ... I feel so, so incredibly insulted each time I go to the mosque for Eid prayer (well, any day but especially for Eid). It's the usual - the space for women & children is so little, so bad that I can't get myself to worship my Creator without feeling intense anger and resentment. I think the men should one day switch places with us to feel what it's like being a Muslim woman. And then they complain when the women talk during the sermon. I know that's rude and all, but honestly, what do you expect when we're praying on floors without rugs, are right by the entrance so people come and go, theres not enough space for us at all, and have our kids with us? It's the same problem each damn year, and all emails sent to the board about it are ignored. I quit with mosques. We suck. And we claim "ohhh women have sooooo much respect in our society." Respect my foot.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Why I am an Islamic Feminist

I wrote this recently for an amazing website I recently came across called Feminism and Religion. Per their guidelines, I can share only the first two paragraphs of the article and provide a link to the original piece for the rest of it.

A question we get asked all the time as Islamic feminist--and especially a response to those who believe that Islam and feminism are an impossible oxymoron. Obviously, I disagree. Not that I need to defend my identity as an Islamic feminist, but I do believe it can help inform those interested in learning about Islam and feminist from an Islamic feminist herself as opposed to from the perspective of anti-feminists' or non-feminists'.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Morocco Journal - Part 15: The Spain Trip

Sup, y'all!
So my last blog post was on my trip to Tangier, where we'd gone particularly to travel over to Spain for a day or two. Here's the remainder of that trip with suggestions of what to and not to do when you're in Morocco and want to take a ferry to Spain.

It took about 3 mins in a taxi to get to the port, where we had to go to this other place to show our passports and something else (like, I don't remember) and were finally told to go to the actual port--seriously, finally!--where we had to again show passports and tickets and all. It was half annoying. Khair, we finally--no, really, FINALLy--made it to the actual ferry. Now, as much as we'd rushed and were told to hurry up because we might miss it, the freaking ferry didn't leave till like 45 minutes later than scheduled! That was really annoying. But it's okay because that meant more time for photos and stuff in the stunning sight of the sea :)

So here.

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