If I’m Being Honest Podcast | Episode 12: I Am A Muslim American (with Azka)

Welcome! In this podcast, we will be talking about all the subjects that we tip toe around in society. We’re going to chat about the sensitive, the controversial, the censored, and the taboo. I’ve invited guests to talk with me about their most intimate stories, in an effort to demystify these subjects and humanize their experience. Subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts or Spotify and I’d love your 5-Star rating and review. You can find us on Instagram: @ifimbeinghonest. Also, please tell your friends about us!

I’ve prioritized this episode ahead of some others in light of recent events. On March 15th, 2019 a lone gunman shot and killed fifty muslim worshippers during their time of prayer in their own house of worship. The shooter was deeply engaged in a global alt-right culture and had the main goal of advancing a white supremacist narrative.

Data shows that Islamophobia in the US is on the rise and has even surpassed post 9/11 levels. People, by nature, are afraid of what they do not understand and fear can quickly translate into judgment or even hatred.

I thought that this would be a good time to educate ourselves a little more on Islam and get to know a friend I recently met. Her name is Azka, and she is a Muslim woman in my community. She’s going to graciously take us through some basic answers about what it means to be Muslim and invite us in to her world as a Muslim American who was raised in Pakistan.

This is a great website for general questions about Islam:

And this is the statistical research we mentioned:
www.ispu.org and https://www.ispu.org/public-policy/american-muslim-poll/https://www.ispu.org/american-muslim-poll-2017/

This website gives an insight into who American Muslims are: www.muslimsforamericanprogress.org

Here are a few follow up notes from Azka:

On the difference of perception of Israel between Muslims overseas and American Muslims: It is important to note that though all Muslims think occupation is wrong and unjust, and some Muslims favor a two-state solution and others favor one state where Jews and Muslims and Christians live peacefully with equal rights, American Muslims are in the tough position where their tax dollars support the government of Israel to the tune of billions of dollars. Israel then uses these funds to oppress Palestinians. So if it appears that American Muslims are more outspoken against Zionism, this is the reason.

Oppression of Muslim women: I mentioned that patriarchy and Islam are separate and if Islam was followed to the letter we would not see the oppression of women in Muslim-majority societies. I wanted to share some examples. Prophet Muhammad’s first wife Khadija was a very successful and accomplished businesswoman who traded in a very wide area. She was 25 years his senior, a divorcee, had kids, and sent him a proposal of marriage. His second wife Aisha is one of the biggest scholars of Islam and taught men and women after the Prophet had passed away. She contributed greatly to the hadith which is the secondary text of Islam after the Quran. Even in the early days of the advent of Islam, Muslim women were in healthcare, fighting on the battleground, and were even militarry strategists and advised the Prophet.

Fatima bint Muhammad Al-Fihriya Al-Qurashiya was an Arab Muslim woman who is credited for founding the oldest existing, continually operating and first degree-awarding educational institution in the world, The University of Al Quaraouiyine in Fes, Morocco in 859. Muslim women have been heads of state in several countries, such as in Bangladesh, and Pakistan, among many others. 

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