I'm a white woman who has spent my life advocating for women's rights in Afghanistan. Unapologetic for my lack of shared ethnicity with those I have strived to defend, I've heard an array of logic-bending criticisms, from subtle critiques veiled in the buzzwords of post-modernism, like the suggestion that all development workers inherently occupy a 'hegemonic' position, to less creative and cruder name calling.
On January 30, I joined 300 Muslims and Christians who gathered at the Gatineau mosque. At the invitation of Archbishop Paul-André Durocher Catholics and Muslims started talking to each other -- embracing, shaking hands and some even hugging -- to find human beings that needed one another in this time of crisis.
I am horrified by what happened in Quebec last week. Innocent people were killed and injured because someone indolently grouped together all sub-groupings of a faith into one broad category. The answer, however, will not be found in just ignoring the existence of such sub-groupings who are persecutors.
As I watched the saga surrounding Kim Burrell's homophobic sermon unfold over the last week, I made several attempts to speak about it and could not. Why? Because I was afraid of what might have come out of my big lesbian mouth. I was too furious to write and I wanted this piece to reflect the ideals of my rainbow family.
Diwali is one of the biggest and most beautiful celebrations in India. Marking Hindu New Year, this ancient five day festival celebrates the triumph of light over dark and good over evil. Witness incredible light displays, mesmerising fireworks and symbolic burning of candles, while families get together to feast and share gifts. This year Diwali is celebrated from October 30th and we've put together some of our favourite destinations to celebrate this one of a kind festival.
There are multiple ways to identify as a minority in Canada with language, ethnic, religious and/or racial/racialized status amongst the principal basis. Even if in certain situations you identify as a minority, that may not be how you're seen by others and/or how you feel in day-to-day interaction.
If our social media profiles can tint in support of Paris, Belgium, and Orlando, then why not change for Turkey, Bangladesh, and Iraq? Innocent lives taken in Turkey airport, and no vigils, or landmarks, but when an attack of similar degree took place in Brussels we did all of the above. I'm often asked why Muslims don't speak out enough, but perhaps this is something we all need to work on.
Is it too much to ask in the 21st century to self-identify based on the beliefs you hold so dearly? After all, who has the right to tell me who I am and who I'm not? Apparently the Pakistani government does, who have declared the Ahmadiyya community "infidel" and non-Muslim since the infamous ruling in 1974.
Kirk Cameron believes (drum roll please) that, "Wives are to honour and respect and follow their husband's lead, not to tell their husband how he ought to be a better husband." WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? I'm so serious. Partners, PARTNERS are supposed to honour each other and treat each other with respect.
No matter how independent, self-reliant, and strong we are, sometimes there's a part of us that wants to self-destruct. Usually, after a traumatic experience, when we feel especially vulnerable, scared, and alone. And after the devastating breakup with my fiancé and boyfriend/best friend of nine years, I self-destructed in a big way.
When we say that nowadays to call for sexual freedom in Arab and Muslim societies is more dangerous than the demand to topple monarchies or dictatorial regimes, we are not playing with metaphor or attempting to gain sympathy. We are stating a bitter and painful fact of the reality in which we are living.
Unfortunately, the absence of a clearly identified clergy in the Muslim world (particularly in the Sunni world) does not favour a reform of Islam. To reform this religion, the various representatives of Islam all around the world should cooperate, coordinate their action to find common ground on major issues.