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City of Brass

City of Brass

City of Brass Archives

The Final Fast

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

These are the very last days of Ramadan, whether you go by moonsighting or calculations (aside, here’s my take on the moonsighting debate). Eid will be either on Friday or Saturday depending on how you reckon; for me, today marks […]

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Iftaar Barbecue for the 4th of July

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

On the 4th of July, it was also the 18th of Ramadan – so my community masjid in Chicago had an Independence Day barbecue for iftar! Burgers, fries, hot dogs – all halal, of course Here’s video coverage from TV […]

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The Nation of Islam is keeping the peace on the streets of Baltimore #BlackLivesMatter

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

No news agency is bothering to cover how thousands of peaceful protestors are expressing their right of free speech in Baltimore, over the killing of Freddie Gray. Instead, the big story is the violence of the few rather than the […]

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G. Willow Wilson’s Ms. Marvel nominated for Hugo Award – and needs YOUR support

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Few people outside the fandom of science fiction and fantasy probably are aware of the Hugo Awards, but in a nutshell, they are the single most prestigious award for SF/F, launched in 1953 during the Golden Age of sci-fi. These […]

Proud to be American, proud to be Muslim

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is a guest post by Safiya Dahodwala. Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin TUS graced the land of America for the first time as the 53rd Dai (spiritual leader) of the Dawoodi Bohra Muslim community. It has been nearly a decade since […]

the State of the Ummah, 2014/1436

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I tuned into President Obama’s 2014 SOTU for a while last week – mainly because my daughter was tasked to watch 15min minimum for school, a limit to which she adhered to precisely – and was struck by how futile […]

Vote now in the (delayed slightly) Brass Crescent Awards!

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Voting in this year’s Brass Crescent Awards is now underway, after a few months’ delay. Here’s the explanation from the official site: We would like to sincerely apologize for the delay in this year’s voting. The reason for the delay […]

My first day of wearing rida to school

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Zainab Jamali is a teenaged Muslim American girl in Los Angeles. As a member of the Dawoodi Bohra community, she recently took her misaq (an oath marking the symbolic passage to adulthood) on the hand of the community’s spiritual leader, […]

Muslims en masse for Modi at Madison Square

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Newly elected Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to a huge crowd of Indian expats in New York City on Monday night, outlining his vision of India’s future and making an explicit appeal to the NRI community to support their home […]

Hussein Abdullah gets a penalty for doing sajda in the endzone on Monday Night Football

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

What's the difference? pic.twitter.com/2Je8PSJ8GW — NFL Memes (@NFL_Memes) September 30, 2014 As a (very) recent convert to the joy of American Football, I am fascinated by the penalty issued to Kansas City Chiefs’ safety Hussein Abdullah for performing a sajda […]

NYPD’s illegal spying on Muslims was legal, says legal system

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is profoundly disappointing but not entirely unexpected: In a decision filed Thursday in federal court in Newark, U.S. District Judge William Martini dismissed a lawsuit brought in 2012 by eight Muslims who alleged that the NYPD’s surveillance programs were […]

Halal Turkeys for Thanksgiving

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Thanksgiving is the singularly American tradition of family, friends, and food – and the mighty turkey reigns supreme. In fact, founding father Benjamin Franklin thought the turkey was a better candidate for our nation’s National Bird than the bald eagle: […]

the silence libel: Muslims do not need to condemn

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Patheos blogger Dan Peterson has a moving and well-intentioned post in which he exhorts the Muslim American community to speak more loudly and denounce terrorism: But you have to speak up more loudly. Others — I promise you this, from […]

a Muslim American agenda: speaking truth to power and “standing firmly for justice” (Qur’an 4:135)

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I am enjoying the debate with Professor Omid Safi of UNC about the White House Iftaar controversy and recommend his follow-up piece: 6 points towards a principled action of solidarity. In that piece, Omid argues that we have a religious […]

Secretary Kerry’s remarks on religious freedom and America at the State Dept Iftar #WhiteHouseIftar

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The transcript of Secretary Kerry’s remarks at the State Dept Iftar (to which I was invited but was sadly unable to attend) are now posted online and I found this section to be particularly moving: I want you to know […]

Honored to be invited to the State Department Iftar – and grateful for the #WhiteHouseIftar

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I am grateful and honored to have been invited to the State Department Iftar hosted by Secretary John Kerry, which will take place tonight in Washington D.C. It is with sincere regret that I am unable to attend due to […]

The Boston marathon bombing and the Saudi national

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

UPDATE: the Saudi national has been cleared of all charges by police. For the American public, the horrific images out of Boston yesterday were far more explicit than images from warzones and conflicts around the world. This attack was not […]

11 after 9-11: a look backwards

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

It’s Patriot Day, the anniversary of Black Tuesday, the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001 (9-11). Eleven years later, I still feel the need to say something about it, suggesting that on some level I am still not “over it” […]

Fasting for Ramadan with Diabetes

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

If you’re Muslim, and you have diabetes, can you still fast? That’s a question that more and more Muslims ask themselves each year, as the diabetes epidemic in America and worldwide continues. According to a 2011 report by the Centers […]

Action Alert – Follow Friday #ThankYou Campaign on Twitter for NYPD Lawsuit

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Wednesday, Muslim Advocates launched Hassan v. The City of New York, a lawsuit seeking to prove that the New York City Police Department’s surveillance of Muslims in New Jersey is unconstitutional. Several lawmakers have also petitioned the Department of Justice […]

Starred review from Publisher’s Weekly for I Speak for Myself: All American (and last chance to pre-order)

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Publisher’s Weekly just gave our forthcoming book a coveted starred review in the Religion section! All-American: 45 American Men on Being Muslim Edited by Wajahat Ali & Zahra T. Suratwala. White Cloud (PGW, dist.), $16.95 trade paper (238p) ISBN 978-1-935952-59-6 […]

The NYPD spied on muslims in Newark

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The Associated Press’ investigative series on NYPD spying continues: Americans living and working in Newark were subjected to surveillance as part of the New York Police Department’s effort to build databases of where Muslims work, shop and pray. The operation […]

A Muslim for Obama

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I have long argued that as muslims, we must avoid allowing ourselves to declare an allegiance in politics. The Democrats have never seen Muslims as anything other than yet another swing vote to be courted when convenient, and in the […]

Muslim Informants prevent domestic terror: the data

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

As Americans, Muslim Americans have the same vested interest in preventing terrorism as any other fellow citizen. In fact, since 9-11 woke all of us (muslim and non-muslim alike) to the reality of terrorism against our homeland, American muslims have […]

I Speak for Myself volume 2 available for pre-order

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The second volume of I Speak or Myself is now available for pre-order on Amazon: The book, like its predecessor, is a collection of essays from American Muslims, in this case men. I am honored to be a contributor to […]

I will not condemn Islam or America

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

A commentor (and person I consider a friend) took serious issue with my 9-11 tenth anniversary post, commenting: I have to say I am quite disappointed by this post. It seems you just want to sweep the horrors of the […]

“The Domestic Crusaders” returns to NYC! buy your tickets NOW

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This award-winning two-act play was written by my friend Wajahat Ali and is returning to NYC for a special performance commemorating the 10th anniversary of 9/11. The play is a day in the life of a modern Muslim Pakistani-American family […]

Muslim Women Do That

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Previous Posts

the 12th Annual Brass Crescent Awards - nominations open
It's that time of the year again! What are the Brass Crescent Awards? Created in 2004 by Shahed Amanullah and Aziz Poonawalla, they are named for the Story of the City of Brass in the Thousand and One Nights. Today, the Brass Crescent - ...

posted 5:13:45pm Aug. 21, 2015 | read full post »

Obvious: The Iraq War created ISIS
This is something that is so obvious, it is in danger of never being said, in which case those who led us into war will try to ...

posted 1:48:22am Jul. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Eid at the State Department
I am honored to be invited to celebrate Eid al Fitr at the State Department again this year. And I am relieved that this time, it's actually taking place after Ramadan, which means I can actually attend for the first time! :) I am looking ...

posted 11:01:00am Jul. 21, 2015 | read full post »

The Empire State goes green for Eid
As is tradition, the Empire State Building - the most beautiful skyscraper in the world - was illuminated in green to mark Eid al Fitr. Of course, in 2015, this is announced via the official twitter account ...

posted 1:21:00am Jul. 20, 2015 | read full post »

Ramadan Pearls roundup
Here is a link to all the posts in the Ramadan Pearls series I did during Ramadan: Criterion Non-existence Mystery Angels Objective Expectant Reed Veils Lend Good I hope you enjoyed these nuggets of wisdom as much as ...

posted 3:01:31pm Jul. 18, 2015 | read full post »

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