Hungry for Ramadan

As editor-in-chief of, Shahed Amanullah is an award-winning journalist who writes regularly about the challenges and opportunities facing Islam in America. Named one of ten "Muslim visionaries" by Islamica Magazine, Shahed's work and writings have been featured in magazines (Newsweek), newspapers (New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune), radio shows (BBC News, National Public Radio, and major websites ( Television appearances include "Nightline with Ted Koppel", CNN Headline News, the "Today Show", and "Hannity & Colmes".

Shahed is the founder of Halalfire Media, a network of Islamic-themed websites with nearly 6 million visitors annually. Along with, signature properties include,,, and He has also served as a board member for the United Muslims of America, the Muslim Public Service Network, and the Muslim Youth Camp of California. He is a general partner in Zakat Community Ventures, a startup "venture philanthropy" fund dedicated to promoting Islamic charitable values.

One of the best things about Ramadan in America is that it is still under-the-radar. After all, it doesn’t take long for entrepreneurs to realize the commercial potential around religious holidays, as the “holiday season” can attest to. And even […]

Fasting gets all the attention during Ramadan, but it is in fact only a warmup for the real task of focused worship. For many Muslims, the true focal point of Ramadan is the optional evening tarawih prayer (at least for […]

Because there are Muslims all over the world, fasting has occurred in many different places, climates, and circumstances. But what happens when the boundaries are pushed? For example, in October a Muslim astronaut will be grappling with the prospect of […]

While fasting is considered one of the mandatory pillars of Islam, there are several circumstances where it is acceptable for a Muslim not to fast. The ill, pre-pubescent children, and menstruating or nursing women are all automatically exempt, and those […]

“Ramadan is the (month) in which the Qur’an was sent down, as a guide to mankind, also clear (signs) for guidance and judgment (between right and wrong).” (Qur’an 2:185) Aside from fasting, the importance of reflecting on the Qur’an, and […]

I had a date last night. No, it’s not what you think: Muslims customarily break their fast with a date. Dates have a special significance in Muslim culture and tradition. Referenced many times in the Qur’an, date palms are said […]

One of the most important tenets of Islam is charity, and it is during Ramadan when Muslim pocketbooks open most freely. With our hearts softened through the rigor of fasting and reflection, our attention turns to those less fortunate. Charity, […]

One of the things that makes America special is our food. We have a unique way of taking cuisines from all over the world–China, Mexico, and Italy come to mind–and putting an American twist on it. We have managed to […]

There is a communal and public aspect of Ramadan that helps to bind Muslims as a community (ummah in Arabic), and there are the logistics of fasting that help us balance our daily responsibilities around the commitment to fast. But […]

Despite the fact that I have been blogging and writing about the Muslim American experience for many years, I am quite private about my religious beliefs in the workplace. (That is, until my boss Googles my somewhat unique name and […]

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