It’s Halloween! And that means two things: a deluge of articles debating whether or not Muslims should partake in ghoulish activities, and some lazy photoblogging.
Making the rounds on social media outlets everywhere is this wonderful article from my friend, associate and all-around fabulady, Sara Yasin. In Growing up Muslim in America, and dreaming of Halloween, Sara reflects on her devout family banning Halloween, and how she handled eating too much candy and scary haunts when they gave in to her nagging:
Looking back, I remember feeling angry with my parents for not letting me participate in Halloween, but I can now understand where they were coming from. Maybe part of it was about religion, but a bigger part of it was about an anxiety about watching their children turn into strangers.
The always wonderful Omid Safi explores his love/hate relationship with Halloween and a little insight from Rumi in The demons & monsters are us–and so are the angels.
I love the fact that this is the one day of the year in many neighborhoods where people open their doors and receive one another as what we are all along: neighbors. And how I wish we would live like this every day, like a real community. And I wonder what it says about us when we feel comfortable going up to our neighbors only when we are wearing masks. How did so many of us get so alienated from our neighbors?
I’ve spoken about our participation in Halloween in years past — but my article on Muslim religious and cultural appropriation on Halloween is making the rounds again.
I really don’t understand the intention behind dressing as a religious Muslim or as a “Muslim cultural” stereotype, except perhaps to have the thrill of experiencing what it feels like being an identifiable religious or ethnic minority for a few hours – without any of the prejudice that comes with it. Because after the pumpkin candles go out and the make-up comes off, I’m the one who continues to experience Islamophobia based on what I wear on my head – even if I’m dressed as a character from Dune.
And here’s an amazingly EPIC piece on appropriation and the sexualization of of Halloween from the 2013 Brave New Voices Grand Slam Finals (some NSFW language):
I will suck every woman stereotype out of your throats. There’s nothing more frightening than a strong woman monster.
I love Halloween because it presents a perfect opportunity to dress up. And I LOVE dressing up in costume. This year I’ve totally been inspired by Tumblr.
From nail art to activism, to recipes and life hacks, I find myself turning more and more to Tumblr to find obscure and original ideas. Like Chocolate Brownie Pumpkin Cheesecake Drizzled with Caramel. Yeah, that amazing cake didn’t last long at all in our house.
Gee, I don’t know how it happened, but the girls wanted to be superheroes. We started dressing up last week — flying around the apartment, listening to the Superman and Wonder Woman theme songs. Ivy is in absolute love with the Superman theme and asks for it constantly. Maybe she loves being thrown up in the air, or maybe it means she has an ear for classical music. Maybe she’s just a wonder. Or super.
Both girls just finished spending the evening giving out candy with their Oma to the handful of children and teenagers who braved the rain. There were even a couple of really excited adults with infants, who obviously put a lot of thought and care into creating their costumes and family memories.
Eryn was particularly excited — and when I asked why she felt so happy giving out candy, she said, “Because some childrens may not have candy. So we give sadaqa!”
We started speaking to her about charity this past ‘Eid ul-Adha and it looks like her heart is in the right place — even on Halloween.