Islam

Tom Levy

About 20% of American Muslims are converts — people who didn’t grow up with the religion and often don’t have any cultural ties.

Some, Done, or None: To be Muslim in the U.S.

Apr 11, 2017
Judy Silber

The Spiritual Edge has been putting together a series of profiles about how people do — and do not — practice their religious beliefs. Ahmad Rashid Salim is Muslim, and a prayer leader at the Islamic Cultural Center in Oakland.

The Bay Area has about 250 thousand Muslim residents – more than three percent of the region’s population. But what many people know about Islam is limited to anti-Muslim messages that have come from the highest political office holders.

Tom Levy

 

Like other holy scriptures, the Quran has been studied and read, commented on, and interpreted mostly by men. There was a tradition of female scholarship early in Islam, but later, it was men at the helm of breaking down the verses, and deciding how they’re applicable to everyday life.

Courtesy of Islamic Scholarship Fund

Back in 2003, the Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science published a study of Arab Muslim portrayals in a Hollywood movies. Out of 900 films, only a dozen had a positive portrayal. 

Muslim Americans in the heartland reckon with sting of national politics

Mar 28, 2017
Daniella Cheslow

 

President Trump campaigned on a promise to ban Muslims from the United States, and imposed travel restrictions on people from several Muslim-majority countries in his first few days in office. These moves have rattled Muslim-Americans, even those who have lived in the U.S., for generations. One of those communities is in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

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 On the December 2nd edition of Your Call we’ll discuss the rise in Islamophobia. 

 

Islam has a rich artistic heritage of architecture, design, music, painting, and poetry. Muslim poets like Rumi and Hafez are famous for a depth and beauty that defies time. Today, that poetic tradition is still strong. It's kept alive in what many may perhaps consider an unlikely place—urban America, through the genre of hip hop.

 

Daily news roundup for Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Jan 27, 2015
Leah Millis / San Francisco Chronicle

Here's what's happening in the Bay Area, curated by KALW news:

Psychology studies suggest rising wealth means more jerks in S.F. // SF Gate

"If it seems that San Franciscans are getting more entitled and self-absorbed, a series of psychology studies performed at UC Berkeley indicates there could be a scientific reason: the city’s increasing wealth.

 

The world is united in grief over recent attacks on French satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo. Meanwhile, Muslims are facing violence in the aftermath. Many have denounced it, including the family of a Muslim police officer killed by the gunmen. And many Muslims say what’s needed is a dialogue between civilizations to understand each other on a human level. One way to do that is through sharing ancient art.

The Spiritual Edge: News roundup for 10.31.14

Oct 31, 2014

 

It’s Halloween! Trick or treating, and parties are the usual ways to celebrate, but a group of Wiccans in San Jose have a different idea, according to the San Jose Mercury News. They’re honoring Samhain, “a Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter or the "darker half" of the year.”

 

 

AAYSP-MI

Not long ago, I attended a lecture at UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall, the law school. It was just before sunset and about 100 Yemeni Americans – mostly young men – filled the room to see and hear their countrywoman, 34-year-old Tawakkul Karman. She’s the activist and revolutionary, who won the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize for sparking the revolution that ousted Yemeni president Ali Abdalla Saleh.

The Bay Area Muslim community includes at least 100, 000 people. There's a large Afghan community in the East Bay, a sizable South Asian population in the South Bay, and the Peninsula is home to large Arab American and Iranian American groups.

Historically, the Muslim community has voted Republican – until 2008 when they voted for President Obama. However, many say they are now disappointed by his presidency, especially in terms of issues like closing Guantanamo Bay, renewing the Patriot Act, and the continuing drone attacks in Pakistan.

As part of our ongoing series with New America Media exploring the ethnic vote, today we discuss how American Muslims may vote this year. We spoke with Javed Ali, editor-in-chief of Newark-based award-winning Muslim affairs publication, Illume Magazine.

Since 9/11, surveillance of Muslims has been on the rise. New York City made national news in February when the Associated Press broke the story about the NYPD spying on area mosques. AP won a Pullitzer Prize for that reporting.

About a month later, in March, we received similar news much closer to home. The ACLU announced it had documents showing the FBI spied on mosques here in the San Francisco Bay Area between 2004 and 2008.