by Abdulrahman, Age 12
I am not the person some people think I am. I can be thought of as a bad person because I am a Muslim. There are a lot of Muslims around the world. In fact, almost a quarter of earth’s population is Muslim, most living in the Middle East and North Africa*. We shouldn’t judge people by their looks or religion.
In Islam, we do something called fasting. Fasting is basically not eating for a period of time. We often fast in Ramadan. Ramadan is a special month where we fast. We start the fasting at 4:00 am until 8:30 pm. This is so we know how homeless people feel when they’re hungry. Just imagine if you were out there without any food, drink, or money. This gives us great compassion for people that have less. Do you know how homeless people feel when they’re hungry?
We pray 5 times a day at 4:00am, 12:30pm, 5:00pm, 8:30pm, and 10:00pm. These prayers are really important to us. We believe we can’t go to heaven if we don’t pray at these times. And when we pray and do good, then good things will happen to us. For example, if I do the all the prayers, then the next day I could win a raffle. It’s like karma basically. If we do bad things, then we believe bad things will happen to us.
We have two holidays, the small Eid (Eid al-Fitr) and the big Eid. We usually celebrate more on the big Eid. When it’s time to celebrate, men give woman and girls money. Men also give money to kids that are about my age. We also go to fun places like amusement parks. We even have special food like Aseed. Aseed is a meal using only boiled water, flour and salt and is usually eaten boiling hot with your hands or spoons. We celebrate Ramadan for about 10 days. We buy a lot of new stuff for that day like shoes, pants, and shirts.
Some Muslim people live in America because there is a war in Yemen. The Republic of Yemen is a country in Western Asia. Many of us want to go back, but the war is stopping us. Sometimes it is hard for me not to be living in my actual home. I hope my write-up will help people think first before they judge someone.
*Credit note: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim
What Makes You Different?
The world is full of people with differences. That is why it is such a fascinating place to explore! When we learn about each other’s differences, we can better understand why we do the things we do. What makes you feel different from others at school or where you live? Perhaps your language, colour of your skin, religion or customs? Try writing your thoughts down. You could even be a part of bringing more understanding to your community and the world in general, by submitting it here. Thanks, Abdulrahman, for sharing!