I am grateful for bridge builders.
This past week has been rough for the Muslim community. A young 17 year old girl was lost too soon and a London mosque became a victim to terrorism and hate.
I am beginning to witness a growing pit of fear and hopelessness in the Muslim community. It’s hard not to feel this way.
When I received this message this morning from my friend Stephanie Dukes, I was overcome with optimism. It renewed my faith in humanity and in the power of building bridges.
Here is Stephanie's message-
Hi Aliya - Yesterday was my second year participating in fasting and iftar at Credit Karma. My good friend and co worker Nazhat organized this both years and supported us "non practicing" fasters through the day. I made sure this year to wake up at 3:30am to eat (as I didn't last year) and so I was much more prepared for my day. While hunger pains only lasted a few minutes mid day the lack of water was harder. Thinking through the day about being surrounded by water and other beverages was always on my mind. It was hard to find the discipline to not partake. I did think to myself that no one would know if I took a drink in the bathroom... but I would know. I made it until 8:40pm and then broke my fast with the best tasting date and pint glass of cold water and I felt very lucky. I shared a delicious meal with a group of coworkers I love and then went to sleep with a full stomach (something that so many do not get to do). I am so impressed by my friends and coworkers who do this for the entire period of Ramadan and it was important to me to further my understanding and experience in their lives and to support them. I felt compelled to reach out to you and to let you know I was thinking about you and to share my experience.
I am very excited that I have been able to do this two years in a row now. There are many Muslims at work but there are several on my team and I know it has brought us closer together to do this together. In the picture of four people above, Ammar is in the center. He is such a kind, smart and giving man and I am proud to know him and to be his peer and manager.- Stephanie Dukes
When I received this message from Stephanie, I was reminded of a verse from the Surah Baqarah when God decided to make Adam a vicegerent on Earth.
“The angels said, "Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?"
Allah said, "Indeed, I know that which you do not know."
Even God was optimistic about His creation.
Thank you Stephanie Dukes for being a bridge builder.