Will Muslims Celebrate Christmas?

Most of the time, I write about the Quran, not Muslims. Today, I want to highlight someone who presents on Muslims. On Slate’s Youtube channel, an American born Muslim named Aymann Ismail created a series of videos recording the perspectives and experiences of Muslims who are living and transitioning/growing up in the western world. Though I have no real authority to designate anyone’s perspective as “normative Islamic belief,” I think it’s safe to categorize Ismail as a liberal outlier. Given the season, and the freshness of Maryam in our minds, I thought it would be nice to share Ismail’s video on the inclusion of Muslims in Christmas, and the inclusion of Christmas in Muslim households.

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The Santa Claus Paradigm

The subject of Christmas–it’s hypocrisies, contradictions, virtues, meanings–is well hashed out. While I was tempted over the season to write a little piece about holiday practices and festivities, it failed to catch enough passion in me to inspire thoughts worth even two cents. But then I had a conversation with a friend, and she dropped reference to the traumatic childhood disappointment of learning that Santa Claus wasn’t real. This dusted off some old thoughts in my mind, and the more I examine them the more upset I get. Continue reading