Time Magazine in July 2016 published an issue called “240 Reasons to Celebrate America.” It has some amazing reasons which being American make us proud. With the month of Ramadan around the corner, we thought it would be great to reflect on reasons to celebrate our faith despite so much negativity in media and the world of politics against Islam and Muslims. Here are 17 “Reasons to Celebrate Islam and Being Muslim:”

Photo by Jordi Bernabeu Farrús – available under a Creative Commons License

  1. We are a diverse lot. With over 50 Muslim-majority countries and with Muslims having some form of meaningful presence in the remaining 146 countries, you see that rainbow of faces throughout the world.
  2. Muslims are generous. Combining Zakah and Sadqa Muslims spend anywhere from an estimated $200B to $1Trillion yearly (Source: oxfamblogs.org)
  3. Muslims are hospitable by nature. As a collective, no matter where ever you go to  Muslim communities in the West or to the Muslim world, we are by far culturally one of the most hospitable people on the planet. We welcome people both known and unknown to our homes and offer food and hospitality to no end.
  4. We don’t have to Detox, Ramadan fasting is a Detox.
  5. 81 UN World Heritage Sites in the Arab States alone plus many more in Africa, Asia and more.
  6. Muslims are Culture-rich in family values, history and traditions.
  7. Muslims are the world’s fastest-growing religious group. Whether it be ethnically, spiritually, or culturally, the Muslim population is growing by leaps and bounds.
  8. Really cool places to visit. Leaving aside conflict zones, Muslims have huge Magnets as cultural attractions from Morocco to the Maldives and from Kenya to Kazakhstan (yeah ok, Kenya is not Muslim Majority), but it rhymes, so just go with it.
  9. The best airlines. The Middle East has become the hub of four of the largest/most popular airlines in the world, including Emirates, Etihad, Turkish Airlines, and Qatar Airways.
  10. Muslims take care of the basics. No matter where Muslims go, we are pretty good of establishing mosques, schools, and Halal meat.
  11. Muslims have an incredible variety of cuisines due to their diversity from West Africa, North Africa, East Africa, Middle East, Near East and Far East, East European, along with all the hyphenated fusion cuisines that come about due to migration. Go Biriyani!
  12. Muslims are blessed with Natural beauty in place and people. Muslim architecture from Morocco to Mali, Egypt, Palestine, Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, Indonesia,… the list is endless. Same thing with people, the men, women and children may not all have the Chiseled, glossed image of beauty in the West, but they have a beauty in their simplicity, dignity, and spirituality.
  13. Some of the best athletes and entertainers both in the West and in Muslim majority countries are Muslim. Arthouse films from Iran and other countries have been nominated and or won Academy Awards.
  14. Muslims are spiritually grounded. Every human being needs a spiritual anchor that grounds them in life and for the vast majority of Muslims we have this blessing.
  15. Muslims have a rich history in the sciences, literature and culture. Our contributions in the past are earth-shattering and there is a slow revival taking place across the Muslim world.
  16. We have the best non-alcoholic drinks the world over, from Chai, to Coffee, Lassi to Dough.
  17. Muslims are blessed with, grace and beauty that permeates not only their lives but all those who they come into contact with.
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