Cultural Diversity and Muslims in America
With about 5 million Muslims living in the United States, many Americans want to know: who are they? Dr. Masood is an American, a mother, a wife, a professor, and a practicing Muslim. She prays 5 times a day, recites Quran every morning, fasts during Ramadan, recites Bismillah before she starts her car’s engine, and pays her zakkah (an annual charitable practice that is obligatory for all that can afford it), but she doesn’t wear hijab. To Dr. Masood, Islam is not supposed to be difficult or rigid, it is not guilt, it is not fear, it is definitely not war—it’s peace—internal and external peace. It’s a life style. Prayer gives her solace when she feels distressed or conflicted. That is her Islam, not the one many hear about from Taliban or ISIS. Dr. Masood’s background in psychology makes her the perfect person to lead an open, welcoming discussion that invites questions and increases understanding.