Originally published for Nylon Magazine.
In Islamic theology, there is the concept of the Jinn—beings born of a “smokeless” fire in another dimension, beyond human but with the same frailties; neither inherently good nor bad, with a fiendish streak that is documented not just in the Holy Quran but in Hadith, and just as capable of salvation or damnation as the rest of us. Of the five kinds of Jinn—Marid, Effrit, Ghoul, Sila, Vetala—the Sila are considered to be one of the rarest, typified by a seductive feminine energy and shapeshifting capability. Continue reading
Originally published for VerySmartBrothas.
When I was a child, my mom would tell me stories about Ramadan in our homeland of Comoros. Some parts weren’t the most idyllic—the idea of fasting under mosquito nets without air conditioning that close to the equator is not my concept of pleasant by any stretch of the imagination.
The one part that I always envied, however, was the sense of community enshrouded in each story. The collective participation in the holy month made the air crackle just a little differently, and you could feel the nuance in every vignette. Continue reading