11, the young Muslims enjoyed starting out by talking about how sports have offered them a great cultural meeting ground.Just as Abousaleh’s diverse dragon boat team is captained by a Muslim “sister,” Siddiqui proudly wears her head scarf over her long hair while playing for SFU’s mixed field-hockey team.
The four Sunni Muslim teens talked about Canadian sports, Much Music, TV shows such as Fox Television’s 24, Bollywood movies, national politics, their mosques, the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, “Muslim terrorists,” arranged marriages, sex, dating, drinking and prayer. engineering student, the Muslim teenagers included quiet-but-firm Hanan Dumas, a 15-year-old Richmond girl who is attending Richmond secondary’s Grade 11 international baccalaureate program this year.We met at Simon Fraser University’s new Interfaith Centre, which contains special tiled washrooms so male and female Muslim students can wash their hands and feet in separated stalls before engaging in prayer in the multifaith, symbol-free sanctuary. There was also forthright Sana Siddiqui, a 19-year-old criminology student at SFU, born and raised in Vancouver after her dad moved to Canada from Pakistan.Rounding out the group was cheery Aamir Mushin, a 17-year-old science student from Dubai who is entering Grade 12 at Burnaby Central Secondary.Sports a cultural meeting ground Even though the conversation eventually turned to sensitive issues such as sex, drinking alcohol, Canadian politics and the wars that were triggered by the terrorist attacks of Sept.BY THE VANCOUVER SUN, SEPTEMBER 8, 2007 Just before Mustafa Abousaleh jumped into his school team’s dragon boat to paddle in a race on False Creek, the teenage Muslim prostrated himself on the grass in prayer. But his multi-ethnic dragon boat teammates took it in stride.“When strangers look at me praying, it doesn’t matter; my teammates respect what I do,” says the young Surrey Muslim.
Abousaleh doesn’t even mind when people take photos as he supplicates himself outdoors during his five-times daily prayers, known as salah. teenagers who are devoted members of their Muslim faith are on the front lines of unpredictable change in multicultural Canada, blending their families’ 1,400-year-old religion with West Coast popular culture, with secular lifestyle possibilities they often find fun, but sometimes trivial and distasteful.
That’s what happened when he and his family once performed the prayers, which are required of Muslims, at White Rock beach. At a time of mounting global conflict, this is the story of four diverse teenagers in B.
C.’s 70,000-member Muslim community; profiled as the holy month of Ramadan is set to begin on Thursday and on the eve of Tuesday’s sixth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept.
11, 2001, which made many in the West suspicious of Muslims.
Four Muslim students talk about life Abousaleh — a 19-year-old who moved with his engineer dad and doctor mother to Canada six years ago from Syria — recently gathered with three other Metro Vancouver Muslim teens to talk about what it’s like to be young and Muslim in this pluralistic, multi-faith metropolis.
Calling each other “brothers” and “sisters,” the Muslim university and high school students discussed how their values interact with mass culture in this corner of the 1.2 billion-member Muslim world, far removed from most of the world’s Muslims, who are concentrated between north Africa and Indonesia.