More Voices? Yes Please!: Diversifying the Ex-Muslim Experience

A photo of a woman with her head and face veiled reading "Saudi Arabia outlaws tempting eyes", followed by an image of Pakistani singer Taher Shah captioned "Well Fuck You Too"
The guy at the bottom is Taher Shah, who has made his love of eyes very well-known.

Although it’s not the most racially diverse secular group (for obvious reasons), one of the reasons why I am so happy and proud to be part of EXMNA is its internal diversity of experiences and viewpoints. Our secret discussion group is full of thoughtful people who enjoy conversing on matters ranging from a bizarre Saudi eye ban that would presumably make Taher Shah very angry to Tajikistan’s religious laws to Junaid Jamshed’s misogyny (and beard).

Two members of the org recently did an interview on Dr. Darrel Ray’s Secular Sexuality podcast [Content Notice for Abuse] that’s very much worth a listen. Their experiences are quite disparate from mine in that both of them face a lot of physical danger from their families.

Embeds of both the podcast and my Skepticon talk below the jump.

I did a shorter interview with Darrel earlier that also touched on my religious background’s influence on my sexual development.

As I half-joked at this year’s SSA West conference, I’m very much looking forward to having more and more competition for my speaking slots as an ex-Muslim. Not only does that meant that I get to do more and more talks that aren’t exclusively or even primarily about Islam, like I did at Skepticon 7, but it also means demystifying ex-Muslims (and even Muslims, to some extent), destigmatizing apostasy from Islam, and, if I may indulge in a spot of optimism, ensuring a better overall world.

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More Voices? Yes Please!: Diversifying the Ex-Muslim Experience
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5 thoughts on “More Voices? Yes Please!: Diversifying the Ex-Muslim Experience

  1. Ed
    1

    “Tempting Eyes” sounds like some early `80s song on MTV with heavy synthesizer sung by a band in metallic black jumpsuits, bizarre hair and a fog machine.

    This is absolutely horrible for women already clothed from head to toe not to even be allowed to keep cloth away from their eyes.

    If there’s nothing they can do about the general idea for now, I hope some Islamic court rules that dark sunglasses (or mirror shades in keeping with my 80s idea) are sufficient as long as men are protected from ….whatever this danger is supposed to be in the first place.

  2. 4

    the story about the eye-law may be the most perfect example I’ve ever seen to rebut attempts to preserve morality by policing women’s clothing choices. It doesn’t matter how much a woman covers up, the remaining ‘bits’ are invariably sexualized.*

  3. 5

    I love how Junaid Jamshed’s comments were attacked not for misogyny, but for blasphemy.

    I loved your talk, by the way, Heina. I wasn’t there so I caught up on YouTube. I have to say I laughed out loud when you started with the salam.

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