This is a baring story by Sumaia Mosoom.
It was liked on LinkedIn by my Bro, Aaron S.
Ramadan at Visa
As I enter my 4th (send help) Ramadan at Visa and try not to make too many typos in my emails with fasting-brain, I’m processing the gravity of the fact that it’s finally the first time while I’ve been here that Visa US has had external-facing content about my holiday; and subsequently, I’ve been thinking (again) about the importance of access and what it means to hold space in an organization.
When I first started here as a part of the New Graduate Development Program back in 2018, I felt like a fraud, and that any minute someone was going to revoke my job because they realized I was so far out of my depth.
Since that time, I’ve been beyond lucky to have friends and mentors who’ve helped me not only slowly shed my imposter syndrome (though it’s still a work in progress), but who’ve also given me the space, trust, and confidence to push for moments of meaningful representation.
As a kid growing up in a 90+% white school in rural Wisconsin, I felt simultaneously hyper-visible in my Otherness and also totally invisible, especially around Christmas.
After being assaulted for my faith in middle school and facing death threats in high school, my goal was just to get to a college with an active Muslim population and be around people like me – so to be able to use my privilege of access to help nudge a Fortune 500 company to recognize my identity is just so validating, to say the least.
I’m not going to fundamentally change society with an infographic, and I know this is just the first step of many that my Inclusive Impact & Sustainability team and I will continue to push for, but today I’m just taking a beat to sit with this moment. If I could, I’d go back in time and show my younger self that it’s going to be more than okay.
Ramadan Mubarak, and alhamdulillah for the small-big wins. InshAllah, on to the next one.
|Taking Your Lunch Break at Night
While Ramadan is a whole month, Muslims don’t fast for 24 hours straight.
Observers still take meals during Suhur, the pre-dawn meal, and iftar, the sunset meal, to break the fast.
In 2022, this means the fast will be 14 hours for much of the US and up to 16 hours for parts of Europe!
|Fostering CommunityRamadan is also a time for worship with family and community. In addition to the normal five daily prayers, Muslims also gather in their local mosques ( in non-pandemic times ) or at home for special congregational nighttime prayer called Taraweeh.
Want to help foster community with your Muslim colleagues in the workplace? Happy Ramadan is appropriate. As is “Ramadan Mubarak” ( have a blessed Ramadan ). Or “Ramadan Kareem” ( have a generous Ramadan ).
|Not even water
Nope. not even water or gum, or your morning coffee either.
What is more, food and water aren’t the only things Muslims abstain from during this time; observers of Ramadan are also encouraged to refrain from pleasures of all kinds and even negative thoughts including jealousy and anger.
My Quick Take
Does of us who love writing, can not just point out slights.
For each slight, we owe the responsibility to point out much more good work.
Many more acts of charity.
Many more Zakats.
It invites God’s favor.
May he be lifted up in all the ways we choose to fast.
May we invite his mercy.
May we be drawn into his intimacy.
May his holiness indwell us.
May his glory capture our imagination and free us of the many bondages of our physical existence.