By Beenish Mahmood
There’s just over one million Muslims currently living in Canada, representing approximately 3% of the total population. Islam is one of the three fastest-growing non-Christian religions in the country.
In October 2007, the Canadian Government designated October as the Islamic History month to highlight the importance that the Muslim community plays in the country. This gives people across Canada the opportunity to learn about the Islamic faith and recognize their contributions. The Muslim community aims to share, inform, and share with fellow Canadians the rich Muslim heritage and their contributions to the society in science, astronomy, medicine, and other disciplines. Many related events take place in educational institutions as well as public libraries to raise awareness of the contributions of the Muslim community of Canada. It is also a time to acknowledge the ongoing challenges and barriers that Muslim Canadians face.
Importance of the Month:
This month is a time for us to bring our non-Muslim friends and neighbours to our Masajid and our homes, giving them an example of Islamic lifestyle and values. The mosque, while a place of worship, is also a place where the youth play basketball or a place the elders of the community meet up. Muslim homes have the same struggles, goals, and dynamics as a non-Muslim home. While we can go around countering our ‘otherness,’ the best way is to show, not tell. Use this month as an opportunity to show that charitable acts are an integral part of being a Muslim, that to fulfill our duty as a good Muslim, we are obliged to share a part of our wealth with those in need and encouraged to practice constant charity in the form of Sadaqah.
Events in GTA to celebrate the month:
The following are some in person events taking place in the coming days to celebrate the Islamic Heritage month around Toronto:
Sat, Oct 29, 11:00 AM
Milton Sports Centre • Milton, ON
Wed, Oct 12, 8:00 AM
University of Toronto Scarborough • Toronto, ON
About the Author:
Beenish Mahmood is an Administrative professional with years of experience working with children with special needs. She also volunteers at Literacy South Halton tutoring adults with Down Syndrome and Learning Difficulties. Outside of work, she enjoys reading, travelling, and serving the community.