When one steps into a mosque in the West, we either see Muslims predominately from one ethnic group, or an array of different ethnicities with a few token converts. The mosques have been present in the West for decades, yet converts, especially White converts, are difficult to acquire, maintain, and make them feel like they are fully part of the community. This article is not written to downplay he struggle of the African American Muslim community in the West. Indeed, these brothers and sisters face enormous challenges, from racism in the immigrant Muslim community, difficulty finding a spouse, being Black and Muslim in America, and struggling maintain good relations with their family and community.

However, African American Muslims have an established sub community in large cities across America, and for the longest time have been the flag-bearers of our Ummah in the West. And while they have been generous to accept white converts into their fold, particularly after brother Malcolm’s Hajj, Malcolm understood that white allies (and by extension white converts) would be best suited to start forming their own group so they can concentrate on giving da’wah to their own tribe. Quote: I tell sincere white people, ‘Work in conjunction with us- each of us working among our own kind.’ Let sincere white individuals find all other white people they can who feel as they do- and let them form their own all-white groups, to work trying to convert other white people who are thinking and acting so racist. Let sincere whites go and teach non-violence to white people! We will completely respect our white co-workers. They will deserve every credit. We will give them every credit. We will meanwhile be working among our own kind, in our own black communities- showing and teaching black men in ways that only other black men can- that the black man has got to help himself. Working separately, the sincere white people and sincere black people actually will be working together. In our mutual sincerity we might be able to show a road to the salvation of America’s very soul.” “Where the really sincere white people have got to do their ‘proving’ of themselves is not among the black victims, but out on the battle lines of where America’s racism really is — and that’s in their own home communities.” (El-Hajj Malik El Shabazz, Malcolm X)

We propose a sub community of Caucasian Muslims who have converted in the West, just as each sub community has their own nation, belonging to the greater Muslim community. We would concentrate on educating on and inviting white people to Islam, just as our African American brothers and sisters focusing on giving da’wah to their own community. We would focus on showing our fellow whites that anyone can be a Muslim and not give up their family or their culture, while leaving behind the things that would displease Allah. We would also focus on being advocates of the entire Muslim community in the West, who are often under the spotlight due to accusations of terrorism and cultural hegemony.

A White Muslim sub-community would not be exclusionary at all. Our Muslim brethren would feel fully invited, and be able to participate in our prayers and community events, just as they have go through considerable effort to make us feel invited. If you go to any mosque that is predominately one ethnic group, whether it is the largely Pakistani Deobandi masjid, or the largely African-American American Society of Muslims (Formerly the “Nation of Islam”) or the Syrian Eid prayer I had the pleasure of going to this year, they never disallow any Muslim from participating to the fullest extent. As a convert of 15 years, I always felt welcomed by my fellow Muslims and treated as an honored guest in their home. At the same time, these masjids are dominated by a particular culture. True, Muslims have a shared Islamic culture, with a codified set of ethics and guidelines. However, there are many aspects of Muslim cultures that differ from region to region. The WMSC is the missing piece to full integration of white converts in the West.

The advantages of such a sub community are several fold. First, more white people would convert to Islam, and feel like they belong. Second, it would show the alt-right that Islam is not culturally predatory. Third, it would take the heat off our Muslim brothers and sisters of color in several ways. As the WMSC grows, it would be more and more difficult to distinguish who is Muslim based on their skin color. We would also be welcome to establish dialogue with white groups opposed to Islam, as we are best suited deliver this message to them. Fourth, the WMSC would remove us from the white savior status foisted upon us by Islamic leadership at the mosque. Instead of trying to be a white knight, we would work on improving ourselves, our family, and our community. Lastly, the WMSC would help build from the ground up, allowing white converts to marry each other, start families, instead of trying to force intercultural marriage to both sides who may not be ready for such relationships.

Indeed, there would be those who would be completely opposed to such a concept, especially imams and other Islamic leadership. They saw how nationalism destroyed the relationship between Muslim countries. I say to our detractors: different cultures is what makes our Ummah great. We are not interested in nationalism or cultural superiority. We want to change the image of Islam in the West from something to be feared to a way of life that can lead to success in this life and the next.

Robert, Canada

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *