“Wayward Son” and “Deen Tight” Film Screenings, and Al-Musharaka workshop
A dialogue in collaboration with Ta’leef Collective, seeking solutions to re-engage and re-connect converts and disenfranchised Muslims within our community.
FRIDAY, JUNE 22:
“Wayward Son” Film Screening and Discussion
SAIT 1301 16 Ave NW, Orpheus Theatre
SATURDAY JUNE 23:
Kahanoff Centre 200 12 Avenue SE, 2nd Floor
9:30am - 5:00pm
SATURDAY JUNE 23:
“Deen Tight” Film Screening
Old Y Centre Suite 101-223 12 Ave SW
WHY WE THINK THIS IS IMPORTANT:
There has been a distinct increase in the number of Muslims feeling disenfranchised and out of touch with the community, including youth, Western converts to Islam and those who are re-examining their faith. Many in the community have vocalized their sense of non-belonging, that they do not feel like they have a voice, and a need for alternate points of view and dialogue. These sentiments ring true for both Western converts to Islam and those born into Islam, particularly young people. The Western Muslim (WMI) has recognized that there exists a void of resources and people available to accept and assist individuals who want to learn and to explore what Islam means to them in a way that is not defined by the immediate dominant community and by overseas culture(s).
Through the two film screenings of “Wayward Son” and “Deen Tight” and the Ta’leef workshop, WMI intends to provide Muslim community members and leaders in Calgary with practical advice and the tools to find solutions with respect to the topics of disenfranchised Muslims. Additionally, Mustafa Davis’s and Micah Anderson’s personal experiences, through their involvement with Ta’leef Collective, will enlighten the community as to what solutions and approaches worked, which ones did not and how to avoid failure.
FRIDAY, JUNE 22:
The Jordan Richter Story is the multi-dimensional and deeply personal film by documentary film producer Mustafa Davis. On the surface, it tells the story of Richter’s difficult childhood coming from a broken home, charts his rapid rise as a professional skateboarder as a youth in San Diego and then his conversion to Islam in the 1990’s. Out of what he felt was a religious obligation, he quit professional competition and disappeared from the spotlight. Now 15 years later, he is attempting a comeback. Below the surface, the film intimately and honestly addresses the complicated issues of conversion, identity formation, cultural imperialism, social pressures, spirituality and the emergence of a uniquely North-American expression of Islam. The story will deeply resonate with both converts and Muslims struggling to fuse their Western identities with Islamic principles.
The film is 36 minutes long and will be followed by a panel discussion with director Mustafa Davis and Micah Anderson of Ta’leef Collective.
SATURDAY JUNE 23:
“Al-Musharaka” with Ta’leef Collective
Kahanoff Centre 200 12 Avenue SE, 2nd Floor
9:30am - 5:00pm
The program is targeted to individuals and community leaders who are already working or plan to work within the Muslim community with converts and disenfranchised Muslims, or who are converts themselves, and are willing to particpate and learn with an open mind.
The Taleef Collective will be facilitating the workshop for participants. Based out of Fremont, California, and established in 2005, Ta’leef Collective “provides the space, content and companionship necessary for a healthy understanding, embrace and realization of Islam.” This unique, independent organization serves converts to the faith by assisting them in realizing a sustainable conversion to and practice of Islam. Ta’leef “also strives to re-engage the growing number of disenfranchised and often marginalized Muslim young adults.” In an effort to assist other communities who are facing similar challenges, the founders of Ta’leef have initiated workshops for Muslim communities around the world, as well as leadership training. While these workshops are catered to the specific needs of the individual community, they generally address the fundamental components of how communities can create safe, welcoming and supportive places for disenfranchised Muslims and converts alike.
SATURDAY JUNE 23:
Music, considered taboo practice by many traditional Muslims, has also become one of the most prominent methods for Muslims to share their faith internationally through Muslim Hip Hop. Hip Hop is a global phenomenon reaching from the skyscraper laden skies of New York all the way to the deep deserts of Arabia and beyond. It is a subculture that transcends boundaries of language, gender, and religion. Deen Tight brings to the screen the untold story of Western Muslims struggling to find a balance between their culture and their religion.
Filmed on location with Muslim rappers, DJs, slam poets, breakdancers and a graffiti artist in concerts, recording studios, at homes and in the streets. Our story focuses on the perceived conflict between traditional religious ideals and modernity, as well as both the positives and negatives of Western Pop culture on todays’ Muslim youth.
Mustafa Davis is an acclaimed filmmaker, photographer, creative director, and founder of the award winning production company Cinemotion Media, based out of Hollywood, California. Cinemotion Media produces feature documentary films, including two which relate specifically to the Western Muslim experience: The Wayward Son and Deen Tight. Both films have ties to Ta’leef Collective and address compelling issues and problems within the Muslim community. Mustafa Davis is also one of the co-founders of Ta’leef Collective.
Born in the United States, Micah Anderson embraced Islam in the late 90s, after extensive travel overseas. He is currently the Convert Continuum of Care program coordinator at Ta’leef Collective, which provides an alternative social and sacred space for Muslim converts and seekers. Micah pulls from a wide variety of lived experiences including: recovering addict and alcoholic, straight edge punk rocker, and Buddhist practitioner.
Micah also works with the Mind Body Awareness Project, an Oakland CA.-based non-profit which does emotional literacy work coupled with mindfulness meditation with at-risk and incarcerated youth. He currently attends school at Goddard College in Vermont, where he is studying Islamic-American identity issues.
He lives in Oakland, California with his wife, Sarah, and their 3-year old son, Tariq.
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