Welcome to the thoughts, rants and passions of a young Muslim woman seeking soulful enlightenment in cyberspace.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

In 5 Years...

Izzy Mo asked me a series of questions many weeks ago, and I never got around to answering them. I promised her I'd respond to one question each day until I've completed them all, but I'm afraid I've been putting it off. Here's the answer to question #1.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I've been deliberating over whether to answer this question for quite some time now. This blog seems like such a public forum - and a public record of what I write. But anyone who does a bit of digging on the Internet is sure to find out things about me anyway. Plus, I’ve been needled about the fact that I don’t say much about myself on this blog. Is this true? Because I feel as if I’m baring my soul.

Okay, here goes. In five years, I want to be a new and improved Safiyyah. It’s hard to measure success, but here are a few quantifiable goals:

Academics: I will be graduating with an Honours B.A. in Political Science later this year. I can’t adequately describe what a surprise it was to hear I’d been accepted directly into the Ph.D. stream at UofT – without having done my Master’s degree. I applied on a whim, so I’m still trying to come to terms with the exciting news and struggling to get over my trepidation. In five years, I plan to be near completion of the program, God willing. I hope I can make it worthwhile for those on the Admissions Committee who obviously think so highly of me.

Religion: Besides aiming to become a stronger person spiritually, I'm a glutton when it comes to Islamic knowledge. I'm also driven to improve my command of classical Arabic. And I intend to continue with my activism in the Muslim community.

Personal development: A number of things strike my fancy, including refreshing my French, rereading forgotten philosophy texts, and travelling to an undisclosed location. Undisclosed because I'm secretly very rich and famous and don't want any stalkers chasing me down. I'm kidding. The real answer is less glamorous but more mysterious: I simply haven't decided where to go. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention marriage. I intend to be married when I find an individual who’s intelligent enough to intrigue me, religious enough to inspire me, and with the kind of akhlaaq (morals) and adaab (manners) that will garner my love and respect. And no, I’m not a hopeless romantic - just a girl in search of her soulmate!

Anyway, those are some of my plans for the next five years - or at least the ones I'm willing to share. I find this exercise needlessly uncomfortable, but I feel I owe it to my readers. The truth is I don't really know what I'll be like in 5 years. I can only hope that I'll be happy with myself and satisfied with what I've accomplished.

You can view the answers to question #4 and question #5. More to come soon.


  • At 5/13/2005 08:48:00 p.m., Anonymous SK said…

    Congratulations! I wish you the best of luck, Saf. You have your life ahead of you. Are you planning to do graduate studies and get married at the same time? Can you explain how? It would be helpful for me too.

  • At 5/14/2005 02:02:00 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hehe, me too.

  • At 5/14/2005 02:06:00 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said…

    yup.. let's do some blogging about graduate school + getting married..
    for sisters only! :p

  • At 5/14/2005 10:25:00 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said…

    okay, so grad school + marriage is only a sisters' worry, huh? Yes, leave out the brothers why don't you... why care about them? they're *SHUDDER* men, huh? Tsk, tsk.

  • At 5/14/2005 02:17:00 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said…

    OK.. fine, so it's a brothers' worry too.But this is a serious issue for a sister and it DOES stop her from going to graduate school. Believe it or not!
    -that anonymous!

  • At 5/14/2005 08:34:00 p.m., Anonymous anonymous of 10:25:10 AM said…

    Thank you for agreeing :) Okay, so it might affect sisters more. But as far as I know, Islam tells men to get married when they come of age... and to fast otherwise. Brothers in grad school have (typically) come of age. And they need to sort out their nuptial plans, too.

    Bottomline: Safs, we DEMAND blogging on this issue :) And others, too, if you're willing to share.

  • At 5/15/2005 03:07:00 a.m., Blogger Safiyyah said…

    Grad school and marriage...well, to be honest I’ve been struggling with the question of how I’d do the two for a very long time. I even decided not to go to grad school at one point because I felt the two might not be compatible, and I really want to have a family of my own. After seeking advice from people I respect, I eventually came to realize that I must do this, that I will be contributing best to my community this way, and I believe that sense of purpose propelled me forward to the place I’m at today. I know this is an unconventional route. I know too that most traditional guys wouldn’t consider a girl heading off to grad school for a variety of reasons. There’s not much I can do about that. I hope to marry a man who values me for who I am – not some image they’ve concocted of the ideal Muslim woman. I’ve seen it work with other married grad students, and I believe it is possible with the right partner.

    Since you’ve asked, I promise you I will post on the subject of marriage, though I’m no expert on the matter. I’ll be offering my naïve observations and not much else. But please be patient because I'm dealing with a number of things right now and I don't know if I can get to it right away.

  • At 5/15/2005 03:09:00 a.m., Blogger Safiyyah said…

    I'll try to deal with the issue of male grad students too;-)

  • At 5/15/2005 03:36:00 a.m., Blogger The Rabbi's Kid said…


    It's funny how similar religious communities are. In the ultra-religious Jewish world girls are also pressured not to continue with studying but rather to get married and produce babies. Luckily I come from a more modern background and hopefully will find a life-partner with a good amount of education in her (what a waste of 50% of all human brian cells!)


  • At 5/19/2005 06:31:00 a.m., Blogger cncz said…

    macha Allah...doing a PhD at UofT in poli sci would be like my dream come true and I am so happy someone I know gets to do it! Macha Allah again so you know I'm not giving you the evil eye. Grad school and marriage ARE compatible. I am so happy to see a sister going forth in the field of poli sci, we need more Muslimahs writing that aren't Fatima Mernissi and friends. Salam

    Les anonymes need to chill. It's different for brothers in grad school because they marry some 19 year old anyway. that's sarcasm, a joke! no flame war! Nice Husband married an old maid like me and we were both in school so hey.

  • At 5/21/2005 01:11:00 a.m., Blogger Safiyyah said…

    Cncz, I really do appreciate the support. Thank you so much!


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