Beginnings | Continuations

· Introductions

Enough ‘delete,’ I tell myself, thinking of the thousands of thought processes saved in my head, soul, body, books, Iphone, binders and computers. I have always been writing, but I have never dared to find any textual material as finished enough to share. Yeah. Unfinished texts stays with me. What a waste. Or, rather, as I get closer to 40, which is a huge ni’mah, it starts to get frustrating. I want to live up to what I stand for, that every single persons’ experiences matter. We as individuals and society need to put a stereo to all those stories. I use every possibility to explore that richness through reading, watching documentaries, connecting with people, travelling and writing. I learn, I grow, I enjoy. I feel dead if I stop.

So, how can I justify that I continue to mute my own voice. My own world of experience? What about starting to embrace raw texts as absolutely perfect textual material for sharing? Yeah. What should determine what makes a text complete?

The purpose, I answer myself, and my purpose with writing has been the same, always: Channeling out those strong flows of emotions and energy in impressions, experiences, opinions, whims, wonderings and suggestions that I ride on through my day and night. How fantastic life is for a social scientist nerd, accompanied with a complete certainty in the perfection of Fitrah and Qadr: Life is a field work. Every single moment of life get lifted up, explored from different angles. Like, what just happened here? Why am I, or they reacting like this? What makes me think and speak like this, just now? What is 'Me', what is performance., or is it even possible to make that split?' I want to think aloud, contribute to build qualities like integrity, reflexivity and humility, in general the art of living responsibly. I’m driven by a strong conviction that having personal responsability as a main guiding mantra in life will save us from waswas, meaninglessness and suffering, our families from breaking and our societies from falling.

It’s never too late for manifesting that conviction in my use of time and visible work. Speaking of progress: The space for beginning- or the continuation is well enough prepared. As an expat I now have the necessary distance to unapologetically dig into policies, practices and philosophies dominant in the Norwegian Society, and to make visible that there is more to my homeland, its diverse population, rich traditions and long history than what we are educated to acknowledge and therefore able to be influenced by. The historian of ideas, Dag Herbjørnsrud, one of my scholarly heroes, helps me to engage in an unlearning/relearning process through his book Globalkunnskap. He analyses the many historical facts that are hidden behind the ethnocentric mask, a product of the still ongoing ethnomethodological nationalism. I'm in aaawe. I was born and shaped in that country, far north, with its stunning nature, yes. I have my roots, my family and ancestors in Norway, and I have brought those roots, that line of blood and history further to my Norwegian-Somali children. Especially now as we live abroad, I dwelve over the impact of those roots, and the prerequisites of belonging. I have my roots in one place, but I sense belonging to another. How does place matter? How does our societal positioning matter?

This subject is an oft returning one in my writings, and a central reason why I study a specific part of the Norwegian history: The early migration flow from Norway to America, comparing it with the ongoing 'quiet flight' of Muslims from Scandinavia/the West to Muslim countries/the Global South. In the letters written home by Norwegians who left for America, I recognized the not-so-different-after-all Norwegian society that I have experienced different sides of as a Norwegian ethnic convert to Islam. I see and hear myself, and other Norwegians abroad in those letters; in their expressed relief of being in a place where they ‘can breath’ and have faith in a healthy future for their children. Norway is amongst the many countries who face lower birth rates than ever before. It could be wise to concentrate, for real, on its competitiveness in retaining its citizens as well as attracting new ones.

So, through sharing raw texts using documentaries, the public debate, news articles, scholarly writings I find inspiring and my own life/everyday experiences, I invite readers across localizations to catch up the threads of thought processes, and to continue on their own, in their own minds, souls, bodies and work. I hope you’ll enjoy. And I pray it will in one way or another lead you to the ultimate khayr in this dunya and akhirah.