CAIRO – For those tired of all ‘possibilities’ that aunties keep bringing up, a new site is gaining foothold among single Muslims trying to find the right person from Washington to London to Cairo.
“We fill in that space that maybe our community or mosques don’t,” Humaira Mubeen, a 24-year-old Pakistani-American, told Christian Science Monitor.
“We’re giving them a space to come, maybe not for marriage, but at least to test the waters,” she added.
The Matrimonial Banquet and Muslim Matchmaking
Mubeen was speaking about HipsterShaadi.com, a new site catering to young Muslims “tired of all the ‘possibilities’ the aunties keep bringing up at every get-together,” according to its Facebook page.
The project was born when Sheereen Nourollahi, a 26-year-old Iranian-American, and Mubeen were discussing dating in an online forum for Muslim hipsters, or “Mipsterz.”
Launched last October, the site creators said they hope to reach out to “third-culture kids”, singles in their 20s and 30s, who are often highly educated first-generation Americans and are struggling to balance multiple cultural identities.
After two months, the site has 650 users from around the world capitals such as Washington and London, as well as in the Middle East, in places like Egypt and the Palestinian territories.
Although there are no official figures, the United States is believed to be home to between 6-8 Muslims.
Matchmaking is one function that has not faded with modernity.
In recent years, as matchmakers, respected individuals and Muslim organizations from communities, especially in the UK and the US, have sought to resolve the problem of finding a suitable partner in a halal way by organizing social events.
These events allow for those seeking marriage to meet prospective partners with their families present.
For some Muslims, the new site has given them a new hope of finding the right person.
Ana, a Palestinian-American from New Jersey, was thrilled when she saw the new website, signing up a new profile immediately.
“Not looking for someone more religious than I am (I fast, don't pray yet),” she writes.
“If you think a woman belongs in the kitchen and shouldn't work or get an education then I am not interested.”
Browsing usernames like KhanyeWest, Pakiswagger, and MakeChaiNotWar, Ana says she was optimistic about meeting “someone that was more of a ‘modern/Americanized’ Muslim.”
Replacing ordinary matchmaking, the site was breaking taboos connecting these sites with dating.
But “those taboos are going away rapidly,” says Hassan Shaikley, one of the site’s young programmers.
It serves a modern generation of Muslims who are still fully aware that “in the religion, marriage is encouraged – and marriage is said to embody half of the faith,” he added.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net - Read full article here
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