In you and I there’s a whole new land (Opening the Cabinet # 2)

In the book Show Your Work by Austin Kleon, there’s a section called “Open Up Your Cabinet of Curiosities” with a bunch of questions, all of which I am determined to answer. The first one was “Where do you get your inspiration?” The second one is:

What sort of things do you fill your head with?

I’m a big believer in “you are what you eat”, especially when it comes to the type of media I consume. That means I fill my head with good stuff. The problem is, there are so many neurons firing away in there that it takes more than just taking in good media to get them trained to think positively. I have to act on what I read/watch/listen to, in order for it to have a lasting effect.

Which brings us to the point of actually answering the question. I fill my head with a good dose of Muslim women writers, funny stuff, Islamic lectures and blogs. I confess that before, it used to be a good dose of any novel that I judged badgeto be “clean”, with a bit of non fiction thrown in, and the random reading of an Islamic text translated into English. I am steering myself towards buying South Asian or Muslim or women writers, and if it’s a South Asian Muslim woman writer who writes Islamic stuff, I am the ultimate fangirl. In the sense that I still have to purchase Sadaf Farooqi‘s books, while I follow her blog and tweets and even managed to end up in a Whatsapp group with her in it (I didn’t know at the time of asking to join the group that she was in it. Hidden bonus. Achievement unlocked!) I ended up getting books by Na’ima B Robert, Umm Zakkiyah, and Yasmin Mogahed first. This post shall serve to drive me on to order Sadaf’s stuff and become a true fangirl.

The next question is more related to reading, so I will save the details (yes, there’s more!) for then.

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11 thoughts on “In you and I there’s a whole new land (Opening the Cabinet # 2)

  1. All of those mentioned are brilliant authors…but I also have only read one or two books. Keep meaning to get more and read but it is often finding the time. Agree with “you are what you eat”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The only author I know in your list is Yasmin Mogaheb :/ And I’m not a big reader either but I do listen to a lot of lectures specially by Imam Omar suleiman, Mufti Menk, and Nouman Ali khan. I agree with eating good things … I’ve been thinking about going vegan lately but I don’t know

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  3. Beautiful reminder to read this morning 🙂 I’ve found that limiting social media has helped prevent negativity coming into my mind which would usually leave me feeling weighed down and distracted due to the overflowing of negative stories, comparison, fear online. I’m really looking into adding more positivity in my daily so this was a timely reminder, jazakillah x

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  4. Agreed.As now 95 % of my timeline is about blogs relating to islamic parenting..so selecting and filtering the right things for your thought process is key to your output and creativity.loved it Ma sha Allah

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  5. Nice list of authors but I have not read them..It is a good post and I am glad to see the people are still working to share positive things while there is an overflowing of negative stories on Internet..

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  6. So much of my mind is filled with holistic, natural living, remedies, blog related stuff (mainly: FOOD!!), baby related care, and less reminders 😦 I think I need to focus on getting even the smallest reminders here and there more often in my life. Reading a complete book would be a miracle as a mom lol 😛

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  7. Alhamdulillah… I read a lot and have read works of all the authors you mentioned.

    Just as I cannot NOT read, in the same way I cannot NOT write. So I invest my time, money and energy into books and other resources related to Islam, self growth, learning and helping others.

    I also make conscious effort to take ‘digital fasts’ weekly so I can get off that media high.

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  8. Masha Allah. You are voracious reader. Yasmeen is the onky author I have heard about in the list. I haven’t heard or read about her. I would love to read their work someday.
    Yes, what we fill ourselves with has direct effect on what we do. I am currently, only occupied with Quran, tafseer books, hadith lectures and my son’s school books. Oops! I forgot to mention articles written by bloggers. I love such clean inspiring article. I can’t think of filling one’s thought. In future, I should squeeze in book reading schedule.
    Now I am curious to know about the next question in the list of question. You should have mentioned the question. This would have encouraged more people to revisit the blog. 

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Masha Allah. You are a voracious reader. Yasmeen is the olky author I have heard about in the list. I haven’t heard her lectures or read about her. I would love to read their work someday.
    Yes, what we fill ourselves with has direct effect on what we do. I am currently, only occupied with Quran, tafseer books, hadith lectures and my son’s school books. Oops! I forgot to mention articles written by bloggers. I love such clean inspiring article. I can’t think of filling one’s thought with something better than Quran. In future, I should squeeze in book reading schedule.
    Now I am curious to know about the next question in the list of question. You should have mentioned the question. This would have encouraged more people to revisit the blog. 

    Liked by 1 person

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