In Islam, the holiest item one may posses is the Quran. It is held with such respect that one must make wudu, a method of cleansing oneself with water and prayers, to hold it. It must be held with a firm grip and needs to placed in an clean and secure area to be able to recite its text. Yet, even with all these precautions in place, this Quran looks battered and worn beyond repair. This Quran has been in our family for more than 70 years. It was originally my grandmother's Quran until she passed it down to my uncle. My uncle studied the Quran and became an Imam, the head of a mosque. Through this, he provided for my mothers family of nine. It was later passed down to my mother who has been using it since 1980. My mother would sit with me in our house atop a hill in Bangladesh and teach me how to read the Quran. She would do the same in our Queens home after we came to America. My parents gave up a lot of their culture when they decided to come to America for a better future. This Quran serves as an anchor to Islam and our traditions. In a world so secular its important for our family to have something religious to reconnect to. Recitation of the Quran has provided for peace in times where life may have been anything but. Even to this day, my mother wakes up around 4:00 AM to make salah (prayer) and reads the Quran. My parents hope to one day pass this Quran down to their children. Due to them, I recite the Quran everyday to remember my roots.

Year: 1991

– Shariar Kabir

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