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What makes a successful woman indifferent to her faith and what draws her back to it to see the world in new way? Why would a smart woman-of-the-world choose to be a practicing Muslim who voluntarily wears a headscarf, commits to praying five times a day and fasting a full month each year? And how does that decision affect her public life and her international work?
Sandcastles and Snowmen explores faith through the story of a woman on a personal journey to search for spirituality, leading her to reconnect with Islam in a new, global context in the turbulent post 9/11 world.
Sahar El-Nadi is an Egyptian and a born Muslim, yet she went to a Catholic missionary school in Egypt, then to an Islamic school in Saudi Arabia, while living in an American environment and socializing in a multinational gated-community. She was a TV host and the lifestyle editor of Egypt’s top fashion magazine, but she left behind her successful career to reconnect with her soul. She reinvented herself while searching for spirituality, and she began writing extensively and traveling the world to speak at high profile events in places like Harvard and the Swedish Royal Palace. In reaction to a potential global inter-faith clash, she created an award-winning project promoting tolerance and respect for diversity, and she joined the Egyptian revolution in its early days to demand freedom and democracy, all while wearing a headscarf.
In addition to sharing basic information about Islam and what attracted her back to it as her chosen way of life, Sahar draws on her extensive multi-cultural experience to view Islam within the modern context of our fast-paced material life. She inspires the reader to view the world from new perspectives as she re-examines world issues touching everyone’s life: politics, gender, diversity, ethics, business, and religious tension, from her personal view a a woman, a Muslim, and a citizen of the world.
This book is for the global reader, to inform and inspire and to help break barriers and encourage communication across divides of race and creed. It is also a good tool for addressing integration issues related to Muslim immigrants and asylum seekers. But most of all, this book is meant to show how women can help make this a better world, by reaching out and speaking up, to challenge ignorance and hate and to engage the world in a peaceful dialogue based on facts, mutual respect and friendship.