The Founder

Ironic that I'm calling myself 'The Founder' since I'm still on a journey of finding myself. But, technically I have founded Massar. My little dream that is now a reality. 

Salaams! My name is Rubina and I am a student of life. I've been blessed to have a wide and varied career and a myriad of life experiences that I am so grateful for. But I have always felt like I should be doing something more. I'm creative, enjoy learning and I have a deep desire to help others... and I've finally discovered a way to combine all three. 

The prologue...

In the summer of 2020, like so many others who were struggling with the impact of the covid pandemic, I was scared and stressed. I tried my best to cope with the changes the world was going through. And perhaps the stress was too much. It was during this time, that I became very ill with a rare autoimmune disease called Pyoderma Gangernosam (shout out to all PG warriors out there!).  I was hospitalised and many weeks later Doctors were able to make the diagnoses. I was left unable to walk, in severe pain, pumped full of drugs that impacted my overall health and a deep sadness. During this time, there were other hardships my family experienced, particularly the loss of a close loved one. This left me in a state of depression. 

It was during this time that my connection to the Almighty became stronger and I began my journey to re-discover Islam. Being immobile, I found solace in creating, by hand, 33 bead tasbih with semi-precious gemstones first they were experiments in design and craft. I used different types of thread, experimented with making tassels and alternate ways of finishing off the prayer beads.  I made them for myself and my family. It nourished my soul to create from the heart and I felt deeply connected to perform dhikr (repetition; remembrance of God - The Gracious, The most Merciful) using the tasbih.

I truly believe that my increase practice of Islam and renewed connection with The Merciful combined with therapy and supportive family helped me through this dark time. 

Although born into a Muslim immigrant family, being first-generation Canadian, my practice of Islam was stunted. I never really understood the why behind what I practiced. And there is so much confusion over what was cultural and what is Islamic. I want to understand Islam for what it really is. Without the cultural interpretation, or the patriarchal one. 

And, so I endeavour to craft a way to support myself and offer Muslim refugee women dignified employment while building a safe environment to share dialogue and remove the stigma of Refugees. I will share my personal journey learning about Refugees & Islam, building my social enterprise and selling handcrafted, high quality prayer beads.

In lieu of a picture of myself (let's be honest - i'm not a fan of being in front of the camera! 😅) I give you BlackBerry - my daughter's cat.  Isn't she cute!!! 

With love,