Lyrical Nourishment to me is an event that offers the space for artists to share their authentic voices in regards to faith, life, and purpose. My intention for this event is not to only put together a great show but to create the culture of openness and acceptance within a islamic community. My desire is that every person who comes to our open mic leaves feeling entertained and connected to both their fellow human beings and Allah, and if we are really lucky inspired enough to create a piece for the next show! I want all those first timers to find their voice and feel safe to share their souls with us because I truly believe that no story or perspective is void of magic. This is why Zawiya Perspective has invested to obtain high end video and recording equipment so that performances are professionally recorded and put online for performers to be able to share with a larger audience on the web. Lyrical Nourishment is what it is today because of the bravery of those that left their comfort zones and shared a piece of their spirit with us. I thank every single performer for the courage and beauty reflected in their words on our stage. I recently was asked what my favorite moments of lyrical nourishment have been and thats such a tough question because between a performer wearing 10 layers of clothing and "undressing" his experience in front of us, to a glowstick drum circle halal rave, to a collective poem recited by my brother that included over 40 peoples words its hard to pick just one moment that has made this event what it is. I would have to say for me personally one of the most rewarding things has been co-hosting mostly because despite liking the act of sharing poetry I feel shy in front of a crowd! It's been beautiful to face my fears in an environment that is so accepting. That comfort and opening that my heart has felt is really what shapes the future dreams I have for lyrical nourishment. I would ultimately like to see an event like this to grow into a bigger space allowing for an arts and craft bazaar experience where other artists can express their talents through other artistic mediums as well. As our database of recorded pieces grow I also see the potential of doing a professionally recorded best hits of the zawiya as we have dhikrs, nasheeds, with guitar, drums, some great spoken word. Essentially my dream for this event is to connect artists from different walks of life, with different skills and create collaborative possibilities. I often hear spiritual entertainment sources are very limited so my prayer is that we can step in and fill the gaps to allow this generation to have a place to go that is both entertaining and soul enriching. I like to think of the Qur'an as one of the greatest artworks of Allah and so it becomes the breeding ground for inspiration that is other worldly. Plain and simple as an artist that is my greatest secret, I try to plagiarize God as often as I can! Whatever the source of your inspiration, I pray that you find it in your heart to come share your voice with us, to join our movement of love, and most importantly to be a part of our God loving family at the Zawiya.