Grappling with religion

Video: why writer and scholar Reza Aslan wants a Muslim 'Modern Family' for Americans

“You’re more likely to die from faulty furniture than an Islamic terrorist.”

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When it comes to portraying Muslims in American films and shows, there’s hardly any room for positive roles other than getting typecast as terrorists hijacking planes.

And the good Muslims? The good guys? They die too soon.

The bigotry, says writer and religious scholar Reza Aslan, comes from fear, which in turn cares nothing for data. Wondering how this fear can be overcome, Aslan looks for parallels from the changing public attitude to same sex marriage. His solution? A Modern Family with Muslims in it (video above).

It’s not new, but, argues Aslan, needs to be reiterated: do for the average Muslim family what television shows like Will and Grace and Modern Family did for same-sex families and relationships. “The only way you’re going to dissipate that fear is by getting people to know someone that they’re afraid of,” concludes Aslan in a video in Vox’s The Secret Life of Muslims series.

Many of Aslan’s battles have been in the newsrooms. In an interview (video below) with Fox News Channel, he had to answer more questions about his religion than about his book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, which later became New York Times bestseller.

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“The hardest part for me when I’m being interviewed is to tamp down my astonishment,” Aslan says. “The thing that’s mostly going through my mind is, ‘Calm down, calm down.’”

And so when Aslan calmly rebutted negative stereotypes in his interview with CNN (video below), it went big on social media. His defence of Islam and the differentiation of the everyday version of the faith from the extremist position earned him cheers and death threats on Twitter at the same time.

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These GIFs show you what it means to miss breakfast

That monstrous roar is your empty stomach.

Let’s take a glance at your every day morning routine. You crawl out of bed, go for a quick shower, pull out and wear your neatly ironed clothes at the speed of light and then rush out of the house, making sure you have your keys and wallet in place.

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You walk into office, relieved because you have made it to work on time. Stifling yawns and checking emails, you wonder how your colleagues are charged up and buzzing with energy. “What is wrong with these people” you mumble to yourself.

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Slowly, you start to change. You start snapping at colleagues and start arguing with your computer. You take out your frustration on anything or anyone in sight.

To add to the aggressive behaviour, you’ve completely lost your focus. After some time, you simply forget what you were doing.

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Unable to bear the hunger pangs, you go for a mid-morning snack. It is only when a colleague asks you for a bite do you realize that you have developed into a fully formed, hunger fueled, monster. Try not to look at yourself in the mirror.

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If only you had spared not even twenty or ten but just 5 minutes in the morning and not skipped breakfast, your story would look completely different - as you will see in this video.

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The fast dip in your mood and lack of focus is because your body has missed its most important meal of the day – breakfast. Research has shown that skipping a meal, especially in the morning, worsens the mood because there is a drop in the blood sugar. This in turn affects the levels of serotonin and dopamine, the chemicals produced in the brain that control our moods and feelings. In simpler English, not having breakfast is going to make you really cranky and confused!

Morning is also when the body needs maximum nutrition to function efficiently through the day as you’ve just woken up from a full 7 hours of no food (and if you’re sleeping less than that, that’s a whole other article).

So in short, having a breakfast could make you go from looking like the earlier GIFs to this:

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But with changing lifestyles and most people hard pressed for time, a healthy breakfast is taking the backseat. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. MTR has come up with a range of widely loved Indian delicacies like Poha, Upma and Halwa which can be made in (hold you breath) just 3 minutes! All you have to do is add hot water and wait for 3 minutes to get a delicious and filling breakfast.

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These amazing and delicious breakfasts can be made in a jiffy and consumed with the least hassle, even in the midst of your frenetic morning routine. So grab your #MTRbreakfastin3 to start the day on an awesome note.

Click here to make breakfast a part of your morning routine.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of MTR and not by the Scroll editorial team.