Park Street Cultural Tour

Home on Park Street
Four Days in the Corridor
Experiencing Community
What the Kids Said

Day One
Chadbourne College
Sadie Pearson & Richard Davis
Trinity Church
Ideal Body Shop
Park Street Shoe Repair
Yee's Laundry
La Movida
Mercado Marimar
Bram's Addition

Day Two
Early Childhood Center
Yue-Wah Oriental Foods
Boys & Girls Club
Style & Grace Salon
St. Mark's Lutheran Church
Romnes Apartments
Yasmin's Halal Meat Market
Miracle's Home
Neighborhood House
Italian Workmen's Club
Family Potluck

Day Three
Meriter Hospital
Bayview Mural
Bocce Ball
Beth Israel Synagogue
Wisconsin Union Hoofers
Mexico Lindo
Fishing Along Wingra Creek

Day Four
AFL-CIO (Labor Temple)
Eugene Parks
Quality Ace Hardware
Oriental Shop
Lakeside Fibers
Chicken Underground
Family Daycare
Tropical Fish World
Quann Community Gardens
Multicultural Center

Street Scenes 1
Street Scenes 2
Park Street Delights 1
Park Street Delights 2

Dane County Cultural Tour
Hmong Cultural Tour

Prayer Rug
Elaborate designs
Of a rich golden red
Prayer rug, facing towards
The east, the window
The Kabah
Its owner
In full prostration,
Recites sacred chapters
Of the holy Koran
Prayer rug.

Yasmin's Halal Meat Market

1114 South Park Street

[Salih being interviewedYasmin’s Halal Meat Market] is owned by a Muslim man named Salih. He comes from southwest Wisconsin. . . . He was raised as a Catholic. He didn’t know there were such people as Muslims, until he came to Madison. He met his wife, who is also a Muslim, here. Her name is Yasmin, and she is from Somalia. She was single. He asked her why, and she told him that she had to marry a Muslim man. It said so in the Koran, a sacred book for the Muslims. Salih went back to southwest Wisconsin, and bought a Koran, and realized it was much like a bible, on which he had been raised. He became a Muslim soon after he read the Koran. He returned to Madison, but Yasmin had gone north, to Canada. When she came back, they married. Salih told us, “In Islam, I found peace is peaceful submission to the will of God.” Now he needed to learn how to pray.

There are five pillars that "support" Islam. The first is the oneness of God and Salih speaks about the Muslim faithMohammed, his messenger to the Muslims. The second is prayers. There are five daily prayers; the first at sunrise, the second at noon, the third in late afternoon, the fourth at sunset, and the last after night has fallen. He has a prayer rug, and when he prays on it, he faces eastward, because that’s where the Kabah, or house of God is. Before he prays, he washes himself, so as to wash away the sins he might have said or done. To pray, first you stand, and then you bow, then go down and do a full prostration. The third pillar is Ramadan’s fasting. It is controlled by the lunar calendar, and is 29-30 days long. You can't eat or drink at all during the day, but at night you can feast before the sun comes up, “and that is enough to keep you going through the day, actually,” says Salih. The fourth pillar is Zakat, which is giving to the poor. If you have had wealth that year, you need to give them at least 2.5% of your wealth. Finally, the fifth is Haij, which is a journey Fabric in the halal meat marketto the Kabah in Mecca at least once in your lifetime.

Then Salih went on to talk about Halal meat. Halal meat is not pork, since Muslims do not eat pork. But to be Halal meat, the animal must not be raised on other animal meat, and other animals cannot see it being killed. Also, Salih told us that after the September 11th attack, people had many prejudices against Muslims; they thought they were all terrorists! Salih is certainly NOT a terrorist. But, to get through it all, the Muslims just have to remember the oneness of God, he says. Then he recited a passage from the Koran: I have created you, men and women, to get to know each other. The best one among you is the one who sees through the eyes of God. . . .

Islam law prevents all Muslim people from eating pork. It is Haram. Impermissible. Like alcohol or profanity or unnecessary violence. All other meats though are halal. Good fro the mind, the soul, and the body.

Link back to the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures

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Page Last Updated: January 12, 2005