Ruby Usman

Ruby was born in the slums of Karachi, Pakistan. She has experienced sexual abuse at the hands of many men as a child; some of them strangers and others, close family members. She grew up as a Muslim woman and experienced violence as an integral part of society and culture. She now writes about these traditions and hopes that by starting these debates, a new face of Islam is revealed. A new Islam with love, compassion and forgiveness for ALL irrespective of their gender, race and colour.


  1. Maggie Lawson
    October 14, 2017 @ 2:52 pm

    I was interested but not surprised how language can change a sense of agency. Neuroscience has shown that trauma is held in the body by memory cells. This is a new concept of the body’s capabilities and the complexity of the neuro-biological relationship. The impact of trauma is probably easier to understand as hyper-response and hypo-response, (flight or flight response). Children exposed to early repeated trauma can adapt by being in both at once. This is crippling and the source of inner turmoil (mind) and outer (body as rigid or immobility) It is frightening and terrifying. The release of cortisol is part of the autonomic system which makes it beyond conscious control over years this becomes known as Allostatic Load in which the body is unable to return to homeostasis. The consequences are what used to be known as psychosomatic illness. it includes, rhuematoid arthritis, asthma, IBS, fibromyalgia, cardiovascular disease and sleep apnoea. this is a complex medical presentation and benefits from medication, C-Pap Sleep Therapy (this changed my life) and after ten years the Fibromyalgia has reduced its intensity. It also meant a commitment by myself and counsellor to long term management of the psychological development. This has made my life more bearable. I dont say ‘We store the pain” I say the pain is stored in the body, that is its role. However, neuro-science and psychological theory has certainly benefitted from understanding more fully the role of ‘practicing mindfulness ( I began meditating over 19 years ago now as spiritual practice and its benefits were immediate. However, I needed all this new data and research to fully benefit from it alone.

    • Ruby Usman
      October 14, 2017 @ 3:14 pm

      Thank you, Maggie for such a detailed comment on my blog. It affirms the idea that body does show signs of trauma and the trauma goes deep into the cells of the body. For me, it took meditation as well as various body therapies to release and the process continues. I also think that children often experience “freeze” rather than flight or fight response and that means that we are so used to numbing ou bodies and keeping the trauma within…