02/13/2014 01:04 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Ten Surprising Desires Of Muslim Men

Conventional wisdom holds that women want chocolate, roses and fancy dinners on Valentine's Day. (We think it's more complex than that, of course.) But what about men? As editors of the new anthology, "Salaam, Love: American Muslim Men on Love, Sex & Intimacy," we decided to find out. We turned to the experts - our 22 insightful and courageous contributors.

Here's a sampling of the sweet, funny, and sometimes surprising desires they shared with us:

1. Seeing Women In Leadership Roles

mohammad shamma

"To enter a mosque that allows men and women to pray side-by-side, and allows women to give sermons and lead prayer."
-Mohammed Shamma

2. The Quest For the Perfect Beard

sam pierstorff

"To grow a beard long enough to make ZZ Top jealous, without fear of being called a fundamentalist."
-Sam Pierstorff

3. A More Active Role In the Home


"To be the perfect cook. I love making dinner for my wife Samira."
-Yusef Ramelize

4. More Compassionate and Inclusive Communities


"An end to the shame culture. More spaces that welcome everyone and are an environment of love and inclusiveness."
-Randy Nasson

5. To Be Seen As an Individual, Not a Symbol

john austin

"For people to know that Muslims pretty much desire what anyone else does. That though many of us find comfort in our faith, it does not immunize us from the human experience."
-John Austin

6. The Space to Be Vulnerable


"To not have to act tough all the time."
-Anthony Springer

7. A Celebration Of the Diversity Of the Community


"More visible organized progressive Muslim groups that celebrate the diversity of the human experience."
-Ramy Eletreby

8. Commitment and Affection


"For my wife to teach me Surahs, to be led instead of leading whether in prayer or lovemaking sometimes."
-Stephen Leeper

9. Involved Parenting

sam pierstorff

"To raise intelligent, self-reliant, kind-hearted children."
-Sam Pierstorff

10. Flying Carpets


All 22 men we asked agreed on the need for more flying carpets. We concur!

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