Attention All Muslim Converts!!!!!!!

4 12 2007

Open Letters, Open Hearts
Personal Letters from Muslims to Family, Friends and Others
 
Working Title: Open Letters, Open Hearts
Narrative Author/Editor: Christine (Amina) Benlafquih
Publisher: An-Najm Publishers, London , UK
Deadline for Submissions: January 31, 2008 (see Guidelines below)
 
 
About the Book
 
The anthology-style Open Letters, Open Hearts will feature heartfelt letters written by Muslims who appeal to their family, friends and others to open their hearts and minds to the message of Islam.
 
Most of us have been touched and inspired by an emotional piece of writing. Something as simple as a greeting card or as lengthy as a novel can successfully evoke emotion in a reader. Whether raw and direct, or gentle and persuasive, the power of the written word can not be denied. 
 
Muslims worldwide are invited to use this power and compose open letters which address the people and unique circumstances in their own lives from an Islamic perspective.  Whether differences need to be solved, religious issues explained, or concern expressed about someone’s harmful life choices, a letter allows the writer to convey sincerity and present Islamic values and teachings in a positive, relevant light.
 
Although Muslims naturally wish for others to recognize the truth of Islam, one of the main objectives of Open Letter, Open Hearts is to appeal to the emotional ties that connect us to family, friends and humanity in general. It is hoped that people of all faiths will find common ground with Muslims through the personal stories and situations revealed in the letters. Inshaa’ Allah, this connection will help open the door to better understanding of Muslims and Islam’s true teachings. 
 
The Open Letters, Open Hearts project was born of the editor’s desire to meet her personal da’wah obligation and help her non-Muslim family better understand her decision to embrace Islam.  All Muslims have a religious duty to give da’wah (invite others to Islam through teaching or example of good actions).  However, many Muslims are uncomfortable doing so, either due to inhibition or because family and friends aren’t open to such discussion.
 
Da’wah is not only directed at non-Muslims. Born-Muslims often find themselves dealing with family and friends who either don’t practice the religion at all, or neglect certain aspects of it.
 
Submitting an open letter to the anthology – and inshaa`Allah directly to the person(s) to whom it is addressed – offers a positive step towards meeting our da’wah obligation.
 
 
Submission Guidelines
 
– Please limit your letter to 1200 words or less.
 
– Submissions must be in English.  Proofread your letter carefully for spelling and grammar. Poorly written submissions will not be considered.
 
– You may submit more than one Open Letter, but each letter must be submitted separately.
 
– Letters may be written to an individual or a group (i.e. an entire family, colleagues, neighbors, etc.).
 
– Although general content to promote understanding of Islam is acceptable, letters which address very unique, personal situations are most likely to be selected.  For example, a revert to Islam may feel the need to explain his reversion to an angry family member. A born Muslim might want to clarify to her mother why some of her “Islamic” cultural practices are actually not compatible with the true teachings of Islam. Another writer might address a friend’s alcohol or gambling addiction. 
 
– Open Letters of a political nature or letters which address a vast group of people (i.e. letters addressed to the West, all Americans, world leaders, etc.) will be considered only if the content and message will outlive today’s current events.
 
– Whatever the letter’s theme, the content must contain relevant and correct Islamic perspective or teaching. Passages from the Holy Qur’an and Ahadeeth should be referenced.
 
– Write from the heart. Letters with a strong emotional component are highly desired.  References to personal events and family history will help evoke memories and stir emotion in all readers.
 
– The tone of the letters should be kind, informative and non-judgmental. Hateful or inflammatory language will immediately disqualify a submission.
 
– Any topic is welcome, as long as the writer successfully relates it to Islam. Possible topics include:
 
– Culture versus religion
– Comparison of Christianity and Islam
– Explanation of conversion/reversio n
– Incompatibility of the Trinity with Islam
– Infinite Mercy of God
– Women in Islam
– Islamic appearance and dress
– Comparison of the Torah, the Bible, and the Qu’ran
– Current events and terrorism
Tawheed and the belief in One God
– Islam’s views of Jesus and Maryam, peace be upon them
– Harmful lifestyle choices and practices
– Polygany
– Concept of submission to Allah
– Non-Muslim and Islamic holidays
– Rights of parents and children
– Tenets of Islam
– Commonalities and differences between Christianity and Islam
Shirk and the association of others with Allah
 
 
How to Submit
 
Submissions must be made electronically by email to OpenLetters.OpenHearts@yahoo.com.  Please write “Submission” in the subject line.  
 
Include only one submission per email.
 
Use double spacing and select a 12 pt. Roman font (such as Times New Roman).
 
Save your document as a Word file (.doc) or Rich Text Format (.rtf) and attach it to the email.  (Please do not copy and paste your submission into the body of the email.)
 
Include the following information on the first page of your submission.  Copy and paste the header directly into your document.
 
Your name
Nationality
Email address
City/State/Country of Residence
Introduction
 
The introduction should be a sentence or short paragraph which offers background to your letter. An example might be: I am an American Muslim convert of 14 years writing a letter to my brother, who is considering converting to Judaism.
 
 
Privacy and Anonymity
 
Your privacy and that of your family and friends is important. If your letter is selected, you will be asked what name you would like to be published under (real name, first name, kunya or pseudonym).  Names, localities, and other details which help identify the addressee(s) will be changed when needed to protect their privacy.
 
 
Payment
 
As this is a da’wah project to promote better understanding of Islam and Muslims, the publisher, editor and contributors will receive no monetary compensation. Writers of letters selected for publication will receive two copies of the printed anthology.
 
 
About the Narrative Author/Editor
 
Christine (Amina) Benlafquih is a freelance writer and the current publications officer of the Islamic Writers Alliance.  A former publications and public relations director, she accepted Islam in 1993. She lives in Morocco with her husband and six children.
 
 
Contact Information
 
If you need more information, please contact the editor at OpenLetters.OpenHearts@ yahoo.com






More on Muslims 9/11, Terrorism, Bin Laden Video

12 09 2007

ISLAM-OPED: 9/11 EVOKES PAINFUL MEMORIES FOR U.S. MUSLIM – TOP

ISLAM-OPED is a national syndication service of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) designed to offer an American Muslim perspective on current political, social and religious issues. ISLAM-OPED commentaries are offered free-of-charge to one media outlet in each market area. Permission for publication will be granted on a first-come-first-served basis.

CONTACT: ihooper@cair.com
TEL: Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787, 202-744-7726 (c)

Please consider the following commentary for publication.

ISLAM-OPED: 9/11 EVOKES PAINFUL MEMORIES FOR U.S. MUSLIM
By Danette Zaghari-Mask
WORD COUNT: 471

[Danette Zaghari-Mask is executive director of the Orlando chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Orlando). CAIR is the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy group. Contact her at: dmask@cair.com For a photo, see: http://www.cair.com/Chapters.aspx#Orlando]

On the anniversary of 9/11, the memory of those once full of life evoke painful thoughts. I cringe at the panic that they must have endured, and join the mourning of fellow Americans who lost loved ones.

Even if we did not know someone directly effected by the tragedy, we know where we were when the towers fell or when the Pentagon was hit.
I delivered my first child 13 days after 9/11. In the days leading up to his birth, I wept.

I wept as a human, as an American and as a Muslim sickened by the reports of militants who claimed “victory” under the banner of Islam.
I gave birth and then cried as a mother for having endured, only to bring a new life into such a troubled world.

Since that time, opportunities have arisen to speak to my fellow Americans about Islam and Muslims. I, like millions of Muslims across the world, stood in solidarity against terrorism and a firm conviction that Islam, by its very definition, rejects terrorism.
Islam is an Arabic word that translates as “peace through submission to God.”

Those who perpetrated the 9/11 attacks did not discriminate between people of different faiths; rather, they discriminated against every person who did not submit to their twisted ideology.

The perpetrators of 9/11, and those with an agenda to silence the moderate Muslim majority, want us all to believe that Islam itself is the instigator of terror. If we can defeat those ideas in our own minds, we can defeat the mesmerizing effect of those who seek interfaith division and discord.

There are an estimated 1.2 billion Muslims in the world who overwhelmingly desire peace and look to Islam for inspiration.

I am teaching my son the Quran, the Muslim holy book. He is learning that if someone kills another it is “as though he has slain all mankind, and he who saved one life should be regarded as though he has saved the lives of all mankind” (5:32).

He is learning the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad: “The best jihad is saying a word of truth in the court of an unjust ruler” and a believer is one “in whom all of mankind has a sanctuary for its life and property.”

Today, I have more optimism and more reasons to be hopeful than six years ago.
My son celebrated his birthday early this year with contagious courage and spirit. His smile is so wide I think sometimes it will touch the creases of his brown eyes.

He and all of our children are, after all, the possibility beyond the borderline that creates “us” and “them.” The memory of 9/11 motivates me to raise my son to achieve his full potential.

Our children are seeds of peace and, with the right nurturing, future friends of peace.

—–

CAIR: U.S. MUSLIM GROUP BLASTS BIN LADEN VIDEO – TOP
United Press International, 9/11/07
http://www.upi.com/NewsTrack/Top_News/2007/09/11/us_muslim_group_blasts_bin_laden_video/6189/

A Washington-based U.S. Muslim advocacy group Tuesday condemned a new video in which Osama bin Laden praises a Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist.

Posted on Islamic Web sites, the video does not show bin Laden but has a still photo of the al-Qaida founder and about 14 minutes of bin Laden purportedly talking about one of the hijackers.

Al-Qaida claimed responsibility for the hijackings and the suicide airliner attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon near Washington six years ago.

“The despicable actions of the 9/11 hijackers should be repudiated by all Muslims, not praised as examples to follow,” a statement from the Council on American-Islamic Relations said. “There can be no moral, ethical or religious justification for such cowardly attacks on innocent civilians. CAIR joins with Americans of all faiths in mourning the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, and asks that we all use today’s anniversary to enhance our efforts to repudiate religious extremism and to promote mutual understanding.” (MORE)

SEE ALSO:

CAIR-NY: MUSLIMS MOURN 9/11 VICTIMS – TOP

(NEW YORK, NY, 9/11/2007) — The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY) participated in a moment of silence for the victims of the 9/11 attacks at Sunday’s “Muslim Day Parade” in that city.

Hundreds marched down Madison Avenue to celebrate their commitment to interfaith peace and tolerance. CAIR-NY Civil Rights Director Aliya Latif joined Senator Bill Perkins, Councilmember Robert Jackson and other community leaders to address parade attendees.

“CAIR-NY mourns with all Americans over the tragedy at Ground Zero,” said CAIR-NY Community Affairs Director Faiza Ali. “We send our sincere condolences to the families of 9/11 victims. Their loved ones will not be forgotten.”

CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 33 offices, chapters and affiliates nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

CONTACT: CAIR-NY Civil Rights Director Aliya Latif, 212-870-2002, 732-429-4268, alatif@cair.com

CAIR-AZ: READERS REFLECT ON LIFE 6 YEARS AFTER 9/11 – TOP
Arizona Republic, 9/11/07
http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/arizonaliving/articles/0911911reflections.html

Initially, Fawzia Tung didn’t think the attacks on Sept. 11 really affected her life. She was wrong. She soon realized it had a big impact on the way she viewed her religion.

Tung, 50, is a Chinese Muslim living in Phoenix and working for the Council on American-Islamic Relations. But it was only after the attacks that Tung unconsciously took her life down a more politically active path.

At the time of the attacks, Tung was a stay-at-home mom to seven children. She felt very free living in the U.S., able to practice her faith openly. She had no qualms about wearing her scarf in public because nobody paid any notice. But things changed the day the four planes crashed.

“Right after it happened, I was terribly conscious I was wearing a scarf,” she said. “I felt like everybody was looking at me.”

Her husband urged her to stay home if she could. He would do the grocery shopping, a monumental offer. For Tung, it was stay home or heed her husband’s advice to go out without her scarf, an option she had never until that moment considered.

“I know a number of friends who took it (the scarf) off right after 9/11,” she said.

Tung was conflicted. She always considered her relationship with Allah a private one. But her scarf became a symbol in the wake of the attacks.

“It was never a social thing before. All of a sudden it became something different,” Tung said.

A woman at a garage sale told Tung she supported her and held no ill will toward Muslims.

She decided to stand tall for her religion. Tung went to work at an Islamic school and later joined the staff at CAIR.

Looking back, Tung believes the social effects of the attacks had a positive influence on her.

“I didn’t do anything particularly Islamic before that,” she said. “I was just living my life.”

CAIR: A HIJACKED IDENTITY: MUSLIM AMERICAN REFLECTS ON SEPT. 11 – TOP
National Public Radio, 9/11/07

LISTEN: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=14318955

The events of Sept. 11 changed the lives of many Americans, including American Muslims. Arsalan Iftikhar, a regular contributor, and former representative to the Council on American Islamic Relations, explains how the attacks impacted his work as a spokesman for Muslim Americans in the national media.

CAIR-CA REP REFLECTS ON EFFECTS OF 9/11 – TOP
Munira Syeda, Orange County Register, 9/11/07
http://www.ocregister.com/life/style-span-font-1840625-bold-weight

Scurrying about my Berkeley apartment six years ago, I was preparing to leave for a journalism conference in Lake Tahoe. I turned on the TV, and noticed morning news programs running footage of the collapsing Twin Towers. On first impulse, I dismissed the coverage as a faraway international disaster.

Soon, reality hit me. Grief over loss of 3,000 innocent lives replaced indifference, and then quickly gave way to fear. I cringed, secretly praying – God, don’t let it be Muslims. Before long, America learned al-Qaida was behind the attacks.

Over the years, I have spent considerable time educating co-workers, friends and strangers about the basic tenets of Islam, its principles of respect, brotherhood, establishment of human rights and peace and justice. However, I have also observed tremendous backlash against all things Muslim.

From prejudice to discrimination to outright hatred, the American Muslim community has been targeted frequently by a minority who view American Muslims as the “other.” In fact, a USA Today/Gallup Poll conducted last year shows strong feelings against Muslims. Nearly 40 percent of the respondents claimed having at least some prejudice toward Muslims. Another estimated 40 percent also favored having Muslims bear special identification to prevent future terror attacks on our soil.

Despite that, there also has been much support and sympathy offered to the Muslim community after 9/11. Japanese Americans, the Latino and African American communities, Christian, Jewish and other faith observers have stood by Muslims during difficult times. They too had personally experienced, or witnessed discrimination and prejudice promoted against various other minorities. Native Americans were driven out of their homeland, Blacks were enslaved and segregated against, and Japanese Americans were interned. As new immigrants, Jews, Asians, Italians and Catholics weren’t treated any better either.

As I write this column, I ponder the post 9/11 world we live in. I think about the irrational fear that has gripped us and impacts our judgment. The continued civil rights violations and the controversial Patriot Act, the aggressive call for profiling of Muslims and Arabs at airports and other places, the misadventure in Iraq, and the political turmoil the Bush Administration is embroiled in are all examples of this fear.

We proudly claim how 9/11 has not changed us or our values. Let us look around, though. We are now a nation consumed by an alarming level of polarization. The Democrat and the Republican split, the pro-war/anti-war camps, and the conservative versus liberal factions are a symptom of the deeper unrest and anxiety challenging our society.

Nonetheless, I believe in America as a great country for not only Muslims but people of all backgrounds and colors. Our nation’s greatness lies in the founding principles of pluralism, inclusion and equality for all.

Americans used to converse with each other. We used to dialogue. Now, we bicker. We compete in who can shout louder. We feel so threatened by the other side that we quickly attempt to silence it.

We must change our ways. We must make a concerted effort to change our un-American policies and attitudes. Otherwise, we will have allowed al-Qaida to redefine America, and not for the better.

[Munira Syeda is Communications Coordinator for Council on American-Islamic Relations, Greater Los Angeles Area.]

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CAIR CONDEMNS BIN LADEN’S PRAISE FOR 9/11 HIJACKER
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 9/11/07) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today condemned a new video by Osama bin Laden in which the terror leader eulogizes a 9/11 hijacker.

In a statement, the Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group said:

“The despicable actions of the 9/11 hijackers should be repudiated by all Muslims, not praised as examples to follow. There can be no moral, ethical or religious justification for such cowardly attacks on innocent civilians. CAIR joins with Americans of all faiths in mourning the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and asks that we all use today’s anniversary to enhance our efforts to repudiate religious extremism and to promote mutual understanding. “

CAIR issued a joint American Muslim statement of condemnation within hours of the 9/11 attacks and published a similar statement in a full-page advertisement in the Washington Post just days later.

SEE: CAIR Full Page Advertisement, Sunday, September 16, 2001, Washington Post
SEE ALSO: U.S. Muslims Repudiate Rhetoric, Worldview of Al-Qaeda (CAIR)

To read about CAIR’s other anti-terror initiatives, go to:
http://www.cair.com/AmericanMuslims/AntiTerrorism.aspx

CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 33 offices, chapters and affiliates nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

- END -





Condemnation of 9/11 From Shaykh Mustapha Morsey and all scholars at Al Quran Wa Sunnah Islamic Site of Learning.

11 09 2007

 Shaykh Morsy was recently interviewed by the media and here is his statement denouncing 9/11. This statement also serves as the official statement of SunnahfollowersNet.

Follow the link to read it:

http://quransunnahfollowers.wordpress.com/2007/09/11/denounce-911/





An American Muslim speaks about 9/11 and Bin Laden’s latest video-Full Length Version

11 09 2007

Dr. Ali Shehata’s response to the endless stream of bin Laden threats that have yet to be answered by anyone else. This is the full length version.





Child Abuse & A Call To The Muslims

3 07 2007

muslim-orphan-children.jpgWhen I look at my children, I see the typical childhood, worry free. Unfortunatley that is not the case for millions of children worldwide. Many children spend their days and nights worrying about where their next meal will come from, where they will sleep, wondering if they will be abused today. My heart breaks for these children. .

In third world countries, the United States is often viewed as some kind of Utopia. Americans are often viewed as rich and powerful, with perfectly safe homes, and happy spoiled kids. This isn’t always the case. In fact, many Americans do not live so well, many Americans don’t evn have homes, and many kids are like the children I just mentioned above: helpless, victimized, and weary.The truth is abuse knows no race, religion, country, or status. It happens everywhere.

During 2005, Child Protective Services (CPS) agencies investigated an estimated 3.6 million cases of child maltreatment. Of those investigations, approximatley one quarter were determined to have been abused or neglected. That is about 899,000 in the US, DC and Puerto Rico.[http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/pubs/cm05/chaptersix.htm#prevent].

Reading the reports and statistics can make one feel absolutely powerless. However, we can make a difference. Muslims should notify the Imams of their communites promptly and set about steps to correct the situation. In additon see these links:

Educate yourself on the signs of child abuse: http://www.preventchildabusewi.org/signs2A.htm

If you suspect a child is being abused notify your local CPS agency or if in the US call the national hotline: 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453)

To learn more about prevention and the child help organization: http://www.childhelp.org/get_help

Foster Care: A Fact Sheet for Prospective Muslim Families

http://www.brycs.org/documents/FOSTERCA.PDF

As Muslims, we should try to make an effort to get our community to form support groups, build shelters, and become a refuge for the abused children in our communities. The Muslim children who are abused need to be in Muslim shelters and houses. Many muslims do not hesitate to donate to their favorite political campaign or send money overseas. However, we need help right here in our own communites. We have alot that needs to be done right under our noses. We need to stop making excuses. It’s time to step up and make a positive change!!!

“We get calls for Muslim foster families, for Muslim children…and we cannot place them. When everyone says no, that means they are placed wherever the state can place them. That will be within a culture and religion that is foreign to them. Every day they are within a non-Muslim home diminishes their religious identity.” (Molly Dagett, MSW Lutheran Social services. taken from: Foster Care: A fact sheet for prospective muslim families).

The Prophet (saw) said: Whoever sponsors an orphan will be like this with me in paradise and the put his middle and index fingers together. (Bukhari, Muslim)

Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship, and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, Al-Masakin (the poor), the neighbour who is near of kin, the neighbour who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and those (slaves) whom your right hands possess. Verily, Allah does not like such as are proud and boastful; Those who are miserly and enjoin miserliness on other men and hide what Allah has bestowed upon them of His Bounties…. (Qur’an 4:36-37)muslim-orphan-girl.jpg





The Character of A Muslim Woman

29 06 2007

muslimwomensitting.jpgLet’s face it. As women we can be cruel to each other. As for men, I don’t know the politics of their relationships being that I am not a man. Therefore, I will not speak about men. Though, I do know the relationships and cruelty we women show one another. It seems that everything is  a competition. Who is the most pious, intelligent, who has the best children, who is the most beautiful and on and on.In my opinion this competitveness is our human nature. However, as Muslim women we should be above this nonsense. Sadly, many of us are not. Many of us can not control our tongues. We love to backbite and gossip about other sisters. Maybe, it makes us feel better about our own less than perfect lives.  Women are quick to point out which woman needs to lose weight, which woman has a big nose or out of date clothing. We are quick to look down on the sister who gives  us something that we view as small. Allah (swt) and the Prophet(Saw) advises us:
“And backbite not one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is the One Who forgives and accepts repentance, Most Merciful.” (49:12)

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do you know what is backbiting?” The Companions said: “Allah and His Messenger know better.” Thereupon he said, “Backbiting is talking about your (Muslim) brother in a manner which he dislikes.” It was said to him: “What if my (Muslim) brother is as I say.” He said, “If he is actually as you say, then that is backbiting; but if that is not in him, that is slandering.”
[Muslim].


Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Prophet (PBUH) saying, “A person utters a word thoughtlessly (i.e., without thinking about its being good or not) and, as a result of this, he will fall down into the fire of Hell deeper than the distance between the east and the west.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].


The Prophet (saw) said: The two sins that will be punished for most in the grave are slander (in some narrations it says backbiting) and failure to clean yourself after usuing the toilet. (Bukhari)

O ye who believe! Let not some men among you laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor let some women laugh at others: It may be that the (latter are better than the (former): Nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames: Ill-seeming is a name connoting wickedness, (to be used of one) after he has believed: And those who do not desist are (indeed) doing wrong. (English translation of Qur’an 49:11)


Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “O Muslim women! None of you should look down upon the gift sent by her she-neighbour even if it were the trotters of the sheep (fleshless part of legs).” (Bukhari, Book #47, Hadith #740)

Ramadan, the month that is supposed to bring us many rewards, turns into the month which we ruin our good deeds.  Let me explain. We spend the days in fasting, devotion, and rememberance of Allah. Then, in the evening we throw a lavish iftar meal to break our fast. Usually every night of the week is spent at a different house. What happens at these iftars? Well, on the women’s side it is usually gossiping, backbiting, and sometimes down right slander. Often you will find little to no rememberance of Allah at these gatherings.  We all compete to see who can make the most intricate dishes and look down on the households who have less to offer. How many of us actually invite the needy Muslims to our iftars? How many of us even send food to the masjid for the needy muslims in our area? Not many. Instead we invite only those we deem as our friends or those up the ladder in the community in an effort to wow them.  Next time, you are in these situations,Reflect on these words from Allah (swt) and the Prophet (Saw):


“Not a word does he (or she) utter, but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it).” (50:18)


Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Those people who leave a gathering in which they have not remembered Allah, will conclude it as if it has foul odour similar to that of a rotten carcass of a donkey. And it will be a cause of grief to them.”
[Abu Dawud].


“Allaah does not look at the outward appearance or wealth of any one of you, but He looks at your hearts and deeds.” (Narrated by Muslim from the hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah).


Sahl bin Sa`d As-Sa`idi (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man passed by the Prophet (PBUH), so he asked a man who was sitting near him, “What is your opinion about this man?” That man replied: “He is one of the noblest men. By Allah he is certainly a proper person for (a girl) being given in marriage if he seeks to marry, and his recommendation is fit to be accepted if he recommends”. Messenger of Allah (PBUH) remained silent. Then another man passed. Messenger of Allah (PBUH) enquired, “What is your opinion about this man?” He replied: “O Messenger of Allah, he is one of the poor Muslims. He is not a proper person (for a girl) to be given in marriage to, and his recommendation would not be accepted if he makes one; if he speaks, he is not to be listened to.” Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He is better than the former by earthfuls”.
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].


“And they give food, in spite of their love for it (or for the love of Him), to the Miskeen (the poor), the orphan, and the captive(English translation Qur’an,76:8)


As mothers, we are in a constant bragging competition about our children. My child can do this. Oh my goodness, your child can not do that yet! wow! My son did that months ago! What you don’t breastfeed? Oh how horrible! You are satisfied with the number of kids you have? Well, as for me i want a houseful.  This is completely ridiculous. Not only are you bragging but you are also making another sister feel bad. In my opinion, the only people who indulge in this type of talk are insecure about their own children and choices. As parents, we all want the best for our children. Though, we don’t always know what that is. So, we are constantly trying to compare and think we have a victory when our child reaches a milestone before another child his/her age.  This bragging and comparing  seems to give women the validation they crave in order to feel they are doing a good job raising their children.

It is narrated on the authority of Abu Shuraih al-Khuzai’ that the Prophet (may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) observed: He who believes in Allah and the Last Day should do good to his neighbour and he who believes in Allah and the Last Day should show hospitality to the guest and he who believes in Allah and the Last Day should either speak good or better remain silent. (Muslim, Book #001, Hadith #0078)

In our race to prove who is the most pious, we often get no rewards at all.  You see, it all comes back to the intention:
Narrated ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab: I heard Allah’s Apostle saying, “The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended. So whoever emigrated for worldly benefits or for a woman to marry, his emigration was for what he emigrated for.” (Bukhari, Book #1, Hadith #1)

A woman may pray quickly at home remembering Allah little, though when she’s in the masjid she will take her time and sit and do the dhikr and read Qur’an so that everyone will see how pious she is. Similarly, one may not dress islamically, though, when they go to the masjid they will put on the full garb.  Some Muslims strive to be teachers of Islam simply to get the recognition. Our Beloved Prophet (saw) said about these people: Jundub (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “He who so acts to show off, Allah will disgrace him on the Day of Resurrection, and he who does good deeds so that people (may hold him in high esteem), Allah will expose his hidden evil intentions before the people on the Day of Resurrection.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].


If you are seeking knowledge to show up other muslims and say you have knowledge then this is of no benefit.
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah(PBUH) said, “He who does not acquire knowledge with the sole intention of seeking the Pleasure of Allah but for worldly gain, will not smell the fragrance of Jannah on the Day of Resurrection.”
[Abu Dawud].


As for beauty the Prophet (saw) said:
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So you should marry the religious woman (otherwise) you will be a losers. (Bukhari, Book #62, Hadith #27)


‘A’isha, the wife of Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him), reported Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) as saying: Kindness is not to be found in anything but that it adds to its beauty and it is not withdrawn from anything but it makes it defective. (Muslim#6274)

Let’s Remember these hadiths and pass them on to our families and friends:
It is attested on the authority of Anas b. Malik that the Prophet (may peace and blessings be upon him) observed: one amongst you believes (truly) till one likes for his brother or for his neighbour that which he loves for himself. (Muslim,Book #001, Hadith #0072)


Narrated Abu Musa: The Prophet said, “A faithful believer to a faithful believer is like the bricks of a wall, enforcing each other.” While (saying that) the Prophet clasped his hands, by interlacing his fingers. (Bukhari, Book #8, Hadith #468)

So, Instead of tearing each other down, let’s reinforce one another. The whole world seems to be coming at Muslim women from all sides trying convince us we are opressed and turn us back from Islam. We need to put aside our petty ways and come together and be strong Muslimahs. Because the greatest weapon we have against the Shaytan (devil, Iblees) is each other.I advise myself first. Any truth here is from Allah and any mistakes are from myself and Shaytan.





Religion & TV

28 06 2007

helpwantedsign3.jpgDear friends,

I am asking for your help as a part of a survey I am conducting regarding Religion and TV habits. The questions found on this survey describe what I am studying and why. Your response to this survey is totally voluntary and anonymous, but it would be so very helpful if you do respond.

You may respond to the survey by clicking the following link:

http://www.Advanced Survey.com/ default.asp? SurveyID= 53307

(If you cannot click the link above, please copy and paste the URL in its entirety into your browser’s address bar.)

Also, if you could forward this to your friends or lists I would be so appreciative. I truly hope that this survey will point to a way where people can live in peace.

If you have any questions, please write to me and I will be happy to address any questions, concerns or comments. Thank you very much in advance. I look forward to hearing from you!

Sincerely,

Dr. Ali Shehata

****Please forward this to all your contacts****








Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 153 other followers