Age of Jahiliyah

A blog of wide and varied interest, including Islam, Muslims, Poetry, Art and much more.

Archive for the day “September 22, 2006”

Bigotry and Ignorance of Islam

From AntiWar

by Charley Reese

President George Bush’s ignorance of the Middle East and its people is well-known. So also is his habit of parroting words and sentences given to him by other people. He hit a new low when he referred to “Islamic fascists.”

No two more opposite concepts are to be found. Fascism glorifies the nation-state; Islam is transnational. Fascism demands slavish devotion to a national leader; Muslims are far too independent-minded to be slavish followers of anybody. Virtually all the people Saddam Hussein murdered were people trying to overthrow him. Fascism is militaristic. Islam is not.

Mr. Bush, who has dubbed himself the “war president,” has made a pathetic and absurd effort to picture himself as Winston Churchill facing off against evil. He is no Churchill. Most of the enemies he imagines, he has created himself. Read more…

Selections from the Quran: We are returning to our Lord…

They said, ‘We do not care! We are returning to our Lord. We remain hopeful that our Lord will forgive us our mistakes for being the first of the muminun (believer).’

We revealed to Musa (Moses): ‘Travel with Our slaves by night. You will certainly be pursued.’ Pharaoh sent marshals into the cities: ‘These people are a small group and we find them irritating and we constitute a vigilant majority.’

We expelled them from gardens and springs, from treasures and a splendid situation. So it was! And We bequeathed them to the tribe of Israel.

So they pursued them towards the east. And when the two hosts came into sight of one another Musa’s companions said, ‘We will surely be overtaken!’ He said, ‘Never! My Lord is with me and He will guide me.’

So We revealed to Musa, ‘Strike the sea with your staff.’ And it split in two, each part like a towering cliff. And We brought the others right up to it. We rescued Musa and all those who were with him. Then We drowned the rest.

There is certainly a Sign in that yet most of them are not muminun.

Truly your Lord is the Almighty, the Most Merciful.

(Quran 26: 50-68)

President of Muslim Group offers N. American Perspective


TORONTO (CP) – With tensions between the Muslim community and mainstream North American society running high, Canadian Ingrid Mattson considers herself ideally positioned to assume leadership of North America’s largest Muslim organization.

As a woman and a late-in-life convert to Islam, Mattson’s background does not resemble that of many Islamic leaders, but she believes her unique perspective is part of why she was elected last week as the new president of the Islamic Society of North America.

The society’s primary focus is to forge a stronger connection between the Muslim community and North Americans, and for Mattson, much of that work will involve the removal of stereotypes.

“These grand constructs of Islam versus the west are undermined by someone like me in a very concrete way,” she said in an interview. “Unfortunately, these ideas have a lot of currency, even though they’re absurd.”

Mattson said her election sends a clear message that unity and co-existence are high priorities for a faith that has been under fire for several years.

“I do think that our members wanted someone . . .who can reflect the image of the community as a whole, which is a community that finds no contradiction between being Muslim and being North American.”

A mother of two children who grew up in Ontario as a Roman Catholic, Mattson was a late convert to Islam who abandoned her childhood religion as a teenager. She converted to Islam in 1987, months after completing her undergraduate degree in philosophy at the University of Waterloo. Read more…

Small Song by A. R. Ammons

The reeds give
way to the

wind and give
the wind away

What’s On Al-Ghazali: Writer’s notes

From Bite the Mango

When Ovidio Salazar asked me in 2002 to script a film about Al-Ghazali, the 11th Century Islamic philosopher and theologian, I was intrigued. After the events of 9/11, the non-Muslim world had a partial view of Islam, and Salazar wanted to show another side of this great religion – the tolerant, complex, mystical, seeking side as represented by Al-Ghazali and his Sufism. Read more…

Ibn Rajab Selection By Imam Zaid Shakir

This is a beautiful poem about Ramadan by Ibn Rajab. You can read this eloquent piece at Zaytuna

Ramadan: Oh people! A great month has come over you….

O who believe, fasting is decreed for you as it was decreed for those before you; perchance you will guard yourselves.

The month of Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was sent down, a guidance for the people, and clear verses of guidance and criterion. [Quran: Chapter 2, 183]



Suheil Laher

It is appropriate that every Muslim should receive the blessed month of Ramadan with repentance, sincerity, resoluteness and earnestness. He/she should make the intention to perform extra acts of devotion and worship therein, including the Night Prayer (qiyam), recitation of Qur’an, and abundant charity to the poor and needy. Read more…

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