A Terrorist Family
“It is probably incorrect to say that all Muslims are terrorists but I believe that all terrorists are Muslims.”
Yes, we stand as accused
In our fourth floor apartment
Weapons are being fused
Our arsenal: knives, forks, spoons, in the kitchen department
We are gathering forces
Dad, sisters, and mom
Poring over death from American media courses
Oh, and our general for ground war is our cat Tom
Read the rest of the poem at Damazine.
Song for the Music in the Gaza Ghetto: Variations of Osherow
Pity the eyes that are told not to cry.
Pity the voices that are told to be silent.
Pity the child whom the world sanctions to die.
Pity the survivors who turn to violence.
Read the rest of the poem at Free Verse.
More of Maryam Chahine’s work can be read at her blog.
I embraced Islam after graduating from Cambridge. Prior to that I was a skeptical Catholic; a believer in God but with a mistrust of organized religion.
The Qur’an was pivotal for me. I first tried to approach it in anger, as part of an attempt to prove my Muslim friend wrong. Later I began reading it with a more open mind.
The opening of Al Fatiha, with its address to the whole of mankind, psychologically stopped me in my tracks. It spoke of previous scriptures in a way which I both recognized, but also differed. It clarified many of the doubts I had about Christianity. It made me an adult as I suddenly realized that my destiny and my actions had consequences for which I alone would now be held responsible.
In a world governed by relativism, it outlined objective moral truths and the foundation of morality. As someone who’d always had a keen interest in philosophy, the Qur’an felt like the culmination of all of this philosophical cogitation. It combined Kant, Hume, Sartre and Aristotle. It somehow managed to address and answer the deep philosophical questions posed over centuries of human existence and answer its most fundamental one, ‘why are we here?’
In the Prophet Muhammad, I recognized a man who was tasked with a momentous mission, like his predecessors, Moses, Jesus and Abraham. I had to pick apart much of the Orientalist libel surrounding him in order to obtain accurate information, since the historical relativism which people apply to some degree when studying other historical figures, is often completely absent, in what is a clear attempt to disparage his person.
I think many of my close friends thought I was going through another phase and would emerge from the other side unscathed, not realizing that the change was much more profound. Some of my closest friends did their best to support me and understand my decisions. I have remained very close to some of my childhood friends and through them I recognize the universality of the Divine message, as God’s values shine through in the good deeds any human does, Muslim or not.
I have never seen my conversion as a ‘reaction’ against, or an opposition to my culture. In contrast, it was a validation of what I’ve always thought was praiseworthy, whilst being a guidance for areas in need of improvement. I also found many mosques not particularly welcoming and found the rules and protocol confusing and stressful. I did not immediately identify with the Muslim community. I found many things odd and many attitudes perplexing. The attention given to the outward over the inward continues to trouble me deeply.
|Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) said: ‘Forgive him who wrongs you. Join him who cuts you off. Do good to him who does evil to you and speak the truth even if it be against yourself.’|
There is a need for a confident, articulate British Muslim identity which can contribute to the discussions of our time. Islam is not meant to be an alien religion, we shouldn’t feel like we’ve lost all trace of ourselves. Islam is a validation of the good in us and a means to rectify the bad. Islam is about always having balance and I think the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) message was fundamentally about having balance and equilibrium in all that we do.
The Prophet’s message was always that you repel bad with good that you always respond to evil with good and always remember that God loves justice so even when people are committing serious injustices against you, you have a moral responsibility and a moral obligation in front of God to always uphold justice and never yourself transgress those limits.
Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) said: ‘Forgive him who wrongs you. Join him who cuts you off. Do good to him who does evil to you and speak the truth even if it be against yourself.’
Islam’s beauty really becomes to its own when it becomes manifest and it becomes manifest when you make it into a tool for the betterment of society, human kind and the world.
The ideal from an Islamic perspective is for ethics to become lived ethics, to become an applied body of values and not remain unfortunately as it often is cloistered in the mosque of somewhere which is some more divorced from reality.
Myriam Francois-Cerrah became popular when she was a child for acting in the 90’s hit film ‘Sense and Sensibility.’ Now she is gaining more popularity for being one of a growing number of educated middle class female converts to Islam in Britain.
She has recently contributed to a series of videos on Islam produced in the UK titled (Inspired by Muhammad).
Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Karim Yahya, SunniPath Academy Teacher
Zayd, while fasting an obligatory fast of Ramadan, is performing and obligatory wudu and washing his face for the third time. During this third washing, water accidently reaches the inside of his left ear. He immediately takes measures to ensure that it exits. Is Zayd’s fast nullified?
In The Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate
Zayd’s fast is not broken.
The jurist’s axiom concerning water accidentally entering the body cavity during purification is that water which inadvertently goes down from something which is requested by the Sacred Law, even a sunna, does not invalidate the fast and water that goes down from something which is not requested does.1
Washing the ears along with the face is sunna, so this water should not break the fast. And Allah knows best and he alone gives success (tawfiq).
1. Muhammad Shatta, I’anah al-Talibin (Beruit, Dar al-Fikr, 1998), 2:367.
From SunniPath Answers
Answered by Shaykh Hamza Karamali, SunniPath Academy Teacher
It is recommended to make the standing supplication (Ar. du’a al-qunut) in the last rak’ah of witr after rising from ruku`, during the second half of Ramadan. This practice starts on the night of the sixteenth (i.e. the night before the sixteenth day) of Ramadan. If one forgets, it is recommended to prostrate out of forgetfulness.
The qunoot is a main sunna (or “sunna mu’akkada”) in the fajr prayer and in the witr during the second half of Ramadan. [Mostafa Elqabanny]
The specific du’a mentioned in the fiqh books (allahumma-hdina fi man hadayt wa ‘afina fi man ‘afayt etc.) is not required to fulfill the main sunna. One may confine oneself to any dhikr that comprises:
(1) a supplication (du’a)
(2) a praise of Allah ( thana ‘)
(3) invocation of blessings (salat) and peace (salam) on the Prophet (nabi), his folk (aal) and companions (sahb).
(al-Yaqut al-Nafis, p. 37)
The formula: “allaahumma-ghfir lee yaa ghafoor allahumma salli ‘ala sayyidina muhammad wa ‘alaa aalihi wa sahbihi wa sallim” meets the above requirements and is therefore sufficient. (Fath al-‘Allam, 2.251)
Note that the Reliance does not fully specify requirement (3) above. I have reproduced the relevant section from the Reliance below and added comments to clarify the intent of the text.
f8.53 (…) The words of this supplication are not set and (h: the main sunna of the qunut) may be accomplished by pronouncing any supplication (O: and praise) or Koranic verse containing a supplication, such as the last verses of al=Baqara (Koran 2:285-86), though the above words (h: meaning the famous du’a most often recited in qunut) are better. After this, one invokes blessings (h: and peace) on the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) (h: and also on his folk and companions. Sending blessings and peace on the Prophet, his folk, and companions is also a main sunna whose nonperformance calls for the forgetfulness prostration).
If one omits (whether forgetfully or otherwise) the qunoot in the fajr prayer or the witr prayer in the second half of Ramadan, it is sunna to repair the damage with the forgetfulness prostration. [Hamza Karamali]
And Allah knows best.
 The formula means: “O Allah, O Oft-Forgiving One, forgive me! O Allah, send blessings and peace on our Master Muhammad, his folk and his companions”
Requirement (1) is fulfilled by “forgive me”,
Requirement (2) is fulfilled by “O Oft-Forgiving One”,
Requirement (3) is fulfilled by “O Allah, send blessings and peace on our Master Muhammad, his folk, and his companions”.