Taking the Prophet as Your Spiritual Guide: Celebrating and Passing into the Prophetic Reality
Indifference to the celebration of the Prophet ﷺ denies the community the opportunity to unite upon his character and spirituality, in the face of so much pressure to move away from him. What are the tried and true methods to bring the Prophet ﷺ into our daily lives?
Living and Dying on a Prayer: How Jumu’ah Orients Us to the Next Life
In the wake of last Friday’s tragedy in New Zealand, we may find ourselves consumed by the images and the reporting, which then gives way to fears of future copycat attacks or reprisals. It is in such moments that each of us should look deeply at the significance of Jumu'ah and our central rites and traditions, as a way to connect us to the enduring reality of God.
Make Someday Today: The Cubs, Baseball, and Your Spiritual Path
More than any other sport in the American consciousness baseball holds arguably the most symbolism to life and spirituality. A long-suffering Cubs fan reflects on the lessons Muslims can take from the historic World Series win of the Chicago Cubs after a drought of 108 years.
Rights over Rites: Hypocrisy at Hajj
Muslims in the U.S that either stand actively or passively for furthering equality and eliminating the income and wealth gap at home cannot simply ignore their responsibility to question the machine that allows them to perform sacred rites at the cost of human rights.
HISLAM: The Last Faith of Man
What would happen if American Islam and mosques devalued male participation and started to see a decline in male attendance as in other faith traditions? Would mosques dare become more civil and organized without board tantrums, would we only hear of love and mercy? Or would we see the emasculation of Muslim men and more harrowing realities? Solutions lie in valuing the contribution of Muslim men, asking them to step up and lead change emanating authentically from within the tradition, and be chivalrous enough to step aside and open doors for women so they can enjoy the same privilege, obligation, and pain we as men feel at Jummah and in board meetings.
Souled Out: ISIS, Slavery, & Your Personal Faith
While the Muslim world overwhelmingly rejects the actions of ISIS, the group claims their actions as valid interpretations of the sacred law. If such interpretations are drawn from traditional legal manuals, are the rebuttals to the claims of ISIS just apologetics from critics derided as “sell-outs”? Or does ISIS and their ilk simply represent a mirror image of the soulless faith that dominates today, “souled out” actors that erect an ego-driven faith of grotesque gratifications?
Youth Gone Wrong: Addressing the Homegrown Lone Wolf
In light of recent events involving homegrown youth, we need to ask ourselves, "Why?" You may not be able to change global politics, but you may be able to change a young man or woman’s mind. We have the ability within ourselves to change the outcome.
From Shackles to Riches: Our American Muslim Tale
Forty-five years a slave before regaining his freedom, Mahmoud Yaro’s life and character should inspire the roots of our collective community, reflecting the complexity of the struggles and triumphs of Muslims living in America, and bridging the immigrant and indigenous local identities.
Knowledge in Bondage: Slavery & The Value of Texts
All over the Americas, Muslim Africans wrote the Qur'an and other sacred texts from memory, distributed selections to the faithful, converted others, and established networks. What is pertinent to us as we contemplate our own legacy as American Muslims is what will remain of our contributions and faith when we have abandoned the curriculum of textual learning and continue to create socially fragmented institutions?
Love, Inshallah Or Lust, Astaghfirullah? Muslim Men Speak
The conversations stirred by recent literature, like Salaam, Love, only mimic what has been whispered in our homes and houses of worship for decades: Muslim American culture is shifting. These tell-all intimate portraits, exorcizing communal guilt and shame, may serve to "humanize” Muslims and allow for a broader conversation on Muslim identity.
Check The Label
Labeling can have negative impact on how individuals see each other and themselves, hampering bonds. Stigma is a powerfully negative label that changes a person's self-concept and social identity. Often those in a perceived majority or norm seek to alienate any perceived variance via the vehicle of labelling. Imam Shatibi, the great jurist and legal theorist, spoke of this as a “disease of sectarianism and labeling ”...
Love Is A Choice
In a world where neglect or mock grief masquerade as following the example of the best of creation, peace & blessings upon him & his family, we are often remiss of the reality that we have a choice (ikhtiyar) to whom we love and honor. Many of the faithful claim to love the Prophet (peace & blessings upon him & his family) and those that surrounded him of his family and companions, Yet how can we claim love if we know little or nothing about who they were? Moreover how did we get here, and how can we change?
Are You Reaching Your Full Potential?
The word "Tarbiyyah" linguistically means increase, growth, and loftiness. Al Raghib Al-Asbahani explains that the word Tarbiyyah in Arabic means “to cause something to develop from stage to stage until reaching its completion." Are you growing into your full potential?
5 Steps To Get You Ready for Ramadan
Once the smoke of July 4th fireworks and grills wafts away it will probably dawn on you that Ramadan is less than a week away. Anxiety about the long hours of fasting and the heat sets in. Long gone is the winter Ramadans of your youth, where you would come home from school and nap for an hour before you broke your fast with Mama’s homemade basbousa.