Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Conference on Muslims in Europe begins on Friday

The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor will be holding a two day conference on Muslims in Europe on 11/2/07 - 11/3/07.


For more info, see: http://ii.umich.edu/umich/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=6dc3ce9ec64a5110VgnVCM100000a3b1d38dRCRD&vgnextchannel=556177861cb82110VgnVCM1000005b01010aRCRD

European group accussed of enslaving Chadian and Darfurian children


This is a prime example of why African nations are reluctant to allow European aide workers to have free reign in areas that are war torn or stricken with severe poverty. Usually, the primary concerns are that such groups use relief work as a cover to prostelyze the natives or are spies of foreign governments under the cloak of Samaritanism.

http://www.reuters.com/article/homepageCrisis/idUSL31303630._CH_.2400

Chadians protest children case, cite "slave trade"

Wed Oct 31, 2007 8:05am EDT

By Stephanie Hancock

ABECHE, Chad, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Chadians chanting "no to the slave trade, no to child trafficking" protested on Wednesday against a French group accused of trying to illegally fly children from the central African country to Europe.

Several hundred angry locals gathered outside the governor's office in the eastern town of Abeche, where nine French nationals and seven Spaniards were arrested last week as they tried to fly 103 children out of the impoverished state.

"We can't accept this act of barbarity, of vandalism. Whether in the 8th century or the 20th century there shouldn't be these kinds of acts in Africa," shouted one protester.

The detained French are members of a group called Zoe's Ark which said it wanted to place orphans aged 3-10 years from Sudan's war-torn Darfur region with European families.

The scandal has triggered outrage among Chadians, with many on the barren border with Sudan questioning the motives of scores of foreign humanitarian groups that work with refugees who have fled years of conflict in Darfur.

Families of children missing in eastern Chad, itself riven by conflict and sheltering some 230,000 Sudanese refugees from Darfur, arrived at the orphanage where the 103 children are being held in the hope of finding lost relatives.

"I can assure you that the Chadian government ... is aware of your complaints and is putting in place all the necessary judicial measures to investigate this issue," Abeche governor Tourka Ramadan Karo told the crowd.

In a bid to calm anger against former colonial power France, he emphasised the group responsible was acting independently and said the French government was helping with investigations.(MORE)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Armenian - US Congress Irony



In today's Flint Journal, there is an article regarding Flint area Armenians, who are lobbying the US Congress to pass a non-binding resolution that would declare that Turkey committed "genocide" against Armenians in 1915.

SEE: http://www.mlive.com/entertainment/flintjournal/index.ssf?/base/features-6/1193667628176460.xml&coll=5

Turkish people also claim that Armenians committed "genocide" against their people and Jews as well. Maybe Turks will start their own lobbying campaign as well if they haven't already in this regard.

SEE: http://www.tbmm.gov.tr/yayinlar/yayin3/arm111_150.pdf (Warning - some pictures are of corpses)

The irony of the US Congress and the Armenian bill is that our Federal legislature is contemplating passing a resolution, which has little to nothing to due with America, yet the US Congress has yet to pass a resolution, which apologizes for one of the greatest crimes against humanity that our Federal government sanctioned at one time. That would be the chattel slavery of African-Americans.

How many hundreds of thousands of Africans perished while crossing the "Middle Passage" from West Africa to America? How many African-Americans were killed and raped by their masters? How many of the "Founding Fathers" such as Washington and Jefferson were slave owners?

Our representatives would appear more sincere if the Congress apologized to their fellow Americans about slavery before passing non-binding resolutions related to events that were outside our Nation's actions or control.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Why Halloween is impermissible for Muslims

To learn why Muslims do not observe the pagan Celtic celebration called Halloween, please read the short Islamic legal opinion by Dr. Muzammil Siddiqi.

SEE: http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?cid=1119503543074&pagename=IslamOnline-English-Ask_Scholar/FatwaE/FatwaEAskTheScholar

MSU to hold conference on America's top selling poet

Want to take a guess at who Publishers Weekly named America's top selling poet? Ralph Waldo Emerson? Edgar Allan Poe? Robert Frost perhaps?

Many are surprised that America's top selling poet was not an American or of Anglo-Saxon background. In fact, he was a Muslim of Persian ethnicity.

His name is Jalal ad-Din Rumi, the world famous mystical poet, whose works have influenced mystics and philosophers of various faiths to current Hollywood actors and pop artists such as Madonna.

UNESCO named 2007 the Year of Rumi in commemoration of his birthday 800 years ago.

Yesterday in Iran, a two day international conference began on the works of Rumi and Shams of Tabriz, another Persian who influenced Rumi.

Like many writers of his time as in other times, some works have been attributed to Rumi that were not his. Some of these false attributions have made some wonder if Rumi was even a Muslim or if Rumi was lost in the sea of nothingness, not practicing any formal religion.

However, some things to note regarding Rumi are:
1) He followed the Hanafi school of Islamic jurisprudence, one of the four Sunni schools of thought.
2) He performed the 5 daily ritual prayers.
3) He made Hajj, pilgrimage to Makkah.
4) His "Diwan" and "Mathnawi" contain some 6,000 verses that are direct translations of the Qur'an from Arabic to Persian. Likewise, his poems also contain sayings (hadith) of Prophet Muhammad (SAAS).
5) His book "Majlis-e-Saba'" is a book containing seven Islamic sermons that he delivered.

To learn more about Rumi, Michigan State University will be holding a conference on Rumi on November 3, 2007.

SEE: http://rumi.history.msu.edu/schedule.php

Poem below is translated from Farsi (Persian) into English entitled "How Jesus Fled From Fools."

The escaping of Jesus, (may the) peace (of G-d) be upon him,
to the top of a mountain (to flee) from fools.


Jesus, (the son) of Mary, was running away to a mountain.
You might say (that) a lion was wanting to spill his blood.

Someone ran behind (him) and said, "(May you be) well! There
isn't anyone following you, (so) why are you fleeing like a bird?"

(But) he kept running in the same manner, bound to urgency, (so)
that he didn't answer him, because of his own haste.

(The man) pressed forward following Jesus (for) one or two
(more) fields. Then he called (out) to Jesus with great seriousness,

Saying, "For the sake of G-d's approval, stop for a moment! --
since I have a problem in (understanding this) fleeing of yours.

"O noble and generous one! Who are you running from (in)
this direction? (There's) no lion or enemy following you, and no
fear or dread."

He answered, "I am escaping from a fool. Go (away)! I'm
rescuing myself, (so) don't restrain me!"

(The man) said, "But aren't you the Messiah, by whom blind
and deaf (people) become normal?"

"Yes," he replied. (The man) asked, "Aren't you the (spiritual)
king who (is) the dwelling place for mysterious spells and
incantations? --

"(So that) if you recite a spell upon a (man's) corpse, he leaps up
(joyfully) like a lion (who has) brought back prey."

"Yes," he answered, "I am that one." (The other) said, "O
beautiful faced one! Don't you make (living) birds out of clay?"

"Yes," he replied. (The other) said, "O pure spirit! Then you can
make (happen) whatever you wish-- (so) who are you afraid of?

"With evidence such as this, who is there in the world who
wouldn't be among your (devoted) slaves?"

Jesus said, "By the Holy Essence of G-d, the Originator of the
body, the Creator of the soul in (its) superiority!

"(And in) reverence for His Holy Essence and Attributes, (for)
whom the collar of the heavens is torn (in ecstasy):

"(I affirm) that those incantations, as well as the greatest
Name (of G-d), which I spoke over the deaf and over the blind,
were beneficial.

"I recited (the words) over the rocky mountain (and) it became
split, tearing the robe (which was) upon itself (down) to the navel.

"I spoke (the words) over a dead body (and) it became alive. I said
(them) over a point of nothingness (and) it became something.

"(But) I said those (words) a hundred thousand times with
loving-kindness over the heart of a fool and it was not a cure.

"(Instead), it became a hard rock and didn't change from that
habit; it became sand, from which no seed grows."

The man) said, "(Then) what is the wisdom that the Name of
G-d was beneficial in those places, (but) here it had no
superiority?

"That is also (a case) of disease, and this is an affliction. (So) why
was it a cure for that (but) not for this?"

(Jesus) replied, "The affliction of foolish stupidity is (caused by)
the overwhelming anger of God. (Normal) afflictions and
blindness are not (from God's) anger-- those are tests and trials."

Trials and hardships are an affliction which [eventually] brings
(Divine) Mercy. (But) ignorant foolishness brings blows and
wounds.

That which is his scarring has been produced by His seal,
(and) no supporting hand can bring a remedy to it.

Therefore), escape from foolish people just as Jesus escaped.
(For) companionship with fools has spilled so much blood!

The air steals water very gradually, (and) the fool steals
religion from you also in the same way.

He steals your warmth and gives you cold (in its place), just like
one who puts a rock under (your) bottom.

The escaping of Jesus is not because of (real) fear, (for) he is
secure (from such). (But) is for the sake of teaching (a lesson).

Even if intense cold filled (all) the horizons of the world,
what grief would there be for the radiant sun?

Friday, October 26, 2007

Walid gives sermon - "Peace Between Brothers"

Today's sermon was given at the Islamic Center of Detroit (Tireman) in Detroit, Michigan.

Cut & paste to listen:
http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10032

Walid speaks about misrepresentations of Islam and minorities

Last night's lecture was given at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Cut & paste links to listen:

http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10030 - Part 1 (Misrepresentations of Muslims and Minorities by media, politicians & social/community leaders)

http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10031 - Part 2
(Q & A)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Message for Friday - The Weakness is Internal

عن أبي عبد السلام ، عن ثوبان ، قال قال رسول الله -صلى الله عليه وسلم
" يوشك الأمم أن تداعى عليكم كما تداعى الأكلة إلى قصعتها " ، فقال قائل : ومن قلة نحن يومئذ ؟ قال : " بل أنتم يومئذ كثير ، ولكنكم غثاء كغثاء السيل ، ولينزعن الله من صدور عدوكم المهابة منكم وليقذفن في قلوبكم الوهن " ، فقال قائل : يا رسول الله وما الوهن ؟ قال : " حب الدنيا ، وكراهية الموت "


Messenger of G'd [Prophet Muhammad] (SAAS)said, "Nations will call each other, as people make invitations to a meal, to make a concerted attack on you. Someone asked: ‘Will this happen because of our being small in number?’ G'd’s Messenger answered: ‘Rather, you will then be great in number, but as powerless as wood-chips or straw carried in a flood. G'd will remove fear of you from the hearts of your enemies and implant in you fear of death and love of the world."

So many areas of the Muslim world, which makes up 1.6 billion people are ravaged. Depravity, poverty, ignorance and oppression mark most of the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. In these areas, some animosity resides regarding the exploitation of their lands by the former European colonialists, and their continued backing of tyrannical kings and dictators that oppress societies both intellectually and economically. However, it is the spiritual deviation of the majority of the people, which accounts for much of their problems today.

إن الله لا يغير ما بقوم حتى يغيروا ما بأنفسهم

G'd says in the Qur'an: Surely G'd will not change the condition of a people until they change what is inside of their souls.

The love of this world has corrupted the hearts of the people, which has manifested itself in various ways. One way is that Muslims in their quest for piling up material wealth or consolidating power will neglect or ignore Divine guidelines and ethical practices. Another way is that Muslims loose hope in changing their communities and resign themselves to "making a living" to obtain food, clothing, sheltering and small material comforts of life.

Living an austere life does not mean rejecting the good, wholesome things in life, and not fearing death does not equal having a death wish or being fatalistic.

الزهد: هو ترك ما لا ينفع في الآخرة
Ibn Taymeeah (rh) explained this as "Austerity (Zuhd) is to leave what is not beneficial for one's status in the hereafter."

So until the majority of Muslims get back to the basics of Islam such as regular prayer, paying charity and rejecting gross materialism, the intellectual advancement and social progress of Muslim nations will not happen. G'd will not allow anything that is labeled as Islam or Muslim to flourish that does not coincide with the spirit of Islam.

And surely G'd knows best.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Muslim - Jewish dialogue for understanding & peace

Cut & paste below to view video of Muslim - Jewish dialogue shown on Bridges TV:

http://www.bridgestv.com/videos.asp?bcpid=271525776&bclid=307734328&bctid=1258472892

Juror of HLF trial speaks

Video of juror of Holy Land Foundation (HLF)trial is very telling about how there was ZERO conclusive evidence linking HLF to Hamas.

SEE: http://www.dallasnews.com/video/dallasnews/hp/index.html?nvid=185986

The juror clearly says that the trial against HLF was "political," not based upon justice. An anynomous foreign agent who admits that he was paid to testify against HLF?

Monday, October 22, 2007

HLF mistrial a stunning defeat for US government, "little evidence" presented

The judge in the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) trial today declared a mistrial in regards to allegations that HLF gave material support to Palestinian terrorists.

The government could not produce one single guilty verdict on the 192 charges brought against the defendants. Considering how much negative media coverage surrounded the defendants, one would have thought that the goverment's case would have been a 'slam dunk' if there was veracity to the evidence presented.

SEE emotional video of the defendants leaving the courthouse in Dallas after the mistrial was declared:

http://www.wfaa.com/video/wfaageneral-index.html?nvid=185749

Also, one juror says that there was "little evidence" for a conviction on anything.

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/APStories/stories/D8SEFSUO0.html

"I thought they were not guilty across the board," said the juror, William Neal, a 33-year-old art director from Dallas. The case "was strung together with macaroni noodles. There was so little evidence."

Cole & Meek discuss HLF mistrial on Democracy Now

David Cole, Prof. of Law at Georgetown University, and Khalil Meek, President of the Dallas chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) discussed the Holy Land Foundation mistrial on Democracy Now hosted by Amy Goodman.

Cut & paste to watch:

http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/10/24/1528208

No need for students to fear right wing blowhards

http://media.www.themichiganjournal.com/media/storage/paper255/news/2007/10/23/Perspectives/No.Need.For.Students.To.Fear.Right.Wing.Blowhards-3050520.shtml


No need for students to fear right wing blowhards

By Rebecca Mahfouz

President George W. Bush is asking taxpayers for another $46 billion to maintain his Iraq destroying hobby, the global economy is a shambles and Americans are being spied on (mostly during phone calls, as they chat about how their jobs have been outsourced and how they can't afford to see a doctor). All these minor happenings aside, the issue that, according to the far right, Americans should really be focusing on is why it's still important to hate Muslims.

That's right folks, it's Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week. David Horowitz and his frantic minions will spend this week visiting universities across the country to inform us all that the "Islamofascists" have taken over our universities and are especially likely to be lurking in women's studies departments.

According to the Terrorism Awareness Project's Web site, "The nation will be rocked by the biggest conservative campus protest ever--Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, a wake-up call for Americans on 200 university and college campuses." The University of Michigan is, of course, included on the list of campuses about to be "rocked."

The week's festivities will include sit-ins at women's studies departments and campus women's centers "to protest their silence about the oppression of women in Islam," as well as "teach-ins" on the very same subject. Additionally, the list of luminaries who have signed on to speak at campus events is astonishing. Such intellectual giants as Ann Coulter and Daniel Pipes will lend their paranoiac screechings to the cacophony of hysterical anti-Muslim voices set to converge on America's universities.

Although the group is trying to frame the event in terms of "raising awareness" and fighting back against the "lies of the political left," it's actually an opportunity for Horowitz to give vent to his pathological hatred of Muslims and for his followers to intimidate and harass students and faculty who don't share their hateful views. There will, of course, be those students who are willing to jump on board the Muslim-bashing train, but I'm confident that most will let this silliness pass unremarked. A few will protest, or try to shut down the ersatz crusader gatherings on their campuses, but really, there's no need to put up much of a fuss in the face of this particular display of far-right idiocy.

Naturally, many students are distressed at yet another attack on Muslims, and are worried that the events and speakers will feed Islamophobia among college students. Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, however, will likely have the opposite of its intended effect. While the aim of the week's theatrics is to dehumanize Muslims and blame all the world's ills on a single religion and its adherents, the organizers seem unaware that universities are where the educated and those who intend to become so tend to congregate.

By using a Bushism in the very title of their event, by accusing benign organizations like the Muslim Student Association of ties to terrorist groups and by inviting the foulest of right-wing hatemongers to represent them, they've made it unnecessary for reasonable people to so much as acknowledge the presence of the loons on their campuses. The melodramatics of the organizers of "Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week" undermine whatever small credibility it might have had.

Civilian children and clergy killed in raid, Kurds & Turks calling for war in Iraq


Picture above is of a dead Iraqi boy, who was one of the 15 Iraqi civilians ("collateral damage") killed yesterday in a US raid against "insurgents"

Today, Turkey is deploying more troops to the Iraqi border, and Kurdish and Turkish ultra-nationalists are protesting in the streets calling for war against ech other.

Sorry Mr. President, someone in Iran "knowing how" to make nukes will probably not be the cause of World War III. The mess started by our occupation in Iraq and the regional tension between the Arabs, Kurds and Turks may be a greater potential reason!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Yesterday's Islamophobia/Islamophilia conference at U of M

The European Studies Department at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor on Friday and Saturday hosted a conference entitled "Islamophobia/Islamophilia: Beyond the Politics of Enemy and Friend."

SEE: http://www.ii.umich.edu/umich/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=bca5ce9ec64a5110VgnVCM100000a3b1d38dRCRD&vgnextchannel=c937d8d398e42110VgnVCM10000096b1d38dRCRD

What was most interesting about this conference from my vantage point was that although there are some likenesses between the Islamophobia in Europe in comparison to here, there are some social dynamics in play here that are absent in Europe.

One of them is that unlike Europe, a Germany specifically, America has a large indigenous Muslim population, which also has a connection to the struggles of the civil rights movement. Europe has no civil rights movement in their history in regards to ethnic and religious minorities. Hence, Islam is not a recognized religion by many states in Europe including Germany. Also, white reverts (converts) to Islam in America were raised in a society that was extremely more religious than Europe. Their reversion to Islam, primarily via Sufi orders is less of a rejection of their American identity unlike White Germans, who have primarily join the ranks of Islam through the Salafi movement, which includes adopting the dress code of Gulf Arabs. Also, the immigrant Muslims who are in America are highly educated and economically well off as a whole unlike immigrant Muslims in Europe. All of these factors leads to a different social dynamic regarding interaction in society and how Islamophobia should be addressed.

It was also highly interesting to learn that like in America but to a greater degree, Malay/Indonesian Muslims and also German Muslims have rejected Arabs and have also gone into an anti-Arab mode or Arab-phobia mindset in their attempts to distance themselves from the problems of the Arab world that have concretized the discussions about Islam in the post-9/11 era.

Interestingly as most well traveled Muslims know, the Saudis have funded universities throughout the world such as in Indonesia that are not ran by Salafis. In fact, one university, which was discussed during the conference that was funded by Saudis is ran by Sufis whom Salafis deem as creeping into polytheism due to their reverance for saints.

There were conflicting views or rebuttals presented as well regarding the misnomer that "Wahhabis" are a driving force behind terror. Beside there being no sect that calls itself "Wahhabi," Prof. Juan Cole brought up the point that not only have the Saudi religious authorities funded schools ran by Sufis but that being a "Wahhabi" aka Salafi does not equal one who ascribes to a creed of violence.

In fact, Salafis are apolitical Muslims, who by their creed abhor the overthrowing of corrupt governments by violence. Hence, Bin Laden's call to overthrow the Salafi supported Saudi monarchy is totatlly against the Salafi understanding. The Al-Qaeda doctrine is more a misunderstanding of the deceased Ikhwani scholar Syed Qutb teachings than Salafi docrtine. Al-Qaeda follows the doctrine of the Khawarij.

The conference may have been more insightful if there was a better balance of American Muslim academics that were presenters of papers vice discussants.

Irrational policy regarding PKK

The Kurdish Workers Party, a socialist organization, also known as the PKK is an party that has been listed as a terrorist organization by the US State Department.

Turkey, which is one of our NATO "partners" has been attacked for years by the PKK. Fresh attacks being launched by the PKK from the Kurdish area of Iraq into Turkey have resulted in numerous casualities including deaths of Turks just today.

Oddly, the PKK during the time of Saddam was able to operate partly due to the No-Fly Zone enforced by NATO over the Kurdish region of Iraq and the autonomy that Kurds were able to exercise in the area with the support of our nation.

Last week with popular public support from Islamic and secular forces within Turkey, their legislature passed a resolution giving permission to their army to cross into Iraq to fight the PKK. Turkey has already amassed troops on the Iraqi-Turk border.

Obviously, a Turkish invasion into Northern Iraq would not only cause further death and destruction within Iraq's most stable region, but it could provoke neighboring powers to enter into the fray to assert their interests in the region. This would be a total disaster for the region and would drive crude oil prices sky high, which will negatively affect our economy.

How is it then that the "coalition forces" are not tracking down the PKK, which is labeled as a terrorist organization, yet these same forces are hunting down the Mahdi Army, which we haven't declared to be a terrorist group?

I guess being a NATO member does not mean what it used to.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Message for Friday - Some food for thought

Instead of posting a verse from the Qur'an or a saying of the Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) to elaborate on, I figured that I'd just pose a few questions for us to ponder.

1) Why do Shi'i and Sufi brothers and sisters refer to Saudis or Salafis as Wahhabis when no one in Saudi Arabia calls themself Wahhabi and a large combined percentage of Saudis follow the Shafi'i, Ja'fari and Zaydi schools of thought that are not aligned with the Salafi movement?

2) If the traditions of the Sufi orders and their chains of knowledge are complete deviations from "mainstream Islam," why were the major classical scholars of ahadeeth including the knowledge of narration chains those who were followers of Sufism such as As-Suyuti, Ibn Hajar and Ibn Rajab?

3) If all Jews and Christians are disbelievers, why would we call all of the wives of the Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) the "Mothers of the Believers" when there is no sound evidence that his Jewish wife and Christian wife ever accepted Islam?

4) If using prayer charts is acceptable based upon science since most of us do not judge prayer times upon viewing the position of the sun and looking at shadows, why is there so much resistance regarding using science for calling the month of Ramadan?

5) If Sunni Muslims are wrong for pronouncing "takfeer" over Shi'is, is it not wrong when some Shi'i Muslims pronounce "takfeer" over Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman or Ayesha especially when Imam Ali (KW) did not pronouce them as heathens?

Just a few things of us to think about. I'm pondering over two of them myself still.

Islamophobia at U of M Flint

http://www.mlive.com/news/flintjournal/index.ssf?/base/news-46/1192629122104170.xml&coll=5

UM-Flint struggles over nasty letter to paper

THE FLINT JOURNAL FIRST EDITION
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
By Beata Mostafavi

FLINT - A derogatory letter bashing Muslims in the student newspaper at the University of Michigan-Flint outraged some campus members, prompting a university apology and pleas for stricter journalism standards.

But the student editors who published the inflammatory letter - which described all Muslims as "ungrateful, self-centered peons who are beneath the rest of civilized society" and "selfish brats" - called it free speech.

Following a month of back-and-forth letters to the editor and criticism of The Michigan Times for publishing the Sept. 17 opinion piece, students hosted a forum Tuesday to discuss the First Amendment.

About 50 students - including some who came for a class assignment - filled Clint's Cafe in the University Center for the forum "Free Speech: Is it really free?" Four panel members represented the newspaper, Muslims and expertise in journalism and hate speech.

In an often passionate debate, most students protested what they deemed irresponsible journalism.

"It offended me that someone would single out an entire religion like this," said student Greg Lipinski, 21, who is a Christian. "I think the MTimes runs just about anything.

"Definitely there should be a change in standards. You can't just publish everything."

The letter's author, who is also listed as a contributing writer for the paper, did not attend and could not be reached for comment.

The newspaper, which ran an editorial calling the writer's opinion troubling, stood behind the decision. Editors said it exposed existing racism and forced dialogue.

"It's the practice of the MTimes to not censor any letter to the editor," editor-in-chief Amanda Durish, who couldn't attend the forum, told The Flint Journal. "Just because I disagree with it, I don't shut it down. I think these opinions are definitely useful to the university community."

"We do fully support free speech," said Dawud Walid, executive director for the Michigan branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. "At the same time, blanket generalizations that seek to demonize an entire demographic of people (are) dangerous."(MORE)

"Prince Among Slaves" documentary playing tomorrow



"Prince Among Slaves" will be shown tomorrow evening, Thursday, at 7 PM at the Fellowship Chapel Church at 7707 W. Outer Drive in Detroit, Michigan.

Admission is FREE.

A NEW LOOK AT HISTORY: Film shows dignity of slaves, Muslims
October 17, 2007

BY NIRAJ WARIKOO

FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER

It's a story not well-known: A prince in west Africa who is heir to a sizable kingdom is enslaved and taken to America in 1788 at age 26 and fights for 40 years to regain his freedom.

But now, the life of Abdul-Rahman Ibrahima, an African Muslim, may reach a wide audience through a new film about his struggles.

The movie, "Prince Among Slaves," will make its Detroit debut Thursday at a screening sponsored by local Muslim and African-American groups, including the Detroit Branch NAACP and the Council on American-Islamic Relations. It comes at a time of renewed interest in some slaves' Islamic faith.

"It's a very moving film," said Mitchell Shamsud-Din of Detroit, who is helping to organize the event. "We need to be conscious of where we came from, so we can know where we want to be."

Born into the Fulbe group, Ibrahima was sold in Natchez, Miss., to a plantation owner. He wrote letters to his family in Africa, trying to regain his freedom, and his case got African leaders' attention.

He eventually won his freedom, but his children were still slaves, and he fought hard for years to get them released. He returned to Africa, but died a few months later, with his children still in slavery.

Directed by Bill Duke and narrated by Mos Def, the movie will resonate with many in metro Detroit because of the area's large African-American and Muslim populations, organizers said. Shamsud-Din said he was touched by the prince's struggles to help his children.(MORE)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Walid speaks to Muslim youth regarding dangers of extremist websites

This morning's talk was given at Al-Ikhlas Training Academy in Detroit, Michigan. The talk also referenced yesterday's article in the New York Times about the "Internet Jihadi."

*NOTE* - "Jihadi" is not a traditional term used by Muslims and is not a term that has received common acceptance. The word terrorist in Arabic is irhaabi. Hiraabi is also used.

Cut & paste to listen:
http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10029

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Happy Eid from the Empire State Building



For the first time in history, the Empire State Builing went green in honor of the Islamic holiday, Eid Al-Fitr.

Attention Islamophobes and bigots! Islam is here to stay in America, G'd willing!

Muslims have been here since the slaves were brought here from Africa. And now, Islam is the fastest growing religion in America, especially among Blacks and Latinos.

Islamophobes, the more you knock Islam, the more the Islamic community grows.

Eid Mubarak!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Saying of Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) on the last day of Ramadan

‏خير يوم طلعت فيه الشمس يوم الجمعة فيه خلق ‏ ‏آدم ‏ ‏وفيه أدخل الجنة وفيه أخرج منها ولا تقوم الساعة إلا في يوم الجمعة

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) stated:

The best day in which the sun has risen is the Day of the Gathering (Friday). [It is the day] in which Adam was created, the day in which he entered the Garden, the day in which he was taken out of it, and the Hour [Last Day] will not be established except on the Day of the Gathering.

[Narrated in the Sound 6 books and others]

Last day of Ramadan is today for most mosques in Metro Detroit

Out of 40 mosques in Metro Detroit, 8 of them are observing the Eid holiday today. Thus, today will be the last day of fasting of the majority of Muslims in this locality.

Eid Sa`eed wa kull `aam wa antum bikhayr!

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071012/LIFESTYLE04/710120383/1409/METRO

A FEAST OF JOY: Muslims celebrate Eid al-Fitr at new, bigger Detroit mosque

Gregg Krupa / The Detroit News

Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim holy day celebrated today and Saturday, marks the joyous end of Ramadan, a month of fasting and abstinence. But for Imam Abdul Latif Azom, and his congregants at the Islamic Center of North Detroit, this year's Eid is even more special.

"To have our first Eid in our new mosque is truly a happy occasion for everyone involved," said Azom, whose congregation moved last month from a former funeral home on McDougall near the Hamtramck line into the former Our Lady Help of Christians Catholic Church. "Now we have more space and a chance to provide some services and, especially for the young, now we have a gym."

The actual beginning of the feast is sometimes puzzling -- even for Muslims. The moon determines the timing, and when the crescent moon is sighted, the feast begins.

But it all depends on who is doing the sighting.

Some Muslims abide by the determination made in Saudi Arabia, because it contains sites revered in Islam. Others recognize the judgment made in their country of origin. Either way, they generally end up celebrating the feast a day before Muslims who abide by the sighting of the moon in North America...

"We have a saying in our religion that: Man is an enemy to that which he does not know," said Dawud Walid, of the Council on American Islamic Relations, who encouraged members of the new mosque to actively seek out neighbors, explain that they are welcome in the mosque and to offer invitations to social events. "So, some in the old community were a little uptight, at first. But once they got to know the Muslims better and conversed with them, most of the tension has subsided."

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Eid Mubarak or Eid Confusion?

Every year, there is confusion about not only when Ramadan starts but also when Ramadan will end, even when groups of people start fasting on the same day. Islamic months are based upon sighting of the moon and can be either 29 or 30 days.

Today, Nigerians observed Eid, which was a complete violation of the astronomical possibility to see the crescent moon. Libya, which started Ramadan a day prior to what was astronomically possible has called Eid for Friday, which would make their Ramadan 30 days. Saudi Arabia and the other gulf nations except Oman (which is of the Ibadi school of thought) have called Ramadan for Friday, which would make Ramadan 29 days.

As usual in Metro Detroit, mosque that are primarily attended by Sunni Arabs have opted to celebrate Eid based upon the pronouncement of Saudi Arabia. However, mosques that are Non-Arab that are Sunni tend to observe Eid based upon the moon sighting in the Western Hemisphere, which would make their Ramadan 30 days this year, not 29 days.

The Dawoodi Bohras (a branch of Isma'ili Shi'ah Islam that is not heterdox) will be celebrating Eid on Friday at Masjid Al-Burhani in Farmington but fasted 30 days because their religious authority (da'i) in Mumbai, India pronounced Ramadan the same day as the Nigerians and Libyans. The Ja'fari Shi'ah Muslims in Dearborn appear to be split on celebrating Eid on Friday or Saturday depending on their religious authority (marja').

So to those who are observing Eid on Friday, Saturday or Sunday (those few who started fasting according to the ruling of Zaytuna Institute in California), Eid Mubarak!

May the Most Merciful guide the mu'mineen out of confusion and turmoil. AMEEN!

For the scientific analysis of the moon phases, go to www.moonsighting.com

More coverage regarding Muslim-Jewish dialogue

Thank G'd that Muslims and Jews in America can break bread and have civil discussion regarding religion and the Middle East with courtesy and mutual respect. America may be the only place on earth where such dialogue can take place.

http://muslimmedianetwork.com/mmn/?p=1388

Breaking Bread, Building Peace
By TMO | October 11, 2007

Muslims and Jews Eat Iftar Together During Ramadan

By Sadaf Ali, Muslim Media News Service (MMNS)

Ann Arbor-October 5– A mix of Jewish and Islamic scholars and professionals gathered Friday in Ann Arbor to celebrate faith, food and good company.

The evening began with the lighting of two candles symbolizing the beginning of the Sabbath followed by a prayer with members having a toast with grape juice. The ceremony ended with the breaking of the Challa, a traditional Jewish bread with a dark crust and slightly sweet center.

“We have so much in common and we share so much and we really need to give ourselves permission to sit down and break bread together,” said Aura Ahuvia, a former journalist and host of the interfaith party.

“We decided that doing something in someone’s home would be a nice and friendly way to make it more personable for the different communities to get together,” said Aaron Ahuvia, Ph.D., husband of Aura and an Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Michigan-Dearborn School of Management.

According to Ahuvia, last year during a meeting, a member of their Reconstructionist Jewish group mentioned the fact that the Jewish high holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur would fall during the month of Ramadan. From there Ahuvia contacted Dawud Walid, Executive Director of the Council of American-Islamic (CAIR) Relations in Michigan. Walid spoke to the group and it was a success. The group decided to continue the interfaith dialogue.

During the dinner, a young Muslim pre-med student and a Jewish nurse talk about the young man’s future and the woman’s family. Other guests compared Jewish and Islamic Law, including a discussion on which group of Jews eats pork.

“The world thinks that Muslims and Jews can’t get along, but when it comes to religion, there’s a lot more commonality between Judaism and Islam in many areas,” said Eide Alawan, Director of Interfaith-Outreach at the Islamic Center of America, “I think it will lead us to better understand the Middle East problem and resolve it in some fashion.”

The atmosphere of peace and brotherhood was even a part of the furniture. Dinner was served on The Peace Table.

Alan Haber, a cabinet-maker from Ann Arbor, built the table in 1976 for a friend’s office. Haber says he built it with the vision of a peace meeting to end all wars. It served as the opening peace table at the 1999 Hague Appeal for Peace. Since then it has traveled all over the world and has been blessed by rabbis, priests and imams.

“The shape of The Peace Table was debated then just as much as the weapons of mass destruction are today,” he said.

After dinner, the group of thirty broke down into five smaller groups to discuss the story of Moses.

“It’s amazing what came out of the Jewish peoples’ mouth, in terms, of God being in every sentence of the Quran,” said Alawan, “We Muslims seem to find out more about Islam when other people are learning about it and comparing it with their own faith.”

Aaron Ahuvia believes that interfaith communication is necessary especially after the terrorist attacks of September 11th.

“The Jewish is aware that when civil rights are crossed in the name of security that we could be next in line.”

Heather Laird Jackson, a Graduate student from Eastern Michigan University believes more learning and understanding is needed, but this is a step in the right direction.

“When you get to know someone, it’s hard to demonize them.”

Alawan sees the United States as playing a major role in Islam.

“Maybe in a few hundred years the rest of the Muslim world will recognize that Islam’s new foundation came from right here in America.”

Saying of the day from the Seal of the Prophets (SAAS)

عَنْ أَبِي مُوسَى رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ ، قَالَ : قَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ، أَيُّ الإِسْلاَمِ أَفْضَلُ ؟ قَالَ : " مَنْ سَلِمَ المُسْلِمُونَ مِنْ لِسَانِهِ ، وَيَدِهِ "

Abu Musa asked Prophet Muhammas (SAAS), "Whose Islam is best?"

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) replied, "Whomever the Muslims feel safe from his speech and his hand."

(Narrated in Al-Bukhari, Muslim, At-Tirmidhi & An-Nasa'i)

Walid speaks about Muslims in America and students on college campuses

Yesterday's panel discussion was organized by the Association of Religious Counselors at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Cut and paste to listen:


Part 1 - http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10026

Part 2 - http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10027

Part 3 - http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10028

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Saying from the Seal of the Prophets (SAAS)

على المرء المسلم السمع والطاعة . فيما أحب وكره . إلا أن يؤمر بمعصية . فإن أمر بمعصية ، فلا سمع ولا طاعة

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "It is an obligation upon the Muslim to hear and obey concerning what he likes and what he dislikes except when he is being commanded to disobey [G'd]. Surely, if he is commanded to disobey, then he should not hear nor obey."

(Narrated in Sahih Muslim with similiar wording in Al-Bukhari)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Saying of the day from the best of creation (SAAS)

لا يقبل الله الإيمان والصلاة إلا بالزكاة

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "G'd does not accept faith and prayer except with charity."

[Narrated by Ad-Daylami in Musnad Al-Firdaws]

Monday, October 08, 2007

Walid speaks about the conflict between rights and oppression

Today's lecture was given at the Zainabia Center in Walled Lake, Michigan.

Cut & paste to listen:

http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10025

Happy Columbus Day?

Today, Federal offices are closed due to Columbus Day. Have you ever asked yourself why Columbus Day became a national holiday when Christopher Columbus never set foot in North America?

And not only did he never set foot in North America, he never meant to reach the Western Hemisphere at all. He got lost while trying to find an alternative route to India relating to the spice trade. Spices at that time were highly prized commodities in business commerce.

Europeans landed in the Americas long before Columbus' accidental discovery; Scandinavians landed in North America almost 4 centuries prior. There is written and anthropological evidence that Muslims had landed in the Americas almost 2 centuries prior to the "Vikings." How can one discover a land where people had already explored and people had already resided in for centuries?

The year in which Columbus stumbled across America, in 1492, was the same year that the Spanish Inquisition against Jews and Muslims was in full swing.

Columbus' comments regarding Jews and Muslims to Ferdinand and Isabella:

"YOUR HIGHNESSES, as Catholic Christians and Princes who love the holy Christian faith, and the propagation of it, and who are enemies to the sect of Mahoma [Islam] and to all idolatries and heresies, resolved to send me, Cristóbal Colon, to the said parts of India to see the said princes ... with a view that they might be converted to our holy faith … Thus, after having turned out all the Jews from all your kingdoms and lordships ... your Highnesses gave orders to me that with a sufficient fleet I should go to the said parts of India .... I shall forget sleep, and shall work at the business of navigation, so that the service is performed."

And of course, Columbus was keen on the enslavement of the native people of America as well. It is also well chronicled that Columbus and his men hunted the Natives in Haiti like they were wild game.

In light of this, should Columbus Day be a Federal holiday on par with MLK Day? And what message was being sent by classifying Columbus Day as a national holiday to begin with?

Wisdom from the Messenger of G'd (SAAS)

إن هذا الدين متين ، فأوغلوا فيه برفق

The Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) stated, "Surely this religion [Islam] is firm/strong, so apply it with tenderness."

(Narrated by Ahmad in his Musnad with a good chain of narrators)

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Saying of the day from the Leader of the Prophets (SAAS)

لأن يقام حد في أرض خير من أن تمطر السماء فيها أربعين صباحا

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "Establishing law [and order] in the earth is better than rain from the sky in 40 mornings."

[Narrated in Al-Mabsut - As-Sarakhsi]

Walid speaks regarding the Night of Power

The following speech was given on the 25th night of Ramadan, 10/6/07, at the Islamic Organization of North American in Warren, Michigan.

Cut & paste to listen:

http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10024

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Walid speaks about social justice in Islam during Ramadan

Today's lecture was given at the American Moslem Society (Dix masjid) in Dearborn, Michigan.

Cut & paste to listen:
http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10023

Saying of the Beloved of G'd related to recent immigration fraud cases in Detroit

الراشي والمرتشي في النار

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "The person who commits bribery and the one who collects it are both in the fire."

(Narrated in Sunan Abi Dawud)

Friday, October 05, 2007

Jews, Muslims break bread at Ann Arbor home

http://www.mlive.com/news/annarbornews/index.ssf?/base/news-24/1191652877278860.xml&coll=2

Jews, Muslims break bread at Ann Arbor home
Posted by John Mulcahy | The Ann Arbor News
October 05, 2007 21:29PM

Sometimes it takes a coincidence to spark a good idea.

That's why a group of Jews and Muslims gathered Friday evening at the Ann Arbor home of Aaron and Aura Ahuvia to pray, break bread and learn about what their faiths have in common.

The coincidence was the starting dates this year of one of the holiest days of the Jewish calendar, Rosh Hashanah (or the Jewish New Year), and Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting and spiritual reflection. Ramadan started on Sept. 13. The celebration of Rosh Hashanah started on Sept. 12, followed by Yom Kippur Sept. 22.

"We wanted to jointly have something together since it's the peak spiritual season for both our faiths," said Dawud Walid of Detroit, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Michigan, who attended the gathering.

A similar gathering took place last year, he said.

Both groups offered prayers Friday, and Muslims at the gathering broke the fast they had been keeping since before sunrise.

"I think I want to be where people are making a bridge between different communities," said Odile Hugonot-Haber of Ann Arbor, another participant at the gathering. "We have more in common than we have apart."

Tammam Alwan, a Michigan State University student who grew up in West Bloomfield, said getting together to discuss the similarities between the two religions would, "further understanding between two very important faiths in (America)."

While political conflict between Jews and Muslims in the Mideast may be a backdrop to Jewish-Muslim relations in this country, the focus Friday was on the spiritual commonalties. In particular, the group planned to focus on the story of Moses and the Jewish captivity in Egypt, Walid said.

"Moses is the most mentioned prophet in the Koran," he said.

The emphasis also was on just getting to know one another.

"It think it's an excellent opportunity to sit down and break bread with people I don't ordinarily break bread with," Aura Ahuvia said.

Saying of the day related to jihad (struggle)

الجهاد عشرة أجزاء تسعة منها في طلب الحلال للإنفاق على العيال

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) stated, "Jihad (struggle) has ten sections; nine of them relate to seeking what is lawful regarding spending on [one's] dependents."

(Narrated in Sunan Abi Dawud)

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Saying of the day from the Messenger of G'd (SAAS)

‏إن من حسن إسلام المرء تركه ما لا يعنيه

Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "Surely from a person having good Islam is that he leaves alone what does not concern him."

[Narrated by At-Tirmidhi]

Walid speaks about importance of cultivating mutual understanding in Islam

Last night's speech was given at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor regarding the need for cultural exchange among Muslims.

Cut & paste to listen:
http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10022

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Saying of the day from Prophet Muhammad (SAAS)

الكلمة الطيبة صدقة‏

The Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) said, "[Even] a good word is charity."

[Narrated by Ahmad, Ibn Khuzaymah & Ibn Hibban]

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Start of last 10 nights of Ramadan

Today at dusk will mark the last 10 nights of Ramadan; the portion of Ramadan in which Muslims beg to be spared from the Fire. In is recommended that in the last third of Ramadan, Muslims increase the length of night prayers, read more of the Qur'an and give more in charity.

The last third of Ramadan contains a night called the Night of Power - a night that the Qur'an states is better than a thousand months. The Night of Power is the night in which the Qur'an was revealed as well as the night that Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) was commissioned to be the last prophet of G'd after The Messiah Jesus, son of Mary (AS).

For the rest of Ramadan, G'd willing, I will post a short saying of the Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) daily for reflection.

***

النبي - صلى الله عليه وسلم - قال خير شبابكم الذين يتشبهون بشيوخكم وشر شيوخكم الذين يتشبهون بشبابكم وشر رجالكم الذين يتشبهون بسائكم وشر نسائكم الذين يتشبهون برجالكم

The Prophet (SAAS) said, "The best of your youth are those who imitate your elders [in wisdom and rigtheousness], and the worst of your elders are those who imitate your youth. The worst of your men are those who imitate your women, and the worst of your women are those who imitate your men."

[Narrated in Kitab Al-Athar - Abu Yusuf]

Walid speaks at Cranbrook regarding Ramadan and need for understanding

Last night's speech was given at Cranbrook Kingswood, a prestigious college preparatory school, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

Cut & paste to listen:

http://www.twango.com/media/DawudWalid.public/DawudWalid.10021

Monday, October 01, 2007

Radio host says that white people go to Harlem for either drugs or hookers

http://mediamatters.org/items/200710010003?f=h_latest

Radio host John DePetro: White people go to Harlem for "either" drugs or prostitutes

Summary: On MSNBC Live with Dan Abrams, discussing Bill O'Reilly's recent controversial comments about his visit to Sylvia's restaurant in Harlem, Rhode Island radio host John DePetro stated: "It was a discussion on race and we're talking about Harlem. And by and large -- I lived in New York for years -- white people don't go to Harlem." He continued: "If Dan Abrams and John DePetro, Bill O'Reilly, some white guys are sitting around a table, and Dan Abrams said, 'Yeah, I was up in Harlem last night.' We would think you were either, a) looking for drugs, or, b) looking for a prostitute."

On the September 27 edition of MSNBC Live with Dan Abrams, while discussing Fox News host Bill O'Reilly's recent controversial comments about his visit to Sylvia's restaurant in Harlem, host Dan Abrams asked his guest John DePetro, a Rhode Island radio talk-show host: "John, look, you've been on the show and defended Bill O'Reilly before. Don't you wish that he would just be quiet and put this behind him?" After claiming that O'Reilly was "taken out of context," DePetro asserted: "It was a discussion on race and we're talking about Harlem. And by and large -- I lived in New York for years -- white people don't go to Harlem." He continued: "If Dan Abrams and John DePetro, Bill O'Reilly, some white guys are sitting around a table, and Dan Abrams said, 'Yeah, I was up in Harlem last night.' We would think you were either, a) looking for drugs, or, b) looking for a prostitute." Abrams responded by asserting: "That is so idiotic, John," to which DePetro replied: "It is not idiotic," later adding: "It's a primarily black restaurant. It is still a primarily black area."(MORE)

Go to the website to view video.

Attack on Imam Ali (KW) - 19th of Ramadan

On this day in Ramadan approximately 1,330 years ago, Imam Ali bin Abi Talib (KW), the 1st cousin of Prophet Muhammad (SAAS) and the 4th of the rightly guided caliphs, was stabbed with a poison-laced sword while he was leading the dawn prayer. Imam Ali was martyred from his wound on the 21st day of that Ramadan.

The martyrdom of Imam Ali was perpetrated by a MUSLIM by the name of Ibn Muljam from a group that has been labeled "Khawarij." Ibn Muljam's faction represents the first major split within the Muslim community where a group pronounced "takfeer" over other Muslims - "takfeer" is a pronouncement where one group of Muslims deems another as heathens. The martyrdom of Imam Ali sets into motion the second split within the Muslim community, the formation of the Shi'ah (partisans of Ali) movement.

Seeing Muslims killing one another in Iraq, Somalia and Sudan is nothing new. Muslims have oppressed other Muslims since the 1st generation of Muslims were alive. The 19th of Ramadan in its historical context symbolizes the destructive consequences of self-righteousness and the oppressive outcomes that manifest from those who seek to impose their religious views or leadership over the national interests.

Modern day "takfeer" pronouncers such as Osama Bin Laden are nothing new; they are an old disease that needs to be eradicated.

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