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Muslims in the West: Where are we Going– Yasir Qadhi in London

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The following lecture was given by Shaykh Yasir Qadhi recently in London… the message is relevant and important for all Muslims in the West to pay heed to… video links will be added as they are uploaded here (we plan to combine all the links into one video):

Part 1 of 9 (Introduction only- YQ’s speech starts in Part 2)
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Part 2
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Part 3
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Part 4
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Part 5 (fixed 5.1.07)
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Part 6
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Part 7
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Part 8
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Part 9
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Support Our Dawah for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Sh. Dr. Yasir Qadhi is someone that believes that one's life should be judged by more than just academic degrees and scholastic accomplishments. Friends and foe alike acknowledge that one of his main weaknesses is ice-cream, which he seems to enjoy with a rather sinister passion. The highlight of his day is twirling his little girl (a.k.a. "my little princess") round and round in the air and watching her squeal with joy. A few tid-bits from his mundane life: Sh. Yasir has a Bachelors in Hadith and a Masters in Theology from Islamic University of Madinah, and a PhD in Islamic Studies from Yale University. He is an instructor and Dean of Academic Affairs at AlMaghrib, and the Resident Scholar of the Memphis Islamic Center.

76 Comments

76 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Mujahideen Ryder

    April 30, 2007 at 10:07 PM

    You know, I have never seen Shaykh Yasir Qadhi wearing a Kufi.

    Anyways, mashaAllah! JazakAllah khair Shaykh Yasir. I reallly loved the part where you were talking about Hijrah. SubhanAllah!

  2. Avatar

    Mujahideen Ryder

    April 30, 2007 at 10:09 PM

    PS – the person who edited these videos could have kept it as one file and uploaded it on Google video, also they need to synchronize the audio with the video. How do you do that? I use Adobe Premiere. So basically you import the audio and video into the project. Lock the video and audio so the audio can never move. Test play it to see if it is synchronized. Then do all the editing you want, etc.

  3. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    April 30, 2007 at 10:38 PM

    I started listening to some of the other parts as well… This is really good so far… I particularly love the discussion about what should our goal be here and what should be our role in the society here

  4. Avatar

    inexplicabletimelessness

    May 1, 2007 at 12:10 AM

    MashaAllah, great videos. I love how Sheikh Yasir always tries to talk about topics which people think about but don’t necessarily talk about.

    May Allah help us all to be beacons of light for the ummah in the west, ameen.

  5. Avatar

    DD

    May 1, 2007 at 9:15 AM

    Excellent mashallah! Jazak Allah khair for posting it.

  6. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 1, 2007 at 4:17 PM

    Uh, well I thought it was funny how Sh. Yasir was just sitting there so quietly — with his head down and barely moving — while the brother doing the moderating/hosting was making his 10min introduction…

  7. Amad

    Amad

    May 1, 2007 at 6:53 PM

    Part 5 has been fixed, more than 2/3 was truncated before.

  8. Avatar

    Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    May 1, 2007 at 7:16 PM

    MaShaAllaah Jazzak Allaahu Khayr for posting this.

    And may Allaah (swt) reward our teacher Shaykh Yasir Qadhi for speaking to the important issues.

    Since the Shaykh encouraged us to disagree with his answers, I would like to say that I strongly disagree with his answer to Question No. 2 re: What should be our goal in these lands? I have a lot of issues with the way the Shaykh discussed the first question because he actually raised many more issues than he put to rest with his answer, but at the end of the day I certainly don’t disagree with his answer.

    Also, I am not sure if the tone of the lecture was especially directed towards problems which may be manifested more publicly in the UK, but I don’t really find a lot of Muslims here who have some attitude of hatred for the people around us. Even amongst those of us who may be a little more radical in certain ways, many of us have strong family ties with the people here, and almost all of us work or go to school, do community activities, etc. etc. with people of all faiths every single day and do it while treating others with respect and being treated with respect generally.

    So, I’ll give my big problem with the way Shaykh Yasir Qadhi framed his answer to No. 2 in another comment.

    Allaah knows best.

  9. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    May 1, 2007 at 7:36 PM

    I just finished listening and have to say, this lecture was excellent!!!

    I really loved the point about the need for indigenous scholarship. This brings up another related topic: the need to train scholars with a good secular knowledge base along with rigorous shari’ah education in order to provide constructive and meaningful leadership on a broad scale as well as in our individual masjids and communities

  10. Avatar

    Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    May 1, 2007 at 7:37 PM

    Even my strong objection to this answer may end up being only a difference of framing or phrasing but I do think it is very important.

    Shaykh Yasir suggests our basic goal here should be to preserve our daily practice of the deen.

    The implication many might take from his answer is that we either should not or possibly simply cannot do anything substantial to assist with the situation in the Muslim lands.

    All of that may be true, and so maybe at the end of the day I will be forced to agree with Shaykh Yasir, but the implications are extremely problematic.

    The implications are that especially the Muslim community here in the U.S. will be a community of people who fled the admittedly horrible conditions in many ways of the Muslim lands. In many cases these immigrants are some of the smartest and most talented people in the Muslim lands. They have removed those skills and talents and in some cases wealth from the lands of the Muslims and have moved them to these “secular democracies.”

    Now, to focus on USA and UK, these secular democracies are at war with Muslim lands and they are oppressing Muslims. Maybe not any more than the governments in the Muslim lands are, but they are certainly at war with Muslims, and in many cases pious and practicing Muslims rallying under the banner of Islam (even if they have serious difficiencies and mistakes e.g. Taliban, Islamic Courts Union, Sunni resistance groups in Iraq, etc.)

    Now in most cases these Muslims are contributing not just to the strength of these societies in a general way, but are specifically contributing tax dollars and in many cases contributing specific technical skills in defense industries. These are being directed against the ummah. This is not to speak of those Muslims serving directly in the armed forces, or in other policy making aspects of the government which enforce these policies…diplomatic corps, CIA, FBI, etc.

    Is it really okay to have this government committing such actions and then to have us say that our main goal is just to be able to practice our religion in peace…to make five salat and fast Ramadan and build our masjids in our comfortable suburban homes and say sorry we can do nothing for the Muslim ummah?

    The analogy of Abyssinia is mentioned and certainly it holds many lessons. But our situation is like that if Abyssinia had decided to at least tacitly back the Quraysh against the Muslims and then at some point launched a full scale war against different Muslim towns and then began holding captive hundreds of Muslims. Is the supposition that the Muslims would still continue to have remained living in Abyssinia and would have felt no need to do anything while the Abyssinians fought a war against Muslims?

    I understand Shaykh Yasir’s idea of really thinking long term and trying to figure out what is in the best interests of our community and to be pragmatic but don’t our goals have to revolve at least as much around principle as they do around self interest? We are a community which is heir to the prophets, heirs to the legacy of the sahaba, it is not befitting of us to simply say Let us practice our religion in peace, leave us alone and we will leave you alone to do what you will to our brothers and sisters overseas, whom many of us have abandoned in situations we ourselves could not bear.

    Again, this seems to be the implication of Shaykh Yasir’s answer. I’m sure that he would disagree with many of these implications, and would say we could still involve ourselves as citizens of these lands in ways to try to change these policies.

    However, I think we have to face this issue somewhat head on. The reality is most Muslims will assimilate beyond even Shaykh Yasir’s prescription if Muslims follow the trends of other immigrant groups and other religions in this country. There will be occasions when our own comfort and ability to be left alone in this country will contradict with our desire to speak out and be heard on behalf of our brothers and sisters and to assist our brothers and sisters throughout the world. Many have already been imprisoned and many charities shut down (all without trial) because they attempted to assist our brothers and sisters.

    I hope that my comments are clear.

    Allaah knows best.

  11. Avatar

    Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    May 1, 2007 at 7:48 PM

    Just quickly although I focused my comments with regard to Muslims I also think it is a big problem to ignore all the other injustices of the society both externally and internally, no matter whether they affect Muslims or non-Muslims.

    Now, I know Shaykh Yasir would not want to ignore these injustices, but again if we as a community decide our main goal is to preserve our own self interest and our own ability to practice the rituals of our religion, then what would be the implication. The reality today is that most Muslims focus on their own comfort and that of their families and in many cases are at the forefront of exploitation that occurs in America, as for example in the inner cities. They do so gladly in return for their paychecks and then they build large suburban communities where they can have their masjids and their Islamic schools. Won’t this be even more of a problem if we set this as our goal? Is this what we want?

    Working to promote the good and to prohibit the evil while being witness to the message of the Prophets has got to be at the center of our goals in this society or we will be living as hypocrites contradicting the prayers we say in our mosques, and living our lives benefitting off injustice and the rejection of the Day of Judgement.

    Allaah knows best.

  12. Avatar

    Yasir Qadhi

    May 1, 2007 at 8:56 PM

    Br. Abu Noor,
    Jazak Allah khayr for your comments. I would totally agree with most of them. Please do bear in mind that in one lecture, which is supposed to be somewhat comprehensive, there is only so much detail you can go into. My main point that I was trying to emphasize in that particuarl issue was that those groups that seek to ‘establish the Sharee’ah’, and make ‘Iqaamat al-Din’ their main goal in Western lands are simply not understanding the picture. Hence these comments were primarily directed at such people.

    This is not to say that there cannot be other goals as well, or that we should not try to help divert our country’s policies to more beneficial matters. Of course this should be another goal that we should strive for. But I would stand firm (even though it is an issue of semantics and wording) that our PRIMARY long-term goal as a Muslim community is to retain our identity and be allowed the freedom to practice our faith as we see fit.

    And Allah knows best…

  13. Avatar

    Yasir Qadhi

    May 1, 2007 at 9:03 PM

    Mujahideen Ryder, this one is for you:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeQ_Zq63W00

  14. Amad

    Amad

    May 1, 2007 at 10:05 PM

    YQ: “Mujahideen Ryder, this one is for you”; For the koofi or the fundamentals?? ;)

    I have to say you look different in this video… koofi and beard-length….

    As I lament then, where then did our real Shaykh go? :)

  15. Avatar

    inexplicabletimelessness

    May 2, 2007 at 12:18 AM

    MashaAllah I agree with this statement a lot:

    “the need to train scholars with a good secular knowledge base along with rigorous shari’ah education in order to provide constructive and meaningful leadership on a broad scale as well as in our individual masjids and communities”

    Maybe a new post can be started about this where it can be discussed?

    waAllahu ‘alam.

  16. Avatar

    Bintmuhammed

    May 2, 2007 at 10:46 AM

    Assalamualaykum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh
    It was a pleasure listening to this lecture. I must say this is need a topic that is inherently inside all of us. InshaAllah you can probably do a similar topic at ILMFEST, cant wait, its gonna be ilmtacular(cheesy) inshaAllah.

    wasalamualaykum

  17. Avatar

    abu-abdullah

    May 2, 2007 at 4:00 PM

    Assalam alaikum wa rahmatullah,

    Brother Yasir I listened to the Obligation of making Hijrah at http://english.islamway.com/bindex.php?section=lessons&lesson_id=397&scholar_id=37 by Shaikh Albani…he quotes the hadeeth you mentioned as saheeh….could you comment on his position and proofs for calling that hadeeth saheeh?

  18. Pingback: Muslims in the West: Where are we Going? at Ijtema

  19. Avatar

    ahmed

    May 2, 2007 at 5:11 PM

    jazakum Allahu khairan for this excellent series.

    It definitely gives all of us lots of things to think about.

  20. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 2, 2007 at 7:05 PM

    Mashallah,
    The only issue is that the presenter or the MC was speaking like 10 minutes. I was not fond of that.

  21. Avatar

    BintMuhammed

    May 2, 2007 at 7:44 PM

    ExEx blogger…why? the brother wanted a little time too, its kinda refreshing, they never let the poor MC’s talk.

  22. Avatar

    Aziz

    May 2, 2007 at 11:22 PM

    Why muslims in the west are obsessed with this issue ? Look at the muslims in India or in the eastren countries who are in minority. Take a lesson from them, plz.
    Muslim in the eastren countries still maintain their identity at all levels, not like in US or UK, where they simply give up islamic identity. Listen to schoalrs and obey them who are already living in your area, instead of jumping into conclusions by simply reading some blogs. First STOP watching TV……

  23. Amad

    Amad

    May 3, 2007 at 7:18 AM

    ASA,
    Aziz, can you further explain what you are trying to say? What issue are we obsessed with? What conclusions?

  24. Avatar

    Anas Hlayhel

    May 3, 2007 at 1:42 PM

    Assalaam Alaikum,

    I welcome Sheikh Yassir’s courage to discuss this issue from a “pragmatic” point of view. Since he asked us to disagree with him, I will honor his request :)

    Disagreement #1 with the “pragmatic” opinion regarding Hijra/assimilation:

    The attempt to equate a country where the majority is Muslim to a country where the majority is non-Muslim seems to have some flaws. Yes, there is a lot of corruption in the former, and I think many of us can attest to that, but corruption is nothing compared to kufr. So, if a youth in a Muslim country strays off, what does he usually do? He might drink, fornicate, or abandon the prayer, but does he ever abandon his religion completely? Very unlikely! In fact, those same people sometimes show a very strong feeling for their religion, at least at certain occasion. On the other hand, we are facing here the danger of complete assimilation. Is it not much more likely that a Muslim in this land totally abandon his/her religion? A lot of Muslims here, esp. the second generation and beyond, have lost all sense of belonging to the Ummah. I think our experience in this country might still be new, but look at what happened to Muslim communities in Latin America. There you can see 4th and 5th generations of what used to be Muslim communities completely detached from Islam. I really hope and pray that we don’t see a similar experience here. Then, let’s assume for a moment that a man does abandon his identity and his religion in a Muslim country, why do we ignore the many factors that can bring him back. This can be as simple as someone finding you on the street and guiding you to a Masjid. I think those of us who had, I say, the fortune to be raised in a Muslim country know what I’m talking about. The reason many of us became religious back home, was not necessarily because our parents were practicing, but because we met people who guided us to a Tajweed halaqa in a Masjid for example. Sufficient, I say, is the call to the prayer that we hear five times a day. I can tell you that one of the things I miss dearly about my home country is the Adhan and the walking to the prayer. All these factors that can pull you back to the realm of religious practice are lacking to different extents in western countries. One might argue that MSA’s or institutes like al-Maghrib can bring a strayed Muslim back to practice. But, those institutions are so weak to appeal to the majority of the Western Muslim youth. I don’t think it’s a question of whether we should preserve our identity while we live in a western country. The question is, can we really do it?

  25. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    May 3, 2007 at 2:10 PM

    I agree with your point, for a segment of the Muslim population here in the West, coming here was worse for their religion. However, this cannot be generalized. For some, they came here and found a better situation religiously. In fact, I recall reading some posts from Amad’s old blog where he discussed how he grew religiously after coming to America (Amad, plz correct me if I’m wrong)… for some people, the “back home” they have to go back to is places like Egypt or Syria or even worse, Tunisia or Libya… these countries make life hell for practicing Muslims… i think the more pragmatic approach is for the individual to assess what is best for him… I know of many brothers who have made hijrah and gone elsewhere and I applaud them for that… I have thought of doing the same myself…

    however, another pragmatic issue that has to be considered: most of the people who are here are not leaving, that being as it is, what are those of us who are here and choosing to stay (or considering staying) going to do to create institutions to preserve Islam in these lands

  26. Avatar

    Hassan

    May 3, 2007 at 2:37 PM

    Salaam. Sheikh Yasir Qadhi’s lecture is good, and applies in general, not specific cases. Thats what I felt from the lecture. Like as an individual if I see my religion and religion of children being compromised, then as an individual I can decide to leave, I can not tell everyone to come with me.

    Individually my biggest concern is that I am just tired of this rampant nakedness around. You can not go to wal mart without seeing improper things. I mean as an individual I try my best, but I cant help it, and I see that its best for me personally not to live in society where I can get distracted so easily. Moreover when I came to US, I had 2 feelings towards this. One was knowledge that this is wrong, and second was utter shock and disgust. Living here for 7+ years, I still have knowledge that this is wrong, and try not to look, but the shocking and disgust part is not strong anymore. I do not want my children to grow here, where they would know that this is haraam, and they wont do it, but would not be disgusted fiding it widespread, it would just become nausiance.

  27. Amad

    Amad

    May 3, 2007 at 3:43 PM

    ASA, first of all, my heartiest welcome to Br. Anas. Br. Anas was like our own elder brother (though not that much older) when we were all (Yasir, myself, a few others) bonded together by the MSA at University of Houston. So, everything he says, carries a lot of weight for all of our old gang!

    To be honest, I am quite torn on this issue. As Br. Abu Bakr rightly pointed out, indeed, many of us, including myself, had turning points in our deen right here in this country. We came here as just knowing some rituals, and now Allah guided us to some knowledge beyond that.

    However, we did indeed have some foundations. We respected elders, we respected our teachers, we respected our Shayookh, even before we earned any knowledge. Unfortunately, what we see in many of the youth growing up here, esp. amongst those whose parents continued to be just ritualistic, is that they are completely ‘lost’. And since they are ingrained to be independent, molded along the lines of ‘question everything and accept nothing’, and other similar behaviors, it becomes often very difficult to ‘break through’. Even among the religious ones, there is this strong streak of protest, of independence, such that respect for people, institutions and deen sometimes takes secondary roles.

    At the same time, this country offers so much in terms of the freedom to do whatever you want, in terms of dawah, in terms of secular education, in terms of laws and a system that ticks along like clockwork; it becomes a challenge just to contemplate leaving. In other words, it could be perfect for Muslim adults; yet perfectly dangerous for Muslim youth growing up here.

    I tend to believe in the power of the family to keep the kids whole, but I don’t see how we can shield them 100% from the outside influences. While in the Muslim countries, open fahsha (lewdness) is probably less, and open calls to leave the religion or the motivation to do so is even lesser.

    Ultimately, I feel that if you want your children to grow up to be scholars or to be more than just ‘good Muslims’, then perhaps the West won’t work out that well for you. While if you are content on raising ‘good Muslims’ and not much more, then America may be one of the best countries to be in. Of course, there are exceptions all around, and we see those exceptions amongst our shayookh who grew up here. I think I have rambled enough… wallahualam

    P.S. Hassan: I know where you are coming from, I think most of us do. For those with weak eyesight, that can be the best defense: take your glasses off when surrounded by fitnah!! ;)

  28. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 3, 2007 at 4:16 PM

    EXEX Blogger I totally agree w/ you!

    YOU GAVE IT! FULL FORCE…FULL ON!

  29. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 3, 2007 at 4:17 PM

    Sure! I totally agree with the fact that you agree with me.

    I SURE GAVE IT AND YOU ALSO GAVE THE “GAVE IT”. FULL UNFETTERED FORCE. THAT’S WHAT IT IS. I GAVE IT, YOU TOOK IT!!!

  30. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 3, 2007 at 4:21 PM

    Subhanallah!

    I totally agree with the fact that you agreed to me originally agreeing with you!

    Allah Paaak Parwardegar-e-Alam!

    btw…EXEX could you give me your contact info…because we are just chatting away on MuslimMatters.org ….

    It’s kinda like google-talk…Only more MuslimMatters-ish.

  31. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 3, 2007 at 4:25 PM

    okay…jazakallah…let’s respect the shaykh’s posting. Allaamah Qadhi-Saab. Let us not spoil the riveting debates. I agree with you Mujahideen Ryder, Anas Hlayhel, Bint Muhammad, Hassan, Abu Bakr, Amad, Aziz, DD, Inexplicabletimelessness, Abu Noor Irlandee, Abu Abdullah, Muslims in the West: Where are we Going? at Ijtema, Ahmed, and all the forthcoming commentators. Inshallah! ALL GOOD POINTS!!!

  32. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 3, 2007 at 4:29 PM

    ExEx Blogger…

    I agree w/ not “spoiling the riveting debates”…

    Ad-Deenu An-Naseeha: Br. ExEx let’s calm down inshallah and just give your digits (and any other contact info).

    This way, we won’t have to volleyball our comments back-n-forth through all of the “riveting debates” inshallah.

    Finally, I also agree whole-heartedly with the MC’s points in his 10min long intro. HE GAVE…Oh HE GAAAAAAVE IT!

    Jazakallah! and “Teamwork Makes The Dream Work”

  33. Amad

    Amad

    May 3, 2007 at 4:30 PM

    ASA, Sheikh Chao sahib, you seem in a very agreeable mood today. You are right, that besides the fact you and Abu Ameerah sit next to each other, and I still believe that you are 2 in 1 (ego and alter-ego ;) ) ; it is certainly full-blast humorous to see you both’s/one’s exchange online.

    On a serious front, as a student of knowledge yourself, what is your take on the speech; full-force and brazen comments fully acceptable and anticipated :)

  34. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 3, 2007 at 4:33 PM

    jazakallahu khairan, advice taken. may allah reward you. Sorry you know I don’t give digits, but here click on the site: http://www.smokeybear.com. The click on Smokey’s Vault and you’ll find me with a jar of cranberry sauce!

    Remember: Only You can Prevent Wildfires!

  35. Avatar

    Hassan

    May 3, 2007 at 5:00 PM

    Oh I just read what brother Anas wrote, and its making me cry.

    Yes I miss hearing adhan coming from all directions. I miss exiting house and seeing all sorts of people on street going towards masjid and saying salaam to each other. I miss seeing closed shops during prayer times. I miss the fact that when time of prayer comes while you are on road, all you have to do is to take exit and turn right to find a masjid. I miss going to Makkah and Madinah atleast few times a year.
    I also miss some materilistic things. I miss mattabaq, I miss dajjaj mandi, I miss shawarma (genuine ones), I miss ruz bukhari, I miss tamees, I miss cheap gas (0.45riyal/liter), I miss Nasar vs Hilal or Ahli vs Ittihad football matches.

    I know it may not make any sense to many, but I am just putting my emotional outburst out on blog. By the way most of the above things are food, Ammad bhai you promised me Dimassi and you have not come to Houston!!

  36. Amad

    Amad

    May 3, 2007 at 5:31 PM

    Please don’t remind me of the shawarmas of Dubai…. none to compete in America…

    Though I think that’s the least of our worries for our future as Muslims in the West…

    P.S. One day Dimassi has to happen i/a… i can’t avoid houston for too long!

  37. Avatar

    Musa Maguire

    May 3, 2007 at 6:32 PM

    I agree with the benefits of hearing adhan, and having masjids all around. This is a true blessing, and one of the things I miss about Egypt.

    I don’t miss the hypocrisy, bribery, corruption, recklessness, cheating, plagiarism, smoking, racism and other problems that “back home romanticizing” tends to ignore. (and yes, ALL the aforementioned problems are worse, at some level, than anything I’ve experienced in America).

    I do, in fact, miss the koshary.

    At an individual level, hijra to the historically Muslim lands can be a good idea. At a collective level, it is not really a practical option.

    A big part of this issue involves your comfort level and ability to navigate the society. I would never deny the problems here in America, but I feel more capable of dealing with them than the problems I encountered while abroad.

  38. Amad

    Amad

    May 3, 2007 at 7:01 PM

    ASA. Musa, you are correct that a ‘mass’ emigration from the West to Muslim lands is not only unpractical but also highly counterproductive to our deen. Currently, as things stand, with America’s overwhelming ‘super-power’ influences; it is in fact IN AMERICA, that Muslims can make the most difference for Muslims OUTSIDE AMERICA (in addition to of course within our borders). And that applies to a lesser extent to other Western countries.

    That is why I mentioned that unless you are planning to raise scholars, I believe that with a combination of strong family values, preferably Islamic or home schooling, it CAN be done inshallah. We can raise GOOD Muslims. But, before we worry about the kids, it needs to begin with YOU and ME. If we are going to be the typical ritualistic Muslim, if we are going to engage in near-zero activism in the Masjid or in our communities, if we are going to skip all the halaqats and all the Islamic classes; then, we are better off leaving and not risking our children’s Islam. Instead, we should engage ourselves with our deen, so that we don’t destroy our future generations, and at the same time establish our freedoms right here.

    It’s a foregone conclusion that all of us are not leaving, so we need to move on with the next step: what are we going to do here.

  39. Avatar

    Hassan

    May 3, 2007 at 7:48 PM

    Brother Musa if your comments were intended towards me then I would like to say there is difference between “back home romanticizing” and natural love and affection of a person with city/place he/she grown in. It was more emotional message than practical. I have agreed that mass migration is not possible whatsoever.

    Also there is nothing perfect in this world. As Sheikh Yasir pointed out, no utopia, we all have to learn to live with problems. Sometimes at certain stage or phase of life one country may suit a person, and at different phase some other. (Problems are still there). And that each person has to decide oneself.

  40. Avatar

    sincethestorm

    May 3, 2007 at 11:14 PM

    This message is not a new one. We had been hearing this message while we were growing up. Unfortunately, it got drowned out by the voices of speakers who were newly introduced to knowledge. The speakers have matured, mellowed and grown up so now the message has changed. So this is not new, those of us who are mature had known this already.

  41. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    May 3, 2007 at 11:21 PM

    I think we are all in agreement here on the general points and I am certain that none of the brothers here intended any offense to any of the others, in sha Allah.

    With respect to the question of raising scholars brought up by Amad, I agree and I disagree. I agree that at present, raising your children to be scholars is not that feasible an option here in the West, but that CAN (in sha Allah) and SHOULD be changed.

    In fact, if we look at the example of our Deobandi brothers, we will find that they have successfully established Madrasahs of their own here in the US, in the UK, and in South Africa. The Muslims in South Africa have been there longer than Muslims in America and they seemed to have made it work (reasonably speaking). In sha Allah, we can do it too.

  42. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 4, 2007 at 7:54 AM

    “…Sheikh Chao sahib, you seem in a very agreeable mood today. You are right, that besides the fact you and Abu Ameerah sit next to each other, and I still believe that you are 2 in 1 (ego and alter-ego ;) )”

    @ Sidi Amad:

    WOW! Ya Sidi…you went totally Sigmund Freud on us — minus the whole Oedipus Complex thing.

    Ever considered opening up your own practice?

    Would you consider being my first patient? :) Sidi AA? -Amad

  43. Avatar

    Adam

    May 4, 2007 at 11:48 AM

    Salaam aleykum! Sheikh Qadhi, as one who has listened to and recommended many of your previous work I must say I was more than delighted when I found that you blog.

    Having that said, I feel almost compelled to ask: Do you have any plans on releasing more tafsir lectures? Your tafsir of surat Yusuf is deeply appreciated and loved by the Muslims here in Sweden.

  44. Avatar

    ibn alHyderabadee

    May 4, 2007 at 12:07 PM

    I totally agree with Br. Abu Bakr about our Deobandi brethren they have outdone everyone else in this regard masha’Allah. For example…I was in Dallas recently and the Imam at the Plano masjid is a grad from Dar ulUloom in the UK, he is only about 24 years old.

    I saw the same thing in Seattle, WA when i was there over a month ago. They have their own madrasah there where they have boarding and lodging for both brothers and sisters who are there as students of knowledge.

    Basically they have a a vision for madrasahs. They all seem to have a plan, and a curriculum, and a how to guide for anyone that wants to start something up masha’Allah. In other words they are ‘on top of their game’. And as for other institutes like alMaghrib, I have yet to see a curriculum…….we say it’s a 10 year degree but when others ask before enrolling about the curriculum…..well we dont have one yet…..

    The point is that the Deobandi brothers already understood this idea and they looked to the future and planned for it and they are probably 5 years ahead or possibly even 10 years ahead of anyone else, masha’Allah. They are already graduating these ‘sons of the soils’ alhamdulillah from their schools and communities are now having the opportunity and benefit of hiring these brothers as their Imams. Allahu ‘Alam

  45. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 4, 2007 at 12:29 PM

    Oh you gave it.

  46. Avatar

    Hassan

    May 4, 2007 at 12:57 PM

    Hmm deobandi madrassahs… frankly they need very strict curriculum and methodology to keep their children deobandi. If they dont, their children would become salafis!!

  47. Avatar

    Hassan

    May 4, 2007 at 1:04 PM

    Deobandis understood this idea more than 100 years ago, and hence formed tableeghi jamaat.

  48. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    May 4, 2007 at 1:19 PM

    The Dars Nizami curriculum that is used in Deobandi madrasahs to train ulama is very rigorous and is a standard that is now centuries old. It is an extremely rigorous standard.

    Mind you, I would not want to teach the exact same curriculum but they have a system in place, and because it is a system they are able to replicate it anywhere and everywhere.

    They produce Huffadh by the dozens and they also produce a generous share of their own indigenous Ulama.

    I myself have also met a number of young Imams who went from America to Dar ul Ulum in UK. (It seems this must have been before they established their Dar ul Ulums here in America, and they have more than one now)

  49. AnonyMouse

    AnonyMouse

    May 4, 2007 at 2:41 PM

    About Muslims in South Africa… both my parents are South Africans of (desi) Indian descent, and neither of them liked it much there – while there is a pretty established Muslim community with masaajid and madrasas, apparently there’s a lot of bid’ah that’s taught….

  50. Avatar

    Musa Maguire

    May 4, 2007 at 3:07 PM

    Hassan,

    I didn’t really mean any post in particular, though maybe yours was included.

    The homeland nostalgia thing is natural and good. I felt that for America while overseas, and I feel it a bit now for Egypt, which is sort of like a second home.

    My concern is when the back home romanticism is tinged with a tone of Islamic authority, when it contains some implicit quasi-fatwas about hijra. I think we need to be very honest and realistic about the pros and cons of all environments, that’s all.

    Before I left Egypt, a friend told me that I had become like one of them….because I wanted to leave.

  51. Avatar

    Umm Reem

    May 4, 2007 at 5:55 PM

    “Us vs. them” mentality, yes, they do have a lot of goodness in them, but still with their ‘goodness’ (which maybe sometimes more then our own selves or many other Muslims), they are still different from us. And to make sure that that difference must remain, we’ll have to keep ‘us AND them differentiation’. wAllahu ta’ala ‘alam.

    Practically speaking, how much can we assimilate with them. I do recall Sh. Yasir saying that it cannot be complete assimilation but we cannot live in our ‘bubble’ either. Can shaikh please be more specific?

    Because the ‘middle path’ it is not as easily achieved as said.

    Although, my children are home schooled but they do play with my neighbor’s children. My son went though a time wondering ‘why his friend cannot enter Jannah (if he doesn’t become a Muslim) or his friend’s mother, who is extremely nice to him etc. There are many many Muslims who grow up in West and have difficulty absorbing this concept and the concept that there cannot be more then one way towards Jannah…where do you think all this acceptability of ‘others’ originates from.

    And I am talking about esp. those who went to Islamic schools etc. but their constant interaction with non-Muslims from a very young age, slowly but surely made them a bit more acceptable.

    What about children wanting to celebrate Halloween, or sharing just the decoration of Christmas, or the candy of valentines, or ‘can we just pick the eggs…they are just eggs’.

    Seriously, I cringe every time I have to explain this to my children out of fear that what if, iyyadhobillah, they rebel. Because the ‘excitement & fun’ they see other children having, is too much for them to resist and it is too much to expect from a small child to ‘understand’.

    The differences are simply too much that even if we, as we must be, kind and just and respectful towards our fellow citizens and neighbors and not think of them as ‘they are out there to kill us’, there is very very little that we share in common.

    They are not out there to kill us but their influence can kill something more precious then our lives for us and in our future generations.

    Whereas if I was in a Muslim country, even if my children were to rebel, it would probably be issues like ‘music’, ‘not wanting to wear hijaab’, ‘girls/guys’ etc. In all honestly, and may Allah protect and guide my children and all Muslim children, I would rather have them rebel on these issues then the ones above (Rabbana la tuhammilana mala taqata lana bih).

    Perhaps, Shaikh, you didn’t grow up here (at least not totally) and your children are still small. May Allah azzawjal protect them and raise them to be among the salhieen, but I am sure that your opinion on this one will change within 5-7 years :)

  52. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 4, 2007 at 6:15 PM

    interesting…

    i have noticed quite a bit of emotion in some of the responses to the original post.

    can we get muslimmatters to do a series of lectures by Dr. Phil, or something?

  53. Avatar

    abdelrahman

    May 5, 2007 at 12:47 AM

    wow..that got me thinking

  54. Avatar

    ibn alHyderabadee

    May 5, 2007 at 1:45 PM

    Full Force….Abu Ameerah’s Dr. Phil suggestion got me thinking……

  55. Avatar

    ibn alHyderabadee

    May 5, 2007 at 2:57 PM

    I don’t see why we can’t just have a similar curriculum just tweak a bit to our liking and ‘roll with it’…Allahu ‘Alam…

    but then again I feel there are other issues that need to be resolved first like the students of knowledge along with others in the West being able to sit together and work out a plan for our future and try to come to a conclusion as to what direction we want to move in…..I don’t know if this has been done, and if it has then I am definitely not aware of it…..Allahu ‘Alam

  56. Avatar

    ExEx Bloger

    May 8, 2007 at 1:09 PM

    Oh you gave it so hard! FULL ON!!!

    So what it is that I think that Muslim Matters is actively trying ban and exclude myself and others because the “comments” field have some sort of java/html whatever problem that doesn’t allow me to register my comments except through typing the letters extra hard and multiple times. Is this a ploy? And no, I’m not a conspiracy theorist. Nor am I a spy. (pun intended)

    By the way ibn hyderabadee, you gave good points. You’re not bad, you’re just good like ibn hyderagoodie but you’re just misunderstood!

  57. Avatar

    ExEx Bloger

    May 8, 2007 at 1:11 PM

    it is is*
    trying to ban*

  58. Avatar

    AnonyMouse

    May 8, 2007 at 2:22 PM

    Re: Dr. Phil – haha, after a couple counselling sessions my dad comes home complaining that *he* feels like Dr. Phil!

    Rather funny, actually… “And how does that make you feel?”

  59. Amad

    Amad

    May 8, 2007 at 10:12 PM

    Exex, why don’t you start a Dr. Pill service?

  60. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 9, 2007 at 9:46 AM

    I think that we would be good. I’ve always wanted to get into the media. In fact one of my confessions is that I wanted to be an actor when I was young or a comedian. I would be interested in persuing a journalistic career!

  61. Avatar

    ExEx Blogger

    May 9, 2007 at 9:46 AM

    we would become good and powerful if we had the media in our hands***

  62. Avatar

    abu ameerah

    May 9, 2007 at 10:44 AM

    @ ExEx…

    You GAVE IT Islamic University in Medina Style…

    You GAVE IT…Dr. Phil Style…

    You GAVE IT…Anderson Cooper 360 Style…

    You GAVE IT…Don Imus Style (minus the whole “Nappy Headed **” comment controversy)…

    You GAVE IT…”Off-the-Manhaj” Style…

    you just GAVE IT…

  63. Avatar

    Hamzah

    May 9, 2007 at 11:14 PM

    vVery off topic but I am looking for this answer. I couldn’t find a better place to ask this question.

    Why did al-Maghrib choose to teach mainly Shafi fiqh? I would have though Hanbali fiqh?
    Also at universities like in Medinah what fiqh do they teach? Maybe shaykh Yasir Qadhi can answer this since he has been there. I realize both on al-Maghrib and in different universities they might teach some comparative fiqh but wanted to know why al-Maghrib chose Shafi instead of HanbalI fiqh and what happens in other universities. Jazakallah

  64. Avatar

    Abu Bakr

    May 10, 2007 at 12:41 PM

    In Madinah University, they do not teach according to a madhhab. They teach Bidayat al-Mujtahid (published in English as the Distinguished Jurist’s Primer), which deals with the various madhhabs and not one in particular (although it generally neglects the views of the hanbali madhhab). The reason is that the university is an international institute with most of the students coming from all around the world with different madhhabs. In the rest of Saudi Arabia, Hanbali fiqh is generally taught

  65. Pingback: muslimmatters.org » Muslims in the West Event with Yasir Qadhi (2 Part)

  66. Avatar

    inexplicabletimelessness

    May 13, 2007 at 2:48 AM

    As salaamu alaikum

    v. interesting comments. Sh. Yasir, I’m definitely thinking about this now, as you said “many muslims need to be talking and thinking about this if we want to see a change”! :)

    also, is this video(s) available for download in MP3 format? jazakALlahkhair

  67. Pingback: muslimmatters.org » Muslims in the West Event with Yasir Qadhi (2 Parts)

  68. Avatar

    Muhidin

    June 6, 2007 at 6:52 PM

    To what extent are we required to be “pragmatic/realistic” and is it safe to say that those scholars who we take fatawa from living the West are not infact “making things too easy” but are just being realistic.

  69. Avatar

    Muhidin

    June 6, 2007 at 6:57 PM

    I would like to add that I think it is because some people are living in another world (though they bring ayaat of tawakkul etc. to try to justify the reason) that they are unwilling to be realistic in dealing with our situation hear. That’s why they are either very brave or just stupid. Have they crossed that line dear Sheikh Yasir Qadhi?

  70. Pingback: Blogging ISNA « Umar Lee

  71. Avatar

    Nuruddeen Lewis

    September 23, 2007 at 4:14 AM

    Assalaamu alaykum,

    I have a question concerning this lecture, which I believe to be very important and pertinent to many Muslims here in the West. Who are the indigenous scholars?

  72. Avatar

    Yasir Qadhi

    September 23, 2007 at 9:07 PM

    @ Nuruddeen,

    Really this is a question that every individual Muslim will have to answer based upon his/her conscience. Also, as I pointed out in that lecture, we need to realize that although we do NOT have ulama to the caliber of those back home, what we do have in the West are not ignoramuses or minor students of knowledge.
    For example, Sh. Salah al-Sawi is one of the authorities that I personally go to for such types of issues. And there are other senior du’aat out there as well. But in the end of the day every person will obviously lean towards one alim or a group of ulama more than others.

    Also, I am not saying that we should never go back to scholars in other lands. Rather, what I am saying is that we should not trivialize people amongst us, senior du’aat and elders who have been active for decades, just because the might not have as much book knowledge as others. Experiences teach a man just as much as books do – and the two put together is what makes a great alim.

    Yasir

    Yasir

  73. Avatar

    ...

    October 24, 2007 at 4:08 PM

    ”Perhaps, Shaikh, you didn’t grow up here (at least not totally) and your children are still small. May Allah azzawjal protect them and raise them to be among the salhieen, but I am sure that your opinion on this one will change within 5-7 years”

    lol Sheikh Yasir Qadhi was born and raised here. =)

  74. Amad

    Amad

    October 24, 2007 at 4:17 PM

    hmm… actually Shaykh Yasir was born here but raised in Saudi in his early years, I believe through high-school… don’t know how many years here or there between the birth and high-school.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Ammaar_Yasir_Qadhi

  75. Avatar

    Muhib Rahman

    September 3, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    Assalamu Alaikum WRWB

    Dear Yasir Qadhi:

    May Allah immensely reward you for your courage to address the issues you raised in this lecture. Your points are right on. I have been thinking along your lines for years but was uncomfortable to challenge the establised (wrongly) views because I did not have solid proofs to back up my line of thinking. But now you have given me ammunition to start a dialog.

    Your lecture is like a Ramadan gift from Allah. Allah has answered my prayers and my heart, after nine long years of living the “bubble” concept, finally feels at peace. I know many who suffer in secret. They are afraid to open their mouth for fear of being labelled (as weak in eman etc…) by their peers. Insha-Allah, I will point many to this website so they can learn like I have learned.

    JazakAllau Khair.

    Br. Muhib

  76. Pingback: Yasir Qadhi | God’s Law and Man-Made Laws: Muslims Living in Secular Democracies | MuslimMatters.org

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Complicated?:​ ​The A-Z of Women’s Modern Fiqh | Sh Waleed Basyouni

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Women’s fiqh has a reputation for being complicated. However, the reason why is because nobody has given it the full attention it needs in the context of Muslim women living in the West today.

I propose we end that confusion, stop the misuse of Islamic texts, and reclaim the knowledge. This applies to the men, as well. Men will want to learn about this as well – not just because they have women in their life (a mom, a sister, a wife or a daughter). But because knowing the fiqh specific to half of the world’s population saves everyone from making dangerous mistakes.

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“At first, I thought it would be a course on the usual Fiqh of Women stuff… …like pregnancy, periods, ghusl, salah. Sure that was there and with great clarity… …but it was literally the A-Z: He talked about women’s leadership, women as judges, women in positions of power… Never had I felt more empowered, more confident.…and especially grateful to be present in this class. “ – Ustadha Taimiyyah Zubair

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Sarah Sultan is a licensed Mental Health Counselor and has a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, graduating Summa Cum Laude. Sarah is currently working as a therapist at a residential treatment center for teens in crisis, where she works with adolescents dealing with suicidality, trauma, self-harming behaviors, aggression and a variety of other issues. She is also an instructor with Mishkah University, where she teaches a course about the intersection between Islam, psychology and counseling.

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This upcoming TDC, Shaykh Omar Husain’s session will be dedicated to addressing accepting failure and building upon our negative experiences to attain happiness.

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