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Open Thread Sunday 5/11/2008



Share your useful suggestions, tips and tricks… OR share whatever else is on your mind. Here are some past ones:

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  1. Elzaharna

    May 11, 2008 at 12:03 PM

    The world is on fire! Lebanon, Gaza, Burma, Sudan (and Chad I guess..), Pakistan…

    any thoughts?

  2. Muhammad

    May 11, 2008 at 12:03 PM

    Assalaamu Alaikum WRB

    I am new to MM so please forgive me if I misunderstand Open Thread Sunday — there is an issue that has been on my mind for a while and I would love to hear some thoughts on the subject.

    I noticed some time ago that Sh Yasir Qadhi and Sh Mohamamd Alshareef trimmed their beards. They used to have really thick, long, beautiful beards, but it’s now a fraction of what it used to be. Does anyone here know why? Does it have anything to do with being a target of abuse from ignorant people?

    I am sure the Shayukh face quite a lot of difficulties because of their profiles, and I don’t mean to compare my problems with theirs, but the reason I ask is because I’ve recently moved to a western country for studies (well, mostly) and, although I haven’t faced any real problem alhamdulillah, I do face the occasional comment, verbal abuse, etc., and it’s annoying. My thick, large beard seems to be reason. It’s possible I am targeted regardless of whether I have a full beard or not, but still the thought of trimming my beard, similar to length Yasir Qadhi has, is tempting. I dunno, maybe it’s just the shaytan putting these thoughts into my head.

    I would love to hear from the brothers here, as most of you seem to have been living in western societies for a while.

    Secondly, what’s a good way to explain to members of the opposite gender in a corporate environment that you don’t shake hands with them? Any anecdotes on the topic from brothers and sisters would be lovely :)

  3. Amad

    May 11, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    w/s wr wb Br Muhammad.
    There was a post by Br. Ahmad on the corporate issue sometime ago. May be worthwhile checking… in fact, I added it to the main post.

    Observing the Sunnah in the Professional World

  4. Ahmad AlFarsi

    May 11, 2008 at 12:35 PM

    Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullaah,

    Def check out the comments on the corporate post. Wrt to myself, I have a big bushy beard, walhamdulillah, and it hasnt been much of an issue at all in terms of abuse, etc… and I live in Texas :) . As for shaking hands, a brother who I recently met at my job (who not only has a big bushy beard, but also wears his kufi to work everyday, mashaAllah)… this brother told me that in his experience, using the keywords “religious modesty” when explaining why we cannot shake hands causes ppl to understand. i.e.:

    “I’m sorry, but out of religious modesty, I am not allowed to shake hands with unrelated women.”

    When you say religious modesty, inshaAllah, they understand that it has nothing to do with disrespect or looking down on women, but everything to do with hayaa.

  5. ibnabeeomar

    May 11, 2008 at 12:44 PM

    muhammad – if you listen to muhammad alshareef’s cd set on ‘the code of the scholars’ (available through – you might have to email them or he talks about the fiqh of trimming the beard.

  6. Umm Reem

    May 11, 2008 at 1:20 PM

    Totally different but i gotta ask…

    my kids have been bugging me to let them watch Chronicles of Narnia, Prince Caspian. I haven’t read the books but I heard that it has too much religious connotations…
    any recommendations/ideas?

  7. Muhammad

    May 11, 2008 at 1:24 PM

    Jazakallah khair br Amad for the link. It was a long read but definitely worth it, alhamdulillah! This comment by Umm Layth really touched my heart and put my concerns to rest:

    Or maybe it’s because I deal with worse things. I get laughed at, yelled at, get people to turn their back’s on me, spoken about and made to feel like a ‘monster’ in people’s presence for wearing niqab. Maybe this has become so petty in comparison to not being able to order from a restaurant because people think I’m some terrorist who is going to blow them up.

    All I got was a “bleep-ing arab” comment by a couple of guys walking by me, and a few rude comments and honks by guys driving past the bus stop where I was standing. I guess I was worried because this is my first exposure to such rudeness.

    Br Ahmad, jazakallah khair for your words of encouragement and for the “religious modesty” comment — insha Allah, I’ll be using that in the future.

    Br ibnabeeomer, my apologies. I hadn’t realized the length of their beard was because of a fiqhi issue. I don’t know why I always thought it had to be because of an incident… i guess because they both seemed — to me at least — to have trimmed their beards at about the same time.

  8. ibnabeeomar

    May 11, 2008 at 1:52 PM

    br. muhammad – i didn’t mean it as the ’cause’ for trimming – just that trimming the beard in and of itself is a difference of opinion in fiqh, and obviously some take different opinions from others, so its not something to get hung up on about why someones beard is/was at a certain length, thats all :)

    may Allah (swt) make your affairs easy.. insha’Allah whatever trials you face are a purification in this life and source of reward in the next.

  9. Amad

    May 11, 2008 at 2:12 PM

    On 22 April 2008, Hillary Clinton, candidate for the Democratic Party nomination in the upcoming US presidential elections, threatened “to totally obliterate” the Iranian people, fully demonstrating the bankruptcy of her campaign, writes Hamid Dabashi*

    Humorous article.

  10. Dawud Israel

    May 11, 2008 at 2:32 PM

    A few tips and tricks–I blogged these a while ago so I hope ya’ll won’t hate me if I plug em. Simple stuff yet so effective.

    Take off your eye glasses so you don’t have to lower your gaze–yeah it’s just that easy!

    You can use your eyes to count your tasbih

    And finally a cheap yet advanced way of waking up for Fajr on time: The Fajr-o-matic

  11. Nihal Khan

    May 11, 2008 at 2:59 PM

    It’s a nice day in Jersey…hows the weather throughout america today?

  12. Amad

    May 11, 2008 at 4:53 PM

    Nihal, not bad here in DE either… but then again DE is in the NE too :)

  13. Asim

    May 11, 2008 at 5:23 PM

    I’m tired of making (some) salafis making aqeedah an ‘us vs them’ issue and sufi bashing

  14. Hidaya

    May 11, 2008 at 6:14 PM

    oo i heard that the former principle of Arabic school (i forgot the name of school and principle) is suing the mayor???? and wants to be reinstated as principle?

  15. Hidaya

    May 11, 2008 at 6:54 PM

  16. Nihal Khan

    May 11, 2008 at 7:19 PM

    A few days ago, I made a criteria for who I could call a “friend.” I found that only a few people came into that category. Here’s my list:

    -Someone who wants good for you
    -Cares for you
    -Doesn’t agitate you or anger you on purpose
    -Stops you when you do something wrong
    -Helps you when you need help
    -Advices you when you need advice
    -Always wishes good for you and never wishes bad for you
    -Has patience with your mistakes
    -If you cry, they comfort you
    -If you are angry, they try to cool you down
    -And they want for you what they want for themselves.

    Then today, I read an article about Jihad an-Nafs from by Shaykh Hasan Ayyub. It found it to be a sign of Allah (SWT) what I read. Shaykh Hasan was talking about people who often succumb to their Nufoos (plural of Nafs). Then he mentioned those that constantly fight with their nafs to better themselves. He mentions some of their attributes:

    “If you walk with him he benefits you, and if you befriend him he serves you, and if you consult him he advises you, and if you wrong him he excuses you, and if you comfort him he thanks you, and if you are at odds with him he forgives you. Truthful; easygoing; trustworthy; he fears Allāh, so he is as Allāh says regarding him: {“Muhammad is the Messenger of Allāh, and those who are with him are harsh against the disbelievers and merciful between each other. You see them bowing and prostrating, seeking Favor from Allāh and His Pleasure. Their distinctive sign is the mark of prostration on their faces.”} [al-Fat’h; 29]

  17. inexplicabletimelessness

    May 11, 2008 at 8:25 PM

    jazakallahu khairan for posting that brother Nihal. subhana Allah, i think the biggest missing factor in friends these days is those who advise you when you are doing wrong and who encourage you to better yourself. a lot of us think friendship just means re-assuring each other, being nice to each other, etc. which is good but how about being that mirror for your brother/sister and truly wanting for him/her what you want for yourself: that is, Jannatul Firdous al ‘ala?

    my random thought :D how different would my life be without AlMaghrib?

  18. inexplicabletimelessness

    May 11, 2008 at 8:27 PM

    p.s. it’s really nice weather here in California mashaAllah. blue skies, no clouds, light wind, beautiful sunlight. we really need ilmfest here 2009.

  19. Nihal Khan

    May 11, 2008 at 10:41 PM

    For those brothers and sisters who know about Imam Muhammad Qatanani’s situation, it seems verily likely that he will be staying in the USA, inshaAllah. The county sheriff, local priests, rabbis, New Jersey Senators, and other community and non-Muslim religious activists came to his aide. I almost forgot his biggest aide of all…Allah…

  20. Amad

    May 12, 2008 at 11:14 AM

    In case you missed it, see this comment for eye-witness account

  21. just passing through

    May 12, 2008 at 9:02 PM

    Just passing through, a number of articles caught my interest.

    Meanwhile, here’s a pbs documentary on muslim american standup comedians, that should be worth a watch. (PBS has generally been kind to muslims I think)


    May 17, 2008 at 5:10 AM

    “I suffered my first heart attack several months after retirement ending my plans to become a teacher in retirement. I suffered a second heart attack and Allah in His mercy spared my life but my heart is permanently damaged. Add all this up and I am pretty much homebound and manage my work and business from my home. My one person publishing business does not have any outside or family employees or helpers. I am computer challenged when it comes to web work so I have a paid web admin who manages my websites, updates them and keeps things going for me with them. I am working a fast as I physically can and will do all I can to help make this opportunity HalfDate is providing a success with the help and guidance of Allah.”

    Who is this person??? Check out the current HalfDateDrive: Sisters Drive at

  23. Umm H

    May 19, 2008 at 6:23 PM

    Umm Reem:

    There are TONs of religious references in Chronicles of Narnia…
    Aslan, the lion, who dies and is resurrected is clearly “Jesus Christ”. Edmond, the boy, represents humanity who gives into his temtations, helps evil and then Aslan has to die for him, but then Aslan is resurrected again because he wasn’t the one who had committed any sins rather it was Edmond. Narnia is heavens.
    Susan is the one who likes to question everything “logically” (indication of athiesm….i think). That’s why the professor even asks her, “what are they teaching at schools these days!” when she questions that “logically” it wasn’t possible for animals to talk…

    Here are some reviews, it may help:

    Although, the author has promoted Christian beliefs though fantasy throughout the books, I believe the children cannot see through that…if they watch it just as a ‘fantacy’ it is a great movie to watch for children. It is all about chidlren and the main characters are children, no bad scenes etc.

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