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Reviving the Islamic Spirit 2011 – MuslimMatters Special Report

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Shaykh Tawfique Chowdhury

 

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Sh. Tawfique talked about the importance of maintaining the bonds of brotherhood in his deeply moving talk. How many of us actually make du‘ā’ for our brothers and sisters daily in our prayers? Imam Aḥmad used to make du‘ā’ for Imam Al-Shāfi‘i  every day after he had passed away. How many of us are moved and affected by the atrocities happening to Musims around the world? A teacher of the Shaykh physically gets ill every time the ummah is struck with a calamity. We have much to learn when it comes to our relations with fellow Muslims.

 

Shaykh Habib Ali Al-Jifri

 

Building on the theme of love, Sh. Habib Ali narrated to us the famous musalsal ḥadīth of Mu‘ādh b. Jabal through an unbroken chain and told us to narrate it to others. So I narrate it to you the same way and ask that you narrate it to others: “Indeed, I love you. So say after each ṣalāh,

اَللهُمَّ أَعِنِّي عَلَى ذِكْرِكَ وَشُكْرِكَ وَحُسْنِ عِبَادَتِكَ

‘O Allah, help me to remember You and thank You and worship You well.'”

Sh. Habib emphasized the need to love non-Muslims too. Yes, we dislike their falsehood in beliefs and actions, but we separate those from the love of the individual. He ended with, “Our religion is a religion of love. Period.”

Imam Zaid Shakir

 

Imam Zaid talked about the need for lateral leadership in our community; a model that empowers people to achieve a shared vision, rather than dictating it to them. Each one of us is a steward and we are all answerable for our wards. An irresponsible Muslim is an oxymoron he emphasized. Nothing you seek relying on Allah will be difficult and nothing you seek relying on yourself will be easy. He ended with some advice used by the Marines: “Lead. Follow. Or get out of the way!”

Shaykh Hamza Yusuf 

 

Sh. Hamza expounded upon a pivotal aspect of our faith that this world so badly needs – economic justice. He emphasized that Muslims not only need to endorse the fair trade movement but be the ones leading it. A recent report stated that there are 59 slaves working for each American, i.e. the cost of our standard of living comes at the exploitation of some 59 people in developing countries.  We need to start paying fair prices for the goods we purchase; we need to support local farmers and businesses. We need to open up legitimate Islamic banks and transfer our money out of Wall Street banks to local banks. Tools such as www.moveyourmoneyproject.org and the http://www.betterworldshopper.com/ipod.html should allow us to become socially responsible consumers. The ṣaḥābah would leave out bread crumbs on ant hills to honor the rights of ants – what is our state?

Professor Tariq Ramadan

 

In his eye opening talk about the Arab Springs, Tariq Ramadan articulated the need for extreme caution when analyzing and passing judgment on the uprisings in the Middle East. He revealed that these uprisings didn’t come out of nowhere and, in fact, ground work for them was laid out when American institutions such as the Albert Einstein Institution and Freedom House trained many Egyptians on non-violent resistance.

This isn’t to say that the whole thing was planned out, but aspects of it were in the works from before. In fact, he mentioned a Wikileaks document which stated that the Egyptians were mobilizing to have Mubarak ousted by Septmeber 2011. He also stressed that each country is to be treated separately and the ‘domino effect’ theory is simply too naïve. There are reasons why Egypt and Syria get more media coverage than the situation in Bahrain – which has been labeled as simply a Sunni/Shia conflict by many.

 

I got a chance catch up with him after his talk and got his thoughts the on-going Sharī‘ah scare and the rise in Islamophobia. He said that we need to counter this by continually talking about the Sharī‘ah in order to normalize the term and by dissociating it from the fear that is incited with it. The worse thing we can do is give into the scare tactics and stop using the term. He concluded with, “Normalize your presence without trivializing yourself.”

Dr. Sherman Jackson

 

In his illuminating social analysis, Dr. Jackson pointed out that cultural nativity (blindly following the culture of our ancestors) and cultural promiscuity (blindly following fads) are the two enemies of Muslims today. Inability to know what aspects of our imported cultures we need to drop and what to hold on to is what’s holding us back.

Much of the Islamophobia we see around us is because the West feels culturally threatened by Muslims. The fact that people are comfortable with gay marriage but can’t tolerate any mention of polygamy is indicative of this; the Swiss ban on the minarets exemplifies the same idea. This is worsened by the fact that our leaders are using this fear to score political points. This move leads to the alienation of young Muslims and alienation from society is what has historically motivated violent extremists. The important question is, ‘What are the youth running from?’ not ‘What are they running to?’

I got a chance to speak with him about how we can counter the unease many in the West feel about Muslims. He mentioned that their fear is fundamentally an emotional one, thus it is difficult to suppress it. Our job for now is to ensure that non-issues don’t turn into issues; the recent Sharī‘ah bans are an example. However, he also emphasized that we can’t ask people to end Islamophobia while not addressing ‘convertophobia’ in our mosques; Allah will not bless this type of hypocrisy.

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Waleed Ahmed writes on current affairs and politics for MuslimMatters. He focuses on Muslim minorities, human rights and the Middle-Eastern conflict. Based out of Montreal, he's currently pursuing a Ph.D. at McGill University in fundamental physics. Waleed also has a keen interest in studying Arabic and French. He spends his spare time reading, playing basketball and praying for Jon Stewart to run in the next presidential election. contact: waleed dot ahmed at muslimmatters.org

44 Comments

44 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Happy

    December 28, 2011 at 4:50 AM

    As Salaamu Alykum,

    Jazakallah Khair ya Akhi! I really wished I could make it this year, but I couldn’t. InshaAllah, next year!

  2. Avatar

    thayrone

    December 28, 2011 at 6:42 AM

    Great synopsis. May Allah keep safe all the Ulema who participated in this conference and let them lead the Muslims from darkness to light. Shaykh Hamza Yusef and Shaykh Habib Ali’s speeches were enlightening and positively transformative more Muslims should follow their examples and seek true knowledge from these two great contemporary scholars of our authentic Islamic tradition. May Allah preserve them All. AMEEN.

  3. Pingback: Muslims Must Stand Up Against the Horrific Attacks Against Christians in Nigeria – Huffington Post (blog) | Botswana - iWooho.com

  4. Avatar

    Faith

    December 28, 2011 at 8:34 AM

    Jzk- really helpful summary for those who could not be there. RIS sounds awesome. Wish I could access the audio.

    • Avatar

      waleed ahmed

      December 28, 2011 at 12:52 PM

      wa’iyyakum. glad you found it helpful.

  5. Avatar

    A. Seymour K

    December 28, 2011 at 9:55 AM

    Hmm.

    “Sh. Habib emphasized the need to love non-Muslims too. Yes, we dislike their falsehood in beliefs and actions, but we separate those from the love of the individual. He ended with, “Our religion is a religion of love. Period.””

    This is incorrect, bara’ from the non-Muslims is an essential component of faith. Tafsir Ibn Kathir elaborates on this in the tafsir of Surah Mumtahanah, ayahs 3 and 4.

    “Allah the Exalted says to His faithful servants, whom He commanded to disown the disbelievers, to be enemies with them, and to distant themselves and separate from them:
    (Indeed there has been an excellent example for you in Ibrahim and those with him,) meaning, his followers who believed in him,
    (when they said to their people: “Verily we are free from you…”) meaning, `we disown you,’
    (and whatever you worship besides Allah: we rejected you,) meaning, `we disbelieve in your religion and way,’
    (and there has started between us and you, hostility and hatred forever) meaning, `Animosity and enmity have appeared between us and you from now and as long as you remain on your disbelief; we will always disown you and hate you,’
    (until you believe in Allah alone,) meaning, `unless, and until, you worship Allah alone without partners and disbelieve in the idols and rivals that you worship besides Him.’ […]”

    • Avatar

      MR

      December 29, 2011 at 10:57 AM

      I’m sorry but I strongly disagree with your opinion and yes it is an opinion. This same ideology is exactly what leads to extremism like Al-Qaeda, etc. It also leads to hating Muslims as well. I personally use to think like this when i was younger and it only blackened my heart more and more. This type of mentality is what is destroying our ummah. We love all the creation of Allah whether they are humans or animals, because Allah creation deserves respect and honor. Why would Allah tell us to hate non-Muslims when Allah allows man to marry non Muslim women? Are we not human beings? In order to marry a non Muslim woman there must be love? What kind of marriage doesn’t have love? So we are suppose to hate them but can marry them but not love them? This is not Islam.

      The ayat you quoted doesn’t even say hate them. I read that as we do not accept their beliefs. We hate what they believe. It does not say hate themselves. If what you say is true then how do you even give dawah to people? How can you teach someone about Islam when you hate them? There is a very import difference in hating someone and hating what they believe in. We need to differentiate the two and this is what Habib Ali al-Jifri was discussing in his lecture at RIS.

      Also, if we as an ummah took your opinion on hating the non-Muslims Islam would not have spread the way it has spread throughout history. History has proven this. Islam is for everyone and in order to bring the message of Islam to everyone you first have to know the people and to know the people you must honor and respect them as human beings.

      Lastly, the Muslims who live in non-Muslim countries have to deal and interact with non-Muslims daily. Are they suppose to go around hating them. How do you treat people that you hate? Do you greet them kindly? Do you say nice things? Usually when you hate someone you disrespect or ignore them. This is why we should not hate anyone. We should not hate a single human being no matter how evil they are because they are our fellow human begins and we do not know when Allah will change their heart. There are countless examples of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) where he exhibited this. Some quick examples are Hind, the assassin who tried to kill Rasul (s), Umar ibn al Khattab, Hamza, Abu Talib, and others. SubhanAllah Abu Talib is a great example! He was a non Muslim, did Muhammad (s) hate him? No! He loved him. He loved him so much. Abu Talib defended the Prophet (s) and he is still a non-Muslim here. SubhanAllah!

      Islam is a religion of love. And the best of lovers is the beloved of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.

      And Allah knows best!

      • Avatar

        A. Seymour K

        December 29, 2011 at 1:19 PM

        To get this straight, you are saying that Ibn Katheer is a harbinger of al-Qaeda?

        That bara’ is… al-Qaeda ideology?

        I am confused with your statements, because they are not a sensible match for reality. Instead of simply acting upon the very plain and clear statements in the Qur’an to the effect of this matter, (and there are many dozens), then you have dumped a load of obfuscation and indirectly accused me of agreeing with al-Qaeda.

        The answer is simple; there are two kinds of ‘hate,’ but this is a complicated matter. You can ‘love’ non-Muslims in the sense of natural love; like the love between a husband and a Christian wife or the Muslim child and his mushrik parent. But this does not mean you can take them for friends (Ibn Katheer says in his tafseer of Surah Ma’idah: “Allah forbids His believing servants from having Jews and Christians as friends, because they are the enemies of Islam and its people, may Allah curse them. Allah then states that they are friends of each other and He gives a warning threat to those who do this, (And if any among you befriends them, then surely he is one of them.)”

        And there is a kind of hate which is a divine hatred, for all those who would set up partners with Allah most high; and it is different from the ‘hatred’ as you have been conceiving it, nor does it conflict with forgiveness, as proven by other ayahs of the Qur’an…

        This is not complicated nor is it complex; it is straightforward. And it does not conflict with the order to treat the disbelievers kindly in the hopes that they become Muslim, because this is a basic requirement and is evinced by the Prophet’s (salallahu alayhi was-salaam) conduct.

        “We should not hate a single human being no matter how evil they are because they are our fellow human begins and we do not know when Allah will change their heart. There are countless examples of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) where he exhibited this. ”

        The Prophet (salallahu alayhi was-salaam) ordered that Ka’b bin al-Ashraf be killed, he did not forgive him.

        Frankly, this statement is irredeemably awful. I hope you repent from making it. There are many clear-cut ayahs of the Qur’an that go against this statement.

        “O you who believe! whoever amongst you abandons his religion (Islam),
        Allah will bring a people whom He will love and they will love Him, who
        are humble towards the believers, stern towards the disbelievers[…]” al-Ma’idah 54


        Allah is the Wali’ of those who believe. He brings them out of darkness
        into light. But as for those who disbelieve, their Awliya’ (allies) are
        Taaghut, it takes them out of light and plunges them into darkness. They
        are the inheritors of the Fire, in it they shall eternally abide.” al-Baqara 257.

        So everyone who disbelieves, his ally is a Taghut (false god) and are you telling me that I should love the allies of Taghut? Ibn Katheer says in this ayah, Taghut means Shaytan- so Shaytan is the ally of the disbelievers, and this is corroborated by these ayah:

        ““Verily, We made the Shayatin, Awliya’ (protectors) for those who believe not.” (al-Ar’af 27)

        “Surely, they took the Shayatin as Awliya’ instead of Allah, and think that they are guided.” (al-Ar’af 30)

        And there are two religions; the religion of Allah and the religion of Abu Jahl…

        Saleh al-Fawzaan said: “But visiting kaafirs in order to have a good time with them is not permitted, because it is obligatory to hate them and shun them. It is permissible to accept their gifts because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) accepted gifts from some of the kaafirs, such as the gift from al-Muqawqis the ruler of Egypt. But it is not permissible to congratulate them on the occasion of their festivals because this implies befriending them and approving of their falsehood.”

        The examples you have brought, are for people who, in order- accepted Islam, was a singular incident (note the killing of Ka’b bin al-Ashraf, which does not fit into your hierarchy), converted to Islam, converted to Islam, and defended the Muslims and Islam with his wealth and life. It is noteworthy what was said at Abu Talib’s burial, however:

        “Abu Dawood (3214) and al-Nasaa’i (2006) narrated that ‘Ali said: I said to the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him): Your paternal uncle, the misguided old man, has died. He said: “Go and bury your father.”

        Abu Taalib, the paternal uncle of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) died, and he instructed ‘Ali to bury him, but the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) did not attend his funeral or his burial…”

        I ask that you reconsider your statement, because our love is for the believers only- it is not a non-exclusive love that goes out to every person, even people who worship idols. Your non-exclusive love is a love without evidence and it negates an important aspect of the religion. I could use it to justify loving George Bush or Barack Obama or Paul Slough. These are all incorrect loves to have.

        I lastly ask that you not accuse people of ‘al-Qaeda ideology’ directly or indirectly, if they are simply quoting Ibn Katheer and contemporary scholars. It is not a correct thing to do for many reasons. I have no share in the numerous errors of that group in methods and practice.

        • Avatar

          Ibn Percy

          January 1, 2012 at 10:25 AM

          Bismillah,

          (Side note: name change from MR to ibn Percy)

          I apologize if I was harsh in my previous comment. I also apologize for accusing you of extremist ideology. Perhaps in my own experience with this hating the non-believers I saw myself as an extremist. May Allah forgive me.

          You sald:

          “The answer is simple; there are two kinds of ‘hate,’ but this is a complicated matter. You can ‘love’ non-Muslims in the sense of natural love; like the love between a husband and a Christian wife or the Muslim child and his mushrik parent. But this does not mean you can take them for friends (Ibn Katheer says in his tafseer of Surah Ma’idah: “Allah forbids His believing servants from having Jews and Christians as friends, because they are the enemies of Islam and its people, may Allah curse them. Allah then states that they are friends of each other and He gives a warning threat to those who do this, (And if any among you befriends them, then surely he is one of them.)””

          The love between a husband and his Christian or Jewish wife or the love of a Muslim child and their non-believe parent is exactly what Habib Ali al-Jifri was talking about. We may have had a misunderstanding, because in your previous comment you disagreed with him, so I incorrectly jumped on you for that, but it appears you now agree with him.

          Yet, you quoted another scholar:

          “Saleh al-Fawzaan said: “But visiting kaafirs in order to have a good time with them is not permitted, because it is obligatory to hate them and shun them. It is permissible to accept their gifts because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) accepted gifts from some of the kaafirs, such as the gift from al-Muqawqis the ruler of Egypt. But it is not permissible to congratulate them on the occasion of their festivals because this implies befriending them and approving of their falsehood.”

          The problem I have with this is that it is a blanket general statement. A really powerful current day example of love for the non-believers is exhibited in this video by Sh. Abdur Raheem Green talking about his father’s shahada and his passing (inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rajioon) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsAVcJXvrCU

          This directly contradicts Sh. Saleh al-Fawzaan’s statement because it is too general.

          This is love Habib Ali al-Jifri, I believe, is talking about. This is the love that we are lacking in our communities. Our neighbors are non-believers. We should love them and honor them with respect not as disbelievers but as your neighbors, your family members if you have any, your coworkers and most importantly as fellow human beings. This is the love we agree upon. Also, because we hate what they believe, we should love to want them to come to the Truth, inshaAllah.

          Lastly, your mention of the Jewish cheif Ka’b bin al-Ashraf doesn’t fit this discussion. He was publicly known for his enmity towards Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. He plotted to attack and kill Muhammad. Obviously in this case you have an enemy. He is clearly a kafir – one who denies the truth and want’s to kill the Messenger of God. My non-believe neighbor has never attacked me or Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. They never threatened me. Do I need to treat them like Ka’b bin al-Ashraf? No.

          For the most part I think there is some level of agreement and some level of disagreement between us. You said it is “The answer is simple; there are two kinds of ‘hate,’ but this is a complicated matter. ” Sadly I believe this is not as simple because our ummah has failed to understand how to hate and how to love. This is what Habib Ali al-Jifri, in my understanding from listening to the lecture, was saying.

          Lastly, with all do respect to Sh. Saleh al-Fawzaan, has he commented on his government’s recent arms deal with the United States? This surely contradicts what he preaches. Hate the kuffar but buy weapons from them. Not sure what kind of hate that is…

          And Allah knows best.

          • Avatar

            A. Seymour K

            January 1, 2012 at 11:09 AM

            The issue being, that this is only held up by the scholars in terms of familial ties- but you are extending it to apply in general to others, when we should be treating them respectfully and honorably regardless of that so long as they are not of those whom we are not allowed to treat thusly. But this does not mean we can love them, and the numerous ayahs of the Qur’an which repudiate this have very clear meanings…

            The statement ‘Islam is a religion of love. Period.’ and the qualification that you are adding in here conflicts with the statement you made, that read:

            “We should not hate a single human being no matter how evil they are because they are our fellow human begins and we do not know when Allah will change their heart.”

            So if there was confusion, I apologize.

            I am not a fan of Saudi Arabia, but it is not haram to trade with disbelievers. Recall whom the Prophet (salallahu alayhi was-salaam) pawned his armor to.

          • Avatar

            Umm Sulaim

            January 1, 2012 at 12:07 PM

            I am beginning to understand the reasoning behind anti-Ulema articles I have read on MM: sheer disrespect.

            It is obvious your knowledge of Islam is based on logic. Try understanding it according to our pious predecessors.

            And Seymour mentioned Shaykh Salih Al-Fawzaan said we can receive items from them. There is absolutely no justification for your sly comment. If I did the same for those you respect, I am sure my words will be edited.

            Umm Sulaim

          • Avatar

            Ibn Percy

            January 1, 2012 at 12:07 PM

            I can see how my statements can be taken wrongly. I ask Allah to forgive me for causing confusion. InshaAllah we agree to disagree.

      • Avatar

        A. Seymour K

        December 29, 2011 at 1:25 PM

        What is more, you clearly did not even read the ayah, or not very closely… it does not just say ‘we are free from whatever you worship besides Allah,’ it says ‘we are free from YOU AND whatever you worship besides Allah,’ and the Qur’an said the former, you might have a point, but it does not, so you do not…

    • Avatar

      Mezba

      December 30, 2011 at 2:13 AM

      The ayahs you quoted are being incorrectly applied by you out of context. The context of the ayahs was that Haatib, a Sahabi and veteran of Badr, tried to warn the Meccans of the upcoming march by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) on their city. And Allah warned the Muslims not to betray the Prophet.

      The full ayah, with context, and tafseer, is explained here.

      http://readwithmeaning.wordpress.com/2011/01/24/chapter-60-al-mumtahina-she-that-is-to-be-examined-verses-1-2/

      Please do not quote Quran verses out of context or try to mislead Muslims into extremism.

      • Avatar

        A. Seymour K

        December 30, 2011 at 5:48 AM

        I am quoting nothing out of context. What is more, that ‘tafsir’ is misleading. It gives the impression that you can be friends with Jews and Christians, which is refuted by dozens of verses of the Qur’an. (3:28, 3:118, 4:139, 4:144, 5:51, 5:57… et cetera). Treating them with kindness is not being friends with them even though it gives that impression.

        What is even more, pretending that these verses only have a particular context which limits their meaning is odd. Do you not know that ayahs have meanings derived from context as well as general meanings? It’s why Surah 59:7 is a proof against people who say you only follow Qur’an and not hadith.

        Is Hafiz Ibn Katheer an ‘extremist’ to you for the statement above? I did not invent it by myself.

      • Avatar

        A. Seymour K

        December 30, 2011 at 6:23 AM

        And lastly, I would like to ask… can you find a single actual tafseer by a scholar (not a tafseer by you) that actually says what you have done to it- ie; limits the meaning of the verse to an explanation of the contextual reason for revelation, and then permits friendships with Jews and Christians?

        Not even modernistic tafseers like Tafhim al-Qur’an do that, and certainly not classical ones…

        • Avatar

          Mezba

          January 1, 2012 at 12:15 PM

          can you find a single actual tafseer by a scholar

          Yes – Shaykh Habib Ali Al-Jifri , as stated above.

          • Avatar

            A. Seymour K

            January 1, 2012 at 6:32 PM

            Okay, so hypothetically speaking, if I were to go and quote, say, every tafsir available on altafsir dot com, from Jalalayn to Nasafi, and found that none of them permitted friendship in that sense between Muslims and disbelievers, then you would… take Mr. Jifri’s “tafsir” over theirs?

          • Avatar

            Back2Sunnah

            January 2, 2012 at 2:48 PM

            Seymour, did Rasulullah salallahu alayhi wa sallam, not love Abu Talib?

      • Avatar

        Sister

        January 7, 2012 at 3:56 AM

        The Ummah is in a humiliated state except for those who have refused to bow down to the ways of the ‘disbelievers’. Those people of tawheed who have rejected the false systems of the mujirimun who wish to change Islam to “fit” in with their world dominating agenda.

        These people whom you so love are enemies of Allah. There is a difference between giving rights them their rights and “loving” them. Yes we care that everyone is guided because we want Allah to be worshiped alone and we want people to be saved from the fire, but to say you love one who angers Allah is beyond me.

    • Avatar

      Sister

      December 30, 2011 at 8:46 AM

      Jazak Allahu khayra akhi seymour

      The responses you got are from the result of living amongst disbelievers. May Allah save this ummah.

      • Avatar

        Mezba

        December 30, 2011 at 12:08 PM

        The Prophet lived amongst disbelievers, so did his uncle Abbas and so did most of the Companions. Medina was not just Muslims, they also had Jews, Christians and idol worshippers in the city.

        True Islam is being practiced in the West; may Allah save the Ummah from the extremism of Muslims in the East.

        • Avatar

          Mansoor Ansari

          April 17, 2012 at 1:09 PM

          Sis. Mezba, I would not say that ‘True Islam is being practiced in the West; may Allah save the Ummah from the extremism of Muslims in the East.’

          While Islam in the East mite fall on conservative extreme, we in the west tend to follow the liberal extreme. Islam in west in no less cultural than it in the east, yes we tend to believe that the Islam we are following here is free from culture baggage but it is not. It’s has western cultural baggage but since we grew up & live here, we are blind to it just like those in the East are blind to their cultural baggage. We are not moderates here in the west, rest of the world views us as liberal Muslims coz we are, yes compared to the Amina Waduds or Irshad Manjis we are not but compared to billions out there, we are Amina Waduds or Irshad Manji. It’s time we woke up & smelled the coffee.

      • Avatar

        MR

        December 30, 2011 at 2:54 PM

        Indeed, may Allah save our ummah. Ameen!

      • Avatar

        Jock

        December 31, 2011 at 1:26 PM

        If ‘living among the disbelievers’ is what can help people tear down the barriers of irrational sectarian hatred and communal distrust that plagues so many parts of the Muslim world today then it should be a mandatory part of educational and social policy. A person who regards other people as equal people and human beings, even if he disagrees strongly with their religious views, is less likely to commit violence against them and more likely to live in peace with them. And the opposite is also true: encouraging blind hatred, communal separation and implicit or explicit dehumanization leads to broken countries, broken communities, perpetual war and almost limitless irrational fear and ignorance. Think about the Islamophobia in the U.S and Europe from people who tend not even to have met a Muslim on their life and you’ll know what I’m talking about.

        If there’s anything that’s going to ‘save the Ummah’ it will be more mutual love and respect. More warfare and sectarian nonsense is just a path towards social destruction e.g. what’s happening today. And in any case Muslims are not guilty of having ‘too much love’ for the ‘disbelievers’ nowadays. I am talking here about their communal and internal relations. No one is asking you to ‘love’ the pig-headed foreign policy makers in the West and their idiotic supporters. But Ahmedis, Christians and Hindus in Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan etc deserve a much better deal than they are currently getting.

        Good job by Mezba and MR, i support their humane opinions…:)

      • Avatar

        Sister

        January 7, 2012 at 4:20 AM

        The prophet salallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said in the translation: “I am free of anyone who lives with the disbelievers,”

        Our brothers and sisters over here are suffering because of your taxes being paid to those mujirimun kuffaar. And on top of that, the taxes being used to arrest Muslims in the West and the war on islam. They will not be pleased with you until you follow their ways. i.e. give up your religion!

        There are rules in islam for those who are kuffar living in the lands controlled by the Muslims. Islam has a solution for everything. It is not up to us to “think” we have a better solution other than that which Allah has chosen for us. They have rights under the islamic state, and frankly this is the solution to all the problems in the world. But shaytan has deceived mankind and the hizbu shaytan are the ones leading the world ‘ajeeb.

    • Avatar

      Umm Sulaim

      December 30, 2011 at 2:01 PM

      There is a difference between treating someone as a human being and loving the person.

      On the extreme end of Al-Qa’edah is to love non-Muslims to the detriment of Muslims, as displayed on some posts here.

      I interact with many non-Muslims; humanity, not love brings us together, though I do not hate them.

      Umm Sulaim

    • Avatar

      A. Stranger

      January 2, 2012 at 6:08 AM

      What Islam encompasses is VAST! And it cannot be subjugated to a single word (e.g “Love”).

      Islam is NOT the religion of hippies where everything is based on “love”.

      And remember, the people who focus on one aspect of Islam and worship, CANNOT succeed.

      The PILLARS or ‘Ibada is that we worship Allah with LOVE, FEAR and HOPE.

      Those who focused on love; deluded themselves. Those who focused on fear; lost hope. Those who focused on hope; …well, they’re still hoping..

  6. Avatar

    Farhan

    December 28, 2011 at 10:16 AM

    I was there!
    I tried to remember the Du’a Sh Habib mentioned, but I couldn’t. Jazak Allahu khayr, I’m glad you posted it.

  7. Avatar

    Abdul

    December 28, 2011 at 12:25 PM

    Great write up.
    For those who want to see more pictures of the event. Check the article below

    Canadian Islamic convention attracts record breaking attendance Article Link : http://bit.ly/vo9QY1

  8. Avatar

    LeBrock

    December 28, 2011 at 2:29 PM

    Assalaamu alaikum wa rahmatu Allah
    Jazaka Allahu khaira dear brother. This log is much appreciated by one who was unable to attend. Many interesting points… especially liked the du’a, may Allah protect, bless and help Al Habib Ali Jifri and all the teachers at the conference – and outside of it – who share their insights with us for the sake of Allah.I also particularly liked the points made by Dr. T. Ramadan and Sheikh Hamza Yusuf and the links provided.

  9. Avatar

    hira

    December 29, 2011 at 4:21 AM

    This was an excellent summary masha Allah. The issues discussed were germane to our time.

    Can someone do this for Almaghrib’s ilmfest??

  10. Avatar

    Hamayoun

    January 1, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    Salam

    From islamtoday.com:

    [B]
    Hating unbelief, not unbelievers

    Question

    What does Islam teach us about hating unbelievers? What should we feel for our non-Muslim family members?

    Answered by
    Sheikh Salman al-Oadah

    The Muslim is taught by his book, the Qur’ân, to hate falsehood, distorted beliefs, and deviance, and consequently, to hate the representation of falsehood and deviant beliefs at the hands of the unbelievers. He does not, however, hate the people themselves. In fact, he should wish for them every possible good and hope that they will attain guidance and be saved from the Hellfire.

    When one of the unbelievers attains guidance, the Muslim should be as joyous for his sake as our Prophet (peace be upon him) was when a Jewish boy converted to Islam just before he died. The Prophet (peace be upon him) left his home saying: “All praises are for Allah who saved him from the Hellfire.”

    The hatred one should have is for their deviance or sinful behavior, but not for the people themselves.

    This is why a Muslim cannot be blamed for his affection towards his son, wife, and others, even if they are not Muslims. However, such affection should not cause him to neglect any part of his religion. That is why the Muslims who, on account of their wives and children, failed to emigrate to Madinah as they were commanded were rebuked for staying behind. Indeed, Allah describes our wives and children as a trial.

    In fact, the ones who encourage hatred are certain Western and other non-Muslim politicians and media personalities who seem to be doing everything in their power to instigate enmity against Muslims in various parts of the world. By their practices, they seem to be trying to give the Muslims lessons in hatred and rancor.

    If there are some moderate and reasonable voices in the West and in places like India, they are being drowned out by the overwhelming clamor of extremism and anti-Islamic rhetoric. Admittedly, the same thing can be said for the Muslims as well. However, I must stress that the West is suffocating the moderate and temperate voices in the Muslim world who are on the correct Islamic methodology, the methodology that is the way of salvation for the Muslim nation.

    [/B]

    I used to think a little like Seymour, but I personally have found that I became a much better human being when I started treating non believers as regular human beings.

    *Name changed to comply with MM rules. Kindly stick to using your name/Kunyah. Jazak’Allah Khairin*

    • Avatar

      Waleed Ahmed

      January 1, 2012 at 2:40 PM

      Good summary. Thanks for sharing :)

    • Avatar

      A. Seymour K

      January 1, 2012 at 6:34 PM

      So is Ibn Katheer a blameworthy extremist or not?

      Or is his ‘Tafsir al-Qur’an al-Adhim’ no longer ‘suitable for modern times’ due to the ‘more nuanced social situations,’ and it thus must be replaced with new understandings of very obvious Qur’anic ayats?

      Because I have said nothing that is not in Tafsir ibn Katheer, so I’d just like to get this stance on it… whether he is a ‘blameworthy extremist’ according to this new paradigm that I am being introduced to, or not…

      • Avatar

        Ahmed

        January 2, 2012 at 10:19 PM

        Salam,

        Ibn Kathir was not an extremist. Every one knows this. The answer you want is clear, which is ‘yes’. But, I don’t think you will get it. Why are you asking this question? Do you doubt that Ibn Kathir was not an extremist? If you do not then what is the point of asking a question you already know its answer?

        Ahmed

  11. Avatar

    Live Quran

    January 3, 2012 at 5:24 AM

    Quran give the whole information about Islam including history, basic concepts,search engines and recitation. Its logical if one learn about faith would start by reading its most by Holy text. We can survive in this world only when we are ready to get guidance from the Holy Book (Quran). It provide us a survival path which decorate our life in the best way.

  12. Avatar

    Ayman

    January 4, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    Whats up with all the Sufis?

  13. Avatar

    Teaching Kids the Holy Quran using toys

    January 11, 2012 at 10:17 AM

    There is an article that laments the fact that there was a notable absence of women speakers at RIS. Thoughts?

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/mmw/2012/01/reviving-the-spirit-without-recognizing-half-the-audience-2/

    – Mezba

    • Avatar

      Waleed Ahmed

      January 11, 2012 at 10:51 PM

      I don’t particularly agree with the sentiments of the author. I would argue that RIS probably leads other conferences when it comes to inviting female speakers and many of the speakers listed have already spoken at the convention. While the author is quick to recognize that half the audience is female, she doesn’t seem to see that extremely few women from the West have gone on to master the Islamic scholastic tradition…and thus the smaller representation at the conference. Plus, I really don’t think RIS picks speakers based on gender and accusing them of sexism is just wrong. Also, Muslim feminists should not feel the need to push RIS to bring in female speakers; that way you’ll just end up getting a token female speaker.

      Waleed

      p.s. We had a women only conference here in Toronto that preceded RIS and even in that convention, male scholars were present ( http://being-me.org/)

      p.p.s. I am not trying to diss women here for not becoming scholars. There are a plethora of reasons why the number of female Muslim scholars are so few.

  14. Avatar

    Muhammad

    February 6, 2012 at 12:17 AM

    Love the post, hope to see updates on all the major conventions in NA and the UK iA. It’s always nice to get a taste of the wisdom dropped by our community leaders and scholars when we don’t get the chance to attend ourselves. 

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