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What’s In Your Ear? | Imam Zaid Shakir

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What’s in Your Ear? is an occasional Saturday series where we ask Muslims, known and unknown, a few simple questions:

1. What are you listening to?
2. What are you reading?
3. What are you watching?
4. What technology are you rocking, Mac or PC? Kindle, iPad, Android phone, etc?
5. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received or an advice you have for MM’s readers?

In this week’s WIYE, Waleed interviews Imam Zaid Shakir.

[audio:http://muslimmatters.org/audio/2011_What’s In Your Ear _ Imam Zaid Shakir.mp3]
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[Transcribed by Mehzabeen | The following transcript includes slight modifications for the sake of readability and clarity.]

Waleed Ahmed – So we have a segment called “What’s in Your Ear”. What are you listening to these days?

Zaid Shakir – What am I listening to? I’m listening to Qurʾān. Then I’m listening to more Qurʾān. Then I’m listening to more Qurʾān…

WA – Māshā’Allāh! And, what are you reading?

ZS – I’m reading Annie Leonard’s ‘The Story of Stuff’.

WA – ‘The Story of Stuff’ – what’s that about?

ZS – ‘The Story of Stuff’ is how everything we do as a society of consumers is destroying the planet. For example, gold is mined in South Africa, the leading gold producer. To produce a wedding band which is a fraction of an ounce of gold leaves behind 20 tonnes of cyanide poisoned sludge. They dredge up 20 tonnes of gold ore, they drench it in cyanide; the gold clings to the cyanide. They extract it, the rest is cyanide poisoned waste. So that’s what I’m reading.

I’m reading Nicholas Carr, ‘The Shallows’, how the internet and being overindulged with it is literally re-wiring our brains. That’s what I’m reading right now… in addition to the Qurʾān.

WA – And what are you watching?

ZS – I don’t watch TV, except when I visit my father.

WA – Do you have any advice for students of knowledge?

ZS – Student of knowledge? Be serious, be patient. I’ll give you the advice that Imam al-Shafiʿī gave, raḥimahullāh. You’ll never get knowledge, except with six things. I’ll let you know what they are with clarity: intellect; drive – you have to be driven, you can’t be a nonchalant student of knowledge – you have to be driven; patience. Someone has to take care of you, cuz you can’t work full time and study knowledge full time. The guide of a teacher. And a long time.

Mā’salāma

WA – Salām ‘alāykum

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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.

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

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Ahmad

    January 7, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    May Allah bless and guide you Ya sheikh for your contribution to our communities

  2. Waleed Ahmed

    January 7, 2012 at 11:58 PM

    Jazakallah for transcribing the interview Mehzabeen :)

  3. Zaynab b. Mohamed

    January 7, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    <3 Imam Zaid, may Allah bless him, preserve him, and elevate him. Such a benefit to our community in North America.

  4. Ramadan

    January 8, 2012 at 8:52 AM

    mashallah

  5. Yasmin

    January 8, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    Mashallah, very interesting post!

  6. Abu Ibrahim Ismail

    January 10, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    Alhamdulillah, the Shaikh give good advice. I especially take away two things:

    Listen to Quran, Quran, and more Quran.

    And he mentioned that he doesn’t watch TV except at his father’s house. I agree with this practice as television is one of the biggest wastes of time man has invented (Facebook being a close second).

    I’ve almost completely cut TV out of my life and Inshallah, I’m going to try to cut what little remains (mostly the news) out as well.

  7. AJMuslimah

    January 20, 2012 at 4:01 AM

    Salaam
    Very nice to see Imam Zaid Shakir interview. I really hope that Zaytuna and Al Mahgrib do things together, this will also bring the community together

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