Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Bismillah,

Alhamdulilah, alhamdulilah! My Lord is so good to us, He gives, He gives, and blesses us in so many ways its unbelievable!

I’ve been swamped- a good type of swamp, wherein I truly believe its Allah subhana wa tala answering my dua list from Ramadan. I’m attached to my dua list in Ramadan and throughout out the year and all of these things that Allah blessed me with is a result of Him choosing to bestow His mercy upon me! Ujeeboo dawati itha daan! Truly Allah did say, “call upon me and I will answer”. So thats the best part of the last couple months, busy, good type of busy, but not enough time to blog. So here are things that have been on my mind!

* If you leave the Quran, the Quran leaves you! Yes, it does. This is something really scary. I’m really big on memorization, beyond tafsir, tajweed, memorization gives me my Quran-eman fix. I don’t know how to describe, but truly combining all three is wonderful works for me! My heart rejoices. So a reminder to all of you out there, don’t let a day go by without reciting, reflecting, and looking in the book of Allah for directions, its a must. Because as time goes by your brain sort begins to rust, almost like cob-webs begins to set in, and in place of a reflective mind, and an eman filled heart, therein begins a deadness that is scary. This reminds me of the saying of the scholars “as the one who doesn’t have quran in their life, is like a ruined house”; how sad that is!

* I was a camp councelor for MYNA again, I love it! Its amazing, and life changing. Camp isn’t really different from what I do with the youth in my community (at least my role), but the activities/lectures I take part in are a bit different. The best way to be better Muslim is to really help others be better Muslims. I have a hadeeth on my wall that I try to live by everyday. “khayro naas man yanfa3o naas” “The best people are those who are of benefit to others” Not to say I’m the perfect Muslim, but helping out the youth, helping them reflect on the deen, and helping them to remember Allah in one way or another really makes my day.

* Teaching in the morning and working at the library really helps me reflect on all sorts of stuff! I’m currently reading “The Help” by Kathyryn Stockett, and I’ve had two things come to mind (Power of the prayer, shunning/mean girls). I was really moved by Aibileen (a black maid in 1962) desire to be close to God and her need/turning to God for everything in the book. Aibileen, though a christian reminded me of my connection with prayer/dua in Islam! This woman writes her own prayers, and this is something I totally relate to. I listened to a lecture once where the shaykh mentioned how we should make our duas personal/specific to Allah, so that we show Allah how weak we are, and of how much we are in need of Him, and our desire to have what we are asking for. I know its odd to think about this, but think about all the duas we’ve been making through out the years, (good health, good deen, etc.), do we ever change it up? Are we better people because of these duas? Have we changed because of them? I say be precise, get to the nity gritty details of what/and how we want something from Allah! This is something I found that worked for me! One of my favourite lines from the book that Aibleen says is ” Cause that’s the way prayer do. It’s like electricity, it keeps things going” Subhana’Allah, how true that is! Second part of this reflection is that of mean girls! Has anyone seen the movie ‘mean girls?” I have never but the gist of it is a bunch of mean girls causing havoc, and subhana’Allah one of the things my camp adviser said was how at times girls can beeeeee soooo viscous/so mean to each other, meaner than boys. Sometimes I see bits and peices of that in my first graders! Subhana’Allah! But anyway, in the story, Skeeter one of the main characters gets shunned by her ‘friends’ when she decides to try to change things up, and stand up for what is right; i.e equality/rights for humanity! Its a sad case though when Hilly, the head ‘mean girl’ shakes things up and turns everyone else against her. Its sad, and the author describes this when Skeeter is told by Aibileen of her being shunned ” I don’t care about any of that ole stuff, anyway. She kind a laugh and it hurts my heart. Cause everybody care. Black, white down we all do.” Its sad stuff, and personally I’ve been at the end of such situations before while I was young as well as an adult (Yeah, if your outspoken at times like me, you are bound to face some difficulty in this area), but subhana’Allah it really takes a strong will, a determination to stay firm in what you fully believe in, and a lot of dua! Its a road of self discovery as well and it really shows you what you are capable of as a person. I try to teach my first grade girls that things like this shouldn’t happen, and that they should be better people and shouldn’t treat each other this way! I really enjoyed this book overall! It reminds me of the Civil rights era, I always enjoyed learning about that era. I feel like its a part of my history as an immigrant to this country. It reminds me back in 6/7th grade when I read “The Watson go to Birmingham…” one of my favourite books, or the “To kill a mockingbird”… man these are really good books to teach in the classroom, I can’t wait to work with my middle Schoolers!

* When my Ipod battery dies in my car and I can’t listen to my Quran, I’m left to NPR lol. I like NPR, but I don’t like listening too much news, because it makes me sad. I listen to it to the point of just being ‘aware’, and cut it off when it passing towards the point of ‘too sad’. So this past week, while driving home from work, there were some recurring news… 4 nights in a row at least. Syrian issues, Pope having a meeting from members of the church from all of over the world for victims of paedophiles in the church… thats a mouth full, and It really made me sad. This is a case of religion/folks practising that religion gone really really wrong! I respect people of faith, but at times its really hard to listen to stuff like that and have an objective mind. Politics/ the run for office/Romney. All sorts of other stuff, Politics is interesting but I’m always sceptical of things that goes down in Politics.

Alhamdulilah, really busy days, but insha’Allah insha’Allah it is all things that Allah is pleased with. I pray that Allah alleviates our difficulties, and may these difficulties be a cause for us to grow closer to our Lord, the Mighty and Majestic!

Till next time, may we meet in the highest abode! Al Firdous Ala!

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Bismillah,

Alhamdulilah, all praise is due to Allah subhana wa tala who has blessed us all in one way or another.

Book review time! insha’Allah I will comment on the parts of the book that moved me. This book was such an amazing book in that it reflected Islam and its teachings so much that I had to wikipedia the author to see if he was muslim. It was profound and deep…I found myself thinking about each point and wondering how it tied to my own life. So glad I took notes, alhamdulilah.

*Personal Legend : “Its what you have always wanted to accomplish. Everyone, when they are young knows what their personal legend is”

*’At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible. They are not afraid to dream, and to yearn for everything they would like to see happen to them in their lives. But, as time passes, a mysterious force begins to convince them that it will be impossible for them to realize their personal legend”

The above mentioned comments about Personal legends are awesome…this is the amazing dreams we have when we are young, and we believe we can be anything we want to be or do anything we want to. And I think this mysterious thing is what we may refer to as “real life issues”…stuff like money, our own fears, other people telling us its not possible etc.

*It was the language of enthusiasm, of things accomplished with love and purpose, as as part of a search for something believed in and desired”

“But he was able to understand on thing: making a decision was only the beginning of thing. When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision”

*The secret of happiness is to see all the marvels of the world, and never forget the drops of oil on the spoon”

*Started to cry, left the sheep, left the path ” My reflection on this: sometimes the path to achieving your dreams is filled with pain, regret, loneliness, sadness, so many what-if’s.

*”And maybe it wasn’t that they were teaching me, but that I was learning from them”

*”But that disaster taught me to understand the word of Allah: People need not fear the unknown if they are capable of achieving what they need and want” My reflection on this: This comment and others about Allah’s wants for his creation really had me thinking subhana’Allah, this is on point, and had me hurrying to see if the author was muslim.

* We are afraid of losing what we have, whether its our life or our possessions and property. But this fear evaporates when we understand that our life stories and the history of the world were written by the same hand” Subhana’Allah, this was profound. I thought to myself how in the world can I be afriad of the future or about the present, making decisions now and then, when the creator of all I have and all I see around me will decree what is best for me. This comment in all brought me back to who is in charge of all my affairs, who is the owner of it all, Allah jalla jallahu!

*Because I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man” My reflections: This is one of those comments that deserving bolding! In alhuda we talked about the word Qawf in the Quran, its always about fear about the future. This is something keeps us always thinking and in an agitated position..thinking what-if this, and what-if that, and at the end of the day, non of this matter, life becomes so much easier when we focus on the present, live in the present, think and worry only about the present for indeed the future is in the hands of Allah, and the past is spilled milk…just happened, and one should just forget about it! Indeed, one should learn from the past, but nonetheless learn from it as it will help in making ones future better!

Though I finished the book, I will post up the rest of my points soon insha’Allah!

Till next time, may Allah grant us to seek to understand our ‘personal legend’ and may it be always connected with His remembrance, the most High!