Archive for December, 2010

Way of The Heart

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

The Way of the Heart DVD

The Way of the Heart is a new DVD. A luminous chronicle of Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan’s (ra) journey to the West and the wisdom of Sufism he transmitted, and it reminds us that divinity can be found in the depths of every heart. It sounds a note of universal harmony in response to the great need of the world today.

2010 is the jubilee year of Inayat Khan’s arrival in the west. This DVD is part of the celebration of this happy year. Over the 100 years that have passed since his arrival a new consiousness has appeared worldwide, a renewed answer to the longing that is in the heart of human kind.

I highly recommend this DVD for all. You can see previews and interviews on the website (link below) as well as an order form for European and North American versions.

Click : To go to Order Page

via Way of The Heart Website.


 

Khutbah for 12/16/2010 – Strengthening the Ummah

Sunday, December 19th, 2010



Increase My Knowledge

A’udhu Billahi min ash-shaitan ir-rajeem
Bismillah Ar-Rahman Ar-Rahim
Ash-hadua la ilaha il allah, wah-dahu la Sharik allah; Wa Ash-shahadu anna Muhammadan ‘Abduhu wa Rasoollahu wa’al Mustafa

I seek refuge in Allah from Shaitan, the rejected
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful,the Most Compassionate.
I bear witness that there is nothing to be worshiped except Allah, One without any Partner or Associate. And I bear witness that Muhammad is His Servant and His Messenger, Chosen by Allah.

Al hamdu Lillahi Rabbil ‘Alameen. Ahmaduhu Subhanahu wa T’ala wa Ash-kuruhu wa Huwa Ah-lulhamdi wa th-thana
Al hamdu Lillahil-Lathi Anzala ala ‘Abdihil-Kitaba wa lam ya jal-Lahu ‘Iwaja

All praise belongs to Allah, the Guardian, Protector, Sustainer of all the worlds. I Praise Him, the Exalted, the Most High, and thank Him; and it is He Who deserves all Praise and Thanks
Praise be to Allah who sent down the Revelation of the Book upon His Servant, and Who allowed no distortion or error to appear in it.

Allahumma Salli wa Sallim ala ‘Abdika wa Rasoolika Muhammadin wa ‘Ala Alihi wa Sahbih wa Sallim

Oh Allah, send Your Blessings and Greetings upon Your Servant and Messenger, Muhammad and Send Your Peace to his family and to his Righteous Companions

Rabbi-’shrah li sadri wa yassir li amri  wa-hlul’ uqdatan min lisani
yafqahu qawli Ammaa ba’da  fayaa ‘ibaada-llahi uusiikum wa nafsee, awwala bi taqwaa Allahi ta’alla wa taa’atihi

My Lord! Expand my chest for me, and ease my task for me, and loosen any impediment from my speech for me, that I may be understood.

Oh servants of Allah, I advise you as well as I  advise my self, to first have taqwa, regard for Allah, and obey Him.

We greet you with the greeting of Peace from the Holy Qur’an in the Arabic language: A Salaamo Alleikum!   – and we add to that, wa Rahmatullahi wa barakata Hu! – And may the Mercy of Allah be with you, and His Blessing!

At this time in the Islamic calendar many rifts are made wider because of those who would exploit the distinctions and differences which divide our Ummah. Specifically I speak of those who violently protest the recognitions of Karbala. These acts are heinous and based more on agendas that have nothing to do with our Islamic heritage. They have much more to do with political and social power struggles that enslave us year after year. This enslavement to politics and power causes such wide rifts, suffering and murder in the name of false premises.

Today I am reminded of our Ummah. How precious this is. A family beyond our own family. Families have differences as we all know from our own personal experience. But the reality is that more often than not these differences can be overlooked when one realizes the overall goodness that comes from the unity of the family.

In recognizing and participating in the unity of our Ummah we show submission to Allah, and through that submission we actively seek the gateway to the afterlife.

Surely we are hard tested by this, but Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:

wa-ka- dhaalika ja’alnaa-kum ‘ummah wasat. li- takono shuhadaa’ ‘alaa an-naas wa-yakun ar-rasul ‘alay-kum shahed wa-maa ja’alnaa al-qiblah ‘allati kunta ‘alay-haa ‘illaa li-na’lam man yattabi’ ar-rasul min man yanqalib ‘alaa ‘aqibai -hi wa-‘in kaanat la- kaberah ‘illaa ‘alaa ‘alladhena hadaa ‘allaah wa-maa kaana ‘allaah li- yud.e’ ’emaan-kum ‘inna ‘allaah bi-an-naas la-raouf raheem

Thus have We made of you an Ummah justly balanced that ye might be witnesses over the nations and the Apostle a witness over yourselves; and We appointed the Qiblah to which thou wast used only to test those who followed the Apostle from those who would turn on their heels (from the faith). Indeed it was (a change) momentous except to those guided by Allah. And never would Allah make your faith of no effect. For Allah is to all people most surely full of kindness Most Merciful. (Sura 2:143)

And a further description of who is in the Ummah, how we recongnize it in:

‘alladhena ‘in makkannaa -hum fe al-‘ard. aqaamo as.- s.alaah wa- ‘aataw az- zakaah wa- ‘amaro bi- al- ma’ruf wa- nahaw ‘an al- munkar wa- li- ‘allaah ‘aaqibah al- ‘umur

(They are) those who if We establish them in the land establish regular prayer and give regular charity enjoin the right and forbid wrong: with Allah rests the end (and decision) of (all) affairs. (Sura 22:41 (Al-Hajj))

The importance is profound. If Allah (swt) is speaking directly to us in this situation. He describes our Ummah – does not say anything about political differences. And at the end it should be clear to us that Allah (swt) is aware of all we do. He alone makes these decisions and it is up to us to follow his requests of us. Nowhere are we given the authority to decide on our own.

No, in realty we are given instructions so as not to break the strength of this Ummah such as in:

wa- laa takunu ka-allati naqadat ghazl -haa min ba’di quwah ankaath tattakhidhun aymaan -kum dakhal(an) bayn -kum ‘an takun ‘ummah hiya arbaa min ‘ummah ‘inna-maa yablo -kum ‘allaah bi- -hi wa- la- yubayyin-anna la- -kum yawm al- qiyaamah maa kuntum fe -hi takhtalifun

Hence be not like she who breaks and completely untwists the yarn which she herself has spun and made strong. Be not like this by using your oaths as a means of deceiving one another, simply because some of you may be more powerful than others. By all this God but puts you to a test, and he does it so that on resurrection day He might make clear unto you all that on which you were wont to differ. Sura 16:92 (An-Nahl)

Is that not clear enough? When we break our bonds of kinship we untwist the yarn which Allah (swt) speaks of. So the test is for us to remain united and strong together despite our ideas of who is right and who is more powerful. Allah (swt) is not interested in that, but rather in how we react to it. And it is also clear that we will be answerable to him (swt) on the day of our return to him.

A great, noble and powerful thing it is to overlook our differences for the greater good. The world watches us much more closely now. This is due to the heinous acts of some and also because in our electronic world it is very easy to communicate and see what is happening in other parts of the world. When we are seen as fighting amongst ourselves it is seen as weakness, as unraveling the strong cord of the Ummah. It is strength that we should be showing.

It is not weakness to overlook differences. In fact it shows even more clearly the strength of one’s own convictions in that one is not threatened by the other. All we show by the divisions that plague us is our weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

But even more importantly, Allah (swt) has asked us many times to be a compassionate people, to love each other, to love Allah (swt) and to be ever respectful of others even when we are not shown that respect. Our hearts are the dwelling place of the beloved. When we purify ourselves of this animosity and other diseases of the heart we can enter into relationship with Allah (swt) and with other human beings and creation. It is this relationship, this love between us, that fosters the peace, prosperity and health of our Ummah and of the world.

Let us pledge ourselves to overcome these differences. To be better servants of Allah (swt) to increase our knowledge so we know what is the true path of Islam. To want for our neighbors what we want for ourselves – to live in peace and harmony with each other and to reject those that wish to divide us for their own purposes.

And Allah knows best.

Allahhuma ma inni as’aluka min khairi ma sa’laka min-hu nabiyuka Muhamadun (saw)
wa a’uudhu bika min shar-ri mast’aza min-hu nabiyuka Muhammadun (saw)
wa antal musta’an, wa ‘alaikal balagho, wa la haula wala quwwata illa billah.
Rabbana la tuziqh qulubana ba’da idh hadaitana wa hab lana min ladun-ka rahmah, innaka antal Wahhab.

Oh Allah, I beg of Thee all the good things that Thy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.s.) sought from Thee and seek Thy protection against all the evils from which Thy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.s.) sought Thy protection. Thou are the only Helper who we ask for help, and it is only Thee who answers our prayers, and there is no strength or power except with Allah.

Our Lord! Do not make our hearts deviate after You have guided us, and grant us from Thy Mercy, Surely, You are the most Generous of those who Give.

Allahuma’ Eghfir Lil’ Mus-limeena wal Muslimat….
Wal Moumineena wal Mouminaat…
Al-Ahya’ee minhum wal amwat…
Innaka samee’un mujibul dawat…

Almighty God, forgive the Muslim men and women,
Forgive the believing men and women,
Those who are alive and those who died,
You are indeed the One who listens and accepts all supplications

Inna Allah Ya’a muru Bil Aadli wal Ihsan, wa Ita’ee Zil Qurbaa
Wa Yanhaa Anil Fahshaa’ee wal munkaree wal bagh’yi
Ya’I zukum La’allaykum tazakkaroon

Servants of Allah:
Indeed Allah orders us to be just and to excel in what we do,
Be generous and to take care of our kin and relatives,
Never do what is forbidden of all sins and
Not to transgress,
He almighty advises you so you can remember



 

Contact Imam Salim

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Maghreb Jews celebrate Hanukkah (Magharebia.com)

Saturday, December 11th, 2010



A Moroccan Jewish family lights Hannukah candles. The 8-day celebration ended December 8th.

Imrane Binoual

I think this is a good article about the celebration of Hanukah in the Maghreb countries. It also is a small snapshot of the conditions the Jewish communities must put up with. One thing that seems to be prevalent is the feeling that the current cool relations between the Jews and their Muslim neighbors is the amount of reporting on the Israel-Palestine conflict in the media. I find this to be a common misconception among many Muslims who equate being Jewish with being Israeli or pro Israeli. I also think the opposite is true, that many people equate being Muslim with being pro-Palestine. Both camps are feeding a stereotype that fosters ill will and mis trust. Personally I am pro-Peace. I recently heard an interview with a Palestinian woman who had lost a son when he blew himself up at a cafe in Israel and an Israeli man who had also lost a son when a terrorist bomber blew himself up. Both felt that to be either pro-Israel or pro-Palestine meant one was not pro-peace. I agree.

Getting off the topic a bit. I also remember when I was in Fez with a group of Sufi “good will ambassadors” that our sponsor took us on a tour of the old city which included a neighborhood which was predominantly Jewish and had been for centuries. All the signs were still in Hebrew and other than that you could hardly tell the difference between that part of the city and any other. He told us that Morocco was the first Muslim country to recognize Israel (and the US for that matter) and that the king had supported and aided Jews in Morocco to emigrate to Israel when it was founded if they wished. It seems from this article that Jews in Morocco still fare better than their brothers and sisters in other parts of the Maghreb.

via Maghreb Jews celebrate Hanukkah (Magharebia.com).

For Jewish communities throughout the Maghreb, the eight-day festival of lights known as Hannukah ended December 8th, this is a way to safeguard their cultural and religious heritage.

The festival ended on Wednesday (December 8th), but Casablanca residents gathered on December 6th to mark the festivities, said Jacky Kadoch, President of the Jewish Community of Marrakesh-Essaouira.



 

Contact Imam Salim

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New book coming out soon preview – “Physicians of the Heart”

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010



Physicians of the Heart - Cover

A new book, with amazing insight into the 99 beautiful names of Allah is very soon to be published. This past week I have had the blessing of sitting in sohbet and classes with one of the authors who read several passages from the book on various names. The readings were inspirational and would definitely fall into the category of ma’rifa. There obviously was a great deal of care taken in the writing and in the message that is being conveyed. I also know three of the four people who have collaborated on the book and from what I know about them and about what I heard, this may be one of the most significant works on the subject in many years.

I consider each of these people as physicians themselves and deeply inspired by an inner attunement with divine guidance. Their expertise runs the gamut from meditation to linguistics, music to Qur’an, and much more in between. I have highly anticipated this work since I first heard about it being worked on a few years ago.

About Physicians of the Heart

via Physicians of the Heart Main Page.

Prayerful recitation of the 99 Names of Allah has been a sacred practice by Sufis, and by the various Sufi Orders, since the time of the Prophet Muhammad. Through active remembrance of these divine qualities, travelers on the spiritual path can overcome narcissism, resolve their issues of separation from God and from humanity, and awaken to God’s presence manifesting in all their relationships, inner and outer, earthly and heavenly.

This book takes you into the heart of the mystery of these sacred Names. It is a vehicle for understanding the infinite nature of God, and for discovering the divine potential in every soul. It does this through a wide variety of methods. The Names are best understood in relational clusters, and that is how the book is organized, into families like the family of Abundance, or Ecstasy, or Forgiveness. Or the modalities of Omnipotence, or how the opposites combine.

It is a guidebook for progressing through the stages of the spiritual path and an instruction manual for teachers on how to work with students wisely, as physicians of the heart. In the process of this voyage of discovery, the reader is systematically exposed to the universal mysticism encoded in the Qur’an and in the classical Sufi traditions, as well as to a modern psychological approach that works with the Names to achieve individuation and wholeness.

— Wali Ali Meyer

You can pre-order the book from the website (click on the link above). There is a page with instructions on ordering.

Interestingly, on the website there is also an audio pronunciation guide to the names. There are different recitations for each of the 99 names given by fluent speakers with Arabic, Persian-Urdu, classical Arabic and Moroccan styles. This is a wonderful guide for those that are just learning and those who have been practicing for many years. Take a listen!



 

Contact Imam Salim

Contact Imam Salim

VOA | Pakistan Cleric Offers Reward for Killing Christian Woman | Asia | English

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Remember this man's face, the face of a mushrik surrounded by bodyguards. Who does he need protecting from? Hey Yousef, the bodyguards will not protect you from Allah (swt)

A Pakistani cleric says if the government does not hang a Christian mother of five convicted last month of blasphemy against Islam, then his mosque will offer a reward of $6,000 to anyone who kills her. Yousef Qureshi issued the call Friday.

via VOA | Pakistan Cleric Offers Reward for Killing Christian Woman | Asia | English.

This man is a disgrace to Islam. He has no right to make such a claim and in doing so he becomes just another common criminal who is inciting people to murder. Look at his face carefully and remember it. If anything does happen to Asia Bibi then he should be arrested.

I am really getting tired of these fake uluma who speak as if they have some kind of authority and in the end all they are doing is defaming the name of Islam and trying to promote themselves.  And look at the two men on either side of him, what are they? Bodyguards – this man is not a man of the people. The worst part of this is that other, less educated people will believe him to be what he is not and will follow him. He is playing on people’s emotions and lack of knowledge, perpetuating this kind of un-Islamic behavior.

As he spoke of this the real judiciary in Pakistan is considering pardoning and releasing her, this is the correct and Islamic way of doing things. Christians are ahl al kitab and are therefore protected as our brothers and sisters. Furthermore, from what I have read in other accounts there is much doubt as to the truthfulness of the witnesses against her. This so called cleric, Yousef Qureshi, has taken it upon himself to set himself up as judge and jury for this person probably without even hearing the evidence against her, or the witnesses for her, or any type of real judicial process. There can be no such way of doing things in Islam, In Islam there has to be witnesses and a real judge to make a determination of guilt. Even then there are degrees of application of punishment. What Yousef Qureshi is doing is un-Islamic and he is the worst kind of mushrik – he is worshiping his own self, his own ego and desire and his own brand of justice over Allah’s justice. For that I think he will be severely punished when he faces Allah (swt) on the final day.

The case of Asia Bibi seems clear cut to me. People in her village want something from her and since they cannot get it through the usual means they are resorting to character assassination and accusing her of this crime. From what I have ready she should be released and allowed to leave the area if that is what she wants.