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Ramadan Mubarak Muharram . Safar . Rabi’ al-awwal . Rabi’ al-thani . Jumada Al-awwal . Jumada al-akhir . Rajab . 28 SHA’ABAN . Ramadan . Shawwal . Dhu al-Qi’dah . Dhu al-Hijjah . 1429 A.H. FRIDAY, August 29, 2008

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Muslims Find More Visible Role in Democratic Convention

THE ENLIGHTENED CITY PG 12 Politicians and activsts delivered plenty of food for thought at the annual NOVA Civic Pinic. From right, CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad with his thiking cap on encourages attendees to vote; food was plentiful at the well attended picnic; and Congressman Jim Moran hears from one of his Muslim constituents. Photos courtesy of the Muslim Association of Virginia.

GO GIRLS! YOUNG MUSLIMAHS SHINE IN LEADERSHIP BOOTCAMP pg 9

Civic Picnic Offers Sampling of Local, National Elections

Dozens of Politicians Address NoVA Muslim Community at Annual Event By Amalia Rehman Muslim Link Contributing Writer

The 8th annual Northern Virginia Family and Civic Picnic was held on Saturday August 16th at Lake Fairfax in Reston, Virginia.

T h e p r o g r a m i s a n e ff o r t coordinated by Northern Virginia area organizations including ADAMS Center, Dar Al-Hijra, Manassas Mosque, and Muslim Association of Virginia. National organizations with local offices

MANA to Area Muslims: “We Need a Domestic Agenda” By Amalia Rehman Muslim Link Contributing Writer

MANA (Muslim Alliance in North America) held a fundraising dinner titled, “Forging an Agenda of Social Justice and Community Activism” at ADAMS Center in Herndon, Virginia on Saturday, August 23rd . In attendance were approximately 100 people, predominately African American brothers and sisters. The sisters did constitute close to half of the attendees present and MANA’s fundraising director Imam Qasim Khan noted that the donation bag from the sisters side seemed heavier than the men’s donation bag. According to Imam Qasim, MANA raised about $7,000 in

like MAS Freedom Foundation, MPAC, and CAIR also took part. The joint effort aims at showing

>> Picnic Pg 08

Much of the evening was spent in members of MANA’s leadership explaining MANA’s purpose and

mission, and the need to focus on a domestic Muslim agenda. Asim Abdur-Rashid, the imam

>> Mana Pg 10

Hundreds of Muslims journeyed from around the country, including scores from MD/DC/VA to Denver for the Democratic National Committee Convention. While still sore from a string of “disses” by the Obama Campaign, Muslims gathered for activities throughout the weeklong convention. Both local and national Muslim political insiders flocked to Denver, despite the fresh wounds caused by the resignation

>> Convention Pg 07

MD Muslims Push for Representation in Governor’s Commissions By Farkhunda Ali Muslim Link Staff Writer

cash and checks at the event; the pledge amounts were unknown as of this report.

By Talib I. Karim Muslim Link Contributing Writer

Maryland Muslim Council (MDMC) recently held a retreat for local Muslims who were appointed to Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley’s state commissions. The celebration was held at the Best Western Hotel in Baltimore last May. Since the beginning of the year, an estimated 30 Maryland Muslims have been appointed to sit on the boards in various commissions operating under Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley’s office. MDMC members said they will continue to find highly qualified Muslim professionals for state commissions. “The governor considers a variety

of factors. In his selection he takes representing diversity in Maryland demographically and geographically very seriously,” said Shawn Adamec, spokesperson for Governor O’Malley. The governor’s office appoints 1,000 new members to its state commissions each year, according to his staff. Each commission under the governor’s office has its own bylaws; term lengths depend on the bylaws of the commission. “Muslims need to get involved at various levels. Some ways we can contribute are through charity, government relations, attending PTA meetings, community affairs, and voting,” said Akbar Ansari, selected as board member on Maryland

>> Representation Pg 015


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CORRECTIONS: In our Revived MYNA Draws Area Youth”, July 18, 2008 issue However, the correct spelling of the sister in the article is Ilana Alazzeh. In our August 15, 2008 report “Baltimore Muslims Campaign to Bar Gujarat Criminal from US”, we mistakenly wrote that Gujarati Chief Minister Narendra Modi was involved in killing Muslims. In fact, he is accused of allowing hindu mobs to kill Muslims by willfully looking the other way. Also, Human Rights Watch reported that Modi ordered his police to give the mobs 3-days for “revenge killings” against Muslims. Also, our article stated that Attaulla Khan from the Indian Muslim Council-USA said attacks on Muslims were “planned ... with extensive police participation” BJP party support. In fact, Khan did not say this, but several Human Rights reports have reported that information. Lastly, there are more than 2,000 pending cases in Indian Courts and less than a dozen actual convictions, not the number we referenced in the article. We regret the errors. The full, corrected article is available at muslimlinkpaper. com in the Archive section. We thank Attaulla Khan for bringing this errors to our attention. In our coverage of the ISB Summer Fest, “Holding On to Summer Memories - ISB’s SummerFest 2008 in Pictures” (August 15, 2008 issue of the Muslim Link), we incorrectly referred to ISB President Bassam Sayad as the “Former ISB President”. In fact, Brother Bassam is the current ISB President. Br Maqbool Patel is the President-Elect. We regret the error.

INDEX

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

3

FRIDAY AUGUST 29, 2008

04

Community News

16

Civil Rights

17

Islam

20

Fataawa


COMMUNITY NEWS

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The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

Community News Creating links through mutual understanding and cooperation

HoCo Muslims Collect Five Tons of Food for Food Bank By Farha Marfani Muslim Link Staff Writer Kids like Farhad, Danya, Heena, Rida, Affan, and even 7-year old Areeba of Ellicott City, Maryland were only a handful of forty volunteers, including adults and children, who helped to collect approximately 5,000 pounds of food for the Howard County Food Bank. This effort was the seventh annual food drive, organized by the Howard County Muslim Foundation (HCMF), and held this year on Sunday, August 24th. HCMF also invited area Muslims for a BBQ and picnic the same afternoon to bring the community and local leaders together in support of the drive to curb hunger in the county. HCMF was the first Muslim council to

the state’s food bank was in dire need of donations to refill its currently empty shelves. According to recent reports in the Baltimore Examiner and local news stations, the supply at the food bank is half a million pounds of food under its normal supply. Moreover, the scarcity of food is rampant among food banks across the country. Deborah Flateman, Food Bank CEO, is quoted to have said, “This is the worst that we have ever seen, and we are not the only food bank in the country that is saying that. It’s a national issue. There’s just not enough donated food out there.” How exactly were five tons of food collected? And in such a short period of time? “Participation this year was intense. That is where our success lies, in terms of the volunteers who collect the food,” mentioned Rashid Chotani, HCMF president and lead

“This is the worst that we have ever seen, and we are not the only food bank in the country that is saying that. It’s a national issue. There’s just not enough donated food out there.” be formed in the state of Maryland and collaborates on state-wide events with its other counterparts, including Baltimore County, Prince George’s County, and newly formed Anne Arundel County Muslim Council. Along with an annual food drive, HCMF works on social and community projects, including an annual health fair, among other events, every year. Even though organizers planned the food drive a few months in advance, they became even more motivated when they heard that

organizer of the food drive. Between August 20th and 23rd, volunteers went door-to-door across Howard County. They dispensed 7,000 bags and posted signs that read, “Hunger Hurts! Join Howard County Muslims to Help the Hungry,” which instructed community members to donate food for pick-up on Sunday before 9 am. Volunteers also set up booths at various grocery stores in the county to collect nonperishable goods. Seven year old Areeba Shah, who capped her first-time experience

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Rashid Chotani with Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley at a celebration fundraiser for the Governor this summer. (Picture courtesy of Rashid Chotani) collecting food donations as “exciting” went on to say, “The best part was when this man at Safeway bought us cans, and then he went to Giant to give us more cans, and he also went home to bring us more cans. I think he gave us twenty cans!” she said with delight. Approximately 300 people, with food donations in hand, attended the BBQ at Cedar Lane Park on Sunday afternoon for free food, fun, and games. Local politicians, including State Senator Allan Kittleman and Howard County Executive James Robey, addressed the crowd, thanking the Muslim community in assisting the community at large. They also recognized that Howard County is a unique community where everyone works together, regardless of religion, culture, or ethnicity. Numerous other community and political leaders were also in attendance at the picnic, including a representative from Senator Barbara Mikulski’s office, who presented Chotani and HCMF with a certificate recognizing the organization for its campaign to end hunger in Howard County.

According to the Howard County Community Action Council and the Food Bank, HCMF exceeded last year’s collection by more than thirty percent. In fact, Chotani was still driving around his neighborhood and loading donations into his SUV on Monday night, from neighbors who missed the deadline but still wished to donate food. Organizers agreed, however, that the number of volunteers collecting food exceeded that of last year and that the people in attendance at this year’s food drive picnic was more than double last year’s crowd. Food drive organizers thanked the hard work of all the volunteers and expressed special gratitude to sponsors of the picnic for providing food and drinks. Like other volunteers, sixteen-year old Farhad Shah was outside for a total of six hours, going door-to-door and collecting food donations. He summed up the volunteers’ experience quite nicely: “Even though it was difficult, it was really rewarding at the end.”

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COMMUNITY NEWS

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Dar-us-Salaam takes a break from the Daily Grind at Annual Camp By Farkhunda Ali Muslim Link Staff Writer When Barak Obama announced his running mate during the August 23 weekend, everyone heard about it. Except, of course, if you had no access to television. Or Internet. Or radio. Or the newspapers. “So who did he choose,” a camper at the annual Dar-us-Salaam community camp inquired from someone who just arrived at the camp. A small group of men gathered around to hear the news. At the three day camp in Pennsylvania – Darus-Salaam’s second such camp -- children walked around bare feet from tent to tent. Campers shared their tandoori chicken, grilled fish, corn on the cob, and roasted marshmallows with other families. A first for some of them, campers experienced what life was like without wall to wall carpeting, air conditioning, microwave and lights. Families brought their own tents – ranging from small colorful kiddy size tents for one child to large family tents for eight or more campers – and set them up with help from their Muslim neighbors. Dar-us-Salaam reserved an entire section of the group camping sites at the Lewisburg, PA camp grounds. It was time to explore nature individually while bonding collectively. Everyone needed someone else for something. “Can you ask your mother to send me some more charcoal,” said one camper of campsite 69 to a teenager of campsite 72. “Don’t forget the marshmallows,” she added.

general meeting area where campers made their five daily prayers, came together to share the three daily meals, made important community announcements, and provided easy access to the organizers in case an emergency arises. For convenience sake, it was also near the main faucet used to collect water for daily cooking and cleaning, the bathrooms, and a huge playing filed including a volleyball area. Sri Suratman arrived at the campground on Friday night. She said “we were all ready and packed.” As soon as her husband stepped inside their home in Lanham, Maryland, he started loading their Toyota Camry with luggage and outdoor equipment.

DC metro area children take-in the last days of their summer break at the Dar-usSalaam annual summer camp held in Pennsylvania. Photo by the author.

“There was more weight on my car than it could handle. But, we wanted to be prepared and comfortable while we are out here,” said Suratman.

new step-children,” said Suratman. “It was really a time for me to bond with my daughter and for my husband to spend individual time with his sons.”

Suratman was among an estimated 150 DC Muslims who chose this secluded campground of York County in Pennsylvania for a weekend vacation spot. Though Dar-usSalaam organized the camp, it was open to all Muslims, some who came from Virginia to commune with nature and their Muslim brothers and sisters.

If it was not time to pray or eat, Suratman’s husband and two sons were at the lake fishing. They caught enough fish to feed their neighbors. While they fried the fresh croaker seasoned with vinegar, kosher salt and black pepper, their children’s friend all gathered in a line for a piece.

Suratman had been preparing for this three day retreat since the beginning of the summer. Every weekend since her daughter’s schoolyear at Al Huda ended in June, they have been catching good sales at Target, Wal-Mart, and outdoor equipment stores. She brought everything one can imagine for camping. Some items included a large red and black tent for eight sleepers, air

“Cooking on the wooden stove reminded me of Indonesia where we used to cook on wood all of the time,” said Suratman. “This community

life is ideal ... [like how] our Prophet (peace be upon him) encouraged Muslims to be close to each other,” she added. The camp ground is located in the 2,338 acre Gifford Pinchot State Park in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. It features a lake, hills, woods, farm fields, and trails for bikers and hikers. All year round, the camp is available for individual campers as well as families. Away from home, campers enjoyed swimming

>> Camping Pg 15

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Campers help prepare Sunday’s breakfast – fresh halwa poori courtesy of Kafe Kabob restaurant in Laurel. Families cooked and grilled at their individual camp site, and food was shared all over the camp. Picture by the author. The teenager returned to campsite 69 with the charcoal and sugar. “Here is some watermelon my mother sent for your family,” she said as she handed a large try of cold seedless juicy watermelon slices. Out of sixty campsites reserved for Muslims from the DC Metropolitan Area, the most popular gathering area was at campsite 68. This unique place was directly in front of the

mattresses, several blankets, sweaters, boots, lantern, flash lights, fishing line, propane stove, binoculars, pots and pans, silverware, bicycles, swimwear, canned goods, and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Suratman said it was a nice family outing in an Islamic environment. “After I got married this summer, I enjoyed the time in nature with my husband and my

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continued >> Convention from pg 1

of Obama’s Muslim Outreach Director (after less than 10 days on the job), the removal of two hijab-wearing Muslim women from a stage being set for an Obama speech due to fears of raising what has become dubbed the “Muslim issue,” and a general stand-offish attitude by the Obama Campaign towards the Muslim community. Not overlooking the Obama campaign’s snubs, Muslims descended upon Denver for dawah, inner faith dialogue, and debate on the best approaches for advancing the Muslim American political agenda. According to Jameel Alim Johnson, President of the Muslim Council of Prince George’s County, “Four years ago, Muslim participation was almost non existent except for a handful of die-hards. Now this is the first time you have two members of congress, who were seated superdelegates. Its not like ‘we have arrived’, but we’ve planted seeds that are beginning to grow. We have to make sure that these seedlings grow for the cause of deen not for the desire for individual influence personal power or anything not beneficial for the Muslim ummah,” said Johnson. The week of convention activities started on Sunday, August 24th with the first ever inner faith “prayer service.” An Imam, a woman rabbi, a woman priest, joined a chorus of other religious leaders in reading a joint affirmation of religious unity. Throughout the Democratic Convention, Muslim delegates, members of the press, and political insiders were greeted often by the words of “As alaamualakum” from non Muslim politicians and others at the convention. Such was the case when around 200 Muslims gathered on Monday, August 25th for the inaugural meeting of the Muslim American Democratic Caucus. Spearheaded by the Texas Muslim Democratic Caucus, this firsttime event drew both Muslim Members of Congress, a host of Muslim Delegates to the Convention, and even a couple high profile Obama surrogates, including Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick (D). “As salaamualakum, Kaifa al haluk, al hamdulilah, ana atakalam Arabia shewia (I speak Arabic a little),” were the words uttered by Governor Patrick, who learned a bit of Arabic while working in the Muslim country of Sudan for a United Nations group during his early years as a student. Governor Patrick brought greetings on behalf of Senator Obama and told Muslim delegates “You are an important part of the Democratic Family. You may have felt the Democratic Party not as open to you as you would have wanted.” Yet, the Governor explained, we are better if the Democratic Party includes the Muslim community into the fabric of the American mainstream.

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When asked whether the issue of Dar Fur has been blown out of proportion by those whose main aim is to undermine Islam, the Governor responded that “Senator Obama is sensitive to the complexities of the situation. Senator Obama wants healthier relations with (all our current adversaries). Congressman Ellison also addressed the gathering of Muslim Delegates. “We have come far. The 110th Congress has been historic for the Muslim American community with our election to the U.S. House of representatives as the first two Muslim American Members of Congress. We believe our election is representative of the increased civic and political engagement of Muslim Americans as individuals and as a community. Only 63% of U.S. Muslim citizens believe thy are registered do vote

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associations with “Islamists”, particularly an Imam of a well-known Chicago area Islamic Center. According to Yee, “Any time Muslims are persecuted for our faith, it goes against American Values. To the extent that this happens over and over is an indication that there is still an enormous amount of misperception of the Muslim community. Yet, Yee also acknowledged that there may always be anti Muslim forces working against our community’s efforts to establish ourselves and Islam within America. The American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections (AMT) convened a series of free public lectures and other events. The events featured speakers the like of Congressman Mike Honda (D-CA), Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), and Congressman John Conyers (D-MI). One

“Four years ago, Muslim participation was almost non existent except for a handful of die-hards. Now this is the first time you have two members of congress, who were seated superdelegates. Its not like ‘we have arrived’, but we’ve planted seeds that are beginning to grow. (compared to 76% of Americans nationwide). So we have our work cut out of us---with enormous potential,” said Ellison. “The last eight years of George’s Bush’s policies including the Patriot Act, disregard of FISA requirements, Guantanamo, Muslim profiling including endless harassment of citizens at airports (as well as harassment of ) Imams and Muslim non profits should be enough to motivate every Muslim to get out and vote. But remarkably less than half of eligible young Muslims under 30, [as many as] 48 % are registered to vote. Michigan, Nevada Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Wisconsin, and even Georgia all have significant Muslim populations which when registered and mobilized can make the difference in determining if we have another four years of George Bush’s policies,” Ellison exclaimed. James Yee, Former U.S. Army Chaplain at Guantamomo Bay and Delegate to the Democratic Party Convention from the State of Washington , reflected on his own struggle as a Muslim. Yee was was persecuted while working within the system in the US Army; he compared his trial to the plight of Mazen Asbahi. Asbahi, a thirty-something corporate lawyer based in Chicago with Syrian roots , resigned his post as the Obama campaign’s Muslim Outreach Director this August. The resignation came as a surprise to Muslims after a Wall Street Journal article claimed that Asbahi had

AMT guest Nativo Lopez, President of the Mexican American Political Association spoke of the importance of the coalition between Mexican and other Latino Americans and Muslim Americans. However Lopez acknowledged the difficulty he faces in working within his organization to build relationships with the Muslim community.

“I have problems in inviting brothers like Dr. Sayeed [AMT’s Chairman] due to concerns from some in our community. [They ask] do you know what this is going to do our foundation funding,” say Lopez of some in his organization. The Democratic Convention included two other feats (and possibly Muslim firsts), the appointment of Imam Malik A. Majahid (IL) to the Democratic Convention Credentials Committee, and A.J. Durrani (TX) to the Convention’s Platform Committee, which is responsible for developing and ratifying the platform which serves as a policy agenda for Democrats around the country. A record number of Muslims were chosen as Delegates to the convention, just under 50, including the two Muslim Congress Members and Superdelegates. Zarinah T. Nadir, a hijab-clad attorney from Arizona, was overall encouraged by the convention turn out of Muslims -- so much so that she’s been inspired to form a Muslim Caucus in her state. When asked of the challenges faced by Muslims in establishing ties with the Muslim community, Nadir says “I’m a realist, [these challenges] encourage me to get mobilized…we have to stay positive.” And positive Muslims remained throughout the convention which ended with the nomination and acceptance speech of the Senator from Illinois, who bears the name of the grandson of the grandson of the last messenger of Allah (prayers be upon him). DC resident Talib I. Karim filed this report from the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

Request For Dua’s { To Alla h We B e l o n g , a n d t o H i m i s O u r R e t u r n }

““Everyone is going to taste death, and We shall make a trial of you with evil and good, and to Us you will be returned.” (Surah Al-Anbiya:35)” ‘Ina lillahi wa inna ‘ilayhi Raji’un (We are for God, and to Him is our return). With a heavy heart we have to report that Roohi Siddique, wife of Mohammad Siddique a long time member of MCMC, Pakistan Association and an active community leader has tragically died in a traffic accident on Sunday August 17 in California. May Allah Subhanahu wa ta’ala forgive her sins and enter her into Jannat ul Firdous. May Allah Give patience to Br. Mohammad Siddique (Minhas) and Family to bear this loss Aameen. Salat-ulJanaza was on Friday, August 22, 2:30 PM, after second Juma Salah, at Muslim Community Center (MCC) in Silver Spring, MD. She was buried at the Maryland National Cemetery in Laurel, Maryland. The accident information is available at the following site. www.nbc11.com/news/17224655/detail.html [Source: MCC Email, August 18, 2008] ---We regret to inform you of the passing of Sister Noor Aisha, wife of Br. Mohammed Haleem. Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raajioon (Indeed it is to Allah we belong, and to Him is our return). She is the mother of, Khalid Jamal, Javed Iqbal, Razia Khan and Rehana Khan. Salat-ul-Janaazah was held after Salatul-Jumuah on Friday, August 22 at ICCL. May Allah have mercy on her, forgive her and enter her into Jannatul-Firdous. May Allah increase her family with patience and Imaan. Allhumma Aameen. [Source: ICCL Email, August 20, 2008]


COMMUNITY NEWS

8 continued >> Picnic from pg 1

the strength of a united Muslim community to political candidates. Also, Muslims at the picnic have the opportunity to register to vote and become familiar with the faces and positions of local candidates. The picnic drew approximately 400 people from the Muslim community. Twentyone politicians and organization members spoke and gave very brief statements about themselves and why they were at the picnic. Some were more clear and eloquent than others and some really seemed like fish out of water. Below is a brief synopsis of the statements made by speakers. Rizwan Jaka served as the master of ceremonies. Although his voice portrayed excitement and enthusiasm, it was necessary for him to state several times that the crowd should quiet down and pay attention to the speakers. The sense of that no one was really listening seemed to permeate the brief hurried statements many of the speakers made. Bob Morrow, and Khalid Al-Armini encouraged the attendees to register to vote at the registration table. Bob Morrow stated, “In Malaysia the U.S. presidential election is front page news. People throughout the world expect this election to have far reaching consequences. Therefore, you must register to vote.” Mark Elmore a candidate for congress in the 8th district stated, “My children are Palestinian and I know what the issues are. Like you, I want secure borders, no discrimination, and lower gas prices. I know the issues are to have a safe and environmentally friendly place to raise your children.”

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

his lawsuit was dismissed ‘with prejudice’. ‘With prejudice’ means that the court found no merit in his claim and he is never able to bring it up again. Keep participating! This community is an example to all Muslims everywhere.” Neraj Nigan is running for congress as an independent. He stated, “I am fed up with the government that doesn’t represent me or us. Help me to get elected and I will only represent you and no other interests.” Ron Fisher, who is a retired Navy captain after 30 years of service, considers himself a universalist and has had religious training that involves working with people through faith and understanding. He stated, “I am from the 8th district Independent Green party. My goal is to end this war and get rid of Cheney and Bush. I want to get jobs for everyone and to develop better transportation. I encourage everyone to visit my website wethepeoplenow. org. I want to work together for justice and equality.” Mr. Fisher explains, “I was the 9th of 13 children. I was born and raised in a cotton mill town in Tennessee where people had jobs. I truly believe that everyone wants to work if given the opportunity to pursue their goals, interests, and potential. I also believe that we are in an illegal war. I want to cooperate and work together to end this war. This war is costing $3.78 billion dollars a week. Think of the job opportunities!

you asked me to [be here]. I want to serve all of us. I want to represent all of us. I listen to you and I promise to continue to listen to you. I supported ADAMS center 7 years ago after 9-11 and always believed you and I are equals.” Gail Porter an Independent Green senator stated, “I am for more trains, less traffic which is safer and greener. Did you know that 45,000 people are killed each year in traffic accidents and that 3,000 are maimed each year? Please vote for the Independent Green candidates.” Sister Hazambi of Unity Walk 2008 stated,

Safia Gory of the Public Affairs Muslim Council stated, “Vote your conscience. Vote on issues regarding community concerns.”

Tim Rust, also a delegate, encouraged the attendees to, “…register to vote and take part in the political process. I remember when ADAMS opened and promised to be open to everyone so I want to take this chance to thank you for keeping your promise.”

…There is an abundance in this world and there is plenty of money to go around. The 14th amendment states that people, citizens, have certain immunities. Like the right to probable cause (Habeas Corpus). This makes Iraqi raids illegal and torture a clear violation of the Geneva Convention Laws. Geneva Convention Laws clearly indicate that an occupying power must alleviate suffering and we have to become very firm with these laws again.”

Corey Sailor, of CAIR, stated “I have good news for once! When Mike Savage said bad things about Muslims on the air, CAIR cost him over $1 million dollars in sponsors. He tried to sue CAIR and I am happy to say that

Safia Gory of the Public Affairs Muslim Council stated, “Vote your conscience. Vote on issues regarding community concerns.” Eugene Delgario, the Loudon County Supervisor stated “Why am I here? Because

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“This year will be the fourth annual interfaith and intercultural Unity Walk. It will be held on Sunday, September 14th. We need to up the Muslim participation in this initiative. The Muslim presence is often missing in interfaith events.” Sumwul Mall, a Pakistani Christian is the Executive Director of the Muslim-Christian Federation. He does interfaith work in Pakistan which was established in 2000, when a number of Christian churches were being burned in Pakistan. These acts of intolerance were condemned by ADAMS Center, which raised $25,000 dollars for the Federation. Mr. Mall stated, “Thank you for your support. We look forward to your continued support in the future.” Delegate Dave Marsden, who was not running this year, came to say, “God bless everyone!” Jim Moran stated, “I would appreciate your support if you are in the 8th district. Our presidential candidates are not always perfect, but it is time for change. The last seven years have been the worst years in U.S. history, which means they have been the worst years in world history. We have lost our reputation throughout the world. We don’t take sides in America. We believe everyone has equal respect. I am sickened by hate radio which leads to un-Americanism. Politics is not a spectator sport. I have no respect for those who don’t register ... or organize their friends. Keep in mind that the Democratic Party has always been all inclusive.” David Poisson, the delegate who facilitated

Imam Majid to give the opening speech at Congress, asked for the Muslim community’s support. “We need all of us to support Obama. He won’t get elected without your help.” Nihad Awad, of CAIR, made a brief statement encouraging everyone to register to vote. Rafi Ahmed of Dar Al-Noor Masjid in Manassass, a co-sponsor of the picnic stated, “9-11 woke Muslims up. The only way to be heard is to vote.” Corey Stewart, Chairman of Prince William County, was not up for election this year, but stated, “I support the Mosque expansion and many of the other plans that the Muslim Association of Virginia have in mind for the future.” Penny Gross is running for the fourth term in the 11th district. “I support Jerry Connolly, who is a friend of the Muslim Community, and previously he was a supervisor. Vote and tell all your friends to vote.” Dr. Judy Feder, Dean of Public Policy at Georgetown University, is running for Congress in the 10th district. Her focuses are on affordable healthcare, education, and the development of alternative energy sources. She stated, “In the 1980s we had Ronald Reagan and Frank Wolfe came into office. This led us into the wrong direction. This November will be a new direction for our country. A new mandate for change.” She noted that, “In 2006 we almost won but we are going to take him down in 2008.” Sister Nusaiba of FAITH talked about the social services her organization provides to desperate community members. She noted that Zakat donations could be given to FAITH. Additionally, they had some gold jewelry for sale whose proceeds would help to support the program. A representative of Shelter our Sisters, an organization that houses abused and neglected women and their children, announced they had successfully raised $65,000 dollars at their fundraiser a week earlier. These funds will allow Shelter our Sisters to provide housing for up to 15-20 Muslim women and children at a time. For Northern Virginia’s Muslims, this picnic offered plenty of food for thought. Muslim leaders hope no one will suffer from an upset stomach in the coming election season.


The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

COMMUNITY NEWS

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Go Girls! Young Muslimahs Shine in Leadership Bootcamp By Muslim Link Contributing Writers They designed and built ladders in record time, using it to scale a 10 foot wall, and negotiated a steep hill on a tough wooded trail-run. In field events they broke boards

The whole event was conducted outdoors because being in natural surroundings provides for distraction free learning, said Brother Muhib. That is why Aqabah Karate teamed up with the best in the business. Nomad Camps, LLC, a leader in outdoor

It has always pained me that our girls have to be content with passive activities when Allah has also blessed them with the gift of physical agility. Aqabah Karate is now here to show that, given the right environment, our girls can outshine the boys,” he said. Afrah Goshu kicks -- and breaks -- a wooden board as her team mates cheer her on. Photo courtesy of Muhib Rahman. ample privacy for each activity and the eating area/ bathrooms were well maintained. I am excited to bring the older sisters class here but I want to make it more physically challenging.” “Insha-Allah, the plan is that in the near future, this kind of event can be totally managed and run by the sisters”, said brother Muhib, Chief Instructor of Aqabah Karate. “We wanted to bring the girls out of their regular training environment and bring them into the outdoors to show them that the life skills, we talk about in class, are applicable in all settings.”

Jannah Assad takes aim with a Slingshot. Photo courtesy of Muhib Rahman. instead of passing batons. They prayed together under the sun in straight lines. No, this was not Marine boot camp, but a leadership camp – for Muslim girls. On August 17, the “super”- Muslim girls from Aqabah Karate completed their karate school’s first ever leadership camp. Attendance at the camp was not automatic but was through invitation. Thirteen advanced ranking girls from Aqabah Karate – based in College Park, Maryland -- aged between 8 and 12 years, earned a spot in this camp. Three adult female counselors and two Male instructors also attended. “We wanted to emphasize on three major areas, mainly Leadership through Teamwork and Discipline. They were asked to complete a variety of challenging tasks that were designed so they have to work with one another. For example, one task was to build a five foot ladder with three rungs. We gave them rope but they had to find their own wood. Later they would use the ladders to climb a 10 foot wall!” Said Brother Muhib Rahman, the chief instructor of Aqabah Karate.

education and Muslim youth development, was brought in to plan out a customized program. “We had set up programs for Muslim girls before but nothing so physically demanding. [Muhib] did not want to hold back on the physical challenge but at the same time he wanted the girls to have a lot of fun. So this was a new area for Nomad Camps and we were really glad to be a part of this historic event.” said Ilyas Liggans, Nomad Camps co-founder and director.

Many parents asked Br. Muhib to set-up a similar camp for the boys. “Insha-Allah, it’s in the works. Usually, Muslim boys have no problem finding a range of physical activities to do in the summer. It has always pained me that our girls have to be content with passive activities when Allah has also blessed them with the gift of physical agility. Aqabah Karate is now here to show that, given the right environment, our girls can outshine the

boys,” he said. And outshine they did. Ilyas Liggans commented that he was amazed at the cohesiveness and speed with which the girls worked. He had given similar challenges to older boys in previous camps but these girls were faster and more disciplined. InshaAllah, future leaders in the making. Sakinah Abdul Wakil, one of the participants, was asked about her experience. She liked everything but wished the camp ended with a water-balloon fight. Aqabah Karate is a martial arts program for males and females of all ages. It is a project of Darussalaam in College Park, Maryland. For information about joining please call Br. Muhib at 240-565-8709. If you want to contact Nomad Camps you may write to Ilyas@nomadcamps.com. [The writer is affiliated with Aqabah Karate. -- TML]

Halima Glenn, one of the counselors, said, “From the time we arrived to the time we left, the instructors gave highly charged energy that really motivated the girls. It shocked them at first, but it was a positive experience. Muslimahs tend to have a culture of being very quiet, and this camp experience took them one step further to being very vocal in their support of each other. Making dua for your sister is private and very different from cheering and loudly encouraging your sister to keep pushing toward a common goal.” Saira Khan, another counselor and also the adult female Martial Arts instructor said, “ The camp location and facility was a good distance from the school, and it was great Teams composed of about 3 young girls used sticks and tree limbs to construct to have the girls outside all day. There was a ladder. The ladder was used to scale a 10-foot wall. Photo courtesy of Muhib

Rahman.


10 continued >> MANA from pg 1 of Masjid Mujahidin in Philadelphia and a members of MANA’s Executive Committee stated, “The indigenous Muslim American community has no sense of history. Its recent history has been full of struggling for justice and recognition. Now we need to build a sense of history. Since the early 1990s, Muslim leaders in the United States have recognized the need to focus on a domestic agenda. This does not mean that global Muslim issues are not important to us; the Muslim Ummah is one body and if one part of it is hurting, then we all hurt…Talks have been held in Atlanta, Cleveland and DC regarding this important issue and the first MANA conference was held in November of 2007.” Imam Rashid explained, “The goals of MANA are threefold; a community activism program, a Masjid & Leadership Development program and a Dawah program.” Ihsan Bagby, the General Secretary of MANA and a professor at the University of Kentucky, stated, “MANA has begun to be funded since last year. The domestic agenda of community activism is in its primary stage. This has to do with addressing the social and economic issues facing the indigenous Muslim population. The first step is to heal the differences in the Muslim community between those that came from the Nation of Islam and those that did not. Also we must heal the differences between the African American Muslims and Muslims from overseas. At the conference last November there were representatives from ISNA, ICNA, MPAC, Islamic Relief,

COMMUNITY NEWS and others. We need this unity for community activism.” Some of the statistics mentioned were quite significant and illustrate the serious need for such an organization. Fifteen percent of the entire prison population is Muslim. Most of these Muslims are reverts that come out into society, at the rate of about 3000 per day, to find themselves with little to no support. About 33% of the African American youth have had some exposure to incarceration. These are sobering statistics and are indicative of the significant divide that exists within our diverse community. As a result, Ihsan Bagby continued, “We are implementing three components to our community activism program: the Community Re-entry Program, the Healthy Marriage Initiative and SHARE Centers.” The re-entry program is for reverts coming out of the prison system who will find an organization that will help to guide them through the necessary steps of returning to the community as productive individuals and will give them what is so lacking in the community when they are released from prison, faith in their sincerity. Imam Qasim later quoted, “Malcolm X stated, ‘I am not educated, nor am I an expert in any particular field...but I am sincere and my sincerity is my credential.’” The re-entry program has been initiated in 12 cities throughout Ohio, North Carolina and Minnesota. The second component of the community activism program is the Healthy Marriage

Initiative. This program provides pre-marital counseling, marriage education and instituting a no-tolerance policy for spousal abuse. The third component of the community activism program is the setting up of SHARE Centers. “These are social advocacy centers and social services centers that have been started in 5 cities: Detriot, Atlanta, Indianapolis, Richmond and Newark, NJ. Abu Jamal Teague is a volunteer director for these SHARE centers…Part of the goal is also to have a leadership training component for Imams to help them develop set standards for counseling and pastoral skills that are often lacking in their formal Islamic training.” explained Ihsan Bagby. Although Siraj Wahhaj, the Amir of MANA, was the keynote speaker, his message was simple. MANA has a mandate not to exclude anyone. He reminded the audience of the woman in the masjid of the Prophet (peace be upon him) who used to clean it. When the Prophet (peace be upon him) noted she was missing and questioned his companions, they stated that she had died in the night and they had buried her. They had thought her death did not warrant waking the Prophet (peace be upon him). The Prophet (peace be upon him) asked where she was buried and went to make supplication over her grave. He (peace be upon him) did not want her grave to be dark for her. In that story Imam Siraj Wahhaj reminded the audience that every soul was important to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and we must keep our eye on that goal: the people that are often overlooked because they are not so poor that they draw our attention and yet too humble to warrant our attention.

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008 Imam Siraj Wahhaj stated, “MANA is concerned about all Muslims. We are one ummah.” He reminded us of our aging population and stated that, “In the year 2050, it is estimated that the population of those who are 65 years or older is anticipated to grow to 20.8 million. Even today we have many of these people coming out of retirement because they can not afford to live without an income. What then can we anticipate in the future? Who will these millions of people turn to for a living? We need to ask ourselves what we are ready to do to solve this problem. Too often we rely on symbolism, but now is not the time for symbolism but to get real. Waving an American flag doesn’t make you a patriot. Defending the flag makes you a patriot.” As the evening rolled to an end, Imam Qasim reminded the audience that, “We are not asking to build a million dollar edifice. We are not asking for thousand-dollar chandeliers. We are asking for those that are unseen, for the 3,000 Muslims per day who are released from prison with little or no support and people doubt their commitment and sincerity, the single mother who didn’t make the headlines, the under-employed or unemployed…Give more than what you think you can spare. What you give is not ‘charity’, it is a loan to Allah…Often it seems that we believe in Allah, but we do not believe Allah. We do not believe we will get it back.” And, as if the spirit of MANA needed some manifestation, there was so much food, that food was handed out at the end of the dinner for people to take home to their families and for Sister Asma Hanif, of Shelter Our Sisters, to take trays of food to a homeless shelter, Alhamdullilah.


The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

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The Enlightened City The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

A Tour of Some of the Historical Sites in Madinah Al-Munawarrah By Rana Khan Muslim Link Contributing Writer

Baltimore, Maryland resident Sister Rana Khan visited the blessed city of the Prophet (peace be upon him) this past July 2008. We appreciate her sharing some of her faithful journey with our readers. -- TML The empty vastness of the desert is striking in its beauty and simplicity. Miles upon miles of sand and mountains give way to a very dark, rocky soil as we approach Madinah. These are the remnants of the lava fields that resulted from volcanic eruptions in the area, the most recent of which was in the year 654 after the hijrah (migration) of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to Madinah. The molten rock had spread a great distance around Madinah and had reached within a few miles of the city, threatening to overtake it, when it abruptly changed its course out of divine mercy for this blessed city and its people. As we make our descent from 21,000 ft. onto the barren runway of Madinah airport, it is hard to imagine, with the luxury of our modern conveyances, with what difficulties the noble Prophet (peace be upon him ) and his companions must have traversed this distance on foot and on camel-back, in the intensity of the ruthless desert heat. But their journey was one of faith and hope, and one can only speculate on the mixture of enthusiasm and apprehension the companions must have felt in traveling to this new city. Our journey starts at the precincts of Masjid al-Nabawi. At the time of the Prophet, the inhabitants of Madinah consisted of many tribes, the largest two of which were the Aws and the Khazraj tribes. The maternal uncles of the Prophet (peace be upon him) were from the tribe of Banu Najjar and resided in Madinah, in the area around Masjid al-Nabawi. We pass by a masjid called Masjid al-Sajdah (Mosque of the Prostration) and also known as Masjid Abu Dharr al-Ghaffari, named after one of the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him). It is at the location of this masjid that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was praying when, during a very lengthy prostration in his prayer, the Angel Jibreel spoke to him and informed him that whoever sends salutations upon the Prophet (peace be upon him), shall be rewarded with the equivalent of ten good

deeds. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “For one who sends blessings upon me once, Allah will send tenfold blessings in return.” {Sahih Muslim} Next, we visit Uhud. This is a mountain 4 miles in length and 2 miles in breadth and is located about 3 miles from the northern outskirts of Madinah. It is the site where the battle of Uhud took place in the third year after the hijrah. There are many natural cavities in the mountain where rain water collects and forms little “ponds” and these have become popular sites for local residents to visit and camp around. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) had a fondness for this mountain and said, “Uhud is a mountain which loves us and which we love.” {Sahih Muslim} The main cemetary for the city of Madinah, from the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to the present day is called Al-Baqi’ and is located adjacent to Masjid Al-Nabawi, opposite the south-eastern section of the masjid. It is about 14 acres in size and is surrounded by a marble wall. As one stands at the gate of Al-Baqi’, one cannot help but be in awe of the vast number of noble companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and righteous people from the early generations that are buried here - about ten thousand in all. Among them are the Mothers of the Believers, the wives of the Prophet (with the exception of Khadijah and Maimunah), the Prophet’s daughters, his grandson, Hasan ibn Ali, the Prophet’s uncle, Abbas, and his aunt, Saffiyyah, and the third Caliph, Uthman ibn Affan, as well as the prominent Muslim scholar, Malik ibn Anas (may Allah’s peace be upon them all). We drive by the valley of Aqeeq. This is one of the most famous valleys of Madinah and is considered to be blessed. The Prophet (peace be upon him) would love to use the water that would accumulate in this valley as a result of heavy rainfall in Madinah. He would often ask Anas ibn Malik to bring water from this valley for him to use for his ritual ablution (wudu’). Our guide points out the only intact structure in Madinah remaining from the Hijaz Railway, a building which stands as a witness of a bygone era. This railway station was used during the Ottoman period to transport pilgrims from as far away as Damascus to the Holy city of Madinah. The rail link was first opened in 1908 and was in operation for 10 years, until it was

destroyed during the First World War. Several attempts, some as recent as 1971, were made to revive the railway, but the scheme proved too difficult and too expensive to come to fruition. With the establishment of road networks and the rapid progress of aviation in the seventies, the railway was superceded and the huge steam locomotives came to a final halt. We visit Masjid Quba next. This is the first mosque in Islam whose foundation was laid by the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself when he arrived in Madinah on his hijrah from Makkah. The Prophet would visit this mosque frequently and would often pray there. As such, it is highly recommended to offer prayer there, and the reward of praying two rakaahs there is equivalent to that of an umrah (lesser pilgrimage). It is said that there is a well under the fountains outside Quba into which the ring of the Prophet with the famous Prophetic seal, which was with Uthman ibn Affan after the Prophet passed away, fell. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had stayed at Quba for three days, after which he proceeded to another location, where the Muslims prayed their first Jummuah prayer with him in Madinah. This place is marked by the construction of Masjid Al-Jumuah. Another mosque of interest is the Qiblatain Masjid (The Mosque of the Two Qiblahs), located about one and a half miles from Masjid Al-Nabawi. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had come to visit the Bani Salamah tribe who were residing at this location and, as was his practice whenever he visited his companions, he stayed with them and prayed with them. The Prophet was thus leading the congregation in prayer when the revelation from Allah came with the instruction to change the qiblah (direction faced during prayer) from Jerusalem to Makkah and the congregation turned in the course of the prayer to face the new qiblah. The Muslims had prayed for one year and seven months after hijrah facing Bait al-Maqdis and, therefater, prayed facing the Ka’aba. We pause to look at a structure that looks like the remains of a well, surrounded by an eightfoot high wire fence. This is the well from which Salman al-Farsi used to draw water for the date orchards in which he worked when he was sold into slavery and first arrived in Madinah in search of the last Prophet. A plush date orchard still exists around this well, and one can only try to imagine the overwhelming joy that Salman Al-Farsi must have felt when his long and hard search for the truth finally came to an end as he was at the top of a palm tree picking dates for his Jewish owner when he overheard him mention the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) arrival in Madinah. Salman was eventually released from slavery by the Prophet (peace be upon him), who paid his owner a stipulated price

and who, himself, planted an agreed number of date palm trees to secure his manumission. We are back at Masjid al-Nabawi, the Prophet’s mosque. It is here that the Prophet (peace be upon him) lived, prayed and guided his companions in all their affairs, both of this world and the next. This was the focal point of the fledgling Islamic communities’ affairs. After the night prayer, we flow with the sea of worshippers towards the section of the original masjid (prior to the immense expansion projects that were undertaken to accomodate the ever-increasing number of worshippers in the masjid) where rests the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his closest companions and first two Caliphs, Abu Bakr As-Siddiq and Umar ibn Al-Khattab. Once again, we are overcome with a tremedous sense of awe as we stand so near the final resting place of the best of Allah’s creation. Mixed with the joy that comes from being able to partake of this moment is a sense of sadness at the realization of how far we truly are from the beautiful example of our Prophet and his companions. We inch slowly towards the “Rawdah” - the special part of the masjid that lies between the Prophet’s pulpit and his house, about which he said, “Between my house and my pulpit there is a garden of the gardens of paradise, and my pulpit is on my fountain-tank (Al-Kauthar).” {Sahih Bukhari} Everyone present tries to get a chance to partake of the reward of offering two rakaahs in this sacred place. Early next morning, we are walking back towards the masjid before the the dawn prayer. One is amazed at the number of people present at the masjid at this early hour, so that even the huge marble courtyard of the masjid is almost half occupied with rows upon rows of worshippers forsaking extra sleep to reap the blessings of this special time of the early morning. The call to prayer for Fajr shatters the still quietness of the surroundings. The peace and tranquility of this morning prayer coupled with the inherent serenity of this city is indescribable. It is with a heavy heart that we leave Madinah, the city that welcomed the Prophet of Allah and his companions many centuries ago with an unparalleled warmth and brotherhood, and which, to this day, is enlightened with the supplication of Allah’s Messenger for it. The Prophet said, “Verily Ibrahim declared Makkah sacred and supplicated (for blessings to be showered) upon its inhabitants, and I declare Madinah to be sacred as Ibrahim had declared Makkah to be sacred. I have supplicated (Allah for His blessings to be showered) in its “sa’” and its “mudd” (two standards of weight and measuement) twice as did Ibrahim for the inhabitants of Makkah.” {Sahih Muslim}


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The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

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The Mountain of Uhud

A view of the green dome and minarets of Masjid alNabawi. This dome is over the final resting place of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him

Minaret adjacent to the green dome of Masjid al-Nabawi

A view of the masjid opposite the Hijaz Railway Station, built during the Ottoman period, for use by the pilgrims traveling on the railway.

Masjid Quba

A brick wall enclosing the well of “Ghars” - one of the many historical wells in Madinah.

Date palm orchard at the location of the orchard where Salman al-Farsi used to work when he first arrived in Madinah in search of the Prophet (peace be upon him)

An entrance to the area of Masjid al-Nabawi where the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) is located


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COMMUNITY NEWS

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008 continued >> Representation from pg 1

Advisory Commission on Manufacturing Competitiveness. Ansari is a resident of Baltimore, Maryland and an employee at Proctor and Gamble in Hunt Valley, Maryland. MDMC wants to see Muslim representation in all of the eleven commissions and advisor boards under the governor. “We have to empower the Muslims to become engaged and be a part of the system,” said Anwer Hassan, president of MDMC. “There are several issues that need Muslim representation.” With the Muslims’ involvement in the state government and with Maryland Delegate

continued >> Camping from pg 5

in the fresh lake water, riding their bikes, cooking on the wooden fire, canoing, kayaking, boating, and fishing. Adults played volleyball and badminton under the moonlight during late night hours. Young adults and children held hands and walked around the camp ground with flashlights to find their way in the pitch dark hills. On Saturday, about a dozen male campers – young and old – engaged in a 2-hour running water balloon fight. “One particular brother started it .... he began launching water bombs at peaceful campers, so we had to retaliate,” said a brother who requested anonymity. He got pelted 3 times, but said it was good fun.

Saqib Ali backing, they’ve been able to accomplish a number of things in Maryland. In the beginning of the year, Howard County started excusing Muslim students for the observance of Friday prayers without penalizing them for any missed school time. In addition, halal food is considered similar to kosher food in the state of Maryland. “Muslims can bring some results by approaching these issues,” added Hassan. MDMC was formed in 2005 for Muslims to build relations with local and state government officials. Council members said they will initiate internship opportunities for Muslim youth graduating from high schools and universities. This will train Muslims interested in careers in public administration and the private sector. One of their major projects is to make awareness of Islam in public schools. They have been vigorously trying to get a Muslim

“We were closer to each other. Everyone came together regardless of age or ethnicity. The most enjoyable part was the kayaking,” said Uthman Mughni, a teacher at Al-Huda School. After Fajr prayer, families returned to their camps. Children couldn’t resist the warm lake water for a quick swim before breakfast time. Some waited for Dar us Salaam to prepare the breakfast while some started their own fire and cooked their own “I-Hop” like breakfast on the wood. On Sunday, the last day of the camp, Laurel’s Kafe Kabob provided a traditional Indo-Pakistani breakfast of fresh halwa-poori to campers. “For me, this was a way to appreciate Allah’s creations. Getting up early in the morning to make prayer and preparing breakfast for my family was a reminder for me of the traveling life of the Prophet (peace be upon him),” said Abdul-Malik McKenzie. Dar-us-Salaam organizers provided muffins, tea, coffee, juice, and fresh fruits for campers through the weekend.

STAFF WRITERS WANTED The Muslim Link newspaper is looking for full and part-time candidates to fill upcoming staff writer positions. The ideal candidates are committed Muslims who have a penchant for good writing, are involved in community work, have a strong work ethic, and believe in establishing Muslim media. To join our team and start on a job which offers ground breaking opportunities and excitement, send your resume, cover letter, and a writing sample to the editor at editor@muslimlinkpaper.com.

Judge in the circuit courts. There are eight Muslim-member councils in various counties of Maryland. All of them are part of the larger MDMC. The Baltimore County Muslim Council, Montgomery County Muslim Council, Prince George’s County Muslim Council, Howard County Muslim Council, Ann Arundel County Muslim County, Frederick County Muslim Council, Harford County Muslim Council, and Baltimore City Muslim Council all have two representatives on the board of the MDMC. All of the councils work in a decentralized manner engaging with schools, county affairs, and civic engagement. However, they work collectively at the state level. Although the MDMC is made up of professional such as businessmen, engineers, doctors, IT professional, and professors, any

“It is really nice over here away from all of the distractions. I wish this get-away could be longer,” said Shamsa Omar from Landover, Maryland, who intentionally left her cell phone at home to get the full weekend nature experience away from everyday technology. Several halaqas given by various campers reminded Muslims to reflect on the verses of the Quran, remember Allah, and build close relations with Muslims in their communities just as they did at this campground. Campers said the pleasant part about their

15 Muslim in the state of Maryland can become a member without paying dues. MDMC website indicates there are more than 200,000 Muslims residing in Maryland. “We need to do our part so our children can live here without any fear and fulfill the American dream,” said Hassan. Their long term goal is to integrate Arabic language into the public school system. If they are able to achieve this, they said they will be willing to use the same strategies to help other states with this initiative. MDMC is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the interests of Muslims and encouraging Muslim civic and social involvement in Maryland, according to their website.

trip was the union of the Muslims. Although these Muslims may have seen each other at their Masjid or in the grocery stores, they said this peaceful weekend allowed them to build closer ties with other Muslims. “It felt so encouraging to wake up for Fajr after hearing the Adaan on the speaker. This trip gave me the chance to get to know people in the community that I didn’t know before,” Isata Bah of Forestville, Maryland. “It brought us closer to Allah.”


CIVIL RIGHTS

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Civil Rights

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

What you don’t know can hurt you

Muslim Officer Under Fire Again By El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan Muslims in the greater Washington area have become all too familiar with how Muslims of varied cultural hues, coming from very diverse economic and political backgrounds, have become the collective target for the new McCarthyism sweeping post 9/11 America. A case out of Connecticut exemplifies just how broad and nebulous this targeting has become. The opening lines of a front-page report that appeared in the Monday, July 28, 2008 edition of the Connecticut Post said it all: “Mustafa Salahuddin has a scrapbook filled with commendations he has earned during nearly two decades as a police officer. There are thank-you notes from people whose cases Salahuddin has investigated. There are certificates from the Ansonia Police Department marking milestones of service and successful investigations. But now, Salahuddin faces larceny charges that he says will tarnish the reputation he has tried to build as a respected and responsible officer.” In July 2008, Officer Salahuddin was charged with stealing a $25 garden hose from the Ansonia Police Department, even though it was later found on the grounds of the department. Salahuddin maintains the charge was lodged in retaliation over his differences with the department’s leadership. He has a history of not only standing up for his rights, but standing up for the rights of others as well. It should also be noted that Officer Mustafa Sultan Salahuddin was the first police officer in America to successfully sue his department for the right to reasonable religious accommodations, his request to wear a neatlytrimmed beard while in uniform. He believes that among the other aforementioned issues,

there are lingering resentments stemming from that successful lawsuit which also factor into this latest attack on his otherwise sterling reputation. He noted in his interview with the Connecticut Post, “I’m a very outspoken officer within the department. I stand up for my rights and I help others stand up for theirs.” This has resulted in friction between him and members of the upper command, including Ansonia Police Chief Kevin Hale.

what kind of support he was getting from his union in this water hose case, the response was “none.” When I asked why, he informed me that the union’s leadership is comprised of management officers – a clear conflict of interest in any case where the management has targeted one of its own officers. He said something else in his interview with the Connecticut Post that for this writer was chilling: “My tenure here has been good in terms of the community, but a disaster in terms

In July 2008, Officer Salahuddin was charged with stealing a $25 garden hose from the Ansonia Police Department, even though it was later found on the grounds of the department. Chief Hale reportedly asked the State Police to investigate the possible theft of the water hose after a Department of Public Works employee reported the hose missing, and a surveillance camera reportedly showed Officer Salahuddin with the hose in his possession. When I asked him what kind of support he has received from the police union in his area, Officer Salahuddin’s response immediately sent up a red flag. As a human rights activist who has dealt with many cases of well documented police misconduct, I have seen police unions throughout the nation mount some of the most aggressive defense campaigns involving support of rogue officers accused of malicious beatings, wounding and homicides. In case after case I have personally witnessed how police unions will often defend the indefensible. But when I asked Mustafa

of the department. On the streets I feel safe, but in the department I never feel safe.” Salahuddin, 46, was born in Philadelphia (PA), but grew up in Bridgeport (CT), where he witnessed first-hand the best and worst of policing in the black community. When he joined the Ansonia police force in 1993, after serving three years with the Yale New Haven Hospital police force, he did so with his eyes wide open and with a determination to be the best he could be. “I always admired the police and had good role models during my younger years,” he noted in his interview with the Connecticut Post. “But I also saw a lot of injustices done, and I thought between the two, that I could be a good minority police officer.” Officer Salahuddin’s principled commitment to being a “good officer” has been rewarded with very visible support from the community

he has served. The state and local branches of the NAACP, in conjunction with a local church, led a protest march on Monday, July 28, in support of Officer Salahuddin. The crowd marched from the Clinton AME Church on Central Avenue to City Hall, where Ansonia Mayor Jim Della Volpe came out to speak to them. NAACP Valley chapter President Greg Johnson and Della Volpe both voiced support for bringing in the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the more important peripheral issues surrounding this case. State NAACP President Scot X. Esdaile declared at the demonstration, “This [case] is based on propaganda against this police officer to destroy his name and destroy his wife’s name, and destroy his children’s name… You should not tolerate the use of your tax dollars for this nonsense.” This writer couldn’t agree more. Officer Mustafa S. Salahuddin has been placed on administrative leave with pay until the case is resolved. He has been charged with “Larceny in the Sixth Degree,” for which he has already pled not guilty. His trial is scheduled to begin on the morning of Thursday, September 4, 2008, in the Derby Superior Court - located at 106 Elizabeth Street, Derby, Connecticut 06418. Insha’Allah, The Peace And Justice Foundation will be present in support of this outstanding police officer, and to monitor the trial. And for the record, this one is personal. Mustafa Sultan Salahuddin is my brother. DC area human rights activist El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan serves as Director of Operations for The Peace And Justice Foundation. He can be reached at peacethrujustice@aol.com .


The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

Islam

ISLAM

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The way of life given to us by our Creator and practiced by our Messenger Sallallahu ‘alyhi wa sallam

Repentance Shaykh Muhammad Saalih ibn al-Uthaymeen hafidhahullaah Repentance: means turning back from disobeying Allaah to obeying Him. Repentance: is beloved to Allaah, as He says: “Verily, Allaah loves those who repent and those who purify themselves.” [Surah AlBaqarah: 222] Repentance: is an obligation on every believer. Allaah says: “O you who believe! Turn to Allaah in sincere repentance!” [Surah At-Tahreem: 8]

The Prophet peace be upon him said: “Verily, Allaah extends His hand out at night in order to accept the repentance of the sinner by day. And He extends His hand out during the day in order to accept the repentance of the sinner by night, until (the day) when the sun will rise from its west.” [Reported by Muslim]

Repentance: is from the means of attaining success. Allaah says: “And O believers, all of you, repent to Allaah in order that you may be successful.” [Surah An-Noor: 31] Success is when someone gets what he is looking for and is saved from what he is running from. Through Sincere Repentance: Allaah forgives sins no matter how big they are and no matter how many they are. Allaah says: “Say: O My slaves who have transgressed against themselves (because of sins), do not despair from the mercy of Allaah. Verily, Allaah forgives all sins. Verily, He is All-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Surah Az-Zumar: 53] O my brother who has fallen into sins, do not despair from the mercy of your Lord, for indeed the door to repentance is open until the sun rises from the west. The Prophet peace be upon him said: “Verily, Allaah extends His hand out at night in order to accept the repentance of the sinner by day. And He extends His hand out during the day in order to accept the repentance of the sinner by night, until (the day) when the sun will rise from its west.” [Reported by Muslim] And how many people have repented to Allaah

from numerous and enormous sins and Allaah has accepted their repentance? Allaah says: “And those who do not supplicate to another god along with Allaah, nor do they kill a person that Allaah has made forbidden (to kill) except with just cause, nor do they commit fornication. And whoever does this shall receive the punishment. The torment will be doubled for him on the Day of Resurrection and he will abide therein in disgrace. Except those who repent and believe and do righteous deeds, for those, Allaah will change their sins into good deeds. And Allaah is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Surah AlFurqaan: 68-70]

make sure we do not covet the people’s praise. We should only be concerned with Allah’s pleasure and His reward.

Sincere Repentance: must meet five conditions (in order to be accepted), which are:

Allah says: “And they have been commanded no more than this: To worship Allah, offering Him sincere devotion, being true (in faith); to establish regular prayer; and to practice regular charity. That is the proper way of faith.” [Sûrah al-Bayyinah: 5]

1. Sincerity to Allaah, the Most High: This is by the person doing it only for the sake of Allaah and seeking His reward and salvation from His punishment. 2. Remorse: for the sin that was committed, such that he is sad he did it and wishes he had never done it. 3. Ceasing: to commit the sin immediately. If the sin was against Allaah, then he should (1) stop doing it if it was an unlawful act, or (2) hasten to do it if it was an obligation that he abandoned doing. And if the sin was against a created being (such as humans), then he should hasten to free himself from it, whether by returning it back to him or seeking his forgiveness and pardon. 4. Determination: to not go back to doing that sin again in the future. 5. The repentance should not occur before the time when its acceptance is terminated, either by death or by the sun rising from the west. Allaah says: “Repentance is of no effect for those who commit sins constantly until when death faces one of them, he says: Verily I repent now.” The Prophet SAWS said: “Whoever repents before the sun rises from its west, Allaah will accept his repentance.” [Reported by Muslim] O Allaah, grant us the sincere repentance and accept it from us, verily You are the AllHearing, the All-Knowing. Written by Muhammad As-Saalih Al’Uthaimeen, 4/17/1406 ----------------------------------------------------

The Importance of Sincerity and Piety By `Abd al-Rahmân al-Barrâk, professor at al-Imâm Islamic University| S i n c e r i t y. W h e n w e s p e a k a b o u t sincerity in religion, what do we mean? Sincerity in religion is to intend to please God with our deeds and our devotion, without any ulterior or worldly motives. We need to be vigilant with our hearts and

Are we truly focused in our worship upon Allah alone? Are we really doing our good deeds without any ulterior motives?

He also says regarding what we say: “There is no good in most of their secret talks, except (in the speech of those) who enjoins charity or goodness or reconciliation between people; and whoever does this seeking Allah’s pleasure, We will give him

a mighty reward.” [Sûrah al-Nisâ’: 114] Allah describes how we should approach our good deed when He says: “And they provide food, out of love for Him, to the poor and the orphan and the prisoner of war, saying): ‘We feed you for the sake of Allah alone: no reward do we desire from you, nor thanks’.” [Sûrah al-Insân: 8-9] Piety entails abandoning behavior that brings harm to our souls in the Hereafter. This means not only abandoning that which is clearly and unambiguously sinful in Islam. It also entails staying clear of matters that are suspect and morally doubtful. Again, we do this out of our love and our awe of Allah. Form these definitions, we can see how sincerity and piety relate to each other and complement one another. We should also be able to appreciate how people can be at different levels in either their sincerity or their spiritual piety. Sincerity pertains to our worship and to the

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our performance of good deeds. Some of us are more devout in our worship, more focused on Allah’s pleasure, less distracted by worldly concerns and public recognition. Some of us are more likely to do acts of good unselfishly, seeking nothing other than Allah’s reward.

faith. A person who fails to fulfill any of these conditions is a person whose faith is incomplete and in want of improvement. Speaking a good word or remaining silent: This is an encouragement to speak what is good and beneficial; at the same time it is a warning, cautioning us to be careful in what we say, lest we say something that is harmful or false.

Likewise, some people exhibit more piety than others do. They are more cautious about their behavior, and consider the moral implications and consequences of any course of action they might undertake. Some people exhibit greater caution in some aspects of their behavior than others.

It is part of a Muslim’s faith to speak the truth and to say things that bring about benefit to others. Allah says: “O you who believe! Fear Allah and speak a word that is right. He will set right for you your deeds and forgive you your sins. And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly attained a great achievement.” [ Sûrah al-Ahzâb : 70-71]

We should take stock of ourselves on both of these counts. We should appraise the sincerity of our good deeds, as well as the piety we exhibit in our general conduct. Are we truly focused in our worship upon Allah alone? Are we really doing our good deeds without any ulterior motives? How careful are we to avoid falling into sin? How cautious are we concerning unclear actions that may have morally dubious consequences?

Allah informs us in the Qur’ân some of what constitutes good in our speech and benefits other people. He says: “No good is there in much of their private conversation, except for those who enjoin charity or that which is right, or bring reconciliation between people. And whoever does that seeking Allah’s pleasure, then we shall grant him a great reward.” [ Sûrah al-Nisâ’ : 114]

We should take heed of the Prophet’s words: “What is lawful is clear, and what is sinful is clear. Between the two extremes are ambiguous matters that few people know about. Whoever shows caution about these dubious matters keeps his religion and honor safe. Whoever falls into dubious matters invariable falls into sin.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (52) and Sahîh Muslim (1599)] And Allah knows best. -----------------------------------------------------

“Speak a good word or remain silent” Source: ISLAMTODAY.NET Abû Hurayrah relates that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should speak a good word or remain silent. And whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should show hospitality to his neighbor. And whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should show hospitality to his guest.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim ] The importance of this hadith: This hadith discusses some of the ways a Muslim’s faith should affect the way he relates to others. Ibn Hajar al-`Asqalânî writes: “This hadith speaks about three matters, and in doing so it brings together everything that good manners entail with respect to both word and deed.” Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day… This is a conditional sentence. It is repeated three times in this hadith, each time with a different condition. The first of these three conditions is to either speak a good word or remain silent, the second is to show hospitality to one’s neighbors, and the third is to show hospitality to one’s guests. This hadith is showing us that these three qualities are among the many qualities of

When we have nothing beneficial to say, silence is golden. Once, Mu`âdh b. Jabal asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) to inform him of some good work that would admit him into Paradise and distance him from the Hellfire. The Prophet (peace be upon him) mentioned to him the virtues of many good deeds, then said: “Shall I inform you of the foundation of all of that?” Mu`âdh said: “Certainly.” The Prophet (peace be upon him) took hold of his tongue and said: “Restrain yourself from this.” Mu`âdh then asked: “O Prophet of Allah! Are we held to task for the things that we say?” The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied: “May your mother be bereaved of you, O Mu`âdh! Does anything topple people headlong into the Hellfire save the harvests of their tongues?” [ Sunan al-Tirmidhî and Sunan Ibn Mâjah ] We should avoid speaking ill of others. We should rather remain silent unless we are seeking justice for some wrong that has been perpetrated against us. Allah says: “Allah does not like that evil should be mentioned in public except by one who has been done injustice. And Allah is allhearing, all-knowing.” [ Sûrah al-Nisâ’ : 148] Our tongues are like double-edges swords. They can work for us and against us, both in this world and the Hereafter. We will be held accountable for what we say. Allah tells us: “He does not utter a statement except that there is an observer by him ready to record it.” [ Sûrah Qâf : 18] The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Indeed a servant will speak a word pleasing to Allah that he thinks to be insignificant, but because of it Allah raises him by many degrees. And indeed a servant will speak a word displeasing to Allah that he thinks to be insignificant, but because of it, He will consign him to the Hellfire.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî ]

We must be vigilant not to speak falsehood. We must think about what we are saying and the possible consequences of our words before we go ahead and speak. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “A man might speak a word without thinking about its implications, but because of it, he will plunge into the Hellfire further than the distance between the east and west.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim ] Al-Nawawî comments on the meaning of this hadith, saying: “This hadith encourages us to guard our tongues. A person who wants to speak should think upon what he is about to say before he utters it. If it then shows itself to have some benefit to it, he may speak it; otherwise he should refrain from doing so.”

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

How Our Pious Predecessors Spent Ramadan By Sheikh Salman al-Oadah We should look to the example of the Prophet, his Companions, and the earliest generation of Muslims if we want to get the maximum benefit from this blessed month. He said: “The best of my Ummah would be those of the generation nearest to mine. Then those nearest to them, then those nearest to them.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (2652) and Sahîh Muslim (2533)]

Showing hospitality to the neighbor and the guest:

We will look at some of the thing Pious Predecessors used to pay extra attention to during the month of Ramadan:

From the perfection of a person’s faith is his showing kindness to those with whom he has dealings, especially his neighbors and his guests.

Reading the Qur’ân

Allah says: “Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and show kindness to parents, relatives, orphans, the poor, the near neighbor, the distant neighbor, the companion at your side, the traveler, and those whom your right hands possess. Indeed, Allah does not like those who are conceited and boastful.” [ Sûrah al-Nisâ’ : 36] Islam emphasizes the right of the neighbor. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Gabriel continued to impress upon me the rights of the neighbor until I thought that he would soon confer upon him the right of inheritance.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim] There are many forms that this hospitality can take. It can take the form of help in times of need. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “He is not a believer who lets himself be satiated while his neighbor goes hungry.” [ Mustadrak al-Hâkim ] It can mean making allowances for the neighbor’s needs, even by waiving some of one’s own rights. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “None of you should prevent his neighbor from placing his rafter in his wall.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim ] It can take the form of gift giving. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “O Muslim women! None of you should consider insignificant a gift that you give to your neighbor, even if it is but the trotters of a sheep.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim ] Islam teaches us to be generous and hospitable to those who come to us as guests. Indeed, those who come to our homes have a right over us. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should show hospitality to his guest according to his right.” He was asked: “What is his right, O Messenger of Allah?” The Prophet (peace be upon him) answered: “It is (to offer the best) for a day and a night, and hospitality extends for three days. What is beyond that is charity.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim ] ----------------------------------------------------

Allah says: “The month of Ramadan is that in which the Qur’ân was revealed.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 185] For this reason, we find that the Pious Predecessors used to increase their recitation of the Qur’ân in Ramadan. Ibrâhîm al-Nakha`î tells us: “Al-Aswad b. Yazîd used to complete reading the entire Qurân every two nights in Ramadan. He would sleep between Maghrib and Ishâ’. Outside of Ramadan, he would complete reading the Qur’ân every six nights.” `Abd al-Malik b. Abî Sulaymân tells us that Sa`îd b. Jubayr would also complete a reading of the Qur’ân every two nights in Ramadan. It is also mentioned that al-Walîd used to normally complete the Qur’ân every three nights, but in the month of Ramadan, he would read it in its entirety seventeen times. Salâm b. Abî Mutî` informs us that Qatâdah used to normally take seven days to read the Qur’ân, but in Ramadan he would take three days to do so. Indeed, during the last ten nights of Ramadan, he would read the entire Qur’ân every night. Al-Qâsim b. `Alî describes his father – Ibn `Asâkir, the famed author of The History of Damascus – as follows: “He used to always observe his prayers in congregation and was constant in the recitation of the Qur’ân. He would always complete a reading of the entire Qur’ân by Friday. However, in Ramadan, he would do so every day and retreat to the eastern minaret of the mosque.” Al-Dhahabî writes the following about Abû Barakât Hibah Allah b. Mahfûz: “He learned Islamic Law and read the Qur’ân. He was known for his charity and his good deeds. In the month of Ramadan, he would read the Qur’ân thirty times.” Standing for Prayer in the Middle of the Night Al-Sâ’ib b. Yazîd relates: “`Umar b. alKhattâb ordered Ubayy b. Ka`b and Tamîm alDârî to lead the people in prayer in Ramadan. They would each read hundreds of verses at a go, until we had to support ourselves with canes due to the length of time we had to

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stand. We would only finish praying close to the time of Fajr.” [Musannaf `Abd alRazzâq (7730) and Sunan al-Bayhaqî (4392)] `Abd Allah, the son of Abû Bakr, relates that he heard his father say: “By the time we finished our prayers in Ramadan, the servants would have to rush to prepare food in fear of Fajr coming in.” [al-Muwatta’ (254)] `Abd al-Rahmâb b. Hurmuz tells us: “The reciters (leading the prayers) would complete the reading of Sûrah al-Baqarah in eight units of prayer. When the reciters took twelve units of prayer to complete it, the people regarded it as if the reciters were making things easy for them.” [Musannaf `Abd alRazzâq (7734) and Sunan al-Bayhaqî (4401)] Nâfi` relates that Ibn `Umar used to pray in his house during the month of Ramadan. When the people departed from the mosque, he would go off to the prophet’s Mosque, taking a flask of water with him. He would not leave the mosque again until after the Morning Prayer. [Sunan al-Bayhaqî (4384)] `Imrân b. Hudayr tells us that Abû Mijlaz would lead the prayers in Ramadan for the people in his neighborhood. He would recite the Qur’ân in full in prayer in the course of seven days. [Musannaf Ibn Abî Shaybah (7677)] Giving Generously in Charity Ibn `Abbâs says: “Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) was the most generous of all people in doing good, and he was at his most generous during the month of Ramadan. Gabriel used to meet with him every year throughout the month of Ramadan, so the Prophet could recite the Qur’ân to him. Whenever Gabriel met with him, he became

more generous than a beneficial breeze.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (1902) and Sahîh Muslim (2308)] Al-Muhallab makes the following observation about this hadîth [Ibn Battâl, Commentary on Sahîh al-Bukhârî (4/22-23)]: This shows the blessings of good works and that engaging in some good deeds opens the door to the performance of others. The practice of doing some good deeds assists one in further good works. We can see here that the blessings of fasting and of meeting Gabriel increased the Prophet’s in generosity and charity, so much so that he became more generous that a beneficial breeze. Al-Zayn b. al-Munîr explains the comparison with a “beneficial breeze” as follows [al`Asqalânî, Fath al-Bârî (4/139)]: His charity and good treatment for those who are poor and needy - as well as for those who are well-off and possess sufficient means - is as general as the relief brought by a beneficial breeze. Al-Shâfî`î said: “It is liked for a person to increase his charity in the month of Ramadan. This is following the Prophet’s example. It is also in consideration of the people’s needs and their welfare, since so many of them are distracted from earning their livelihood due to their preoccupation with fasting and prayer.” Ibn `Umar used to never break his fast except in the company of the poor. Whenever someone came to him while he was eating and begged him for something, Ibn `Umar would take from his food what he deemed to be his rightful share and then he would stand up and leave the rest of the food for that person. He would then take what was in his hand and give it to his family, so that when he woke up the next morning to resume his fast, he would not have eaten anything the night before. [Latâ’if al-Ma`ârif (314)] Yûnus b. Yazîd thells us that during the month of Ramadan, Ibn Shihâb would engage in nothing besides reciting the Qur’ân and providing food for the poor.

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Hammâd b. Abî Sulaymân would take it upon himself to provide food five hundred people to break their fast with during the month of Ramadan. Then, on the day of `îd, he would give each of those people one hundred pieces of silver. Safeguarding the Tongue Abû Hurayrah relates that the prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever does not abandon false speech and acting falsely, then Allah has no need of his abandoning food and drink.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (1903)] Al-Muhallab makes the following observation about this hadîth [Ibn Battâl, Commentary on Sahîh al-Bukhârî (4/23)]: This shows that fasting entails refraining from obscene and false speech just like it entails refraining from food and drink. A person who engages in false or obscene speech detracts from the value of his fast, He exposes himself to his Lord’s displeasure and to the possibility of his fast not being accepted. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “If one of you starts off the day fasting, he should avoid obscene speech and ignorant behavior. If someone abuses him or starts to fight with him, he should reply by saying: ‘I am fasting. I am fasting’.” [Sahîh Muslim (1151)] Al-Mazarî observes about this hadîth: It is possible that the person is recommended to say “I am fasting. I am fasting” merely to remind himself, so that he refrains from getting involved in the exchange of insults. `Umar b. al-Khattâb said: “One does not

19 merely fast from food and drink, but also from lying, from falsehood, from vain talk, and from swearing.” [Musannaf Ibn Abî Shaybah (8882)] `Alî b. Abî Tâlib said: “Fasting is not to leave off food and drink, but rather to leave off lying, falsehood, and vain talk.” [Musannaf Ibn Abî Shaybah (8884)] Talq b. Qays tells us that Abû Dharr said: “When you fast, then be on your guard as mush as possible.” As for Talq, when he fasted, he only emerged from his home in order to go to the mosque for prayers. [Musannaf Ibn Abî Shaybah (8878)] Jâbir b. `Abd Allah said: “When you fast, your hearing, your vision, and your tongue should also fast – by avoiding lies and sins. You should not abuse your servant. You should maintain your composure and dignity on the day that you fast. Do not make your fasting day the same as your normal day.” [Musannaf Ibn Abî Shaybah (8880)] `Atâ’ tells us that Abû Hurayrah said: “When you fast, do not act in an ignorant manner and do not insult people. If someone acts ignorantly towards you, say: ‘I am fasting’.” [Musannaf `Abd al-Razzâq (7456)] Mujâhid said: “If you avoid two things, then your fast will be alright. You must avoid backbiting and lying.” Abû al-`Âliyah said: “A fasting person is engaged in worship as long as he does not backbite someone.”


FATAAWA

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The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

Fataawa Questions about Islamic life and practice

Break Fast with Sun or Athan ?

that the people who are preparing the food will not be observing i`tikâf in the mosques – but they will be feeding those who are.

Question: Is it from the sunnah that a fasting person has to hear the adhan before he breaks the fast of Ramadan? During Ramadan, the majority of the congregants at our mosque wait to hear the adhan before they break their fasts, sometimes five or more minutes after the Sun has fully set. In fact, those who follow the sunnah and break their fast immediately are looked upon as if they did something wrong.

Answered by Sheikh Sulaymân al-`Îsâ, professor at al-Imâm University in Riyadh Those who are prevented from offering the night prayers due to the fact that they are preparing the pre-dawn meal will receive the same reward as if they were also observing the prayers. In truth, they may even realize a greater reward for themselves due to the service that they are rendering to those who are engaged in prayer.

Answered by the Fatwa Department Research Committee - chaired by S h e i k h ` A b d a l - Wa h h â b a l - Tu r a y r î What matters is that the Sun has fully set. People might prefer to wait for the adhân to be called in order to be extra certain that the Sun has set – and also to avoid having to stare at their watches.

There is evidence for this reward in the Sunnah. For instance, Anas relates the following: We were with the Prophet (peace be upon him) during a journey. Some of us chose to fast on the journey while others opted to refrain from fasting since we were traveling.

However, if it is known for certain that the adhân is being called considerably late, then a person may certainly break his or her fast before hearing the adhân. It is recommended to hasten breaking our fast after the Sun has set.

On one intensely hot day, we broke camp at some place on the way. The people who had been fasting were utterly exhausted and unable to do anything. Those who had opted not to fast set about putting up the tents and watering the animals.

`Umar relates that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “When the night comes from that direction and the daytime departs in that direction and the Sun sets, then the fasting person has broken his fast.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (1954) and Sahîh Muslim (1100)] Al-Bukhârî asserts that `Abû Sa`îd alKhudrî used to break his fast as soon as the Sun’s disk disappeared over the horizon. However, if a person is at the mosque and knows that eating before the adhân is called will bring about discord or commotion in the community, then he or she should refrain from eating for the sake of avoiding discord (fitnah) among the Muslims. Avoiding discord is obligatory, while hastening to break the fast is merely recommended. And Allah knows best. -----------------------------------------------------

Preparing the Suhoor, Missing Out on Qiyaam Al-Layl Question: What are the blessings received by those of us who are busy in the late hours of the night preparing the pre-dawn meal for others? When the rest of the people are at the mosques or in their rooms offering their tahajjud prayers, the people who are preparing the food that everyone will eat are too busy to do so. Some of them might be able to offer a few brief units of prayer on their own, but they will certainly miss out on the congregation and they will not pray anywhere near as much as the people for whom they are preparing the food. It goes without saying

Then the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Those who refrained from fasting got the blessings today.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (2890) and Sahîh Muslim (111)] At the same time, the people who prepare the pre-dawn meal in Ramadan should do their best to offer some prayers at night – however briefly. If they are of those who would otherwise offer their prayers in congregation, they should try to pray the witr prayer, at least, with the imam at the mosque, in order to get the reward for praying throughout the night that comes from finishing the prayer with the imam. And Allah knows best. -----------------------------------------------------

Does Swallowing Mucus Break the Fast? Question: I was praying an obligatory prayer and I had mucous in my mouth out of nowhere. I became confused and swallowed. I was also fasting at the time. Please tell me if my prayer and my fast are valid. Answered by Sheikh Muhammad b. Sâlih al-`Uthaymîn Phlegm and mucous that do not reach the mouth do not cause the fast to break. This is the only opinion expressed on the matter in the (Hanbalî) school of law. If the phlegm and mucous reach the mouth and then the person swallows it back down, there is disagreement among the scholars regarding whether it breaks the fast.

One opinion is that it does break the fast. They compare swallowing phlegm and mucous to the activities of eating and drinking. The other opinion is that it does not break the fast. They regard phlegm and mucous to be comparable to saliva. Even if a person gathers saliva in his mouth and swallows it, this will not break his fast. In a case where the scholars are divided in their opinions, then the matter must be referred back to the Qur’ân and Sunnah. Since we are in doubt about whether ingesting phlegm and mucous invalidates the fast, we must consider that the default assumption in Islamic Law in the absence of other evidence is that it does not do so. Based on this default assumption, we would say that it does not break the fast. -----------------------------------------------------

Sleeping All Day in Ramadhan Question: Some people sleep all day during Ramadan. They wake up for the prayers and go back to bed. Then, close to sunset, they get up and prepare to break their fasts. They do not feel a thing. Are their fasts valid? Some people argue that a fasting person’s sleep is blessed. Is this true? Answered by the Fatwa Department Research Committee - chaired by S h e i k h ` A b d a l - Wa h h â b a l - Tu r a y r î It is not sinful for a fasting person to sleep during the day in Ramadan. It has no affect on the validity of the fast, no matter how much of the day a person sleeps. It is also by no means encouraged to sleep during the day in Ramadan. This was not the practice of the Companions nor of the Pious Predecessors. If anything, they increased their daytime activities in Ramadan. It is merely permissible to sleep. There is a weak hadîth that reads: “The sleep of the fasting person is worship.” However, this hadîth is far too weak to be used as evidence for anything. Even if we assume – purely for the sake of argument – that the hadîth were authentic, it still does not justify laziness. It certainly does not pardon the practice of those who sleep all day in Ramadan and then spend the nights in feasting and merriment. The hadîth only refers to a person’s normal sleeping habits, like a person’s usual daily nap. This normal sleep helps invigorate the person for further acts of worship.

Injections Will Fasting Question: We would like to know if it is alright to get vaccinated during a fast in the month of Ramadan. Answered by Sheikh `Abd alWahhâb al-Turayrî, former professor at al-Imâm University in Riyadh Vaccinations, anesthetic injections, and other non-nutritive injections do not break your fast because they do not constitute eating or drinking. Such injections do not resemble eating or drinking in any way. Nutritional injections, on the other hand, do break your fast because their effects resemble those of eating or drinking. Though it is alright to take nonnutritive vaccinations while fasting in the month of Ramadan, it would be better to take them at night, if possible. And Allah knows best. -----------------------------------------------------

What Illnesses Allows Breaking the Fast? Question: A close relative of mine, if he is so much as beset by a headache, opts to break his fast during Ramadan. Is there a way of defining to the type of illness that justifies a person breaking his or her fast? Answered by Sheikh Salman al-Oadah An illness is anything that takes a person out of a state of good health. A sick person for whom fasting would be injurious to his health may break his fast. On this basis, Ibn Qudâmah writes in al-Mughnî: “It is a matter of juristic consensus among scholars that it is, in general, permissible for the sick person to break his fast.” The proof for this is the verse: “Whoever among you is ill or on a journey can make up the number from other days.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 184] In this verse, Allah has given permission for the person who is ill to abstain from fasting in the month of Ramadan and to make up however many days he misses on account of his illness at a later date. There are many types of illness: 1. There are illnesses that make fasting unbearable. A person afflicted with such an illness can break his fast according to the opinion of all scholars, and this is backed up by a considerable amount of evidence.

And Allah knows best. ---------------------------------------------------

>> Fataawa Pg 21


FATAAWA

The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

continued >> Fataawa from pg 20

Allah says: “Allah does not burden a soul with greater than it can bear.” [Sûrah alBaqarah: 286] and also “…and do not burden us with what we have not the power to bear.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 286] and “And fear Allah as much as you are able.” [Sûrah al-Taghâbun: 16] 2. Then there are illnesses that do not make fasting impossible but which can be aggravated and made worse by fasting. If it is determined by at least one reliable doctor that fasting will indeed aggravate a person’s illness, then it is preferable for that person to refrain from fasting. However, if that person insists upon fasting, the fast will be valid. In this context, Ahmad b. Hanbal, when asked about fasting for a person beset by fever, gave the answer: “And what disease could be worse than fever?” It is also related that Ahmad said: “A woman who fears for herself being beset by tonsillitis may break her fast.” 3. A person beset by an illness that requires medication to be ingested during the day may break his fast, especially if the consequences of delaying the medication are serious, like the loss of a limb.

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4. If breaking the fast will facilitate or speed up recovery, then it is permissible to do so. 5. A healthy person may refrain from fasting if he has well-grounded fears that fasting will make him ill, subject him to severe difficulties, or place unbearable demands upon his person. Ibn `Abbâs permitted breaking the fast for someone “…who suffers from severe and chronic thirst”. Some people suffer from chronic thirst and cannot go for long periods of time without water. Such people can break their fasts. Ahmad b. Hanbal was asked about fasting for a very young girl who attains puberty and menstruates during the month of Ramadan. He replied: “She should fast, and if it is difficult for her, she should break her fast and make the missed days up later.”

PERIOD

Ahmad’s fatwâ takes into consideration the girl’s young age as well as her not being accustomed to fasting. It also takes into consideration that she may be beset by weakness in those circumstances. Though Ahmad stated that she should make up her fast, his students did not mention that she had to do so in that particular situation.

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[All fatawa from IslamToday.Net]

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The Muslim Link, AUGUST 29, 2008

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COMING SOON InshAllah! December 2008

Staff Writers: Lensay Abadula Amina Ali Farkhunda Ali Fasiha Khan Farha Marfani Rashad Mulla Maryam bint DawudMussallihullah Sharia Advisors: Sheikh Salah as-Sawi Safi Khan The Muslim Link (TML) is published every other Friday on a Bi-Weekly Schedule and distributed throughout the Washington, Baltimore, and Northern Virginia Metropolitan Areas. TML is a non-profit publication and is based at Dar-us-Salaam in College Park, Maryland, USA. Staff and contributors are not necessarily affiliated with Dar-us-Salaam. The views expressed in The Muslim Link do not necessarily reflect those of Dar-us-Salaam or TML management or their underwriters. Dar-usSalaam and TML are not responsible for the accuracy of information presented by advertisers, or for the religious compliance of events, products, or services published in TML. This publication contains the names of ALLAH (Subhanahu wa ta’ala). Please keep, recycle, or share it with others The Muslim Link 5301 Edgewood Road College Park, MD 20740 Phone : (301) 982-1020 Fax: 240-209-0702 editor@muslimlinkpaper.com Advertising: 301-982-1020 or email us at ads@muslimlinkpaper.com The Muslim Link. All Rights Reserved 2008

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Upcoming Events In Your Area Community Health Fair Saturday, August 30, 2008

at PGMA. Hosted by Prince George’s County Muslim Council (PGCMC). Featuring Local Doctors and Medical Professionals who will provide free: Health Screenings Consultation Education on Healthy Approaches to Living Information and much, much more! Red Cross blood drive, gifts, prizes, education, and more! Call 202-378-7558 for more info.

El-Iman Learning Center Iftar Saturday, September 6, 2008

Annual Fundraising Iftar in support of El-Iman Learning Center $30 per person (will be sold at door) Iftar and Taraweeh Prayer Children’s Activities and Babysitting $5 for the evening.Contact (703) 820-6688 admin@eliman.org

Moving Forward With PGMA Fundraising Dinner Saturday, September 6, 2008

at Roosevelt High School, 7601 Hanover Parkway, Greenbelt, MD. Speakers: Imam Karim AbuZaid and Imam Safi Khan. For more info call (301) 459-4942

Building for our future: ISB Annual Fundraising Dinner

Saturday, September 13, 2008

at ISB. Guest Speaker: Imam Sahmuddeen Harun Tickets: $20 per person. Children under 7 are free. ... 410-747-4869

ICCL’s Annual Fundraising Dinner and Iftaar Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Islamic Community Center of Laurel invites you and your family to it’s Annual Iftaar and Fundraising Dinner on September 13, 2007 (Iftaar at 7:18 pm) at Eleanor Roosevelt High School 7601 Hanover Parkway Greenbelt, MD 20770 Tickets: $20/ person or $60/family For more information contact ICCL at 301-317-4584, visit www.icclmd.org, or email ps@icclmd.org Babysitting will be available insha’Allah. For more information contact ICCL at 301-317-4584, visit www.icclmd.org, or email ps@icclmd.org ps@icclmd.org

HELP WANTED HARD

WORKING, UPRIGHT

MUSLIMS

ARE NEEDED

COOKS AND CUSTOMER SERVICE WORKERS AT SIMPLY HALAL RESTAURANT IN CALVERTON, MARYLAND. FOR IMMEDIATE CONSIDERATION, EMAIL YASSERN@COMCAST. NET OR CALL BR. YASSER AT 240-593-0925. SALARY IS BASED ON EXPERIENCE. TO FILL POSITION AS

Käzo Kitchen is easy to find, right off MD-295. Take the W. Nursery Rd. exit and turn North onto W. Nursery Rd. We’re on the right, inside the Chevron, Lakson Food Court.



The Muslim Link ~ Augusy 29 2008