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    • My post is focused mainly on how Western socio-political discourse occurs between two poles: (1) Freedom, and (2) Harm. This is the result of a long, crystallizing history. Islam may have areas of overlap with utilitarians and classical liberals, but overall the Islamic thesis puts God above everything else. Regarding your point about jahiliyya: I can easily say that jahiliyya gave many freedoms to women that Islam removed. Jahiliyya had no penalties for fornicators, it had rights for prostitutes, it allowed women to marry a second husband to conceive a high-status son, it had female prophetesses, and it had female goddesses. Islam restricted all of this. Yes, Islam did give many additional rights to women, but my point is that Islam is not all about freedom and liberation. It is about accountability, responsibility, and duty. It freed some aspects of our lives, but it restricted others. Anyone who reads Islamic literature with feminist glasses will be surely disappointed. As for your point that men in eastern culture "don't lift a finger when they are at home", that sounds like a gross generalization of billions of people and hundreds of cultures. Even if I were to concede that eastern men generally cook and clean less than their wives, they work longer hours, and a lot of the handiwork, lawn-mowing, technology fixing is done by men. Either way, it's not a competition. One shouldn't have a men vs women mindset, or even a victimized mindset. Men too are victims; they are the ones most effected by violence, suicide, work injuries, drugs, prisons, gangs, and dropping out of school... a victim mentality however would not solve these problems. Islam = Submission in Arabic, it's not submission to men, it's submission to Allah. Submission in some cases will be the opposite of freedom, but I would argue that sincere submission to Allah frees you from your fears and your desires, and leads to a good and contented life. I never said women should be slaves to men, or that womanhood is a disadvantage, or being dark-skinned (?) is bad. Men and women are simply different and have different rights and responsibilities in Islam. Islam is a sexually dimorphic religion. Women don't pay mahr, they don't pray/fast during their time of the month, they are not conscripted in wartime, they don't need to work, they don't need to divide their wealth, etc. By the same token, women have some unique laws and responsibilities. Total freedom and equality means removing every gendered law, including the ones that restrict men and free women, and vice versa. This is antithetical to our revelation. Please don't call me dishonest or a male chauvinist just because of one respectful criticism of modern feminism. That type of spiteful namecalling won't get you much sympathy from a neutral reader. State your arguments respectfully.
    • Really? You are implying that during the period of Jahiliyya, women were free and they had power. We have always heard that before islam, women were in bad condition. They were buried alive and Islam gave them more rights. Please learn a little honesty. Where have you seen women who live without any responsibilities? So, in eastern culture, men only do their 40 hour job and don't do anything else. They don't even lift a finger when they are at home and in most cases, men don't even work for 40 hours. But that's okay, no one gives them lectures. While women in west work 40 hours, and I am pretty sure they don't spend the rest of time sitting idle. They are always doing something for someone. But just because they don't want to work 120 hours a week and raise kids while they are working full time, it means they don't want to take any responsibility?  And what do you mean by submission? You sound so much like those male chauvenists who tell women: You are a woman, accept it, don't try to become a man or equal to a man. You can never be equal to man. Do you seriously believe that all women are supposed to be slaves? and being a woman is a disadvantage? Being a woman or being dark skinned is just like being born in a poor family or being in a war. This is a disadvantage which happened to you, now accept the consequences and submit to Allah who made you a woman. 
    • Every time i read these blog-posts i feel my IQ increases a little. May Allah reward you on behalf of sharing this knowledge with us. Eagerly awaiting the release of the Atoms post inshAllah, whenever you deem it appropriate. 
    • I liked this post. I believe it has a solid base to say humanism is a conclusion of individualism, but I somehow think that merely because individualism may result in harm for the soul, it doesn't mean that humanism by itself will, or that it will necessarily lead to the perpetuation of individualism in oneself. I think we naturally develop that individualistic approach in our life, and deciding to take distance from it must be a consequence of our convictions. In this case, these can be religious and spiritual convictions (eg Islamic convictions), but also ones developed by people and the way they understand the meaning of life (humanism). What I am saying is that humanism doesn't necessarily leads to individualism, as far as I can understand.
    • Hobbes and John Stuart Mill cane long, long before Ayn Rand or even Marx.
    • i dont think individualism came from Christianity, not even the dysfunctional version.  More likely to be the work of Ayn Rand which is probably somehow related to Mrxism
    • The Report by the Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress is interesting. As you pointed out, the Muslims don't monetize everything they do. There is not one Muslim country in the top 15 of the Wikipedia "List of countries by GDP (nominal)." In the "List of countries by GDP (PPP)" Indonesia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia squeezed into the top 15 by tweaking the statistics. I did not read the whole report that you linked, but the words that stood out to me were "Quality of Life" and "Sustainable Development and Environment." Surely the Islamic societies are cognizant of these as well. I hope that there are studious intellectuals who are reading that document and thinking how they can help improve their own society. 
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The prophet (PBUH) before he declared his prophethood, where would he go? Every single day he would go to the Cave of Hira. He would spent some private time with himself and Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى. We spend time with everyone in society, except our Creator. We come back, we are tired, we fall asleep, we miss even our morning salah, and then we rush back to work. This is not fair. We claim we love Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى, but practically, how much do you actually love Him? A point of our day needs to be dedicated to some private time. The best time is in the middle of the night...

It is ideal, shortly before the morning prayer. Even if you get up for ten minutes. Ten minutes. Spend some quiet time with Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى. What do you have to lose? The hadith tells us if you shed one tear, a single tear - in the middle of the night, out of your love and fear for Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى - this drop of tear is so valueable in the eyes of God, that it can extinguish oceans of hellfire. This is the effect of it. Oceans of hellfire can be extinguished and put off by one single tear in the middle of the night. You will find that this will be the most bueatiful moment every day. You will look forward to it. All of the stress throughout the day, the best place and the best time for you to get rid off all of it and to start a new full energized day is in those 10-15 minutes. By dividing our day properly, we will be on the right track. We will not overstress ourselves. Some people work too much. You shouldn't work too much! Some have three shifts! I discourage them. Take it easy. You dont need to work three shifts and destroy yourself and family. Take it easy. You are not going to starve and die. Yes, maybe you will have less privileges, you can spend less. But that's fine. Life is not all about spending. If you divide your day properly, you will find that comfort. And it is the best way to remove the stress. But it requires you that you make the decision. And number two, actually apply it, because the decision itself is not that important. The first step comes is the intention and decision. But that is not important. Many people, you know, make the decision and intentions they want, but once it comes to the time of application, they actually don't. I mean, how many times have you heard of this bueatiful lecture which has so many good points, you have read that good book and all you think to yourself: these are some good points! this was a very cool book! It is only cool and good if you actually implement it. Sometimes you hear of a very bueatiful hadith. I hear some people they say: that is such a cool hadith! You know, in islam there is nothing cool unless you actually apply it. It becomes cool, when you apply it. The decision itself does not have the full value. This is why the Qu'ran keeps on reminding us: "Those who have good faith, and offer good deeds". They show their faith through their actions. Without showing that you really believe, without offering your actions, without practicing what you believe, it does not have that full value in the eyes of Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى. The decision itself is important, but it actually won't do the job.

Let me ask you a question here. Let's see how smart you are. We have five birds on a brench of a tree and two of them decide to fly. How many do we have left? Three? You should thank Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى I am not your math teacher. How many? Five. Why? They just decided. You get the point. We have got five birds on the tree, but two decided to fly, but did they actually fly? We people are good at deciding, coming up with intentions, but when it comes time to actually implement them, most of us dont really care. We lose, you know, that motivation after a while. That is why the Imam (as) tells us: if you want to truly be one of the followers of Ahl al-Bayt (as), you have to judge yourself every single day. Before you go to bed, just simply ask yourself: What did I do today? Did I achieve my goal today? If you have sinned, ask for istighfar [forgiveness] the Imam (as) tells you. Say: "O'Allah, today I have sinned, and I realize that, I admit that and I feel regretful". Seek the forgiveness of God and make the determinitaion to really not sin the following day. If Allah blessed you on that day, say: "O'Allah I thank you for blessing me on this day. And the way that I shall thank you tomorrow is by using that gift the proper way".

We know how to judge ourselves when it comes to the economy and business. Every single company, they make up charts, graphs to asses where they are. Where did they fail? Where did they advance? But when it comes to our spiritual life, we don't care. To be successful and to be sure that what you are doing is correct and that you are on track all the time is to judge yourself five minutes before you go to bed. The Prophet (PBUH) tells us: "Judge yourself, before you are judged on the Day of Judgement".

 

We ask Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى to guide us all to the straight path. We ask Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى all those who are ill and need our dua to give them a speedy recovery, and to help them with their problems. We ask Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى to grant us the intercession, the shafa'a, of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). And the shafa'a of the Ahl al-Bayt and finally we ask Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى to hasten the reappearance of our Master and Leader Imam al-Mahdi (as). Wa sallallahu ala Muhammad wa ala tahirin.

 

Do the people think that they would be left to say, "WE BELIEVE" and they will not be tested?

Holy Quran 29:2

 

 

 

Entries in this blog

Khomeinist

The Night Love

When Imam as-Sajjad (as) used to gaze up at the night sky, he would address his Lord saying: O' my Lord! The stars of your sky have set, and the eyes of your creation have closed to rest. Kings have locked their gates, but your gate is always open to those who ask. Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى in the Holy Qu'ran reminds us of how he close is to his servants:

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ

O'Muhammad and when my servants ask you about Me, indeed I am close. I answer the supplication of the one who supplicates.

My dear brothers & sisters, Allah is near, but we have not appreciated the joy of divine proximity. Muslim philosophers maintain that the goal of God's creative activity, is not as some might think for simply to be a World out there, but rather for Allah and his loved ones to come together as we were before creation. This is the underlying message of the phrase:

إِنَّا لِلّهِ وَإِنَّـا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعونَ

We belong to God, and to Him we shall return

The famous persian poet Rumi explains this scheme of love. All of us used to be fish, swimming in the ocean of towheed. Unaware of our difference from the water. Then Allah threw us upon dry land, the realm of seperation, longing, pain and suffering. Only by tasting seperation, can we remember the joy of water and desire to return to it. Once we return, we will swim in the ocean of Towheed again, with full awareness of the joy of consummated love.

In a famous tradition Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى reveals to Musa (a) saying:

ذَبَ مَنْ زَعَمَ أَنَّهُ يُحِبُّنِي فَإِذَا جَنَّهُ اللَّيْلُ نَامَ عَنِّي ، أَ لَيْسَ كُلُّ مُحِبٍّ يُحِبُّ خَلْوَةَ حَبِيبِهِ

O'Musa! The one who claims to love me, speaks a lie. For when night sets, he sleeps and forgets me.. is it not that every lover wishes to be alone with his beloved?

My dear brothers & sisters, let us take advantage of the night and whisper to our Beloved because the night is when the lovers meet and it is imperative that we make Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى the object of our love... Wa sallallahu ala Muhammad wa ala tahirin.

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