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In the Name of God بسم الله


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Everything posted by asphyxiated

  1. I know exactly where those numbers come from. These numbers reflect the registered voters of Lebanon for the 2009 elections. Given that Lebanon hasn't conducted a census since 1932, we don't have accurate demographic information regarding the sectarian balance. What we do know is that up to 2.5-3 million Lebanese live in and around the Beirut area, if you include the suburbs and areas such as the lower Ba'abda district and Matn (most notably areas like Dora, Bourj Hammoud, etc.). The fact remains there is very little to do in Lebanon from an economic standpoint outside of Beirut. Most of our community from the South who live in the Beirut region have homes in the South and homes in Beirut, but technically they can only vote in the South. Other segments of the Shi'a community are essentially refugees in Beirut. I've written about this before, but I can say rather confidently that the Shi'a are less likely to register to vote than their Sunni counterparts. In addition, these proportions don't take into account the population below the age of majority. Shi'a families continue to be the largest in the country, with birth rates higher than other groups. The Shi'a are less likely to register for a few reasons: (1) Traditionally, they have lived outside of city centres where registration is more common. Sunnis have dominated Lebanese coastal cities for generations (Beirut, Tripoli, Saida, etc.). (2) Since the civil war many Shi'is have moved to the Beirut region, but they are not registered to vote in Beirut, nor are they allowed to. If you were, say, from Bint Jbeil like my mother, but living in Beirut, you would have to go to Bint Jbeil to register to vote. Changing your voter eligibility status is a very cumbersome process in Lebanon. Part of my father's family is registered in the northern Bek'aa, the other part in Sur/Qana and others are in East Beirut. (3) Shi'a communities tend to be the least contested in terms of elections. Around 97.5% of the Shi'a population support Hezbollah and/or Amal, who act as one party. If I'm living in Beirut, I'm not going to drive to Bint Jbeil to register in what otherwise will be an absolute landslide. (4) Despite the economic improvement Lebanese Shi'a have experienced with the advent of a coordinated resistance movement, many are essentially refugees who reside in Southern Beirut, whether from the South or Bek'aa. Poverty seems to negatively impact voter registry in areas such as Lebanon. Here is a chart illustrating, to the best of my knowlege, the most accurate sectarian breakdown of Lebanese communities. http://daleel-madani...es/maps/001.jpg We can break it down region by region and community by community if you like. Nevertheless, this issue can be resolved in one of two ways: conduct a census or go to a one-person-one-vote system. But certain factions in Lebanon don't want that because they know what it would reveal. If I were to provide you with my honest opinion about the demographic breakdown, given how much I've observed Lebanon, I would say that the Shi'a could very well make up around 35% of the total Lebanese population. This does not include the Palestinians or Syrian workers. I do, however, believe that Shi'a Lebanese outnumber Sunni Lebanese. Christians are likely stable at around 30% (just stay out of their regions) and the Druze... well, I simply don't care. One thing worth mentioning: West Beirut is widely considered to be a Sunni area and the voter breakdown surely reflects that. But even there, there are many noticeable Shi'a communities. The only place in the country where you find no Shi'a strongholds is in the North. I think there are a few pockets in Batroun and one in Koura, but that's it. As a general rule, Shi'a have historically tended to live alongside Christians, be it in the South or Mount Lebanon area. The more Sunni dominated the region, the less likely you will find Shi'a. Saida is an outlier because it is a coastal city in an otherwise dominated Shi'a part of the country (Zahrani). The same can be said for Sur.
  2. Professor Higgins, you are a fool who is spreading the same sort of anti-Shi'a propaganda we've been hearing for years. They say the same thing about Hezbollah in Lebanon. Once you have a real argument, we'll discuss further. Then again, what more can one expect from a nationalist with Arafat in his avatar? I pity you for the heroes you keep.
  3. Your best bet is to use Youtube-to-mp3-converter sites. There are literally dozens of websites that do this. You simply copy the URL or write the name of the video. Go to Google, type in "Youtube to mp3" and pick one of those listed, such as: http://www.youtube-mp3.org/ http://www.video2mp3.net/
  4. Nor in the Bek'aa can they do anything. Just imagine how Ba'albeck and the valley would react to these threats. That leaves Beirut and we saw what happened last time. Better off playing games with the 'Allawis in Jabal Mohsen. Unlike these takfir artists, Nasrallah doesn't play games. If he responds to this jibberish then my advice to them would be to listen carefully because he is painstakingly honest.
  5. Like I said in the previous thread, I'd give it two hours. The biggest inconvience will be having to mop up dead cavemen off the ground.
  6. The Salafis have been inciting threats in Saida. Aside from their typical MO, I can't find much reason for this. I'd like to see their solutions to Lebanon's problems. Inshallah "al-Salaafeeyeh" bi wal3ooha bi Saida, ya Rabb. I'll give it two hours. Ya3ne iza beleshna sa3a arb3a ba3d id dohr, ma bi roo7 3alayna 3asha. Two hours.
  7. lol Is this a threat? Let them come--no, sorry, I meant, "let it spread," whatever that means. You do realize that we've dealt with Israel in the South, right? You know, the state that is supported by your vile, self-proclaimed followers of the Righteous Predecessors. The South has dealt with a much more competent enemy for decades and managed to accomplish what your collective community can only fantasize about in its most erotic masturbation. Let them come. In fact, God-willing, I'll be in Lebanon later this summer. I can introduce them to some men they don't deserve to look at in the face. I've been promising myself to stop wasting time with ignorant people because I keep reminding myself that they are not entitled to an opinion. But just so as you are aware, the Allawis are fairly inconsequental in Lebanon. Outside of a few communities in the North, there's really not much to talk about. You insinuated that they were the eyes and ears of Assad. Even if that were true, it doesn't really mean anything. The Lebanese have, as a collective, been the eyes and ears of foreign interests for decades. Shall we discuss who the eyes and ears are for implenting Israeli and U.S. policy in Lebanon?
  8. Sovereignty lies with the people, not the state, especially when the state has never existed outside of what it says on the map. Lebanon is a non-state and the Lebanese Army has, much like the rest of the country's infrastructure, absolutely failed to safeguard its people or provide a modicum of security. This is the reason Hezbollah came into being; the Resistance is a grassroots movement that picked up where the "state" left off. If you want to wait for a corrupt institution that has never supported you or provided you with security, then keep waiting. Back in the 1980s a large portion of the population decided to take matters into its own hands. The war with Israel has been raging since long before then. Israel has been making incursions into South Lebanon since the 1960s; between 2000 (the so-called "end" to the Israeli occupation) and 2006 (the latest hot war), Israel violated Lebanese sovereignty thousands of times. Since 2006, Israel has continued to violate Lebanese sovereignty. If you're looking to the army for protection, then you have serious issues. If you think the army is capable of protecting its citizens from Israeli aggression, then this conversation is over because you are not entitled to an opinion on this matter. However, this doesn't even get to the source of your (or fellow Harirists') argument, which is to ensure Lebanese protection by accepting U.S. and Israeli aggression (whether passively or actively). This is what your community did back in 2006 when you rolled out the red carpet to Condeleeza Rice after her administration authorized a month-long Israeli invasion. These are the politics of shame and I would expect no less from the Harirists, who have abandoned the Palestinian cause, developing true Lebanese sovereignty or working toward addressing the crux of the regional problem. If you want to argue against the Resistance, choose an avenue other than what you think the ideal state ought to behave like. Any time you conjure an image of Lebanon as a traditional nation-state, you have defeated your argument. Lebanon is a non-state. It will continue to be so until further notice. In this environment you cannot rely on a state that never was to protect and inform you.
  9. Wahdat al-Wajood is a philosophized transgression that negates the Oneness of God by giving God a material form. From a Western perspective, such concepts can be found in the writings of Baruch Spinoza, who tried to show us that everything within material existence is a reflection of God (or, in other words, is in fact God). When I use the term reflection, I mean it literally--we are all manifestations of God, which, as the OP pointed out, ultimately leads you to the most abhorrent conclusion: that you are, in fact, God, or a manifestation the God, or an episode of God and so on and so forth. Spinoza developed an entire ethical system from this principle. This is a complete rewording of Islamic theology. Is it the sort of philosophizing that is present within some Sufi orders. As such, it is not worth any more of my time. Although I will say that these sorts of theological arguments fall prey to the same philosophical issues that have befallen pantheists, Christians and others who give the Creator material attributes or realities. This would be debatable if the universe is infinite, but it is not and has already been proven otherwise.
  10. Well, the OP raises a good point. Self-defense is a natural right and is promoted by Islam. I grew up in Windsor and across the border in Dearborn there is a huge Shi'a Muslim population. I personally know of at least two families who have lost loved ones in random, indiscriminate acts of violence. One of them was shot dead at his car at a gas station by a thug who wanted to steal from him; the other was shot dead in his own store by a thief. Others are routinely harassed and threatened within the confines of their own businesses by shoplifters, who take what they want and leave. Due to the gang-related violence of the Detroit Metropolitan region, I know many people who are deeply afraid. Couple that with the corrupt justice system of that region and I think people like the OP have considerable cause for concern.
  11. Akkari? Is this piece of filth Lebanese? It all makes sense now. We should conduct a critical analysis of what his Northern brethren have done that even warrants their mention in the same sentence of the Resistance. I suppose there is nothing wrong with being weak, impotent and incompetent when it comes to justice and other political issues, but to attack those whose beard trimmings have done more for the sake of the aforementioned is quite laughable.
  12. Letting go of music is not an easy task, especially if you were brought up in a Muslim household that taught you very little about Islam. Music is not only the norm throughout the world, it is the rule. Growing up in the West you meet your friends based on the genre of music in which you listen. From a logical perspective, you've already concluded that music is haram and ought to be avoided. This is a good first step. Now, we must use that knowledge to drive your faith and your practice. What is faith without knowledge? I highly recommend that you preoccupy yourself with media, especially at night. Listen to lectures, debates and newscasts. They don't all have to be Muslim. I have a plethora of political, social and economic interests. Late at night I cultivate these interests, whether through Youtube or reading. There came a time when I would only listen to music to drown out other sounds around me. Al-Hamdullilah, finishing school and finding a great job has given me practically no time to look for useless jingles. I guarantee you, once you have your own place and have the opportunity to control your surroundings, this part of your life will improve. I can't tell you how many lyrics I have in my head of songs I used to listen to years ago. And not just any old songs; I had a very nuanced and well developed taste for music. Progressive Rock/Metal, Melodic Death Metal and bands from every corner of the earth. My uncle is a well-known Lebanese singer. I spent thousands of dollars on CDs growing up. Yet, even I was able to do away with it. Then again, I was raised in a household that did not teach me how to pray, so I had to learn salat on my own. Suffice it to say, abstaining from music was the least of my worries at one point. Faith comes with knowledge and the pursuit of knowledge will get you closer to God. The more you know, the more you will put into practice. This will come gradually. Work toward building your life in every capacity and this tendency will evaporate.
  13. The mourning rituals that we see during Ashoura are typically cultural expressions. Based on traditions, nothing is wrong with cultural forms of expression insofar as they don't contradict Islam. Because different cultures express grief differently, Ashoura commemoration will vary. The question then arises: do they contradict Islam? I've been a critic of those who think they are more pious because of how much blood they can shed during commemoration. For me personally, I'm against most of these rituals. I think beating the chest in unison and taking to the streets is enough to draw attention to the cause. Of course, even these acts are meaningless if the person doesn't reflect upon the martyrdom of the Imam both rationally and emotionally. However, the other extreme is just as bad. Those who like to criticize how others mourn while they themselves couldn't give a damn about the slaughter of the progeny of Muhammed by one of the most ruthless, despotic, despicable pieces of garbage are not entitled to an opinion on this subject. Rather, you should be honest and ask yourself why you are willing to accept (and in many cases condone) some of the most perverted rulers humanity has ever seen. Since some of us were talking about Pakistan and the Sub-Continent, these rituals shouldn't concern you nearly as much as the fortune telling, crystal balling and superstitions dominating that largely Sunni part of the world.
  14. (salam) I think your assessment is correct and I said as much in my first post. There is a lot of evidence to suggest that men have, throughout the ages, preferred lighter skin women. At the same time, women seem to prefer darker skinned men. Of course, lighter and darker are relative and they rarely signify the extremes (pale white skin or very dark sub-Saharan skin). I'm very honest about my preferences. Based on anecdotal evidence and experience, I tend to attract the same kinds of women. It is unfortunate that most of them do not have an Islamic background or else I would be married by now. Nevertheless, there are always cultural elements involved. We should not forget that people in the West risk skin cancer and other diseases by going to tanning salons in order to appear darker. There's a wide enough medium in there for many kinds of people, but it also excludes many others.
  15. This was one messed up thread. The good news is I got to show men everywhere exactly what to do to not get laid.
  16. Height appears to be strongly correlated with confidence. Women typically prefer taller men; the sweet spot appears to be 5'10''-6'2'', although there is variability. The reason for this is that women associate height and build with protection, at least, on a subconscious level. If you are not tall, make sure you can express these characteristics in other ways. Since we are men, the conversation will always lead back to this. Still, I'm about two to three inches taller than my dad. My mom is one of those midgets from Bint Jbeil.
  17. So, nothing you know is based on facts or experience? I gathered that a long, long time ago, but now you've summed it up fairly nicely, I might say. Lebanon is, in general, a very bad country, east to west and north to south. Lebanon lacks basic infrastructure, education and clean drinking water. Lebanon lacks a just political infrastructure and military that can protect its citizens from occupation. These are the important matters that need to be addressed. For many of these reasons, the Resistance was established. It was established when the Lebanese were making war among one another. There is no correlation between denomination and better or worse Lebanese standards, outside of artificial indicators such as nice cars, rates of plastic surgery and the number of bomb shelters that have been converted into night clubs. In fact, West Beirut was considered a Muslim part of the country throughout recent history. In recent decades more Christians have moved to West Beirut than Muslims have to East, due largely to the region's economic opportunities. In terms of Muslim vs. Christian areas, Christians are far more concerned with tourism, cultural attraction and appearance. You will find many Christian towns decorated nicely and looking great in pictures. But so what? What does that mean? Think about the issues I mentioned above. Better yet, why don't you go live there and see how long you last? Take a look at your friend Samir Geagea's hometown: http://static.panoramio.com/photos/original/8330513.jpg . Looks great, doesn't it? What is also great is its deep rooted feudalism, no education or access to basic infrastructure and lack of opportunity for youth. This is true across all regions. With all that is going on in Lebanon, some people are prepared to live a life with no political resolution or justice insofar as they get to boast their shameless pseudo-nationalism, go to concerts and wear nice clothes. Another segment of Lebanese society has devoted itself to overcoming a political struggle that you do not wish to understand. This narrative has gone on for a long time. Looking at nice pictures and admiring girls in bikinis isn't going to make the real problems go away.
  18. Who are these Lebanese Christians, you blithering fool? You are not entitled to an opinion on this matter because you have clearly demonstrated that you lack the capacity to form judgments beyond your bias. Maronites have been emigrating from Lebanon for generations; many left during the mountain clashes they had with the Druze, which escalated into a bloodbath on both sides. Like Lebanese of other groups, most of them fled Lebanon to escape the Civil War, which had absolutely nothing to do with Islamic "terrorism." You blithering idiot, Hezbollah was formed in the 1980s in response to Israeli occupation; Hezbollah didn't emerge as a influential organization until years later. By that time hundreds of thousands of Lebanese had already fled the country as refugees. My family came to Canada in 1990 as refugees; our Maronite neighbours next door fled Lebanon a few years earlier as refugees; the Maronite family a few doors down left the country during the same time as refugees; the Shi'a family across the street fled the country as refugees shortly after we arrived. How many Lebanese Christians have fled Lebanon because of Hezbollah, which does not even operate in Christian-dominated towns and cities? How can you blame the outcome of the 2006 War to the sweeping generalization that the Lebanese Christian community has been fleeing Lebanon because of Hezbollah? Projections from many organizations show that Lebanon will not experience significant growth rates over the next 40 or 50 years, mainly due to emigration. This trend has been apparent for quite some time, even when the Resistance was in its infancy. I will not respond to stupidity in a pleasant manner because the world is filled with stupid people such as yourself. Somewhere along the line society came to accept ignorance as the norm. I won't make the same mistake.
  19. If it contains instruments other than a basic drum, daff or chest beat, then I think it would classify as music. In terms of the rationale behind "amusement gatherings," I would put it into two categories: i) Would the song you are listening to be the kind used at a club, party, dance or concert? ii) Would the instruments you are listening to be the kind used at the above venues? To be honest, I've been trying to avoid it all together. I don't have the time or energy to decipher. It's simply not worth it. I have a set of Qur'anic recitations and nohas that I listen to at the gym, with the latter usually carried by a very loud beating of the chest.
  20. I train as a powerlifter. I'm in the gym about four days a week. My training consists of volume/recovery/intensity. I squat below parallel, deadlift, bench press, press and power clean. I also do chins and dips. I train volume on Sunday and hit new 3/5-rep PRs on Thursday.
  21. WaSalaam wa Rahmat Allah There are some bizarre misconceptions going on here. If I were to judge Sunni Islam based on, say, what I see in Lebanon, I would have a laundry list of shameful misconceptions. Why have you not taken the initiative to study the Ja'fari school yourself to clarify some of these notions? In the world of the internet, you can go to the source and learn for yourself. The Shi'a hadith collection is vast, with many traditions attributed to the Prophet and his Family. The Shi'a tend to scrutinize hadith far more closely (even their own), whereas the Sunnis have accepted particular collections as authentic. Even if you look at Kitab al Kafi, Shi'a scholars have determined that the majority of these narrations are weak. We do not have a "sahih" collection similar to the ones Muslim and Bukhari put together. I would encourage any and every school to scrutinize their hadith. How do you know "most" of them do this? The Shi'a commemorate the slaughter of the grandson of the Prophet during Ashoura. While one can certainly argue that some Shi'a take this practice too far, you can also argue that Sunnis simply pay no attention and hence do not care about Karbala. In fact, the latter seems obvious. If your school promoted the Ahlul Bayt like it should and commemorated the events of their lives like it should, you wouldn't be asking these questions. I consider the chest pounding to be a sign of protest and an act of commemoration. There is no harm to it and expressing grief is justifiable Islamically. So, as a Sunni who shows no remorse for the violence attributed to the children of the Prophet, who are you to tell people how they should express their grief? There are those Shi'a who use cultural norms to express grief, such as tatbeer with a sword or other extreme measures. In this sense, it is no different than other forms of cultural religious expressions that Muslims have fallen into; the only difference is that tatbeer is more bloody. Islam isn't about what Muslims do; it's about what Muslims should do. Any "Shi'a" who prays to the Ahlul Bayt is an exaggerator and polytheist. Again, why have you not explored this from the source? How stupid would you think I am if I asked you why Muslims worship the black stone of Mecca? Here, read these: http://www.makaremsh...i=11&itg=6&s=ca http://www.al-islam.org/shiism/ Cursing in the Islamic religion is different from cussing, which is roughly translated as seb in Arabic. Asking God to withhold mercy on certain people is an Islamic practice and was practiced by the Prophet. Cursing in Islam (i.e., cussing) is forbidden. As to why the Shi'a do not hold positive views of these personalities, you will have to refer to the history books. Again, it's not hard to find. Aisha waged war against the Imam of her time; the first three caliphs never disputed Ali's status at Ghadeer, but illegitimately took hold of Islamic leadership (according to the Shi'a school). This is a matter up for debate. Look at the evidence and decide for yourself. Heh. The four Sunni schools of jurisprudence pray about a hundred different ways (literally, there are about a hundred differences). Some prayer congregations look like a gymnastics event. They also have no issue prostrating on rugs, even though they were first introduced into the Prophet's mosque 300 years after his death. The Shi'a prostrate on clay/dirt/earth. If anyone wears an Islamic symbol thinking it will bring them rizk, they are in the wrong. Some wear it as cultural forms of expression; others wear it for identification. Some young guys wear it because they think it looks cool. Not even worthy of consideration. Here are some more. These are good beginners, like the previous: http://www.al-islam.org/leadership/ http://www.al-islam....ruthaboutshiah/
  22. In the Arabic language, the word for cursing is seb; Muslims, as a whole, should avoid cursing. La'nat, on the other hand, is permissible. The Prophet performed la'nat and so did his community. To perform la'nat simply means to ask God to withhold his mercy from certain individuals for their actions.
  23. There is nothing contradictory about evolution and Islam, unless you remove God from the equation or do not accept Adam and Eve as the first human couple. I find it embarrassing that so many Muslims like to argue against evolution without knowing what it is. First of all, you should define scientific theory honestly, as opposed to the "it's just a theory" nonsense. Scientific theories are the working assumption for scientists and researchers because the principles contained therein have been identified and observed. We have observed the process of evolution and the fossil record is there for all to see. There remain a lot of holes in our understanding of evolution, species and even the origins of sexual reproduction. Our knowledge of the natural world is extremely limited, so I'm opposed to anyone shooting down theories or claiming their views are complete and accurate. Islam doesn't tell us to ignore scientific proof; no other religion tells its adherents to strive for knowledge, understanding and scientific inquiry.
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