Archive for June, 2005

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New Books

June 30, 2005

I’ve recently added several new books to my library:

1. Chinese Gleams of Sufi Light: Wang Tai-yu’s Great Learning of the Pure and Real and Liu Chih’s Displaying the Concealment of the Real Realm by Sachiko Murata with a foreward by Tu Weiming and a new translation of Jami’s Lawa’ih from the Persian by William C. Chittick
Note:This book essentially deals with the influence of Persian Sufism on Chinese Muslims and the how the rich 1400 year history of Islam in China has appropriated much of Chinese culture into their Islamic practice. (ISBN: 0791446367)

2. Prophetic Traditions in Islam: On the Authority of the Family of the Prophet by Shaykh Fadhlalla Haeri
Note: A brilliant explanation of Islam through traditional sources and according to the holy Ahlul-bayt (may Allah bless them and grant them peace). This book is originally written in English by a Shaykh that I highly recommend and admire for a firm grounding in sufi thought and practice according to the light of Ahlul-bayt. The book even explains its own purpose in eloquent terms that are beyond my scope:

“The first person to attach importance to the collecting of prophetic traditions was Imam ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib. Adhafir al-Sirafi has described how he once saw al-Hakam ibn ‘Uyaynah quesiton Abu Ja’far Muhammad ibn ‘Ali al-Baqir. The latter was feeling averse to him and they fell to arguing over something. Abu Ja’far then sent his son to go and get the book of ‘Ali. He took out a great rolled up scroll and opened it, examining it until he had found the explanation of the matter in dispute. Abu Ja’far then said, ‘This is the hand of ‘Ali and the dictation of the Messenger of Allah.’ Then he went up to al-Hakam, saying, ‘Go with Miqdad and transmit it as you wish to the right and the left, for by Allah, you will certainly not find more sure knowledge amongst the people which has been revealed through the words of Jibril (Gabriel).'” (pg. XVIII)

(ISBN: 0946079870)

3. A Bundle of Flowers: from the Garden of Traditions of the Prophet and Ahlul-bayt (a.s.) compiled by Ayatullah Sayyid Kamal Faghih Imani .
Note: I have loved this book for years and have read it several times on al-islam.org, but I wanted my own copy. There is something so much better about holding a book in your hands, flipping the pages, even smelling the aroma of the paper. Nothing beats that experience. (ISBN: 9645691028)

4. Forty Hadiths: An Exposition of Ethical and Mystical Traditions by Imam Khomeini.
Note: This is another one that I have read pieces of online, but it’s simply too massive to comfortably read on a computer screen or print out on paper. I have searched for this book for years and never found it in print, until I finally found it at al-khoei center. It only has forty ahadith, but Imam Khomeini’s commentary is phenomenal, both from an exoteric Islamic perspective and an esoteric sufi perspective. (ISBN: 9643353583)

That’s all I can offer on the books now as I have not read them, but I will reveal more as I plow through them, insha’Allah.

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Where are all the fatwas?

June 28, 2005

I just came across a blog post from a couple of years ago asking why Muslims were not issuing fatawa condemning terrorists attacks on innocent people and other such injustices.

More than anything else, I think this shows how ignorant non-Muslims (and even some Muslims) are regarding fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence). The purpose of a fatwa is provide new insight into some aspect of the shari’ah or to indicate how the shari’ah should be applied in a certain place and time. Anything beyond this scope is not relevant to fatawa.

I think that many people have confused the “fatwa” with socio-political commentary on behalf of jurists, which most Muslim scholars, especially shi’a scholars, do not do. There is no need to issue a fatwa against killing/murdering of innocent people because every Muslim knows that it is wrong. Those who do it are not in need of a fatwa to make them stop. They do it because of their own desires. “That is because they hate what Allah has revealed, therefore He makes their deeds fruitless. “(Qur’an 47:9)

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New Iranian President A "Softy"?

June 28, 2005

Apparently people have misjudged the new Iranian President, Dr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

“Mr. Ahmadinejad will do his best to prevent the state from interfering in people’s private space,” Kalhor told the MITV channel in a telephone interview late on Monday.

“We demand the police do not pick on what boys and girls wear and how they interact,” he said, adding the president-elect wants everyone to be happy.

“We intend to stop censorship and pressures. Everyone is free to have satellite (television),” he said, insisting all his views were shared by Ahmadinejad as well.

Read the full story

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War against Iran has begun

June 27, 2005

Blackhawk helicopterAlthough the US media is currently focused on the war in Iraq and the fresh elections in Iran, the untold story is the covert operations and strategic military build-up for an Iranian invasion that has already begun just outside of Iran in neighboring Azerbaijan. The CIA is also aiding the MEK in terrorist bombings inside of Iran. The full story is here.

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Studies Revisited

June 26, 2005

This summer, I plan to get back on my Arabic studies, insha’Allah. My original goal, a couple of years ago, had been to go through the entire Qur’an and study every word that I did not know. I would then eventually be able to read the Qur’an more fluently.

If I accomplish this goal, I would then be much better prepared if and when I go overseas to study, insha’Allah.

We are currently looking at studying at the Hawza Ilmiyya in London as a possible place to begin our studies in a couple of years.

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Charity for the Rich Folks

June 25, 2005

I live in Indianapolis, and apparently, they will soon raise taxes (http://www.wtnh.com/Global/story.asp?S=3469962) to pay for a new stadium that is being built for the Indianapolis Colts football team.

I also work for Indianapolis Public Schools and find it interesting how willing they are to hike the taxes for stadiums while continuing to cut funding for schools (http://www.indianademclub.org/blog/2005/03/22/indiana-politics/46/).

Why is the responsibility of the city to pay for such a stadium? Where does revenue from the stadium go? It certainly doesn’t go back into the pockets of the people. And it’s not as if it’s free to go see a football game. What message are we sending to our children who we’re supposedly not leaving behind?

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Living in exile

June 24, 2005

I am currently living in exile. Taubah is having a hennah party for her sister, who is to be married tomorrow. I was sent away because of my male gender. I am thinking of filing some type of lawsuit. 🙂

In the meantime, I’m crashing over my brother-in-law’s house. You should notice that the design of the site has changed a little. I decided to make the top banner look a little more mature to fit the rest of the evolution that has taken place with the site. The picture was taken by a great photographer. Please check out more of his work.