Non Muslim army men showing a rarer sign of communal Harmony ,performing Eid prayer along with Muslims in India
Non Muslim army men showing a rarer sign of communal Harmony ,performing Eid prayer along with Muslims in India
The Prime Minister David Cameron along with Faiths Minister Baroness Sayeeda Warsi met Hazrat Allama Qamaruzzaman Azmi ,a prominent Sunni Sufi leader,during a historic visit to North Manchester Jamia Mosque. Hazrat Allama Qamaruzzaman Azmi discussed the current issues and challenges facing the world including, the plight of Rohingya Muslims in Burma, Syrian crisis as well as the safety and security of Mosques and Muslim communities in the UK.
David Cameron spent two hours with the mosque community during his visit and stated his support for the Big Iftar programme, which has seen scores of mosques up and down the country open up their doors to Muslims and non-Muslims to demystify the faith of Islam and connect to communities. After a tour of the mosque he helped them prepare for their own Big Iftar by chopping onions and making samosas, providing his own cooking tips along the way. The Prime Minister was impressed by the vibrancy of the mosque, which is set for redevelopment to cater for an ever-growing community.
Allama Qamaruzzaman Azmi said: “I thank the Prime Minister for taking time out from his busy schedule to come and meet with the British Muslim community in Manchester”.“During his landmark visit he championed the contributions that British Muslims are making in all walks of life and listened to some of the real concerns that the community are facing”, he said.
Following this meeting the Prime Minister and Faiths Minister Baroness Warsi took a tour of the Mosque which caters for 2,000 people through daily worship, after-school clubs, youth projects and support groups and had a frank and open discussion with a mixed group of young and old people where Mr Cameron heard the concerns of Muslims about attacks on their community following the horrific murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich.He restated the commitment of the UK government to tackling anti-Muslim hatred and condemned the recent Islamophobic attacks in the strongest possible terms, saying the UK needed to be intolerant of intolerance. His government has set up a cross government working group on anti-Muslim hatred and fund an organisation, Tell MAMA, which records attacks and supports victims.
Faiths Minister Baroness Warsi said: “It was brilliant to accompany the Prime Minister to the Jamia Mosque and help them prepare for their Big Iftar that evening.
“Jamia Mosque is a fantastic example of a model Mosque that reaches out to its community, providing vital services to the local Muslim population. “The Prime Minister was given a fantastic opportunity to see this vibrant Mosque in action.He also spoke at length to the Mosque members about their concerns over the recent anti-Muslim attacks and was able to reassure them of this government’s unwavering commitment to tackle and stamp out this unacceptable form of hatred”, she said.
In wishing Muslims in the UK and around the world Eid Mubarak the Prime Minister
said: “I send my warmest wishes to Muslims in the UK and overseas as they celebrate the festival of Eid-al-Fitr. After a month of longer summer days fasting, praying and putting aside many of the things that we can take for granted, Muslims will come together with friends and family to celebrate this joyous occasion. I wish you all Eid Mubarak”
One in 10 people under 25 are Muslim, while Christianity is in decline, the 2011 UK census reveals. An explosion in the Muslim population and an aging Christian demographic could mean Islam will be the dominant religion in the UK in 10 years.
A new analysis of the 2011 census by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that the number of Christians was falling 50 per cent faster than had previously been thought. Earlier analysis of the statistics showed only a 15 per cent decline, but the ONS found that this figure had been beefed up by 1.2 million foreign-born Christians.
Furthermore, the re-analysis showed that the majority of Christians were over the age of 60 and for the first time less than half of young people describe themselves as Christian. As a result the ONS has calculated that in a decade only a minority will classify themselves as Christians in England. Christianity is still the dominant religion in the UK with over 50 per cent of the population regarding themselves as believers.
However, this may be set to change as the British Muslim population has surged dramatically over the past 15 years, increasing by 75 per cent in England and Wales. The 2011 census puts the Muslim population of the UK at around 5 per cent, a total that has been boosted by around 600,000 Muslim immigrants who have arrived in the UK over the past decade.
Muslims attend Friday prayers on a rainy first day of Ramadan, at the courtyard of a housing estate next to a small BBC community centre and mosque in east London (Reuters/Chris Helgren)
Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society, said to UK daily the Telegraph that the decline of Christianity is
“inevitable.” “In another 20 years there are going to be more active Muslims than there are churchgoers,” he said.
Moreover the number of people identifying themselves as atheists has increased by 10 per cent, rising from 15 per cent to 25 per cent. The change has been dubbed as a “significant cultural shift” by the British Humanist Association, while the Church of England has shrugged off the statistics, maintaining they still retain a strong base of believers.
“While this is a challenge, the fact that six out of 10 people in England and Wales self-identify as Christians is not discouraging. Christianity is no longer a religion of culture but a religion of decision and commitment. People are making a positive choice in self-identifying as Christians,” said a spokesperson for the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales told press in December.
In addition the census registered an increase in followers of Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Judaism.
The rising number of immigrants and different ethnicities in the UK has given rise to increasing levels of segregation. Think tank ‘Demos’ has labeled the phenomenon ‘white flight’, citing the falling number of ethnic whites in areas where they are minorities.
Demos’ investigation revealed that new ethnic minorities like Somalis where moving into areas where older most established ethnic populations like Afro-Caribbeans had previously been dominant.
Muslims attend Friday prayers on the first day of Ramadan, in the courtyard of a housing estate next to a small BBC community centre and mosque in east London (Reuters)
The population of London is indicative of the change in the British demographic with 600,000 white Londoners moving out of the capital in the past decade. In spite of the fact that the British capital’s population has grown by more than a million, the number of white British residents has decreased from 4.3 million to 3.7 million.
“We do have an integration problem,” said Demos director David Goodhart to RT. The
“changing ethnic composition” of the British capital is causing a large exodus of ethnic white out of the city, he added.
Goodhart went on to say that the problem of integration was not confined to Great Britain and is prevalent all around the EU despite attempts to eradicate segregation.
“Part of the point of the euro was to disperse German power and prevent the rise of nationalism in Europe, but it has done precisely the opposite on both fronts. We now have serious national resentments in countries like Greece,” he stressed.
Trevor Phillips, the former chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission warned that the statistics did not spell good news for integration in the UK and warned the country was
Lahore: Sufi saints spread Islam in the sub-continent through their teachings of tolerance and love and gave a message of equality and brotherhood besides promotions of religious tolerance and social forbearance.
Punjab Minister for Population Welfare, Ms Neelam Jabbar Chaudhry said this on the eve of Urs Bibi Pak Daman.
She said that besides achieving latest knowledge and advanced technology we should also promote the message of justice, affection and brotherhood of Sufi saints.
She said that due to spiritual force of Sufies, non-Muslim accepted the message of Islam in the subcontinent.
She said that the real Ulema have deep respect throughout the world and we should highlight idea of love, affection and accommodation of Islam for establishment of peace in the world.
She further said that Islam teaches us religious harmony and equality, therefore, we should make hectic efforts for the promotion of mutual love and brotherhood in the society.
[Picture from Bibi Pak Daman on Wikipedia,
DHAKA The first-ever complete translation of the Noble Qur’an into the Nepali language is finally seeing the light as part of efforts to spread kno (more)
It was attended by Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim religious leaders as well as hundreds of media figures, politicians, diplomats and community activists.
The launch made headlines in all the major print and electronic media outlets.
Islami Sangh, a leading Muslim organization in Nepal, has begun the project five years ago with funding from the Al-Quran Academy London, an international organisation engaged in Islamic research and publication.
It took Nepali scholars and linguists years of hard work to bring this unprecedented translation to light.
Previously there were only translations for short parts of the Muslim holy book published in Nepali.
The complete translation comprises a total of 1,168 pages with the original version of Qur’an in Arabic language.
The translation of Islam’s holy book is meeting the religious need of Nepalese who are thirst for understanding the meanings of Qur’an.
“The Nepali translation will provide a unique tool to know Qur’an for the Nepali people,” Hafiz Munir Uddin, Director General of Al-Quran Academy London, told IOL.
Khadiza Akhter Rezaee, a scholar and a women rights activist from Britain who attended the launch ceremony, agrees.
“Qur’an in the main source of Islamic knowledge, so the Nepali version of Qur’an is a golden opportunity for Nepali Muslims.”
Nepal was the world’s only Hindu state till 2006 when the parliament amended the constitution and declared it a secular state.
According to the CIA World Fact Book, Muslims constitute 4.2 percent of the country’s 28-million population.
Jamila Marium, of Nepal Islami Sangh, believes the translation will help many, Muslims and non-Muslims, to understand Islam.
“Qur’an translation into the Nepali language is good event for Nepali Muslims and the Nepali people in general,” she says.
“Now we know the message of Allah through our own language.”
The project sponsors hope the new translation will also serve Nepali-speaking people across South East Asia.
Beside being the lingua-franca language spoken in Nepal, Nepali is also spoken in Bhutan, Myanmar and some parts of India.
About 2000 copies of the new translation of the meanings of the Qur’an have so far been printed in New Delhi.
“Qur’an is a complete code of life and true guidance for all human being,” said Faizan Ahmad, Secretary General of Islam Sangh Nepal.
Tel.: (704) 544-3337 , Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visiting Assistant Professor of History, Wingate University
Part time Lecturer, Queens University of Charlotte
Ph.D. History (1990) Columbia University Awarded with Distinction.
Dissertation: “In the Path of the Prophet: Maulana Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi and the Ahl-e Sunnat wa Jamaat Movement in British India, c. 1870-1921”
Committee Chair: Prof. William R. Roff.
M Phil. History, Columbia University
South Asia and Southeast Asia
MA in Southeast Asian Studies, University of Kent at Canterbury, UK
BA (Honors) in Sociology, minor in Economics, Delhi University, India
CURRENT RESEARCH INTERESTS
Ahl-i Sunnat or “Barelwi” Madrasas in South Asia.
“Traditionalist” reformist women, especially those of the Ahl-i Sunnat or Barelwi movement, through the study of the “Sunni Bihishti Zewar” and related texts.
Connections between the sufi elements of Shah Wali Allah’s thought and the Ahl-i Sunnat movement.
Ahmad Riza Khan: In the Path of the Prophet. Oxford: Oneworld Publications, 2005.
Devotional Islam and Politics in British India: Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi and His Movement, 1870-1920. 2nd edition. New York and Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1999.
“Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi.” Encyclopedia of Islam, 3rd edition. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 2007.
The book, “Devotional Islam and Politics in British India: Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi and His Movement, 1870-1920” is currently out of print. Efforts are under way to get it republished in India. An Urdu translation is also planned.
The book, “Ahmad Riza Khan: In the Path of the Prophet” is part of a series of short books on Muslim leaders and thinkers worldwide, called “Makers of the Muslim World.” The series editor is Patricia Crone. This is available on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk in hardcover.
Most of the articles are in books that are available from Amazon.com or from oup.com/us
Turkish government has jailed Dr.Harun Yahya, the man who challenged Evolution and had his work given for free, I suppose those Muslims who say “Beware of Harun Yahya” are probably happy. Here is the report:
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish Islamic author Adnan Oktar was sentenced to three years in prison on Friday for creating an illegal organization for personal gain, state-run Anatolian news agency said.
UPDATE: Adnan Oktar makes statement (found on website):
This is a case that will probably go down in history. I have never heard of, seen or read of such an intriguing case. But we still feel the appropriate respect.
We respect the justice system. We respect the court verdict. There is something auspicious in all things. That verdict had been determined in the sight of Allah before those judges’ parents were even born. They issued the statement when the time came. They issued the statement that was in their destiny. Nobody can decide for himself, nor make any statement of his own volition. Everyone makes the statements determined in their destiny. Why did it happen in that way? Because it was auspicious for it to do so.
As with Prophet Yusuf (as). He was a servant beloved of Allah. Yet Allah had him thrown into a dungeon for seven years. InshaAllah, we are also on the path of the Prophet Yusuf (as). We are on the path of the blessed prophets. We abide by their excellent sunnah. InshaAllah we are doing what is auspicious. Believers are on the path of the prophets, and in the Qur’an, Allah says He wills us to adopt them as role models. He tells us to obey and resemble them. And our lives may have aspects similar to aspects of theirs. These verses of the Qur’an apply to all Muslims. In that sense they also apply to me and to my colleagues. In verse 35 of Surah Yusuf, for example, He reveals: “Then, after they had seen the signs, they thought that they should still imprison him for a time.” The verse suggests there were doubts whether to imprison him or not, but that the former option eventually prevailed. There is indeed a similarity here. Allah says of Yusuf (as) that he was sentenced to at least three years’ imprisonment. The Qur’an refers to several years. That means at least three, somewhere between three and nine. That is a sign. The Qur’an applies to all times, all people and all events, and this is one of the miracles of the Qur’an.
Nobody can hurt me anywhere in any way; only things that my Creator, Almighty Allah, wills to happen actually do so. I shall live by my destiny. Whatever is in my destiny, that is what will happen. The time will come when my soul is taken. When that time comes, He will take my soul. But apart from that, nobody can harm a hair on my head. Nothing can happen to me. Whatever is in my destiny, it will happen when the time comes, at the appointed time.
In the latest events, the latest bit of pressure, we learned that someone we never expected, whom we believed to be a conservative, religious individual, was in fact a Freemason. We were stunned. We really thought he was a devout, right-wing individual, and we trusted him accordingly. But he turned out to be a high-ranking Freemason.
There are eight letters [from foreign Freemasonry], sent here to the [Turkish] lodge. They refer to us, and to me personally, making direct reference to my book, to Atlas of Creation. They refer to my ability to operate without difficulty. They ask how this is possible, how I can enjoy such freedom of action.
They say it [the Atlas] has had a huge impact, like an atom bomb. That is what lies behind the pressure being put on us in recent years. We are even of the opinion that pressure is being put on the government to put pressure on us. I can understand why the end of Darwinism has upset them so much, because this has really demolished their entire system. Their philosophies, world views and ideologies have been shattered. And they are unable to find an answer to this. All they can do is pressurize.
We received a new threat regarding my latest book [on Freemasonry] only yesterday, directed against myself, for the book not to come out; it came from the Freemasons, who phoned a friend of mine. They suggested we would have real problems if the book comes out. But I shall nevertheless be bringing the book out, inshaAllah. I have been threatened before, when I was in the mental hospital. I was told to abandon my activities. At that time they both offered me money and also said they would “get rid of this problem” I was having, and they had my lawyer bring me the message. They offered me a substantial sum of money if I would abandon my work, give up producing books, put a stop to my book regarding Freemasonry, and that the nightmare I was experiencing would be brought to an end. But I declined the offer.
Let me state once again that I have no complaints regarding the court. I harbor no resentment or recrimination towards anyone. It is Allah Who caused the court to sign that verdict. Only one thing in the court decision surprised me and gave me pause for thought, which was that we had three female friends. Like my other friends, they had absolutely nothing to do with the allegations. But they were sentenced to three years’ imprisonment each. These were really well brought-up young ladies. That did surprise me. But again I still respect the court, and there is something auspicious in all things.
|Did you find this post useful? MessageID: 272735|
“By Time, Verily Man is in loss… except those who believe, do righteous deeds, exhort one another to truth and have patience.” [Surah Asr:103]
May 21, 2008
In a highly charged situation shooting the Koran is tantamount to shooting the albatross, the bird of good omen. The war in Iraq is purportedly fought also for winning the hearts and minds of the people. When the wind of anti insurgency seems just to have started blowing shooting the holy book could wreck the very ship in which the Americans and the Iraqi government are sailing.. This is not a theological perception of any presentiment but rather a gauge of geopolitical realization of the facts on ground.
An enlisted soldier of the US army used the holy book to practice shooting target. This incident has come full several years after the flushing of the same holy book in the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay. Both are contemptible outrageous deeds. Instead of winning hearts and minds such odious acts would create cataclysmic reaction. It is like carrying gunpowder for the al Qaeda cannon aimed at the so called crusaders besieging the Muslims.
In the fist place it is a symbolic action. A thin wire far away or gravel would have done the job better. But choosing the thick book with hundreds of pages the American soldier wants to signify certain things that are fixated in his mind. It is objectification of his hate. He can shoot even without bothering the crossed hair in the view. In the words of Najam Sethi such deliberate wilful act of vandalism is seen ‘as evidence of how America and the West make the war against terrorism synonymous with the war against Islam.’ [Somini Gupta and Salman Masood, “Guantanamo Comes to Define US to Muslims” New York Times, May 21, 2005]
It also lends credence to the fact that there is design behind all the incidents of desecration. It was no other than a two-star general in charge of the hunt of Osama bin Laden, William G ‘Jerry” Boykin who told in 2003 a gathering of Christians that America was cast as a Christian nation locked in a battle with Satan. The general made such a statement wearing full military uniform. He also described his god as greater than the god of the Muslims. It is for nothing that some 4000 Christian missionaries landed in Baghdad after the invasion began in 2003.
On May 9, 2008 American soldiers were practicing target shooting in the police station of Radhwaniya on the western outskirts of Baghdad. They had clearly marked the centre of a copy of the Quran for this purpose. Afterward the bullet ridden copy was retrieved by an Iraqi policeman, Abdullah. There were fourteen bullet marks and the pages of the holy book were scrawled with graffiti. Since then the Americans have pulled the particular sniper soldier out of the country and flown him to US.
In the past US officials were dismissive in their attitude and did not tender any apology. Their attitude is summed up what the soldier in charge said when US planes had bombed a marriage party. A senior officer had remarked: “Hey, bad people can have parties too.” In the case of the shooting the Koran the New York Times reporter described the reaction of the people as irrational popular anger [May 20].
The blogger site Abu Muqawama devoted to fighting insurgency merely called the soldier stupid and the American response to apologize: quick.
A meeting of tribal leaders was called on May 17 where a grim looking officer, General Jeffrey Hammond said: “I come before you here seeking your forgiveness, In the most humble manner, I look in your eyes today and I say please forgive me and my soldiers.”
President Bush who was lecturing the Arabs on democracy and asking for more oil around the same time spoke to the Iraqi Prime Minister Noori al Maliki and expressed his concern. There was no extraordinary effort on his part as was in evidence during his visit to Israel. He ignored to dilate on the kind of attitude his soldiers had for Islam and the Muslims. He had won the hearts and minds of the people of Israel when on that foreign soil of the ally he had castigated Barack Obama for daring to speak with radicals and terrorists. The Americans know whose hearts and minds they really want to win.
Many others in America justified saying that shooting the holy book is of the same class as beheading Daniel Pearl and Nicholas Berg. For them Jehovah was guidance: an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. They did not bother that such attitude puts the soldiers in the rank of the terrorists. Of this Matthew Arnold had said of armies clashing in the dark of the night when the sea of faith was ebbing. But now it is full.
So full that every event has a biblical justification. Some took strong exception to American soldiers kissing the Quran by way of tendering apology. They also felt angry at army officers’ submission to the tribal leaders and their demand. Submission as a metaphorical substitute of Islam is a bete noire to many.
However, when all is said and done, what really matters is that US is a secular country and yet such regrettable incidents happen, that too in the army. Another is the absence of chain of command in the episode. The higher officers on duty enjoy the cloak of anonymity. No one seems to question what they were doing when the incident transpired. Call it what you will, debasement or demoralization. Occupation of a foreign land has queer ways of recoiling on the occupiers.
President Bush had attacked talking to radicals or ‘terrorists’ as appeasement. What else were the army officers in Baghdad doing when they met the tribal leaders? True, real politick is necessary, but the Americans and their allies in the Noori government have much longer to stay together, if at all staying the course is feasible. It is for this that many people recall how Britain had to deal with the IRA for a hundred years. In a world where IRA, yes, but Hamas and Iranisns, no, the Reformation is still needed in the West.