Tag Archives: Hurricane Irene

Hurricane-Sandy: The Storm that took us all by surprise:

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For an entire week, New York City was hit with the effects of a hurricane, that knocked it clear off of its feet. Hurricane Sandy, not only rocked NYC, but the entire Eastern-Seaboard of the United States to its very core. Thousands of people without water, heat, or electricity, hundreds who have no place to call home, in the (New York-New Jersey-Connecticut) tri-state area alone. This event, which took place over the last weekend in October, has really brought a brand-new sense of both realty & vulnerability, that none of us could’ve ever anticipated, nor were willing to accept, prior to it.

I mean, even I, myself, who has suffered very little, other than missing a whole week of work, couldn’t have possibly imagined that things would’ve turned out this bad, mainly because the effects of last-year’s Hurricane-Irene was nothing, in comparison to the damage witnessed by this-year’s Hurricane-Sandy-The entire city of New York was at a complete stand-still, the subway-system was completely non-functioning, due to immense underground-flooding, in Lower-Manhattan, South-Brooklyn, and in the Rockaways, Queens, and this has not only been the 1st time in my own lifetime, but the 1st time in the entire century-long history of the New York City subway-system, that it was forced to shut-down completely, as a result of a disaster-Whole blocks & sections of NYC, as well as other parts of the Eastern-Seaboard, look just like war-zones, in war-torn, 3rd-World nations, like Breezy Point, Queens, for example: No exaggeration…it looks as though 20 Hellfire-Missiles descended upon this neighborhood. It’s really sad, how damaging this storm has really become. There are people, whom I even know personally, from NYC itself, who have to re-build their lives, all the way from scratch, literally starting from nothing…from zero.

Now, not to down-play the severity of this natural-disaster, but, there are some serious questions, which must & should be on everyone’s minds, regardless to the severity of how, or if, at all, we were affected by this hurricane:

1. Are we, generally, grateful to Allah, our creator, for our lives & possessions?

2. Are we grateful for surviving the effects of this natural-disaster?

3. Are we of among those whom have been affected, by this natural-disaster, yet, are grateful for things not being worse?

4. Are we empathetic and/or sympathetic towards those who may have either lost life and/or possession?

5. Have we done, or are we going to do anything to offer some type of help to those whom we no who have been affected by this natural-disaster?

If the answer to any of the above questions are no, then, we as individuals, as well as a society at large, have some serious problems-There should not be any one of us whom is not grateful to our creator, for everything that we’ve ever acquired or anything which has been denied us-There should never be any of us whom are not grateful for surviving any mishap or tragedy that befalls us-There should not be anyone among us whom are not reflecting upon the plight of either persons whom we know or don’t know, whom have become victims of this natural-disaster-There should not be any of us whom are not willing & able, or whom have not already stared to, help anyone, whom we know or don’t know love, or despise, in need of any form of assistance.

There are actually several things which this natural-disaster should’ve have taught us all:

1. The recognition & acceptance that Allah, the Creator & Lord of the Universe, is, in all reality, in control of everything & we, as created-things, in all reality, are in control of nothing, we merely have the illusion of control.

2. The recognition & acceptance that just because Allah has chosen to spare us, this year from any form of death or destruction, is absolutely no guarantee that we will continue to be spared, from death or destruction in the next years to come, from becoming a victim to this type & magnitude of a natural-disaster.

3. The dire need to be concerned about, how the “other-half” lives, the condition of the other.

4. The recognition of the severity of what has happened & the need to enact action, in regards to volunteer ourselves for the other, in the path of public-service, during this most tumultuous time, during the aftermath & rebuilding of the regions of America hit by this hurricane.

In closing, this is just a simple advice, primarily to myself & then, to others, that we, as Human beings are obligated by Allah, to be of sincere help to others, in any & every way that we can. So, let us truly do that, starting helping those directly within our midsts, wherever we may be in this world-Just be a person of conscience & positive-action for others.

Thanks for reading,

Gareth Bryant/2012

The Perfect-Storm to reflect upon!!!

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August 26-28th, 2011, C.E. will go in the record books, as one of the wettest Summer weekends in History, along with being within the month of August, which currently broke the record of the wettest Summer month in U.S. History, as well as being within the wettest Summer in U.S. History, on the east coast, NYC specifically, and the very first official Hurricane to ever touch down in NYC, during my lifetime. But, aside from all of the record-breaking feats that Hurricane Irene has accomplished this weekend, it should be due noted how dangerous this Hurricane actually is & could be. There are people who are excited about the news of a hurricane, fearful of it, worried, and all of that. But, what people are missing is the true reflection of the one who is the reason why hurricanes even exists.

No…..it’s not the warm Summertime jet-stream winds of the Mid-Atlantic, nor the dry western winds from the interior of the mainland that connect with these oceanic warm winds, not even the temperature of the water…..it is Allah, the Creator of the Wind, Water, Fire, and all of these other types of natural phenomena, who is in complete control over all of these various “forces-of-nature”. As a Muslim, I’ve read stories in the Qur’an, about various peoples, who were once destroyed, by these same natural disasters that we view as just novel natural occurrences. But, when something like a hurricane in in your face, and all you can do is watch & wait for things to either get better, or worse, a different type of reality begins to resonate in one’s mind & heart, providing that they’re a person of reflection.

Now, it’s very easy to just brush this off & say, “Listen, dude…..it’s just a “Category 1 Hurricane”…..no big deal!!!”. Yeah, okay…..one can say that. But, check this out: the People of Thamud, who were among the first Humans to make their homes within mountains & valleys, whose residential remains are still preserved, in the Mid-East, along the Jordanian-Saudi border, were destroyed by something that you can’t even see, it’s called a Thunderclap. Yes, these people, described in the Qur’an as having great power & strength, were divinely brought down to size, as a result of their immense arrogance, simply by the sound of Thunder. You can also look at the People of Pompeii, destroyed only by Volcanic-ash, preserved & encased in time, to show those who come after them what happens as a result of out-right disobedience to Allah.

As I’m pondering over the potential damage that this storm has to offer, I’m left in complete awe of Allah’s power, and this is just a very minute, example of that power, which He alone possesses. Witnessing this hurricane actually unfold & occur before my very eyes, compels me to seek out a true sense of humility. Here I am, a young, smart, great-looking, and popular writer, with a bright future ahead of me (yeah, ladies…..this is my personal plug-in…..I’m available…..holla @ya boy!!! :-]). Yet, I’m completely powerless against something made from two of the most initially gentle aspects of nature itself: Water & Wind.

It’s truly amazing how separately & normally, they’re the softest things that you can come in contact with on Earth.¬†However, when their fury is unleashed by the command of their Lord, they can knock you dead off of your feet, break bones, shatter windows, destroy buildings & structures, and even kill…..in all honesty much like a Woman. Women are so soft, beautiful & delicate, but when their fury is unleashed, they are also destructive (just a humorous side-note by the way, I don’t want any females reading this to start forming witch-hunts, wanting blood & revenge for this…..relax…..seriously!!! I know that once this is published, I’m gonna catch mad heat for this). Anyway, back to the point of reflection, at hand: Volcanic-eruptions, Hurricanes, Typhoons, Tornadoes, Tsunamis, Monsoons, Earthquakes, all of these forces-of-nature are signs for the creation of Allah, to ponder upon His might, His control over all things, and the extent of His wrath, if we’re not obedient to Him alone.

Even in light of the recent tremor, that shook up the eastern seaboard, people have speculated that this was a result of the passing of the Same-Gender marriage act in New York State. Not that I personally doubt that, but, at the same time, we as Muslims live among Homosexuals, Christians, Jews, Atheists, Anti-Theists, drug-users, drug-dealers, pimps, prostitutes, and all sorts of other people, who say & do things which are against the commandments & prohibitions of Allah. However, we as Muslims must also serve as a beacon of light for these people, firstly, by being good Muslims ourselves. I mean, honestly…..if someone sees us doing the same things that they do or worse, they’re not gonna have any incentive to change who they are and/or what they believe, say, or do; this is why we are religiously obligated to be upon our best behaviour at all times.

There are several reasons for this:

1. Allah has made it obligatory for us, as Muslims, to practice what we preach.

2. We have an obligation to our families, neighbors, classmates, co-workers, etc., to be the best examples of what Islam is & who Muslims are.

3. If we are not upholding the previous two points, we’ll be destroyed right along with the same people whom we are condemning for their wrongdoing, because by virtue of the fact that we’re not providing viable options for people, referring to how they choose to live their lives, we will definitely receive any & every punishment that those people whom we criticize receive.

So, in closing, it’s really in our best interest, as Muslims, all around, to use these volatile weather phenomena to reflect upon our own faults, in order to commit ourselves to constant & consistent self-improvement & to be the best examples for the people, so that we help to save them as well as ourselves, in this Material-Existence as well as in the Hereafter.

GarethBryant/2011