Monthly Archives: January 2013

The Muslim’s-Guide to converse with Atheists/Anti-Theists:

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Author’s note:
Unfortunately, usually, when it comes to the subject of having any form of intelligent, civil discourse, with any Atheist/Anti-Theist, concerning Theism vs. Atheism/Anti-Theism, it ends up being a conversation that always goes on tangents, which are the faults of both Theists & Atheists/Anti-Theists, who engage in these types of conversations, debates, arguments, etc. However, ironically, for Theists, Muslims especially, they never realize (until it’s too late, and when they’ve said all of the wrong things, either inaccurately or completely out-of-context) that it’s never about “winning” an argument with any Atheist/Anti-Theist. The objective is to simply not lose an argument with an Atheist/Anti-Theist. We, as Muslims, have to be very intelligent, tactful, and wise, whenever conversing with people of an Atheist/Anti-Theist disposition. However, one of the major things which Muslims, Theists, generally, get caught-up with, when conversing with Atheists/Anti-Theists, is the whole “Scientific-Fallacy”…I’ll explain what I mean by “Scientific-Fallacy”.

This is what I mean by the “Scientific-Fallacy”:

Whenever Atheists/Anti-Theists converse with those who are Theists, they always, in order to dominate the conversation, drag the issue into the realm of Science, and then challenge people like us to formulate a Divinity-Theory/Law, in which we’re then pigeon-holed into trying to prove the existence of Allah via the “Scientific-Method”. And, ironically, sadly, we fall for this entrapment, every time/all of the time.

Now, the best way to counter this “Scientific-Fallacy” is simply the following:

Make the point that by using the “Scientific-Method”, to attempt to “prove” the existence of a “Divine-Creator”, is self-admission that Allah: the Creator/Lord of the Universe thus exists within the confines of the Physical-Universe. Now, we as Muslims, we know, based upon what Allah teaches us, in the Qur’an, that the Universe has 2-Dimensions: Physical & Non-Physical. Now, with Allah being who He is, we know that there is no way that He can possibly exist within either Dimension of the Universe, because He is Eternal/Non-Created: existing with neither a Beginning nor an Ending. Also, you can only use the “Scientific-Method” to detect the Existence of Things which exists within the confines of the Physical-Universe, and since this is the case, you cannot use the “Scientific-Method” to prove the Existence of Allah, and Atheists/Anti-Theists know this fully well. But, they also know that it’s so easy to trap-up Theists, who are not on to their entrapment. So, because one cannot use the “Scientific-Method”, to prove the Existence of Allah, that’s what Revelation is for. However, the Problem is that Atheists/Anti-Theists don’t recognize, respect, or accept Revelation. Basically, it gets to the point of the Atheist/Anti-Theist point of view having nothing to do with anything Scientific.

One of the other things that they challenge us to do is to disprove all of the “Scientific-Proofs” of things like “Evolution”. Even though, ironically, there still isn’t any definitive proofs for almost all of the elements of “Evolution”, “Darwinian-Evolution”, particularly, which clearly explains why generally, largely, “Evolution” is still, til this very day, classified as merely a “Scientific-Theory” as opposed to a “Scientific-Law”, especially in terms of determining the Origin of Man. And, if a Theist, a Muslim, especially, says that they even accept all that they interpret Science to be, which would include “Evolution”, but, that Allah is the one who is Responsible for all of what “Evolution” states takes place within the Universe, you will be plainly called “Wrong” by any Atheist/Anti-Theist, just because you testify that a Divine-Creator is Responsible for all that exists. And, this also proves that Atheism/Anti-Theism is an `Aqidah/Theology, because they believe in the non-existence of a Divine-Creator-even though they claim that Theists cannot provide proof for the existence of a Divine-Creator, they themselves do the exact opposite; but, ironically, they have no Proof: Empirical/Scientific Evidence for what they claim is the non-existence of a Divine-Creator. Also, one of the key things which Muslims must be careful of are the classic “Spin-Off Arguments” which Atheists/Anti-Theists love to use to make Muslims, and Theists generally, look really Stupid.

Typically, almost always, a Muslim/Theist in general, would say that nothing comes from nothing, that all which exists has an Origin. But, then, an Atheist/Anti-Theist would attempt to trip you up, and spin that Argument right back around towards you & then challenge you, as to why is it that Allah has no Origin, yet everything else does. And, the only way to dispute those varied “Spin-Off Arguments” is to simply use Revelation, which, unfortunately, they will deny. Honestly, that’s really the only edge that we, as Muslims, have over Atheists/Anti-Theists, Revelation: Islāmic-Texts (The Qur’ān & Sunnah/Prophetic-Tradition. Simply from a Human-Level, we’re only 50/50 when conversing with Atheists/Anti-Theists, without referring to Revelation.

I say that for the following reasons:

Without the mercy & gift of Revelation, it is not at all possible to prove the Existence of Allah definitively. And, when it comes to the Belief in a Divine-Creator, when compared to the Disbelief of a Divine-Creator, with Revelation aside, we’re only at 50/50 with Atheists/Anti-Theists. Meaning, they can only disbelieve in a Divine-Creator, but, they have absolutely no Empirical/Scientific Evidence that a Divine-Creator doesn’t exist, it’s just that they’ve now replaced a Divine-Creator with their Intellect, Egos/Desires as their own Gods. While for us, without Revelation to substantiate our Belief, that’s all that it is, a Belief. And, this is why knowledge of Islam is so important for us to learn, know & live.

My conclusion:

This is not the only ways to combat, ward-off Atheism/Anti-Theism. However, if one had no Idea how to previous to reading this Article, then, I’m pretty confident that, with Allah’s Help/Guidance, this will empower Muslims with the Necessary-Tools to keep Atheists/Anti-Theists at bay, so as to not allow their Beliefs (rejecting the Existence of a Divine-Creator) to cause Doubts in the purity, authenticity of our Islamic-Beliefs.

Gareth Bryant/2013

My New Books:

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Salam/Hello People

I will, with the permission of Allah, be publishing two books this year. These projects are some of the best work that I’ve produced since I’ve been professionally writing. These will be my very first literary-publications. For more details, of when the books will be published, please go to these links:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Gareth-Bryant/137796123047230

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ampli-Pages/440859329272328?fref=ts

Water: An Islamic-Treasure!!!

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Khaled Dardir pic

All living things, essentially, rely on water for basic-existence on Earth, making it such a crucial part of our existence; yet, sadly, we take it for granted far too often & even once is one time too many. We, often times, are so quick to purposely ignore & forget the teaching of Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him), when he directed us to be conservative with the water and not wasteful. Also, the scarcity of water on this planet is a reality the affects all of us. Let us explore your role as a Muslim on conserving water.

First let’s present some basic statistics: 75% of our planet is water. We are technically a blue planet. 97% of all the water is sea water which cannot be used for cleaning, drinking, farming, irrigation, manufacturing, etc.  Of the 3% remaining freshwater 79% of it is frozen as icecaps, and 20% is groundwater. That leaves 0.0003% of the entire world water supply in rivers, lakes, etc. that can be claimed as clean, usable, and easily accessible water.

In other words, over 1 billion people do not have access to clean water. It is our duty as Muslims and human beings to protect the planet for our children and future generations. The majority of the 1 billion who suffer from not having access to clean water are in Muslim countries. Ensuring that our brothers and sisters in all parts of the world have easy access to safe drinking water is our responsibility as Muslims. The Prophet (PBUH) gave us a prime example of this by saying: “The Muslim Ummah is like one body. If the eye is in pain then the whole body is in pain and if the head is in pain then the whole body is in pain.”

How can we function if the majority of our Ummah is sick or dying?

The Prophet (PBUH) was reported to have told one of his wives, Ai’shah (May Allah be pleased with her): “The day you give water to people out of charity, and especially if it is the time when people are in dire need of water, or during the dry season when people are greatly suffering from scarcity of water, you will have the reward of one who sets a slave-girl free.”

There are several programs which help build wells in impoverished nations. These wells often last multiple decades, thus providing an entire generation within the area with clean water.

This reminds me of one of my favorite hadiths; Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet said, “A man felt very thirsty. While he was on the way, there he came across a well. He went down the well, quenched his thirst and came out. Meanwhile he saw a dog panting and licking mud because of excessive thirst. He said to himself, ‘this dog is suffering from thirst as I did.’ So, he went down the well again, filled his shoe with water, held it with his mouth and watered the dog. Allah appreciated him for that deed and forgave him.” The Companions said, “O Allah’s Messenger! Is there a reward for us in serving the animals?” He replied: “There is a reward for serving any living being.” (Bukhari)

This was about an animal; imagine 1.1 billion people if not more?

That is the severity of it. But our local masjids and congregation tend to believe wudu (ritual cleaning) is related to how much water we use. Abdullah ibn Amr ibn Al-`Aas (RA) reported that the Prophet passed one day by Sa`d ibn Abi Waqas (RA) while he was performing wudu’ (ritual cleaning of body parts in preparation for prayer). The prophet asked Sa`d, “Why is this wastage?” Sa`d replied “Is there wastage in wudu also?” The Prophet said, “Yes, even if you are at a flowing river.” (Ahmad and authenticated Ahmad Shakir)

So what is acceptable use of water for Wudu? Sayyidinah Safinah (RA) narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) performed ablution with a mu’dd of water and the purifying bath with a sa’ of water.Jami’i at Tirmidhi

These are the teachings of the Prophet (PBUH), who was helping us avoid a disaster before it was even considered. Our brothers and sisters in Indonesia, recently lost all of their freshwater reserves, and are left drinking ditch water. The threat is real so reflect on the guidance of the Prophet in this area as it proves ever helpful and relevant.

“Mirage”:

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Tasneem Aljayyousi pic

How foolish it is to fall in love with a mirage.

And every day I do.

Desperately wanting to quench the thirst of my heart with a lover’s tune.

Expectations of awakening the passion I’ve dreamed of.

But poison is what this infatuation reeks of.

Spending days, months and years searching for the missing piece.

Telling myself, “Once I get it, my soul will finally know peace”.

Longing for something I know isn’t there.

Reaching out to touch it, only feeling air.

Returning like a dethroned king to the chambers of my mind.

Trying to make sense of what I couldn’t find.

The agony of painting a scene with desire as my eyes.

The torture of reality as my heart slowly dies.

How foolish it is to fall in love with a mirage.

And every day I do.

Tasneem Aljayyousi/2013

Desperately wanting to quench the thirst of my heart with a lover’s tune.

2012 in review:

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 29,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 7 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Arise with Chirps:

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Erik Leon pic

God is Great, God is Great…

The first beginning sounds that a person with faith
Listens to…
In the summer, the birds chant prayers with you
Although they may speak another language

But they answer to the call, God willing, when the Mu’athan calls out “Come to Pray, Come to Pray…”
“…Come to success, come to success…”

Alas, although your fellow species may not be behind you, in front of you, or beside you…
The wings of many feathers agree to your announcement
They have seen far and wide, the world we think so narrow when we think in our minds, inside
Yet, the wild wings have seen every single horizon between Everyone…You, and I

For that one reason, could be a ‘one’ reason..That we end our Call repetitively
“God is Great, God is Great. There is no god but God”
How true, Mu’athan.
How true, Oh Allah!
Subahanallah! May the creations bow down before the Creator, for we all struggle for the attitudes

Of effort! Of pride! Of dignity!
…to get up for the morning prayer
…while the birds wait in the air

Erik Leon/2013

The Power of Generosity!!!

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Jonathan Parks pic

 

Author’s note:

This article has been written by my good-brother, my good-friend, Jonathan Markis, who has invested a lot of his own time & resources, for a cause & movement that I take very seriously, as I, myself, have invested a lot personally to this same exact cause. I am very happy that he has thus chosen to write an article, for my blog, to demonstrate through the power of words, how important what he’s advocating truly is.

I’d like to share with you a little bit I’ve learned about the importance of helping others. Sometimes it takes a tragedy to bring us to a point in our lives to do things that others may benefit from InshAllah. In this case, I am referring to the importance of donating blood. Did you know that by one person donating, that person can save three lives?

I want to share now 9 reasons why you should donate, if you don’t already:

1. Blood transfusions saves life.

2.There’s no substitute for human blood.

3. Every three seconds, someone needs a blood transfusion.

4. About 60% of the population are eligible to donate blood, yet less than 5% do.

5. You’ll make your community a safer place.

6. Fulfills your desire to “Give back” to the community.

7. You’ll receive a mini physical (blood pressure, temperature, iron level).

8. You’ll learn your blood type.

9. Its safe, simple, and it saves lives.

I hope that these 9 reasons are motivating enough for each and everyone of you to donate, or at least, at the minimum, encourage others to donate. I would like to give some Islamic evidence on the importance of donating blood but the point of giving and receiving InshAllah. The Quran says that to save all humanity (Quran 5:32) And Allah says “Oh no soul does Allah place a burden greater than it can bear (Al-Baqarah, 286), the principal of fiqh states “Necessity makes prohibition lawful” (See Nujaym, Al-Ashbah wa Al-Naza’ir, P. 85)

The messenger of Allah (pbuh) advised the people of Urayna to consume the urine and milk of the camels due to them being affected by the climate of Madina (see Sahih Al-Bakhari, No.23)
I would like to share my story now for the reason I got involved in organizing blood drives I like to call Miracle Comeback. On August 3rd 2009, my two sons Elijah (16 years at the time) and Rasheed (13 years old at the time) were riding their bicycles late at night. This night would change many lives forever. My son Elijah at the intersection of South 16th street and Greenfield avenue decided to take his chances and ride his bicycle thru a changing red light and made it safe to the other side, Rasheed wasn’t so lucky. Rasheed stayed back with his friend Justin, but decided to ride thru the standing red light and didn’t make it to the other side. Rasheed was hit and run over by another Suv. The police report stated my son was in “fatal” accident. I immediately got on the hospital computer and asked my family and Facebook friends to make Dua for my son. Here is my exact email that I sent ..
“Salam, at around 11p.m. on 8-3-09 my son Rasheed who be 13 years old in 2 weeks InshAllah was hit by a truck while on his bicycle and is in serious condition with internal bleeding in his stomach, Sorry just got back from speaking with the surgeons and he is in very serious conditions. One of his kidneys were removed and half his liver from the impact. I am asking all to pray for my son that he survives and  if he does not that he goes to Jennah/Heaven, InshAllah God willing, thanks much”.

Once I got to see my son I was told that he had a very small chance to survive and I was also told, that if he does survive, he wont be the same. My son in total, lost; 1 kidney, ½ his liver, broke his liver, crushed 1 lung and lost 46 pints of blood in surgery. Saying this , my sons Dua’s were answered and my son went home on August 25th,2009 and started school only one week late on September 9th,2009. Today my son is living a totally normal life without any side effects Alhumdulilah. My sons Miracle of life inspired me to have a website created called www.miraclecomeback.com.

On my website you can see the many past updates to the new ones. I’ve organized 8 blood drives so far and will be working on my 9th one soon called ‘Miracle Comeback 9’ and this one will include my son Rasheed. It will be called ‘Giving Back’ as he for the first time will donate InshAllah. Anyone interested in organizing any Blood drives in your city and state? Please contact me at bilalmarkis@yahoo.com if interested. I would post this on my site. Don’t wait till something happens to you or someone you know before you decide its important. JazakAllah, your brother Jonathan Markis.

Jonathan Markis/2013

The Honeybee: A Blessing From Allah

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Pollination plays a pivotal role in the life cycle of plants and the goal of the campaign is to raise awareness about the importance of these species. Pollinators range from bees and moths to birds and bats. The diverse range ensures that both flowers and crops are able reproduce and contribute to the overall health of the ecosystem. Khaled Dardir explores the role of one pollinator, the honeybee, and the health benefits associated with honey.

Among the many creatures Allah has created in this world, there is one in which Allah’s blessing is so clear that all of mankind sees it. This creature is no bigger than my thumb and affects our well being, our society and our economy. This miraculous creature is the honeybee. There is a reason why a whole chapter in the Quran has been devoted to it as Allah has enabled the honeybee to produce a substance within which there is a cure for all mankind. Allah says in the Quran:

And your Lord inspired to the bee, “Take for yourself among the mountains, houses, and among the trees and [in] that which they construct (Surat An-Naĥl: 16:68).

Then eat from all the fruits and follow the ways of your Lord laid down [for you].” There emerges from their bellies a drink, varying in colors, in which there is healing for people. Indeed in that is a sign for a people who give thought (Surat An-Naĥl: 16:69).

From these verses, we can see the reference to the healing benefits of the honeybee.  Unlike other creatures that are limited in range to specific locations, the honeybee can be found worldwide, and its medicinal benefits are universal.

In a Hadith, Abdullah bin Mas’ood has reported Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) as saying:

“Make use of two remedies, Honey and Quran.”

Honey has been useful both as food and medicine. It has been produced by bees from nectar and contains a unique combination of sugars, acids, minerals, enzymes, vitamins, and flavour to make it one of the most nutritionally diverse and easily digestible foods known to man. For these properties it has become known as a Super-food for its superior health benefits.

Approximately a third of all the food we eat is due to pollination from the honeybee. Unfortunately, due to habitat loss, pollution, pesticides and disease their numbers have been dwindling. Over the last decade, there has been a startling rise in colony collapse disorder, a phenomenon by which the worker bees in a colony disappear. Research is still ongoing but several possible causes have been identified including pathogens, mites, radiation and fungus. As honeybees are essential for maintaining our food supply, it has become a major concern from an economic perspective as well. Without a healthy bee population, produce prices would skyrocket, costing both the agricultural and food industry billions of dollars.

The list of benefits which the honeybee gives to its consumers and our society through honey and pollination include:

  • One teaspoon will help to clear most colds and coughs
  • Drinking honey diluted in hot water in winter and cold water in summer relieves stress and is an ideal energy supplement
  • A spoonful of honey early in the morning restores health and increases potency
  • Honey improves memory and eyesight
  • Honey strengthens the joints in the body
  • Honey has four times more energy than milk
  • Honey reduces stress and tiredness
  • Honey is not harmful for diabetics
  • Honey bees are vital as pollinators. They are responsible for 1/3 of your food.
  • It is the only insect that produces food eaten by man.
  •  Honey is the only food that includes all the substances necessary to sustain life, including enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and water; and it’s the only food that contains “pinocembrin”, an antioxidant associated with improved brain functioning.

The critical role of the honeybee and the benefits of honey have only become apparent over the last several decades. Modern science is becoming more aware of the knowledge that has existed within the Quran and Sunnah over 1400 years ago, which is a testament to the signs of Allah. May Allah guide on the straight path, and guide to better understand his creations and his blessings.

Khaled Dardir has recently completed a Master of Science specializing in the chemistry and is currently enrolled as a student in Mishkah pursuing a bachelors in Islamic Studies. He is the founder and Chief Coordinator of the non-profit organization The Building Blocks of New Jersey whose mission is: “To aid self development, promote activism, and bolster community building”

The Flow:

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Mensur GJonbalaj pic

Author’s note:

Mensur GJonbalaj is an aspiring writer, with a lot of drive & spirit, to get his thoughts and feelings transformed into pen & paper. He’s a very motivated individual, and I hope to receive more writing from him. For more info. about his work, here’s his own blogsite: http://www.merapoetics.wordpress.com

My mind’s full thoughts
My heart’s is full of emotions

Life is lived by what the hand wrought
Whilst my soul flows in a series of subtle motions

Is good inspiration from the soul?
Or is it the result of a mind tormented by whispers?

The containment of virtue makes me feel whole,
But the absence of love in me  disperses

The purity of my verse
Vexing me like a plague-stricken curse

These feelings get mixed
Though my thoughts are thoroughly fixed

Passion brings me to places I’ve never been
Ubiquitously in a state of sin

If sacrificing passion fosters virtue,
Then seeking love must hurt too

The body, mind, and soul are separate from the other
But each yield the same power

In different forms they appear,
Their unity ends the reign of fear

Like God, we are one in essence
All equal under his presence

Submission to his word
Pleases His shepherd’s herd

Virtue is contained through submission
Salvation is attained by mercy’s admission

I’m keeping hope as a sword in the fight for success
But fear keeps lurking in the corner, causing confusion and doubt

Darkness could only be extinguished by the light
It’s a plight from which I can’t take flight,

But, indeed, a fight I must get right
At the end of the day the truth will prevail

Obliterating falsehood to no avail
These words are flowing from my hands

As blood runs through veins
Flying through time like pebbles of sand

On a beach during a windy day
With each fleeting moment they rise in meaning

Each word I use comes gushing out, reaming
As sleek as a simile,

But cunningly a metaphor
I jot my thoughts down peacefully

Through the chaotic disturbance of the train’s door
Is there any meaning to what my words show,

Or am I once again afflicted by the whims of that devilish flow?

Mensur GJonbalaj/2013

The Islamic sense of Health & Wellness:

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Shata pic

Author’s note:

This is a very important article, written by Isteshhad Shata, concerning the importance of Islamic wellness, on both the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical levels. It is my hope that you all benefit from the significant advice given.

Allah tells us, clearly, within His noble book:

“You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah.”(Quran 3:110)

As I ride the car to school, do the groceries, return books to the library, etc, I witness a reality which my eyes obstinately refuse to believe. I witness the supreme determination of our society’s elderly…The old man runs and runs, only stopping after reaching his desired goal. I think to myself, “MashaAllah!! This man truly understands the potent benefits of exercising. To him, age shall never be an impediment, and doing what’s right continues to be his ardent motivation.”. I close my eyes to contemplate the status of our Ummah; now, regarding this manner, I can only express my cumbersome grief, viewing our Muslims with pot bellies, excess body fat, and lack of energy is quite disturbing. I think about the foods our Ummah eats, and a gloomy frown assumes the place of my initial, pleasant, smile I had, after seeing the old man running.

Thinking back to that Ayah, I ask myself, “Can we (as Muslims) truly be the ‘best-nation’, that Allah speaks of?”. Unfortunately, the answer, stubbornly, manifests itself as a big fat “NO”. If we lack the basic health and physical fitness required to achieve maximum success (even mentally and emotionally), then, when will we ever consider ourselves to be of those who are “the best”? True believers need healthy souls, minds, and bodies, in order to worship their Lord in the correct way. To maintain a pure-heart, a sound-mind, and a healthy-body, special attention must be paid to wellness. The heart and the mind are nourished by the remembrance of Allah, and the body is nourished by partaking of the Halal & healthy food Allah has provided on Earth, for us. We must start revamping our diets NOW…and also make space for some form of physical-activities to show gratitude to Allah, for this ideal Human-Body that He alone has given each of us, the body which each of us are responsible to Him for protecting & cultivating, and will be held accountable for. Allah mentions, “And they will say to their flesh: ‘Why have you testified against us?’ They (their own flesh) will say: ‘We were made to speak by Allah, Who has made everything speak; He created you the first time, and to Him you are returned.” (Quran 41:21)

The teachings of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) urged us to cherish good health and realize its rightful place as one of Allah’s countless bounties:

“And your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you give thanks, I will give you more; but if you are thankless, lo! My punishment is dire.'” (Quran 14:7)

Surely, by neglecting our health we show no gratitude to Allah, Most-High.
Choosing wholesome food and avoiding the insalubrious is essential to good health. Allah says:

“Eat of the good things which We have provided for you.” (Quran 2:173) “Eat of what is lawful and wholesome on the earth.” (Quran 2:168)

The Quran, itself, contains many verses of advice regarding healthy eating that relate to the interconnectedness of physical and spiritual health. Encouragement to eat only good and pure food is often combined with warnings to remember Allah and avoid Satan. Healthy eating not only satisfies hunger but also effects how well we worship.

“O mankind, eat from whatever is on earth [that is lawful and good] and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. Indeed, he is to you a clear enemy.” (Quran 2:168)

If one becomes obsessed with food or indulges in too much unwholesome or junk food he is bound to become physically weak and distracted from his primary purpose of serving Allah. Similarly, if one concentrates exclusively on spiritual endeavors and neglects his health and nutrition, weakness, injury, or illness would also result in failure to carry out obligatory worship. The guidance found in the Quran and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad advise humankind to maintain a balance between these two extremes.

A healthy-diet is balanced with a mixture of all the foods Allah has provided for His creation. The variety satisfies all the body’s needs for carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, proteins, fats and amino-acids. Numerous verses of Quran mention the foods Allah has provided for us to nourish and maintain our bodies. It is not an exhaustive list of dietary requirements but rather a general idea of the types of food that maintain a healthy body and prevent illnesses.

“He created cattle that give you warmth, benefits and food to eat.” (Quran l6:5)

“It is He who subdued the seas, from which you eat fresh fish.” (Quran 16:l4)

“It is He who sends down water from the sky with which He brings up corn, olives, dates and grapes and other fruit.” (Quran 16:11)

“In cattle too you have a worthy lesson. We give you to drink of that which is in their bellies, between the undigested food and blood: pure milk, a pleasant beverage for those who drink it.” (Quran l6:66)

“There emerges from their bellies a drink, varying in colors, in which there is healing for people. Indeed in that is a sign for a people who give thought. .” (Quran 16:69)
“…and from it (the earth) we produced grain for their sustenance.” (Quran 36:33)

While sweets and junk food are not forbidden they must be eaten sparingly as part of a balanced diet, designed to maintain optimum health. Many of the most common chronic illnesses today derive from unhealthy eating habits. Coronary Heart-Disease, Hypertension, Diabetes, Obesity and Depression have all been linked to inadequate-diets. The traditions of Prophet Muhammad praise moderation as a way of maintaining good health and the Qur’an stresses the need to strike a balance between any extremes. Taking a closer look at exercising, it is appropriate to mention a hadith by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH): “A strong believer was better than a weak believer.” He was talking in terms of faith and character but also indicating that physical strength i.e. optimum health and fitness were desirable, provided that God gave us the means of attaining such strength.

A narration recorded by Imam al-Bukhari states: “The Prophet passed by some people from the tribe of Aslam while they were competing in archery (in the market). He said to them, ‘Commit yourselves to Archery, Children of Ishmael! Your father was a skilled Archer. Shoot and I am with so and so.’ One of the two teams therein stopped shooting. The Prophet asked, ‘Why did you stop shooting?’ They answered, ‘How could we shoot while you are with them (the other team)? He then said, ‘Shoot and I am with you all.”. In another narration, Prophet Muhammad’s beloved wife Aisha mentioned their love of games and sports. She said, “I raced with the Prophet and I beat him. Later when I put on some weight, we raced again and he won. Then he said, ‘this cancels that(referring to the previous race).’” Moreover, a highly-respected Islamic-Scholar, ibn-ul-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah, stated that movement helped the body get rid of waste food more efficiently and strengthened the body’s immune system. He also stated that each bodily organ has its own sport (or movement) that suited it and that horse riding, archery, wrestling and racing, were sports that benefitted the whole body.

If we even only observe/reflect upon our daily performance of the obligatory 5-Prayers, we would find that prayer itself is a form of exercise; its prescribed movements involve all the muscles and joints of the body, and our concentration in prayer relieves mental stress. This is Complete and Divine Perfection of our religion…Allahu-Akbar!!

I end, by accentuating the sanguinity and sincere hope that are bustling inside me. I can already feel the warmth of the light at the end of the tunnel, a truly ineffable feeling. I ask Allah to benefit whoever reads this, and to help you and me to implement this decisive way of life to the best of our abilities…Amen

Isteshhad Shata/2013