Monthly Archives: September 2013

This is what “True-Freedom” tastes like:

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Honestly, it doesn’t matter whether you release an individual of their physical-shackles, if you don’t release them of their spiritual & mental shackles,as well, they’re still a Slave. Slavery can only truly be abolished if the soul, mind, and body are freed…all three must be freed, in order for someone to truly experience True-Freedom. And, the greatest taste of Freedom that one will ever experience is by eating the fruit of Guidance, which Allah, the Creator/Lord of the Universe, has grown for us, using the seeds of Revelation, picked from the tree of Islam, so that we make all partake in & enjoy, thereof.

Gareth Bryant/2013

The Act of Killing

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I have spent time with mass killers, warlords and death squad leaders as a reporter in Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans. Some are psychopaths who relish acts of sadism, torture and murder. But others, maybe most, see killing as a job, a profession, good for their careers and status. They enjoy playing God. They revel in the hypermasculine world of force where theft and rape are perks. They proudly refine the techniques of murder to snuff out one life after another, largely numb to the terror and cruelty they inflict. And, when they are not killing, they can sometimes be disarmingly charming and gracious. Some are decent fathers and sentimental with their wives and mistresses. They can dote on their pets.

via ZCommunications | The Act of Killing by Chris Hedges | ZNet Article.

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Debunking Popular Myths || Be the Change you want to see wasn’t said by Gandhi

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I am about to take a dump on one of the most vapid and popular aphorisms I have come across today, without saying a word. I am going to repost  an article that appeared in The New York Times about 2 years ago.

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Falser Words Were Never Spoken

By BRIAN MORTON
Published: August 29, 2011

… […]… Gandhi’s words have been tweaked a little too in recent years. Perhaps you’ve noticed a bumper sticker that purports to quote him: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” When you first come across it, this does sound like something Gandhi would have said. But when you think about it a little, it starts to sound more like … a bumper sticker. Displayed brightly on the back of a Prius, it suggests that your responsibilities begin and end with your own behavior. It’s apolitical, and a little smug.

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Seen At 11: Are Illegal Guns Being Sold In Your Neighborhood?

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Interesting…But, first, before we start talking about illegal-guns, we need to start talking about how/why Arms-Dealing is one of the top-3 industries in the World & how the U.S. is known for arms-dealing with nations like Iran (https://garethbryant.wordpress.com/2011/10/10/ifanwaralawlakiwereolivernorthhedstillbealivechillin/)

CBS New York

[worldnow id=9356788 width=420 height=266 type=video]

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Quiet, upscale communities are some of the last places that you would expect to find criminals selling illegal guns. But, recent investigations have found that gun deals have gone down in some of New York’s nicest neighborhoods.

“It’s horrible to have to think that someone is selling guns on these corners while we have these little kids running around here,” Billy Vellios recently told CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.

Criminals have been selling guns out in the open and residents had no idea.

“Not on the corner of East Third and Avenue Q, where there’s nice houses that sell for upwards of a million dollars,” a resident named “Esther” said.

There is no denying it. In a suburban neighborhood in Midwood at least one criminal tried to sell a loaded 9-millimeter to undercover police officers while residents went about their day unaware.

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The Causes & Dangers of Bullying:

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To put it very simply: Bullying is a form of Oppression & Allah clearly states, within His book how dreadful & harmful Oppression truly is, “”.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.2, V.221; Chpt.5, V.32; Chpt.7, V.33; Chpt.8, V.25)

Let’s face it: in all-reality, we’ve all either been the perpetrators of or the victims of Bullying. This fact is completely undeniable: we have all either been picked-on, either as lil’-kids, or have ourselves, picked-on other lil’-kids. Bullying, for a very long time, within our Human-Experience has been an unwritten acceptable way to downgrade, berate, dehumanize other Humans, for the sake of our own personal-amusement and/or expression of how powerful we are, over others. This is something, however natural that many may view it is a very severe wrong, an evil, which plagues all of us, from the greatest among us, to the least among us: Bullying is the reason why people are driven to Suicide, Homicide, criminality, and all  sorts of (negative) vices. Bullying is the reason why people go to war against one another, why people feel that they only way to resolve their problems, issues, differences with others is via violence.

People are victimized by Bullying, all of te time, for various different reasons, some of these reasons are the following…

1. Religion

2. Ethnic-Background

3. Disabilities

4. National-Origin

5. Sexual-Orientation

6. Family-Ties

7. Socio-Economic Status

…and this list can go on, forever…

…I, myself, have definitely been on bot ends of the Bullying spectrum: I was once the kid that people would pick-on, because I was short, wasn’t as athletic as everyone else was, because my father had died when I was young, because I even had a father, while others, whom were envious of this, not having their own fathers in their lives, because my mom would keep me out of the street, causing many of my peers to taunt & tease me,accusing me of being a momma’s-boy, teasing me about not being able to stay-out as late as they did, etc. Then, I get a lil’ older, by this time, I’m in Junior High School/High School: from 9th grade, onward, I began being the bully, helping my friends from school rob people, from our own school, from other schools, kids, good-kids, whom were just like me: kids with hard-working parents whom loved them, whom sent them to school, to get educated, not to get robbed, beaten and/or dehumanized.

However, sadly, ironically, it was a classic example of how a typical cycle works:

Category# 1- Someone whom wants to be so popular, so relevant, so recognized, so important, as a result of some type of emptiness, within themselves, they feel the need to make others feel low-this is by far the worst of the categories mentioned. They have this arrogance: this posture that they are everything & those whom are not them and/or are not like them are nothing, that they have no value, as in the case of ash-Shaytan/the Devil, the ultimate-bully, whom refused to obey a command from Allah, because of his arrogance, and thus, pledged/vowed to Allah that he would, for the rest of his material-existence, bully the Human-Race, until we are misguided, just like he is.(Noble Qur’an: Cpht.2, V.34; Chpt.7, V.11-18; Chpt.15, V.30-39; Chpt.17, V.60-65; Chpt.38, V.71-81)

Category# 2- Someone with a chip on their shoulder, whom was never embraced positively by anyone, or was cultivated upon any form of positivity, takes things into their own hands, and sets out to make people feel just as bad, sad, negative, about themselves as they were made to feel, once upon a time.

Category# 3- Those whom are victimized by those in category one feel helpless, as if doing the same thing to others will make things right, or at least make feel more positive about themselves, which, really, never works.

Category # 4- Someone whom has been victimized by Bullying, yet, does nothing about it: they don’t resist Bullying, they don’t tell parents, teachers, grown-ups, friends, community-leaders, etc., they just accept being the victims of Bullying, without fighting back against it.

In the Bullying-Cycle, these respective categories play-out, along with one another & actually intertwine with one another. But, what I really wanna focus on is not how interconnected these categories are, but, more so, how many of these categories, if any, do we, as Muslims, we as Human beings, actually fall under. In other words, how many of us are a part of the Bullying-Cycle, how many of us fall under any/all categories, within the Bullying-Cycle? It’s a serious-question, which all of us, as Muslims, People of Conscious, People of Consequence, Human beings, etc., must answer for ourselves. Then, if our answers bring us to the conclusion that we fall under one or all of the categories, of the Bullying-Cycle, then we must ask ourselves, “How did I even become affected by the Bullying Cycle?” “Why did I consciously decide to bully someone/anyone, regardless to whether I, myself, were ever victimized by Bullying?” and “Why did I not resist being a Bully and/or why did I not resist being bullied?”

Granted, none of these questions are very easy to answer, depending upon the individual, of course. But, still, each & ever one of those questions has an answer, an intelligent answer, and we all have an obligation to Allah, the Creator/Lord of the Universe, then, ourselves, then, to all those victimized by Bullying, to answer these questions, honestly/accurately. And, when we don’t stand-up, to our own demons, within us, or in our pasts & begin to deal with the reality which surrounds Bullying, as well as its innumerably (negative) consequences, the damage to ourselves, our families/loved-ones, our friends/neighbors, classmates, and all of Humanity, as we know it could be very well rendered hopeless in salvaging what’s left of our already depleting sense of Humanity, towards our fellow Man.

I choose to end with this: from this day forward, whenever/wherever you see Bullying taking place, we must stop it, in any Humanway possible, as Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has told us that “Whomever witnesses wring/oppression, he must eliminate it by his hand; if he’s not able, then, he must eliminate it by his speach/words; if he is not able, then, he must rsent it internally (within his heart). However, that (internal hatred for wrong/oppression) is the lowest (level) of Faith.”. And there is also this statement of Allah that Muhammad quotes, “Oh, My Slaves (Property/Creation)!!! Verily, I’ve even made Oppression prohibited against Myself, as well as between you all. So,do not oppress one another.”.(an-Nawawi)

Gareth Bryant/2013

The Sharh/Explanation of “Breaking-Bad”, by William “Suhaib” Webb:

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Author’s note:

The following article is directly from the words of a William “Suhaib” Webb, a very popular Muslim-Personality, originally from Oklahoma, then, upon receiving Ijazat/Islamic-Accreditations to teach Islam, at al-Azhar University, relocated to California, and thus relocated, again, to Boston, Ma. I’ve actually had the opportunity to discuss several serious religious issues with Suhaib (which he is commonly referred to), both publicly, via panel-forums, as well as confidentially, in-private settings. He is someone whom I sincerely respect, and enjoy listening to, as well as discussing things with. Now, that doesn’t mean that I will with everything that one particular individual brings to the table. However, William has proven quite capable of being a viable, positive resource for Muslims, and is able to reach them where they really are, which is what has always been needed, yet, sadly, has been missing for many a years, within our Muslim-Communities, both within the Western-Hemisphere, as well as within the conventional “Muslim-World”. This following article is about Suhaib’s synthesis/breakdown of the very popular “Breaking Bad” AMC T.V. show.

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The Theology of Breaking Bad: Avoiding Becoming Walter White-

1. Understand choices – “Indeed, We showed them to the way (of truth)….”.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.41, V.17)

2. There is no moral neutrality – Choices breed consequences for the soul and life. “Every soul will bear its burden.”.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.2, V.286)

3. Walter said, “For once, I want a say in this.”; however, test and trials cannot be addressed with narcissism, but with submission: he first leads to calamity, the second leads to Futuhaat (exposure/revelations answers to things which we question).

4. Sin and moral decline are a slow burn – don’t underestimate thoughts. Breaking bad took 5-Seasons. al-Ghazzali said, “Zina starts in the mind.” ibn al-Qayyim said that “Satan is forbearing: he will wait to catch you when you are weak.”

5. Trust in Allah means through the good and the bad – hardships should not be used as an excuse. “Revere (Respect/Fear Allah [be ever conscious of Allah]) Allah wherever you are.” Wherever you are means you physical, spiritual and mental states must be aware that, “At least you know Allah see you!”.(an-Nawawi)

6. Understand the value of the Hereafter vs. This life. If that is there, Walter will never exist. “Paradise is surrounded by difficulties.”.(al-Bukhari)

7. Sins/Sinning is a “slippery-slope”: once you fall in, it is hard to get out. Walter got better and still sold meth. In the Qur’an we find the story of people whose boat was rocked by a storm and “…supplicated to Allah, with earnest/sincerity. But, when they were safely taken to land, they immediately associate (false-qualities to Allah).(Noble Qur’an: Cpht.29, V.65)

8. Blessings can be curses if they are not met with a renewed commitment to God. Walter’s wealth is a curse as is health and other Ni`am/divine-favors (of Allah/from Allah). It is not so much about what, buy who it is used. Even the Qur’an can be a potential threat to a person, “And, the Qur’an is a proof for you, or against you.”.(at-Tirmidhi)

Moral decline is based on a few things (often intangibles): fear, Illness, doubt and desire. Fight them with knowledge, Ihsan, love good friends (Walter was a loner and Jesse needs loves), and understanding the value of the Hereafter.

The following formula plays out in our lives every day: Reverence/Consciousness (Respect & Fear of Allah) or Fear and love (of Allah) or Fear (of Allah) and Love of this life happen everyday in our lives. Clean hearts are able to see through that and make choices based on divine teachings and a good support system. The theology of Breaking-Bad is a lesson in how a person can lose his moral compass by making a series of choices that are rooted in fear.

On a final note, the fatalism of breaking bad is problematic. Some folks do evil and do not see it in this life. Walter continues to get worse. Some folks do good and don’t see it. The unseen and how a person is addressed in this world is rooted in the divine knowledge. Fatalism is not a means to measure Good or evil. The Book and the Sunnah are!

William “Suhaib” Webb/2013

My 1st-Published Poetic-Work:

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Salam/What-Up?!!!

It’s finally here…Gareth Bryant’s 1st-published work, “My Poetic Anatomy” is finally available for download…#GarethBryant…#MyPoeticAnatomy…#SupportGarerthBryant:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/my-poetic-anatomy/id711538227?mt=11

| Zionist Apartheid: a Crime Against Humanity!

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This is exactly how the Jews were treated in Nazi/Fascist-Europe, and yet, ironically, the State of Israel is treating the Palestinians the same exact way…#AparthiedIsEvil

| truthaholics

Zionist Apartheid: a Crime Against Humanity ~ Amjad Alqasis, BADIL Resource Center, The Clockwork of Ongoing Nakba: Unraveling Forced Population Transfer (Summer 2013).

Israeli Annexation Wall near ‘Aida Refugee Camp - Bethlehem, October 2012 (© Richard Wainwright)
Israeli Annexation Wall near ‘Aida Refugee Camp – Bethlehem, October 2012 (© Richard Wainwright)

In 1973, the United Nations rightly condemned “the unholy alliance between Portuguese colonialism, South African racism, Zionism and Israeli imperialism.” Only two years later, it determined “that Zionism is a form of racismand racial discrimination.” At the behest of the U.S. administration, this resolution was revoked in 1991 in order to pave the way for the Madrid Peace Conference that same year; however, equating of Zionism with racism is still valid.

Apartheid is based on the establishment and maintenance of a regime of institutionalized discrimination in which one group dominates others. In the case of Israel, Zionist ideology is the driving force behind the ongoing Palestinian reality of apartheid. Not limited…

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The Reality of Breaking-Up with Someone:

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Regardless to how difficult it may be, when you are with someone & it’s not going anywhere, it’s time to let go & move on: some relationships just can’t be fixed & some people just shouldn’t be together…And, that’s OK…that’s Life. We all should/must come to terms with the reality that just because we want to be with someone doesn’t mean that we belong with that person and that some people are just not in relationships for the same reasons: some people get into relationships just to pass the time, or to escape the realities of their own conditions…then there are those who sincerely want to do good by others, but are never appreciated. With that being said, when it’s finally time to call it quits, don’t cry about it, because a person who just wants to be with you on their terms, or who doesn’t appreciate what you’ve done for them, or who only wants you for what you can give them, isn’t worth your love, concern, time, energy, resources, and they are not worth you missing them & they’re not worth your tears…#NoRegrets

Gareth Bryant/2013

The Recent Attacks in different countries Worldwide:

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Learning about the recent violent attacks in both Kenya & Pakistan, as well as other nations, are always sad constantly constantly to hear about, or to constantly read about, or to constantly watch on T.V. It still reminds us all that senseless-violence, regardless to whomever commits it, whomever teaches to indulge in it, whomever supports it funds it, either overtly (publicly) or covertly (behind the shadows)…

…And, it’s truly bad enough that these attacks are common-place. But, then, to add insult-too-injury, there are people whom are either masking themselves as Muslims, or are Muslims whom are so misdirected, truly believing that taking the lives of those whom have not harmed you at all are religiously-justified, when there are so many/too many examples, from the Qur’an (Chpt.5, V.32) & Prophetic-Tradition (an-Nawawi), itself, which openly-condemns unjustifiable/unnecessary violence towards anyone or anything…

…As a Muslim, it’s truly heartbreaking, if/when someone actually asks you, “Why do your people attack us?!!!”, “Why did your people take down the Towers?!!!”, “Why do you wanna kill us?!!!”, “Why do you hate us?!!!”. It may seem trivial to some, especially those whom are Non-muslims. But, for us, as Muslims, these types of questions, whether someone is mere jokin’-around (which really aren’t jokes, because to say this to someone really isn’t even funny, even though people do it, thinkin’ that it’s funny), this is a really big-deal…

…For someone to compare you with violence is never a badge-of-honor: It’s just like if people were to compare every Italian/Italian-American with Mafia figures, which are portrayed in entertainment, that would be very degrading, no?!!! Of course, it would, and people, knowing how degrading something like that would be, for any demographic, either religious, ethnic, social, political, etc., would never go there…

…Sadly, though, it’s like there an unwritten no-holds-barred free-for-all, open-season approach, when it comes to Muslims, as an entire global demographic, being (very) harshly discredited, because of the actions of so few people. Bt, that’s just the way things are, I guess; yet, that doesn’t make it right: I don’t wanna look over my shoulder, for the rest of my life, as a Muslim (may Allah keep me a Muslim), compelled to worry that I may be monitored, just because I pray 5-times daily, or because I have a beard, or because I’ve been t Saudi Arabia, for Pilgrimage, an elementary religious duty, for all Muslims, just because of some attack, that I now have to always assume that it will be the Muslims whom are blamed for it, whether or not any Muslim even did it…

…Always on the edge, always paranoid, isn’t good, for anyone, it makes people doubt their own faith/beliefs, it causes division among communities: Hell…it even encourages people to be even more extreme & actually do more acts of violence, out of frustration, anxiety, etc. This has to stop…on all-ends…

…Muslims must truly learn what Islam is & what it’s not. Those whom are Non-Muslims need to learn Islam from Muslims, where they actually are in the World, as opposed to turning on the T.V., to watch Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Bill Maher, Sean Hannity, Daniel Pipes, Pamela Geller, etc….

…But, in the meantime: Please, ask Allah to makes things easy for the surviving victims of the recent attacks in #Kenya, as well as #Pakistan…May Allah soften the hearts of the people, and turn them away from senseless-violence…Amen

Gareth Bryant/2013