Tag Archives: Humor

My 1st Udhiyyah: What I’ve Learned To Respect And Appreciate About Life&Death:

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Author’s-Note:

Dhul-Hijjah 12, 1438, A.H./September 3, 2017, C.E. I participated in an Islāmic-Tradition, predicated by Islāmic/Revelatory Texts, spanning Several-Generations: al-Udhiyyah/Slaughtering. This Traditional-Slaughtering commemorates the Rites of al-Hajj/Pilgrimage (predicated upon the Sacrifices/Sufferings of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Ishmael, Issac [Peace be upon them]), leading up to the Islāmic-Holiday known as Id-ul-Adha/the Celebration of Sacrifice​. For more Information regarding al-Hajj & `Id-il-Adha: http://www.garethbryant.wordpress.com/2012/10/01/theoriginsofidiladha/

Annually, the Udhiyyah is done by Millions of Muslims Worldwide, to follow in the Noble-Footsteps of Abraham (Peace be upon him). It was now my turn to participate in this great Tradition. I was so excited, to actually do something such a Part of Islām, so deeply entrenched into Islāmic-History. There was 1-Challenge: I had never done this before. I had a Million plus 1 Anxieties regarding the Experience. And, to add to my Self-Awkwardness, I had gotten into a Fight with a Man who tried to rob me a Week prior to me participating in the Udhiyyah. So, it was still very much fresh on my Mind/Heart. As I got to the Farm I did the Udhiyyah at: my Nerves were shot. I did nothing for the first few Hours there but ask the same Types of Questions in various different ways. I was able to reinforce what I already knew regarding Udhiyyah & also learned a host of interesting New-Things as well.

The Things which are Generally-Essential to know before one commits themselves to do Udhiyyah/Qurbānī:

1. Pure-Intention for Allah, as Udhiyyah/Qurbānī is a Sacred Act-Of-Worship.

2. No Body-Hair or Nails can be cut/removed prior to the 10th-Day of Dhil-Hijjah (the 12th-Month of the Islāmic-Calendar: the Month of Hajj/Pilgrimage).(Muslim, Ahmad)

3. The Animals slaughtered can only be Animals which are Islāmically-Allowable to consume Dietarily…specifically for Qurbānī (Hajj-Time Slaughtering/Sacrifice: Cows, Camels, Goats, Sheep. (Noble-Qur’ān: Chpt.22, 34)

4. The Animals slaughtered must be Healthy (no Signs of Ill-Treatment, Malnurishment, Abuse, Deformity, Disease, etc.).(al-Muwatta’)

5. The Animals slaughtered must be slaughtered at the following Ages, in order to qualify as Qurbānī: 6-Months to a Year for Sheep, 1-2Years for Goats, 2-3 Years for Cows, 5-Years for Camels. This is according to the various Fatawa/Islāmic-Rulings of the 4-Major Madhāhib/Islāmic Legal-Schools: the Hanafī-School…Mālikī-School…Shāfi`ī-School…Hanbalī-School.(http://www.islamqa.info/en/41899)

6. The Animals slaughtered cannot/shouldn’t be Pregnant (this is the Position of the Shāfi`ī-School).(https://islamqa.info/en/192041)

6. The Blades/Knives used to slaughter the Animals must be as Sharp as Humanly-Possible & the Animals must be slaughtered across the Neck: forcefully & swiftly, ensuring that the least amount of Pain/Suffering is inflicted upon the Animals & the Animals must not see the Blades/Knives used for Udhiyyah, nor must they be slaughtered within the Presence of other Animals.(https://islamqa.info/en/153936)

So, the Day of the Udhiyyah: basically from Fajr/Pre-Dawn to Maghrib/Sunset we were working on the Farm…it was serious Work. There were so many Animals which we had to get slaughtered. Then it came to my Turn. Internally, I honestly started having 2nd-Thoughts. So many Things came to my Mind like: “What if I cause this Animal more Pain than necessary?!!!”…”What if I begun to use my still fresh Anger over the Fight I had & end-up oppressing this Animal with too much Force?!!!”…”What if I completely screw-up the Udhiyyah?!!!”…etc. But, then I just decided to cast my Fears into the Wind by relying upon Allah to help me through it, which He did. And, considering the Fact that I was a 1st-Timer doing Udhiyyah, even the Farm-Hands confirmed that I did a Good-Job, which was very Comforting to my Ego. In total, I slaughtered 3-Goats personally with my own Hands & assisted with the Slaughtering of about 20 other Sheep & Goats combined. Let me tell you: taking the Life of an Animal that Size is truly a Sight to see.

Normally, externally of this Event, Regular-People such as myself don’t live on Farms, aren’t as in tune with Fitrah/Nature the way we ought to be, as Humans. And, for those of us whom are confined to Concrete City-Life: the closest we get to Fitrah are Household Vermin, such as Roaches & Rats & Creatures we generally deem a Nusance, such as Squarels, Opposums, Raccoons, etc. However, to actually up close & personally slaughter an Animal which you know will eventually be on someone’s Plate for Meals, it truly forced me to reflect more introspectively concerning how precious & fragile Life itself really is. Also, it forced me to be ever more Grateful to Allah that I’m a Human & not an Animal. It compelled me, this Experience, to look at the Fragility of Life & Reality of Death this more Seriously. One instant, we’re here & the next, we’re gone: just like that.

When coming back to New York City from the Farm, I wasn’t/didn’t allow myself to shake the Psycho-Emotional relevance of what I’ve experienced via Udhiyyah/Qurbānī: being recallibrated & reconnected with/to the Natural-Environment…the smells of Grass, Hay, Livestock, the Large Rolling-Hills & Tree-Covered Mountains…the Muddy-Terrain which nearly ruined my already Dirty-Nikes…the Blood of the Slaughtered-Animals…the freshness & ordors of the Flesh of the Animals sacrificed. All of it was worthwhile, an Experience which I wish/hope that Allah always preserves within my Memory-Bank. And, yes: I plan to definitely do Udhiyyah/Qurbānī more often.

Gareth Bryant/2017

 

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The Reason why Muslim-Women are against Polygyny & why Muslim-Men can’t really blame them:

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Author’s-Note:
There’s going to be a lot of controversy behind the release of this article. But, that’s ok because that’s what Gareth Bryant is all about.

Allah states: “Men are Responsible for Women.”.(Noble Qur’an: Chpt.4, V.34) And, this status of Qawwamah/Responsibility, that Allah has placed upon Men, to be Responsible for Women, consists of any/all elements of the Human-Experience. But, in the interest of time, I’ll just focus on a few of them, which could very well, ironically, encompass any other facets of Responsibility. Sadly, the problem is that we, as Muslim-Men, really don’t match-up to the standards of Qawwamah for Women that Allah requires of us, neither within the Qur’an nor the Prophetic-Tradition.

All Women (Muslim & Non-Muslim alike) are attracted to Quwwah/Power, which linguistically intersects with the word Qawwamah.(Lisan-ul-`Arab/Lexicon of the Arabic-Language) Yet, Power, within our Modern-World, is something that the typical Muslim-Male has either forfeited, never experienced, or is just pathetically powerless.

Here are some of the many avenues of Power, as is manifested in many significantly different ways:

Intelligence-
Intellectual prowess is something that Women value very highly. Women require to be stimulated on an intellectual plateau. They want to be with someone who can & will stimulate and challenge them, intellectually…no Woman wants a Dumb-Dude.

Religion-
A Man with strong religious-convictions are qualities that Women are very impressed with, because it shows that he has spiritual structure, boundaries, self-restraint, morals, character, etc.

Politics-
Women respect a Man who is able to control his surroundings, his environment, to be able to dictate policy, which can & will ensure the preservation, goodwill, safety, security of all.

Wealth-
Women want to be maintained…they want to live comfortably, without having to do it all themselves, without having to struggle financially. Women require Men to be able to stand on their own 2-feet, to have some type of financial independence, stability, security, etc.

Sexuality-
Women want a Man who knows what he’s doing in the bedroom. They want a Man to treat them respectfully, yet at the exact same time, take them places sexually that they’ve never been before.

Humor-
Every Woman wants a Man who can make them laugh, when they’re sad, to be able to bring a smile & joyful mood to their person.

Now, contrary to popular-opinion, the reason why the Muslim-Woman doesn’t generally approve or is privy to a Muslim-Man having more than 1-Wife/Multiple-Wives aren’t any of the cop-out reasons some try to give like:

1. Jealousy-
The Wives of Muhammad (Peace be upon him), the best of Women in Human-History (May Allah be pleased with them), often displayed acts & fits of jealousy against one another, over being married to Muhammad. However, his house was still in order, his wives never had to go out into the streets to get food, clothing or shelter, he made sure that these elements of Human sustainability, protection, safety, security, were well taken care of for his wives.(ar-Rahiq-ul-Makhtum/The Sealed-Nectar)

2. Emotional-Disproportion-
This plays on number one a lil’ bit, because the Wives of Muhammad also displayed, at times, disdain for one another, as a result of vying for the affection of Muhammad. In fact, there’s a Hadith/Narration concerning one wife knocking food onto the floor, because Muhammad had decided to eat food made by another one of his wives.(an-Nasā’ī)

3. Men wanting younger Women-
One of the biggest & most obvious ways to disprove this is the fact that most of the Wives of Muhammad were similar in age as he was. In fact, `Ai’shah was (via [Islamic-Scholarly] Ijma`/Unanimity) the youngest wife that he had ever married. Also, his 1st-Wife, Khadijah (May Allah be pleased with her) was (via Ijma`) the oldest Woman that he had ever married: they were married even before he had been given Prophecy, 15-years prior, to be exact & she was 15-years his senior. And, she was the only Woman that he was ever married to prior to her death, which was 13-years after Muhammad had become a Prophet.(ar-Rahiq-ul-Makhtum)

4. Lack of ability to spend equal time with all of one’s Wives-
Muhammad had 9-wives at one time; yet, he was able to be a Prophet, a Military-Leader, a Father, a Community-Leader, a Diplomat, a Statesman, and he was also able to give time to all of his wives, relative to their respective needs. Now, if he were able to wear these many hats & perform the duties attached to each of them to their fullest capacity, yet was still able to be the best of husbands to all of the wives he ever had, then, surely, the Muslim-Man, who is religiously-relegated to only having up to 4-wives at a time, can handle 2, or three additional wives to the 1 wife they are currently married to.

Rather, the true reason why so many Muslim-Women are growing more unwilling to agree to their respective husbands to have multiple-wives is simply because they genuinely believe that we’re not even deserving of this. And, why do I say this? The answer will make sense, trust me. Most of the Muslim-World is a direct product of Colonization, nation-building/nation-making, by the Oppressor & with the help of power-hungry, sinful, Muslims, etc. Now, within this process, there have been, unfortunately, so many, too many, atrocities that have plagued the Muslim-World, particularly Muslim-Women, like: being raped, forced to leave Islam at the hands of Non-Muslims, while the Men of the Muslim-World have largely stood by & have done nothing about it. All of the prior things I’ve mentioned, the facets of Power, which are seen in fruition in everyday Life, all around us-To be able to execute the manifestation of any/all of the above means that one possesses an immense amount of Power.

However, within the Muslim-World today, we tend to be very lacking in our manifestations of these particular facets of Power, especially referring to the following: Intelligence…Religion…Politics…Wealth:

1. Intellectual-Weakness-
Muslims have no say as to how Academic policies are conjured, concepted, carried out, etc. We are just influenced by the order of the day by other People, with their Anti-Islamic intellectual theories, like Atheism, Darwinism, etc. In fact, ironically, Atheists/Anti-Theists have more influence within the Academic-World than Muslims do & historically, many of the World’s 1st Universities were incepted by Muslims, several centuries ago.

2. Religious-Weakness-
There are Muslims whom are Billionaires, like Prince al-Walid ibn-Talal, of Saudi Arabia, nicknamed “The Arab Warren Buffet”, whom have invested their wealth into companies like NewsCorp, which owns FoxNews, the most Islamophobic media-outlet the Human-Race has ever known. This proves that Muslims don’t even control/can’t even control how our own religious image & narrative is portrayed within the media, because here we have one of the most affluent Muslims, in Human-History, financing the Oppressor, against the Oppressed, who happen to largely be his own fellow Muslims.

3. Political-Weakness-
There is no country on Earth, right now, where the Muslim-Woman is 100% secure from getting abused, raped, forced into Prostitution, Slavery, etc. Countless cases have even actually indicated that many of the World’s Oil-Rich Muslim/Arab nations have been responsible for some of the highest Human-Rights Violations against Muslim-Women, on all levels. I’ve already mentioned some of the too many historical instances in which invaders of the lands of the Muslims (both Muslims & Non-Muslims) have pillaged & raped, and forced into Prostitution as well as Slavery, untold thousands, if not millions, of Muslim-Women. And, the Men of the Muslim-World have done nearly nothing, basically nothing to prevent this or to avenge these types of atrocities that our Muslim-Women have been forced to endure, by our own hands, as well as by the hands of Non-Muslims.

4. Financial-Weakness-
With all of the World’s wealthy Billionaire/Millionaire Muslims, there’s absolutely no excuse as to why Poverty exists on planet Earth, particularly/especially within the Muslim-World. And, this is actually how we know that there are Muslims aren’t even properly paying 2.5% of their wealth in az-Zakah/Annual Obligatory (the 3rd among the 5-Pillars of Islam).(Minhaj-ul-Muslim/The Methodology of the Muslim) The reason why I’m bold enough to say this is because there’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that if every Wealthy-Muslim on this planet were to truly pay 2.5% worth of az-Zakah, on their personal-wealth (their net-wealth), there’s absolutely no way that there would/could be any hungry, homeless, jobless Humans on Earth. If the Wealthy-Muslims were to truly implement the payment of true Zakah, the World wouldn’t need the usury-based, exploitative International Monetary Fund, the World-Bank, etc. The World would be able to come to the Muslims for economic balance, fairness, justice, sustainability, etc.

Now, for those of you whom happen to be Men, Muslim-Men especially, reading this article: try looking at these very unfortunate realities, from a Woman’s point of view: knowing the sheer weakness of the Muslim-Man, who has largely no Power of his own to wield globally, where the Muslim-Man has basically become an international Joke-of-the-Party, then, why should Muslim-Women want to have Men like us having more than one Wife? Basically, we don’t have our shit together. Take a look at all of the atrocities that have befallen the Muslim-Woman, within the 19th-Century alone: the inhumane tragedies in the Middle-East (during World-War I), North Africa (during World-War II), The Balkans & the USSR/Russia (during the 90’s), India, Sri Lanka, Burma, Iraq, and the list can go on forever. The Muslim-Man is in absolutely no position to secure the sanctity, the integrity, of the Muslim-Woman. And, that’s the real reason why they are not comfortable with the Muslim-Man having multiple-wives, particularly/especially within the confines of the Western-World, where Feminism is King (an ironic hyperbole obviously), our Muslim-Women are being influenced to the extent that Men generally, particularly/especially that Muslim-Men are completely useless, which unfortunately, we’ve proven that very ugly & malicious stereotype right for far too long.

The issue of Muslim-Women being against Polygyny honestly has so much more to with the inadequacies of the Muslim-Man to serve his environment & protect his Women. Trust me: if the Muslim-Man had his shit together, no Muslim-Woman on planet Earth would have any justification as to why they wouldn’t be in favor of Polygyny at all. But, the weakness of the Muslim-Man gives them that justification, that the Enemies of Islam have helped to indoctrinate the Muslim-Man with, to disempower him, as in the Pharaonic mentality that Allah mentions within the Qur’an, “kill the Men & spare the Women”.

Gareth Bryant/2014

My St. John’s University Adventure (trust me, this is funny!!!):

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This is how my story goes:

Back in 2011, I was going to an Islamophobia lecture at St. John’s University, by John Starling, an instructor at the Foundation for Knowledge and Development, in New York City. When I got there, the posters for the event were all gone. And, no one seemed to know where this event was taking place. So, I’m basically walking aimlessly, around the St. John’s campus. Then, I walked pass one of the on-campus dorms, and then half of the St. John’s female basketball team is walking in front of me. Then, one of them looked back at me, like she knew me. Then she starts this conversation with me, askin’ me who I am, whether or not I’m a student @St. John’s…all of the above.

What happened was just crazy…one of the basketball players, on the female team, wanted to add me on Facebook, to get to know me better, and then……..well, you know……lol!!! Anyway, she was there that night, the girl who wanted to add me on Facebook. Her friends were teasing her about not steppin’ to me when she saw me that night. Then, they started askin’ me did I wanna roll wit them……..I definitely knew what time it was-their angle was simple, they were tryin’ to make a baby-daddy outta me!!! But, I just simply told them that I was Muslim, that’s what drove them even crazier.

Let’s just say that after that night, I can respect & appreciate Don Imus’ comment about the Rutgers female basketball team being “Nappy-Headed Hoes” because that’s exactly who the St. John’s female b-ball team were, a bunch of horny “Nappy-Headed Hoes”……..SMMFH!!! But, what made it even worse was that there were only three of them who were kind of pretty-the rest were just wounded……..And, I mean “WOUNDED”!!! I felt so disrespected, that I had to call the Devil & tell him: “Yo, my NIGGA, you play too much!!! How you gonna just disrespect me by sendin’ some ugly broads to try to throw me off of Allah’s path, I expected better from you. Then, he promised that he would send me prettier girls, to tempt me with. So, I said, “Aight, but you still gonna lose…..LOSER!!!”

And, that’s my St. John’s adventure!!!

By the way, this is in no way a made-up, or exaggerated story……..this really happened!!!

Gareth Bryant/2012