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Dr Kaukab Siddique | Editor-in-Chief Rajab 5, 1432/ June 18, 2010 # 25

Verse of the Week

"And there are some people who say: We believe in Allah and the last day; and they are not at all believers.

They desire to deceive Allah and those who believe, and they deceive only themselves and they do not perceive.
There is a disease in their hearts, so Allah added to their disease and they shall have a painful chastisement because they lied.
And when it is said to them, Do not make mischief in the land, they say: We are but peace-makers.
Now surely they themselves are the mischief makers, but they do not perceive.
And when it is said to them: Believe as the people believe, they say: Shall we believe as the fools believe? Now surely they themselves are the fools, but they do not know."
Holy Qur'an 2:8-13

Submitted by Sis. Abigail

Jamaat al-Muslimeen teaches: We must respect ALL women. In particular we must respect and HONOR Muslim women. Beyond that, we must not only honor but SUPPORT and STAND BY, with whatever it takes, Islamic women who wear the hijab and the niqab. These are the ones under attack by France and Belgium and pro-west Muslim sects. Please scroll way down. Don't forget to read the link at the end of the article by Sis. Asma bint Shameem [Houston, Texas.]

From Imam Badi Ali, Jamaat al-Muslimeen National Shoora Leader, North Carolina

Spotlight #1: Children's antennas. Be careful how you deal with children. They pick up even unintended, off-the-cuff remarks. They will even sense your discomfort. Be aware and thougtful when you are with children.

Spotlight #2: Capitalism is repeating its series of disasters, be it coal mines or toyota and now BP. A paltry $20 billion have been set aside to help the victims of the oil spill. What about the countless dollars BP and others make off the American people? Why are those endless profits, sometimes 500%, not the issue. Islamic economics puts people first. Capitalism puts profits first.

Spotlight #3: While the Gaza freedom flotilla showed the moral courage of Turkey, it also showed the weakness of US Muslims. Why are we so slow and quiet about Gaza? There are 10 million of us, perhaps more as the census will show. We should be holding ongoing, at least weekly, brainstorming sessions to discuss what we can do for Gaza. Here we have an entire population center turned into a prison by the Israelis and we can't even speak about it!

Outreach: # 1: Unite Against zionism: Jamaat al-Muslimeen Shoora theme

100 Muslims Receive literature about Israeli Attack on Turkish Ship & Zahid Bukhari [ICNA] Link with State Department

June 11, 2010. At Baltimore biggest Islamic center, Masjid Rahma [ISB], 8 pages of Jamaat al-Muslimeen literature were given to 100 people after juma' salat. [Total 800 pages.] Most of the people were Indo-Pakistani with some Africans and Arabs and a few African-Americans.

Included in the 8 pages were Sis. Karen's illuminating article on Haim Saban, the Jew behind Zionist control of the media, plus Jamaate Islami Pakistan leader's point that USA evidently okayed the Israeli attack on the Turkish ship.

A major item in the literature was the revelation of ICNA leader Zahid Bukhari's years long links with the State Department [US government] as reflected in his own job resume.

Also included was Sis. Abigail's letter to Christian churches challenging their silence on Gaza based on their scriptures. Taliban battlefield successes were also listed.

Outreach # 2 To 37 Arab Muslims
At a Masjid on Harford road in northern Baltimore, Jamaat al-Muslimeen Shoora's resolutions urging Muslims to unite against Zionism were given to 37 people after Juma' This is an Arab congregation led by an elderly imam from Syria.

Outreach #3. to 20 Indo- Pakistanis in Military Related Mosque

At a Juma prayer in Bel Air, Maryland Jamaat al-Muslimeen Shoora's resolutions calling on Muslims to unite against Zionism were given to 20 people after Juma' This community has people working for the military and related activities. They are always collecting funds

Jamaat al-Muslimeen Shoora Theme: UNITE AGAINST ZIONISM

Why Boycott Israel? Now is the time! Specific Items listed.

Press Release by Sis. Karen English [Jamaat al-Muslimeen Los Angeles] [Boycott Director]

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullah, wa Barakatuhu

In response to Israel's long history of flouting international law, in response to its wanton theft of Palestinian land, in response to their chokehold on the lives of 1.5 million Palestinians incarcerated in Gaza, in response to the murder of 9 peace activists---one of them a nineteen year old young man who aspired to be a doctor like his father (4 bullets in the head), in response to Israel's refusal to let Palestinians in the Diaspora return to their homeland...

In response to all of this please let go of your fear and join the worldwide protest in the form of a boycott. Others---Christians, Jews, and those who are simply devoted to truth and justice---are giving voice and action to what Allah ta'aala tells us in Qur'an: "...oppression is worse than death." (2:217; 8:73). They are giving voice to Prophet Muhammad's (pbuh) clarification that the very least expression of faith when it comes to wrong doing is to speak out against it. Please join this world wide speaking out:
Space does not permit the listing of every show of solidarity with Palestine, but every day Israel becomes more and more a pariah state, reminiscent of South Africa during the time of apartheid.

We are asking that you educate yourself and join in solidarity with the world community boycott of Israeli products and those companies that support Israel. The following is a partial list of products and companies to boycott:
The above is only a fraction of companies and products that are supportive of zionism---but it's a start. Please take this small, almost effortless, step in support of justice.
(Do people think by merely saying, 'We have attained to faith' that they will be left to themselves and will not be put to a test?" The Qur'an 29:1).

Your brothers and sisters in Islam,

Jamaat al Muslimeen

Unite Against Zionism: Published in the Jakarta Post, Indonesia, with thanks to Br. Shaikh Ali Khan.

Who is a great terrorist in the World? It may help the readers to see who really disturbs the peace of the world:
With thanks to Br. Dr. Shaukat Khan, Charlotte, North Carolina
Astonishing Facts which US Media are Hiding from America's People

Complete article from New Trend was published in Jakarta Post.

We published Dr. Zahid Bukhari's RESUME, listing his programs with the oppressors. [ See NT #23. ]

He has not answered. Is he that holy that he will not answer? Like the Pope perhaps?

ICNA President Zahid Bukhari is following the policy of other corrupt organizations by ignoring the facts of his cooperation with the US State Department, US Embassies and tyrant regimes. He is hoping no one will read.


How can a Muslim organization have a president collaborating openly and shamelessly with the oppressors? We publish below a letter excusing his behavior. It seems that ICNA has not educated its members about clear and unambiguous teachings of Islam about cooperation with oppressors. So we have published these teachings.

Please scroll way down.

A reader has sent us a tax form signed by Zahid Bukhari as Director in which he gives $5000 to himself and $17000 to Prof. Sulayman Nyang. The organization is called Center for Islam and Public Policy in Frederick, Maryland.

Mr. Bukhari, please respond. We are not ICNA. We give you the right of reply to 300 words.

Letter: Open Kufr. ISNA's Chief Guest Tariq Ramadan Working for Abolition of Islamic Law: First Step Suspension of Sharia', second step Abrogation

Look at what the Muslim Brotherhood man is up to: Verbatim quote from his debate:

"I am against death penalty, and I am against stoning.... If I say this from where I am, they will say: This is a swiss westernised man, who just wants to please the West. Now I want to change mentality, so I have to deal with Muslims and say, come to the text. The text as they are saying is true. The quran is stating about corporal punishment and death penalty, about stoning men and women. But we have text. I am asking three questions to the scholars; 1) What do the texts say, 2) What are the conditions, 3) and in which context. Come and talk. And while you are talking we stop everything. This is what we call moratorium, in order for me to go towards abolition. But this is to only change mentality."

Abdul-Rashid Hamid [England]

Recently famous Dalit leader of India, V.T. Rajshekar from Bangalore, visited Pakistan. Dr. Kaukab Siddique introduced him to the Jamaate Islami leadership and a very sucessful meeting was held in JI's headquarters in Lahore. Dalits are the oppressed people of India and are sometimes described as the Black people of India. Readers of New Trend might remember that African American Muslim leader Hodari Abdul Ali went to India and was given a tremendous welcome by both Dalits and Muslims of Dalit origin. These contacts are important for friendship between the oppressed people of India and the Islamic people of Pakistan.


Dalit delegation led by Rajshekar receives hero's welcome in Pakistan

Maulana Maudoodi and Dr. Ambedkar are factors for Mutual respect and Unity.


Bangalore: The five-day long Dalit writers visit to Pakistan from May 22 received such a big reception, giving lie to the ruling Brahminical wild propaganda that Pakistan is a terrorist state, out to destroy "Hindu India". The delegation led by V.T. Rajshekar, editor of Dalit Voice, every where received spontaneous love from the common Muslim masses. Newspapers and TV channels simply vied with each other to give a massive coverage, including exclusive interviews.


The Editor made it clear at all the meetings that India had more Muslims than Pakistan and the peaceloving masses of India had nothing against Muslims. It was the ruling Brahminical microminority (2.5%) that resorted to its favourite divide and rule policy to keep itself in power and frequently indulged in anti- Muslim riots.The ruling Brahminsts not only persecuted the Muslims but all indigenous people forming 85% of India's 1,300 million population. At every meeting the Pak Muslims condemned the Brahminical stunt called Aman-ki-Asha and said Pakistan would not be fooled by such cheap tactics. They said the Dalit delegation from India was a mighty gesture of Indo-Pak friendship. The Indian delegates addressed a distinguished gathering of academics and students at Lahore University, the largest and the most famous in Pakistan.


The Jamate-Islami, Pakistan, gave a big reception to the delegation at its headquarters, Mansoora. The Editor reminded the JI leadership that its founder, Moulana Moududi (who hailed from India) was one of the first to identify the Brahminists as the enemy of both Muslims and Dalits. Dr. Ambedkar, the leader of Indian Untouchables, and Qaide-Azam M.A. Jinnah, leader of the Muslim League, were not only great friends but fought the common enemy together.

But the Jamate-Islami leadership in India rejected not only Moududi's diagnosis but even his leadership. The Sir Ganga Ram Heritage Foundation, which invited the delegation for the celebration of Dr. Ambedkar birth anniversary, held a big reception under the leadership of State Minister Kamran Michael, a Dalit Christian, and Lal Chand, a Dalit member of Parliament from Karachi.


Pakistan has just 1% religious minorities comprising Sikhs, Hindus, Christians, Dalits. All their representatives were present in full strength at the reception and said the Pakistan Govt. and its Muslim people treated its minorities as their honoured guests. As against this India's upper caste rulers frequently persecuted its 15% Muslims, 20% Dalits, Sikhs and Christians (2.5%each) and Tribals (10%) as proved from the official reports given by govt.- appointed commissions. Editor V.T. Rajshekar and Prof. Raju Thomas, from Kerala, addressed several meetings. Prof. Yousaf Irfan, Director of the Sir Ganga Ram Heritage Foundation, and the chief host, took all the care to make the visit a glorious success. Prof. Raju Thomas went round the nook and corner of Lahore and said that he did not find a single slum or a beggar anywhere in the city. This is exactly opposite of what is happening to Indian cities which are full of beggars and slums.

Book Review: by Kaukab Siddique, PhD

Islam Victorious in the Face of Hate, Violence and Extreme Abuse:

Struggle of Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef, Taliban Ambassador to Pakistan

My Life with the Taliban by Abdul Salam Zaeef, edited by Linschoten and Kuehn, Columbia University press, 2010, 331 pages, $29.95 hard cover.

Deep from within the craggy mountains, the meandering streams and arid deserts of Afghanistan, a deep faith in Allah and His messenger, pbuh, has emerged which is comparable to the era of Abu Bakr, Umar and Usman, Allah be pleased with them.

The awakening of Islam has been painful in the extreme with both superpowers intent on drowning the faith in the blood of its people. Afghanistan is indeed a land of the best who will not give up the Islamic way of life for any price, even if it be $50 million each on the heads of Shaykh Osama, Dr al-Zawahiri and Mullah Omar. It is also the land of the worst who become Communists and apostates to welcome barbarous invaders.

The reader gets an in depth look at Mullah Zaeef's life as a child. Like many other Afghan children he ran away from home to join the Jihad against the Soviet invaders. Most reports on Afghanistan leave out the key role of the Taliban in the jihad against the USSR. They did not attract American-Saudi attention like Hikmatyar or European attention as Ahmad Shah Masood did.

Mullah Zaeef's discussion of Pakistan and Pakistanis is painful. This country has betrayed all its ideals and even its raison d'etre for existence. The secularized Pakistanis who rule the country do not care for the people or for their religion in the least. For them religion is merely a ploy. General Musharraf could not understand that the Taliban were not merely using religion to mobilize people but were genuinely spiritual people for whom Allah's Will is more important than anything else.

The people of Pakistan loved Mullah Zaeef. The outpouring of support has few comparable examples in Pakistani history. Pakistan's military ignored the wishes of the people.

Mullah Zaeef's suffering in Pakistani and American hands and his endurance and the victory of his faith should inspire every Muslim. He was humiliated and mistreated and beaten and tortured by the Americans in every possible way but his faith in Allah helped him to survive.

Never in Muslim history has a Muslim country handed over a Muslim ambassador to a kafir military invader. This is the scene when the Pakistanis handed him over to the Americans:

"They shackled my hands and the cloth was tied around my head covering my eyes. This was the first time in my life that I had been treated in this way. They ... took the holy Qur'an, a digital recorder and some money I still had with me. As they [Pakistanis] led me out of the building, they kicked and pushed me into a car....Someone grabbed me and pulled an expensive watch that I was wearing from my wrist...Even before I reached the helicopter, I was suddenly attacked from all sides. People kicked me, shouted at me, and my clothes were cut with knives. They ripped the black cloth from my face .Pakistani and American soldiers stood around me...The Pakistani soldiers were all staring as the Americans hit me and tore the remaining clothes off from my body. Eventually I was completely naked, and the Pakistani soldiers --- the defenders of the Holy Qur'an --- shamelessly watched me with smiles on their faces, saluting this disgraceful action of the Americans...[P.172-173]

The torture and humiliation of Islamic prisoners all the way from Kandahar and Bagram to Guantanamo Bay indicates the hatred for Islam reeking out of the American power structure. The Qur'an was the special target of the Americans in their attempts to humiliate Muslims. [Chaplain Yee, in his book on Gtmo, has detailed the American plan to use desecration of the Qur'an to break Muslims.]

Why has this book not been highly publicized in America although it is the only book of its kind and has been published by a reputable book service? One reason could be that it brings out the extreme inhumanity of America towards Islam and towards those Muslims seen as standing against America. It is very difficult to love America after reading this book. It is the story of an ambassador, a spiritual man, a person who worships Allah [God] and who wants to solve the problems of Afghanistan through understanding, compassion, reason and dialogue. Parts of the book are difficult to go through as the writer describes the hatred of highly trained American military and intelligence men towards Islam and in particular the Qur'an.

Others were treated worse but with Mullah Zaeef, the Americans shredded humanity, decency, respect for religion and sacred things and the rights of prisoners and helpless people. America under Bush became a monster devouring civilization and decency. Under Obama things have not changed.

The book has probably been published to help Americans understand the Taliban [and to make money for the publishers.] It might be an attempt to divide the Taliban or to use Mullah Zaeef but looks like he did not fall in their trap.

There is only one photo in this book but it sends an everlasting message, the message of Muhammad's, pbuh, global revolution. It is the photo of the masjid from where the Taliban movement came out to change Afghanistan [and the world].It looks like a shack, like a poor man's home. God's spirit rises from among the poor and the downtrodden who choose the Hereafter. From this unimpressive, almost nodescript, masjid came the movement which defeated one superpower and is in the process of humiliating the only remaining one.

Will Muslims look and learn and start building faith, fearlessness and akhira instead of million dollar mosques run by those who have sold out to kufr and tughyan?

[NB: Mullah Zaeef's treatment of women in his family is helpful for us to understand that the demonization of the Taliban about women is nothing but propaganda. In his relations with women, he is respectful, kind, compassionate and caring beyond the call of duty.]

Hadith Studies

Women's Equality in the Mosque: How to explain Hadith which seem to discourage Women's Participation in the Masjid?
by Br. Kaukab Siddique

Br. Shoaib, a well-read, thoughtful and thought provoking Muslim, active in the Muslim community in the London, England area has asked how one can explain hadith which seem to create an impression that it is better for women to pray at home and not go to the mosque. Here is my response:

The Qur'an gives the broad principle about the kind of people who should be in charge of mosques:

"The mosques of Allah shall be visited and maintained by such as believe in Allah and the Last Day, establish regular prayers, and pay the zakat, and fear none (at all) except Allah. It is they who are expected to be on true guidance." [9:18]

[I don't know about England, but most imams of mosques in America are disqualified by the final condition in that verse, 'fear none except Allah', as they are by and large bootlickers of the American power structure and hangers on of the rich and the powerful.]

Obviously 9:18 includes all believers, men and women, who have the given qualities, as those who are entitled to visit and maintain mosques. As Yusuf Ali's commentary points out (p.502), "ya'amuru" (roughly translated as 'visited and maintained') includes all mosque activities, four of which he lists: 1. To build or repair. 2. to maintain in fitting dignity. 3. to visit for purposes of devotion 4. fill with light and life and activity.

The concept of "masjid" or mosque as taught by the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is so broad and comprehensive that there is no question of keeping anyone out of it who means well:

"Abu Huraira (r.a.) narrates that the messenger of Allah, pbuh, said: The ENTIRE earth has been made for me pure and a masjid." [Literally: place of prostration in worship.] Hadith, Sahih Muslim, kitabus salat, Tirmizey Sunan, kitabus siir, Ibn Maja's Sunan, kitabut taharah.

In the pre-Islamic ethos, women were given a secondary position in places of worship. In pagan temples, as in the Hindu religion, they were sent into places of worship to be made into servants of men and sources of entertainment. Pagan men often thought that women should bring enjoyment for men in places of worship. Islam rejected pagan use of women for entertainment. Hence the new entrants into Islam were very sensitive to the idea of women visiting places of worship. They did not want mosques to go the way of pagan temples. [This fear was similar to the one related to rituals of Hajj which the pagans had corrupted. The Qur'an, for instance, taught Muslims that they should run up and down the hills of Safa and Marwa and not stay away just because they had seen the pagans going there. Islam was reclaiming the original worship for those who had cast paganism aside.]

Hence the Prophet (pbuh) commanded:

[From Nafi', who narrates from Abdullah ibn 'Umar (r.a.): The Prophet, pbuh, said]: Do not stop the maid servants of Allah from the mosques of Allah. (Hadith, Muwatta of Imam Malik, compiled late in the first century of Islam, published in the second.)

Then there was the element of lawlessness because Madina was under attack and the streets of the city were not lighted. In spite of the element of danger, the Prophet, pbuh, insisted:
[From 'Amash, from Mujahid from Ibn 'Umar] The messenger of Allah, pbuh, said: "Do not stop women from going to the mosque at NIGHT." [Hadith, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmizy, kitabus salat.]

Imam Abu Hanifa, who began his hadith studies in the first century of Islam, and completed his work in the first half of the second century compiled this specific hadith about women's participation in the mosque prayers at the difficult times of morning, before sun rise, and at night:

"Abu Hanifa narrates from Hammad from Ibrahim from Sha'abi from Ibn 'Umar (r.a.): The Prophet, pbuh, permitted women to go forth and participate in fajr and 'Isha. (Musnad of Imam Abu Hanifa, under the heading: The benefit of participation in Fajr and Isha prayers.]

Hazrat 'Ayesha narrates the ongoing process of women coming for collective [jamaat] prayers in the mosque so early that it was pitch dark and the women could not be recognized:
"From the Mother of the believers, 'Ayesha (r.a.): After the messenger of Allah completed the fajr prayer, the women, wrapped in their outer garments, returned home. It used to be so dark that they could not be recognized." [Hadith, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Nasai, kitabus salat.]


Tamima, the daughter of Salama, narrates that the Mother of the Believers, 'Ayesha (r.a.) led the women as their imam in Maghrib prayers. She stood in the center (of the first line) and recited loudly. [Darqutni, with reference to the musannaf of Abdur Razzaq, 3:141]

Hujaira, the daughter of Husaain, narrates: Umm Salama, mother of the believers, led us in Asr prayer and stood in the middle (of the first row). [Compiled by Ibn Saad in his Tabaqat, vol.8, p.356. Darqutni has collected this narration from Ibn Abi Shaiba, Abdur Razzaq and Imam Shafi'i.]

Taus narrates that the mother of the believers, 'Ayesha Siddiqa, (r.a.) used to call the adhan and the iqama (before leading prayers). (The musannaf of Ibn Abi Shaiba, 1:223)

Nearly 99.9% of hadith collected by the scholars of Islam are authentic. There are a very few, however, which are defective or out of context. There are even a couple of fabrications which managed to survive the intense scrutiny of scholars; hence the hadith is put second to the Qur'an, and not equal to it, as the source of Islamic knowledge.
Related to the issue of women's equal participation in mosques, here is a discouraging hadith which opponents of women's rights in the mosque, use:

"From Ibn 'Umar (r.a.): The Prophet (pbuh) said: Do not stop your women from going to the mosque and their homes are better for them." [Hakim in his Mustadrak vol.1, p.209.]
It is also related in Abu Daw'ud's Sunan under the heading: "Collective prayer and its blessings."

As we noticed above, there are hadith with excellent chains of narration from Ibn 'Umar (r.a.) accepted by the imams of Hadith, Bukhari and Muslim, in which the Prophet (pbuh) commands: Do not stop women from going to the mosque. So why the contradiction in this hadith attributed to Ibn 'Umar (r.a.) himself?

My understanding is that this hadith is narrating two pieces of narration and has left out what went on between them. It is narrated that when 'Ibn 'Umar (r.a.) narrated the Prophet's (pbuh) command not to stop women, Ibn 'Umar's son objected and said their homes are better for them and that people will use the hadith permitting women to go "to weave the webs of deception." His son insisted that he would stop his wife. At this 'Ibn 'Umar was extremely upset. He said to his son: "I am telling you what the Prophet said and you are saying you will stop your wife!" (Musnad of Abu Hanifa) Other narratives say that 'Ibn 'Umar cursed his son for opposing the Prophet's command. Some even say that he thereafter refused to talk to his son.(Musnad of Ahmed)

My understanding is that the words "their homes are better for them" are a fragment from the bitter words between father and son and have been inserted along with the Prophet's command into the collections of Hakim and Abu Dawud. [Note that Ibn 'Umar's son was not a sahabi and his opinion does not count as a religious text.]

Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim left the fragment "their homes are better for them" out of their collections which are universally accepted as the most authentic of Hadith collections.

Opponents of women in the mosques also bring a narration which says:

"Abdul Hamid bin al-Mundhir Ansari narrated from his grandmother or his mother's aunt, not clear which, Umm Humaid, as follows: The Prophet, pbuh, said, your prayer in your home, is better than the one you pray with me" (in masjid nabawi): (Ahmed in his Musnad, vol.6, p.371)

This has a number of variations, one of which appears in Ibn Khuzaima's collection to the effect that "it is better for a woman to pray in the inner little room of her house than to pray in the main room of the house, better to pray in the local mosque than in the main mosque ..." (Attributed to hazrat 'Ayesha in Baihaqi's Sunan.)

Abdul Hamid al-Mundhir's narration is not acceptable because the scholars of Hadith say that he is MAJHUL. No one knows who he was. The narrations which support women's rights have well known, in fact famous, narrators at every level of narration.

The narration attributed to hazrat 'Ayesha (r.a.), if taken at face value, contradicts the numerous narrations which assert that women used to pray in the mosque in the time of the Prophet (pbuh) and in the caliphate of Abu Bakr, 'Umar, Usman and Ali (Allah be pleased with them). In fact 'Umar and Ali (Allah be pleased with them), leaders, along with 'Ayesha (r.a) of Islamic thought, took extra efforts to appoint imams to lead women in prayers in the main masjid, especially when the crowds were big in Ramadan and the main imam could not be heard by the women.

'Ayesha the exalted (r.a.) not only prayed in the masjid BUT LED PRAYERS in masjide nabawi.

I have been trying to trace the cause behind this narration from 'Ayesha (r.a.) given by Baihaqi. It appears that there was a woman who was so poverty stricken that she did not have enough clothes to cover herself to travel from her home on the outskirts of Madina to the mosque of the Prophet (pbuh). At the same time she was too self-respecting to accept charity. The Prophet (pbuh) understood her dilemma and her modesty. He gave her a blessing that if she prayed in the innermost closet room of her home, she would get the same rewards as if she was praying in the mosque of the Prophet (pbuh). [Allahu Akbar wa lillahil hamd.] This it was not an effort by the Prophet (pbuh) to curtail the participation of women in the mosques, which would have contradicted his entire mission, but to give special blessings to a woman's vibrant faith and sincerity.

It would be extremely CONTRADICTORY for all those women to be going to the masjid at FAJR and 'ISHA (as quoted in sahih hadith above) if they could have just stayed at home and gotten more rewards for praying at home. I don't think the opponents of women's rights have a case here.

Finally there are some narrations which claim that 'Umar (r.a.) did not like his wife to go to the masjid. [Perhaps he remembered how women were used as sources of corruption in the pagan forms of worship even in the most sacred of places, the Ka'aba.] However, remembering the command of the Prophet (pbuh) he never actually stopped his wife. In fact the relevant narration is very instructive about the tension created by the emergence of the new revolutionary Islamic community coming out of a background of jahiliyya and exploitation of women:

"Mu'ammar narrates from Zuhri that 'Atika, the daughter of Zaid ibn'Umru bin Nufail, was marrried to 'Umar ibn al-Khattab (r.a.). She used to pray regularly in the masjid. 'Umar used to say to her: By Allah! You know that I don't like this. She would reply: I will not stop until you actually forbid me. 'Umar would say:, No, I will not forbid you. The day 'Umar (r.a.) was assassinated, 'Atika was in the mosque." (Abdur Razzaq's collection, vol.3:148)

Ibn Hazm has a superb comment on this situation. He says, 'Umar (r.a.) could have said that 'Atika you are doing something inferior (praying in the masjid) as opposed to praying at home which according to the narration we discussed above is superior. Also, I, as husband, disapprove of it. How could a sahabia ('Atika, r.a.) continue to act in a way which was inferior in worship and aroused the displeasure of her husband, and a husband who was a great Muslim, a great teacher of Islam and the greatest Khalifa the Muslims have ever had. Obviously both 'Umar (r.a.) and 'Atika (r.a.) knew that 'Umar was simply expressing his gut feeling and not an Islamic edict. She was torn by the assassination of 'Umar (r.a.); she loved him beyond herself. All the women of Madina respected him as their older brother. Their mourning knew no bounds when he was assassinated. He is the one who got down from the mimbar in humility when a woman of Madina objected to a point he had made in his khutba in MASJIDE NABAWI. [I have referenced this incident elsewhere in my writings.]

In 'Umar's armies there were thousands of Islamic women, both married and unmarried, who went forth to topple the empires of Rome and Persia. I have documented this fact in a critique I wrote on Fatima Mernissi who was ignorant of basic facts about 'Umar (r.a.) and made some false statements about this great servant of Allah, great leader and mujtahid.

Why do Some Pakistanis think Arabs are Racists?

WOMEN & HIJAAB: Where is your finger pointing?
Don't be so quick to blame others
perhaps the fault lies with you....

by Asma bint Shameem [The writer teaches Islam on the Internet and lives with her husband in Houston, Texas.]
With thanks to:

I remember the first time I went for Umrah was when I was about 16 or 17 years old. That was the time when my family was not really a 'practicing' Muslim family. Yeah sure, we prayed and fasted, but that was about the only thing I knew about Islaam...nothing much more than that.

Included in that was my ignorance of the rules of Hijaab. I didn't cover myself except when I prayed and that also, not too well.

I didn't know that Allaah required of me to cover myself, not just when I prayed; rather, all the time, in front of all non-mahram men, and I didn't know exactly how I should cover myself, either.

You see, I had grown up with the erroneous understanding that it is 'backward' and 'uneducated' to cover yourself, and indeed, those who observed hijaab were looked down upon.

So there I was, in front of the Haram, the House of my Lord, with my tight shalwar kameez and a small scarf (or dupatta, as you call it in Urdu) just barely covering my head and shoulders, the rest of me exposed.

As I stood by the main entrance of the Masjid, I looked at the throngs of Saudi women who passed by me, fully covered from top to toe, in their 'abaayas and niqaabs with nothing but their eyes showing. And as I looked at them, several emotions were going through my young and ignorant mind......emotions of amazement, pity and scorn, all mixed together.

These poor Saudi women...I thought to myself. Aren't they hot? Poor things, they are so illiterate and suppressed. They are living in a world of their own. They have no idea where the rest of us are going.

But as I took pity on them and shook my head with hopelessness and disdain, I also noticed something else.
I noticed that they were glaring at me as they passed me by....each and every one of them!
Wow! I thought to myself. What's the matter with them?!!

And just when I thought I had had enough of their awful looks and glares, one of them stopped abruptly and sharply tugged at my hair that was showing from underneath my short scarf.
"OUCH! Stop that!" I snapped at her. "Why in the world did you do that to me?!!"

The lady angrily muttered something to me in Arabic and left and I just stood there, hurt, angry, bewildered and disgusted. These Arabs are SO RUDE!! I hatefully and bitterly thought to myself. I didn't understand the hostility, the angry looks, the resentment.

When I told someone about what happened, they said, "Oh, you don't know. These Arabs are so racists! They don't like Pakistanis!"

And that's what I believed. That these Arabs are not only illiterate, suppressed, and uncivilized, but they are also racist, rude and mean....
And then, after some years, Allaah gave me another chance to go for Umrah. Only this time, it was different. To my amazement, everyone was so kind to me!
The sisters smiled at me and treated me with respect. When they spoke to me, their voice was soft and their manners were the best. They said salaam to me, and hugged me and kissed me. They shared their food with me. They made space for me in the saff for prayer, when there was no space to be seen. In other words, they treated me like their sister.
Wow! Amazing!
"Surely, these Arabs have changed!" I thought, so pleasantly surprized and thankful. "They are no longer rude and mean. They have actually become civilized, polite and courteous!"

Saudi women: Courtesy:
them change....??" I wondered. "Why was it so different last time?"

And then, an awful and bitter reality dawned upon me. The painful and distressing realization crept upon me and made me shudder. The disturbing awareness that it was not them who had changed. Rather, it was me.
It was not they who were different after all these years. I was different.
Alhamdulillaah, Allaah had guided me. Now, I was now covered, from head to toe.....just like these Arab women, just like the way Allah has told us Muslim women to cover.
And that was the difference.
It became clear to me, as bright as day, that, it was never me that these Arab sisters were angry at, when I had first come for Umrah many years ago. It was the laws of Allaah that I was defying that they were upset about.
All those years back, the fault was with me, not them.
When Allaah made me realize that it is an order from Him to cover myself and wear proper hijaab..... that was the difference.

I had realized that it is NOT backward or uncivilized to dress modestly and it is NOT a sign that I am oppressed. That was the difference.

When I believed that it is a sign of me obeying my Lord and an honor and a dignity that He bestows on whomever He wishes, that was the difference.

I also realized that these Arabs are NOT racist and it is not about us being 'Pakistani' or non-Arab, rather, it is our own actions that make people like us or honor us...or dislike us.

It also made me aware of the fact that so many times, we are so quick to blame others. We rush to see the faults that lie with others that we forget, that perhaps the fault, in fact, lies with us and not with them.
Just like I was so quick in condemning and blaming my Arab brothers and sisters for being mean and rude and racist. And I didn't realize that it was my actions, my deeds, my way of dressing, that was the reason for their dislike and nothing more.
Remember, when you pick up your hand to point a finger at somebody, do realize that there are four (fingers of your own hand) pointing at you too.

Dua: May Allaah forgive our previous mistakes and guide us always to the straight path and enable us to see the Truth as the Truth and falsehood as falsehood. May He allow us to see our own mistakes and enable us to make taubah and rectify our shortcomings.

Letter: In support of Zahid Bukhari's activities.

Re: ICNA leader Zahid Bukhari's Love Affair with US State Department

My dear brother Kaukab Siddique is dead wrong in slandering other Muslim leaders, and here again, such as br. Zahed Bukhari today.

As I said before, nobody other than the Prophets of Allah can be perfect in their good deeds and that is why we cannot and will not be able to agree with each other, especially in a stressful situation such as the one of enemocity between Islam and un-Islam. We must remember that this problem of not being perfect and not knowing who is right and wrong in his or her method of working with friends and fows is because the Prophet of Allah is not with us to guide or command us to the right path. It is a significant missing link as far as Muslims are concerned, since the death of the Prophet, s, until now and the last Day.

Yes, we have the Quran and the Sunnah, but knowing and understanding of the Quran has always been subjective and never agreed upon, besides the verses that are ambiguous, hence even the scholars are apart from each other. This may be a blessings, but for that we need to change our attitudes towards each other, by allowing each other serve the Cause the way he or she believes it should be served, while others must agree or disagree but intellectually, respectfully and proactively, without condemning and slandering each other.

My brother Kaukab Siddique needs to change his views and attitudes towards others who do not think or do things like him, including the enemies. Just for the sake of clarification, some one may come and say, how come he is condemning others in such harsh languages, while he himself is living in America, working, paying taxes, and following the law of the land, which may be equal to other people working for the State Department for the sake of it? Something is not right here!

May Allah forgive and guide us to the right path.

Haider Bhuiyan [Athens, Georgia] [The writer is a professor of religion.]

Response by Kaukab Siddique: Law of the Land and taxes do not Require Cooperation with Oppressors. Such activities as those of ICNA's Zahid Bukhari are Haram and a form of kufr.

Let us see what the sacred texts of Islam say about any kind of cooperation with the oppressors, the rejectors, the kuffar, the munafiqoon, the tawaghit:

" ...Stand firm as you are commanded, you and those with you: turn [unto Allah], and transgress not (from the path), for He sees well all that you do. And INCLINE NOT towards those who oppress, or the Fire will touch you, and ye [shall] have no protectors other than Allah, nor shall ye be helped." [The Qur'an 11:112-113]

Scholars have noticed that these verses are condemning not only cooperation with oppressors but even an INCLINATION towards oppressors. Classical commentaries on the Qur'an discuss the depth of meaning in the Arabic text of this verse "wa la taraknu" [do not incline or bend or have the slightest positive feeling] for oppressors.

Commentators as varied as Zamakhshari and Beidawi agree that "wa la taraknu" is about the stage before actual physical cooperation takes place. The desire to bend slightly towards the oppressors becomes punishable by the Fire.

Qurtubi, another classical scholar, points out that this "inclination" includes dependence and a LIKING for the oppressors. These meanings are supported by the comments of Ibn Abbas, r.a., one of the companions of the Prophet, who was the earliest mufassir of the Qur'an. He says that this verse also implies that one should not keep quiet when one observes oppression being carried out. [Such as in our times the destruction of Fallujah during Ramadan or the degradation of the great scholar of Islam, Shaikh Omar 'Abdel Rahman, or the 'cavity search' of Imam Jamil and Dr. Aafia Siddiqui]

Qatada and 'Ikrima, of the first generation after the Sahaba [companions of the Prophet, pbuh] say that such inclination towards oppressors also implies obedience to them [such as the happiness of these "leaders" that they will, or could, get invitations to the White House].

Imam 'Auzai, from the first generation of Islam after the sahaba, says that his understanding of hadith on these verses is that NOTHING IS MORE CONDEMNABLE WITH ALLAH THAN A PERSON WHO CLAIMS TO BE AN IMAM [or 'Alim] BUT MEETS AN OPPRESSOR, be it a king or his functionaries. In the Arabic there is a play on the words 'Alim [Islamic scholar] and 'Amil [functionary].

The best comment comes from a classical Hadith scholar of the first era, Muhammad ibn Maslama, that:
"The approach of one who recites the Qur'an to the door of oppressors is WORSE THAN the likeness of the FLY WHO SITS on S..T."

In our own times, Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani, the Islamic teacher of Mohomed Ali Jinnah, founder of Pakistan, wrote the following note on 11:113 in his tafseer:

"Do not be inclined or attracted to the oppressors [those who have broken the bounds of Islam) in the slightest. Do your best to stay away from their friendship and companionship, refrain from respecting and honoring them, praising or exalting them, looking like them in appearance, jointly working with them, in short everything to do with oppressors, otherwise the fire will envelop you and you will find that you have no helper and Allah will no longer help you."

The learned Maulana then points to the solution for Muslims, given in 11:114, which we have not quoted, which is to incline towards Allah and to worship Allah morning and evening ..

The Prophet Muhammad, pbuh, has given us clear Hadith not to cooperate with oppressors. These are general teachings, in addition to the specific verses from the Qur'an:

From Abdullah ibn Mas'ud, r.a. the Prophet, pbuh, said: ...."By him in whose hand is my life, you will not achieve salvation unless you stop the oppressor and give the oppressed their right." [Hadith, Jami Tirmidhi, Abwab tafseer al-Qur'an]

From Abu Bakr Siddiq, r.a. .....I heard the messenger of Allah, pbuh, say, When people see an oppressor and do not stop him with both their hands, sooner or later the punishment of Allah will overtake them [the passive ones] too. [Hadith Jami Tirmidhi, Ibid.]

When such are the rules for non-cooperation with "Muslims" who become oppressors, there is absolutely NO BASIS in Islam for cooperation with oppressors who in addition to being oppressors are also kuffar.

2010-06-19 Sat 05:26:48 cdt