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The Mad Mamluks

Ep 138: Fragments of Truth | Ijaz Ahmad

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 137: Upsidedown | Dr. Ali Ataie

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 132: Sweating Bullets: Contextualizing Islamophobia | Hossam Gamea

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 129: Pictures of You | Sajjad Shah

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 126: Don't Fear the Reaper: The Muslim Exorcist | Abu Mujahid

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 125: Bring Me To Life | Chris Blauvelt

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

Khabib proves that chivalry is still alive

Written by Hasnet Lais

As the dust settles after an epic grudge match between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor, much of the sporting world is still reflecting on what was arguably one of the greatest moments in combat sports history.

Rarely does a fight capture the imagination of peripheral fans and polarise audiences like the Khabib-McGregor saga. It not only solidified its place in MMA folklore, but came to represent a seismic moment in the fight game with reverberations beyond anyone’s imagination. For McGregor’s part, the Irishman set the pre-fight hoopla in full swing at a press conference, unleashing a torrent of abuse towards Khabib’s religion, family and heritage. As for Khabib, well, something epic was brewing. He left all his talking for the cage and the melee which ensued after his emphatic victory became the stuff of legends.

For those who have previously revelled in McGregor’s trademark histrionics, please spare me the righteous indignation over the post-fight fracas. If anything, much of the reaction to Khabib’s fit of rage is symptomatic of western cultural myopia. We seem oblivious to the fact that such an outburst was a natural instinct for someone taught to pride honour over any gimmick of hyping a fight to boost its box office ratings.

A prime example of such corporate kowtowing is the UFC’s cash cow himself, McGregor, who has repeatedly exploited racial tropes for promotional purposes without the slightest remonstration from his employers. In fact, the UFC appears to have green-lighted his indiscretions, responding to his catalogue of misdemeanours with the occasional wrist-slapping. Here is a man who hurled a metal dolly at a bus filled with rival fighters (including Khabib), forcing a bloody cut on the head of Michael Chisea and once taunted Brazilian opponent Jose Aldo in his hometown saying “…if this was a different time, I would invade his favela on horseback, and would kill anyone who wasn't fit to work…”

Despite the abuse hurled at Khabib, he remained a consummate professional leading up to the bout, refusing to be caught up in the shenanigans and responding to McGregor’s provocations with the ice-cool demeanour he exudes in abundance.

Yes, he apologised to the Nevada State Commission for his unsportsmanlike like conduct but was equally commendable in accounting the media’s culpability in perpetuating a culture of disrespect amongst fighters and in his condemnation of fighters who spare no sacred cow as part of a fight’s promotion, reiterating a desire to clean up the sport and restore etiquette between athletes which was once the hallmark of the pugilist form.

Fair play to Khabib for calling out the elephant in the room. Instead of punishing him with a suspension, we should be celebrating Khabib as a civilising force in a sport which too often descends into intemperate slanging matches, a far cry from what combat sports originally represented. Tracing the history of martial arts to its origins, we find that a knightly virtue gave the art its esteem, where competitors placed such a high premium on mutual respect that affronting another’s dignity was a cardinal sin.

Those who have followed Khabib’s career can testify to just how much he imbibes these lofty principles, embedded in his stoic Avar upbringing along the North Caucasus Mountains, where humility is lauded and responding to the basest of insults is the pinnacle of manliness, as per the timeless wisdom of a warrior culture. There was something to admire in both his composure and fury as it proved Khabib is committed to a code of chivalry in an industry which has developed a sordid reputation for placing profits over principle.

For those enthralled by the bluster of entertainers, Khabib’s chivalric persona may come across insipid when compared to his flamboyant counterparts, but this unpretentious quality remains true to the essence of his craft, where fight masters of old rarely harboured an inflated sense of self. McGregor’s provocations are a testament to the pandemonium that can ensue when razzmatazz knows no bounds.  In today’s conflicted and polarised racial environment, we must ensure such showmanship never rears its ugly head again.

But Khabib’s appeal cannot be reduced to simply being a nice guy intent on edifying his ill-mannered peers. In a recent instagram post directed at the UFC, the undisputed lightweight champion reminded us why he has ennobled himself in the fight business, through a gesture of defiance akin to trailblazers like Colin Kaepernick who confronted the perceived racial inequalities sustained by a power structure which Khabib currently finds himself resisting. After exposing the UFC’s double standards for failing to specify sanctions against McGregor, he threatened to quit the organisation if the Nevada State Athletic Commission to decide to fire his teammate Zubaira Tukhugov-one of the men accused of attacking McGregor in the post-fight brawl-arguing that McGregor should be reprimanded for throwing the first punch.

If daring to speak truth to power didn’t convince us of Khabib’s seriousness, the champion went on to claim that he would forfeit his $2m earnings since defending his faith and family was dearer to him than any material benefit which he would sacrifice in a heartbeat. Dana White realised this was no bluff and was forced to respond to Khabib’s ultimatum by allaying fears of the champion’s departure and softening his stance towards Zubaira.  By taking a principled stand against the jingoism and religion-baiting which the UFC President allowed to fester at his expense, Khabib, like Kaepernick, has come to symbolize something bigger than his sport by daring to challenge the juggernaut of white privilege in the UFC.

For Khabib, the recent decision by the athletic commission to withhold half of his purse is a price worth paying. Suffering in silence would be tantamount to cultural betrayal because he deems honour an inviolable and sacred ideal. While honour is a universal principle, its standards in the west have eroded to the point many deem it too tribal and antiquated a concept to cherish, despite it being a value which the founding fathers swore upon. Islam and family are Dagestani red lines in which McGregor saw only a pecuniary interest and crossed at his peril. So much so that at the end of the third round, the former lightweight champion could be heard muttering to Khabib, ‘It’s only business’, in what sounded like a pathetic plea for mercy.

What was business for Conor, was a virtue worth dying for in Khabib’s moral compass. For those drowning in the hubris of assuming there ought to be no reprisals for encroaching the cultural sensitivities of others, let the post-fight scuffle prompt us to interrogate our cultural bias. The Twitter-sphere demonstrated our varying degrees of sensitivity and perception regarding Khabib’s actions, exploding with outrage but also becoming a venting ground for voices of conscience, expressing sympathy with the undefeated champion and solidarity with marginalised communities slighted for espousing their faith and protecting their integrity.

For every critic Khabib earned after vaulting the octagon, there was a victim of bullying, xenophobia and microaggression beaming with the delight of avenged pride, leaping with him. For me, this was the moment when virtue was rewarded, vice was punished and poetic justice was served. Failing to recognise his outburst as arising from a dignified state of being is to some extent an indictment of our descent to a lower morality.

EP 124: Run to the Hills | Mohamed Ghilan

EP 121: Low Voltage | Tanzim Alam and Joshua Fayez

EP 120: What is known by necessity ( w/ Safina Society) - Part 2

EP 120: What is known by necessity ( w/ Safina Society) - Part 2

EP 119: What is known by necessity ( w/ Safina Society) - Part 1

EP 120: What is known by necessity ( w/ Safina Society) - Part 1

Shaykh Yusuf Rios - Live with The Mad Mamluks

TMM Team will be in Houston at ISNA 2018. We're organizing a meet and greet with you all.  Follow us on our Facebook Page www.facebook.com/themadmamluks for the location

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Sh. Yusuf Rios has studied Islamic Psychology and Tradition at Al-Azhar University, Egypt. He has over three years of experience in teaching Islamic studies and Arabic Language. His has general and specialized licenses (Ijazah) in the Hadith Sciences. He has also been involved with the Muslim community as Khateeb for Jummah prayer and as a Chaplin – Counselor with correctional facility. https://www.facebook.com/3PuertoRican...

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EP 117: In My Time of Dying | Joe Bradford and Mohammad Bataineh


On this week's episode, we talk to Joe Bradford and Mohammad Bataineh.  We discuss an important and difficult subject, that most people tend to avoid, but if it's not done correctly, it is known to rip families apart. Death. No one likes to think about dying--and that is probably one reason most people lack wills. But death is inevitable, preparing an Islamic will can protect your family from your assets getting into the wrong hands.

“Mohammad Bataineh is an entrepreneur, investor, and the managing partner of Bataineh Palmeri, LLP, a law firm with offices in Florida and California. He’s Co-Founder of MyWassiyah.com. Mohammad is known for successfully growing early-stage businesses to scale, including a multi-use real estate development company, a medical instruments manufacturer, and an online fashion company."

Please let Joe and Mohammad know that you found out about their service through The Mad Mamluks by using the link below to sign up with MyWassiyah.com

http://6mywassiyah.refr.cc/themadmamluks

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Imam Siraj Wahhaj, My Friend, My Hero.

Written by Irtiza Hasan (contributing host)

My friend Muhammad Alshareef once told me, “If we think about people who could claim they may have traveled to every masjid in the USA and Canada – raising money, giving lectures, teaching… that list would probably have on it – Dr. Muzammil Siddiqi, Dr. Jamal Badawi, Ahmed Sakr and of course Imam Siraj Wahhaj.”

These four can only be described as the forefathers and pioneers of the Muslim community in North America.

From 1997 until 2013 I had the opportunity to host Imam Siraj Wahhaj in my city, Houston TX, many times – starting with my days at the University of Houston MSA.

The Imam is almost 70 now but back then he would frequently make trips to Houston. In fact, I remember him once coming three times in a two month period for three different fundraisers. Those of us who grew up in the 1990s and 2000s with the Imam at our conferences and conventions remember him as the man with a million-dollar smile, ability to give fiery speeches and always at least four pens in his shirt pocket.

In Houston, our Muslim community had its divisions back in the day – and many will say we still do – the Imam was always a favorite across Muslim organizations and groups. They all lined up to invite Imam Siraj any chance they could – ICNA Houston, CAIR Houston, Texas Dawah Convention, Taleem ul Islam, Clear Lake Islamic Center, Masjid El-Farouq, Islam in Spanish, MAS  Houston, MSA UH, MSA Rice, Masjid W.D. Muhammad, Masjid Al-Islam, Muhammadi Masjid and of course the Islamic Society of Greater Houston.

The Imam in fundraisers alone raised hundreds of thousands – if not multi-million dollars for mosques, conferences, dawah projects and startup organizations – and I only speak about programs I personally attended. I wish I had exact numbers but would not be surprised if it reached 5 million dollars in Houston alone.

I think beyond people like Dr. Siddiqi, Dr. Badawi, Ahmed Sakr and Imam Siraj… there are other notable and respected figures for the American Muslim community such as say Hamza Yusuf or Yasir Qadhi. They impacted many people but largely catered to their bases in terms of Sufi or Salafi leaning audiences and organizations, respectively. There are other well-known national figures who have been surrounded by controversies and scandals – especially in recent years.

Imam Siraj was for everybody.  Nowadays, we hear Muslims claiming their disregard for labels and I understand that but I remember a time when most of us identified as traditionalists or progressives, Sufi or Salafi, ICNA or ISNA, Arab or non-Arab, etc.  No matter what team you were on, we all loved Imam Siraj. We all benefitted from his talks.

I had the opportunity to host Imam Siraj on behalf of multiple organizations and the man was truly selfless. Even in the age of AlMaghrib Institute - an organization that I care deeply about.  It introduced a self-sufficient funding model based on student tuition and was able to pay instructors handsomely. Some of the more qualified and in demand instructors could make up to $10,000 USD per course.  That all being said, Imam Siraj never asked for honorariums or minimum payments or deposits up front, etc. Never once. Not for classes. Not for conferences.

He would often ask me or my friends Anees Siddiqui, Zaheer Malik, Ismail Jafri or Mudassar Khan (all UH MSA Presidents during my time there) whether he can set up a small table and sell his old khutbahs on cassette tapes – and this well after CDs and MP3 had already come out! Imam Siraj would bring the old school cassette tapes and sell them for a few dollars.

The Imam was easily the biggest draw at every conference from 1992 to 2008. He knew how much the demand was for speeches and yet would not request any kind of  honorariums or payments.  Imam Siraj Wahhaj knew when he left his family in his beloved Brooklyn NY he would sometimes visit up to 6 cities before returning home.

McAllen TX.

Winnipeg Canada.

Des Moines Iowa.

Chicago, IL.

The list goes on. There were hardly any cities the Imam would not go to. When Muslims needed him, he never let them down.  He always showed up.

I was asking my friends whether Muslims believed in the concept of collective sin or collective shame.  There was a time a few years ago when Imam Siraj battled cancer. he reportedly struggled with medical bills and costly medical care and only a few brothers resorted to some private fundraisers to help support him. It was a truly shaming time for us.

When you meet Imam Siraj Wahhaj – if you knew Imam Siraj Wahhaj – you know he is a genuine and good man.

Recently Imam Siraj’s family has been in the news and to be honest I have not followed much of the details. Instead, I have been making dua and talking to friends around the country who are either close to the Imam or like me have worked with him in the past. I am personally upset at how the media has mischaracterized Imam Siraj and how they are pulling him into the story.  I cannot begin to imagine the pain of seeing your loved ones go through trials and tribulations. I can only express my love and respect for Imam Siraj Wahhaj – he is one of at least four pioneers for the Muslim community in this country.  There will not be another like him in terms of impact and influence for a very long time.

EP 116: Somewhere in Time | Joseph Kaminski


On this week's episode, we talk to Joseph Kaminski about his experiences living in Bosnia, the socio-political dynamics of the west vs. the rest of world and his book, The Contemporary Islamic Governed State.  He is a political scientist, author and a lecturer at the International University of Sarajevo.

The Contemporary Islamic Governed State https://www.palgrave.com/us/book/9783319570112

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EP 115: Goodbye to Romance | Megan Wyatt


Mahin, Sammer, and Naureen talk to Megan Wyatt, founder of Wives of Jannah. Wives of Jannah is a rapidly growing organization of thousands of Muslim wives who are inspired by the core goal which is stated as:

Inviting emotionally intelligent Muslim wives from the West to create a loving, emotionally deep, spiritual and passionate marriage; to rekindle marriage as an act of worship, a path to being nearer to our Creator, and a gateway to being a wife in Jannah, insha’Allah.

She has successfully led workshops dealing with sexual intimacy, communication, and emotional connection, and teaching wives and couples how to practice the art of her concept Fearless Vulnerability in their marriage.

Megan has been coaching Muslims from all over the world since 2008 and through Wives of Jannah works directly with wives and couples in personal coaching and on-site intervention meetings.

She has also authored two ebooks both dealing with intimacy, one specifically for women who struggle due to previous sexual trauma in their lives, offering guidance for themselves and their husbands.

You can find WOJ on Facebook here www.facebook.com/wivesofjannah You can also download their ebook, "Will the Angels Curse Me?" by clicking here http://wivesofjannah.com/wtacm

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EP 114: Foreclosure of a Dream | Shadi Hamid


On this week's episode Mahin, SIM and Shaykh Amir talk to Shadi Hamid on the struggle for Islamic governance in the Muslim world.

Shadi Hamid is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a contributing editor at The Atlantic. He is the author of Islamic Exceptionalism: How the Struggle Over Islam is Reshaping the World and co-editor of Rethinking Political Islam

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Twitter: @ShadiHamid

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shadihamid20

Shadi Hamid

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EP 113: Wheels of Confusion | Dr. Mohamed Ghilan


Mahin, SIM and Shaykh Amir talk to Dr. Mohamed Ghilan about consciousness and philosophy.  The last hour is just an open goofy/serious dialogue for those you who prefer those kinds of episodes.

Dr. Ghilan is a neuroscientist, Islamic lecturer, YouTuber, and Podcaster.

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AndalusOnline.org - Join the Andalus Book Club!

Search for "Mohamed Ghilan" in iTunes and subscribe

to his podcast.

Twitter: @MohamedGhilan

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Mohamed Ghilan is a Canadian Muslim originally born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to parents from Sudanese and Yemeni backgrounds. He attended high school after immigrating to Canada in Vancouver, British Columbia. Eventually, Mohamed moved to Victoria where he obtained a B.Sc. with a major in microbiology (honours) and a minor in business administration.

In 2007 Mohamed began his full-time studies in the Islamic Tradition after having made connections with several Muslim scholars. He has been consistently traveling over the past years to spend intensive extended periods studying various aspects of the Islamic sciences relating to Theology and Creed, Jurisprudence, Hadith, Foundational Principles (Usool), Arabic, Poetry, spiritual purification, and Quranic sciences.

Mohamed has previously given lectures on the biography of the Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him, Fundamentalism in Islam, Islam, and science, the message of Islam, Jesus in the Qur’an, in addition to others. He has also taught an introductory course on Islamic Jurisprudence according to the Maliki School as well as an introductory course on Islamic Theology (‘Aqeedah).

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EP 112: Far Beyond Driven | Ahmed Hankir (The Wounded Healer)


Dr. Ahmed Hankir is a psychiatrist, lecturer, found of the Wounded Healer and recipient of the prestigious Royal College of Psychiatrists Foundation Doctor of the Year award in 2013.

https://www.ahmedhankir.com

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EP 111: Seek Hallowed Land | Ramadan Round Table ft. Ahmed Shaikh


On this weeks episode, we talk about flaky fasters, career choices for artists and later in the episode we call up former ISNA board member, Ahmed Shaikh to understand what's going on with the rescinded invite to Wajahat Ali via ISNA (Islamic Society of North America).

Ahmed Shaikh is an Estate Lawyer, ISNA Board Member and a writer for MuslimMatters.

ahmedshaikh.com

Twitter: @bornshaikh

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EP 110: The Warriors Prayer: Ramadan Shred | Shakeel Shafiuddin


The guys talk to Shakeel (Shak) of Jaanwar Fitness about nutrition and workout tips during Ramadan.

https://jaanwarfitness.com/

Instagram: jaanwar_fitness

info@jaanwarfitness@gmail.com

Hosts: Sh. Amir, SIM and Mahin

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EP 109: Eat Some More | Sameer Sarmast


We sit down with Sameer Sarmast from the popular halal restaurant review show on YouTube.

Sameer Sarmast is the Host and Executive Producer of “Sameer's Eats”, the popular Halal restaurant review show on YouTube. “Sameer’s Eats” was co-founded by Sameer and his friend, Saad Malik in 2010. In 2013, Sameer and his team launched "The Halal Food Tour" in 5 U.S. cities across the country. The tour was a series of Halal Food Festivals highlighting local Halal restaurants while Sameer and Yvonne Maffei of “My Halal Kitchen” entertained the attendees by hosting cooking demos and “Iron Chef” style cooking challenges.

Sameer has been recognized for his efforts in promoting Halal cuisine through several media outlets and publications such as Fios1 News, Fusion, Al-Jazeera and the U.S. State Department. Sameer is very passionate about Halal Food as he frequently shares his zeal with chefs and personalities from the Food Network.

http://www.sameerseats.com/

Instagram: Sameerseats

Twitter: Sameerseats

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sameerseats

We sit down with Sameer Sarmast from the popular halal restaurant review show on YouTube.

Sameer Sarmast is the Host and Executive Producer of “Sameer's Eats”, the popular Halal restaurant review show "Sameer's Eats" on YouTube. “Sameer’s Eats” was co-founded by Sameer and his friend, Saad Malik in 2010. In 2013, Sameer and his team launched "The Halal Food Tour" in 5 U.S. cities across the country. The tour was a series of Halal Food Festivals highlighting local Halal restaurants while Sameer and Yvonne Maffei of “My Halal Kitchen” entertained the attendees by hosting cooking demos and “Iron Chef” style cooking challenges.

Sameer has been recognized for his efforts in promoting Halal cuisine through several media outlets and publications such as Fios1 News, Fusion, Al-Jazeera and the U.S. State Department. Sameer is very passionate about Halal Food as he frequently shares his zeal with chefs and personalities from the Food Network.

http://www.sameerseats.com/

Instagram: Sameerseats

Twitter: Sameerseats

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sameerseats/

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EP 108: The Kids Aren't Alright | Abdul Malik Merchant


The guys sit down with Imam Abdul Malik Merchant from ISBCC (Boston).  We have a free-flowing discussion about raising children, being mentors, chaplaincy and his life studying in the KSA.

After ten years of intensive study, both within Umm al-Qura University and privately with respected scholars, Imam Abdul-Malik graduated in May, 2016 with a Bachelor’s degree in Islamic Studies with a Concentration in Dawah and Islamic Culture. He is currently enrolled at Boston University in a dual masters program in Divinity and Social Work.

Imam Abdul-Malik brings a rich cross-cultural sensibility to his position of Associate Imam, one that encompasses working with inner city youth in Washington, D.C., as well as giving khutbas and teaching classes as a Junior Resident Scholar. His valuable experience as a mentor and life coach has further prepared him for his pastoral care responsibilities within the ISBCC.

 

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EP 107: Airstrikes Sell...But Who's Buying? | Dilly Hussain


We talk to journalist and political commentator, Dilly Hussain about the recent Air Strikes in Syria and the Turkish television series Ertugrul.

Dilly is known for his writing at Middle East Eye, Foreign Policy Journal, Al Jazeera English and is the Deputy Editor at 5Pillars.

Contact:

Twitter: @dillyhussain88

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dilly.hussain88

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EP 106: After Forever: The Divine Reality | Hamza Tzortzis


SIM and Shaykh Amir talk to Hamza Tzortzis about his new book “The Divine Reality: God, Islam & The Mirage of Atheism".

Hamza Andreas Tzortzis is a public speaker, instructor, essayist and author of “The Divine Reality: God, Islam & The Mirage of Atheism”.

He has over a decade of experience in articulating a compassionate and rational case for Islam and has studied Islamic thought and theology under qualified scholars.

He has two postgraduate degrees in Philosophy (PgCert and MA) and is currently continuing his postgraduate studies in this field.

He delivers workshops and courses around the world and has taught an accredited diploma course on topics related to Islamic thought and philosophy.

He is most famously known for his debates with prominent academics and thinkers on Islam and Atheism.

Find out more about his work at www.hamzatzortzis.com

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References:

The Divine Reality by Hamza Tzortzis

 

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EP 105: Over the Wall: Free Speech and Narratives | Uthman Badar


Uthman is a writer, activist, and student of Philosophy, Economics, Arabic & Islamic sciences.
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God & Prophets should be protected from insult

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZGlyymF00I

Debate with Lawrence Krause

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JknkomRLXCM

https://5pillarsuk.com/2014/02/12/uthman-badar-free-speech-is-a-liberal-tool-of-power/

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EP 104: Seasons in the Abyss: Navigating the Western Social Climate | Mobeen Vaid


Mahin, SIM and Shaykh Amir talk to Mobeen Vaid about several issues like the #MeToo movement, neo-atheism, transgenderism, feminism, etc.

Mobeen Vaid is a Muslim public intellectual and writer. His writings center on how traditional Islamic norms and frames of thinking intersect the modern world. As of late, he has focused on Islamic sexual and gender norms. Vaid also speaks at confessional conferences, serves as an advisor to Muslim college students, and was campus minister for the Muslim community while a student at George Mason University. He has reviewed The Study Qur’an for the Journal of Islamic Sciences and published “‘And the Male is Not Like the Female’: Sunni Islam and Gender Nonconformity."

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EP 103: Down on the Upside: Bringing Mental Health Awareness | Haleh Banani and Sarah Sultan


Nour Goda and Naureen Ahmed talk to Sarah Sultan and Haleh Banani about bringing awareness to mental health.

Sarah Sultan is a licensed Mental Health Counselor and has a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, graduating Summa Cum Laude. She has experience in a variety of therapeutic interventions and has worked with several age groups including children with special needs, adolescents with emotional and behavioral issues, families undergoing difficulties and survivors of trauma and domestic violence. Sarah is currently working as a therapist at a residential treatment center for teens in crisis, where she works with adolescents dealing with suicidality, trauma, self-harming behaviors, aggression and a variety of other issues. She is also an instructor with Mishkah University, where she teaches a course about the intersection between Islam, psychology and counseling. She has been actively involved in serving the Muslim community over the course of the past 10 years through providing lectures, halaqas and workshops.

http://www.sarahsultan.com/

Haleh Banani has a Master degree in Clinical Psychology with 20 years of experience working with couples and individuals. She was a featured expert on Al-Jazeera international, Huda TV, Islamic Open University, Mercy Mission and Bayinnah TV. Haleh is an instructor for Ilmflix and Qalam Institute. She was the first female to host a program for Al-Fajr TV called “With Haleh” which combines the principles of psychology and Islam. She does Skype coaching sessions with people from around the world saving marriages, building self-esteem & helping individuals in all their relationships. Haleh is an internationally published writer and counselor for the website www.MuslimMatters.org She received her ijaza for the recitation of the Quran in Egypt. She was recently given the Icon Award representing America in Malaysia for her contribution in psychology & Islam. She has been married for Alhamdulillah 20 years with 3 kids ages 16, 13 & 11.

https://halehbanani.com

SEEMA

Learn more about SEEMA (Support Embrace Empower Mental Advocacy):  SEEMA

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EP 102: Reprise Revive: Islamic Statecraft | Round Table Discussion


SIM and Ismail talk to Twitter commentators on the revival of Islamic statecraft.

Participants:

AQ: Formerly Oxford, now Cambridge grad student. Mostly focused on philosophy and Islamic theology

@Evollaqi

Dimashqee: Student of politics and history.

@Dimashaqee

Hossam Gamea studied Psychology at Hunter College, has been involved with several political grassroots efforts, including Criminal Justice reform, anti-government surveillance, anti-racist, anti-war, and Pro-Palestine efforts, and is a co-founder of an organization known as IMJ (Islamic Movement for Justice), which is dedicated to reviving political Islam within the Muslim American consciousness.

@FromCairotoBx

Haris is a Grad student at Oxford, did undergrad at U of T, interests in international relations, Islamic finance, and Ottoman history.

@transakhsanian

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EP 101: The Crooked Hooks | Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul


Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul talks to Mahin, Shaykh Amir and SIM about rediscovering Rumi, the dilemma of the Qadiani movement and other thoughts.

Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul is originally from the West Coast and currently resides in the Chicagoland area. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from the University of Washington in Seattle. After graduation Shaykh Hamzah went on to pursue traditional Islamic studies, which took him to a number of countries, including Syria and Egypt where he studied the Arabic language, Morocco, Mauritania, and UAE, where he studied the madhab of Imam Malik, grammar, usul al-hadith, and the two renditions of the qira’ah of Imam Nafi’, Warsh and Qalun, and finally Pakistan where he had the opportunity to study tafsir, usul al-hadith, hadith, ‘ilm al-rijal and Hanafi fiqh.

All of these studies culminated in him receiving an ijazat al-tadris, literally meaning “a license to teach” which is the equivalent in Pakistani Islamic seminaries to a MA in Arabic and Islamic studies, as well as an unbroken chain of transmission by which to narrate the hadith of such books as the Muwatta of Imam Malik, the Sihah al-Sittah (Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, Nasa’i and Ibn Majah), and the Sharh Ma’ani al-Athar of Imam al-Tahawi.

Currently Shaykh Hamzah is employed full time at Islamic Relief where he is involved in their fundraising efforts. http://www.islamic-relief.org/

Hamzah Maqbul also teaches at Ribat.org

Twitter: @HamzahMaqbul

SoundCloud: soundcloud.com/hmaqbul

Please support bringing the universal creed of Islām into our context on an intellectually robust level.

https://www.launchgood.com/project/modern_aqidah

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EP 100: On a Highway to Timbuktu | Shaykh Abu Taubah


We talk to Shaykh Abu Taubah from Orlando, FL about his time in Mauritania, his educational approach and marital advice.

Hosts: Shaykh Amir Saeed, Mahin, and SIM

Abu Taubah (born Marcus Robertson) is a convert to Islam from Brooklyn, New York.  He comes from an educated family where his father was the founding Vice President of Medgar Evers College, the only Negro college in the Northeastern United States.  His mother was a school principal and college professor.  He served in the U.S. Marine Corps before teaching at the Islamic School of Kansas City.

He then went on to study at Umm ul Qura in Mauritania under the tutelage of Shaykh Muhammad Saalim wal-udood ash-Shanqitee (rahimahullah).  He is an expert in the Arabic language and is a hafidh of the Qu’ran with a specialization in Warsh.  He is the founder of the Timbuktu Seminary, which is an online institution to transmit the Islamic sciences in a traditional format.

www.timbuktuedu.com

Interview with Greta Van Susteren (Fox News) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmHORPlkiD8

YouTube channel for Timbuktu Seminary https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCH_6kgPaXDTARM4-pXM4HQw

Facebook:  Timbuktu Seminary

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We talk to Shaykh Abu Taubah from Orlando, FL about his time in Mauritania, his educational approach and marital advice.

Hosts: Shaykh Amir Saeed, Mahin, and SIM

Abu Taubah (born Marcus Robertson) is a convert to Islam from Brooklyn, New York.  He comes from an educated family where his father was the founding Vice President of Medgar Evers College, the only Negro college in the Northeastern United States.  His mother was a school principal and college professor.  He served in the U.S. Marine Corps before teaching at the Islamic School of Kansas City.

He then went on to study at Umm ul Qura in Mauritania under the tutelage of Shaykh Muhammad Saalim wal-udood ash-Shanqitee (rahimahullah).  He is an expert in the Arabic language and is a hafidh of the Qu’ran with a specialization in Warsh.  He is the founder of the Timbuktu Seminary, which is an online institution to transmit the Islamic sciences in a traditional format.

www.timbuktuedu.com

Interview with Greta Van Susteren (Fox News) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmHORPlkiD8

YouTube channel for Timbuktu Seminary https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCH_6kgPaXDTARM4-pXM4HQw

Facebook:  Timbuktu Seminary

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EP 098: Where Eagles Dare: The Female Scholars | Ustadha Zaynab Ansari


Mahin and Ismail talk to Ustadha Zaynab Ansari at Texas Dawah Convention.

Zaynab Ansari spent a decade studying Farsi, Arabic, and traditional Islam, sitting with male and female scholars in seminaries in the Middle East, including traditional scholars in Damascus in the 1990s. Upon her return to the United States, she earned degrees in history and Middle Eastern Studies from Georgia State University.

Since 2014, Zaynab Ansari has served as a scholar-in-residence for Tayseer Foundation, offering enrichment courses and halaqahs to women and youth in the Muslim Community of Knoxville, and working on interfaith dialogue. She is currently an instructor at Tayseer Seminary, which features a one-year intensive in Islamic Studies, drawing students from Tennessee and all regions of the United States.

Ustadha Zaynab has previously written and taught for SunniPath. She has been a freelance writer for Azizah Magazine, a certified speaker with the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta, and a contributor to online Islamic educational portals such as SeekersHub. She has also served as the coordinator of oral histories for the After Malcolm Project, a digital archive of African-American Muslim history. She is part of the teaching faculty of the Ribaat Program, an online Islamic Studies curriculum led by Anse Tamara Gray, a leading woman scholar of traditional Islam. She is also a board member of Tayseer Seminary.

Links:

http://tayseerseminary.org/

https://www.facebook.com/TayseerSeminary/

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EP 097: The Quantum Chronicles | Fahad Tasleem


Mahin, SIM, and Nour sit down with Fahad Tasleem at Texas Dawah Convention.

Fahad Tasleem plays a multifaceted role as an ambassador, an instructor, an entrepreneur, a lecturer and a student. He is the founder of DC Seminary - An institute dedicated to spiritually empowering Muslim working professionals, graduates and students.

He is also the lead ambassador and instructor at the Islamic Education and Research Academy United States (iERA US).

His areas of interest include Islamic Theology, Dawah, History, Economics, Entrepreneurship and Quranic Studies. Fahad studied Arabic at Georgetown University and the University of Texas at Austin and he holds a bachelors in Economics from Michigan State University and a Masters in Taxation from the University of Southern California.

References:

The Divine Reality by Hamza Tzortzis

https://www.amazon.com/Divine-Reality-Islam-Mirage-Atheism/dp/0996545387/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1517956738&sr=1-1&keywords=the+divine+reality+hamza+tzortzis

Free: The Future of a Radical Price by Chris Anderson

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EP 096: A Question of Heaven: The Apologetics | Bassam Zawadi


On this week's episode, we talk to Bassam Zawadi who is known for his writings, debates, and lectures on answering some of the toughest questions regarding the Islamic belief to Muslims.

Hosts: Mahin, Sh. Amir  and SIM

Resources:

www.Call-To-Monotheism.com

List of Bassam Zawadi's Refutations and Rebuttals

How to Debate for Muslims by Bassam Zawadi (must listen)

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EP 095: The Seeds | Imam Daniel Abdullah Hernandez


Imam Daniel Abdullah Hernandez sits down with us talk about how his relationship with basketball and NBA brought him to Islam as well some of the projects he is working on with the Latino Muslim community.

Hosts: Mahin, Ismail, and SIM

===============

Imam Hernandez is an educational leader and facilitator of IslamInSpanish. Imam Abdullah organizes events in Spanish at the Pearland masjid in Pearland TX on a weekly basis, teaches regular classes in Spanish and English, and leads a Dawah initiatives on behalf of IslamInSpanish domestically and internationally. Imam Abdullah also presides over the Pearland Islamic Center in Pearland, Texas, an extension of the Islamic Society of Greater Houston (ISGH).

Imam Abdullah, converted to Islam in 1999, studied at Al Azhar University in Egypt from 2004-2007, completing five years’ worth of extensive coursework in Islamic Sciences. He continues his education in Islamic studies. He is currently studying at Mishkah University, Salik Acadamy, and Roots &Sprouts!

https://www.facebook.com/daniel.a.hernandez.92754

https://www.facebook.com/3PuertoRicanImams/

https://www.islaminspanish.orgImam Daniel Abdullah Hernandez sits down with us talk about how his relationship with basketball and NBA brought him to Islam as well some of the projects he is working on with the Latino Muslim community.

Hosts: Mahin, Ismail, and SIM

===============

Imam Hernandez is an educational leader and facilitator of IslamInSpanish. Imam Abdullah organizes events in Spanish at the Pearland masjid in Pearland TX on a weekly basis, teaches regular classes in Spanish and English, and leads a Dawah initiatives on behalf of IslamInSpanish domestically and internationally. Imam Abdullah also presides over the Pearland Islamic Center in Pearland, Texas, an extension of the Islamic Society of Greater Houston (ISGH).

Imam Abdullah, converted to Islam in 1999, studied at Al Azhar University in Egypt from 2004-2007, completing five years’ worth of extensive coursework in Islamic Sciences. He continues his education in Islamic studies. He is currently studying at Mishkah University, Salik Acadamy, and Roots &Sprouts!

https://www.facebook.com/daniel.a.hernandez.92754

https://www.facebook.com/3PuertoRicanImams/

https://www.islaminspanish.org/

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EP 094: Cats in the Cradle: The Absent Father | Mohammad Elshinawy


Mahin, Nour, and Ismail sit down with Mohammad Elshinawy at Texas Dawah Convention about the role of fathers in the family unit.

Mohammad Elshinawy is a graduate of English Literature – Brooklyn College, NYC. Studied at College of Hadith at the Islamic University of Madinah. Currently completing Bachelors in Islamic Studies at Mishkah University. Translated major works for the International Islamic Publishing House, the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America, and Mishkah University.

He is currently a research fellow at the Yaqeen Insititute for Islamic Research.

elshinawy@yaqeeninstitute.org

https://www.facebook.com/elshinawy.mohammad

https://twitter.com/ElshinawyM

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EP 093: Deus Ex Anima | Heraa Hashmi


Sammer and Nour talk to Heraa Hashmi, the organizer behind MuslimsCondemn.com, about her views on Muslim American politics, women’s rights, and Muslim support of the LGBTQ movement. Heraa also offers advice to Muslim centennials on how to make sense of these heated issues.

Heraa Hashmi is the 19-year old Muslim American woman behind the 712-page list of Muslim names condemning a collection of wrongdoings done falsely in the name of Islam, from acts of terrorism to climate change. Heraa was born in India and moved to Colorado at a young age. She’s a graduate of the University of Colorado, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology.

Twitter contact: @caveheraa
www.muslimsCondemn.com
https://www.amazon.com/Heraa-Hashmi/e/B00HZZ4A0Y

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EP 092: Man in the Box: The Imprisonment of Ibrahim Mohammad | Umaima Jafri


“Unlimited power in the hands of limited people always leads to cruelty.”  Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

On this week's episode, we talk to Umaima Jafri, a native Houstonian currently residing in the Midwest, as she fights for the release of her husband from a so-called war on terror.

https://www.facebook.com/freeibrahimzm/

EP 091: Resurrection: Ertuğrul | Round Table with Mohamed Ghilan


Netflix recently released Resurrection: Ertuğrul to western audiences and Muslims on the internet has been abuzz about it.   We set out to share our excitement and experiences while watching the show and take a stab (pun intended) at providing some historical context and compare it to the situation of the Muslim world today.

Hosts: Mahin, SIM, Irfan and Dr. Mohammed Ghilan

===============

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 Netflix recently released Resurrection: Ertuğrul to western audiences and Muslims on the internet has been abuzz about it.   We set out to share our excitement and experiences while watching the show and take a stab (pun intended) at providing some historical context and compare it to the situation of the Muslim world today.

Hosts: Mahin, SIM, Irfan and Dr. Mohammed Ghilan

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EP 090: Love will Tear us Apart: Polygamy and Infidelity | Nuriddeen Knight


We talk to Ustadha Nuriddeen Knight from By The Fig and The Olive Blog about secret marriages, polygamy and the #metoo movement.

Hosts: Mahin, SIM and Summer

Nuriddeen Knight completed an MA in psychology with a focus on child and family from Columbia University. Alongside her academic degree, she studied traditional Islamic knowledge including Islamic law, theology, spirituality and prophetic biography with local scholars and in the majalis in Amman, Jordan.

In 2015 she created Nooralshadhili.com, a holistic initiative focused on human development through education, research, and counseling.

Her written work has been featured in thepublicdiscourse.commvslim.com,altmuslimah.com and thedemureist.com. She compiled a collection of 40 sayings from the prophet Muhammad's life through the narration of his wife Aisha and is currently working on its second edition.

In 2013 she gave a lecture entitled 'A middle ground: An Islamic and Psychological Perspective on the Divided Self', combining Islamic wisdom and psychoanalytical theory. In 2014 she taught the New Muslims Program and Perfecting the Prayer classes for new Muslims in the M.E.C.C.A. center. In the summer of 2015 she conducted a class on traditional Islamic theology in Masjid At-Taqwa in Brooklyn, NY. And most recently gave an online lecture for Rabata.org concerning marital conflict.

She currently resides in Fez, Morocco with her husband Ustadh Abu Bakr and NYC.

Contact: M.me/Knight.Nuriddeen

http://bythefigandtheolive.com/

Twitter: @FigandOliveBlog

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EP 089: Take No Prisoners | Imam Shadeed Muhammad


Mahin and Ismail talk to Imam Shaheed Muhammad about his conversion to Islam and how he dealt with some of the extreme elements within the Salafi dawah from the east coast.

Imam Shadeed is the CEO of Rawdah Publications, Entrepreneur, Muslim, Author, Community Leader and Speaker on Islamic Affairs for Indigenous Muslims.

00:00-10:00: Early interactions with Islam

10:00-23:00: The road from prison to University of Medina

23:00-45:00: The (extreme) Salafi takeover

45:00-60:00: Know your audience

60:00-70:00: Countering 'Progressive Islam' and western Muslim brands

70:00-85:00: Regarding NAK scandal, how large Muslim organizations shun impoverished Muslim communities.

85:00-90:00: The Honorarium problem

================

https://www.facebook.com/ImamShadeedMuhammad/

Twitter and Periscope: @Shadeed_M76

Rawdah.info/Rawdah

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EP 088: Taiba USA | Nadeen Mustafa


Mahin, SIM and Summer talk to Nadeen Mustafa about Taiba USA based out of Houston, TX.  Taiba created an innovative approach utilizing the corporate database models in building a safe space for Muslim women to meet up for social gatherings, mentorship programs, and skill-building workshops.

Contact Taiba

info@taiba-usa.org

www.facebook.com/TaibaUSA/

http://www.taiba-usa.org

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EP 087: Imam At Large | Marc Manley


Mahin, SIM and Mort talk to Imam Marc Manley about working as an Imam for American masjids, race relations with the Muslim Community and touch on Muslims embracing liberalism.

================

Imam Marc Manley worked as a Muslim educator in subjects ranging from the Arabic language, philosophy, and creed, to spirituality and self-purification. He was formerly the Muslim Chaplain at the University of Pennsylvania.

He currently serves as the Religous Director of the Middle Ground Muslim Center based out of Upland, California.

http://www.marcmanley.com

Twitter: @manrilla

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EP 086: Into the Void: The American Jihadi in Prison | Ismail Royer (Part 2)


0:00 - 8:00: "The Order of the Day" The Communications Management Unit (CMU) for Muslims in Terra Haute, IN. 2006

8:00 - 12:00: Zvonko Bušić the Croatian

12:00 - 20:00: Divisions within the CMU

20:00 - 25:00: falling apart and fighting suicidal thoughts

25:00 - 39:00: Becoming an Imam John Walker Lindh, The Fight

39:00 - 83:00: Hunger strike, in the hole in Illinois, sent to the ADX SuperMax in Colorado

83:00 - : Winning again and Release

===========================

Contact Ismail Royer:
Website: https://agoodtree.net
Twitter: @_IsmailRoyer

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EP 085: Into the Void: Into the Void: The American Jihadi in Prison | Ismail Royer (Part 1)


Ismail Royer returns back on the show to tell us about his time incarcerated in some of the most notorious prisons in the United States.

0:00 - 38:00: charges, gameplan, sentencing

38:00 - 60:00: solitary, marital strains

61:00 -  75:00: prison racial dynamics

75:00 -  90:00: the alliance and revolt

Contact Ismail Royer:
Website: https://agoodtree.net
Twitter: @_IsmailRoyer

==============

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Shaming Of The Natural Male

I recently came across an article entitled “Why Are Some Muslim Men Obsessed With White Converts” written by Kaya Gravitter. The article basically talks about how some Muslim men are inclined to marry white converts for various reasons, and the author dissects the arguments in the form of mini rebuttals. A lot of the counter responses were very problematic to me and I’d like to highlight them in this article. This is not an attack on the author, I am sure she has her own frustrations, and intended to provide beneficial advice for her male audience. However, as a Muslim male, I feel compelled to respond to some of the points as a response to the general attitude and not the individual.

 

The author says:

 

Brothers tell me they want a convert because she was not born a Muslim and she found Islam by herself. I am told by Muslim men that they want a convert so he can teach her about Islam.  He does this so he can receive more good deeds. Us converts are not “good deed tokens” you can just receive to get into heaven. God loves humble people.  If you are expecting to get good deeds for selfish reasons, don’t waste your time.

 

The author is criticizing a man for wanting to teach his wife about Islam for reward, as if that is something disliked. One of the reasons people get married is because they feel that is a religious obligation, and they receive rewards for doing so.  The Prophet (S) said:

 

"Marriage is my sunnah. Whosoever keeps away from it is not from me."

 

And Allah says:

 

وَعَاشِرُوهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ فَإِن كَرِهْتُمُوهُنَّ فَعَسَىٰ أَن تَكْرَهُوا شَيْئًا وَيَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ فِيهِ خَيْرًا كَثِيرًا

Live with them in kindness, for if you dislike them, then perhaps you dislike something but Allah has placed therein much good. (Surah An-Nisa 4:19)

 

So, if we are looking at marriage as a form of worship and drawing nearer to Allah SWT through righteousness, why would it be wrong for a man to seek that in a revert? The term “selfish reasons” could be used in many examples and can be made to look negative. For example, if a woman says, “I want to complete half my deen and get married”. Would that be a selfish reason? If a woman is looking for a partner who can provide a certain standard of living (beyond basics), could that be selfish? The problem lies in the fact that “selfish” is a very subjective term when talking about marriage. Marriage in many ways is like a business contract. Each side has expectations from the other and they mutually agree to get married. One could call the expectations “selfish” but, it’s human nature.

 

The author goes on to say:

 

Some Brothers who marry converts say that they are worried their wife will leave Islam and become a Christian again. Maybe, brother, you are not secure about your Islam and don’t practice it properly, so you think she’ll leave the religion. If you are so worried about that, maybe you should be a better Muslim and husband; then she will never want to leave Islam. That means you should worry about your own faith, before you worry about hers.

Worrying about a convert spouse leaving Islam is a legitimate concern in the modern era since studies have indicated that many reverts to Islam end up leaving Islam as indicated by Imam Luqman Ahmad and Rubain Manzoor. That coupled with that fact that many born Muslims are also leaving the religion for Atheism as indicated in the Washington Post. This is a natural concern given the circumstances we live under today. It’s also important to note that many reverts also chose not to marry other reverts and prefer to marry born Muslims for several reasons. This may be uneasy for some people to digest, but these are legitimate concerns that any person may have. The other interesting point to note is that the author says, “If you are so worried about that, maybe you should be a better Muslim and husband; then she will never want to leave Islam”. I find this to be problematic because the author previously said “don’t expect that converts don’t know anything about Islam.  I researched Islam for three years before I converted”. So why would the reverts belief in Islam be dependent upon how the man were to behave if the revert has understood what Islam as all about before becoming a Muslim.

 

The author continues and says:

 

“I’ve also heard brothers say they refuse to marry coverts and only want to marry born Muslims, so they can teach their kids everything about Islam.  Yes, let’s put all of the burden on women yet again to carry the family. Also, when looking for someone to marry, we should never put aside anyone because of their race or the way they were raised.”

 

I understand that this maybe upsetting for some reverts to hear but I believe the individuals who make this claim have deeper reasons behind their decision. When and individual gets married, there are many factors that are taken into consideration. Factors such as cultural compatibility, gender roles, in-law relationships, dietary habits, etc. Sometimes people overlook the importance of compatibility and focus only on the deen. Of course, the deen should be the most important thing but if two practicing people are not compatible, it’s inevitable that there will be a strain on the marriage. Based on this, it’s understandable that people will have preferences for individuals from certain cultures over another. In an age of political correctness and social justice, I recognize this may not be the favorable viewpoint. However, the reality is that humans have always had preferences and they will continue to have preferences.

 

In the final part of the article, the author mentions:

 

“Basically, when looking for a wife, it’s okay to have a preference of who you want to marry, but it’s not okay to have a fetish. You should be diverse in your mindset. Black Muslimahs, or born Muslims of different ethnicities are just as great, if not better”.

 

The author choses to use the word “fetish” and I am not entirely sure why because generally the term fetish means “a sexual attraction to objects or body parts of lesser sexual importance (or none at all) such as feet or certain types of clothing”. The author is comparing a man’s preferences to fetishes, when in fact they are not related at all. A person preferring someone of a certain race can’t always be faulted because part of it is related to genuine attraction.  Simply put, a person can’t control who they find attractive.  The author can say there a plenty of women of different color and backgrounds, but that doesn’t mean the person can simply train themselves to automatically be attracted to something they weren’t attracted to before.

 

Sexuality is a very sensitive subject among Muslims, but it’s an important one. Men and women are built different and often enough they view sex and intimacy very differently. The reason I bring this is up is because the author attempted to use the word fetish in a negative implication to describe male arousal and intimacy. It is perfectly natural for men to like certain body parts, colors, smells, and so forth. As a matter of fact, this is part of normal sexuality. It seems the author chose to use this term to highlight the point she was trying drive home, which was that Muslim men should not be obsessed with white reverts. The author may have failed to realize that they may be interested in “white” reverts because they may share the same cultural norms that they have or would like to have. It could also be purely based on the fact that they are attracted to “white” women. We will never know unless we hear their reasons. However, it is very normal for women to receive solicitors for marriage, irrespective of their race or religion. The bottom line is that men will always be attracted to women and men have their preferences, as women do. Perhaps the author is more aware of these Muslim men who want “white” reverts because she is one. She most likely has never come across a brother looking for only a “black” revert sister because a brother looking for that probably wouldn’t approach her since she doesn’t fit the criteria. We live in a time where people are becoming more and more afraid to express their political views, preferences, and opinions because of political correctness. We must allow people to express themselves respectfully or we will be creating a generation of individuals that will rebel to the opposite extreme in the future. Let us not label and “shame” preferences/opinions because we may not agree with them, but rather let humans be humans.  

 

Original Article: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/mostlymuslim/2017/05/muslim-men-obsessed-white-converts/#xZEfWy4dyoI6dWJL.01

Murtaza Siddiqui

October 11, 2017

The views and opinions of contributors do not necessarily equate as endorsements by The Mad Mamluks. 

EP 084: On a Wing and a Prayer | Omer Mozaffar


Omer Mozaffar sits down in The Mad Mamluks studio for an exclusive conversation to break down what transpired in the ongoing predatory abuse saga and responds to allegations against him.

Hosts:

Shaykh Amir Saeed

SIM

Mahin Islam

=========================

Omer Mozaffar is the Muslim Chaplain at Loyola University. He addresses theological, personal, social matters for students of all sectarian outlooks. During the school year, he also runs classes on Scripture, Student Life, and other matters.

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EP 083: Crypto Writings: Bitcoin, Arbitration and Slander | Joe Bradford


Mort, Mahin and SIM talk to Sh. Joe Bradford about his recent writings involving Cryptocurrency, Defamation, Conflict Resolution and Mediation.

Houston Flooding and Islamic Wills: 0:00 to 11:39

Cryptocurrency: 14:00 - 60:00

Slander/Ambiguity - 60:01 - 1:18

Arbitration: 1:18 - End

Read More

EP 082: Abattoirs of Love | Daniel Haqiqatjou


SIM talks to Daniel Haqiqatjou about the Nouman Ali Khan scandal.

 

Daniel Haqiqatjou was born in Houston, Texas. He attended Harvard University where he majored in Physics and minored in Philosophy. He completed a Masters degree in Philosophy at Tufts University. Haqiqatjou also studies traditional Islamic sciences part-time. He writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and Modernity and is also a contributor to Muslim Matters and the Muslim Debate Initiative.

www.muslimskeptic.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/haqiqatjou/

Twitter: @haqiqatjou

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EP 081: Sleight of Hand | Nour Goda


Mahin and SIM talk to Nour Goda about her journey back to Islam, her divorce,"Wolf Shaykhs" and her experiences working with modernist/reformist Muslims.

Nour Goda is an educator, writer, lecturer, and podcaster.

 

 

 

 

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EP 080: The Other C-Word | Rashid Dar


Mahin and SIM talk to Rashid Dar about his rediscovery of Islam in his formative years, working for a Washington based think tank and talk about his paper "The Other C-Word".

Rashid Dar writes on foreign policy, Muslims in the west, he works for Washington based think tank and is also a student of Dar ul-Qasim based out of Chicago.

Notes and References:

https://rashiddar.com/the-other-c-word-caliphate-5fb5e0efe8bc

Rise of Colleges by Makdisi

Recalling the Caliphate by Salman Sayyid

The Taymiyyan Moment by Ovamir Anjum

Contact:

https://rashiddar.com/

@rashiddar

==============

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EP 079: In a Reverie | Dr. Jonathan Brown


ahin and SIM have a casual conversation with Dr. Jonathan Brown.

We talk to him about Turkey, the Rohingya, the Adnan Syed case, 9/11 conspiracy theories, call out culture, reparations for slavery and the recent Mad Mamluks controversy.

Hosts:

Mahin and SIM

===============================

Jonathan A.C. Brown is an American scholar of Islamic studies. Since 2012, he has been an associate professor at Georgetown University's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. In 2014, he was appointed Chair of Islamic Civilization. He is the editor in chief of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Law.

He has authored several books including Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenges and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet’s Legacy, Hadith: Muhammad's Legacy in the Medieval and Modern World, and The Canonization of al-Bukhari and Muslim. He has also published articles in the fields of Hadith, Islamic law, Salafism, Sufism, and Arabic language.

@JonathanACBrown

www.facebook.com/jonathanacbrown

==============

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EP 078: Once More Around The Moon | Roundtable


We talk about the culture of victimization, race relations, Colin Kaepernick, White Supremacists.

Hosts:

Mort, Moga, Mahin and SIM

==============

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EP 077: Shadowplay | Dr. Mohamed Ghilan


He's back.  Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Dr. Ghilan about the effects of Philosophy in the modern psyche. We talk about Postmodernism, Existentialism, Stoicism, and Spiritual Development. As well as comparing approaches to the tradition between the present and the past.

Dr. Ghilan is a neuroscientist, Islamic lecturer, YouTuber, and Podcaster.

===============================

AndalusOnline.org - Join the Andalus Book Club!

Search for "Mohamed Ghilan" in iTunes and subscribe to his podcast.

Twitter: @MohamedGhilan

===============================

Mohamed Ghilan is a Canadian Muslim originally born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to parents from Sudanese and Yemeni backgrounds. He attended high school after immigrating to Canada in Vancouver, British Columbia. Eventually, Mohamed moved to Victoria where he obtained a B.Sc. with a major in microbiology (honours) and a minor in business administration.

In 2007 Mohamed began his full time studies in the Islamic Tradition after having made connections with several Muslim scholars. He has been consistently travelling over the past years to spend intensive extended periods studying various aspects of the Islamic sciences relating to Theology and Creed, Jurisprudence, Hadith, Foundational Principles (Usool), Arabic, Poetry, spiritual purification, and Qur’anic sciences.

Mohamed has previously given lectures on the biography of the Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him, Fundamentalism in Islam, Islam and science, the message of Islam, Jesus in the Qur’an, in addition to others. He has also taught an introductory course on Islamic Jurisprudence according to the Maliki School as well as an introductory course on Islamic Theology (‘Aqeedah).

 

==============

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EP 076: Love Buzz | Nura Maznavi


On this episode, the tables are turned when our guest, Nura Maznavi, co-editor of Love, InshAllah and Salaam, Love, interviews Mahin and SIM with their wives about their own love stories, for an interesting conversation.  Nura Maznavi is a civil rights attorney, writer, and Fulbright scholar and the co-editor of the nonfiction anthologies Love, InshAllah: The Secret Love Lives of American Muslim Women and Salaam, Love: American Muslim Men on Love, Sex, and Intimacy.

 

Website

https://loveinshallah.com/

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/LoveInshAllah/

Twitter 

@salaamlovebook

@loveinshallah

Amazon 

https://www.amazon.com/Salaam-Love-American-Muslim-Intimacy/dp/0807079758

 

==============

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EP 075: ...and Social Justice for All? | Dawud Walid


We talk to Dawud Walid about Social Justice, Activism and Black Lives Matter.

Dawud Walid is currently the Executive Director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI), which is a chapter of America’s largest advocacy and civil liberties organization for American Muslims and is a member of the Michigan Muslim Community Council (MMCC) Imams Committee.  He is also a co-author of the book, "Centering Black Narrative".

https://www.amazon.com/Centering-Black-Narrative-Muslim-Muslims/dp/099827819X

Hosts: Mahin, SIM, Sh. Amir, Mort

Twitter: @DawudWalid

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dawudwalid/

==============

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EP 074: Tha Dogg Pound Roundtable


No guests this episode, just the gang talking to Shaykh Amir about Mona Haydar's new song entitled 'Dog'.  This episode features language/themes intended for mature audiences.  Do not message us telling us how we embarrassed you in front of your child.

 

Hosts:

Shaykh Amir Saeed

SIM

Mahin Islam

Murtaza (Mort)

Moga

==============

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EP 073: Poison was the Cure: CVE and PREVENT | Ahmed Shaikh


Mahin, SIM and Mort talk to Ahmed Shaikh about the CVE and PREVENT government programs that are being instated in the western world.

Ahmed Shaikh is an Estate Lawyer, ISNA Board Member and a writer for MuslimMatters.

ahmedshaikh.com

Twitter: @bornshaikh

==============

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EP 072: Amongst the Madrassas of Alim-Ka | Abdul Rahman Chao


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Shaykh Chao about his childhood experiences in a traditional Indo-Pak madrassa.

Shaykh Chao is a Houston based speaker and a Halal Chinese food enthusiast.

Master of Theological Studies - Christian Studies, Literary Theology, Islamic Studies
2011 Vanderbilt University
Bachelors of Arts - Theology & Missiology (Da'wa wa Usūl al-Dīn)
2006 University of Medina

Snapchat: archaonet

Twitter: abdulrahmanchao

Website: archao.net

Facebook: Facebook.com/abdulrahmanchao

==============

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EP 071: SSSS - You Are Not Cleared for Takeoff | KAYEM


Mahin, Mort and Moga talk to hip hop artist Kayem (the artist formerly known as Khalid M.) about being on the no-fly list, the Libyan revolution, life as a Muslim Hip Hop artist.

Son of a Libyan revolutionary, Kayem is a Chicago-based hip-hop artist who was born into the struggle. His father was a political prisoner who helped form a pro-democracy movement after escaping prison. Kayem’s first trip to Libya, after spending a lifetime of advocacy in exile, was filmed in the docuseries “Sing Freedom”.

Yahoo! Music listed Kayem’s showcase at South by Southwest 2017 as “The 6 Best Things We Saw at SXSW” and he was listed as one of CNN’s “Most Interesting People”. He has also been featured in Rolling Stone, Billboard, Complex Mag, The New York Times, and more.

Kayem relaunched his career with a name-change in 2017 after having to step away due to government restrictions. He detailed his experience on “Intercepted”, where he was a guest along with Edward Snowden.

With a story fit for a Hollywood script and a loyal, hungry international fan base, there’s no question Kayem’s time is now.

==============

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EP 070: Social Intrapreneurship| Heba Ansari



Mahin, Summer and Sh. Amir talk to Heba Ansari about Social Intrapreneurship.

Heba works at a global strategy firm and as a World Economic Forum Global Shaper. TEDx describes her as someone who’s “passion lies in using the intersection of the private and public sector to solve our world’s biggest problems.”

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==============

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EP 069: The First American Jihadi | Ismail Royer


Fresh out of a 14-year prison stint, Ismail Royer reveals everything that happened from his endeavors in the Bosnian war, Pakistani training camps, incarcerated life, the Anwar Al-Awlaki Saga, how he spends his days now fighting extremism/terrorism.

Hosts: SIM and Mahin

Website: https://agoodtree.net/

Twitter: @_IsmailRoyer

==============

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EP 068: The Backpacking Scholar | Mustafa Umar


Mahin, SIM and Shayk Amir talk to Mustafa Umar of the Islamic Institute of Orange County and the California Islamic University.

=========================================

Shaykh Mustafa Umar was born and raised in Orange County, California. He completed his Bachelors in Information and Computer Science from the University of California Irvine while studying Arabic and getting a taste of the various Islamic sciences through personal study and by attending local intensive Islamic classes. His thirst for knowledge led him to study at Nadwatul Ulama in Lucknow, India and then to Cairo, Egypt. After two years in the East, he moved to France for another three years and graduated with a degree in Theology & Islamic Law from the European Institute of Islamic Sciences. He went on to serve the Muslim community of Southern California as an Imam and activist for about three years.

Shaykh Mustafa left his post of Associate Director at the Islamic Society of Corona-Norco in order to focus more on his studies. He moved to the UK and authored several books on Islam while, in his spare time, he completed an M.A. in Islamic Studies from the University of Gloucestershire, graduating with highest honors and receiving the Islamic Bank of Britian award for academic excellence. He currently serves as the Education Director at the Islamic Institute of Orange County (IIOC). Shaykh Mustafa has the rare asset of being able to fuse together the authenticity of a traditional Islamic education with the academic experience of both the Arab and Western worlds, all combined with a deep understanding of modern pop-culture.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IIOC.Anaheim

Website: http://www.iioc.com/

Ph: 714-533-6246

California Islamic University

Website: https://www.calislamic.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/calislamic

==============

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EP 067: Islam by Touch | Nadir Thabatah


Mahin and SIM talk to Nadir Thabatah about how he and his wife brought the first English Translation of the Qur'an in a Braille format, we also talk about hip hop, super salafies, SJW's and much more.

Nadir is the co-founder and president of Islam By Touch. Islam By Touch is the first Muslim organization in North America dedicated to the blind community.  Nadir and his wife and co-founder, Yadira Thabatah, produce the English meanings of the Quran and distribute them free of charge.

You can fund a Qur'an for the legally blind for $250.00

Learn more and help support us by visiting islambytouch.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Islambytouch

Twitter: @IslamByTouch

==============

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EP 066: The Quality of Erudition | Bilal Ali Ansari


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Maulana Bilal Ali Ansari.

Mawlana Bilal has ijāzahs in hadith from the most senior generation of hadith masters in Pakistan, namely Mawlana ʿAbd al-Halīm al-Nuʿmānī, Mawlana Salīm Allāh Khān, Mawlana Sarfarāz Khān Ṣafdar, Mawlana ʿAbd al-Ḥamīḍ al-Sawātī, and Mawlana Khān Muḥammad — students of Shaykh al-Islam Ḥusayn Aḥmad al-Madanī and Mawlana Fakhr al-Ḥasan al-Murādabādī (may Allah have mercy on them). He has since continued his studies in various fields, including discursive theology (kalām), Islamic jurisprudence (uṣūl al-fiqh), and Islamic philosophy under Shaykh Mohammed Amin Kholwadia at Darul Qasim. His research interests include Hadith, Ḥanafī law, Education and curriculum development, Mental Health, and Islamic Bioethics

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EP 065: The Black Muslims | Omar Muhammad


Mahin, SIM and Mort talk to the Khateeb of Masjid al Faatir, Omar Muhammad.   Masjid Al-Faatir was founded by the late Muhammad Ali and Jabir Herbert Muhammad (may Allah preserve them).  Khateeb Omar is the grandson of Elijah Muhammad and the nephew of Warith Deen Muhammad.  We start the discussion off with the beginnings of the Nation of Islam and the Black Sunni Muslims of America.  Later, we discuss the current socio-political climate of Black Muslims, Black Lives Matter movement and how Muhammad Ali helped build Masjid Al-Faatir.

Please help support Masjid Al-Faatir financially by going to http://masjidal-faatir.com

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EP 064: Activism for Truth and Justice | Omar Suleiman


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Imam Omar Suleiman about his childhood in Louisiana, activism and the Dallas-Fort Worth shootings.

Imam Omar Suleiman is the President of the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research and a professor of Islamic Studies at Southern Methodist University. He’s also the resident scholar of the Valley Ranch Islamic Center, and Co-Chair of Faith Forward Dallas at Thanks-Giving Square, a multi-faith alliance for peace and justice.

==============

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EP 063: Of Hijab, Feminism and Rape Culture | Daniel Haqiqatjou


Mahin, SIM and Summer talk to Daniel Haqiqatjou about the Dad and Hijabi daughter viral photo, an intro to feminism, and rape culture epidemic.

Daniel Haqiqatjou was born in Houston, Texas. He attended Harvard University where he majored in Physics and minored in Philosophy. He completed a Masters degree in Philosophy at Tufts University. Haqiqatjou also studies traditional Islamic sciences part-time. He writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and Modernity and is also a contributor to the Muslim Debate Initiative.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/haqiqatjou/

Twitter: @haqiqatjou

==============

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EP 062: Showdown: Mamluks vs Mongols | Asim Ahmed


Mahin, SIM and Mort talk to Asim Ahmed about life as a pilot for a major airline and a brief history of the Mamluks and the Mongols.

==============

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EP 061: From the Cosmos to the Quantum | Mufti Abu Layth Al Maliki


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Birmingham's finest, Mufti Abu Layth Al-Maliki.  We talk about the Mamluks, liberal interpretation of Islam and the nature of discourse with Atheism and the scientific community.

Contents:

01:00 – Why the kunya 'Abu Layth'?

02:20 – 'Mad Mamluks' & the Mongol history

12:50 – Muslim communities in Birmingham, UK & the U.S

29:00 – Feminism

34:10 – Islam & liberalism

50:45 - Zabiha meat in the West

56:00 - Institutionalisation of Religion & regulating the image of Islam

59:00 - Regarding ‘Monday Nights with Mufti’ on FB live & an impersonation of Mufti Abu Layth

1:04:20 - Promoting health/fitness & positive role models for Muslims

1:17:30 - Scholars, censorship & control

1:25:50 – Islam, Science & some out-dated arguments

1:30:30 - Challenges of this age- Science, Ethics & Atheism

1:49:00 - What central themes from the Quran should we promote?

1:52:30 – Quran & free will

1:56: 05 – Narratives of Islam & presenting Religion today

1:59:30 – Dealing with modern issues

2:03:30 – “Swearing” & cultural sensitivities

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mufti.abulayth

Twitter: https://twitter.com/muftiabulayth

Email: mufti.abulayth@gmail.com

Snapchat: malm2014

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EP 060: MIST Chicago | Ziyad Dadabhoy


Mahin, SIM and Mort talk to Ziyad Dadabhoy.  Ziyad is a board member of the MIST Chicago Chapter.

The Muslim Inter-Scholastic Tournament (MIST) is a unique program designed for today’s American youth.  It is famous for being a fun, educational, interactive program of competitions and workshops geared towards bringing high school students together from around the nation to develop leadership, communication, and other creative skills, all while gaining a deeper understanding of Islam and Muslims.

The Muslim Inter-Scholastic Tournament (MIST)™ consists of annual Regional Tournaments that take place in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, DC,  Florida, Philadelphia, New York City, Houston, Southern California and Toronto.  The winners from each Regional Tournament qualify to compete at the annual National Tournament.  The tournaments last two-three days, ending with the Awards Ceremony on the final night.  The Muslim Inter-Scholastic Tournament (MIST)™ currently features over 35 different competitions. MIST has 10 chapters and over 3,000 participants in North America. We strive to prepare emerging leaders and community members to excel academically, develop confidence in their abilities, and most importantly, create friendships that will last for years to come.

chicago@getmistified.com

http://www.mistchicago.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MIST.Chicago

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EP 059: Syria: Dead Men of The Levant | Muhammed Shirazi


Mahin, SIM and Omer Zaman talk to Muhammed Shirazi of Islamic Oasis.  Shirazi recently returned home from the borders of Idlib, Syria. He shares with us harrowing stories, responds to Russian news allegations and warns us of our indifference to the calamity.

Islamic Oasis is a charity and refugee center based out of Chicago that works to provide the refugee community with aid and religious education.

Please donate to Islamic Oasis by visiting their website below:
Islamic Oasis
6243 N Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60659
872-203-9413

http://islamicoasis.org

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EP 058: Islamically Integrated Psychotherapy | Hooman Keshavarzi


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Hooman Keshavarzi about Islamic psychotherapy. Hooman serves as the Executive Director of Khalil Center.  Khalil Center is a social and spiritual community wellness center designed to address the widespread prevalence of social, psychological, familial, relational and spiritual issues of communities. Khalil Center has locations in the Bay Area and Chicagoland.

Khalil Center is a project of the Zakat Foundation.

Annual Banquet Dinner:

Speakers: Zaid Shakir, Hamzah Wald Maqbul and Rania Awaad

Time: 6pm
Date: Saturday, April 15 2017
Where Shalimar Banquet Hall
280 W. North Ave, Villa Park IL 60181

info@khalilcenter.com
Facebook: http://facebook.com/khalilcenter
Twitter: @KhalilCenter

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EP 057: Saad Tasleem | Saad Tasleem


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Saad Tasleem about kunias, Working Out, Comic books, online stalkers and his new clothing line.

Saad Tasleem is one of the newest instructors at Al Maghrib Institute.  He studied Art History, Modern Art, Graphic Design, and Psychology at the University of Maryland. He started his Islamic education at IIASA in Fairfax, VA. He then went on to study in the Islamic University of Madinah where he dedicated himself to the study of Islamic Sciences. He graduated with a Bachelor’s from the Faculty of Shariah, University of Madinah.

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EP 056: The Snapchat Imam | Suhaib Webb


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir sit-down with Imam Suhaib Webb. Sh. Amir reunites with his Al-Azhar classmate, Suhaib Webb. We talk about Black Lives Matter, Keto Diets, Madhabs, and Arabic.

Suhaib Webb is a Graduate of University of Central Oklahoma with a background in Education & Azhar University from the College of Shariah (Islamic Law & Jurisprudence). Imam Suhaib has served a number of communities over the years in North America and is currently managing an Institute for training Imams in Washington DC.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/suhaib.webb

Twitter: @ImamSuhaibWebb

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EP 055: Friend Zones and Gender Roles | Karim Serageldin


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Karim Serageldin about male and female identities and how we behave around each other.

Karim, the founder of Noor Human Consulting, has BA in psychology & religion and an MA in east-west psychology with a specialization in spiritual counseling. He is a certified life and relationship coach with years of teaching and community outreach experience. He consults with leading scholars of Islam and is working on his own theory of Islamic psychology for Muslim in the west.

Make sure to subscribe to Karim's YouTube Channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsJf_w0XO9tZjl0eghGBvgQ

http://www.noorhumanconsulting.com

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EP 054: In the Quest for More Knowledge | Shaykh Amin Kholwadia


Shaykh Mohammed Amin Kholwadia has been called Muslim America’s greatest hidden jewel primarily owing to his deep knowledge in the Islamic tradition and aggressive engagement of and preoccupation with contemporary issues facing everyday Muslims in the West. Shaykh Amin, as he is fondly called by his students, reflects the full breadth and depth of traditional Islamic knowledge. His is a level of academic accomplishment that traces its roots to the rigor of a classical instruction in the traditional Deobandi schools of Northern India. There, he exhausted himself under the tutelage of some of the brightest minds in Muslim academia. He received his theosophical initiation and instruction from the venerated Mine of Divine Knowledge, Shaykh Mohammed Meeran, at the Sabil al-Rashad Institute in the Southern Indian city of Bangalore.

After completing his studies in the subcontinent in line with the methodologies and curricula of some of the greatest luminaries of our scholarly tradition, Shaykh Amin returned to his home in England and worked as a professional translator and book reviewer. He relocated to Chicago in 1984 and since his arrival, he has served as a Muslim scholar in various capacities and as an advisor for Muslim schools, Muslim organizations, and the Council of Religious Leaders of Greater Chicagoland. Among his well-known published works are Islamic Finance: What it is and what it could be, co-authored and published in England, and a book on Qur’anic exegesis entitled A Spark From the Dynamo of Prophethood. He is currently working on a book on Ghazālian eschatology.

https://darulqasim.org

@DarulQasim

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Break the Echo Chamber

written by  SIM

Were you shocked that so many people supported the Trump presidency? Do you find yourself pushing away people with differing perspectives? Finding your newsfeed a bit predictable? This could be happening because you are stuck in an echo chamber. The echo chamber is a social situation where you are surrounded by people who agree with you in most (if not all) the things you believe in. It's  dangerous because it leads to damaging relationships, polarized social groups, and overall poor social interactions. If you ever wondered how a pitchfork wielding mob forms in a movie, this is how it happens. Breaking the echo chamber is crucial to a balanced well-being and a healthy society.

The algorithm in our social media newsfeed distributes information that we already tend to agree with.  We're finding ourselves increasingly insular and intolerant of others.  Studies have shown that this happens because we generally view ourselves as a 'good' people.   When we hear about new thoughts, the needle on our compass of right and wrong starts immediately spinning toward a particular direction.   When we agree with something we automatically ascribe it into our understanding of the reality around us; everything else is discarded.  This, in turn, leads to cognitive dissonance; where we inherit disjointed ideas that upon further introspection, we're finding they don't make sense and unable to explain it to others because we never fully understood it to begin with.

Locking people into echo chambers has been a tool used by oppressive governments to stifle dissenting ideas in society. The tricky part of echo chambers is that most people don't even realize they are part of it.  It takes an active effort by an individual to explore different perspectives. It requires setting your biases and emotions aside and actively listening to another perspective and discovering why people hold the beliefs they do.

 

 

 

EP 053: The Wooer and The Maiden | Dalia Mogahed


Mahin, SIM and Summer talk to Dalia Mogahed live in studio about Muslims having trouble getting married, Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) and Extremism.

Dalia Mogahed is an American scholar of Egyptian origin. She is the Director of Research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU) in Washington, D.C. She is also President and CEO of Mogahed Consulting, a Washington, D.C.-based executive coaching and consulting firm specializing in Muslim societies and the Middle East. Mogahed is former Executive Director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, a non-partisan research center that provided data and analysis to reflect the views of Muslims all over the world. She was selected as an advisor by U.S. President Barack Obama on the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Twitter: @DMogahed

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EP 052: Yemen: A Well of Tears | Aneesa Muthana


Aneesa Muthana is a Yemeni Muslim American business owner and community activist and spokesperson.

Yell for Yemen: What about Yemen? Tue 7 March 2017 6:15 pm - 9:00 pm
Cortelyou Commons
DePaul University

Please assist the Yemeni people by going to Islamic Relief's Yemen page.

Yemen

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EP 051: Team Truth | Round Table Discussion


This week, Mahin, SIM, Mort and Sh. Amir, share our umrah experiences and respond to some of the criticism and accusations directed our way.

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EP 050: Ilyas and Duck | Omar Khawaja


Mahin, SIM and new host Summer talk to Omar Khwaja, author of the popular children's books 'Ilyas and Duck'. We discuss his inspirations, parenting and going beyond the 40 hour work week.
Omar is a Muslim American born in Saudi Arabia with family roots in Pakistan. He grew up in New York and now lives in the Washington D.C area with his wife, three young children, and lots of noise.

Omar is the founder of Little Big Kids and creator of the Ilyas & Duck cartoon characters. Ilyas & Duck Search for Allah is his first children's book.

Ilyas & Duck Search for Allah - 2014 Moonbeam Children's Book Awards Silver Medal (Religion/Spirituality)

Ilyas & Duck and the Fantastic Festival of Eid-al-Fitr - 2015 Moonbean Children's Book Awards Silver Medal (Multicultural - Non-Fiction picture book)

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EP 049: Dead Bedrooms | Karim Serageldin


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Karim Serageldin about struggling marriages from lack of sex. This episode is intended for mature audiences so please don't send us e-mails about how we embarrassed you while you were driving your kids to school.

Karim, the founder of Noor Human Consulting, has BA in psychology & religion and an MA in east-west psychology with a specialization in spiritual counseling. He is a certified life and relationship coach with years of teaching and community outreach experience. He consults with leading scholars of Islam and is working on his own theory of Islamic psychology for Muslim in the west.

http://www.noorhumanconMahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Karim Serageldin about struggling marriages from lack of sex.  This episode is intended for mature audiences so please don't send us e-mails about how we embarrassed you while you were driving your kids to school.

Karim, the founder of Noor Human Consulting, has BA in psychology & religion and an MA in east-west psychology with a specialization in spiritual counseling. He is a certified life and relationship coach with years of teaching and community outreach experience. He consults with leading scholars of Islam and is working on his own theory of Islamic psychology for Muslim in the west.

http://www.noorhumanconsulting.com

==============

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EP 048: NoDAPL | Yusuf Cincinnati


Murtaza (Mort), Mahin and SIM talk to Yusuf Cincinnati about his experiences at the protests against the Dakota Access Pipleine at Standing Rock, North Dakota.

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EP 047: The Dhimmis | Dr. Jonathan Brown


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Dr. Jonathan Brown about the controversial subject of the Dhimmis, Hadith, Albani, Slavery, Muslim Alliances and the MLI-BDS Rift.

Jonathan A.C. Brown is an American scholar of Islamic studies. Since 2012, he has been an associate professor at Georgetown University's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. In 2014, he was appointed Chair of Islamic Civilization. He is the editor in chief of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Law.

He has authored several books including Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenges and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet’s Legacy, Hadith: Muhammad's Legacy in the Medieval and Modern World, and The Canonization of al-Bukhari and Muslim. He has also published articles in the fields of Hadith, Islamic law, Salafism, Sufism, and Arabic language.

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EP 046: Conviction | Daniel Haqiqatjou


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Daniel Haqiqatjou about conviction in belief, the Muslim-Liberal alliance, and the Obama legacy.

Daniel Haqiqatjou was born in Houston, Texas. He attended Harvard University where he majored in Physics and minored in Philosophy. He completed a Masters degree in Philosophy at Tufts University. Haqiqatjou also studies traditional Islamic sciences part-time. He writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and Modernity and is also a contributor to the Muslim Debate Initiative.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/haqiqatjou/

Twitter: @haqiqatjouMahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Daniel Haqiqatjou about conviction in belief, the Muslim-Liberal alliance, and the Obama legacy.

Daniel Haqiqatjou was born in Houston, Texas. He attended Harvard University where he majored in Physics and minored in Philosophy. He completed a Masters degree in Philosophy at Tufts University. Haqiqatjou also studies traditional Islamic sciences part-time. He writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and Modernity and is Director of Religion and Scientism for the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research. He is also a contributor to the Muslim Debate Initiative.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/haqiqatjou/

Twitter: @haqiqatjou

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EP 045: Shibirty| Ammar AlShukry


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir sit with Al Maghrib Instructor and Spoken word artist Ammar AlShukry during his recent visit to Chicago.

Ammar began seeking knowledge in New York with a wide variety of teachers in Quran, Hadith, Aqeedah, Fiqh and Tafseer.  Beyond the tri-state he was able to benefit from scholars throughout the United States such as Shaykh Salah Al-Sawwy, Dr. Hatem El-Haj, Shaykh Mamdouh Mahmoud, and extensive study with Vice-President of AlMaghrib Institute, Shaykh Waleed Basyouni. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Islamic Sciences with AlMaghrib Institute.

He has the ability to walk seamlessly between generations. Ammar is also very well known for his thought-provoking and heart-moving poetry with classics such as “Jannah”, “Until I See You”, and “The Witr Du’a”

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ammarpoetry/

Twitter: @ammarpoetry

Email: ammaralshukry@gmail.com

Website: http://www.iamammar.com

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EP 044: Consciousness | Dr. Mohamed Ghilan


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Dr. Mohamed Ghilan about Consciousness, Artificial Intelligence, Neo-Atheism, proving the existence of a creator, why we sin despite having conviction in God.

Dr. Ghilan is a neuroscientist, Islamic lecturer and podcaster.

AndalusOnline.org - Join the Andalus Book Club!

Search for "Mohamed Ghilan" in iTunes.

Twitter: @MohamedGhilan

Mohamed Ghilan is a Canadian Muslim originally born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to parents from Sudanese and Yemeni backgrounds. He attended high school after immigrating to Canada in Vancouver, British Columbia. Eventually, Mohamed moved to Victoria where he obtained a B.Sc. with a major in microbiology (honours) and a minor in business administration.

In 2007 Mohamed began his full time studies in the Islamic Tradition after having made connections with several Muslim scholars. He has been consistently travelling over the past years to spend intensive extended periods studying various aspects of the Islamic sciences relating to Theology and Creed, Jurisprudence, Hadith, Foundational Principles (Usool), Arabic, Poetry, spiritual purification, and Qur’anic sciences.

Mohamed has previously given lectures on the biography of the Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him, Fundamentalism in Islam, Islam and science, the message of Islam, Jesus in the Qur’an, in addition to others. He has also taught an introductory course on Islamic Jurisprudence according to the Maliki School as well as an introductory course on Islamic Theology (‘Aqeedah).

In May 2015, Mohamed earned a PhD in neuroscience at the University of Victoria, where he studied synaptic plasticity in Huntington’s disease, as well as the effects and molecular mechanisms of stress on the brain in Fragile X syndrome. He hopes his research can eventually be used to develop new therapies can be used to assist individual with movement disorders or intellectual disabilities.Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Dr. Mohamed Ghilan about Consciousness, Artificial Intelligence, Neo-Atheism, proving the existence of a creator, why we sin despite having conviction in God.   Dr. Ghilan is a neuroscientist, Islamic lecturer and podcaster.

AndalusOnline.org - Join the Andalus Book Club!

Search for "Mohamed Ghilan" in iTunes to listen to his Podcast.

Twitter: @MohamedGhilan

Mohamed Ghilan is a Canadian Muslim originally born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to parents from Sudanese and Yemeni backgrounds. He attended high school after immigrating to Canada in Vancouver, British Columbia. Eventually, Mohamed moved to Victoria where he obtained a B.Sc. with a major in microbiology (honours) and a minor in business administration.

In 2007 Mohamed began his full time studies in the Islamic Tradition after having made connections with several Muslim scholars. He has been consistently travelling over the past years to spend intensive extended periods studying various aspects of the Islamic sciences relating to Theology and Creed, Jurisprudence, Hadith, Foundational Principles (Usool), Arabic, Poetry, spiritual purification, and Qur’anic sciences.

Mohamed has previously given lectures on the biography of the Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him, Fundamentalism in Islam, Islam and science, the message of Islam, Jesus in the Qur’an, in addition to others. He has also taught an introductory course on Islamic Jurisprudence according to the Maliki School as well as an introductory course on Islamic Theology (‘Aqeedah).

In May 2015, Mohamed earned a PhD in neuroscience at the University of Victoria, where he studied synaptic plasticity in Huntington’s disease, as well as the effects and molecular mechanisms of stress on the brain in Fragile X syndrome. He hopes his research can eventually be used to develop new therapies can be used to assist individual with movement disorders or intellectual disabilities.

==============

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EP 043: Just-war Theory | Justin Parrott


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Justin Parrott over Skype. Justin is a researcher for the newly formed initiative led by Sh. Omar Suleiman, the Yaqeen Institute.  We talk about Jihad, Creeping Sharia, Sam Harris, Imam Ghazali.

Justin Parrott has a BA in Physics, English from Otterbein University. MRes in Islamic Studies in progress from University of Wales. Current Researcher at NYU in Abu Dhabi. He currently resides in Abu Dhabi

Justin's article Jihad as Defense: Just-war Theory

https://www.yaqeeninstitute.org/publications/jihad-as-defense-just-war-theory-in-the-quran-and-sunnah/

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EP 042: Perennialism and Inter-Muslim Attitudes in the West | Dr. Shadee ElMasry


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk about The Study Quran book, errors of Perennialism, inter muslim attitudes in the west and muslims participating in elections.

Dr. Shadee Elmasry was born and raised in New Jersey and studied in the Muslim world in Fez, Hadramawt, Cairo, Makka, and Madina.  He completed a Masters from The George Washington University in comparative religion, then a PhD from the University of London, SOAS on “Da’wa in the Works of Imam al-Haddad.”

Dr. Shadee has his own podcast called the Safina Society Podcast.  Now available on iTunes.

https://www.safinasociety.org/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-safina-society-podcast/id1173266688

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EP 041: Applying Principles of Management within our Communites | Salman Razzaque


This week's episode is two parts.  The first half is covering Salman sharing his experiences in getting accepted into a top tier undergraduate institution. The second half (around the 33rd minute mark) is about applying management and business strategy principles to Muslim organizations.

Salman Razzaque is a Senior Business Analyst at McKinsey & Company, a leading global management consulting firm.  Salman is a Chicagoland native who attended Stanford University where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Biology.  He volunteers for Ma'ruf Chicago in his spare time.

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EP 040: Evolution of Social Media | Omar Usman


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir talk to Omar Usman about interracial marriages, Muslim Matters, evolution of modern Social Media and John C. Maxwell's leadership program.

Omar Usman is one of the founders of the popular blog MuslimMatters.  Host of Debt Free Muslims Podcast and Qalam Institute.

http://ibnabeeomar.com/

Twitter: @ibnabeeomar

  thru

Youtube: 

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EP 039: Trumpocalypse! | Round Table with Joe Bradford


Mahin, SIM and Murtaza talk with Sh. Joe Bradford about how Trump won the election and how Muslim Americans move forward.

Joe Bradford is an American scholar of Islam, Author, instructor, entrepreneur, and ethical investments advisor. He regularly lectures on topics such as Islamic law, legal theory, financial ethics, and thought. Get your Islamic Will made in 3 easy steps at https://www.mywassiyah.com His books: Simple Zakat Guide Qaddumi's Elementary Hanbali Primer A Primer on Jumu'ah www.joebradford.net @JoeBradfordNet https://www.facebook.com/Bradford.Joe

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EP 038: Traversing the Divides | Shaykh Yasir Qadhi


Sh. Amir, SIM and Mahin talk to Sh. Yasir Qadhi about The Pledge of Mutual Respect and Cooperation, The Fiqh Council, taking principled stances and making Pilgrimage to Al Aqsa.

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EP 037: All out Social Media Warfare! - Round Table Discussion with Abdul Malik Ryan


Happy Haramoween! On this week's episode, Sh. Amir, Mahin and SIM sit with Chaplain Abdul Malik Ryan about Halloween, share a Jinn story, talk about CIOGC award to Rabia Chaudry, the All Male Scholar picture, Sex Education and other Social Media drama.

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Truth: Between Conviction & Delusion

written by: Mohamed Ghilan (Guest Contributor from MohamedGhilan.com)

This article appeared originally in Al Madina Institute’s Blog and was expressly authorized by the author for publication on The Mad Mamluks.

In his autobiography Deliverance from Error (Al-Munqidh Min Adh-Dhalal), Imam Abu Hamid Al-Ghazālī explains how he dealt with his skepticism on the path to attaining certainty regarding what beliefs he adopted. He mastered the tenets of the major intellectual movements of his time and authored books in each, garnering the praise of figures within these movements for how Imam Al-Ghazālī not only understood the core issues they were dealing with, but that he had a better grasp on them than their own scholars. Nevertheless, the intellectual activity proved to be insufficient, as it never settled his restless soul. The significance of Imam Al-Ghazālī does not lie so much in his insights about the specific deficiencies of arguments within each intellectual movement and sect during his time. Rather, it is in his realization that a discourse claiming to deal with knowledge but that cannot in turn be realized in tangible action that transforms one’s being is in reality a façade – a mirage of enlightenment.

The Arabic terms for knowledge, ‘ilm, and action, ‘amal, differ only in the order of letters. Changing the letter order once more results in the word lama’, which means brilliance. True enlightenment, which is really about having the capacity for insight, i.e., being able to see beyond what is apparent and presented to the sight, is a result of having a purified heart. Indeed, although the Beloved PBUH had his heart physically washed, the ingredients that made up the water used in that purification process have been passed down over the past generations. For us, it is a matter of consciously mixing them and doing the washing ourselves.

A purified heart is necessarily one that is connected with God. The possessor of such a heart reflexively interprets the events of their lives as reflections of Divine Attributes in light of the Big Picture. God’s mercy is not something to be judged based on a limited interaction with this world, for our presence in the world is nothing but a brief stop on the path to the Final Abode. Attachment to this temporal realm is an attachment to an illusion of the power of the self. It is the idea that I am the possessor ofmy destiny, and that my plans will get me to my goals. The delusion here lies in the fact that there is no I or me for there to be amy. That is not to say that one should stop contemplating the future and plan accordingly. But it is to point out that plans have a funny way of becoming an idol to be worshiped, albeit subconsciously, besides God. A man knocked on the Beloved PBUH’s door and when asked to identify himself he replied, “It’s me” as if the Beloved PBUH should recognize who it was from his voice, to which the Beloved PBUH replied with dislike, “It’s me! It’s me!

The Beloved PBUH taught a man who asked about whether he should tie his camel or just have reliance on God that he should “tie it and rely on God.” The teaching here is that it is upon one to strive, but it is not upon one to arrive. In other words, you must carry out the means, but do not get attached to them or to their outcomes. Rather, your possession of the camel has nothing to do with your own doing in the real sense of what that would actually entail. You have no power to sustain your own contingent and temporal existence, let alone possess any power of your own to bring another’s existence to be subjugated to yours.

Among the invocations recited during the morning and evening litanies practiced and transmitted from the Beloved PBUH is one stating, “O God, I seek from you a surprise that is good, and I seek refuge with you from a surprise that is bad.” Plans are our means to create an orderly life to minimize anxiety about the unknown. Plans give us a false sense of certainty about how life will unfold. It is a feeling of being awake when in reality we have gone to sleep. This is evident in the way many of us react when things do not go according to plan. Like the one who gets suddenly awoken in the middle of the night, we become upset and lash out due to having our imagined state of comfort disrupted, even if the person we get upset with has nothing to do with the disruption aside from being the means through which we experience it.

Our perception of the quality of surprises being “good” or “bad” is limited to our experience of the world. We heedlessly wonder about how we could reconcile God’s love and mercy with circumstances that we feel are “bad”, rather than wonder about our own perception’s validity in relation to the Big Picture. Whether what we go through life happens to be good or bad is a judgment that we cannot make until we actually get through life. Aristotle viewed that happiness can only be ascertained after one reaches the conclusion of their life and assesses the sum total. The Quran states that real life where such a judgment about happiness can be made is in the Final Abode. Our existence in this world is merely a preparation.

No calamity befalls on the Earth nor in your own selves except that it was written before it was brought into existence; surely, that is easy for God. This is so that you may not grieve for what has escaped you, nor be exultant at what He has given you.” Quran

The Beloved PBUH gave a counsel to his young cousin Ibn Abbas RA in which he told him that nothing meant for him can be prevented from reaching him even if everyone in the universe were to gather their efforts to stop it, and nothing can afflict him with harm that was not meant to afflict him even if everyone in the universe were to conspire for it to make it happen. Having certainty in the Divine Decree is a difficult thing, if not impossible, to attain if this Prophetic counsel was restricted to the intellectual realm. The achievement of this certainty can only be attained, as Imam Al-Ghazālī realized, through the path of action. “And worship your Lord until certainty reaches you.” Quran

The certainty mentioned in the verse is traditionally interpreted to mean death. However, another layer of meaning can be extracted based on the verse that says, “I have not created the Jinn and Mankind except for that they worship Me.” According to Ibn Abbas RA, what is meant here is that the purpose of creation that was to be realized through worship is to know God. In other words, the verse mentions the means to arrive at the objective. To know God is to know the Truth, and to know the Truth is to have certainty. But none of this can be realized unless one begins with acknowledging that this can only come on God’s terms, not on ours, for that “He does not get questioned about what He does. Rather, it is they who get questioned.” Quran

Knowledge of God does not come through rational contemplation. One cannot claim to know what falling in love feels like simply because they have measured oxytocin and dopamine levels and looked at functional MRI brain scans of lovers as they thought of each other. The non-rational experience of love is the only way to know what love is like. Only those in love can comprehend what Jane Austen meant by saying, “If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.” Or better yet, only those who are enamored in love can understand what Qays ibn Al-Mulawwah meant when he said,

I kiss the dirt that your foot walks upon O Loa’yla

If it were not for you I would not be called the Afflicted One

My kissing of the dirt is not out of love for the ground

It is out of love for the one who stepped upon that dirt

I went insane because of her and have become

A lover who enjoys through her the experience of pain

Whoever tastes, they shall know, and whoever knows, they shall indulge. One of the past Muslim sages said, “The ignorant of God is one who wakes up wondering what they will do that day. The knower of God is one who wakes up wondering what God will do with them.” This statement is a reflection upon a Hadith related by the Beloved PBUH in which God says in part of it, “When I love I will be the ears with which they hear, the eyes with which they see, the hand with which they strike, and the leg with which they walk.” When one sees everything and every event as a sign meant to direct them to God, nothing will seem out of place.

Much of the spiritual crisis and doubts many experience can be attributed to the lack of personal investment and engagement in the actions prescribed by the Lawgiver. We have turned our rational powers from means to get to God into ends that everything, including God, must be subjected to. We live in a time when everything in Islam that deals with action is being explained away in a fashion that facilitates inaction. Nuance is being introduced increasingly into every aspect of Islam as it is being deconstructed to fit whatever happens to be the popular cultural movement. Instead of belief in God, we believe in ourselves, and we project a model of religion and God based on our own notions of what constitutes love, mercy, bigotry, and tolerance. There is a metaphysical effect to observing the Sacred Law that is undermined by its abandonment. Prayer is not a set of stretching exercises, the Hijab is not about men, and fasting is not about losing weight. Before one asks, “Where is God?” they must first cease from participating in this circumambulation around the ego in a collective act of self-worship. Only then will the world no longer be a veil between us the Unseen.

Mohamed Ghilan

 

Author Bio:

Mohamed Ghilan is a Canadian Muslim originally born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to parents from Sudanese and Yemeni backgrounds. He attended high school after immigrating to Canada in Vancouver, British Columbia. Eventually, Mohamed moved to Victoria where he obtained a B.Sc. with a major in microbiology (honours) and a minor in business administration.

In 2007 Mohamed began his full time studies in the Islamic Tradition after having made connections with several Muslim scholars. He has been consistently travelling over the past years to spend intensive extended periods studying various aspects of the Islamic sciences relating to Theology and Creed, Jurisprudence, Hadith, Foundational Principles (Usool), Arabic, Poetry, spiritual purification, and Qur’anic sciences.

Mohamed has previously given lectures on the biography of the Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him, Fundamentalism in Islam, Islam and science, the message of Islam, Jesus in the Qur’an, in addition to others. He has also taught an introductory course on Islamic Jurisprudence according to the Maliki School as well as an introductory course on Islamic Theology (‘Aqeedah).

In May 2015, Mohamed earned a PhD in neuroscience at the University of Victoria, where he studied synaptic plasticity in Huntington’s disease, as well as the effects and molecular mechanisms of stress on the brain in Fragile X syndrome. He hopes his research can eventually be used to develop new therapies can be used to assist individual with movement disorders or intellectual disabilities.

This article appeared originally in Al Madina Institute’s Blog and was expressly authorized by the author for publication on The Mad Mamluks.

The views and opinions of guest contributors do not necessarily equate as endorsements by The Mad Mamluks. 

The Value of Destruction to Modern Islamic Scholarship

written by: Daniel Haqiqatjou (Guest Contributor from MuslimSkeptic.com)

My dad has always been a very handy person and loves to take on home projects mashaAllah. When I was young, he would try to get me to help him and I never really enjoyed it but I still ended up learning a lot.

One of the things he taught me early on is that when you start a project, you have to make sure you are working on a clean, solid site. For example, if you want to re-paint the side of your house, you first have to clean off any old paint, take off any rotting wood, etc. Only after all that prep work is done can you actually start painting. You can always just forget the prep work and put new paint on top of the old stuff, but within a short period of time, the new paint will start to crack and peel and things will be even worse than before.

The same principle applies to pouring concrete or installing a new deck. The first step is crucial: disassemble, deconstruct, and, if needed, destroy the old structure and remove the debris and once the site is clear and level, then you can rebuild something that is solid and will last. It would be counterproductive and quite silly to try to build something on the shaky remains of the previous structure because the final product, no matter how well-built it otherwise is, will likely be just as shaky and prone to collapse and dilapidation as the original. Also if you are trying to build on the remains of the original structure, you will have to make adjustments and compensations to accommodate what you are building on. Rather than build something according to your own preferences and needs, you now have to build something which suits and takes into account what you are building on top of.

All this is just a metaphor for a situation our contemporary ulama have to deal with in the course of their scholarly work in light of modern issues. In this metaphor, the old paint or the old dilapidated structure is modernism and its concomitant -isms: liberalism, scientism, feminism, secularism, etc. This is the stuff that needs to be dismantled and thoroughly cleaned out because if a scholar builds on this, even if what he builds is of the highest quality and the most sound erudition, the end result is still going to be lopsided, shaky, and liable to collapse. But if the rot is scraped off and discarded, leaving a pristine, level work site, that is when the alim can build a true and lasting masterpiece bi idhnillah.

This is why we see so much tawfiq from our scholarly predecessors. They were building on solid ground. They were building on top of the solid scholarship of those before them, all of which was built on the unshakable foundation of revelation and the Prophet's sunna ﷺ. And that is how they were able to create this unmatched monument of intellectual and spiritual achievement that is the Islamic sacred sciences.

But at the dawn of the modern period, as the Muslims lost political power and European modernist philosophy increasingly became the dominant mode of thought around the world and in Muslim societies as well, that's when some of the discourse and some of the scholarship became reactive. All of a sudden, scholars are having to respond to these -isms and/or write their opinions in light of them, whether due to social pressure or political pressure or even outright coercion by colonizers and other agents of Western hegemony. And of course this -- knowingly or unknowingly -- affected the content of that scholarship. In effect, some of that scholarship ended up being built on rot.

We need to clean out the rot. We need to deconstruct and dismantle it and discard the rubbish. Then we can resume building with confidence and on our own terms, once again showing the world that nothing can match the magnificence and awe-inspiring splendor of this deen.

Daniel Haqiqatjou

Daniel Haqiqatjou was born in Houston, Texas. He attended Harvard University where he majored in Physics and minored in Philosophy. He completed a Masters degree in Philosophy at Tufts University. Haqiqatjou is also a student of the traditional Islamic sciences. He writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and Modernity.
The views and opinions of guest contributors do not necessarily equate as endorsements by The Mad Mamluks. 

Solomon’s Horses: What are the legal and moral implications for creating Strong AI in Sharia?

written by: Joe Bradford (Guest Contributor from JoeBradford.net)

A few days ago, Yonatan Zunger released “Artificial Intelligence, Talmud, and Sharia.” After reading this very interesting piece, I decided I’d attempt to add to the conversation specifically in the area of Sharia/Islamic thought.

Before we talk about the problem of creating Strong AI, let’s talk about how Islamic law categorizes rulings. While Yonatan  presents this as an issue of encouragement vs. prohibition, Islamic Law offers a few other choices. Laws falls under one of five categories: Obligatory, Encouraged, Unrestricted, Discouraged, and Forbidden. Creating strong AI may fall under any of these five.

Yonatan  is correct that statues (tamāthīl) appears in the Quran two times. One during the story of Abraham with his people, the other in during the building of Solomon’s temple. An interesting caveat to the story of Abraham is paring the term statues with the terms idols (aṣnām). “What are these statues (tamāthīl) to which you pay devotion?” and after their answer he replies “By God I will plot against these idols (aṣnām) of yours after you turn and leave.”

The question is then: Why did Abraham swear to plot against these idols? The answer is found in the function they fulfilled for his people “We found our forefathers worshiping them” (21:53) In other verses Abraham questions them saying “He asked: So you worship other than God that which can neither benefit you or harm you? Uff to you and what you worship other than God; Have you no intellect?! They reacted: Burn him! Give victory to your gods! If you will do anything!” (21:66)

Note that these verses highlight the folly of idolatry: the inability of corporeal, created matter to benefit or harm, making them unworthy of worship being directed to them. In another verse (26:97) polytheists lament their having taken idols on the Day of Judgment saying “By God we swear, we were in clear misguidance, when we equated you to the Lord of the Worlds.” In 39:3 God states “Should not sincere faith be for God? Those who take less than him as protectors say: we only worship them to approximate us in closeness to him…” In the story of Moses, his people are said to have passed by a group of idolaters and said “Give us a god like they have gods. Moses responded: You are an ignorant people; those people’s situation is in pieces and their actions are invalid.” (7:138-139)

And since I feel so much more can be said about this, I’ll sum up what I understand here: that the taking of objects as equals to God or as intermediaries to him, is forbidden. These verses add another layer to the discussion, namely allowing these man-made objects to occupy a place in the human psyche above man, either as an intermediary to or as an equal to God.

Now let’s juxtapose this to the verses mentioning Solomon, as well as a pertinent hadith to Solomon’s court. Bukhari records a hadith in which a toy is found with Aishah. The Prophet asks her “What is this?” She replies: “This is a horse.” He “And what are these?” pointing to two straps of leather hanging from its sides. She replies “These are its wings.” He says “A horse with wings?!” She replies: “Have you not heard that Solomon had horses with wings?” So the Prophet laughed so hard you could see his molars.

The point here being, as elucidated by most exegetes of Bukhari, is that 1) toys are not the same as idols/statues and that 2) the power of imagination can at times take shape in the real world, representing things that but for the power of imagination would never have existed.

Perhaps what this tells us is that if and when objects of human creation, while similar to objects of God’s creation, if and when they fulfill as cognitive function, educational or recreational, they are wholly different than those that fulfill emotional functions, spiritual or devotional, which seek to supplant, parallel, or challenge the divine creative process. This speaks directly to the derogative use of the phrase “challenging God” in several hadith directed to those that create statues or images of God’s creation. If all such creations were included in this prohibition, then even those that were products of the human imagination (like “Solomon’s horses”) would be as well.

This would take care of the problem presented by Yonatan  when he referred to the creation of Golems in Jewish thought. So while one does not and should never worship anything he has the ability to create himself, he must also treat with care those things that, while products of the human imagination, are symbols or tools for the recreation or education of man.

So does this mean that Islamic thought would permit the creation of a Strong AI? I think the better question is: Can man create something that is equal to human intelligence? Is true AI even possible? Perhaps the story of Adam alludes to this, when it refers to God “teaching Adam the names of everything…” essentially imparting to him the ability to intelligently discern his surroundings in a manner more optimal than all other creation.

So while Angels are described as not “disobeying God in what they were ordered and doing what they are commanded” and when challenged to apprise the nature of things presented to them respond to God saying: “Glory to You, we have no knowledge but what You have taught us”. Adam on the other hand (and thus man) is described as having “informed them of all their names” with God then proclaiming that only he knows the hidden in heavens and earth, and what “you present openly and that which you conceal.” (2:30-33)

Walking on thin ice here, I’ll say perhaps the difference between these two intelligent beings is – ala Searle – the difference between being able to syntactically process information versus the ability to semantically process it.

So would Islamic thought allow for the creation of a Strong AI? I don’t believe that it would allow the possibility of a true AI to exist, given that the power of creation is of God’s dominion alone. To claim ascendancy to human intellect I believe would be violation of Islamic beliefs (kufr). Worse even would be to claim ascendancy to divine intellect and power (shirk).

But if an AI were created, the assumption here would be that this AI would never truly possess an intellectual capability that is functionally equal to a human’s, but may serve a purpose that is recreational or educational in the service of mankind. Being a part of creation, it would be at the service of mankind (2:29) and would be due the dignity of stewardship (2:30).

So back to where we started: how would these five categories of law apply here? The building of an AI would be unrestricted, yet given its purpose would transition to the other rulings mentioned. The Islamic legal principle being that “Means take the ruling of their objective.” So what is the objective of attempting a Strong AI? If to build systems that can better serve the safety and health of humanity as a whole, this may be obligatory or at least highly encouraged. If to challenge God’s power and promote disbelief, subjugate others, or harm them individuals or the public, this would be prohibited. But for any of these things, building an AI would seem to remain unrestricted, with the caveat that Islamic thought would challenge the impossibility of a true AI ever existing.

Whether or not that AI would it be a person? Well that’s another lengthy discussion.

Joe Bradford

Joe Bradford is an American scholar of Islam, Author, instructor, entrepreneur, and ethical investments advisor.  He regularly lectures on topics such as Islamic law, legal theory, financial ethics, and thought.

www.joebradford.net

@JoeBradfordNet

This article was originally published on JoeBradford.net and was expressly authorized by the author for publication on The Mad Mamluks.

The views and opinions of guest contributors do not necessarily equate as endorsements by The Mad Mamluks. 

EP 036: Dream of Detroit | Mark Crain


Mahin, SIM and Sh. Amir sit down with Mark Crain Director of Dream of Detroit.

Dream of Detroit is a Muslim-led initiative that’s combining community organizing with strategic housing and land development to build a healthy community and empower marginalized neighborhoods.

Founded by two allied organizations, Detroit-based NeighborlyNeeds, Inc. and the suburban-based Indus Community Action Network (iCAN), Dream of Detroit exemplifies the spirit of intra-community cooperation that powers the Michigan Muslim community.

@dreamofdetroit

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EP 035: The Sartorial Scholar | Ubaydullah Evans


Shaykh Amir, Mahin and Murtaza sit down with Shaykh Ubaydullah Evans at his beautiful home in Chicago and discuss the Madhab of Malik, the infamous Playboy article, his sense of syle/fashion and what he thinks of the social media craze.

Ustadh Ubaydullah Evans is ALIM’s first Scholar-in-Residence and now Executive Director. He converted to Islam while in high school. Upon conversion, Ustadh Ubaydullah began studying some of the foundational books of Islam under the private tutelage of local scholars while simultaneously pursuing a degree in journalism from Columbia. Since then he has studied at Chicagoland’s Institute of Islamic Education (IIE), in Tarim, Yemen, and Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt, where he is the first African-American to graduate from its Shari’a program. Ustadh Ubaydullah also instructs with the Ta’leef Collective and the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN) at times.

https://www.alimprogram.org

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EP 034: Dynamics of Islamic Law and Learning | Joe Bradford

Mahin, Sh. Amir and SIM talk with Joe Bradford about a multitude of issues such as American Fiqh, Home Financing, Madhabs, Music, Halal Meat, White Converts, Islamic wills. Joe Bradford is an American scholar of Islam, Author, instructor, entrepreneur, and ethical investments advisor. He regularly lectures on topics such as Islamic law, legal theory, financial ethics, and thought. Get your Islamic Will made in 3 easy steps at https://www.mywassiyah.com His books: Simple Zakat Guide Qaddumi's Elementary Hanbali Primer A Primer on Jumu'ah www.joebradford.net @JoeBradfordNet https://www.facebook.com/Bradford.Joe

Receive a discount by utilizing the link below to sign up with MyWassiyah.com

http://6mywassiyah.refr.cc/themadmamluksMahin, Sh. Amir and SIM talk with Joe Bradford about a multitude of issues such as American Fiqh, Home Financing, Madhabs, Music, Halal Meat, White Converts, Islamic wills.

Joe Bradford is an American scholar of Islam, Author, instructor, entrepreneur, and ethical investments advisor.

He regularly lectures on topics such as Islamic law, legal theory, financial ethics, and thought.

Get your Islamic Will made in 3 easy steps at

https://www.mywassiyah.com

His books:

Simple Zakat Guide

Qaddumi's Elementary Hanbali Primer

A Primer on Jumu'ah

www.joebradford.net

@JoeBradfordNet

https://www.facebook.com/Bradford.Joe

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EP 033: Islam in Spanish | Mujahid Fletcher

Mujahid Fletcher runs a Houston based nonprofit called Islam In Spanish that produces a Web site, Podcast, YouTube Channel,  DVDs and a radio program designed to educate the small but growing number of Latino Muslims.  Fletcher sees the organization as a tool to counteract some of the misconceptions about Islam that he initially encountered among his own friends

@IslamInSpanish

http://www.islaminspanish.org/

https://www.facebook.com/IslamEnSpanish

https://www.youtube.com/user/IslamInSpanishTV

Broadcast from ISNA 2016

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EP 032: Revelation: The Story of Muhammad | Dr. Meraj Mohiuddin

Dr. Meraj Mohiuddin is an American physician and author of Revelation: The Story of Muhammad. The son of Indian immigrants, he was raised on the East Coast with a strong emphasis on sports and education. With a college background in neuro-science and medical degree from Northwestern University, he moved to Boston to complete his training in Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine.  While teaching at Harvard Medical School and its affiliated hospitals, Dr. Mohiuddin developed an interest in international relief work and created a curriculum to encourage young American doctors to share their skills in the developing world.

Ultimately his love for the outdoors brought him to Phoenix, Arizona where he enjoys trail-running, archery, and camping. He lives with his wife and son, and his parents live down the street.

Revelation: The Story of Muhammad is available on MeccaBooks.com

http://www.revelationthebook.com/

Twitter: @revelationthebk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/revelationthebook

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The Muslim Narrative

Summer Zehra | The Mad Mamluks

Since 9/11, Muslim Americans have gone through various stages that have been shaped by a largely reactionary approach to the mainstream narrative. Muslims adamantly proclaimed that all Muslims are not terrorists, followed by most Muslims love peace, then a flurry of reminders of Muslim accomplishments in the past (Al-Jabra and coffee!) . After this, Muslims have been constantly trying to bring modern accomplishments into the spotlight.  As if that wasn’t enough to prove that we are human beings with various strengths and capabilities, Muslims are now at the next stage:

Look, Muslims can integrate! We can run, jump, cook, write, be politicians, musicians, activists, designers and appear on magazine covers. It is crucial that there are genuine Muslim narratives being presented in the mainstream, but each of these things are often received with a condescending tone of awe and amazement. It’s anxiety-inducing, not only because there is the implied and unfair burden of representing an entire faith group of 1.3 billion people with your every action, but now it must also prove how American you are? Like Clinton’s remarks that Muslims are “on the frontline of fighting terrorism” or like Trump’s stance that all Muslims should be banned. Is there no middle ground, where we’re just people?

Why is there all this undue pressure to prove that Muslims are diverse? The practice of Islam as a religion varies from country to country, neighborhood to neighborhood and even from person to person. We know and readily accept that Christianity and Judaism have a spectrum. We’ve seen and lived with the spectrum, but that doesn’t mean a Nun has to put out a designer line at NYFW for us to value her or realize she is a complex person. Nor does an Orthodox Jewish woman need to promote her views on illicit magazines for us to accept different worldviews. Similarly, Muslims are all along a spectrum of faith and action.  In fact, the same Muslim person may hop around the spectrum throughout their lives, as their life experiences, worldviews change and they evolve.

The narrative and voices will continue to evolve to highlight what is important and relevant. But what is more critical than integrating with a particular country’s culture to seek acceptance in that country, is Muslims around the world just needing to be recognized as diverse, beautiful, flawed and mainly, just human.

 

EP 031: Becoming the Alpha Muslim | Nabeel Azeez

Nabeel Azeez is the founder of BecomingTheAlphaMuslim.com and the Podcast by the same name.  Nabeel Azeez presents Becoming the Alpha Muslim.   Men's issues, masculinity, and self-improvement for the modern Muslim man.

Episode 1 of Becoming the Alpha Muslim Podcast available now on iTunes.

Website: https://becomingthealphamuslim.com

Twitter: @nabeel4reel

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EP 030: The Silicon Valley Polygamist

The MM Crew sits with a brother practicing polygamy, offering practical experiences and insights into what it takes to make it happen.

EP 029: Olympics, Burkini and other Ramblings | Round Table

If the intro of this episode went over your head.. It's a parody of some of the refutation videos on YouTube posted by people who have made their mission in life to refute other scholars and/or organizations.

EP 028: The Interfaith Chaplain | Adeel Zeb

Adeel J. Zeb is an interfaith scholar, TEDx speaker, and certified Muslim Chaplain. He is the Co-University Muslim Chaplain at The Claremont Colleges.

EP 027: The AlMaghrib Origin Story | Irtiza Hasan

Shaykh Amir, SIM and Mahin sit down with Irtiza Hasan who is the founding manager of AlMaghrib Institute.

EP 026: Book A Muslim | Maria Ahmad

SIM and Mahin sit down with Maria Ahmad who represents BookAMuslim.com

EP 025: The Couturier | Osman Aslam

Osman Aslam is the founder and creative director of Franc Lloyd Custom Menswear

EP 024: The Arrakian Economist | Dr. Jerry Hionis

The Mad Mamluks sit down with Dr. Jerry Hionis, a professor of economics at Widener University.

EP 023: Round Table with Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul

Shaykh Hamzah and Shaykh Amir reminisce about their time in Mauritania as students, Shaykh Hamzah also talks about his teacher Murabit Al-Hajj, later we talk about the Pokemon craze, and the Hajj.

EP 022: The Deliverance of a Nasheed Artist | Omar Esa

Omar Esa is a nasheed artist from England, who uses only his voice in all his nasheeds and recites nasheeds in mainly the English, Urdu and Arabic languages.

EP 021: A Mid-Ramadan Night's Dream | Round Table Discussion

Sheikh Amir, SIM, Mahin, Murtuza sit down and discuss Muhammad Ali, Orlando and Ramadan.

EP 020: Two and a Half Percent | Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul

Shaykh Hamzah Maqbul talks to The Mad Mamluks about Islamic Relief USA, Zakat and his journey in seeking knowledge.

EP 019: How Malcolm X led an Irish American kid to Islam | Abdul Malik Ryan

Abu Noor AbdulMalik Ryan is a Chicago native whose reading of African American history and specifically the life of Malcolm X led to his accepting Islam in 1994.

EP 018: Coming to Islam | Mike Swies

Mike Swies works professionally as a Speech Language Pathologist serving the communicative needs of young children with developmental delays and adults with communications disorders.

EP 017: Ultimate Fighting Championship | Ricardo Lamas

Ricardo Lamas is an American mixed martial artist who currently fights as a Featherweight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship organization.

EP 016: From American Prisons to Islam | Shaykh Rami Nsour

Shaykh Rami is an accomplished scholar in the Islamic Sciences and currently teaches Islamic Education through distance learning to incarcerated men and women via his organization Tayba Foundation

EP 015: The Productive Muslim | Mohammed Faris

Mohammed Faris is an internationally sought speaker, coach, and author who spearheaded the niche of productivity and Islam.

EP 013: Just Do It! | Muhammed Qandil

Burhan Hanif is a Da'ee and Lecturer from the United Kingdom. He has lectured around the world about political and social issues surrounding the Muslim world.

EP 014: Muslims in the West and the Ummah At Large | Burhan Hanif

Burhan Hanif is a Da'ee and Lecturer from the United Kingdom. He has lectured around the world about political and social issues surrounding the Muslim world.

EP 012: Lost Islamic History | Firas AlKhateeb

Firas Alkhateeb is a historian that specializes in Islamic History. He is also the author the book Lost Islamic History.

EP 011: The Blizzard of OZ: Living with a Disability | Omer Zaman

Brother Omer Zaman, is a volunteer for MUHSEN (Muslims Understanding and Helping Special Education Needs) and organization dedicated to help create awareness for Muslim brothers and sisters with special needs across the United States.

EP 010: My Halal Kitchen | Yvonne Maffei

My Halal Kitchen: Global Recipes, Cooking Tips, Lifestyle Inspiration (Agate) will publish July 2016 and provides recipes for making classic global cuisine halal.

EP 008: Halal Advocates of America | Hamza Warsi

Hamza Warsi talks about his organization, Halal Advocates of America.

EP 007: The Marriage of the Islamic and Secular Sciences | Dr. Kamran Riaz

The Mad Mamluks talk to Dr. Kamran Riaz about Darul Qasim Institute's effort to bring Muslim professionals towards Islamic Sciences. We also discuss some of the challenges of American Muslims today.

EP 006: Mental Wellness | Dr Fahad Khan

Dr. Fahad Khan is a psychologist with a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology and a Masters degree in Biomedical Sciences. He is also a Hafiz of the Qur’an.

EP 005: Behind the Scenes of the Halal Meat Industry | Sajid Khan and Ali Querishi


Talking about Halal Meat and Halal Money

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EP 004: Islamic Center of Wheaton | Shaykh Omer Haqqani

Mad Mamluks talk to Sheikh Omer about Islamic Center of Wheaton (ICW) and it's relationship with a city that is known as the Evangelical Christian capital of America.

EP 003: Unity in Islam | Round Table Discussion


Round Table Discussion with Mad Mamluks Contributor, Murtaza.  Discussion is about the often thrown about slogan, "unity".

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E-mail us your comments, feedback, and questions at TheMadMamluks@gmail.com
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View pictures of our guests and studio on Instagram: TheMadMamluks

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EP 002: Relief Work in War Zones | Muhammad Shirazi


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E-mail us your comments, feedback, and questions at TheMadMamluks@gmail.com
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Like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/themadmamluks
View pictures of our guests and studio on Instagram: TheMadMamluks

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www.youtube.com/themadmamluks

EP 001: The Rise of a YouTube Star | Subhan Ashrafi

MM Guys talk to STG Gamer about his rise on YouTube, haters, sports, Star Wars and religion.

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