Just curious - how many muslims are on mumsnet?

(1000 Posts)
Galvanise Sat 01-Dec-12 00:21:53

Hello/Salaam,

I know mumsnet has a wide and diverse population and I tend to recognise some MN usernames as regulars. Just intrigued to know how big/small a community it may be.

Of course, I respect that there may be those who do not wish to even identify themselves for various reasons - which is fine too.

I am not asking for 'religiousness' levels or any vital stats! Nor is this a muslim-only thread or an 'no non-muslims' thread.
If you really wish to tell me that you are not a muslim, that is fine too smile

<Waves enthusiastically to all muslims and non-muslims> smile

ummunono Sat 19-Jan-13 11:09:59

Salaam alaykoum all, just marking my place to be counted in the Mumsnet sisterhood!
(Sits at the back to listen to the more knowledgeable sisters...)

WaynettaSlobsLover Sat 19-Jan-13 11:14:41

Some interesting points and info there Crescent. I personally feel a lot more educated on both sides about the prophet's birthday (saw). I would like to add that I agree with not disapproving of what others do, because if there is evidence in both sides, then it becomes a grey area and a matter of interpretation, not just something black or white.

WaynettaSlobsLover Sat 19-Jan-13 11:15:45

Walikumasalaam ummonono xxx

crescentmoon Sat 19-Jan-13 11:34:18

morning waynetta and ummunono!

as for this, "because if there is evidence in both sides, then it becomes a grey area and a matter of interpretation, not just something black or white"

this was Sunni Islam's achievement. that for moral and pragmatic reasons orthodox Sunni Islam was able to "incorporate a wide spectrum of theological and juristic dispute into the universe of allowable internal difference". (quoted from Sheikh Abdul Hakim Murad).

just watched this video about Salafis taking on Al Muhajiroun in Luton and East London, never thought id be rooting for them!

www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2011/jan/17/muslim-resistance-struggle-within-video

was thinking about it because of that thread in AIBU about those boys accosting people in east london. Salafi and Islamist community groups (in London as elsewhere) often have the best tools with which to undermine al-Qaida propaganda within their own youth communities. quote here

WaynettaSlobsLover Sat 19-Jan-13 15:53:04

Crescent I often feel that although we are individually capable and entitled to make up our own minds and hold differing views, that it seems these days, clerics and scholars hold the final word on everything. The amount of times I've been told (despite studying in depth) I'm just a 'layman' and basically have no right to dispute a view of theirs, makes me sad and reaffirms to me that in the present islam, ordinary people don't hold a vote. With the majority of views and despite like I said, evidence for both opinions on matters, it is now a case of black or white, and there is no such thing as grey- I.e interpretation based on individual study and critical thinking. I'm sick and tired of it.

nailak Sun 20-Jan-13 16:59:42

crescent didnt you say further up the thread that you do not think you are qualifies to do ijtihad? I mean I feel I am not, due to the fact I don't understand the intricacies of the Arabic language, I am not a muhadith or hafiz and so on.

fuzzywuzzy Sun 20-Jan-13 20:41:31

Waynetta, why don't you study Islamic fiqh in whatever area interests you, then you would have a perfectly valid means to make decisions on Islamic jurisprudence matters.

crescentmoon Mon 21-Jan-13 08:55:28

salams waynetta could it be that you have too many salafi scholars around you maybe? or have people around you who are allied to salafism? they are often the black or white type.

when i speak about orthodox sunni islam im talking about the traditional islam of the 4 madhabs. i think in my posts i generally reference them or scholars from the 4 schools naila, im not making any fatawa , myself just sharing what my teachers have taught me. it is orthodox sunni islam that has a large tolerance for different viewpoints. i follow shaafiee madhab, both on daily rules but also the methodology that the school of Imam Shaafiee apply to interpreting the quran and hadith. thats still relevant to the 21 century. and there are things hanafis and others do that i wouldnt do but i pray with them and behind them even if we do not follow the same rules because that tolerance for different views is part of the emotional and mental furniture of traditional Sunni Islam.

even if you have a PHD in nuclear physics that doesnt mean you have a PHD in sharia law. the whole problem of Al Qaida and its ilk is not that they are uneducated as such. the people who lead them, and apply the reductionist and black and white mentality are actually well educated. but alot of them are from the engineering and the sciences and they apply that rigidity to the quran and hadith when actually it needs the fine legal minds of the equivalent of Abu Hanifah.

an imam is not automatically a jurist. a jurist is not the same as a theologian. a theologian is not the same as a spiritual teacher. your freedom as a layperson is you can if you want to mix and match. i have one teacher for aqeedah (theology), a different teacher for fiqh (shaafiee), i have a sheikh i write to for family problems and dilemmas - you can say he is my spiritual guide. and the mosque i pray at - occasionally - is Ikhwan just because the imam has a beautiful recitation. i think waynetta because of your views on the mawlid and birthdays that you have followed a salafi on theology. but not in practise because you do not believe in the hijab and that is one of their 'black and whites'.

when i wrote earlier about contraception i was conveying hadith but the main point was about the opinions of the 4 madhabs from several hundred years ago. i got them from this book: the Fiqh of Medicine By Dr Ahmad Yacoub

www.amazon.co.uk/The-Fiqh-Medicine-Jurisprudence-Development/dp/184200025X

crescentmoon Mon 21-Jan-13 09:04:15

as for fuzzy's advice about studying islamic fiqh the door is open to you. we need far more female jurists and experts in sharia, there is no reservation in islam, against it actually there were thousands of female scholars in the past as Sheikh Akram Nadwi has found and now written books on..

Emel the lost female scholars of Islam

please read this article too....

www.nytimes.com/2007/02/25/magazine/25wwlnEssay.t.html?_r=0

opening paragraph:

"For Muslims and non-Muslims alike, the stock image of an Islamic scholar is a gray-bearded man. Women tend to be seen as the subjects of Islamic law rather than its shapers. And while some opportunities for religious education do exist for women — the prestigious Al-Azhar University in Cairo has a women’s college, for example, and there are girls’ madrasas and female study groups in mosques and private homes — cultural barriers prevent most women in the Islamic world from pursuing such studies. Recent findings by a scholar at the Oxford Center for Islamic Studies in Britain, however, may help lower those barriers and challenge prevalent notions of women’s roles within Islamic society. Mohammad Akram Nadwi, a 43-year-old Sunni alim, or religious scholar, has rediscovered a long-lost tradition of Muslim women teaching the Koran, transmitting hadith (deeds and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad) and even making Islamic law as jurists."

.....

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 10:27:41

I really appreciate that long post you just wroteCrescent, and I read it all. I think based on what you have said, that those I have been taught by are salafi and Wahhabi. I have not come across much tolerance for different viewpoints in those I have met and the masjids I have attended. Not that sisters haven't been nice because they are lovely it's just personally difficult to go against the norm (like removing head covering) because some drop you like a hot plate thinking you have become like an apostate. You made a point that I've never in a million years actually acknowledged or really thought about , when you said an imam is not a jurist, a jurist is not a theologian, a theologian is not the same as a spiritual teacher etc. The way I have been taught in terms of the madhabs is that even though they agree to disagree, despite this flexibility and depending on what kind of people you hang around with, some can vehemenently oppose your view..even though you have evidence for it. Also if you follow parts of some school and parts of another, that's not always approved of,

crescentmoon Mon 21-Jan-13 14:02:34

iv met alot of salafi sisters who are nice and welcoming mashaallah. and sometimes more broadminded than cultural muslims who demand things not founded in religion but culture.

when i talk with shia sisters i avoid mentioning the sahabah, and with salafi sisters i avoid mentioning sufi things i do. DH has salafi friends and before they visit he puts away certain things that could cause comment!

with sisters who dont wear hijab i just focus on other topics - i mentioned before i have a friend who wears it sometimes and doesnt wear it other times depending on her relationship with her DH! i just act like i do not notice anything! but iv lived in places where there are few muslims so even if cultural or practising iv always just been glad for seeing another person who loves the prophet (pbuh).

someone can recite the quran in a beautiful voice but they might not be following the rules of tajweed - it takes a knowledgeable person to know the difference between tarteel and tajweed.

a memoriser is not the same as an analyser - would you agree naila? the precision and memory recall you need for memorising the whole Quran is huge - for that alone i have huge respect for imams because they are knowledgeable about the book of God. they are hafez - and guardians of the Quran because they have memorised it and they teach the rules and help others to read and memorise it. Muhammad (pbuh) tasked all of us with this though not just imams, even if we do not understand the words we gain reward just for every word we read and learn and commit to memory because we can then be alert to any of the changes in the text. thats part of what has kept the holy Quran unchanged for over a millenia.
(some point to this and say 'inflexibility' but we see it as proof of 'incorruptibility'.)
likewise with hadith- you cannot just take one in isolation but you need to weigh up its strength, how many chains of narration it had, authenticity. then the context - the wording? what was the prophet (pbuh) trying to convey?

i think one great example is about kissing during ramadan. in one hadith he told a man his ramadan fast was not broken if he kissed his wife. in another hadith a man asks the prophet (pbuh) the same question and the prophet tells him his ramadan fast would be broken. why the difference between them? the man in the first hadith was elderly, the man in the second hadith was young and hale. its a scholar who can tell you the background of the hadith and the explanation based on that, the context. a layperson wouldnt know just by reading the two hadith side by side that information.

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 16:33:32

I do love you crescent thanks lol i really enjoy just sitting back to read your posts. Mashaallah you are very articulate and know exactly the right way to speak to people. Same goes for all sisters on here, the differences are what makes every one of you unique and special

nailak Mon 21-Jan-13 17:01:53

yeah i agree a memoriser is not the same as an anlayser, i just feel that i might analyse something, but because i am not a memoriser, might have a piece of the puzzle missing, which would make a big difference to the outcome, if you gget what im saying.

Also it is not only salfis and wahabis who dont celebrate mawlid al nabi, there are deobandis, tablighis etc

nailak Mon 21-Jan-13 18:37:26

ok, so I went away and thought about it.

By my reasoning, a bidah is an innovation in worship. Our religion is complete, and to add anything to it would be a bidah.

Celebrating my kids birthdays comes under the sphere of social interactions and culture. the intention of it is not an ibadah, so it is not a bidah. There is nothing in that which is specific to a religious group or anything like that so imo it is not copying the kuffar, anymore then wearing jeans or something is copying kuffar. things like wearing a bindhi or something imo would be.

The Prophet Muhammad sas honoured his birthday by fasting on that day. So it is a sunnah to fast on that day. However to make it in to an Eid is something which he sas did not do. and you cannot fast on Eid anyway! So if people make this in to an eid then imo it is a bidah. Because their intention is ibadah then they are adding something to the religion my making this day in to an Eid in honour of the prophet sas.

But say they dont "celebrate" but they do fast and do dhikr, we can say that the prophet did extra ibadah on Monday as it represents his birth, so it is ok if we do this to. But to me it is like mothers day and valentines day, this is something we should be doing through out the year, we do not need a special occasion to do it, we can do it randomly. The Prophet sas regularly fasted on Monday, we can do that too. He sas did not do extra ibadah once a year on his birth, so why would we? to do so would be adding something to the religion.

Like I said I might be missing something, as I am not a muhadith and I do not understand Arabic.

nailak Mon 21-Jan-13 18:39:31

and yes all the madhabs are equally correct, none is better then the other, this is an important point.

However to me aqeedah is important, it is the basis of everything, so where I can understand differences in the madhabs and in fiqh, differences in aqeedah is a bit harder for me to understand. This is the fundemental questions of what makes you a Muslim.

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 18:45:17

So naila would you celebrate your kids bdays? Just a bit confused lol

fuzzywuzzy Mon 21-Jan-13 20:44:53

You didn't ask me, but I'll tell you how I cleebrate my childrens birthdays. lol

It took me ages to conceive, so on my childrens first birthdays I started sponsoring a child the same age as my children, did the same for both children. I figure, I would like another child to benefit, the children are in third world countries and it doesn't cost a large amount at all, possibly about as much as I would spend on gifts to my children anyway.

I give my children presents and bake cakes, but not on birthdays per se. If the entire family is together I'll give all the children little gifts and bake cakes to go with our chai.

The major celebrations are always at Eid, the kids in the family really look forward to Eid, as it is very special.

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 20:55:18

Fuzzy that sounds lovely mashaallah and I like the idea of sponsoring a child...will be looking into that inshallah. Roll on Eid this year wink

nailak Mon 21-Jan-13 23:01:18

yeah i do waynetta, like have a meal with family, the families buy gifts, i dont coz they have enough! lol but obviously we want eid to be the focus

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 23:47:28

Ok mashaallah, just wanted to be clear lol. I suppose I would but tbh (and this is embarrassing to admit) but when I went through a bit of a 'strict' stage of my journey in the deen, I denounced birthdays to everyone as bid'ah and the fact it's got pagan associations etc...therefore I'd feel like a bit of a prat going back on it now. Ds seems happy and excited at Eid time and isn't bothered that we don't do birthdays so I guess that's also why I'm not too fussed.

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 23:51:03

Out of interest, and I may seem a bit mad asking..but has anyone else had a 'strict' stage of their deen? I've worn niqab in the past, covered absolutely anything with an animate pic on in the house, refused to attend my bro in laws wedding on the basis that it was mixed gender (I did go in the end) and gave up listen

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 23:53:12

ing to music. I know maybe some things here I've said are just normal to other sisters or brothers, but I'm a lot more relaxed in terms of stuff now. Praying, fasting, Quran recitation, niyyaa to go Hajj and zakah are a fixed and n

WaynettaSlobsLover Mon 21-Jan-13 23:54:24

on optional thing obviously. Apologies for posts. iPhone is possessed I think.

HardlyEverHoovers Tue 22-Jan-13 12:43:02

Asalam u alikum all, salaams ummunon I remember you from a previous thread. Fuzzywuzzy I love your idea about sponsoring a child from when your own is born, what a lovely way to be thankful for your blessings.
We sponsor 2 kids in Palestine through interpal, it's lovely as you get a letter from them and photos every year so you can see how they progress, I'd really recommend as a form a sadaqa.
I wanted to ask if anyone has heard of Sheikh Imran Hussein, he has millions of videos on youtube. I came to hear them as my husband listens to them. He talks about politics quite a lot which normally doesn't interest me, but as he talks about current events in the light of the Quran I find him very interesting, and I must say his arguments very compelling. I believe his views are quite controversial though, as he believes we are currently living in the time of dajal, which is not the view of ahlus sunna wal jammat.
Anyone any opinions/experience?

crescentmoon Tue 22-Jan-13 12:58:32

Jazakhallah waynetta, seriously i talk WAYYYYY more than i act may Allah forgive me and not strike me where i sit for hypocrisy! i have a few things im struggling with now at the moment spiritually, its easy to be merciful to outsiders than own family and relatives sometimes! i try and be circumspect and careful around people but my in laws take it the wrong way and think i must be a greater schemer than all of them combined. big fat FAIL on my part lol- i thought i knew. im going to be 30 this year, i cant blame my parents anymore for particular traits i need to figure out how to root them out and i find reading and learning helps me in giving me purpose - this deen is true - and resolve and a strategy.

salam alaikum Fuzzy that is such a good idea about sponsoring a child with each of your children. i love that idea, i used to ask myself when listening to a talk on orphans how much good it would be to look after one but it never went further than that. but i definitely will look into it properly after reading your post - actually, give me one week, this time next week i have to have set up something. and it should purify our money.
a couple of years ago we were really tight financially and and then we decided that we should cut down on the sadaqah we were giving as we could no longer afford it with all our other expenses. and then you know what, right afterwards crazy things were coming up out of nowhere and the money we hoped to save ended up going on repairing the car, a parking ticket here, new coat for ds1 as he lost his at a friends house, just lots of things. we were haemorrhaging money. and then we realised that maybe giving sadaqah (charity) was what purified the rest of our income and put some barakah (blessing) in it, and when we stopped giving sadaqah we found we no longer had any barakah at all in our money! and what God had meant to be in our pockets after everything was done was still in our pockets, it hadnt increased though we cut out that large direct debit so we quickly started another one though alot smaller. when i told my mum she said 'of course why should you cut out charity first thats the only thing that goes to the next life for you everything else is worthless'.

salams naila read your post i avoided the word bidah in my long one. i knew if i used it at the beginning a certain type of reader would have alarm bells ringing in their head! but actually you are right, the mawlid is classed as a bidah but a bidah hassanah - a good innovation and it was recognised by that by those same imams i quoted - suyuti, Nawawi, Ibn Taymiyyah, Al Qayyim etc.
to say it is haram to ceelbrate birthdays because the prophet (pbuh) never acknowledged his own birthday is wrong because he did. once a year? the prophet (pbuh) and companions marked the day each WEEK.
i dont see it as Eid and dc dont see it as that either - we are not celebrating baby Muhammad (pbuh) being born! but just commemorating/ celebrating his story and his life and his struggles all together with lots of other families. i try and go to one every week throughout the year so for me it isnt just one month in a year i mention the prophet (pbuh). but for some people they wouldnt make the time otherwise but for the month of Rabi Al Awwal they do. it is nice and something to look forward to because the mawlid celebrations are much more formal.

as for strict stage i was like that too waynetta in a different way than yours. i think i am outwardly less stricter now but inwardly working harder against myself than i used to. its not wrong to change your opinion about something, if you learn and have new understanding theres nothing wrong with that. just let it be based on a scholar teacher with sound scholarship not 'been to madinah university for 3 years now i can make fatwa' types. and God knows best.

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