Welcome to muslim tea room 2.

(977 Posts)
defuse Mon 30-Dec-13 22:18:47

Peace to you all smile

Ok, well here it is again...we have moved to room 2 now grin

Discuss whatever aspect of islam you like my lovely sisters - this is a place for muslims and non-muslims too, to share experiences, raising kids or just having your say! smile

The kettle is on.... We have loads of herbal teas, coffee and guava juice .... I like guava juice grin so welcome! smile

brew

defuse Mon 30-Dec-13 22:21:32

Just too the liberty to copy and paste a message by worldcitizen from previous thread in case anyone can help:

Hello everyone, I am seeing some names which are so familiar to me and I didn't know where else to post, so hope you all could help me ut or lead me into the right direction, hopefully

I have 2 questions:

A long while ago, there was a thread about relationships, domestic violence or conflict in a marriage or something along those lines and someone posted a link (not so sure anymore) where it specified de-eskalation, mediation etc "the Muslim way" it looked like great advice. It seemed to be very professional (SW or counselling) and evidence-based. I hope I am able to explain well what I mean?

Does someone here know what I mean and could help me to find that again. I tried google, but wasn't successful.

And the second questions is a little bit more complicated...please bear with me

I am looking for help in regards to some contacts with social work/counselling/police units (specifically dealing with hate crimes (against Muslims), domestic violence in Muslim families, interreligious community groups etc., in London, where we ( a group of 3-4 people) could meet in April for a few hours.
We are in London (Hendon) at that time and we would be looking to meet for a professional exchange.

I wold like to elaborate more, but am not sure, if this would be the right place, so better keep it to a minimum as of now...

I am saying thank you in advance for your help and guidance.

defuse Mon 30-Dec-13 22:22:32

took the liberty!! Not too!

fuzzywuzzy Mon 30-Dec-13 22:23:58

Yeay I was just checking to see if a new thread had been started up.

I've never had guava juice!

defuse Mon 30-Dec-13 23:14:12
worldcitizen Mon 30-Dec-13 23:55:56

Hello everyone,

thanks so much for the very informative response I have received from peacefuloptimist thanks

And thank you defuse for reposting my question/call for help.

Really really appreciate it smile

craftysewer Tue 31-Dec-13 02:10:16

I just wanted to pop in and say "Hi" as I am away visiting friends over New Year and may not get much chance to stay in touch for the next few days. I've never tried Baclava, but next time I visit my oldest daughter in Edinburgh I will make sure we go back to the Turkish cafe near her and try some.

ButterflySandwich Tue 31-Dec-13 04:45:55

Guava juice and baklava... diabetics will need a spoonful of insulin to help all that sugar go down grin

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Tue 31-Dec-13 06:57:02

Salaam

Thank you for the new thread defuse.

Crafty your post on the last thread was lovely, thank you. I hope you stay with us throughout this thread, I look forward to hearing your input smile.

I will post more on this thread inshAllah, but for now I'll have a plain old English tea. Never tried baclava either, sounds a bit adventurous for me!

May Allah (swt) grant our families with good health, peace and unity for the new year ahead.

Ameen

UmmSHI Tue 31-Dec-13 08:46:10

Salam everyone, really happy to see this thread here today. Will pop back soon inshaallah with more to say once the thread gets going.

Mine's a peppermint tea.

crescentmoon Tue 31-Dec-13 09:53:31

salams defuse, jazakhallah for starting a new thread.

links to the 2 previous muslim chat threads:

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/philosophy_religion_spirituality/1626217-Just-curious-how-many-muslims-are-on-mumsnet

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/philosophy_religion_spirituality/1712895-The-Muslim-Tearoom

very glad to welcome worldcitizen - havent seen you in awhile! and craftysewer - glad you enjoyed the previous thread. hope we get more insight about the previous thread from posters like yourself. i wonder if the constant use of arabic islamic terms is difficult to follow - should we have a glossary?

im back at home sisters a week earlier than planned - was meant to have 2 weeks away! but i became persona non grata at my mum's after ds2 had five one too many 'accidents' in my attempt to get him potty trained. i left my ds1 and dd there but im not to come back with ds2 until he is housebroken knows how to use the toilet! i wasnt driven out with pitchforks (though i swear i saw a red light in my mum's eyes when ds ran giggling through the kitchen with a poo covered bottom!) but i saw their visible relief when i said maybe i would go back home to keep dh company. but so much for 'it takes a village to raise a child'!

so sandwich (forgive me for using sunshine on the other thread, it was because your posts were so sunny and cheerful!) - im letting him run free in normal underpants not nappies or pull ups. and so far its working, i dont know why i thought this boy was going to run on my time this xmas holiday. since the day he was born he's always made it clear we fit round him not he fits round us! from his birth, weaning, co sleeping, breastfeeding, and now toilet training etc. Lord God, i thank you for this child who has taught me humility - i used to be arrogant and think it was my parenting that had my first two so easy, and lecture my friends with difficult little ones as if i was an expert. but then ds2 came along, and by him, subhanallah, You sure showed me!

as part of my new years resolution to reduce screen time i decided instead of stopping MN completely, to get rid of my iphone instead! this sunday gone i went and bought a cheap 20 quid mobile from carphone warehouse with no internet so id only have a phone for calls and texts! im only going to be posting from my desktop here on in so hoping to be part of tearoom still! and inshaallah, i wont have so many typos either (does anyone else cringe reading back over their previous posts about their grammer? ych!)

happy new year too all our sisters, if not sisters in faith, then - please dont barf, this is in earnest! - our sisters in humanity.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 17:17:27

Hello crescent!!!!! So glad to "meet" again smile

It's true, I haven't been on here for such long while. I was too busy with lots of life-changing career decisions and simply no time to be on MN.

I was thinking, I might have to introduce myself and my cultural/religious background and also with which intention I have posted my questions and what the backstory is.

I will later this evening. Thought I will read through both threads linked above, so I know better what's appropriate here and what not. At least, I hope I will blush

crescentmoon Tue 31-Dec-13 17:57:14

worldcitizen, you dont have to read through the last two threads at all - that would take several days! as for introducing yourself, give as little or as much information as you like, theres no formality here. this is a place where it is hoped posters can unwind and relax with each other - and from that, be open in talking about all types of topics, even sensitive subjects with ease. with copious cups of tea and sweet pastries and bakes of course!
as for your earlier request,iv been wondering which thread you were talking about, 'de escalation' seemed a grand term for the advice suggested in this thread, could it be the one you meant? i remember your comments in it too and also an intimation of some womens/community projects you would be involved in in the future? it was summer 2012 then?
i forgot to make my request. id love some cardamom spiced tea, with carnation evaporated milk, a pinch of cinnamon and 2 ''good' tsps of sugar! i celebrate the dc's bedtime each evening by starting with a cup of tea!

fuzzywuzzy Tue 31-Dec-13 18:03:11

Subhanallah I start re evening when my girls are in bed with a cup of spiced chai, I'm going to start buying evaporated milk and use that in my chai too make it really special lol.

There's nothing like the first cup of chai of the evening and the start of 'me' time.
Over the years I've come to really enjoy the evening solitude. During the day I sometimes feel pulled in so many directions.

What does everyone else do to unwind?

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 19:05:34

Hello everyone, and thanks crescent for encouraging me to join without having read throught he other threads first. Thanks a lot.

I remember soem names here mostly due to some 'obnoxious threads' on here, which were ignorant and bigoted, and i was so impressed with the way posters here are able to repsond and still hold their head up gracefully. very impressed.

Also impressed by the strength and poise and peacefulness. I've said it before and someone has said it in the last tearoom thread.
It's very strange, but reading the ones where the Muslim family and marriage experience is being shared, one feels miraculously at peace. Really strange emotional experience.

as some of you might already know, I am German of Tunisian Muslim descent who has married a half Catholic/half Southern Baptist White-Latino U.S. American.
I myself have attended Protestant childcare, after-school care and promary school. With involvement in the church community after-school events until we were all 16.
Grew up with 'Native Germans and kids of all kinds of mediterranean descent and Scandinavians, as I grew up in the street where all 4 Scandinavian main churches and community/family centers are.
Also up the street was the English Anglican church and the Catlic one, surrounded be the 5 other main protestant-lutheran churches...scattered around also all kinds of mosques from all kinds of Muslim immigrant communities.

All this mostly not identifiable to visitors from the rest of Germany or other tourists. Looks all very unassuming and generic german.

I speak German, Arabic, English and French...

I have one child, a daughter, who lives with my ex-husband, her grand-parents, stepmother and various half-and stepsiblings.

I have been very much touched by the latest global developments (past 10 years or so) and have been way to quiet/silent, but I believe it has reached a point with me, where I cannot not be involved in peace work and interreligious dialogue anymore.

I am hoping to learn from the UK experience, as you are ahead of us in those terms.

Well, what i else can I share...?

My background is in social work (medical and clinical) and police/border control, and refugee/asylum seeking field.
I have worked and still do on state/government level and NGO's and organisations with religious affiliations.
Whcih I am doing now as well. I do work for the state government, the city of Hamburg, at the official Centre for new coming unaccompanied refugee/asylum seeking minors) AND work at the mergency homeless shelter which is entirely Christian (Protestant) with funding from city government and donations.
At the same time I have returned to uni working on my 2nd/3rd Masters. One in International Criminology and the other one in Peace and Conflict studies.
Of course, my regional focus is going to be mostly the Maghreb and further the entire Mediterranean region focusing on EU borders and the western sub-saharan area (former French and British colonies).

I am also a participant (as a private individual) in interreligious events. Also, starting to have more and more contact with the jewish community who have loads of cultural offers.

I am now 40 years old...and well, I guess I actaully should share whatwe are planning to do in Londo. And who we are smile.

But first, I'll take a little break and something little to eat and make a tea and then I'll be back.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 19:07:24

Hello fuzzy remember you too smile

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 21:29:56

...so my personal story to be continued ( i am currently also over there on the Northern ireland and HQ not reacting issue)...

So in the second week of April, we will be a group of 20 or so people in London and I took it upon me to organise for 4-5 people, myself included two to four professional exchange visits.

Background is female detective superintendent having lots of DV cases, and other sorts of human conflict related things...
Not because it is more prevalent in the Muslim community, no, more due to the neighbourhoods she is serving where there is higher Muslim population present.

Also, there has been a huge conflict between parent group of Turkish Muslim male youth being (maybe?) targeted more often by police...
Conflict escalated that much that it even made national news.

She wants to meet with community organisers and police, where within the police there is some best practice standards or something similar how to work together towards social peace in the community and how police should self-reflect???

Do they have such thing in the UK? maybe Leeds, London, Birmingham?

We believe that our neighbourhood situation could be compared to 3rd generation pakistani youth, maybe?!

Then the other 2 are prosecutor (male) and psychotherapist (female) both also Muslim and of Afghan descent.
Strong interest in forced marriage and DV and social work/shelter support net.
We in germany are still little bit in infancy regarding the application of support system and yet being culturally and religious sensitive and respectful, IYSWIM.

I am of course very interested in these topics, mentioned above, and am also looking into Islamophobia, hate crimes and other hateful nasty reactions.
We jsut had a few days ago, in another german city though, several pigs heads around the mosque and at the entrance.

Also, there is currently a former church being transformed into a mosque in a very multi-cultural working class neighbourhood. And they have negotiated this within the community with all kinds of members and the deal was made and all are happy, but now all kinds of people from other areas of the city and other parts of germany are commenting as this is not the proof that Germany is being "islamisized" and next will be the Sharia law etc.

So, we are hoping to get some contacts and learn some thing or two and have more or less of an informal meet and greet.....

You think, this is just a stupid of mine or do you think it sounds realistic?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 31-Dec-13 21:42:47

I don't think it's stupid at all.

I think domestic issues need to be discussed openly and clamly within the Muslim comunity begining with the 'leaders' the imams and the scholars need to work with the police and come up with a strategy that will make the issues more open and the environment safer for people wanting to leave violent situations or have the right to refuse to marry based on their parents cultural expectations.

You could speak with East London and Central London Mosques they both have imams and I know East london mosque also has a counselling service (or did) who openly condemn and speak of DV issues and forced marriages etc.

There is a whole list of Muslim groups geared to helping women in vilent situations, but these are still in their infancy.

But it's a step in the right direction.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 21:56:07

Thanks fuzzy

See, we certainly believe that there is a terrible dveloment of sensational media coverage of Isla and Muslims.
the strange thing is, this has not been the issue before, but in the past 6-8 years possibly it has started to become unbearable.

So, many female Muslims are starting to wear headscarfs and we even have the develoment of women wearing hijabs and once in a while also the face veil. All of this being stated as being the counter-reaction of a hostile environment.

I just had to cry reading what has been stated at the N.I. racist MNHQ not reacting thread.

People now being late thirties describing how they were treated 20 years ago like terrorists and being strip-searched and people on the tube moving away thinking they're having explosives...how sad sad

Am I too dramatic in feeling that there is a massive increase of islamophobiain Europe?

peacefuloptimist Tue 31-Dec-13 22:04:20

Yippee. A new thread. I have been watching with interest all day but finally got a chance to post now. Thanks defuse for getting us started. Hello everyone glad to see all the familiar faces and some new ones too.

Worldcitizen it definitely sounds doable. I mean you have a good couple of months to arrange it so I dont see why not. Now that you have given a bit more info there are some other organisations I can point you towards.

Association of Muslim Police

West Midlands Association of Muslim Police

I would search out more official governmental organisation if I were you just because they probably have Standards of Practice and Procedures that would be useful to you. The West Midlands Association of Muslim Police probably deal with the sort of demographic you describe.

Of the ones I mentioned before TellMama and IHRC are probably the best to contact about Islamophobia and Nour is a good one to speak to about domestic violence. There is another charity which may be of use to you.

www.an-nisa.org/

Just found this on their website:

'An-Nisa works in three main areas:

* Developing and promoting good practice models of faith appropriate services to Muslim families

* Supporting other Muslim groups in the UK and beyond

* Raising awareness about Islam, the Muslim community and influencing policy development'

So it seems like they deal with some of the issues you mentioned. I hope this helps and sorry to bombard you with lots of information.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 22:13:37

Hey crescent thanks a lot. Looked through it. Not wasn't there.

I am so angry about myself that I cannot find it anymore. Even tried google didn't help sad

It was something like recommended counselling practice whe working with Muslim couples/families.

It debunked separation and divorce ways and gave recommendation of how to approach the family, the community and which responsibilities the husband actually has and how and which family members are being activated and offering shelter to the woman.

How the man needs to "change" and reflect etc....

And which steps finally could lead to divorce for example.

It sort of explained how the rules of how to treat and care for wife and kids are actually very women-friendly and how men who are let's say simply losers, just use their religion as an open backdoor to act nasty like a dictator, but how wrong it actually is cause that's not what the religion is about.

And actually we have this development here, mostly in our german case being third generation Turkish-german young adults.
Am wondering if this could be compared to 3rd generation Pakistani-British young adults marrying one another and other influences could be reason for disturbed young marriages, but they claim themselves it's their religion...but it's not.

I hope I make sense. And I promise, I won't drag this out too long here on this thread as it is otherwise a very lovely calm and peaceful support thread.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 22:18:09

Wow thanks sooooooo soooooooo much. No, I appreciate all this. exactly what I was hoping for.
I myself feel like I am the one bombarding here blush

This all has simply reached a point where I am not willing to stand back and continue to be polite, so seeing how often and tiredlessly many of you have constantly explained on various threads is a wonderful inspiration and I am not even in the UK.

Thanks so much. One of resolutions for 2014 is to get this done and bring this from the UK back to our community cause you are ahead of us!!!!

peacefuloptimist Tue 31-Dec-13 22:29:43

It is very depressing to hear your accounts about the spread of Islamophobia in Europe. There has been a significant increase in these sorts of scaremongering articles about Muslims. The recent thread on mumsnet about Marks and Spencers policies towards its muslim staff is a good example. I couldnt even be bothered to post on it. I thought if people are so pathetic that they can get hysterical about such a non issue I really dont have anything to say to them. I mean really only 5-6% of the Uk population is made up of muslims. How many of them work in Marks and Sparks and how many of them care enough to actually act on that policy (assuming that its true and not just made up)? There was an interesting article a few years ago where a journalist resigned from a British tabloid newspaper because he said they were pressuring him to write stories to stir up hatred against muslims and even going to the lengths of publishing fictional stories.

www.theguardian.com/media/2011/mar/04/daily-star-reporter-quits-protest

I always suspect all the so called news stories to do with muslims these days. I remember once reading the Metro on the way to university a few years ago and I was baffled after reading a few scaremongering articles like that and just wondered why is this news? It is a growing concern for me especially now that I have a child. I dont want him to grow up being hated. Now Im the dramatic one.

Woah not even finished page 1 and we have already got on to some heavy topics. Shall I lighten the mood.

I went to the hairdressers today to get the Brazillian blow dry but she told me you cant get it done if your breastfeeding. When I told her that Im still breastfeeding my 16 month old son she looked at me in horror and said "But he's a man. What are you still breast feeding him for?" grin Made me chuckle the whole day. Im really on my last legs now with this breastfeeding gig. Im sick and tired of it but Im too scared of my son to stop. I was hoping he would get bored of it by himself but over the holidays he has become even more addicted to it. Im giving him another two months I think then Im going to stop. My DM and DH keep telling me though that if I have got this far I might as well complete the two years. Has anyone managed to breastfeed any of their children for two years by the way? After speaking to a few friends who all stopped before their child was one years old Im starting to think its a myth or at least doesnt happen as commonly as we are led to believe.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 22:39:15

I breastfed my child until she was 19 months. Starting from about 13 months to give one less daily feeding every month until it was only once a day in the end and I hoped she would forget to ask for the breast, which she did for two days then she tried again but without demanding it and I got her distracted and then that was it.

Breastfeeding was history grin

peacefuloptimist Tue 31-Dec-13 22:54:42

I hope it will be as easy as that for me worldcitizen!

By the way anyone doing anything interesting for New Years Eve. I have been keeping watching of the Google homepage doodle to see what its going to do when the clock strikes 12. I know what an exciting life I lead. grin

My evening routine is to settle down with a cup of hot chocolate and my lap top and watch bbc iplayer. I used to spend time with my DH in the evenings but now I just want to totally unwind on my OWN. If he comes in to the same room whilst I am having my evening me time I just give him my death stare till he leaves. He sits in the kitchen whilst I have the big sofa all to myself. grin

EmbroideredCloths Tue 31-Dec-13 23:16:11

I breastfed my ds until he was 2.5 yrs. like you, peaceful, I was ready to stop at about 18 months but he wasn't having it. There were a handful of abortive attempts to make him stop, they were traumatic and extremely stressful. They also didn't work. From 18m onwards it was only at night time but I was aware that others thought he was too old for it and felt the subconscious pressure. In the end though I gave up and gave in. Just didn't tell people he was still breast feeding.

At 2.5, one day, he just didn't want it anymore. No tears, no tantrums, unbelievably easy. Made me realise that if you work to your child's timetable instead of artificial external ones, life is just easier all round for everyone.

worldcitizen Tue 31-Dec-13 23:23:48

I know so many cultures where feeding once or twice (early morning and late one before sleeping) until the age of 2.5 or even 3 is absolutely normal.

Still allows for this special closeness and unique body contact and calming and soothing.

crescentmoon Wed 01-Jan-14 09:33:07

embroideredcloths that sounds amazing that he just woke up one day 2.5 years old and didnt want it anymore. id always thought the older they get the harder it is to stop them breastfeeding. its so true about child's timetable rather than artificial external ones. its 9.19 am, DS has been up for 3 hours this morning, and so far not a single wet accident! he's gone to the toilet 4 times - albeit prompted by me! - and mashaallah tabarakallah he's dry otherwise. heres hoping the rest of the day. but its a bloody miracle even this! (hands out sweets and chocolates, brings out tray of baklava).

worldcitizen your work and project sounds fantastic. you say you have muslim parentage were you brought up muslim yourself? peacefuls links are pretty great iv enjoyed reading through them myself. as for

"Then the other 2 are prosecutor (male) and psychotherapist (female) both also Muslim and of Afghan descent.
Strong interest in forced marriage and DV and social work/shelter support net."

things really changed on the crime issues affecting ethnic minorities here in the UK when Nazir afzal was appointed Chief crown prosecutor in the north west, (he is 1 of only 13 across the UK). as part of the 100000 prosecutions he oversees a year he successfully pushed through the prosecution of the Rochdale grooming gang last year (constantly left out of the narrative about the asian grooming gangs was that it was a practising muslim who led the criminal case against them) and also honour crimes cases, forced marriage cases and he also campaigns against fgm. mashaallah he's a pretty cool guy.

www.nytimes.com/2013/09/28/world/europe/a-muslim-prosecutor-in-britain-fighting-forced-marriages-and-honor-crimes.html?pagewanted=all

crescentmoon Wed 01-Jan-14 09:59:11

oh yes, cant leave out www.southallblacksisters.org.uk/, an asian women's organisation that "
provides a range of advice and support services to enable black and minority women to gain the knowledge and confidence they need to assert their human rights. We provide general and specialist advice on gender-related issues such as domestic violence, sexual violence, forced marriage, honour killings and their intersection with the criminal justice, immigration and asylum systems, health, welfare rights, homelessness and poverty."

theyre based in west london world, hendon is in north west but close enough compared to the others. theyre not a muslim organisation but do alot of work on topics that affect ethnic minority women which includes muslims.

as for milk in tea fuzzy, keep your semi skimmed for everything else but when it comes to tea only evaporated milk. it will make your chai even more luxurious- what other pleasures in this dunya are there for us to imbibe? actually, scratch that, welch's white grape, pear and apple juice is pretty amazing too!

peaceful thats so funny what the hairdresser said! i wonder if anyone else has had that keratin treatment? i had to google it! lucky you found a hairdresser though, i have to trek quite a long way to get to a ladies only one there are none near where i live! i used to have a mobile hairdresser come to my house to do my hair but i cant really afford that anymore. still, the threading and waxing lady, and the henna lady, who i go to more regularly now, are both close by!
i laughed about giving your DH a death stare - but seriously, the reason i decided to try and decrease screentime was because dh kept complaining! one sister posted this video on facebook a short while ago,
www.youtube.com/watch?v=OINa46HeWg8

and i watched it and felt so bad because i could really see how much i was missing out on with family. i dreaded to think my dc growing up saying they always remembered mama constantly on her phone - facebook, instagram, twitter, GU's comment is free, MN, they were uncomfortably becoming a very strong habit. so i resolved this year im going to try and break my nafs' attachment to those sites. im still going on them on my pc dont get me wrong! but my crappy little functional phone now means i cant walk around the house surfing online as i used to. its been a couple of days and my nafs is very much still hankering, but i thought im your boss your not my boss! (though, when it comes to sugar astaghfirullah its still the boss!).

EmbroideredCloths Wed 01-Jan-14 11:17:19

I'm going to try making the chai with evaporated milk for DH today. He has a sweet tooth and loves sweet milky coffee so I'm thinking spiced chai will go down well.

Sadly I have gestational diabetes and though it's only borderline and diet controlled I'll have to wait til March before I can have some sweet chai myself. confused

worldcitizen Wed 01-Jan-14 12:47:49

Hello everyone,
I wish you all a hopefully wonderful 2014 with lots of happiness, health, and good fortune smile

Yes, the links are awesome and very informative and helpful. I truly appreciate all this help and advice.

And another yes to your question about me being raised Muslim myself. Yes indeed, I have been raised exactly the same way all my cousins and others in my age group have been raised in Europe and the Maghreb.

Me having been signed up by my parents in Christian child-care and primary school wasn't even considered unusual as this has not been uncommon in the Maghreb itself in the 30's, 40's and up.

Also, my strong interest with dialogue and peaceful living with Jews as well, has not been uncommon in my parents's upbringing as this used to be the norm for ages in the Maghreb and also Egypt and various other countries in the Near and Middle East.
So my parents are in their late 60's and early 70's now are of the generation and also the ones who are older than them who find this actually very normal.

I do not wear a headscarf and my mother never has and tons of women, actually over 85% never have and do not.
I also do not pray and do not fast while having (had)normal regular school, uni, and work responsibilities.

My parents didn't want me too,, when I was still a minor. They didn't not want me to be harmed or get repurcussions from a fasting situation which German culture, school responsibilities etc. weren't taking Ramadan into consideration.

I have found my own alternative way with the help of my parents.

I very much look into similarities of all three monotheistic religions. I like the Old testament la lot as the common denominator.

I love, more and more the older I get, the idea of fasting and try to get more into how all these 3 religios fast and why.
So, I actually spread timing (4 times 10 days) across the year and very much include the Catholic fasting time as well by also sitting in the Catholic church to be close to God.

Why Catholic, well the Protestant ones here are not as beautiful and they are very cold and somehow inside I feel a distance. So, I go, where I feel there is a spirit I can feel.
Orthodox churches are also very much what I like.

We also have some (not a lot) few beautiful mosques...and I love it in there.

My parents, but also by my extended family, which also includes a grear-great uncle who was a very great Imam in the famous and very important mosque in Tunis and Uni professor for Islamic Theology, have raised me to look for comfort and look for connection in any other holy and blessed place, if I feel like it.

Oh and I know others who grew up that way and see it nowadays this way as well.

Does that make sense to you?

peacefuloptimist Wed 01-Jan-14 13:38:04

Thank you EmbroideredCloths for your reply. You and worldcitizens are giving me hope that weaning ds off the breast is not going to be as traumatic as I feared.

Wow Crescent that video you posted is kind of scary because its so true. I went to a restaurant once and saw a whole table full of people all taping away on their phones, no one speaking. I thought how odd that phones can make you look so antisocial in such a social environment. I hate the whole selfies craze as well. I have younger relatives who will take pictures of themselves (and get you to take them too) doing silly poses wherever you go out with them and one even took a picture of the packaging of some sweets we had bought together to post on instagram. Are people really interested in such mundane things like that? I think its a generational thing though. But I dont think I will give up my evening time with my laptop though. Its much cheaper than therapy.

World its interesting to read about your upbringing. I know what you mean about enjoying looking for the similarities between the three faiths. I do too. It makes me sad sometimes how many unnecessary conflicts there are between people of the Abrahamic faiths. I mean even if we all held on to our differences there are so many similarities between us that we should be able to get along. The Quran has a beautiful verse in it which addresses this inter religious dialogue.

'Say: Oh People of the Book (i.e. Jews and Christians)! Let us come to common terms between us and you: that we shall worship none but God, and that we shall ascribe no partner unto Him, and that none of us shall take others for lords beside God. And if they turn away, then say: Bear witness that we are they who have surrendered (to God).' Holy Quran, Chapter 3; Verse 64.

Since joining mumsnet and posting on the philosophy and religion thread I have been struck by how similar some of the things the christian mumsnetters say is to our own understanding. Essentially we speak the same language, how could we not when so many of our Prophets are shared. A Rabbi, Priest or Imam would give very similar sermons about the lessons learned from the stories of Abraham, Moses, Noah and Joseph (peace be upon them all). Its sad though that some people (from all three of the faiths) prefer to fixate on differences rather than build on our commonalities. There was a facebook group I saw that was based on this idea from the Quran of coming to a common agreement between different faiths.

https://www.facebook.com/ComeToCommonTermsAsBetweenUsAndYou

worldcitizen Wed 01-Jan-14 14:07:42

Oh that's interestin peaceful.

I am very, very sure to the bottom of my heart, that we humans are not meant to be fighting.

I sometimes ask myself, if this is all a test. I am very serious, it sounds stupid, but I read on here (the first thread) about how important sincereity is.

That was actually very touching. My father always held that up high. he always sais that he felt as a parent and also as his reponsibility not only as a parent, but as a Muslim to raise us to be believers and to wholeheartedly feel from the inside that all our actions are sincere.

He couldn't stand insincerity and the same is also my best friend who is Roman Catholic and a theologist herself and a former nun, who is now a community organiser of a interreligious faith group here.
Her employer is the Catholic university for applied social sciences in Berlin which has attached to it the German Institute of Community organising headed by Professor Leo Penta (an Italian U.S. American who is also a Jesuit priest...)

The funny thing is she leads several groups which are mostly Muslim and also Christian, and 70% are from various African countries and the rest are Turkish.

But all of them are 2nd generation Turkish-Germans and 1st generations Black Africans with their children being born here.

They want to be able to be Muslim and live their faith and teach their children but also be Germans and Europeans and live peacefully together...

It's not impossible, I grew up that way. my parents thought since the 60's it would get better, but instead it just got worse these past years sad

Which is why I will start to speak up and stand up, this is my resolution from 2014 on....and hopefully for many years to follow.

I don't see why I should leave it to others to explain and disseminate their version of islam etc.
And yes, there are lots of Christians and even Jews (also the ones who left Israel to live here) who would love this.

It's not impossible and history proves whe have had this for many, many centuries already.
What's happening on the political front in the past 50 years or so....shouldn't derail what has been wonderful for many centuries before.
I personally do not even think there is that much difference between the three abrahamitic religions.

What I see is more an issue between believers and atheist.

defuse Wed 01-Jan-14 23:34:08

Thank you worldcitizen for reminding me of the sheer importance of sincerity - ikhlas. It is such a crucial part of islam. I must admit, MN has made me realise the extent of the issue between an atheist and a believer, but the verse that is so perfect for the situation is how Allah the most wise says:

To you be your Way, and to me mine. (109:6)

Back to ikhlas.... A very deep and fundamental topic in islam.

The Exalted said:

"And whoever desires the Hereafter and strives for it as it should be strived for while being a believer then his striving will be acknowledged (rewarded)." [Al-Qur'an 17:19]

There are some other useful definitions of ikhlas: (sunnah online.com)

It is the freedom of the desire for nearness to Allah from every blemish or impurity;
It is singling out Allah with one's intention in all acts of worship;
It is forgetting the sight of the creation by continual observance of the Creator; and
It is to hide your good deeds just like you would hide your evil deeds.

A great article about sincerity here - a fantastic reminder:

www.suhaibwebb.com/personaldvlpt/character/ikhlas-the-foundation/

Ok, now to something a bit lighter smile

I breastfed my dd until she was 22 months. I thought i deserved a pat on my back ( where is the ikhlas in that!) until i read about others who have faced bigger challenges and persevered.

Ok, i have a new issue to tackle, dd sucks her thumb and is constantly sucking her thumb. Now her front teeth are beginning to stick out, her thumb looks really sore and her nail is soft and doesnt grow properly. i need this to stop now! I have tried the bitter nail polish thing but she just licks it off and continues sucking. So i was now considering this contraption which is not cheap! If anybody has used it, i would love to hear about how effective it was and whether its worth forking out so much. shock

worldcitizen Wed 01-Jan-14 23:57:18

Hello everyone,

and thanks defuse for more input.

I am sorry, I cannot say anything worthwile about getting rid of thumb-sucking. I do remember though that this used to be one of greatest fears I would have to challenge, but thankfully I was not put into that situation to deal with.

I hope someone will know and have good ideas.

crescentmoon Thu 02-Jan-14 10:37:28

did anyone else notice my typo earlier with grammar spelt as grammer? [groan] i apologise in advance because it certainly wont be the last!

dear worldcitizen, i find your posts so interesting, i really hope you stick around throughout this thread. you being german along with your parents traditions gives a really interesting dimension to discussions about islam in the diaspora. i love what you mentioned about "It's not impossible and history proves whe have had this for many, many centuries already.
What's happening on the political front in the past 50 years or so....shouldn't derail what has been wonderful for many centuries before." for me this is so important, something we need to learn and know for our own conviction and faith, not just for deconstruction and debate/apologetics.

but you'll have already noticed, that we try to keep a mix of topics going, light/heavy/sensitive/easy/religious/non religious, just to make it easy and welcoming for those sisters who might feel they cant/wont come into the tearoom if the topic is constantly on politics for example.

in the group of women im currently saving with we have a few sisters like you world who do not pray, or wear hijab, and maybe do ramadan but not much else. but when it comes to committee - which is our word for this

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotating_Savings_and_Credit_Association

being practising/non practising as an individual is of less importance than being trustworthy and honest for/with other people in the group. some sisters join because they don't want to take bank loans and pay interest, and some sisters join because they dont earn enough to be able to access bank loans. im less concerned about their reasons for joining or whether the sisters im in a committee with pray/not pray. but im more concerned that they always keep up their payments into the group well after they've collected their money. that even if they enter difficult financial straits they keep the trust of the group - even if it means we eat baked beans for a week until payday just to make sure we dont break that trust. over the last 12 years iv been involved in various ROSCAs, its one of the best ways to know the sincerity and mettle of a person. when there is nothing stronger than a verbal agreement to make sure someone doesnt take their money and run off before the end of the committee term, you want people who have a strong sense of taqwa, or a strong sense of izzah when it comes to the amanah of other peoples money!

worldcitizen Thu 02-Jan-14 18:29:50

Hello,
no have not noticed any spelling mistakes other than my own blush please don't judge.

Never heard of ROSCA's ever before. Thanks for the link, I will read with interest.

I will try to stay and add something worthwhile. See I have only one child and she is older and I don't remember much of child-rearing difficulties...thank God

But I think I can add to multicultural and multi-lingual family life etc. i hope I can at least smile

peacefuloptimist Fri 03-Jan-14 10:13:27

Just wanted to make you aware of this online seminar tonight.

The Women Scholars in Islam - FREE ONLINE SEMINAR

By Shaykh Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi

Date: Friday 3rd January 2014 | Time: 7.00pm GMT

Introductory Seminar on History of Female Scholarship in Islam and The Role of Muslim Women in The Society

Discover the hidden legacy of the female scholars of Islam and the role of Muslim women in society throughout history in this amazing online seminar, based on the ground-breaking research and revolutionary findings of Shaykh Dr Mohammed Akram Nadwi on this generally unknown and unexplored area. This seminar is for both men and women and it will help restore balance and understanding between each other in line with the Prophet Muhammad's statement "Women are The Twin Halves of Men".

Brought to you by Cambridge Islamic Sciences Worldwide

Register @ http://bit.ly/MuslimWomenScholars

I really like Sheikh Akram Nadwi. His talks are really relevant and engaging. I had to register when I read this;

"God has given girls qualities and potential. If they aren’t allowed to develop them, if they aren’t provided with opportunities to study and learn, it is basically a live burial." - Shaykh Dr Mohammed Akram Nadwi

referencing the pre-Islamic ritual in Arabia of burying baby girls which the Quran outlawed. I totally agree with him.

peacefuloptimist Fri 03-Jan-14 10:46:10

I dont know why but its seems like there has been a deliberate cover up of the history of female scholarship in Islam. Just in the field of hadith sciences alone there have reportedly been over 9000 muslim women scholars who were considered experts in that field. shock Can you imagine! Why dont we know about them?

Defuse I had a look at the thumb guard. It looks so futuristic. Like something out of the Jetsons. But I wonder how comfortable it would be. I dont know how old your daughter is but maybe you could try a reward chart or something with her where you give her a star for not sucking her thumb in a given amount of time i.e. an half an hour, an hour etc. Then reward her when she gets a certain number of stars or goes without doing it for a longer period of time e.g. a day. Just an idea.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 03-Jan-14 12:14:26

People would come from far too learn at the feet of the mother of the believers, of course the bulk of scholarship would be with the women of Islam if you think about it logically, the women of the household were first hand witnesses to the unfolding of Islam, they were a source of comfort and consolation and counsel as well, and they were all very gifted in their own right.

Female scholarship is glossed over because men do not want women to get uppity and start expecting their rights. It's better to keep them uneducated to keep them in their place.

Regarding thumb sucking I grew out of it (eventually), my eldest still sucks her thumb, it gives her comfort so I don't really do anything, the dentist did say she may end up needing braces eventually, but her teeth don't look bad at all Alhumdulillah. She's a very determined thumb sucker tho, when she has henna on her hand she will suck the other thumb! I've tried to put henna on both hands and she then doesn't sleep till she's beyond exhausted.

Someone once told me they put bandages on their little brothers thumb at night when he used to suck his thumb and told him it was a booboo, he eventually stopped sucking his thumb because of that trick.

It wouldn't work with dd as she swaps thumbs.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 03-Jan-14 15:42:08

I accidentally ended up in Jummah today, I've started walking up to the masjid and praying very quickly. However I got the tail end of the Khutbah today and didn't want to rush off so stayed.

The Imam was very eloquent, the end of his Khutbah he said 'Raise your hands when you make Dua, for Allah in his greatness is shy to turn away the suppliant who raises his hands to him in Dua empty handed'.

Happy Jummah (almost over), make Duas in these last minutes as they may contain the moment of acceptance inshallah.

defuse Fri 03-Jan-14 21:24:12

Salaam all,

peaceful i am gutted that i have just seen your message about the seminar. I would have loved to have watched it. Is it still available to watch online? I am shocked to hear that we had 9000 female muslim scholars at one time. Now its hard to find even one. I have a question for a scholar - not necessarily a female one, but dont know how to access one as i am based up North. Most of my info comes from the odd sisters circles that attend and reading books and internet. Because there is quite a bit of detail required for my question (more like an essay!) it would be so much easier to talk to one rather than write it all out because i will no. Doubt leave some aspect out - unless anyone is aware of forum type of scholar q&a where they can leave any further questions fir you and you can add any further info before you get a fatwa.

Thanks to peaceful and fuzzy for your advice on thumb sucking. I wouldnt have been too bothered had dd's teeth not already been looking the way they are and she isnt even 3 yet! I will try the reward chart, but i doubt she will co-operate. Dont really want to pay out so much for that thumb guard, but have seen a type of glove for the thumb so might pay £16 and and try that first. I just know dd will be awfully upset with the thumbguard but might not be too upset with the glove thingy.

peacefuloptimist Sat 04-Jan-14 01:43:35

Salams all

Embroidered I just re-read what you wrote and realised your expecting. Congratulations thanks How has your pregnancy been? Gestational diabetes must be really tough to deal with. It was a big fear of mine that I would get that because diabetes runs in my family so I used to always be slightly nervous when they would measure my sugar levels. I hope the rest of your pregnancy goes smoothly and your labour is stress-free. Wasnt Gosh expecting too? Does anyone know if she has given birth yet?

Defuse, it was absolutely brilliant! It started at 7 and lasted for just over an hour. Im not sure if its online still but I hope they put it up because Sheikh Akram Nadwi was amazing. grin There were so many incredible things he said that it really boggles the mind that this is not known more widely in the muslim world but as Fuzzy said there are some people who prefer women to be unaware of this great history as it makes them easier to control. Fuzzy its not just the Mothers of the believers there were sooooo many more female scholars. In the end I just had to grab a pen and paper and write some of the names down and some of their great achievements. I thought I would share some of it with you.

Well first we cant start mentioning female scholars without mentioning Aisha RA who narrated 2,210 and in the six books of hadith, she narrates the most hadith after Abu Hurayrah RA. After the death of the Prophet Muhammed PBUH she became a point of reference for the muslim community. Abu Musa al Ashari said "Whenever any matter became difficult for us, the Companions of the Prophet PBUH, then we asked Aisha about it and we found she had knowledge of that".

Other famous women companions who related many hadith were Umm Salamah RA (378 hadith); Asma bint Yazid RA (81 hadith), Maymunah, umm al muminin RA who narrated 76; Hafsah, umm al muminin RA who narrated 60 and Asma bint Umays RA (60 hadith). In fact he said 25% of the hadith are narrated purely from women and the other 75% are narrated from a mixture of men and women (i.e. women and men both narrated those hadith). He even mentioned how the hadith narrated by women would take precedence over mens in many cases. For example for the sunnah salah before dhuhr that was disputed between the men (who narrated the prophet PBUH prayed 2 rakats before dhuhr) and the wives of the Prophet Muhammed PBUH (who said he prayed 4 before dhuhr). He said in the hanafi madhab they take the opinion of the wives of the Prophet Muhammed PBUH because he used to pray sunnah at home so they would be better informed.

In the generation after the companions of the Prophet Muhammed PBUH you also had some great female scholars. Amrah bint Abdul Rahman studied under Aisha RA and the great caliph (caliph means ruler) Umar Ibn AbdulAziz said about her 'No one is now living who has more knowledge of the hadith of Aisha than Amrah' and he would seek her counsel! Another male student of hers said 'I came to her and I found her an ocean of knowledge, its water never goes'. Hafsa bint Sireen was also one of the most famous scholars of hadeeth of that time. When Hassan al Basari and Ibn Sireen were mentioned in front of Iyaas bin Muaawiyah (a famous judge if that time), he openly stated that in his opinion, no one surpassed Hafsa bint Sireen.

Another famous female scholar from that period was from Syria and her name was Umm al Darda. She would spend 6 months teaching in Damascus in the Ummayad Mosque and then 6 months teaching in Jerusalem in Masjid al Aqsa - the third holiest mosque in Islam. Imagine some men think women shouldnt even come to the mosque and here you have a woman teaching in the 3rd holiest mosque. He mentioned others who taught in the mosques in Makkah and Madinah so the 1st and 2nd holiest mosques too and in both cases they taught men and women. There was one he mentioned as well (cant remember her name now) who was selected and paid by the ruler of Syria to be the primary hadith teacher in an educational institution in Damascus (cant remember exactly the name). So anyone going there would have to go to her to learn hadith and she was paid to do the job.

He also gave examples of women scholars from non-Arab backgrounds. For example Fatima bint Abu Ali al Hasan and Aisha bint Hasan ibn Ibrahim from Iran who were both famous teachers in their times. Even in Herat, Afghanistan there was a famous female scholar called Biba bint Abdul Samad who it was said about her 'the people who learnt hadith from her cannot be counted'. Also an African woman called Abida was an expert in relating hadith. She married Walid al Dahoon al Andalusi who took her to live in Spain with him where she narrated over 10,000 hadith of Imam Malik bin Anas and several other Madani scholars and she became the source of the spread of the Prophet’s (PBUH) teachings in Europe.

A really famous one as well was Karimah bint Ahmad al Marwaziyyah who was originally from Turkmenistan but travelled to Jerusalem, Isfahan, then finally Makkah in pursuit of her studies. She was considered to be the expert of Sahih Bukhari in her time and many people would travel from far and wide to listen to her teach in Masjid al Haram in Makkah. He said she is considered to have made the best copy of Sahih Bukhari (she would not allow her students to buy copies of the book and instead would make them copy the hadith from her copy and then she would check it with them that they had copied it correctly before allowing them to learn from her) and most of the ones we have today rely on her version written centuries ago because the chain of narration between her and Bukhari was very short. One of the most outstanding figures in the history of hadith was Fatimah bint Abdillah al Juzdaniyyah who also taught in Isfahan. She had many many students who went on to be famous scholars in their own right including Fatimah Bint Sa'ad who first came to learn from her when she was 4, then came back when she was 10-11 and finally when she was 16. Her father took Fatimah from China to Isfahan to learn hadith, then to Baghdad and she finally settled in Egypt and it was said that the hadith sciences had declined in Cairo until she got there and revived it again. Amatullah bint AbdulGhani from India was also another famous scholar. She used to teach in Madinah and in fact had the authority to award ijazahs to men who studied hadith from her.

I know this is a major overload but I just wanted to share because this is something we dont hear about often. I have barely scratched the surface of what he mentioned. There is a great book called 'Al Muhaddithhat - the women scholars in Islam' written by Akram Nadwi which has more information on this topic. Dr Farhat Hashimi (a contemporary famous female scholar from Pakistan) has written an article on this topic too here

Somebody asked a question about what caused the decline in female scholarship. He gave a really interesting answer. He said that when the study of Greek Philosophy became popular female scholarship went down (in fact there are no muslim female scholars of Greek Philosophy listed). He said this was because they were influenced by the ideas of Aristotle (who was one of the most influential misogynists you can think of) who didnt put much worth in to teaching women or on women as human beings at all so they didnt either. He said whenever hadith sciences became popular then you would see an increase in female scholarship again because there was more respect for women whilst the study of Greek philosophy caused men to despise women and look down on them.

Another really interesting thing he said was that there are 100s of men who are known to have fabricated hadith but there is not one women who is known to have fabricated hadith.

Did anyone else manage to watch it?

worldcitizen Sat 04-Jan-14 10:48:24

Wow peaceful it's amazing how much you know!!!! So amazing and interesting.

Will read with pleasue and great interest smile

thanks

peacefuloptimist Sat 04-Jan-14 12:24:29

I dont know anything worldcitizen. Im just repeating what I heard yesterday in that online seminar and (whispers) I have the book by Sheikh Akram Nadwi. But to my shame I didnt read it until yesterday when I needed to remind myself of the names and achievements of the female scholars before posting blush.

UmmSHI Sat 04-Jan-14 13:19:19

That all sounds so interesting peaceful. I wish I had caught the lecture yesterday as well. Is there a book of the lecture then? If so could you link it please, or whichever book you are talking about. JazakhAllah khair, what you have posted is so informative.

crescentmoon Sat 04-Jan-14 13:48:55

just also wanted to say thanks peaceful for the info. thanks so so much. i tuned in at the beginning of the talk and there were a couple of hundred people in the online seminar room when i had to sign out. i didnt get to hear those parts you mentioned but the sheikh began with a hadith about a man whose daughter came to him and he told her to sit on the floor. and then his son came to him and he held his son up on his shoulder (showing preference for sons over daughters). and the prophet (pbuh) was sitting with him and he rebuked the man saying 'you must treat your children equally'. i remembered countless little things like that my dad would do growing up and i thought if i didnt hear anything else after this at least i got to hear that!

theres the word whitewash, i wonder what word is used to describe the erasing of women's contribution to islamic scholarship? manwash? is it by ignorance or deliberate? Allah knows we have very few learned people man or woman anyway, but i cannot help but think, if there were such luminaries that their contributions were so widespread and great then the omissions must be... systematic? may God forgive them and forgive us.

im reading comments about thumb sucking with interest. but defuse that device thing is way too expensive love. consider it when she's a teen not now poor girl. my eldest is a thumb sucker too but only when he thinks no one is looking. definitely he's learned its uncool for school though - and in front of in laws too - they take the piss out of him mercilessly when he sucks his thumb in front of them! for that reason alone - tell me more about the £16 glove thingamajiggy!

i was so close to going to jumaa prayer yesterday fuzzy, usually im very grateful its not an obligation on women to attend as it is to men. for various disappointments reasons i wont go into hear. but yesterday, i really felt a yearning to attend the jumaa. im going to nurture that feeling through this week and attend next week inshaallah.

as for the committee thing, i usually save with them because im crap at saving money by myself! if i break a 5 pound note, whether its 4 pounds left or 50p left its gone - if its only for my sake i find it hard to watch the pennies. but i feel much more organised when in a group and with a social purpose as well.
say world, ummshi, cloth, defuse, peaceful, fuzzy, butterfly decide to start a ROSCA between themselves. you all decide to put £100 side each month for a term of 7 months (as theres 7 of you). each of your £100 together makes a lump sum of £700 to give to one of your group.

then between yourselves you work out when each of you needs the money. based on all having the same trustworthy rating (otherwise, NEW people take their money towards the end), say fuzzy's washing machine is on the brink, so she says can i have it the first month i need to get a new washing machine and other stuff. then peaceful says im moving house this £700 would help for the deposit, can i have it the second month. world says something like 'im not bothered about the first few months but can i get mine in June as im going on holiday then'. ummshi 'my MOT is up in August, can i get it that month so in case car needs some money spent, il have the money ready'. and so on... , the ones who need credit take it earlier in the 7 months, the ones who want to save take their lump sum later in the term.

grin - (actually, im repeating the conversations we've recently had in the group im in!).

the benefit is that instead of 7 of you each individually taking 7 months to save £700 each, and that money sitting at home in a piggy bank or a jar doing nothing or at risk of getting raided by the small crises that come up now and then. by doing a ROSCA most in the group will get that lump sum earlier for a 'big spend'. iv been in 'committees' where each person only puts in £50 a month - some women its the small amount left over from their house money that they can afford to put in. or the child benefit money etc. and the pot is only a few hundred, to ones where each person puts in £500/£1000 a month, and the lump sum is much more substantial. and it completely avoids riba/interest, because the glue is trust.

worldcitizen Sat 04-Jan-14 15:05:19

This ROSCA sounds really lie it makes sense. I actually would save as I feel I Need to do it as I am not only answering to myself but to the other group members as well.
So, beside us being able to Access a larger sum at once without interest and hassle and embarrassment, it actually helps me saving as well.

Again, never heard of this before. It sort of creates a bond as well and gives a feeling of being supported and also the wonderful feeling of helping others in return as well.

Very empowering

crescentmoon Sat 04-Jan-14 19:02:59

you might not have heard of it but im sure your parents maybe have, its something that the older generations brought with them and some of the younger generation are carrying on with. though in the UK convert anglo muslims - iv seen a group in my city - are now doing committee also

"It sort of creates a bond as well and gives a feeling of being supported and also the wonderful feeling of helping others in return as well."

yup, those are totally the reasons i stick with it till now! it suits a certain type of personality, theres the type of person that would rather save on their own. but theres actually lots of ways to buy interest free in the UK, google interest free furniture and you'll find you can buy sofas etc from DFS, laura ashley who offer 0% interest deals. can buy now pay later 0% from argos for electronics and other household goods eg fridges/tumbledriers. theres even interest free car finance now... www.interestfree4cars.com/
(theyre a non muslim company but are also marketing to the muslim market as sharia compliant). but for all those you need good credit rating/and or salary, so it might be out of the reach for some low income sisters who havent accessed or built up a credit history. or, sometimes the sofa or car you want to buy is from a smaller company that cant afford to do buy now pay later/interest free, and needs payment/cash up front. so committee/ROSCA helps for such situations too.

so then, the 7 months finish, and you all decide to do another term together, and say 'lets see if we can find some other sisters willing to join'. then i get to hear and ask world if i can join in, then world vouches for me with the others that im reliable yadiya, then the term extends to 8 months, and the lump sum is £800 per month. then, just before we begin, defuse says 'sisters i have a friend whose in a pickle and needs to borrow some money, can she join with us and take the first month her boiler needs fixing. il take the last month so'. and then maybe peaceful will bring along her cousin, says 'she'll definitely keep up the payments etc' and make that the tenth person, then the group is 10 strong, the pot is £1000, and we say 'lets do 10 months'. and it carries on, and grows each time, the longest iv been in a committee is 20 months - 20 people. i didnt know more than 2 people in that particular one, but i knew the sister leading it and trusted and left it to her. but as i was new in that one - got in through my mum - i think i had to wait until month 16 to collect our lump sum. but had i been saving that amount on my own, 100 things would have popped up to constantly eat away at it so id not have had the same amount after 16 months as by saving in a ROSCA. so alhamdullillah its always been a source of good for me.

worldcitizen Sat 04-Jan-14 20:22:38

Wonderful!!!! I am seeing my mother tomorrow, I'll ask her about it.

fuzzywuzzy Sat 04-Jan-14 21:01:57

I've a friend in Amman and this is how she bought her house, her husband was part of a ROSCA and each month one member of hte group got the massive lump sum.

I remember her telling me to do this to buy my house, I found it slightly bemusing how quickly she suddenly forgot how difficult it would be to do in the UK.

This method of finance is very popular in India amongst the Muslim community and the Middle Easst. The group of friends have to be trustworthy tho and usually there is a written contract stipulating the terms ie that each member will contribute till the entire group has received their savings back you are tied in for the entire duration you can't quite midway (or when you've had your money).

defuse Sun 05-Jan-14 00:27:50

Salaam,

Thanks for that summary peaceful, it was a really interesting read. I am a big fan of Farhat Hashmi, listening to her inspired me to start wearing the hijab. She does some great work mashallah.

I looked at the interest free car purchase crescent and am contemplating it at the moment. Thank you for that link. As for the glove thing, i will let you know when i look further into it.

Love the committee idea. But have never participated for fear of not being able to keep up the payments! Having said that, when i look at the crap that i buy sometimes, i think i could have easily have put that aside for savings instead of wasting it. fuzzy i would jump at the chance of being in a committee if it would mean being able to afford a house, buti just dont see that happening somehow. smile These committees are also quite popular around here amongst the pakistani community.

crescentmoon Sun 05-Jan-14 11:02:55

i think written contracts is a good idea, iv been in various ROSCAS and theres never been a contract. at most the sister doing the organising writes a list of who needs the money when but iv never seen more than that. because of geography and convenience paying in is usually by bank transfer now and paying out now is too.

i know a sister who had to pay private school fees like you fuzzy that joined a large ROSCA and scheduled her lump sum for when the fees were in e.g september. sisters who joined ROSCAS to pay for hajj or for the spending money during hajj, to pay off other debts etc. i know for some who want to save its also a way to keep family money out of the machinations of demanding relatives and (cough, cough wink) husbands who cant say no. if the money is in a ROSCA its not at home at risk of being given away lent for an indeterminate term to in laws on either side or used for unneccesary spending. but then money sitting in the bank after the ROSCA ends presents another problem!

i know what you mean defuse about the crap that we buy. im in my second year doing one with a local group. initially id planned to put x amount for the committee and the same x amount in my own bank account to save on my own. but now i wish id just put aside the whole thing in a committee where i cant reach it because i always spend the amount im meant to save myself on crap!

the car link is good isnt it - i hope it will be of benefit? i think we should share any other riba free deals/offers out there inshaallah!

LittleTulip Sun 05-Jan-14 22:22:33

Just a quick hello and gregorian happy new year will reply properly when I've read through the thread! smile

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 06-Jan-14 09:53:05

Salaam

My SIL and MIL are part of a committee, when they first told me about it I have to admit to thinking they were mad, but having read up on it now I think it's a brilliant idea, something I might look into in the future, all disposable income at the moment is going towards our family holiday and paying off debts from moving house!

A bit late to this, but with regards to the thumb sucking I'm not sure that contraption would work, if they were really determined wouldn't they just suck the plastic part? We have an issue with DD2, since birth she nibbled on the corner of a muslin, and now age nearly 4 she still can't sleep without one in her mouth, she shoves half of one into her mouth and 'sucks' on it. A few times she has actually swallowed it and I've had to pull it up from her throat resulting in her being sick. We did manage to get rid of them for a few months but since DS has a nice statsh she takes them for herself! So fuzzy I feel your pain. DD2 was born with a slight hereditary (DH side) overbite, and due to this muzzy sucking it's now severe and her jaw is misaligned. They're already talking operating on it once all of her adult teeth are through.

My local mosque has a group for revert sisters on a sunday, I went there for the first time this weekend and took DD1. And wow, it was amazing, the sister that took the class was so empowering and so knowledgeable. I took a notebook but I was so engrossed in what she was saying, two hours later I had an empty notebook. DD1 luckily took notes for herself!

Do any your local mosques have any groups like this going? There was a sister there at the weekend who had reverted that very morning alhamdullilah.

I hope you're all well.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 06-Jan-14 09:56:58

Sorry I meant defuse when it comes to the thumb sucking smile

UmmSHI Mon 06-Jan-14 10:05:25

Mashaallah Lost. That sounds so uplifting. Sadly there is nothing like that in my area. I miss spending quality time with practising sisters.

Where I used to live there were groups similar to that. One was discussing the 99 names of Allah and how they are relevant to us. It was a very good group. The only thing they offer where I am now is sisters quran classes, but I have no one to take care of my three children and the mosque in question won't let children in the mosque during anything other than the madrassah classes unless they are old enough to pray.

I really disagree with that because I could keep mine quiet with a colouring book or iPad, and they are preventing people (women) from accessing knowledge. It makes me quite sad and angry to be honest, because as a muslim woman I don't think having children should prevent you from continuing to learn and keep your iman high, but too often it does.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 06-Jan-14 11:34:53

Umm it most definitely was uplifting. I've been struggling with my imaan for a while and now it's slowly getting back on track inshallah. That was just what I need to give me a kick up the behind!

I too find that really sad, and like you I disagree with it. I decided to take DD1 with me (who's 9 and reverted with me 2 years ago) and leave the lively toddler and 9 month old at home. The sister who took the class made it very clear that all children were welcome, and like you said they can be easy distracted with colouring or an iPad or similar.

I think it's also great practise for them to go there. My DD2 (the livewire) has been to that particular mosque a number of times and has described it in detail to her keyworker at preschool smile. How else are children meant to learn? I find churches very welcoming for children so why aren't the mosques? These children are our future.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 06-Jan-14 12:36:35

I love seeing children at the masjid, I only get annoyed when the mother decide to sit right up front and ignore children running rampant, which some actually do.

Mostly you get the normal children playing around and I take biscuits and lollies and colouring pens and paper with me when I go and hand it out.

One Jummah a couple of new sisters appeared I think they were reverts and they had quite a few children with them, the children weren't especially loud or anything but I could hear one of the mothers getting stressed so I asked her if she minded if I gave the children some clotted cream biscuits I have with me (was meant to be a gift for a friend from a trip to Cornwall), the mum was very flustered but gave me permission, and suddenly the children all became silent then I heard one of the little boys saying 'Mmm this is rather delicious...' I cracked up.

I think a little tolerance and everyone working together to make it a pleasant atmosphere would really help.

My American friend said her local masjid in NY had a family room part of the masjid, so the women's section was split, the room at the front was for women without kids then the room behind was for women with little children, she said eventually what the girls did was offer to supervise when they weren't praying and keep the children occupied whilst the mums and older children could go and join the jamat and pray undistracted but with the reassurance the children were ok.

I'd love to have something like that in all masjids.

UmmSHI Mon 06-Jan-14 20:20:13

I'm the same right now lost in terms of iman. Your eldest daughter sounds very mature mashaallah.

That is a really good idea fuzzy. Although some mosques are too small for that in the uk, but alhamdulillah, many of the new builds are spacious and more accommodating.

crescentmoon Tue 07-Jan-14 18:00:40

i often wish we had something like sunday school for kids during the friday jumaa sermon and prayer lost. if there was id go because its difficult expecting dc to sit and listen throughout. trying to keep mine focused during the eid prayer and khutbah back in october was like holding a bag of ferrets - they fidget so much even with colours and books to read and play with! maybe im at fault for not having started them young enough? but its not easy for lots of reasons.
im very sad ummshi that your local mosque inhibit women with children from coming to the masjid. if they say 'dont bring them until they are old enough to pray' does that mean there are no children younger than 7/8 years old? gosh that is so ridiculous - i think they automatically expect wild behaviour from kids so instead of teaching about mosque etiquette they just say dont bother bringing them at all. i love my local muslim community because they are very friendly to small children and so women with kids feel welcome to attend talks and dhikrs. my three talk and play with the other children they rarely join in with the worship and i dont mind. id like if they can look forward to coming to the mosque to see their friends and have a run around quest through the masjid! but theres a mosque i would go to with my friend sometimes, la illaha illallah but the whole experience always left me stressed out because the children of the regulars there would be absolutely pin drop silent through any talk/worship. they were so well behaved mashaallah - even the toddlers would sit still silently for long periods. but they made my kids look like football hooligans as they were so used to our own local gatherings!
its so important the classes and lessons for one's emaan. i get alot of benefit in my emaan from being around other muslim women. with men i dont know, when i see a religious one giving a talk or giving advice on being practising i think 'easy for you does the wife busy at home with dc and family and home get to work on her deen like you do?'. but when i meet religious muslim sisters who juggle dunya and akhirah demands successfully, home/work/children/spouse/
prayer/fasting/quran etc it inspires me to try to fit more in my time. its very specific for me i need to see and talk to such sisters, book learning doesnt have the same affect on my actions though it can on my emaan! how about you?

UmmSHI Tue 07-Jan-14 19:35:54

yy totally agree crescent. Advice and guidance comes much more easily from someone who you relate to. I like your story about the really quiet children, mashaAllah, I don't think mine could be like that. And it is so important for children to feel welcome at the mosque. Unfortunately your assumptions about my local mosque are correct, at least there are posters that say as much. All directed at the women and so patronising, there are none in the men's section.

I try my best at home, and my eldest child, 5, loves the salat and prays with me sometimes.

All this hardship is further exacerbated by the fact that my husband is out of the country for a while and it is all down to me to raise the children right and keep my own iman up. But inshaAllah this will pass soon. After difficulty there is ease, alhamdulillah.

peacefuloptimist Tue 07-Jan-14 23:28:59

Salamalaykum dear sisters

UmmSHI that is very sad about your local mosque. I always think you can tell the strength of the community by how they welcome the women and children in the mosque. The community's which are more welcoming tend to be a lot more active I find and relevant as well whilst the ones that are less welcoming tend to have low congregations or at least have become like an old man's club.

One of the best mosques I have ever seen is one that was in Battersea. Subhanallah sisters everytime I went there it was surrounded by young people from children to teenagers to young adults. I used to wonder where the parents were! The mosque had a dedicated youth club that would organise activities like paintballing, go-carting and a holiday program to keep the young people in the community busy and happy. What also impressed me was they had a youth mosque committee made up of under 30s which also included women. And they seemed to have real power within the mosque to implement change. Definitely an exemplar. The problem is some mosques tend to spend so much money and time over style rather then substance. I love the mosque where my parents live as its so inclusive. As a result the women in that community are very well educated about the religion which has empowered them to be more active in the community and they are involved in a range of projects such as charity fundraisers, soup more like biryani kitchens for the homeless, youth activities etc.

On a separate but related topic, I once listened to a radio show where a female CEO of a company was asked about what the secret to her success was and she said something quite interesting. She said she had married the right man. She wasnt attributing her success necessarily to her husband but without his willingness to support her career ambitions by taking a greater role in childcare, being a SAHD or going part time (cant remember which) etc then she wouldnt have been able to have a family and at the same time be so successful. Its interesting dont you think. One thing I noticed when listening to the talk about the muslim women scholars is that they were really supported and encouraged by their families to pursue their education. The father of one of the women travelled from China to Jerusalem to Iran to Cairo to Makkah just so that his daughter would have access to the best teachers. I really believe that having a supportive family network behind you (whether it be your spouse, parents or siblings) can really help to make you whilst not having that can make things really difficult for you.

peacefuloptimist Tue 07-Jan-14 23:31:28

*I meant successful in her career

fuzzywuzzy Wed 08-Jan-14 09:46:28

That makes sense sis Peaceful a proactively supportive home environment will naturally gear one towards success in their professional endeavours.

I think slowly slowly masjids are welcoming women and children the newer masjids are definitely built with us in mind alhumdulillah, it's ridiculous not to, because if you've not grown up in the masjid going lifestyle it's insane to expect our children to suddenly want to go when they've reached the magic age of acceptability.

LittleTulip Wed 08-Jan-14 12:03:23

Good morning ladies hope you are all in good health in this lovely month

I was wondering if you could help me, I am trying to book our Umrah trip and well it is becoming difficult with DHs commitments with work. We have a provisional date however I may start menses whilst there - its only going to be a short trip, 4 days Makkah, 4 days Medinah. I may start spotting 4 days before menses which may be on day 4 of my trip (last day of Makkah) confused. Sorry if tmi. I know I wont be able to do salah and tawaf whilst on but what do you all think? Is it worth me even going? All other dates seem impossible and I'm starting to feel all stressed about it as the opportunity to go seemed so very near and now it's all going to pot! Do you guys count spotting as your actualy menses? I'm sorry to bring this up...

I know there is the option to take medication to delay my period however I really don't want to take it as I'm worried it's going to mess around with my fertility, especially when we are desperate to conceive and every cycle is important. Plus a lot of women don't feel so great on the medication either and reading some online Islamic forums a lot of scholars recommend against it. I've also read that a lot of women have taken these tablets and they have not worked!

I hope new year is going well for you all so far I must admit I haven't read the whole new tearoom chat, DH's grandfather died recently, DH's father died at a young age so a lot has been left for him to sort out - plus his family are not muslim and live miles and miles away so I am trying to get to grips with non-muslim funeral arranging!

Other than that I have managed to finally pop into work and alhamdolillah it went really well I felt confident about it all and there were not too many sympathy stares. I start back properly soon inshallah and actually looking forward to it!

Forgive the me, me, me, post and remember me in your duaas xx

isitme1 Wed 08-Jan-14 12:09:18

Salaam everyone
I have a quick question.

My little sister was married around a year to an abusive arsehole.
he came to our house last year and in front of a few family members he gave her talaaq (divorce)
now she claims she was on her periods and that its not valid. They remained in contact and within months they 'were back together' now the twist is they have a daughter who is still obly 2 years old. Shes under child protection as the dad a horrible past.

Is there divorce valid or not?
Thank you all .
x

fuzzywuzzy Wed 08-Jan-14 13:11:18

Little Tulip, according to what I've been taught spotting counts as menses, you know it's part of your cycle and the beginning of your period so you have to treat it as such.

However, you're TTC, you might actually manage it and not see menses for nine months inshallah!

Personally from my own point of view, I would go even if I knew without doubt I would be on my period, you can still enter the haram, you can sit and look at the haram and make duas you can visit all the places for ziyarat. I would go.

And please remember the ummah and me and my girls in your duas.

Sis Isitme, it does count as a divorce, how many divorces did he give her? Divorce does not have to be witnessed by anyone the wife only needs to be present to be divorced.
If he only gave her one divorce then she was divorced however they have the iddat period i.e. till she completes three of her menstrual cycles (the one she was on at the time doesn't count) to reconcile, if they reconcile within that period they can continue to live together as normal, if they choose to reconcile after then a whole new nikah has to be performed.

If the H uttered three divorces in one go, there are schools of thought which only take it as one divorce and they are still allowed to reconcile within the iddat period.

However they now only have two chances, if he utters divorce again it will be a second divorce after that if he says divorce it will be the third and will be irrevocable.

Allahualam and Allah knows best.

At any rate she should LTB if her child is on the at risk register.

isitme1 Wed 08-Jan-14 16:53:29

She doesnt understand. He said it in one go but 3 times.
They havent been living together since then because of the child protection as he isn't allowed to even see the baby but the mum doesn't care. Its heartbreaking!

So before they were divorced they lived together for a short while. Amd then she came to parents house to live. They arent living together but she sneaks to his house and leaves girl at home
hes supposed to have had some dv background with sis

fuzzywuzzy Wed 08-Jan-14 17:24:18

You can't make her leave if she doesn't want to.

She shouldn't be the main carer for her child tho if she's leaving her to go see her violent abusive husband.

isitme1 Wed 08-Jan-14 20:08:49

Hes such a horrible person.
She's so much better than him
he even cheated on her and is still with him.
he wouldn't let her buy baby nappies at 1 point and didn't let his pregnant wife eat. He would eat 1st and she got left overs.

isitme1 Wed 08-Jan-14 20:10:42

Shes still pretty young. Shes 22. Hes around 29

defuse Wed 08-Jan-14 20:38:39

Dont have much in the way of advice - but there is a baby involved and she must put her child first.

isitme1 Wed 08-Jan-14 21:22:08

It's sad.
she does care about her (mum about baby) but he seems to come 1st.

peacefuloptimist Wed 08-Jan-14 22:17:33

isitme Im sorry for your family that you are going through this difficulty. You can contact the Islamic Sharia Council if you need further clarification about whether the divorce is valid but fuzzy's advice does sound right. You can email them or call their advice line but from experience getting through to someone on the advice line will take you forever.

If the charges he has against him are to do with child protection then I think you have no choice but to try to convince her that it is in her baby's best interest that she ceases all contact with him. Even if she genuinely believes that they are still married what is she going to do about her daughter? Is she willing to risk her safety? Her daughter is an amana (a trust) from God and she will be asked about it if her actions lead to her daughter being exposed to harm. Im sorry to sound so harsh but she really needs to get a grip. No man is worth losing your child for. She is young but she is also a mother and needs to start thinking like one rather than like a deluded teen.

LittleTulip if it was me I wouldnt want to go on umrah when I was on my period. I think one salah in Masjid al Haram in Makkah is like doing a 100,000 salah in an ordinary mosque and I think 1 prayer in the Prophets Mosque is better then a 1000 prayers in another mosque. There is the potential to reap a huge amount of reward (making tawaf, praying in al rawdah etc) that it seems a shame to miss out on that. If its your first time going I would definitely reconsider either going at another time or trying to delay your period. Its only for a short time. I did this whilst on hajj and it didnt have any negative effects. But hopefully it wont be an issue at all and we will all be saying mabrook to you soon inshallah.

isitme1 Thu 09-Jan-14 08:42:24

Thank you all
hes so controlling
her legal adviser has expressed concern too.ss said if at the next meeting they are still together they will seek legal advice which we have been told will be to lift her
the sad thing is no one in the family can look after her
I have a child with SN and lots of hospital appointmentsand lil 1 ois very young plus im expecting again 5months +.
Other family members also have children and the little girl ia very challenging.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 09-Jan-14 09:37:58

Its standard procedure for ss to step in. Ex was violent and ss pretty much made it clear they would take my girls if we remained together as the children could get caught in the middle, also their witnessing the abuse was abusive to them.

Either family members offer to foster her till your sister sees sense, could be years or never.

Or a child of the family will be taken into care.

I'm not surprised the child is challenging, poor baby has experienced a lot no child should have to during her short life.

I've a friend who's sister behaved exactly as yours (not Muslim), eventually the sister left the abusive husband but in the meantime my friend bought up the daughter and now the daughter is pretty much re-living her mothers life. Her mother is in another not dissimilar abusive relationship with another child. This time my friend has taken a step back. She's decided she can't live her sisters life for her and she can't deal with the responsibility.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Thu 09-Jan-14 10:16:05

Isit that doesn't sound like a healthy environment for a child, and that's probably an understatement. She can't grow up thinking that it's normal for a woman (or man) to be treated like that. As, like fuzzy has just described, history will repeat it self.

Ss are there to help, if they think say they're going to remove her will that shock your sister into seeing sense?

I really feel for you, I hope it all works out.

crescentmoon Thu 09-Jan-14 12:02:47

"Or a child of the family will be taken into care."

for me id do anything to avoid that, isitme you have way too much on your plate but i really hope some arrangement can be found in your family so as to avoid that. i know theres been a decade long drive by muslim foster carer groups to get more muslims to join as to help children keep the faith even after going into care. with the child protection order in your sister's case, its very correct and i hope to god she sees sense. our children should give us courage sometimes when for ourselves we dont have it. the most galling thing sometimes with our families - and for some people its not just galling but heartbreaking and tragic - is that if someone is dead set on destroying his/her life theres almost nothing we can do.

tulip im so sorry about your dh's grandfather passing. i hope the arrangements are not too difficult to organise and you both are taking the time out to breathe and work through the bereavement emotionally also. im so proud of you at going back to work and really hope your umrah plans dont fall through. please go, i had the same issue that i would be on my menses at the same time so i took the pill to suppress it. but you dont want to play about with the hormone stuff when trying to conceive if you dont want your fertility to be out of kilter. but theres still so much of benefit if you have no other opportunity to go for umrah this year 2014. you know we are rewarded for making a good intention whether we get to later act on it or not, for which if we do perform it we get two rewards. whereas the pens are lifted for a bad intention unless it is acted out. so always keep intentions to do good acts and service and inshaallah our book of good deeds will be all the heavier for them.

im not having the best of weeks sisters can you just make dua for me. i was let down really badly by someone and whilst my nafs wants to unleash armageddon on this person. the higher self has said, leave it for the sake of Allah. and i cant even talk about it with dh because he'll tell me 'i told you so'. (sigh). my 2 hadith of the day lovelies? The Prophet (s) said, "If a person speaks to you and then looks around him, that was an amanah." (Hasan, al-Tirmidhi). the other hadith? “Render back the trust to the one who entrusted it to you, and do not betray those who betray you.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 1264, similar wording in Abu Dawood). its one of those just plodding forward put one foot in front of the other weeks!

UmmSHI Thu 09-Jan-14 12:26:36

horrible situation isitme may Allah rectify the affairs of all involved, ameen.

Sorry to hear about the difficulties you and your husband are having with losing a relative tulip, Allah make it easy for you.

crescent you are in my dua also and it is always better to leave it to Allah, even though it doesn't feel like it sometimes.

Salam everyone else, I'm having trouble finding a school place for one of my children at the moment, and that is getting me down, so please also make dua for me.

LittleTulip Thu 09-Jan-14 21:33:14

I have finally read the whole chat! You mustn't laugh at me but I really have to concentrate when reading to fully take it all in. And again I have learnt so much!

Crescent I must ask, what is 'nafs'? You have mentioned it a few times. Hope you're not too mad with whoever has upset you!

Peaceful that thumb guard looks torturous! However I totally get why you would want it, my nephew is 7 and still sucks his thumb, not all the time more when he's watching tv etc. bless him, he just can't help it. My sister kicks herself and wishes she had done something sooner, she also puts the bitter nail polish on his thumb which doesn't seem to last very long.

Interesting conversation about going to the masjid. I have never actually prayed salah in a masjid, there is nothing like that round my way. The thought of praying jumma excites me so much....which is is why I need to keep my feet firmly on the ground about going to umrah. - getting über excited at the prospect.

As for umrah inshallah we have managed to get a date where my menses will be over I think (woohoo!) I appreciate your good wishes fuzzy and peaceful however unfortunately I just don't seem to fall pregnant very easily like everybody else seems to and when I do well it doesn't work out! :-( which is why every cycle is so very important and I get majorly obsessed with it, my poor DH!

Crescent I liked that link about trustworthiness it is so much more than just 'keeping a secret'. It's about our lives, I liked what defuse quoted on ikhlas about hiding our good deeds like we would our evil deeds. I like reading things like this, it's fulfilling. Also makes me smile as I have a family member who is the most religious muslim in the world who prays ALL the time, gives 80% zakat, and is a basic know it all, never sins etc. I feel really inadequate sat with her in a room but it's not always about that! There was a good tweet from mufti menk not so long ago something along the lines of you really don't know what somebody's iman is like or what their faith is like and what goes on behind closed doors!

Isitme I do hope things work out for your sister, of course e child is priority.

I hope I have not waffled too much grin. DH is in the process of producing a eulogy for his grandfathers funeral, he has added quite a few hymns and bible extracts which I was reading and looking at the similarities to our surahs and hadiths on death and the akhirah. Quite captivating!

msvenus Fri 10-Jan-14 02:41:27

I can't sleep so I thought I would check in to read the discussions. Very interesting points raised, LittleTulip I am more likely to be suspicious of the obvious muslims because they are more likely to hide mistakes or make them while pretending to be purer than the driven snow! I have a family member who ticks all the boxes for adherance to faith but her behaviour is shockingly bad. Don't get drawn in by outward appearances as they can distract you from concentrating on your own behaviour and faith.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 10-Jan-14 10:55:14

What's an obvious Muslim (genuine question- have visions of sisters in face paint, crawling across floors in camouflage hijabs confused )?

I have to say I do steer clear of the more vocal holier than thou ones.

I like mixing with practicing sisters tho, just being around them gives me comfort and an iman boost Inshallah.

I learn so much and pick up things from practicing sisters, like the fasting on Mondays and Thursdays up till a couple of years ago I never knew firstly the sunnah of it and the pleasure of Allah in it. I have to say fasting outside of Ramadan is the toughest form of ibadah for me.

Also I learned the fada'il of reciting surah Kahf on Fridays from a sister which started me doing it a few years ago as well.

On that note Happy Jummah/Friday everyone. Remember to recite or listen to urah Kahf today and keep the ummah and my girls and me in your duas today especially.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 10-Jan-14 12:10:24

Sisters, I really need duas, please keep my girls and I in your duas.

Jazakallah Kahir

crescentmoon Fri 10-Jan-14 13:03:45

iv read fatiha for you fuzzy, i really pray to God you stay the strong sister you are. and as you speak about other people helping your emaan up honestly i used to dread fasting and now i get up for suhur every monday and thursday to do the sunnah fasts. just through knowing you over the past 2 threads.

venus, i know the type you mean. "a family member who ticks all the boxes for adherance to faith but her behaviour is shockingly bad." we call those the street angels/ house devils. the type that appear very religious and then for their families and friends they have horrible conduct. street angels/house devils are usually men, but sometimes women too. and may Allah protect all of us from being like them.

ummshi i was having a horrible afternoon but yday ended really well subhanallah - i woke up this morning feeling much better. i know how stressful it is about school places i really hope something comes up for your dc soon. though sometimes it can be more trouble than its worth as my whole xmas holiday spent potty training ds for his new nursery place shows! but mashaallah, he's 90% there alhamdullillah.

crescentmoon Fri 10-Jan-14 13:10:46

actually what do you think of this sisters. im thinking about moving my dc from their current school because whilst their teachers are nice, i have deep misgivings about the way the school welfare officer has sicced social services on a few muslim families that did not deserve that. iv heard from others that the WO has expressed crude stereotypes about muslim families, and, well, im just a little unsettled with the school tbh. its been for a while now, thats why i wouldnt even mention to the teachers i was struggling with the school run last term fuzzy. the alacrity with which the WO involved SS when one of the school mums had gone in to ask for help - how quickly it escalated- got me paranoid about asking even for advice. dh doesnt understand as he grew up in a "nice" area and well off but i think iv still kept my suspicion of over interfering authorities from growing up on a council estate with the bogeyman of getting taken into care despite being well educated and a professional now. i dont think im being paranoid about over interest in muslim families either, in this gvt report on ethnic minority children in care, one part struck me:

"Differences in the reasons for referral are another possible indicator that Children’s Services are taking more precipitate action against one ethnic group than another.There were high levels of abuse and neglect in all the samples but white and mixed ethnicity children were more likely to be referred for neglect whilst black children were often referred for physical abuse and ^Asian children because their family was experiencing acute stress and there was the potential for abuse or neglect.^"

did that make anyone else sit up and take notice? asian kids (most likely to be muslim than the other groups) were more likely to be referred to SS if their families were experiencing acute stress and there was the potential for abuse and neglect. to me that means the bar is set really low for involvement and imagine you have a racist or islamophobic school welfare officer or local SS. they could really go to town with that potential for abuse and neglect bit- they could react disproportionately to news of a family's difficulties and their racist assumptions can have children's services breathing down your neck for months. thats whats happened to the families i know of personally. and from the NSPCC 60 per cent of Asian children are subject to an emergency protection order prior to care proceedings, compared to 19 per cent of white children. am i being overly paranoid or with good reason? it would be interersting to get the takes of professionals in that field also whether muslim ornon muslim. theres another school that iv heard really great things about from local muslim families at mosque with a really supportive head and school team. would you do move if you were me?

fuzzywuzzy Fri 10-Jan-14 14:28:56

One of the biggest reasons I chose the schools I did for my DD's was primarily for the excellent pastoral care, I was looking for an environment that would offer support for my children enabling them to be comfortable so they could just concentrate on learning.

Academic excellence is also a big issue for me because my girls are academic, if they weren't I'd have looked for a school that wasn't so strict about it.

The first thing I tell teachers when my girls move up classes or join secondary school, is that I am there to support the teacher, I want to work along with the school to ensure my DD's receive our full support to get the best out of their schooling.
Which is why I didn't hesitate in getting the teachers on side when I had problems getting airy fairy DD2 out the door on time to school. I've always felt my DD's teachers love the kids and teaching for them is a passion, which shows in how the children respond.

My youngest still throws herself at her old year two teacher for a hug whenever she sees her, teacher said she started a trend in that all the other children now come to her for a hug too lol.

So yes I would, if you feel unsupported or unable to seek support at your children's school, if you feel you have to walk on eggshells in case the WO alerts SS and that report is horrendous, I would move my children no question.

msvenus Fri 10-Jan-14 14:32:09

FuZyWuzzy the 'obvious' muslims are the ones physically identifiable as such by their clothes, hijaab etc. Not war paint & camouflage gear, it is the holier than thou attitude which I dont like. For me that is the ego talking & that is what we should be working towards controlling. I have met quite a few sisters who have been less than welcoming & have a superiority complex. That is what I meant by my statement.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 10-Jan-14 14:41:31

mrsvenus, don't right off all hijab wearing sisters.

I've increasingly (only on here), that non hijab wearing sisters are very hostile going on downright rude and insulting towards the hijab wearing sisters, calling every single woman in a headscarf holier than thou is odd, you can't know them all. And it's uncalled for. I'd bet a fair few sisters posting on here wear hijab if not the odd niqab.

In RL I've found sisters all over the spectrum lovely regardless of their sartorial choices Alhumdulillah.

crescentmoon Fri 10-Jan-14 18:23:03

"if you feel unsupported or unable to seek support at your children's school, if you feel you have to walk on eggshells in case the WO alerts SS and that report is horrendous, I would move my children no question."

thats exactly it, forget walking on egg shells in case something you say gives them a bad opinion of muslims - actually i feel that way with their teachers anyway. but i feel from seeing recent things happening to kids of muslim families at the school that i cant express a need for support however little in case that puts me on the WOs radar. i support their teachers and really appreciate them, mashaallah they are good teachers. kids love their friends, i really like the parents and theres a really nice atmosphere in playground at pick up and drop off. but iv lost confidence and cant help but feel wary that any solicitousness from the WO is masking something else. and there have already been a couple of families that have left the school already for this reason and im halfway to thinking we'll decamp too. il pray istikhara about it but if it wasnt for DH id have already done it tbh. the other school im hoping for has great rapport between parents and school. i want to feel like if i speak candidly its not going to be said that 'oh that family is going through high stress at the moment and therefore there is a potential that......'.

anyway, interesting reading here from the Arts and Humanities Research Council about how british muslims pass on faith to their children in higher rates than other religious groups. it says the the proportion of adult Muslims actively practising the faith they were brought up in as children was 77% - i wonder if that will increase or decrease in the next generation do you reckon? 77% doesnt sound like much and i know myself if i teach the dc the exact same way the deen was taught to me it wont work.
theres a really interesting saying from Ali ibn Abi Talib (rah), the prophet (pbuh)s nephew and fourth caliph where he said: "Do not raise your children the way your parents raised you; they were born for a different time." here. one really interesting study i read today is about religious nurture in muslim families

www.cardiff.ac.uk/socsi/research/researchprojects/religiousnurture/

(study as pdf at the bottom of the page)

"The research aimed to describe and explain how children of primary school age and under are brought up to be Muslims. The topic of religious nurture is of interest in relation to all faiths, but given the diversity of schools of thought and ethnic groups amongst British Muslims, there was a strong argument for a detailed study of Islam in particular."

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 11-Jan-14 09:47:03

tulip I hope your dh's grandfathers funeral arrangement is going as well as can do, when is it taking place? I'm pleased you have been able to change the date of when you go on umrah alhamdullilah. Good luck with the ttc I'll make dua for you inshaAllah.

fuzzy I'll read fatiha for you and make dua for you and your girls. I'm not sure if you've mentioned any hardships on here, I may have missed it but I'll keep you all in my thoughts.

One day inshaAllah I'd like to fast Mondays and Thursdays, I've still to make up my fasts from Ramadan. I managed one day last month but then I kept getting friends asking me for lunch and I became weak and accepted the lunch offers instead of fasting. I'm really quite annoyed with myself that I didn't just keep my head down and fast the days I intended to.

I like your attitude with regards to schooling, I haven't said that to any of my dd's teachers but I like to make it obvious I'm on their side and that I'll work with them rather than against them.

crescent I think I walk round in my own ignorant bubble sometimes, I'm so oblivious to things like you have mentioned with regards to children's and social services. I think I need to become a bit less selfish and start taking note. These things are happening under our noses and what can we do about it? My dh is always saying how Asian people are targeted, I've always said it's nonsense and he's being paranoid. I can now see where he's coming from. I do worry about my children being mixed race though and only just this school year have I experienced racial bullying towards dd. The school dealt with it ok, not great but I didn't know what to expect of the outcome.

Have you been to look around this other school that you like? Have you asked your dc about how they would feel about moving school? If you've lost confidence in their current school then I'd move them, especially if other families have also left for that same reason.

Thank you for the link to the study, it makes for interesting reading. I like that they use the word 'successful' in one of the sub headings. I have no experience of growing up having a religion incorporated as part of daily life, we went to Sunday school but we didn't actively do anything outside the church. I think there's a number of reasons why Islam is so successfully passed down through the generations and if I'm honest I can't seem to write it down! I never have the right words, or they don't come across in the right way written down.

I do think that children learn best by example though, and I'm trying my absolute hardest at the moment to be a good teacher to my dc. Easier said than done though. One thing I do feel quite strongly about though is forcing it on children, I always think the more you force the harder they rebel. I know that's true of me anyway. With dd1 it's always been a bit different, I did tell her she would be reverting with me, but I've let her take the lead with the speed in which she learns. As it happens she knows more than me and can recite more than me mashallah. She also wants to teach me how to read Arabic! I'm so proud of her.

I think I've rambled a bit with nothing constructive to say again, I really do feel inferior to you sisters! I'm one of these people that can talk passionately about a topic for hours, but putting it down on paper I just don't have the words, and it comes across like I'm actually quite thick and that I don't know what I'm talking about!

Ok, can I set you all a little task please. I'm after an abaya, I want one that has the measurements of a size 53 but a 58/59 in length! I've got one size 58 and it's so baggy I could fit 2 of me in. I know they're not supposed to be fitted but it really just looks like a bin bag. I know I could get it taken in but I'm far too lazy for that. Anyone have and good links for me please?

fuzzywuzzy Sat 11-Jan-14 11:00:42

Sis Lost you are not any less than any of us on here, I always have a deep awe and admiration for revert sisters actually, what you have done for the sake of Allah is inspiring Mashallah.

I personally have tried to teach my children to cultivate their own relationship with Allah, I encourage them to make duas as that is their dialogue with Allah.
Last year my girls were being minded by a friend after school, they didn't like her (she can be quite sharp and her children can be a bit too much), so before Christmas break my eldest insisted I should pick them up from school on the last day of term and we could have a lovely lazy day together. However when I asked my manager for annual leave for that half a day she refused.
My eldest was so upset, I told her to make duas, to which she burst out 'Duas duas duas, that's what you always say, your manager has already said NO' she was really upset and pretty inconsolable. It had been a rough year subhanallah.
Any way when she calmed down, I told her fine, I would continue to make duas till the time to pick her up from school was passed, I told her that my God was the God of Musa who parted the sea, The God of Ibraheem who made the fire a cool garden for him, the God of Dhun Nun who bought him out of the belly of the fish. I told her I would see which of us would win, her anger or my duas because what I asked was so small and it meant so much to my daughter Allahs mercy could nto but prevail.
Then I just prayed to Allah that he keep her on the right path.
That Friday my manager decided we should all go home half day, I arrived in time to pick my girls up from school and I got paid for a full day and kept my annual leave! Since then I've reminded her of this and other times her duas have been answered and she has become more likely to do duas then moan or get upset. I feel it strengthens her bond with her creator Inshallah.

I think all of us talk about our iman and things to do and inspire eachother but actually doing the fasting for example outside of ramadan is tough subhanallah. Before I go to bed I make duas that Allah help me fulfill my intention of fasting and that he make it easy on me. Work is hilarious tho, one of my colleagues was like; 'Fuzzy you are always fasting', to which I replied; 'No you just never offer me food when I am NOT fasting'.

Abaya shopping;

Silk route I'd go for the regular fit in their abayas as they are a pretty comfy fit already, the slim fit would just end up too fitted for my liking and with your regular clothes on underneath it can look a bit bumpy! (on the other hand I like my abayas in tent sizes!)

simply Islam does a very big range, sign up to their email newsletter and you get a discount on some items.

[[http://www.aabcollection.com/shop/category/shop-by-clearance/114 AAb] abayas are very fitted, and they are very expensive for what they are, but they fall so beautifully I do think the prices are rather inflated for the material tho.

never bought from them but one day when I am rich inshallah I shall buy one abaya from here, I'll let you know what the fit and material is like wink

fuzzywuzzy Sat 11-Jan-14 11:03:30

Woops one link not working AAb

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 11-Jan-14 12:14:07

Fuzzy that story about your daughter gave me goosebumps, I have great admiration for the way in which you deal with your girls in situations like this, you always seem to see the positive in everything mashallah.

Thank you for those links, I've bookmarked quite a few, mainly from aab and I will have a closer look once the dc are I'm bed. I did do a quick google before I posted but I never know who's reputable or not.

I was shock at the prices of the ones on abayas by akhawat, but yes please do let me know how they fit! One day inshaAllah.

What is everyone doing this weekend? We're having a quiet one, it's the anniversary of my father in law passing away so a bit subdued in the lost house.

crescentmoon Sat 11-Jan-14 12:57:29

thank goodness id thought i killed the thread!

for islamic clothing i like:

www.inayahcollection.com/#

www.shukr.co.uk/Tops-C95.aspx?p=1 - iv ordered a few items for work from here recently

www.hijabstyle.co.uk/p/shopping-links.html - best round up of shopping sites

forgot to answer your question yday about the nafs tulip - its what is referred to as the ego/soul/psyche in the Qur'an. that 'lower self' that we do Jihad against when we strive to do good - the part that would easily pull us down to selfishness, laziness, avarice, cowardice, malevolence, jealousy, vanity, lust, gluttony, anger etc. its basically the thing within our selves that we try to inhibit by self discipline. to overcome our nafs and purify it so that it is at the service of our ruh (the higher self, the 'spirit') not that we allow the naf's lusts to rule over us.

"But as for him who feared to stand before his Lord and restrained his soul from lust, Lo! The garden will be his home" (79:40-41).

"Have you seen the one who chooses for his god his own lust?" (25:43)

(Rumi: The idol of your self is the mother of all idols.)

"By the nafs and the proportion and order given to it,
and its inspiration as to its wrong and its right;
Truly he succeeds who purifies it,
^and he fails that corrupts it^" (91:7-10).

this wiki page has a good explanation about what nafs means in islam:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nafs

Rumi on the nafs: sufism.org/poems/rumi-on-the-nafs-2

Jihad ul nafs is the struggle against the self. we each have our own weaknesses and struggles - my jihad this year (new years resolutions in secular speak!) - is to fight off the waswasa of the iphone (uncharged, in a drawer upstairs for 2 weeks now!)and stick to my little old unaddictive phone, to fight against my sugar compulsion - i dont know how recovering alcoholics do it subhanallah because i find it hard enough to resist sweetness in food and drink! to keep my salah closer to the beginning times even when at work, and keep up the sunnah fasts even through to ramadan inshaallah.

myjihad.org/ - nice website about reclaiming the word Jihad

as for the school thing iv been to see the new school, i know a few families there already and im going to fill out the form they emailed me this weekend.

fuzzywuzzy Sat 11-Jan-14 13:26:38

Sis crescent you're so funny, this is not as fast moving a thread as some others but you'd never kill the thread. Your posts are always very thought provoking mashallah.

UmmSHI Sun 12-Jan-14 09:38:17

I agree with fuzzy mashaAllah crescent you are so insightful. Andd I love that story about making dua and encouraging your children to. I try and get mine to do so as well. My eldest child totally gets it, but it is still quite funny when he asks Allah to make it snow.

As for abayas, I always end up with ones that are too baggy as well, because to get the length, they just get wider and wider. That is why at the moment I am saving to go to a place in London and inshaallah get some tailor made ones in colours and fabric that I will choose myself. I don't want anything tight fitting but something that looks a bit tidier because I always feel really rough like I haven't made an effort when my abayas are so baggy, they do not suit formal occasions at all.

peacefuloptimist Sun 12-Jan-14 12:03:44

Salams

Thank you Lost for bringing the topic on to abayas. I would say its sort of a specialist topic of mine. grin I spend too much money time checking out different websites and if you want to avoid the baggy, tent look I can suggest a few.

www.inayahcollection.com/ is definitely at the top of the list for style and affordability (though it doesn't score as highly for affordability when compared to some others). I bought this style from them but not in that colour, and the fit was great but you have to go up one from your actual size if you want a modest fit as they are cut to be quite fitted. I have bought two from them already and I am eyeing up this one for my next purchase.

www.khimaronline.co.uk/ are top for affordability I would say, good service and quick delivery times. They have some interesting designs and I have ordered two from them as well, though be careful as some styles are actually wider then they look. The jersey abayas have a flattering fit but I haven't quite got the knack of how to iron jersey without leaving marks confused. Yes I know Im an imbecile.

www.biah.co.uk/product-category/abaya/ actually BIAH gives khimar a run for their money in terms of affordability. They have some nice styles, haven't ordered anything from them yet but they seem legit.

ash-shams.co.uk/ are great for luxurious style abayas. I went mental last eid and bought this no niqab though grin. Then I realised intricate beadwork like that and a one year old baby do not go together. I haven't worn it since sad.

Anyway I hope that helps. What do you all think of the hijab style bloggers. I love the Hijabi Barbies though I don't have the patience to put all that effort in to get the look (plus Im rubbish with liquid eyeliner). I like the way they give young girls and me some inspiration in to how to inject some individuality in to your look whilst still (just about wink) maintaining hijab.

I recently came across the fashion designer Rima Tadmory who designs clothes for both muslims and non_muslims. Oh my god check out these designs. Shes a hijabi as well (she is the one next to Dina Tokio in picture 4). Some of her designs are really not very modest at all though. Do you think its a bit contradictory to believe in dressing modestly but yet design clothes that very much show off the female form?

fuzzywuzzy Sun 12-Jan-14 12:29:15

Oh gosh yes the Inayah collection, it's stylish with a twist my friend got a gorgeous dress form there. The descrptions confuse me tho they call dresses abayas confused

I really want to get some nice new outfits for summer for work inshallah, last year silkroute clothing did packs so you got three abaya sets for £75.00 wish I'd boguht some then.

fuzzywuzzy Sun 12-Jan-14 12:30:01

sis peaceful I love the cut of the secodn abaya you want to buy inshallah.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sun 12-Jan-14 20:33:22

The inayah collection are lovely mashallah.

Peaceful the two you highlighted are two of the ones I've bookmarked (also not in the first colour, I'd look naked if I was wearing that!).

It's definitely the jersey style I want, and this is where I feel like a hypocrite cause I don't actually wear abaya. Clothes are my downfall, I love fashion far too much and I'm always on Instagram looking at the Hijabi Barbies. I want some nice, stylish abayas that I can wear in the summer.

Peaceful, the Hijabi Barbies sometimes leave me with my mouth on the floor. Sometimes I wear clothes that I umm and ahh about because I know they're not modest enough, but I just can't stop myself sometimes because I have to always 'look good'. Which is not actually hijab at all. Don't get me wrong I always cover correctly (only face, hands and feet on show) never wear anything see through etc, it's just the skinny jeans I can't seem to irradiate from my wardrobe. I wear them with jumpers or dresses to my knees or just above but still, they're skinny jeans.

I always ask dh if what I'm wearing is modest enough and he always says wear what you want, which isn't actually helpful at all.

Sorry I'm ranting, all of those links I've had a good look at, thank you, and inshallah I'll be wearing abaya's a few days a week in the near future.

crescentmoon Sun 12-Jan-14 21:02:54

ohmygosh same here lost, one of my big loves is to check out hijabi bloggers on instagram! some of their takes are abit out there, but i feel after wasting most of my teens and twenties being too boring conservative im enjoying fashion now to be honest. i think islam is about making sure we dont get too vain not completely destroying our feeling to look nice. 'Allah is Beautiful and He loves Beauty' after all as the hadith goes. the prophet (pbuh) said dont wear ostentatious clothing but also, dont dress in rags. to dress well is a sign of the dignity of the human being and that is actually from his sunnah. or the minimum we have to go for in our appearance is this: 'cleanliness is half of emaan' (Sahih Muslim). so wearing long clothing that could drag on the floor and pick up dirt, or too wide abayas that also drape down and drag along - forget about how messy and untidy it looks to others, it might not be tahir/clean. how are you going to pray in something that might have dragged along dog poo or whatever on the floor?

but im one of those weird ones that is more concerned with wudhu restrictions than the modesty aspect. i didnt wear nail polish for years not because i considered it wasnt hayah but because i didnt want to have doubt that my ablution wasnt counted because of not getting hands clean enough! now i wear nail polish to match my hijab colours since i discivered that breathable nail polish that o2m have come out with. likewise, im more concerned that the lipstick im wearing doesnt have pig fat in it than whether it is a bright shade or not. ditto with other cosmetics so i generally use mineral makeup now.i get where the mipsters are coming from in a way that once you cover the crown of your beauty - your hair - really thats the biggest jihad covered. im so not for that style but if my dd grows up and wants to go for that as a 'hijab as identity' thing rather than hijab for modesty - il be happy and grateful to be honest.

crescentmoon Sun 12-Jan-14 22:00:55

peaceful i love your links especially that khimaronline website. i really like this but its so long that it would drag along the floor. i really wouldnt like that.

and ditto fuzzy for aab being more expensive than what they are. so much for essentially jersey fabric though i like the designs. but generally i dont dress in abayahs much - i like the 'dress' looking styles. arent you all hoping that the transparent maxi style hurries up and disappears already? isnt it so frustrating when you see a rare maxi dress or skirt on the high street, lovely print, no slits, then you get close or hold it up to the light and realise its one of these grrr! i have had my hopes raised and then dashed many times this way lol when out shopping. and i cant be arsed to hallallify it so i just give it a miss.

i love sheikha mozah's style here, i mentioned here before on the first muslim thread but just in case new sisters have come along!

sheikhamozahfashion.tumblr.com/
sansretouches.com/fashion/arab-celebrity-style-sheikha-mozah
pinterest.com/judi561/hrh-sheikha-mozah/
forums.thefashionspot.com/f50/sheikha-mozah-82349.html

it appeals to me on so many levels, i know the turban style is something alot of the hijabi instagrammers are using now - at least some of the time. i think its a good medium between hijab and non hijab, either on the transition to wearing hijab or when a hijabi doesnt want to dejab completely but for one reason or anoter, she doesnt want the full hijab look. the hijab instagrammers i like are ascia_akf, dianpelangi, langstonhues, dinatokio, and now rima tadmory from peaceful! DH is still at work and dc are tucked up in bed so its my time to use for hijabi fashion and blogs now, but my instagram app on my phone was my favourite one this winter!

i also cant be arsed with the intricate hijab styles, ivtried, but too many layers around the head i dont know how they can bear it lol. please i feel like a pin cushion with the amont that are needed to keep the hijab in place.

crescentmoon Sun 12-Jan-14 22:03:04
peacefuloptimist Sun 12-Jan-14 22:46:27

This is the third time I've tried to post a reply but my computer keeps crashing lets hope third time is lucky. confused

Thank fuzzy and lost for your endorsements of that abaya. I am really left with no choice but to get it now am I. Though I probably didnt need much convincing in the first place. grin

Lost don't feel bad. Wearing hijab is a journey in my opinion. You have to travel at your own pace. In my experience I have found that people who go from one extreme to another often end up going back the same way. Its better that you build your emaan up to the point that your ready to wear abaya rather than just jump in to it because you feel you have to. Also as Crescent said liking fashion and wanting to look good is not bad. I think it can be quite fun challenge to make abaya look trendy. Takes a lot more creativity and is much more impressive in my opinion grin.

By the way I have a question for the abaya wearers. Why do you wear abaya. I started wearing it in my late teens and I can't imagine not wearing abaya but my reasons for wearing it have changed. When I was younger I had a lot of people around me who held the opinion that it was fard and that influenced me to start wearing it. However I have never been fully convinced of that opinion. If wearing abaya is fard that means women who don't wear it are sinful and I just cant accept that people who are otherwise dressed modestly would be considered sinful for not wearing it. I listened to a female Islamic lecturer once who was asked this question and she said she didnt believe it was obligatory despite wearing it herself. She said that we can not know for certain what women at the time of the prophet pbuh wore and it is highly unlikely that what we call abaya would have been it. She said that as long as your clothing meets the requirements of hijab (i.e. loose fitting, not see through, covering all the required parts and is not ostentatious) then it is fine. So the Pakistani woman who wears a long shalwar kameez (not Bollywood style ones grin) and hijab is modest. The African sister who wears her colourful outfits which cover her hair and body is also modest and the western, European sister who dresses in loose clothing is also in hijab. For me this is the most fair opinion. Islam is a universal religion and has the ability to transcend any one nations cultural practices and ways of dressing. If all muslim women had to import a style of dressing that was not native to them in order to be modest that would be impractical. That being said I love wearing abaya and I hope to wear it for the rest of my life. I feel most comfortable in it and I feel like I can relax and know that Im meeting the requirements of hijab without too much thought or effort. It is the best choice for me but I wouldn't judge someone who doesnt wear it. What are your opinions and reasons for wearing abaya?

peacefuloptimist Sun 12-Jan-14 23:02:02

Crescent this might interest you.

Beyond the Mipsterz debate

peacefuloptimist Sun 12-Jan-14 23:05:29

By the way I think a lot of the criticism levelled at the muslim hipsters is rooted in jealousy. People envy that they are able to bring together both sides of their identity, the Western and Islamic.

defuse Mon 13-Jan-14 01:37:30

Salaam all,
Just managed to catch up......

crescent i just read that piece about SS and potential for abuse and neglect in asian families. shock That has riled me. I grew up not knowing much about discrimination etc. but as i am getting older and possibly wiser hmm i am seeing discrimination everywhere. I was shocked to recently find out that my SIL, who has a first born with a genetic illness was told not to have another child for minimum 6 years. When she had another after 4 (who is healthy alhamdulillah) the SS turned up to assess whether she was able to take care of the new baby! There was no history of any kind of issues of neglect etc, but there the SS were, looking for potential! Fortunately, they decided not to take it further, but i still cannot believe the audacity. angry.

As for moving to another school, my advice would be, check out the new school, if you like it, if your DCs are happy with the move then, bismillah - do it smile

lost. I dont always wear the abaya either. My abayas tend to be quite bling, so can only be worn for occasions rather than everyday wear (except for one or two). I tend to wear long dresses - if i can find one that covers! If i wear tops then i will wear trousers or jeans. Long Skirts are probably more modest but i am not really a skirt person. smile

I have an ample bosom blush so do try to cover that with my hijab or a loose cardigan. In fact what annoys me is when i see these lovely abayahs with lots of bling around the neckline, but they are no good to me because i cannot carry them off - i must cover the entire area with my scarf otherwise i just look vulgar grin . I envy sisters who can wear lovely fitted clothes without the additional need to cover it all - i just dont look right!

Having said that, i found a gorgeous abaya in my local abaya shop which came with a dupatta (a georgette scarf) encrusted with lots of crystals and sequins which actually drapes along the abaya from one shoulder and crosses over the bust and is part-stitched at the waist. So for once, i can wear the hijab in a style that doesnt necessitate that i cover my bust. Hurray! grin.
The best bit was that it was reduced from £85 to £35 - well 39.99, but i haggled grin Now i just need an occasion to wear it!

peaceful I wear the abaya ( when i do) because they are very feminine and flowy and i do believe they best meet the criteria of dressing modestly in accordance with islam. However, that is not to say that other dresses
(Eastern/western) dont meet the criteria. They do - you just need to accessorize and halalify grin

I am liking the pakistani long kameez fashion, that is working for me at the moment. smile

I have gone on a bit... Better stop now! blush

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 13-Jan-14 02:06:27

Crescent I've done that far too many times with regards to the see through fabric on a skirt, so know exactly what you mean! Thank you for reassuring me that wanting to look half decent isn't as bad as I'm making it out to be.

I read my post back and I've made it sound like I don't wear hijab, I do and have done for nearly two years. Personally I don't like the turban style, I see it loads on instagram and a lot of this sisters get slated for it, oh my goodness I've read some vicious comments on there. I've looked at some of dinatokios page, mashallah she's beautiful. I follow hijab fashion484, unique_hijab and hijabfashion to name a few.

I didn't know they did that nail polish, my toes always feel bare in the summer without it, I'm going to keep an eye out for it.

I was reading on the last thread about getting out the house in the mornings, I would get out the house much quicker if I laid my clothes out the night before! I have over 50 scarfs (scarves?) and I like them to match what I'm wearing. My dh used to get so frustrated with me because I'd often change twice before I was happy. Now he leaves for work before I'm awake so doesn't see my clothing despair sometimes!

I can't wait for the summer, that's when I live in maxi skirts and dresses, hence the wanting to find an abaya that's more dress looking.

Peaceful I've never thought the abaya to be fard, as long as modest dress no skinny jeans is adhered to. I could be wrong though, I often am grin. Definitely get the ruby abaya! The cut is really nice and would look very flattering.

What shoes do you all wear with your abayas? That's partly my problem, I like wearing knee high boots which is why I wear skinny jeans in the winter, to me when I wear maxi skirts or dresses only flip flops or pumps will do. And it's far too cold to wear even pumps now, I like warm toasty feet! So how do you wear them?

I must go to sleep, ds has just had a 6 week sleep regression, that was fun, and he's just coming out the other side but I'm so used to being awake in the night I now can't sleep properly!

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 13-Jan-14 02:15:45

Salaam defuse

I have the opposite problem, I'm far from ample so love it that my scarf covers the non existent! I can see what you mean though with regards to a lot of clothing having detail around the chest area. That abaya sounds lovely, and what a bargain! My sil's wear the long kameez sometimes and look lovely in it, they're extremely fashionable and half my size in both height and width, the eldest one is size 6!! So I feel like bit of a giant compared to them.

Must sleep...

fuzzywuzzy Mon 13-Jan-14 09:46:06

Assalamualaikum,

I always regard abayas as outer wear, so wear them when out and about, indoors at work I take it off, but I do tend to wear long dresses or long loose tunics over trousers, I also like skinny jeans and knee length boots, but the boots hide the fact I'm wearing jeans in a sea of suits.

I started wearing abayas since primary school when my parents bought me once back when they returned from hajj, haven't looked back since.

My hijab style is pretty much throwing it on and hoping it looks OK, I cannot be bothered to style my hijabs, I love looking at (admiring) the sisters who do but I have no patience myself.

crescentmoon Mon 13-Jan-14 23:01:22

salams lovelies, not much time to post today but just wanted to check in and say hi! mawlid month and today is the 12th rabi ul awwal, theres a load of events across the UK as the resident bidah merchant on this board, wink (or is it bidah peddlar!?) i will post them up tomorrow!

i filled out the forms and sent them in today to the new school, will talk more about it tomorrow. love reading the posts as usual please sisters who havent posted before come on into defuse's tearoom!

UmmSHI Tue 14-Jan-14 10:30:04

I wear abaya all the time, because it is the easiest way to cover I think. I mostly wear black too but am trying to branch out into other colours. I just find black easier to match. I loved all those links posted above.

I have found a school now for my child to attend, alhamdulillah. It is not the best school in the area but it is a school at least.

Hope that everyone is ok. I don't really celebrate (is that the right word) mawlid. I suppose with some aspects of islam I take a strict viewpoint. But in other areas I am more liberal, even though I still think I am sinning when I am being liberal. Maybe it is because I am a revert, although I have mellowed since I first became muslim. So for example, I let my children draw humans and have toys that have images or cuddly toys or little figurines, but not sure if I believe it is right. And also I let them watch things on tv that have magic in them, again not sure it is right, think I am sinning. I know someone who keeps their children away from all of that and I feel a bit inadequate that I have not done the same.

Maybe it is my own hang up, but what do others do with their children?

defuse Tue 14-Jan-14 11:34:48

Salaam ummshi glad you got your child a place in school. I find the process quite stressful too!

I share your views on mawlid and I also let my dc draw whatever they like. I have friends who dont watch harry potter (or read it). I am not so strict but admire their imaan and how they go about protecting it. Personally not watched it either. Not my cup of tea.

My dds like watching sofia the first on disney channel and I realised recently that sofia wears an amulet which lets her talk to animals. I am not too keen on the whole amulet stuff, so am hiping to get the dds away from watching sofia and onto something else. Will take some time though! Am writing this from my phone, so sorry about any typos.

I admire all the revert sisters. Really do. You are all so amazing mashallah. May Allah keep your imaan strong. Ameen.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 14-Jan-14 12:25:13

I have to confess, I love fantasy, I grew up on the Chronicles of Narnia, the snow spider, box of delights etc and I want my girls to have that in their lives too. I don't think allowing them to read and watch (I don't have a TV) stuff like that makes them believe in magic, I rather think it gives them food for thought and inspires creativity, letting them reach beyond what is currently considered possible.

I always tell my girls that nothing is out of their reach, with hard work and absolute trust in Allah I expect they can reach beyond the moon should they choose inshallah.

Having said that I spent a long time hoping everytime I opened a wardrobe door to find an enternal winter land beyond....hmm

My youngest has a whole plethora of cuddly toys, who all end up tucked in my bed at night and assorted Barbies and friends and the associated paraphenalia the vet stuff, the doctor stuff, the porsche the jet/yacht with swimming pool. I don't mind them playing with dolls and toys, I remember longing for a doll as a child, I'm not having my girls go thro that. Besides which I find it amusing watching them play with dolls and toys, there's an innocence about it which I hope they carry for a long time yet inshallah.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Tue 14-Jan-14 19:07:07

Umm I'm glad you found a school alhamdullilah.

I'm very relaxed when it comes to drawings, pictures, photos, cuddly toys etc. The only thing I don't allow is animals or people on clothing, or anything that looks like an eye. I bought a scarf from ebay a while back and it didn't really look like the picture! The print was like peacock feathers and so looked like it had eyes all over, that went straight in the charity bag. I also don't buy clothes that have slogans of any kind on them.

Fuzzy I love the chronicles of narnia. Dd1 went to the royal film premier of one of them, can't remember which but she could see the queens hair from where she was sitting!

Has anyone got any holidays booked for this year yet?

crescentmoon Wed 15-Jan-14 08:29:09

salams!

interesting last few posts. like fuzzy i have to say im a big fan of fantasy too. both from childhood and still as an adult, we're all really into dungeons and dragons type books and games in our house. im currently reading this as fast as i can as iv been waiting years for this author to publish his third book! im so sad though because when i finish it i know il have to wait probably another three years for his next one. i often use publishing dates to chart my year as much as anything else, the annoying thing about sci fi and fantasy is that many books are often trilogies or longer with at least a year between each book in the series. i quite like space opera books and dystopian novels too.
actually the winner of 2013's World Fantasy Awards last year was a muslim convert sister, G Willow Wilson for her book 'Alif the unseen'. which is on my kindle wishlist and one of the books im going to be reading soon.

www.tor.com/blogs/2013/11/2013-world-fantasy-award-winners

she's also a hijabi too!

from this review: www.theguardian.com/books/2012/oct/07/alif-the-unseen-willow-wilson-review

"What would happen if the veil between visible and invisible worlds started to fray? This is the premise of G Willow Wilson's brilliant debut novel Alif the Unseen, which draws on Islamic theology, the hacking underworld, Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials, spy thrillers and the events of the Arab spring to weave an "urban fantasy" in which the everyday and the supernatural collide.
The dizzying mix of elements can be traced to the pigeonhole-defying experiences of Wilson, a Boston University-educated convert to Islam who married an Egyptian and lives between Cairo and the US. Her writing portfolio is similarly heterodox: she has reported on religion and politics for the Atlantic and the New York Times; written a well-received memoir, The Butterfly Mosque; a graphic novel, Cairo; and the comic series Vixen and Air (acclaimed for their gutsy female protagonists) for DC Comics."

from the famous hadith on leisure time and hobbies: the only things the prophet muhammad (pbuh) didnt regard as a waste of time was archery, horseriding (because they had a martial purpose though in these times they're kind of posh hobbies!) and a couple spending time together. anyone know the hadith im talking about?

"Everything with which a man amuses himself is vain except three (things): a man's training of his horse, his playing with his wife, and his shooting with his bow and arrow." (hadith from Sahih Muslim, Book 14, Number 2507: Narrated Uqbah ibn Amir)

so i do feel abit guilty about wasting time as thats a sin, but i always remember the 5 salah as washing away the small sins as long as we avoid the big sins!

as for magic and metaphysical stuff, i dont see that as foreign to islam but its not halal. 'from the witch who blows on the knots and the evil of the envier when he envies'. (surah falaq). we all know theres abit too much dabbling in that in the folk islam that some muslims practise - it gets blurred with the natural medicine stuff that is praised in islam. also stuff like amulets as you made a point defuse, and protective devices: the hand of fatima etc. i always tell ds1 to replace any stories to do with ghosts with 'jinn' lol. there are no ghost stories iv ever read or heard that are as blood curdling as the ones my dad used to tell me about jinn as a kid!

UmmSHI Wed 15-Jan-14 09:26:31

Interesting perspectives, thanks everyone for your views. I think that in the end it all comes down to getting the right balance really, give your children the knowledge of Allah and the religion, and hopefully anything else they come across will not deter them from the straight path.

defuse Wed 15-Jan-14 10:32:45

Oooh crescent share a jinn story! I have never been told a jinn story so as a result, I fear humans more grin

Lost what is a holiday??!! grin
The last time I had one was with DH before my bundles of joy came along! I have ruled out any holidays abroad for another 5 years at least! I so need one now! I was saying to DH last night that he should go on hol and I will look after kids then when he comes back, I will go! DH not doing the deal!! grin

crescentmoon Wed 15-Jan-14 11:14:00

true about the right balance ummshi, i think we all have lines that we draw and say 'i wont go past this one'. im also pretty relaxed about toys - too relaxed acording to my mum. i know she dislikes that i have peppa pig toys and figurines in my house - my kids really like the characters and i pick the toys up when we are in the charity shop!

i just wanted to clarify as for spending time on hobbies -
"Everything with which a man amuses himself is vain except three (things): a man's training of his horse, his playing with his wife, and his shooting with his bow and arrow." (hadith from Sahih Muslim, Book 14, Number 2507: Narrated Uqbah ibn Amir)

the prophet (pbuh) didnt forbid other hobbies he just said that all are vain except the three in the hadith. and its a hadith i searched for to make a point to my husband who has a hobby that takes up a long time and is very 'one person only'. i wanted him to spend more time with me and the dc so i read about the hadith that any activities a couple do together are 'not vain' whereas his hobby was potentially not worth it - vain in this context meaning 'fruitless'.

but, from loads of other hadith, there are certain pastimes which if you take the right intention can be made into a act worthy of hasanat. actually DH says his hobby helps to make him a better provider for his family hmm. one sheikh i heard once said that if you read fiction books so as to improve your language so as to make yourself more articulate to explain the deen to people, then it isnt a waste of time. sports like swimming, martial arts, if they are done with the intention to strengthen the body and take care of it as its an amanah from God. with that intention, then those hobbies become activities that can gain hasanat. certain hobbies if done to produce something, make a gift to give to others, then they go from neutral to something that can earn hasanat. 'verily, actions are by their intentions and all will be rewarded according to their intention' (bukhari, muslim)

actually i think thats probably sensible defuse about fearing the evil of humans more. what does shaytan do? he is only a whisperer. human shayatin are far worse than anything that can come out of the ghaib/unseen. and i think that verse in surah falaq: 'Say: I seek shelter in the Lord of the Daybreak.....from the evil of the envier when he envies', its not just about hasad and bad karma 'wishing evil on someone'. but its also about the very physical harm that can come from the hands and mouths of others because of jealousy and envy. when i read surah falaq over my children at night i ask Allah to protect them from that.

crescentmoon Wed 15-Jan-14 12:02:41

www.nytimes.com/2004/04/07/world/since-94-horror-rwandans-turn-toward-islam.html?src=pm

this interesting article is about how islam grew exponentially in rwanda by conversions between 1994-2004 because of how the muslims protected the tutsis, tutsi christians as well as muslims, during the 1994 genocide. muslim neighbourhoods were considered safest places to hide and part of that was because:

"In some cases Hutus were afraid of searching Muslim quarters for Tutsis. The widely believed myths that both Muslims and their mosques were protected by the power of highly efficacious Islamic magic, and the fear of the jinn(creatures of fire mentioned in the Qur’an), turned out to have saved the lives of Tutsis who sought refuge with Muslims. In one case, a mosque was set ablaze in Cyangugu, but the arsonists ran away instead of destroying the mosque and its inhabitants because they believed jinn were inside the mosque. In some cases when a Muslim was inclined towards killing, one Tutsi testifies : “If a Hutu Muslim tried to kill someone hidden in our neighbourhoods, he would first be asked to take the Qur’an and tear it apart to renounce his faith. No Muslim dared to violate the Holy Book and that saved a lot of us.”[4]" wiki link but the excerpt is from this book here: walking a tightrope

obviously, its not an actual jinn story but a story about how jinn stories affected relations between people there. totally untrue of course, and im not the only one whose face would blanch if someone told me there were jinns in mosques confused. but, in their case, this fake story had a protective effect for the muslims and the tutsis they were hiding! grin. plus im posting it to offer a different view from the vision of islam currently being portrayed by the conflict in the Central african republic.

defuse Wed 15-Jan-14 12:20:34

So true crescent what you say about evil of people wrt jealousy and envy. I have heard of some bizarre customs within some muslim communities for protecting their kids, especially newborn. I dont understand why they feel that the surahs from the quran arent enough. confused

crescentmoon Wed 15-Jan-14 19:28:20

"I have heard of some bizarre customs within some muslim communities for protecting their kids, especially newborn."

yeah same here, really weird things! its funny how pagan practises and superstitutions piggybacked into the deen when certain communities converted to islam. very little can be tolerated within orthodox islam which is pretty fiercely monotheistic and anti bidah. but its in the folk islam where you get belief in amulets: tahveez, turkish blue eye, hand of fatima, people consulting spiritual healers and fortunetellers, psychics, shrine worship, exorcisms, animal sacrifice ( yes, even by imbecilic presidents! ), and other rituals to ward against hasad and sihr.
i think thats one thing to be applauded about the salafis (not wahhabis, salafis im saying here) - is how theyve really tried to educate people about how haram many of these practises are and outside quran and sunnah. sometimes its just weird or amusing but many times they cause harm to people, people get defrauded of loads of money, 90% of practitioners are just con artists looking to get rich.

as for holidays, loved the idea.. "I so need one now! I was saying to DH last night that he should go on hol and I will look after kids then when he comes back, I will go!". i read those types of posts on mumsnet with alot of interest! we went on holiday last year the whole family - by miracle really subhanallah - so we wont be going on one again for at least a couple of years now. dh and i often go away together on short breaks leaving the dc behind with family. even when we cant go on a holiday abroad, we're just as happy dropping the dc off with family during school hols and then returning back to our house and enjoying the peace and quiet for a week or two till theyre back lol. lost where are your family going on their hols? i always want to be able to book a holiday with these people: sunseahalal.com/ or islamictravels.com/ but not this year!

defuse Wed 15-Jan-14 19:30:52

Love your take on the jinn story crescent grin and so utterly sad what is happening in Central African Republic. sad

The first time i had ever heard of central african republic was on the programme 'pointless'. It is horrible what is happening there and if nothing is done soon, it will only escalate even further sad

fuzzywuzzy Wed 15-Jan-14 22:56:37

My mum is really into talismans and taweez to ward off evil the eye, they're usually ayahs from the quran, I refuse to wear them on the grounds I am not walking into toilets etc carrying the word of Allah.

I've always maintained whatever happens is Qadr Allah and whatever passes me by was never for me.

I try and keep my farad and have utmost trust in Allah and take him as our Walee.

Having said that we do recite the quran every day, ayah ul Kursi and the three kuls abundantly and we listen to surah baqarah often, it is the antidote to sehr.

Someone once told me they were doing Itikaf in a Masjid during the last ten days of Ramadan, during the night when everyone was asleep this person (I honestly can't now remember who told me, whether a cousin or my dad or someone else), felt someone grab him by his foot and shake him calling to him to wake up to pray or he would miss the night, he was so terrified he curled up pulled up the blanket over his head and refused to look out let alone get up for prayer, he is convinced he missed the night of Laylatul Qadr. He said all the other people were asleep and he'd never seen the tall man dressed all in white before.
You here lots of Jinn stories about majids and madrassas.

Scaring myself now!

fuzzywuzzy Wed 15-Jan-14 22:57:47

and that is atrocious spelling ..sorry.

crescentmoon Thu 16-Jan-14 07:39:06

"I refuse to wear them on the grounds I am not walking into toilets etc carrying the word of Allah."

me too, thats the first thing i think of - how can you walk into the toilet with that! someone gave my daughter a necklace when she was little, made of 24ct gold, of the whole of ayatul kursi in the shape of a scroll. it probably is meant as a talisman actually. but iv kept it for her for when she's older and is aware enough to take it off each time when she goes to the bathroom cause i thought it wasnt appropriate for a child to have something like that.

sunnah fasting again today - we're so lucky that magrib is early! im getting better at not counting down the hours till the early afternoon. subhanallah but somethnig really interesting is on days i fast i dont drink tea or even have sweet things, but on days i eat normally i spend the day grazing i cant do the three square meals like DH can!

on the spiritual benefits of fasting mondays and thursdays

on the benefits of fasting mondays specifically: "It was narrated from Abu Qataadah al-Ansaari that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was asked about fasting on Mondays. He said: “On that day I was born, and on it the Revelation came to me.” Narrated by Muslim, 1162. so the tradition of commemorating the birth of the prophet (pbuh) began from him and was something the early muslims kept up to also commemorate his (pbuh) birth. and the mawlid grew from the commemoration to the celebration - to involve more of the community including the less devout and less religious who couldnt do the monday fasts! i dont believe it is a bidah for this reason, when i was saying 'bidah merchant' earlier it was tongue in cheek i hope you all realised that! xxx

fuzzywuzzy Thu 16-Jan-14 09:48:44

Sis I love your love for the Prophet (saw). I find it deeply inspiring and a reminder, everything we are and have is thro the sacrifice of him (saw).

When I find the fasts getting hard I always make duas, Oh Allah I fast for your sake accept it from me as ibadah. I especially make that dua when it feels hard.

crescentmoon Thu 16-Jan-14 12:22:14

mashaallah thats a dua il be making today too fuzy. i laughed to myself after reading about your colleague saying to you' your always fasting' and your answer to her. im such a floozy, my dua when i begin the day is always 'please Allah let me keep it through the day and let no one offer me something yummy'. because many a few times iv started then given it up when someone says 'lets go for a coffee' or 'would you like some cake'. i would talk myself out of the fasting you see, saying 'ahhh well its not ramadan its only sunnah fasting'. blush. but recently iv stopped that now, heres hoping i can maintain it inshaallah.
as for loving the Nabi (saw), actually i see that in you and how you keep the sunnah fasts and the sunnah prayers. i may join you on the latter one later -cause i never imagined id be someone who kept up the former. but, maybe, the sunnah prayers will be 2015's resolutions!

fuzzywuzzy Thu 16-Jan-14 13:42:36

It was just the way we've been taught to pray, to include the sunnah rakahs as well.

I'm not very strict on it with girls, I am about farad, that's not up for negotiation, but sunnah is down to them.

One weekend, my youngest finished praying came to bed and informed me I've got a house for you in Jannah mummy, when I queried it she told me she'd learned that the reward for completing all the sunnah rakahs along with the Farad is one house in Jannah (per day!), her first one she has generously saved for me! grin

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Thu 16-Jan-14 21:28:18

Salaam

I'm just going to derail the thread, I'm really worried about something and I was going to start a thread in chat but I don't have the energy to keep up with the replies!

I've got bad eyesight, my contact lenses are -11.00. I've taken a few 'selfies' recently I know I know with the kids and I noticed a week ago that one of my eyes looks considerably bigger than the other. So I took a few more from different angels and it's really quite obvious. I don't have many photos of myself so I looked at my wedding photos and they're completely normal. I then flicked through my photos and found one from three months ago where again they're the same size and normal.

So I send the photos to my sister and she agrees with me, at first I thought it was the left eye smaller, but I googled stupidly and actually my right eye is bulging. I didn't say that to my sister but she replied saying it looks like my right eye is bulging.

I can't ignore it, it's scaring me, so is it the GP tomorrow or opticians? I should probably say if they were always like this I wouldn't be worried, it's more the fact they've changed in such a short space of time.

Sorry for the derail, I'll reply properly soon I've just got myself in bit of a state!!

fuzzywuzzy Thu 16-Jan-14 22:24:30

Opthalmic hospital, they have all the equipment to check the back of the eye.

If you're in London I would go straight to Moorfields A&E to be honest, your GP will not be equipped to deal with it and will send you to the nearest Opthalmic hospital anyway.

I had really severe ocular migraines so have experience of emergency eye treatment.

May Allah grant you shifa.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Fri 17-Jan-14 03:26:54

Thanks fuzzy, I'm not in London, near but not near enough.

I haven't had any pain or headaches so can only see that as a positive sign. I still can't decided if my right eye is bulging or my left eye is lazy!

GP is probably the best option tomorrow and I'll go from there.

Thanks

crescentmoon Fri 17-Jan-14 07:56:01

salams fuzzy i always always think this but mashaallah your girls are mubarak girls. i cant believe the littlest is praying let alone sunnah too. though i would have told my dc if they said that about the house in jannah for you mama 'thats great dear, remember, one in dunya and one in akhirah for me!'.wink. lost my love, i really hope you can get an appointment to see the GP today just to put your mind at rest. dont google, absolutely dont google, i have turned up at the gp so many times thinking im at death's door from one thing or another because of googling symptoms.
im supposed to go the gp soon for the next depo provera injection but iv had so many side affects iv decided im not going for it again. (plus it was also rather undignifying getting the shot!) i hate being on the pill but i get queasy about the coil so im trying to think through what il be doing this year!
let me be the first to say Jumma Mubarak sisters, Happy Friday/Blessed Friday! im going to jumma prayer today, im going, inshaallah as it will be my last free friday in awhile! i always knew it was sunnah to have a bath on friday, but i read the full hadith and thought it was really nice to share:

Narrated Salman Al-Farsi (RA): Muhammad (pbuh) said,

"Anyone who takes a bath on Friday and cleans himself as much as he can and puts oil (on his hair) or scents himself; and then proceeds for the prayer and does not force his way between two persons (assembled in the mosque for the Friday prayer), and prays as much as is written for him and remains quiet when the Imam delivers the Khutba, all his sins in between the present and the last Friday will be forgiven."

[Sahih Bukhari]

also, mabruk, (passes out cake and sweets) - my son is now 100% fully potty trained. i almost wept two days ago he went to the toilet on his own to do a number too then called out 'mama finished' for me to go and wash him. i am so proud of myself him and as a treat to myself, im calling the carpet cleaner people to clean the carpets for the whole house today! (because whilst i tried to get everything, i still have doubt and waswasa astaghfirullah!)

UmmSHI Fri 17-Jan-14 09:38:02

I'm also finding the reports from Central African Republic really harrowing as well. The atrocities being committed in many of the african countries are appalling to hear and it really gets to me that some people are so ignorant about how they reached their current condition. In terms of the wests contribution. The unstable governments and dreadful poverty didn't happen in a vacuum because black people are some kind of sub human inclined towards violence and laziness to improve their condition, but unfortunately a lot of people believe this. It is so offensive. If anyone spouts views like that in front of me I immediately write them off as an ignoramus.

Your jinn story, crescent, was really interesting. I love jinn stories too and having not grown up muslim, they are so alien to me.

I definitely hear what everyone is saying about people using amulets more and more these days, straying further away from Allah's command. The halal butchers that I go to has those turkish "all seeing" eyes everywhere. It makes me really uncomfortable going in there. Not because I believe i'm being watched by them or anything, just because I know that it is not islamic at all and is in fact shirk. I am lax when it comes to other things but shirk is one thing I don't go near, as we know it is the greatest sin. I used to have some superstitious beliefs before I was muslim, so I have worked very hard to move away from them. Not going back there.

UmmSHI Fri 17-Jan-14 09:48:27

Hope you get your eye sorted Lost. May Allah give you shifa. Congratulations crescent. It's a great feeling isn't it.

MashaAllah, all of you sisters who do sunnah fasts, I admire you, Allah reward you. I still have last years ramadhan to make up for. I am still breastfeeding right now though so I am waiting for my son to start eating more solid food so I can cut down and have the strength to make them up before the days get too long.

Salam everyone, enjoy your Friday.

defuse Fri 17-Jan-14 11:15:01

Salaam everyone.

Jummah mubarak. smile

lost. Have you seen anybody about your eye yet? I really hope it is all ok inshallah.

Will check in again later inshallah.

Welshcake77 Fri 17-Jan-14 12:10:52

Hello and Salaam ladies.

I hope you don't mind me joining in but I have seen how welcoming you all are so I thought I would give it a go! First of all I wanted to say how much I admire you all for the way you live your lives through your faith. It is amazing how knowlegable you are about islam, I have learnt so much reading this and some of the previous thread and also now realise there is so much more to it than I ever thought!

I am not muslim but my DH is (he is originally from Afghanistan) and we have an 18 month daughter together. I was born in Britain but now live in Germany where we met nearly 10 years ago. We are bringing our daughter up in the muslim faith but I must admit I sometimes wonder how I will manage this well if I do not know enough about it myself. My husband isn't practising, in fact the only person in his family who does is his mum, so I know she will help me and teach our daughter lots of things. But I was wondering, how can I best educate myself? I have a Quran which I would like to read, but wonder if I will understand much if I don't have much background knowledge. Does that make sense?

If any of you have any ideas for me, maybe some website or book suggestions I would be very grateful.

Happy friday to you all!

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Fri 17-Jan-14 16:17:00

Hello welshcake smile

I'm glad you found us. I too have learnt so much from the the tearoom threads, I think I have learnt or read something new everyday. It's good that his mum is around to teach your daughter. I can only speak for myself with this but right at the beginning when I was learning and reading the very basics I found books aimed at children much easier to understand. Most of them are written in basic terms with explanations so that should help.

The others will be around soon to help and welcome you.

Crescent that's brilliant news about your ds, alhamdullilah.

Umm I also admire the sisters who do the sunnah fasts, I was talking to revert friend about this the other day and we both want to start fasting these too inshallah.

Ok, I went to the doctors. And as soon as I started waffling about how I thought I was imagining one eye was bigger than the other he stopped me and said he could see. I'm to have a blood test on monday, he thinks there's something behind my eye pushing my eyeball out, he said there's also white around the iris where there shouldn't be, not sure what that means though. He thinks it could be an over active thyroid, but I don't have any other symptoms. Depending on the results I'm going to be referred to an eye hospital. My right eyebrow is now also higher up than my left! I look very attractive grin.

Is anyone else having a massive downpour, we got drenched walking back from school!

peacefuloptimist Fri 17-Jan-14 20:50:09

Hello Welshcake

Nice to have a new poster on the thread. Have some baklava and sweet tea. I really admire you for already starting to think about how you will teach your daughter about Islam. My son is a similar age to your dd and so I would also be interested in any tips people have to offer.

I would probably echo what Lost said though about starting with the books aimed at children. That way as well you can start accumulating books for her as well. I am currently in the process of developing an Islamic children's book library for ds and just finding children's dvds as well as cds. My parents didn't really teach us about islam directly but mainly through making information about islam accessible to us. So me and my sister learnt how to pray from reading a book but parents did check we knew it correctly.

If you concentrate on teaching her the 5 pillars of Islam (the testimony of faith, the prayer, charity, fasting in ramadhan and hajj) and also about the 6 pillars of faith (belief in God, belief in His angels, belief in the messengers, belief in the books of God, belief in the Day of Judgement and belief in divine predestination) then you will give her a good foundation. This book is a really good standard reference text for all muslim children/parents to have

Islam beliefs and teachings

I had this book as a child and I really enjoyed reading it. His book on the life of the Prophet Muhammed PBUH is also very good for young readers but probably more for young teenagers.

I will link to some websites for you that you can use to get books and other materials. Just try to make it fun and enjoyable for her as you can as her positive associations and memories of learning about her faith is what will really make the difference in the long run.

Childrens books I recommend any of the collections on stories from the Quran as that will make it easier for you and her to learn about the stories in the Quran.

books and toys Some nice things here and more guidance on what is appropriate for particular age groups.

www.noorkids.com/ Would definitely recommend this to those of you with older children. The books look really interesting and the scenarios are more in keeping with our childrens experiences. Read the free sample to get an idea of what they are like.

Hope that helps.

By the way I wanted to ask what positive things or challenges have you found about marrying in to a muslim family and also of marrying someone of a different culture? My husband is from a different culture to me and though we do have differences in the way we look at things in particular about social interactions and familial responsibilities towards extended family. However I have found that by leaning on and looking towards our religion we are able to resolve most of our disagreements.

Has anyone else found that the way your spouse and you learnt about the religion effects how you want to teach it to your kids. My DH was brought up in quite a liberal environment where he wasn't really taught about religion and because of that he really wants to make sure ds has a good Islamic upbringing whilst I had lets say a conservative upbringing so I tend to want to be more relaxed with ds.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 18-Jan-14 08:52:44

I like some of the games in your link peaceful, I might get some for my dc. I think it's a great way for them to learn.

I could spend all day writing about cultural differences between myself and dh and all the hurdles we have had to overcome along the way. It's been a rollercoster ride and even now I wouldn't say we were completely content with each other's cultures. But we get by with mimimal discussion now. We know when something is expected of us with the others family and we just get on with it now.

With regards to raising the children, in theory I was raised very similar my dh (cultural differences apart) in that discipline was always firm but fair, we were taught good manners from an early age, we knew how to behave around our elders etc. Somewhere along the line dh has adapted his own parenting style which is nothing like the way either of us was brought up.

I think the key to successful different culture marriages is compromise, you have to give and take in equal measures and having an understanding of the others culture.

If we do ever disagree about something cultural, we tend to then refer to religion as a middle ground and take guidance from there.

I've been interested to read about everyone's opinions on taweez and practises that are bidah. You have all opened my eyes to be honest and I've realised that a lot of what my in laws do is bidah, and now I'm finding myself wanting to pull away from it but I can't, so go along with it. They all wear taweez and have given the children them, I didn't even think about wearing it in the bathroom. That's the kind of thing I want to question them on but can't! They have also held various khatum's for my father in law, something I have now realised is bidah, I was led to believe it was all part of the process of someone passing away, but it's not, is it?

Sorry I've rambled. Does that answer any of your questions peaceful? I can't answer for the differences in the way we were taught religion as I'm a revert. The only thing I will mention though is something I've always found odd with my dh. I think he was taught things that are sunnah as being fard. He puts so much emphasis on some things that are sunnah, and the way he tells it to the dc is as if it's fard. It's hard to explain really. But for example he's been told he has to pray the fard, sunnah and nafl. No exceptions ever, whereas the way I've learnt about it is you pray the fard, but sunnah and nafl are optional but highly rewarding. There's lots of other examples but I won't bore you as I find it hard to explain.

crescentmoon Sat 18-Jan-14 10:24:27

salaams and a big warm welcome from me welshcake, its always lovely to see more posters on the thread! a big big welcome to anyone else muslim or non muslim who would like to join in the thread also.

glad you liked that jinn story defuse and ummshi! luckily for those muslims those people set on harming the Tutsis they were harbouring were so superstitious.

ummshi, i found your first post yesterday really interesting. im pretty relaxed about other things - khatms don't faze me lost as its just reading the Quran for someone. that is from islam. i wouldnt pull away from your in laws for that at all. gathering together and remembering Allah i join in with that also whenever i find it, the general permission has already been given from the Quran 'to celebrate the praises of God whether standing, sitting, or lying down by your sides' (3:191). that side of islam, the spirituality, its the baby that the Salafis tried to throw out with the bathwater in trying to purge the muslim world of this mixing of the occult with the religion. seriously, some of the things people do to try to protect themselves from the occult, is also, actually, the occult!
but when it comes to shirk, like you, i dont want to go near it. when i married my husband i said to him i was open minded to alot of his religious practises but i didnt want the father of my future children to get anywhere mixed up with shirk. i didnt want my future children to be taught they couldnt pray to God except through an intercessor, or that they were too unworthy or lowly of a close relationship with God by themselves without requiring a mediator. i know others do it and i know the explanations but i couldnt agree with the practise of prayers to saints, or even prayers to muhammad (pbuh), and he agreed he wasnt the type to be interested in that either.
but, theres this prayer he makes sometimes, and it makes me abit confused, where the names of the fallen at the Battle of Badr are read out and you make your prayer from that. its the semantics of it im still trying to puzzle out, does 'with Your love' 'by Your love' 'through Your love' all mean the same thing? still thinking on it tbh!

crescentmoon Sat 18-Jan-14 12:35:51

as for cross cultural marriages peaceful, i read this a few years ago and it helped me understand the common flashpoints DH and I would have.

the differences between ask culture and guess culture peoples:

www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/may/08/change-life-asker-guesser

a brilliant explanation here:

What is the middle ground between f**k you and welcome.

ask.metafilter.com/55153/Whats-the-middle-ground-between-FU-and-Welcome#830421

"In some families, you grow up with the expectation that it's OK to ask for anything at all, but you gotta realize you might get no for an answer. This is Ask Culture.
In Guess Culture, you avoid putting a request into words unless you're pretty sure the answer will be yes. Guess Culture depends on a tight net of shared expectations. A key skill is putting out delicate feelers. If you do this with enough subtlety, you won't even have to make the request directly; you'll get an offer. Even then, the offer may be genuine or pro forma; it takes yet more skill and delicacy to discern whether you should accept.
All kinds of problems spring up around the edges. If you're a Guess Culture person -- and you obviously are -- then unwelcome requests from Ask Culture people seem presumptuous and out of line, and you're likely to feel angry, uncomfortable, and manipulated.
If you're an Ask Culture person, Guess Culture behavior can seem incomprehensible, inconsistent, and rife with passive aggression
Thing is, Guess behaviors only work among a subset of other Guess people -- ones who share a fairly specific set of expectations and signalling techniques. The farther you get from your own family and friends and subculture, the more you'll have to embrace Ask behavior. Otherwise you'll spend your life in a cloud of mild outrage at (pace Moomin fans) the Cluelessness of Everyone."

understanding that DH was from a ask culture upbringing and i was from a guess culture upbringing explained why i constantly frustrated him 'crescent just say what you mean! your going round in circles talk straight!'. and why he constantly offended me! 'don't deny it i know thats what you were trying to say...!!!!'

what about you peaceful and others?

defuse Sat 18-Jan-14 20:33:46

Salaam all.

lost. I am glad you got an appointment sorted. I pray that Allah gives you shifa.

welshcake. Welcome, i am really glad you joined us. There are some really good links given posted above by others and i like the idea of starting with children's stories and games - they hold great educational value, even for adults. A few years ago I bought a game a game called 'Quran challenge.' It is suitable for age 8+ and i found it so hard!!! I had to read around the topics! Definitely not a starter game - not for me anyway - but great for learning when a bit more advanced i guess.

I would start reading the Quran, and if you have any questions, just come along here and pop your question on, between us all we should be able to find an answer for you - Inshallah.

lost, interesting points regarding taweez, amulets and khatam ul Quran that you raise. I will come back to those a bit later. Got to go do some cleaning before i get too tired. smile

crescent. Sis, i havent heard of the badr dua before, do you know the words?

defuse Sun 19-Jan-14 11:38:37

Salaam all

Cleaning took longer than I hoped!! grin

I was raised surrounded by relatives into taveez. Luckily, my parents werent too keen on the practice so dont recall ever having to wear one. I find taveez a strange concept. It is supposedly there for protection, with the words of Quran. Yet our prophet Muhammad (pbuh) never commanded hanging verses be it in amulets around a person's neck, or cars etc as is common practice nowadays. Instead, the emphasis was always on reading Quran, recital and pondering and reflecting. That is where the most benefit is drawn from.

Just to clarify, it is general scholarly consensus, that taveez is not permissible to be used as protection. If however, say you have some Quranic verses hanging on your wall at home, such as ayat-ul-kursi, and it is there to remind you to read it and gain benefit from it, then that is allowed. If it is hanging on the wall as a means of protection, then that is not permissible.

As for khatams, I remember my great aunt saving thousands and thousands of stones from dates and using them to read ayahs from Quran or duas or durood during khatams. I remember i used to get sooooo tired but never dared say anything because I felt that would be a terrible thing to say!

I also remember when my great uncle passed away, there were rituals for doing khatams, on the 3rd day, the 11th day, the 40th day and so on. I can't remember how many of these rituals were observed, but at least 3rd and 40th were quite common. It is scary how far we come away from the true teachings of islam when we start going down the line of what we believe to be good instead of what Allah and His prophet (pbuh) prescribed to be good.

The following is taken from islam-qa.com.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "When a person dies, all his deeds come to an end except three: sadaqah jaariyah (ongoing charity, e.g. a waqf or endowment), beneficial knowledge (which he has left behind), or a righteous child who will pray for him." (Reported by al-Tirmidhi, no 1376; he said this is a saheeh hasan hadeeth)

Prayers for forgiveness offered by both sons and daughters of the deceased bring great benefits, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "A man’s status will be raised in Paradise and he will ask, ‘How did I get here?’ He will be told, ‘By your son’s du’aa’s (prayers) for forgiveness for you." (Reported by Ibn Maajah, no 3660; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1617)

Another thing that may reach the deceased is sadaqah (charity) given on his behalf, because ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) reported that a man said to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): "My mother has passed away, and if she could have spoken, she would have given something in charity. Will she receive a reward if I give something on her behalf?" He said, "Yes." (Reported by al-Bukhaari, Fath, 1388)

Sa’d ibn ‘Ubaadah said: "I said: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, my mother has died. Should I give charity on her behalf?’ He said, ‘Yes.’ I asked, ‘What kind of charity is best?’ He said, ‘Providing water.’" (Reported by al-Nisaa’i)

Other deeds that may also benefit the deceased are Hajj and ‘Umrah on their behalf, after the living person has first performed Hajj and ‘Umrah on his or her own behalf.

lost sis, it can be very tricky challenging people on practices, especially if the occasion is quite an emotional one, such as death anniversary. If you feel you can, then bring it to the attention of your DH. If not, then just do the prescribed actions as stated above, make lots of dua for your FIL - he sounds like an amazing person mashallah, give charity on his behalf and ask Allah to show you a way.

My inlaws are very much into these practices too, I have been unable to change their ways, but I have told them very very gently and nicely that I cannot participate either. My situation was easier in that DH isnt into it either and much more strict than I am. Having said that, it has strained relationships a bit between him and his family too sad.

That is why my personal advice would be to start from your DH snd go gently. Let him take the lead, should he be willing wrt the family - I know from DH's experience that his family are so into taveez and khatams that despite showing them evidence of the bidahs, they have still clung to them sad

I do go on a bit....sorry. blush

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 20-Jan-14 10:11:30

Salaam everyone

At least you've done your cleaning defuse, I'm just sat with my feet up whilst dd2 is having a nap (she got up at 5) and ds is sleeping peacefully in his pushchair. A rare treat!

Defuse I think that's the right approach, you've raised some interesting points, thank you.

I don't think I would ever pull away from attending khatams, because to me my duty of a wife and being there for dh is more important. He has been brought up thinking they're fard, so I can't see he would ever give them up. He always, always defends the way he was brought up and will argue until he's blue in the face that their way is the right way.

I very nearly questioned him on why he doesn't take his taweeez off when he goes in the bathroom, but I chickened out! I will ask him though, he's very strict with the dc when they go in the bathroom and how they should behave they never listen so I'd be interested to hear his answer for that. And yes, I see a lot of people with the Quran written on CDs hanging in their car, is that for protection also?

It's a shame the relationship with your dh and his family is strained, good on your dh though for sticking to his beliefs though.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 20-Jan-14 10:25:59

The khatams thing is a very integral part of my childhood, if things are going bad they hold khatams, if things are going good they hold khatams, if someone dies they have khatams, if someone is ill they have khatams etc. I don't mind khatams as reciting the Quran in one sitting or fifty surah Yaseens etc is fine as far as I'm concerned, they used to have long duas after the khatams and that was fine too the only mention of prophets and the deceased family and friends was to call for blessings on them. I remember the khatams quite fondly actually.

I do not hold with the using prophets as intercessors and I absolutely despise the people who use piirs who they give money too and practically pray too, my sisters husbands family is like that and my youngest niece matter of factly tells me that her grandma prays to that picture of a man to the detriment of her fard prayers. It scares and repulses me to be honest.

It's taken me a while but I've managed to slowly sift thro the social traditions that my family carried over from the actual Islamic practices, I tend to stick to just the Islamic practices inshallah, I don't need the complication. and the fear of bidah is actually very real for me.

Welshcake77 Mon 20-Jan-14 13:45:09

Thanks for the warm welcome everyone! And for all of your posts and especially the links, I really appreciate it. I don't have much time this week but I will have a proper look at them next week when I have the time to go through them properly. Its a very good idea I think for me to start with children's books and work my way up from there. I knew about the 5 pillars of Islam, but hadn't even heard of the 6 pillars of faith, so thank you for that explanation peaceful

Regarding your question about marrying into a muslim family and different culture...where do I start?! No, seriously, it has of course been challenging at times because in many respects we have totally different backgrounds but it is also extremely rewarding and I think it has made me rethink a lot of my priorities in a positive way. I am lucky that my inlaws are very open and accepted me (and indeed my parents and brother) into their family from the day I was formally introduced to them. It was a long wait for me, but I understood and accepted that my DH (then boyfriend) would only do this when he was certain I was the woman he wanted to marry. I think the most stressful time for us was when we were planning our wedding as it became so difficult at one point trying to incorporate everything we wanted to and keep others happy too. We couldn't have a nikkah as I haven't been christened (my MIL still can't understand that concept!) so most of these difficulties were down to cultural differences but we were able to carry out some afghan traditions and it turned out to be a wonderful celebration and the perfect mix of both cultures. I think what has made dealing with the differences all a bit easier is the fact that DH and I had numerous conversations about all sorts of issues and 'deal breakers' before we were even engaged. E.g. how he would want to bring up our children, things he would expect of me and himself within our relationship and how we interact with other people. So we are on the same page regarding many things which could otherwise potentially cause disagreements or worse. I could go on and on but I'll stop there for now!

Lost I hope your blood test went ok today and that you get some treatment for your eye soon.

UmmSHI Mon 20-Jan-14 17:50:08

Lost, your eye situation sounds scary but I'm glad that you are getting it checked out. Hope all goes well.

Welcome Welsh. I have always thought that a good place to start when you know the basics of islam, is with manners. Islamic manners are a very integral part of conduct as a muslim person, ranging from how you eat, to the rules of greeting people. If you could find a book detailing these then that would knowledge would be of great benefit for educating your child.

Really interesting reading this thread, some of you are a lot quicker at replying than me. Glad everyone is ok though, and I can completely sympathise with cultural differences. It's taken me a while to get used to my inlaws way of doing things. Sometimes I partake in their strange ways but often I stick to my own way of doing things, only when I know it won't offend though.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 21-Jan-14 10:54:54

sis Lost do come back and update us on your appointment, if you cant get an appointment quickly I would recommend going to an opticians they diagnose very quickly.

Welsh, have a look around at your local Masjids and Islamic centres, some run classes for reverts which will begin with basics of Islam so you can get to grips with it, you don't need to be a revert to learn them. If you're shy just ring them before hand and ask, some masjids will have affiliations to sister circles and other classes run outside of the masjid or they may be able to point you in the right direction.

The masjid I go to pray in near has such classes. also my girls school have regular parenting conferences and workshops.

If you are interested in reading it, there's a verse in the Quran called the verse of Luqman, (Luqman being the name of a man who is a father) and the verse describes how he parents his son and is actually a beautiful parenting example.

If you are very interested you could cheque out Imam Suhaib Webb's analysis on the verse, it's long I tend to watch these in parts not in one single sitting.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 21-Jan-14 10:56:00

check not cheque, arrgghhhh I swear I do know how to spell.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 21-Jan-14 13:57:00

Assalamualaikum, you know we did the Eid swap for Eid ul Fitr last year, someone got halal bath stuff I think, which company was it?

I'm trying to figure out what to get for year end for my girls teachers and I want it to be extra special this year inshallah as my eldest is leaving primary school.

crescentmoon Wed 22-Jan-14 06:32:35

That's so exciting to have eldest starting high school next year. I get astonished thinking how old all mine are getting and a teeny bit sad too.sometimes I I wish I could just bundle them all back inside my tummy again to keep them close to me and safe. But it's the sunnah of life that they grow and get older and less needing of me. I think of the wisdom of the prophet pbuh in the Hadith about child rearing that we can only do our best with them and then leave them to Allah....

"Play with your child for seven years,
Then teach them for seven years,
Then be their friend for seven years,
Then let them go for you have discharged your duty to Allah"

In another wording I've read:

"The child is the master for seven years,
Then the slave for seven years,
Then the vizier for seven years,
Then let them go for you have discharged your duty to Allah"

I prefer the first wording but I've seen the second version narrated to one of the ahlul bayt.my Eldest is in the second phase now religion wise but school wise was already in it when he started reception! but I'm already thinking middle dc is mature enough actually for seen wise to start too subhanallah.

Hope that for all of you the week is going well!

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Fri 24-Jan-14 06:14:20

I too cannot believe how fast my dc are growing up, dd1 will be 10 this year and I can't quite believe how she has been in my life for a decade, she's been here for a third of my life.

Fuzzy I've got a feeling it was naila who had the halal bath stuff, it was when I disappeared for a while but I remember reading it when trying to catch up. Where is naila?

Crescent that's one of my favourite hadith, I prefer the first wording also. When I used to read about countries whose children don't start school until seven I used to be horrified at the thought of them being home for that long, but actually the prophet (saw) said 'play with your child for seven years', so these countries may have a point. What does everyone think? That said both my dc were ready for preschool when they started at three and I couldn't wait for them to start!

fuzzywuzzy Fri 24-Jan-14 10:11:53

Assalamualaikum,

Jummah Mubarak everyone don't forget to recite/listen to surah Kahf today, I'm listening to the tafseer by Dr Yasir Qadhi, I listen to it bit by bit each evening so I'm in the middle right now.

Sis Lost, I think the hadith is right too, but I also think that in England at least the first years schooling is mostly learning thro play and at (my home my girls had toys and play and we just enjoyed being together. My girls school does streaming by ability and I wasn't at all bothered that my girls were pretty near the bottom during the first three or so years of primary school, I only learned to read at seven myself and maths was totally beyond me till I suddenly had that ahh moment at around 9ish I think.
I used to watch other mothers getting utterly hysterical over their child being on the average ability tables (mine were on the bottom!).
But I was right to an extent both my girls now excel at school Alhumdulilalh and (most importantly) they enjoy it, I think pushing hard at the early years the children suffer burnout very early on and schoolwork is a chore for them and they don't like it because they've not had a chance to play.

Dunno, shall let you know if my methods work when my girls are older lol.

GoshAnneGorilla Fri 24-Jan-14 13:22:27

Salaam my lovely sisters, just to add to the discussion - Alhamdulilah, our family have been blessed with a second daughter. We are just so happy.

I remembered you all in my du'as, please keep us in yours.

May Allah grant you all sabr and sakina :-)

fuzzywuzzy Fri 24-Jan-14 14:07:16

Walaikumassalaam, Mabrook may she be the coolness of your eyes

crescentmoon Fri 24-Jan-14 15:23:21

mabruk mabruk mabruk gosh, fabulous news mashaallah. May Allah give you a long life for your daughters and give them both long lives for you ameen. And let them be a coolness for your eyes, and the fruit from which much good is hoped dear sister. Xxxx

defuse Fri 24-Jan-14 15:46:26

Salaam and congratulations. Mabruk sis.

So happy for you mashallah. May Allah bless your daughters with the best in this life and give the health and happiness.

crescentmoon Fri 24-Jan-14 20:37:32

salams, not had much time to post this week. but dc are in bed, DH working nights, iv got my gorgeous cup of tea by me so inshaallah hope some of you are around for a real time chat!

defuse, i asked DH for more detail about the battle of badr dua (the prayer beginning with the names of the fallen) and it led us to a very long discussion about tawassul - intercession prayer. and, lets just say, im still unsettled by our conversation on it - we have more divergent views on aqeedah/theology than i thought subhanallah.
but i was able to hold my own, impossible before a couple of years ago but thanks to a fantastic aqeedah teacher who got me interested in the subject i now can say a few more sentences than 'God is One, Unity, Up!'. (the natural fitrah like 'the faith of the old women of Nishapur') only a few more sentences mind.

lost its a favourite hadith of the homeschooling sisters here where i live. but its not something that can easily be followed if your kids are in the school system i find as the national curriculum year 2 SATs exams hit children here in the UK at age 7same time as children in other parts of Europe are starting formal schooling! its a delicate balancing act i think as fuzzy said push them too hard at an early age and they might hate schooling. i love how relaxed you were about your daughters being initially in bottom set, mashaallah its so good to be relaxed about it. i must say iv chilled out so much since hanging out with the homeschooling mamas, i could never ever do it but they've made me less wannabe tiger mother-ish and more accepting of my dc's own interests and inclinations. i was also late to read - year THREE was when it all clicked! - and maths too. how ironic you said that fuzzy wink so mashaallah my kids are doing better than me!
older 2 started a new madrassah yesterday - i prefer the afterschool ones now to weekend and this new one theyve been on the waiting list for months and months! i really liked dd's teacher and she especially came back really excited from her first day. im so happy as in school ds and dd hardly have any muslim friends at all so its also the social side - not just running around like heathens in the mosque but also learning! - that im happy about. (previous madressah was at a hired out school!).

defuse Fri 24-Jan-14 21:00:17

Salaam.

Came across this article racism in schools and it makes me worry for my children's future. sad

crescentmoon Fri 24-Jan-14 21:12:10

youch, its scary isnt it. i never even went into detail about the goings on at my dc's school but the WO isnt the only issue. im making dua they both get a place at the other school subhanallah because whereas some mums want to stay and fight it. i just dont want to deal with that kind of prejudice - and Allah's earth is wide (4:97) alhamdullillah.
as for the terrorist stuff im trying to hide that kind of stuff from my dc for as long as i can defuse. it inhibited our generation so much i think, so so much, but we walk small so our kids can walk tall inshaallah.

defuse Fri 24-Jan-14 22:00:48

I must admit, I have recently come to realise the extent of islamophobia around us. I used to shrug it off and make excuses for it and present reasons why it is so!!!!! But now, i have come to realise that this in itself gives rise to more islamophobia. I just hope my children never have to feel like they are somehow 'different' purely due to their colour and religion.

crescentmoon Sat 25-Jan-14 10:21:40

iv written reply after reply this morning defuse but each time i have to delete it because it reveals too much of my bitterness and sadness at so many deliberately manufactured crises around the muslim world because of this islamophobia - which existed alot longer than sept 11 2001. older than 'clash of civilisations', older than fukuyama's 'the end of history'. its depressing when you trace backwards and realise who inflicted it upon whom. Allahu Musta'an. (In God we seek aid).

hope you all have a great saturday and that gosh you enjoy your lovely new baby and seeing eldest be a doting big sister inshaallah.

defuse Sat 25-Jan-14 20:41:25

Just got back on and seen more stuff which is really sad. I was looking at tell mama and it is sad to see how much hatred exists.

crescentmoon Sat 25-Jan-14 21:12:28

im offline from now love, it does get one down. but we have to keep a good opinion of people as we keep a good opinion of Allah.

defuse Sat 25-Jan-14 21:28:34

Very true crescent. Our history is full of those who did awful things to muslims but then saw the beauty of islam such as wahshi ibn harb

crescentmoon Mon 27-Jan-14 08:15:07

i had no idea who wahshi ibn harb was and i googled him last night and his story was so interesting. jazakhallah khair defuse.

anyone else counting down the hours till magrib/sunset already? sad i didnt wake up for early morning suhur and im already famished, my dua today was please help me to keep my fast past zuhr. the hour before the midday prayer is always the hardest and if my will breaks its usually always then! but iv had a good run of weeks so i hope i wont be so pathetic as to break it when magrib is only in 10 hours. inshaallah inshaallah! hope everyone else has a good day. salaams!

fuzzywuzzy Mon 27-Jan-14 08:48:20

If I miss Suhoor I don't keep the fast (only for nafl fasts), but I very rarely miss it as I'm up at daft o clock anyway to get to work/school run.

May Allah make the fasts easy for everyone who is observing them.

The weekend just flew by.

crescentmoon Mon 27-Jan-14 09:03:08

"If I miss Suhoor I don't keep the fast"

damn man, fuzzy you shouldnt have told me that! half my will has crumbled lol. i really like that expression daft o clock - up at sparrow's fart is another funny one lol.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 27-Jan-14 09:19:52

My motivation is because I want to get all the barakah of fasting, there's barakah in the pre-dawn meal. with Nafl acts of worship I'm all or nothing, with fard I am doing it to the best of my ability and hoping Allah will accept them in his infinite mercy.

Altho to be fair I'm usually vey engrossed with work and have to set an alarm for iftar or I will forget. So Alhumdulillah it's not so bad, my friend and I were talking about Nafl fasts and she said how Ramadan when it comes around is much easier for her as she's so used to fasting, she said the year she stopped Nafl fasts for a while she really felt the first few Ramadan fasts.

Basically you need to keep occupied so you wont think about it, I reckon that's why we all tend to go mad during Ramadan cooking insanely extravagant dishes, we're trying to keep occupied and the only thing we can think about is food lol

crescentmoon Mon 27-Jan-14 20:51:34

i managed the day alhamdullillah! as for setting an alarm to remind for iftar. id never forget to countdown to magrib are you kidding? iv got an internal clock that starts to tick when theres 20 mins to go lol, im conscious of where the sun is in the sky all the time from midday to fast break!
thats how i feel about getting ready for ramadan too fuzzy, its a shock to the system the first few days for me but im hoping if i keep up the sunnah fasts through till summer than the beginning wont be so difficult.
tbh, there are a fair amount of days i need to make up for ramadan so i know that my fasts are not really counted as sunnah until those days have been made up for. that is the opinion of the Shaafiee madhab. the most difficult time is doing the 6 days of shawwal right after ramadan - i learnt from my hanafi friends that they can launch straight into the shawwal fasts then do their make up ramadan fasts afterwards. but in the shaafiee madhab you need to make up your ramadan fasts before you can do the superogatory days of shawwal. my grandmother Allah have mercy on her, she used to do Eid ul Fitr the one day then go straight into 6 days of fasting. 7 days after the day of Eid ul Fitr we used to call it 'Shawwal Eid' as that was when she realyl celebrated the end of Ramadan!

welshcake, umm, worldcitizen, lost, hope all our sisters are well. and that new sisters join in the thread, make a prayer, share your gratitudes to God with us, favourite hadith/ayah. anything inshaallah.

crescentmoon Mon 27-Jan-14 20:51:43

just to share, heres a really quick way to give sadaqah without having to get up if your phone is next to you. just text
HIHS10 £10

to this number 70070 to donate money to Hand in Hand for Syria. (it can be £1, £3, £5 not only £10). i like the text donations the most because its the quickest way for some people to act on an intention to give sadaqah. if anyone has any other numbers for charities please share - even the secular charities i had a look but couldnt find any current appeals that say donate by text. why i like this is because sometimes a sister will make a reminder about the importance of giving charity and link to a just giving page. (usually fuzzy). and hand on heart i have the intention but silly things get inbetween and half the time i dont get round to it. even when im sitting in front of the computer! but the text donations are much easier if you are on a contract phone as it goes through instantly, no tedious entering of bank details, it just goes on your phone bill!

here is a compilation of all the verses in the Quran that mention charity. about 70 verses altogether! consider, the verses on Ramadan are only 7. on "covering/hijab" are only 2 verses. verses mentioning hajj are about 10, but the verses on zakat and sadaqah are about 70 verses in number! subhanallah and many of them are with verses on prayer, again and again in the Quran you read "those who establish regular prayers *and regular charity*".... and i think thats so important to link personal religiosity to community, that we dont become so insular with worship that we forget the people around us and the fact that islam is very much a group orientated religion.

theres this saying about how when the rich give up the zakah (charity, third pillar of islam), then the poor will give up the salah (prayer, the second pillar of islam).
iv got my own thoughts of what it means, what do you feel about it?

UmmSHI Tue 28-Jan-14 11:20:36

Thanks for that interesting piece of information and beautiful reminder crescent. The fact that charity is mentioned so much in the qur'an (and especially its mention alongside prayer) should remind us all that it is such an important aspect of our faith.

I have never come across such a saying before, my take on it is that if those that are wealthy give up something that is so easy for them to do that will bring great reward, then the not so wealthy will also give up something equally (more) important that is easy to do. It is a reflection of the type of society that would disobey the commands of Allah to the point of dropping one of the five pillars. I didn't explain that very well but what I mean is that people just won't care anymore, and will give up anything. What are your own thoughts?

fuzzywuzzy Wed 29-Jan-14 10:18:34

Assalamualaikum,

I've been thinking about the saying, I think maybe it is because, we are exhorted to give charity to ease the state of the impoverished and straitened for entering Islam. Charity is a consolation for the second and easily given by the first as it is incumbent upon those who qualify as both are pillars of Islam when one pillar falls the others will follow slowly as the distribution is then unequal, I think the pillars of Islam are dependant upon eachother, one must observe them all otherwise deserting one leads to neglecting the rest then we have nothing but the title to pass on.

crescentmoon Thu 30-Jan-14 11:44:16

salams my lovelies,

sorry or not posting, dc have been really unwell, one by one all down with the flu, and im stressed doing tax return online so i havent had anything intelligible to say here till now!

but ummshi and fuzzy thats how iv always understood the saying as well! islam is based on the 5 pillars and the zakah is the third and maybe one can say from that the central pillar. an ICM poll done with the charity website Justgiving found that by religious groups muslims gave the most charity in the UK - an average £371 per year. it was published in the Times but because of the firewall il give the huffpo link here:

www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/07/21/muslims-give-most_n_3630830.html

what that average figure doesnt go into is how much is zakat and how much is sadaqah though! because zakah is the obligatory charity, and that a motivation for me!! many of us is that charity extinguishes the anger of Allah like water extinguishes fire as the prophet (pbuh) said. (in the hadith 'fasting is a shield and charity extinguishes sin')

crescentmoon Thu 30-Jan-14 11:44:28

as for 'when the rich give up the zakah the poor give up the salah'. its not a uncommon thing that some people join the religion because they seek the protection and help of a group - this was recognised even in the time of the prophet (pbuh). there were those who were turned off by the commercialism and polytheism of the makkan arab society, and they wanted the simple monotheism Muhammad (pbuh) was preaching about. but even in his time many dispossessed people also converted, not just the poor, the weak, but lonely people, or people without the membership of a strong warrior tribe also took the shahadah.

we have the same thing now, people convert to islam as individuals or in large groups (but maybe small in their own societies) for social security (as in that nytimes article i linked earlier) or for economic security. The islamic ideals about social justice and zakah was something that attracted the latter, and for that right to access help they took on the other obligations of islam like the second pillar the prayer - which is harder to fit in the day when you are working in a low wage job just to be able to get by and having to negotiate prayer times and ablution in the back breaking jobs many poor do where they might not have much of their own bargaining power to follow the deen. and the fifth pillar the hajj, which is so hard to save up for even just to go once in one's lifetime if your not earning much.

but the reason the rich were attracted to the deen was because of the much needed law structure that the Quran and hadith provided in the lawlessness of the arabian desert where it was survival of the fittest and the one who had the largest militia got to call the shots. and so it is now, for people who dont need the social or economic advantages its the discipline and structure that they are attracted to. for those advantages was the obligation of the zakah - which is not on the poor (those who do not have savings or property above the nisab level), and also the obligation of the ramadan fast to remind them how it is to go hungry and not be able to afford any food to eat as the poor. (who might regularly go without food that the ramadan fast is not such a hardship for them.) i think its this then that when the rich give up the zakah, the third and central pillar, then the second pillar falls as well because it makes people lose faith and become disillusioned in the religion.

not just the charity side ,i think the sense of betrayal some muslims get when they are not offered that brotherhood/sisterhood or cannot find it amongst the muslims they are with, or watching on aljazeera and seeing what fellow muslims do to each other when there are supposed to be such strong ties between the people who proclaim 'la illaha illallah', that can really fatally undermine their emaan. it doesnt mean their faith was superficial or insincere to begin with, because there are among many of the reasons people are muslim or stay muslim or take up being a muslim.

crescentmoon Thu 30-Jan-14 12:12:53

www.familybreak.org.uk/th_event/when-the-stars-sun-and-moon-prostrated/

im going to this event in april bank holiday weekend with my family inshallah anyone else?

(and i mean inshaallah like really inshaallah, not the magical land inshaallah where 99% of muslim promises, presents and punctuality is stored!)

its going to be our only break this year and im looking forward to the programme as well. if anyone else is there we could have a meet up maybe?

fuzzywuzzy Thu 30-Jan-14 13:58:03

OMG that looks so amazing mashallah I'd love to go to something like that.

Come back and give us a review inshallah, let us know if you attend the talks.

crescentmoon Thu 30-Jan-14 15:13:47

It's going to be fab inshallah, go on fuzzy you and your girls will have a great time. For us definitely we're not able to go on the lovely sun sea halal type holidays abroad so this will be good. I used to go to the Islam camp years ago and I think this is the grown up version. I'm trying to convince my mum too to come so she can spend some lovely time with the dc wink wink.I'm looking forward to the night prayers and the Quran recitals as well as the chance to unwind and have a mini break away inshallah.

Anyone else trying to be a hands free mama? It's very boring isn't it at times? I love the night shifts dh does so I can have the PC without feeling guilty I'm ignoring my family. My internet free mobile makes me gnash my teeth often- and I spend most evenings after dc go to bed saying to my husband 'go on then, say something to make me laugh!'. Subhanallah but As peaceful said a few pages ago the, it's cheaper to amuse oneself on iplayer than couple therapy lol!

defuse Thu 30-Jan-14 21:30:03

Salaam all.

crescent that family break sounds amazing. I would have gone if circumstances had allowed. I hope they have it next year too, then inshallah i should be able to go. I have been looking at the details (not that i can go!) and am a bit confused. It says that its a 4 day break (18-21) so does that mean its a 3 night stay at the hotel with meals over 4 days included? Because elsewhere it says that activities are covered for saturday and sunday. Doesnt mention other days.

De vere hotel near leeds is absolutely gorgeous. If this is anything like that one, then it will be a lovely stay inshallah.

Welshcake77 Fri 31-Jan-14 15:39:56

hello and salaam ladies! I need to catch up on the thread to reply properly but just wanted to say hello while I have some time. I have been really busy this week as after job hunting for 6 months I finally got a new job! Am so happy, I start on Monday though so I have had lots to organise this week and unfortunately DD is not well so has been up all night every night and we're all a bit exhausted! I'm nervous and a bit worried about how I will manage everything (it is a full time position) but also looking forward to using my brain a bit more.

I will be using my commute on the train to read some of the links you suggested to me so hopefully I will be able to participate a bit more and ask you all lots of questions smile

I hope you are all well, happy Friday to you all.

crescentmoon Fri 31-Jan-14 18:40:23

happy friday welshcake, so glad about your new job and inshaallah god willing your first day monday will go really well. im hoping worldcitizen comes along soon as shes in germany too. ask questions as and when you like love, if we all put our heads together we will figure them out!

i had to look up what you meant by de vere hotel that leeds one is lovely. im so excited about the activities on offer on this break, i think there are set courses over the weekend but maybe free time over the friday and monday to do the sports. i love the idea of the calligraphy class, but art wise im more into islamic geometric art - (whispers: i did a simple class with a kids group for the masjid last year and it was really fun!). iv seen these calligraphy courses become fashionable but its too curly wurly for me- beautiful mashaallah to look at though. how has everyones week been? welcome to any new posters inshaallah with copious brew, cake and biscuit on offer!

BettyButter Sat 01-Feb-14 00:20:29

Assalamu alikum. I am a revert, nearly three years now alhamdulilah. I have caught up on the thread. I had a long period of not praying but alhamdulilah I have kept the past few days. You ladies have inspired me. I need to surround myself with Islam to keep my Iman high I think. I tend to be all or nothing in life so this time Inshaallah I will try not to overdo things, and make the 5 fard salah for the next month or so till it becomes a good habit. Then Inshaallah add dua, more dhikr, fasting etc as it feels right. Do any of you have low points? How do you overcome it? Someone once explained it to me like passing seasons...
I feel like I could talk and talk right now. I don't currently socialise with any sisters. My husband is older so his friends are older and their wives are really a generation apart from me.
Like I said up thread you really have inspired me, you all live your lives and juggle your commitments and your Deen. I have been lazy and making excuses. May Allah SWT reward you all. I've been lurking for a few days, there could be many more out there that are being inspired too wink

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 01-Feb-14 07:15:06

Salaam and hello sisters

Congratulations gosh, how lovely to have a new baby daughter.

Crescent I hope your dc are feeling better, there's so many nasties going round this time of year. That weekend break looks amazing, I'm going to look into it but as we're going abroad this year I doubt we'll be able to.

I've just saved the hands free mama page to my bookmarks to have a read later today!

Congratulations on your new job welshcake, I hope your first day goes well.

Walaikum asalaam betty. I'm glad you've joined us. I was exactly the same as you, I had a period where I didn't pray and like you this thread inspired me. I also go to my local mosque every weekend for lessons just for reverts, it's great and alhamdullilah it's increased my iman. Talk away, we're all here to listen, the more the merrier smile.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend.

crescentmoon Sat 01-Feb-14 14:50:42

salams betty, just like lost im so glad you joined the thread sis and i hope more delurk and post too. i also really admire the sisters here. myself im not that practising betty, i don't do much above the bare minimum and it only got abit above bare minimum because of sisters like fuzzy on this board. i know what you mean about seasons, i felt my islam hibernate for a few years as i lived in a couple of places with barely any muslims and it got so i felt it was all my effort just to maintain salah and ramadan. take it slowly, dont pile too much on yourself straight away butter, there is a hadith that says:

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said, “Verily, this religion is vast, so enter its depth with gentleness.”

Source: Musnad Ahmad 27318

Grade: Sahih (authentic) according to As-Suyuti

dont throw oneself in and become overwhelmed but the religion is deep so dive carefully.

as for handsfreemama lost, i became so sad at recognising so much of myself in her article here about my relationship with ds1: www.handsfreemama.com/2013/12/10/the-bully-too-close-to-home/ . i said i had to do a jihad against this part of myself.

i saw this story on another MN thread earlier this week and really couldnt stop thinking about it- what do you think?

"An old Cherokee chief was teaching his grandson about life...
"A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy.
"It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves.
"One is evil - he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, self-doubt, and ego.
"The other is good - he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.
"This same fight is going on inside you - and inside every other person, too."
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather,
"Which wolf will win?"
The old chief simply replied,
"The one you feed.""

i thought how it fitted in so well with the islamic idea about the nafs/ego-the lower self, in this the bad wolf, and the ruh - the higher self, the spirit, the good wolf. and that imagery of their constant battling with each other.

BettyButter Sat 01-Feb-14 23:36:12

Salam ladies, well I'm assuming we are all ladies? wink
Thanks for the lovely welcome. That's a good reminder Crescent about the religion being fast so to take it slowly, I remember as a new Muslim reading that the Quran was 23 years (?) to be revealed, and we should take it slowly.
Lost, for a year before and a year after I reverted I spent hours and hours online, reading and learning about Islam. Attending Jummah at the mosque and I went to a couple if sisters circles. I think when I started trying to conceive I started to read up about conception and health etc and my focus shifted... But alhamdulilah I'm back now and Inshaallah this will be it. Lots to learn on this thread and hopefully I'll be able to give something back...
I read the hands free mama blog on bullying. Really struck a chord with me, I worry I do this with my DSC and might do it with my DD when she is older. So I've bought the book! Haha! I think this thread is going to be life changingthanks
Now, I have a very serious question to ask.... Do any of you thread your eyebrows? grin I stopped plucking as I read the removal of eyebrow hairs was prohibited. But I see Muslim ladies with perfect eyebrows everywhere! Is threading permitted? I don't usually bother, it's liberating have a good reason not to pluck them but I have a wedding coming up so would like to look my best. smile
I downloaded a new Adhan alarm app from Islamic Finder for my phone today. Has lots of changeable settings etc, and the stunning Mecca Adhan. my favourite one so far.

BettyButter Sat 01-Feb-14 23:42:37

I forgot to say about the wolves story (on phone so can't scroll back) it's a great way of looking at our strengths and weaknesses. I imagine that's written by a religious person? Another good analogy I read was about exercising our character traits such as discipline, resistance etc as we exercise our other muscles, the more you do it (resist cake/pray fajr) the stronger those muscles get so the easier it is.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 03-Feb-14 09:23:36

Assalamualaikum,

When my iman is low I force myself to continue with the fard and I also listen to lectures more and just make duas.

The eyebrows thing as far as I am aware personally is that one is not meant to shape ones eyebrows by plucking in any form, you can pluck the middle bit if your eyebrows join in the middle but apart from that you're not supposed to. I'm sure if you dug deep enough you'd find a fatwa telling you to shape them tho.
I just brush my eyebrows with a brow brush and forget them. I'm no help sorry!

It was world Hijab day on Saturday, anyone have friends participate?

UmmSHI Wed 05-Feb-14 20:37:18

Salam sisters. Sorry I disappeared for a while. I was having my laptop repaired and I don't really do the internet on phone thing.

Welcome Betty, nice to see someone new. I totally get your low iman feelings. It is so hard, and that's why I come here too, just to get a little lift sometimes.

As far as the eyebrows go, I'm with fuzzy. Although it is tempting to pluck, I really try not to. I have done in the past but I have always followed the opinion that it is something we are not supposed to do.

As always, hope everybody is ok. I feel so much happier now the days are getting longer. A lot more positive. I'm so much more a summer person now whereas I used to love winter, I think because I have spent time in a hot country and became accustomed to it. What about everyone else?

defuse Wed 05-Feb-14 22:49:55

Salaam all,

Been meaning to post but feel exhausted by evening! Nice to have you here betty. I also tend to just pluck/thread between the eyebrows and leave the rest - otherwise i would have a monobrow grin

I used to be meticulous about waxing my arms, legs etc, but what is it about being married for 5 plus years that i just cant be bothered to wax so regularly any more! My view now is that my DH has seen me cut open for a caesarean - so a bit of body hair shouldnt put him off now should it! grin

Having said that, i did wax last week after aaaagggggeeeeesss and it actually felt quite nice - I might start doing it regularly again .

ummshi i like the dark mornings and the dark evenings at the moment, but that is because the kids sleep as long as it is dark! I really want a hot hot summer this year as holidays are not going to happen for sometime yet. If its beautifully hot, then i love the long daylight hours too. Although most of those hours do get spent at work rather than enjoying the weather!

Off to bed now....

Speak soon inshallah

BettyButter Wed 05-Feb-14 23:12:34

Thanks for your replies ladies. I think I will not thread for the wedding and just comb them into shape.

I love the longer daylight hours but much prefer the winter weather for ease of wearing hijab....

crescentmoon Thu 06-Feb-14 21:05:23

salams betty, defuse, ummshi, fuzzy, welshcake, little, butterfly, peaceful, worldcitizen, lost, hope you are all well inshaallah. glad to see the tearoom revived, i didnt have much time to post these days.

im glad you bought the book betty, i think i would wither if i read the whole blog, just a few posts have me feeling very bad! that one about the bully close to home is a sobering read, i realised with that article that it was also alot to do with irritation at being disturbed from my downtime/pursuing my own interests. going handsfree has been super annoying: no camera on my phone and i cant receive pics, no whatsapp, instagram, facebook apps, no google maps, or even being able to look up things as soon as i need to - especailly at work where its very aggravating not having that! when texting needing to tap the button out to the letter i want and dealing with T9. texts are dificult to organise, no music on my phone. i think i went to too old a model in some ways in going back to basics.
but you know what sisters, my sleep has improved - i dont pick up the phone and while away ages in middle of night browsing all my social media accounts. i read more books till the end now - i scarily lost the ability last year to concentrate and read a book all the way through because id get bored easily. because i dont carry the internet in a phone i find i use the internet less generally as i cant be bothered to power up or seek out a desktop just for simple enquiries.
and i make more eye contact with my dc instead of saying 'hmm' looking down at my phone as they talk/ play around me! i get irritated with them alot less because im not trying to multi task or have multiple conversations /read stuff - especially with ds1. im just with them more instead of ignoring them whilst theyre eating/bathing/dressing to fiddle about with my phone - though it was annoying at the time im grateful DH made the comments he did. inshaallah il stick to this thing, i still feel abit weak but when i do i realise how much i was missing of their lives before by trying not to miss what was happening in the wider world/ my social circle/ family and friends lives on facebook! i wish i could go completely cold turkey but right now slowly slowly. Umar ibn Al khattab said 'Take yourself to account before you are taken to account. Weigh your deeds before your deeds are weighed'. and i think websites like handsfreemama help me with that self accountability!

crescentmoon Thu 06-Feb-14 22:33:35

as for eyebrows - i know the hadith and the wording is quite strong but in the Shaafiee madhab its taken along with other hadith, not in isolation by itself, so as to understand the purpose behind it and understand the exemptions. being a married woman i started taking the exemption last year - i enjoy getting them done as i feel my whole face looks very different with well groomed eyebrows! i wish i could say that when natural they look like im in transition to werewolf or something but actually theyre only a little untidy when not done but not really hairy or anything alhamdullillah.
with hair removal i try to make sure i do at least the parts mentioned in the hadith on fitra here every month but sometimes i stretch them to the 40 days limit. as for arms and legs im not as bothered as like most of my family i dont have any much arm or leg hair at all!
i love winter as a hijabi too betty, i like being able to layer clothing. i also like it for the long dark nights defuse, i laughed out loud when you said your children slept longer so do mine as long as its dark! summer time its a killer as i try to shift them at 7 and its still light in the sky until 10pm! (anyone else breaking out into a sweat over ramadan starting in June this year?!).

its after magrib/sunset on thursday evening so according to custom its already friday. Jumaah Mubarak everyone!

peacefuloptimist Thu 06-Feb-14 23:47:58

Salamalaykum sisters

How are you all? Welcome to all the new posters. Sorry I haven't been posting much either. I suffered a miscarriage recently which has kept me away. Alhamdulillah I am well and recovering. It was at a very early point in the pregnancy so I hadn't had long to get used to the idea of being pregnant but at the same time I was so shocked about how much your body has to go through to miscarry even at such an early point in the pregnancy.

I wanted to ask for some advice on tahara issues from any sisters with experience of this. Did you resume your ritual prayers whilst still bleeding (sorry for tmi) or did you wait until it had stopped. The advice I have read online had been quite conflicted with some people saying you still have to pray regardless, others saying it depends on what stage you were at. Some say its like menstruation other say its equivalent to post natal bleeding. confused. Anyway Ive kind of been following the one I feel most comfortable with but not sure if this is the right way to go about it.

Anyway jumuah Mubarak all. I will keep you in my duas. Please remember to pray for the muslims suffering around the world. Ya Allah it brings you to tears. I looked at the family break link you posted Crescent and Im hoping to go too. There is something about being in the company of fellow muslims especially those who are striving to improve that gives life to your emaan. I once heard a talk by Muhammed Al Shareef in which he said the sunnah/tradition of God's creation is that if you are not growing you are dying. Really shocked me even till now. But its kind of true. Its difficult to maintain a certain level of faith/knowledge/actions indefinitely you tend to either go up or down. Inshallah I pray we all go up in these things rather then down.

UmmSHI Fri 07-Feb-14 13:59:58

Wa alaikum salam peaceful Sorry for your loss, may Allah bring about good from it.

I have experienced miscarriages myself and I understood that because they were early losses, I was to continue praying. That is what I did anyway but I can't offer anymore help than that.

crescent you have done so well to limit your internet use mashaAllah. I think we are all guilty of missing parts of our childrens' lives sometimes. I don't go on internet on my phone but I do love my laptop.

As for the rest of you with your love of the dark mornings, I don't know what is wrong with you all, haha. I'm joking really and I am dreading trying to get them to bed when it is still light out in the summer. I can just imagine the objections now.

I still have all of last years Ramadhan to make up for, so reminders about the next one arriving are making me crazy. It will be a hard one this year but inshaAllah I am determined to make the most of it, especially after missing last year. Not just the fasting but praying too due to postpartum bleeding for some of it. I was very lacking in spirituality and iman and as such feel like it didn't even occur. Praying for a better time this year.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 07-Feb-14 19:55:05

Innah lillah wa innah Iley hai rajeoon, I'm so sorry peaceful May Allah grant you Sabr.

My sister had several miscarriages and she always waited till she'd finished bleeding before resuming praying. She treated it as nifas.

I'll ask my friend inshallah. I am friends with a female scholar alhumdulilla (& how cool is that)!

crescentmoon Sat 08-Feb-14 00:43:54

salams sisters,

peaceful I realised you hadn't posted in awhile and had wondered how you were. Innah lillahi wa innah ilayhi rajioon, im so sorry about your loss. even if in early stage of pregnancy, it will still bear on one's mind that this had been a potential family member for all of you and a soul you didnt get to meet in the dunya.

when talking about fiqh and legal issues, we need to refer to the hadith where the prophet (pbuh) said that the ensoulment occurs at 120 days after conception. this is for deciding the fiqh rulings on whether it is like hayd or like nifas/whether to have a burial/whether to read the funeral prayer/cover with the shroud/whether or not for diya in case of injury etc.

but spiritually, whether miscarriage (before ensoulment at 120 days) or stillbirth after ensoulment, muhammad (pbuh) said the child who dies in the womb will drag their mother to heaven by the umbilical cord for her patience in dealing with the loss ( full hadith here please read ).
maybe early in the pregnancy and you didnt know for long, but still a child who can do khidmah for you, not praying for you in the dunya after you die as you hope from your firstborn. but this one going ahead of you to the akhirah, to be an intercessor on yawmal qiyamah with Allah, confronts Him, that you must go to the Garden with them. and like all the children in Jannah who die before puberty, this child will be in the care of Sayidna Ibrahim (as). and how excellent such a person is to hold the amanah that is your child for you inshaallah.

i don't know if you listen to music but there was a song in Beyonce's new album released recently about her own miscarriage in 2012. whatever else to be made of her other songs and work, i was really surprised that the lyrics to this song 'Heaven couldnt wait for you' were very spiritual and told of her feelings of loss and acceptance. it ends with the Lord's prayer in Spanish: "Our father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven Amen." Your Will Be Done, subhanallah. even if you just listen to it the once i think you will find its got very deep ideas.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=RnrqP0-EDfA

as for i know you may have read different fatawa, so really its about how is your health and how are you emotionally right now. if you need time finding it hard to reconcile then i would take whichever opinion that relieves you from as much of ritual obligations as possible.
in the past when i have felt abit battered or ground down by the Divine Will, where I am holding onto the deen with gritted teeth and its like a hot coal in my hand. in those situations il take whatever the easier rulings are to relieve me from as much of wajib/obligatory as I can. so i can shore up my physical and mental energy for the pressing thing i need to deal with.

CuriousGeorginah Sat 08-Feb-14 20:32:35

'Scuse me for butting in - (commiserations, peaceful, I'm sorry for your recent loss).

I'm delurking to say hello. I'm an atheist who is interested in finding out more about Islam in particular, which I can't really explain. It's like I have an itch I can't scratch. So just to say I'm enjoying reading along and going to all the links you post. smile

BettyButter Sat 08-Feb-14 21:18:17

Salam ladies. I wrote a huge post this morning which appears not to have arrived! hmm

Peaceful I am sorry for your loss and May Allah SWT grant you and your husband patience to heal.

Crescent thanks for the links. (Ouch to the armpit plucking!) How do you decide on which school of thought to follow? Were you raised in a particular one? I find this tricky as I would probably say im Sunni but I'm scared to dig any deeper than that... I follow Productive Muslim, this thread and a few Islamic Facebook pages. When I was first considering Islam I watched lots of episodes of The Deen Show. I used to watch the Q&A on Iqra tv until the host said to keep your shoes on whilst you pray?! Has anyone else heard that?
I love that here you have differing opinions and all respect eachothers. Up to now I've mostly followed my instincts and checked my intention before settling on a decision about about whether something is permissible etc.

Curious, hello! Nice to have you here. I'm a former staunch Atheist. Have you always been Atheist?

defuse Sun 09-Feb-14 00:20:11

Salaam my lovelies smile

Hope everyone is well.

peaceful I am so sorry for your loss. crescent has mentioned sone lovely things which I hope will give you some peace. The reward for your loss and patience is with Allah. May Allah give you the strength and patience to persevere through this difficult time.

As far as i know (but you should get this checked out), if you miscarried before 81 days were up, then you can continue praying. If it was after 80 days, then you dont pray until the bleeding stops or after 40 days. But i am not 100 % certain on this and hopefully fuzzy can get ananswer from the scholar (wow! A female scholar - thats awesome!)

curious welcome to the muslim tea room. I am glad you delurked and popped in for a cuppa brew . Feel free to ask anything you like, we will all try to answer if we can Inshallah smile

betty got this from islam q and a:

One of the conditions which must be met before starting to pray is to make sure that one's body and clothes and the place in which the Muslim is going to pray are all clean and free of impurities. It was narrated from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) that he used to pray wearing his shoes. Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) was asked, “Did the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) pray wearing shoes?” He said, “Yes.” (al-Bukhaari, 386; Muslim, 555). This is to be understood as meaning, so long as there is no impurity on the shoes; if there is any impurity on them then it is not permissible to pray in them. If a person forgets and prays wearing shoes when there is some impurity on them, then he has to take them off when he finds out or remembers. This is because of the hadeeth of Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri who said: “While the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was leading his companions in prayer, he took off his shoes and placed them to his left. When the people saw that, they took off their shoes too. When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) finished his prayer, he asked, ‘What made you take off your shoes?’ They said, ‘We saw you take off your shoes, so we took ours off too.’ The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, ‘Jibreel (peace be upon him) came to me and told me that there was something dirty on them.’ When any one of you comes to the mosque, let him look and if he sees anything dirty on his shoes, let him wipe them and then pray in them.” (Abu Dawood, 650; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood, 605).

This has to do with the kind of shoes and with the mosque at that time. However if the mosque is furnished with carpeting, then the mosque should be kept clean of shoes, and no one should enter wearing shoes lest the place be made dirty. (Fataawa Samaahat al-Shaykh ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Humayd, p. 81). Moreover the furnishings of the mosque are a waqf which should not be damaged or destroyed, and if dirt gets onto the carpets it will offend those who pray and prostrate on them. Hence no one should enter wearing shoes and walk on the carpets in the mosque in shoes, lest he damage them or make them dirty.

The one who is keen to follow this Sunnah can apply it when praying at home, or when praying in places where there are no furnishings or carpets, such as parks, beaches and out of doors, etc. If this action confuses some of those who are unaware of the Sunnah, he should explain to them that it is Sunnah before he does it, so that they will not find that odd. We ask Allaah to make us among those who adhere to the Sunnah and strive to follow it until He joins us with the author of the Sunnah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) close to the Lord of the Worlds. And Allaah is the Source of strength.

crescentmoon Sun 09-Feb-14 13:38:38

salams all,

betty glad you posted again, im hoping you will be one of the lovely regulars here on defuse thread. you, ummshi lost really get me thinking about issues and perspectives converts/reverts sisters have.

curious always lovely to have people delurking to say hello. glad your enjoying the thread, conversation kind of ebbs and flows as someone said in the first tearoom! please ask if there are any terms or things you'd like to understand. mainly we've just been talking at a level of expecting most who post and read to know the basics of muslim faith. so its not so much been a thread about why we believe - which would make it easier for non muslims as yourself to follow - but more of how or not! we practise that belief. and by that, share some inner dimensions of muslim life and faith.

CuriousGeorginah Sun 09-Feb-14 14:23:31

Thanks for the welcome. I used to be a Christian, so I understand some of the basics of 'faith'. I'm interested in the way Islam seems to cover every single aspect of life. It's almost like no stone is left unturned in terms of rules and guidance. That's fascinating to me. Personally I've long ago lost any 'awareness' of a supreme being, but I do miss it.

defuse Sun 09-Feb-14 22:58:10

Salaam everyone,

Curious , when I was at uni and also for many years post-graduation, I too had lost awareness of Allah. Took me a long time to develop that awareness, and tbh it still falters and strengthens depending on the day of the week! blush

Your last sentence reminded me that Allah says:

"Take one step towards me, I will take ten steps towards you. Walk towards me, I will run towards you." [Hadith Qudsi]

I still cant explain fully, how I chose to try and practice - by that i mean just the 5pillars of islam - it just happened, but this hadith Qudsi rings so true, i did take a teeny step and then it just became easier and easier.

PS: definitely not trying to 'convert' you grin. Your last sentence just struck a chord and reminded me of this beautiful hadith and my own journey smile

peacefuloptimist Mon 10-Feb-14 13:41:49

Salams

Just wanted to say thank to you all for the kindness and prayers. It really does help to read your comments. Crescent those reminders are very useful. For me personally it has helped me to cope that this happened before the 40/120 day point as I think it would be harder for me to deal with the thought of losing a soul/life that was meant to be my child rather then the potential of a soul/life that could have been my child if that makes sense. I think different people make sense of these things in their own way. Alhamdulillah I am back to being a musaleen again so no need for fiqhi interventions anymore. grin

By the way did anyone attend or hear about that Al Maghrib Institute seminar in London: 'Complicated - A to Z of Women's modern fiqh (jurisprudence)'. I was dying to go but sadly I miscarried a few days before so had to cancel. There are so many things we don't know and it would have been fascinating to hear the different opinions on issues related to women. The problem I find is we always hear the conservative 'traditional roles' voice but that viewpoint is heavily coloured by cultural interpretations and patriarchal mentality. That is why it so important for women to educate ourselves so that we can develop our own understanding based on Islamic principles rather then cultural dogmas.

That's what I love about Islam. You are always encouraged to learn, to think.

The Prophet Muhammed PBUH said "Seeking knowledge is an obligation for every muslim male and female".

Also this hadith: 'The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “One who treads a path in search of knowledge has his path to Paradise made easy by God…”'

Also: 'The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "If anyone travels on a road in search of knowledge, God will cause him to travel on one of the roads of Paradise...The superiority of the learned over the devout is like that of the moon, on the night when it is full, over the rest of the stars. The learned are the heirs of the Prophets, and the Prophets leave (no monetary inheritance), they leave only knowledge, and he who takes it takes an abundant portion."

It must be strange to you Curious how Islam seems to legislate for all aspects of life but there is always a reason for why we believe or do things. Doing things blindly (i.e. without understanding) and blind faith is discouraged and instead we are encouraged to learn about why we do things and to back up our faith with knowledge.

I heard a talk once where the speaker quoted Imam Ibn al Qayyim ul Jawziyyah...

'Fitnah (trial and tribulation) is of two types: the fitnah of ‘shubuhaat’ (doubts and misunderstandings), this one being the greater fitnah of the two, and the fitnah of ‘shahawaat’ (desires). It is quite possible that (these two fitan) can be present in a person at the same time, or one of them may be within him to the exclusion of the other.

Regarding the fitnah of shubuhaat (doubts and misunderstandings), this is due to having a weak vision and a lack of knowledge.

As for the fitnah of shubuhaat (doubts), this is prevented and cured by possessing ‘al-yaqeen’ (certainty), and the fitnah of shahawaat (desires) can be fended off and remedied by ‘as-Sabr’ (patience). This is why Allaah made these two qualities a necessity for leadership, hence Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic says,

“And We made from among them leaders, giving guidance under Our Command, when they were patient and used to believe with certainty in Our Ayaat.” [Sooratus-Sajdah, 32:24]

Thus this indicates that by having patience and certainty one achieves leadership in this religion. Allaah has also aligned these two characteristics in Sooratul-‘Asr (the Time) wherein Allaah, the Exalted says,

“Except those who believe and do righteous good deeds, and recommend the truth to each other and recommend one another to patience.” [Sooratul-‘Asr, 103:3]'

Sorry for the long quote but as we were talking about having low emaan and how to counter that I know this helped me to realise that the more you increase in your knowledge and understanding of the religion the stronger your faith/emaan becomes.

crescentmoon Tue 11-Feb-14 11:14:51

salams everyone. certainly peaceful you make sense of it in your own way and with what can comfort your own ruh/spirit. whatever helps you go through the day and keeps you functioning, helps you get up in the morning, get your kid's breakfast, go to work, meet and greet the people, get home, get to sleep and rest, etc. whether that is in Allah, His Names of Mercy or in Allah, His Names of Majesty.

how is everyone else? fuzzy hope your good my sister and welshcake that your new job is going well. iv not much to write these days - im just finding real life just too much drama at the mo and its sapping my energy to post much. but i got lots of amusement seeing this gallery of motorbike girl gangs of Morocco. i wonder if British Niqabis dressed and were more like this if people would be less fearful of them? what do you think?

www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/gallery/2014/feb/06/morocco-motorbike-women-pictures-kesh-angles-hajjaj

but seriously, really liked this story and wanted to share it with you all,

www.policymic.com/articles/80633/this-niqab-wearing-tech-whiz-is-smashing-the-glass-ceiling-in-the-middle-east

i couldnt ever wear niqab but i have one very sweet human being in my life who is a niqabi sister so i look out for stories like this to show her. (also why i cant help getting into anti niqab threads here on MN!). Fatima Jassem Al Zaabi - first of many inshaallah.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 11-Feb-14 12:17:44

Assalamualaikum,

I rather suspect if we all drove around motorcycles whilst observing niqab, we'd all get arrested!!! lol

I recently read an article by a hijabi sister who was basically saying enough already, I am tired of being discussed for what I wear, I am the sum of my achievements I am more than this cloth on my head and the ever present judging and discussing of this scrap of cloth.

I know how she feels, nobody cares about us as people its always straight to a discussion about what we're wearing, I'd like to start doing that, have endless discussions about the hairstyles of women without hijab, forget achievement, or seeing them as people, lets just talk over them and about them about their hairstyles, and how oppressed or liberated their ponytails or lack thereof make them.

Feeling slightly murderous today.

Need crazy mad duas please there's too much going on in my life right now Subhanallah.

CuriousGeorginah Tue 11-Feb-14 12:25:08

I have to say, I rather like the Hijab, and the Niqab doesn't bother me - I find myself quite jealous of Niqabis (?) as they seem to have their own little protection against the world.

UmmSHI Tue 11-Feb-14 16:08:29

MashaAllah Fatima Jassem Al Zaabi. Such an inspiring woman. These are the kind of stories that you won't find about muslim women on the front pages in the british press.

I too hate that people have negative assumptions about the way I dress. I know someone who is always telling me that her husband tells her what she can and can't wear and she is not muslim, but when we are together people would assume that I am the one being told what to wear.

defuse Tue 11-Feb-14 22:08:31

Fatima Jassem Al Zaabi - she plays basketball too. She rocks! I like basketball - no god at it though grin

I have heard that islamic bank of britain are considering offering the right to buy scheme with 5% deposit. I dont know whether to get excited by this or not! Will it still be unaffordable or not - i dont know! At the moment, it doesnt look likely that we will own a property anytime soon - but Allah provides from sources that we never even thought of - so i keep making dua.

Cuddledup Wed 12-Feb-14 14:24:04

Hi everyone in the tea room.
I'm not Muslim but I am interested in all religions. I've just signed up for this MOOC about Muslims in Britain - is anyone here doing it?
www.futurelearn.com/courses/muslims-in-britain

hi Crescent… nice to see you're still posting fascinating articles. I liked the article about the Powerpoint woman… she could teach me how to use it! (I struggle with all IT things)!
Take care all
X

crescentmoon Thu 13-Feb-14 16:37:30

georgina thats so surprising you like the hijab, normally thats the last thing people find themselves ok with in islam!

cuddledup im so glad to see you on this thread! likewise i could learn alot too from her, i hate powerpoint!

brilliant you are doing that course i had no idea. but from the looks of it im glad its right from the start talking about the pluralism even amongst british muslims.

defuse i read about that islamic bank of britiain inclusion too, really exciting inshaallah!

www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/10629602/Help-to-Buy-expands-to-Islamic-mortgages.html

i also want to know how it works but its exciting if its really true. im thinking its brought that dream of home ownership forward- we're just haemorrhaging money constantly on rent and would like that if there is something halal and affordable.

CuriousGeorginah Thu 13-Feb-14 17:24:25

Oh no, I think the scarves are so pretty and I love the way it frames the face and draws attention to that rather than anything else.

I find myself thinking about worship and what it means. Why does an almighty god require us to worship him? And how do we know we're doing it the right way?

fuzzywuzzy Thu 13-Feb-14 21:19:13

He is our creator and our reverence is for him alone, we were created to worship him. But we have the choice to do so.

Think of anyone important and they expect pomp and ceremony. For me as a Muslim my devotion and gratefulness belongs to God alone and I show it through my worship. He does not need my worship I need to worship him, it is a source of succour and solace and joy for me. When I'm sad, when I'm unbelievably happy I need to turn to the one who created it and me.

We know we are doing it correctly as we were sent guidance thro the prophets who taught us.

defuse Thu 13-Feb-14 23:11:47

Salaam all

Hope everyone is well.

curious your question about why Allah requires us to worship Him is a fantastic one. fuzzy has answered in a lovely and personal manner mashallah. May Allah accept all our worship.

I am just going to re-iterate what fuzzy said. Allah almighty doesnt need anything from us mere mortals. He has however, set 'guidelines' if you will, to show us what He would like for us to do. This includes what is known an good morals - honesty, integrity, kindness, generosity etc. It also includes an acknowledgment and acceptance and gratitude of all that Allah has given to us and our sheer dependence on Allah.

Allah says: 'And if you were to count Allah's favours, you would not be able to number them; most surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.' [Sūrah al-Nahl: 18]

I once tried to count Allah's favours upon me for one minute and say thank you for each favour (i just thought i would try it out and see how far i get blush ) So i sat down in my room grin I was only counting those favours that Allah was doing for me at that precise time and not the ones that surrounded me. So i started counting...i thought, Allah has allowed me to breathe....there is a thank you for that. Then i counted that Allah has let my heart beat....there is another thank you....then I had to go back to thanking Allah for the next breath....as I had taken it and then had to say thank you for the next 2 heartbeats. And i kept going round in a loop without having time to thank Allah for anything else as He grants favour after favour upon me and I am unable to keep up with it. A simple excercise like that for one minute only and I couldnt keep up with the thank yous! I didnt even have the time to thank Allah for one favour, that the next favour would be done, let alone have time to thank Him for all the good in my life!

Allah asked His prophets (the people He loved) to show gratitude:

Allah says:
{Work, O family of David, in gratitude. And few of my servants are grateful} (Saba’ 34: 13).

{O descendants of those We carried [in the ship] with Noah. Indeed, he was a grateful (shakur) servant.} (Al-Isra’ 17: 3)

{And We had certainly given Luqman wisdom [and said], "Be grateful to Allah." And whoever is grateful is grateful for [the benefit of] himself.} (Luqman 31: 12)

This shows that showing gratitude is not only a good trait to have, it is of great benefit as it leads to strengthening other good traits such as humbleness, awareness, manners, and keeps bad traits under some degree of control such as the desires of the nafs.

Prophet Muhammed (saw) said: "Indeed, I was sent to perfect the honorable manners” (Ahmad).

Allah says:
{… and whoever is grateful, he is grateful only for his own soul, and whoever is ungrateful, then surely my Lord is Self-sufficient, Honored.} (An-Naml 27:40)

The next question is that if one cannot manage to say thank you to Allah for each of His favours, (as you would literally be there all day and still not have thanked Him for half the stuff) then how does one express gratitude:

Allah says:
“And I (Allaah) created not the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me (Alone)” [al-Dhaariyaat 51:56]

The muslim prayers/salah 5 times a day is showing gratitude to Allah. Muslims abandon the chaos of daily life for those few minutes of prayer where the verses read during the prayer are full of giving thanks and showing gratitude and then asking some more from Allah grin and acknowledging and remembrance of Allah.

{So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me} (Al-Baqarah 2 : 152)

Apologies for the essay blush I have learned a lot from writing this myself thanks

peacefuloptimist Fri 14-Feb-14 05:47:27

Wow some really great responses here to that question. Ive learned a lot too Defuse from yours and fuzzy's responses. Let me put my two cents in too. grin

I think worship is about strengthening your own personal relationship with God.

Now again I would re-iterate what fuzzy and Defuse said which is that God doesn't need our worship. In a hadith qudsi God says

"If all of you, were to worship like the most righteous amongst you, it would not increase the dominion of Allah in any way shape or form."
Our worship doesn't benefit God, but it benefits us.

As muslims we believe that this Earth we live in is not our permanent home but instead we are here for a short time to be tested and then we return to our permanent home in Paradise with God.

What God is testing us for is to see what we will do with this life He has given us and the unique gifts He has blessed us with. Are we going to use it to draw closer to God or are we going to use it to distance ourselves further away from God.

Worship has been established, fundamentally for the spiritual growth of human beings. When we worship God we are remembering Him. In the Quran God says

"Establish the prayer for My remembrance."

By remembering God often our consciousness or awareness of Him grows and that has an impact on our actions, which should hopefully be to cause us to choose to be more kind, charitable, honest, trustworthy, compassionate, just, considerate etc. If you know someone who has authority over you is watching you, that normally causes us to be more aware and careful of our actions.

Through our remembrance of God (via worship) spiritual growth takes place and that spiritual growth strengthens our personal relationship with God so that when we dieand return to God we are closer to Him.

I hope that makes sense.

peacefuloptimist Fri 14-Feb-14 07:13:06

Just wanted to add that some people may be confused as to why we would want to be closer to God especially if you come from an atheist viewpoint. Well I would compare it to asking why do you want to be close to your children, or your parents, or your husband, siblings or friends? What I am getting at is that it is part of human nature to seek closeness to those around us for different reasons but generally because it gives us comfort. In the same way drawing closer to God and having a close relationship with God also gives us comfort but more so then what you would get from a relationship with a human as God knows us and understands us more than anyone else even more than we know ourselves.

crescentmoon Fri 14-Feb-14 07:14:32

just doing some printing out (only have this time after fajr to prep for a job interview next week that im terrified very nervous for!). glad i caught this - thats how i feel too fuzzy, exactly like that. its interesting you started it from that view of gratitude sis peaceful, its part of the reason i started the daily gratitudes thread ages ago. i knew of the verses talking to us the reader but not the verses of the prophets. alot has been written on gratitude recently, gratitude by itself secular as well as religious, and how beneficial it is in gaining contentment and happiness for one's own mental health.

when i think of that verse 'if you can count' i dont even think of starting with breaths, or heartbeats subhanallah - even blinking is one of those physical constant things i dont consider. we dont realise what a blessing that is to have so much going on within ourselves that don't need us to consciously order or think out. instead i usually start my gratitudes from my organs onwards.... 'thank you for my liver, my lungs, my heart, my brain, ....'!
theres this really interesting fact about how the sujood position in the ritual prayer, which is the forehead, hands, knees on the floor position. that physical position itself in yoga is said to be a really beneficial in relieving stress and anxiety, along with the physical positionsthemselves even without the prayers.
then the ablutions. on the outside, you might think, why is their God so exacting, why should He care if hands are clean, mouth is rinsed, ears are washed (behind as well as inside!), feet... etc. but its for our benefit, by these and other ritual cleansing rules - ghusl, bath every friday, one hand for eating one hand for the toilet are the common ones - were an early attempt by the prophet (pbuh) to spread a wide range of public health measures to a wide range of people. on a population level, not just an individual level, those who in past times would not have understood talk of germs and microbes and how disease spreads, instead it was, 'this is my sunnah and what our God requires so follow it'. is it of benefit to me now in the 21st century? yes because its like a mini shower 5 times a day (or three if i can stretch my wudhu long enough wink), especially the first ablution for dhuhr after catching public transport in the morning!

same with the times of the prayers, and the direction of the prayers. the rule is that they must be at certain times of the day, and in the direction of Mecca. these and other religious requirements - the belief that God was so exacting that the minute and degree of direction would be considered in the acceptance of the ritual prayers...-are what started the golden age of science in the muslim world, which began within 100 years of the death of Muhammad (pbuh) and lasted for 600 years. (really good documentary that goes into that by Jim Al Khalili, who was 2013 President of the British Humanist Association, here).

crescentmoon Fri 14-Feb-14 07:54:55

sometimes muslims take more notice of the ritual cleanliness rules than other rules in the religion - (sometimes its quite amusing to the degree!). alot of muslim women dont wear nail polish or false nails because it doesnt fulfill the requirement that water must touch the nails during ablution - not because of modesty reasons. a complete ablution is a requirement for the prayer. no complete ablution, no prayer. and we would/may think, why should/would it be so specific, why would God be so petty? shouldn't He just be satisfied that we just make the effort to pray not just the other stuff? but is it for His Benefit or for our benefit? sometimes we understand our religion and get the wisdom of it in other places, for healthcare workers its normal not to wear it for these reasons www.medscape.com/viewarticle/547793. would we avoid it if it wasnt for wudhu? probably not! as with lots of other prohibited things - usury, alcohol, the lottery - that by ourselves we may just shrug our shoulders and say 'its worth the risk'.

(though there is that polish company who came out with that breathable nail polish last year that now means lots its not just something we wear during our period when we dont have to pray!)

same with the reason alot of sisters avoid false hair or eyelashes too! if it wasnt a wudhu/ablution requirement that water must reach the eye lashes, that water must touch the head - that reaches deep down into the core of us more than 'hijab rules' or 'modesty rules'.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 14-Feb-14 11:25:44

This has reminded me of one of my (other) favourite duas from the Quran.

رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقْتَ هَذا بَاطِلاً سُبْحَانَكَ فَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
(191:3)

(transliteration) Rabbana ma khalaqta hadha batila Subhanaka faqina 'adhaban-Naar'

O’ Lord! Thou hast not created (all) this in vain! Glory be to Thee! Save us then from the torment of the (hell) fire

CuriousGeorginah Fri 14-Feb-14 13:18:06

Thanks for your considered and detailed responses. You've given me a lot to think about.

crescentmoon Sat 15-Feb-14 09:07:58

your welcome dear georgina.

i always think fuzzy, that if we believed as the Christians do that everyone goes to heaven automatically with only belief, no actions to be accounted for, no obligatory practise, then i really wouldnt bother with religion at all - its knowing The Garden is something to work for that keeps me going. paradoxically though, belief in hell inspires more economic trust between people researchers found:

www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2009/11/15/the_curious_economic_effects_of_religion/

the whole islamic finance industry is more based on the prohibition of usury (jahannam) rather than the reward for avoiding it (jannah). the article doesnt even go into the Hawalas and ROSCAS that many muslims use between themselves. which are also entirely trust based, relying on again, that vision of a exacting Creator who 'for whomever does an atom's weight of good shall see it, and for whomever does an atom's weight of evil will see it' (99:7-8). trust based on mutually knowing and believing that the Garden is inaccessible to one who has debt on himself based on the hadith of the prophet (pbuh) (linked to on that page).

i once sat on a fiqh class on wudhu and there was a lesson on how clean water must be for ablution. really long and boring, about cubits and different hadith on purity/impurity, whats the minimum of the latter to render water unusable for wudhu etc. and then lesson proceeded to just the rules of wudhu, much more detailed than learning about it as a child during madressah classes.
and it was loong, couldnt believe a class on wudhu would have so much to it. but i realised that in places where there were or still are outbreaks of dysentery, cholera, typhoid, cholera, many of the sunnah practises concerning cleanliness: left hand toilet, right hand food, washing after toilet, constant handwashing through the day during wudhu, cateogries of pure/impure water, angels dont enter unclean places etc, are really very effective in preventing/reducing the spread of disease. so its for our collective benefit again.

i got the wisdom of it, but how incomprehensible all these rules were to the desert 7th century Arabs who were just a few levels above scrabbling about in the dust! they werent like the jews with the laws and dietary rules so it was all new to them and the other non arabs islam spread to as well who also went onto follow these rules of the prophets. whereas, with the religion of Sayidna Isa (as), they decided to not have those daily life and practise laws to make it easier for gentiles to take up the religion.

crescentmoon Sat 15-Feb-14 20:34:19

argh DEFUSE, so sorry i thought that lovely post on gratitude Thu 13-Feb-14 23:11:47was by peaceful, i just read it over again now sis! it was so nice i came back to read it again and realised! subhanallah so well written and it got me really thinking, if i said hamd and shukr for breathing - we dont know what it is until we see someone stuck on a machine having their lungs inflated by it, or heartbeats, then what time would we have left for other things? jazakhallah for that defuse it gave me a different way of thinking about ibadah.

defuse Sat 15-Feb-14 23:22:28

Salaam all.

crescent sis, it doesnt matter who wrote it, i dont deserve any credit fot it. the verses that i use are not generally something i have too much in depth knowledge of - i may have vague recollection of some verses and hadith and then i google them to get the proper word for word ayah or hadith. Thats what i did with this topic and i found the article on gratitude of prophets which i found so interesting that i posted those ayahs.

Speaking of gratitude, it has reminded me of the virtues of patience - something i really really need to work on personally! And that has reminded me f the patience of Ayub a.s

A truly inspirational story.

peacefuloptimist Sun 16-Feb-14 22:18:24

Salams

Im glad that we got that cleared up crescent. Defuse I promise I wasn't taking credit for your comment but just didn't find time to post to correct the mix up blush

I find it fascinating how we all look at worship in a different way. Its reminds me of the concept of worshipping God with love, hope and fear which we are taught to do as muslims.

"Call upon Him with fear and hope." [Al-Qur'an 7:56]

^Anas reported that the Prophet peace be upon him entered upon a young boy who was dying. The Prophet PBUH asked, "How are you?" The boy replied, "O Messenger of Allah, I am in between hoping in Allah and fearing for my sins." The Prophet PBUH said, "The like of these two qualities do not unite in the heart of a servant except that Allah gives him what he hopes for and protects him from what he feared."

In Islam, no worship is considered complete without the presence of all three qualities: love of Allah, hope in His Mercy and fear of His Punishment. Its almost as if we are manifesting different aspects of this in our descriptions of worship with Crescent veering towards the fear side and defuse more of the feeling of hope. I read a beautiful description of this once by the famous scholar Ibn ul Qayyim who said:

'“The heart, on its journey to God, is like a bird: love is its head, and fear and hope are its wings. When the head and wings are sound, the bird flies gracefully. If the head is cut, the bird dies. If the bird loses one of its wings, it then becomes a target for every hunter or predator.”

It emphasise the importance of keeping these three feelings balanced in your heart. If your fear is too great then you tend to despair in the Mercy of God and that may cause you to be very hard on yourself, going to extremes or conversely cause you to leave the religion (because what chance have you got). On the other hand if your hope is much greater then your fear then this causes you to become careless about committing sins. I know someone like this who horribly abuses others but then says that God will forgive them because they are at a good person at heart and there are worse people out there.

I always thought it was better to have more fear but I read this poem by Fudayl Ibn Iyaad (died 187 AH) who said:

"The love is better than the fear.

The fear checks us from sinning,

and the love makes us do what is prescribed with an open heart."

I love how in the Quran whenever you read a verse about punishment it is immediately followed up with one about mercy e.g.

"So whosoever does good equal to the weight of an atom, shall see it. And whosoever does evil equal to the weight of an atom shall see it." [Al-Qur'an 99:7-8]

I think this is why muslims have less problems dealing with the concept of suffering. If you believe God is only love it can seem contradictory and difficult to accept how a loving god can allow suffering. When I was doing my A levels we studied the poem [http://www.daypoems.net/poems/441.html 'The Tiger] by William Blake where he writes 'Did He who made the lamb make thee?'. I remember thinking it was so strange that this was presented as a contradiction. However if you have a more multi-faceted view of God it can be easier to accept that love and pain are not mutually exclusive. Found this lovely poem that illustrates that.

Pain by Kahlil Gibran

And a woman spoke, saying, Tell us of Pain.
And he said: Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.
Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy;
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.

And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief. Much of your pain is self-chosen,
It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.
Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquility:
For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen.

peacefuloptimist Sun 16-Feb-14 22:31:10

'The Tiger' My link didn't work. Gosh Im half asleep and rambling. blush

I have been thinking about something recently and wanted to ask you all. How do you think becoming a mother and getting married has effected your worship and/or emaan? I was weighing up overall whether I had become stronger or weaker as a result and I couldn't come up with a decisive answer. Im much better about sticking to the fundamentals now i.e. prayers on time, mainly due to the influence of DH who is really conscientious about these things and also always say my morning duas since I have had ds especially when going out with him, as a protection, and tend not to time waste as much as I did before. However I hardly ever go to islamic classes anymore which used to be a big emaan booster for me in the past and cant seem to find time to memorise Quran as I was able to when single and feel as if Im in a bit of a rut. Anyone else experienced similar or have a different experience?

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 17-Feb-14 08:58:23

Salaam everyone

Nice to see some new people, welcome to the tea room smile.

Peaceful I'm so very sorry for your loss thanks.

That's an interesting question peaceful, I can't answer it fully as I had children before I reverted, but I can definitely give you my thoughts on my own situation.

My imaan has definitely been effected by the different stages of motherhood, and within my marriage. At the moment it's definitely on the rise.

I've been making a real effort recently to teach my dd's by example, not only in prayer but in the way I present myself as a person.

I find my imaan dips when I'm going through a bad patch with the dc's, dd1 had problems at school recently so I was putting all my efforts into sorting that, then ds went through an awful sleep patch recently so I was literally just existing in the day. I need to better how I integrate things like this, as I know myself when my imaan is high everything just seems so much easier!

I won't go into my marriage, I don't have the energy for it, but I'll just say how hard it is to be married to someone who's not fully practising. Yes he prays fajr every morning but his tongue and anger is vile at times. I'm going to fix my own faults before trying to fix his although I fear he is now a lost cause. When he was being particularly nasty I used to be nasty back, now I do my best to ignore him and I now take myself off and read some hadith or a translation of the quran. I refuse to be lowered to his standards now. It's so hard though!

I'd be interested to hear about how those of you who were 'born muslim' have been effected by motherhood and marriage. I often dream of having a week of no children or husband so I can pray and read all day!

fuzzywuzzy Mon 17-Feb-14 10:33:43

I've been bought up in a 'religious' household. Mostly my mum practiced mixed up with traditional practices, so I grew up not knowing much in the way of fiqh outside of immediate fard requirements.

But we had stacks of books and I loved reading.

I think I consciously came into Islam during my marriage, I'd spent my life with Islam being in soft focus in the background of everything, then when I was married it started slowly coming into focus.

First it took me forever to conceive, ex of course blamed me and I had to face the gamut of tests as he point blank refused insisting he was fine. I remember vividly being booked in to see a consultant (male) and making dua to Allah that if it wasn't written for me to have children for Allah to remove the yearning from me that I would not have to unnecessary uncover my awrah as Id' spent my lifetime covered and I find medical procedure so so so invasive. After seven years on the day I was meant to have my first consultation about fertility I found myself having my dating scan instead.

Then right before my marriage ended and I couldn't take anymore, I actually prayed salat ul hajjat the prayer of need and for the only time my life I prayed for death, I prayed that my little baby have a better mother than me and she be loved and protected and never feel my loss. The very next morning ex got himself arrested and I was able to start divorce proceedings.

Since then my build up of iman has been slow and steady alhumdulillah, I've looked for and found prayers for ease, I have tried to build up my fard so it is steadfast and built on that by adding supererogatory worship. I do dhikr a lot I keep prayer beads in my abaya pocket so I automatically start doing dhikr when my hands touch the beads when out and about.

When I can't sleep I watch lectures on YouTube or pray salat ul tahajjud.

And slowly as my knowledge has increased Alhumdulillah my family has changed too, my mum has started increasing her knowledge so we have a lot less of the non Islamic stuff happening at home, one of my sisters has started observing niqab altho her husband is utterly against it so they've compromised where she wears the niqab when he's away from home. I've never said or done anything to encourage or discourage their practice or behaviour.

For me the change has been very gradual it's almost seven years of small changes, and they've been such that it's become part of me as a person so I hope I will not stop no matter where I am in life.

It affects everything, my girls are used to making duas for what they want and need, and we have a rule in our house if we want barakah and suqoon we do not fight and argue.

It's part of me as a parent, if I learn anything new I tell my girls, I told my girls about the dhikr angels, there are angels who's sole purpose is to seek out those doing dhikr and they stay with them till the dhikr ends. If we're walking to school in the morning and my girls get too chatty or argumentative I remind them of the dhikr angels and they immediately start doing dhikr (blissful silence for at least thirty seconds at a stretch). My eldest is hoping to see an angel (or a bunch of them) I think!

peacefuloptimist Mon 17-Feb-14 20:37:33

What a lovely, heart-lifting post fuzzy. Jazakhallah for sharing. I pray Allah SWT increases you and your children in your emaan and makes you steadfast on the deen. Ameen.

Thank you too Lost for your post. I really enjoyed both yours and fuzzy's replies that I had to read them twice grin. I pray Allah helps all of us to be good mothers and role models to our children.

I don't have time now to post a proper response but will think on it first and post when I can.

crescentmoon Tue 18-Feb-14 10:20:32

jazakhallah khair dear fuzzy for your last beautiful post, i felt very moved by it. i always love to read how you are with your girls and the ideas you have of making deen relevant in their little lives. i get alot of ideas from that everytime i hope you always share with us.

lost, im so glad you are feeling your emaan is on the rise, i think thats the benefit of going to classes and being around other sisters. thats how i feel too, and like you this phase in my life that has involved childbearing and children has really changed my relationhip with Allah, i feel deepened it, more profound. on a different scale than in my single days where i loved going to talks and helping out at charity events and islam camps and praying at sisters-only all night qiyam ul layls. i rarely have the time for that anymore, like you sometimes i wish i could just isolate myself away from everyone: husband, children, relatives, in laws, etc. and just concentrate on my deen in seclusion.

but that isnt from the sunnah of Muhammad (pbuh), once the risalah came to him he didnt go to Cave Hira as he used to always do (to get away from the hurly burly of the city of makkah). his sunnah after islam was to be with and around people, his wasnt the way of isolation. and some of that living with people was to tolerate, and even to suffer through their hurts and disappointments. the Rasul (pbuh) dealt with the joys and disappointments of marriage, and children, and daily chores, fixing his shoes (pbuh). and bereavement, and earning and keeping a living. he dealt with rude guests, and horrible relatives/neighbours, and borrowing money and lending money, and neighbour/community disputes, and being the subject of gossip 'you have been made a fool of muhammad! xxx said that he said that she said that they saw your wife with xxx'. with the divorces of some of his children, and the marital problems in others: when his son in law wanted to take a second wife (and he (pbuh) told Ali 'whoever hurts my daughter Fatima, hurts me'.)

in the seerah, and in the hadith, you get the nitty gritty of normal day to day life, the parts that rub you up the wrong way, and how muhammad (pbuh) dealt with it. not by the way of those who move away in a cave or a monastery to concentrate on God and live out his days in seclusion. and alhamdullillah for that because even if i say i wish i could do that, the reality is, i wouldnt be able to hack it after awhile, and neither could many people do that, we're social creatures! instead its about how to bring God consciousness in our daily lives and dealings with people.

crescentmoon Tue 18-Feb-14 11:57:19

another thing i take from the seerah, is how, if one has reached their capacity, you don't have to tolerate oppression on yourself, or stick around until your spirit is depleted and emaan sunk to the level you could then be oppressing others. it is not craven, or cowardly to say, i cant take it and im not able to change this so im retreating from this, or walking/ moving away from it. the Quran makes it as if its almost obligatory to do so if you find yourself in a weak situation : the famous 'wasn't God's earth wide enough?' verse 4:97

in the story of the early muslims they had situations when they were driven out of their homes because of zulm. there were those who remained in makkah dealing with the oppression of the Quraysh and there were those who took themselves and their children and migrated to Abbysinnia to practise their religion there. and sought asylum and the help of King Najashi against their people who hunted them down to hurt them. Muhammad (pbuh) himself later also migrated to Madinah to leave the persecution in Makkah.

marriage is, complicated. in this phase of my life, lol, let me say on this day, im feeling 'subhanallah for the wonderful man you gave me'. there are also days when i am so pissed off and im raising my hands up saying 'was i his worldly reward Lord God or is he to be my punishment in this life?'. im sure iv given my husband cause to ask God that himself too. wink i could give you ayahs and hadith about how a man has to treat his wife with love, and the least of that is respect and dignity. iv posted them in the other threads, just to know for ourselves, even if it doesnt translate to seeing it in our lives. but with what language do yo speak to someone who isnt interested in such hadith and quran. sis lost i had to find a different language with my husband also for different reasons, not what you posted uptop. sometimes, being pious and 'leave arguing the angels will answer for you' is good. and sometimes, it doesnt help your bargaining power or position in the marriage overall. and thats a detriment to your lovely dc too, not just yourself. so, no invoking of the D word yet, but the situation is untenable, you can say your ruh is in the clouds but your body is firmly tethered down here. you may say my nafs needs to be broken but we do that for our own selves not other people break us. let it percolate around your head for abit but think about how your going to get the upper hand with DH, rather than him thinking its ok to give out at you whenever he feels bad and you will just take it. but its beneath the dignity of yourself or any other human being to put up with that shit.

as for fear, love and hope, i really appreciated that reminder peaceful. i try to keep all in balance, be that bird that flies evenly. but interestingly, sometimes when i see horrible things happening, in syria, in CAR right now, in egypt, saudi, i dont think 'don't they love God' but rather 'don't they fear God?'. because isnt that the prayer we make for ourselves and children, that we do not have over us people who do not fear Allah.

defuse Wed 19-Feb-14 23:35:43

Salaam all.

peaceful, i feel like i am stuck in a rut. Like others,i used to attend study circles, volunteer and be quite active. Then i got married and had kids and it all changed. Before DH and DCs, i used to be out at 7pm attending lectures, circles etc. Now, come 7pm i am fighting to get the kids to bed so that i can collapse onto the sofa and recharge my batteries until bed time!

Even when i do attend the odd circle now, my mind seems to be elsewhere, worrying if DCs are ok at home!!

Speaking of fear, love and hope....i am very afraid and ashamed of my shortcomings - therefore pin all my hopes on the mercy of Allah - for i am painfully aware that my actions will not allow me into heaven - so I have no choice but to hope for the mercy of Allah. Though, i mustn't let hope in His mercy make me complacent and neglectful of my responsibilities and worship - our sole reason for existence. I need to do more than the bare minimum that i currently do!

peacefuloptimist Thu 20-Feb-14 12:57:27

Salams all

Crescent your post was really moving too. Especially about how the Prophet Muhammed PBUH lived a normal life with family, friends, relatives and all the headache that entails. It reminds me of this hadith

“The believer who mixes with the people and endures their annoyances is better than the one who does not mix with them and does not endure their annoyances.”

grin The wording always makes me smile. Annoyances is right. hmm Defuse Im in the same camp as you. Too much hope, I need to inject a bit more fear in to myself and stop making excuses for my shortcomings.

As for how marriage effects worship. Well I think its really up and down isnt it? Sometimes its a help and other times a hindrance. When I first got married I felt like my fard definitely improved. I did all my prayers on time, started sunnah prayers, reading and fasting. Being pregnant and then having ds also made me more conscientious about saying my morning duas and reading Quran daily. It was all to do with feeling grateful towards Allah SWT for His blessings.

However, for me before marriage my happy place was being in a class or seminar learning about the deen in the company of other muslims. Getting married made that more difficult. The problem is whilst I am more of a social worshipper grin DH is more of a solitary one. I say that but he goes to the masjid regularly so does get interaction with other muslims but he is perfectly happy to sit and read or listen to a lecture online and learn that way. I find this really unfulfilling and definitely not as beneficial as learning with a group where you have the other students and teacher to help you stay motivated. Especially since moving to a new area which is made up of primarily 'cultural' muslims I have found it hard to get that buzz/emaan boost from lectures as there just simply isn't that much going on. Having ds has made it more difficult as well in that whilst I could just take off and leave dh for the weekend to go to lectures ds is a responsibility that I cant not ignore or pass to someone else. So for me its about finding new ways to increase my emaan and increase knowledge and not rely on the methods I used in my single days.

A dilemma I am having right now is that I am going on umrah to Makkah and Medina with dh and whilst I would prefer to leave ds with grandparents dh wants him along. I know I will not be able to concentrate on my worship and get the full spiritual experience if I am worried about keeping an eye on ds and his coming along is going to be a potential source of tension between me and dh over who is watching him and when. So Im not keen but dh makes me feel like I am a bad mother for not wanting to bring him with us on 'holiday'. Anyway I know I am being whiny. What a first world problem eh! What do you think? Take him or leave him. He is 18 months.

peacefuloptimist Thu 20-Feb-14 17:58:32

Forgot to say I also often have that fantasy of getting away for a week Lost. Me and my sister are always planning a getaway to Turkey for a husband free (feel too guilty to leave kids) week. Maybe we should plan a fantasy tearoom meet up there. Sunshine, culture, Islamic history, beautiful mosques and great food. We could even try to rope Cote in to be a translator/tour guide. grin

fuzzywuzzy Thu 20-Feb-14 18:34:34

Subhanallah don't take your 18 month old, it will be hot and crowded and you will be concentrating on the rites and rituals of umrah. Does your husband want the responsibility of taking care of you both?

Leave him with his GP's inshallah.

Take him when he's older and can benefit from the spiritual and physical experience.

Having said that many people bring babies and it's fine everyone loves little kids. I remember years ago when I went for umrah a little toddler stood up climbed on a water cooler removed the lid and was attempting to dive head first into the zamzam therein. Me and the women around kept removing him and distracting him. His mother was oblivious altho standing very close to the child.
And when went for hajj my youngest sister kept being given gifts by the vendors free food and trinkets and even a rather expensive watch!

It's different being there. If your husband insists go and leave it to Allah, we only get to go on his invitation and if your son goes he's been invited by Allah and he will make it easy for you. Don't let it upset you sis. But umrah and hajj are no holiday.

I so want to go with my girls inshallah.

Keep us in your Duas inshallah.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 20-Feb-14 18:40:47

Also I think hope is the lynchpin of iman, especially hope in the mercy of Allah, those who lose hope lose their iman.

I think it's amazing listening to stories of the prophets how they never lose hope in the mercy and forgiveness of Allah such as Yunus (AS) calling on Allah for his forgiveness in the belly of the whale.


Prophetic Supplications for Trials
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The supplication of my brother Dhun Nun (Yunus, peace be upon him), who called on Allah while in the whale’s belly: ‘There is no deity but You. Glory be to You! Verily, I have been among the wrongdoers’ (Quran 21:87) – no Muslim person says it, for any situation whatsoever, except that Allah Most High answers his call.” [Tirmidhi]
La ilaha illa Anta, Subhanaka, inni kuntu mina z-zalimin.
لا إلهَ إلا أنتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظّالِمِيْنَ

crescentmoon Sat 22-Feb-14 00:33:29

the verse in the Quran

'...But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not.'. (2:216).

i think i only understood it when i became a mother - hate a thing but it is good for you, love a thing but it is bad for you. i thought on it when taking my kids for their infant vaccinations and when theyd cry through it, even had fevers afterwards sometimes. getting them to school even on days they desperately hate to go, so they get an education, waking them up to brush their teeth when they fall asleep, so their teeth are clean (and dont need root canals like mine!), things they might not enjoy/ see the point in, but we do and act on to guide/ protect them but they hate/dislike it. even when theyre too young to make sense of the concepts. to God we are just like infants in our wanting instant graitification or instant comfort. the scale humans think on, and Allah, isnt even like an adult and a baby, but its the closest.

i used to wonder 'why Allah? i made dua and You didnt answer'. dont our kids wonder the same when we dont give them what they want straight away? when we pick them up just before they grab, reach, climb over somewhere or something, we know its not good for them so we keep it from them for their benefit, because it might be dangerous and their minds are too immature to understand cause and effect. or too immature to weigh risk properly. but also, i cant wrap them up in cotton wool completely because they have to learn those skills themselves eventually, or worst case they can put themselves into danger and those around them. i realised thats actually me with Allah.

mine would be over the moon if i let them eat chocolate and crisps when they liked, sleep when they liked, play into the night as long as they wanted, got them whatever toy they saw etc. if i allow them everything in my power to be able to bestow for them, then i actually do them a disservice - it wouldnt be good for their health, concentration etc. even if it would please them at that moment or for a few moments. id be their best friend, but being a parent isnt about being their best friend/the most popular parent! being a loving mother isnt letting them gorge themselves, or avoid vegetables, or buying them every single toy they see in the shops. i understood His names Al Wadud, and Ar Rahman, and Al Lateef, in motherhood, not that they were limited with the other attributes, but that as the role of a mother is multifaceted, so can those names be.

i dont give them whatever they want when they want because they will grow up into adults with no boundaries and not respecting the rights of others - feeling that their will and desire should usurp everyone elses. that type of parenting ruined some individuals i grew up with who became spoilt by getting whatever they wanted. because parents and relatives enabled them to act as they wished from childhood - so they never developed self discipline, and are very brittle - not resilient, not able to deal with disappointment well, or be patient with others, or have sympathy for others over their own interests. AND theyre a pain in the neck because they dont know how to persevere/concentrate for what they want and work for it expecting to win everything without effort. i resolved the next generation on my side are not going to be like that! but as a child gosh, id envy them how their parents used to rush to fulfill their wishes compared to mine. but, now as an adult, i see that was to their detriment. its in parenting i also understood the hadith 'Whenever Allah wants good for someone, He tries him with some hardship'.

crescentmoon Sat 22-Feb-14 10:07:09

sorry, from last sentence..

its in parenting i also understood the hadith 'Whenever Allah wants good for someone, He tries him with some hardship'. i could take over doing their maths homework (as with ds1), make and write out the sentences for the story dd needs to write, do ds2's letters homework (he gets homework though he is at nursery! proper sheets to practise writing!). but its in their struggling to do it themselves that it will benefit them in the long run.

Rumi put it in a different way, (iv posted it before in the other thread!):

""""It is pain that guides a man in every enterprise. Until there is an ache within him, a passion and a yearning for that thing arising within him, he will never strive to attain it. Without pain that thing remains for him unprocurable, whether it be success in this world or salvation in the next, whether he aims at being a merchant or a king, a scientist or an astronomer. it was not until the pains of parturition manifested in her that Mary made for the tree:

‘And the birthpangs surprised her by the trunk of the palm-tree’ (Quran 19:23)

Those pangs brought her to the tree, and the tree which was withered became fruitful.

The body is like Mary. Every one of us has a Jesus within him, but until the pangs manifest in us our Jesus is not born. If the pangs never come, then Jesus rejoins his origin by the same secret path by which he came, leaving us bereft and without portion of him.

‘The soul within you is needy, the flesh without is well fed:
The devil gorges to spewing, Jamshid lacks even for bread.
See now to the cure of your soul while Jesus is yet on earth;
When Jesus returns to heaven all hope of your cure will have fled’""""

(Taken from Mawlana Rumi's 'Fihi Ma Fihi', translated as 'Discourses' by A J Arberry)

just wanted to say if the issue with posting on the tearoom with lurkers is that you'd like to be able to post on other threads without people knowing you are muslim... (no judgement there, sometimes i feel it has an effect on perceptions and responses to one's posts as well.) why not have two screennames? one for posting here on the tearoom about how you see muslim life and faith, and another screenname for your posts in non religious threads in back to work/pregnancy/chat etc? i use the same crescentmoon for all of my posts but im considering that option myself, or a general name change anyway! salams

defuse Sun 23-Feb-14 23:10:00

Salaam everyone....

Completely off topic..... Interested to know what you all think of life insurance...legit or not? I found an opinion saying legit.....but had to really dig for it.....consensus seems to be not legit.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 24-Feb-14 08:42:58

As far as I'm aware insurance is not permitted, you will need to get a fatwa specific to your own position tho.

All I know is that its not permitted as it has interest (usury) and is likened to gambling, ie you're expecting a high payout based on chance not on your own input or hardwork.

I may be wrong. speak to a scholar, contact East London Masjid or Central London Masjid or your nearest one.

crescentmoon Mon 24-Feb-14 09:01:50

i was just reading about this last week as well defuse. apparently there is a sharia compliant type of insurance called takaful, but i dont know whether it is available here in the UK.

lots of fatawa here on conventional insurance:

alqalam.org.uk/category/fatawa/insurance-fatwa/

(its a good website for other financial religious questions)

crescentmoon Mon 24-Feb-14 09:02:12

one of them:

alqalam.org.uk/fatawa/insurance-fatwa/is-conventional-insurance-permitted-when-required-by-law/

Is conventional insurance permitted when required by law?
February 4, 2014
Q: Is conventional insurance permitted when required by law?

الجواب حامدًا و مصليًا و منه الصدق و الصواب

A: If the law of a country requires its citizens to take out insurance, such as in the case of car-insurance within the law of England and Wales, one should first seek to take out a policy that is compliant with Sharīʿah principles. If no such policy is available then one may resort to conventional insurance as a matter of dispensation to the extent that the requirements of the law are met.

And Allah knows best.

Mufti Mohammed Zubair Butt
Al-Qalam Sharī‘ah Panel

i know some who have home insurance - iv often wondered if its something obligatory as part of their mortgage as people have with car insurance? but iv not met any muslims who have life insurance.

crescentmoon Tue 25-Feb-14 08:26:04

blush i keep closing the tearoom defuse, sorry love. im going offline for awhile - im feeling too much news and media overload and just want to go 'hear no evil, see no evil' for awhile. hope that gives your thread a chance to get going again instead of stuttering to a stop each time i post lately! il definitely come by - theres no better tea anywhere else on mumsnet and i reckon i wont be able to go more than five pages without one! wink

fatiha please for me and my family. thanks xxxxxxxx

fuzzywuzzy Tue 25-Feb-14 13:45:08

sis Crescent it's not you, this thread is very slow moving so barely ever in active convos, I tend to check active convos not individual boards and it tends to fall out of threads I'm on as well so I've put it on my watch list to find it more easily. It's certainly not you.

I've learend so much from you, I never knew there was halal insurance.

LittleTulip Fri 28-Feb-14 23:21:28

Good evening ladies,

I just wanted to pop in and say assalamoalaikum! I haven't read any of this chat for quite a few weeks now so apologies for not posting. The main reason is that I've been struggling with life in general. My obsession with the conception forum was getting out of hand and I was getting to the point where everything baby/child related was upsetting me (fancy being on mumsnet! hmm. I know it's still earlyish days since losing my pfb, but I guess I was hoping I would be pregnant with number two now and you can guess of course it hasn't!

Anyhow I am back at work and I have more routine in my life which alhamdollilah I am ever so grateful for. And I feel so blessed, I am going to umrah in a few weeks which is really keeping me going at the moment. Feel free to PM about specific duaa's if you want...

Also many congratulations goshanne and sorry for your loss peaceful. I haven't read any replies for a while so apologies if I've missed something, I will eventually read and reply I'm sure.

I actually do think of you ladies quite often x

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sun 02-Mar-14 10:58:29

Salaam everyone

I've been a bit caught up in real life recently, that and my new steam mop that has changed my life grin.

Crescent, don't disappear, you're one of the most highly thought of sisters on this thread and I love reading your posts, they're very thought invoking. I'll read Fatiha for you and your lovely family thanks.

Defuse I never even thought about life insurance being non compliant with Islam, thank you for bringing it to my attention. It was one of those things I've been thinking of taking out for a few years but now I know better.

Nice to see you again LittleTulip. Sorry to hear that, please don't give up hope, it'll happen one day inshallah. Have you been on umrah before or is it your first time? I know lots of people who have been in the last few weeks, some who are there now and some who are going in the next few weeks. It really makes me want to go but financially it's just not possible at the moment.

It's nice catching up, hopefully I'll be round a bit more this week.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 03-Mar-14 14:43:01

I just did this quiz, I got 10/14 it's very interesting the different way Christians & Jewish women observe hijab and even veiling.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 03-Mar-14 18:07:05

That's good fuzzy, I got 7/14 confused. I'm going to pass it on and see what my friends get.

Crescent, going to back to what you mentioned last week I think it was, I've always wondered whether any of you name change for chat or somewhere else. I've been tempted a few times but I can see myself getting easily confused so think I'll just stay as I am. I'm always reading chat though and sometimes I venture over to parenting, AIBU and a few others.

defuse Mon 03-Mar-14 19:55:06

Well, i only got 6/14! blush
I was convinced the niqabis were muslims - obviously not!

I do wonder if UK has a shariah compliant life insurance - dont think there is one though.

Love you all.

crescentmoon Thu 06-Mar-14 06:31:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

crescentmoon Thu 06-Mar-14 06:41:55
TheDietStartsTomorrow Thu 06-Mar-14 07:10:59

Assalamualaykum all. Just popping in and waving to you all. I'm not a regular poster here but it's lovey to find like minded sisters on my set too.

peacefuloptimist taking your DS to umrah depends on what he's like and what your temperament is like too. For many, it's just too much of a distraction but if your DS is not overly boisterous, will hold your hand and does not get overly hyper, it's not too bad. You also need to be a bit laid back and let him run around a little and be prepared to miss going to Haram if he's sleeping. It doesn't mean your reward is reduced in the slightest as women are excused from attending the congregation prayers, especially so if they have young children to attend to.

I've been for umrah numerous times alhamdulillah and I've always taken my DC with me. They're older now but I've taken toddlers and even breastfeeding children in the past so I'm very comfortable with having them there. They know their limits, always stay close and I've also adjusted to doing things in a certain way with them. I hardly ever go for zuhar salah and sometimes offer fajr in the hotel if any of them are sleeping. I have fixed times for tawaf where DH looks after the little ones and we sit in women's sections near him so the DC can run inbetween both sections, sometimes siting with him and sometimes with me. We have a good system and I don't get stressed by having the kids around me when I'm engaged in ibadah so it works well. Umrah is easy alhamdulillah, so you won't find it tiring to have him around you. I even took four of my DC to hajj with me when I was 5-6 months pregnant and although alhamdulillah, Allah facilitated everything for us with the utmost ease and comfort for which I am eternally grateful, I would be wary about recommending other to take them because they may not have the same experience as us. Make istikhara of two rakahs and inshallah Allah will open up your mind to a decision that's best for you all.

Scrolling up and checking your date of posting... your probably already left or made a decision at least so this is a bit late. I pray Allah accepts your umrah and grants us all an opportunity to visit and revisit His Beloved (SAW).

TheDietStartsTomorrow Thu 06-Mar-14 07:25:46

I also just wanted to add for those finding it difficult to balance roles with their ibadah that being a mother, a wife and a daughter is ibadah in itself. One of the best things about bring a Muslim is that we are rewarded for all our actions if we carry them out with the correct intention. The famous Hadith of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) that actions are according to intentions is explained by the commentators of Hadith that even every day monotonous acts can be converted to acts of worship if they are carried out with the correct intention. For example, when washing clothes makes intention that you are doing the laundry to purify clothes for prayer, to tidy and smarten your appearance as advised by Allah and his Messenger and to provide the family with clothing to cover their awrah. When cooking make intention that you are cooking to providing halal options for your family to partake of, to provide food that offers nourishment and strength to the body for ibadah and to create happiness for your family. Then these acts will also help you come closer to Allah and enable you to find contentment in your different roles in life.

Besides that, one must always make time for primary ibadah such as Quran recitation, nawafil and regular tasbeehat. It's a matter of self discipline and forming a routine so it's a regular part of your day despite the distractions that family life brings. Allah says that 'Indeed your wealth and your children are a test'. They can be a source of distraction from Allah and it's up to us to recognise that and put in place measures that prevent them from being a trial and instead, make them a source of attaining further closeness to Allah and reward.

crescentmoon Thu 06-Mar-14 18:35:00

really lovely posts diet, jazakhallah khair and I hope I get to read your beautiful reminders regularly. there was a pile of laundry the size of mount Everest in my home this past week but after reading your post I rechecked my intention and decided (solemnly holds up index finger of right hand) for the sake of God and His prophet (pbuh) wink I would plough through it. and i did it finally alhamdullillah.

another interesting article (abit older than the earlier one) about Islamic branding and 'beyond sharia compliance.' (not just about 'halal meat' or 'halal money'). just on this tangent thinking on the life insurance topic defuse thought of

www.wpp.com/wpp/marketing/branding/islamic-branding/

I certainly need to make more time for primary ibadah diet - especially quran recitation and reading. I used to be very regular on adhkar and awrad either end of my day but have lost the habit. except daily salah my only hope really is in salawat upon the prophet (pbuh), and that by prayers for peace on him (pbuh) Allah will give that to me. inshaallah.

crescentmoon Thu 06-Mar-14 19:41:58

argh check out the wording here in this article today on religious slaughter in the daily mail (in the blue box down near the comments)

www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2574456/Stop-slashing-animals-throats-ritual-slaughters-halal-kosher-meat-says-new-leader-Britains-vets.html

HALAL

"Halal slaughtering involves cutting through the large arteries in the neck with one swipe of a blade, while a Muslim butcher recites a religious verse."
"All blood is then drained away since the consumption of blood is forbidden under Islamic law."
"Under Islamic law, an animal must be slaughtered by having its throat cut while it is conscious."

whereas, describing kosher slaughter:

KOSHER

"Before slaughtering, the animal must be healthy and uninjured and a sharp knife is used to slice through the main arteries and windpipe, causing a drop in blood pressure that causes the animal to lose consciousness. Jews believe this is a way of killing that shows 'respect and compassion' as set out in Jewish law."

subhanallah, we use the same method for exactly the same reasons as in kosher slaughter, but the description of the muslim method is designed to evoke a very different response in the reader to the description of the jewish method where sharp knife, single clean cut, drop in pressure ...., for the purpose of respect and compassion etc. are all said to keep most of the ire towards the muslim way.

crescentmoon Thu 06-Mar-14 19:49:41

notice how they contrast the two explanations for the same method?

the word 'blade' is used in the halal paragraph, not knife as in kosher paragraph below , (blade more associated with=> war of course!)

the word 'swipe' (verb:hit or try to hit with a swinging blow) is used not 'slice' (to make it seem clumsily done or shallowly, not properly)

only in the muslim description do they mention a religious invocation, not in the kosher explanation, to specifically make us 'other', whereas, we worship the same God as the majority religion here.

the 'blood drained away for islamic law', this originates from OT law too, but that isn't mentioned in the kosher explanation below, again, to invoke imagery of the muslim as 'other', 'barbarian', 'bloody',

the last sentence

'animal must be conscious while having its throat cut'

- is to make it as if the purpose is so the animal suffers the most whereas in the kosher bit that requirement isn't mentioned. furthermore - the blurb there says that the single cut is to make the animal lose consciousness quickly and a 'jews believe' only, but that is why we muslims follow the halal slaughter method also - we do it for the same purpose - but in the explanation of halal slaughter only that the animal must be conscious beforehand, not 'to lose consciousness after'.

see how clever all of that is? just the words used, careful omissions, sly mentions, half truths, cue the comments below that halal slaughter should be banned in the UK.

whereas, actually, it is Islamic law that can accommodate stunning pre slaughter if it becomes required in UK law, whereas in kosher law it is entirely forbidden,

and no mention that already the overwhelming majority of UK halal meat IS stunned before slaughter just as conventional meat is. even the secularism society acknowledges and reports on that here:

www.secularism.org.uk/uploads/religious-slaughter-of-animals-briefing.pdf

and we could just shrug our shoulders and say 'ahh that's them all the time', except, articles like that fuel the far right in targetting and hatred of ordinary muslims. did anyone realise the violent threats to LEGOLAND Windsor for hosting that muslim family fun day this weekend have now meant the day is cancelled?

time.com/13667/legoland-cancels-muslim-fun-day/

they're refunding the 4000 tickets bought - by non muslims as well as muslims - but that's how bad islamophobia has gotten now, even taking children for a day out to a theme park during off season gets demonstrations and threats. as with the mosque bombings, very little attention given to this but its articles like above that lead to announcements like Legoland's today.

and breathe,

tea, anyone? (holds up tea pot, hand shakes)

defuse Thu 06-Mar-14 21:23:59

Salaam all.

diet a warm welcome to you - you have made some lovely points to ponder over. I do worry and pray that i pass the tests set by Allah - but can only do so by His grace.

Crescent i cant believe that Muslims only account for 5% of world GDP. I do agree that there is a massive market to be tapped into - just gotta have the know-how!

Yes, i read that article about halal/kosher being 'barbaric' - so bemused, but the DM just likes to start anti-muslim hysteria over anything - and its fans like need any excuse to start crying muzlamics! [sigh]. I did notice how the article was trying to make a distinction between the halal way compared with the kosher way. Tbh, DM readers are as much anti-semitic as they are islamophobic - its just more fashionable to be a muslim basher at the moment.

I didnt know about the legoland cancellation. Gonna go look at your link in a minute. Before i go...remember we were talking about thanking Allah Almighty but not being able to do so? Well, i came across this hadith by abu dawud:

The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: If anyone says in the morning: "O Allah! whatever favour has come to me, it comes from Thee alone Who has no partner; to Thee praise is due and thanksgiving,'! he will have expressed full thanksgiving for the day; and if anyone says the same in the evening, he will have expressed full thanksgiving for the night.

I thought that was totally amazing. I cant find the arabic version of this, so just say it in English instead.

Ok....off to read about legoland...

defuse Thu 06-Mar-14 21:38:59

Just read about legoland.... Am really annoyed that EDL have managed to get the event cancelled. They are a bunch of thugs. Am worried about the summer retreat now.

crescentmoon Fri 07-Mar-14 08:35:52

i think that article on religious slaughter was almost genius how the paper tries to sow islamophobia in its readers just by the description. and you know this because of the parts it chooses to mention and not mention in the descriptions of the two same slaughter procedures. in the halal bit it mentions 'muslim butcher', but it doesn't mention 'jewish butcher' in the kosher bit.
opening up 'theyre taking all our jobs', as well as, 'gosh even the animals are not saved from muslim barbarians'.
whereas, halal meat can be by a Jewish/ Christian butcher as long as God's name is mentioned, not just the word 'Allah', and the same process is taken.
i thought more about the 'all blood Is drained away' part, why did they mention that if not to try and make it as bloody as imagery as possible also? as if the end goal of halal slaughter is the slaughterman stands and watches the animal bleed to death.
notice how they try to make the kosher explanation more scientific and precise, 'sharp knife slices through main arteries and windpipe, causes a drop in blood pressure, so animal loses consciousness...'.

that article is a perfect example of the islamophobia that masks racism don't you think? just that purposeful difference given in the description of the two same processes. the BVA made their statement about religious slaughter in general, but the DM writer wanted to whip up islamophobia in the 'description box' by that artful explanation. racism because really the only difference is that kosher the knife is held by a white hand, whereas halal the knife is held by a brown hand. same old, same old.

its an attempt to divide and conquer because muslim and jewish groups stand together on the religious slaughter issue, as with circumcision, as with rules on autopsy and burial etc.
definitely right about the anti semitism. the Daily Mail revealed its still present a few months ago with that article on the father of Ed Miliband (leader of labour party). the one about 'jewish Marxist who hated britain'?. their islamophobia is much more flamboyant - Jolly Jihadi day out at LEGOLAND.

hope everyone is well, Happy Friday, Jummaa Mubarak.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 07-Mar-14 09:58:51

The DM are a xenophobic scaremongering rag not fit to wipe your'e arse on.. well I never!

I would only be shocked if they (or any paper actually) wrote a balanced factual article involving Muslims. I gave up on the rag years ago when they described a rape of a girl who happened to be Muslim, and they wrote something like her parents only asked her if she was OK when they found out because they were thinking about how difficult it would be to get her an arranged marriage now! They derived all this from the the girl saying she hadn't told her parents and the first they knew was when a police officer came to the house to speak to them, then they asked her if she was OK. Well goodness me parents in shock on hearing their child has been raped, presumably parents of other religions would have been utterly unmoved by it and how did they know what the parents were thinking?

fuzzywuzzy Fri 07-Mar-14 10:00:06

Anyway, Happy Jummah, please keep the Ummah and us in your duas today inshallah.

And Hadith of the day;

Anas (radhiallahu anhu) said that he heard the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) say: �Allah the Exalted said: �O son of Adam! As long as you invoke Me and plead to Me, I will forgive you whatever you have committed, and I will not make much of it. O son of Adam! If your evil deeds reach the borders of the sky, and then you ask Me for forgiveness, I will forgive you. O son of Adam! If you bring forth the earth full of errors, then you meet Me while you do not associate anything (or anyone) with Me, I will bring forth for you its full of forgiveness.� [At-Tirmidhee (Shaikh Albanee rendered it as Hasan)]

crescentmoon Fri 07-Mar-14 10:45:09

loved that dua defuse its part of the award of the wird al lateef. I did mine this morning reading your post last night.

Allāhumma mā asbaha bī min ni‘matin
aw bi ahadin min khalqiqa
fa minka
Wahdaka lā sharīka laka
falaka’l Hamdu walaka’sh shukru ‘alā dhālik
(once)
(In the evenings, recite: amsā instead of asbaha)

O Allāh! Whatever favours
I or anyone else in Your creation received this morning
are from You Alone.
You are the One and Only (God worthy of worship) without any partner.
So for You is the Praise and for You is the thanks for that.

www.iqra.net/zikr/wirdallatif.html

your so right fuzzy I don't know why I read it. DH is working nights all week so I had lots of time last night to read it and the more I looked at the language and wording the more I got mad.

I told myself stop reading the news but I broke it after a week. this thread should be a calm oasis even if the world is going to hell in a handbasket around us!

did anyone see Save the Children's video this week 'If London were Syria'. it will make you cry, subhanallah we forget Syria was a middle income country where ordinary kids did homework and had parties and went to sports lessons same as kids here. I wept the first time I watched it, put my head down and sobbed - before 3 years no Syrians imagined their country would be in civil war and their leader Assad would be gassing them and bombing them, making millions becoming refugees. life can change as quickly as that aoothoobillah.

www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/if-london-were-syria-save-the-children-releases-unsettling-video-9168988.html

if you've got your phone by you just send a quick £3 donation to Save the Children's Syria appeal by texting SYRIA to 70090.

www.savethechildren.org.uk/mobile-terms-and-conditions I just did it now so its still active even in march 2014. that's for £3

but a larger amount is better if we can do it, and this is Jumaa day and all good charity and good deeds on this day have greater merit.
www.savethechildren.org.uk/save-syria-children

your sister crescent

crescentmoon Fri 07-Mar-14 11:58:53

"this thread should be a calm oasis even if the world is going to hell in a handbasket around us"

in case you didn't get the reference, I was referring to this hadith:

"Anas (rah) reported that the Prophet (pbuh) said,
“If the Hour (the day of Resurrection) is about to be established and one of you was holding a palm shoot, let him take advantage of even one second before the Hour is established to plant it.”

(Authenticated by Al-Albani) other green hadith here

the ultimate 'keep calm and carry on' message don't you think? (though others would call it muslim fatalism!). that even if the Day of Judgement is about to begin one should finish or carry on with one's work, the prophet (pbuh) said even if it is planting a seed of a tree when you know the dunya is going to end!even if its just one second before the 'Hour' comes.
I always think of those muslims living during the time of the Mongol invasions/decimations in the Middle East, or in the lands conquered by the Europeans after the 18th century. they must have thought their world was ending - that that was their 'Hour', and that islam was about to finish in their part of the world maybe. but still, they just steadfastly carried on, and subhanallah here we are in 2014, and sometimes my mind thinks the same but, we keep calm and carry on.

defuse Fri 07-Mar-14 21:17:13

Jazakallah khair for the arabic dua crescent . I feel better saying duas in arabic, but it doesnt really matter whether it is said in whichever language, Allah wants kalbun saleem - a pure heart.

crescentmoon Sat 08-Mar-14 07:39:59

I know what you mean I also like to read duas in Arabic though English is the language I think in and speak in. we've decided after they finish the Quran to send them to Arabic classes or have an Arabic teacher come to the house to teach them conversational/formal Arabic. iv been really unmotivated lately so im enjoying the return to the morning adhkar for this prayer in particular:

Allāhumma innī a‘ūdhu bika mina’l hammi wa’l hazan
wa a‘ūdhu bika mina’l-‘ajzi wa’l kasal
wa a‘ūdhu bika minal jubni wa’l bukhl
wa a‘ūdhu bika min ghalabati’d dayn
wa qahri’r-rijāl
(once)

O Allāh! I seek refuge in You from anxiety and grief,
and I seek refuge in You from weakness and laziness,
and I seek refuge in You from cowardice and miserliness,
and I seek refuge in You from being overwhelmed by debt,
and the tyranny of men.

I feel so comforted to know that even this is covered in the Sunnah duas that Muhammad (pbuh) taught and left for us to say. that even he (pbuh) had these feelings/concerns - so that when im feeling very lazy and weak there is a specific dua for that! that its not just about what we can gain from regular prayer to Allah, but what we can lose: anxiety, grief, laziness, depression, insecurity, fear etc.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 08-Mar-14 08:52:48

Salaam sisters

I just came on to share the legoland news article but was beaten to it! I read that with utter disbelief. I get so wound up by things like that I normally avoid reading them, but as we've been to legoland quite a few times I wanted to read it. Even though the event is advertised as being a Muslim family event, the doors were also open to anyone one from any religion, it's not like non Muslim's were banned. The park is also seasonally closed at the moment and doesn't open until a week after this event would of taken place, so it wasn't closed especially. Why are the EDL able to dictate things like this?

I also saw the news with regards to banning halal meat. It's madness it really is. Subtle thing like these two events in the news really make me feel like we are under attack. I've never felt like that before but it feels like we always have to justify ourselves.

Crescent with regards to schooling issues, ours are still there but not so extreme anymore alhamdullilah. The school handled it well which I think plays a massive part in these things. I'm trying to teach dd to be confident in her skin (and her hair) which is slowly coming through. She had her hair down at school one day last week for the first time since she was 4. When I say down I mean 'out', she has a full on afro. As soon as she got into the playground my heart sank for her as one of the girls in her class came over and literally just stared at it, but dd just said 'what are you looking at?' in a quizzical way and walked off. As far as I'm aware the day was fairly uneventful and she has lots of people grabbing it (why do people think they can just grab a handful of someone's hair?) but she took it fine alhamdullilah.

Have you decided on whether you'll be changing your dc's school? I think the last you mentioned was you were looking to move them and had looked around the new school?

Fuzzy I like the idea of Hadith of the day, maybe it can be something we can start doing? Help the thread come to life again?

I don't know about anybody else but I sure am glad to see the sun starting to shine through and the weather warm up slightly. I was getting a bit bored of getting drenched everyday day on the walk to school!

crescentmoon Sat 08-Mar-14 09:06:46

I don't know if any of you caught Boris Johnson's recent article in the Telegraph that the children of muslim radicals should be taken into care. scary stuff when you realise who he and the regular readership of the Telegraph/Daily Mail et al. take as radical muslims. Quilliam Foundation's return on the £1million of gvt funding was ''A secret list prepared for a top British security official accuses peaceful Muslim groups, politicians, a television channel and a Scotland Yard unit of sharing the ideology of terrorists.'' ('turkeys voting for Christmas' I read yday and so apt to Quilliam)

you'll be shocked how many mainstream muslim organisations and individuals Quilliam reported as extremists/radicals. groups that have supported the government in counter terrorism.

heres a good article on it but I've really liked the humorous takes on Johnson's comments some people have done:

on twitter under #signsofaradicalbaby. (though scarily that's what some people will call it that, taking Dawkins line that any exposure of religion to children is child abuse):

stream.aljazeera.com/story/201403041616-0023526

and this article 'How to act british and keep your kids: Advice for Muslim Parents' is quite funny (but abit sad too, that even being a regular Mo (get it, regular Jo/regular Mo?) is so suspect instead you must fall over yourself to go the other way.)

it still might not be enough though. the Moriscos: the former muslims that converted to CHristianity during the Spanish Inquisition were denounced and tortured for being heretics/apostates just if they showed repugnance to eating pork when tested. historian Matthew Carr wrote a book on them 'Blood and Faith - the Purging of Muslim Spain'. and how in the end just for having Moor blood (being descendents of muslims) 300000 were forcibly expelled from Spain in the 17th century. really interesting, and his warning about how the rhetoric about muslims in europe today by right wing an far right groups is so similar to that in Spain during that period. (who ascribed even the defeat of the Spanish armada to the british due to the impurity of having muslims on Spanish soil.)

'a cursed and pernicious seed' - really fascinating extract from the book.

anyway lovelies, have a fab Saturday inshaallah!

crescentmoon Sat 08-Mar-14 14:16:15

sorry lost I posted my last post then went off for the morning. my eldest has been having trouble with a boy in his class who lots of other parents have complained about for being violent. but teachers have been ineffectual. im just waiting on the new school now wh only sent me an acknowledgement of my application but nothing since. in the meantime iv told ds never start a fight but don't let himself get pushed around/pushed in front of etc.
im so sad that your dd had to deal with that kind of thing and very glad the school have dealt with it appropriately. let her be proud of the skin she's in and be proud of her hair too. I really like that website www.amightygirl.com/ that someone mentioned once in FWR for resources on raising confident courageous girls. I just saw a page of books for bullying prevention and teasing: really lovely titles lost have a look....

www.amightygirl.com/mighty-girl-picks/top-books-on-bullying-prevention-for-mighty-girls

I might even get some for my own mighty girl to navigate around friendships too. she's been having 'those' friendship problems constantly since christmas- the ones where they're all friends one day next day 'we're not friends anymore'. she has a few drama queens in her class and whilst last year she was able to stand her ground this year she's struggled abit to not be affected by them. and though to me they are all so young these little girl problems are so consuming to them. recently its the Queen Bee of her class that my DD and her friends are all fed up with her bossying them around that they swap stories of outrageous things she does! whilst its cathartic to them I had to give her the talk this week about nameemah/talebearing and gheebah/backbiting - (something i thought for was for year 4/5 not now!) have any of you ever had that feeling giving your kids a talk that a lightning bolt from the sky would strike you down for hypocrisy? that talk was one such talk, i sat with my shoulders hunched waiting to duck at any moment whilst talking with her!

I have told ds1 and dd before about keeping the secrets of friends private from other friends (but not from their mother, same advice my mum told me wink!)and that it will save them both a whole heap of arguments and problems through their lives that still pull me in now! if they get that from now. but I needed to talk to dd about this in particular before it becomes a habit! subhanallah I hate being in 'he said that she said that you said that I said' situations - i told dd better to be known for not speaking other peoples business and that people say of her 'i know .... she never talks about people behind their back'. and let her take after DH who never mentions anything someone hasnt expressly told him is ok (even to me! even if its a pregnancy or a wedding which I find out from others when he's known about it for ages!! argh - another talk for another day!) whereas, i reckon the best that can be said about me is 'crescent wouldn't have said it like that'. lol.

defuse Sat 08-Mar-14 23:53:16

Quilliam just do my head in! I cant believe they have salma yaqoub, MCB, MAB and islam channel on their list - in fact, cant believe they have any of those on their list.

As for taking away children of radical muslims - if you go by quilliam's list, then that would be very worrying. Yes, i also feel under attack, as lost has stated. There is always some story about telling the muslims how to live nowadays. It makes me realise how xenophobic a big part of society really is.

crescentmoon Sun 09-Mar-14 08:01:05

The only one I used to like from them was Usama hasan. but after watching him in that when tommy met mo show I realised he's trying too hard to make up for his first name. Tbh I think it was residual from my liking of imam suhaib hasan his dad.

Anyway lost Ib seen a few books on that page about girls being proud of their big curly hair. I think still age appropriate for your dd inshallah. even found a great book for my dc from that list: 'trouble talk'!
The amazon reviews linked to below the blurb look good and it's exactly the topic I want- dealing with tale and rumour spreading.

www.amightygirl.com/trouble-talk

crescentmoon Sun 09-Mar-14 11:37:59

just to lighten the mood.

for sisters out there who follow 'no musical instruments' opinion, you've got to check out Alaa Wardy, a musician from Saudi who makes amazing tracks a capella alone. you have to watch the videos to see how he does it. totally beyond the old beatboxing stuff- he studied sound engineering and its all voice and body only. and, even cooler, he even manages to do acapella to Bollywood!

Jiya Re (my favourite of them all!)
Jai Ho from slumdog
Royals with an Arabic beat
Happy from despicable me 2 (my kids found this very funny and I thought it was a positive video of young muslim men. I love the background Arabic commentary I didn't understand all of it but I recognised all the stereotypes!)
no woman, no drive(very funny satire based on bob marley's 'no woman, no cry', its by a Saudi rights activist and comedian working with Alaa Wardy again to no musical instruments. sarcastic lyrics about how the mutawwa justify the law banning female driving.... 'ova-ovaries safe and well, so you can make lots of babies...')

the vimto song
this one isnt strictly acapella but it makes me think of ramadan with all the vimto glass bottles! was vimto a feature of anyone elses ramadans growing up? xx

fuzzywuzzy Fri 14-Mar-14 10:46:17

Happy Jummah everyone, remember the ummah in your duas today.

defuse Fri 14-Mar-14 12:08:10

Salaam everyone.

Jummah Mubarak.

Just found out Tony Benn has passed away. I feel gutted. He was a lovely lovely man.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 14-Mar-14 18:29:34

I was saddened to hear that too, he was a decent guy.

crescentmoon Sat 15-Mar-14 07:38:15

yeah same here, what with bob crow passing and now tony benn, i just think that two of the best british opponents to neoliberalism are gone. no matter that the banking crisis of 2008 nearly effed up the world, this ideology is not going to go away - and now there are less people to articulate and speak out against it. sad for us as brits watching the gvt dismantling workers rights, the NHS, the welfare state, etc and sad for us as muslims that this ideology still dominates foreign policy. hope your all well lovelies.xx

crescentmoon Sat 15-Mar-14 11:32:13

heres a moral dilemma iv had this week sisters, iv been wrestling with it every day thinking whats the right thing to do.

when do you practise 'make 72 excuses for your muslim brother/sister' and when do you decide 'its needed for the public good to be known'?

the Quran is very much against backbiting or slander, its like 'eating the flesh of your dead brother' and my teacher said its a worse sin than zina. but the Quran also says 'Allah does not like the public mention of evil except by the one who has been wronged...' (4:148). and im in that stuck place in between. second, and then third, and then fourth guessing myself whether a situation iv been in recently -with a person i usually like and respect- should be told to other sisters so that they steer clear of particular dealings with that person too. or should i just keep shtum as the person would be very shamed and up until now iv been bashful myself even to talk about it with herself or others in RL.
part of my conflict is i think my intentions are abit murky too - though iv made every effort not to mention what shes done she's now cold shouldering me anyway. i still like her, just wont trust her on money ever again. but i got to thinking whether covering for her is for her good, for my good, or for the community's good. but then i dont know if the feeling to reveal it is from the nafs, or waswasa, or if its justified. WWYD?

crescentmoon Sat 15-Mar-14 11:54:08

iv mainly decided not to do anything because im not sure whether it is from wanting to help others or for my own satisfaction in a 'she shouldna messed with me' kind of way. i felt as long as i had that second feeling i shouldnt say anything.
DH told me if people ask me about her concerning that then to reveal it: your meant to tell the truth even if its unflattering when it comes to a character reference after all. (but isnt that only for marriage? or is it also for when going into business/travelling/living etc with a person?) but i shouldnt go out of my way to say something as that is gheebah. however, when i did abit of digging i found another person had had a similar experience to me and i wished that when she saw that huge inconsistency in that sister's conduct she had warned others instead of practising 'covering'. if she had then i wouldnt have had to deal with this drama had i known. so its like that abit. blush. would really love some advice.

fuzzywuzzy Sat 15-Mar-14 12:14:21

If this person is causing harm to people and will continue to do so if you do not tell others, then it's your duty to tell people what this person has done.

Zulm is haram, doing zulm and silently suffering zulm is haram.

You don't need it to be gibah, be honest and factual and ensure that in future anyone else who deals with this sister does so with open eyes (so to speak).

This will prevent her from doing zulm and others from suffering zulm.

There are consequences for ones actions and we are meant to look out for each other. Imagine the harm she could do if left unchecked because she's been allowed to get away with it.

Do it with the intention of preventing zulm. If you know this about her and she continues to cause harm to others and you don't warn people you're complicit by your silence.

fuzzywuzzy Sat 15-Mar-14 12:17:24

May Allah replace whatever loss you have suffered by something far better and reward your patience.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Sat 15-Mar-14 15:41:12

Peaceful I'd never heard of Tony Benn until now, he sounded like a lovely person.

Crescent, your situation sounds like a tough one, I have no advice except listen to fuzzy, she always speaks sense grin.

I could actually do with taking that advice myself, I've found out someone has been saying horrible, vindictive stuff about me behind my back, someone who is supposed to be a friend. I'm guessing the person who told me was in a similar situation to yourself, and I'm grateful she told me. It's all untrue but so malicious. Luckily all the sisters involved (there's about 5 in total) know 100% that what she is saying is all lies. This is someone I've known for 20 years, our children are the same age and last year we moved in next door to each other (not planned just a coincidence). And I have to see her every day, being nice to my face but nasty behind my back. It's a horrible feeling. But I'm too nice to confront her, mainly because of the implications it will have on the other sisters.

Sorry for the ramble blush.

Jazakallah for the book links crescent, they look good and it's the kind of thing she will read.

I hope everyone is well.

defuse Sat 15-Mar-14 20:17:38

Salaam all,

Crescent sis, i would be inclined to tell anyone about to entrust their money to her. After all, that is dishonesty on her part. Dont know of she is having financial issues, but regardless of that, so is every other person nowadays. Just on the intention side, ensure that when you tell, that your intention stays pure - a challenge in itself when you have been wronged.

Hope it works out for you inshallah

crescentmoon Sun 16-Mar-14 09:46:56

Alhamdullillah Allah settled it for me but what upset me was that i had to really press her to get it, and that i forgave the first lie, and the second lie, but when she got onto the fifth one i just lost patience and respect. i wished a thousand times i wasnt in that situation because i do/did really like her. and i had to play along so as not to let her lose face or offend her that i was checking on her version of events. because just asking around would have got back to her that i didnt trust her and so that would have caused a big hoohaa anyway by itself!
my 72 excuses were more along the lines of reasons why someone would lie rather than perhaps i didnt see/hear it right defuse. not just maybe she had financial issues - 1 reason but breaking financial issues into a load of different excuses 'maybe she has mortgage arrears/unpaid school fees/medical bills/sick relatives/boiler broke/divorce fees(?)/depression etc etc' but still i couldnt even get to ten! (thats to tell you shes not poor by the way!). and anyway, theres no excuse to take other peoples money! i will do something fuzzy as you invoked that word zulm, normally i wouldnt have hesitated but iv been trying more to assess the words i say and think about intentions behind them more. thats why i didnt trust my own judgement on this because whilst i really like/liked her on one hand and dont want to hurt her, im quite angry as i feel she put me through unneccesary crap and kept trying to turn it around on me as if it was an issue of being fussy. i asked myself 'is it because i dont want her to go around as if she did nothing and our mutual friends not know?' - because i have kept it from them all (surprisingly, normally when i feel hard done by i dont cover for anyone!).

lost thats a really horrible situation. i was in a similar one last year! except i wasnt in the centre with 5 people coming to me as you, i was at the end of a chinese whispers chain of 6 people, when i heard i was so mad i went straight back to the first person saying things and got persons 2 and 3 there too to argue it all out like fishwives and clear myself with person 5. (once we found the big twist in the story came in between person 2 and 3) but i said i dont want to get involved in this type of troubletalk again. thats whats making me leery of this situation now and constantly checking my intentions. having to talk to my daughter about her own little social issues at school also makes me think of gheebah and nameemah more carefully. lost its great they all know that those are all lies, my problem was that the person who came and told me had doubt so i had to speak to the person who started it all and get people to fess up. you can leave it as that but if you have the support of the other sisters you should then speak to that neighbour and tell her how you know and have found her treachery. you might not think of yourself but there are a multitude of reasons why things like this happen, least of which is jealousy. (im going to wait for feelings of vengefulness to go in my own situation before i speak too to make my intentions clean!). may Allah protect you from 'the evil of the envier when she envies' (from Surah Al Falaq), from the harm from her hands and the harm from her tongue. ameen.

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Mon 17-Mar-14 18:58:57

Ameen. That sounds pretty awful crescent, and sorry you're in a similar situation. I've been thinking a lot the last few days and I just don't understand how some people can be so bitchy. Everyone knows you shouldn't back bite, so why do it? I'm not going to say anything to my neighbour at all, I don't want to lower myself to her level. Did your people 2 and 3 deliberately change the story or was it a genuine misunderstanding? At least you stood up to them though and asked them outright I'm too much of a wimp.

"O you who believe! Avoid much suspicion, in deeds some suspicions are sins. And spy not neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear God, verily, God is the one who accepts repentance, Most Merciful." (49: 12)

Rasul Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “Truthfulness leads to righteousness and righteousness leads to Paradise; a person remains truthful until he is written as a Siddeeq (truthful person) with Allah. Lying leads to sin and sin leads to the Fire; a person keeps lying until he is written as a Kadhdhab (liar) with Allah.” [Bukhari]

I found this also -

Backbiting and slander is so widespread that it has become the topic of people’s meetings and an avenue for expressing their anger, misgivings and jealousy. Those who indulge in backbiting are oblivious of the fact that they are only harming themselves. This is because of the fact that on the Day of Resurrection both the wrongdoer and the wronged will stand before God, Who is the Just Judge, God will then give this wronged person from the good deeds of the person who wronged him in accordance with his wrong by backbiting.

Some situations allow us to inform others of what someone has done. It is allowed for us to inform the authorities when someone does injustice to us or others. It is allowed for us to inform someone who can help a perpetrator from committing further vice. It is also permissible for us to tell whoever seeks our advice on a person for business dealings or marriage. In this case it is not allowed for us to hide what we know about the person so that the enquirer will not be deceived. All these types of speaking about others are lawful.

Islam teaches us that if people are being ridiculed or backbited in our presence, we should defend their honor. If we neglect this, we shall deprive ourselves of ever needed help and mercy from God - If a man's Muslim brother is slandered in his presence, and he is capable of defending him and does so, God will defend him in this world and in the next. But if he fails to defend him, God will destroy him in this world and the next. (Baghawi). What will we do the next time we are tempted to backbite or hear slander in our presence? Right now the choice is ours!

We ask God the Most High, the All Powerful, to teach us that which will benefit us, and to benefit us by that which we learn. May God grant blessings and peace to our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.

crescentmoon Mon 17-Mar-14 20:57:06

jazakhallah for your last post lost, really thoughtful stuff on the topic of backbiting. im going to make dua for the sister that im the last person this happens with. and im making it haram on myself to speak about the matter to anyone in RL until i talk of it with her first and give her naseeha because i shied away from speaking straight on it once she settled things with me. as for telling people it was less to do with needing people's involvement and more whether to keep quiet about it and risk someone after me having the same experience with her, as i found a sister before me had done. and from the other situation i was in - and person 2 said it was a misunderstanding, but tbh she had her own axe to grind with person 5!- im tired of rumour mills! some phases in my life iv left it as you are now with that person, and some phases in my life iv just gone straight to have it out with a 'la hawla wa la quwwata illah billah'.

and as for this part you posted:

"on the Day of Resurrection both the wrongdoer and the wronged will stand before God, Who is the Just Judge, God will then give this wronged person from the good deeds of the person who wronged him in accordance with his wrong by backbiting."

i remembered from the dua book of Imam Hasan al Basri:

""O Allah, I seek Your forgiveness for every sin of mine. I ask You to forgive me all the injustices against Your servants that You have enumerated against me; for Your servants have against me many claims of violated rights and injustices to which I am held captive. O Allah, even if these evil deeds of mine are many in number, they are a paltry few in sight of Your forgiveness. O Allah, any male or female servant of Yours who has against me a claim of injustice, that I forcefully seized from him something of his land or wealth or honor or body- whether he was absent or present, or whether he or his representatives demanded from me compensation for it but neither was I able to return it to him nor did I seek to be pardoned for it- I ask that You, with Your benevolence, generosity, and abundant treasures, satisfy them on my behalf; and do not give them over me power to take away and decrease my good deeds. For indeed You possess what can satisfy them on my behalf, and I do not. And do not make a way for their bad deeds to overcome my good deeds on the day of Judgment.

So send blessings and peace, O my Lord, upon our Master Muhammad (may Allah’s peace and blessing be upon him) and upon the family of our Master Muhammad, and forgive my sin, O Best of those who forgive!""

and i read it out for myself as im sure that there will be some on that Day who can call me out too. i was always taught that as long as you never mention names or specific details then it was ok to share experiences as anecdotes. but really the higher criteria is whether that person would like for you to tell others whether or not they could be identified by the retelling or not. ach, maybe not even the higher criteria it should be the only criteria.

crescentmoon Mon 17-Mar-14 21:30:28

came by this today and thought to share it with sisters, about why moderation in religion and in worship is directly from the sunnah of Muhammad (pbuh) and what he asked his followers. iv mentioned a hadith here and there:

The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: "Do good deeds properly, sincerely and moderately. . .Always adopt a middle, moderate, regular course, whereby you will reach your target (of paradise)." - Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Hadith 470

before but this page has loads of hadith on advice he (pbuh) gave to his companions on being moderate in religion:

Allah says, "Ta Ha. We did not send down the Qur'an to you to make you miserable," (20:1)

and the Almighty says, "Allah desires ease for you; He does not desire difficulty for you." (W2:184; H2:185)

142. 'A'isha reported that that once the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, came when a woman was with her. He asked, "Who is this?" She replied, "So-and-so," and told him about the amount she prayed. He said, "Stop! You must only do what you are able. By Allah, Allah does not grow weary [of giving rewards] as you grow weary, and the deen He likes best is the one in which there is constancy." [Agreed upon]

143. Anas said, "Three people came to the houses of the wives of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, to ask about how the Prophet worshipped. When they were told, it was as if they thought it was little and said, 'Where are we in relation to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, who has been forgiven his past and future wrong actions?'" He said, "One of them said, 'I will pray all of every night.' Another said, 'I will fast all the time and not break the fast.' The other said, "I will withdraw from women and never marry.' The Messenger of Allah came to them and said, 'Are you the ones who said such-and-such? By Allah, I am the one among you with the most fear and awareness of Allah, but I fast and break the fast, I pray and I sleep, and I marry women. Whoever disdains my sunna is not with me.'" [Agreed upon]

144. Ibn Mas'ud reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Those who make things hard for themselves will be destroyed." He said it three times. [Muslin]

145. Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "The deen is easy. Anyone who makes the deen too hard on himself will find it becomes too much for him. So aim for what is right, follow a middle path, accept the good news of the reward for right action, and seek help [to reach your goal by being constant in worshipping] in the morning, evening and some of the night."[al-Bukhari]

more hadith here:

www.sunnipath.com/library/Hadith/H0004P0014.aspx

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Wed 19-Mar-14 13:10:49

Jazakallah for those crescent, I've read most of those Hadith before and it's always nice to read them again, it refreshes my memory.

Can someone please explain something for me? Why is the number 786 used so often by Muslims? What's the importance of it? I asked my dh but he doesn't know either, he's just accepted it but was never told the reason behind it like most things he has been taught.

Has anyone else got any dc starting school in september? I'm getting nervous about my dd not getting our preferred school. We're out of catchment but I'm hoping the sibling rule applies.

defuse Wed 19-Mar-14 13:50:35

At work so quick response... not read all the messages. 786 caught my eye. It has no meaning in islam.

Will reply in detail later inshallah.

Also ig anyone gets a chance see the daily mail article about extremists taking over schools. Pathetic reporting. Cannot link as at work. Will catch up later. Ps: dont read it if they make your blood boil grin

defuse Wed 19-Mar-14 23:25:04

Salaam.

lost sis, your post about backbiting was really good and thought provoking. It is something i really want to ensure that my kids understand how awful it can be along with slander. crescent I read the dua by Hasan al Basri, in the hope that Allah saves me. It is a wonderful dua. Talking of moderation in worship, i am really struggling with khushu in my salaah. It just seems to be rushed and just not to a satisfactory standard sad

lost sis, 786 doesnt have any authentic basis in islam. It represents bismillah numerically if you assign each letter a number - apparently it totals up to 786. I remember many many years ago, my mum used to write it on a letter that she would write to her mum. She would tell me that she didnt want to write bismillah, in case the letter ended up on the floor or something.

It is not a practice that she engages in any more as it doesnt have any basis in islam.

I was going to link to the DM article but have decided against it as its just a waste of time and energy. grin

lost. I hope inshallah your dcs get a place at your chosen school. Sibling attendance does carry some weight, but not always - depending on how popular the school is. Try not to worry sis, though i know thats easier said than done.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 20-Mar-14 10:18:14

Sis defuse, I once watched a youtube video by a sister who'd been to a talk by Nouman Ali (I think), and the whole point of the lecture was attaining Khushu, she siad he made a point of saying you need to start your prayer fully concentrating from when you make your intntion, she said from then she always made sure she was totally focussed at the start which helped her with the actual salat. She said sometimes she started and realised she wasn't even sure if she'd made the intention corrreclty so would stop and start again.

I've tried to do that too, it's surprising how much more focussed and aware you become when you aren't sleepwlaking thro your salat thinking of all the chores you still need to do and places you need to be!

LostAtTheEndOfTheRainbow Thu 20-Mar-14 20:58:07

Jazakallah defuse, thank you for explaining that.

It's funny you should mention khushu in salat, just yesterday when I was praying I made sure I focused 100% and didn't rush it. I think it took double the amount of time it normally does! It was much easier without the kids hanging around, I find I've normally always got one ear listening out for them and then my mind wanders and I always feel guilty afterwards that I wasn't completely focused.

defuse Thu 20-Mar-14 21:30:28

Salaam all.

fuzzy i will try to concentrate - like you say, i tend to start thinking of all the millions of things i still have to do and then i feel annoyed that i didnt concentrate. Oh and if its not the chores, then its the kids like lost said. There is always an excuse! Will try to imagine myself standing in front of my Lord. Inshallah that should help me concentrate.

crescentmoon Fri 21-Mar-14 08:20:37

Happy Friday/Jumma Mubarak!

fajr is so early now, from next sunday when the clocks go back fajr will be 3.30am.gosh khushoo is so difficult - concentrating in the prayer to the effect of shutting out the world. im still in trying to keep up the observance of salah on time. i have the time so no excuse really with my '1 wudhu two salah' delays. its always dhuhr and asr that i struggle to pull myself out of the daily occupations to get in on time. another thing that astaghfirullah but 2 wudhus in the afternoon ruin my makeup but i cant wear waterproof as that means wudhu isnt valid either! but i cant hold my wudhu all day as i used to when younger as the unfortunate effect for me on going through my pregnancies - i escaped stretchmarks and have a still flat tummy - is that i cant hold wudhu that long! grin but great reminders of where i need to be going!

have a great day inshaallah! fuzzy iv memorised the first ten verses of surah khaf now alhdamdullillah just from having it on most friday when at home. im going to memorise the last ten verses too just to cover both versions of the hadith! wink

crescentmoon Fri 21-Mar-14 08:36:27

oh and defuse, i found that thing older generation used to take part in to save for the death of a member in the group. its called a burial society. do you think that can work as a alternative to life insurance, as in expanded to cover more than funeral costs?

fuzzywuzzy Fri 21-Mar-14 09:44:29

Assalamualaikum,

Happy Jummah, remeber the Ummah and all of us in your duas today inshallah.

I've recently decided to try and do Qiyam ul Layl, it's fine on the days I fast but gosh I love my sleep and it is such a struggle subhanallah, I've decided to get up about fifteen minutes before the start of Fajr inshallah.

My youngest was reciting surah Muzzamil and it struck me I really really should try inshallah;

"The person who wants to pray qiyaam al-layl should realize that Allaah is calling him to qiyaam. When the slave realizes that his Master, Who has no need of people�s worship, is calling him to do this, he will respond. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): �O you wrapped in your garments (i.e., Prophet Muhammad)! Stand (to pray) all night, except a little. Half of it, or a little less than that, or a little more; and recite the Qur�aan (aloud) in a slow, (pleasant tone and) style.� [al-Muzzammil 73:1-4]. "

My mum used to tell us the following hadith;

Abu Hurayrah (radhi allahu anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: �Our Lord descends every night to the lowest heaven, when only one third of the night has remained. He says: �Who will invoke Me, so that I may give him? Who will seek My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him.� [Saheeh al-Bukharee and Saheeh Muslim] In another report, he adds: �Then Allah extends His Hand and says: �Who wants to invest (good deeds) with the One who is not wasteful or unjust?� He continues to say this until the dawn arrives.� [Saheeh Muslim]

It's just thinking of this that motivates me to get up even when every part of me just wants to sleep. And its good trianing for Ramadan Inshallah.

Obviously I don't pray half or even a third of the night. Waking up enough to pray with sincerity at that time is the hardest of all, but ocassionally I have made that connection and then I don't want to sleep but continue to pray. To be that connected in every salah would be amazing subhanallah.

I like the weekends the most for Qiyam ul Layl, when I get up I console myself that I can pray as long as I like becasue I can be snuggled up in my warm bed till late in the morning after lol, I actually sleep better afterwards too for some reason Alhumdulillah.

I'll tell you something really daft, I never knew that the Ramadan salat ul Taraweeh is no more than Qiyam ul Layl, I never knew this till I was reading up about Qiyal ul Layl (a few weeks ago!), how dozy am I?

fuzzywuzzy Fri 21-Mar-14 09:50:30

PS sis Crescent I totally envy your flat stomach, mine is crepey and wrinkly! And I don't even have thatm any children! On the up I do have amazing bladder control lol

LittleTulip Fri 21-Mar-14 10:44:50

Jumma Mubarak all!

Just a few more days before I go umrah and can you believe it ladies, remember when I said about avoiding being on my menses when going? Well my periods are normally so regularly, except this month has been bloody crazy, and I am due to come on the day of travel!! hmm

All I can do is laugh about it, this is surely a test from the almighty! Anyway I have decided to take the tablets to delay my period, I can't waste the opportunity of prayer when there.

Hope you are all well, forgot to pray surah kahf this morning, but will listen to it! Finding it a challenge to also wake up for fajr especially as I'm now back at work full time but I am trying alhamdollilah.

Remember me in your duaa's x

fuzzywuzzy Fri 21-Mar-14 10:50:25

Oh sis LittleTulip, May Allah grant you offspring who will be the coolness of your eyes andd may he reward your patience and fortitude and may you he grant you a fulfilling Umrah and accept your worship and grant you forgiveness..

Remember us all in your duas inshallah.

UmmSHI Fri 21-Mar-14 11:11:59

Salam everyone. Just dropping in to say hi. I'm loving all the hadiths and other wisdom people are posting about.

Does anyone else feel as though the year is passing so quick? I can't wait for summer though.

Also, has anybody on here or does anybody on here know someone who has completed an open university course? If you know anything about them, then please can you tell me how time consuming it is? I have three young children, would it be too much? How long did it take? Thanks in advance if anyone can answer those questions for me.

Other than that, sisters, please keep up the good work inshaAllah. You are all an inspiration and such dedicated muslimahs, I feel privileged to "know" you all. Especially when I see those that take the time to correct peoples' misconceptions about islam on other threads. May Allah give you all a high station in jannah and give you ease in this life. thanks

defuse Fri 21-Mar-14 14:56:07

Salaam all.

crescent , my in laws have got some sort of burial fund which means that they will be taken to Pakistan and buried there. I dont really understand it as, isnt there a hadith which states that you must be buried where you die? Not sure though. But not gonna argue with them grin

What can i say about my tummy and bladder control.....well...the less said, the better sad grin

tulip , so happy for you mashallah umrah will be amazing. ummshi i must admit i am enjoying the sunny days, but its still coooollllllddddd.

fuzzy , you are amazing for doing qiyam outside of ramadan mashallah.

FoziaS Fri 21-Mar-14 18:15:11

Asalaam Alaikum sisters!

I posted back in September in the old thread and then to be honest forgot to come back to it and to Mumsnet to be honest!

How are you all?

crescentmoon Sat 22-Mar-14 16:00:30

lol fuzzy i didnt want to say bladder control but thats what i was euphemistically referring too yes! i envy you that (gives fuzzy the laazzzyyyy eyee

i think we use religious euphemisms for bodily functions alot dont we. i like how 'im not praying this week' means auntie flo is visiting, 'whoops iv just broken my wudhu' would mean someone has farted, 'sorry i was late but i had to wash my hair before i left' meaning you've had sex that morning (couldnt leave the house without making the ritual bath. or maybe thats just me and my friends joke about? lol). which really isnt as brazen as the response to 'come and pray' from my womanising single cousin. his answer why he wouldnt? 'ahh i need to take my bath first'. (for whom zina is ok but praying without ghusl is not ok - go figure!) the upside is that alhamdullillah i can also say 'please i want to keep my wudhu' to my non practising cousins' friends/uncles/neighbours (who are very demonstrative but they mean well!) and so they'll keep it to a wave hello. it wont offend them because even though they are not practising they know the shaafiee rule about wudhu being broken if one touches someone of the opposite gender. that doesnt offend them - they'll respect that as its 'just fiqh' - but say 'i dont want a big bear hug from non mahram' and they will get very offended that you would imply they are not like your blood family! (no joke: convert sisters i bet you thought you were the only ones with these dilemmas haha)

really like the reminders about doing qiyam ul layl. im usually up at that time but normally reading on my kindle or my latest paperback - its the only time i ever get to read anymore! normally a little while before fajr, then i pray and go to sleep for abit longer before dc are up! during ramadan il try to do qiyam, but right now my only prep for ramadan is the monday/thursday sunnah fasting!

theres actually alot of research that until recently sleeping in one long 8 hour stretch was not the norm and actually unnatural. and that most human beings practised 'two sleeps' - one period of sleeping for a few hours, then awakening for 1/2 hours then falling asleep for another 3/4 hours. its here in this BBC report but i read about it ages ago and realised i had settled into this pattern since birth of ds2.

www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-16964783

so actually qiyam ul layl was probably much easier for earlier peoples, the articles say that in europe they used to use that period in between for prayers also - but we all just dont know it and think instead they must have gone to sleep soon after sunset and woke up in the morning in an unbroken line of sleep!

crescentmoon Sat 22-Mar-14 16:18:34

fozia, very nice to see you again! how are you dear sis hope you stick around this time grin. ahlan wa sahlan - welcome!

ummshi go for the course inshaallah. is it something to work with or something to keep your mind stimulated? whatever the course is inshallah you will hopefully do well in it. iv heard lots of talks on how we should always educate ourselves and keep doing that until we die. its incumbent on all of us and not only in religion but in any and all subjects. i take for my example the way the early muslims were not shy to access and learn the secular knowledge of the ancient greeks and the hindus and the christians and jews that was part of the Islamic Golden Age of Science. because of the hadith of the prophet (pbuh) that “The statement of wisdom is the lost property of the believer, so wherever he finds it then he has a right to it.” famous hadith on knowledge here.

as well as the open university also check out MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) - they provide really high class quality university courses:
https://www.coursera.org/ is the biggest,
and this this site has the links to the MOOCS run by the elite universities Harvard, yale, stanford, MIT.

khan academy cant not mention that too - iv not done a course with them but mashaallah heard lots of good stuff from other people. the founder Salman Khan quit his job as a hedge fund analyst to devote to this project and its one of the most popular free high quality education websites. https://www.khanacademy.org/

tulip mashaallah you are going for umrah this coming week. i really hope you get everything of benefit from it my love and your heartfelt duas are answered for dunya and akhirah. can you make a prayer for me too, that Allah settle things for me and inside me.

defuse is that burial fund just on their own or with a group of other people?i know the hadith you refer to as well but so many people have this and funerals are already so expensive. i went to a sister once for some budgeting advice and she had 4 accounts one of which was set up as a funeral fund in case she or her husband died. they both put in a little amount each month and it shocked me as we were both the same age then - i understand wills but it seemed abit morbid to start a burial fund at 25 years old! but she was into really into ROSCAS, savings and investment and had every penny in and out on spreadsheets all mapped out. someone i saw as having alot of barakah in her money because she made their home income go alot further than we were doing!

hope your all well and more sisters join in!

LittleTulip Sat 22-Mar-14 22:40:28

Wow fuzzy excuse my ignorance but I had to google qiyam ul layl, Mashallah good on you sis you are a real inspiration.

Crescent your religious euphemisms made me LOL grin so so true, and very new to me too, seeing as I've only recently started practicing salah 5 times and we're ttc! I have started using an extra strength hair butter rather than the usual dry shampoo for my greasy roots! blush

We have had some bad news again, well I said bad but in a way it is a relief. DHs grandmother passed away last night, that is 10 weeks after his grandfather earlier in the year. It was actually really sad to see her on her own and she was really struggling without his grandfather. DH is really gutted though, his dad passed away at a young age and so that's basically his paternal family pretty much gone. DHs family aren't muslim and I was worried that we may have to cancel umrah but they have encouraged us to go which I am so grateful for!

Hope you are all having a lovely weekend. I will indeed remember you all in my duaa's xx

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 24-Mar-14 12:08:09

Salaam sisters,

Sorry, I've not been in for ages. I hope you are all well, insha Allah xxxxx

Little Tulip - sorry to hear about your DH's grandmother. May Allah make her passing easy for your family.

crescentmoon Mon 24-Mar-14 12:18:41

aww sorry about your DH's grandmother tulip, i understand what you mean about the conflict in feelings. we felt that for my grandmother (God have mercy on her) when she passed away that we were sad and miserable but relief that she rested in peace.

thats very nice his family have still encouraged you to go for the umrah, that would have been very hard for them. so sad his paternal family are gone - i hope that maybe uncles/aunts and cousins are there to keep up relations on that side? we have so many relatives on both sides that its difficult keeping up ties of kinship with everyone. i feel sorry for DH sometimes that he wanted a small nuclear family coming from a large family and he married me with a close extended family - because we were a small nuclear family growing up!

make dua for all of us love inshaallah! seriously we've used all those expressions we're not the only ones. its way more modest when someone asks 'are you fasting?' in ramadan to say 'im not praying' than 'im on my period'! (or thats me anyway).

fuzzywuzzy Mon 24-Mar-14 14:38:12

Little Tulip, I'm so sorry to hear of your loss may Allah grant your family ease.

Sis Crescent we all use those excuses too, when I was little I vivdly recollect a person turning up to a funeral no less and refusing to pray, he was male and theo nly conclusion everyone could draw fomr that was that he was in a state of ritual impurity, the hilarity and pearl clutching that ensued was very funny. But why would you turn up to an occassion where prayer would be expected in such a state?

Also I must apologise if I've given the impression I'm doing loads of night prayers, I certainly am not, I'm trying to get up half an hour before Fajr to do Qiyam ul Layl, it's hit and miss!

I've been feeling disconnected in my Iman and I'm trying to find a connection again (cue lots of research of what to do)!

what does everyone else do for iman boosts?

UmmSHI Mon 24-Mar-14 20:15:18

Sorry for your loss tulip.

Thanks for all those other links crescent, looking to study english as it is my passion.

Personally if I am low on iman, I try to keep in touch with other practising people more, or watch lectures, or visit blogs or youtube channels of people who have reverted. I also try to recapture my own feelings at the time I reverted to remind myself how exciting it was.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 25-Mar-14 13:10:13

Salaam ladies,

I just wanted to share this with you:

www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2009/aug/27/sebastian-faulks-quran-islam

It's about a specific incident but it seems to some up nicely Western misinterpretation of the Quran.