Posts Tagged ‘British Muslims’

Eid-ul-Fitr: Prayers in the Park, Pt III (or maybe Pt IV?)

// September 21st, 2009 // 8 Comments » // Photos

Well, I think this is the third time I prayed ‘Īd salat in the local park. ‘Īd-in-the-park/" target="_blank">First time, second time… hmm, the blog seems to think 'three' too. Looks like I missed out on park Eiding in 2008… I believe I prayed one ‘Īd at Whitechapel mosque, as it was raining… but where did I pray the second one? – complete blank – Gah! [Update (23/09/2009): After discussing the matter with SimSim, we remembered that we prayed at East London Mosque on both Eids in 2008. Alhamdulillah & huzzah for the relief!]

Anyway, one thing you'll hopefully notice from the pics below is that I actually took a decent camera with me this time, and did not rely on the crummy camera in my phone (which is good, as I still use the same handset as I did back in 2007!). Please click on each image to see the full-size copy. [Flickr archive]

Don't Start Without Me!

Don

Straighten the Rows: the men line up for the prayer.

Straighten the Rows: the men line up for the prayer.

Imam gives the Khutbah

Imam gives the Khutbah: Not the most effective design for a partition. ;)

Higher Daddy!

Higher Daddy!: A father pushes his child on the swings during the khutbah.

The brothers sit and listen to the imam.

The brothers sit and listen to the imam.

The kids quietly play!

While the kids quietly play! The advantage of holding prayers in a playground. :)

Playground Springs

Playground Springs: I have no idea why they have these little fountains and showers in the kiddies

Curious Child

Curious Child: All the kids were fascinated by the sprinklers... though I

So there you have it: another ‘Īd in the park; another step closer to establishing a personal ‘Īd tradition, inshā’Allāh.

Where did you pray today?

Advice for Attendees of the Harrow Mosque 9/11 Counter-Protest

// September 10th, 2009 // No Comments » // Blog

I wrote the following article in a hurry this afternoon, after receiving messages from certain friends and acquaintances, encouraging me, and other Muslims, to attend a counter-demo taking place outside Harrow Mosque tomorrow (Friday, Sept 11th, 2009).

As some of you may have heard, a coalition of fascist groups are planning to hold a static demo outside the Harrow Mosque in NW London, tomorrow, i.e., on Jumuah, Sept 11, 2009. A counter-protest has been organised by 'Unite Against Fascism', with support from various elements of the London Muslim community.

It is clear that tensions are now running high in the lead up to the event. I, myself, have received numerous text messages from Muslim acquaintances encouraging their fellow Muslims to go “defend the mosque” – without actually explaining what that means. I can't help but feel that this is all reminiscent of several violent clashes between fascist protesters and Muslim youth, that have occurred in the recent past. In this regard, sister Yvonne Ridley gave clear warning to attendees of the protest, via her Facebook profile… continue reading.

I actually heard about the event earlier in the week, but didn't really know what it was about, so I mistakenly ignored it. It's only when I received yet another text message about it this morning from a good friend, that I was spurred into writing something, worrying that all this buzz was leading somewhere bad, God forbid.

I am praying that the right-wing media, and the fascist thugs, don't get the anti-Muslim front page headlines they are no doubt salivating for, and that there are no casualties – on either side (I'd rather the opposition be guided, than beaten up, tbh; besides, doing so would only serve to start up a cycle of revenge attacks).

My Big Day Out

// July 27th, 2009 // 7 Comments » // Blog

As I mentioned in my last status update, Thursday 23rd July ended up being quite a productive day for me, māshā’Allāh. For a start, I was actually active between the normal working hours of 9.30am and 4.30pm. Amazing! I didn't even manage that during my PhD.

The day involved two major meetings, each relating to the two main projects that currently dominate my unemployed life: Deaf Muslim initiatives (e.g., SignLabs), and blogging. As the content of both meetings was pretty much confidential, I'll skip the details, and just describe the basic aims.

(more…)

The Lake District

// July 16th, 2009 // 3 Comments » // Photos

Here are some photos from my recent trip to the Lake District.

19 18 15 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

The following is my personal favourite; click to enlarge.

Jazakallah khair to brother Mohammed for inviting me to Cumbria, and granting my father and I a personalised tour of the area.

Taking Advice From the Past To Save the Future

// June 2nd, 2009 // 9 Comments » // Blog

You know those Sci-Fi films where the protagonist receives an unexpected visit from their future self, heralding grave news of a disastrously sticky end if they don't do an incredibly important task, that can conveniently be achieved within the 75 minute remainder of the movie?

The kind of scenario that always throws up the problem: “Well, if they complete the mission, then that version of the future will no longer exist. Therefore the character won't be able to return to the past to warn themselves about avoiding said disaster. But without such a warning, the bad things will happen anyway. Ah, but then if they… no, that won't work… unless they manipulate the space-time continuum…? Yes! No. Wait… using the graviton emissions of a nearby worm hole…. perhaps… Multiverse theory would allow… would allow… wo- Oh look: time for Hollyoaks!”.

Anyway, I experienced something like that this evening, at a sisters-circle I attended – but in reverse.

Continue reading my post at MuslimMatters.org…

Enjoying the English Countryside

// June 1st, 2009 // 9 Comments » // Photos

I spent the weekend in Blackburn, which is about 300-odd miles north of London. I was there for my cousin's wedding, on my father's side, but ended up being person-napped by my cousins on my mother's side for a outdoor birthday party at a picnic site in the country. As you can tell, I have a lot of family 'up North'.

The weather was gorgeous, māshā’Allāh… just perfect for a BBQ.

Smokin'

Chops on the BBQ Birthday BBQ Cake Cute Baby Tee

After lunch, we took a leisurely walk in the woods and fields surrounding the picnic area.

Walk in the Woods

Bleached Buttercups In the Spooky Woods In the Woods Grrrass Breathtaking Cows From A Distance Cows Up Close Cows! Sheep!

These were the shoes I was wearing during our little Nature walk… not good for wading through patches of mud. Alhamdulillah, I survived, unscathed.

My Chappals

A nice shot I managed to capture from the car on the way home. Click here to see a larger version.

Show Me the Way to Go Home

My parents and I used to travel to Blackburn at least once a year, back when we were living in Leicester. However, moving to London added another 150 miles to the car journey. That, together with my studies, meant that in the last ten years we've only bothered to drive up there for two important family occasions: deaths & marriages.

Upon leaving the wedding house yesterday evening, we exchanged the usual pleasantries with our hosts, not-so-subtly acknowledging the fact that only another wedding would likely reunite us in the near future.

inshā’Allāh, it'll be your turn next, Mehzabeen!”, my aunty chirped in Gujarati, as I put on my shoes. Luckily I was looking down at the time, so she didn't notice the eyes rolling in my head.

Oh well. At least they'll be the ones making the six hundred mile round-trip next time, if she's correct.

Watch iMuslim ‘Live’ Tonight, on Divan 2.0 (7.15pm, UK Time)

// May 22nd, 2009 // 1 Comment » // Blog

I've been invited to be a panellist at a Radical Middle Way event tonight. The subject up for discussion is Islam and the Internetz… so at least I'll be familiar with the subject matter – inshā’Allāh!

I'll be representing MuslimMatters, so please make dua that I don't let the side down, as it'll be my first time doing anything like this (I'm trying to minimize your expectations; remember, blogging and public speaking are two different animals!).

Welcome to Muslim 2.0 – a wired generation whose members would rather pose their tough questions to Shaykh Google than their local Imam and who feel more connected to the Facebook ummah than the congregation at the local mosque. Never has Muslim conversation buzzed with so many divergent, combative and off-the-wall perspectives.

But is more Muslim chatter really better?

Has Web 2.0 democratised Muslim debate, and if so at what cost?

Are we talking to each other or at each other?

With so many blogs, websites and forums to choose from, are we actually engaging with other points of view or are we comfortable staying in our intellectual (and spiritual) ghettos?

Join us for Divan 2.0, as we bring together some of British Islam's most (in)famous bloggers, web pioneers and online warriors for some face-to-face debate. They will be taking your questions in this special “Question Time” style event.

Challenge and be challenged – submit your questions in advance and come ready to jump into fray!

For those who can't make the free event in London, you can watch live via the little video box below. It'll start approx. 7.15pm BST (GMT+1), inshā’Allāh.

Wanted: British Muslim Bloggers

// May 20th, 2009 // 22 Comments » // Announcements

I don't know enough of them… they must exist. Where are you?

If you're a Muslim blogger based in the UK, please leave a comment below with your blog address in the URL bar. Alternatively, paste the relevant link in the comment field… but a warning that your comment may get spammed if you add too many URLs.

What Day Is It Really?

// March 11th, 2009 // 3 Comments » // Blog

Yasir Qadhi's latest entry on MM reminded me of a slightly paranoid question that came to mind a while ago.

Jumu'ah is a significant day for Muslims, as the most important congregational prayer is held on that day, every week. But how do we know that the day we call “Friday” in the Gregorian weekly calendar is the same day that we call “Jumu'ah” in the Islamic calendar? Have Jumu'ah prayers really been held consistently, every seven days, since the time of the Prophet, peace be upon him? It's not like we can check using the Moon, like we do when determining the beginning and end of the Islamic calendar months.

I suppose the same question applies to every day of the week, seeing as Mondays and Thursday have special significance with regards to the practice of ritual, Sunnah fasts.

I can trust that the Arabs have it right, from the point of view of uninterrupted tradition. So when the Gregorian calendar was introduced to the Muslim world, did they simply synch the two systems, noting that Friday was equivalent to Jumu'ah? I guess it wouldn't be very difficult, seeing as both weeks contain seven days. Imagine the chaos otherwise?!

Okay, now I suspect that my question is very silly indeed. :/

Viva Palestina Have Reached Gaza!

// March 9th, 2009 // 4 Comments » // Blog

Viva Palestina Update
15.30 (GMT) Monday 9th March 2009

GROWN MEN CRYING…THE SIEGE IS BROKEN… ON THE DAY THE PROPHET WAS BORN

And they entered side by side like heroes, some on foot some in their vehicles, tears, smiles, hugs, flowers. It was historic, it was legendary. Gaza we are here. We have fulfilled the promise – Viva Palestina! The lifeline from the people of Britain to you, the people of Gaza, has arrived.

We have broken the barriers, we have opened closed borders, we have defied the odds,we have overcome the challenges across thousands of miles and three continents. We are here to be with you, to embrace you, to share your tragedy with you.

After another morning of intense negotiations, a deal was reached to allow all of the members of the convoy to go through. In the end, Viva Palestina had to make the sacrifice of agreeing that some vehicles will have to cross the border from the Al Ouja Israeli controlled crossing point. This includes our mascot, the fire engine and the boat. This was due to the restrictions imposed by Egyptian law governing the Rafah Crossing.

A tearful Talat Ali told me that 'Rafah is the most beautiful crossing in the world', he also said that the time , effort and sacrifices put in by all the Viva Palestina family meant that history has been made today – on the day the prophet Mohammed (PBUH) was born.

George Galloway made an emotional speech thanking the people of Gaza for the wonderful reception and assuring them that for Viva Palestina and in our millions, “WE ARE ALL PALESTINIANS!” George also reiterated that the people of Palestine have voted and that their voice should be respected.

Today the convoy will head along the Salah Eddine road towards Gaza City witnessing along the way the destruction and death caused by the Israeli war machine. Along the way they will be greeted by the people of Gaza who will know that Viva Palestina is here and that they will NEVER BE ALONE.

Farid Arada

Sign up for e-mail updates, and donate to the cause at VivaPalestina.org

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