Heart goes out to the dead, injured, and others in Boston
but also my heart goes out to all the Muslims in the area who will wrongly be rounded up and detained tonight and to their families, and to the ones who will have to face mob violence and a spike of hatred that this…
The Muslim Debate Initiative is proud to announce that one its senior speakers and researchers, Paul Bilal Williams, will be sharing a platform at Cambridge University with the former Archbishop of Canterbury, the head of the worldwide Anglican Church, to discuss Jesus in Islam and Christianity. The event is expected to be well attended, and for those who cannot make it, the event will be recorded.
I was once asked on a radio program by a religious caller: “How far do you want Saudi women to progress?” I explained that I actually wanted them to regress — 1430 years.Dr. Khaled M. Batarfi, “Power to Saudi Women: An Islamic Duty”
At that time, Muslim women had more rights than they do today. They owned and managed businesses. Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) as a young man worked for his future wife, the mega businesswoman Al-Saydah Khadija. Women joined the army as soldiers and nurses.
The Prophet (pbuh) consulted his wives on social, state and religious affairs. So did Caliph Omar, who changed his position on marriage dowry and admitted his mistake after a woman challenged him in public. As for driving, women rode their camels and horses, even in war.
The caller explained that it was a different era then. Our women need more time to reach that level, he argued.
I answered him by asking: “Do you mean after 14 centuries and 50 years of modern education, our women are less educated, trained and responsible? And if so, who is to blame? Our education system? Our upbringing? Our Islamic teaching?
Just a reminder:
When Prophet Muhammad (sallahu alayhi wa sallam) was travelling on the road with his cousin, Al-Fadl ibn Abbas, a woman stopped him to ask him a question. The woman was very beautiful, and Al-Fadl couldn’t help but stare at her.
Seeing this, Prophet Muhammad reached out his hand and turned his cousin’s face away.
He didn’t tell the woman to cover her face.
He didn’t tell her to change her clothing.
He didn’t tell her that her appearance was too tempting or indecent.
He averted his cousin’s impolite stare.
Striking back against an anti-jihad advertisement in the subways widely perceived as anti-Muslim, two religious groups – one Jewish, one Christian – are taking out subway ads of their own to urge tolerance.
Rabbis for Human Rights – North America and the group Sojourners, led by the Christian author and social-justice advocate Jim Wallis, are unveiling their campaigns on Monday. Their ads will be placed near the anti-jihad ads in the same Manhattan subway stations, leaders of both groups said and transit officials confirmed. The groups said their campaigns were coincidental.
The ad by Rabbis for Human Rights turns the language of the earlier ad, placed by a pro-Israel group, on its head. The original ad says, “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat jihad.” The ad by Rabbis for Human Rights says, “In the choice between love and hate, choose love. Help stop bigotry against our Muslim neighbors.”
“We wanted to make it clear that it is in response to the anti-Islam ad,” said Rabbi Jill Jacobs, executive director of Rabbis for Human Rights, whose members include rabbis from all streams of Judaism.
The Sojourners ad simply says, “Love your Muslim neighbors.”
Another Christian group, United Methodist Women, an affiliate of the United Methodist Church, has placed similar ads in the same 10 Manhattan stations where the anti-jihad appears. The ads, which went up on Wednesday, say, “Hate speech is not civilized. Support peace in word and deed.”
One of the Methodist group’s ads, in Times Square station, is posted right next to one of the anti-jihad ads.
Thank you, real humans.
Given what passes off as commentary on Muslim women, over the years I developed a system whereby I determine whether an article is worth my time. The main things I check are:
- The headline -If I spot a veil pun, chances are that I’ll close the tab immediately
- The summary - you can expect an article to continue going further downhill if the summary relies on dichotomous divisions, propagates stereotypes, dilutes identities, etc.
- The byline - chances that I’d read an article decrease exponentially if the you describe yourself as a a “reformist” or if your only claim to expertise is a book that no one’s ever read
- The accompanying photo - because sometimes a picture does tell a thousand words
- The final paragraph - if the conclusion is remotely intriguing or piques my interest, I might be willing to look past the other shortcomings.
There are of course other things to consider such as where the article was published, how I came across the article and so on. And I’m sure most of us have our versions of the “Read It or Leave It” test.
Which brings us to the purpose behind this post; I encountered an article that miserably fails my ‘Read It or Leave It’ test.