Channel: Abdul Nasir Jangda
Practical Tips to Tackle Islamophobia – Abdul Nasir Jangda
2016 ICNA-MAS Annual Convention, Baltimore, MD
May 29, 2016
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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa salatu salam ala rasulillah, who Allah Allah, he was happy as Mary said, I'm Anakin rahmatullahi wa barakatuh.
So I know that in sha Allah, we have the keynote session that's coming up and then followed by the entertainment session. It's a very busy program and schedule here for the rest of the day. So you shall I'll try my best not to, you know, take up too much of your time, and I'm going to try to keep my comments concise, and wrap it up on time inshallah. So,
I was listening as the last few speakers were addressing the different elements dynamics, issues pertaining to Islamophobia. And overall the demonization, the vilification of Muslims. That is very unfortunately, and tragically that's occurring here in America. I was addressing the youth earlier today, this morning, upstairs, and I kind of made a little bit of a comment to them, I shared some thoughts with them. And I feel that it'd be very apt, it would be very appropriate to share those comments here as well.
And those comments were that I completely understand and recognize
the current challenge that is being faced by American Muslims. And Islamophobia is something that is very real. And it is something that is very serious. And it's something that is potentially very, very dangerous. I completely understand that totally, wholeheartedly agree with that. And I'm very grateful to different activists and organizations that are investing a lot of energy and resources and efforts into combating and countering an Islamophobic narrative that is being created in this country currently. That being said, part of,
I guess what you can say, my responsibility or what I see as my responsibility as a student of the tradition of the Quran of the prophetic tradition, and somebody who tries to who attempts to teach the Quran and the prophetic tradition, the Sunnah, the Islamic tradition, and an overall aim Islamic knowledge on to you know, to pass it on to our future generations. analysis is very, very important, when I analyze our current circumstance and situation, one thing that I find that is very, very fascinating is I do not find that saying, when it is said that this is the very first time are Muslims have not faced negativity like this ever before. I just don't find that to be a factual
statement. In light of our own history. We should take a look at our own history. Go all the way back to the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, look at how Muslims were vilified how Muslims were.
How Muslims were, a campaign was made against them. Propaganda was created against the Muslims at that time. The Muslims were demonized. At the time the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam many people don't know, but the word that they use to use for the Muslims the Muslims always called themselves Muslims, but at the time of the Prophet sallallahu sallam, if somebody else became a Muslim, what they would call him is sabi. And a sabi meant apostate
sabi means apostate,
when somebody would become a Muslim, they would say sebata
which means you have a plasticized you have abandoned the religion of your forefathers.
Right so there was vilification of Muslims before we have seen such rhetoric and such problems and forces before.
And the Sunnah of Allah subhanaw taala. In the world that we live in is we ask a lot for protection, but it's very possible and it's very likely that Muslims in the future might again deal with great negativity towards them. That's a real possibility.
What we need to focus on is what are we supposed to do in this situation? Now the previous speaker, I was listening very beneficially, it was very beneficial, talks about getting involved in the political process, becoming civically engaged, getting active, getting involved and being part of the solution. Not only just crying and complaining about the problem,
but what I'd like to talk about is, what can we personally do? What can we individually do for ourselves, for our families, for our children, for our communities? What can we do?
To make sure while the brother was talking about to make sure that we do not lose our footing as a community, what do I feel that we need to do, what I'd like to share is what, what we need to do, so that we don't end up losing our faith in the process.
I'm going to specifically address and talk to some of the older, you know, folks that are here in the audience in the congregation today.
We remember a world we grew up in a world where we were not the subject of every single negative news story.
I was thinking about this the other day, about our children, my own kids, even the teenagers that sometimes, you know, we see that we talked to that we work with.
And I was thinking about the fact they never knew a world before 911.
And what that basically means is that the entirety of their lives, being a Muslim is a curse is difficult.
And that's something we have to understand, and we have to plan for. And we have to strategize in regards to how are we going to fix this? How are we going to solve this? How are we going to make sure that our our children do not abandon their faith and their Islam, and so that future generations of Muslims can continue. So I'd like to present two things here today. Number one, is that we have to have, it is mandatory, it is necessary, it is compulsory, it is no longer a luxury or an option. We need very solid, grounded, serious knowledge of who we are and what we believe in what I'm talking about is knowledge of the D knowledge of the religion. We need Quranic literacy. We
need an understanding and an appreciation for the prophetic biography. We need a very thorough sound understanding of the deen and the religion. Because if our kids and us included if we do not know what our Deen is, what our religion is and what our Deen and religion says, We will become influenced by what other people tell us is our Deen in religion. And that's exactly what's happening right now. People are informed. They're listening to the radio, they're watching TV, they're reading the news. And Muslim, young Muslim people, even older Muslim people, I have them come to me and say brother,
I heard this this this, I read such and such. And they said, This is what Islam says. This is what Muslims believe in. How can we believe in that brother? Why do we believe in that brother. And it's completely false.
But a grown Muslim,
who otherwise is a very functional human being. I've had physicians, a doctor, somebody who has a decade of education in a very technical scientific field. This is a very intelligent person is saying, why do we believe in that brother? And I'm sitting there looking at the person saying, are you?
Have you lost your mind? Of course, we don't believe that. How could we ever believe such a terrible thing?
Well, I heard it on TV. So what?
But I can't believe and be mad at that person. I can't blame that person. You know why? Because nobody ever taught that person.
That person was never taught what the Quran says. That person was never taught about how the prophets a lot of them lived his life. We need to become serious about Islamic education. And I want to make this not so theoretical. I want to be practical. I want to make specific recommendations. The two things that every single Muslim needs to know needs to be educated before anything else is the Quran. And the Syrah the Sierra means the prophetic biography, how the prophets a lot of them lived his life.
So I actually have
a an action item for everyone that's here today. Number one from now, from today.
Till next year, maybe when you come here again, for the Ethernet convention from this exact convention to the next convention, if you want to look at it, we're basically maybe about what 10 days out from the month of Ramadan at the most a week or so out from the month of Ramadan. So from this Ramadan to next Ramadan, I want you to make a goal and Ramadan is the best time to start making some serious you know, to gain some
Serious ground to cover some serious ground in this goal and that goal is I will read the translation of the entire Quran from cover to cover from this Ramadan to next Ramadan everyone say inshallah
that's number one. And if you have children, I will read the translation of the Quran with my kids in its entirety from cover to cover from this year to next year, say inshallah. Otherwise everyone else is gonna keep telling us what we believe in.
When Allah is telling us what we believe in, and we're too busy listening to other people, we haven't read and make time for what Allah said.
So it's very important. Number two, number two is the seat or the life of the prophets a lot easier to get a seat on book, the very recently released a book that we utilized as a curriculum, we utilize it as a textbook as well at the column Syrah intensive. It's called revelation. It's a Syrah book called revelation. If you go to Revelation, the book.com, that's where you can purchase the book, you can go on Amazon, you can buy the book. And maybe it's not that book, any secret but but that's a good solid place to start. It's called revelation, get the Syrah book, and read the entirety of that book from cover to cover from this Ramadan to next Ramadan, say in sha Allah.
And I know that reading is apparently a thing of the past. A long, long time ago, our ancient ancestors, they used to read these things called books. Right? nobody reads books anymore today, right? So if somehow, some way you find that a little challenging, even for this era, if you go to Sierra podcast.com, or you can go to the Calum Institute website, lm institute.org QAM
if you go to that website, there is a free audio library, a Sierra podcast, you can find it on iTunes on your iPhone, you just go and you search Calum Institute, it'll come right up. So far. It's a series on the life of the prophets, a lot of them so you can listen to it and learn on the go. So far, we've done we have like 140 sessions, 140 episodes, and we're still in the seventh year of digital. We shot three more years to cover. Very detailed but start listening. But learn the Quran, learn the life of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, and know your deen for yourself. Don't you dare let anybody else tell you what your deen is. And let's tell you what you believe in and
what you don't believe in. That's number one. Number two, that is how we will solidify ourselves. That is how we will solidify the faith of our children, our families and even our communities. Once you start educating yourself, facilitate that education for other people, for the youth in your community, for the brothers, for the sisters, for the elderly, for the for the recently converted for those non Muslims who just want to know facilitate education, knowledge, you know, my teacher made a very profound point to us. A very, very long time ago, I have never been able to forget this point. The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam in an authentic narration from the Muslim Ummah,
Muhammad, he tells us, no prophets were sent between their Isa Ali Salaam, Jesus, and the Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu sallam, there was about 600 years between them, and no prophets were sent during that 600 years.
No divine revelation came down. The world became a very dark, terrible place for a while. And then the prophets a lot of a sudden was given divine inspiration. He was given revelation, he was given the Koran, and the very first time when the world had totally become corrupted, varel facade of
the world that become corrupted, and the very first time I lost $1 was sending His revelation. He was speaking into this world, not just the first revelation, not even just the first suitor, not even the first ayah the very first word that was spoken to this world to bring light, justice, fairness, dignity, honor back to this world. Allah said the word
and the word it means read.
It does not mean recite. It means read the difference between reciting and reading in Arabic tilava. And Kira is still our reciting you can do without comprehending what you're reciting.
But ikura read requires comprehension. know you're doing Dino your religion. The solution to the world's problems is to enlighten people to educate the minds and the hearts. The second thing and the last thing and I'll conclude with this
Is after we solidify our own faith our own mind and give other people those tools through educating them. The second thing, the second powerful resource that we have that Allah mentions in the second revelation to the prophets a lot sooner number 68 is called pseudo column. We're in the color of him, how we conduct ourselves, how we carry ourselves, how we behave, how we interact with people, that is a choice we always have.
I cannot control what other people say or do but I most definitely I most definitely
can decide how I want to speak or how I want to behave and conduct myself and there's one thing I want to share about character that the prophets a lot he some talks about. There's a narration I'd like to share with you. In Sahiba hottie I shout out the Allahu Allah Allah, the mother of the believers. She says, there was a Jewish delegation that came to visit the Prophet sallallahu sallam. When they came to visit him, they knew that the Muslim greeting was a salam o Alaikum. May peace be upon you.
But doing kind of a play on words trying to be sneaky.
Some of them in the group said Assam Aleykum
which is a curse word it means like may death be upon you.
And they said this
to the prophets a lot. He said.
Think about any one of us how we would react in that situation. I shadow the Allahu taala and her is much is a much greater believer than we are. She has much more love and a sense of, you know, respect and protection for the profits a lot easier than we do. Plus she's his wife. When she heard this, she could not contain herself. She got really upset.
And she says a SAML she says y la como Sam, will Lana. May death be upon you and me the curse of God be upon you people? How dare you curse the Messenger of Allah.
She says this, defending the prophets a lot. He said
the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam says millennia Shyamalan which means calm down. Easy. They're Ayesha easy, calm down. Relax brief. Mulholland brief.
And he says yeah Isha. In the law, you hippogryph coffin emrakul Lee. God loves dignity and grace
in how people conduct themselves he wants to see gracefulness and dignity and when they when they conduct themselves. For rasulillah she says, I said on messenger of God, I will come upon you. Did you not just hear what they said? they curse you?
And you tell me to be easy.
They curse you. I'm defending you. And I'm the one who's doing something wrong.
I want them to smile my follow the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said
to alikum I heard them loud and clear. I said and the same upon you.
But you did not have to selling your tongue. You were supposed to maintain your own dignity. The lesson from this that the profits a lot of them teaches us is what the profits a lot a Sam says in the law you Hebrew riff coffin America Li.
Allah loves to see gentleness, gracefulness dignity, in everything. Man, you are rifka you Herman hater, hater Kula, somebody who is deprived of the ability to remain graceful and dignified in the in the face of evil in the face of harshness and rudeness has been deprived of that which is good. The profits a lot of assumptions minority has the human rifki
somebody who is given the ability to be dignified and graceful, has been given a great blessing by Allah subhanaw taala and the list goes on and on and on. The prophets a lot a Selim says in the Rif palaia kuno fish a Illa Zanna who What are you in Xero MinJae in Illa Shana who the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam says, whenever you add gracefulness and dignity to something, it makes it beautiful. You can take the turn the ugliest situation beautiful by conducting yourself with grace and dignity.
And when you remove grace and dignity from a situation, it ruins it and it spoils it and makes it ugly. You can take the best situation
unpossible removed the gracefulness and the dignity from it and you will spoil it. You will ruin it.
And somebody might now say, But brother, we're dealing with an enemy. We're dealing with someone who wants to kill us. Who wants to see is dead.
I understand what you're saying. But you're talking about a situation where maybe there's some room for dialogue. What if this person that other group that other that objectifies you that vilifies you does not even see you as human. How do you work with that? Let me share a quick little story with you. When the Prophet salami seven went back to my cover for the conquest of Makkah. And Makkah came under the fold of Islam, Makkah entered into Islam. And the Muslims were in Macau doing tawaf and worshipping at the GABA, a young man who is still was holding a grudge against Islam and the Prophet sallallahu sallam. He went to one of the senior leaders of Mecca who was also still holding out and
so had hatred. And he said, Would you like for me to dispose of Mohammed salatu salam
Would you like me to take care of business
and the old man told him until a higher food Allah the young man's name was footballer he said go for it food Allah, you're the man for the job.
So for dollar said, I decided I was going to take care of the profits also, meaning I was going to assassinate him.
And he says I was very clever, I was very quick and sharp with like a knife like a dagger almost like,
like a small knife, a shift or something like that. I was very crafty. I was very good with that. So I knew how to stash something in my clothes, be able to get it out, stab somebody to death and stash it again. And nobody would even realize what I just did, until the body dropped. That's how good I was. So he says, I got my knife. I went to the garba. And I found the profits. A lot of the Muslims doing toe off, you know, when they circle around the Kaaba, they were doing throw off, they were worshipping, and the prophets and lobbies and was on the innermost part of the circle, close to the garba circling,
worshiping. So I joined into the crowd. And he says that I joined in on the outer rim. I didn't cut right through because I might have kind of spooked some people. So I slowly slowly inch my way inward around the circuit.
Until I was standing right next to the profits a lot. He said, I'm right next to him. And I started to think to myself, how am I going to make this move? How am I going to do this?
And while I was thinking that to myself, the province a lot he turns to me, and he says of Madonna.
Hey, isn't your name Phil Donna? And he said I was so taken aback. Why is he talking to me? How's he know my name? I just kind of stumbled a little I said yes, yes, I'm food Allah.
And then he said the prophets a lot of them looked at me straight into my eyes, very calm. He had this serenity about him. calmness about him and he said, Mother contatto had this knapsack.
What were you thinking about doing?
And he said, In that moment, I panicked. I freaked out. I lost my will do.
And in that moment, I started stammering and stumbling. I started saying like, oh, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, escuela. And nothing nothing. I don't know what you're talking about. I was just here worshipping like everybody else. And he said the prophets a lot of them then smiled at me. Flash me that big, beautiful smile that was more glorious than the full moon.
He smiled at me.
And then he placed his hand on my chest, which is like an expression of love. It's like putting your arm around someone shoulder and our culture.
So he placed his hand on my chest. And he said, it's tough here in LA.
Make good with God. ask Allah for forgiveness, make peace with Allah. Don't do this.
And he said no sooner that he had lifted his hand from my chest, that Islam had entered my heart and I became Muslim on the spot.
This was a would be assassin. This was someone carrying a knife for the Prophet sallallahu sallam.
But the grace, the calm
the gracefulness the calmness, the gentleness of the prophets a lot. changed that person's heart.
So yes, I'm suggesting I'm saying that we should be very calm.
graceful and thoughtful and dignified in how we handle this entire situation. And yes, I know there are people who want to do as harm. But there were people standing in the masjid standing next to the profits, a lot of them with a dagger in their hand who are about to kill, stab tried to stab, the prophets allowed him to death. And that's how the prophets a lot of them responded and that's how we handled it. And they accepted Islam on the spot. Allah subhanaw taala has that potential and all of us and it happened in the life of the Prophet ceylonese him to teach us a lesson that that is how we handle it. Educate yourself, educate your families, your communities, society, open people's minds
and hearts and win your way into their hearts through your grace and your dignity and the respect with which you conduct yourself desert blockade and Samaniego