Build Your Child’s Eman Through Nature

Fatima Barkatulla


Channel: Fatima Barkatulla

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Episode Notes

Muslim Family Adventures with Faisal Mohammed Abdul Khaffar

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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa salatu salam ala Rasulillah Dear brothers and sisters Assalamu alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

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And welcome to this special session. As you can see, we have brother Faisal with us. Let me tell you a little bit about brother Faisal. So this session is called Raising resilient hearts, the power of nature and adventure. And brother Faisal Muhammad afar is the founder of Muslim family adventures. And he's going to be speaking on the transformative impact of connecting with nature and embracing adventures in nurturing, resilient, thriving families.

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And, you know, in our times, there's so many our children are so distracted by screens and we're so busy, we live such busy lives.

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He's going to be speaking about how to foster a connection with nature with Allah's creation, and how that can benefit our children. Sharla So, without further ado, and I know that brother Faisal he wears many hats. Mashallah.

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So I haven't really done his profile justice.

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in Charlotte, for the Faysal please

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put please do go ahead and share your thoughts with us on raising resilient children, which is like an affair. Okay, Does that clarify Salam aleikum wa rahmatullah wa barakato. It is a great pleasure to be with you. And special thanks to shake up, Fatima for inviting me for this session. And to be honest, as I mentioned, to Sheikha Fatima, that this is the first time I'm formally talking about

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the adventure, nature, resilience and these types of things. But Hamdulillah, I've been running Muslim family adventures as a formal organization for the past three years. But before that, I've been taking

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families from Cambridge and other parts of the UK on adventures. And it's all started off in 2012. When I was invited by a group of friends at the Cambridge University Islamic society, they wanted to go on a camping trip. And they said, We don't have a driver, we don't have anybody to take as Bucha come with us. Prior to this, I had no connection at all, with

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with adventure activities, or I wasn't involved in climbing mountains, or niche activities or anything like that, although I was born in Sri Lanka, which is an island surrounded by the sea. But we rarely visited

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the sea. And if at all, we visited the sea, just just you know, walking, walking in the sea show and, and having some ice cream, but never really got involved in engaging in activities in the sea and the forest and the mountains. So this is a great lesson that, you know, even if you're not involved in any of these things, you can still get in it is never too late. So, in 2013, I was

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you know, close to 40 years old. Now, I'm, I'm 49.

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So by then, by then you were married. And you had Yeah, five kids.

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Yeah. So married and had five kids, four or five kids. handler we have seven now.

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And but, you know, that was the point where I was thrown into the deep end, we went on a wild camping trip. So this is not a camping trip where you know, you go to a campsite, you have some facilities such as toilets and washing facilities as such, but we went to Snowdonia, to the Snowdon mountain. And the group that was that event that I went with. There were a couple of people who are quite experienced and he was doing it as part of his mountain training leadership program. So he wanted to take a trip. So I said, Okay, why not? I would like to go and then I did I went and then we can't, on the first night, we climbed Snowdon halfway through and we did

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Can't and we stayed in tents we had to carry everything from, from our pens to sleeping bags to food, to cooking equipment to clothes to everything so we can't stream halfway down halfway up Mount Snowdon and the next morning we woke up and then we after praying and having some breakfast and stuff, we went up to this up to the summit of Milan Snowden spent some time and then we came back to the base and we again can't in a forest

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and you know, going toilet finding water cooking,

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filtering the water or heating up the water for drinking. And you know, this was the first time and that's when I really got

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in touch it really in touch with nature and love the mountains and then I thought after coming back home, bought some new tents. It's like okay, we are going as a family, not wild camping. But you know, we would go into campsite and spend some time in different national parks like Snowdonia National Park, Lake District National Park,

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Yorkshire Dales Peak District National Park, Pembrokeshire, Brecon, beacons, fuel, so we used to go quite often, and we are home educating families. So we were quite flexible in terms of time, and I was working from home doing my own things on business and stuff. So, you know, we'll never be not whenever we get time, but we may make time to go on family trips, and

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other home educating families in Cambridge saw us. So what we were doing, and they said, Oh, can we come with you? And that's how it started to grow as Yeah, yeah. So if this was 2013 1415 onwards, and then they told their families or friends who live in other cities, you know, Bristol, Birmingham, London, Manchester. And people were interested to join from different parts of the UK, and they will tell their families and friends and it became a large group. And at one point, we would go on trips, and there would be, say, 3040, even 50 families. And logistically, it was possible because everybody makes their way to a certain point, either a campsite, in a national

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park, so we'll spend three, four or five days exploring the places and,

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and it was still exploring the places we didn't really engage, engaging in adventure activities as much, but it was exploring the places and, and slowly, it turned out to be an organization which is Muslim family adventures. Now, it is a registered organization, which started in 2020. And this is the third year running as Muslim family adventures and basically, we saw how, as a family, we were transformed.

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And how our kids

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become became more resilient, more confident, more active,

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more curious, wanting to discover thing wanting to explore. And we saw this with the other families as an aside, I did more research into

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the effects of nature effects of adventure

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effects of really

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the mountain itself because

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as we know, as Muslims, you know, Allah subhanaw taala has mentioned quite a few times the mountains in the Quran

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that how humble The mountains are, how magnanimous The mountains are, how how much the mountains give stability to the earth. So So when when I thought of

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Muslim family adventures came up with the name Muslim family adventures, it does refer to it as like family outings or something like that. So we came up with the name Muslim family adventures and the logo that I have we decided to have for Muslim family Adventures is a mountain

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and and

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I, and all of us, and we actually love the mountains. And there's so much research that has been done done on the effects of the mountain, basically, if you if you Google

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mountains for the mind, and people this gives the people's experience of people who have anxiety issues, people who have depression, people who are

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so depressed that they are suicidal, and people who have bipolar disorder, people who have several are different types of mental health issues, how they change,

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and they've been going into, you know,

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taking medications and going into therapies for years and years and years, which hasn't been working for them. And then somebody tells them, why don't you go on a walk? Why don't you climb a mountain and then that that actually switches them I mean, transform them and they become totally different person after that. So the effect of the mountain as Allah says in the Quran as well you know, mountain

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you know, how humble they are that you know, if the Quran is revealed on the mountain it humble itself.

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And, and it seems to have an effect on all of us. So this is just the mountain and then the effect of the forest effect of the sea effect of everything around us effect of the whole nature effect of the stars, looking at the stars, looking at the sun, looking at not not directly looking at the sun, but looking at the Mount, especially at night. And some places we go to, such as Pembrokeshire Snowdonia, when the skies clear, you can see the Milky Way you can see literally literally millions of stars, you can you can see parts of the Milky Way when we go. And, you know,

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it was I was, so the result that I saw how we saw through this

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expeditions, adventures, outings is, was phenomenal in our family and others as well. And so I started researching more and more. And then I combined a few different things as a as a basis for Muslim family adventures, and this is even an acronym called function. So if you want to learn more about it, you could go to the website, Muslim family And there's more details, but I'll just briefly explain what this function is. So, function is F A N C, H, E M, seven letter letters. So, F stands for faith, and this is the foundation for

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Muslim family adventures. And, and and what we try to do is that

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bit tried to take two or three aspects of each of them and and introduce it, you know, you must have come across or your reverse must have come across the 8020 principle, Pareto rule, where were

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you 80% of the effort result produces 80% of the results, so it's not always 5050 50% effort produces 50% results. 80% effort produces 80% research, it's like, there are certain things there are certain core things so that's what we try to incorporate within Muslim family adventures that we try to take these core things when it comes to fate.

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Two things that stands out our gratitude, sugar, and Cebu and then we add our coal as well.

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So, in our programs, you know we when whenever we climb a mountain when we see the trees, when we are in the sea, doing sea kayaking or canoeing, when the lakes wherever we always talk about you know, the creation of Allah how Allah has created these things, how how much we should be grateful to Allah subhanho wa Taala and this again ties back to the Quran in the Quran, Allah tells so many times in different ways about the science of Allah. And you know, we have the ayat the Quran, we have ayat in the in the universe and within ourselves as well. And we always try to tie this and then patients are steady states.

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Foster's is quite key as well. Because

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when it comes to adventure

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full of Muslim family adventure is, is

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So people shouldn't be scared when I say difficulty, but

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you're out of your comfort zone, aren't you? I know.

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That's, that's, that's, that's what it is to really grow, you have to be out of your comfort zone is very different to a hotel room. Yes.

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And one of the first things that that we do is when people come by we don't have hotels, what we do is just to get more people coming in because for most people, going straight into the tents is a bit difficult. It's like too far away from their comfort zone. So what we do now is we have hostels where 2030 families come together.

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And you know, it's facilities are basic, but you know, it's it's indoor area, at least for staying just for sleeping, and then we spent the rest of the day

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in the outdoors. So, yeah, suburb and

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suburb and telecoil.

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And we always have tie these two verses from the Quran. So we have regular reminders from the Quran. And we, we we want to also make sure you know, we start from the Quran. So, you know, it could be Stories of the Prophets from the Quran lessons from the Quran story of asiyah story of Marian stories of you know, different people that Allah has mentioned in the Quran because it's not just the Prophets and Messengers were mentioned in the Quran as examples. There are individuals mentioned as mentioned as well, you know, in Surah Yaseen you have, you know, person coming from the edge of the city to tell the people that, you know, these messengers are and he was killed, that he tells

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the people that, oh, I wish that they know how Allah has honored me. So there are so many

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people who are not prophets and messengers mentioned in the Quran as well. And we pray about these stories and we pray together, we do things together. So just to that was on, on on faith, and when it comes to adventure, so it's to do with challenging ourselves.

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That is key.

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If there is no challenge, no difficulty, no discomfort, no uncertainty, no hardship, no pain,

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then people don't grow. Yeah.

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You know, you just just I just want to comment on what you've just said. Yes. I think, you know, we're so stuck with with the faith element. We're stuck in the concrete jungles aren't we like? Yes. Yeah. And this is why, like, when I get cold phone calls from older kids who or people whose children have really like lapsed from the den, you know, or they're questioning even existence, right? Yeah, there are people, young people like that.

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It makes me wonder like,

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I think the more human beings are disconnected from Allah's creation, the less war that we feel, basically, because I think it's war doesn't that sense of awe of Allah's creation, how small we are, and how great this universe is how great the creator must be. I think, if a child feels that from a young age, and experiences that gets away from the screens gets away from this concrete, basically unnatural living conditions that we humans have created, and sees.

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Gets back in touch with greenery, because I think greenery is also part of a human psyche. Yeah, yeah.

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Absolutely lovely. Yeah. being grounded touching the ground actually touching the ground. I know that there's like these rich people now. They actually every morning they take their shoes and socks off. And

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yeah, they put their feet on the ground. I don't I don't know exactly what the benefits of it are. But

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I mean, people are finding this out now. You know that they've been so disconnected from nature, and then needing to reconnect. And then the second thing you mentioned,

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was about adventure. Yeah. And getting out of your comfort zone. I think. Again, it's so easy, isn't it too?

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We wrap our children in cotton wool. And so when the first time they feel any kind of adversity as adults, they they'll just fall apart because they've never they've never had to do without we've never had to be inventive or creative or, you know, find a creative solution out of a problem, etc. So, yeah, it sounds like you're doing some really important work there. Mashallah. Yeah.

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Yeah, when it comes to adventure, so it's because sometimes

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adversity can come without,

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you know, involuntarily, you know. And one example was that

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in on 31st of January, this year, my son, Ibrahim, he was met with a

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terrible car accident.

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He was actually he was in Palestine, he was in Jerusalem.

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And there were some shootings happening while he was at Alexa and handler. He said, all of that and took the flight back to Luton Airport, Luton.

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And then he took the car from Luton to

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Birmingham where he was living.

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And then he met with an accident

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on the motorway and one and, you know, car was like, it's unrecognizable. And he was sent to the

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he was taken to the county hospital. And at 5am. In the morning, two police police officers came to our house and knocked on the door saying, Open the door, it is the police, we want to talk to you. And they said that this person was involved in major traffic road traffic accident. It could be it could be your son, we don't know.

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It could be your son. And what they said. So we were asking questions, you know, easy, easy, alive.

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They said, We don't know anything, just rushed to the hospital.

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And, and, you know,

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I'm the lambing.

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I mean, we weren't able to cope with that situation. And, and what followed afterwards. And, and, and they also said, I mean, then the police officers got some more information saying he's, he's got a brain injury. And, you know, we couldn't imagine Okay.

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Accident here, major accident, brain injury in the hospital.

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So, and, and then when we went, he was in a coma. And

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all this together and, and hamdulillah as a family,

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the hamdulillah it's from Allah that we managed to audit the doctors, when we went, they said,

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you know, we don't know, we have to wait and see this is brain injury, and it's brain injuries in such a way that it's not just, you know, one place that they could operate this diffuse axonal injury or something, which means that it's all over small, small, small injuries, it's all over the brain.

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And, and, because, because of, you know, people's drive and everything, he fully recovered, or the doctor said that, you know, they can't do anything about it, he just had latency fully recovered. And, and, and, and I've handled, I think, I think we were able to cope better because of all that will lead to the difficulties that we've gone through

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in terms of challenges, and sometimes it is, it is frightening, for example, you know, we've gone on adventures as especially two months before, before the accident in January in December, when we went to the Lake District.

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In winter, this was 25th of December. So it was one month before and

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whole family. I was taking a group and then we went up to a mountain and we were coming down and I made sure that everybody else was leaving, except for my family and and two of my nieces and nephews

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and the we lost our way.

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We lost our way and it became dark

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and it was very cold. It was starting to rain and there is gales and there was wind and and it's not just

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Just me. But so, you know, this is the kind of experience and handler, because we've got experience and stuff, we knew how to call the emergency services. 999 just as backup, while we were coming down and stuff, and, and when everybody came down, and the to that my nephew and niece who has come for the first time, and they changed as well, that through this experience, so difficulty raised some element of danger, challenge.

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Pain, this really makes you resilient. Definitely. And again, if you see the people in Gaza, Gaza now, what is happening there in some of the people, you know,

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unless they have these residents, you know, they can't, but Subhanallah the way they're coping and, and if if they were like people living in,

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in the comfort in London, or if something like this can't, it would be very, extremely difficult to cope with. But they have. So so. So, you know, today, we are so much within our comfort zones, and we don't want to venture out of our comfort zone. So this, because we had that benefit of seeing the results. And, and, and then now there's lots of research being done on the benefits of nature benefits or adventure because you know, people people have all these things, but they still feel empty, and they still have so much of mental health issues. And then on top of that physical, physical health issues.

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And the schools, like for example, nowadays, schools are telling parents, they're having meetings and bringing parents in and saying, Look, girls are getting depressed. Because of Instagram, you know, like, being addicted to Instagram, seeing images of so called beautiful women, or, or at least, you know, pictures that have been changed and manipulated. Yeah. And constantly comparing themselves to that, not just to not to just to the physical appearance of other people, but even just their fake lifestyles, you know, that. Obviously, they're not showing the reality of their lifestyles is just like

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the curated version.

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It's causing people anxiety, depression, it's causing problems between couples, because husbands and wives now, instead of looking at each other into each other's eyes, you know, they're literally looking at their phones, they've, their phones are more entertaining, the phones, give them more, I guess,

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instant kind of dopamine hits, right. So

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this is causing rifts and problems in families. So I guess going into nature, I guess there's no Wi Fi there, right.

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There's no Wi Fi there, but there is Wi Fi in the hospitals. But I mean, we we engaged engaged in activities throughout the after we come back we have for example, workshops, different workshops, for example, mindfulness workshop,

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you know, where we engage in mindfulness session, we have Quran workshops, in a sense, you know, reading the Quran, reading the translation of the Quran, we pray together, we eat together, then we have journaling. We have

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separate sessions, you know, fitness sessions, yoga,

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pilates, so are the basic would you be able to

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do things quickly go through the letters that you were mentioning? Yeah, yes. And then also, could you just tell us, like, if somebody's never been on something like this before, and you know, some of our parents, they're not in the UK. Okay. So of course, many of them are so we should all join you in Sharla. One day, you're too trips, but if parents from different places, you know, if they can't join you, if they blind to get started? Yeah, perhaps you could give some advice about like, how would you get started? Sure, I'm sure. Yeah. But maybe if you could go through the briefly the letters because I'm curious to know what they stand for. Yes, so. So that's because every letter I

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could elaborate so much, so try to be

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Can you

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just so we don't fake F and A adventure and and the third one is

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as you mentioned before, because it's that interconnectedness of everything, you know, because everything is in harmony, Allah mentions in the Quran that you know, all the creation of Allah, the mountain, the sun and the moon and the animals and the trees, everything makes us be Allah

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and, and this becomes opportunity for us to be with everything that may just be Allah, everything that praise Allah so so you know, we

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there's a song that we were very passionate about when we releasing the song as well this is done by an A sheet that was done by somebody called Hamza Robertson, it's called the mountains it starts off by

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I gave my son arms to the mountain.

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And then it ends by saying, We should be like the mountain places God and never complaints. So it ties back to, you know,

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being grateful to Allah subhanaw taala and, and also being patient.

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And, and, you know, it's the nature of connectedness, because nature is therapeutic.

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And it helps us to see the bigger picture. So one of the biggest issues that we have as families and living in the cities is that

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we don't see the bigger picture, because we are always tuck media like constricted

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and, you know, but when we go out into the nature

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because he you know, in those situations and within the cities, we are always looking down either you know, looking at the phone or so, when you go into the nature, it helps us to

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look up.

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Raise your eyes up.

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Because, because, you know, you see, especially when you when you climb up Mount a mountain, say for example, Mount Snowdon, which is the highest mountain in England and Wales. You see, it's a different perspective. And, and the training that we get from here, you know, it stays within us. And then when you come back as well, that's why many people say that when you come back, you see things differently, because your perspective changes. And that's why it's so important to spend time in

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And I've seen on your on your website, so is the power of faith, the power of adventure, the power of nature, and the next one is the power of community. Yeah, power of community, and community community because, again, Allah says that, you know, everything is in communities, animals, bees, everybody, human beings. So when people become individualistic, that's when things go wrong terribly. So, so when we get together, and and, and the nice thing about this is that people come from different backgrounds, not like, you know, always friends go together. When we get

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these new people,

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there are people who have to keep coming back and, but But generally, it's new people, you know, they will be held back 1617 adventures in a year. So people usually come one family may come back three or four, not every everyone. So you constantly get new people coming in. And so

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So, so, what we do is that

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from the outset, it is like one big family. It's like, it's not like MFA, Muslim family ventures, Pfizer is providing services to all of you, you don't have to do anything that is not like that is that everybody has to be involved in cleaning. Everybody has to be responsible for keeping things helping each other. And especially in in difficult circumstances, when especially when you know, you have a family with five kids. The youngest is three months old. They're also climbing the mountain. They've got things to play. There's a two year old three year old so

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In these types of situations, people really come together, they help each other. It's not like, you know,

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seeing people, I mean, that's the best example. I've seen people on Facebook and stuff, but even this thing each and but this is in a, in a difficult circumstance to use is really see people bonding with each other. I can imagine. Yeah.

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They say that if you if you really, to prove that you really know someone, you have to have either done business with them or traveled with them, right? Yeah, the thing just going one step further, this is difficult circumstances, challenges, adversity, where each one depends on the other. For example, for example, let me tell you, if somebody is rock climbing,

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rock climbing, and, you know, there's harness and there's rope, and there's what's called be like, who would control and who would look up. So in this second, we do have instructors, but it's, it's, it's teamwork, that somebody has to hold the road, and that person was climbing the rock has to rely on trust them. So this builds trust among each other.

00:36:21--> 00:36:35

So it builds trust, and people become very generous, and, you know, people who would generally not be comfortable sharing stuff and sharing food, and they just want to share and

00:36:36--> 00:36:46

extra friendly and caring, and, and this really rubs into the children, because they they don't see this type of

00:36:47--> 00:37:11

behavior much where your people are, people are individualistic, you know, they want to keep things for themselves or want to share, and you see this happening right in front of your eyes. And you even you just because everybody's like that you you even you participate, even if you're not used to this. And so

00:37:13--> 00:37:23

the next one is health, and then the power of health, the power of education, the power of the mind. Yeah, so health, is

00:37:25--> 00:37:32

it ties into what I said before, I mean, we focus on physical health, and, and mental health.

00:37:34--> 00:37:38

In fact, we are actually trying to collaborate with

00:37:39--> 00:38:04

universities, and there's some talk going on with the NHS as well, which is called Social prescribing, there is a within the NHS and within within the health community, and there are certain things that the hospitals or doctors can't help. So they prescribe, you know, nature activities, mountains. So again,

00:38:05--> 00:38:15

you know, for our own sanity for our own mental health, and also physical health. So that's what he is. So we promote, basically promote health

00:38:17--> 00:38:18

and education and the,

00:38:20--> 00:38:29

it tell us, if you could just tell us briefly because I would like to open up, you know, for our brothers and sisters to ask any questions as well.

00:38:30--> 00:38:36

So, So, education is is is about real world,

00:38:37--> 00:38:38


00:38:40--> 00:38:47

education. So you learn by doing that is one big philosophy in MFA.

00:38:49--> 00:38:55

Can you just tell us what kinds of things do you do, like, Give us just five or six ideas have like,

00:38:56--> 00:39:01

practical in terms of problem solving skills?

00:39:04--> 00:39:21

Awareness, skills, just being aware and self awareness plus awareness of your surrounding. And, you know, we do lots of navigation stuff, navigation, and this becomes a metaphor for life as well. You know, how to how to navigate life.

00:39:24--> 00:39:30

Yeah, so we try to connect each of the scales into, you know, bigger metaphors.

00:39:32--> 00:39:53

As I mentioned, the mountain metaphor, you know, how we should be like the mountain. So, navigation and how to navigate problem solving obstacles. So these are fundamental life skills that comes through within within the education and, and also curiosity.

00:39:54--> 00:39:56

Exploration discovery.

00:39:58--> 00:40:00

Me let's jump on to the

00:40:00--> 00:40:00

otherwise, because

00:40:02--> 00:40:10

my mind is right. And, you know, this basically comes back to changing our mindset.

00:40:12--> 00:40:27

Sometimes people see oh, it's very difficult for anybody to change. But yeah, if you if you change your mindset mindset can be changed within seconds, if the right circumstances are there.

00:40:29--> 00:40:39

And this is how, you know, this whole, whole philosophy helps people to have what they called a growth mindset.

00:40:41--> 00:40:51

You know, people have what we call a fixed mindset, people think that we are born with, we're born with certain talents,

00:40:52--> 00:41:01

we can improve, that's how and, and because of that, they fear failure, they think that failure is a reflection of themselves.

00:41:02--> 00:41:08

Whereas with growth mindset, failure is an opportunity to learn and improve.

00:41:10--> 00:41:13

Because with growth mindset, you

00:41:14--> 00:41:21

say that you can, you can persist, persevere, learn, improve,

00:41:22--> 00:41:31

and grow. So, so, so when we do things, yeah, we don't fear failure.

00:41:32--> 00:41:39

Obviously, we do risk assessments and stuff, but we encourage people to do things. Now, sometimes, it's

00:41:41--> 00:41:43

trying to try things and try new things out.

00:41:45--> 00:41:51

So, you know, fear is what stops many people from moving forward.

00:41:53--> 00:41:53


00:41:55--> 00:42:03

yeah, so because we have the support, we have the encouragement of the people around us. We have instructors, and we have

00:42:04--> 00:42:16

the support, people are more inclined to try new things out. And once they do it, they're comfortable. They you know, they go on to the next next one, next one, and then their comfort zone

00:42:17--> 00:42:18


00:42:20--> 00:42:31

You know what I mean? Yes, absolutely. Yeah. I think it's always the first time that's the hardest, right? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So that's the seventh function phage.

00:42:34--> 00:42:39

Education in the mind, the philosophy of the organization? Yes.

00:42:40--> 00:42:54

So Brother face a while, I'm going to ask the brothers and sisters, if you have any questions, please do type them in the chat or raise your hand, there's a button where you can raise your hand if you'd like to ask, verbally, you know, yourself, orally.

00:42:56--> 00:43:12

In the meantime, while we're waiting for people to think of questions, or to type them, could you just tell us what your advice is for somebody who's just starting out? Like, you know, they used to going on holiday in a hotel, maybe, you know, to a nice location?

00:43:14--> 00:43:17

Even if they went to the Lake District, they probably stay in a hotel.

00:43:18--> 00:43:36

What would you say? Like, it's a bit of an unknown, you know, never been on a camping site, for example. What would you suggest to somebody like that? Where would where could they start, like in the UK? Where could they start, for example? Yes, it's a very good question. And, you know,

00:43:38--> 00:43:45

the real issue may not be staying in the hotel itself. However, what they do during the daytime,

00:43:47--> 00:43:58

because many people were in the code to the national parks like the Lake District, they just go sightseeing. Never do anything. But just

00:44:01--> 00:44:06

so what I would recommend is that if people are actually going,

00:44:08--> 00:44:16

just because I remember before 2013 Before I first climbed a mountain, as I mentioned, Snowden,

00:44:17--> 00:44:26

we have been to Snowdonia, many times. Yeah. But never it It never occurred to us that we should climb a mountain.

00:44:28--> 00:44:42

We will take you know the heritage train and then walk or go and see the castles. Go and go and go to a park when she see a waterfall. Never get into a waterfall.

00:44:44--> 00:44:54

So it's changing from just seeing to do immersing, immersing, immersing yourself. So,

00:44:56--> 00:44:59

say for example, and this can be done because there are the

00:45:00--> 00:45:13

You know, one of the easiest things to get into is getting into the habit of walking. Hiking. Yeah, yeah. And this can be done, you know, there are parks, look at local parks.

00:45:14--> 00:45:45

And, you know, because we're so used to taking public transport or car or whatever, and we're not used to walking so you know, you could go even, even within London, inland if you're if somebody's living in London just going outside of the Surry Hills. And to the south side, there's lots of beaches and stuff. And then what I would recommend that the second step is

00:45:47--> 00:46:07

their adventure activity providers, local providers, does, this wouldn't be like, you know, going with MFE with Muslim families, but at least you will get to test have an experience of what adventure look like say for example, a kayaking adventure or crop line being or abseiling or,

00:46:08--> 00:46:35

or a canoeing or if it is a coastal surfing, because, you know, sometimes we go to coastal regions like Pembrokeshire National Park, or Devon. And then we do different types of activities. So each of these activities, the, the, the skills, and the type of confidence is gifts is different. Yes.

00:46:37--> 00:46:37


00:46:39--> 00:46:47

try, go ahead. Alright, I was gonna mention, there's something that came to me that so I've been camping once, okay. properly, like, you know,

00:46:48--> 00:46:56

and it was with a Muslim organization as well, you know, we're taking families and I thought that's a good way to get into it.

00:46:58--> 00:47:15

And the thing that really struck me the most was, yeah, first of all, there were a lot of mosquitoes at night. Okay. So, again, getting used to the kind of, you know, like, getting out of your comfort zone, being able to deal with that. The first night, I couldn't sleep, I remember,

00:47:16--> 00:47:17

at all.

00:47:18--> 00:47:37

But by the second or third night, something happened, I feel like suddenly, my, my body and brain and all of our bodies and brains were attuned with, with the psyche, you know, with with night and day, our circadian rhythm was kind of reset almost right.

00:47:38--> 00:47:43

Because we didn't have a lot of we didn't have like, torches and things like that.

00:47:45--> 00:47:57

But obviously, like, when we're living in the city, you can stay up late at night, right? Because there's light, something as simple as that you didn't have there. So as soon as it started to get dark,

00:47:58--> 00:48:07

everyone was just getting ready would have a campfire and stuff like that. Everyone was just getting ready to wind down, go to sleep.

00:48:08--> 00:48:11

And there was something so natural about that.

00:48:13--> 00:48:30

As the light started coming in the morning, you wanted to get up because like you want to make the most of this light, right? Yeah, yeah. So I think even just something as simple as that getting back in tune with your natural sleep and wake rhythm.

00:48:31--> 00:48:45

I found that was so powerful just from that one experience. Yeah, Mashallah. Yeah, it's it's, you know, as I said, as you have experience, and others would have experienced that it's the transformative effect is immense.

00:48:46--> 00:48:46


00:48:47--> 00:48:51

you really need to do to see

00:48:54--> 00:48:55


00:48:57--> 00:49:24

I just thought it would be a good idea to show us some pictures to reverse. Would that be okay, can I show and we've got a couple of questions that have come in as well. Sure. Should I ask you them now? Yeah, yeah. So we have a question. Where I live in the USA, there is no such organization for Muslims. What would be your advice to get into it?

00:49:26--> 00:49:27

Make your own

00:49:28--> 00:49:46

make your own organization. Yeah. At least start with your own family. Right. Yeah, yes, yes. Yeah. I mean, that's, that's how we started. There wasn't anything like this before in the UK. And this is all I mean, in terms of families, this is the this is the one which is you know, kind of like regular.

00:49:47--> 00:49:53

Yeah, and this started just our own family and it's about taking the initiative.

00:49:54--> 00:49:59

And then people people see and people would like to want to join us join you and

00:50:00--> 00:50:31

I'm sure you can find what another one or two families so you can it can be just a day trade, it doesn't have to be start off small, right? Small, wouldn't you say Brother face of that a lot of countries like USA Britain, they do have national parks which job. It's not like, you know, going into the jungle, like literally it's very well kept campsite as well and things like that. So maybe, you know, look up one of those campsites

00:50:32--> 00:50:42

somewhere that is already recognized as a place of beauty and somewhere where they used to visitors so that its facilities and things right. Yeah, yeah.

00:50:44--> 00:51:08

It could be, you know, if people are not comfortable yet to go into camp again. So it could be just a cottage, you know, it really depends on what you do. So sleep wise, you could be sleeping in a tent or hostel or cottage or even a hotel, you know, if that's what you want. But it's really what you do. Yes.

00:51:10--> 00:51:20

You know, during the day and in the evenings, and you know, you could be staying in a hotel, but at night, you spend a couple of hours going to

00:51:22--> 00:51:25

this designated dark sky areas,

00:51:26--> 00:51:36

in the national parks. So you have 20 minutes, 30 minutes, and then you just spent two hours looking at the sky looking at the Milky Way.

00:51:37--> 00:52:05

So you can do so many things. You don't have to, you know, leave everything to get into this. You can you can still stay in a hotel if you'd like to. But but do things that would that would that would help instead of just, you know, just hosting, holidaying and sightseeing. And so basically it comes back to being purposeful.

00:52:07--> 00:52:08

Going with the purpose

00:52:12--> 00:52:26

do you get what I mean? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So so so since just to share my own experience, so since then, my sons are very good. They like, you know, camping and things with their friends. And

00:52:27--> 00:52:32

I haven't been able to convince everyone in the family to come again. Okay, so camping.

00:52:34--> 00:52:35

I'm working on it. I'm working on it.

00:52:37--> 00:52:57

But we have been, like you said, like, you know, live staying at a small hotel in Lake District or something. And then, like you said, making an itinerary to getting a guidebook, a guidebook having an itinerary where we literally have to climb mountains, hills, start off with something a bit small, you know, to have

00:52:58--> 00:52:59

a very difficult mountain.

00:53:01--> 00:53:04

Make sure you brought your good shoes and all of that, you know.

00:53:06--> 00:53:21

So do things that are there's something to make everyone happy, I think, you know, like, you could have an element of holidaying if that's what you want sightseeing. But then have you have times and days where you're literally hiking and

00:53:22--> 00:53:25

going into the unknown a little bit. Right. Yeah.

00:53:27--> 00:53:40

Yeah, and this is, you know, there's so many sides. So as one of the beavers asked the question in the USA, so, you know, just Google national parks, and

00:53:42--> 00:53:46

now, it's not very difficult to find places to go.

00:53:48--> 00:53:59

And just making a day trip to start with, you know, just within two hours drive. And I'm sure you can find places.

00:54:01--> 00:54:18

Yeah, I mean, in America, they have like, you know, the Grand Canyon. Yeah, amazing places and I know I know people who go to the Grand Canyon and just go hiking you know, yeah, yeah. I mean, we don't even have we don't have we've got beautiful scenery, Mashallah.

00:54:20--> 00:54:24

You tend not to have a spectacular things that is that right?

00:54:26--> 00:54:36

Yeah, so, so another thing I would say is changing the mindset because many people go they go to these places as tourists, right?

00:54:38--> 00:54:52

Yep. If you go as a tourist is a different thing. But if you go as an adventurer, that's a different thing. What's the difference if you could put your finger on it? The difference is that, you know,

00:54:53--> 00:54:57

Adventurer want to do things. tourists want to see things

00:55:01--> 00:55:25

And, you know, if you take, for example, in the Lake District, there's Lake Windermere is a very touristic place. Yes, people come there just want to spend time, you know, have scones? Yeah, yeah. I mean, which is, I wouldn't say it's a bad thing. It's a good thing. But, but that doesn't give any of the benefits that I mentioned. Yes.

00:55:27--> 00:55:42

Only when you get immersed in nature, get involved with nature, do things with nature, that you know, all these benefits come. So this is a quite important distinction. Don't be a tourist be an adventurer.

00:55:44--> 00:55:55

Wow, I like that. Don't be a tourist be an adventure. Yes. We've got another question. I don't really understand it. But maybe the sister or brother could explain.

00:55:56--> 00:56:01

Do you come across people who take public transport? How did they manage?

00:56:03--> 00:56:10

Yes. Traveling to camping, I guess or camping sites with public transport? Yeah, yeah. I mean,

00:56:13--> 00:56:27

you know, these places, the especially the national parks in the UK, they're well connected as well. For example, you could take a train from London, Euston station to Lake District,

00:56:29--> 00:56:41

in two hours, you can get to Lake District in two hours by train, right. And so what we do, generally people who come they, the, they make their own way private transport in their cars.

00:56:43--> 00:57:00

And some people come by train and stuff, some people take the coach. And whenever possible, you know, we pick them up from the closest Train, train station, or take an Uber or a taxi or, you know, and once we are there,

00:57:02--> 00:57:19

we have several cars, and you know, we share cash and stuff. So, so, you know, yeah, public transport is, is fine. And most places are well connected. And, you know, you can choose to go to places where they are connected if you don't have private transport.

00:57:23--> 00:57:45

Great, yes. If there are any other questions, please do post them brothers and sisters. Otherwise, brother, faithful. If you'd like to share, you've got the permission to share the screen. So, okay, if you'd like you can do it. If you'd like me to put something up. Yeah, just I know. I just wanted to share some photos. That's it. Okay.

00:57:49--> 00:57:59

You've really inspired me definitely, like, to be honest, I've been meaning to join your group for a long time, but I just haven't managed to

00:58:00--> 00:58:02

the timing has never been quite right. But

00:58:03--> 00:58:08

do you have any planned soon inshallah? Yeah, so generally?

00:58:09--> 00:58:17

Not generally. Always there during school holiday times. Okay, data for everybody? Yes.

00:58:20--> 00:58:38

And the next one, usually we do it in December as well. But because, I mean, this time we ourselves as family, we're going to Sri Lanka to see our families, my my family and wife's family. So you're not doing anything this December, sort of next one is in February halftone.

00:58:41--> 00:59:11

Can you see the screen? Yes. So yeah, just quickly explain these photos. I mean, the one you can see it's hard. You're our daughter, a sixth child. And so she was climbing Mount Snowdon and one in front is my wife, Fatima. And, and hogere Yeah, when she climbed Mount Snowdon when she was three years old. So this is when she was climbing three years old. Wow. Yeah. And

00:59:12--> 00:59:41

this is, you know, group of families in in, in, in the Lake District. And when you do activities, such as you know, for example, canoeing and stuff, we go from one place to another place this is this is a place where the ruins of a Roman forts so they're exploring that, and then they will get back into Canada. So we make it interesting as well. Learn history of the places where we go to

00:59:42--> 00:59:43


00:59:45--> 00:59:47

So this is my daughter Asya.

00:59:50--> 00:59:58

She loves mountain biking. And so this is I think they've been to so many places. This is I think, in Snowdonia.

01:00:00--> 01:00:08

Mountain biking in Snowdonia. This one. Yeah. group of people this was in October.

01:00:10--> 01:00:13

No, this was in August this year

01:00:14--> 01:00:24

climbing Mount Snowdon. Wow. Yeah. And oh, this is a group of kids. This was when we met in Pembroke share.

01:00:25--> 01:00:32

Just this. Right next. This is on the cliffs facing the sea.

01:00:35--> 01:00:39

This is this is in Dutch National Park.

01:00:40--> 01:00:44

So dark mode is very famous for this dark mode ponies.

01:00:45--> 01:00:53

So you have rocks and ponies. These are wild ponies, but still managed to play with them.

01:00:55--> 01:00:58

Awesome. Yeah, this family's

01:01:00--> 01:01:02

in Devon.

01:01:05--> 01:01:13

This is again in Devon. So in this in this adventure, we had 40 families 170 people

01:01:15--> 01:01:29

getting together so. So this is not all of them at the same time, because some others were work quite far ahead. And some so this is a picture of people I could get hold off at this point.

01:01:30--> 01:01:31

And yeah, this is

01:01:33--> 01:01:45

yeah, sorry. Go ahead. Yeah. Sisters, Zainab is asking, what's the cost range? And can a person go alone? Yeah, good question. So we get we get

01:01:47--> 01:01:59

families mostly. But we have singles coming as well. Yeah. So people can come alone. Or they can come with family. So it's open for everybody all day, this call Muslim family adventures.

01:02:00--> 01:02:30

Now the face of how can I ask you? How has this changed you as a person? Because you said you started at like 40 something? Right? Yeah, yeah. So before that, were you more of a hotel person? Yeah, more of a hotel person? Yes. That's, that's how it was. I mean, I was, you know, brought up in Sri Lanka. All the factories were given. And you know, even from going from house to house to school, home to school, you know, drive a car, everything. So,

01:02:31--> 01:02:41

like a black Chevy. And then, yeah, so it's, it's it's major transformation. And now Now, this is why I'm so passionate about is to,

01:02:42--> 01:02:53

you know, to, you know, introduce it to more and more people. Yes. So how has it changed? You tell us some examples, like of your personality or your

01:02:54--> 01:02:56

self as a father, maybe?

01:02:58--> 01:03:05

Yeah, in terms of how we bring up our kids, it changed a lot.

01:03:06--> 01:03:14

And in terms of giving our kids some kind of independence and

01:03:15--> 01:03:23

self esteem, and I know self esteem, we've talked about that before. I don't know, did I talk to you about self esteem? But anyway,

01:03:25--> 01:03:26

in terms of, you know,

01:03:27--> 01:03:37

it has given me so much confidence. I mean, that's one big thing in terms of confidence, you know, when I think of an idea or

01:03:38--> 01:04:04

think of doing something, I have the confidence that I can do it, no matter how difficult it is. So there through through this journey, there are other projects that I've been thinking about and stuff, Inshallah, which are, you know, let you know, soon. So in terms of confidence in terms of bringing up children in terms of, Okay, this one here?

01:04:06--> 01:04:16

Yes, is is this, this was in August. This was our son Musa cause who just turned one year old.

01:04:18--> 01:04:23

And then, you know, he went up the top of Snowdon. Wow.

01:04:24--> 01:04:38

Yeah. So it took about four hours to get there and took another three hours to come down. So hamdulillah even even he seemed to be enjoying, he's saying he's going telling he's going up is pointing his finger.

01:04:39--> 01:04:41

Yeah. And

01:04:44--> 01:04:45

yeah, in terms of, you know,

01:04:47--> 01:04:52

in terms of my perspective, and focusing on things which are important.

01:04:54--> 01:04:57

So it's changed me in so many different ways.

01:05:00--> 01:05:03

and these are, you know, a lovely.

01:05:04--> 01:05:08

Yeah. So this is the experience. So it's it's, it's,

01:05:09--> 01:05:17

this is one benefit in going with a group, especially Muslim Muslim group is that you get to experience these things, you know,

01:05:18--> 01:05:32

many of the activities I mentioned before, you could join some, some activity providing do with them. But you know, it's not the full experience of helping each other and getting to know each other doing things together.

01:05:34--> 01:05:57

sharing the joy and the pain and the challenges and everything and, and what happens with after each adventure is that, you know, people become lifelong friends. And independent of the adventure, they visit each other from different cities like Cambridge, Manchester, Birmingham, London, people come from Scotland as well.

01:05:59--> 01:06:21

And he's, you see, you know, it's all ages from we have three months old babies coming to, you know, grandfathers and grandmothers coming. So, you know, teenagers youngsters, these are two of them. My sons and yeah, yeah.

01:06:23--> 01:06:31

Fathers, and we've seen a surge of single parents coming. Really? Yeah. So lots of

01:06:32--> 01:06:56

lots of single mothers, I mean, have single parents, with their kids. Yeah. With their kids with their kids. Yeah, yeah. And, and I think somehow this word has spread that, you know, this seems to be some kind of way for them to connect with families, because, you know, the difficulties single parents faces. So we have single fathers come in single, single mothers coming.

01:06:57--> 01:07:05

And what it's like having an extended families and extended family. And that's exactly what we said, this is one big family.

01:07:07--> 01:07:32

And we definitely need that in our times. Because even those of us who have relatives tend to be quite disconnected, you know, yeah, it takes a lot of effort to get together and stuff. Yeah. And the other thing is, you know, people of all backgrounds come as well. So we have, you know, everybody basically, lots of converts come, you know, English,

01:07:33--> 01:07:45

African, and then Asian, Turkish, Arab, everybody, and the nice thing about that is that everybody makes us with each other, whereas when we live in a

01:07:47--> 01:07:59

home towns and places, you know, we tend to restrict ourselves to our own communities. Yeah. And then, you know, on the last day, just before we have

01:08:01--> 01:08:15

what you call a shared dinner, you know, anything that is leftover, people share them, and how do you cook that? Oh, it's self catering. So people, usually what people do is people

01:08:17--> 01:08:28

bring food from home, and then we have plenty of fridge freezer facilities, and then they store and some people cook there. And some people, you know, most places have

01:08:29--> 01:08:36

takeaways and restaurants and stuff. So and then then we help each other we share them together, and it's good.

01:08:38--> 01:08:38


01:08:40--> 01:08:53

just just cycle a hair and lovely, perhaps, to to wrap up, you could just tell us what you wanted to express about self esteem. And maybe we could end with that.

01:08:56--> 01:09:00

Yeah, self self esteem is that, you know, one of the

01:09:02--> 01:09:05

one of the issues that we have in the modern day is that

01:09:10--> 01:09:40

especially children, they don't have the confidence, self esteem, and self values. And what this brings is that they get the feeling that they can do things. They can explore, they can try out, they can, they can progress. So what is actually necessary is to teach the kids and our families that it's not perfection, but progress.

01:09:41--> 01:09:59

And two things we emphasize is within MFE when we do things is that two things. I think this is key in equal things in life, which is prioritization and consistency.

01:10:00--> 01:10:01

Wow, yeah.

01:10:02--> 01:10:24

Prioritization and consistency to things that you really need to do to be a successful person, right? Person. Yeah. So this is the, what, what comes from MFA. It's like, you know, emphasize, you know, do the important things, as I mentioned before, as well, the 8020 rule, because there are so many things we can do.

01:10:25--> 01:10:37

There are so many choices, so many options, we can do everything we need to pick the things that would give the greatest results or get greater. Yes.

01:10:38--> 01:10:41

I, in other words, prioritization. Yeah.

01:10:43--> 01:10:50

And then to do them consistently, and to do them consistently, even if it is 10 minutes every day, or 20 minutes every day.

01:10:52--> 01:10:53

And that's what you know,

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make makes you progress. And that's what gives you self esteem as well, because

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seeing progress itself gives you confidence, you can see you're improving every day. And sometimes people depend on

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big goal, motivation, and motivation can go up and down. But, you know, if you have a system, where you where you do, and this comes from, you know, the famous book, atomic habits, yes. Thinking, yes. Yeah. But you know, this is this from the Prophets lesson as well, you know, the deeds, love by Allah, the Most ones that I've done,

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consistently, even if it is little.

01:11:44--> 01:12:04

Yes, absolutely. And, and, and, and, you know, in terms of prioritization, the professor asked me, if somebody comes to the process and asks him, you know, I want to be this, this is what should I do, he wouldn't tell 100 things, he would just tell one or two things, the most important for the most important things for that person.

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So, in life, I think that is key. Right, or taxation and consistency,

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to achieve anything, even religious, as well, as you know, other things in life and in self esteem, is to have that confidence that we are Muslims, we are believers, we are bigger than

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anything that we can see. Because we have a lot. And this is what I like.

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About Yeah, you know, the people in Palestine, you know, or when I think there's a story when, you know, Omar, Martha,

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the, the resistance from Libya, Libya, so yeah, yeah, Libya, you know, Libya was colonized by Italy. And,

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and people are asking him, you know, the, the Italians, you know, they have, they have fighter jets, and all these things we don't have, how are we going to fight fight? So he asked the question,

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do these fighter jets, they fly under the Throne of Allah or not?

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And the people say, of course, they fly under the Throne of Allah. So if, if they fly under the Throne of Allah, we have Allah so we don't care, you're not scared of fainting. And that, having that confidence, and you know, is what is important. And so really, if you can come to the crux of what we do at MFAs is building this confidence and we go beyond beyond confidence and, and resilience. There's another term, which is quite important to understand. It's called anti fragile. Have you come across this word? You heard it, but I haven't heard it explained. Yes. Okay. We all know what fragile is for example, if you if you drop a glass, it will break

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on the floor. If you drop a glass on the floor, it will break. So that's fragile, but if you drop a tennis ball,

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it will come back up to the same place

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or if you squash a tennis ball, it will come back to its shape. So that is that is what we call resilience if you go down, but you come back up to the same place.

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01:14:49--> 01:14:58

what is meant by anti fragile is that when you are put under pressure when you face difficulties and challenges, you go down

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but you

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Go back more than where you work.

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It's not you're coming back. You go back up, you're better you're stronger, better, you better. So so as human beings, we are anti fragile. We are not just

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01:15:22--> 01:15:30

But yeah, we are anti fragile we we have the capacity to go back be be better than how we were before.

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It's a panel that does local affair and Brother,

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you've really inspired definitely inspired me. I'm sure you've inspired all of our parents out there. I hope it inspires you, brothers and sisters to get to make a plan to get out there in nature, to perhaps getting involved with Muslim family adventures as well. We will we have sent you the website address and everything.

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discipleland brother Faisal, for sharing that story about your son as well, you know, I know that your son went through a very difficult phase and your family.

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But I think it just really shows how resilient you all are really, you know, that got through that period.

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There is a saying that I wanted to share with everyone before we end. And I believe it's attributed to Omar bin pub had their annual that he said if Shoshin all that, it means toughen up. Okay, become rough. Like, and you said for in the Nam, lotta Doom, because

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good times don't last forever, right. SubhanAllah. So, I was actually saying to people don't get used to these comforts and these luxuries and do things deliberately to toughen yourself up. Yeah. And I think that's, you know, subhanAllah so many

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Muslims are in different periods of time. And I don't want to like scare everyone. But you know, we went to Spain recently under Lucia. And we heard about the Muslims who

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they were living live very comfortable lives in Granada, right. And then all of a sudden, eventually, they had to flee up into the mountains. SubhanAllah. And we actually visited the last village of

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the Muslims who fled into the mountains, because the Christians who were chasing them out, they couldn't be bothered to chase them up into the mountains, so they let them and the Muslims, it was like the last town, they rebuilt, they built a town in the mountains. And they stayed there for 50 years, 50 more years. They remained as Muslims in those villages. But I remember just visiting those that place and eventually it got taken over and the Muslims were either forcibly converted or you know, shaheed. But it really got me thinking Subhanallah like, they were living such a luxurious and comfortable life in Spain. And suddenly times changed. They have to go up in the mountains, but they

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were so what's the word that's so much ingenuity, they rebuilt a whole town together, you know, like, the buildings are still there, that they built, the Masjid is still there, but now it's a church.

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And, sorry, but just the hearing from you just reminded me of that, you know, even the connection to the mountain as well.

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We don't know what inshallah May Allah never allow us to have to face something like that. But we don't know what tests lay ahead, right.

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Yeah. And if I may just quickly add, you know, some of the things there's, there's a, there's a blog as well on the Muslim family adventures website. So it's not just for advertising the adventure. So we generally keep updating about this, specifically the things that I was talking about. So if anybody's interested, their blog post to learn more about, you know, about, you know, I mentioned growth mindset, fixed mindset,

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anti fragility and all this stuff.

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Just like Allah and brother Faisal. Thank you so much. Thank you everyone for joining us.

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And as Aquila fine it was wonderful to be with you and your weavers and Hamdulillah this the first time

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done anything talking about this and from the lab. It's a good encouragement meant for me as well to

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come out and talk and definitely

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I think you're very inspiring in that regard. You know, mashallah, I'm sure a lot of families need to hear this message actually. So, hope you do more of it in sha Allah.

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Allah Hearn, and thank you, brothers and sisters for joining us. We're going to be different well now. So please do look up Muslim family adventures get inspired if you if you're not in the UK, or if you can't join the actual, you know, family adventures. We hope that this session will inspire you to do your own thing because there are so many opportunities out there, just look them up online. I mean, I just looked up American national parks and there's like, hundreds of them, you know, so

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01:20:43--> 01:20:52

it takes a bit of effort takes a bit of planning, but somebody has to do it in the family, I think and, you know, maybe you're that person and take that step and Charlaine You won't regret it.

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And with that, is that Kamala Harris and I will end Subhanak Allah humma will be handing a shadow Allah Allah Allah and stuff Itokawa to boo Lake, wa Salam o Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh