Channel: Ismail Kamdar
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household and being someone who loves to read
I grew up with Islamic knowledge, I used to read books in life, the Sahaba from the time.
Those are like the first things I read, when I was 12 years old, I read an entire 500 page book.
You know that that's the level of love of reading. And so when I was a teenager, my mom didn't like our local high schools. She shared that in common with my kids. So she took me out of school. I was and I hope to at the same time, so over the next seven years, I finished my high school football and I did Art Of course, he never really clicked in my head.
He just graduated, I started teaching, I got my bachelor's and
it's a very natural progression.
Wonderful. Now your ship and when a proper ship, right, so So can I beat you? It feels like like, I could just sit down and have a cup of coffee with you, you know, have a chat, not feel intimidated? how important you think? Is it for Islamic scholars, especially nowadays, to be more approachable and available to young people?
It's a very important question. A lot of people ask me why I dress like this is why I'm not wearing my quota in
Milan. And my reply is, because for those people who are comfortable speaking to Milan and could
speak, when other people are not comfortable approaching someone like that they're scared of him. So they need someone needs to be clearly someone they can talk to, they can ask the questions. And I'm filling that void because the way I dress is still 100% 100%. Right? And so people needed an alternative. Now for me why I went this route was growing up in the darkroom.
My teachers terrified me, right into the unstable, they terrified me. These guys never smile, everything's around. And right, today, I will not be able to approach him because if I say anything.
So growing up, I grew up loving Islamic bodies. But there was this disconnect. I love the knowledge, but I don't have the representation of the knowledge. And there's a real disconnect because I read the stories of the Sahaba and the prophet and a child. And I was not seeing their character in practice. I mean, the tropics, where is the most approachable. If you walk into a gathering, you will not be able to make it out to everybody else. He didn't have a special chair didn't have a special dress code look like everybody else. So that to me is this is gonna blend in, don't make us up to just on the podium. So growing up in that environment, I wanted people to start number seven
want people to be scared of Islam to be scared of Islamic knowledge to be scared of people of Islam. So I took a different approach. The other controversial approach our community, it's probably to another one what over the years, but I'm used to be I enjoy it. And I humbly like it. See, I've reached many people this way. A lot of people come to me for advice, speak to me know that my Dharma mostly takes place in coffee shops. If you look for me, I'm mostly sitting with a guy one on one in a coffee shop, selling coffee because that's that's kind of it, I find that this is what origination means. You need to step away from this in order while the scary guys everybody else is scared of
that he needs to find this middle ground and work together.
Beautiful, I love that. And you know, we spoke about young people and the identity you know, so a lot of young people are facing a problem of you know, am I Indian and my African wouldn't my culture was my background, a fighting religion, you know, what type of Muslim Am I would stick them sitting on the side of the fence? So a lot of conversations about their own sexuality, about this space. So what advice would you give a young person who's who's searching was looking for novices.
My advice is identity is not as important as you think it is. Right? When in your teenage years in your early 20s, it's all about identity. Identify as a male something something this gender, that gender, everything right? You want to identify as anything and everything you want to put into this group or that group. Even if you identify as a Muslim, it's Sunni or Shia or Salah pOcT which must have which share this Jamia NGC, we break down our identity into so many things. What happens when you get older you realize none of that matters. What matters is my relationship with love and relationship with my family. And if I'm happy
and when it comes down to that, it doesn't really matter. You know what you identify as right now today I just identified when I was younger into different phases, I was a hardcore, hardcore, hardcore geology guy.
And after going through every possible phase, I realize every of these phases each and every one of them amending each any one of them is somebody's understanding of Islam.
It's all comes about from someone's idea that they want to belong. So they come up with these labels to say I belong to this group, I belong to that group. But it doesn't really matter which group you belong to, is not something that's going to identify you. When you get older. You find once you hit 30, or 35, you stopped really caring about, she's not really clearly identified if you want more about being happy. And of course, you've been living your purpose, making a lot happy. And then you have a family, making sure your families and that's what I do is focus on love myself and my family, and of course, the community. And with that, you really don't need labels, you don't need a specific
identity, just be yourself.
That's beautiful advice. A lot of your advice is written in your books, you've got your first book you publish at the age of 20. And some of your books, some of the titles I love the first book that I read from Moses called having fun, Holloway, entertainment, Islam, it really opened my mind. You have books like themes of the Quran guidelines for confused Muslims. Recently, you kind of branched off into a very unique sort of space, or untapped market, shall I say, which is called Islamic self help. With books like getting the Baraka and Islamic guide to time management, discover your hidden gems 10 self help tips from 10 authentic pieces, or even homeschooling one on one? I would love to
know about that what to expect in your first year? Would you like to share with us some of these? Or what is the concept of Islamic self help, and some of these books?
Islamic self help, just like everything else in my life came about by accident. I think it's accidental.
My life just published about five years ago. So what happened about seven years ago, I got promoted at the university to faculty manager. And I found myself way out of it. I have no management training, right? I'm graduating Islamic Studies. So I began to panic, to wonder, you know, what, what do I need to know to do this job. So people introduced me to a couple of books. The first two were the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, and the other ones How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. And I got really into self help books and self help courses. And as I began studying these, I began to realize that there was a gap in the market.
Whenever people came to me for advice, they asked me, can you recommend me a book on time management by a Muslim woman? We get to dig I can't think of any better understanding. So an Alma get in America. Again, people ask me with some confidence, but I want an Islamic perspective. So no, my book on self confidence from externally perspective. And before you knew it, it just grew. So today, I have my website, Islamic self help.com. On the website, we have articles, we have ebooks, we have online courses, it's become this full, full fledged business. We am reaching people all over the world, in a field that I never even thought about. I
think such a field exists. It just when I saw a gap in the market, I saw a need. I saw that this was something nobody was doing. I had the skills to do it. I had the Islamic knowledge and the knowledge of self help. So I put them together come up with a new genre.
And it's been a real success, especially the time management book. So
it's really been phenomenal for
me finally, I'm sure people here who are mothers and fathers that homeschooling I'd love to know a little bit about this homeschooling story. Tell us about
homeschooling. For me, it's
it's something I'm very passionate about.
And it comes with many different reasons what many people will think many people think of money primarily for religious reasons, that's there. But I primarily doing it because I believe the school system is outdated. The school system was designed for the 1800s. And the world changes. MBA school system changes every five years. So our school system is really outdated. And our school system is happy that even worse, right? If you actually look at the rankings in the world, we like right out in terms of maths and science.
So I had to ask myself is this way I want my kids to go further I used to be.
I used to be a school teacher. And after teaching as African school, I decided I don't want my kids sitting.
It's just it just gets really nasty. So I decided to homeschool because I've seen the success personally my own life. I didn't go to high school. I did High School.
And it really helped me grow into the person I am today. Number two, is that
homeschooling gives me the freedom to teach my kids things that they are not want to learn in school, for example, this year, we studied the history of science as an entire subject. All the Muslim scientist in the contributions we did the other four subjects. I taught him about money, a whole syllabus of money earning spending, saving, avoiding, again, something you know, learning entrepreneurship. No
online businesses, schools that are teaching. My kids at night are learning these things at home. So I'm preparing them for the new world this week. So for parents to feel that the school system is too restricting, it's too focused on only certain subjects. It's not really going to matter. How much did you learn in school that still matters today? Maybe 10% or 20%, right? So focus on that 20% and teach what matters. That's what I do.
And it's been really, really successful for me and my family. And my favorite part about it is, I have a very close bond with my kids. So I'm not just a dad, I'm the teacher. And so we have a special relationship identical parents who work from home parents who are at home all the time. Parents are passionate about their kids education is a really beautiful
children. Thanks, machete smartkarma your books are available online, the homeschooling one in every one of those
Islamic self help.com so check it out. Thank you so much for your time this evening. We'll also be interviewing him