Difficult To Be Different

Kamal El-Mekki


Channel: Kamal El-Mekki

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Episode Notes

an amazing talk delivered by Kamal El Mekki during At The Peak Islamic Convention in Hong Kong

May 24th/25th, 2014

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AI Generated Summary ©

The conversation covers the negative impact of culture on society, including the pressure of conforming to community values and fearless behavior. The speakers emphasize the importance of belief in one's own values and culture, patient standing, and learning and practicing patience. The segment also touches on the negative impact of Muslims on society, including their views on drugs and alcohol use, and the importance of avoiding drugs and alcohol. The speakers emphasize the need for educators and guidance to avoid confusion and misunderstandings.

AI Generated Transcript ©

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Salam aleikum to lower capital.

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s Miller Hello Haman hamdu Lillahi Rabbil alameen wa salatu salam ala rasulillah Amin. Father Ernie, he was happy here. Jemaine, I'm about. I'm very happy to be here with everybody in Hong Kong. And since I'm in Hong Kong In Hong Kong, I'm going to pretend that I like pandas. Because I understand there are certain things you don't say you don't like when you're in Hong Kong. I will assume pandas are one of them. Bruce Lee is another one.

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Right? So Okay, very good.

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I just want to know who's in the audience. So who's from the Philippines in here? Let's see some hands. Allahu Akbar, the Philippines. Yes, sir. moussaka, Polanco, Kemal McKee.

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And that's it. We finish colors. And the story. Wonderful. Who's from India in here? Allah Akbar Allahu Akbar. Mashallah Pakistan Oh, whoa, whoa, look at that. Yes sir. Um, so we can do the lecture in order if you like,

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can take it or do my own resume boom

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that's my luck kurata Tora Tora don't figure Yeah, very good. Very I lived in Islamabad for five years, but we were just a little kid. So all I learned was good urban durability. And that was about it. Yeah. Wonderful. Who's from Africa to many countries in Africa. Let's just see the African my brothers or brothers from Africa. Mashallah. Notice also some brown people put their hands up. So, Indian origin lived in Africa. And some white people put their hands up. Hey, works hamdulillah Okay, what countries do we not mentioned here? Okay. Who's Who is from who is a local from here? originally born and raised from Hong Kong?

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Yes, sir. Excellent. from China. Mainland here.

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Okay, fine. Fine. Anybody else? Any any place I didn't mention? Indonesia? Yes. Indonesia. Let me see Indonesia. Mashallah. Fantastic. Excellent. Excellent. Bangladesh, Allahu Akbar. Now what else do you have? UK? UK.

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Wonderful, wonderful. All right. Anything else?

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Nobody said anything. Boo.

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Okay, Mashallah. Yes? gentlelady. from Seattle. I'm from Virginia. So that's us representing? Wonderful. Okay, okay. Well, let's we'll get started. Welcome to everybody else as well.

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Yeah, the difficulty of being different. So a lot happens to you. Psychologically, when you're a minority that lives amongst the majority, a number of things happen. And you are faced with a number of choices. And there are actually four choices, you have to pick one of them. So if you're a minority that Lim's lives amongst a majority, the first option might be to leave whatever values you originally had, or you have religiously, so that means a Muslim, let's say living as a minority amongst non Muslims, one option they have is to push away all Islamic values. Or even if it's culture, it whatever it is, their parents culture, they push it aside, and they completely adopt the

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values and the culture of the majority. That's the first option. very logically, the second option is the opposite of that, that you completely reject and refuse the values of the majority. And you stick hard and you stay hard against upon the values of, let's say, your place of origin or of your religion. That's the second one. The third option is to reject both. And you see that happening sometimes that, for example, in America, you'll find someone who will reject the Islamic his Islamic values, push them aside, and the values of the majority of people, and then pick another subculture in the community, whatever it is, you know, there are many subcultures and communities, you know,

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whatever it is, could be related to music, like the goth, or punk culture, or something like that. The fourth one now, and this is probably the most reasonable, and this is the one that we would like, is that you make a mix of both cultures or both values. And this is only

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it's logical. And it's it's the one that makes best religious sense, meaning you're a Muslim, who lives for example, I'm going to pick America as an example. I'm Muslim living in America. So I'm going to adhere to my Islamic values. And anything from the values of the majority of that goes against Islamic values I'm going to reject, but at the same time, as a human being, you can't help but be a part of that community. You know, you don't find for example, a man born and raised in America speaking with a British accent. That would be why would he get that from? He picks up the accent that he's around because this is how we are as humans, and we're very social beings. So we

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pick up from each other. So it's not necessarily that you have to reject everything.

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thing, every value of the majority, if you can't do that, and not everything, and in your society in your locality is evil and bad, some people think to be a Muslim, you have to reject everything that's not Islamic, a lot. And I know people like this even sciences, they rejected. This is the work of looking for it science man, work of the Godfather, gonna bring it in here also keep your problems over there. Everything mathematical.

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Okay, you don't use math in your life. So it's not. It's not a requirement in the religion, we reject everything that comes from the society. No, you make a blend and you take the best, can you take the best of what you have in your community and your society. And at the same time, your core values, you identify yourself as a Muslim in that society. So these are the four options that we're faced with now.

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Now, any minority living amongst a majority feels the pressure to conform the pressure to be like everybody else. Now, this pressure is caused by a number of things. Number one, human beings. As I said, we're social beings, we interact. And we are affected by each other socially. Interestingly, animals who do not communicate at an intricate level like we do, animals are affected, and they affect each other. And there are many examples of this actually.

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There was a dog This is in America, there was a dog who only lived with humans, and he never ever saw another dog in his life. So he thought he was a human.

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And he would actually stand up on his hind legs, trying to be like everyone else. I'm not talking about Scooby Doo, by the way. He does that too.

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Yeah. Actually, just two days ago, I saw something about a dog raised with cats. And he thought he was a cat. And he sits like a cat, dog sit with their arms out like this with their legs out. But cats bend them in this dog, they had a picture of him sitting like a cat like this. I saw another video of a dog who thought he was a cat. And there's a there's a plant called catnip. It's from the mint family in when cats smell that they start to roll around and get old, high and lazy and everything, but it doesn't affect dogs. But this dog would smell it and he would roll around also like the cats.

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So animals they don't communicate on a very intricate high level, they affect each other What about humans then? For sure, we're going to be affected by each other. And that's why the professor Lam told us about this he told us also about your close companions, you'll be you should look and see who your close companions are. Because your take their Deen meaning their Deen their conduct their values, they will affect you. So naturally, without anything without anyone telling you be like us, you naturally feel the pressure to conform to be like everybody else. And that's what also people feel comfortable when they find someone else who's on the same wavelength as they are, or from the

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same origin as they are, you feel immediately comfortable.

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So that's the first thing. The second thing is that naturally, every society believes that their way is the best way their values are the best values. And every country you go to, they believe they're the best. And they see the people next to those people, always wherever you go. Now sometimes when I traveled to a place I asked them, who do you guys not like? Who don't you like in here? And one group was all the Germans in America, the French, every group has a place and some community that they think they're beneath us. But naturally, every group thinks they're the best and their culture is the best. This is known as ethno, centrism, ethnocentrism, when it's the belief, the inherent

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belief that the belief that your values are inherently better than all the other values and all the other cultures out there. And right now, those people who are from Pakistan in the audience originally, they believe, yes, our culture Our way is better than the African way and the African things are always the best way. And the Filipinos are sitting here, Filipinos are better than everyone else. And they're right.

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Everybody feels that way about their people, everybody feels our coaches, the best way, our ways the best way our language is the best way. That's natural, every community experiences this. Now, the thing that's the important factor here is that when you're a minority, living amongst that majority, you also start to believe that their way is the best way. And not only that, it transcends that it goes to two countries, when there's a strong nation, the weaker nations start to believe that the way of the strong nation is the best way. And this has happened many times historically. In Spain, when the Muslims were in charge of Spain, the young Spanish youth, they were not Muslim, but they

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would dress like the Muslims and act like the Muslims. You can just imagine this young Spanish man who is not even a Muslim. He's like got a turban on he's got a miswak on his walking around. humbler? Not even Muslim, right? Because the Muslims were the dominant force. And the minorities always want to if they think that way is the best way and they want to act like that. And that's why Same thing happens now with

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With in America, basically our number one export is pop culture, popular culture, movies, music, things like that. So you will find people all around the world trying to act like someone who lives in the ghettos of America. But Allah saved you from the ghettos. You want to you want to live like you're in the ghettos. Yeah, we see this all over in Germany, even people in Germany, and they want to live like they're in a very dangerous neighborhood in America, the people in the dangerous neighborhood, they make the everyday a lot Take me out of here. And people other parts of the world, I wish I could be in the ghetto of America.

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You see this all over the world. And in, in Sudan, I was I went outside of the capital, and I saw some very poor villages. And I found someone spray painting on the broken wall, some rapper name. Like, really, this is your look at this village. That's your concern, this rapper fixed this village, when the walls broken, you're spraying a fixed a wall.

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So what happens is nations then they start to see the way of the strong nations as the best way you will find this now, Muslims will question Islamic values. And they'll say why don't we have those values? Why don't we have Americans don't have Western values, because those nations are strong. So there's more pressure than to conform to be like the majority. I'll tell you something interesting concerning ethnocentrism. And our For example, one of our Messiah, Chef Jaffa dress, hello, Hola. And he said that many years ago, he was in Czechoslovakia what used to be tech Slovakia doesn't exist anymore. But he said I was at an event and I didn't like the gathering. And I wanted to leave.

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So I started walking, looking for the hotel, and I got lost. He said, I asked a Czech Lady for directions to the hotel. And basically in English, all you have to do is say the name of the hotel and she immediately understood, but she gave him directions in full check. Go straight, make a left, make a right you'll find this and make another he didn't understand a single word. Of course. He said I'm sorry, I don't understand. She repeated it again. Just slower. That doesn't help, right.

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I'm just gonna say it slowly. No, I'm sorry. If I don't speak Mandarin, you can say that slowly as you want. I still don't understand. By the way, just as a note, same thing happens when people ask the shoe questions. Or they ask the instructor questions. People come up to me, they asked me a question. Islamic question is too difficult for me. And I don't understand. I don't know the answer. So I tell them. I don't know the answer. I don't know Allahu Allah. So they say it again, slowly.

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Like, like I'm slow or something. Oh, ha, ha. Now that you're speaking slowly. Now I know the Hadith said, I still don't know if you can say too slow or fast as you want. I still don't know it. So this lady is just repeating herself again, slowly. So the chef does it one more time? I'm sorry, I don't understand. He said she hit me

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and walked away.

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Why did she do that? Because she thought he was dumb. Do you don't understand? What's the matter with you? I explained to you very nicely, and I even explained it slowly? Why don't you speak Czech? Why don't you speak my language? And many people do this to minorities, you should speak my language in America. We do this to people all the time. And we would get arrogant about it. If you don't speak the language get out. how welcoming isn't it? Yeah. You have to speak my language. It's the language. And every other place thinks their language is the language. And you should be speaking my language. What does this have to do with Darwin? just said that he was at a conference in the UK.

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And then it was question and answer time. So a young man put his hand up, he said shirt, I have a question. Why can't we eat pork in Islam?

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Why can't we eat pork? So before he could answer, the organizer, he said, Let me answer this question. He grabbed the microphone. He said, why is it that you didn't put your hand up? Why didn't you put your hand up and ask chef, why can't we eat dogs in Islam?

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You know why?

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Because British people don't eat dogs. That's why he lives amongst a majority that doesn't eat dog. So he never wakes up and think, thinks to himself, why can I eat dogs? Just look at that one. Hmm.

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I get some chili and catch up with that thing.

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What isn't? He say that to himself every day. You never wake up in the UK and ask yourself, why can I have a dog for breakfast? Hot dog is different. I want a real dog.

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You know why? Because British people don't eat dogs. But British people eat pigs, the pork, the bacon, all that stuff. So he starts to question his own values, and say, why can't we do what the majority does? Now he's questioning himself. But he never one day asked why can I eat mouse and rat and all that stuff? Because they don't. So you start to question your own values, because the values of the majority become the norm. That's what's normal not. And that's what the chef told him. Why didn't you ask? Why can't you Why can't we dog

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But I'm sure if he lived in certain countries.

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We're not gonna mention where they are.

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at that conference, he might say, hey, why can't we dogs?

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Yeah. Anyways, so this is what happens called ethnocentrism. I'll give you another quick the whole point here. When, anytime in America, someone asked me, What did your prophet marry a young girl?

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What they're really doing is they're saying, our society, our culture, which is the best said the number 18 is the best age. So they're saying, Why didn't your prophet from 1400 plus years ago, follow what our society today said is the magical age 18? You see what he's doing? That's all it is. It's ethnocentrism. So I never answer but oh, well, you know, it was accepted. Here. Here's the question. How old would you want her to be? 18? Is there any science that says 18? is the best age for marriage? It's a prime time for a woman to get married? No. And he studied that says 18 is the best? No. Okay, how did you come up with 18? Really, the answer is, our society said 18 is the best

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age. That's it. We're not based on any science or any study, just our people said, 18 is a good age. So why didn't you people follow what our society said, You know what, it's not even your society. It's recent society that said, 18 is the best age in 1901 1905, in America, statesman would marry girls who are nine and 11, Queens of England were 13 and married. And it wasn't even it's in a recent thing that 18 became the magical age. So you get people to understand you're questioning the actions of my Prophet, not because they're wrong, because you think everybody has to follow what your current culture says is, okay. ethnocentrism. Yeah. And it applies to many other aspects of

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Tao, I just don't want to go into them. It's not a it's not a Dharma talk. So we've seen now already, that there are certain options you have as a minority living amongst a majority. We've seen now that there's pressure upon the Muslim, the believers to conform to act and to be like everybody else, to take the values of everyone, even the voters that go against Islam, this pressure, and this pressure is what causes the difficulty of being different. Being different is not easy. You stand out, you dress differently, you stand out. Yeah. And, and for example, in America, if I dress like this, and I go into the train station, I stand out. It's not like everyone's dressed like this. And

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in America, people will stare but they're experts at staring. You understand? Like, they don't stare at you like this. They when they see you like, Oh, it's normal, I accept. And then when you pass it.

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I used to live in a country, I'm not going to give names. In this country, people stare

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a lot the way they stare. They stare so they have PhDs in staring.

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I know this is a side note, but you know how when you if someone is staring at you, even if you can't see them, you feel something burning into you, right? If there's someone here staring at me, I feel like something's burning me here. I turn around, there's got like this.

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Like, we'd be waiting for our parents in the car and you feel something burning into you. You turn in, there's a guy staring at you. I'm not gonna exaggerate just like this.

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Now, usually, when you turn and look at someone right in the eye, what do they do? They look away.

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But in that country, they keep staring right back at you. So the two of you are just staring at each other like this. Then we'd get frustrated, and we do this.

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And the guy does this.

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Anyways, but you know, when you different people stare, you dressed differently. People stare. If I wear this, people will stare. But sometimes I wear jeans and a T shirt and maybe nobody stares. But sisters, you don't have that all the time. You dress differently all the time you stand out. And there's a degree of difficulty that comes with that. And Islam recognize that difficulty and the Prophet sallallahu Sallam recognized that difficulty. And that's why the hadith of we've been hearing and will continue to hear throughout the conference, about being strangers about being what about were mentioned, is to give people like us support to give us courage. So we can withstand

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that, because it is difficult to be different. And the President said but Islam over even will say are over even Canada, Islam started out as something strange. And it's going to return to be something strange, just as it started for global horrible, glad, glad tidings to those who are different. So who are those who are different? And there are a number of explanations. One of them is that is the people who are who are basically they remain righteous amongst a majority that's not righteous. People who behave right and believe in Allah and do all the things in a majority that's not like that different. So there's a difficulty of being different because as humans, we want to

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conform. We want to agree we want to be like everyone else. We're social beings. But now I'm

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Different, and I stand out. And there is difficulty involved with that. And because there's difficulty you have to withstand it and remain strong. The prophets, Allah Salah mentioned in a hadith he mentioned to his companions, that there will be ahead of you, meaning in the future, there will be days of patients that require patience. And if days or days of patience, that means there's difficulty. So difficulty you need to be patient. And the reward of the believers at that time will be like the reward of 50 of one of you. Yeah, and he's saying he's talking about people later generations, like in our times, if you're a patient in these difficult days, you will get the reward

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like that of 50 of the companions, it doesn't make you better, but the reward because it's so difficult. Now, all these ahaadeeth are there for us. So we learn this concept of being strong, being patient being courageous with standing this difficulty not conforming. And this is what happens when people start to lose their identity very quickly. No, the attitude we learn is that we need to be strong. And we learned this from the seat of the process in them. That's his life. That's what the companions went through. Look at the meccan era difficulty. patient would stand difficulty patient would stand. It's not difficult. Okay, here we go. Drop it. This is what happened after 911

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Yeah, brother before 911 his beard down to here. Yeah.

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Fantastic beard. 912. Uh huh.

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He's like the guy in the Gillette commercial.

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That guy?

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No know.

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There's a lady she wrote about. She's deceased to work at this office building. It's an American lady. She said, For years, I would see this Muslim woman who works in another floor and sometimes we take the elevator together. She's always dressed in full hijab. After 911 I saw her short skirt, explosion of colors on her face her hair standing like this. Bobby did you have to go all that he could have just also still covered up? Well, so she said I the first time I ever spoke to her. I asked her. Do you look different today? Why did you change your dress code? She's I'm afraid people won't talk to me.

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If she read the seat of the process, if she knew Islamic history, this is our life. Yeah, this is our life. We do it we please Allah azza wa jal. If other people find that distasteful, and they make our life difficult, we stay firm. We stay patient, we don't immediately get rid of things. That's why after 911, beards flew out the window hijab flew out the window. People change their names, whoever was Muhammad became Mo, whoever was beloved became bill

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and Hassan Ali Abdullah photo became Jackson.

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what is the attitude of standing firm and just overnight,

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the largest machine in our area, cancelled Juma after 911. The largest Michigan area cancelled it.

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Muslims made life difficult for Muslims. Brother, shave your beard brother do this room for this change your name doesn't help. It's too late to your neighborhood saw you with your beard up to here. If you shave it. They still remember you as the guy who had the beard of now you're just the guy who used to have the beard up to here. You'll never become another guy.

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I'll tell you something, the prophets of Salaam and he he he was teaching us this attitude of being strong like the rock against the waves stand firm like that. When one day he was in the courtyard of the Kaaba is laying down. And the companions came to him and which companions companions that were tortured, severe, tortured, like above or below. I know. They made him write lay down on red hot stones. And the eyewitnesses says the only thing that put out these stones was the fact from his back melting and putting up the stones, these types of people, and they came to the process of them. Did they complain? No. What did they say? allotted? rolana aratus tonsor Lana, that's all they're

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saying. No complaint. You also look what they did to me. Not nobody was complaining. And I said, Oh, Donna, would you not make the offer CRS Allah, Allah has to sponsor Lana, will you not asked for victory for us? yada yada, that's it. And the precedents set up, set up here and he told them about nations before and how they should torture the nations before that they'll bring a man and a dig a hole in the ground and put him in it. And then they will start to cut him saw him in half. Can you imagine what that's like, they put the soul hair on your head and it starts to cut through your skin. And now it's starting to touch the bone of your skull and you can hear it really loud.

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And they're cutting you now it's touching your brain and they cut them all the way in half and I know sorry for the graphics. But look at what people would stood before us. They would bring a man and they would bring a metal rake and they would latch it onto his skin and his muscle and flesh and tear it off from the bone.

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Like that,

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and that was the Muslim said that would not cause them to turn away from their religion. What can come Coleman to study alone? But you're a people who are impatient you hasten to impatient. Allahu Akbar hubub is impatient. These companions are impatient. And all they said was, let's just make the offers for victory. But these things are to teach us the later generations patience being strong. Not the slightest amount of pressure. What do you do this? What do you wear? That was you be like that and immediately, huh? I don't know. Okay, give me the shaver. I'll shave it. No.

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I don't want to repeat this story. But a guy at work asked me why I grow my beard. I asked him why he shaved his. That's it asked me why I grow. It's not true for me to grow my beard. Actually, I don't grow it. It comes out by itself. Right. I don't put manure and wake up every morning, huh? something happening. It just comes out by itself. So what's unnatural is for you to remove it every morning and cut yourself in the process and put Cologne and scream and all that stuff.

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You know something, the pressure of being different now we're in a day and age. It's not even from non Muslims pressuring Muslims to conform. It's Muslims pressuring each other. Because those who are upon the Sunnah now and then some of the scholars like an amendment ozar Abraham Allah, He said that it's not that Islam will disappear or anything, but it's the people following the sun, there will be few, these will be the strangers. So now look at when people follow this and know what happened to them, even within Muslim families, how they make fun of them, or a girl who want to put on her hijab and her parents are the ones who oppose her the most, or a girl goes to her school and niqab and the

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school Muslim school will oppose that. Or people have the pseudo Gemma that was taught to us by the processor lab. And people oppose that. And then a flock of the believers becomes a rare thing. Go to some countries now Muslim countries, and you'll be so disappointed at the mannerisms, how people deal with each other how people speak with each other, very disappointing. And then you have the few

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anytime in any Hadeeth in anything, when you hear about few in any AI a few are like that you want to become from that group True or false? anytime and pay attention from now on. Anytime I did that says few people do this. Make sure you're from the few Alissa's Walker Edelman, about the show called a few of my servants are truly thankful you told yourself, I want to be from those few put effort to be from the rare people, not like just the commoners. So the waterbar are those few who have the proper belief, proper following of the sinner, proper mannerisms, even if everyone else is corrupt, they remain upon that. They remain upon that. That was one of the other explanations. By

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the way. It's that though it's the few who repent and remain upon the truth at a time when the majority are not upon the truth. Okay.

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So now what do we have, we have the options that you're faced with when you're a minority living amongst a majority, we explain why it's difficult, why there's pressure on someone to conform, because we're social beings, because the way of the majority appears to be the proper and the good way in the better way. And then we explain that it's difficult to be different. And that's why the poster lamb, and in the Hadith, and the Sierra and other places taught us this idea of being strong, not immediately breaking and collapsing. So the question then is, how do you see yourself? You know, they tell you, the first way to control a people to control a group is to control how they see

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themselves. Yeah, this is very serious issue. The first way to control people is to control how they see themselves. How do I see myself? Do I see myself in a positive light? Do I see myself as a productive, productive member of community of the community or society? Or do I just see myself as you know, in the lower rungs of society, if you can manage to make me see myself down here? I'll never come up here. I'll always stay down here. Always. Again, I don't want to use too many American examples. But for example, if you ask,

00:29:04--> 00:29:11

specifically, there's some studies done with African American youth. If you ask a classroom of African American students, who wants to be an athlete,

00:29:12--> 00:29:21

and most of them will put their hands up, football player basketball player this this is not hands will go up. Who wants to be a rapper? Hmm. Hands will go up once you become a lawyer

00:29:24--> 00:29:26

has to become a doctor, one guy, and he's ashamed of it, too.

00:29:28--> 00:29:28


00:29:29--> 00:29:47

Now the truth is, statistically, there are more African American doctors and lawyers, then all in the entertainment industry combined, then more more than more African American lawyer, lawyers and doctors, then there are African American athletes in all fields of sports, and represent actors and all that.

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But if I can control you to just want to go into that field, and have no impact in the other fields, then I've won. So the question is, how do we see ourselves? Do we see ourselves as terrorists

00:30:00--> 00:30:05

wrists to accept that we do we reject that. Yeah, I know. We'll also be rejected.

00:30:06--> 00:30:14

It's no secret when I go to America. I'm stopped at the airport. Yeah. And then I'm searching my bags. Where have you been on? What were you doing all this time?

00:30:15--> 00:30:19

They don't ask any other young white guy comes in like Hey, welcome back, sir. Welcome home.

00:30:21--> 00:30:34

I come Why did you leave? Come here? Yeah. Now, so I didn't like that. So I went to a lawyer. Is there anything we can do about this? And you know that it was a Muslim lawyer, you know, when he told me, he told me to accept it.

00:30:35--> 00:31:02

told me to accept it. This is defeat. When when I say, Yeah, well, you know, the 19 people who started 911, they were from our people. And therefore, if they stopped people like me at the airport, it makes sense. So I'm going to be quiet and let them trample and walk all over me. accepted. The lawyers told me accepted. This is the problem. How do we see ourselves? It's true, we don't see ourselves as bad people. But at the same time we accept the one we treat like that.

00:31:04--> 00:31:05

Yeah, you know.

00:31:07--> 00:31:47

So that brings us to how does the world see you? How does the world see you, if any of you studied PR public relations, you understand that if you let's say, as a company, as an organization, as a school, you have to first tell people who you are. That's how people will know you. But if you don't tell people who you are, and someone else publicly says, who you're not, that label will stick on you no matter what. And you have to put 10 times more effort to fix that label to undo that picture. 10 times more effort. It's smarter and easier to come up from the beginning and say, This is who we are. But most people don't do that. And someone else says that's who they are. And now No, no, no,

00:31:47--> 00:32:13

it's not true. nobody's listening to you anymore. You've gotten that label. So how the world sees us is a very big deal. How we're seen in the media is a very big deal. And what's our response? What do we say what happens when we depict it a certain way, is a very big deal. And typically, for now, for the most part, we don't do much about that. We don't do much about that. And I know, shut up the buddy brought up earlier, when other groups are attacked how they react.

00:32:14--> 00:32:45

In America, you can't say a word about the Jews, because they know how to act properly here. And immediately. You're an anti Semite. You can't say anything about the Jews. You say things about Muslims. Where are they? They're busy somewhere else eating kebab, biryani, whatever they're doing. Nobody does anything about that. You know, I had part of my my field of study is media production. And had a professor, he said something very interesting. He said, if you look at all the movies, or the older American movies, the bad guy has what accent?

00:32:46--> 00:32:56

Huh? who watches movies? Now? No, no older movies. The bad guy has what accent? Russian accent? Or who get this other one?

00:32:58--> 00:33:34

Thank you German. The bad guy always had a German accent. Or a Russian accent. And I don't want to give you names of movies. But you think to yourself, not Hong Kong Hollywood movies. Yeah, Hong Kong movies, though. You have a different accent. But here the bad guy always had the German accent because this is the effect of the World War. Yeah. And it affected a lot of things. World War Two, affected a lot of things in America, even the names of food. The hot dog, it used to be known as a Frankfurter. But it's a German name. World War Two, they changed the hot dog. I don't want a German name anymore. It had this issue with the Germans it still stayed in the minds of Hollywood

00:33:34--> 00:33:51

producers. And even we tried to do some stupid things like that, after with France refused to invade Iraq and Afghanistan and all that. With this. We came up with this whole we hate France thing. And even George Bush, you know, french fries, right? He said, I call them freedom fries.

00:33:52--> 00:34:02

Not. That's george bush. I'm sorry. He said we're gonna call them freedom fries, not french fries, because we don't like the French. Of course, we all know it's no secret that george bush was a complete idiot.

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And the word French in English, it was a verb to French means to cut into strips. They're called french fries, because they were cut into strips not because it came from Paris. But when you have an idiot as a president, what can you do? Yeah. So. So the point is that the professor said, Now this was after 911. He said, Now you will notice that bad guys from now on moving forward, are going to have Arab actions. And you're nodding because you all realize that you've seen that. The bad guy is the Arab guy. Yeah. And that's, that's the new bad guy. How What is it going to take for us to undo that a lot on Ireland. The Germans have been friends and they've been producing wonderful cars to

00:34:46--> 00:34:59

the Americans for how long and they were always the bad guys in the movies. How are we ever going to remove that? Well, I won't I'm I'm working on my laptop and the TV's on. And I heard there was a standoff. You know, this guy with his gun behind the wall, the other guy with his gun and they're talking to each other.

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One guy had an Arab accent. So I stopped work to see what this Arab guy looks like. And when he surrendered and he came out from behind the wall, he wasn't even Arab. He was African.

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They give an Arab accent. That's the new bad guy. Okay, just a side story. But this is the true story. It happened after 911. I used to work in Washington, DC, and an office and the head of security. Okay. This has nothing to do with the lecture. Just a funny story. Okay. Actually, it does have something to do with the lecture, you'll see. So this head of security of the building, he comes to us, he comes to our office because it was an Islamic radio station. He sees all the woman and hijab and all the brothers with beards. So the head of security comes to the office. Does anybody in here speak Islamic?

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I said, You mean Arabic? There's no such language as Islamic. So he felt stupid. I don't know what language it is. But we just need somebody to translate something. So okay, I'll go with you. So basically what happened, they thought that they discovered something great. One of the ladies and the other floors and other buildings. Someone called her office phone over the weekend by accident, and left a voicemail there.

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So in Arabic, so now she thought maybe it's two terrorists making leaving voicemail in the wrong place. I will tell the FBI, I'll be a hero on CNN. Yes, I came in the office and I found the voicemail to be a super hero now, heroin. So I went to the office. And when I got to the office of translators here, everybody's standing on Syria. So we intercepted the message from a possible terrorist organization. And I went, and they played the voicemail for me.

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It was an African guy speaking in English.

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Because like, I'm standing right here, Maputo.

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That's all it was. It was an African thick, thick English thick African accent speaking English. I heard it. I looked at them. I was like, This is English.

00:36:53--> 00:36:55

Just a guy lost in the street.

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Once Jeff told me, he should have told him, actually, this message isn't Christian. It's not an Islamic.

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Oh, man. Oh, man.

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Okay, let me close with who you are. Right? Not how people see you now how you see yourself. Let me close with who you really are and how people should see you. Number one, you are someone who's gonna guide everybody else, guide them to Jenna. Now guide them to a good investment here, or a good automobile to buy or a place to live. You're gonna guide people, you're a guide, you're the only ones that alive on this planet who have the religion of truth. Just knowing this, there is no way I can see myself beneath you. It's impossible. How on earth? Will I know the way to an agenda? And someone who has no clue what agenda is, is going to make me feel that I'm less than them. Well, you

00:37:50--> 00:37:53

can try as hard as you want. You're never going to make me feel less than you

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chose me to be a Muslim, someone who knows the way to paradise eternal paradise, and to have the ingredients to stop you from going into the hellfire. And I'm supposed to see some guy who has no clue about anything on Earth. Am I supposed to feel this person is superior to me? Absolutely not. So number one, you're one who guides others to the truth. And there is no way that you are a guide and an educator and see yourself as having the lower hand and the lower position. No way. So number one, you're a guide to humanity. That's your job. That was the job of your Prophet, and by extension, it's your job. And that was the way and the life of the Prophet saws hidden them will

00:38:35--> 00:39:15

have the stability in a law here. Allah basura tiene un a woman at avani. Say her the Sabina say this is my way. So the Protestant system then, is to say, this is my way. I call to Allah. What does this mean? When explanation? It means Islam. This is my way. Islam is my way. And I call people and I call to Allah, and those who follow me also do the same thing. The other explanation What is this mean? Had the stability it means that what is my way? So it's like the President was saying, that was my life. And I call people to Islam. And it's also the way of my followers, those who follow me.

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This is our life. We're educators, we're guides. So number one, we're guides. Number two, we're educators, Islam has solutions for all kinds of problems in this world. So we're supposed to be people who offer these fantastic solutions. You know, when the there was a recession not long ago in America and the housing market crashed and everything every Muslim kept saying,

00:39:37--> 00:39:51

if only they would have followed the Islamic system, this wouldn't happen. And now they will see that the Islamic system is the best system. What does that say about you? Huh? What does that say about seven or 10 million Muslims living in America who have the perfect system, but they're keeping quiet about it.

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And then when it collapses, you tell them I had this system all along.

00:39:58--> 00:39:59

That was much better than this one.

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Now the years has collapsed, you see that yours is no good. And imagine you're with a group. Yeah. And there's whatever there was an accident or something, and you need to stop the bleeding. And then the guy just lets you try all kinds of things. You're not a doctor, you're trying all kinds of weird things, putting scotch tape and electric tape on the wound, nothing work, the guy dies, he bleeds out, he dies, then you tell him, I studied medicine.

00:40:23--> 00:40:30

And I know the way to do he should have done it this way. And I know that, but I just I was just letting you fail first, I was just so you know,

00:40:31--> 00:40:39

what would you tell this person to what kind of a human being are you? You're sitting there watching you make mistakes all this time? And then when it's too late, tell me I had the better system.

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So we're educators, people, we're educators. We don't sit here with Oh, we have the solution for everything. We have the orphanages, you know, children out of wedlock, venereal diseases, we've got the solution in Islam. But we're just keeping it we're not going to share it with everybody. We know how to get people off a drug addiction. We know how to get all these kinds of problems, but we're not going to share it with you. What kind of person are you then we're educators, we're educators. And we come with our solutions immediately. And we help and that's why I bring them into my third and last point, which is we are we should be a blessing to our community. When the Muslims come into

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town, what a blessing that is for everyone else, and everybody feels that way. Yet when Muslims coming to a city, or come to a neighborhood, the non Muslims should say the Muslims are here. This is great. But they don't. When the Muslims move in like the Muslims are here. Let's get out.

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Why we don't have this fantastic impact on people. Call Allah azzawajal Allah says in the Quran, contin hierro Mateen rejet linas morona with maroof watton how Nana Mancha You're the best nation ever brought forth for an S. And you know what an S means in the Quran. It doesn't mean the believers it means everybody Muslims or non Muslims. So you're the best oma brought forth for humanity. Why? Because you enjoin what is good, and you forbid what's evil. That's what makes us excellent and superb. That's why when we come into this community, we're going to fix everything, every problem in it, but we don't do that. with certain exceptions. I can think of only maybe two

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communities or neighborhoods in America, where it was a very dangerous neighborhood, you could not even drive your car there without getting killed. And now the Muslims moved in, built the masjid and everything and cleaned it up, no drugs being sold nothing. But that should be the effect everywhere. But now when Muslims come, people are disappointed. There's a message I'm not gonna say which state in America but there's an Islamic Center in a very rich neighborhood.

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Very nice, very clean, very organized, rich neighborhood. Every Friday after Juma It looks like a hurricane hit that neighborhood. Because that Masjid, they give food for everybody. Hundreds of people every Friday, they give out food for free. So what do you find that that clean? nice neighborhood Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Thursday. Clean neighborhood Friday It looks like a hurricane a tornado hit the city Why? plate paper plates here. chicken bones over there. Rice all over the place in the street and the guys just eating rice on the you can see their eyes follow it from the guy's car all the way to them. And I match it to his car. chicken

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bones rice. Okay, here's the plate. It's like a crime scene. Okay, this is where he threw the bone.

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So now you think you're gonna be happy? Oh, the Muslims are moving into the neighborhood. Oh, no. Let's move goods sell the house now before the property value goes down. Unfortunately, you know there was a machine gun there was going to be built in one one neighborhood in America so that the non Muslim said we don't want a mosque here. traffic in double parking and we don't want it. So they took it to the city council. And they had a meeting and one uncle got up Muslim uncle got up to give reasons why we should build a Masjid here. He said we have the right to build the masjid here, a mosque. Because we have been part of this community for 25 years. He thought it was a great speech.

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A woman got up non Muslim woman and she was genuine. She got up shocked. He said you guys have been here for 25 years.

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I've been doing soup kitchen you know when you give soup to the poor and all that every whatever Saturday give food to the poor. She's I've been doing soup kitchen for 20 years, not once have I seen a Muslim helping out or giving or doing anything to this community. She's saying where you you just hide and for many years and hamdulillah this has changed. Now, Muslim communities would be just hiding like that. And I'm saying this. So you know better what happens in Hong Kong. So if you're in the same situation, you change it, but for many years in Islam, any good that came out of the community went back to the community. It never reached anyone else. So when we help the poor people

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will help the Muslim poor when we feed we feed the Muslim poor. No one else feels the effect of being around Muslims. We don't help

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Anybody else, but that's really not the way of the believers. It's not the believers. The good that comes out of them is felt immediately and it's felt by everybody in the community. And one of the best examples of this is that of scheffel Islam even Tamia, Rahim Allah, and he basically, he, when he died when he died, it was his death was a big deal. Schools closed markets and stores closed. And people were crying and saddened. But a Christian man, a priest came crying that had been Tamia died. A Christian man was crying. And the Christian man should not cry, because even taymiyah wrote volumes refuting Christianity.

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So he should be very happy that he died, but he came crying. And people asked him, Why are you crying? This is a Muslim leader who cried What? Who died? What do you care. And he said, I'm not crying because the man died. I'm crying because all the good that he used to do, no one's going to do it anymore.

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This is the believer, it's unbelievable. This is the believer that they do so much good effects Muslims, non Muslims, Claire comes out of them oozing out of them, affecting the whole community, that when they die, people say who's going to do the good work they used to do.

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That's, that's how we should be. That's how we should be.

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But today, closed cocoon. Very little good goes out to the community. Muslims move in Hamdulillah, that's great. The Muslims have come now the drug dealers will stop, now the liquor store will be sold, and it'll be something else. There'll be less crime here. Because the Muslims are here, everyone should be happy, and everyone should feel the effect. We actually have speakers who go around the world telling Muslims that if non Muslims are doing drugs, it's not your business. It's hard for them. If they're drinking alcohol, it's also hold on for them. Don't tell them, don't try to stop the liquor store and close it and, and fix up the community and remove the drug dealers.

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What kind of attitude is this? How is that possible? You're telling me that I live in a country and it's my country, and there's a drug dealer down the road and my children will go to and from school on the school bus? And they'll meet him and he'll try to sell to them? And that's not my business to tell him to stop? Because it's hard for him to sell drugs? Who said it's hard for him to sell drugs?

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Now, what are you seeing the Bible thou shalt sell? Thou shalt sell crack. Where have you seen that? Sir? Hello from the soul.

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So wrong attitude, wrong attitude that we don't do anything. It's okay. Just let it happen. No, the hair comes out of us. And it affects everybody. And everybody's happy that the Muslims have come to town, not the opposite, which is what is happening now.

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And that's why one of the explanations of what it means what about to be strangers? One explanation is that those people who are righteous when everyone else is the opposite, so those who remain upon the truth, everyone else is upon a type of falsehood. Or the other explanation is that it's those who correct the false and in basically, whatever, whatever wrongdoings the others, do, they correct that that's their job, people who correct and fix what's wrong with society is not enough to be a very meaning that you Am upon the truth. And everyone else is upon falsehood. And I will remain strong that the scholars say that's the lower position, and the lower explanation of what about the

00:48:24--> 00:49:03

lowest explanation that I'm every everyone else is corrupt, unrighteous, I pray and everything and I remain firm. That's the low explanation. The higher explanation of that is that people are corrupt, and I'm fixing things. That's who we are. People are corrupt, things are wrong, and we fix things. That's our position. We're guides, we're educators. We're people who are a blessing to our community. This is how we should see ourselves. always see yourself as a guide, see yourself as an educator, see yourself as a blessing for the community. And that way, you will never see yourself in the lower position, or that look how they're looking at me and

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I wish I could be like that or dressed like that. I wish I could disappear and not be noticeable. No, that's the way the believers and this is also mentioned in the Quran. It's in the Sierra, it's in the Sunnah.

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Kala xojo levina. a drama can Amina Latina Amano. Yep, Hakuna. So those who basically those who disbelieve that transgressed, they would laugh at the believers. Why? Because that's the way that's just as soon as Avalon Earth. You're if you're laughed at be happy.

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If you're laughed at be happy. That's that's the history of this Dean. You're upon the truth. The truth looks strange to someone else. So they laugh.

00:49:46--> 00:49:59

Don't worry about it. Everybody will. They might. They might make fun of you. They might make fun of your beard. They might make fun of your hijab. They might ask you why don't you date? Are you gay? This happens all the time in America. Someone doesn't have a girlfriend.

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

Are you gay,

00:50:02--> 00:50:36

make fun of you all the time. So they'll make fun of you. But there'll be a day, when they will wish that they were just like you. They will wish they were just like you. And we're talking about when death comes, we're talking about on the Day of Judgment. They make fun of you. But there'll be a day when they wish that you were like you, the one who's not covered and making fun of you, Aren't you hot? It's hot today? Shouldn't you take that off, she will wish one day that she was like that woman who is well covered, she will wish like they were praying like that guy that they made fun of. So this is who we are. And if we always see ourselves in this light, it doesn't matter how are depicted

00:50:36--> 00:50:50

anywhere else, it doesn't matter who tries to put you down, there's no way you can be put down. If I'm an educator, the educator always has the upper hand, if you're a guide, the one who doesn't know it, there's no way he can be equated to the one who knows.

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See, there's no way you can see yourself less than anyone else without and I think we've come to the end. So what do we learn here? We learned a number of things, that it's natural to feel pressure from being different. We're social beings, and the society wants you to conform, and you as a social being want to conform as well, because it's difficult to be different. And because it's difficult to be different. We have words of encouragement, and a lot of encouragement from the Quran, and from the student telling us this is the history of Islam. People tortured people punished and they remain strong, like a rock against the waves crashing against it. So we have this attitude. Not that Okay,

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let me get rid of this value. No, we have the attitude of let me stand strong for the sake of a large origin. And then see yourself as guides as educators as blessings to the community fair comes out of you. And you're always teaching you teaching those younger than you those around you, your neighbors, the influence is tremendous. So just like to have the body said then when the guy goes in here, something on the television says that's not what I've seen from the Muslims. That's not what I know of Muslims, and it won't matter what people are saying at that point. So with that, I'd like to thank you for being an attentive audience sola hobeika Mohammed

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Salam aleikum, wa Taala