Islam From Scratch #3

Muhammad West

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Channel: Muhammad West

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Salam Alaikum wa rahmatullah wa barakato. I'll be ready as well.

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Smilla Rahim Al hamdu Lillahi Rabbil Alameen wa Salatu was Salam ala COVID Mursaleen St. Anna Mohammed Ali. He was Sofia Germain and beloved brother and sister Molly come Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

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are y'all doing?

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Can the guys on teams? Can someone just give an indication if you could, you can hear you can see me you can see the slides. Someone can give me a confirmation

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anyone there

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are people raising?

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Okay.

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Can you can unmute? I mean,

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I don't know what the raising the end means. Is it? Yes.

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Okay, and, and the slides you can see fine.

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Okay.

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Right. hamdulillah so,

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welcome to Islam from scratch, listen three.

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And today Inshallah, we're going to talk about some of the questions that atheists ask about atheism. Okay, what does atheism mean? Atheism means the you don't believe that these higher powers simplistically, the belief that there isn't a higher power, there isn't a creator or that the IS is what we see. And today is, you know, I'll actually call today's lecture, a conversation, a dialogue with atheism, because

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atheism is, perhaps, in all honesty, perhaps the fastest growing trend of theology in the world. And it is something which is a new phenomenon. It's something which wasn't there in the history of mankind, you won't find the theme of atheism, you know, picking up speed as it is, as it is now. And there are some very compelling questions that is being asked by atheists, and atheism. And so today's it's not about refutation. It's not about a debate, it's a discussion. You know, at the end of the day, we're trying to have a discussion, and together hopefully can can come to some kind of higher power eyetooth. So just to give a bit of summary, for those who are joining. For the first

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time today, there was a lecture one and lecture two. This is lesson number three. Lesson number one, we spoke about what Islam is, what does it in fact, mean? This religion of Islam, right, this whole list, this whole series, is about giving the basic principles of Islam. And the first thing we said was that Islam linguistically, it means to submit and surrender yourself to a higher power that we are as human beings, we have a higher purpose, and we have a higher power. And we need to sit into that higher power, we have a creator that we need to sit into to. And, you know, the Quran goes into a lot of discussion about, you know, who this higher power is, how do you serve him? How do you help

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build the relationship with him, but it almost starts the Quran, you know, this religion almost starts with the, with the assumption that you already accepted as a creator, you believe in a God, you know, you already crossed the line to believe that there is a God, I'm just trying to find out who he is, and how to connect with him.

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It doesn't The Quran does not deal extensively with the issue of atheism, because atheism, as I said, is a modern kind of phenomenon. So we said we want to take a moment before we jump into Islam to actually address this question is the higher power because if there is no higher power, there is no creator, then there's nothing to submit to. There's nothing to surrender to, then there is no Islam, there is no submission, you are in for all intents and purposes, you know, the God of your world. And you do as you please. So we asked last week, is there any evidence? Is there a case that we can make? Is there any proof that we can?

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Is there any proof that we have that there is indeed a higher power? So in terms of making the making the case for a higher power, we said that there is the federal the federal which is this natural inclination that there is an Allah this natural feeling that the is a creator that I've been put here for a reason. This is something in our, not our DNA, our spiritual DNA, that

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that we are in, we are meant to be connected to something more, and everyone, no matter how atheistic you are, at some point in your life, you would sit down and you'd feel this, this connection, Allah mentions that people towards the end of their life, you know, when they are in deep distress, they almost go back to the default, they almost go back to the the base, the base fitrah. So this is the most important evidence, and it's a personal evidence, it's something that everyone fields, because Allah when He created us, He created that link that relationship with us. And if we seek him out, we will find him. The second most compelling evidence that there is a

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Creator is the creation itself, the fact that there is a creation. And we said that scientifically, we know the creation actually had a beginning. You know, scientists call it the Big Bang, we have many other other scientific evidences to suggest that the universe has a beginning and it's heading towards an end. And if it has a beginning, and scientists, you know, they they wouldn't use the word it was created, because you know, with the created as implication of a creator, definitely, it had a point in time when it did not exist, and then all of a sudden, it came into existence. And as we said, if something was caused, who caused it, and that one caused it is external to the universe,

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that must be the creator. We also said, if we look at the creation of the universe, there is a lot of Intelligent Design, there are systems, there are rules, there are processes, there are laws. And this again, it gives evidence that gives credibility that it was made with certain, it was definitely made with a purpose.

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We then also have this issue of higher morals and ethics, we believe as people that there are certain things that we just inherently believe is right and wrong, and that they are consequences for for living a good life and its consequences for living a bad life. They just, it just feels wrong to say that someone like he loves all the terrible people in the world, they will get away scot free, there must be some kind of reckoning something inside of you, tells you that these are highest set of models, you know, that the law of the jungle is not how the universe works. Now, that is if you believe in a higher purpose, a higher set of models, you believe that there is a number

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five, a purpose to your life is meaning there's going to be a reckoning, then, of course, that goes without saying you need to believe in the existence of a higher a higher power Creator.

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The last two points we see number six is that each and every one of us, at some point in our lives, we went through some difficult moments, and we basically opened up, we open our hearts to our Creator, and we had individual personal experiences. And then, you know, it could not be a coincidence across all people. And so this is not only for Muslims, you'd find Christians, Hindus, Jews, who have personal experiences, where we say, It can't just be coincidental, you know, I was I had no options, no alternatives. I, you know, scientifically, there was no way forward for me, I poured my heart out to my, to my Creator. And you know, things just out of nowhere, came right. And

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every one of you has a story like that. This is an indication of a creator, that actually intervenes in his creation, that he plays an active role in his creation. And we've seen it, you know, lastly, we said, it just makes at the end of the day, if you don't want if you want to ignore all of these things and say, You know what, I'm still 5050 I'm not sure if there's a creator, I'm not sure if there isn't a creator? Well, it makes logical sense to hedge your bets, played safe. And so you know what, let's say there is a Creator.

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You know, let's go down that road, let's try and find out what he wants, which try and look at what is the best possible alternative of all the religions and try to live that life. And if I'm, if I'm wrong, well, when you die, basically, it has no you cease to exist, you won't regret it. But if it's the other way, you you don't, you know, have a relationship with your Creator. And then you die and you find out he's on the other side, while when you have a problem. And so it's sort of logical to actually think about it in this way. So but we said as much as we make a case for the Creator, there are obviously certain very important questions, very difficult questions, very deep questions that,

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you know, the atheist community, those who don't believe in a higher power would ask us anything, it's faith that we look at these questions. We ask those questions, and we try and answer some of them. And as I said, this is not a tennis match, we, we give out evidences and they respond, and then we give another and it's back and forth, because there's very little benefit in that kind of debate. And, you know, format of things. This is a discussion. And at the end of the day, this is we are all shared in our humanity. None of us can claim to know the truth, the big picture completely. There is no person on earth that knows all of it. We are, you know, on this little planet, we know

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that we live for about 60 7080 years 90 If we're lucky, very few of us will reach 100 We're going to die and

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We don't know what's on the other side, no one has really come back to tell us what is on the other side. So we don't know where we came from, how we will create it, we don't know for sure, with absolute certainty, we have to believe that there is a purpose or no purpose. And we have to believe what is in the afterlife. These are the methods of the unseen. And so we have the shared problem or the shared concern for humanity, we all want what is best for ourselves, for our family for our kids. And so it is only it is only through dialogue and discussion. And we think about these big questions that hopefully we can be on the path to finding the truth.

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We also as everyone is searching, and it's not a debate to win, but rather a dialogue to find the truth. And so I hope that no one gets offended in this discussion. And I know, these these are, these are questions that people have very strong opinions, and everyone's entitled to have their opinions, it doesn't mean that your opinion is correct, doesn't mean my opinion is correct, doesn't mean that those people would disagree with you are incorrect. And you have the right to voice your opinion. But of course, we're in a respectable, respectable manner. So let's look at some of the so we've made the case for the existence of a creator. And someone might ask, well, there are certain

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questions I have as an atheist, or certain kinds of refutations that I have. And I would like you to,

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to address those things, you know, hundreds of different arguments or questions that atheists raise, I've, you know, tried to select, I can't obviously address all of them. And I've tried to select the ones which I find are compelling, and obviously try to respond to those ones. The more common ones, the ones that we do more regularly, of course, many, many questions that can be asked, and we don't have, you know, we're not going to go into in depth into all of them. Also appointed outside, not yet. Few, you know, I've heard comments that, you know, last week's lecture was very deep. You know, it's, it's, it was a bit it was a bit intense. And this week, maybe it's gonna fall in that same

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vein, inshallah from next week, it will be a lot easier, it will be a lot lighter. And when we talk about who Allah is, and his nature, what should we think about we think of our Creator, what does he want? What is his personality? Like? What are his attributes, those things we'll talk about next week. Inshallah, this is a bit more, you know, but a mental gymnastics to think about? Yeah, but it's going to become easier. But I think it's important, because these are questions that are very important questions that you don't get asked in your school or in your madressa, or whatever it is, but it's questions that we all have, before we jump into some of the arguments made by, you know, if

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he has them, and how do we sort of respond to them? Maybe just take a minute or two. Are there any questions before we we jump into that? Anyone like to ask a question?

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Leticia, I see your hand is up. Would you like to ask something?

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Anyone would like to go go ahead and ask a question?

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Nope.

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Okay.

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All right.

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Yes, I could see you speaking.

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Well, you Well, good, good, good.

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I just have a question

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of connectivity was the section is locked on? It's been sorted out. The other question that that I've got is in addition to you know, the making the case for for higher power, you know, the existence of Allah subhanaw taala.

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You know, it's indicated that

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I do want to believe and you know, in this rectify me that this is completely a different betrayal to the fact that we're going to experience in Ramadan, the party, say some relation to that with the root word or something to that if you can just expand for clarity purposes, to fit the category. That's so So okay, so maybe I see you.

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Okay, so I'm actually confused the class I see a lot of,

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you know, people that might not be Muslim. Yeah. And so the fitrah that I spoke about is this your basically your natural state. So as Muslims, we believe you're born in a state of, of natural purity, spiritual purity, with a link to your Creator, there's always the but no matter how sinful you are, no matter how bad you are, if you actually reach down to your your, the depths of your DNA, you will actually come back to your Creator. So that's called the fitrah. We have something at the end of Ramadan, Ramadan, the month of fasting, we have a special kind of charity called Zakah. To filter, we basically it's saying on the day of eat, you know, the day of faces of eat of

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post Ramadan, that no one should be begging that people should enjoy the eat. And so there's a charity to make sure that everyone has a meal on that day. Now, that thing in Canada is called fitrah. It's actually called it's the right word is a cattle feeder. So of course they could not they don't have any sort of link between the two. It just in Cape Town, we use the word Fidra, which is not technically correct, but we know what it means. It's a psychological sign for that for that question for clarifying that up.

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All right, let's get into an argument number one of our atheist, friends and neighbors, when they ask well, it's not that I don't believe in a creator or IMF the I have to bring the proof to you guys. You know you theist. So you have atheists, meaning I don't believe in a God. And theists are those who believe in a God. They're saying, you the you guys have to make the case. To me. It's like asking, Why don't you believe in Santa Claus? Why don't you believe in the tooth fairy? Well, I'll be leaving them if you bring evidence that they exist, I don't have compelling evidence that there is a God. And when we say evidence, scientifically, you can only believe in something that is proven

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to exist. And we can only prove it through seeing it touching a tasting and smelling it, hearing it, we apply an experiment and, you know, has an effect. So that that makes sense that, you know, you won't believe in monsters and ghosts and all these things, because we don't have proof of proof proof for it. So our response to this kind of question that we don't have proof that there is a Creator, we say, well, okay, we're just saying, Look, in the past, before we had telescopes and microscopes, before we had modern technology, we never had any, you know, concrete evidence that they were viruses and germs and black holes, and, you know, things deep in the earth, we never knew

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those things existed, because we didn't have the technology to perceive them to teach them. And now, they're currently things that we still don't have the technology to know. You know, many mysteries of the universe, right? There are things out there that we have no idea that they exist, for example, if they are aliens, in fact, the Quran side note mentions that they are such things as creatures living outside of our planet, they are aliens, but of the Quran. But we don't have any proof that they exist, because we don't have the technology to make contact with them. Not just because we don't have the technology to make contact with them, doesn't mean they don't exist. Just

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because 500 years ago, we didn't have the ability to see germs or see a black hole doesn't mean germs and black holes didn't exist 500 years ago. So we say that just because we can't perceive the Creator does not mean he does not exist, we can of course, show that he exists. The same way we show other phenomenon exists, like dark energy, dark matter. We don't we can't teach these things we can't, but we can see the impact they have on the creation. And so that is the same way. Allah subhanaw taala says you can't see me you can't hear me, you can't, you know, smell me, touch me taste me. But you can see my existence through the way I influenced the creation, the creation. And

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so through that, through his influence, we know that he exists. And I mean, when we apply this rule to other things in science, we go hunting for certain things, based on, you know, we'd say a leap of faith, I would say the message the similar kind of, you know, scientists are looking for aliens, there's no proof that they exist, absolutely no proof, but they almost believe that there should be more than this life out there. And so they go on a journey for discovery. And so we say the same thing, then go out and search for the creator and try and, and actually discover, have that relationship with Him. The second argument is, and this is perhaps something which we all think

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about very often, you know, how can I believe in a God, a creator, an all powerful creator, you know, with just one word, everything in the universe can you know be made it right? Why Ken? How do I believe in Him? When evil happens? Surely, I mean, an argument is, well, if I was in charge of the world, I would make sure there's no more murders and the rape and children dying and children getting hurt. Well, I mean, I wouldn't do it. So why, and I'm just a human. So why would God allow these things to happen? And you know, it's a, it's an emotional and a compelling kind of question. But how I like to look at this. And again, these are things that you might have a better answer than

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me. I almost say to my atheist friends, I say, okay, look, an earthquake happened. Many innocent people died. horrible, terrible. You're an atheist. I'm a theist, I believe in a god you don't believe in a God? Does it matter whether we believed or not that the earthquake, the earthquake happens irrespective in your world? You know, my atheist when the earthquake happened, people died in my world, you know, Muslim friend, the earthquake happened and people that you're, if I ask you, why did the earthquake happen? They would say there's no reason the earthquake happened. It's just nature that you know, orphanage wasn't built properly, the wrong place the wrong time. It means

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nothing. Those people who died, they suffering has no consequences have parents who lost those kids, they're not going to have any, you know, compensation for that. It just it just luck of the draw. That's it. I say that these things the evil that happens in the world happens with a reason and with wisdom, and that the evil is only one chapter in the book, there are other chapters to come. Within will be this God will intervene and he will take action, and he will have they will be consequences for those who do evil and they will be a constellation

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For those who suffered in this world, and so we asked, which of those two realities are more unjust, the one we for no reason, you know, you get stuck, you know, in an earthquake, or the reality, we say, God knows who gets stuck in an earthquake, and he knows who's suffering and who's crying and who's hurting. He doesn't intervene now, but he will intervene very soon, either either in this world or in the afterlife, but he's going to intervene, but he obviously operates on his own time, and with his own wisdom. And so whichever way you believe, or don't believe that, that those bad things still happen in the world, at least with belief, you know, that there is a wisdom behind it.

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And again, as a human, a conscious, moral,

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intelligent person, which of those two realities make more sense to you? And which sits better with you? Right.

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Right. The argument, and this is a very, this was a simple argument, right? They said, Well, you know, religion has a bad track record. And it's the cause of so much fighting and evil caused in the world. Without religion, we would be better off if there was no religion, we wouldn't have fighting in Palestine, we wouldn't have fighting between Muslims and Hindus, we wouldn't have you know, suicide bombers, 911, the kk k, and none of these, though, basically, it will be peace on earth, religion brings about so much evil. So how could we possibly say that it is something good, right? You know, if we got rid of religion, things we better. And also, we must remember that atheism is

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really a product from the Western paradigm. And in the experience of Europe, religion, you know, wasn't the best thing for you, when, when when when Europe kind of got rid of the power of the church, they flourished, you know, the Renaissance kicked in, and science and technology and civilization grew. So they said, Well, look, we spent, you know, almost a millennia, 1500 years searching for, you know, believing in the afterlife, focusing on the soul, you know, putting our religious people in charge, and we were in the dark ages, we had oppression made a terrible life, then we got rid of all these things, focus on science, no longer thought about God, and just focused

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on this world. And we flourished. And so there is this argument that religion holds you back. So we respond to that mean. So while it is true, that, as we said, that religion, that people people have used religion, to cause terrible crimes, the crusades, and I said until today, many, many evil things are done, in the name of religion, but we also say we live in a world now religion is not as powerful as it was before, yet we still have wars, we still have, you know, for what reason is Russia about to invade Ukraine, what religion is causing that human beings do not need, they do not need an excuse to go to war. They, whether it is power, politics, ego, money, whatever it is, we

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humans are always going to find ways of fighting and harming one another. In fact, the two worst wars in the history of mankind, World War One and World War Two, nothing to do with religion. And if you want to actually add up the body count in the last 100 years, then atheists, you know, Joseph Stalin, and the Communist Party in Russia is responsible for the biggest genocide in the history of mankind. You know, you can you can research these things. And of course, we know, communism is premised, one of its founding principles is that that there is no creator. It's atheistic, you know, pretty famous they call marks. Religion is the opium of the masses. And so in that, if you look at

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the body count, now, we don't blame atheists, we don't say atheism causes that. But a movement that did not believe in God resulted in so much killing. If you look at another person, like Hitler, who was a theist, he did believe in a creator. But he took this concept of Darwinism, which is very integral to atheism. And he took it to the extreme we one group of people has evolved above another group of people and that they are a superior race. This isn't really what it could lead to that it's, you know, even even Richard Dawkins, who is like the, the great the pope of atheism, he agrees that Hitler is a personification of social Darwinism that this is what what what atheism and

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Darwinism can become, is basically the Nazi party where you believe that we are genetically superior. There is no such thing as humans have model rights we are we have been through natural selection, you know, through time we have become superior than other races, and therefore, these deficient races, it's, you know, better for the human race to get rid of them. By getting rid of all these different, you know, inferior races, humanity's better. So atheism can also lead to genocide, like religion can lead to genocide, like politics can lead to genocide, like anything, so let's not blame religion for the problem of people, you know, people that exist in every human being okay?

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Alright, argument number four, if the evidence of God is the creation, so because we are here, we said, well, we are here, something created us. So they must be a Creator. They said, Well, God is also here. So who created God? It's a very common question. Where did God come from? Okay, this is a very deep one, let me just break this down. So what we're saying is, if you are caused, if you had a beginning, then you were caused. And if you're caused, then something caused you and as a creator, so you were created. Now we say, if we were to ask, well, who caused the universe in a cause, number one, who caused caused number one, cause number two, and so on and so forth? Eventually, you're

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going to have an infinity of causes, you know, it's an endless infinity and endless array of causes one after the other. Now, this is impossible. It cannot be that there has been no original uncaused cause let's have a deep ties. Right? You have to believe that at some point, there has to be something which is uncaused had no beginning has no creator, it was always there. Now, we know the scientists originally believed the universe was that the universe was uncaused that no Creator, but we know now scientifically the universe was caused. It wasn't the, from the beginning of time, it had a moment in time, 14 billion years ago, where it came into existence. So we know we've been

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caused. So there must be at some point something which has no beginning. And that basically, by definition is God. But he's uncreated. He doesn't have time, he doesn't have space, he doesn't have any limitations. This thing is by definition, an unconscious being is the creator is God. Okay.

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Right. So that is, you know, so you in this argument is to summarize this, you have two ways of looking at it, you either have

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a series of causes to infinity, that cause number one was as a result, of course, number two was it it was number three, and it goes on until infinity, there was everything was caused by something before it, and there is no into it. Now, we know that it's not that it's not possible. The other alternative is, well, we believe we just believe that they at some point, there is a cause that had no beginning. And that cause we say his God is the Creator. Right? Argument number five is a very interesting one. It says that religion contradicts science. And this actually holds true that if your religious text, if your Bible if your Quran, if your Hadith, it directly conflicts with true,

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unequivocal science, you know, you know, science is this 100% scientific fact. And your religious texts say something completely different, and there's no room for interpretation, there's no room for reconciliation, then this is an indication that your religion, there's something wrong with it, that this cannot be because God can't make a mistake. God cannot reveal something which is factually incorrect or untrue.

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And so we say, Our belief is that true religion, correct religion, will always align with correct science. If we have the correct religion, and we have 100%, pure science, then these two will always be in line, because both come from the same source both come from the Creator. And so if there is a direct unavoidable contradiction in them, then there is a problem with your religious takes. Religion, though, it's possible that when the, you know, scholars of old age read a certain religious text, they misinterpreted something. And as science came along it, they realized, Oh, my goodness, the texts that I was interpreting was not meant to be read, literally, but it was a

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interpretation from from from people, we can say, human interpretations is fluid that's possible. At the same time, science also can get it wrong, what we accept to be scientific fact, now 50 years later, we can find Well, it's completely incorrect. Our our view of science changes all the time. And so we always need to be careful that we don't equate a human interpretation of religion

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with a scientific fact. And we shouldn't equate scientific theory with scientific fact. But when these two things are aligned, and they end they should reconcile, and that's also a strong indication of the authenticity of the religious states. Now, Islam takes great pride, and one of the things that I personally, you can hear from my, my discussion, science is something which I'm very passionate about love learning about, you know, outer space and the things that happen in the natural world. And, I mean, I remember, I share something personal with you sitting at Seapoint with my parents, and watching the sunset, and I said, you know, just amazing how it looks like the sun is

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moving. But in fact, we are we are moving right and, and then we had a bit of a debate that you know, but the Quran says the sun does move and all of this and that's one of the reasons why should we go study and I said that I need to understand what my religious takes is. And if there is a contradiction between religion and science, then how do I reconcile that and if I can't reconcile that, well, there's a problem with my religious texts and

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As you go and study the Quran in particular, you'd find that Islam really celebrates the Quran celebrate science, it encourages people go and look at the events go out and search, go and do your calculations, go and learn and read and research, and you will come back to the same conclusion. And it is a known fact that the Muslim world was at its peak at its zenith in terms of learning in terms of

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in terms of civilization, when it was close to its religious texts. As, as the Muslim world started submitting lists and lists and started forgetting the Quran, they also lost the scientific age. Now we depend on the rest of the world for technology, for our meditation for energy in the past, we lead the world, in most fields in science, and that was when we were aligned with our religious texts. Because under the under Islam, under the Quran, it encourages you to go and search and explore the universe. Okay. And so, there is no contradiction, I think from an Islamic perspective, maybe from a European perspective, but from an Islamic perspective, we don't see this tension

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between science and religion. In fact, we find a lot of compatibility. And there's a great level of respect between the scientific fraternity and the religious fraternity, that we are basically getting two beams from the same light, this is two sources of truth coming from the same creator. And that is something which we want, it's important to revive and to to look back at the history and the tradition of Islamic science, the sciences, okay.

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And, you know, in the sorry, before we move on in this there, obviously, a lot of specific arguments things like evolution, you know, Islam as a response to evolution, we don't deny evolution, we don't say evolution doesn't exist. In fact, we see evolution, we affirm evolution, there is in the Quran, where Allah says that creatures begin from water, and then they sort of change over time into living things into things with different, you know, they crawl on their bellies, and some have legs, and some have more than more than two legs. And so evolution is something which sort of the Quran alludes to, but we of course, don't believe in the evolution of man, which really is the is, you

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know, God almost intervened and created Adam, we don't we don't find any contradiction in sort of the principles of the heavens and how things move, in fact that the Quran mentions these things. And so it's important to look at these these these specific differences and understand, are you understanding the Quran correctly? And do you have the right facts scientifically, and I've been very honest, I haven't found anything which is glaringly in contradiction between Islam and science, I haven't found something which I find is a conflict is always an explanation that satisfies one's one's heart.

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Number six, most people, atheists would say that, you know,

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this is actually a response, you know, one person a person might say to atheists, well, how can you guys be right? When you are in such a tiny minority, let's throughout the world, every civilization kind of believes in a creator, you know, without, you know, borrowing from one another, even those who are completely isolated, they came to the same conclusion. Surely, you know, the is the some kind of strength in numbers here. And that people have religion has been followed, from the beginning of human civilization until today, there are still a lot more people that believe in a creator. And the response to that is you only follow your religion because your family, you are

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Muslim, because your parents are Muslim, you're a Christian, because you come from a Christian household. And they still think that, you know, that is true, I'd say that is true for most of us. 80% 90%. You know, we just simply follow the religion of our our parents, in fact, there is a prophetic tradition, a hadith within Amazon says that, you know, people are born on the fitrah, they are born connected to God, and then the parents and the society almost influences them to a certain degree. And this isn't only for religion dies, you follow the same sports team, because your dad was a Manchester fan, you eat a certain cuisine, because that's your you're accustomed to it. So it's

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not strange to say, Look, I'm a Muslim, because my family are Muslim, you tend to follow what your society

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gives you. And at the same time, I would say two Atheists may feel sorry for us because they come from an atheist household, or that they had some negative experience. It wasn't sort of a rational decision, you had a negative experience with a religion or a certain segment of a religious faith based community. And that almost, you know, caused you to have this perception. And so we are saying, one of the reasons why we're doing this is to step outside your background, not to challenge or question or put doubts in your faith, but to really test your faith and to question it to hopefully Discover the Truth independently, but you need to make up your own mind at the end of the

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day, guys, every man for himself. Everyone has to make this decision on their own. You have to come to the truth on your own. It's a journey that you can't walk with your friends or with your family. It's

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A personal journey. And these Unfortunately, these the are there are many paths. But it can't be that all of them are correct, you know, not all of them are going to be correct. And so you have to make the best choice that I choose to the best of your ability.

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Number seven, I think this is one of the real reasons why atheism is on the rise. Most people don't become atheists because of these heavy philosophical debates. It really comes down to your personal views on morality, what I like and what I don't like, what is okay with me, so I am, Let's hypothetically say, I'm vegan, I'm against the eating of meat, hypothetically. And so automatically, I say, well, any religion, that slaughters animals, any religion that eats meat, or allows meat, I can't accept that religion. Another person might say, You know what, I am against capitalism, I am completely Pro that, you know, you shouldn't own any property. And any religion, which allows the

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ownership of property is immoral, and other persons as well, you know, I'm my views on feminism is so strong, that their religion that that dictates how a woman should dress or that a woman should get married, or that a woman can't have multiple sexual partners. You know, I can't accept a religion like that. And so you have a morality, you have a sense of what's right and wrong. And then you compare that to other religions that say, Well, if it doesn't match what I want, then I'm going to reject it. Now, what is how do we respond to them? We'll say, who's to say your views of what's right and wrong? What's permissible, impermissible? Is the correct view. How did you get your your

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morality? How do you come about in terms of what is okay or not? Okay? Basically, your views are shaped by your education, your family, your society, the things you watch on TV, Netflix, and through that you've basically developed a sense of a moral compass. And it doesn't mean that that is correct. And also, if we were to say that we except, you know, I chose a view of morality, her sister, Xena might have a completely different view, she might say, I'm against a religion, that,

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that so one person might say, I'm against the religion that doesn't allow same sex marriages, another person might say, I'm against the religion that allow same sex marriages. That's my view that it's bad. It's wrong. That's my morality. How do what do we say is correct in this to this debate? We cannot say well, to each his own both of you are correct. No, they have someone has to be right. And someone has to be encoding. And so the modality of society and most being you find your modality is really a reflection of what society or the dominant society deems Okay, so the dominant society or civilization in the world is Western secularism. That is this the dominant religion of

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the world today. And of course, things like gender. Just think about this, the debate on gender.

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You know, five years ago, 10 years ago, these issues were not even things that we thought about. Now it's becoming more and more prevalent, because we almost get murdered, through the the impact of the dominance dominant society, the dominant civilization upon us. And so as this thing shifts next, you know, next year, it might be something new 50 years from now, those people will look back at what we watch on TV, the views of society and say, well, that is completely backward and wrong. How do we know what is right or wrong? How do we have the sense of morality? And so the only this only proves that humans cannot logically derive an ultimate set of moral truths without an ultimate, without an

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ultimate decider that is applicable to all civilizations, right? They asked if there is a set a code that all civilizations must follow. It cannot be derived by one civilization. We can't say, the Greeks, you must come up with a set of models that suits everybody. And the South Africans, you must say, No, we can't. We need to see some, someone external to humanity must do this. And that is why we say that is why there's a need for a higher power. That is why there's a need for a higher entity. Because ultimately, what you end up following is yourself with this kind of argument that I don't follow any religion that doesn't suit my morality. You're following your own religion, you're

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basically making up as as as you go along. And what about you know, think about this, your views on certain things might change. Today, you might feel very passionate about, you know, I'm against eating meat.

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A year later, you might realize, well, I'm pro eating meat again. So your religion was changed based on

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your experiences. That is not an acceptable way of living your life. Basically following every one and desire and believing that to be true. I mean, you have the you obviously have the freedom to do as you as you want. But you can't say that what I'm doing is correct and this is how it should be. That is just your preference. Okay. Someone might ask, Is it okay to say and this is perhaps the the reality legion of the world today. This is the maybe the dominant religion. It is one

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There is not a theistic, it's very few people that truly are truly atheistic. There are many people that say, look, I believe in a higher power. I believe in the Spirit, I believe in the afterlife. I believe in spirituality, I believe in the university is this, you know, higher power higher entity. But at the same time, I don't believe in the religion organized religion, I'm I believe you're allowed to live your life the way you want. And the term is a term that is commonly used as agnostic as incorrect agnostic. agnosticism doesn't mean that you believe in a creator, but you don't believe in religion, that's not agnosticism. But people use that term to describe this. Well, you also I'm

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spiritual. I don't I'm not religious and spiritual. Now, is that not an okay religion to follow? Again, this just basically means you're following yourself, and you're making it up as you go along. And something to think about, if you believe in a higher power, Is it logical to say that he created all of this, and put everyone on earth without reason? You know, he put us here? And then he just walked away. And he said, You guys do what you feel is right. I'm not interested in what you do what you don't? Do. You just get along? And that's it. Surely,

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if all of the if not the effort, but he went through,

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you know, took the time to create the universe to create us to place us here? Did he not then intervene in our lives and shown and gotten once us do we are we not supposed to do something? Logically, it feels like we need to do something, and that there is a sort of roadmap that what we need, what we need to do. And so that's why we say, well, the best thing, and this is my view, and you can disagree with me is that look, there is a higher purpose, he is a creator,

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there is a purpose, there is a reason why we are here, and one of these religions, you know, one of the many, many religions of the of the world must have some indication of what we supposed to do. And so we almost didn't say I believe in a creator, what religion should I choose to follow? Which of these religions makes the most sense? And so that's why when we talk about when I'm going to talk about all these religions, we'll talk about Islam. And what is Islam is an alternative. It's one of the options, what I should follow to to really get to this higher, higher power. And that is what we're going to discuss as we go forward. And so,

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you know, before we conclude, and again, this was quite another deep session. Any questions?

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Yes, we do have one question on YouTube. Okay, so we've got a question YouTube. Wait, what is the question? Bachelor asks, or she says, that's an option. My non Muslim colleague was arguing over Islam is the American Legion.

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And then she says Western to expect non Muslims to believe in Islam, but you will rarely find America. Right. Okay. So the question was, how do we know that Islam is the correct religion? Excellent question. It's something which we need to address. And it's something which I'm going to get into, you know, what evidence do you have that I can support this religion? We're going to start off by saying, Well, what is this religion, one from me? You know, if the urgency is why you should kill your children. That doesn't sound sound correct. So they should be certain things in this religion, which agrees with just your model, logical sense. And then they should be additional

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things, or make like, the religious text needs to be consistent. They shouldn't be errors in it, they shouldn't be mistakes in the so we'll talk about the miracles of the Quran, the people that are involved in preaching the religion, or the prophets, you know, they should be people that we could follow. I mean, we can't follow someone that we know is morally corrupt. So we need to go through those are the kinds of things that we are going to discuss. So it's a good question. Something to discuss guys on teams, anyone have a specific question?

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Okay, so, then to just conclude in terms of, well, what's the way forward, you know, between us and our, you know, our atheist friends, and, you know, how do we move forward with us? So we say, look, as I say, atheists, as your atheism asks important and difficult questions. And it's questions that we need to think about. And to be honest, we're not gonna have all the answers. So atheism is really good at asking questions. But atheism is not very good at answering questions. You can poke holes and say, Look, this theory doesn't work. Fine. Now, give me an alternative theory. And you'll find really the theory that the alternative atheism wants you to believe is, there is no creator, there

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is no purpose to your life. We're not going any way. You are just an accident. Your life is meaningless. There is nothing to aspire for. Because at the end of the day, you're just going to become nothing. Your parents that have passed away, they're gone. Now, that doesn't sit right with me. It doesn't sit right with a lot of people because that's not an answer. That is just basically saying, well, because we don't know we are going to say there is no answer. Or other I believe there is an answer and there is a purpose.

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To really, you know, one of the things that I encourage people when they say well, you know, how do I know about that there is a Creator, how do I get to in touch with my you know, how do I find belief or faith in this

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It's not about going through all these different, you know, beliefs, all these different arguments or other. What I recommend that we do, what I recommend we do is we actually turn to him. And I say to people, instead of doing the back and forth debates with atheists and different different faiths, what religion is correct? The question can be, I don't know, Islam is correct. Ask your Creator, whatever religion that you believe in, whatever faith that you have, whether you believe in a faith you don't believe in even for an atheist, don't worry about the words just say, Listen, creator, whatever name you call yourself, I don't know who you are. If you're out there, and you can hear me,

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then just guide me, show me what you want me to do. Okay, I've listened to lectures, I've read books, I don't know what I should do. Help me guide me. The Quran says who are either so I like it, I knew that when they asked you about me, the creator, for indicative I'm very, very close with you without a die that Dan, I answer to the person who calls out to me. So I believe we believe that if there is a Creator, and you speak to him, he will respond. So instead of going through all this back and forth, let your heart ask him and call upon Him. And He will guide you to, to where you need to be. And he says for Manuel de la ADA Yasha solderable Islam, Allah says, whom ever Allah wants to

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guide, whoever wants to be guided, and he wants you to be guided, he will open your heart to Islam, He will guide you to the to the faith of Islam. And so speak to Him and ask Him to guide you, every one of us think that minute, no rituals, no specific, you know, place or time to sit down with is on your bed, whether you are alone in a room and say, creator, you've made me if you are the guide me, Inshallah, next week, we're going to ask, then we're going to, we went away from the heavy stuff, we will say, what is the Islamic? Who is Allah? Who is this Allah that I keep hearing in Islam? What should I think about when I think of him? Is he is he angry? Is a very, you know, you know, he's

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powerful. Is he merciful? Is he kind? What should I think about when I think of him? What does he what are his qualities? What does he look like? What is he? What are his attributes? We'll talk about what Allah is, in our next week lecture in sha Allah. Any questions? We have another?

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Okay, yes, we've oncocytomas a question.

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Or a question. Just the previous slide makes mentioned to call out and see call out to me, and I'll see, you know, maybe in the sub sector,

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during the network, the response, or as a human is occasions when you know, tout sits in

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why is my Creator not answering my prayers?

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Is that the sign of weak ima with a maybe a reason for not answering the

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request or that question?

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So we've all had this experience where we ask and you know, we we expect the Creator to respond immediately. Sometimes he wants you to keep asking sometimes, in that asking, you get the response. But we even have an example of NaVi Brahim, we, you know, he asked Allah and Abraham, this is the man who taught people about the Creator. And he says, you know, show me how the resurrection is. And Allah awesome, don't you believe? Don't you believe that the resurrection is I do believe, but to bring comfort to my heart, that it's not about doubt, I don't doubt that you exist. But you know, seeing and experiencing something is so much more powerful than believing something. And yes, on

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some level, part of religion is that you need to believe Oh, Allah, so I'm going to show you heaven and hell is not going to give you all you do as an antonym immediately. He wants to test your belief, that's part of our part of theology, that you need to go through the process. He's not going to give it to you on a platter, you need to do the hard work and continue to search. If you're going to ask once and turn away, well, then you weren't that serious about asking. So he wants you to keep asking and asking and searching and searching until and if you are sincere, we believe if you are sincere, you will get the answer. He will give you the answer. There was a face there was a YouTube

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question. What is the YouTube question? The question was, what do you say to someone who grew up? What do you say to someone who grew up Muslim, no longer believes, but no longer believes in religion and Allah protects obviously, it happens. And this is why we have this discussion. And you know, many of you probably like might think, I don't have this question about atheism, and it's, you know, wasting my time to even discuss it. Well, your kids might have these discussions anyway. You don't have the discussions with them, with your kids, with your siblings with your friends. You know, it's very easy that you that they will look to other places for answers. And I encourage you

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actually want you to sit down and say, Guys, do you ever ask these questions? Why is then Allah, what are we supposed to do? And year what the answers are? So so the question was, what do I do with a person who wasn't Muslim and then became an atheist? Well, like we do today, have a discussion. Have a dialogue. We're not here to judge anyone. We're not here to condemn anyone. We're not here to this is not part of part of this discussion. We are here to have a dialogue. And if someone is gone through a different

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stage in their life, keep talking to them keep getting to understand why they left. And you know, if you're not equipped to give the answers, then link them up with a religious scholar, someone many times you're put off with a religion, and it's because of personal experience, which is not really true. I mean, it's like saying, you know, I don't like Islam because there's so many tinnitus it's not a lot on like Christianity, because there's so many pedophiles in the diligence because nothing I mean, those those are those can nothing to do with the religion itself. Yes, there are bad people in the religion. And so it's important to really understand why people have made the change, and to

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then have that dialogue, never give up on someone, keep having the dialogue. And as I said, every single person, whether you're Muslim or atheists, it doesn't hurt you to reach out and call out to your to your Creator and say, Look, just guide me, you know, show me the way and that's that's far more profound than actually having a lecture like this. I need to wrap up we are over time actually, again, for any additional questions or comments. You can email me there's been a number of people who have emailed me and I thank you, I apologize if I can't get to all of them. I'll try my best but I thank you so much for your your comments. Even if you you agree with something you disagree with

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something you don't like something please let me know. So we can improve, then I must mention this that, you know, they say February is the month of love. While march for us is the month of love. We are doing a pre marriage, workshop, the WHO Tunica.

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We're going to talk about so those of you who are interested and you can register, especially those who are you know, in a serious relationship or you're about to get engaged, you are engaged, you want to get married, we do a workshop in terms of all the rules, the do's and the don'ts in terms of marriage. But this is a bit special and we want to do something a bit special. We actually want to link you up with a therapist and psychologist to see if your personalities we're going to do a personality profile exercise. You know, do your personalities gel all these certain blind spots you will have a counseling session with with the Imam one on one. You know, we've seen so many

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marriages, so many divorces based on advice we can give you and we can help you draft unicaf contract. So if you're interested in this, it will be over the month of March will be a number of sessions. You can email me or you can contact the Toronto office, our WhatsApp line and register we only going to take a sip number I think maximum 20 people because it's a smaller group and inshallah this is not going to be online. So please, if you're interested, let us know Zack Lafave was ALLAH Cena Mohammed radio se la mysoline hamdulillah Ramadan Amin s reliable