Channel: Nouman Ali Khan
Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan addresses the topic of the hour and a pertinent problem amidst the Muslim youth – a crisis of faith, and a crisis of confidence in the religion. our struggling Muslims friends and family that are Muslim are barely holding on to their faith, and they’re barely holding on to any semblance of Islam in their lives.
How do we solve this predicament? A feasible solution needs to be adopted. There needs to be a kind of mentorship happening at the community level so that our younger boys are spending time with some of the older boys, especially the ones that are mature in their religion and those who have chosen to submit themselves to Islam. Doing this helps us achieve two objectives – it gives young people someone to look up to, and it gives older kids a sense of responsibility. It makes them realize that others have their eyes on them, they have to answer to a higher standard because they set the tone for others.
On a long term basis, we can hope to have forums where our young people can talk about the real questions they have without being afraid of reactions from their parents or their Imam or their scholar, or their speaker. We shouldn’t put them into a position of them feeling intimidated for them to even want to be able to ask a question. We need to create an environment where they feel comfortable enough to be able to ask certain kinds of questions.
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la masa bit Nanda Moti Bella ilaha illallah wa lahoma Jimena Latina Emmanuelle, Amina salekhard, whatever. So Bill, Huck, what are some of the sub? I mean, I mean, can everyone hear me clearly in the back? You guys hear me? Raise your hand if you cannot hear me? If you can't hear me, okay, good. Nobody Raise your hand. All right. I wanted to make this first session and charlo Tada
and dedicate this one session to what I feel is one of the most pressing issues in the lives of Muslim youth. One that I have come to experience myself personally at one point in my life, and I've, as I've had the opportunity to travel more recently and interact with many, many young people across the country, I'm noticing that it's not a program localized to one community are limited to one specific kind of, you know, person, but rather, it's happening pretty much almost universally. And I guess I could like, I'd probably want to turn that a crisis of faith, and a crisis of confidence in the religion. You know, Alhamdulillah, many of you that are sitting here are Muslims
that are eager to learn something more about their religion, and they want to advance further and inshallah Tada, you guys are the hope for becoming ambassadors of this religion, not just to non Muslims, but even to your Muslim struggling Muslim friends, and, you know, family that are Muslim, but they're barely holding on to their faith. And they're barely holding on to any semblance of Islam in their lives. And you are, at this point, the only people the only connection essentially, that Allah has provided to them for Islam. So the fact that you're here is already speaking volumes for the kind of commitment you have. And you might not think very highly of yourselves. But
actually, I do an alarm. Maybe I'm, you know, perhaps Eliza, which then holds you in very high regard, and may lie except gathering this gathering and gatherings like this one, and make a sincere in them.
Now, what I wanted to talk about this crisis of faith, I'll share a couple of stories with you, and then I'll talk about it in general.
The first story is from a couple of years ago, I was at a I was giving a flip by a necessity that I don't want a name. And at the end of the hood, a father came up to me and said, I'd really like you to have lunch at our house, I want you to talk to my daughter.
And I said, Okay, I guess I have time. So he was right next door to the master too. So he took me to his, his house. And his daughter, he said I you know if you're okay with it, my daughter has some questions about Islam, etc, etc. You know, if you don't mind, you can help answer some of them. So his daughter comes out. By the way, this is a Muslim family born and raised Muslim, his parents are born and raised Muslims. You know, children are raised Muslim. And she comes out and she has piercings in strange places on her face, like on the side of her eye and like, a couple on her forehead, like weird places. Like if you look at that and go out. But anyway, so she sits down. I'm
kind of weirded out at this point. But okay, you know what, let's, let's have her ask her questions. And she had about 30 of those. She had about 30 questions, and I didn't answer any of them. I just said, so what else I kept saying what else and she kept adding stuff. And she had questions like, Well, you know, I have some friends in high school and they're gay, and they're not bad people. They haven't killed anyone. Why do we hate them so much? And you know what? So why does everybody else why did God make a hell? Why do you have to do that? Like, what's the point? If you want if you wanted to make a hell, then why did he create us to begin with? If he knows we're gonna go there?
Then why did he do that to us? As you said, well, what's so bad about having a boyfriend? You know, it's not like, you know, murder.
You know, I'm not that bad. What's the big deal? What Why are we Why did we make such a big deal out of everything? And I said, so I mean, at this point, internally, I'm already had three heart attacks, but externally, I'm saying what else
you know, and she just keeps going
going and going and mind you, her father is sitting there. So if I'm having seizures,
you know, I felt really sad for him, I really did. And she just kept going and going. And at the end of her 30 questions, I said, Okay, I'm willing to spend time with you and discuss these issues with you. But I'd rather you just answer one of my questions first. If you could do that, then we can probably have a good, well directed conversation, there was a copy of Quran sitting on the dining table. So I picked it up, I said, Do you really actually believe this is like, this is from God, sent by an angel, through an angel to a man. So Allah, Allah who send them, and whatever this has is perfect instruction for you and for me to live our lives in the best possible way. And if we live
our lives this way, we'll find happiness here and forever. And if we don't, we'll find misery here and forever. Do you actually believe that? She goes, No, I'm not so sure.
So she told me flat out, I'm not so sure. I said, Well, then all of those other questions don't matter. None of that stuff matters. That's what I would call a crisis of faith. That's what that's that's the first crisis of faith.
And she's not the only one. I've seen this story play itself out some some. And a lot of people have those kinds of questions. They don't ask them. They don't ask them. A lot of people, you know, I'm not just picking on girls here, Muslim guys, you know, they'll, they'll be raised in a religious family, and they know certain things are hot on and they'll, you know, in their in their head, they'll say, why is it? Why can't I do that? And they'll just as Allah said, so you say that for everything.
And then if somebody was to ask them, so what's Islam, everything's Haram. Here's my summary. All right.
You know, Islam equals don't smile, don't have fun, don't live life, because that all of that stuff is haram. It's forbidden. Right? And of course, it's reinforced. Because when you come to a typical mustard across the country, all you see is people that are frowning all the time. It's like, like manure at the bassoon. Right? This is forbidden to smile here. Like if they even see a child like running a little bit with a smile, they must.
Don't you see the sign says sadness.
Second depressing thing.
So you know, a child even growing up in a Muslim community in an Islamic school in Islamic school, he goes to I'm not knocking on any Islamic schools here in Maryland, I don't know enough. But generally, it's run by some very angry and these
kids that are in class are just seeing angry people all the time. And the more religious they are, the angrier they are. Right? the you know, the longer the beard gets, the bigger the frog is, like,
you know, very hard to smile.
So, they're, they're in this environment all the time. And there's some questions that start popping in their head. Why? You know, why am I Why am I even Muslim? everybody around me so miserable, they can't do anything. Every time I want to do something fun. There's a wrong.
There's a wrong and all the friends I have in school, they say they're going to hell.
What do you want me to do? internally, internally, a young man, a young girl, a young boy starts getting a little turned off by the religion.
They could start getting turned off by it. And then on top of that, you know, most parents, let's be honest, most parents, even if they want to put their children in Islamic schools, they can't afford to. It's a lot of times they can it's a tough economy. It's not easy to afford, you know, so the most of our kids go to public school. That's the reality. That's it's not something you should not embarrass people about. It's just a reality of Muslims living in this country. They go to public school. So parents feel guilty that they're not themselves able to give a quality religious education. They're not certainly not getting one at school. might as well put my child in Sunday
school. Right? That'll help.
It won't. It doesn't ask your child if it helped.
Right? I asked the controversial question, as you know, if you want to gauge and I love Sunday schools, by the way, I still run one and I think they're there. They're a blessing and they're an important effort in the effort to educate our children. Nonetheless, as the average child that is sitting in Sunday school, any given Sunday is pull up. You know, take one random kid from especially a teenager 1213 older, pull them aside, do you want to be here? Just ask him that one question. Do you want to be here? What are the what is the overwhelming answer you will find?
They've already served five days in prison.
At school. The prison for a child is behind the desk.
And what do parents do, you need to serve some extra time. Here's a six day in prison. By definition kids hate class, it's, you know, when the when the bell rings for recess, you should look at, you know, I used to be a teacher at a school. And one of the ways I would punish students, if they were misbehaving is the bell for recess would ring and I say you can't leave yet, you have to finish 10 more problems. And you see all these kids sitting there. And as the bell rings, the temperature in their seats raise, it rises. And it's really it hurts to stay inside your seat. And then they look outside the window and they see others entering the gates of paradise. You know, they're like,
Can we go please? Just anything, but here? Anybody? They hate being in a class and what do we do? We stick them in another class. And we stick them in another class, or at least it should be fun, right? No, not gonna be fun, either. Somebody's going to come and they're going to do you know, another, you know, my second story now, my second story.
This is actually happened in the Sunday school I used to be a part of the class next to me, was a bunch of teenage boys or preteens. 11 to 13. younger guys. Teacher Roxanne says today, children, I'm going to tell you the best story of all time. The best.
Do you know what it is?
This kid raised his hand.
Yes, you can tell me what it is. Dragon Ball.
This kid next to him goes no, you you you keyhole you you hockey shaped something?
This other kid goes to Naruto and this other kid and they start arguing with each other. No, that's the best story on that video game had the best storyline. And the sequel was even better because it went backwards in time. And the other one goes, No. Did you see that movie? Oh my god, it was awesome. Have you seen the third season of this or that? or the other? Oh my goodness. This argument breaks out in class. And the teacher standing there in shock. his jaws dropped. He doesn't know what to do. Like,
no, no, no, no. This is all wrong. I meant the story of use of in the Koran.
Because you know Allah xojo says natalina pusaka
Allah subhana wa Tada. He said himself, we are giving weird, we're narrating onto you. In fact, the best of all possible stories. This is a claim made by Allah.
And so he was expecting the child who raised his hands as I know the best of all stories. That's the story of he was a very strong, nobody said that. It wasn't even a contender. It wasn't even a contender. So he said no, no, no children. You're all wrong. The best story is the story out of use of and the kids don't
already know that one.
Okay, yeah, sure it's the best. Do you think they really believe it's the best?
That's a crisis of faith right there.
Allah said something, a loss at something.
And our children, children's sitting in a Sunday school in a mustard in the house of Allah. No matter how badly you want them to believe that they don't.
They're just seeing it because you want to hear it.
They're just saying it because you want it that's a crisis of faith. That's a huge crisis. We have to understand how to address that crisis.
All the other problems we have for our youth and if you want to make a list of those and have programs about those, how Facebook is a fitna how YouTube is a fitna how the internet is a fitna how stepping out of sight outside of your houses of fitna how high school is a fit now the mall is a fit. Now your friends are a fit. Now your car is a fit. Now, how your cell phone is I mean good goodness gracious. Oxygen is a fitness at that point. Right?
You just keep the list keeps going. I am saying that list is superfluous. I'm arguing that stuff is fluff.
We have to look underneath that fluff and look at what the real problem is. The real problem is a crisis of faith.
We need to understand the problem. And the problem is our youth are not confident, not proud, not in love with Islam.
They're not confident in the Quran. They're not confident that the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is the absolute best role model. No one deserves to be loved more. No one deserves to be followed for no one.
My third story, part of crisis of faith.
I was I mentioned the story at the Ignite convention too.
We're flying to the Ignite convention. I usually take my whole family all 28 of them. I have six children, I lose count sometimes. But anyway, so we're flying together. My kids are little so you know, they're short so they can't really see over the seat in the plane. So they're little they're all theirs. They're sitting there. And my wife and I were talking
So we can see the TV screen when it drops. Right. So there's a movie playing. We don't want to see it, but it's in your face right here.
And it and of course, hamdulillah we don't have headphones. So it's a silent film at that point.
And it was the Justin Bieber documentary.
Yeah. Imagine that. Well, thankfully, it was a silent film. Right. So
move forward, they say, and also license plate number. I'm kidding. I'm kidding. Okay, just move forward as much as you can. Thanks for moving. I really appreciate that. Not all at once, please come down. Okay.
Yeah, the spaces in the front, please take them. Okay. So this documentary that is playing, I'm trying to avoid looking at it. But I can't help myself. I can't help myself because they're showing this kid come and start singing his songs and girls in the audience are crying.
Like you could tell they're just like, we love you so much. I'll die for you and mothers bringing their daughters to concerts. And then somebody handed a voucher that says you get to meet him backstage, you should see the family. How they're jumping up and down. Enjoy. And in the course of that video, I was like, oh, man, these these people have nothing to look up to. This all they have to look up to. They're so happy at this. They're so happy at this. How satellite can it be and next clip, there's a Muslim girl, she's wearing a hijab, she's handed a voucher, you're gonna get to meet Justin Bieber, and she's going around the tree, hugging it and going crazy.
And she's not the only Muslim girl that would do that. She's not don't sell stuff at a law. What kind of Muslim? That's the average Muslim girl.
So now we have a crisis, not just a faith, but some of the fruits of faith. What are some of the fruits of faith? The faith itself is you're convinced Islam is true, right? That's faith itself. You're convinced Islam is true. But beyond that, a step above that is you take pride in it.
And a consequence of that is everything that is not Islam
no longer appeals to you. Everything that contradicts Islam, you you don't not only are you not attracted to it, you feel sad for people who are
you look at it as something beneath you.
Let me tell you what something a great thing for Muslims would be a point of pride for Muslims would be instead of a young Muslim men thinking I can't do this, I can't do that. I can't do the other everything is wrong. Look at my friends, they get to do this. And that and the other instead of a Muslim girl who's going to high school, and she's wearing Hijab and everybody makes comments at her and pokes fun at her and says weird things to her.
Or girl seller, you look so ugly, because because that thing on your head, etc, etc. And she's thinking in her head, you know, I wish I could be like those other girls, they get to do whatever they want. I can't do anything. I can't have any fun in life. The only thing that's keeping me from being happy is Islam. While there's some huge transformation happening on the side, what is going on? wasn't something I said.
I'll wait. I'll wait for this
to be over.
Take your time. Take your time.
What just happened? Still trying to understand
The easier thing would be the people in the back just move up instead of Everybody move up. But okay. Whatever works for you, Chawla.
So I didn't want to just mention the crisis of faith. I wanted to try to mention some of its solutions. How do you address the crisis of faith, it's easy to talk about a problem. It's hard to talk about solutions. It's hard. And I'm not gonna I'll my disclaimer will be I don't claim to have answers. Like absolute ones. I have some ideas. I'd like to share those ideas with you. These ideas are a result of discussions with scholars with counselors, discussions with youth
that I feel I don't want to give you kind of generic kinds of answers. I want to try to give you some kind of practical answers.
Again, they may not be the absolute solution, but inshallah tada with your own discussions among yourselves, you'll come up with some better things. The first of the first part of the solution
is that we have to create a culture around strong friendship.
Islamic ident not even Islamic identity itself is it revolves around who you hang out with, who you spend most of your time with, who you identify with. When you spend most of your time on a computer, you know, you you start taking on some of the qualities of the stuff you're reading, and the stuff you're watching. It starts invading your thoughts. The kinds of people you spend time with. If they're studying Islam all the time, you'll want to study Islam too. If they're playing basketball all the time, you'll develop a habit.
from playing basketball also, if they're going to watch movies all the time, you'll want to go to, you're going to want to go to the movies to your environment has an effect on you, the people you surround yourself with, has an effect on you, the Muslim community, starting with the Muslim family, and then evolving to the Muslim community needs to actually have a campaign to ensure our young children are in the company of good role model older kids, like a big brother, Big Sister type thing. Excellent. So when our girls are 12 1314, when they're coming up in their ages, some of the more leading Muslim girls in our community that are 17 1819, they're going to college they're
holding on to their religion, they're learning their Deen, these girls are role models, they don't even know it. And our younger girls need to be spending time with these older girls, it's really important that they have someone to look up to, that is strong in their Deen and they aspire to want to be like them.
That's really important. The same goes for the guys, at a younger age. It's not like you know, what we do is we keep the we keep the little kids by themselves and keep the big kids by themselves. And it kind of it doesn't work out. There needs to be a kind of mentorship happening at the community level. So that our younger boys are spending time with some of the older boys, especially the ones that are mature in their religion. And we have Mashallah, even though we don't have a lot of those, we have enough of those. We have enough young people that are mature in their religion, they really want to learn more about it. And they're good role models, you know, they're there, they have youth,
they have energy they have, they have health, they have good looks, they could go on any number of ways in their life. And they chose to submit themselves to Islam, that in and of itself is huge. That already makes them a role model, whether they've ever grabbing a mic and speaking publicly or not doesn't matter. They're still role models. And we need to put them in that position. It does two things. One, it gives young people someone to look up to and to it gives older kids a sense of responsibility, it makes them realize that others have eyes on them, that they have to answer to a higher standard. Because they set the tone for others. It gives them a sense of responsibility, too.
And that kind of mentorship thing needs to start happening when families start doing that and utilizing the community as a place where that kind of mentorship can happen. That's one, that's one suggestion.
Another really important suggestion, and this is a long term thing
is that we have to be able to have forums where our young people can talk about the real questions they have without afraid without being afraid of reactions from their parents or their mom or their scholar or the speaker and the speaker should not be in a position to say you are so wrong, you are what you said is so bad. You should make us that far. You know, go slaughter a goat and then come back, etc. We shouldn't put our youth in a position of them feeling intimidated to even want to be able to ask a question, we need to create a space we need to create an environment where they feel comfortable enough to be able to ask certain kinds of questions. And I say this, because of some
experience. Muslim community generally we're very conservative people. We're very, you know, we have certain expectations of ourselves and we have expectations of our children, we have expectations of other Muslims. So when our Muslim boys and girls are within even our own family, have certain thoughts, or have certain questions, like if you're a boy for the first time got asked out on a date or said some girl came up to and said you want to go to the prom with me or something. And he's thinking about it, but he'll never tell his mother. He's thinking about it. But he'll never tell his dad because you know what's going to happen if he tells his dad right. In Nadella, he were in a
larger home. That's what's gonna happen.
Right? So you can talk to his parents about this stuff, even though it's on his mind. And even though some stuff is on her mind, she can talk to her parents, she can talk to even the mom because what's the mom gonna do? And I don't know, the mom hears I'm speaking in general terms, the mom will give a football next week, you know what this sister came and told me?
they're afraid of being just called out afraid of being called out. The there needs to be a space where they can ask their questions. There needs to be a space where they can feel comfortable asking those questions. And there needs to be a training even among our data, our data is training and how to answer those questions in a sensitive way. Realizing these are not questions on a piece of paper that you give a black and white answer to there's a person who's really having problems. It's a human being was really going through some serious struggles, and to want to spend time understanding where this problem came from. And the best way to try and help them this is a training in and of
itself. It's a training in and of itself. It's not black and white. just telling our youth This is wrong. You can't do it isn't enough. You need to understand why are they attracted towards that Anyway, what led to that? How did they end up in that position? I'll tell you a story about a good friend of mine.
JOHN Murphy is coming in Maryland a couple of weeks, I think. He, he used to be a youth director in Chicago.
And when I saw his work in Chicago, I kind of forced him to move to Dallas with me. And hamdullah he served as a youth director in Dallas for some time. And this is a huge machine. I mean, there's like 1000 people, easily. I mean, on a Friday night, like it's insanely Big Three, four or 500 people regularly for motive inertia every day. Right? It's big, big community, lots and lots of youth, lots of youth. This is the first time they hired a youth director. And his announcement was, if you've got a problem, come to my office, we can talk about it. So this kind of offer has never been made to us before. Come to my office, you can talk to me about whatever it'll stay between us is a
counselor. First week, I'm thinking about killing myself.
I think I'm gay.
I've committed the ultimate wrong act, what should I do?
Our all kinds of crazy stuff. All kinds of crazy stuff.
And when he first came into, like, 100, people just coming in one after the other. I I think I left Islam. I don't think I'm Muslim anymore. All kinds of stuff. The first week he fell into serious depression, like I didn't realize what I'm
how bad things are. And it's not that Dallas is crazy.
It's not that this is average. This is happening everywhere. But our youth don't have someone to talk to. They don't have someone to talk to. And that's really, I'm saying I'm not even qualified. And for those of you that are activists that want to serve Islam in some capacity, think a little outside the box. Yes, we need scholars, yes, we need to add, yes, we need to just we need speakers, but man, we need counselors really badly. We need people trained, properly trained in psychology, both in the western sense and the Islamic sense. We need these people.
You know, we need we need teen counselors, mentors. We need marriage counselors. But that's another story. I just want to talk about the youth for now.
We need leadership trainers, people that instill a sense of confidence and love, and youth, this stuff is important. It's really important. You know, and this is, to me, these things come first. And when these things are in place, then Islamic education on top of that makes sense. It makes sense. Because the people that are trying to learn now are already convinced of what they should be learning. Our assumption for a long time has been if we give people knowledge automatically, they'll be convinced it hasn't worked. It hasn't worked. Our kids will tell you about the life of the Prophet sallallahu, Alayhi, wasallam kids that are 10 really good. Yeah, and I've seen this happen,
really intelligent children that are really good readers, not islamically. But just they're good readers, they get good grades in social studies, they could get good grades in history, they get good grades in all these other reading subjects, you give them an Islamic Studies textbook, they're gonna read it, they're gonna be really smart and understanding it, they'll get 100 on the test. But it still won't mean they've internalized any one of those principles. That just means they're good readers, and they're good at taking tests, and they're gonna get an award at the end of the school year, for getting 100 on that test. That does not mean that they've internalized anything, anything.
It just means they're gonna take in tests are gauges of giving Islam and instilling Islam into our youth are our measures for that are very shallow. It's not the same as measuring whether your kid is doing well in math. It's not the same. There are two different things. And then our children are very smart. You know, kids are very adaptive, especially teams are like cunning.
They'll tell you exactly what you want to hear.
What's the best story of all use of Gollum again,
they'll tell you because they know that's what you want to hear.
The scariest thing I've ever seen, scariest thing I've ever found was doing a youth program. He said, how many people believe that when you make dua to Allah, you just raise your hand you make dua to Allah, Allah is actually listening. Everybody raised their hand. Then he said, Okay. Think about it for one whole minute. And then tell me three people raise their hand.
Three people as scariest thing, scariest thing. This is the crisis of faith. This is what we have to address first. This is at the at the younger youth level. I want to talk a little bit about the old way, how much time you have left, you know,
half an hour, no, I don't need half an hour. Okay. I need much less than that. The next level of crisis I want to talk to you is this is more psychological in nature. But there's one higher up that's more intellectual in nature, a crisis of faith again, a fundamental crisis again, our kids you know, we are living in a time now where obviously Islam is constantly under attack. Actually, when you think of Islam, you think of criticism before you think of anything
Else, okay. And there are certain ideas that are associated with the word Islam with the word Koran with the word Shetty. So if you ask ask an average person, you say the word Sharia, what are the things that come in their head immediately without you adding any adjectives yourself? What are some ideas that immediately popping their head?
beheading cutting hands, barbarism, stoning, you know, this kind of stuff. This is what comes in people's head. This is popular society. And you cannot imagine you cannot assume that Muslims that live in a society where Islam is constantly being bad, not even a society, a world where Islam is constantly being bashed, will not have an effect some residual effects on them also,
it will, it has an effect on us, it impacts us. So our youth have already some like a little bit contamination in their views of Islam, because they're mixed in with what others say about Islam and what they've come to learn themselves from the deen from for of themselves. And a lot of times the real foundation isn't there to begin with, then they go to college. And when they go to college, they already felt bad about looking Muslim being weird being different being the guy that's being criticized all the time. And then they end up in philosophy 101 and they end up in anthropology 101. And they end up in Middle Eastern Studies, one on one. And you know what happens in those courses,
right? You know, what happens in those college courses? Basically, now this youth, let me tell me what's going on this youth who felt bad about Islam this whole time, they didn't feel confident in the faith to begin with. And it was something they were almost embarrassed about. Now they have some philosophical arguments in their hands that justify as well, yeah, I'm not interested anymore. Because you know, how do we really know if God exists? I took a course about whether God exists or not, and I there are all these arguments. But the real problem isn't that they have new philosophical arguments. The real problem is they never had a real love and conviction and loyalty
to Islam to begin with. These courses only made it easy for you to make an excuse to hide behind the facade of an intellectual excuse. That's all it is. But they're being equipped with those those those excuses. And then, of course, you take Islam, people want to study Islam in the West, and they want to study Islam at the University of Chicago, or they want to do a master's in Islamic study studies from George Mason or whoever, wherever else and all over the country, their Islamic studies programs. Now, these are anti Islamic studies programs. These are an Islamic studies programs, the entire idea behind them is criticism, the religion you've learned to appreciate and love and admire
your entire life. Now you're going to do a master's degree the entire time your teachers will constantly be doing one thing with Islam. What will that be? criticism, criticism, criticism, criticism, criticism? You don't think that'll have an effect on you? You don't think that'll start messing with your head eventually?
You know, I met a friend who's doing a master's degree in Islamic Studies at Harvard.
And he told me he used to do you know, he was learning Islam in high school, he got really interested, he went to Syria and did some Arabic studies. When he came back. He said, Man, I should learn more about Islam. So I decided to join the master's program at Harvard. So he joined
one semester into the program. one semester, the first semester was introduction to heavy. Sounds awesome. You know what the premise of the textbook was? The premise of the textbook was, the more Sahih Hadith is, if its motto, Hakuna Allah if it's agreed upon by both Muslim and Bukhari, that just means the author's went out of their way to tell people that it's authentic. So the more authentic the Muslim say it is actually that's the more fabricated it is. That was the premise of the course.
That was the premise of the course. Introduction to heavy.
You take that for a semester, see what happens to you.
Are we even equipped to handle that stuff? No, no, we're not.
And I'm, I'm arguing that that's already happening. A good number of youth are in Islamic studies programs. And they're developing some very strange understandings of Islam. Very strange understandings of Islam. And these are going to be movers and shakers in the world. You think that these people that are on CNN that you know, that come out the earshot mon G's of the world are weirdos, there's a whole army of them on the way.
There's a whole slew of them on the way that you think that's wacky. You haven't seen anything yet. The real show is about to begin.
We haven't equipped our own youth intellectually.
Our Islamic schools should not be there to protect children from the world of govern.
Our Islamic schools are supposed to be this is what you're gonna find them saying about allies, Dean, and this is how we respond. So when you go out there, you're not there to answer their questions. You're you
Because the people that follow the nation of Ibrahim on Instagram, he's not asked questions. He's the one asking the questions.
He's not, you know, he's not shaken about his faith, he makes other people shaken about their false beliefs. It's the other way around our entire approach to Islamic education has become entirely defensive. There's too much out there, we need to shield our children and hide them from what's going on outside. I fear for them when they go to college. No, everybody else should fear when the Muslim goes to college should be the other way around, we should be the carriers of confidence. That's what it should be. It needs an entire rethinking on our part on how Islamic education is conducted.
We're constantly on the defense. This is my last point about this building this kind of character and this, this mindset. We're continuously continuously on the defensive. It's, I'm tired of it. I'm tired of it personally.
We don't have to constantly explain ourselves.
You know, that's a really easy strategy that was employed even at the time of the Prophet alayhi salatu was Salam. Keep asking him all kinds of questions.
Just keep keep him busy answering those questions. If he's constantly asking your answering your questions, he'll never get around to asking you any questions.
So some of many, some members of benissa in Medina, some Jews of Medina, so who brings you revelation? gibreel. Okay, that's interesting. Who are these people in the cave?
Okay, you know who they are. Okay, what's true? What's true? Oh, you got an answer for that too. Okay. How come sometimes a boy is born and sometimes a girl is born.
And if he answers that, what are they going to do?
Ask another and then ask another and then ask her and you'll be explaining yourself. So I answered a few. And then they will move on to another question. They said, Oh, Carlo, Isaac una environment moto fatin in Alibaba. ruhuna. Hello, contra de la.
If we're going to be reduced to decayed bones, nothing, we're going to be created again. Really?
This time Allah did not explain usually he does right. He answers the question they asked about the people of the cave that likes being explained in detail he did.
When they asked about you know Jebel Ali Salaam, Allah explained in detail. This time, a lot drew a line.
Hola, uno hotjar. Ratan ohada. owlchemy Maya roofie. So dorico.
Tell them even if you forget bones and decay, turn into rock turn into metal. I'll bring you back anyway, which basically means Shut up and get lost.
I'm done answering your questions.
Go ahead, turn into whatever you want a level bring you back, or whatever your imagination can come up with. That is even harder to mold. Go ahead. Oh, help me Mike Brophy sudo Rico.
There is a who's gonna bring us back first, I have done manually Donna
Padilla de Fatah, como la Marathi and tell them the one who got you back the first time. Okay, last straight answer. Now. We have to see the fluff or fluff. We have to see through them. Not just for the sake of others, but for our own youth. We need to build a confidence into our youth as part of our education of them. If we don't do that, we will be paying the price for that in the next 10 years. And I say that very fearfully. As I say this to you. We are not as the Muslim leaders of Muslim community, we're not doing an adequate enough job. Thinking about how to instill the confidence of faith, how to fight the crisis of faith among our Muslim youth, Muslim youth when they
have philosophical problems. We tell them go make will do and make five protocol over there.
And if that doesn't work, Okay, come back. And I'll give you a special duel. Recite that and your problem will go away. Listen, if they have a philosophical problem, and if they have doubts already, the spiritual solution is there, but you cannot ignore the intellectual solution. You can we can afford our Deen is intellectual. Our Dean is not blind faith. Our Deen is powerful. We have to believe that and we have to instill that belief into our kids. Especially at a time where everybody thinks they've got something on Islam. They've got a reason why Islam is wrong, everybody. Everybody's got one.
Christians are attacking Islam.
Do you know how ridiculous that is?
Do you understand how absurd that is? I live in the south. Right? I are close enough. I live in Texas. And I drive around in the south a lot and my hobby is listening to Christian talk radio. That's what I do. When I'm on a road trip. I listen to Christian talk radio. And most Christian talk radio is about Islam.
Because they have nothing much to talk about whether you know there's just all these Muslims
you know, the things that we're doing shirk,
as believers are doing shirk, and we've got a Quran expert here is going to explain everything to us.
You know, and they'll, they'll have their whole show. And I'm listening to this stuff and I'm laughing my head. So it's such good comedy is quality comedy, except when they talk about the contradictions in the Qur'an, and its grammatical mistakes. Right? When they talk about that stuff, I'm sitting there laughing and I'm at the same time I started crying, cuz somewhere, there's a Muslim, listening to this, who has no foundation and faith. And he's listening to this and saying, what to himself or herself? Oh, my God.
That makes sense. They're onto something. The Goddess
we haven't been able, we haven't yet done our job. planting the right seeds. That's my only premise. That's my only point. We have to do that at an early age and you know, forums like why am and programs what like regular programs like why am where youth get together and have company of each other. these are these are components of building confidence in your faith, because you're around other people that have similar comfort, feed, confidence feeds confidence. That's one part of it. But now we have to think even further. And we really have to give some serious thought on how to develop these kinds of institutions, and how to evolve our current institutions and make them ready
for these real challenges that are coming and see the symptoms for symptoms and see the actual disease that needs to be attacked. Most of the time we talk about the symptoms we don't talk about the disease. May Allah azza wa jal allow us to see the disease and empower us to be able to find a cure for those diseases through his book and the Sunnah of His Messenger sallallahu alayhi Santa Monica