Channel: The Deen Show
Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa salam alaikum peace be unto you. Welcome to the deen show, which is a way of life we try to put out there for everyone to see helping you understand Islam and Muslims. And today we have one of those special Muslims on the show special guests on the deen show shake
for being with us today. My pleasure.
So we want to just
go over briefly, your history, tell us a little about many people know you in the Muslim community. But those that aren't Muslim, and those that have never gotten a chance to hear about you tell us a bit about your history? Well, I don't know if my history is all that interesting. But for whatever it's worth, I was born in Houston, Texas. And I was raised for a short while also in Saudi Arabia, I went to middle school and high school over there and a British curriculum, British environment. And then we returned to Houston where I completed my education in chemical engineering. And after finishing a Bachelor's in chemical engineering, I decided that I really didn't want to spend, you
know, 3040 years of my life just solving equations and writing computer code, I had experienced that Dow Chemical, which is a chemical plant outside of Houston. And I realized that life was was more than just, you know, solving equations. And how old were you when you realize it? Well, I always had a passion for knowledge when even as a teenager, but I guess when I actually went to Dow Chemical 1920. And I started working in that environment, and the money was great. I mean, you're getting a lot of money, much more than I've ever gotten before, actually more than I'm getting now even but you know, what's money going to do? She just doesn't, it doesn't give you the happiness of the
heart. And so I decided that I just, I couldn't imagine myself sitting behind the desk for 3040 years doing something that I didn't feel a passion for, you know, so I decided that what I really wanted to do was to study my religion. I wanted to know what Allah what God wants me to do on this earth and, and how to worship investments. So I decided to apply to the University of Medina, where I got accepted and completed a second bachelor's in health studies. And then I did a master's in theology, Islamic theology over a total of how long? I stayed in Medina, basically 10 years. 10 years study. Yes, that's a long time.
And then from there, you continued your education in Islam? Yeah. Well, what happened was, while I was doing my Masters, it was my second year, I think 911 happened. And I remember clearly the, you know, I was, you know, I went to the mosque, and I didn't have a television. I wasn't checking the internet on that day. And one of my neighbors, American neighbor came rushing over, he didn't usually pray in that locality. But he came just to tell me, do you know what happened to do what happened? I said, No, I don't know what happened. Because the World Trade Center has been been bombed, planes have crashed into whatever. It's like, what so we rushed out to a neighbor's house
who had a TV and we're watching they're just my mouth is just, you know, wide open, what the heck is going on here? And the dread sets in that oh, my God, this might be happening for Muslims, you know, and that was the reality. And when I saw all those, the things that started unfolding based upon that it
totally shocked me totally. My whole perspective of my own life change in the sense that when I saw all of the hatred, animosity from both sides, I felt that perhaps I was one person who could try to bridge that gap. I mean, you know, I'm in eastern and western, both east and west. I feel I've lived in Arabia, and I've lived in America. I'm American, by birth and nationality. And I've lived in Saudi Arabia for American citizen. You were born here. Yeah, this one here. So yeah, I was born here does tell us since you mentioned is does Islam have anything to do with acts like this? No, obviously, the Islamic theology in the Islamic religion doesn't. But the fact of the matter, there
are many angry Muslims out there, who, even if they're angry for legitimate reasons they're expressing in a very illegitimate doesn't make it right. Of course, it doesn't make it right. It does not make it right. two wrongs don't make a right. Yes. And so the fact of the matter is that we as more hopefully mature and educated Muslims have to channel that anger in a legitimate manner. And I think, for example, for example, the Palestinian issue, the best way is to educate the masses of reality, yes, education, we have to show the people the reality of what's happening. That's all we can do. We can't take the law into our own hands. And I fully believe if the world knew what was
happening in places such as Palestine, and other places, they would sympathize with the people there. So the people who have done these acts, they've taken the law into their own hands. And that's what's wrong. Islam doesn't allow? Of course not. So we got to cover one very important point for those of our non Muslim guests that are tuning even Muslims that Islam condemns acts of terrorism unconditionally, you have a right to defend yourself but to go on kill innocent civilians. It's a big no no in Islam. Correct. unconditional. Give us a verse from the Quran that says this estates is the evidence behind this. Well, I mean, God clearly says in the Quran, that whoever kills
the soul without any reason it is as if he has killed all of humanity. I mean, this the crime of murder.
Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him said that a man will I mean, I'm paraphrasing, the Hadees will basically get away with with a lot of things on the Day of Judgment, as long as he doesn't have blood on his hands. I mean, God can forgive a lot of sins, the prophet said, as long as he doesn't have blood on his hand, if they do sin of killing somebody. That's just it's a very, this is a very important point we covered so you know that you don't judge Islam on the action of some Muslims. Of course, you are just okay. So we got to cover it. So now, going through this history, you also are a continuing education at Yale University. Yes.
After 911, basically, I mean, I stayed in Saudi Arabia for two, three years. And when I saw all of the events unfold in America and abroad, I really felt the need to come back to America. And I had initially planned to do my PhD from Medina itself. But after all, that it occurred, I decided that really I need to come back and educate both the Muslims and people of other faiths about the reality of Islam. And so I came back here and applied to many universities. And presently, I'm doing my PhD in Islamic Studies at Yale University. It was like Harvard, they're like the top university. Well, if I'm from Yale, I'm not allowed to say Yale is like Harvard.
They're like this, like the top university in the United States, correct? I'd have to they're pretty much all praises to God. So you've been educating yourself for a long time, and you got a lot of knowledge to give out there to the people. And this is what we're trying to do. We're trying to educate the masses, because through education is how we can build tolerance, hopefully, hopefully, inshallah, God willing. So you've got a lot of credibility. And you teach at a university or a university like Institute Institute called l negative. real briefly, can you let the people know? Well, as Muslim Institute is basically an onsite university where the instructors they fly into the
various cities, and instruct people, semester long courses condensed into two weekends. So we have Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and the next Friday, Saturday, Sunday, probably around 30 hours of teaching time, we condense an entire semester into two weekends, we teach all of the classical sciences of Islam in a manner that is that is understandable that is amenable to the Western environment. So we teach, you know, in an interesting environment, using PowerPoint slides with notebooks and binders with their own textbooks. So we're teaching the classical material in a modern way. So you have credibility to do the job is in the job is to educate now, US non Muslims and
Muslims alike, on the most basic of basic, which is something that you actually had a master's degree in is the, how you aqeedah What's that translated in English? Well, linguistically, octava means that which binds you that which you you cling to, and the meaning of or the science of al Qaeda is theology, because theology is something you cling to theology is what gives you salvation. And so in Islam theology is called al Qaeda, because you cling to it and you it binds you down, it holds you fast, you save yourself through theology. So linguistically, it that means that which you cling to that which you hold on to that which binds, but what we translated as theology. So Islamic
theology is what my speciality is, I think people got this theology all mixed up today. And the last and final messenger to mankind the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him, who was in a line of messages to name five for the greatest Abraham, correct me if I'm wrong anywhere, Abraham, Moses, Noah, Jesus Christ, and the last and final message of Prophet Muhammad peace be upon them. They all taught this very theology, that God is absolutely one, and that you don't pray to nobody else can you cover the importance of this because you have today you have many people praying through prophets, some people praying through Muhammad, peace be upon some people praying through Jesus Peace be among some people
praying through certain saintly people. You got all sorts of people praying through rocks, to rocks, everything is going on. And this is how long did the last and final messenger talk about this and tell us the importance of this, please? Well, this, this brings us to the topic of monotheism and Islam. And monotheism is basically the crux is the gist of Islam. It is the center upon around which all of the other Pillars of Islam, you know, cling to, there is nothing that is more fundamental to our religion than the concept of monotheism and monotheism to us is not just the belief in one deity or one supreme god. monotheism is the belief in one all perfect God, and then the directing of all
of your acts of worship to that one God. So monotheism has two aspects to it. The first is unified God. And the second is in your own acts of worship, you direct all of those acts of worship to that one god to to believe that there are many gods out there goes against monotheism, to believe that there is one God but then you worship another being to get to that God, this too goes against monotheism. And both of these types of groups exists. There are those religions who believe there are many creators out there, and they worship these creators. There are other religions, they believe there's one Supreme God, but you need to go through intermediaries to reach that God and so
you'll find people with
worshipping angels, some of them worship idols, others worship the prophets of God such as Jesus Christ or the Prophet Mohammed. And they think that they'll have to go through these people to reach God. The Pure religion of Islam, is based upon the fact that there is a direct relationship. There's a direct link between you and God, when it comes to your worship, when it comes to your frustration, when it comes to your prayer. When it comes to each and every act that you do. That is a religious act, it must be done for the sake of God, and God alone, to set up intermediaries between you and God to make middlemen between you and God. This this is the greatest sin in Islam, and it is
basically tantamount to polytheism. And that is why God says in the Quran, he can forgive every sin if he wishes, but he will never forgive the sin of worshipping other than him. This is the one unforgivable sin in Islam, to worship others besides God. This is because God created you, and God gave you everything that you have for you to then direct your veneration and worship to other than God is the greatest injustice, how could you possibly bow down or pray to a being who did not create you a being that doesn't have the power to give you what you need? Only God is all powerful, only God is all loving. Hence, this the the crux of Islam centered around the testimony of faith, which
translates as there is no deity that is worthy of worship, other than Allah or God, there is no deity that is worthy of worship other than Allah. This is the first testimony of faith, and it is the fundamental pillar of Islam.
Very simply put, and I hope, I don't think there's anybody that couldn't understand it's very basic, fundamental simple. inshallah, God willing, is it acceptable to now pray? you've answered it, but for those that need more clarification, to pray through Jesus, where people say, you know what, God's too holy, you got to go through His Son to get is this acceptable? You see, this is a very common misunderstanding that people have, and that is that they believe that we are too sinful, and God is too holy to care about us. Hence, we need to go through beings to approach God. And the primary message of the entire Koran is to negate this point, because the idol worshippers at the
time of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, they also believed in God, but they would worship God through idols, and they would say, we are too sinful to approach God directly. We need to go through these angels that would make images of angels, and they would pray to these angels, they wouldn't say the angels created them, they wouldn't say that these beings are the Lord's besides God, what they would say, these beings are beloved to God, and we are to sinful. Therefore, we have to approach God through these beings. And they made an analogy, which is basically, if you want to go to the President, you want to go to the king, you can't directly approach them, you're a nobody,
you have to find middle men to approach the king. But the Quran defeats this logic by telling us well, God loves you, and God knows who you are. The reason why you can't approach a king directly, is because the king is not all knowledgeable, he doesn't know you exist. Hence, you have to go through a person who knows him to get to him. Also, the king doesn't care about you. In reality, he's only caring about his own position and power, but God does care about you. And another point that the Quran mentions is any human being, cannot give you what you want, just by snapping his fingers. No being is powerful in and of itself. Only God can give some power. Hence, why turn to a
creative being that needs to be sustained itself. God says in the Quran, that all the beings that you worship besides God, they can't even feed themselves, much less feed you look at the beings that that any person who worship Jesus Christ had to eat food, the prophet Mohammed had to eat food. Where did that food come from? Who gave them that food? It was God who gave them food. So why do you go to a being that needs to eat and drink, go to the being who provides the food to everyone, as God says in the Quran, I only created man and gin to worship me. I don't want any food from them. I am the one who provides God doesn't need anything. One of the names of God is a colony or the self
sufficient, the one who is not in need of anything. We are the ones who are in need of God, God is not in need of us. How can we turn in worship to a being that is also in need of God? Any being that we turn to is created is powerless is itself created? How can we turn to a creative being for help when the creator knows us and cares about us and loves us? This is the primary principle. This is the primary message of the entire report on that God is your Creator. You all know this. Why do you then worship other than God? How long was the prophetic message just really basically drilling this message? Well, I mean, the reality is that the prophetic message which lasted 23 years, all of it
was centered around this concept of monotheism but was very interesting for the first 13 years in the stage where he was in Mecca, the city of Mecca. That was basically his only message
There was nothing else to Islam other than the pure worship of God. The prayers had not been, you know, legislated the charity had not been eliminated the fasting of Ramadan had not been revealed. The the main tenant and the main message of Islam was the worship of God a lot of people had gotten attached to this so it took a lot of time to clean them up. Exactly. And a lot of people are doing the same thing today and we just try to educate and clean this mess up because a big mess out there. Worship one god worship the creator alone, not the creation. Did I say it right perfect shape. Perfect. So now we go on to some more clarification. I know someone who knows someone that told
someone that when you're in trouble call on this saintly person, he was a warrior. He was really a Wally, a friend of God. He said when you feel and you need some support call on Jaco that appear or yaka Jelani, I don't know who this is, but and this person call on this person, is this acceptable? This is like calling on some say have you heard of these? Yes, yes, yes. Unfortunately, this is common in Islam and and other than Islam, it is, unfortunately, a practice that is prevalent in many parts of the world. But think about it, though, when you're in trouble, who do you think you should call out to? I mean, what is the essence of worship? The essence of worship is to to call out to the
being whom you know loves you, and cares about you and protects you. Hence, to call out to other than God you are directing an act of worship to other than God, whatever they say we're, you know, we're not calling on that we're just they're really close to God and they're just going to intercede for us. Have you heard these excuses? these exotic acceptable these excuses are the same excuses that the idol worshippers at the time of the Prophet Muhammad said, when God revealed in the Quran, why do you worship them? The response was and the Quran tells us the the responses, the responses, were only worshiping them in order that they act as intermediaries as intercessors, between us and
God, someone says that looked at the prophets are alive in their graves, so they can hear us Is this true? Well, we know that the prophets are indeed alive in their graves, but it's a different type of life. It's not the life that we know. It's not a life where they need to eat and drink or no, they say, it's a life that's a spiritual life. We call it the life of the Buddha. The Buddha is the interim period between life and between death and the Day of Judgment. There's this interim period called the Buddha, and this interim period, God knows the reality of it. All we know is that when our souls go there, they will have a different type of life. And the life of the prophets is a more
perfect life in the life of the buzzer. But that doesn't mean that the prophets are knowledgeable of all that is happening in this world. When the prophets were alive. They were not aware of what's happening in the world all around them, how can they be aware of it in their in their graves? It doesn't make sense. Likewise, when the prophets were alive, the companion didn't go to the prophet and say, Oh prophet of God, you know, Grant me paradise, oh prophet of God, forgive my sins. They didn't do that. They would go to the Prophet sometimes when he was alive, and they would say, oh prophet of God, make dua or pray to God to forget exactly this. In his life it is, after he passed
away no more after he passed away, none of the companions went to his grave and said, Oh, prophet of God asked God, they were the best generator the best to generate, they wouldn't know they would have known if it was allowed. Yeah. Okay, so we cover this now, we're coming to a close. Tell us, we covered to recap that, worship god alone, not the creation of God. You don't have to go to a confession box, say Listen, I did so many sins, and he gives you so many Hail Marys, and it's all good. God is a Forgiver of God.
And in a time of need and a time of desperation, who hears you turn to God, you turn to the Creator of the heavens and earth alone. You don't need no middleman, no middle some what advice? Do you have someone that you know what? He had a shake. He had someone for 1020 years. You know, he was a humble man. And he taught him this. How do you get someone who's so attached to this? And you know what he's even seen as shaken a dream? Well, these are realities. Are you seeing Jesus in His dream? We're talking to non Muslims and Muslims alike. What advice do you have for them shake? Well, a dream in and of itself is not a source of law in Islam. I mean, a dream could be from your own
imagination. And it could be definitely from God, but a dream from God is only going to be a dream that tells you to do righteousness and good. A dream could also be from satanic whispers and thoughts. So a dream in and of itself has a multitude of sources. How can you base your religion on that you base your religion on what God has revealed in the Koran? So you read the Quran? And you see, does the Quran justify invoking other than God? additionally, God has given us intelligence and a brain, use this brain that God has given a given you and think to yourself, does it make sense to call out to another creative being? Even if that creative being is holy? No matter how holy he is?
Is that being not created still? Is he not in need of God's mercy and sustenance? Then what is the point of calling out to a being when that being itself is in need of God's mercy? Why not call out to God the Merciful directly, we use our intelligence and we use the Quran and put together this myth of going through intermediaries is demolished it shuts it down. The Quran boasts that we are supposed to adhere to the verbatim Word of God and the tradition of the last time
Final messenger who was sent for all mankind, not just the Arabs, or the Polish, or the Italian for everybody for all mankind, and this is a simple message to worship your Creator alone, not the creation. And the benefit of this is what the benefit of this when you do so God says in the Quran, the blessings of this world and the blessings of the hereafter will just rain down upon you paradise paradise can be achieved through this paradise worshiping God alone. And the opposite if you set up these intermediaries, if you set up intermediaries besides God, you've deprived yourself of the blessings of this world and you've deprived yourself of the blessings of the hereafter which we're
not angry at nobody are we having the love this is out of the love. The love you have tried to educate you you have to be sincere and sometimes when you what you say might be a bit shocking we tell them we love them. Of course we love it. We love it. So thank you so much for being with the show and we're gonna have you back again inshallah. And you can see him at the L magnet Mr. To always magnet calm. Or elda magnet.org Thank you very much. You can visit us the deen show calm. We have a new show. Every week. We cover different topics. You see how Islam tackles these issues. It's for everybody. Peace be upon you as salaam alaikum.
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there's only one. Jesus was his messenger.
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there's only one
there's only one