Thursday, April 26, 2012

In Praise of the Home-Maker

In Praise of the Home-Maker It's an icy cold winter's morning sitting in the comforts of my home and enjoying a hot cuppa coffee. Suddenly feelings of inner contentment and serenity engulf me. It dawns on me - far too many women feel unimportant, unrecognised and apologetic for being full-time housewives. I prefer the term 'homemaker' - an infinitely better description of a tremendously important role. And so, as an occasion arises with its heavy demands on women, let us reflect upon the vital art of homemaking. How special you feel in a home that is always open with a warm welcome. The kind of old-fashioned home with enough love to spare for outsiders, which beckons you to sit down and relax. In it you'll find a wise blend of order and flexibility. A mother who doesn't fuss if her children and friends run in and out... who is never too busy to sit down for a chat with a friend, a confused teenager or lonely widow. Not that she isn't busy or creative. She probably is, but she recognizes one of the advantages of being Queen of the Home; of having flexitime, which allows her to set aside plans in order to help someone in need, or to rush into the garden to share a small wonder with a child. Lifestyles and options are changing. Many women need, or prefer to work. But full-time home making is a career option, which allows you to make of it what you will. It requires many skills ranging from communication and management to cookery and economics. She'll find time to listen to her family, to friends young and old, rendering invaluable emotional "first-aid." A good homemaker knows the home is the heart of society - a place where family and friends can be nurtured. In swiftly changing times it can be provide a sense of security and continuity where children soak up happy experiences and memories that will affect their whole lives. If you're a bride-to-be, anticipate your career as a homemaker with joy. If you're a mature woman who has spent years learning the art of home-making, never be apologetic about being 'only a housewife.' Glow with pride at having chosen such a vital role. I have come to value this 'way of life' through the will and grace of ALLAH TA'ALA by blessing me with a stay-at-home mother who showered me with guidance, compassion, generosity and love. I in turn will do the same to my kids, Aameen. May ALLAH TA'ALA give us all women the faith of Aasiyah (Radhiyallahu Anha), purity of Maryam (Radhiyallahu Anha), love of Khadija (Radhiyallahu Anha), affection and knowledge of Aa'ishah (Radhiyallahu Anha), and the favour of being with them in Jannah, Aameen.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Time and circumstances

Time and circumstances "When a bird is alive... it eats Ants. When the bird is dead... ants eat the bird! So... time and circumstances can change at any time. Don't devalue or hurt anyone in life. You may be powerful today. But remember, time is more powerful than you! One tree makes a million matchsticks. But when the time comes, only one match stick is needed to burn a million trees. Don't judge me till you know me. Don't underestimate me till you challenge me. Don't talk about me till you talk to me. The world is full of haters: they will hate you, rate you, and even try to break you. But how you stand up to them will make you. Let your hater be your motivator..." - Mufti Ismail Menk -

Monday, April 23, 2012

Press Release: Strangers Tour SA


Three well-known North American personalities will visit South Africa early next month, to participate in a series of events aimed at assisting young Muslims deal with the challenges they face living in the West.
Featuring comedian Baba Ali, spoken word poet Boonaa Mohammed and Islamic scholar Navaid Aziz ‘The Strangers Tour’ has been sold out in over twenty cities worldwide, and will visit Durban, Pretoria and Cape Town from May 5 to 8.
Mohammed, 23, a Canadian who has several slam poetry title credits to his name, says that the event started as an idea between himself and American Baba Ali, who shot to fame after he started posting homemade satirical videos about goings on in the Muslim community on YouTube.

"(Our idea was) to use our influence as Muslim entertainers to organically attract youth to an event that would offer more than just some cheap laughs,” he explains.

In stepped Aziz, 30, a graduate of the Islamic University of Medina, also from Canada, who is popular amongst young Muslims in various countries, including the USA and the UK.

“The idea of having performers construct a program around a traditionally trained imam to some was unbelievable, but after countless sold out events all around the world clearly our formula has been more successful than we could have ever imagined,” says Mohammed, who has also performed at TEDx Toronto. “As a community we need exciting and interesting ways of reaching out and teaching Muslim youth about their religion, to ensure the bright and healthy development of the future leaders of tomorrow.” In ‘The Strangers Tour’ Mohammed, Ali and Aziz use spoken-word poetry, comedy and motivational speaking to reconnect Muslims with their faith and their communities.

“Boonaa Mohammed will present powerful poetry which deals with personal insights and reflections on spirituality for individuals who feel alienated from the community,” said Fatima Asmal-Motala the director of ILM-SA, a Durban-based organisation which is hosting the tour in conjunction with the Caring Women’s Forum of Pretoria, the Muslim Student’s Association (MSA) of the Cape and the Willowton Group.

“Baba Ali will present a humorous take on family and relationship dynamics in a sketch entitled ‘Men are from Makkah and Women are from Madeenah,’ and Navaid Aziz will deliver a dynamic lecture on reviving one’s faith in the midst of various challenges faced,” she added.

Details of events around the country are as follows:
Pretoria: Saturday May 5, 6pm at Kit Kat Convention Centre (tickets available at Fruity Imies, Video Razeena, Yusra Tours: Zaheera 078 678 6700/ Nadia 082 778 6445/ and in Johannesburg at Gift of the Givers, also from: Yasmien Gani: 083 261 2661; Nabeela Saloojee Bham: 082 468 3183; Asima Ghoor: 082 786 0382)
Cape Town: Sunday May 6, 4.30pm at Old Mutual Campus Courtyard (tickets available at Muslim Hands, Opera Mini Market and Sawants Creations)
Durban: Tuesday May 8, 6pm at the NMJ Islamic Centre (tickets available at all branches of Kikis)

The Strangers Tour SA - Boonaa Mohammed

Thursday, April 19, 2012


In this discussion, Ml Ravat read out an article entitled, Why Should I Wear The Hijab - 17 Reasons. Some reasons mentioned were: You are pleasing your Creator; Its Allah Ta’aala’s protection of your natural beauty, you are too precious to be on display for each man; Allah purifies your mind and heart through hijab; Allah defines your femininity through hijab; Allah raises your dignity through hijab. When a strange man looks at you he respects you.

Listen Here:

Friday, April 13, 2012

She looks so stunning - Really proud of this Hijaabi

A hijabi on the red carpet

She is the wife of an Australian foot ball player- she looks a billion times better then Hollywood Celebs!

Rouba Houli shows off her faith...Marsha'Allah

Rouba Houli, the 20-year-old wife of Richmond midfielder Bachar Houli. She seemed an island of serene glamour in a sea of fake-tan and bedazzle.

She was wearing a hijab and that, in modern Australia, means she is one brave lady.

The hijab is a protective garment, a sanctuary. In Australia it can often seem the opposite - a liability for the women who choose to wear it, because it exposes them to the curious and often hostile glances of others.

Rather than disappearing into the tranquility of an interior space, an Australian woman in a veil is actually more exposed to the judgment of strangers.

That's tough. These women know that they'll be stared and sneered at, and they don't give a stuff: they've made a choice to wear their faith on their faces, and anyone who doesn't get it can just keep walking.

I've always found the veil challenging as a concept. It's one of those facets of modern Australia that really test our boundaries: I might like to think of Australia as a rich and tolerant multicultural society, but does that really mean anything beyond 'I like lamb jalfrezi?' When it comes to it, am I really tolerant?

Earlier this year I was in a Turkish seaside village, enjoying a lazy honeymoon day with my husband. I was wearing a summer dress - knee-length, high-necked and sleeveless and sandals with a big floppy hat, plus a wide silk scarf flung over my shoulders to keep the sun away.

As I walked along, a big tourist bus wheezed and fizzed to a halt and disgorged dozens of Turkish holidaymakers, all laughing and talking and crowding onto the footpath around me.

I was suddenly in a crowd - and I was the only woman not wearing a hijab and neck-to-ankle gown.

My modest summer dress suddenly felt skimpy and revealing.

I felt half-naked, highly conscious of the glances of the men and deeply annoyed.

This is the part I'm not proud of.

My instinctive reaction - even though I have spent plenty of time in Muslim countries and have never had a problem in dressing modestly to suit the environment - was to feel not friendly or curious, but rather irritated by the veiled women around me.

"Why are they making me feel exposed like this?" I fumed to myself. "Whose side are they on? Why do I suddenly feel like I'm in a bikini?"

See why I'm not proud of this? My honest reaction was deeply unpleasant. With the extraordinary presumption of an Australian abroad, I only really cared about these women to the extent that their choice of clothing reflected upon me. It's all about me.

Those Turkish women couldn't have cared less, I imagine, what I was wearing. They barely noticed me, bustling off to the souvenir shops.

Until the bus-doors opened, I'd been perfectly confident in my outfit. Now, I felt as though I'd let myself down by wearing too few clothes. And I hated it. I pulled my big scarf down around my arms and kept walking, trying to suppress the surging irritation.

A few days later, in the heat of midday Istanbul, sitting in the grounds of an old palace, I gazed at a group of women in full-length black robes. I couldn't help the irritated thought crackling through my head: "Come on, girls. Why are you wearing all that gear? Whom are you protecting? How is this helping the rest of us?"

That's not a sentiment to be proud of. It's something I - and many other western women, whether we call ourselves feminists or not - simply have to deal with.

It's about stopping the constant judgment of other women's choices.

In the past few months, I've been thinking a lot about those feelings. I interviewed another impressive Muslim-Australian woman, Arwa El Masri, for a story published this week. Arwa decided at 23 to begin wearing a veil because she likes the unequivocal signal it sends: I am a woman of faith, and I want to keep some things private and intimate.

No man ever told her to wear a veil. Despite the stares, she has never regretted her choice.

If I'm a real feminist, isn't my job to accept her version of liberation to support the choices of other women? That means letting go of the idea that a veil is a man-made confinement, and giving up on my own need to judge.

I'd like to be as serene as those women; as proud of my clothes as veiled women are of theirs. I'd like to hold my head high and be confident about what I think is right, without the fear or the defensiveness.

Veiled women feel that fear and do it anyway. That's real feminism!!!

by: Claire Harvey

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Visa Requirements

Salaams Everyone

I came across this super handy site! It indicates for SA Passport holders whether visa's are required for certain countires.

Check it out!

Ponder, Ponder, Ponder...

If you are poor then someone else is heavily in debt

If you don't have a car then someone else doesn't have two legs

If you are ill, then someone else has been bedridden for years

If you have lost a parent then someone else has lost both parents in a single accident...

Today before you say an unkind word - Think of someone who can't speak

Think of someone who has to use sign language to tell his family he loves them and they've never heard the sound of their parent's voice or the recitation of the Holy Quran!

Before you complain about the taste of your food - Think of someone who has nothing to eat

When you're frustrated because you cannot decide what food you should cook, remember that there is a mother in Somalia who cannot decide which of her children she should give the little food she has while the other is left to die

Before you complain about your husband / wife - Think of someone who's crying out to Allah for a companion

Today before you complain about life - Think about someone who has passed away today and is being placed in the ground at this very moment - This will be their first night in their Qabar, all alone

Before you complain about your children - Think of someone who desires children but they're barren...

Before you argue about your dirty house, someone didn't clean or sweep - Think of the people who are living in the streets

Before whining about the distance you drive - Think of someone who walks the same distance with their feet...

And when you are tired and complain about your job - Think of the unemployed, the disabled, and those who wished they had your job

Before you think of pointing that finger or condemning another - Remember that not one of us is without sin

And when depressing thoughts seem to get you down - Put a smile on your face and think: You're alive and still around and it's never too late to make TAWBAH and turn back to Allah Subhanna Wa Ta'ala

Oh, Allah, forgive me when I whine! Aameen

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

A Message for the Youth and Parents

A Message for the Youth and Parents

A thoughtful children's complain to their parents:

“I’LL never do to my children what my parents did to me,” Salman fumed, kicking the ball against the wall next to his friend in the istiraaha.

“They were only trying to look out for you, man.” Abdullah’s voice was low, partly because he didn’t want their other friends to overhear and partly because he didn’t believe in what he was saying. He had always felt Salman’s parents were raising him wrong, but what place did he have to say that?

“That’s easy for you to say,” Salman shot back. “Your parents made you pray with them.” Salman huffed in anger. “But mine wanted me to come to it on my own.” He sang out the last words sarcastically a moment before retrieving the ball and kicking it fiercely against the wall again.

“And you know what?” Salman said, turning to face his friend. “Yesterday, I went out to the desert with some friends and they asked me to lead the prayer.”

Abdullah kept quiet, already knowing the end of the story.

“I told them I didn’t want to,” Salman said. “But they insisted because they’d overheard me reciting some Qur’an and liked my recitation.” He grunted. “I felt so stupid refusing, so I finally told them why I wouldn’t lead.”

“But, Sal—“

"Because I didn't know how to!" Salman cut off his friend, thrusting the ball against the wall again.

“Now tell me,” Salman said, his angry eyes on his friend, as if daring him to refute his words, “what kind of parent is going to force their son go to the best schools and learn perfect English—whether he liked it or not. And by the way, I hated it. They even chose my freakin’ college major, for God’s sake—But when it comes to Islam they’re going to say, Let him come to it on his own.

There was a marked silence as Salman’s friend looked away, embarrassed to hear his own thoughts on the tongue of his friend.

“Wallaahi,” Salman swore by Allah, raising his voice. “If there’s anything they should have forced me to do, it should have been to follow my religion.”

As a teacher and counselor of youth, I cannot recount how many times I’ve received phone calls, e-mails, and requests for confidential meetings from teenagers and young adults struggling with some of what Salman is struggling with in the fictional account above.

But what’s worse than this fact is that there are those countless other youth whom we’ll never hear from—because they’ve merely inherited their parents’ lax attitude about things like praying the five prayers, wearing hijab, and mixing with the opposite sex.

One of the biggest culture shocks I experienced when moving to Saudi Arabia from America was many Muslims’ admiration for disobeying Allah (and I’m not just talking about Saudis here; I’m speaking also of the plethora of Muslim expats from Muslim countries whom I met when I settled here).

This admiration has reached such an extent that in “higher classes,” the concepts of men praying in the masjid (or at all), women wearing hijab (especially when traveling to Western countries), and men and women not intermingling are considered lowly behaviors in their circles.

As a result, many youth (who happen to be their children) fall into any one of these categories:

They don’t how to make wudhoo or pray.

Their parents tell them not to wear hijab when they travel abroad (or more often, they tell them not to wear it at all).

They’ve never entered a masjid in their lives.

They are severely struggling in their faith (and private lives) and feel there’s nowhere to turn.

And the list goes on.

But what was even more shocking to me than these sad realities was the growing popularity of “practicing Muslims” who, like Salman’s parents, imagine themselves to be doing a good thing…

By instructing their children to disobey Allah…

Why this reality is more shocking than the we-love-to-disobey-Allah classes of people is that that those from Salman’s parents’ group do not imagine they’re doing anything wrong…

Yet Allah says,

“Say, ‘Shall We tell you the greatest losers in respect of [their] deeds? Those whose efforts have been wasted while they thought they were acquiring good by their deeds!”

(Qur'an, 18: 103-104)

What’s amazing amongst these self-proclaimed “practicing Muslims” is this…

In an effort not to “force” prayer or hijab on their children (who are actually young adults with the angels recording their deeds) they encourage these “children” to not pray or cover “until they come to it on their own.”


Yes, it is true that we should do everything for the sake of Allah.

And we certainly must inculcate this lesson of ikhlaas (spiritual sincerity) into the lives of our children.

But how? is the question.

Ironically, in answering this, so many of us turn to our opinions, “experiences,” and nafs instead of to the One whose pleasure we’re claiming to seek.

In the Qur’an, Allah describes the believers as those who say “We hear and we obey.”

Why then are we telling our children to say, “We hear and we disobey”?

…Even if we imagine that this initial disobedience will somehow lead to some lasting sincerity in obedience in the future…

Until, when death comes to one of them, he says: "O my Lord! send me back (to life), so that I may do good...” (Qur'an, 23: 99-100)

…Suppose your young adult daughter or son never sees that future of obedience you’ve planned out for them?

What if they die not praying or covering?

…Having died obeying you supporting them to disobey Allah.

What have you gained then?

What then have they gained?

"Actions are by intentions, and every soul shall have what he intended..." (Hadeeth, Al-Bukhari, 1:

Yes, Allah judges us and our children on our intentions…

But let’s not forget what this really means: If I know I’m supposed to do something, and I don’t do it, then I intend to disobey Allah…

No matter what colorful language or “semantic acrobatics” we use to wriggle out of this plain fact.

And the same goes for our age-of-puberty “children” who are fully aware of Allah’s instructions for them to pray, cover, or what have you…

…Regardless of whether or not they intend to obey Him later on (as you told them to do).


Telling our children it’s okay to do wrong today because they’re not “ready” to do right is like telling them it’s okay to commit zina so long as they intend to get married one day in the future…

After all—if I follow the line of reasoning employed by the parents who profess “I want my child to come to it on her own”…

…Why guard my chastity if I really don’t want to?

So often we shudder when we read the words of those suffering in the grave after their life on this earth has ended…


Yet so often we forget that amongst these sufferers are not only those who heard of Islam but delayed becoming Muslim (or turned away from the religion altogether)…

But also, there are those among them who were Muslim but delayed obeying Allah.

Those who are teaching their children to pray and cover only after “they come to it on their own” should reflect on this reality for a long, long while.

I just pray that this “long while” doesn’t stretch out longer than your life on this earth…

Or the life of your children