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Modern Challenges to the spirit of Hajj

By Aslam Abdullah
“When the Prophet performed his only Hajj, the only provision that he had with him was worth of no more than four dirham as narrated in several books of ahadith.
Hajj was meant to teach the pilgrims endurance and perseverance for higher causes, yet it has been turned into an exercise in convenience. Hajj was meant to express the utmost humility in the presence of the rest of humanity by declaring that “Here I am, Here I am, I will not make anyone Allah’s partner. Allah is the one who is in control of everything and He alone is the one who is the source of all blessings and praise.” Yet, today, Hajj, for many has become, a badge, a symbol of spiritual pride…”

Reflections on the Hajj

By Arshad Gamiet
“Hajj is not only a journey through geography and history. It is perhaps most importantly, an inward journey to our own centre, to the human heart, the locus of our personality …. what emotions, what desires lurk there in the hidden recesses of the spiritual heart?”

The Goal of the Shari‘ah is Justice, Not Equality

By Abu Aaliyah
“IN SPEAKING OF JUSTICE, many well-intended Muslims are unconsciously secularised. For their discourse about justice (Ar. ‘adl, qist) is so often scarred by failing to grasp its Quranic essence: ‘To put a thing in its rightful place.’1 Which is to say, justice is to give things their proper due – at the due time, the due place, and in due measure.

This requires possessing knowledge about the value and measure of things, as Islam assigns to them, so as to give them their due. ‘Hence,’ Ibn al-Qayyim wrote, ‘knowledge and justice are the root of every good, while injustice and ignorance are the root of every evil.’2”

The worlds most ‘Islamic’ country is … New Zealand?

“New Zealanders came together, regardless of color or creed, to mourn and to help the grieving Muslim community recover. Social integration and empathy are sacred in Islam. New Zealand’s population is only 1 percent Muslim, but …

ACCORDING TO A NEW ANALYSIS, NEW ZEALAND IS THE COUNTRY THAT MOST CLOSELY FOLLOWS QURANIC PRINCIPLES.
The Islamicity Indices, compiled by the Islamicity Foundation, a U.S.-based nonprofit, measure world governments by how well they adhere to the Islamic principles set forth in the Quran, including adherence to interest-free finance, equality of education, property rights and animal rights, among others. They don’t include the personal duties required of Muslims, like prayer, fasting and pilgrimages..”

When Ramadan Reconciliation Might Fail 

By Rabbi Allen Maller
“Yet many good hearted idealistic people keep trying to fix bad relationships, often exposing  themselves, and sometimes others, to new hurts and rejections. They need to understand that without the co-operation of another person, some hurts and bad feelings cannot be healed. 

The only remedy then is to let that person go; and to begin again with new opportunities to atone by giving extra charity, as Anas related: “The Prophet was asked, ‘Which type of charity is best?’ He responded, ‘Charity done during Ramadan.’ ” (Tirmidhi, #663); and doing good deeds for other suffering people.”

Muslims have the highest life satisfaction: They have a feeling of ‘oneness’ that trumps Christians, Buddhists and yogis, study suggests

By Natalie Rahhal
“Muslim people feel the most satisfied with their lives because they feel more ‘oneness,’ or connection than people of other faiths, a new study suggests.
Measuring life satisfaction is about as close to quantifying ‘happiness’ as we’ve been able to get thus far, and a German psychologist’s new study suggests that a feeling of ‘oneness’ predicts overall contentment.
And when the researchers divided their 67,562 survey respondents by religion, Muslims felt the greatest sense of oneness.

Sincerity: Is Our Motive Purely for God, or for Others Too?

By Abu Aaliyah
“‘Sincerity is to single-out the Real [God] as the sole object of devotion. Meaning that one desires by their obedience to draw closer to God, exalted is He, to the exclusion of all else, such as making a show [of one’s piety] for people; seeking their praise; taking pleasure in their compliments; or other such things besides drawing closer to God, exalted is He. It is right to say that sincerity is: Purifying the act from creation having any share in it.’