Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Nightly Prayers

Side-by-side they stand in prayer
Shoulder-to-shoulder and their feet touching
No room for pride and arrogance
Keep out the distance
Spread the feelings of faith

Men young and old
Women silly and intelligent
Children who are only learning
Teenagers who are putting a hold on chilling
For blessings they are yearning

They all come together 29-30 days
At night in one large congregation
Men on one side; for the obligatory prayer
Women on the other; voluntarily joining at the masjid
But each pray 2-20 sets of prayers

Prayer is a short price to pay
For the ridding of sins
As one prayer ends
Another one begins

Fasting is a blessing during the day
No food water or drinks
No lying, spying, cheating, gossiping
No stealing, hating, wasting

Prayer is a blessing during the night
Retreat, refresh, recharge, reconcile
Rejoice, restore, remind, recite the Quran
Remember the Lord.

Muslims pray the tarawih prayers during the nights of Ramadan.
Narrated Abu Huraira: I heard Allah's Apostle saying regarding Ramadan, "Whoever prayed at night in it (the month of Ramadan) out of sincere Faith and hoping for a reward from Allah, then all his previous sins will be forgiven."

What are tarawih prayers? http://blog.beliefnet.com/ramadan/2007/09/tarawih-filling-the-night-with.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Oh the Stupidity

How can I not be worried? I turned on the radio this morning, like
every morning, and tuned into the "Top 40" station. This one is my
least favorite and I only listen to that if the other station is on commercial
break. Most of their topics involve sex or something related and I
can't be bothered with listening to that early in the morning.
I mean, who talks about that in the morning? Who talks about that, at all?

So what I hear today is a married couple nervously phoning into the station
as part of this new segment. I'm thinking why are they so nervous, something bad
must have happened or maybe their marriage is in trouble and they want advice.
Wrong! They were extremely nervous because they had entered their homemade
"sex tape" (I thought only celebrities had those?) into the station. The show producers/DJ's
then take that DVD along with 2 other random DVD's (Disney movies) and shuffle everything up.

Then, the wife was called in to randomly select one of the DVD's. Whatever she picked, would be sentto a person of her choice. She picked the random DVD and then she picked her mother-in-law. MIL!!! (By now I'm already so disgusted by all this). Normally I would switch stations at
such a point (when I feel like they've crossed a line, which is most of the time with this station), but I wanted to know why on earth would anyone put themselves through something like this?

So now the DVD was being hand delivered to the mother in law (at 8 am in the morning, mind you). Obviously the couple was REALLY nervous because they were barely speaking
and they kept saying "omg I'm nervous." And I'm thinking didn't you put yourself in this
position in the first place... and um question of the year...WHY? In the end, the mother in law
played the dvd (not knowing why it was sent to her or what was in it) and lucky for them
it turned out it was Bambi. The wife lucked out because her random selection was not the sex tape. The mother in law was pretty confused and didn't understand what was going on or why her son and daughter in law sounded ecstatic that she was watching Bambi.

Finally the DJ announces the couple has won tickets to the Eminem and Jay Z concert.
I'm thinking ()(*%(*_(#_()_#%@^&*^&*^#_@)$(_)(!!!!!!)
That's what they did that for?
SOOOOOOOOO lame and idiotic and lame to the infinite power.

Is this how lame our country is becoming? Sex is prevalent everywhere, even on
an 8 am radio talk show, which by the way could be playing in a car full of kids going to school in a few weeks! It makes me so angry and frankly, worried.
How is this even allowed? If they absolutely have to have that topic maybe they
can make it a late night segment so no sane person has to hear it. And also for the participants, what kind of message exactly are you sending to people? Is everything so open now in society that you're willing to display your most intimate moments for anyone to see? That too, for some concert??!?!

Why can't people save up and buy tickets like the old days? How disrespectful to the mother in law (and disgusting) to receive that "gift"?? How lame is that husband who doesn't mind sending
in a tape for strange men and women (basically everyone at the radio station) to see? Which by the way,the men were commenting on while airing their show live, about how interesting and "raunchy" it was.

To me that couple is idiotic. Also, Eminem and Jay Z are not exactly national heros (in my opinion), why so much attention?

This radio show has done similar segments before and usually its their morning slot, I know because I've flipped stations tons of times while driving to work. I just can't stand when they talk like that and there's no benefit in listening to it, for anyone! More than that, I just don't want to participate in giving their station any ratings because they obviously don't deserve it.

Is this a problem in other cities as well? Are your radio stations crossing the line?
Is anybody else as worried as I am about our future and how hard it will be to raise kids here?

-Artistic Logic

Friday, August 27, 2010

What's the Point Anyways?

Most people already know that we're in the blessed month of Ramadan in which Muslims all over the world are fasting sunup to sundown. However, not many people, even Muslims, know the true purpose of fasting during this month.

From dawn to dusk Muslims are ordered to abstain from food, drink, and sexual relations with their spouses. But why??

Some people give random answers like...

"Oh its so we feel bad for the poor" ... sure I guess but what does sexual relations have anything to do with that?

"Oh its a month that we get to finally become healthy and lose weight in!" ... um yea except most people stuff their faces with food at sundown and end up gaining weight...

God says in the Quran,

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

"Oh you have believe, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you so that you may become God-conscious." [2:183]

God states the purpose of fasting during Ramadan clearly in the verses* and that is to become God-conscious. The word used in the Arabic is تقوى (taqwa) which is a hard word to translate but I think the best translation is God-consciousness.

Literally the word taqwa in Arabic means a barrier. It is a barrier that forms through increasing faith in God which prevents a person from doing that which is impermissible out of fear of God and Hellfire. It is also something which pushes a person to do good deeds out of love for God and desire to enter His Paradise. This taqwa is embedded in a person's heart and manifests itself through his or her actions.

The purpose of physically abstaining from certain things during Ramadan is to help a person have a certain level of self-discipline so that he or she may be better able to have self-discipline with internal qualities. So in essence we're not just fasting from physical things but also from any negative or disliked action such as lying, swearing, backbiting, hurting people's feelings, listening to inappropriate things, going to inappropriate places, etc. The physical fast reminds you that you must focus internally to better yourself as a person and stay away from that which is impermissible and not beneficial.

The hope is that this blessed month will serve as a sort of boot camp for Muslims so that they can spiritually develop themselves to be people who are more conscious of God's existence during their everyday life. There's a beautiful concept in Islam that if you do something for the intention to please God (so long as its a good action) that you will be rewarded for it.

The Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessings upon him, said, "The reward of deeds depend upon the intentions (of those deeds) and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended." Because of this concept, mundane actions like eating, talking, sleeping can incur reward! For instance, if I remember God before I eat and make the intention to gain enough strength to go out and do other good deeds and to worship Him then I get rewarded for eating...even if its this amazing cheeseburger or whatever. Or if I help someone out with a situation with a sincere action then I get rewarded by God for doing it.

Basically Ramadan is this amazing month that brings us back to our faith and works on strengthening it because faith in it of itself that naturally goes up and down. So lets all strive to be more God-conscious individuals who seek to do good deeds and spread goodness on their earth!

*Read Chapter 2 verses 183-187 for more details on Ramadan

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A day

As you guys know it's the month of Ramadan.

An important month for Muslims everywhere. It starts on a different date every year because we follow the lunar calendar.

Anyways that is besides the point...well actually it's kinda is the point of the point.

Sigh. I don't make sense.

I'm sitting in the library, with a binder open, around 14+ hours of lecture that needs to be listened to, and memorized...and I all I want to really do is go home and eat.

Correction> I can't eat until Dusk so never mind.

But that girl sitting behind me, eating that Jimmy John's sandwich....she's .....well...I'm not gonna say she's annoying because it's not her fault she's eating a sandwich.


ahhh there goes that guy again with that stupid Coffee that's helping him stay awake. WHY does he keep walking around with it?!! YEsss we're all happy for you and your stupid coffee that's keeping you awake and I'm SURE no one's going to steal it from you.

Me? I prefer yawning till I have tears running down my face.

Anyways, so what was I talking about...besides my craving for a sandwich?

......My stomach says hello. Grumble, grumble, grumble..... Grumble to you too. It's ONLYYyy two more hours till sunset. It's just sad that I have to say that to myself. sigh.

Really sad.

I just don't want to be here. With books and notes EVER AGAIN..... EVER.....That's not happening anytime soon.

I should just go do some extra prayers. School is wasting my time in Ramadan.

CC, out

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Men in India

 *Disclaimer* What I write is based of what I hear or see. But I don’t know many men personally in this country {Three, actually} to generalize and say all are like this. I do know that this is a problem in India, it does occur and that it should be addressed. So until I have money or power or the ability to help in some big way, I am going to you readers about this issue. And maybe you can throw out a little prayer to the ones who have to deal with such people day in and day out.

*   *   *

Hate is a strong word, especially when I’m generalizing in this post. So I’ll have to say I highly dislike the men of India. Old men, young men, middle men. Etcetera etcetera.

Most of India is poor. Last time I checked, over forty percent of the population was below the poverty line. The rich keep getting richer and the poor even poorer. They are uneducated and many of them don’t know the importance of getting an education. Or maybe they know do, but they also know that an even if they pass their tenth standard exams they can’t afford college; and a shot at a better life. So they stay illiterate. What’s the point, right? The government schools aren’t any good. To their credit they have started a mid-day meal program here to encourage parents to send their kids to school. A free meal and a free education. Most just come for the meal. Otherwise they won’t get anything at home.

However, I can’t accredit education and illiteracy for the behavior of many of the married men in this country. Even the educated or wealthy ones {these two are not related} act like such jerks. It drives me insane. The way they treat their wives here is so upsetting.

Will you believe me if I told you on the way to school I saw a man kicking a woman in the face in broad daylight? She was on the ground and I couldn’t tell that what he was kicking was actually a who until later, after it set in. I say his wife because people don’t get involved with husband-wife relationships. Even if it has to do with domestic violence. Maybe if they were boyfriend-girlfriend. The police generally do not get involved. Fortunately, the times are changing, and I hope they’re changing in this regard as well. So I assumed it was his wife because people were walking around them, not really offering help to the woman.

My experience with them is next to nothing. I know about them through the stories of many women. And I’m very grateful that I don’t have to deal with them. But it sucks because so many women out there do.

I might not know much but I do know that something’s not right when the maid will come to work with a swollen face and blue and black bruises on her arms and legs.

I will know something's not right when she comes with cuts on her face and walks with a limp.

I will know something's not right when a man desert his wife {even the educated class, including doctors and engineers & lawyers} when she gives birth to a daughter instead of a son. This has happened to a few people we know, actually. And it really sucks. I mean, REALLY? Are you really blaming your wife?? Some men don’t leave their wives. They just make them have baby after baby until they have a son. Sons here are considered valuable, because after marriage the daughter goes off to her husband’s family, while the son stays with his wife and takes care of his parents. Interesting tangent: Sex determination is illegal in India because most of the time they couple will go for an abortion in the case of a girl. India has more males than females.

I will know something isn’t right when my maid tells me her husband spends most of the money on booze and he cannot sleep without it. If there is no money for booze, he cannot sleep. No one is allowed to sleep that night either because he was denied “his right”. No one is allowed to sit. They have to stand all night long. It’s ridiculous. He does not work. He sends his wife and daughters out to earn and takes it all. But this fact must be hidden from the extended family. It’s still looked down on here if the women of the household must work. It looks bad on the man’s part. It’s seen as if he can’t earn and provide for them. Random tangent: my mother is generally not old school but still feels this way and would not let me get a job in the mall in high school. She said I’m not allowed to work until I get a proper college education and a “dignified” job.

I can’t speak for many of them and I know that there are good and bad people everywhere. The good tends to outweigh the bad and I tend to see the glad half empty on certain issues. But why don’t people get involved to stop such actions? Why don’t I get involved? The thing is, a divorced woman here will have a hard time remarrying. Sad but true. Since she is most likely illiterate she won’t be able to support herself, earning a maximum of 1,200 rupees a month as a full time maid. Twenty-five dollars and some cents. Will her family take her back or will they be shamed that they have a divorced daughter?

But I will not be sensitized to these horrible incidents. But it’s still going to make me unhappy after hearing story after tragic story. It’s not something I’ve gotten used to these past five years. And I don’t plan on getting used to it. So for these reasons I hate the men here in general. It’s not fair for me to do so, but I will.

There are good men out there, too. There are men who work so so hard to earn an honest living. They work long hours, come home dead tired, but still have time to spend with their families. They do everything they can to make their kids smile. {This information I have gathered from Bollywood films} Men here are also family oriented. They respect their parents and blood ties aren’t severed so quickly.Children are safe in the hands of men here. Pedophilia isn’t as rampant as it is in the States.

The prophet Muhammad peace be upon him said, “The best among you is he who is best to his wife.” In many cultures men are seen as the protectors of women. But who does one turn to if their protector has deserted them?

I am so grateful that I my father is the way he is. I'm grateful to have someone who loves his family, does what he can to give them financial and emotional security. I'm glad to have someone in my life who goes out of his way to keep his kids and family happy.

I feel bad after writing this. I really do. I don’t know many men here and my opinion of them are solely based off stories I hear from friends, family, the maids and a few observations. People tend to talk when there’s something amiss and the boring happy stories are usually ignored. Happy gossip isn’t as juicy as sad gossip, you know. So this is based off what I hear and have observed, but I can be wrong about them. I hope I am, but I honestly don’t think so.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"Ground Zero Mosque" or Pentagon Chapel?

Just weeks away from the 9-year anniversary of the September 11 attacks, controversy brews in New York City over the building of an Islamic cultural center at Park51, nearly two blocks away from Ground Zero, where 2,700 people were killed.

The measure was taken to the city's Landmark's Preservation Commission, which approved the building of the cultural center 9-0, said the New York Times.

According to www.park51.org, the vision of the community center includes, "pluralism, service, arts and culture, education and empowerment, appreciation for our city and a deep respect for our planet," to allow an "accessible platform for conversations across our identities."

Those who lost loved ones, neighbors and Republicans have been opposing the building of the cultural center - noting sensitivity issues such as "giving the terrorists a reason to cheer" being one of the main concerns.

Supporters have raised the flag of tolerance for religion freedom.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York said, Muslims have the right to practice religious freedom, reported the Huffington Post.

"We may not always agree with every one of our neighbors. That's life and it's part of living in such a diverse and dense city. But we also recognize that part of being a New Yorker is living with your neighbors in mutual respect and tolerance. It was exactly that spirit of openness and acceptance that was attacked on 9/11," he said.

"Let us not forget that Muslims were among those murdered on 9/11 and that our Muslim neighbors grieved with us as New Yorkers and as Americans. We would betray our values - and play into our enemies' hands - if we were to treat Muslims differently than anyone else. In fact, to cave to popular sentiment would be to hand a victory to the terrorists - and we should not stand for that."

President Barack Obama echoed the message of religious freedom, putting the issue of whether to continue the project, on a national scale.

"Ground Zero is indeed hallowed ground. But let me be clear. As a citizen and as president, I believe that Muslims have the right to practice their religion as everyone else in this country, and that includes the right to build a place of worship in a community center on private property in lower Manhattan," said the president, reported the Voice of America News.

While House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she supports the constitutional right to freedom of religion, she is concerned about the funds of the project, reported CBS News.

"Pelosi told KCBS is San Francisco yesterday that she joins "those who have called for looking into how is this opposition to the mosque being funded." She added: "How is this being ginned up?"

In a follow-up statement today on the project - an Islamic cultural center that includes a mosque called the Cordoba House that would be built two blocks from the site of the Sept. 11 attacks - Pelosi said the location of the project is a "local decision," though "the freedom of religion is a Constitutional right."

She said that she agrees with the Interfaith Alliance and Anti-Defamation League that the funding for the project should be transparent, as well as this portion of a statement from those groups: "At the same time, we should also ask who is funding the attacks against the construction of the center."

From a different set of eyes

While all eyes are on Ground Zero, Muslims are praying freely at the Pentagon Memorial Chapel, where 184 people were killed on September 11, 2001, reported CNN.com.

The building was created in November 2002, giving space to all religious groups to practice freely.

"United in memory, September 11, 2001," it reads.

"The chapel contains 80 seats and has regularly scheduled religious services on weekdays, including Catholic confession and Mass, a Jewish service and Torah study, a Hindu service, a Mormon service and services for other Christian denominations, along with the Muslim prayer service.

"I've never had a question about it" in four-plus years at the Pentagon, Army spokesman George Wright said.

The Army culture of religious freedom dates back to the Revolutionary War, Wright said, describing it as "a big tent."

"We're very tolerant here of one another and our faith," he said. "We don't keep track of who comes in."

Peace, Journalist.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Pakistan is drowning while we're sleeping.

I'm sure most of you have heard about the HORRIBLE flood that hit 1/3 of the country of Pakistan last month. Oh, wait...you don't know what's going on? Of course you wouldn't...because the American media is too busy broadcasting about the "ground zero mosque" or interviewing the "priest" who wants to burn the Quran....or telling us about everything else ridiculously irrelevant in relation to what's happening to our brothers and sisters on the other side of the world.

Yes, they're in need. ONE FIFTH OF THE COUNTRY IS UNDERWATER. 20 million people are affected. Thousands have died. Conditions are not safe yet. People are continuously dieing, they've lost their homes, not enough food to eat...their water is impure. Water, something I drink everyday without having to think twice about. SubhanAllah.

It's very upsetting that the media isn't covering it to the extent they did when Haiti was hit with the earthquake. It makes me think: is it because Pakistan is a muslim country? Is it because Osama is supposedly hiding out there? Is it because Pakistan and US are not on good terms? Is it because the deathtoll isn't as high as it was in Haiti? WHAT IS IT? Flood/earthquake/tsunami/hurricane...muslims/christians/thiests/athiests...why does it matter?

Human life is sacred.

Please open your hearts and donate. You can do it through Red Cross, Islamic Relief, through your local temple/church/mosque/any house of worship. Any amount is meaningful in the eyes of God, as long as your intention is pure. And if you don't have the means, please spread the word and pray for them. That is sufficient for God too.

- Somebody out there

Monday, August 16, 2010

I'll Introduce Myself...so leave a comment and do the same

Hello there,

We once got a comment from someone, I forget who, saying that they were confused by all the people that write on this blog and they don't know who is who.

And I once had done a post breaking down the authors on this blog, sometime ago, but we've had changes since then so I think I need to re-do that post.

And I was supposed to that re-do post like months ago, but then I got lazy, then I decided to go through a phase of 'I feel like my life is over' and then a phase of 'it's so amazing how everyone is so different', then a phase of I hate the weeds that grow in our lawn but nobody is doing anything about it.

Currently, I'm floating through a phase of tiredness. Floating because ...well it feels like I'm floating..Like a ghost...in realllll slowww motionnnn.

Anyways so here's the original post introducing the authors on this blog: HERE

And this is the current one. To make life easier for myself, I just asked the authors to gimme 5 witty/fun lines about themselves. And this is what I got

Presenting Falling Up's response:

Why are we doing it again, btw??
Also, here are my five lines/things about me.

I am short and small, so people think I'm a little girl but hello I'm old.
People think I look Like Jasmine but pffft I'm way prettier. Jay Kay El Oh El.

Oh this is supposed to be about our authors selves. sigh. Umm iDK what to write.

I am the Queen of typos and I heart it.
I love tangents and I think it's an essential part of my life, because everything is connected in this very small world.
I love medicine and one day will be your doctor.
I love food and cooking, sometimes a little too much.

Okay I cant think of a fifth that readers might recognize my by. SO if you want you can use number one or two at the top right there

(Haha she's totally going to kill me for including the entire email...hahahaha..or I mean Boo boo boo boo...You know...a ghost's laugh)

Next up, probably the highest commenter (as in commenting on other people's blogs)...Constructive Attitude

ummm its not witty, its not fun, and its not five lines.

but here you go...............................

Feel free to edit/delete.

Salutations! My name is Constructive Attitude, I'm 24, and I'm a first grade teacher. Teaching is not all it's cracked up to be. It's not cute. Nor do teachers sit and grade papers all day. And some teachers need to work during the summer instead of taking a three month vacation. I have an urge to physically harm anyone that remotely thinks the opposite of what I just said, in regards to teaching.

Recently I've become obsessed with saying (in my head) that I'm 25. Even though, obviously, I'm not. Just yet. I had a revelation (dont know why it came so late) that when I hit 25, I will be halfway to 50. This thought has embarked me on what I currently refer to as, "My Midlife Crisis". That tiny idea formed in my head and now I'm obsessed with it.
Along with tiny ideas, I'm also obsessed with my mom and potatoes. They are my life.

(I just think you gain more of an insight into the author's personalities if I paste their entire email...Like this author pretty much gave me a post when I asked for five lines. NOTE: FIVE 1..2..3..4...5... Or maybe I'm just really tired)

Next we have Youthful Wisdom, who seemed to believe that she could rap

I'm Youthful. I'm wise. I'm a teacher by day and traveler by night.

I'm very analytical about situations around me and my favorite subject is the Arabic language.

But then her rap died in the next line. RIP Doomed Rap line.. Oh but she can beat box...a little. Much more than I can though.

Next up, our very own die hard (well used to be anyways) fan of Edward Cullen, Mrs. Cullen

Oh. Ok.

My name is Mrs. Cullen. I'm not really a "Mrs." I'm a 22 year old student who loves to eat.

(Me:That was only three sentences)

Sigh. I like to sigh and I love my cat....

( Gimme something more)


(Nothing else?)


YEahhh it's pretty obvious that she's from a different planet all together. And that's coming from a ghost. But the cool thing is that's she's going to be Optometrist, God willing.

Then we have our random hippie. Well she's kinda of a hippie, kinda of a wandering soul, and kinda of a I dunno, but her name is Snake Charmer

i'm a wannabe pollyanna in a sad, sad world.

(can i just give that one line? it pretty much sums up who i am right now)

And I dunno if she appreciates being called a hippie. ::shrugs shoulder::

NOW, for those of you who like sitting in the front seat in class and preview lectures notes BEFORE coming to class and like catching the Professor before they even finish making a mistake, WILL notice that there is one more name.


Now that author, is not any specific author. It's an account open to anyone who wants to write anonymously or just wants to contribute to the blog.

Like our part-time authors Journalist or Simply Me, who'll sign their names at the bottom.

Or some other person that might approach us and want to guest write, and may or may not sign their name.

So there you have it. A re-introduction to the authors. In the style of a thesis paper. Written by a ghost.

If you do want to know about the authors on this blog just click on the About Us label on the Right--------->

So on this blog you'll find a doctor to be, a teacher, an optometrist to be, an arabic/Islamic studies student, another doctor to be, a physician assistant to be, a journalist, an engineer (who left the blog a while ago...but her posts are still up)

And Me?

Like I said...I'm just a floating ghost...enrolled in a school that started a couple days ago and is actively trying to kill me with a bunch of students that are neurotic and psychotic and study everything and talk about it all the time so idiots like me feel like they should float somewhere else.

The end.

C.C., out.

P.S. The original post was definitely better.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Help Me be Clean

I hate cleaning.

I really do.

You know what the irony is? There's a saying of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, that 'Cleanliness is half your faith.' Plus, God says in the Qur'aan that He loves those who are clean and pure.

Sigh. I really hope God still loves me even though I don't shower every day, I don't scrub the tub as often as I should, I really hate mopping, and I pretty much leave majority of the house cleaning duties to the Hubster. On the flip side, I do the laundry so I hope that makes up for something...

When I was younger I would clean and organize when I was angry...I don't get as upset about things anymore so that won't help.

This Ramadan I want to work on being a cleaner person*, among other things. Any suggestions on how to get my clean game on while not totally hating it??

*Disclaimer: I am not really that dirty of a person. My house always looks spotless, my clothes new, and I always smell good!! :)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Guess who's Back. Back again. Ramadan's Back. So tell a friend.

Dear Ramadan,

You are back, my friend. And it seems like you have come back so soon.

If I can be candid, I dont feel like I'm prepared for you this year. Actually, every year that you come I feel unprepared. It's not as if you have come out of nowhere. I have known for 11 months that you were approaching. And before you left last year, you more or less told me, I'll be back.

And so here you are again.

I feel like this time, it's a little harder having you around. The days are much, much, much longer than I have ever anticipated and expected. How will we spend our days together? Will I get bored and want to watch movies with you? Will I want time to go much faster so that we can eat and forget about the true reason you have come? Will I ignore your true purpose of being here? Will I try to teach others about your visit, try to tell them that during your time here, Muslims fast from dawn till dusk, not eating food or drinking water and abstaining from wrongful deeds such as backbiting and slandering. Will I push myself to worship God during your stay here? Or will I just sit around and do what I've been doing for the past 11 months? Nothing. Will I try to help the needy or remain selfish and help myself only. Will I want to party with my friends? Or will I want to worship/learn/engage in productive activities to increase our sisterhood and our Iman (faith) during this time.

Again, I knew this was coming, but it feels so soon. I still remember the days when you used to come in February, when the days were so much shorter. I also remember that during those visits, I was still a kid. Not yet a woman that had hit puberty and was obligated to host you. But once I did hit puberty, and I became acquainted with you, it was a little easier because I had not yet taken you so seriously (which I should have, so please forgive me) And the times when you used to come
after daylight savings time were the best times EVER. When the sun used to set at like 5 p.m and the days used to go by so much faster because we would be in school. And it would be time to break our fast right when we got home.

Now you have become a summer guest. And I believe that you will be a summer guest for the next couple of years. I'm glad you're here. Dont get me wrong, but I just wished I did so much more before you got here.

However, regardless of when you come, or how soon/late you do, welcome back, you were missed, and I'm glad you are here. Let's make the most of this visit! God willing.

With love,

Constructive Attitude

Friday, August 6, 2010

I Swear My Hymen is Still There

I'm a virgin.


What does that even mean? I took a human sexuality class last semester and the professor posted a really good question. What does it mean to have sex?

Does it mean to have actual intercourse? Ok let's break it down by throwing out some scenarios. Before I do that let me put down a disclaimer that physical contact between men and women is generally a big no-no in Islam, let alone dating or even coming close to premarital relations. At the same time our reality in the US is that so many young Muslims are doing it anyway, regardless of its prohibitions in Islam.

With that said, let's look at the following three scenarios.

  1. Couple A want to remain 'virgins' so they decide to dry hump (keeping their clothes on)
  2. Couple B decide to engage in oral sex especially so the girl keeps her hymen in tact
  3. Individual C is frustrated so masturbates to release tension
What's in common with all three?

The possibility of reaching orgasm for one.

So let's suppose 1, 2, and 3 all reach climax. What does that mean? They're all sexual experiences but does that mean they've lost their 'virginity'?

I feel like this is a topic that Muslims need to speak up about. It's prevalent in our communities and it's time we talk about it! A lot of times for Muslim women, virginity equates to keeping one's hymen intact. A lot of girls who become sexual active actually go and get get their hymen sewed so their future husbands don't suspect anything. Does that mean she has suddenly been given back her virginity?

So what does it really mean to have sex or lose your virginity.

God says in the Qur'an "But let them who find not [the means for] marriage, abstain from sexual relations until Allah enriches them from His bounty..." [24:33]

From my understanding, the Arabic here leaves leeway to the meaning of sexual relations which connotes all types of sexual relations with a person who is not your spouse. That includes touching, kissing, hugging, etc. The wisdom behind this is that these types of sensual actions all lead up to sex.

I think that these types of relations are on a continuum and virginity deals with all of them. I mean honestly there are so many ways to be sexual active other than intercourse.

I guess that next question is, what do Muslims that engage in these behaviors thinking they're still 'virgin' do?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Growing up we were never allowed to own a cat. My dad used to say he was allergic to them so it would be an injustice to him to get one.

We found out later that he just really dislikes cats....

Thanks, dad.

Anyhow, now that I'm not living at home I don't have to worry about Dad's aversion to furry little moving things. I asked the Hubster back when we were engaged what he thought about getting a cat. He totally said no because of maintenance and what not. Apparently he just wanted to surprise me later on.

Which he finally did last week! I came home at night to two little beautiful kittens running around the living room!! Ahhhhhhhh!! They're baby brothers from the Human Society..and they're oh so heartbreaking cute. And they love cuddling up next to us :)

So guess what I found out? Owning cats have tons of benefits.
  1. Cat owners are less likely to die of heart attack or stroke from people who don't have cats.
  2. They also have less stress
  3. And more calmness
  4. And a better immune system. Apparently cats are good for kids with asthma.
  5. Cats are fun friends to play with
  6. They're soft so you can cuddle and pet with them
  7. If the Hubster pisses you off you can go to the cats and they'll lick your nose to make you feel better
  8. Good practice taking care of kids before you actually have them. Actually they're better than kids because you can leave them home alone while you go to work and they don't cry.
  9. They can make good pillows
  10. Cat owners always have someone to come home too...even on the crappiest of days.
There ya have it. 10 benefits of owning a cat. Oh and if you get one adopt it from the Humane Society and make sure you don't declaw them...that's just cruel and unusual punishment for cats.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Is Ignorance Really Bliss?

You will always have racist/prejudiced/hateful people in the world. No matter how much a group of people will try to prove themselves against a stereotype or how much they will try to teach people about themselves, their beliefs, and their culture, there will always be that one group of ignorant individuals that refuse to accept it.There will always be that one Caucasian that abhors African Americans. Or that one U.S. veteran who cannot stand the Japanese. Or that one Black panther that hates the White man. Or that one man who thinks that women should stay at home and cook and clean. Or that one group of people who think that Native American Indians should go back to where they came from. Or the group of people who think that all Mexican immigrants should learn to speak English.

And while most racist bigots keep their thoughts to themselves and only express it to certain people, you still have your fair share that explicitly state and talk about how much they hate a group of people.

Most of, if not all, the time, these thoughts and opinions sound extremely ignorant and only show the lack of education people are willing to seek for themselves because they are so blinded by their hateful thoughts.

The latest act of hate: A Church in Gainesville, Florida is planning to burn the Qu'ran, the holy book of Islam, on the 9th anniversary of September 11. They are honoring and remembering the victims of 9/11 by burning the holy book and declaring Islam, to be "religion of the devil".

(click on the picture for the full story)

I dont know how many times that Muslims will have to say time and time again, that the acts that were carried out on September 11th were not what Islam teaches. I dont know how many times Muslims have to defend themselves because of a horrendous act that was carried out by a group of people that claimed to be Muslims and were following what Islam told them to. I dont know how many times Muslims will have to say that what happened on 9/11 had nothing to do with Islam. I dont know how many times Muslilms will have to face the backlash of the acts that were carried out that day. I dont know when the world will accept Islam as a religion of peace and the actions of Muslims do not necessarily reflect the teachings of Islam.

I do know that a time should come where Muslims should stop having to do/say these things. And the rest of the world, the non-Muslims, should take the initiative and go out and learn these things on their own, so they can truly be able to understand the practices of Islam and what it really teaches.