Thursday, November 27, 2008


A funny video about how NOT to give dawah and an idea of what might be a good way to go about it...everybody likes pizza right?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Surah Al-Adiyat

Jamaican Parliament Death Penalty Vote In

34:15 - Hangman wanted
published: Wednesday November 26, 2008

PARLIAMENT yesterday gave warm-up instructions to the hangman, telling him through a unanimous conscience vote that he was wanted back at work soon.
However, the Senate will have a say, by way of a similar vote, whether the death penalty should be retained.

Prime Minister Bruce Golding said yesterday's decision, taken by elected members of the House of Representatives, might take precedence if the Senate votes to abolish the death penalty.
"I think a great deal of weight would have to be attached to what the 60 members of parliament said because those were the persons who were elected by the people," Golding told journalists outside Gordon House shortly after the vote.

Provided that the Senate votes in a similar manner to the House, Golding has said he would move an amendment to the Constitution to remove the stricture which requires that the process of appeals through execution takes place within five years of sentencing or a condemned inmate's sentence should be commuted.

The prime minister also said there were no international treaties or conventions that conflict with the vote of MPs to retain capital punishment on its books.

10 mps absent

Thirty-four members, including Golding, voted for the death penalty to remain on the law books, while 15 voted against. Ten MPs were absent. The House speaker did not have a vote.
On the reverse question of whether MPs were in favour of the abolition of capital punishment, 36 MPs said no, while 15 voted to remove the death penalty. The additional votes came from two MPs who had entered the House during voting on the second.

"Provided that the position that the Lower House took today holds, then we are going to stand ready to carry out that penalty whenever any person on death row has exhausted his avenues of appeal," the prime minister said.

Punishment appropriate

Unlike Opposition Leader Portia Simpson Miller, who was absent from the sitting of the House and had never made clear her stance on the death penalty, Golding said he believed the punishment was appropriate.

"... The death penalty, which I think is an appropriate penalty for someone who takes someone else's life in those cases that we define as capital murder, I believe [the judicial system] it can withstand that scrutiny," the prime minister said.

He added: "I have looked at the reviews that have been conducted by the Privy Council in England and I would venture to say that, whatever deficiencies may have impaired a trial here, it is not going to pass the Bar in the Privy Council."

Golding said that as long as the Privy Council "is an avenue of appeal open to the persons, then I am satisfied that once somebody is convicted, then the death penalty should be carried out".

Eight persons on death row

There are currently eight persons on death row and, according to Golding, none have exhausted their appeals.

The condemned man has a right of appeal to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council and the International Commission on Human Rights.

Yesterday's conscience vote was the second such in the history of modern Jamaica on abolition of the death penalty.

Of the 44 members who voted in the first conscience vote in 1979, a majority of 24 members voted in support of the retention of hanging while 19 voted against. As occurred yesterday, Simpson Miller was also absent then, prompting government members to heckle the Opposition about its leader.

"If you are voting for, then vote for. If you are voting against, then vote against. But don't run and hide," West St Thomas MP James Robertson shouted across the aisle.

Simpson Miller said on Sunday that she had a prior engagement overseas that would prevent her from voting

The To-Do List

I find myself procrastinating a lot these days, I make plans and then I just get lazy. Hopefully I will be able to stick to my list InshaAllah. Here goes...

  • Memorize Surahs- currently memorizing Al-Adiyat, theres one ayah that is defeating me in this one

  • Read More Islamic books - currently reading Misconceptions on Human Rights in Islam

  • Study Arabic lessons and practice vocabulary

  • Read Makkan Chapters of the Quran (Focusing on these first, reading in English of course)

  • Practice reading Quran in Arabic

InshaAllah I will complete these and update my list from time to time, some items will always be on the list as on-going activities.

Oops....I forgot to add
  • Exercise
  • Eat healthily
  • Cut down on TV time

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Krismuss Breeze

Its that time of year again, where the breeze blows wonderfully, there's not as much need for the fan or the AC, and traffic occurs at odd times of day as people take time off to go shopping. Its that time of year again where people get 'silly' , spending money they don't have, buying things they don't need and of course the crime rate doesnt improve either even though they preach brotherly love.

Its that time of year again where I remember my Mom, and back in the day when I was Christian and we celebrated Christmas with the tree and the gifts and the dinners with the many relatives that we only see once a year. It was my Mom's favourite time of year. I always feel sad at this time because I remember her. She died when I was 15. She died as a non-Muslim.

So for the next few weeks I will enjoy the 'Krissmus breeze', and feel sad and feel happy, feel lonely and feel fulfilled, feel different but feel content and a multitude of other contradictions as I strut about in my Christian country in my hijab with the peace of mind that Alhamdullilah I am Muslim.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Scientific Explanation of Halal and Haram meat

Islam and Science

In the Holy Quran, God speaks about the stages of man's embryonic development, 1,400 years before modern day scientists 'discovered' important information on creation of man and his development:

We created man from an extract of clay. Then We made him as a drop in a place of settlement, firmly fixed. Then We made the drop into an alaqah (leech, suspended thing, and blood clot), then We made the alaqah into a mudghah (chewed-like substance)...
[Holy Quran 23:12-14]

Ever wanted to find information relating to the Quran and Science , Evolution versus Creation, Video Comments on the Quran by Top Scientists, Islam's Contribution to Science, and Miracles of the Quran.....well this website is so cool, take a look...

Islam and Science

Status of Sunnah in Islam

Shaikh Salem Al-Amry talks on a very important subject that every muslim needs to know, - the Status of Sunnah in Islam.

He explains why we should follow the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam as we are to follow the Qur'an, the book of Allah subhana wa ta'ala. Shaikh Salim al-Amry is from the United Arab Emirates. He is a Computer Engineer by profession, however he has spent a major part of his youth studying under different scholars.

He has taken the effort to obtain knowledge of the different sciences of Islam including Aqidah, Usool, Hadeeth, Fiqh, Tafseer, Arabic language and more. His teachers include: Shaikh Ali Khashshan and Shaikh Mahmood 'Atiyyah, who were two of the first students of Shaikh Albani and under both, Shaikh Salim studied Aqidah.

Buy a house without interest?

Check out this article and video at

The book mentioned is available here

Islamic Banking in a troubled economy

Non-Muslims turn to Islamic Bank as a safe option

Oct 3 2008 By Anna Blackaby, Business Staff

Growing numbers of non-Muslims are turning to Islamic banking as customers spooked by turmoil in the Western banking system increasingly see the sector as a safe haven.

The Birmingham-headquartered Islamic Bank of Britain said it had seen significant growth in non-Muslim customers since the onset of turbulence on financial markets as Islamic banks, bound by strict religious principles, are largely seen as insulated from the credit crisis.
Islam’s prohibition on the charging or paying of interest - riba - as well as rules on the kinds of investments they can make are among the reasons Islamic banks are coming through the crisis unscathed.

Islamic Bank of Britain head of marketing Steven Amos said: “Our core business will always be Muslims but the numbers of non-Muslims are really picking up.
“We’ve had massive interest and it’s down to the number of reasons why we’re insulated from the credit crunch.

“There were two reasons for the credit crunch. The first is liquidity - banks lending to each other on the money markets - but Islamic banks do not borrow or lend on money markets because interest is not allowed.

“The second reason Islamic banks are insulated is to do with assets - everything has to involve an underlying asset or service and if you are going to trade in an asset you have to own it first.”
The explosion in complex derivative products over the last few years has left Western banks reeling from exposure to toxic assets often far-removed from their everyday activities.
In contrast the more risk-averse Islamic finance system did not embrace this kind of deal.
“Conventional banks didn’t know what they were buying in these derivatives but we have no exposure to subprime as we just don’t deal in it full stop. “That is one of the fundamental reasons we are insulated.” Stipulations that you must own the asset you are trading in also mean practices such as short-selling are not a feature of Islamic banking.

Mr Amos also said the principle of partnership underlying Islamic finance means banks would never enter into the subprime-style agreements behind the current crisis. “For the benefit of the customers and the bank themselves, we enter into a partnership agreement. “Islamic banks don’t just enter into any agreement, we make sure the agreement is right for both partners.”
The growth in ethical investment in the UK over the last few years has also spelled an increase in interest from non-Muslims attracted by the strong ethical tenets of Islamic banking. “We guarantee you we won’t invest customers’ funds in alcohol, tobacco, pornography or in any form of gambling. “These factors are often in keeping with the ethical products that we’ve seen growing in the UK over recent years,” said Mr Amos.

The Islamic Bank of Britain is the UK’s only stand-alone fully Shariah-compliant retail bank.
In July it launched its Home Purchase Plan, billed as “the mortgage alternative,” which enables customers to purchase their homes in an ethical and Shariah-compliant manner.
The plan is based on the Islamic financing principles of Ijara, which means leasing, and Diminishing Musharaka - partnership. For example, the bank contributes 80 per cent of the purchase price and the customer puts in 20 per cent.

Over a period of up to 30 years, the customer will make monthly instalments buying back the bank’s share of the home and with each instalment paid the bank’s share decreases.
Many of the big conventional UK banks have entered into the Islamic finance market in recent years, with big names such as Lloyds TSB offering a Shariah-compliant home finance product.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

More reasons to eat halal

Turkeys Viciously Mutilated at World's Leading Poultry Farm

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, November 19, 2008

Undercover PETA workers have once again caught a meat-breeding company viciously abusing animals.This time, it's a turkey farm called Aviagen, a supplier of millions of turkeys for holiday meals.

In the videos, Aviagen workers murder turkeys with 2-by-4s, they drown turkeys to death by shoving their heads under water, and they punch them, stomp on their heads and shove broomsticks down their throats.

These are the actions of American workers in an American meat factory. This holiday season, don't eat animal meat! If you do, you're promoting animal cruelty and rewarding animal meat factories that provide the bulk of the turkey meat sold during the holiday season.

From the PETA press release: PETA's investigator also saw disgusting, cramped conditions. The rotting remains of about 70 hens were left amid live birds—who had to climb over the dead—for more than a day. A supervisor urinated in turkey pens, and workers spat tobacco in the pens as well. The suffering typically found on factory farms was also routine in Aviagen's sheds: Hens' beaks were cut with pliers, massive birds collapsed and died of exhaustion or heart attacks, and turkeys were thrown into transport cages.

Islam, Judaism Speak Out

Islam, Judaism speak out published: Sunday November 16, 2008
TO TAKE a life of a murderer is to save the life of many, says Sheikh Musa Tijani of the Islamic Council of Jamaica.
"When someone kills and he knows he will be killed, he thinks twice to do it and that will make people live in peace and harmony," he says.
Tijani, who is head of education and Dawah (which means calling people to the religion), says the Koran teaches that capital punishment is the law of God, and robbery and murder of the innocent are crimes punishable by death.
He says if Jamaica reimplements capital punishment, the island's ghastly murder rate is likely to be reduced.
"That is one thing that can help to solve the problem if they utilise it properly," he comments. By that he means the State must act fairly in carrying out capital punishment.
"In Islam, we believe that everybody has to be under the law; no one should be above the law; everybody has to get the same punishment," he adds.
That the innocent could inadvertently be killed in the process of carrying out capital punishment should be no excuse for discarding the system, Tijani states. He says the occurrences of such cases are minimal and all that needs to be done is to improve the process of investigation to minimise such occurrences.

The rights of the victim

"That is what happens in every country. So, as long as it is not a [deliberate attempt] to kill the person, then you cannot use it as an excuse not to perform it. When you talk about human rights, what about the rights of the victim?" questions Tijani.
The stance on capital punishment is not so clearly defined by the world's oldest religion, Judaism.
Spiritual leader Ainsley Henriques says Judaism strongly advocates preserving life, but will subscribe to the observance of capital punishment if it is the law of the land.
"We acquiesce to the majority consideration in this regard, recognising, however, that as far as we are concerned, life is a sacred blessing," he says.
He adds that modern Jewish thought is opposed to capital punishment, but might support its observance in extreme circum-stances. There has only been one execution in the history of the modern state of Israel for crimes committed against Jews during the Holocaust.


Vote Left Hanging

Vote left hanging - MPs now to decide on death penalty Tuesday
BALFORD HENRY, Observer writer
Thursday, November 20, 2008

THE House of Representatives last night pulled back from the brink of a crucial vote on the death penalty, at the suggestion of Prime Minister Bruce Golding.
Golding, who introduced the motion last week, asked that the vote be delayed until next Tuesday to facilitate more MPs being present. There were 45 members of the 60-seat House present at the time.

The decision was a disappointment for the so-called "hawks", who support retention of the death penalty and who are obviously the majority. But it was welcomed by the opposing "doves", who probably hope to sway some of the "hawks" by Tuesday.The MPs streamed out of the House after accepting Golding's proposal, mostly confident that there would be no further delay beyond the deadline set last night by the prime minister.Minister of Labour and Social Security Pearnel Charles, one of the fiercest supporters of the death penalty, said last night that although he would not be in the island for Tuesday's vote, he was confident that his view would prevail.

Government's chief whip, Andrew Gallimore, who is passionately against the death penalty, said he had resigned himself to be on the losing end of the vote, but hoped that by Tuesday others could be swayed to his view.

The decision to delay the vote came at the end of a marathon debate lasting four days with contributions from over 40 MPs.Yesterday's portion was highlighted by Charles' demand for immediate action against "murderers" including those who he said recently beheaded an uncle of his, and Gallimore, who severely criticised those supporting capital punishment.

At one stage, Opposition MP Phillip Paulwell (East Kingston and Port Royal) criticised Charles for lashing out at those against the death penalty. Another Opposition MP, Dr Peter Phillips, also accused him of imputing motive for criticising MPs who were against the death penalty and had violence-prone communities in their constituencies.

Opposition MP Robert Pickersgill, whose follow-up motion to have the UK Privy Council's five-year stricture on carrying out the death penalty removed, and has already attracted criticisms from human rights activists, proclaimed "I am for the capital punishment".

Among those absent yesterday were: Leader of the Opposition, Portia Simpson Miller, who had indicated Tuesday that she would not be present; cabinet ministers Mike Henry, Clive Mullings and Olivia Grange, who are abroad; Opposition MP Ronald Thwaites, who left after prayers; and Leader of the House, Derrick Smith, who had surgery over the weekend in Florida.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Deck the Halls....

Its that time of year again. So this morning my boss comes to my desk and asks if I mind them decorating a tree at the office entranceway. I say no I don't mind. He then asks if I would help to decorate, and that they won't put any 'Christian things' on it, I say nope. Nice of him to ask if I mind though.

Last year they were planning their 'Christmas dinner', and I said I wasn't going. He then had them change it to a 'Family dinner' with no Christmas Carols.Working here is pretty cool, most of the people are open-minded, I am even allowed to pray in the filing room and nobody bothers me, so hey let them have their tree.
By the way, their tree is an articicial banana tree similar to that in the pic :-)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


While making the change to practicing Islam, there were a few things I had to get rid of, gradually. Music was one of them. In my office environment, one co-worker insisted on playing his music for all to hear.

Another co-worker of mine, a Christian lay-preacher and I decided we had to do something about it so we bought him a nice set of headphones as a gift. We were talking one day and we both realized that we were unconsciously memorizing the words of the songs he was listening to , even when he had the speakers turned down. We discovered that we would both be humming these songs to ourselves at home, and were amazed that we had the same issues.

I then realized that I could practically recall word-for-word dancehall and other songs from the 90's when I was a teen, even some from the 80's. I was like if I can keep that nonsense in my head then surely its affecting me subconsciously, and then decided to totally break away from music.

I now play surahs from the Quran in my car, and Alhamdullilah I have been able to memorize quite a few. So it can be done, I listen to lectures and quran on my headphones at work now and find it quite fulfilling. All this from a former music junkie, trust me I had like 10G of music in mp3 format on my PC at home , all genres, filed by artist name, filed by year, you name it. I was hooked. I got rid of ALL of it, I'm not saying it was easy to do but I think it was worth it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The more things change...

Obama's election spurs 'hundreds'of race threats, crimes , Racial discrimination still plagues America

Monday, November 17, 2008

Cross burnings. Schoolchildren chanting "Assassinate Obama." Black figures hung from nooses. Racial epithets scrawled on homes and cars.
Incidents around the country referring to President-elect Barack Obama are dampening the post-election glow of racial progress and harmony, highlighting the stubborn racism that remains in America.
From California to Maine, police have documented a range of alleged crimes, from vandalism and vague threats to at least one physical attack. Insults and taunts have been delivered by adults, college students and second-graders.
There have been "hundreds" of incidents since the election, many more than usual, said Mark Potok, director of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Centre, which monitors hate crimes.
One was in Snellville, Georgia, where Denene Millner said a boy on the school bus told her nine-year-old daughter the day after the election: "I hope Obama gets assassinated." That night, someone trashed her sister-in-law's front lawn, mangled the Obama lawn signs, and left two pizza boxes filled with human faeces outside the front door, Millner said.
She described her emotions as a combination of anger and fear.
"I can't say that every white person in Snellville is evil and anti-Obama and willing to desecrate my property because one or two idiots did it," said Millner, who is black. "But it definitely makes you look a little different at the people who you live with, and makes you wonder what they're capable of and what they're really thinking."
Potok, who is white, said he believes there is "a large subset of white people in this country who feel that they are losing everything they know, that the country their forefathers built has somehow been stolen from them".
Grant Griffin, a 46-year-old white Georgia native, expressed similar sentiments: "I believe our nation is ruined and has been for several decades and the election of Obama is merely the culmination of the change.
"If you had real change it would involve all the members of (Obama's) church being deported," he said.
Change in whatever form does not come easy, and a black president is "the most profound change in the field of race this country has experienced since the Civil War", said William Ferris, senior associate director of the Centre for the Study of the American South at the University of North Carolina. "It's shaking the foundations on which the country has existed for centuries."
"Someone once said racism is like cancer," Ferris said. "It's never totally wiped out, it's in remission."
If so, America's remission lasted until the morning of November 5.
The day after the vote hailed as a sign of a nation changed, black high school student Barbara Tyler of Marietta, Georgia said she heard hateful Obama comments from white students, and that teachers cut off discussion about Obama's victory.Tyler spoke at a press conference by the Georgia chapter of the NAACP calling for a town hall meeting to address complaints from across the state about hostility and resentment. Another student, from a Covington middle school, said he was suspended for wearing an Obama shirt to school November 5 after the principal told students not to wear political paraphernalia.
The student's mother, Eshe Riviears, said the principal told her: "Whether you like it or not, we're in the south, and there are a lot of people who are not happy with this decision."Other incidents include:
. Four North Carolina State University students admitted writing anti-Obama comments in a tunnel designated for free speech expression, including one that said: "Let's shoot that (N-word) in the head." Obama has received more threats than any other president-elect, authorities say.
. At Standish, Maine, a sign inside the Oak Hill General Store read: "Osama Obama Shotgun Pool." Customers could sign up to bet US$1 on a date when Obama would be killed. "Stabbing, shooting, roadside bombs, they all count," the sign said. At the bottom of the marker board was written "Let's hope someone wins."
. Racist graffiti was found in places including New York's Long Island, where two dozen cars were spray-painted; Kilgore, Texas, where the local high school and skate park were defaced; and the Los Angeles area, where swastikas, racial slurs and "Go Back To Africa" were spray painted on sidewalks, houses and cars.
. Second- and third-grade students on a school bus in Rexburg, Idaho, chanted "assassinate Obama", a district official said.
. University of Alabama professor Marsha L Houston said a poster of the Obama family was ripped off her office door. A replacement poster was defaced with a death threat and a racial slur. "It seems the election brought the racist rats out of the woodwork," Houston said.
. Black figures were hanged by nooses from trees on Mount Desert Island, Maine, the Bangor Daily News reported. The president of Baylor University in Waco, Texas said a rope found hanging from a campus tree was apparently an abandoned swing and not a noose.
. Crosses were burned in yards of Obama supporters in Hardwick, New Jersey, and Apolacan Township, Pennsylvania.
. A black teenager in New York City said he was attacked with a bat on election night by four white men who shouted 'Obama'.
. In the Pittsburgh suburb of Forest Hills, a black man said he found a note with a racial slur on his car windshield, saying "now that you voted for Obama, just watch out for your house".
Emotions are often raw after a hard-fought political campaign, but now those on the losing side have an easy target for their anger.
"The principle is very simple," said BJ Gallagher, a sociologist and co-author of the diversity book A Peacock in the Land of Penguins. "If I can't hurt the person I'm angry at, then I'll vent my anger on a substitute, ie, someone of the same race."
"We saw the same thing happen after the 9-11 attacks, as a wave of anti-Muslim violence swept the country. We saw it happen after the Rodney King verdict, when Los Angeles blacks erupted in rage at the injustice perpetrated by 'the white man'."
"It's as stupid and ineffectual as kicking your dog when you've had a bad day at the office," Gallagher said. "But it happens a lot."- AP