From coffee to cheques and the three-course meal, the Muslim world has given us many innovations that we take for granted in daily life. As a new exhibition opens, Paul Vallely nominates 20 of the most influential- and identifies the men of genius behind them
Q: Is there any specific Dua or Zikr to be made on 10th Muharram? Some say that Ayatul Kursi should be recited 360 times and Hasbunallahu Wa Nimal Wakeel 70 etc.? Is there any basis to this? Also is it true that if you spend on your family on this day you will get Barakah for the entire year?
Muslims have made enormous contributions to civilization, perhaps due to the heavy emphasis that Islam places on knowledge. People who forget or blatantly ignore major trends or events in world history can be said to suffer from “historical amnesia.”
Islām is a way of life sent by Allāh ta‘ālā for the guidance of mankind, and it is the key to success in both worlds. Something that holds such significance holds great importance; hence, it is of great value and therefore needs to be protected at all costs.
In recent years there has been a surge in resentment towards Udhiyyah or ritual Qurbani carried out between the 10-12 of the Islamic month of Dhul Hijjah. Proponents of a ban cite environmental concerns and animal cruelty issues. They believe that since the dream of Ebrahim (alayhis salaatu was salaam) to sacrifice his son was a test of his submission – any other ‘sacrifice’ representing submission aside from bloodletting will do. They also believe that exposing young children to animal slaughter is child-abuse. It is important that we debunk these theories by understanding the core philosophy of ritual animal slaughter, lest contradictory ‘reason’ prevails.
1. Zul Hijjah is from the four sacred months of the Islamic Calender. The four sacred months are Dhul Qa’dah, Dhul Hijja, Muharram and Rajab. The rewards of any good deed done in these months are multiplied, and the sins committed in these months are also regarded as more serious.
Harvard Law School, one of the most prestigious institutions of its kind in the world, has posted a verse of the Holy Quraan at the entrance of its faculty library, describing the verse as one of the greatest expressions of justice in history.
In the hype of the post-Woolwich media blitz can Muslims in the United Kingdom expect a fair deal? Tomorrow millions of Muslims around the world will go hungry. They will do so intentionally, with no sustenance from dawn till dusk for a full month. This is challenging, particularly for Muslims in the northern hemisphere, where the days will be long and dry. In Britain, fasting could be as long as 19 hours.