Tuesday, November 30, 2010

SRI Ayesha GD 2010

Don't let the world deceive you, because once you are deceived, you're only deceiving yourself

We need an epistemology to help us, appearance and reality really doesn't mix

If I do not strive to understand this world then I have PEANUTS in my head!
When will I wake up?!

Don't care about the people out there, you stick with what you have

Chapter 2 - Aziem's "River"

Fauzul Aziem was jumping up and down in his "makeshift" swimming pool. he never had so much fun since ummi "went to work". It seems an awfully lot of work, every time he sleeps and wakes up ummi wasn't there beside him, but no matter, baba was always their, and now abang si (Fakhry) is here too. Abang si just came back from work, he supposed.

Ever since Abang si sat and baba's place in the car, he never felt any better in the car than before, rasa macam nak muntah, Abang Si masak pun keluarkan semula dekat luar, tak boleh bagitau Abang Si, or else he'll smile very widely, entah kenapa waktu dia senyum lebar2 nanti dia tumbuk dinding or gelikan Ziem. Freaky Abang.

But now, since Abang Si has been back, he bought with him some box. It was like magic. Abang Si open the box and some "oversize bathtub" came out. He used some weird equipment, one of those things you put at the bicycle and tiba2 bicycle tu boleh jalan, like magic. Abang Si said that every morning kalau nak boleh mandi in this "kolam" he called. macam Abang Si pulled the river and brought it to the back of our house, one day I really need to learn all this, macam "cool" je.

I tgk kat atas, ohhh, the big-bad-bright-hot-round-thingy is shining so much, kena bawa my river to a shadier place.

"Abang Si, Abang Si!....... Abang Si!"

"Yes Aziem???", Abang Si's head poked out from the wall, Masyaallah! terkejut Ziem tgk. It seems he's at the "touching TV", getting out long sparky things that looks like spaghetti and rewinding them. Is he doing dinner? Yuck, tak nak makan tu.

"Niiiiii, Hot, Aziem Hot", pointing my finger at the big-bad-round-thingy.

Abang Si quickly understood and went out to the backyard where my "round river" is and started............... pulling it??? bringing it under the cool shades of the roof. I giggled with a smile of thanks.

"Say Thank you", Abang Si said to me.

"Teee ku", whatever that means, but it must mean a good thing since, after i say it Abang Si looks nice and happy.

So now, back into the river! yeah! all the water with all the toys, and better still here come Ya and Udden.

"Ya, Ya, in Aziem" I said.

"Hah ye, nanto nadia masuk, kena tukar baju" she said.

"Ju?? Ju?, I pointed at her clothing, why can't she just go naked like me, much more easier. Girls makes things complicated.

"Ye, Nadia kena tukar dulu"

A few thick tocks, and finally Ya and Udden came in their "river clothes". Ya touched the edge, dipping her fingers in the water, testing how good it feels before getting into the river, while Udden just came in with a splash.

Yeay! now all the gang is here, just Abang Si, whom is busy with his "touching tv", what's so great about it? I tried touching it and all it did was some strange sounds, guess the more you get older, the border you get. Being a baby is always fun. Ya, Udden and me played in the river so much, there was a ball Abang Si took from "the other people's house" and he let us play with it.

Hmmmph, it's much more fun playing ball with Abang Si, because Abang Si is so strong when he hits the ball, no one could catch it, he even throws it so high.

"Abang Si, Si"

"Yes Aziem", again his head popped out from the "magical-wall-like-mirror", looking around, Abang Si nodded in satisfaction that Udden and Ya was there with me.

"In Ball, In Bal"

"Abang can't play ball lah Aziem, I wanna fix this computer", pointing to the touching tv, the what-ter? they call it.

"Abang............... in Bal, in bal", I started rattling, holding the ball in my hands, showing to him to play with us. it seemed like it didn't work, because after that he just ignored us.

So i stepped out of my river and went into the shady-place-with-spinning-thing-on-top-and -lots-of-bright-things, and I did the unthinkable. I threw the ball at him.

Rule number #1, don't make grown ups unhappy, and that was the rule I just broke. Abang Si's touching tv was hit by the ball and it all got wet.

"Aziem..............", Abang Si sounded grumpy, but why is he still smiling, Uh-oh, I know what's gonna happen after this. I ran back to my river as soon as possible. Of course I knew that my small body was no match to the huge structure that shadowed me, Abang Si. He quickly picked me up and together, jumped into the river with me, and he's still in his clothes! wet of course.

I saw his sinister smile, he held on to me and he started dancing and tossing me up and down, bringing me into the waters while teaching me how to swim. It was all fun, the spinning the dancing, the swimming, and finally Abang Si, sat down into the water, soaked in his clothes.

He looked like he needed nap times, I could have sworn I could hear his chest with those funny cat voices, it's like there's something inside of him, like in Naruto where there's a creature called Kyubi, yeah, and in the story it's a bad idea to let this "kyubi" get out.

So I went to his chest and tapped it a little, hopefully the kyubi will stay in there, that's how naruto does it.

"Ni kit?" I was pointing at his chest.

"ye Aziem, Sakit, your Abang Si ni has asthma, you know"

I knew it, there was something in his body, and it's name was................ Asthma.
Whatever happens, I can't allow it to get out.

Abang Si, was resting at the edge of the river, he looks exhausted, but happy. It's great that Abang Si comes out and plays with us, its always boring when he stays with his touching tv, fun, fun, fun. Life is soooo much fun.

Why in the world do grown ups do all these boring stuff? I don't know, but I'm glad Abang Si played with us today, I hope it was like this all the time.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Chapter 1.2 - Somebody has to Fattah

Fattah was trying to gain back balance. Some lunatic had just hit his back, almost crushing the parts where he had an operation.

He looked up and saw some arab guy laughing at him, showing fingers, acting like the world belonged to them.

His vision and his hearing came back, he could recognize the faint arab cliche's the guys were talking about.

What were they calling him? Slave boy? Asian? Mata Sepek?

he couldn't quite register it, he understood more Hebrew than these dumb a** would think an "asian" guy knew possible.

Rising up his fragile body, a calm hand help on to his feet. it was his sister, Ayesha.

"You alright?"

Fattah gave a slight nod, determined not to show his weak side.

The "arab" strangers were still laughing and mocking. Now calling his sister things like, prostitute or whatsoever. Ayesha kept her ground, not wanting to find trouble in the middle of "the dessert".

The shouting and mocking from the Arabs suddenly ceased, continued by surprisingly another type of shouting.

"Go to hell! All of you! Get out of here!"

It was our mom, and she was showing her right hand with a clench fist and on her left hand, a hand bag with 'God-knows-what" accessories that would make your head splatter when it hit you.

The guys knew that whoever this angry lady was, she meant business, looking at how the way she dressed with a purdah on, she looked like a modern arab women.

One of the guys quickly made a dash, not wanting to take on the fury of this "women in the purdah".

Fattah almost laugh at the fury shown by his mom, even he wasn't afraid to debate with his own furious mum, and yet here the people whom has just punched him are fleeing at the very sight.

Rising on two by two, Fattah quickly tidied up what was left of him, his hair was almost in ruin, as if he would care, but the worst part was on his stomach. there's a red-bluish spot where they hit him. whoever these lunatics were they really were going to pay, no wonder americans think these guys are terrorist: arabs like to bully Americans, like him.

By time everything settled back the way it was, it looked like as if this whole commotion of "arabs like to bully asian" was and everyday chore.

The trio quickly departed, seeing that it is now almost late, way late, and not wanting to go through a "worst case scenario" all over again.

Sending his mom and his sister back, Fattah made the journey back to his house accompanied by their trusty "muraqib" Anas back to where he was staying.

He thought back at the current events.
He has been in Jordan now for almost a week, things looked appeasing to him.

JUST, Jordan University of Science and Technology took on the stage of his attention. As a place to continue learning, it seemed "here" was a good place. The facilities were there, everything looked ok, and most of all, he loved the food, the lamb chops, the rice and the camels. He might even be able to get taller than his elder brother, Ibnu Ahmad, always boosting how tall he is.

And then, on the looks of it, things didn't go the way they should, with the gang members bullying asian-americans, saying things in chinese which "God-knows" what they are saying.

Something has to be done about this...........................

For some weird reason, whenever some problem like this acquires, his family, would end up thinking it's up to them to help it out. Whether it be in knowledge (his dad), Education (mum), socializing and peers (sister), social problems and Dakwah(his brother), military (his younger brother) and the list goes on and on, with the specific things each member of the family wants to solve, they always think it's up to them to do it.

Guess he'll be needing more than just his "knowledge in comparative religion".

Hmmmmphhh, Well.

if it's not these guys, somebody has to solve it..............................................

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Are U Alim - Chapter 1 - I Believe

Say: "Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds:

(Suratul Al-An'am :162)

I remembered dear Nadia asking me:

"Is there really God?"

She being in her rebellious mode was making my life as a older brother like an ordeal. I should have known that these were one of those questions just to run away so she doesn't need to perform her prayers or not wear a hijab when going out. you can't blame them, there curiosity is enormous, why, I even once doubt my parents......... were my parents, thought I was adopted or something.

"Yes, there is", I said.

"Tak nampakpun"

hmmmphh, and I thought it would be easier to tell a child than something as complicated like this.

"Just because you can't see God, that doesn't mean He doesn't exist"

"hmmmmphh", she chuckled

"Do you see the air you breathe? no, because it's invisible, but you could feel it with your hand, it blows in your hair. Same like Allah, you could feel him, although not with your hand but with your heart, that's why you need to pray, so that you could "feel" Allah, blowing a relief into your soul."

Nadia smiled in delight. From that day I know, Nadia would be waiting to pray, wanting to "feel" the blowing relief of Allah.

And here starts our Journey.......................

Friday, October 22, 2010

Generation XYZ: An introduction

I remembered the first day I wanted to stay in hostel, it was one of those days where your tummy was growling like crazy, as if it would also know that by tomorrow no more of your favorite mushroom soup or "ayam masak arab" would be served during breakfast and dinner, I even though: would I even have breakfast or dinner while in hostel? I'll be skinny like a stick, or worst, just bones and blackness, like a fleshed skeleton (Amnah might like that).

Yep, for anyone going into hostel that would be the scenario. there was even a scene I heard a form 4 going into hostel her first time, crying (I'm not saying any names)

The truth is for me, when I entered hostel in Maahad Hamidiah Kajang, it was all about being somekind of "dare-devil" in the family. Someone in the family had to start the tradition of staying in the hostel, and that person was me. It made me "smiled" knowing these were one of those "things" you could always be proud against your sister and someday say to her

"Hey sis, I stayed in the hostel for 4 years while in school"

ok, maybe that might be a little too much, but any thing I'm better at than the rest of my siblings, then I'm proud of it and appreciate it the most.

Now that same feeling in your tummy is coming back, but this time, your just older.

As we get older, these "feelings" when you were a kid shouldn't be here. But it IS.

I remember my mum saying to me once, the reason why young kids should always get what they want was because they didn't "understand".

Understand what?

Life, Grown ups, news, politics, or any "boring" stuff a kid would think

guess she never touch that part, but maybe between you and I, we could put a blind eye to it, and I think we both understand what she's talking about (unless your a kid).

The older we grow up the more we should be able to "understand" things and become more wise when it comes to choice making, being more matured (as in controlling emotions and lust) and making sure the "greater good" is always put first.

Recently, my mum told me about how different our generations are apart. she (as a professional child psychologist) would classify the generations in today's world into generations X, Y and Z.

these generations are divided base on the progress of technology.

Generation X: these people are kinda old in this 21st century, but they are powerful people, and are the ones controlling the world, they know what's going on and how the world works that feel responsible to there upcoming generations and try to help them out like creating newer technology for everyday use like cars, washing machine, home telephone, t.v and even the computer or modifying government policies. Although there intentions are pure, their creations sometimes gives little help to the Y generation, diverting them from their objectives, and ruining the Z generation, who are too into entertainment.

This generation are those from the time the first computer was made and when the Tv was black and white, they had to struggle through life, maybe sometimes working during their youthful days.

People who are X generations that I know: My mum and Dad, My teachers in Maahad (not all, but the majority) and anyone who was born before 1980.

Generation Y: they form the core of the 21st century, the majority of the world are populated by Y generations, called "belia" in Malay, while generation X leads, they follow, forming the backbone of the world, whatever happens, it's because their presence or absence in the situation.

They "develop" the technology generation X has created, but with a bit of fun in it. facebook, friendster, sports cars, Youtube, Ipods, Mp4's, anything that generation Z likes, it's because generation Y developed.

Again their intentions were pure, but it got off hand, with the pampering from generation X and the begging from generation Z, they went out of control, causing the world to spin in entertainment and lust. But, the power to bring peace back also are in them. Although less aware of whats happening, they would charge head on into anything that challenges the ideas of the people from generation X they idolized. from Jihadism to Zionism, they walk half blind, half mature and half wise from their predecessors, generation X.

Part of there lives before the 21st century, they were like generation X, going through a life of hardship and struggle, making them wise, but by the time the step into the 21st century, a majority of them forgotten the struggles and hardship, and thus were consumed by lust and hedonism, even hastening it for generation Z. The Fate of the world depends on them and their choices.

People I know who are Generation Y: Myself, Brother Khairul, Fattah, Nafeesa, Nuaim, my Usrah buddies, my classmates, my debate mates, Saddiq, Amnah, Daeng, Kamal and Zubair. Anyone born between 1980's to the year 2000.

Generation Z: begging for happiness and peace from both generation X and Y, they are the ones who least understand that the world has been going all wrong. being pampered from the start of the 21st century, they craze for lust and good entertainment. No struggle here, everything is served by technology. there story has much to be written, and that story lies in the hands of generation X. they are just users of technology, neither developing nor devolving it. but seeing the 21st century and how it's spinning out of control, you could say they will feel the full impact.

There story to be continued........................

People I know who are Generation X: Udden, Nadia, Fauzul and all the cute kindergartens I could see. Anyone being born during the 21st century. You have Ipods, Andoroids and God-knows-what technology your mum gave you.May Allah bless you all.

this is a wroth description on the generations and how they affect each other.

The gap between us is so real, I just need to look at my family.
Between me and my mum, I double the usage of handphones and internet when I was her age, she hardly uses it, even now.
Between me(generation Y) and my little brother, Uddeen (generation Z), he used handphones and a computer double me, if I was his age.

So you could see how by time, we make ourselves "slaves" to technology, and only a handful acknowledge this.

To be continues................................

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A New Earth

3600 years ago..................

Aaron came to his brother Moses and asked,

“Brother, what is the first commandment of all?”

And Moses replied, “Here Israel your Lord, your God, your Lord is One”

Some 1600 years later.........................

A learned men of the Jew came to a man named Jesus while he was preaching, he asked

“Master, what commandment is the first of all?”

And just like his elder, Prophet Moses, Prophet Jesus may peace be upon him replied,

“Here Israel your Lord, your God, your Lord is One”

He said the exact sentence without the change of a dot!

Some 600 years later, a Christian Missionary group came to the House of Prophet Muhammad for a dialogue, after talking on various issues, one man asked,

“Dear Muhammad, what is your concept of God”

and that's where Allah s.w.t sent down suratul Ikhlas for Prophet Muhammad Peace be upon Him, which says:
“Say: He (your Lord) is One and Only!”
(Al-Qur'an, Al-ikhlas, 112:1)

What is the difference? Moses said your Lord is One, Jesus said the same, Muhammad said exactly the same in Arabic! The fundamentals are the same. The faiths are the same.
Then it suggests that there could be no hate nor discrimination among ourselves.

The cases going thru the twenty first century has endangered the teachings of these “enlightened” people, threatening the very foundation of this one faith.

When I see people of various religions, I see lunatics, fighting, killing mass murdering in the name of God, as if He would agree with it, I do not see the same faces of Moses, Aaron, Jesus or Muhammad in those actions (P.B.U.T)

In a world spinning out of control, Why has humanity gone so far astray? Are we back in the dark times?

Last time the dams of Maghribi has erupted causing the times of dark, has the dams that hold our lustful, egoistic, inner-animal being has erupted into such a devastating form that we are in the dark times............ Again?

Our humans instincts and our purpose is only for one.................... eternal happiness. And yet this eternal happiness is being pursued in the most devastating ways, from suicide bombing to night clubbing.

It is time we wake up from our slumber of ego, lust and our animal selves and start embracing the ways of the “enlightened” people.

How do we shook of being miserable? All the lust, fear, disappointments, ego and hate, how do we destroy it?
* * *

Some 1400 years ago, the Prophets wife, Aisyah r.a, saw the Prophet praying in the night. His feet were in bruises, his body sore, and the man looked like he would have toppled down with a simple push.

So Aisyah came and asked,

“oh Prophet of God, why have you inflicted hardship on yourself for praying to God, where as you among all people are confirmed to enter paradise?”

With one of the warmest smile, the Prophet replied:
“Can I not be a servant that is grateful to my Lord?”
600 hundred years prior, a humble servant came to Jesus (pbuh).

“Master, I have no food, nor shelter, nor the warmth of one's (family) touch, how shall I be among the happiest people of this world?”

and so Jesus (pbuh) replied

Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Jesus Christ for you”
(1 Thessalonians 5:18, the Bible)

1600 years before this event occurring a man by the name of Moses, came down upon his lord praying:

“He said: O my Lord! Expand my breast for me,

And make my affair easy on me,

And loose the knot from my tongue,

(That) they may understand my word,

And give an aider from my family,

Aaron, my brother,

Strengthen my back by him,

And associate him (with me) in my affair,

So that we should glorify (be Grateful) Thee much,

And remember Thee oft.”

(Surah Taha, 20:25-35, The Holy Qur'an)

* * * * *

The key is to be grateful, grateful that you have good health, even though you cough every morning. Grateful for your friends, even though they sometimes don't get you, grateful for your parents, even though they wouldn't allow you your freedom. And most of all be grateful for your life, for the bless of God for being able “to be” grateful once more.

Because in the end our ego, lust, animalistic behavior and hate is all because we never tend to realize that God, even though he never gave want we always wanted, he gave us what we needed.

And so........................ the start of a new world, a new earth, without wars, without fear, without being miserable.

A New Earth

(Allah) Most Gracious!

It is He Who has taught the Qur'an.

He has created man:

He has taught him speech (and intelligence).

The sun and the moon follow courses (exactly) computed;

And the herbs and the trees - both (alike) bow in adoration.

And the Firmament has He raised high, and He has set up the Balance (of Justice),

In order that ye may not transgress (due) balance.

So establish weight with justice and fall not short in the balance.

It is He Who has spread out the earth for (His) creatures:

Therein is fruit and date-palms, producing spathes (enclosing dates);

Also corn, with (its) leaves and stalk for fodder, and sweet-smelling plants.

Then which of the favors of your Lord will ye deny?
(Suratur Rahman, 55:1-13, The Holy Quran)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Ramadhan Weekends

This recent saturday, 28th of August, I had exams................ Fardhu Ain, and it was freakingly hard, Masyaallah. They keep on asking about girls and there menstrual- cycle................

And to me it was like............... Masyaallah, do guys actually have to know all this? LOL

But all in all.............. it's exams, so what more do you expect?

After a thrilling hour with exams, it's finally time to mesmerize my weekends, you see, this might be the only weekend during ramadhan I didn't went back home, my parents were furious.......... partially wanting me to take care of my siblings (potty training Fauzul I guess, YEAH!)

Rather I told the m I wanted to hang out at rumah Daeng in KL (he really lives beside KLCC),

"ada nak siapkan kerja rumah with him and all"

So they allowed, hearing the name of Daeng of course (my mom knew his mom) so boleh trust lah that I won't do anything bad (protective parents)

before going to his house, I went to Markaz SRI petaling with Syarafi, we wanted to hear the news from the Markazand buy "God-knows-what" sunnah items (I.e Celak, Jubah, Sugi.... those things) my supply dah nak habis dah.

Going to Sri Petaling wasn't that easy, you see I brought along my bag with a text book inside because after this I was going to Daeng's house to sleepover. we went from Bus - train and finally taxi, all in one day.

It was a relief getting to Sri Petaling, the mosque was packed with people even though it was only Asar (that's something rare you'll find in other mosques) but the air was cool and filled with the air of hope and submition to God.

we stayed there until after Asar prayers, then me and Syarafi head back to KL.

By the time we reached to Masjid Jamie', it was already 6.45pm........... dah nak buka puasa!

there was a bazaar next to the mosqye, so we bought some food there, the bazaar was packed with people, and we're in the middle of KL for heaven's sake!

I almost choked in there, with the smoke and all the people, Syarafi, noticing this quickened his work, we quickly went out of the bazaar and straight to Masjid Jamie', where we will break fast and did maghrib prayers.

finally it was time to part our ways. Syarafi went back to CFS while I'll continue to Daeng's house, I wanted to invite Syarafi to Daeng's house, but he said he couldn't follow.. "takde baju"

I followed the LRT to KLCC, and by the time I'm infront of Surian KLCC, it was already almost Isya',

Masjid Asy-Syakirin was close by, so I went there, that was one of the most beautiful Mosque I've been, it's in the middle of KL, yet the environment was quite peaceful and spectacular. Buat tarawih kat situ jugak.

It seemed pretty cool: In one day I went and prayed in 4 different mosque, Masjid CFS UIA, MAsjid Sri Petaling, Masjid Jamie' and finally Masjid Asy-Syakirin. and that's all done during the month of ramadhan, guess great (spiritual) things do happen during ramadhan.

Reaching to Daeng's place, I slump across the floor, grabbed a remote controller, and played Resident Evil the whole night! So much for Ramadhan. LOL God-knows how long I slept after Subh.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sekilau di CFS

Alhamdullillah, sudah nak habis semestar pertama di CFS IIU. Hidup disini memang syok (Apasal tiba2 cjp melayu ni?)

So what have I been going through really? well there were lectures from........... well lecturers

There was debate and God knows what hectic competitions: IDC 2010, IIU Open and ICRC Debate.

And there was also life in the campus. more or less what I expected.

In Class >>>>
Physics Lab, this was our last experiment, in picture: Hakeem and Zuhdi

Kelas Ustaz Wan Shuhor, he thought arabic, dia nampak garang, macam terrorist, but actually very nice (to boys lah)
My Math class, very fun learning with these bunch of people, in pic from top: Syarafi, Rafiq, Lutfi, Aidil, Atiq and Syukur. LOL

Last class with madam Suzana (middle one sitting) my chemistry lecturer, she took leave because she was pregnant. Miss u mdm Suzana

Debate >>>He he he (I never said I was a good guy), on the way for Iskandar Debate, my teammate Saddiq, poor guy, always doing the thinking. Penat

Eating a scrumptious 1 feet long sandwich. this was during Taylor's, don't forget to recite Doa'
Trainning for Iskandar Debate, God knows what Amnah is thinking of. LOL
Team Fauzi!!! Fakhry and Fattah Fauzi, during IIU Open, we made a great team together

Other Activities while in CFS >>>
Some activities with my Usrah buddies, and singgah Markaz SRI Petaling

Brother Khairul's Wedding, Hope you make a great husband!

And Finally.............. Going into ward for the 5th consecutive time in IIU. LOL

"What is a man, if he does not bring benefit the world"

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Home of God

"Why do you want to go and pray at the mosque? is it any different than praying in your room?"

it makes all the differences.

"well the mosque is the house of God"

"that's very particular, how do you know he lives there?"

of course, Allah is anywhere.

What is a home really?

It's where you feel most secured, where you know you own most (if not all) the things in that place, it's YOUR place of remembered (where you are remembered, because obviously you live there).

Masjid, it derives from the word "Sajada" which means to submit. In the mosque, the man purpose of that institution is to submit to God ie the recognition of God.

That is why it's the home of God, because now, you submit yourself spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally towards God's cause.

Concerning the Ground Zero Mosque

should muslims in NY pursuit to get a mosque built there? what is the objective? to enhance inter - faith understanding? or is the true purpose to create the home of God where people once demise Him?

If Muslims really want to build a mosque, it must be on the grounds of Taqwa (recognition of God) Not for any other agenda.

Will this truly be the Home of God? moreover where is our home to be exact?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

One Person, One value, One Solah

"Fakhry, could you help do Saddiq's solah?" Brother Kamal asked.

"If I could I would"

"But that isn't possible. Just like a vote, it's only worth for one person"

One Person, one Value, One Prayer
Solah is only worth something to yourself, not for your friends nor families, not to anyone.

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said:

If all of humanity united and strive to go away from God,

Then God doesn't loose One Atoms worth of his Kingdom

And if humanity united and strive to submit towards God,

Then God doesn't gain One Atoms worth of His Kingdom.
What does this philosophy tells us?

It tells us that God is not in need of your prayers and worship (like in movies "clash of the titans"), God isn't divine because of your prayers, God does need you.

YOU are the one who needs God, YOU are the one who are in need of these prayers and worship acts.

May you one understand the significance of submitting yourself to the divine.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Reasons VS Religion

Ask yourselves: what is the real reason we do anything?

Do we do something just because or God or our Prophet orders us to?

Do we do something just because it is a sunnah? some kind of good deed? or does it just makes everyone feel good?

Science without Religion is Lame
And Religion without Science is Blind
-Albert Einstein-
If I do not seek to understand what's happening here then I got peanuts in my HEAD!
When will I WAKE UP!?!

-Sheikh Imran Hossein-

Friday, July 30, 2010

Reasons Of Faith

An atheist professor of philosophy speaks to his class on the problem science has with GOD THE ALMIGHTY.

He asks one of his new Muslim students to stand and...

The Haram Police

Reminding You Just In case you forgot

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Execution Plan

Whether we like it or not, the perception of people towards us is very important when we want to do Da'wah.

FYI, you could give a whole lot of facts and figures to that dude, and yet still be unable to make him understand Islam, because people don't tend to remember what you said rather "how you made them feel".

That is why, when the prophet came, his main goal was to right our manner, how we portray ourselves in front of everyone.

For My Parents, Happy Aniversary!

Coming this 21st July is my parents anniversary.

there was so much I could give them, yet time doesn't allow me the luxury of that.

so instead I made this article, in the hope we may remind ourselves how much our parents has raised us and made us a better person.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Exam Orientated

If you've been staying in Malaysia for your whole life, never entered a debate or some other activity that enhances your critical thinking then you need to read this.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Hardcore Training

Training another person without going through your own lane of brutal experience training is hard.

Not that I mean hard, as in hard to do, but hard to teach, hard to make sure they understand you.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Insyaallah =)


some of you might notice the new layout of this blog, no worries, I'm trying to update it as efficient as possible so to make sure this blog can take it's new task, which are:
  1. A blog for my juniors and students to refer for debate ( especially MAHDI)
  2. A blog I could use for dakwah
  3. a blog I could use to reflect myself, making myself a better person
To collaborate with these 3 objectives, there are 3 important links:
  1. Are U Alim - as a reflector for myself and those reading, mainly talking about my life here in CFS IIU and it's challenges
  2. Islamic Conscience - talking about Islamic world issues and the important things to learn from it
  3. Eyes of a Debate Trainer - my life in debate (for debaters) and some tips for debating
so hope these rearrangements help everyone, there are independent post which are not link to anyone of these, feel free to read them,

Salam Alaik, thanks for reading

Monday, July 19, 2010

When God is Angry

During the weekends, I had a debate competition in Taylor's University, although I wasn't actually able to break for top 8 teams, going into the final. my team was reshuffled from last times ICRC debate, so it was totally new for us, and we had to get to know each other more.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Training trainers

13 May 2010, 3.30pm

I was running in the hall way, heading to the parking lot of CFS (it's at the end of the other side of our football field, so it was like very far). I had a debate practice at Nilai campus against my seniors from Gombak.

Kamal, my senior debater, had "kindly asked" for me to follow, looking at the situation that I have debate competitions ahead, this might be a good training.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

In the Eyes of a Debate Trainer: Faithful (Part 1)

this is there story from the trainers point of view, Fattah, Fareeha, Iman, Kamalia, Syed, Kamil and all the other debaters, I wish you could read this.

Ustaz Ibrahim: the teacher who wouldn't stop smiling

When I was in Maahad Hamidiah, a sudden news came into the classroom. Our headmaster, Ustaz Ibrahim has died.....

He's gone..........

I remembered talking to him like a week ago. I wanted to ask him whether Maahad would be able to go for the Musleh debate held in Titiwangsa. of course anyone would say no, and yet his response was a nice "he would see what he could do". That was the man that I knew during my form 5 years, somebody whom would NEVER make other people unhappy.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Book by it's cover

This is a cache phrase I saw one of my friends had on his t-shirt while going into class. It was totally cool (although i wasn't ab;e to get a picture of it).

I'm now having night class, starting with mathematics and after that Wallahu a'lam what kind of classes I'll be having. My schedule is as packed as any other student taking a 1 year course is.

Class from 8am to 6pm, non stop, breaks only during Zuhr. And I thought school was more horrifying than this. NOT

Back to the FIFA thing and the night class; well see this that there aren't any restrictions of dress code during night classes, so I choose to wear my favourite Blue-black jubah.

My lecturer didn't comment on anything when i went into class, just stared at my serban and my eyes which I wore celak. No problem with that.

I was amazed how simple rules and regulations, when not imposed could make people so.................. different.

I notice some girls wearing tight outfits with jeans and a plain tudung that is just not that opaque, you could see her hair inside, or boys wearing simple plain t-shirts with a three quarter trouser, like puh-lease, don't they know how cold it is in the lecture room.

Some people even came and asked why in the world am I not wearing something casual or "normal".

LOL, isn't this normal enough. and I thought only during the prehistoric ages were we only wore a plain cloth would think like that. Guess not.

So that's were I would start my 5 minutes lecture on "reasons why I wore a Jubah".
  1. It's awesomely comfortable:if you wore it, your feet won't be that cold or that hot because there is good air circulation rather than wearing jeans. during class, I notice how shaking some of the boys whom wore the three quarters pants, and to say my body mass is low that I would shiver; ridiculous.
  2. well it's the best attire to wear, especially when there are no laws enforcing you to wear a plain shirt, like it's the Sunnah, and this IS after prayers
  3. well, one good thing when you were something that makes you look alim, you have this burden of pertaining that look, so if people notice like your doing something bad you wouldn't do do, because you have a reputation in stake, it's like a deterrence (this is for me personally).
So maybe the term "don't judge a book by it's cover" doesn't applied in my situation here, it's too obvious. the important thing is to make sure you become a better person than before

Friday, June 18, 2010

Worth a mosque

One of my favorite subjects is Arabic.

Not "mainly" because of the Subject itself but because of the lecturer teaching it. His name is Ustaz Wan Shohor bin Leman.

Very friendly, always singing and being humorous in class, studying arabic with him was the best thing. half of the time you don't even study arabic at all, he'll keep on talking about his life, his wife whom is from Bosnia, how to raise a family and such. Also having the "terrorist" attitude.

Here I want to thank him for teaching me Arabic by posting a special fund raising post.

You see, Ustaz Wan Shohor is building a mosque and an Islamic Centre in Bosnia, Insyaallah if he has the time and money (which he would ask us to pay of course) he will bring us there.

This mosque is used to help propagate the teachings of Islam and help elevate the people there.

If you want to help, even if it is only a dollar then please do not hesitate you could send your money to his account

MAYBANK 5140 6605 4194


He needs another RM50,000.00 to finish the mosque and get the human power needed to run it. I'm sure that if we all help, this mosque in Bosnia will be finished and Allah knows how many He will reward us in the hereafter.

In building the Ummah, you require not the biggest things to do, even helping donating a dollar will help a lot. As Sherlock Holmes once said:
It's in the smallest details that gives the biggest change

As long as we have the right Nawaitu, and the money in hand, then nothing is impossible.
Hope you make it Ustaz Wan Shuhor!!!

Alternative Facebook

The recent harms done by facebook (FB) has caused a major disturbance among the muslim community especiall those whom have a FB account.

FYI FB has been an Israeli product

and now recently they have gone a step forward with posting cartoons of the prophet, don't know whether they have deleted it or not.

So what I have been trying is to find an alternative to FB.

For starters you could reactivate your friendster or myspace account but, it seems dull and ancient if you do that.

Other things is just you stick to Blogger, however blogger is more of a web log than a social network.

So I came upon 2 new websites after the recent accession.
  1. Millat facebook. Don't know wheter you have heard of it, it's a counter towards FB and it's growing fast. in just a week 330000 members have registered compared to a week of facebook. it's in way after there was a post at FB of the prophet. http://millatfacebook.com
  2. Ummah book, those whom are more to writing and socializing at the same time, then this is your alternative. it's islamic, you could make a blog in there and it's a social network. Myspace, Facebook and blogger all combined. how cool is that. And you could also upload photos and videos like photobucket. now thats a starter. http://www.ummahbook.com
These type of alternatives are really cool when compared to FB, however the only problem is lack of members and activities, because you see, there aren't many members so it's our job to fill them in. as my Ustaz said
If there is an empty space, then plenty it
I feel there is a need to make these types of Islamic social networks more enhance and used by the islamic community. What better way is unifying the ummah than if all of us use the same social network.

so deactivate your FB account and come to Ummah book. LOL


PS: if you wanna find me in Ummahbook, which I've already became a member like a month ago but wasn't that active (no friends), then search for Khaleed Fakhry. Hope to be friends

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Image

If you could do something like this....
even without a text, then you are amazing.

the very idea that, somebody from a religious school, could possibly think critically and yet still be able to retain there Islamic Image is incredible.

Hopefully we would have more people like this

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dare you to wear a jubah

(And so a continue on "Are you Alim")

I'm not going to talk about human rights or freedom of humanity or such (lame).

This weekend, 11th to 13th June, I went to the International Humanitarian Law Debate.
what we were debating was whether some acts should be done and whether it was humane enough to do it.

Things like the Flotilla, Myanmar, Eu and other stuff.

One of the things that I most fell grateful was debate, yet one of the things I regret most was my inability to be in control during the debate, because hey, FYI, debate is about in control of yourself.

Your emotions, how you think and how you create a strategy is all in debate.

When I was in Uitm Shah Alam, there were some bits of moments where I feel responsible as someone whom knew Islamic knowledge and philosophy, to tell my friends and teammates, what is the do's and don'ts. However it seemed like by the end of the day, I was not in control of the situation myself.

Sometimes (maybe all the time, especially in university) you forgot things. things that are suppose to be the principles and beliefs of your life. To me it happened during this debate. I was so into debate, so into winning and fighting for a place that I forgotten the real objective I went in there the first time. It's like you weren't actually doing anything much to change the people you intended to change.

I remember Fattah, how he "mingled" with these type of people, they didn't actually understood Islam as we did, so he tried to help them, but rather than helping them, he went with them. Diverting from his purpose, from his objective.

I remember the time when I went to my first ever training at CFS. I was wearing a jubah with a serban, and I actually got rank first in the audition.

Brother Irzal was surprised that it was me whom got first, and gave a slight comment

"by the end of this year, you might not be wearing this anymore"

I took that as a challenge, and as a dare to myself, that even within debate, i will still be able to be the Fakhry I am before this. I don't want to be like my seniors whom got lost nor like my friends who went through the trend of modernization and got lost.

Saddiq's influence over me it seemed was too great, and I didn't notice that there were some values I've forgotten, some things I missed. Further more was the influence the surroundings I was in. It wasn't like you were back in IIU interschool, you were debating with people whom has been brainwashed with secularism and liberalism.

But the truest victory wasn't actually whether I was able to make Saddiq, Kamal, Harris, Aidil or ASyraf a better person. It was actually making myself a better person, because I realize that to make others good, you don't need to watch them 24/7 like a mom does and make sure they do things, it's actually making yourself better, still holding on the principles you acknowledged and the beliefs you had. and in the process, these people, your friends will follow, not because of what you did, but what you believe in that showed what you believed in.

You bring them, show them the right way not because you are somebody Alim, but because you wanted to be somebody Alim, it was all about you.

Amnah dared me to help Saddiq with all I can, and I'll uphold that promise I made. I'm sorry Saddiq, sorry Wani, Sorry to Amnah for being lost.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Israel.....And Flotilla?

Now let's mesh everything what we've seen in then past few days:

  1. Under the “Freedom Flotilla”, a ship, Mavi Marmara, containing humanitarian aid and lifeline supplies was attacked by a commando organized the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) at around 7 in the morning, Mecca time on the 31st of May 2010. Among the 19 killed 9 of them was from Turkey. The rest were injured. (Why do I sound like a broadcaster. LOL)

  2. A second ship a.k.a Rachel Corrie, although not so bloody as it's later sister was ordered to re-route to a port in Israel after Israel Forces came storming at the ship. Alhamdullillah, there weren't any causalities, just some panic I guess. The Malaysians on board was sent to Jordan to be brought back to their country.

Now from my point of view, the story is all so interesting, because there are many questions to be raised from both sides.

Lets see firstly on our side, the so called “good side”, “Islamic side” or “Defender of Humanitarian side”. Call it what you like, the things I want to talk about here might be a little uncomfortable if you've been the person who shed tears and sweat trying to fight for this thing, or you've to the demonstrations held here in Kuala Lumpur. (I went one myself, at the Wilayah Perseketuan Mosque)

Ok, so maybe you have to give some credit to the political guys (especially our prime minister) whom went to the demonstrations. They were all shouting God knows what things making us more feeble and anxious to get our swords and guns out and run to the nearest war. But, this is were things doesn't make up much. Like, ok, the PM is supporting us, finally he has some senses to the Islamic World (Hope he asks his wife to wear a Hijab “properly” if they ever wanted to visit the holy lands) but where is all the talk taking them? Like Puh-lease, I've seen them even more exited when it comes to elections.

Some of us expected more action from the government, considering the fact that they are the ones who are governing this country, the power is in there finger tips (they just sign papers and stuff) for example send military escorts. What is the use of us actually buying a submarine or an aircraft carrier if we don't want to use it? It's like all talk and no work.

Right now, it's not just about the Malaysia, whole other countries have gone mute about such decisions.

I don't know where Pakistan and Iran went with there so- called “Nuclear Power” or Turkey's trying to find Justice or even Egypt which just merely “Opens a border”.

Looking at things at the silver lining, maybe we should give them some time to adjust at this point, re-thinking there views, maybe putting on a kopiah next time you go into Parliament, they are just people.

On the other hand, you might be able to see things a lot more brighter than before. There is this so called rumor that Turkey is re-grouping the old Empire. There is a meeting of 8 Presidents from Eurasian and Middle East States last Monday, Iran, Russia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey, Palestine are among the board that will be discussing on this issue of Israel invading International waters. Syria although not a member is invited as a guest.

One good news is to the fact that Turkey, under the leadership of Erdogan, is leaning more into an Islamist state. War between Turkey and Israel might be unavoidable. Let's just hope this time, Turkey won't be alone. The Islamic World is behind you..........

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Mingling Part

It feels weird to be mingling with people whom are another world than yours. Not that I'm saying they are from another world, it's just the way they think that is different.

Ok maybe saying some not so good words are a little uncomfortable when they say it in front of me. Or the fact that their knowledge of religion is way down than any Muslim I ever meet (Saddeq doesn't even understand the concept of “you can't get close to adultery”).

Maybe it was my fault for not teaching them or at least guiding them. Consider the fact that Saddeq (RMC), Harris (SDAR), Aidil (SAS) and Kamal (SASER) are all from conventional schools and lacks basic religious teachings.

Getting along with them isn't that tough. The fact that my religious knowledge is way higher than all of there's combined, they respect my views and my opinions, like why I don't eat McD, or why don't have a facebook account, or even why sometimes during their normal conversations I don't talk a lot (I like listening, letting them do all the talking).

By the end of the day, they are just a bunch of people whom are left unchecked and untold about the truth that there IS an Al-Mighty God and that there IS a Hell and Heaven.

It's a challenge for me to actually be able to bring them back to the right path (especially Saddeq) not because it's what Allah or the prophet's orders but because deep inside we all know we have a responsibility to our friends and family members.

It doesn't matter whether we are Alim or we are somebody whom is from a religious school, guess what the prophet is NOT from a religious school nor was Abu Bakr, he just thought people what he knew, and I guess that's what makes us one big family correlated with each other, not by blood but by bonding of minds and ideas.

I remembered what my debate trainer said, brother Irzal when he wanted people to understand that debate IS an important thing when it comes to religion:

“ We want to create the Intellectual Muslim, the Creative Muslim, the Great Muslim”

Guess we were never born great nor we were given great abilities, it's just that by the end of the day we need to do great things, and things like telling your friend whom has no idea what is the phylosophy of Islam is something GREAT.

May Allah bless you with Hidayah and Taufiq: Saddeq, Harris, Kamal and Aidil, my debating friends in CFS IIUM.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Are you Alim?

Even if I'm 17 that doesn't mean I'm young

Alhamdullillah, I'm learning in IIU Petaling Jaya Campus, taking Engineering.
Going into university, as I saw it, wasn't that much shocking than what I've heard of.
(Well, it was just.... the ta'aruf week)

And Insyaallah after a few years in IIU, I'll be flying to Saudi Arabia to continue my studying in Noetics and Nanotechnology (look up in a dictionary)

Life in university, does have it's ups and downs. There were pressures, even during the first days at IIU, some split decision moments, some bad days and sometimes great ones.

What I was most intrigued most in IIU wasn't the name of the university or it's system of conduct, it is it's society and environment.

Ok, you could say thath there is a mosque and mussolla very close by, everything is in walking distance. everyone smiles to each other and there is a huge line between the relationships of boys and girls. No comments there.

And yet, looking back, this time behind the scenes, we see that such things are actually a veil, or a hiding place for occult things.

I'm not trying to give a bad image to IIU, I live there right now, but I feel the need to watch over things so that they wouldn't go astray, especially when it's my home.

Back in Maahad Hamidiah, we had this idea, that everyone is a hypocrite one way or the other, no matter how good that person is or how bad, there is always something we would over saw. that means, we don't trust looks. That's why one of BADAR's main job is to make sure that everyone has a good being in them.

I've seen people following Usrah and Muzzakarah Iman yet go out for smoking, and people whom are wise and intelligent yet not so active in such things. It's a dual world in Maahad.

So my adventure in IIU started when as usual, going to the mosque wearing a jubah and a serban as i did in Maahad. It was a habit of mine to do such things.

However, when I was in the mosque, there wasn't any other single being (except 2 others) whom was wearing an attire like mine. ok don't mind about that.

I did my prayers, then the surprising happened. Someone came to me and asked whether I was fro Darul Qur'an. Like Puh-lease

He said that I "looked" like someone "alim" wearing a serban and jubah. I replied to him that, no, I wasn't exactly from DQ, not a graduate there, once learned but didn't stayed. Only memorize quite a few verses of the Qur'an, and God knows how many I scored in my Arabics and Islamic Studies (not to mention I got a C+ in Shariah, and I was hoping to take a double degree in that). I'm not that "alim" compared to some of my friends, especially the KISASians in Islamic knowledge.

I explained to them that our outer looks doesn't signify anything to others. It is just a proclamation of what we believe in. like if somebody really loves the prophet then he would wear a jubah and a serban, but not vice verse.

I've been telling people, don't judge a book by it's cover (although I could get a lot of things about people by there body language).

To come to someone and ask them "Are you somebody Alim?" I feel that isn't that much of a significance in these times. It's base on the heart of a person, then showing it through his-self and his surroundings.

What is Alim these days? somebody with a high knowledge in Islam, yet still doesn't practice it?
Somebody who looks nice but in his heart (which we wouldn't know) is filled with emptiness and ignorance in religion? or is it just somebody whom as all people would see it, once learned at a religious institute i.e. KISAS, Maahad Hamidiah or Darul Qur'an?

Last question to be thought of: Are you somebody who is Alim?

Muslim = Following Muhammad

For the love of the prophet, how many of us are willing to sacrifice ourselves for the prophet and hos teachings?

I've watched this movie so often that every time I watch it new energy seeps into me. I've even uploaded it into my hand phone so I could watch it often.

This one minute show could give so much meaning.
And surprisingly, this advertisement was made by Hollywood.

Don't believe me? well that's up to you.

The story was like this if I'm not mistaken, the Saudi government wanted to propagate the love for the prophet, so they seek Hollywood to produce such an advertisement. (well you know how close Saudi is to the West, and please tell me if I was wrong)

* * *

There is a problem in our society right now, in which many Muslims aren't that much Muslims.
we proclaim that "Muhammad is the messenger of Allah" every day, yet how many of us actually do his teachings. Like wearing a jubah and kopiah when going to pray and regular attire, looking down and being modest when walking, wearing "celak" (the black powder we put on our eyes) or even smiling always.

Egoistically these humans, especially Muslims nowadays needed scientific proof that such Sunnah are good. Well personally, I think these people are hypocrites, needing to asking questions and proofs, when the real big proof: if you do the Sunnah then you'll go to heaven, they didn't look upon. That's the problem with Muslims nowadays, they are too "Earthly bound".

Those who perform my practices love me, and those who love me shall be with me in heaven

Well, by the law of Mathematical reasoning, then if A=B=C, then A=C

thus whoever does the Sunnah goes to heaven. it's as simple as that.

When we talk about the"Sunnah" it doesn't mean that when you do it you get good deeds, and if you don't it's ok.

The prophet's Sunnah is actually a line for Muslims to see whether they have succeed or failed doing something. If you do something following the prophet, you succeed, if you don't, you fail, it's that simple.

Note to everyone: Do you love the prophet? Prove it, I dare you.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

E=mc2, Relativity theory

Now in my mind right many of you whom have seen this equation,


thought that it has something to do with emotional intelligence etc (gibberish things)

well to tell you the truth, it's actually has NOTHING to do with emotions (well not yet of course, until I talk about Meta-physics)

E=mc2 is actually THE equation about Einstein's theory of relativity, in which well "physics is logic" i.e. it means that physics law applies everywhere.

In your head I'm sure you'll start thinking BORING!!!!
Well this is where the meta-physics side comes in.

And well, bad news is that we've gotta learn more about it to understand what in the next few sentences I'm going to say.

represents Energy

m represents mass/ matter

c is the speed of light, which FYI is approximately 186,282 miles per second. that is very, very fast.

now if you learn physics, you would learn things like directly proportional or indirectly proportional. The speed of light is always the same, it never changes, unless in changes mediums.

So the Energy is directly proportional to the mass. (like What??!!)

What I mean here is that if you have more mass (you weight more or you're bigger) then you would have more energy.

This fits nicely with the concept that Allah s.w.t is Almighty (Akbar), Allah has an infinite size that we could not imagine. Thus this means that Allah s.w.t has an infinite amount of energy, more than anything we could imagine.
Ok. that's in Religion.

Now into Emotions.

Emotional Intelligence uses brainpower, thus is represented by E, Energy.

m is represented by the soul, or how much the soul weight. If you give the soul food (Dzikr, Solat, Reading the Qur'an, doing good deeds) then you increases it's weight.

c is the human instincts (fitrah manusia), what are our intuitions as a norm, which is constant.

So from my theory of relativity, it comes to this:
The more soul you have (filled with spiritual things), the more better are you in controlling your Emotions.

Emotional Intelligence is the ability to control your emotions, and when you have done things like making yourself spiritually linked to the world and to the One true God, then you are able to control it better.

So for those of you whom usually have emotional problems (I'm focusing on to Fareeha here, LOL), try getting close to Allah for a while, i can confirm, it'll help a lot.

The Truth About Muslims in America

Barack Obama is a Christian, not a Muslim, but if he were of the latter faith, more than half of all Americans would have no idea what that affiliation meant beyond stereotypes, a new study finds.

Like nearly all social groups, Muslim Americans are a diverse group both politically and socially.

While some have tried to clarify Obama's religious affiliation, others have gone further and condemned the negative use of the label Muslim to elicit prejudice and fear.

Most recently, former Secretary of State Colin Powell rebuked the claims that Obama is a Muslim and said, "What if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer is 'No. That's not America.'"

The new results based partly on national surveys suggest Americans think the Islamic religion is associated with violence and religious extremism, and perhaps even terrorism. Along with these negative views, which have spurred a general fear of Muslims, seven in 10 Americans admit they know very little about the Islamic religion.

"Clearly, many Americans are convinced Muslim Americans pose some kind of threat to American society," Duke University sociologist Jen'nan Ghazal Read writes in the fall issue of Contexts magazine, published by the American Sociological Association. "Two widespread assumptions fuel these fears. First, that there's only one kind of Islam and one kind of Muslim, both characterized by violence and anti-democratic tendencies. Second, that being a Muslim is the most salient identity for Muslim Americans."

Overall, Muslim Americans are, well, American. They have similar levels of career and educational attainment as the general American public; their political beliefs are just as varied as the general public; and their typical level of religious devotion is on par with that of many other religious groups, the research shows.

Fear of the unknown

The results come from interviews with more than 3,600 Muslim Americans in 2001 and 2004 by the Georgetown University Muslims in the American Public Square (MAPS) project and with 1,050 Muslim Americans in 2007 by the Pew Research Center. Information was also harvested from the General Social Survey run by the University of Chicago. And Read has conducted research for the past 10 years on the economic, political and cultural integration of Muslim and Arab Americans.

Some of the findings include:

  • Four in 10 Americans have an unfavorable view of Islam.
  • Five in 10 believe Islam is more likely than other religions to encourage violence.
  • Six in 10 believe Islam is very different from their own religion.

These views stem from misperceptions and just not knowing the facts, said Read, who volunteered that she is not Muslim.

For instance, people often confuse Muslim, which means a person who practices the religion Islam, with an ethnic group such as Arabs, she said.

But that's like assuming all Christians are African American or Irish American. In the United States, Read said, about 25 percent of Muslims are African American, while one-third are Arab, one-third are South Asian and a small group are U.S.-born Anglos and Hispanics who have converted to the Islamic religion. An estimated 2 million to 8 million Muslims currently live in the United States.

People often think of Islam and say, "Oh, that's Osama bin Laden," Read said. "Osama bin Laden is a terrorist who was using Islam to try to recruit people into his terrorist organization but Islam has nothing to do with terrorism."

Who are Muslims?

Read's research has painted a picture of Muslims that resembles the picture most of us have of most Americans.

"Muslim Americans look a lot like other groups of Americans," Read said.

On average, Muslim Americans tend to be highly educated, politically conscious and fluent in English. As a group, they share similar socio-economic characteristics with the general U.S. population in terms of education, income and employment: one-fourth has a bachelor's degree or higher; one-fourth lives in households with incomes of $75,000 or more; the majority are employed.

The same match-up goes for political and religious views. "Being a Muslim isn't necessarily the most important factor when it comes to their political attitudes," Read said.

For instance, the majority of both Muslim Americans and the general public oppose gay marriage and favor increased federal funding for the needy. Muslim Americans are slightly more conservative than the American public with regard to abortion, with 56 percent of Muslim Americans opposing it compared with 46 percent of the general public.

Foreign policy is the one area where Muslim Americans aren't entirely in step with the general public, particularly with regard to the Middle East. In 2007, for example, Americans were overall nearly four times as likely as Muslim Americans to say the war in Iraq was the "right decision," and twice as likely to say the same about the war in Afghanistan.

Like Christians, Jews and members of other faiths, Muslim Americans vary widely on their levels of religious devotion, along with how often they attend a mosque and pray.

"The idea is if you just group everybody together that's a Muslim by affiliation and then pretend like one characteristic defines them, well that's as silly as saying that all blacks can run fast," Read told LiveScience. "Being a Muslim doesn't mean they all hold the same values, attitudes, but we haven't been very good about recognizing that."

Muslims in politics

Even with such similarities, Read said, political campaigns have used the "Obama is Muslim" tactic to steer voters away from the Democratic presidential candidate.

"I think they're definitely trying to play it up a little bit more because it's socially acceptable to say [Obama is] Muslim and let that be used to scare people," Read said, adding that the tactic is meant to paint Obama as a non-mainstream American.

Educating the public about the diversity of Muslims and the Islamic faith could not only stem fears but also help to unite the nation.

"If we're going to face our nation's challenges in a truly democratic way, we need to move past the fear that Muslim Americans are un-American so we can bring them into the national dialogue," Read said.