Friday, October 28, 2011

Faith Fridays - Your 10 Days of Dhul-Hijjah by Imam Khalid Latif [VIDEO]

Every Friday we hope to bring you a khutbah or short lecture in English that we feel may be of benefit to you. Think of it as a weekly khutbah from a different perspective. All you need to do is spend 30 minutes (or less) a week to learn something new.

If you have any suggestions on a video that we should share please send us an email via "Write for Us".

Remember that Ramadhan feeling? That feeling you got everyday knowing that you were striving for Allah's sake and nothing else? And then remember when Ramadhan ended and you felt sad and you wondered if you could keep up all the things you were doing?

And of course it's hard. But Allah knows the human heart better than we do and then He gives us the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

"The days are better than anything else for us," Imam Khalid Latif explains. He explains how we should make a commitment to strive to go for Hajj but also that for those of us who remain behind the only thing stopping us from reaching a higher state of God consciousness (taqwa) is ourselves.

These days are better than all other days in the year, including the days in Ramadhan. There are even opinions that they are better than the last ten nights of Ramadhan (you know, the ones where you make sure you go to the mosque and try to get up early for Qiyam?) and yet in most years they just pass us by.

So spend some time to listen to Imam Khalid and let him motivate you from your core to reap the benefits of this short period that has come before us.

Imam Khalid Latif is the Imam of the New York University Islamic Centre and the New York Police Department (!). He is the first imam (Muslim chaplain) at New York University and was also the first imam at Princeton University. He can be found on twitter @KLatif

Monday, October 10, 2011

Lounging With Peter Gould - Friday 14th October 2011- 8pm @ Annexe Gallery, Central Market, Jalan Hang Kasturi, Kuala Lumpur

Ladies and Gentlemen,

YMP Presents:

WoW!!!  This is too cool to be missed. Seriously. 

Do You Have ADD - by Vivy Yusof

Salam all,

Were you there at KGPA earlier last week for the ADD (Akhirah Deficit Disorder) talk by Imam Suhaib Webb? We hope you were there because Masha Allah, it was awesome as usual.

One of our committees stumbled upon this post that was written about the talk. Alhamdulillah, the author has allowed us to re-post her thoughts here. Hope you enjoy it.

[P/S: her website is]

Do you have ADD?

I just cannot sleep before I blog about tonight. I’m so excited, I feel bad if I don’t share this with you guys. It’s a pretty lengthy post, so just take whatever you guys can la k.
I just came home from a talk by Imam Suhaib Webb.
He is like THE BEST speaker ever and whenever there’s a talk by him, the hall is always full. True enough, I had to sit on the floor tonight.
And some of the guys actually had to sit on stage because even the floor space was full! But it was cool, cos I had such a good view of him and I listened better.
So the topic tonight was DO YOU HAVE A.D.D.?
ADD would normally mean Attention Deficit Disorder, but tonight it was “Do you have Akhirat Deficit Disorder?”
And for most of us who went tonight, the answer is a big fat yes. Everything that matters now is usually the worldly stuff and the hereafter is like “we’ll cross the bridge when we get there” kind of thing. Everyone’s chasing for the ease in the world, but what about the ease in the hereafter? We hear these things all the time and it’s not like we don’t know, but it’s important to be reminded a lot.
Imam Suhaib starts off by saying that when he was in KL, he saw a lot of Sweet Charity posters and advertisements everywhere. Almost everywhere he went he was reminded of Sweet Charity and how they have a concert coming up here. So he acknowledges the point of advertisement and how it’s just the nature of human beings to forget. Then he related that to akhirat and life hereafter. How we always forget about the akhirat because we don’t see advertisements of it everywhere. If there was a “Hell is Hot” sign on every streetlight on the street, we’d all be amazing Muslims.
But actually, there IS advertisement of akhirat! He says that on every page of the Quran, the word hereafter is mentioned. Every single page of the Quran will remind us of the hereafter, so if only we read it, we’d remember akhirat all the time and not have “ADD”.
He reminded us the this world we live in, this dunia, is all a means, but should not be an objective. Our objective in life as a Muslim is to go to heaven, that is the only pure objective. And this worldly things surrounding us is a means to achieve our objective. Someone who has a lot of means, like money or fame, but doesn’t use it to achieve the objective is not a successful person.
I whispered to Asma’ who was beside me and pointed to her gorgeoussss Loubotin shoes. (We took off our shoes while sitting on the floor cos it got uncomfortable)
“Dude, remember, those are just means, not objective”
“Shut up and listen to the talk.”
So to be successful in life and not have ADD, one needs to know their direction in life. For one to have that, one needs NIAT. Niat is your direction, niat will let you focus on what you want to do. So have a good niat in everything you do, and everything will make sense and your life will be more meaningful.
He added that as Muslims, we should be inspirations to others. We should be creative and be proactive. Even our Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. had non-Muslim “fans” and one wrote poems about him during his time. He inspired even his enemies and we should be inspired by this. As Muslims, we should not breed insecurity or fear to live or be so restrictive. He gave the example of a dog. Yes, Muslims can’t touch wet dogs etc, but in Egypt he said, they build water troughs for dogs! They used charity money to care for these dogs by giving them a place to drink water, because dogs are Allah’s creations too and they would feel responsible and answerable to God if these dogs died of thirst! See how creative they were??
Then he said something that really made me want to cry.
He said this.
In the Quran, there’s a lot of “We” in God’s words. We will protect you, We will comfort you. And that just goes to show how strong this intimacy between Muslims and God is. It’s like saying “We got your back, dude.” Like if we struggle in life, trying to uphold what’s right, trying our best to stay away from gossip, trying our best to cover ourselves, trying hard to pray 5 times a day, trying hard to memorise the Quran, trying hard to balance work and family, trying hard to stay away from the destructive pleasures in life. If we struggle in the dunia for Allah, Allah’s got our backs in the hereafter. He, of all things, knows what we go through in order to become better humans and He acknowledges all we do, even if no one else cares. If there are ever times we find it hard to do what’s right, don’t worry, Allah’s got our backs. If not now, He’ll reward us in the hereafter.
I was holding back tears, I don’t know why! And Ice Queen Asma’ also looked down. Ajjie was whatever la. She was nodding the whole time concentrating like mad.
It’s just so beautiful; Islam. It only asks you to do good things, but sometimes it’s hard. When no one else knows how we feel, we just have to know Allah’s there every step of our way. Allah cares. He’s got our backs. So all He asks in return is for us to care for Him too and live in the way of Islam. Why do we expect Allah to be there for us if we’re not there for Him?
It’s simple and it’s only humans who make it hard. I have to constantly remind myself everyday and really try to overcome my struggle, especially in the case of covering my aurat. Insyaallah, I won’t take that long.
So to summarise, he says the best thing to overcome ADD is the Quran and sunnah.
Where to start?
1) Baby steps – never stop learning everyday. Read the Quran’s meaning, learn the sunnah. Don’t read the Quran just as how it is revealed to you. Be proactive, he said. Actually find out the meaning and read it as if you’re walking along with the ayat.
2) Surround yourself with good friends - seriously, once your niat is right, suddenly good friends will just surround you! Suddenly you’ll find good people around you who come out of nowhere. My mom was right all along. CHOOSE YOUR FRIENDS. Don’t waste your time with friends who take you further away from good deeds.
3) Attend educational talks and discussions – feed that brain, don’t be arrogant thinking we know it all. To keep myself updated, I “liked” theYMP Facebook fanpage or go to website.
4) Be good to your parents – Imam Suhaib said that he had so much trouble memorising the Quran. When he went to his teacher, the teacher asked “How do you treat your mother?” Imam Suhaib’s mom is a non-Muslim and so Imam Suhaib wasn’t that close to her. So the teacher called him a fool. And Imam Suhaib started being nice to his mother, treated her nicely, helped her with housework. His mother was pleased with him and slowly, he started seeing that he could memorise the Quran, page by page. So never underestimate the power of mommy and daddy.
5) Be good to people in general. Respect people, be helpful, be kind, be beneficial to others.
Whatever we do, always have the hereafter in mind. Chase all the goodness we can find in this world, make something out of ourselves right now, have a career, get rich, be ambitious! But never neglect that book in the corner and the meaning it carries. Don’t be deceived by the ease and pleasure of this world, because they’re all temporary.
We all want a good ending in the end, so whenever it gets hard, just keep our eyes on the prize; Jannah.
Ok, baby steps now. Bismillah.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Faith Fridays - Danger by Amir Sulaiman [VIDEO]

Every Friday we hope to bring you a khutbah or short lecture in English that we feel may be of benefit to you. Think of it as a weekly khutbah from a different perspective. All you need to do is spend 30 minutes (or less) a week to learn something new.

If you have any suggestions on a video that we should share please send us an email via "Write for Us".

In anticipation of next week's event, Lounging with Peter Gould, that's going to be about artistic expression and Islam we're doing something unorthodox today.

Meet Amir Sulaiman, a Def Jam poet and a servant of Allah. Amir began writing poetry at the age of 12 and his poems always exude raw emotion. In "Danger" he talks about some of the injustices that the Muslim community faces and how we should respond.

You can find him at or his YouTube page.

I am not angry; I am anger.
I am not dangerous; I am danger.
I am abominable stress, eliotic, relentless.
I'm a breath of vengeance.
I'm a death sentence.
I'm forsaking repentance,
to the beast in his hench men.

Armed forces and policemen
that survived off of oils and prisons until there cup runneth over with lost souls.
That wear over-sized caps like blind-folds
Shiny necklaces like lassoes
Draggin’ them into black-holes
And I may have to holla out to Fidel Castro
To get my other brothers outta Guantanimo

And the innocence on death row?
It’s probably in the same proportion to criminals in black robes
That smack gavels
That crack domes
That smack gavels
That smash homes

Justice is somewhere between reading sad poems and 40 oz of gasoline crashing through windows
It is between plans and action
It is between writing letters to congressmen and clocking the captain
It is between raising legal defense funds and putting a gun to the bailiff and taking the judge captive
It is between prayer and fasting
Between burning and blasting
Freedom is between the mind and the soul
Between the lock and the load
Between the zeal of the young and the patience of the old
Freedom is between a finger and the trigger
It is between the page and the pen
It is between the grenade and the pin
Between righteous and keeping one in the chamber

So what can they do with a cat with a heart like Turner
A mind like Douglass
A mouth like Malcolm
And a voice like Chris?!

That is why I am not dangerous; I am danger
I am not angry, I am anger
I am abominable, stress, Eliotic relentless
I’m a death sentence
For the beast and his henchmen
Politicians and big businessmen
I’m a teenage Palestinian
Opening fire at an Israeli checkpoint, point blank, check-mate, now what?!
I’m a rape victim with a gun cocked to his cock, cock BANG! Bangkok! Now what?!
I am sitting Bull with Colonel Custard’s scalp in my hands
I am Sincay with a slave trader’s blood on my hands
I am Jonathan Jackson and a gun to my man
I am David with a slingshot and a rock
And if David lived today, he’d have a Molotov cocktail and a Glock
So down with Goliath, I say down with Goliath

But we must learn, know, write, read
We must kick, bite, yell, scream
We must pray, fast, live, dream, fight, kill and die free!

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