Islam students at LUC

Archive for October 2010

Starting this book, I sort of felt like it can’t possibly be related to what we learn in class. How can it discuss the importance of the Prophet or what Islam is about etc. where my first impression. But I like the poetry because it does in fact make you feel closer to God. The fact that God created the love in this world between men and women is explained beautifully through poetry verses. It also makes you look into your belief and your love for God. You feel a sense of belonging, knowing there is so much peace involved behind your faith in Him. Essentially, his words make you remember the love you have in God. I feel like a dork, but I do like all the poems in this book, for they aren’t just written for the sake of poetry, but they remind us of more than the basic things in life.

I read this book, Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan by Iraq Veterans Against the war. Basically, it is a testimonial by a few dozen soldiers who tell their stories about Iraq. One section is basically about dehumanization of the enemy. I was actually thinking about this after we watched the documentary in class last week pertaining to the Hajj. I was thinking about it because in the book the soldiers say that there is little to no respect by many soldiers and officers pertaining to the faith of the people. For example, all of the enemies are called “Hajji’s.” This term, a positive religious meaning within Islam, is taken by the American’s and other soldiers and used to declare them as enemies and terrorists. I think this has to do with the beginning of the rift in America and the anti-Islamic sentiment, and there needs to be a better understanding within the war itself to help create a better sentiment at home.

 

through the readings they discussed something about false gods and how ignorant people sometimes believe that Allah to be a false god. But in reality Allah is one and the same as the monotheistic God that wish Christians and Jews all believe in. “There is no god but God,” gets to me showing that if anyone deserves to worshiped as a god, it should be the one God that I have been worshipping and praising since I was taught to do so as a young lad. If I were to stray from the path and praise a false god (shirk) i would be committing a grave in in both Islam and Catholicism. I liked the similarities between the two religions and how we should be adore and respect the one God and give him the worship and credit where credit is due. He is a righteous God.

Class

Posted on: October 31, 2010

It was interesting to talk about whether or not the Qur’an is a piece that transcends time. I agree that the messages within the Qur’an, that is, the ideas that are presented, do transcend time. It is difficult to take a literal translation out of anything and have it transcend over time, which is where there are some ideological rifts within religions and anything similar. Part of religion is taking these sacred texts and applying them to your own life, without that I feel there can be know true religious belief since religions would have passed their “time” hundreds of years ago.

One of the pillars of Islam as many people know is to pray Salat. It is required five times a day and consists of many steps, all forming a routine to be repeated in different amounts of sets. But what’s important is that praying teaches Muslims many important traits. First, we learn to be responsible and make time to pray everyday. We leave our work to pray and learn the importance of prioritizing, putting religion and God before other tasks. It is said that even in battle during Prophet Muhammad’s life, soldiers would have to take turns to pray. How often do soldiers today leave to pray during a battle? The act of prayer brings one closer to God, because you are standing in front of him five times a day, praising him and his qualities. Many people feel incomplete if they do not do this, but that’s because it has become a good habit, something all Muslims should attain to have.

I’d like to discuss the Surah 90, which was a calling to people that reminded them of the need to ditch any luxurious lifestyle which makes people arrogant. It talks about the need for good intentions to approaching life. Don’t help the needy because that is the way to salvation, but do it out of human duty. It challenges us to be dutiful and share the hardship with those struggle more. In my opinion, this surah includes an amazing message that asks people to be helpful and genuine, but I can’t get the bad glimpse out of my mind, of this being so ignorant of those who don’t believe in the religion. According to this passage, riches who enjoy the fruits of their labor are considered lazy and inconsiderate of those who couldn’t work hard. At the end, it says that people who can share but won’t share shall be punished. It’s a healthy intended message, but at the same time, it’s not fair to those who earned more! Also, what still bothers me is that the promise of good after-life in heaven will never ever be proven to be true! It’s hard enough to be good at school knowing  that if I work hard, I’ll get a good grade. If there was no guarantee to the good grade, then I wouldn’t know how hard I should try… you get the point…

I thought that the beginning of chapter three in “The Vision of Islam” was very interesting.  It began with the Shahadah.  The Shahadah consists of two statements: “There is no god but God” and “Muhammad is the messenger of God.”  We have heard this statement many times before in class, but we have not really discussed the meaning.  The first statement is very general and would be accepted by many other religions in the world.  It essentially is just declaring Monotheism.  The second statement is unique to Islam.  Murata and Chittick talk about how it is hard for non-Muslims to understand the university of the first statement.