Blog

The Orlando Statement

A JOINT MUSLIM STATEMENTON THE CARNAGE IN ORLANDO June 13, 2016On behalf of the American Muslim community, we, the undersigned, want to extend our deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims of the barbaric assault that occurred early yesterday morning at Pulse, an LGBTQ nightclub in Orlando, Florida. We unequivocally say tha...

A Good Father

My father, David Hanson, passed away at 8:00 p.m. on the 16th of April, 2016 at the age of 89. He left the world in a good state. He was born into great wealth and advantage, and was afforded an excellent education. At the age of 17, he volunteered to join the Air Force at the height of World War II and served for four years.He was a good father...

Response to Wheaton’s Decision to Fire Dr. Larycia Hawkins for Saying Muslims and Christians Worship the Same God.

January 10, 2016 I want to thank Dr. Larycia Hawkins for her courageous stance in solidarity with those she described as her “Muslims sisters.” It is sad that Wheaton College took the actions that it did against her beautiful act of support and solace. But, it is not burning her at the stake as a witch. So we are making progress. I do feel, how...

The Purpose of Life in an Hour and a Half

 Given the choice, I would rather read a book than listen to a lecture. Books are wonderful companions: they offer their opinions, and if you disagree, they don’t seem to mind. I can reread when I find difficulty with what is written, and the book doesn’t think I’m stupid or get annoyed that I’m asking it to repeat itself, sometimes again and ag...

The Lunacy of Lunar Sightings

The following piece is an important article written by Dr. Youssef Ismail, who is one of the few people I really trust on the issue of determining lunar dates in order to know when the Hajj and Ramadan have begun, when it’s Eid, etc. I trust him for two reasons: firstly, he has been traditionally trained in Maliki fiqh and granted an ijazah to t...

War is Not the Way: Peace is the Path

The pursuit of peace is a most noble human endeavor. The Qur’an states, “Now if they incline towards peace, then incline to it, and place your trust in God, for God is the all-hearing, the all-knowing. And if they mean to deceive you, surely you can count on God” (8:61-62). This verse indicates that one should not avoid reconciliation out of fea...

Striking Necks: It Must Be the Kharijites!

To paraphrase an aphorism coined by a 20th century philosopher, those who fail to learn the lessons of history are condemned to repeat them until they learn them.The earliest strain of extremism in Islamic history emerged in the late 7th century with the Kharijites, a sect that scholars have said will continue until the end of the Ummah’s time. ...

Falling Down - and Taking Innocents with You

How do we make sense of the murder of three American Muslims?Sudden and brutal murders are always troubling but never so much as when they seem inherently mad and senseless. When a young man strides into a school and annihilates little children without even wild and cruel vengeance as a motive, we are all the more confounded by the meaninglessne...

On the Passing of the Young Abdullah Abdullatif Alkadi* and a Postscript on Charlie Hebdo

*Abdullah Abdullatif Alkadi was the cousin of the noble scholar, Shaykh Abdullah Alkadi.For several years, I was fortunate to spend Ramadan in Mecca and Medina and to celebrate Eid in Dammam and Al-Ahsa in eastern Saudia Arabia. I came to know that latter city and its notable families well, and they had grown so accustomed to my celebrating Eid ...

Tempest in a Teapot: Islamophobia Meets Homophobia

The English love their tea, and some also seem to relish tempests in their teapots. In America, we love our mountains, and we tend to make them out of molehills. Making a big hullabaloo over small matters is a common human affliction.Recently, a storm has been brewing in one of the tearooms of Cambridge, and it involves someone I have known and ...

Sticks and Drones May Break Our Bones, but Fitna Really Hurts Us

What is apostasy, and how does it differ from simple error? When a Muslim suspects a fellow Muslim of apostasy, how should he or she act? Recently, certain Muslims have been attempting to “expose” me as a deviant Muslim by highlighting mistakes I have made in my talks that are on the Internet. Some of these attempts have been so ridiculous that ...

Guarding the Tongue (Lecture Notes)

On Friday, August 3rd, Hamza Yusuf gave khutbah at a masjid in Abu Dhabi in which he spoke on the subject of just rulers.Just rulers are the first of the seven groups mentioned in the Qur’an who are in the shade of God on the Day of Judgment. Hamza Yusuf explained why: They are a great blessing to all of humanity. Furthermore, the sultan represe...