The Autumn Leaves Still Fall

It’s early morning in Srinagar. The chinar leaves are fluttering in Lal Bazar. The sweepers are busy clearing the leaves from the roads. While walking through the tiny lanes that lead to ‘Rasool Kandur’ (Rasool the Baker), Charagh Baigh a 14 year old boy, hears a woman cursing the Autumn season, “Yem harud’an tul toas mya, dohayi tchum sadakh pyavan saaf karin, yim kul gasan tchatith thavin” (This Autumn has annoyed me, everyday I have to clean this street, these trees should be felled down).

Charagh Baigh, enters the Kandar’waan (the baker’s shop). There are too many people inside the shop, he is furious. “Bael aas bi, osus bi shangith. Yim pophi yin gow bael izza’h” (Why did I come? I was sleeping. The coming of aunts is such a pain) He put his one feet inside the shop, and other outside. Sitting on the edge, he hears Afzal Gani the former guerilla having an animated conversation with Gul Wasta who is a dedicated follower of National Conference.

Afzal: Gul wasta, talsa jaayi traav. (Gul wasta, can I take the bread before you?)

Gul: Kyazi traava’i jaayi, yi tcha myan wya’r (Why should I? It’s my turn)

Afzal: Asi ha tchi, ghari sirf trya be’atch, tuih tchiv khudayas sawaal dyon gharan 10 be’atch (We are only three in the family, by the grace of Allah you are 10 in two families)

Gul: Bi kyah karayi tath? (What shall I do?)

Rasool Kandur smiles, he knows the entertainment has started. His wife giggles while as the rest of the people inside the shop have all their ears towards the conversation. Charagh Baigh has put his head inside the Pheran (a long traditional Kashmiri cloak) to avoid the smoke.

Afzal: Tche kos wya’r gasi. Tche kar MLA’s phone, su ani gyavdaar tchot. Tche hayi, NC’as panun nafar tchuk. (What turn you want? You call the MLA, he will give you bread with Ghee. You are NC’s own man)

Gul: Tala kar tchopi, tche hayi Dakistan gayokh. Waapas kyazi aakh. (Shut up, you went to Dakistan (abusive form of name for Pakistan) Why did you come back?

Afzal (seethes with anger) Koal’i gadaarov, jahnam taan tchuv tohi haraam. Koali Abul Sheikh’as tchuv winti Security. (You traitors, even the fire of hell is forbidden for you. Sheikh Abdullah still has security over his grave)

Gul (gets red in the face): Tameez saan kar kath. (Talk with manners)

Afzal: Dopmay’na Di mya wear ( I did tell you to give me your turn)

Gul: Ma khaal mya tempar (Don’t raise my temper)

Afzal (grins): Adi tchi kyah karakh? (Oh, what wil you do?)

Gul: Be barath jail’as bayi, pati nimath begaari. (I will send you to prison again, and I will make you a Begaar)

Begaar was a form of punishment given to Kashmiri Muslims during the Dogra Period, he was send out to Mountains or other parts carrying loads. When the person got sick on the way, he was thrown from a gorge)

Afzal: Auzu billahi min-ash-shaitan-ir-rajim (I seek God’s protection from Satan, the accursed)

Gul: (Concentrating on the Rasul Kandur’s son taking out Lavasi a form of bread from the tandoor ) Shaytaan tchukh paani. (You are the Satan)

Everybody is waiting for the fight to happen, Charagh baigh is counting the number of people inside. Calculating when his turn will reach.

Afzal is seething with anger, his face has turned red. Gul Wasta turns his head towards him.

Gul: Doali Kyzi tchuk witchaan, be ha kadai atch. (Why are you staring at me? I will gouge your eyes out.)

Charagh Baigh seeing that it would atleast take an hour, jumps into the conversation

Charagh: Afzal Syab, yim’an kari Allah taalah nesto naabud (Afzal, Allah will destroy their ilk)

Gul Wasta: Nyari gobrah, tchu maaji hyund doadh. (Go away kid, drink your mother’s milk)

Charagh:Maaji pyath ma gas, be ha tchusai kal-kharaab. (Don’t talk about my mother, I am a hothead)

Gul Wasta: (Sarcastically) Awi, tche hayi tchukh, nyar gas Afzal’ni zanaan nish (Oh, you are somebody, go to Afzal’s wife)

Gul Wasta, had got the last of his bread. He was about to leave. When a slap landed on his face, he was dragged by his pheran out of the shop. Afzal couldn’t take anymore. He biffed him, while Gul Wasta’s hands were inside his Phiren. Gul Wasta took up the piece of firewood on the side of the street and banged it on Afzal’s head.

The girls that came from their tution classes got scared and ran faster. All the people inside the shop came out to stop the fight and some just looked on for entertainment, since the power cuts had deprived them from Television.

Charagh Baigh, the smartass he was took the bread inside. And left.

Blood was on both Afzal’s and Gul Wasta’s face.While some people were holding on to both of them, the fight broke off. As the people were leaving.

Gul Wasta: Teli tchus ni Maaji hyund nechuv, yeli ni bi Jail barath. (I am not my Mother’s son, if I didn’t put you in Jail)

Afzal Ganii: Be tchusni Jail’as khochaan. Gas kyah tchui karun. ( I am not scared of the prision, do what you want to do)

After some days of the fight, Afzal Gani was arrested in the night. He was dragged from his bed by the Police with the troops. Charagh Baigh, was beaten up on the streets. His clothes were torn apart. He was beaten black and blue. He was then detained, while his mother and father held on to the Major’s feet.

Charagh Baigh came two weeks later in an Ambulance. He couldn’t walk on straight. The Troops had tortured him. He was given electric shock in his private parts. They had put a chilli iron-rod inside his anal cavity. His groin area was put on flames and then the flames were put off. He was sodomised by the Major throughout the two weeks.

Afzal Gani was killed in an encounter, a fake encounter by the troops. His mutilated body came home. His only son became an orphan, his wife turned mad. His brains were buried at the encounter site, and he came home without his head. His funeral took place midst of Pro azadi slogans. A memorial stone with water taps was placed in the chowk, nearby the Rasool Kandur’s shop.

Few months later, Charagh Baigh was found hanging in his room. Leaving his family destroyed, he was their only son.

Few years later, Gul wasta became the MLA of the area.

Afzal’s memorial stone still provides water to the thirsty. The autumn leaves still fall…

The Story of The Elephant

Yemen is a place in Arabia to the south of Makkah. A long time ago, it was ruled by people who worshipped other gods than Allâh. The ruler of those people, Dhu Nawâs, used to oppress the Christians who lived there. Once he had a big ditch or trench dug and put fire in it. Then he threw into it about 20,000 Christians. All those people died except one or two of them who ran away and came to the emperor of Syria for help.

The emperor of Syria wrote to the king of Abyssinia (Habashah), who was a Christian, and asked him to take revenge. So the Abyssinian leader (whose title was Najâshi) sent a huge army under the leadership of two commanders named Irbât and Abraha. Dhu Nawâs ran away from Yemen and later drowned, so Yemen came under the rule of the Abyssinians. After some time, an argument happened between the two commanders and a civil war broke out in which Irbât was killed and Abraha became the governor of Yemen.

At that time, all the Arabs used to make Hajj to the Ka’bah in Makkah. Even though they worshipped other gods than Allâh and did many wrong things, Allah kept His House a place which people always visited. Abraha saw them doing this and wanted to turn them away from it, so he built a huge cathedral in a city in Yemen called San’â. This church was so big that its roof could not be seen from the ground. It was decorated with gold, silver and pearls. Abraha announced that nobody should travel to the Ka’bah anymore. Rather, they should all come to this cathedral to perform worship.

Even though they were idolaters, the Arabs had great respect for the Ka’bah. So when Abraha made his announcement, they were very angry. Some of the Quraysh of Makkah went to the cathedral in secret and threw dirty stuff all over the floors and walls of it. Some also lit fire to it. When Abraha found out that these things were done by the Quraysh, he swore that he would take apart every brick of the Ka’bah and destroy it.

Abraha began gathering a big army. He asked permission from the Najâshi, who sent his personal elephant, Mahmûd, and eight other elephants with Abraha’s army. When the news of Abraha’s plan reached the Arabs, they prepared to oppose the attack. Abraha defeated the armies of several Arab tribes along the way to Makkah, and he took one of their leaders, Nufail bin Habeeb, as a prisoner and used him for a guide. As he approached Makkah, the people of Tâ’if decided that instead of trying to fight Abraha, they will help him out, so that he would not destroy their own temple. So they sent with him one of their leaders named Abû Righâl.

Abraha reached with his army up to Mughammas, a place close to Makkah. There were some camels feeding there, and the army overcame the herdsmen and captured these camels. Of these camels, 200 belonged to Abdul Muttalib, the grandfather of the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)), who was at that time the leader of the Quraysh. Abraha then sent a messenger to tell the people of Makka that he only wanted to destroy the Ka’bah and did not come to kill any people if they left him alone.

Abdul Muttalib came back with the messenger to meet Abraha. Abdul Muttalib, being the grandfather of the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)), who was the best of creation, was himself a very handsome and striking personality. So, when Abraha saw him, he came down from his throne to sit next to Abdul Muttalib, even though this was not what the kings commonly did. He asked Abdul Muttalib what he had to say. Abdul Muttalib said that he wanted his camels back.

Abraha was very surprised. He said, “When I first saw you, I thought you were a very respectable and honorable man, but the first thing you have said has made me change my mind. I have come to destroy your Ka’bah and all you are worried about is your camels?!”

Abdul Muttalib replied, “I am the owner of the camels and they are my concern; while Allâh is the owner of the Ka’bah and He will defend it.”

Abraha replied, “Your Lord cannot defend it from me.”

Abdul Muttalib said, “Then do as you wish.” So Abraha gave back the camels and Abdul Muttalib returned to Makkah.

In Makkah, Abdul Muttalib went first to the Ka’bah and made a prayer to Allâh to protect the Ka’bah. Then all the people in Makkah left the city and went to the mountains around Makkah to see what would happen.

In the morning Abraha prepared to enter the city. He put Mahmûd, the elephant, in the front of the army. However, Nufail bin Habeeb, the captured Arab, secretly whispered into the elephant’s ear, “Kneel down! – Return safely from where you have come, for you are in the Secure Land (Balad Amîn).” After this, the elephant sat down and would not go forward. Abraha’s men tried to poke it and push it but it would not move. If they turned it around to face Syria or Yemen then it would start walking, but as soon as they faced it towards the Ka’bah it would sit down again. This was the sign of Allâh’s Power.

Suddenly, while this was happening, came the punishment which is mentioned in Sûrah Fîl of the Qur’an (Sûrah 105). Hundreds of birds which had never been seen before flew towards Makkah from the ocean. Each bird had 3 little stones- one in the beak and one in each foot. They flew over Abraha’s army and dropped the pebbles. Each pebble went straight through the bodies of the men. The elephants started running like crazy and the people were running back and forth getting killed. Some people, like Abraha, did not die right away. Instead they became extremely sick and died later on.

The result of this happening was that the Quraysh became very famous and respected among the other Arabs. No one else would dare to attack them or their caravans which they would send on business trips to Syria and Yemen. These trips are mentioned in the following sûrah (Sûrah 106) of the Qur’an, where Allâh says they should be worshipping and thanking Allâh Who gave them so many blessings of food, wealth and safety.

This amazing event was not a coincidence. The year in which this happened was the same blessed year in which the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)) was born, in the month of Rabî’-ul-Awwal. This event was one of many things which happened around the time of the birth of the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)), which proved to the world that a wonderful person had been born, the last of the prophets, who would bring the message of Islâm which will last now until the Day of Judgment. When we study the life story of the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)) we find proof and evidence beyond doubt of his being the Messenger of Allah and the Last Prophet. May Allâh give us all the strength of imân to learn all about the life of the Prophet (ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)) and use it as our example in our lives.

(This story is recorded in one of the most authentic books of commentary on the Qur’an called Tafsîr Ibn Kathîr.)

When Abu Bakr, Umar nearly lost all

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is an article I received in e-mail. Read and share and apply in your lives.

THE Prophet (peace be upon him) was once sitting with his companions when they were approached by some horsemen as delegates from the tribe of Banu Tamim. As with any tribe coming to accept Islam, the Prophet wanted to select a leader for them. Naturally, recommendations for the man best fit for this job came from his closest companions, Abu Bakr and Umar, may Allah be pleased with them.

Abu Bakr recommended that the Prophet make Al-Qa‘qa‘ Bin Ma‘bad, member of Banu Mujashi‘, take the position. Umar disagreed, suggesting that the Messenger of Allah instead choose a man named Al-Aqra‘ Bin Habis. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)

Disagreement between the two turned to debate, debating turned to arguing, and soon the two began raising their voices so loud, they drowned out the voice of the Prophet.

Just then, Allah revealed the following verse to the Prophet (peace be upon him).

“O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet (peace be upon him), nor speak aloud to him in speech as you speak aloud to one another, lest your deeds may be rendered fruitless while you perceive not.” (Qur’an, 49:2)

 

Respect for the Prophet

Allah was telling both Abu Bakr and Umar that what they were doing was uncalled for. When one speaks near the Prophet, they can’t speak louder than him, out of respect and reverence for the man who is the messenger of Allah himself.

This command from Allah goes beyond mere volume. When issues arise in matters of the Sunnah, we can’t speak out over or against it. As Ibn ‘Abbas said, this means do not contradict the Sunnah in your actions, statements, or even your intentions.

The attitude towards the Sunnah should be like that of Imam Malik’s. When students came to his house wanting to learn Fiqh or ‘Aqeedah, he would come out and teach them. If they wanted to learn Hadith however, he would make Ghusl before coming out and recite the verse, “O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet (peace be upon him), nor speak aloud to him…” before he began his lesson, to remind himself and his students that what they were about to study has to be respected at the highest level.

 

How Umar reacted

After this verse was revealed, it was narrated that whenever Umar would speak to the Prophet, he would speak so quietly that you could barely hear him. In fact, Abdullah Bin Al-Zubair said the Prophet sometimes asked Umar to repeat himself because his voice was so soft.

With the coming of a commandment from Allah, Umar immediately followed it and practiced it in his daily life. He didn’t second guess it or try to just half-way act on it, nor did he delay it or temporarily follow it. He immediately acted on it in full permanently.

 

The Thabit approach

When Thabit Ibn Qays Al-Shammas, a Sahabi who used to speak in a loud voice because he was hard of hearing, heard this verse, he was devastated. Since the verse said that those who speak above the Prophet would lose all of their deeds without them even knowing it. Immediately Thabit went home in despair and didn’t come out to the point where the Prophet and Sahabah noticed his absence.

When they visited and asked him where he’d been, he said he had been terrified of losing all of his deeds because he, too, used to speak above the Prophet, even though he was only speaking loudly because of his hearing problem. Later the Prophet consoled him by telling him that he was a person of paradise.

 

How Satan exploits disagreements

When Abu Bakr and Umar were arguing, they were doing it at the worst time in the worst scenario. In front of them was the Prophet and around them were the delegates from a new tribe that wanted to accept Islam. Shaitan will do whatever it takes to destroy any chance of Islam prospering.

Here, he made two Muslim brothers escalate their disagreements to the point where an issue greater than choosing leadership, i.e. respecting the Prophet, was being ignored.

When things get heated in your disagreements with family, friends, or in da’wah work, never let Shaitan use your differences to his advantage.

 

Correcting ourselves

The Sahabah weren’t superhuman beings who didn’t make any mistakes whatsoever. What made them extraordinary and models for us, instead, was how they corrected their mistakes.

Imagine if you found out that you and your family lost everything you ever owned and went bankrupt. No more assets, no more house or cars, and no money.

Now imagine you lost all of your good deeds. Which of the two would you feel more devastated at?

The Sahabah thought of losing one’s deeds as one of the worst things that could ever happen to them.

The next time we fall into a dispute with our Muslim brothers or sisters, we should remember the way Abu Bakr and Umar acted and reacted, as well as make sure we respect the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his Sunnah without becoming clouded by our situation.

Modern Stress And Its Cure

Well here I am again, sharing something I received in my inbox today. I hope you find it useful. May Allah relieve the stress in our lives.

Modern Stress And Its Cure From Quran by Shahin Akhtar MD

Stress is the most common aliment of modern age. It has been implicated in the causation of peptic ulcer disease, coronary heart disease, depression, auto immune disease, hypertension, diabetes and even cancer. In milder form it manifests in form of unrest, violence, at work, school and home. Common medical problems like tension headache, insomnia, and obesity are also attributed to unusual stress. None of us are free from stress but some deal with it better than others.
Stress results from the following factors:
  1. Fear of the unknown and trying to see through and control the destiny.
  2. Losses in our life of people and things dear to us and our inability to recover those losses.
  3. Inner conflict between our heart and mind between what is known to be the truth and our failure to accept it as truth. Acceptance of truth may require changing our habits and way of life which we may adhere to for some reason like pleasure, joys, taste, pride in race or heritage etc.
Let us examine how Quran deals with such situations.
Our losses are a trial for us:
“Be sure we will test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives, but give glad tidings to those who are steadfast, who say when afflicted with calamity: To God we belong and to him is our return. They are those on whom (DESCEND) blessings from God and mercy and they are the once that receive guidance. 2:155
Thus in Islam, we do not have concept of the ownership of goods and life. Everything belongs to God and returns to him. So if we don’t own that thing why mourn our loss?
  1. Our destiny is predetermined. We do not have control on that part. What we have control over is a limited free will, that is our actions, our choice to do good or bad, to believe in God or not to believe in Him, but we have no control over tomorrow’s event not related to our actions i.e. whether my wife will have a son or daughter, whether his/her eyes will be brown or black, or whether I will have an accident or not tomorrow. Worrying over such things is of no use.
  2. Rejection of faith in Quran is called a disease. This denial of truth is due to arrogance.“In their heart there is a disease and God has increased their disease and grievous is their penalty because they lie to themselves.” 2:10
Therefore after lying to ourselves, we set up an inner conflict – between heart and mind. In order to contain that conflict the mind sends signals to glands for secretion of harmones like adrenaline which leads to rapid heart rate, perspiration, tremor, the basis of lie detector test.
This lying conflict could be due to “SMALL” crimes like theft or adultery, or big crimes like rejection of God.
3 Stages of spiritual development of soul age
  1. Nafsul Ammara: -The Passionate soul “I do not absolve myself Lo the (human) soul is prone to evil, save that whenever my Lord has mercy. Lo, Lord is forgiving; merciful.”12:53 (Surah Yusuf)This soul inclines toward sensual Pleasure, passion and self gratification , anger, envy, greed, and conceit. Its concerns are pleasure of body, gratification of physical appetite, and ego.Hadith “your most-ardent-enemy is your evil self which resides within your body”(Bukhari).If this evil soul is not checked will lead to unusual stress and its resultant effects.
  2. Nafsul Lawanunah (The Reproaching Soul). “Nay, I swear by the reproaching soul”75:1This soul is conscious or aware of Evil, resists it, asks for God’s grace, and pardon, repents and tries to ammend and hopes to achieve salvation.“And (There are) others who have acknowledged their faults. They mix a righteous action with another that was bad. It may be that Allah will relent toward them. Lo! Allah is relenting, merciful.”9:102Hadith “These are two impulses within us. One spirit which calls towards good and confirms the truth. He who feels this impulse should know that it comes from Allah. Another impulse comes from our enemy (Devil) which leads to doubt and holds untruth and encourages evil. He who feels this should seek refuge in Allah from the accursed devil.”This soul warns people of their vain desire, guides and opens the door to virtute and righteousness. It is a positive step in spiritual growth.
  3. The satisfied soul (Nafsul Mutmainnah). “O (you) soul in (complete) rest and satisfaction. Come back to your Lord, will pleased (yourself) and will pleasing unto him. Enter you then among my devotees, enter you in my heaven.” 89:27-30
This is the highest state of spiritual development. satisfied soul is the state of bliss, content and peace. The soul is at peace because it knows that inspite of its failures in this world, It will return to God. Purified of tension, it emerges from the struggle with obstacles blocking the peace of mind and heart.
What should we do in panic and despair? In panic non-believers behave differently than believers. They have no one to return to, to ask for mercy and forgiveness, their life is this life, which they cannot control, thus get more depressed and increase in their state of wrong doing. Then we will see that if they are used to casual drinking will start drinking more and become alcoholic, or a barbital criminal.
On the other hand a believer should do the following:
  1. Increase dhikr (Remembrance of God)
    “who have believed and whose heart have Rest in the remembrance of God. Verify in the remembrance of God, do hearts find rest.” 13:28
  2. Increase their prayer.
    “O you who believe, seek help with steadfastness and prayer. For God is with those who are steadfast.” 2:153
  3. Ask forgiveness
    “And I have said: seek forgiveness from your Lord. Lo He was ever forgiving.” 71:10
In addition to above we are also asked to continue to struggle to up-grade ourselves.
” surely God does not change the condition in which a people are in until they change that which is in themselves.” 13:11
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us a du’aa’ by which we may ward off worries and distress. Ahmad (3528)narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“There is no-one who is afflicted by distress and grief, and says:
‘Allaahumma inni ‘abduka ibn ‘abdika ibn amatika naasyati bi yadika, maada fiyya hukmuka, ‘adlun fiyya qadaa’uka. As’aluka bi kulli ismin huwa laka sammayta bihi nafsaka aw anzaltahu fi kitaabika aw ‘allamtahu ahadan min khalqika aw ista’tharta bihi fi ‘ilm il-ghayb ‘indaka an taj’al al-Qur’aana rabee’ qalbi wa noor sadri wa jalaa’ huzni wa dhihaab hammi.
(O Allaah, I am Your slave, son of Your slave, son of Your maidservant; my forelock is in Your hand, Your command over me is forever executed and Your decree over me is just. I ask You by every name belonging to You which You have named Yourself with, or revealed in Your Book, or You taught to any of Your creation, or You have preserved in the knowledge of the Unseen with You, that You make the Qur’aan the life of my heart and the light of my breast, and a departure for my sorrow and a release for my anxiety),’ but Allaah will take away his distress and grief, and replace it with joy.”
He was asked: “O Messenger of Allaah, should we learn this?”
He said: “Of course; everyone who hears it should learn it.”
In summary, I conclude that stress results from lack of inner peace due to conflicts within us and leads to external disturbances in our behavior and health. Inner peace can only be achieved by believing in God, the All Mighty, and remembering him frequently and asking for his help and forgiveness in times of difficulties.

Abortion

Someone shared this note with me on Facebook, and I share it with you all!

A worried woman went to her gynecologist and said:

“Doctor, I have a serious problem and desperately need your help! My baby is not even 1 yr. old and I’m pregnant again. I don’t want kids so close together.”

So the doctor said: ‘Ok, and what do you want me to do?’

She said: ‘I want you to end my pregnancy, and I’m counting on your help with this.’

The doctor thought for a little, and after some silence he said to the lady: “I think, I have a better solution for your problem. It’s less dangerous for you too.’

She smiled, thinking that the doctor was going to accept her request.

Then he continued: ‘You see, in order for you not to have to take care of 2 babies at the same time, let’s kill the one in your arms. This way, you could rest some before the other one is born. If we’re going to kill one of them, it doesn’t matter which one it is.

There would be no risk for your body if you chose the one in your arms.

The lady was horrified and said: ‘No doctor! How terrible! It’s a crime to kill a child!

‘I agree’, the doctor replied.. ‘But you seemed to be ok with it, so I thought maybe that was the best solution.

The doctor smiled, realizing that he had made his point. He convinced the mom that there is no difference in killing a child that’s already been born and one that’s still in the womb. The crime is the same!

How to poison your mother in law

Got this in another email! And yes, it is very very interesting. 😛

Poison Your Mother-in-Law …

A long time ago in China, a girl named Li-Li got married and went to live with her husband and mother-in-law. In a very short time, Li-Li found that she couldn’t get along with her mother-in-law at all.

Their personalities were very different, and Li-Li was angered by many of her mother-in-law’ s habits. In addition, she criticised Li-Li constantly.
Days passed days, and weeks passed weeks. Li-Li and her mother-in-law never stopped arguing and fighting. But what made the situation even worse was that, according to ancient Chinese tradition, Li-Li had to bow to her mother-in-law and obey her every wish.
All the anger and unhappiness in the house was causing Li-Li’s poor husband great distress.
Finally, Li-Li could not stand her mother-in-law’ s bad temper and dictatorship any longer, and she decided to do something about it.
Li-Li went to see her father’s good friend, Mr. Huang, who sold herbs. She told him the situation and asked if he would give her some poison so that she could solve the problem once and for all. Mr. Huang thought for a while, and finally said, Li-Li, I will help you solve your problem, but you must listen to me and obey what I tell you. Li-Li said, “Yes, Mr. Huang, I will do whatever you tell me to do.”
Mr.Huang went into the back room, and returned in a few minutes with a package of herbs.
He told Li-Li, “You can’t use a quick-acting poison to get rid of your mother-in-law, because that would cause people to become suspicious. Therefore, I have given you a number of herbs that will slowly build up poison in her body.
Every other day prepare some delicious meal and put a little of these herbs in her serving. Now, in order to make sure that nobody suspects you when she dies, you must be very careful to act very friendly towards her. Don’t argue with her, obey her every wish, and treat her like a queen.”
Li-Li was so happy. She thanked Mr. Huang and hurried home to start her plot of murdering her mother-in-law.
Weeks went by, and months went by, and every other day, Li-Li served the specially treated food to her mother-in-law. She remembered what Mr.Huang had said about avoiding suspicion, so she controlled her temper, obeyed her mother-in-law, and treated her like her own mother. After six months had passed, the whole household had changed.
Li-Li had practiced controlling her temper so much that she found that she almost never got mad or upset. She hadn’t had an argument with her mother-in-law in six months because she now seemed much kinder and easier to get along with.
The mother-in-law’ s attitude toward Li-Li changed, and she began to love Li-Li like her own daughter. She kept telling friends and relatives that Li-Li was the best daughter-in- law one could ever find. Li-Li and her mother-in-law were now treating each other like a real mother and daughter.
Li-Li’s husband was very happy to see what was happening.
One day, Li-Li came to see Mr. Huang and asked for his help again. She said, “Dear Mr. Huang, please help me to keep the poison from killing my mother-in-law! She’s changed into such a nice woman, and I love her like my own mother. I do not want her to die because of the poison I gave her.”
Mr. Huang smiled and nodded his head. “Li-Li, there’s nothing to worry about. I never gave you any poison. The herbs I gave you were vitimans to improve her health. The only poison was in your mind and your attitude toward her, but that has been all washed away by the love which you gave to her.”
Treatment of Mothers-in-Laws
By Dr. Muhammad Ali Al-Hashimi
Excerpt from: The Muslim Woman and her Husband.
Note: Although the article below is written in reference to the wife treating her mother-in-law.
The advices are also applicable to the husband in his treatment to his mother-in-law as well.

One of the ways in which a wife expresses her respect towards her husband is by honouring and respecting his mother.

The Muslim woman who truly understands the teachings of her religion knows that the person who has the greatest right over a man is his mother, as one notes in many Ahaadeeth. So she helps him to honour and respect his mother, by also honouring and respecting her. In this way she will do herself and her husband a favour, as she will be helping him to do good deeds and fear Allah Ta’ala, as commanded by the Qur’an. At the same time, she will endear herself to her husband, who will appreciate her honour and respect towards his family in general, and towards his mother in particular. Nothing could please a decent, righteous and respectful man more than seeing strong ties of love and respect between his wife and his family, and nothing could be more hateful to a decent man than to see those ties destroyed by the forces of evil, hatred and conspiracy. The Muslim family which is guided by faith in Allah Ta’ala and follows the pure teachings of Islam is unlikely to fall into the trap of such jahili (ignorant) behaviour, which usually flourishes in communities today.

A Muslim wife may find herself being tested by her mother-in-law and other in-laws, if they are not of good character. If such is the case, she is obliged and would be meritorious to treat them in the best way possible, which requires a great deal of cleverness, courtesy, diplomacy and repelling evil with that which is better. Thus she will maintain a balance between her relationship with her in-laws and her relationship with her husband, and she will protect herself and her marriage from any adverse effects that may result from the lack of such a balance.

The Muslim woman should never think that she is the only one who is required to be a good and caring companion to her spouse, and that nothing similar is required of her husband or that there is nothing wrong with him mistreating her or failing to fulfill some of the responsibilities of marriage. Islam has regulated the marital relationship by giving each partner both rights and duties. The wife’s duties of honouring and taking care of her husband are balanced by the rights that she has over him, which are that he should protect her honour and dignity from all kinds of mockery, humiliation, trials or oppression. These rights of the wife comprise the husband’s duties towards her: he is obliged to honour them and fulfil them as completely as possible.

One of the Muslim husband’s duties is to fulfill his role of qawwam (maintainer and protector) properly. This is a role that can only be properly fulfilled by a man who is a successful leader in his home and family, one who possesses likeable character and qualities. Such a man has a noble and worthy attitude, is tolerant, overlooks minor errors, is in control of his married life, and is generous without being extravagant. He respect s his wife’s feelings and makes her feel that she shares the responsibility of running the household affairs, bringing up the children,and working with him to build a sound Muslim family, as Islam wants it to be.

Manners of talking in the light of the Quran.

Got this in an email. Its a lesson for all of us to learn and implement in our lives…
Manners of talking in the light of the Quran

· Talk straight, to the point, without any ambiguity or deception [33:70] 

· Choose best words to speak and say them in the best possible way [17:53, 2:83]

· Do not shout. Speak politely keeping your voice low [31:19]

· Always speak the truth. Shun words that are deceitful and ostentatious [22:30]

· Do not confound truth with falsehood [2:42]

· Say with your mouth what is in your heart [3:167]

· Speak in a civilized manner in a language that is recognized by the society and is commonly used [4:5]

· When you voice an opinion, be just, even if it is against a relative [6:152]

· Do not be a bragging boaster [31:18]

· Do not talk, listen or do anything vain [23:3, 28:55]

Women who suffer by Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan

Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan is the mother of Smadar Elhanan, 13 years old when killed by a suicide bomber in Jerusalem in September 1997. Below is Dr. Elhanan’s speech made on International Women’s Day in Strasbourg in March 2005.

Although a year on from the time of this address by Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, the issues and need for such honesty is ever more critical.


Thank you for inviting me to this today. It is always an honour and a pleasure to be here, among you (at the European Parliament).

However, I must admit I believe you should have invited a Palestinian woman at my stead, because the women who suffer most from violence in my county are the Palestinian women. And I would like to dedicate my speech to Miriam R’aban and her husband Kamal, from Bet Lahiya in the Gaza strip, whose five small children were killed by Israeli soldiers while picking strawberries at the family’s strawberry field. No one will ever stand trial for this murder.

When I asked the people who invited me here why didn’t they invite a Palestinian woman, the answer was that it would make the discussion too localized.

I don’t know what is non-localized violence. Racism and discrimination may be theoretical concepts and universal phenomena but their impact is always local, and real. Pain is local, humiliation, sexual abuse, torture and death, are all very local, and so are the scars.

It is true, unfortunately, that the local violence inflicted on Palestinian women by the government of Israel and the Israeli army, has expanded around the globe, In fact, state violence and army violence, individual and collective violence, are the lot of Muslim women today, not only in Palestine but wherever the enlightened western world is setting its big imperialistic foot. It is violence which is hardly ever addressed and which is halfheartedly condoned by most people in Europe and in the USA.

This is because the so-called free world is afraid of the Muslim womb.

Great France of “la liberte egalite et la fraternite” is scared of little girls with head scarves. Great Jewish Israel is afraid of the Muslim womb which its ministers call a demographic threat.

Almighty America and Great Britain are infecting their respective citizens with blind fear of the Muslims, who are depicted as vile, primitive and blood-thirsty, apart from their being non-democratic, chauvinistic and mass producers of future terrorists. This in spite of the fact that the people who are destroying the world today are not Muslim. One of them is a devout Christian, one is Anglican and one is a non-devout Jew.

Islam in itself, like Judaism in itself and Christianity in itself, is not a threat to me or to anyone. American imperialism is, European indifference and co-operation is and Israeli racism and its cruel regime of occupation is ..

I have never experienced the suffering Palestinian women undergo every day, every hour, I don’t know the kind of violence that turns a woman’s life into constant hell. This daily physical and mental torture of women who are deprived of their basic human rights and needs of privacy and dignity, women whose homes are broken into at any moment of day and night, who are ordered at a gun-point to strip naked in front of strangers and their own children, whose houses are demolished , who are deprived of their livelihood and of any normal family life. This is not part of my personal ordeal.

But I am a victim of violence against women insofar as violence against children is actually violence against mothers. Palestinian, Iraqi, Afghan women are my sisters because we are all at the grip of the same unscrupulous criminals who call themselves leaders of the free enlightened world and in the name of this freedom and enlightenment rob us of our children.

Furthermore, Israeli, American, Italian and British mothers have been for the most part violently blinded and brainwashed to such a degree that they cannot realize their only sisters, their only allies in the world are the Muslim Palestinian, Iraqi or Afghani mothers, whose children are killed by our children or who blow themselves to pieces with our sons and daughters. They are all mind-infected by the same viruses engendered by politicians. And the viruses , though they may have various illustrious names–such as Democracy, Patriotism, God, Homeland–are all the same. They are all part of false and fake ideologies that are meant to enrich the rich and to empower the powerful.

We are all the victims of mental, psychological and cultural violence that turn us to one homogenic group of bereaved or potentially bereaved mothers. Western mothers who are taught to believe their uterus is a national asset just like they are taught to believe that the Muslim uterus is an international threat. They are educated not to cry out: ‘I gave him birth, I breast fed him, he is mine, and I will not let him be the one whose life is cheaper than oil, whose future is less worth than a piece of land.’

All of us are terrorized by mind-infecting education to believe all we can do is either pray for our sons to come back home or be proud of their dead bodies.

And all of us were brought up to bear all this silently, to contain our fear and frustration, to take Prozac for anxiety, but never hail Mama Courage in public. Never be real Jewish or Italian or Irish mothers.

I am a victim of state violence. My natural and civil rights as a mother have been violated and are violated because I have to fear the day my son would reach his 18th birthday and be taken away from me to be the game tool of criminals such as Sharon, Bush, Blair and their clan of blood-thirsty, oil-thirsty, land thirsty generals.

Living in the world I live in, in the state I live in, in the regime I live in, I don’t dare to offer Muslim women any ideas how to change their lives. I don’t want them to take off their scarves, or educate their children differently, and I will not urge them to constitute Democracies in the image of Western democracies that despise them and their kind. I just want to ask them humbly to be my sisters, to express my admiration for their perseverance and for their courage to carry on, to have children and to maintain a dignified family life in spite of the impossible conditions my world in putting them in. I want to tell them we are all bonded by the same pain, we all the victims of the same sort of violence even though they suffer much more, for they are the ones who are mistreated by my government and its army, sponsored by my taxes.

Islam in itself, like Judaism in itself and Christianity in itself, is not a threat to me or to anyone. American imperialism is, European indifference and co-operation is and Israeli racism and its cruel regime of occupation is. It is racism, educational propaganda and inculcated xenophobia that convince Israeli soldiers to order Palestinian women at gun-point, to strip in front of their children for security reasons, it is the deepest disrespect for the other that allow American soldiers to rape Iraqi women, that give license to Israeli jailers to keep young women in inhuman conditions, without necessary hygienic aids, without electricity in the winter, without clean water or clean mattresses and to separate them from their breast-fed babies and toddlers. To bar their way to hospitals, to block their way to education, to confiscate their lands, to uproot their trees and prevent them from cultivating their fields.

I cannot completely understand Palestinian women or their suffering. I don’t know how I would have survived such humiliation, such disrespect from the whole world. All I know is that the voice of mothers has been suffocated for too long in this war-stricken planet. Mothers’ cry is not heard because mothers are not invited to international forums such as this one. This I know and it is very little. But it is enough for me to remember these women are my sisters, and that they deserve that I should cry for them, and fight for them. And when they lose their children in strawberry fields or on filthy roads by the checkpoints, when their children are shot on their way to school by Israeli children who were educated to believe that love and compassion are race and religion dependent, the only thing I can do is stand by them and their betrayed babies, and ask what Anna Akhmatova–another mother who lived in a regime of violence against women and children–asked:  Why does that streak of blood, rip the petal of your cheek?

Setting the Record Straight: The Miracle of Islamic Science

Excerpted from: Appendix B of ‘The Miracle of Islamic Science’ by Dr. K. Ajram, Copyright © 1992
The concept that the sciences are exclusively the products of Western minds remains unquestioned by most individuals. A review of any of the standard texts or encyclopaedias regarding the history of science would support this view. As these books are perused, it becomes evident that the only contributors given significant mention are Europeans and/or Americans. It is hardly necessary to repeat the oft-mentioned names: Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, Bacon, Newton, Da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin, etc. The unavoidable conclusion is that major contributions to the development of the modern sciences by other cultures is minimal. Most texts give little or no mention of the advancements made by ancient Indian, Chinese or, particularly, Muslim scholars. Western civilization has made invaluable contributions to the development of the sciences. However, so have numerous other cultures. Unfortunately, Westerners have long been credited with discoveries made many centuries before by Islamic scholars. Thus, many of the basic sciences were invented by non-Europeans. For instance, George Sarton states that modern Western medicine did not originate from Europe and that it actually arose from the (Islamic) orient. The data in this section concerning dates, names and topics of Western advances has been derived from three main sources: World Book Encyclopedia, Encyclopaedia Britannica and Isaac Asimov’s 700 page book, Chronology of Science and Discovery. Supportive data for the accomplishments of Islamic scholars is derived from the miscellaneous references listed in the bibliography of this book.

What is Taught: The first mention of man in flight was by Roger Bacon, who drew a flying apparatus. Leonardo da Vinci also conceived of airborne transport and drew several prototypes.

What Should be Taught: Ibn Firnas of Islamic Spain invented, constructed and tested a flying machine in the 800’s A.D. Roger Bacon learned of flying machines from Arabic references to Ibn Firnas’ machine. The latter’s invention antedates Bacon by 500 years and Da Vinci by some 700 years.

What is Taught: Glass mirrors were first produced in 1291 in Venice.

What Should be Taught: Glass mirrors were in use in Islamic Spain as early as the 11th century. The Venetians learned of the art of fine glass production from Syrian artisans during the 9th and 10th centuries.

What is Taught: Until the 14th century, the only type of clock available was the water clock. In 1335, a large mechanical clock was erected in Milan, Italy. This was possibly the first weight-driven clock.

What Should be Taught: A variety of mechanical clocks were produced by Spanish Muslim engineers, both large and small, and this knowledge was transmitted to Europe through Latin translations of Islamic books on mechanics. These clocks were weight-driven. Designs and illustrations of epi-cyclic and segmental gears were provided. One such clock included a mercury escapement. The latter type was directly copied by Europeans during the 15th century. In addition, during the 9 th century, Ibn Firnas of Islamic Spain, according to Will Durant, invented a watch-like device which kept accurate time. The Muslims also constructed a variety of highly accurate astronomical clocks for use in their observatories.

What is Taught: In the 17th century, the pendulum was developed by Galileo during his teenage years. He noticed a chandelier swaying as it was being blown by the wind. As a result, he went home and invented the pendulum.

What Should be Taught: The pendulum was discovered by Ibn Yunus al-Masri during the 10th century, who was the first to study and document its oscillatory motion. Its value for use in clocks was introduced by Muslim physicists during the 15 th century.

What is Taught: Movable type and the printing press was invented in the West by Johannes Gutenberg of Germany during the 15th century.

What Should be Taught: In 1454, Gutenberg developed the most sophisticated printing press of the Middle Ages. However, movable brass type was in use in Islamic Spain 100 years prior, and that is where the West’s first printing devices were made.

What is Taught: Isaac Newton’s 17th century study of lenses, light and prisms forms the foundation of the modern science of optics.

What Should be Taught: In the 1lth century al-Haytham determined virtually everything that Newton advanced regarding optics centuries prior and is regarded by numerous authorities as the “founder of optics. ” There is little doubt that Newton was influenced by him. Al-Haytham was the most quoted physicist of the Middle Ages. His works were utilized and quoted by a greater number of European scholars during the 16th and 17th centuries than those of Newton and Galileo combined.

What is Taught: Isaac Newton, during the 17th century, discovered that white light consists of various rays of colored light.

What Should be Taught: This discovery was made in its entirety by al-Haytham (1lth century) and Kamal ad-Din (14th century). Newton did make original discoveries, but this was not one of them.

What is Taught: The concept of the finite nature of matter was first introduced by Antione Lavoisier during the 18th century. He discovered that, although matter may change its form or shape, its mass always remains the same. Thus, for instance, if water is heated to steam, if salt is dissolved in water or if a piece of wood is burned to ashes, the total mass remains unchanged.

What Should be Taught: The principles of this discovery were elaborated centuries before by Islamic Persia’s great scholar, al-Biruni (d. 1050). Lavoisier was a disciple of the Muslim chemists and physicists and referred to their books frequently.

What is Taught: The Greeks were the developers of trigonometry.

What Should be Taught: Trigonometry remained largely a theoretical science among the Greeks. It was developed to a level of modern perfection by Muslim scholars, although the weight of the credit must be given to al-Battani. The words describing the basic functions of this science, sine, cosine and tangent, are all derived from Arabic terms. Thus, original contributions by the Greeks in trigonometry were minimal.

What is Taught: The use of decimal fractions in mathematics was first developed by a Dutchman, Simon Stevin, in 1589. He helped advance the mathematical sciences by replacing the cumbersome fractions, for instance, 1/2, with decimal fractions, for example, 0.5.

What Should be Taught: Muslim mathematicians were the first to utilize decimals instead of fractions on a large scale. Al-Kashi‘s book, Key to Arithmetic, was written at the beginning of the 15th century and was the stimulus for the systematic application of decimals to whole numbers and fractions thereof. It is highly probably that Stevin imported the idea to Europe from al-Kashi’s work.

What is Taught: The first man to utilize algebraic symbols was the French mathematician, Francois Vieta. In 1591, he wrote an algebra book describing equations with letters such as the now familiar x and y’s. Asimov says that this discovery had an impact similar to the progression from Roman numerals to Arabic numbers.

What Should be Taught: Muslim mathematicians, the inventors of algebra, introduced the concept of using letters for unknown variables in equations as early as the 9th century A.D. Through this system, they solved a variety of complex equations, including quadratic and cubic equations. They used symbols to develop and perfect the binomial theorem.

What is Taught: The difficult cubic equations (x to the third power) remained unsolved until the 16th century when Niccolo Tartaglia, an Italian mathematician, solved them.

What Should be Taught: Cubic equations as well as numerous equations of even higher degrees were solved with ease by Muslim mathematicians as early as the 10th century.

What is Taught: The concept that numbers could be less than zero, that is negative numbers, was unknown until 1545 when Geronimo Cardano introduced the idea.

What Should he Taught: Muslim mathematicians introduced negative numbers for use in a variety of arithmetic functions at least 400 years prior to Cardano. What is Taught: In 1614, John Napier invented logarithms and logarithmic tables. What Should be Taught: Muslim mathematicians invented logarithms and produced logarithmic tables several centuries prior. Such tables were common in the Islamic world as early as the 13th century.

What is Taught: During the 17th century Rene Descartes made the discovery that algebra could be used to solve geometrical problems. By this, he greatly advanced the science of geometry.

What Should be Taught: Mathematicians of the Islamic Empire accomplished precisely this as early as the 9th century A.D. Thabit bin Qurrah was the first to do so, and he was followed by Abu’l Wafa, whose 10th century book utilized algebra to advance geometry into an exact and simplified science.

What is Taught: Isaac Newton, during the 17th century, developed the binomial theorem, which is a crucial component for the study of algebra.

What Should be Taught: Hundreds of Muslim mathematicians utilized and perfected the binomial theorem. They initiated its use for the systematic solution of algebraic problems during the 10th century (or prior).

What is Taught: No improvement had been made in the astronomy of the ancients during the Middle Ages regarding the motion of planets until the 13th century. Then Alphonso the Wise of Castile (Middle Spain) invented the Aphonsine Tables, which were more accurate than Ptolemy’s.

What Should be Taught: Muslim astronomers made numerous improvements upon Ptolemy’s findings as early as the 9th century. They were the first astronomers to dispute his archaic ideas. In their critic of the Greeks, they synthesized proof that the sun is the center of the solar system and that the orbits of the earth and other planets might be elliptical. They produced hundreds of highly accurate astronomical tables and star charts. Many of their calculations are so precise that they are regarded as contemporary. The AlphonsineTables are little more than copies of works on astronomy transmitted to Europe via Islamic Spain, i.e. the Toledo Tables.

What is Taught: The English scholar Roger Bacon (d. 1292) first mentioned glass lenses for improving vision. At nearly the same time, eyeglasses could be found in use both in China and Europe.

What Should be Taught: Ibn Firnas of Islamic Spain invented eyeglasses during the 9th century, and they were manufactured and sold throughout Spain for over two centuries. Any mention of eyeglasses by Roger Bacon was simply a regurgitation of the work of al-Haytham (d. 1039), whose research Bacon frequently referred to.

What is Taught: Gunpowder was developed in the Western world as a result of Roger Bacon’s work in 1242. The first usage of gunpowder in weapons was when the Chinese fired it from bamboo shoots in attempt to frighten Mongol conquerors. They produced it by adding sulfur and charcoal to saltpeter.

What Should be Taught: The Chinese developed saltpeter for use in fireworks and knew of no tactical military use for gunpowder, nor did they invent its formula. Research by Reinuad and Fave have clearly shown that gunpowder was formulated initially by Muslim chemists. Further, these historians claim that the Muslims developed the first fire-arms. Notably, Muslim armies used grenades and other weapons in their defence of Algericus against the Franks during the 14 th century. Jean Mathes indicates that the Muslim rulers had stock-piles of grenades, rifles, crude cannons, incendiary devices, sulfur bombs and pistols decades before such devices were used in Europe. The first mention of a cannon was in an Arabic text around 1300 A.D. Roger Bacon learned of the formula for gunpowder from Latin translations of Arabic books. He brought forth nothing original in this regard.

What is Taught: The compass was invented by the Chinese who may have been the first to use it for navigational purposes sometime between 1000 and 1100 A.D. The earliest reference to its use in navigation was by the Englishman, Alexander Neckam (1157-1217).

What Should be Taught: Muslim geographers and navigators learned of the magnetic needle, possibly from the Chinese, and were the first to use magnetic needles in navigation. They invented the compass and passed the knowledge of its use in navigation to the West. European navigators relied on Muslim pilots and their instruments when exploring unknown territories. Gustav Le Bon claims that the magnetic needle and compass were entirely invented by the Muslims and that the Chinese had little to do with it. Neckam, as well as the Chinese, probably learned of it from Muslim traders. It is noteworthy that the Chinese improved their navigational expertise after they began interacting with the Muslims during the 8th century.

What is Taught: The first man to classify the races was the German Johann F. Blumenbach, who divided mankind into white, yellow, brown, black and red peoples.

What Should be Taught: Muslim scholars of the 9th through 14th centuries invented the science of ethnography. A number of Muslim geographers classified the races, writing detailed explanations of their unique cultural habits and physical appearances. They wrote thousands of pages on this subject. Blumenbach’s works were insignificant in comparison.

What is Taught: The science of geography was revived during the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries when the ancient works of Ptolemy were discovered. The Crusades and the Portuguese/Spanish expeditions also contributed to this reawakening. The first scientifically- based treatise on geography were produced during this period by Europe’s scholars.

What Should be Taught: Muslim geographers produced untold volumes of books on the geography of Africa, Asia, India, China and the Indies during the 8th through 15th centuries. These writings included the world’s first geographical encyclopedias, almanacs and road maps. Ibn Battutah’s 14 th century masterpieces provide a detailed view of the geography of the ancient world. The Muslim geographers of the 10th through 15th centuries far exceeded the output by Europeans regarding the geography of these regions well into the 18 th century. The Crusades led to the destruction of educational institutions, their scholars and books. They brought nothing substantive regarding geography to the Western world.

What is Taught: Robert Boyle, in the 17th century, originated the science of chemistry.

What Should be Taught: A variety of Muslim chemists, including ar-Razi, al-Jabr, al-Biruni and al-Kindi, performed scientific experiments in chemistry some 700 years prior to Boyle. Durant writes that the Muslims introduced the experimental method to this science. Humboldt regards the Muslims as the founders of chemistry.

What is Taught: Leonardo da Vinci (16th century) fathered the science of geology when he noted that fossils found on mountains indicated a watery origin of the earth.

What Should be Taught: Al-Biruni (1lth century) made precisely this observation and added much to it, including a huge book on geology, hundreds of years before Da Vinci was born. Ibn Sina noted this as well (see pages 100-101). it is probable that Da Vinci first learned of this concept from Latin translations of Islamic books. He added nothing original to their findings.

What is Taught: The first mention of the geological formation of valleys was in 1756, when Nicolas Desmarest proposed that they were formed over a long periods of time by streams.

What Should be Taught: Ibn Sina and al-Biruni made precisely this discovery during the 11th century (see pages 102 and 103), fully 700 years prior to Desmarest.

What is Taught: Galileo (17th century) was the world’s first great experimenter. What Should be Taught: Al-Biruni (d. 1050) was the world’s first great experimenter. He wrote over 200 books, many of which discuss his precise experiments. His literary output in the sciences amounts to some 13,000 pages, far exceeding that written by Galileo or, for that matter, Galileo and Newton combined. What is Taught: The Italian Giovanni Morgagni is regarded as the father of pathology because he was the first to correctly describe the nature of disease.

What Should be Taught: Islam’s surgeons were the first pathologists. They fully realized the nature of disease and described a variety of diseases to modern detail. Ibn Zuhr correctly described the nature of pleurisy, tuberculosis and pericarditis. Az-Zahrawi accurately documented the pathology of hydrocephalus (water on the brain) and other congenital diseases. Ibn al-Quff and Ibn an-Nafs gave perfect descriptions of the diseases of circulation. Other Muslim surgeons gave the first accurate descriptions of certain malignancies, including cancer of the stomach, bowel and esophagus. These surgeons were the originators of pathology, not Giovanni Morgagni.

What is Taught: Paul Ehrlich (19th century) is the originator of drug chemotherapy, that is the use of specific drugs to kill microbes.

What Should be Taught: Muslim physicians used a variety of specific substances to destroy microbes. They applied sulfur topically specifically to kill the scabies mite. Ar-Razi (10 th century) used mercurial compounds as topical antiseptics.

What is Taught: Purified alcohol, made through distillation, was first produced by Arnau de Villanova, a Spanish alchemist, in 1300 A.D.

What Should be Taught: Numerous Muslim chemists produced medicinal-grade alcohol through distillation as early as the 10th century and manufactured on a large scale the first distillation devices for use in chemistry. They used alcohol as a solvent and antiseptic.

What is Taught: The first surgery performed under inhalation anesthesia was conducted by C.W. Long, an American, in 1845.

What Should be Taught: Six hundred years prior to Long, Islamic Spain’s Az-Zahrawi and Ibn Zuhr, among other Muslim surgeons, performed hundreds of surgeries under inhalation anesthesia with the use of narcotic-soaked sponges which were placed over the face.

What is Taught: During the 16th century Paracelsus invented the use of opium extracts for anesthesia.

What Should be Taught: Muslim physicians introduced the anesthetic value of opium derivatives during the Middle Ages. Opium was originally used as an anesthetic agent by the Greeks. Paracelus was a student of Ibn Sina’s works from which it is almost assured that he derived this idea.

What is Taught: Modern anesthesia was invented in the 19th century by Humphrey Davy and Horace Wells.

What Should be Taught: Modern anesthesia was discovered, mastered and perfected by Muslim anesthetists 900 years before the advent of Davy and Wells. They utilized oral as well as inhalant anesthetics.

What is Taught: The concept of quarantine was first developed in 1403. In Venice, a law was passed preventing strangers from entering the city until a certain waiting period had passed. If, by then, no sign of illness could be found, they were allowed in.

What Should be Taught: The concept of quarantine was first introduced in the 7th century A.D. by the prophet Muhammad, who wisely warned against entering or leaving a region suffering from plague. As early as the 10th century, Muslim physicians innovated the use of isolation wards for individuals suffering with communicable diseases.

What is Taught: The scientific use of antiseptics in surgery was discovered by the British surgeon Joseph Lister in 1865.

What Should be Taught: As early as the 10th century, Muslim physicians and surgeons were applying purified alcohol to wounds as an antiseptic agent. Surgeons in Islamic Spain utilized special methods for maintaining antisepsis prior to and during surgery. They also originated specific protocols for maintaining hygiene during the post-operative period. Their success rate was so high that dignitaries throughout Europe came to Cordova, Spain, to be treated at what was comparably the “Mayo Clinic” of the Middle Ages.

What is Taught: In 1545, the scientific use of surgery was advanced by the French surgeon Ambroise Pare. Prior to him, surgeons attempted to stop bleeding through the gruesome procedure of searing the wound with boiling oil. Pare stopped the use of boiling oils and began ligating arteries. He is considered the “father of rational surgery.” Pare was also one of the first Europeans to condemn such grotesque “surgical” procedures as trepanning (see reference #6, pg. 110).

What Should be Taught: Islamic Spain’s illustrious surgeon, az-Zahrawi (d. 1013), began ligating arteries with fine sutures over 500 years prior to Pare. He perfected the use of Catgut, that is suture made from animal intestines. Additionally, he instituted the use of cotton plus wax to plug bleeding wounds. The full details of his works were made available to Europeans through Latin translations. Despite this, barbers and herdsmen continued be the primary individuals practicing the “art” of surgery for nearly six centuries after az-Zahrawi’s death. Pare himself was a barber, albeit more skilled and conscientious than the average ones. Included in az-Zahrawi’s legacy are dozens of books. His most famous work is a 30 volume treatise on medicine and surgery. His books contain sections on preventive medicine, nutrition, cosmetics, drug therapy, surgical technique, anesthesia, pre and post-operative care as well as drawings of some 200 surgical devices, many of which he invented. The refined and scholarly az-Zahrawi must be regarded as the father and founder of rational surgery, not the uneducated Pare.

What is Taught: William Harvey, during the early 17th century, discovered that blood circulates. He was the first to correctly describe the function of the heart, arteries and veins. Rome’s Galen had presented erroneous ideas regarding the circulatory system, and Harvey was the first to determine that blood is pumped throughout the body via the action of the heart and the venous valves. Therefore, he is regarded as the founder of human physiology.

What Should be Taught: In the 10th century, Islam’s ar-Razi wrote an in-depth treatise on the venous system, accurately describing the function of the veins and their valves. Ibn an-Nafs and Ibn al-Quff (13th century) provided full documentation that the blood circulates and correctly described the physiology of the heart and the function of its valves 300 years before Harvey. William Harvey was a graduate of Italy’s famous Padua University at a time when the majority of its curriculum was based upon Ibn Sina’s and ar-Razi’s textbooks.

What is Taught: The first pharmacopeia (book of medicines) was published by a German scholar in 1542. According to World Book Encyclopedia, the science of pharmacology was begun in the 1900’s as an off-shoot of chemistry due to the analysis of crude plant materials. Chemists, after isolating the active ingredients from plants, realized their medicinal value.

What Should be Taught: According to the eminent scholar of Arab history, Phillip Hitti, the Muslims, not the Greeks or Europeans, wrote the first “modern” pharmacopeia. The science of pharmacology was originated by Muslim physicians during the 9th century. They developed it into a highly refined and exact science. Muslim chemists, pharmacists and physicians produced thousands of drugs and/or crude herbal extracts one thousand years prior to the supposed birth of pharmacology. During the 14th century Ibn Baytar wrote a monumental pharmacopeia listing some 1400 different drugs. Hundreds of other pharmacopeias were published during the Islamic Era. It is likely that the German work is an offshoot of that by Ibn Baytar, which was widely circulated in Europe.

What is Taught: The discovery of the scientific use of drugs in the treatment of specific diseases was made by Paracelsus, the Swiss-born physician, during the 16th century. He is also credited with being the first to use practical experience as a determining factor in the treatment of patients rather than relying exclusively on the works of the ancients.

What Should be Taught: Ar-Razi, Ibn Sina, al-Kindi, Ibn Rushd, az-Zahrawi, Ibn Zuhr, Ibn Baytar, Ibn al-Jazzar, Ibn Juljul, Ibn al-Quff, Ibn an-Nafs, al-Biruni, Ibn Sahl and hundreds of other Muslim physicians mastered the science of drug therapy for the treatment of specific symptoms and diseases. In fact, this concept was entirely their invention. The word “drug” is derived from Arabic. Their use of practical experience and careful observation was extensive. Muslim physicians were the first to criticize ancient medical theories and practices. Ar-Razi devoted an entire book as a critique of Galen’s anatomy. The works of Paracelsus are insignificant compared to the vast volumes of medical writings and original findings accomplished by the medical giants of Islam.

What is Taught: The first sound approach to the treatment of disease was made by a German, Johann Weger, in the 1500’s.

What Should be Taught: Harvard’s George Sarton says that modern medicine is entirely an Islamic development and that Setting the Record Straight the Muslim physicians of the 9th through 12th centuries were precise, scientific, rational and sound in their approach. Johann Weger was among thousands of Europeans physicians during the 15th through 17th centuries who were taught the medicine of ar-Razi and Ibn Sina. He contributed nothing original.

What is Taught: Medical treatment for the insane was modernized by Philippe Pinel when in 1793 he operated France’s first insane asylum.

What Should be Taught: As early as the 1lth century, Islamic hospitals maintained special wards for the insane. They treated them kindly and presumed their disease was real at a time when the insane were routinely burned alive in Europe as witches and sorcerers. A curative approach was taken for mental illness and, for the first time in history, the mentally ill were treated with supportive care, drugs and psychotherapy. Every major Islamic city maintained an insane asylum where patients were treated at no charge. In fact, the Islamic system for the treatment of the insane excels in comparison to the current model, as it was more humane and was highly effective as well.

What is Taught: Kerosine was first produced by the an Englishman, Abraham Gesner, in 1853. He distilled it from asphalt.

What Should be Taught: Muslim chemists produced kerosine as a distillate from petroleum products over 1,000 years prior to Gesner (see Encyclopaedia Britannica under the heading, Petroleum).

For biographies of Muslim Scholars mentioned in this article, visit the Web Site: Muslim Scientists and Islamic Civilization . For authors and books mentioned in this article, refer to the author’s book ‘The Miracle of Islamic Science’. Also, Refer to Dr. Ajram’s companion book ‘Incredible Islamic Scientists: Incredible Facts About Incredible Men – 500 Multiple Choice, Short Answers and True-False Questions’, 1992, p. 136. ISBN 0911119485.

Does God Exist?

[Got this in an email, found it interesting, so here it is for you to read and THINK!]

“WHAT DO U FEEL ABOUT THIS?

A man went to a barbershop to have his hair cut and his beard trimmed. As the barber began to
work, they began to have a good conversation.They talked about so many things and various subjects.

When they eventually touched on the subject of God, the barber said: “I don’t believe that God exists.”

“Why do you say that?” asked the customer.

“Well, you just have to go out in the street to realize that God doesn’t exist. Tell me, if God exists, would there be so many sick people? Would there be abandoned children? If God
existed, there would be neither suffering nor pain. I can’t imagine a loving God who
would allow all of these things.”

The customer thought for a moment, but didn’t respond because he didn’t want to start an argument.

The barber finished his job and the customer left the shop. Just after he left the barbershop, he saw a man in the street with long, stringy, dirty hair and an untrimmed beard. He looked dirty and unkempt.

The customer turned back and entered the barber shop again and he said to the barber: “You know what? Barbers do not exist.”

“How can you say that?” asked the surprised barber.

“I am here, and I am a barber. And I just worked on you!” “No!” the customer
exclaimed. “Barbers don’t exist because if they did, there would be no people with dirty long hair and untrimmed beards, like that man outside.”

“Ah, but barbers DO exist! ” answered the barber. ” What happens is, people do not come to me. ”
“Exactly!” affirmed the customer. “That’s the point! God, too, DOES exist!

What happens, is, people don’t go to Him and do not look for Him.

That’s why there’s so much pain and suffering in the world.”