~A Revert Story to Remember~

September 29, 2011

Faisal mosque

Image via Wikipedia

 My name is Cassie, I am 23 years old. I graduated as a qualified nurse this year and was given my first position as a home nurse.

 My patient was an English gentleman in his early 80’s who suffered from Alzheimer’s. In the first meeting  with the patient  I was given his record and from it could see that he was a convert to the religion of Islam, therefore he was a Muslim.

I knew from this that I would need to take into account some modes of treatment that may go against his faith, and therefore tried to adapt my care to meet his needs. I brought in some ‘halal’ meat to cook for him and ensured that there was no pork or alcohol in the premises as I did some research which showed that these were forbidden in Islam.

My patient was in a very advanced stage of his condition so a lot of my colleagues could not understand why I was going to so much effort for him, but I understood that a person who commits to a faith deserves that commitment to be respected, even if they are not in a position to understand.

Anyway, after a few weeks with my patient I began to notice some patterns of movement. At first I thought it was some copied motion he’s seen someone do, but I saw him repeat the movement at particular times; morning, afternoon, evening.

The movements were to raise his hands, bow and then put his head to the ground. I could not understand it. He was also repeating sentences in another language, I couldn’t figure out what language it was as his speech was slurred but I know the same verses were repeated daily. Also there was something strange, he didnt allow me to feed him with my left hand {I am lefthanded}.

Somehow I knew this linked to his religion but didn’t know how. Read the rest of this entry »

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Common Mistakes Made During Prayer

July 13, 2011

Faithful praying towards Makkah; Umayyad Mosqu...

Image via Wikipedia

Many of us learned how to pray on our own through books, others by practicing knowledgeable Muslims, and others from believers who themselves know or understand little about Islam.  In all cases, learning new points, or refreshing our information only serves to increase our deen and our iman.  Please watch this short video to gain more knowledge of how prayer can be complete and satisfying not only to Allah but also for ourselves.

Please follow this link:  http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=207814715897561


CHOOSING ISLAM FOR MYSELF

May 20, 2011

Borrowed from HAPPY MUSLIM HUSBAND & WIFE

Story of Wanda and how she became a Muslim – very inspiring for all.

I was raised in a Christian environment, but from about the age of 7 or 8 I openly refused to accept the idea that God and Christ were one in the same–nor did I accept the trinity.

 woman making supplicatton

There were six children and my parents. No one else thought as I did, so you can imagine how very interesting “Bible Study” got at home. My mother was so shocked by my steadfastness, but nothing she said could change my mind. As shy as I was, I stood my ground and refused to accept my families’ beliefs. For whatever reason, I simply could not accept the Christian concepts to the point I got nothing out of the studies.

When I was fourteen, I decided I wanted to search for what I could not find in Christianity. I was literally starving spiritually for something I had no name for, but felt it existed somewhere.

I visited other religions–studied with some of them, but there was always that point where I was aware they were not for me. I just about visited every church/religion you could think of and they all fell short of the concept I had in my mind and heart for My true religion. The one religion I kept searching for was that which I could serve with all my heart and soul totally, fully, truly and uncondionally beyond a shadow of a doubt.

I was an oddball among my family and my peers. All during my childhood strange things happened to me that could not be explained by ordinary standards. I stood out like a sore thumb. I stopped going to church except for special family funcions and funerals. I prayed to God often, and tried to live my life each day to the best of my abilities with God’s guidance. I prayed to God to show me where I belonged. I asked Him where did I belong? I prayed for years and years, and would you believe I finally got my answer? Almost 4 years ago, I got an unsolicited letter out of the blue from a man who got my name from a penpal list sent to him by his sister-in-law.

I answered his first letter and from then on, it all was very interesting. I could read from the flavor of his letters that he was Muslim; he acknowledged this fact. I noticed his beliefs were a lot like my own and over time,he told me that without knowing it,I basically lived my life as a believer. We had so much in common when it came to serving God.

He sent me literature. The first piece of literature was so very beautiful, I could hardly stand the overwhelming emotion that came forth as I read it. It touched me to the point that I could not hold back my tears. I was so shaken by it; I have no words to explain what was in my heart at that time. I thorouhly studied all the literature sent thereafter, and it had the same emotional affect upon me. Read the rest of this entry »


A College Junior Converts to Islam

October 14, 2010

UNC junior reshapes lifestyle after converting to Islam

By KELLY POE | The Daily Tar Heel
Updated: 1:58 AM
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Nushmia Khan / DTH

Junior Matt Stevens holds a Quran before a Muslim Students Association on Wednesday evening. Stevens grew up going to a Christian church, but converted to Islam in 2008. “When people come to college, it’s a time where either they lose themselves religiously, or they find their true passion,” he said. “I found my place.”

muslim2Kirsch

Stevens prays in the Student Union. “They’re deep moments, those moments after prayer,” he said. “They’re silent. No matter how busy you are, you remember why you’re here. You can ask God for anything.”

MULTIMEDIA
Close ups: The Convert to Islam

Close ups: The Convert to Islam

This installment of Close ups focuses on Matt Stevens, a junior business administration major who decided to convert to Islam from Christianity.
Before sunrise, Matt Stevens is closest to God.

He wakes up every day between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. for fajr.

He washes his face and kneels toward Mecca, then puts his head to the ground to bow before God. The first thread of light has just appeared on the horizon.

He is closest to God at least four more times each day when he performs the five daily prayers obligatory to the Islamic faith.

He prays the dhuhrasrmaghrib and isha’a , some silent and some aloud. For Matt, these are five daily reminders of what’s important to him and what his life really is.

When he kneels before Allah, you hardly notice his blond hair and blue eyes.

Same god, new religion

Matt hasn’t always prayed this much. He always prayed to the same God. But he’s only been calling him Allah for about two years.

He used to go to church with his father every Sunday. He went to youth fellowship and Bible study, and he volunteered at vacation Bible school programs and went on mission trips all at the same church where he went to preschool.

He digested what the minister told him in his sermons. He got it. He understood.

But he didn’t feel anything.

“Who is Jesus?” he asked a Sunday school teacher.

He’s the son of God, she told him. He’s also God. Sometimes he’s God, sometimes he’s the son of God.

But how could he be both?

He brought the question of the Trinity to his father. Try, his father told him, and you’ll get it eventually.

As he waited for answers and none came, his interest in the answer only grew. Read the rest of this entry »


HOW TO PLAN A GREEN WEDDING

September 26, 2010

7 easy ideas to ‘green up’ your wedding day, a true story from an Ann Arbor couple!

Did you know that an Ann Arbor couple ‘greened’ up their wedding and you simply could do it too?

It was in August 2010, the Ann Arbor couple (Engel and Dyer) were married in a “green” outdoor ceremony and reception near the Huron River fit to pay homage to their shared love of the planet and the outdoors.

The trend toward green weddings certainly isn’t new, but industry experts say it has evolved to allow married couples to incorporate their unique personal preferences and still afford their big event.

Most people are interested in a green wedding and when they hear about just what it entails, they find themselves going a different route. Our heroes Engel and Dyer made the decision they wouldn’t be able to keep everything completely green, but were going to try their hardest. And the most essential element was to make the day educational as well as fun for guests.science and nature centers

They planned the marriage at a science and nature center where tours were offered to guests in the hour before they walked down the aisle. The tour featured different water and energy conservation solutions used at the center like the solar-panel arrays for electricity, solar-powered heating and water heater systems and no-flush compost toilets.

The couple also focused on little details they said make a big difference.

– Dyer wore an heirloom – a vintage green dress that had been her great-grandmother’s in the 1930’s.

– Her ring was made with recycled gold and had a beryl stone instead of a diamond.

– Her makeup was certified organic.

– Guests were given local lavender buds – rather than sachets of rice – to throw in celebration.

– Tables were covered with local wildflowers and locally sourced foods.

– Leftovers and unused food were recycled (by sending to local farms) or reused.

– They found a generator that was solar powered and able to produce enough power to run the lights and the sound system they needed for the rock band. (how cool is that?!!)

For all their efforts, they still made some choices they knew weren’t the most eco-friendly options.

While  they could’ve gone with Internet invitations rather than printing and mailing invitations, but Dyer said she felt paper invitations were important – on recycled paper, of course.

So you? What can You do to ‘green up’ your marriage day?solar panel

While green weddings are becoming more trendy, planning and pulling off the event is not as easy as one could imagine.

Sorting through claims of environmentally friendliness when shopping in the current marketplace is a big enough obstacle for typical purchases, let alone for such an emotionally charged and personal event as a wedding.

The best way to reduce the impact of an event is to execute a life cycle analysis on different elements of the ceremony. For instance, where is that food coming from, how much energy is expended to produce it, how does it get to your plate and where do the leftovers go?

While meat typically takes more energy to produce than fruits and vegetables, considering how far some vegatables and fruits must travel might give them a larger carbon footprint.

The best way to reduce an event’s carbon footprint is to cut back on the number of guests invited. Fewer guests mean fewer meals, fewer needs for centerpieces and other decor and fewer miles traveled to reach the wedding.

About the writer – Lucy E. Thomason writes articles for the <a href=”http://www.eventplanningcareers.net/”>event planning degree</a> blog, her personal hobby blog focused on recommendations to help people figure out how to organize a green event to spend less energy and reduce carbon footprints.


Bilal Phillips Free Islamic Courses

December 30, 2009

Jazak Allah khayr for this post! IOU offers a variety of free courses and it is great for working sisters and SAHMs, as you may work at your own pace.  I would encourage everyone to check it out and spread the word!

May Allah reward you generously for the information and reward the brother and his organization and make them successful in this life and the Next!

Abu Ameenah Bilal Phillips is offering free courses / quizzes w
certificates online at the Islamic Online University. Plus they
offer BA n MA degrees in Islam.
Www.islamiconlineuniversity.com
<http://www.islamiconlineuniversity.com/>


15 Brain Boosting Activities

December 30, 2009

If you dont keep your mind active, studies show that your brain loses some of its functionality as you age, which causes memory loss, brain fog, and even Alzheimers. A well-stimulated brain also elevates your mood, which helps you feel better on the inside. Here are 15 brain boosting activities:

1.  Play games that challenge and stimulate your mind. These include: * Picture Puzzles

  • Strategy Games
  • Crossword Puzzles

    Model of neurons firing in the brain. Researchers may have accidentally hit on a trigger spot for déjà vu in the hypothalamus. (Credit: iStockphoto/Kiyoshi Takahase)

  • Card Games
  • Deduction Games (such as Clue
  • Visualization Puzzles
  • Optical Illusions

2. Reading stimulates the brain as it activates your imagination. Reading also helps with memory retention and problem solving, especially if youre reading a mystery. Also, self-help books stimulate your brain by helping you to think for yourself, as well as find solutions in your mind..

3. Exercising helps circulate blood that carries oxygen to your brain. Over the long-term, exercise is proven to increase brainpower and even create new neurons.

4. Stimulate your brain with meditation.. Meditation has been shown to increase your IQ, relieve stress, and promote a higher level of brain functioning. Meditation also stimulates the prefrontal cortex of the brain, the area of the brain responsible for advanced thinking, ability and performance.

5. Deep breathing helps deliver oxygen to your brain. Oxygen helps you be more alert and awake. As little as 10 to 15 minutes of deep breathing daily can increase brain functionality.

6. Taking fish oil supplements is literally like membrane material for the brain.. The two primary components in fish oil, DHA and EPA, strengthen the emotional center of the brain and boost focus.

7. Studies have proven that listening to Nasheed and Quran strengthens the right hemisphere of the brain and actually changes the structure of it. Also, people who listen to music are shown to be more emotionally intelligent than those who dont.

8. Writing improves memory and thought expression. Writing articles, blogs, or journal entries stimulates thought processes, which also enhances brain function.

9. Sleep clears out brain clutter and reduces brain fog. When you dont get enough sleep at night, your memory and normal brain function suffers.

10. Painting is shown to be an effective brain booster in that it sparks the creativity within you. Even if youve never tried painting before, give it a shot. Youll find that you feel more creative and may actually enjoy it.

11. Starting the day out with a good breakfast has been proven to supply energy to the brain and body for the whole day. When you skip breakfast, youre missing out on a powerful edge, both physically and mentally.

12. Walking allows you to clear your mind and thoughts. Not only is it good exercise for your body, walking gives your brain a chance to wander freely, clearing it of any troublesome thoughts.

13. Drink a serving of pure fruit juice.. Fruit juice contains nutrients that revitalize and refresh the brain. Juices to drink are pomegranate, blueberry, and cranberry as they deliver more focus and energy.

14. Students who drink some caffeine before an exam typically have higher scores than those who dont. This is because caffeine stimulates activity in the brain, which produces better focus and thinking ability. Dont overdo it though!

15. Draw a picture. Like painting, drawing stimulates the creative side of your brain. So get out some colored pencils and start boosting your brainpower.

To get the most out of these brain boosting activities, mix them up and do a variety of them at different times. Just choosing one wont boost your brainpower, however, combining and alternating them will give your brain the added boost you need now and in the long run.


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