Author Archives: najaaba

When dependence is good

All my life I’ve tried to be independent – independent in the sense of relying on myself as much as possible to get things done.  As an American, I have been acculturated to value independence as a positive aspect of a strong … Continue reading

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R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Do you remember a song performed by Aretha Franklin entitled “Respect”?  It begins with “What you want… baby, I got.  What you need, you know I’ve got it.  All I’m askin’ is for a little respect…R-E-S-P-E-C-T.  Find out what it … Continue reading

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A Short History of Religion

Following is a sequence of events that seem to logically explain the diversity in religions today and the differences in religious scriptures.    With this model, we can see that the diversity and differences are to be expected, and we … Continue reading

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Would You Have Followed Jesus?

We all know the Bible stories about Jesus, his birth, his miracles, and how he was persecuted.  Did you ever close your eyes and imagine you were there?  Let’s imagine together.  We are Jews who follow the Book of Moses … Continue reading

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Hajj: A Spiritual Journey to Mecca

Hajj is an annual event that falls in the last month of the Islamic (lunar) calendar with the Ka’bah in Mecca as the central gathering place.  Roughly a 15 meter cube, it is not a temple, church, or shrine, but … Continue reading

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Ramadan

Ramadan is like spring cleaning to me: an annual ritual that results in the cleansing of the body, the airing out of the mind, and the beautification of the soul. It provides the opportunity for reorganization and fine tuning of … Continue reading

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The Muslim’s Journey through Life

Our journey in life is never alone.  Each of us has a mother, and each is born into a family.  In Islam, the journey through life is intrinsically woven into family life.  It is within the family structure that the … Continue reading

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My Story

Most stories begin when we are born.  And surely there is significance in the circumstances, people and events of our birth and childhood, but there are specific major events in our lives that fundamentally change us.  For me, the most … Continue reading

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Criminal Law in Islam

Criminal law refers to the rules in a community that define conduct that is not allowed because it is held to threaten, harm or endanger the safety and welfare of others, and that specify the punishment to be imposed on … Continue reading

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Patience

Patience is mentioned in the Quran as one of the qualities of someone who will go to Paradise.  For example,  “I have rewarded them this Day [with Paradise] for what they have endured patiently; they are indeed the ones that … Continue reading

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English translation of the Quran

Only the Quran in Arabic, the original language, can be called the Quran.  There are several translations which approximate the meaning but can never fully express the rhythm, rhyme, depth of connotation and subtlety of denotation of the Arabic words. … Continue reading

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The Testimony

La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammad rasool Allah.  These words comprise what is known as the shahada, or testimony, among Muslims.  It is a phrase that one should hear immediately after birth and should say as he passes from this life.  … Continue reading

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The Basic Principles of Islam

Islam is a way of life based on belief in God as an exclusive deity and acts of worship that enhance spiritual, emotional and social wellbeing.  Adherence to standards of conduct outlined in the Holy Quran enable individuals and communities … Continue reading

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Signs

  I was driving home yesterday when I spotted this sign on the road:  “Camera ahead – 80.”  I thought, how nice of the traffic department to warn us that a camera is ahead and remind us that the speed … Continue reading

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The Muslim’s Prayer

One of the things that fascinates me most about Muslims in their adherence to the daily prayer.   Five times a day you see them stopping whatever they are doing to make a connection with God.  It’s not uncommon to see … Continue reading

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