Monday, September 29, 2008

Google Eid Doodle

Google just turned 10 years old!! Happy Birthday!! They have included all of their Doodles that they have created in the last ten years. See link: Google Doodle.

I think it would be great if we can get Google to make us a doodle. I've written a letter that I sent to Google and I'm asking you to send it too!! Emai Google is the link. Paste this text and put your name!!

To whom the Doodle May Concern:

I was looking through the doodles over the last 10 years and it is truly amazing how far Google and the doodle has come.

There over one and a half billion Muslims in the world and if they are on the web, they are most likely using Google. We are nearing the end of our holy month of Ramadan. Our holiday is Eid al-Fitr which is set for Wednesday October 1st, 2008. We also have another holiday which commemorates the end of the Hajj or the holy pilgrimage to Mecca (in Saudi Arabia). Over 3 million people converge in one place. It would be nice for Google to acknowledge the 1.5 billion plus Muslims in the world with a doodle that acknowledges one or both of our holidays.


Your Name
Loyal Google User 

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Zardari (& Crew) Pimipin' Palin?

Yay Pakistan!

On entering a room filled with several Pakistani officials Wednesday, Palin was immediately greeted by Sherry Rehman, the country's information minister.

"And how does one keep looking that good when one is that busy?" Rehman asked Palin, drawing friendly laughter from the room.

"Oh, thank you," Palin said.

Pakistan's new president, Asif Ali Zardari, entered the room seconds later. Palin rose to shake his hand, saying she was "honored" to meet him.

Zardari then called her "gorgeous" and said: "Now I know why the whole of America is crazy about you."

"You are so nice," Palin said, smiling. "Thank you."

A handler from Zardari's entourage then told the two politicians to keep shaking hands for the cameras.

"If he's insisting, I might hug," Zardari said. Palin smiled politely in response.
Full Story: CNN

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Help Needed at Masjid Al-Islam (Oakland)

Assalaamualaikum wa rahmatullah
Please forgive the length of this email.

Many of you know of the Muslim community of MAsjid Al-Islam in East Oakland on
82nd and MacArthur Blvd. This is the community that Amir Abdel Malik and Imam
Musa came from. Several of us must have heard of it but never really went there
since they were the ones who came to our communities in Southern California,
MCA, SFo, San Jose...etc.

While they were coming to our communities, we never went to their masjid and
saw the community there. The Masjid Al-Islam community is a very small tight
knit community. They are simple, friendly, and very accommodating. While they
have these and many more qualities, they are not a wealthy community. They run
their own Islamic school a block from the Masjid. They also own a fairly large
piece of undeveloped land with a building between the school and the Masjid.
They purchased and paid off these pieces of property several years ago,
Alhamdulillah. They want to develop these properties and use them to make dawah
in the community (they have a lot of respect for the brothers and sisters
there),and generate some income for the school and masjid to reduce financial

Over the years, Masjid Al-Islam never really received enough funds to complete
repairs in the Masjid, the school, and the building. What ever they have
received, they used it for the repair and bills for the school and the Masjid.
Unfortunately, majority of the people are struggling to make a living and to
support their families. Alhamdulillah, there have been some brothers and sisters
who visited the community and have given a lot to help with the masjid expenses.
However, this has not helped with the completion of any of the properties. They
have been able to make their bills and sometime have delayed payment of their
bills due to the lack of funds. They cannot ask for large amounts of money from
the same people all the time. Therefore this e-mail appeal to help the

I have been visiting the community for the past few days and found that they
are being shy to ask for money. They have tried to have fundraisers at MCA but
the larger organizations had already taken up much of the wealth from the donor
community. The attendance was poor, and the few who came gave everything that
they could.

I was able to get a rough idea of what their needs are and the possible cost of
material. I would strongly recommend that people from other communities visit
the MAsjid Al-Islam community without any hidden agenda and see first hand what
happens there. The following list should give us an idea of their needs are:

In the Masjid,
Womens Bathroom: Needs to be remodeled (the mens wudu area and bathrooms was
all donated by one brother. The sisters bathroom has been long due): It needs
everything (double sink vanity, 25 sheets of tile board, two commodes, flush
tanks, faucets, shower area, 3 doors (two for stalls, one for main entrance)
with knobs and frames, tiles for the walls (tiles cover half the walls and
floor), Paint, lighting and ventilation. Pretty much everything.
The approximate total cost of rebuilding the Women's bathroom and wudu area
is $10,000.

Masjid Office: Needs repairs to walls, lighting, and paint.Estimated cost is
$1000. The office needs an office desk (can help get a good one from craigslist,
does not have to be new), complete desktop computer with canon image class
printer/copier (if you have something P4HT or better with CD/Dvd burner would be
sufficient), and four drawer file cabinet with a lock, one 6ft dry erase board.
These things do not have to be new but have to be in good working condition. One
license for Quick books and 20 licenses to Kaspersky anti virus all same version
(Frys had rebate deals for

Everything is needed in the kitchen. Walls, ceiling, paint, Refrigerator,
freezer, gas stove, counter, sink, disposal, shelving, lighting and ventilation,
fire extinguisher...etc.

Classrooms (Two):
all the electrical wiring needs to be redone. Currently it is a fire hazard and
is not being used. That by itself may cost close to $4000 I am not sure. The
walls and ceiling need around 100 sheets of drywall. $1500
My rough estimate is $10,000 for these two rooms.

The Masjid is trying its best to cut costs by looking for bargain deals for
their items. If anyone wants to donate specifically towards a certain item,
please mention what that item is. If anyone wants to take the item to the
masjid, then please co-ordinate and make sure it is something that the Masjid
needs. If you are taking anything to the masjid, please find out if they already
have it or not. Other wise it will go to waste. Make sure all items are clean.

Besides these expenses, The school needs $40,000 and $50,000 to be able to stay
afloat for the rest of the school year, InshaAllah.

The Prophet, salla Allaahu 'alaihe wasallam, said; "Verily, wealth
does not decrease because of charity." [Muslim]

Allah SWT has always provided and InshaAllah will continue to provide.

Please donate what ever you can. If you cannot donate then please pass the
message. InshaAllah, there will be reward and Barakah in whatever you can give.
You can make your checks payable to Masjid Al-Islam and mail your checks to the
address below.

Masjid Al Islam
8210 McArthur Blvd.
Oakland, CA-94605
Phone: 1(510)-638 9541

Please note that this Masjid is on the intersection of 82nd and McArthur.
JazakAllahukhairan for your generosity.

Galib Haswarey

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ramadan Extravaganza

I'm so so so guilty of this. May Allah (swt) guide us all.

In mosques all over the country, at the time of breaking the fast, a festival of food is being served. This year, Muslim Americans will spend close to $10 million on feeding those who are already fed. On an average each mosque will spend some where between $500 to $2000 daily to serve food and beverages. Of the food that is being served, a large amount is being wasted as the believers will have no appetite to consume after filling their plates thrice the size of their normal diet. It is a different thing that every evening while listening to the Quran in taraweeh prayers, they would marvel at the words of the God that inspires us not to waste and overspend.
Ramadan has become a month of parties and food and not many are willing to challenge that concept of raveling specially when more than half of the Muslim world sleeps hungry and more than 40 percent of the world does not have a decent meal.

Imagine, if the $10 million being spent on Ramadan food is used to pay off the mortgages that many Mosques have, to finance the education of poor children, to build schools and to promote print or electronic media, how great an impact it would create on the social life of Muslims, yet few are willing to talk about it.

Ramadan to our prophet was a month of simplicity. He would break his fast with half a date and water or a glass of milk if he could get one. Eating meat was a luxury. Eating a full meal was unthinkable. Much emphasis was placed on reflections, self improvement and personality growth. Under his leadership, his companions would form circles to ponder on the ayas of the Quran. They would spread out in the streets of Medina to ensure that people do not sleep hungry and children are fed properly. They would invite people to read the divine message and think on the verses of the Quran and each would try to surpass the other in acts of generosity. They would ensure that their prayers are regular and they do not miss obligatory prayers in the Mosque. It was the simplicity that marked Ramadan during the life time of the Prophet.

Simplicity is far from anything that you would see in our mosques during the iftar today. The irony is that some people will even forego the obligatory prayers as it would interfere with their food. In many places one can see people fighting with each other over getting the best portion of the meat. If they do not find what they are looking for, they would even curse the organizers. They would even complain if the food is not of their taste. This is of course not the norm but ask any Mosque organizer and they will attest that this does happen.

Ramadan was meant to inspire in us the feeling of caring and sharing. It was meant to create discipline among us. But far from it, the iftar gathering in our Mosques have become a big embarrassment.

Ramadan is meant to motivate us to sacrifice for others. It is meant to purify us from our weakness. We are often told that that by fasting, we feel the pain of hunger and thirst of millions of less fortunate people. The purpose was that we would give preference to the needs of the poor over our needs. Yet, during the month, many of us pay little attention to the poor and needy. Very few Mosques in the country make any systematic effort to identify those who are unable to afford a decent meal and then serve them quietly.

Can we return to the simplicity of the Prophet? We can if our teachers, scholars and all people of conscious start taking a stand on this issue. Unfortunately, we are all promoting this extravaganza by being a part of it and approving of it and congratulating the hosts for adding so many dishes on the menu.

Let's try to set an example by focusing on personal growth and serving the needy and the poor from our homes and our Mosques. Let's feed the homeless of our city every day of the month of fasting. This will require a greater personal sacrifice then just abstaining from food and drink all day and only those will be ready to do this, who are willing to follow in the footsteps of our beloved Prophet.
Source: IslamiCity
Hijab Flutter: Lina Akkad

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I Took The Pledge!

Plastic water bottles are sooo 90's. I took the pledge to ditch bottled water for good at Filter for Good! Why would I do that? Well, get this:

  1. Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles in 2006. However, the U.S.'s recycling rate for plastic is only 23 percent, which means 38 billion water bottles — more than $1 billion worth of plastic — are wasted each year.
  2. The energy we waste using bottled water would be enough to power 190,000 homes.
Additional facts at Filter for Good.

What are you waiting for? Sign up at!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Memo From God

To: You
Date: Today
From: The Boss
Subject: Yourself
Reference: Life

I am God. Today I will be handling your problems. Please remember I do not need your help. If life happens to deliver a situation to you that you cannot handle, do not attempt to resolve it. Kindly put it in the SFGTD (something for God to do) box. It will be addressed in My time, not yours. Once the matter is place into the box, do not hold on to it.

If you find yourself stuck in traffic, don't despair. There are people in this world for whom driving is not a privilege.

Should you have a bad day at work, think of the man who has been out of work for years.

Should you despair over a relationship gone bad, think of the person who has never known what its like to love and be loved in return.

Should you grieve the passing of another weekend, think of the women in dire straits, working twelve hours a day, seven days a week to feed her children.

Should your car break down, leaving you miles away from assistance, think of the paraplegic who would love the opportunity to take that walk.

Should you notice a new gray hair in the mirror, think of the cancer patient in Chemo who wishes she had hair to examine.

Should you find yourself t a loss and pondering what is life all about, asking what is my purpose? Be thankful. There are those who didn't live long enough to get this opportunity.

Should you find yourself being the victim of other people's bitterness, ignorance, smallness or insecurities, remember, things could be worse. YOU COULD BE THEM!

Hijab flutter: Sarah Alhabib, who said this reminded her of me.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ten Days of Forgiveness?

The blessed days of Ramadan are passing so quickly. The special days of Allah's great mercy, forgiveness and favors are going; therefore, every one should evaluate the efforts he exerted in Ramadan before it is too late. Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) told us that the first part of Ramadan is for Allah's mercy, its middle is for forgiveness, and its end is for salvation from Hell-fire.

No one knows whether or not he gained the mercy of Almighty Allah before the end of the first third of Ramadan. We should all be faithful and honest when evaluating our success in gaining His mercy in the first part of this blessed month. We should realize our shortcomings in order not to miss out on the blessings of the few days that remain.

Now we are favored with the days of forgiveness. Are we ready to work for forgiveness? Have we prepared ourselves to be forgiven by Almighty Allah? It is our great opportunity to repent, to return to Almighty Allah, and to seek His forgiveness. It is a precious time that we should not miss out on. If we fail to gain the forgiveness of Almighty Allah during the days of forgiveness, when would our sins would be forgiven?

Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), his companions, and the righteous Muslims throughout the ages used to pay due attention to Ramadan and the blessings it contains. Wise people should never miss the merits of every single day of Ramadan.

Now, the important question is: How should we seek the forgiveness of Almighty Allah during these blessed days of Ramadan? Below are some tips that we should consider and implement:

1. Everybody should sincerely repent to Almighty Allah, seeking His forgiveness,

2. Wrongdoings and prohibitions should be avoided,

3. One should offer more optional acts of worship such as Tahajjud (night prayer), charity, dhikr, and Qur’an recitation.

4. Obligatory acts of worship such as the five daily prayers should be carried out properly and faithfully, and

5. One should earnestly make du`aa’ to Almighty Allah to bless him with His favors and forgiveness.

O Allah, help us all to gain Your mercy, forgiveness, and blessings, Ameen.

Source: Islam Online

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


"One thing I started doing to “reduce” consumption, is to use a small amount of water for wudhu. Did you know that RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alayhi Wassalam used to use less then a 355 mL popcan worth of water for wudhu? (an Imam told me) Subhanullah!!! There are muslims out there who use atleast a gallon easy.
It’s pretty easy, just use your hand as an individual cup, (squeeze your fingers tightly) and the opposite hand to quickly turn off, and on, the tap, saving LOTS of water. This way the water isn’t running all the time even when it isn’t being used. I managed to only use half of a water bottle, which is about 250mL."
            Source: Mujahideen Ryder

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Two Very Cool New Finds

*Way to make the haraam so very halaal! He's even got a customizable Eid song. Check him out and support creative activism.
Hijab Flutter: Sabeen Shaiq Flores

*follow Seher thru her mission to complete 30 random acts of kindness in 30 days.
Hijab Flutter: the author, Seher Sikandar

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Inspirational Words Found in My Purse

You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour.
Now you must go back and tell people that this is the Hour.
And there are things to be considered:
Where are you living?
What are you doing?
What are your relationships?
Are you in right relation?
Where is your water?
Know your garden.
It is time to speak your truth.
Create your community.
Be good to each other.
And do not look outside yourself for the leader.
This could be a good time!
There is a river flowing now very fast.
It is so great and swift that there are those will be afriad.
They will try to cling to the shore.
They will feel they are being torn apart, and they will sufffer greatly.
Know this river has it's destination.
The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water.
See who is in there with you and celebrate.
At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally.
Least of all, ourselves.
For the moment we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.
The time of the lone wolf is over. Gather yourselves!
Banish the word struggle from your attitutde and your vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.
We are the ones we've been waiting for.
-The Elders ~ Orabi, Arizona, Hopi Nation

So these words are not a totally random find. A fellow protestor handed them to me at the Olympic Torch protests a few months ago in San Francisco. The paper had just been sitting at the bottom of my purse, forgotten. I remembered and found it when news broke recently of China's ridiculous Ramadan restrictions. I pray we really are the ones we've been waiting for.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Top 3 Ways To Know Muslims Have Successfully Integrated

Courtesy of a brother on one of the bajillion listservs I'm somehow subscribed to:

3- When you enter the restroom of a mosque and its dry, and with no lotas
2- When you hear on the news that "Hurricane Abdul-Cader" is brewing
1- When Right wing bloggers slam a Presidential candidate because he doesn't wake up for Fajr prayer

Community Organizers

Sarah Palin, you stand tall because you stand on the backs of those who came before you. You're a VP candidate partially because of the work of community organizers like Susan B. Anthony.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Something Different

I'm doing something different this Ramadan. Check it out: I signed onto the Ramadan Compact!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Ya' Allah Protect Us From Muslim Men Like This One

How do they sleep at night? 

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - A Pakistani lawmaker defended a decision by southwestern tribesmen to bury five women alive because they wanted to choose their own husbands, telling stunned members of Parliament this week to spare him their outrage.

"These are centuries-old traditions and I will continue to defend them," Israr Ullah Zehri, who represents Baluchistan province, said Saturday. "Only those who indulge in immoral acts should be afraid."

The women, three of whom were teenagers, were first shot and then thrown into a ditch. They were still breathing as their bodies were covered with rocks and mud, according media reports and human rights activists, who said their only "crime" was that they wished to marry men of their own choosing.

Full Story: MSNBC