Friday, September 29, 2006
Radio Ramadan 1
well yesterday I did my first show on the radio for this Ramadan and boy did it get heated.
nm, md and the revert came with me and so I knew that it was going to be an exciting and different show and seriously it was.
on Tuesday I had invited md to come on to the show and she agreed bless her and I asked her advice for a topic, instantly she said ' white African talk about the mosque issue'
of course, duh I should have realised, its a hot topic at the moment amongst my circle of friends because the mosque in our area where the majority of my friends live and where funnily enough is right behind my back garden, all I have to do is come out of the back gate and hey presto I'm at the mosque premises, any way this mosque does not allow sisters to pray, it would have been so convenient for us to pray tarawih prayers in our local mosque instead of having to treck all the way to town and risk our SAFETY (a word that kept cropping up on the radio).
just before Ramadan, md and the revert decided to pay our local mosque a visit and ask them politely if they would allow sisters to pray in the mosque, they where speaking to somebody concerning this when an older man pushed in and told them that THEY believe that woman have to pray at home and that's final, how rude!!!
well we will not stay quite about this and our voices will be heard, letters will be sent to the mosque, if that is ignored then we will petition the area as well as all Muslims in Manchester and if that does not work then protest out side the mosque will be the next step until we are given our rights as Muslim woman, what really saddens me is that the prophet pbuh did not prevent Muslim woman from praying in the mosque, so where did this mentality of preventing woman form the mosque come from? its not an Islamic mentality.
and this is why it was decided to talk about this issue on the radio, to raise awareness, well we had all met at Sanam restaraunt where MMU isoc where having there freshers iftar, we had just opened our fast and then had to dash away cause and bless the mmu committee they wouldn't let us leave without a take away of the dinner, which was delicious mashallah.
we got to the radio about 5 minutes late and started straight off, at the start it was a discussion between ourselves until the first caller called in, it was man and he was anti-woman praying in mosques, he kept asking us what was the need in us wanting to pray in a mosque, he understood our want but he wanted to know the need, want, need what difference does it make, the point us I want to pray tarawh or any of my fard prayers in a mosque.
what kept being mentioned was the hadith of the prophet pbuh which was that it is more rewarding for a woman to pray at home, fine I understand that but what the callers failed to mention was the hadith of the prophet where he (saw) said 'do not prevent woman from going to the mosque', but even though we mentioned this hadith over and over again some of the callers still turned a blind eye to it, frustrating or what.
one of the callers said that we don't have to go to the mosque any more because many mosques have a walki talky system so we can follow the imam from the comfort of our very homes and we do not need to risk our safety by leaving the house to walk to the mosque, because we all know that thousands of men are waiting round the corner ready to attack us, my god what planet are some people from????
it didn't help that 2 woman called in to the show in support of this mans statements, one of them would only speak in Arabic even though majority of listeners are English speakers, so I ha to play that role of translator, she called in to say that we should not step one foot into the mosque, that if I was looking for reward then I would follow the hadith of the prophet that says there is more reward in praying at home, she then moved on to say that it was dangerous for a woman to walk in the streets to go to the mosque, to which I repeatedly asked her whether she went shopping to which she would not answer my questions, so basically its ok to go shopping and what not because that's not dangerous, but to go to the mosque is????
she continued to say that we must accept that we are the weaker sex, that we are going against what god said - excuse me, granted we are created differenly physically but we are equal in the eyes of god in term of worship ibadah, but she still wouldn't accept this point. She then ended her conversation by saying that it is the duty of the maherm in our family to drop us of and pick up us from anywhere including going to uni, and that they should accompany us every where, yeh like they have nothing better to do, subhannallah.
we had another classic caller with a very strong scouser accent, bless her this lady did not listen to a single word we said, she rang accusing us of many thing we supposedly said when in fact such words did not even leave our mouths, pathetic really, she rang saying that she is sick and tired of these modern Muslims who come on the radio blah blah blah, the funny thing is that we are only asking for our god given rights so by asking for this we have been labeled 'modern Muslims' whatever, if following the prophet in the correct manner means being labeled modern so be it, bring it on I say.
she accused us of being feminists, sheeeeeech just because we want to pray in the mosque we have now been labeled as bra burning, armpit hair growing feminsists, see my point when I said she did not listen to us.
she said that we kept using the word liberated, walahi that word was not uttered from any of our mouths, I told her that the only liberation I want is to liberate my self as a Muslim from the fire of hell, to which she shouted 'my god, are you saying that if us Muslim woman don't pray in the mosque then we will be going to hell'
now does that sound like what I said, duh, NO, I was talking generally but it was pointless she refused to listen to any of us and continued to call us feminists, ok then...
we did have 2 supportive callers, one from a brother and another from a sister, so that was nice but to be honest I was expecting more calls of support but I guess like nm said, all our supporters are busy praying tarawih in mosques.
we ended the show with one more caller who I suspect was a previous caller but putting on a very strong Asian accent, he started by shouting 'HAAAARAAAAAAAAAAM' down the phone, 'it is HARAM for a woman to pray in the mosque' he then started to go on about how sisters these days wear rainbow coloured scarfs and wear d&g perfume, ??????????? and that such sisters should not be allowed into the mosques until they learn to dress appropriately and that includes niqab, and md bless her mentioned to him that there are difference of opinion concerning niqab but again it fell to deaf ears, he did big up Somali sisters by saying that they are good examples of how a Muslim woman should dress, which brought smiles to md and nm.
its funny but at the same time sad, you know when you reach a point of either laughing or crying, we chose to laugh yesterday but it's a serious issue and it really makes me sad to think that sisters are prevented from going to the mosque, its like the revert said, if it wasn't for the mosque that she attened she would never have reverted,
any brothers out there who are advocates of this ban woman from the mosque policy, please give us your reason because in all honesty no one has yet given us a reason, and don't bother mentioning the hadith that we get more reward praying at home, we know this alhamdullilah, the hadith does not say 'so don't you dare pray in the mosque' do not use the hadith in the wrong context.
I have rambled on enough, watch this space because it is not over yet...
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
Marching in Manchester
well I did say I was gonna blog about the march, unfortunately as is the usual case with me, I forgot to take my camera, pathetic really, and I always remember it as soon as I get to my destination, what is the point, so I will put up some picture but they weren't taken by me instead I stole them from the ever wonderful internet...
it was really a hectic week before the demo, we had been franticly calling the media to inform them of this amazing demo to be held in Manchester, it was estimated that 30,000 where to attend and instead we got between 50 - 60 thousand marching the streets of Manchester.
I was at Albert Square from 8 am, I hadn't slept the night before cause I was stressing over the speech I had to do, although ever the idealist your pre-Ramadan do was a de-stressor for me so thanks a million sis, your a star.
it was only me and hana and the odd stop the war person, eventually Fatima joined us and the rest of the crew as well, we where there to hunt, that's right hunting for the media who decided to turn up around 11am so we could have had some extra sleep but oh well, well worth it inshallah.
there was some weirdos around, like in the morning an elderly man approached me and hana and started to have one of the most weridest conversations I have ever heard, I don't even know what he was mumbling, and when hana politely asked him what he said he started to copy her which I thought was hilarious, eventually he got bored of us and walked away.
there was another lady,( I stole her picture from the site you gave me anglo, thanks, curtsey of br essa's handy photography), she was walking around shouting and muttering things that didn't make sense, she attracted a lot of attention but for all the wrong reasons, people where laughing at her, at one point I heard her shout ' I'VE FIGURED IT OUT ALL BY MYSELF, THAT'S HOW CLEVER I AM' figured what out? What you talking bout woman? Then she started shouting 'BIN LADEN, BIN LADEN, BIN LADEN' for no reason what so ever..
one of the guys who was standing next to me, he was from London turns around to me and say 'white African, Manchester has a lot of weirdos, man I didn't realize how weird mancunians are'
to which I replied: ' ummm excuse me, I wil have you know that we are not weird, and to be fair any demo that is held in any city including London always brings out the weirdos, its not some thing attached to Manchester only, and I bet you she's from London (no offence to lonondoners it was just a hit back).
to which he laughed and said no way, so I turn around to a fellow mancunian and I say to him ' br come on you gotta defend your fellow mancunains, our brother from London is taking the mick out of us, he thinks were all mad'.
did I find support, umm no, my fellow mancunian who is a dr turns around and says: ' mancunians are crazy, your right, do you know how many mancunians are depressed, studies shows that in all of Britain Manchester has the highest depression rates, and continued to drone on including statistics to his speech, ugh the betrayal...
more people started coming, a thousand came from Scotland which was cool, you can always rely on the Scots. There was a rally just before the march, and my speech was due soon, my heart was pacing at like 20,000 beats per second, I swear I was so nervous, I had never spoken infront of so many people, and I hadn't practiced my speech, I kept having images of me falling of the stage although I did contemplate jumping into the crowd like they do in rock concerts now that would have been funny and something for people to talk about lol.
I remember once being told that if you ever have to do a public speech or talk in front of a crowd of people, then one way of calming the nerves is to visualize every one naked, (I know I know astghfurallah and all that, but its funny and it makes every one look ridiculous).
Salma Yaacoub introduced me and as I walked towards the microphone I kept thinking to myself, why do I put myself in such situations, how is it I find myself saying yes even though I meant to say no.
approaching the microphone and seeing all those people standing there waiting for you to say something was nerve racking, the person before me was shorter than me so somebody had to adjust the microphone height, I started my speech and had just finished the introduction when a lady taps me on my shoulder and says '1 minute left please', what??? I had prepared for like a 4 minute speech like I was told to, 1 minute?? My god, I had to skim past most of the stuff and just about mentioned the main parts, she had to tap me again to remind me.
I swear the feeling I got when I finished was like a massive weight had been lifted of my shoulders, wow.
that's when I started to enjoy the rest of the rally and the march, every one started marching around Manchester town towards the GMEX where Blair and his cronies where meeting and then marched back to Albert Square, such a colourful crowd, and the atmosphere was amazing, unfortunately I didn't march with every one as I had to sort out media interviews but I heard from so many people how brilliant it was.
there was more speeches from amazing speakers like Tonny Benn who was introduced as 'the best prime minister Britain never had'
obviously George Galloway spoke and as usual he was brilliant, Tony Blairs sister in-law also spoke and said she was ashamed to be related to him, strong words...
all in all glad I went and participated in this history making event, hope it wil be a lesson to whoever will be blair's successor.
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Ramadan Mubarak to all, May Allah bless you and may we all benefit greatly from this amazing month...
we got to make the most of this month, i swear i feel that the atmosphere changes as soon as Ramadan comes subhnallah its truley amazing, most people think that food is the issue in Ramadan, it's not really, its about training ourselves, its about preparing ourselves, reminding us that we have to better ourselves, ramadan is really a preparation for the next 12 months, its not a matter of keeping away from food and drink from sun rise to sun set.
its always sad to say good bye to ramadan, i write this in the 2nd day of Ramadan but within a blink of an eye lid i will be saying farewell to ramadan and only allah knows if i will witness the next one, so brs and srs make the most of it, truly an inspiring month inshallah.
Radio Ramadan is starting again here in Manchester and my slot is from 8:30pm - 10:30pm, thats kinda late, first one is tonight and i havent really prepared cause i've been working on the march but i'll see how it goes...
i will blog about the march inshallah, it was really good mashalah, over 50,000 atteneded now thats an achievement for manchester, Albert square was packed like anything..
Friday, September 22, 2006
Thursday, September 21, 2006
BEIJING (AP) - A drunken Chinese migrant worker jumped into a panda enclosure at the Beijing Zoo, was bitten by the bear and retaliated by chomping down on the animal's back, state media said Wednesday.
Zhang Xinyan, from the central province of Henan, drank four jugs of beer at a restaurant near the zoo before visiting Gu Gu the panda on Tuesday, the Beijing Morning Post said."He felt a sudden urge to touch the panda with his hand," and jumped into the enclosure, the newspaper said.The panda, who was asleep, was startled and bit Zhang, 35, on the right leg, it said. Zhang got angry and kicked the panda, who then bit his other leg. A tussle ensued, the paper said."I bit the fellow in the back," Zhang was quoted as saying in the newspaper. "Its skin was quite thick."
Other tourists yelled for a zookeeper, who got the panda under control by spraying it with water, reports said. Zhang was hospitalized.Newspaper photographs showed Zhang lying on a hospital bed with blood-soaked bandages and a seam of stitches running down his leg.The Beijing Youth Daily quoted Zhang as saying that he had seen pandas on television and "they seemed to get along well with people.""No one ever said they would bite people," Zhang said. "I just wanted to touch it. I was so dizzy from the beer. I don't remember much."Ye Mingxia, a spokeswoman for the Beijing Zoo, confirmed the incident happened but would not give any details. She said Gu Gu was "healthy.""We're not considering punishing him now," Ye said in a telephone interview. "He's suffered quite a bit of shock."
what!!!! 'no one ever said they would bite people' duh its was asleep, you disturbed it, also its an animal they bite.
beer, panda and humans just dont mix...
Monday, September 18, 2006
I dedicate this poem that I made up on the spot to ever the idealist, its just a bit of fun on my part, enjoy it and any one who wants to ad any verses please do, some one can come up with a tune and we can sing it this Friday lol
There was once a nurse by the name of ad
Who held a party for 33
In her flat near Shrewsbury
Where we squashed together so warmly
8 on the sofa laughing madly
10 in the kitchen cooking franticly
12 in the bath tub squashed soundly
3 on the carpet spread out hysterically
Food came from all friends sharingly
Music played all night amazingly
Some danced other clapped Caucasianly
Chatting and enjoying the moment lovingly
Thanks ad for the pre Ramadan get together, you where an amazing host naturally
May Allah reward you tremendously?
And may he bless you forever and keep you smiling massively.
ad I just wanted to entertain you sis while your doing your long nights at the hospital, luv you loads...
Friday, September 15, 2006
tomorrow is the anniversary of the death of the Freedom fighter, the shaheed Omar Al-Mukhtar.
I was talking to an Iranian brother last week, I was at a stop the war meeting, and he was one of the speakers, he asked me where I was from and when I replied Libya he said that one of his greatest hero's is from Libya. For a split second I thought he was gonna say the kernal himself, gaddafi, and I was preparing myself to uncover his dark secrets when he volunteered the info and to my pleasant surprise he said it was the shaheed Omar Al-Mukhtar, wow, the fact that Omar AL-Mukhtar is still a hero and a role model by the youth is amazing, and why not I say, we need such role models to stay alive in our minds, were barley scraping the bottom of the barrel as it is for some decent role models for us in today's times.
I hadn't though of Omar Al-Mukhtar may Allah have mercy on his soul, for a long time, I remember some of the Arab channels broadcasted 'The Lion of the desert' last year, and I always manage to miss most of it and only just join in the part where he's preparing himself for the hanging, and each time I still cry, I guess this is the only good thing that gaddafi has given us, memoirs of his life....
ever since a child every time I ever saw a film with Anthony Quinn I would be well pleased as I associated Omar Al-Mukhtar and hamza the uncles prophet whom he played the role of, and I always hated Oliver Reid cause of the Italian character he played in The lion of the desert, my dad would always tell me that it was only acting but I guess once you associate some body with something then its difficult to remove that stigma, kinda like what some viewers of cornation st or eastenders do when they see the actors who play villains in real life, they attack them lol....
I once was asked to write an article on the history of the shaheed as well as the then Libyan resistance to Italy, and it was really interesting finding out the information, but to be honest there really is int that much info on the shaheed in English. The Iranian brother said to me that one of his wishes is to go to Libya and research on the life of Omar Al-Mukhtar and then write a book in English on his life story, wow... Its amazing really, he wasn't young when he fought the Italians, he was ill a couple of times and many of his comrades asked him to retire and leave the country, he was 80 years old, 80 years old, subhanallah. He refused to stop and give up and kept fighting and he really deserved the name given to him as "The Lion of the Desert."
On 16 September, 1931 the Italians hanged Omar Al-Mokhtar in the city of Solouq and they forced the Libyans to watch their hero being hanged. No consideration to Omar Al-Mokhtar's old age, no consideration to international law and no consideration to world war treaties. The anniversary of his death is coming up, I pray that Allah accepts his efforts and the many others who fought along side the shaheed.
not many people know realize that Libya's history is one of blood tears and broken bones, the Italians really thought that taking Libya was going to be similar to taking candy from a baby but they where in for a shock, there aggression was courageously and strongly resisted by the Libyan people.
the resistance spread across the country from the far western region to the far east, the numbers kept growing, beginning with less than a thousand to within a short period, over 6 thousand. They united to protect their land, freedom and honour from the Italians and they fought as religious men.
the Italian-Libyan war was a David vs Goliath battle, the Italians where equipped with the then latest battle gear, all types of weaponry, tanks etc... The Libyans had old rusted rifles and there horses but despite all that they had tremendous courage and determination to liberate there country and they had faith and reliance on Allah which was there greatest weapon against the Italians.
the resistance lasted nearly 20 years, that's a long time, the Italians where embarrassed by the lack of power and control they had over the Libyan resistance which kept increasing no matter what the Italians did to destroy it.
from May 1930 to September 1930 more than 80 thousand Libyan men, woman and children where forced to leave there homes and where put into concentration camps, 55% of the Libyans died in the camps, it's reported that in November at least 17 funerals a day occurred in the camp due to hunger, illness and depression.
the Libyans never once compromised there beliefs, they continued to fight for freedom, after the death of Omar Al-Mukhtar, the Italians didn't stay long in Libya and shortly afterwards Libya gained its independence.
Libya now is going through a different stage, I pray that the likes of Omar Al-Mukhtar will rise again amongst the Libyan population, primarily the youth, and bring justice to a country in dire need of it.
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Pinocchio and friends converted to Islam
Malcolm Moore in Antalya (Filed: 31/08/2006)
Pinocchio, Tom Sawyer and other characters have been converted to Islam in new versions of 100 classic stories on the Turkish school curriculum. "Give me some bread, for Allah's sake," Pinocchio says to Geppetto, his maker, in a book stamped with the crest of the ministry of education. "Thanks be to Allah," the puppet says later.
In The Three Musketeers, D'Artagnan is told that he cannot visit Aramis. The reason would surprise the author, Alexandre Dumas. An old woman explains: "He is surrounded by men of religion. He converted to Islam after his illness."
Tom Sawyer may always have shirked his homework, but he is more conscientious in learning his Islamic prayers. He is given a "special treat" for learning the Arabic words. Pollyanna, seen by some as the embodiment of Christian forgiveness, says that she believes in the end of the world as predicted in the Koran. Heidi, the Swiss orphan girl in the tale by Johanna Spyri, is told that praying to Allah will help her to relax.
Several more books have been altered, including La Fontaine's fables and Victor Hugo's Les Miserables. The clumsy insertions by Islamic publishing houses have caused controversy in Turkey, which has been a strongly secular state since the 1920s. Other books contain insults, slang and rude rhymes which mock the president and the prime minister. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is Turkey's first Islamic premier, has called for swift action to be taken against the publishers. The education ministry has threatened to take legal action against any publisher which continues to issue such books. Huseyin Celik, the education minister, said: "If there are slang and swear words, we will sue them for using the ministry logo."
how cool is that lol, we had a family friend who used to tell us all these brilliant fairy tales but with an islamic out look to them so reading this article brought back memories...
i wonder whats next on there list? you know whats really funny, watching the lion king, lilo & stich as well as other cartoons in an egyptian arabic accent, that just makes it even more entertaining?
Friday, September 01, 2006
I knew that work was going smoothly and that it was too smooth to be true, eventually something had to happen, I mean that's how things work..
seriously, how is it that one human being can really cause so much anger and annoyance, subhannallah, and at the moment I'm on the edge as it is of exploding and saying things that I don't mean although in this case what I did say I meant...
I get called to the office, and the manager (bless his patronising cotton socks) asked me to read a new notice that he wants to put up for the staff, he wanted me to double check on the spelling and grammar and structure of the notice, so I'm reading this notice and he's basically not allowing staff i.e me and the other girl, from entering the office, and from having access to the kettle unless its in our break time, the really funny thing is that we don't actually get allocated a break time, ok sure we close from 12 - 2 but DUH, like is said, DUH, I'm expected to type the letters and do the one hundred and one things that I cant do when we are open, so his rule sucks, and I said that to him which he wasn't pleased about...
ok second thing, if it was in any other office then fine, but what you have to understand is that HIS OFFICE, (bless him), has the fax machine, has the photo-copier, it has the stationary cupboard, it has the filling cabinets, its got the majority of things that allow for the surgery to function, and unless he is going to get up from his leather upholstery chair, and do the work that we generally do, then the surgery will collapse from us NOT ENTERING HIS lovely OFFICE, aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah, some one give me a wall to bang my head on, hey maybe if I bang my head hard enough on the apartheid wall in Palestine I will knock it down, see that's how frustrating it is some times working with certain individuals....
well I kinda said that his notice was rubbish and did a dramatic twirling of my flat shoes and walked out with my head held high (loool its so easy to anger him) and I counted the seconds (15 seconds to be precise) it took him to call me back into the office. so I counted a further 15 seconds, plastered a fake smile on my face and walked back in to HIS office ( I swear its not even his office wallahi, we don't have enough space in the surgery to allocate personal offices, even the Dr rooms are used by nurses and midwives). so I walk in he asks me to sit down, I did remember to say thank you, and then he burst not into tears but into gibberish, un related things that have nothing to do with the now situation, he does this all the time...
so I apologised for calling his master piece rubbish, I know I shouldn't have said that, it was wrong of me, I'm afraid that when I'm angry my mouth talks for itself...but I still raised my points on how ridiculous his rule was, the funny thing is he wants to ban the drs as well, see when he said that I nearly fell of my chair and rolled around the NHS carpet from laughter, but I had to contain myself and ask him whether that was a good idea, to which he replied yeh brilliant.
I had to remind him that the drs will not listen to him, and one of the drs is addicted to tea, kinda like I was to coffee, he has one after the other so how in the world you gonna tell him not to walk into YOUR amazing office and make tea?
he told me off for calling his office amazing in a sarcastic manner, for the love of Allah......
any way watch this space cause I haven't finish the battle of the OFFICE, and besides I haven't completely given up coffee, I've just reduced it, so I do need at least 1 cup....
ya Allah give me strength and patience.....