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  • Niqab Ban In France Violates Human Rights Of Muslim Women: UN Human Rights Committee
    The United Nations Human Rights Committee said France’s niqab ban violates the human rights of Muslim women and risks “confining them to their homes.” Women in France can be fined up to 150 euros for wearing the niqab, a full-face...
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  • Rathana At It Again; ACJU Is The Punching Bag For Everyone
    By Mass L. Usuf Mass Usuf Let this column begin with a Disclaimer. It is only an analysis and the writer is not holding a brief to defend or protect the All Ceylon Jamiyathul Ulema (
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  • Democracy Threatened: Impunity, Political Patronage & Rollback Of Devolution
    By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole – R. Sasilan: Assistant Commissioner of Elections Today we are opening new living quarters for our Election Commission’s man-in-charge in Batticaloa. I am so glad because R. Sasilan is a man I am proud of. He stands up for what is right without fear or favor. When a minister distributed gifts in elections some years ago, he confiscated a gift pack and filed a complaint with the police. The police, as often happens, disappeared the evidence. Sasilan sent a report to the Commission and that too disappeared....
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  • Coronavirus funerals: Sri Lanka's Muslims decry forced cremation
      Image copyrightEPA Image captionSri Lankan Muslim women wait for a Covid-19 test. Some in the community are fighting cremation rules Sri Lankan authorities are insisting on cremation for coronavirus victims - a practice forbidden by Islam. The nation's minority Muslim community says they are using the pandemic to discriminate, writes BBC Sinhala's Saroj Pathirana. On 4 May, Fathima Rinoza, a 44-year-old mother of three from Sri Lanka's minority Muslim population, was admitted to hospital with a suspected case of Covid-19. Fathima, who lived in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, had been suffering from respiratory problems and the authorities feared she had caught the virus. On the day she was admitted to hospital, the family was "set upon" by the authorities, her husband Mohamed Shafeek said. "The police and military along with...
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  • ජිනීවා මානව හිමිකම් කවුන්සිලයේදී රටවල් 5කින් ලංකාවට චෝදනා
    පාස්කු ප්‍රහාර සම්බන්ධයෙන් සැකපිට අත්අඩංගුවට ගෙන සිටින නීතිඥ හිජාස් හිස්බුල්ලා රඳවා තබාගැනීම, විශේෂ බළකායේ සැරයන් සුනිල් රත්නායකට ජනාධිපති සමාව ලබාදීම ඇතුළු කරුණු ගණනාවක් පදනම් කරගනිමින් එක්සත් රාජධානිය ඇතුළු රටවල් 5ක කණ්ඩායමක් එක්සත් ජාතීන්ගේ මානව හිමිකම් කවුන්සිලයේදී ශ්‍රී ලංකාවට චෝදනා එල්ල කර ඇතැයි ජිනීවා තානාපති...
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  • මුස්ලිම් නීතිඥයාට එරෙහිව 'ත්‍රස්ත සාක්කි' ගෙතූ රහස් පොලිසියට විනිසුරු විරෝධය

      පාස්කු බෝම්බ ප්‍රහාරයට සම්බන්ධ යැයි ජනමාධ්‍ය මගින් ප්‍රචාරය කරමින් ත්‍රස්තවාදය වැළැක්වීමේ පනත යටතේ අත්අඩංගුවට ගනු ලැබු මුස්ලිම් ජාතික නීතිඥවරයකුට එරෙහිව ව්‍යාජ සාක්ෂි ගෙතීමට රහස් පොලිසිය විසින් දරණ ලද උත්සාහයක් විනිසුරුවරයකුගේ මැදිහත්වීම නිසා ව්‍යර්ථ වී තිබේ.

    නීතිඥ හිජාස් ඕමර් හිස්බුල්ලාහ් රඳවා...
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  • Gnanasara Thero Once Again Inciting Sinhalese Against Muslims
    Malicious campaign pushing discriminated and frustrated Muslims to wall Few weeks ago Ven Galagoda Atte Gnanasara Thero, known for inciting Sinhalese and unleashing violence against Muslims, said he would dissolve his organisation Bodu Bala Sena as it has achieved its target of setting up a Sinhala Buddhist government without minority support. Latheef Farook Following the election of the present government to power on 15 November 2019, he was rather quiet. Now that the parliamentary election is forthcoming, he has started his campaign once again pitting the Sinhalese against Muslims.There were reports that during the presidential elections in November 2019 Buddhist monks and temples were used to demonize Muslims to win Sinhala votes assuring security. As part of this campaign to win Sinhala votes, he attempted to brand as extremist, several...
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  • Hejaaz: A lawyer for all seasons

    A year has passed since the deadly Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka. Victims, survivors, and the general public still await answers. Amidst these desperate demands for accountability, Hejaaz Hizbullah, a prominent Muslim lawyer, is suddenly – and most unexpectedly – arrested and detained.

    I met Hejaaz during the first-ever debating tournament I participated in. He led the team from S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia, and I represented St. Joseph’s College, Colombo. Our teams made it to the finals that year. I recall Hejaaz as a fierce competitor with the rare gift for conveying an argument with charisma and conviction. He also had a great sense of humour, taking friendly banter in good spirit. The Thomians triumphed that year, and deservedly so.

    What strikes me now is...
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  • Muslim writer in jail for 60 days without "explicit evidence"
    A group of activists in Sri Lanka has called upon the government for the unconditional release of a Muslim writer who has been held in detention for more than
    sixty days without “explicit evidence being produced”.

    In a letter to the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) the Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim activists say that Ramzy Razeek arrested on April 09 for allegedly violating the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and Cyber Crimes Legislation has also been denied medical treatment and legal access in detention.

    “Despite orders from the Magistrate to allow him access to medicine, reliable sources state that his health condition is deteriorating due to lack of access to specific medicines of which he is in dire need. A lawyer attempting to visit Razeek this week, was also denied...
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  • அடையாள அணிவகுப்புக்கு முன் ஹிஜாஸின் அடையாளத்தைக் காட்ட சிஐடியினர் முயற்சித்தார்கள்
    இரு சிறுவர்களிடமிருந்தும் வாக்குமூலம் பெறுவதற்கு முன்னர் சிஐடியினர் தனது அறையில் வைத்து ஹிஜாஸ் ஹிஸ்புல்லாஹ்வின் புகைப்படத்தை அவர்களுக்குக் காண்பிப்பதற்கு முயற்சித்தார்கள் என கோட்டை நீதவான் ரங்க திசாநாயக்க தெரிவித்துள்ளார்.

    புத்தளம் மத்ரஸாவொன்றின் மாணவர்களுக்கு தீவிரவாதத்தைப் போதித்தார் என சிஐடியினர்...
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CULTIVATING ONE'S CHARACTER

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CULTIVATING ONE'S CHARACTER

'A believer plants a palm tree and fears that thorns will grow'

We have to constantly search our behavior to insure its consistency with that of the believers.

While walking in the market not so long ago, I happened to see a group of foreign Muslim sisters heading my way. Needless to say I was very happy, because it is not often that I run across other Muslim women when out and about.

From the manners of giving the salams, I greeted them first. To my dismay, they all looked at me from the top of my khimar-clad head to where my Abaya (outer garment) pooled around my feet with a look of total disgust, and walked away without uttering a word in response. I was so hurt and shocked that all I could do was stand there with my mouth wide open behind my niqab.

It never ceases to amaze me how many of us claim to follow the Qur'an and Sunnah, yet our actions are in total contradiction to what we say we believe. It was part of the manners of those who lived with the Prophet, Sal-lallahu alayhe wasallam, that they would constantly search their thoughts, hearts and behaviors, to make sure they were consistent with those of the believers, and to discard those things which were characteristic of the hypocrites.

For Allah Ta'ala says, "They say, 'We believe in Allah and in the apostle, and we obey:' but even after that, some of them turn away: they are not (really) believers." [24:47]

Along with this, Allah Ta'ala paints for us a complete picture of the believers when He says, "Those who turn (to Allah) in repentance; that serve Him, and praise Him; that wander in devotion to the cause of Allah; that bow down and prostrate themselves (in salah); that enjoin good and forbid evil; and observe the limits set by Allah - so proclaim the good tidings to the believers." [9:112]

 

Also, Yahya ibn Muadh, rahimahullah, talked about the believers possessing the following characteristics in one of his essays:

"It is to be full of modesty, and to be harmless too. To be full of goodness and not to be corrupt. For the tongue to be truthful, for the words to be little and to be plentiful in good actions. To have little slip-ups and not be excessive. To be good to one's relatives, building closeness between them. To be dignified and grateful, and to be full of contentment if Allah restricted some provision. To be forbearing and friendly to his brothers, and to be compassionate and chaste. Not to curse, swear, insult, backbite, nor to gossip. Not to be hasty, envious, hateful, arrogant, or vain, neither to lean towards worldliness or to extend long hopes and wishes. Not to sleep too much, nor to be absent-minded, nor to show off nor be hypocritical. Not to be selfish, but to be soft and cheerful and not servile. Loving for the sake of Allah, being pleased for His sake and being angry only for His sake. His provision is taqwa, and his worries are what will happen to him in the Afterlife. His friends remind him, his beloved is His Protector and Master, and his struggle is for the Hereafter."

How many of us possess these qualities? How many of us are striving to cultivate these characteristics within ourselves? How can we profess to be true believers when we don't even spread the salams, and protect each other from harm and hurt? We're not, for the Prophet, sallallahu alayhe wasallam, said, "By Allah, he does not believe. By Allah, he does not believe. By Allah, he does not believe." He was asked, "Whom, O Messenger of Allah?" He said, "The one who does not safeguard his neighbor from his harms." (Bukhari)

Allah Ta'ala also says about the believers that, "The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another: they enjoin what is just, and forbid what is evil: they observe regular salah, practices regular charity, and obey Allah and His Messenger. On them will Allah pour His Mercy: for Allah is Exalted in power, Wise. [9:71]

As Muslims, we must remember that Islam is not a religion based on theories, but it is something that is alive and practical, and must be implemented into practice in every aspect of our lives. Since we are striving to achieve true success, our attitudes should be as Allah Ta'ala says, "The answer of the believers when summoned to Allah and His Messenger, in order that He may judge between them, is no other than this: they say, 'We hear and we obey;' it is such as these that will attain felicity." [24:51]

As it was the practice of those who came before us, let us then too search our hearts, souls, thoughts and actions on a daily basis in order to cultivate the character of a believer, and stamp out any weeds of hypocrisy before they can gain root. Let us remember what Fudayl ibn Iyadh, rahimahullah, said, "A believer plants a palm tree and fears that thorns will grow. The hypocrites plant thorns expecting ripe dates to grow."

Sumayya bint Joan

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