Let God.

Awakening. Searching. Journeying. Opening. Striving. Witnessing. Expanding Inward.
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Why the trees lean in

Do you know why the trees on our widewalk lean in toward the street? my father asks. The first time he posed the question I was quite young and hadn’t the faintest idea that those trees even had a choice. They lean in like this because there are so many of them so close together and they are quite tall. The 7 story apartment buildings compete with them in height. So they bend, shading the cars that pass underneath them in order to expose themselves to the sun’s rays the best they can. They put themselves in a position to recieve all that they can- given the restrictions of where God has placed them- from the sun they depend on. This way they don’t just grow, they flourish. Since the first time my father asked me this question, he has asked it at least half a dozen times. I repeat the words the he first said to me and he smiles and then elaborates. Once or twice he said, I’ve asked you that before haven’t I. Each time he comments on how fascinated he is by this small phenonemon. Now I realize that what I had come to know as the answer to that question was  quite superficial. I knew the answer, but I had not come to it on my own. I hadn’t looked at the trees and smiled as I’m sure my father had. I had the answer but I did not grow in wisdom like he did, just in information. I rejoiced in feeling like the trees, the sun, me and my father had this secret between us, but still  this had not  become a knowledge deeply rooted in my heart. Until I realized that my endeavor in life, our endeavor in life, is quite the same as those trees outside my window in Brooklyn, New York. God choses where to place us. Some of us grow on expansive plains, we’re our task is just to keep growing straight and tall as nature intended. Some of grow up in a crowd and although it would be easy to just grow straigh, it would not be most beneficial. For those who have this lot they may have to twist and turn and lean in order to capture all the light they can. Some of us are made to live comfortably, not to grow too tall and not to face much difficulty. And still some of us are planted in such dire circumstances that although we try to reach for the light, the most beautiful part of us may be the roots deep under the earth that no one ever sees. No matter where God planted you it is your task to expose yourself to the light. It might mean that you move some and it may mean that you sacrifice some and even if it means your trunk, your leaves, your branches are sometimes vulnerable, as long as you are reaching for the light your roots will grow and reach lengths that your branches never could. Now I think I know why the trees on my sidewalk lean in, and I look forward to asking my child this very question one day. 

God is greater, 

Faatimah

On Cairo and Other Masri Doings: First Night, First Car Ride through Cairo

rasheedamuneera:

Thank God for Ustadha Mona and her rescue! This was also another first, the first time I was solicited by a taxi driver masri style; in the span of 15 minutes, it became my 23rd time. They were aggressive, yes, but there was something else underneath that “Taxi!” “Taxi!” “Taxi!” “Taxi!”…

(Reblogging posts from our Rasheeda Plenty’s summer stay in Cairo!)

The baraka(blessing) in breath

The world is one system. Everything we use is used and everything new is old news. That is why there is baraka(blessing) in breath. There is also turmoil, sadness, triumph and exuberance. Each emotion ever felt is dancing in the air around us. We in or exhaled it and we in or exhale it.

Someone’s dying breath that they weakly parted with as they passed from this world could be a newborn’s first inhale.

The one who glances upon the face of a person they love, takes a prolonged inhale, then holds it somewhere suspended in space and time, and then is gently forced into a slow release- all the energy packed into that breath becomes yours or mine. 

In the same way the Prophet breathed, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. He and his companions, they breathed together. The companions and their followers, they breathed together. The followers and their disciples, they breathed together. We have a community of breaths. Joining with those who are active, conscious participants in this community connects one to the master of breaths, our Prophet.

The word for breath is Arabic is so closely connected to the word for self and the meaning of a thing cherished and precious. Not only because breath, in all its subtlety, is the cycle that keeps us alive, but also because breath carries precious secrets like the breath we trace back to the Prophet. The word for childbed, the condition of a woman in the process of giving birth, also derives from the word for breath. The mother and her child also form their own small community of breath- passing inconspicuous love notes to each other. 

In English we find a similar efficiency of the word meaning breath from the Latin root SPIR-. Respire, inspire, aspire, conspire, spirit, spiritual; meaning the process of breath, the bestowal of breath, the ascent of breath, breathing together, the essential breath, the nature and affectation of the breath, respectively. 

This is old wisdom.

Faatimah,

God is Greater

Original Post (http://faatimahtheknight.tumblr.com/post/21518171904)

Asalamu Alaykum, please take a look at our student-taught Fiqh classes for the Spring Semester, consider registering, and pass the information along!

Asalamu Alaykum, please take a look at our student-taught Fiqh classes for the Spring Semester, consider registering, and pass the information along!

We believe Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is His chosen one, His preeminent prophet, and His messenger, with whom He is well pleased.

—Imam al-Tahawi

Say: If you love God, follow me, then God will love you and forgive your sins. Verily God is forgiving, merciful.

—Qur’an 33:30