Month: September 2018

This is Not Your Mama’s Halaqa Group

This is Not Your Mama’s Halaqa Group

Halaqa groups can be intimidating. I do not have every part of the Quran memorized, and when sisters start naming one surah after the other, I feel shy asking what she meant. A halaqa should be a place free of judgment where sisters can bring […]

Innocent Until Proven Guilty:  Should We Proceed With Brett Kavanaugh’s Nomination?

Innocent Until Proven Guilty: Should We Proceed With Brett Kavanaugh’s Nomination?

On September 28, 2018, your regularly scheduled programming was interrupted by coverage of the world’s most talked about ‘second-look’ interview. This was, of course, the hearing held by the United States Senate Judiciary Committee regarding Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination. Many were originally skeptical of […]

7 Ways to Step Up Your Self-Love

7 Ways to Step Up Your Self-Love


We are all pretty familiar with the term “self-love.” It’s flung around a lot these days, and more so when we’re feeling ourselves. However, self-love is more than just external confidence; it is something that must be instilled deeply within us. It is possible to be confident but have a deep lack of self-esteem, and that is contrary to the true meaning of self-love. We use the term judiciously, but do we actually apply it correctly? Do we really wholeheartedly love ourselves? Sure, we can love ourselves when things are going well, or when we are feeling good, but do we love ourselves through the darkest of days? Self-love grows as we embark on a journey of personal development, and by that I mean our physical, spiritual, and physiological growth. Each and every one of those aspects directly links into self-love.

I used to ask myself, “How do I love myself through my mistakes?” It certainly doesn’t magically happen overnight. It’s a gradual process, and below are seven steps to put into practice to achieve the goal of self-love:

1. Put yourself first. No, putting yourself first isn’t selfish, it is vital. As we grow up, our priorities change and the burden of responsibilities take over. We start to slide down our own list of priorities. We get so caught up in taking care of others we forget our needs, and if we are not fulfilled and happy within, how can we give to others? People around you will benefit greatly if you are genuinely happy within. Do the things YOU love and enjoy.

2. Being self-aware. Self-love without self-awareness is useless. They go hand-in-hand. Reflecting upon your thoughts, actions, decisions, and general behavior is so important. If you truly love yourself, wouldn’t you want to be the best version of yourself? It can be hard to admit your true emotions even to yourself, but it’s important to truly connect and be honest with yourself. Self-awareness is critical in order to eradicate negative behaviors.

A lack of unhealthy boundaries with people can leave us feeling drained, disrespected, anxious, unfocused, open to hurt and manipulation…the list is endless. Set boundaries that your are comfortable with, and be sure to communicate to others why you are setting these boundaries. This will ensure that you are limiting negative interactions in your life.

3. Self-care. Taking care of yourself by fulfilling your basic needs is another obvious, yet crucial aspect of achieving the goal of self-love. Eating well, being mindful of your physical health, good sleeping habits, and limiting or giving up bad habits will have you feeling good from within and raise your energy levels.

4. Forgive yourself. Mistakes are a natural part of life. It’s actually where you learn the most about yourself. Every situation gives you an opportunity to elevate, or sink. If you are clinging on to negative situations you’ll hold yourself back from progressing. Learn to let go, and elevate.

5. Set boundaries. A lack of unhealthy boundaries with people can leave us feeling drained, disrespected, anxious, unfocused, open to hurt and manipulation…the list is endless. Set boundaries that your are comfortable with, and be sure to communicate to others why you are setting these boundaries. This will ensure that you are limiting negative interactions in your life.

6. Invest in the right people and be aware of your environment. Your environment has a massive impact on your growth and so does investing in the right people. The most beautiful friendships and relationships are when you challenge and motivate each other. An unhealthy relationship is usually only one person investing, and getting little or nothing back. Be conscious of who you bring into your inner circle.

7. Find your purpose and stay focused.  We are all blessed with unique gifts. Discovering what they are, and how best to use this gives you a sense of purpose. You will appreciate your strengths and qualities.

Once you raise your standards within yourself, you naturally start attracting and allowing others to reciprocate. Love is a powerful emotion that so many of us try to block. Be love, feel love, give love. It all starts with you. Show others how to love and treat yourself by how you love yourself.



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25 Things Latino Muslims Want You To Know

25 Things Latino Muslims Want You To Know

You may have heard that Latinos are not only the fastest growing minority in the United States, but they are also the fastest growing minority within Islam. However, the history of Latinos is just as rich with Islamic roots and influences as their future promises […]

Here’s Why Everyone is Talking About BBC’s Controversial “Bodyguard” Miniseries Right Now

Here’s Why Everyone is Talking About BBC’s Controversial “Bodyguard” Miniseries Right Now

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD —  DON’T SAY WE DIDN’T WARN YOU! This past week, a BBC miniseries, Bodyguard, was the talk of the town. The six-part series came to a conclusion with a stunning twist: A mild-mannered character named Nadia Ali revealed herself to be a […]

Shatter the Matrix- The World is Not Jannah

Shatter the Matrix- The World is Not Jannah


By Sh Ahmad Salim

Translated by Sh. El Shinawy

Among the priceless benefits of major calamities and the emotional shock that accompanies them is shattering the faulty matrix with which we choose to understand the world. The most common notions for understanding the world which collapse during calamities are:

  • Good things happen to good people…
  • Calamities are punishments for evil people…
  • When you are afflicted and exhibit patience, ease will soon follow the difficulty…
  • Allah will make an example of every tyrant in the way their lives end…

Though this matrix for understanding the world is not entirely flawed, it will not necessarily occur with every person and in every situation. Our world follows a system of laws that are astronomically more complex than that, but you will find that the simplistic notions above are those more widely adopted by people – essentially because they help people live, be optimistic, and find hope. They like to call it having good assumptions of God, and I like to call it: telling God how things must happen.

This world is not Jannah, nor is it a place of recompense. Its days may sometimes follow the matrix above because the scorching desert needs an occasional breeze to lighten its ferocity, and an oasis in its remote corners to prevent despair. But again, the world is more complex than to be governed by a single unfailing rule, and Allah did not inform us of anything in 6,000+ verses of the Quran more than the fact that this life is a trial in which Allah will examine your conduct.

You having good assumptions of Allah is by trusting that whatever befalls you is an opportunity for you to extract your best qualities. You having good assumptions of Allah is by trusting that He will deliver you to the best version of yourself, and by acting based on that assumption. Believing that you are dearer to Allah than His prophets and nearest slaves, who experienced the greatest calamities and it only increased them in faith and surrender, is not part of having good assumptions of Allah.

Life is a journey in a fiery desert, one where its sun cyclically intensifies, then calms, then sets altogether, and it may on rare occasions offer a cool gust of wind. You must exhibit patience when its sun intensifies, and when its nights darken, and exhibit gratitude for its pleasant breezes and sprinkles of rainfall, and await the Hereafter you have worked for – for it is the true life, and whomsoever Allah grants its bliss will never be harmed by anything.

 



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How to Stop Following the Crowd & Live Your Own Life

How to Stop Following the Crowd & Live Your Own Life

This world is not what I expected it to be. Today, societal trends overpower talent and hard work, making it difficult to truly shine. Standing out and being yourself is the only way to stay real and not be corrupted by corporate branding and their […]

The Call to Action for Aafia: Why it is Needed Now More than Ever

The Call to Action for Aafia: Why it is Needed Now More than Ever

By El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan   On a recent trip back from the UK I had a chance encounter with a British Muslim, a taxi driver, whose job it was to pick me up from the hotel and take me to the airport for my return […]

Trump’s U.N. Speech Draws Laughter

Trump’s U.N. Speech Draws Laughter


President Trump’s second address to the United Nations General Assembly went down a little differently than his administration probably expected it to.

This past Tuesday, President Trump commenced his remarks to the U.N. by boasting about what his administration had achieved over his almost-two year tenure as POTUS.

“In less than two years, my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country,” Trump said, in typical fashion. Delegates of the General Assembly rewarded President Trump with hearty laughter, to which Trump remarked that he hadn’t expected that reaction, but — and these are his own words — “That’s OK.”

Is it okay, though? Is it really? Is it really alright to deliver prose so comical, that it draws laughter from a room full of individuals sworn to global unity?

Repeating falsehoods isn’t the same as telling the truth, or telling it like it is. Repeated falsehoods until the world can no longer take the United States seriously is toxic to our own national security.

Since 2014, businessman Trump gleefully dismissed then-President Obama as a weak leader who turned the United States into a laughing stock on the world stage. And yet, here we are, a short four years later, and President Trump is actually facing what he accused President Obama of: being laughed at on a global stage. The laughter is understandable too. Perhaps the delegates, well-versed in history were laughing at Trump’s grandiose claims because he seemed to be comparing passing a tax bill to Lincoln’s handling of the Civil War, or Woodrow Wilson and Truman’s re-building post-World Wars. Those seem evenly equated, right?

Whilst this may seem like a comical moment in our history, it’s indicative of something much darker. If world leaders are laughing at you, you can bet your bottom dollar that they aren’t taking you seriously. And the second you aren’t taken seriously, any ounce of influence you may have evaporates. You are no longer seen as a leader in diplomacy or a force for good. You are no longer seen as an ally to be trusted.

President Trump continued by touting an isolationist agenda, bragging about the construction of his infamous wall along the Mexican border, and blaming China for attempting to interfere in U.S. elections. Whilst it is true that Chinese hackers were caught trying to breach the 2008 campaigns of Obama and John McCain, lately, indisputable proof which proves that Russia had been running a sophisticated, and large-scale interference in the 2016 U.S. election has seen the light of day. Ignoring these facts, and completely flipping the situation around is a damaging tactic because it depicts a total lack of understanding of one’s reality. This renders the U.S. without allies and vulnerable to those who may mean us harm.

If it’s even possible, the situation got that much more ridiculous post-speech. When asked about the laughter, both President Trump and Nikki Haley, the current United States Ambassador to the U.N., doubled-down by claiming that they had intended for laughter when Trump bragged about his performance as the leader of the U.S. Haley even went so far as to claim that the laughter was a sign of respect. Respectfully, Ambassador Haley seems to have stumbled across a classic sign of delusion. President Trump’s own surprise at the laughter, as caught on video and documented for the world to see, is incredibly telling about how “intentional” the laughter was.

Repeating falsehoods isn’t the same as telling the truth, or telling it like it is. Repeated falsehoods until the world can no longer take the United States seriously is toxic to our own national security. These very basic tenets are something the Trump Administration needs to comprehend before too much damage is done.

 

 



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10 Tips to Stay Healthy as a Working Women

10 Tips to Stay Healthy as a Working Women

Many women today are taking on amazing jobs and doing rewarding work (claps).  In fact, women make up about half of the labor force in the United States so the idea of being a working women is far from being unheard of. That being said, […]