Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-19

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From eastern skies the stars brought forth their light, Conveyed by hearts transcending desert nights, Igniting flames that burn the dross of sin, Bequeathing the courage to gaze within, Freeing the hearts to know the secrets there, Those secrets to their lovers do they share. Their wisdom sometimes subtle, sometimes frank Defy pretenses of a social rank. For knowledge is for all men to enjoy And ignorance their calling to destroy. For Moses, Jesus, David, Muhammad Are guiding stars that light the firmament. Its ancient vault spanning turbulent… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-18

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There have been 210 mass shootings in the United States this year. A mass shooting is described as a shooting that has four or more victims. Of those 210 mass shootings, only one, the killing of the Marines in Chattanooga, Tennessee, was perpetrated by a Muslim. That unfortunate and tragic incident is the only mass shooting in which the media mentioned the religion of the shooter. It is also the only one where the psychological issues the shooter was clearly struggling with were dismissed as the most important factor informing his actions. Instead of focusing on his mental state a… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-14

1 Comments

Today’s New York Times’ (NYT) article highlighting ISIS’ sexual enslavement of Yazidi women has cast a critical light on the issue of slavery and Islam. The ensuing implications should concern all Muslims. This is so owing to the fact that ISIS presents its practices as normative Islam and accuses the masses of Muslims who reject their draconian interpretation of the religion as ignoramuses or cowards who are afraid to identify with “real” Islam. ISIS’ practices and fatwas are based on a type of literalism that has never been part of normative Islam, both during its formulation and after its maturation.… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-12

1 Comments

Tree and sky, Green, blue and white; Imagination, Serenity and flight. Not even the sky, Can limit our dreams… Which is one way God tells us, Better days are ahead. Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-11

1 Comments

During my time in Damascus, I lived in many different neighborhoods: Zahira Qadima, Mukhayyam Yarmuk, Saha Shahbandar, Muhajireen, Suq al-Jumu’ah and Khurshid. Like a desert nomad in search of greener pastures, I was ever in search of a cheaper rent. My year in Saha Shahbandar was certainly challenging from one perspective. We lived in a one room Mulhaq (add-on) on the top of the roof of an apartment block. Our landlord was a retired Syrian army general. A committed secularist, he was amazed and astonished that an American who was not born into a Muslim family would actually become a… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-10

1 Comments

The corporation has been defined by Gerald and Kathleen Hill as “A legal entity formed with state approval to act as an artificial person to carry on business, which may sue or be sued, and whose liabilities or debts are limited to its assets, so its shareholders and officers are protected from personal claims unless they commit fraud.” The important part of this definition is that the real people behind this artificial person are free from any ultimate consequences for their actions, no matter how immoral, other than fraud. By definition there is no legal mandate for a corporation… Read More - All articles


Say No To War

  notes

Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-08-04

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The political theorist, Carl von Clausewitz, famously said, “War is the continuation of politics by other means.” If that is the case, war is a politics that we do not need, because it only opens the door to mass murder, under the disguise of a political agenda. As Muslims we should know this all too well, as many of our lands are being ripped apart by the wars that grow out of “righteous” politics. Perhaps the most repugnant of these wars is the American-backed, Saudi-led destruction of Yemen. Yemen was poor to begin with. Now with the naval blockade, the… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-07-30

1 Comments

“Death is the most inescapable part of life. Upon entering into the world, no one can say, with absolute certainty, if a particular individual will be rich or poor, a glowing success or an abject failure. No one can predict if they, or anyone else, will live a long and healthy life or see their earthly stint end during their youth. No one knows if they will be tried by disease or some other physical or psychiatric challenge. The only thing we can say about life with absolute certainty is that anyone coming into the world will eventually leave… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-07-24

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My maternal grandfather is a Whitaker from Harris County, Georgia. His grandfather, who went by the name of Rich Eubanks (my grandfather, Richmond Whitaker, was named after him) was a slave, sold to an owner in Harris County from somewhere in Virginia. My maternal grandmother is a Spence. Her grandfather, Will Spence, was a slave also. Unfortunately, we have not been able to trace my father’s lineage, yet. I mention this little bit of family history to remind my brothers and sisters who have migrated to this country voluntarily, or are descendants of voluntary migrants that some… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-07-18

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The Muslim world has lost one of its giants with the passing of Shaykh Shukri Lahafi. Despite his stature, it is likely that anyone reading these words who is not from Syria has ever heard of Shaykh Shukri. Before I arrived in Syria, in 1994, to begin my studies there, I too did not know who he was. Upon arriving in Damascus, Shaykh Shukri was one of the first scholars I met. Our most generous host, Abu Munir Sha’ar, had arranged callighaphy lessons with the Shaykh. A motley gang of Americans made our way through the streets of Damascus to… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-07-16

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If we ask a simple, straightforward question concerning the initiative launched by Faatimah Knight to help rebuild the eight black churches that were either partially or totally destroyed by fire in the immediate aftermath of the assassination of Clementa Pinkney, and the murder of eight of his fellow congregants in Charleston, South Carolina, last month, the answer is quite clear. That simple question is: Is it permissible for Muslims to contribute towards building a church? The answer to that question is unambiguous. No, it is not permissible to make such a contribution. If, however, the question becomes more involved by… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-06-30

0 Comments

Perhaps the greatest hit recording of the popular 1970’s disco era singing group, The Bee Gees, was “How Deep Is Your Love.” Among the lyrics of that song were the following touching words: “I believe in you You know the door to my very soul You’re the light in my deepest, darkest hour You’re my savior when I fall And you may not think I care for you When you know down inside that I really do And it’s me you need to show How deep is your love, how deep is your… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-06-26

3 Comments

Dear Brothers and Sisters, Let us not forget the people in those parts of Pakistan who are suffering from a horrific heat wave. Almost a thousand people have perished, along with almost three thousand earlier this summer in India, may Allah’s mercy envelop them all. One of the characteristics of Ramadan is mercy. We pray that Allah bestows His mercy upon those who have perished during this disaster by resurrecting them in the highest heights of Paradise, for, as described by our Prophet, peace upon him, they are indeed martyrs in the true sense of the word. We pray… Read More - All notes


Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-06-22

5 Comments

This is brief response to recent comments about the need for a Khalifa. Brothers and sisters, do not think, simplistically, that the mere existence of a Khalifa will solve the Muslims problems. The Khilafa (office of the Khalifa) was ended by the order of Kemel Ataturk in 1924. At that time, all of the problems currently affecting Muslims existed, some to a greater extent than they do today. For example, the existence of a Khalifa did not prevent the colonization and division of the Muslim world. A Khalifa did not prevent the rise and consolidation of western economic hegemony over… Read More - All notes


Q and A Time

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Imam Zaid Shakir


Posted on 2015-06-20

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Question: Why is it so hard to call the massacre of African Americans in Charleston, South Carolina a terrorist act? Answer:  Because all terrorists are Muslim, and Dylann Root, the confessed murderer is not a Muslim. Question: When obviously deranged Muslims commit acts of mass murder, why are they never declared mentally ill? Answer: Because if you are mentally ill you cannot be motivated by an evil ideology. Question: Why do the politicians who are so quick to shed tears over the massacre in Charleston,  which should move all of us to tears, so slow to initiate any legislation that… Read More - All notes


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