Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Computer Eyestrain

Drsonnet Sonnet
I read for you: 
Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is a temporary condition resulting from focusing the eyes on a computer display for protracted, uninterrupted periods of time. Some symptoms of CVS include headaches, blurred vision, neck pain, fatigue, eye strain, dry, irritated eyes, and difficulty refocusing the eyes. These symptoms can be further aggravated by improper lighting conditions (ie. bright overhead lighting or glare) or air moving past the eyes (e.g. overhead vents, direct air from a fan).


Dry eye is a major symptom that is targeted in the therapy of CVS. The use of over-the-counter artificial-tear solutions can reduce the effects of dry eye in CVS.

Asthenopic symptoms in the eye are responsible for much of the morbidity in CVS. Proper rest to the eye and its muscles is recommended to relieve the associated eye strain. Various catch-phrases have been used to spread awareness about giving rest to the eyes while working on computers. A routinely recommended approach is to consciously blink the eyes every now and then (this helps replenish the tear film) and to look out the window to a distant object or to the sky—doing so provides rest to the ciliary muscles. One of the catch phrases is the "20-20-20 rule": every 20 minutes, focus the eyes on an object 20 feet (6 meters) away for 20 seconds. This basically gives a convenient distance and timeframe for a person to follow the advice from the optometrist and ophthalmologist. Otherwise, the patient is advised to close his/her eyes (which has a similar effect) for 20 seconds, at least every half hour.

Decreased focusing capability is mitigated by wearing a small plus-powered (+1.00 to +1.50) over-the-counter pair of eyeglasses. Wearing these eyeglasses helps such patients regain their ability to focus on near objects. People who are engaged in other occupations—such as tailors engaged in embroidery—can experience similar symptoms and can be helped by these glasses.

Computer Eyestrain:
Some of the specialists categorize these symptoms under the term 'Computer Eyestrain'. According to them the computer eyestrain is not a clinical disease. Rather it is a reaction to a computer-centered office environment. Making simple adjustments to your workplace usually can eliminate it.


Place your computer in such a way that the screen sits slightly below your eye level.
The computer screen should be at the distance of 20 to 26 inches from your eyes.
Adjust the lighting around the computer to minimize glare and reflections. You can also place a non-glare filter on the computer monitor to reduce glare.
Time to time give your eyes a break by frequently standing up to stretch.
If possible alternate computer activities with other tasks.
Use an adjustable copyholder that holds documents at the same level as the computer screen. This will eliminate the need to swing around (to view documents) and help reduce back and shoulder strain.
Time to time use artificial tears to moisten dry eyes.
Immediately consult an eye specialist if the symptoms persist.
Have regular eye check ups, especially if you work with computer or video screens.

Eye Strain And Computer Use

Some of the most common symptoms of eyestrain are mentioned below. These could be attributed to prolonged computer screen viewing. However, everyone could have different experience with these symptoms. The common symptoms include:

Red, watery, irritated eyes
Tired, aching or heavy eyelids
Problems with focusing
Muscle spasms of the eye or eye lid

Relief From Eye Strain

The symptoms of eyestrain may resemble any other eye condition therefore it is advised to consult a physician for proper diagnosis. Still you can have relief from the eyestrain in the following ways

By resting the eyes
Changing the work environment
Wearing the proper glasses

How To Avoid Eyestrain

Position the top of the VDT screen at or slightly below the eye level.
Place all the reference materials as close to the screen as possible. This will minimize head and eye movements and focusing changes.
While working minimize lighting reflections and glare.
Keep the VDT screen clean and dust-free.
Schedule periodic rest breaks to avoid eye fatigue.
Try to keep the eyes lubricated (by blinking) to prevent them from drying out.
Keep the VDT screen in proper focus.
You should consult your ophthalmologist as may be you are one of those individuals who normally do not need glasses but may need corrective lenses for doing the computer work.

Eyestrain occurs with the over-use of eye muscles, which usually happens when you work on computers. Normally any muscle held in one position for too long strains. So when you concentrate on activities such as reading, working at the computer or watching television for a long time then your inner eye muscles tighten up and cause the eyes to get irritated, dry and uncomfortable. You should take a 5-minute break, once or twice an hour, from whatever you are doing. Avoid working the same thing for longer durations. This would give your eyes a chance to relax and refocus.


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Computer Eyestrain  Source :


Yes, Israel has a right to exist

My American guest asked me; if I believe that Israeli nation has the right to exist or not.  Yes, Israeli nation has the right to exist.


Amazed?!!!!!    Any way this amazement will vanish when you read my explanation..

Every people and every nation has the complete right to live freely and peacefully without harming others. That's the way I believe.

So, if we considered the Israeli nation which existed for long centuries before my birth, your birth and before the birth of all people on earth now, is a nation like any other nation, taking into consideration the lawful fact that the difference between nation and people or state is the element of authority, and asked ourselves if they have the right to exist or not, then, we can reply by another question; Are Israelis(Jews) human beings or not?!!

Now, my respond is clear; Jews who are sons of Israel(Jacob) are human beings, and only for that fact they have the complete right to live and exist. As a result; this Israeli nation has the right to exist.

BUT if were going to talk about Israeli state which has been declared in 1948, so, it's completely different. I won't say directly what I think about the right of Israeli state to exist, but firstly there are more important views than mine to Israeli state and its right to exist..

In the preamble of UN charter; you can read this as a general obligation on UN peoples;  ' practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours ..',  You can also read following in the  2nd article of UN charter;  'All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, ...'

So, what can we extract from these texts?!!!  Every people is obligated to live together in peace with its neighbours, and to be good neighbours!!!  Let me think for a moment;  Live in peace!! Good neighbours!!      As a good neighbour I help my neighbours in their troubles, share them in their happiness and sadness, exchange advice, greet them, visit them when they become ill, not to spy on them, ..etc. And if I'm not going to do all that, then the least thing which I have to do is that not to harm them and to steal their belongings, right?!!
So, how a people can be a good neighbour?!!!  Help other peoples in their troubles, share their happiness and sadness, exchange knowledge, not to spy on it.. . Yes, that's right. And if this people isn't going to do any of that, then the least thing to do is not to harm other peoples and not to steal what these peoples own.  It's an ethical obligation before being an obligation out of law.

As for the 2nd article it sets an obligation on states not to use any kind of force or even threat of using it in their relations together against  territorial integrity or political independence of any other state!!!  The obligation is so clear!!!  No state can use force against territorial integrity or political independence of other states to achieve any of its purposes.

Regarding to these texts, the declaration of the state  Israel is against international law!!!!!

Israeli people wasn't the good neighbour to Palestinian people, in contrary it stole its land without having a reasonable reason that justifies stealing Palestinian lands from their people and random killing.  On the other hand, Israel clearly used force against integrity of Palestinian land (Declaration of a state on another state represents the most grave threat to integrity of this state!!!)
As for the 2nd part of the article '..political independence..'  Israel deleted and destroyed political independence of Palestine. Actually; after there were an independent state called 'Palestine ', this state has been deleted!!!!  And another state has been declared instead on this state!!!

Yes, Jews(Israelis) had a purpose which was their unity on one land under one state, after oppression committed against them during WWII, and even before that for long centuries. They gathered and discussed about the good area that will be their state, one of the choices was Uganda but they refused it. Then Balfour Declaration has been made to establish national home for Jews in Palestine !!!!!!! And 1948 came by the birth of this state on Palestinian lands,, 'Israel'. A nd since then there is continues extension for the sake of Israeli state against Palestinian land.
The right of Jews to unit must be respected and even to be supported, but if this right opposed with rights of other peoples living in peace, independently and under an established and situated authority, then, the right of this people must be respected firstly.

If we're going to talk about humanical law, then we'll fill thousands of long papers.
Israel daily break the humanical rule which obligates not to attack children and babies. Israel daily break the huanical law which obligates not to attack women and old men. Israel daily break humanical rule which obligates not to attack armless people. Israel daily break the humanical rule which obligates not to attack civilians. Israel daily break the humanical law which obligates not to target civil homes and destroy habitation apartments.

So, what can be a good solution?!!!!

I recommend a solution. Why don't Israelis declare their own state on a land where there is no people and where there is no independent state?!!!  Do you know where this kind of land can be found?!!! No people, No independent state?!!!! .....  Antarctica.
Illogical, right?!!!!
So, is it logical to accept killing and killing and killing of babies like Eman Hajjo (4 months old) in 5-1-2001, Sarah (1.5 years old) in 1-10-2001, children like Mohammad Al-Dorra (12 years) 30-9-2001, old men like ( Ahmad Yaseen) and civilians (don't need here any example as the world knows the daily and continues random killing) ?!!!!  Is it logical to accept daily destructive of civil homes and targeting civil targets?!!!!  Is it logical to accept creating more and more orphans and more and more widows every day passes in Palestine?!!!   Is it logical to accept displacing people from their homes?!!!  Is it logical to accept frightening safe people?!!!

So, if the first solution is illogical, and the second is illogical at all too, what is the solution then?!!!!

51st article of UN charter gave us the solution; 'Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations..'
So, it's the right of Palestinian people to defend himself and his land the same like the right of self-defence which any people have and can practice against invaders. And this resistance must last till the Palestinian state which existed before 1948 be declared, and violence be rejected, and real peace prevails, and rights be got back to their owners, and war criminals be provided to international neutral courts.

I believe that, any solutions to the Palestinian issue won't do any thing, because all will be temporary and won't last. So,there must be a permanent solution which depends firstly on respecting international law and punishing criminals and getting back rights to their owners.  And without that; you'll see a hundred Qana, and a hundred Deir Yassen, and the problem won't be solved. If the group of the four requires; rejecting violence, respecting previous deals, confession by Israel and ending resistance, so I think that they aren't targeting the good solution, but the good solution must depends on following basics;
  • Israeli state is against international law; preamble of UN charter, 2nd article of UN charter.
  • Israeli state is an invader land.
  • Israeli daily deeds against armless Palestinian people is against humanical and international law.
  • The right of Jews to unit must not harm others rights.
  • Self-defence against killing innocents and stealing lands represents an admitted and legal right.
  • If it's not good to decrease Israeli state, so was it good to delete Palestinian state?!!
Was my view rational?!!

Yes, Israel has a right to exist   Source :

Etiquette of Conversation

by Rawa Muhsin

Reflection time
Photo source.
These are 10 reminders that can serve as an aid for having fruitful conversations. They can be used by couples when talking with one another, by Muslims in giving Da'waah to non-Muslims, or any other situation:

1) Don't challenge. It is important not to challenge the other party as this can agitate their Kibar (pride) and make them more prone to disagreeing.

2) Don't say "You are wrong." When you try to show their error bluntly, they are more likely to hold on to their position even if they come to realize that they are wrong.

3) Admit you are wrong. If you realize that you are wrong about a certain point, don't hesitate to acknowledge it. This will make them know that you are seeking the truth, and not trying to impose your own opinion.

4) Honest praise. Praise the good qualities of the other person. This is definitely a heart-softener. Do make sure that your praise is truthful and in its place.

5) Ask confirmatory questions. Ask questions for which you expect an affirmative reply from the other party. These will make them more close to the correct position you are trying to show them.

6) Leave the food for the bird on the ground; don't expect it to come to you. When you want to get your correct position over to the other party, it is a good idea to propose it in the form of a suggestion and let the other party arrive at their decision by themselves; don't force them to, for they won't comply.

7) Don't interrupt, listen attentively. This is very important. Nobody likes to be interrupted when they are speaking. Everybody likes to be listened to. Let them say all that they want to say and listen attentively, and when they are finished, start speaking. What is worse is to disagree with them while they are expressing their opinion.

8) Adapt their position. Put yourself in the other person's position to see what is wrong with it. If you see nothing wrong, then there is probably nothing to argue about.

9) Common grounds. Try to highlight your common grounds so that you can resolve the issues in which you are disagreeing over. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta'aalaa) commands us to give Da'wah to the Christians by showing them our common grounds and then rectifying where they went wrong (Surah Aali 'Imraan, verse 64).

10) Move their feelings. Emotions play a major role in people's decisions. Moving somebody's feelings in a positive way (not hurting their feelings!) is likely to bring about good results.

The upshot of these points is to ask Allaah to help you and the other party to see the truth as truth and accept it, and see falsehood as falsehood and reject it, and to know that it is only by the will of Allaah that these points can bring about benefit.


Originally adapted from a lecture by Shaykh 'Adnaan 'Abdul-Qaadir. 

Etiquette of Conversation

Source :

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The World of Body vs. World of Soul

Posted  by: sonnet sonnet
The World of Body vs. World of Soul by Iqbal

Delve deep into your buried Self, and find the clue to life,
If you cannot be mine then be not, but be your own;
World of soul- a world of fire, ecstasy and longing,
World of body- a world of gain, fraud and cunning;
The treasure of the spirit once again gained is never lost again,
The treasure of the body is a shadow- wealth comes and goes ;
In the world of soul I have found no Frankish rule,
In that world no Sheikh or Brahmin I have seen;
This saying of the Qalandar poured shame and shame on me;
When you kneel to anothers might neither body nor soul is your own.

Note: Iqbal uses the Qalandar as a symbol for the evolved man who has realized in himself the truth of self-development.
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Intermarriage worries Gulf states

Marriage between relatives is seen as distasteful within some cultures, but it has been a common feature in many others for thousands of years.

However, growing evidence has shown that children born to parents from the same extended family face a higher risk of developing a range of health problems.

Research from 2008 shows that marriage between cousins in the US, Europe, Russia and Australia is less than one per cent.

In countries such as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, more than half of the population marry a spouse who is considered a relative.

Some of these countries and a number of African and Asian countries have the world's highest rates of birth defects - up to 69 cases in every thousand people.

Some experts say the real figure is much higher. Like its Gulf neighbours, Qatar has now made pre-marital medical tests mandatory.

Khalid bin Jabor al-Thani, the chairman of Qatar's cancer society and former deputy director of its national health authority, told Al Jazeera that inter-family marriages are tolerated because they are the product of "tribal traditions".

"The tolerance comes from people who used to live in very remote areas and tribes would always want to keep their blood within the family and not go outside," he said.

"In Islamic religion it is always advisable to go outside the family. But since this has [been happening] for such a long time ago, and has been carried forward, it [is] one of the issues that people overlook."

Al Jazeera's Charles Stratford reports from Doha.

Family: The Building Blocks of Society

Saulat Pervez

Mr. and Mrs. Siddiq migrated to the United States in the late 1980s from Pakistan. Sponsored by Mrs. Siddiq’s brother, they had a clear and simple goal: to avail better educational opportunities for their four children in the New World.

Muhammad Uthman came to the United States as a masters student in the mid-1990s. He studied computer engineering at a prestigious university, intending to return to his native Egypt. As it turned out, he met his future wife, a Syrian American, and decided to stay.

Mary Kief was one of two siblings born to an Arab father and an American mother. With very little contact with her paternal family, Mary thought little about her identity except as a born-and-bred American. However, things began to change once she started attending college, embarking herself on a journey of self-discovery.

The above three examples aptly characterize the diversity of Muslim families inhabiting the United States. While many have converged here from different parts of the world, others have no sense of “back home.” Still others find Islam in their search for the truth and thence begin their legacy as Muslim families.

Family in Islam
The family unit is an important component of Islam, and all elements of a family are given due significance – from parents to children to spouses to kith and kin.

The Holy Quran repeatedly reminds its readers of the duties children have toward parents, particularly in their old age. God says in the Quran:

And your Lord has commanded that you shall not serve (any) but Him, and goodness to your parents. If either or both of them reach old age with you, say not to them (so much as) "Ugh" nor chide them, and speak to them a generous word. And, out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: "My Lord! bestow on them Thy Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood." (Quran, 17:23-24)

Of the two, the mother is given greater importance in Islam. The Quran bears witness to the mother’s travails by stating, “with trouble did his mother bear him and with trouble did she bring him forth; and the bearing of him and the weaning of him was thirty months…” (46:15)

One of the traditions of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) strongly supports this as well. A companion once asked the Prophet, “Who deserves my good treatment most?” “Your mother,” said the Prophet. “Who next?” “Your mother,” he replied again. “Who next?” “Your mother,” he answered yet again. “Who after that?” “Your father.

Obeying one's parents and treating them with respect and affection are greatly esteemed virtues, even if they are non-Muslim. A female companion of the Prophet once asked him how she should treat her mother who was not a Muslim and followed pagan tribal customs and beliefs. Prophet Muhammad told her to be kind and considerate and to behave towards her as was a mother’s due from a daughter.

Yet, one’s obedience to parents does not overlay one’s obedience to God. He says, “…and if they contend with you that you should associate (others) with Me, of which you have no knowledge, do not obey them, to Me is your return, so I will inform you of what you did.” (29:8)

Islam further advises parents to treat their children with mercy, love, and equality. In addition, parents must provide proper education to their children along with raising them to be morally upright and responsible individuals of society. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has said the best gift a father can give his child is good education. The Prophet (pbuh) also laid great emphasis on proper treatment of daughters and promised the reward of paradise for parents who raise their daughter(s) well. At the same time, God calls for moderation in the Quran:  “O you who believe! Let not your wealth, or your children, divert you from the remembrance of Allah; and whoever does that, these are the losers.” (63:9)

Importance of Marriage
Marriage is a sacred social contract between a man and a woman. Like all great religions, Islam also emphasizes the institution of marriage. God says in the Holy Quran: “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.” (30:21)

In addition, the Quran beautifully describes the depth of a marital relationship by invoking the metaphor of “garments” for the husband and wife: “They are your garments and you are their garments.” (2:187) Moreover, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has specifically mentioned marriage to be of his traditions and even equated it to completing half of one’s faith.

References to marriage within the Quran and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) are unmistakably heterosexual. In fact, homosexuality is strictly forbidden in Islam. The story of Lot is repeatedly mentioned in the Quran and the behavior of his people is termed indecent, excessively sinful, lewd, evil, and shameful. While Muslims do not discriminate against gays and lesbians as human beings, they detest their homosexuality as something which transgresses the bounds set by God from the beginning of time. In this vein, orthodox Christianity and Judaism continue to strongly condemn homosexuality as well.

The Process of Marriage
While the concept of dating does not exist in Islam and intercourse prior to marriage is prohibited, the Islamic notion of marriage recognizes the need to determine compatibility between future spouses. For instance, when marrying their eldest daughter, Sarah, the Siddiqs made sure she and her suitor were given an opportunity to speak with one another with moderated supervision before either side made a commitment. Once they were engaged, the two continued a dialogue via phone and email.

Spouses are selected in different ways. Some marriages, like Sarah’s, are “arranged.” Other individuals find their own partners through interaction with each other, as in the case of Muhammad Uthman and his wife, Eman, who met on campus and took a liking for one another. Through it all, the focus is on the immediate goal of marriage. In this way, Islam strives to keep the spirit of matrimony alive: a union not only of two distinct persons, but their diverse viewpoints, their unique backgrounds and their extended families as well; a pledge to interweave their hitherto autonomous lives, hopefully successfully, and to continue the legacy onward.

Contrary to popular beliefs, Islam does not avow forced marriages irrespective of the gender; in fact, a marriage is incomplete without express approval by both the bride and groom. In practice, arranged marriages in Islam refer to the process where a third party introduces two families with children of marriageable age.

Weddings are festive occasions involving family and friends and may last for several days, depending on one’s culture. Yet, the essence of marriage lies in the nuptial contract signed by both the bride and groom after verbal affirmation to marry one another, which is overseen by two witnesses. This ceremony is called the “nikah” and it binds the two as husband and wife. An after-marriage feast called a “walima” is hosted by the husband, as was the custom of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

Marriage: Related Topics
Interestingly, the convention to change one’s name to their husband’s continues to exist in many Muslim countries, but practicing American Muslim women are increasingly choosing to keep their maiden names, understanding that no matter who they marry, they will foremost be their father’s daughters. They take their cue from the following words of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh): “You will be called on the Day of Resurrection by your names and the names of your fathers…” The women at the time of the Prophet (pbuh), including his own wives, were all known by the names of their fathers, not their husbands. Following this tradition, Mary Kief decided to keep her last name after marriage without any objections from her husband.

Moreover, Islamically, the wife is free to keep her income since the husband is expected to provide for the upkeep of the home and family. In actuality, though, many couples maintain joint bank accounts and share the burdens of the home together. Divorce, while discouraged, is a social reality which is accepted and legalized. The wife or the husband may initiate the annulment process, which involves months-long negotiations with arbiters from both sides in the hopes of mending the relationship before a final decision is reached.

Although polygamy is practiced by a minority among Muslims, it is by no means the norm. Islam permits men to marry up to four wives at a time and this custom is more prevalent in some cultures than others. If a man chooses to have more than one wife, he must deal with all of them with justice. The Quran states: “…marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one…” (4:3) Limitless polygamy has been practiced in a variety of cultures; however, Islam humanizes this practice with a limited allowance, recognizing a variety of factors, such as a higher ratio of women in certain countries, the toll of war and excessive male deaths in a society, and offering a legitimate and protective solution against the social evil of adultery.

Carrying the Legacy Forward
Having children is often the natural next step for many Muslim couples although some choose to wait a few years before conceiving whereas others are unable to do so – as is pretty much the case with people all over the world. Naming the child can become a family affair with the involvement of grandparents at times, whereas some couples opt to name their own children. On the seventh day after the child is born, a religious sacrifice of slaughtering is performed and the baby’s head is shaved, giving the monetary equivalence of the weight of his/her hair in charity. This ceremony, called an “aqeeqah,” may instead be conducted on the 14th, 21st, 28th (etc.) day of the baby’s birth.

Extended Family
The Qur’an repeatedly stresses the significance of safeguarding the ties of the womb. Two examples:

"And give to the kindred his due." (Al-Isra’: 26)
"Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship, and do good to parents, kins-folk..." (An-Nisa’: 36)

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has similarly instructed, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should maintain good relation with his kindred.”

Even as Muslim couples embark on their lives together, maintaining strong ties with their extended families is an important aspect of their lifestyles. Some couples live in a joint family system; others prefer to live as nuclear families and may reside in close proximity to either set of parents or a great distance away depending on job locations, chosen community, or preference of state. Nonetheless, frequent family reunions, particularly during summer holidays or weddings, are common. Many visit their countries of origin for this purpose.
Conversely, families abroad also regularly visit their American counterparts.

The Siddiqs have been living in the States for more than two decades now and no matter how nostalgic Mr. and Mrs. Siddiq may get when they talk about Pakistan, their children cannot imagine a home other than America. They have lived up to their parents’ expectations and are not only productive citizens, but also committed to giving back to their community. Sarah, the eldest, is a teacher; Zafar is a software programmer; Haider is an architect, and Hala is just completing her dental college. They have all married and are managing their own families, jobs and community responsibilities, carrying their parents’ legacy forward. As a family, the Siddiqs are planning to visit Pakistan next year for a big reunion with their Pakistani relatives after many years.

Muhammad Uthman and Eman have come a long way too. Uthman, a successful software analyst, routinely participates in community events hosted by his local mosque. Eman, a writer, chooses to stay home and works on a freelance basis. She also keeps herself busy in the philanthropic activities of the mosque, from organizing Quran study circles to participating in soup kitchens; she is an active member of their local public library as well where she volunteers her time on a weekly basis. In addition, she teaches at the weekend Islamic school which their two children regularly attend. Uthman’s parents visit them every other year for a few months; while they initially enjoy the peace and quiet of American suburbia, they eventually long for the hubbub of their urban lifestyle and are happy to return to their home.

Mary Kief is now an accomplished doctor with a family of her own. She has undergone quite a journey ever since her first year in college when she roomed with an amiable Muslim girl. When her roommate invited her to attend a lecture being hosted by the Muslim Student Association (MSA), Mary reluctantly went. The lecture was titled, “Islamic History: A Glorious Past.” Mary was so fascinated that she called her father and told him all about it. She began doing her own research and started to understand her Arab ancestry. That summer, she even forced her parents to take her to Jordan, her father’s home country. She was happy there but, somehow, not satisfied. She returned to her campus and began attending more and more MSA meetings, feeling truly at home with her Muslim friends. During med school and afterwards, she has stayed connected to the local mosque. Today, she is aware of her mixed heritage and proud of the fact that her own family is a melting pot of sorts, with one common strand: no matter where they come from, they are American Muslims!

The families profiled in this article are fictionalized; however, their life accounts, in spirit, can easily be applicable to a wide variety of American Muslim families.

 Family in Islam
Source :

Monday, March 29, 2010

Cells Phones Cause Brain Cancer, Report Finds

Cells phones are associated with causing brain tumors, a report issued by the International Electromagnetic Field Collaborative has concluded. The report, which was endorsed by 43 scientists from 13 countries, reviewed all evidence on cell phone use and brain health, and concluded:
  • There is a risk of brain tumors from cell phone use;
  • Telecom funded studies underestimate the risk of brain tumors, and;
  • Children have larger risks than adults for brain tumors.
The report found that the most compelling research linking cell phone usage to brain tumors was noted in a Swedish study published in 2009. It found a 420 percent increased risk of brain cancer among people who started using digital mobile phones and cordless phones as teenagers. Older analogue mobile phones, which are now mostly off the market, were found to cause a 700 percent greater risk of cancer.
The study also highlighted 11 flaws in an upcoming Interphone study on the safety of cell phones. It said that the study eliminated subjects who use portable phones, even though those devices also emit microwave radiation as cell phones do. Also, it excluded many types of brain tumors from the study as well as subjects who died or were too ill be interviewed. The Interphone study also did not include children and young adults, who are more vulnerable, it said.
Here are some quotations from the report:

"Exposure to cellphone radiation is the largest human health experiment ever undertaken, without informed consent, and has some 4 billion participants enrolled. Science has shown increased risk of brain tumors from use of cellphones, as well as increased risk of eye cancer, salivary gland tumors, testicular cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and leukemia. The public must be informed." Lead study author, Lloyd Morgan. "It is indisputable that exposure to radiofrequency radiation at cell telephone frequencies produces biological changes that are consistent with potential adverse effects on human health and development. Moreover, these biological effects are consistent with recent epidemiological studies of long-term cell phone users that have shown increased risks for tumor development. What should be a major concern for scientists and non-scientists alike is industry's misleading and scientifically inaccurate use of available data. Industry's claims of studies negating one another, their misuse of "weight of evidence," and their overt support of studies designed to produce negative data, all in the name of increasing the profit line, are shameful and should not be tolerated." Jerry L. Phillips, PhD, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs; United States
"Independent research findings, including our own, show that cell phone damages the DNA of brain cells and sperms in animal models. Research lavishly funded by industry to counteract the results from the independent science should be taken with caution." Narendra P. Singh, Research Associate Professor, University of Washington; United States
"The scientific data show, with a high degree of confidence, that mobile phone exposure is associated with an increased brain tumor risk. The age group below 20 years is facing the greatest risk, for malignant (deadly) brain tumors, of about 400 percent, compared to non exposed. When we take the long latency period of up to some decades into account, and the fact that large parts of our society and especially more and more teenagers and even children are using mobile phones on a daily basis, we may well expect a brain tumor epidemic. From a public health perspective there is an urgent need not only for a wake-up call for our society, but for measures that are able to combat this public health threat effective now. " Gerd Oberfeld, Dr (MD), State Government Salzburg and Speaker for Environmental medicine for the Austrian Medical Association, Vienna; Austria
The report gave eight recommendations of ways to reduce exposure to cell phone radiation:

  • 1. When on a call, use a wired headset (not a wireless headset such as a Bluetooth), or use in speaker-phone mode, or send text messages.
  • 2. Keep the cellphone away from your body (particularly pant/trouser or shirt pockets) or use a belt holster designed to shield the body from cellphone radiation, when not in use (stand-by mode).
  • 3. Avoid use in a moving car, train, bus, or in rural areas at some distance from a cell tower (AKA mast or base station) as any of these uses will increase the power of the cellphone's radiation.
  • 4. Use the cellphone like an answering machine. Keep it off until you want to see who has called. Then return calls, if necessary, using steps 5 and 1.
  • 5. Use a land-line phone, if available, instead of a cellphone.
  • 6. Avoid use inside of buildings, particularly with steel structures.
  • 7. Do not allow your children to sleep with a cellphone beneath their pillow or at the bedside.
  • 8. Do not allow your children under 18 to use a cellphone except in emergencies.
The full report can be Downloaded here
 Cells Phones Cause Brain Cancer, Report Finds   Source :

The ideal personality of the Muslim

Posted by Aminah naila

The ideal personality of the Muslim

The ideal Muslim character is distinct and balanced. The Muslim is the embodiment of the teachings of the Quran and the ‘Sunnah’ (sayings, actions and the approvals of the Prophet Muhammad ). He follows the teachings of the Book of Allaah (i.e. Quran) and the example of the Prophet Muhammad in all affairs, relations, and situations – starting with his relationship with his Lord, his own self, his family and the people around him.

In what follows is a brief overview of some qualities of the ideal Muslim personality.

His attitude towards Allaah

One of the most distinguishing features of the (ideal) Muslim is his deep faith in Allaah, The Exalted, and his conviction that whatever happens in the universe and whatever befalls him, only happens through the will and the decree of Allaah. The Muslim is closely connected to Allaah, constantly remembers Him, puts his trust in Him and is obedient towards Him.

His faith is pure and clear, uncontaminated by any strain of ignorance, superstition or illusion. His belief and worship are based on the Quran and the authentic ‘Sunnah’.

The Muslim is alert and open-minded to the magnificence of Allaah. He knows that it is Allaah who is in control of the affairs of the universe and of mankind, and He (Allaah) Knows all and Witnesses every secret.

A Muslim feels in the depths of his soul that he is in constant need of the help and support of Allaah, no matter how much he may think he can do for himself. He has no choice in his life but to submit to the will of Allaah, worship Him, strive towards the Right Path and do good deeds.

This will guide him to be righteous and upright in all his deeds, both in public and in private.

A Muslim recognizes the signs of the unlimited power of Allaah in the universe, and so his faith in Allaah increases: Allaah, The Exalted, Says (what means): “Verily! In the creation of the heavens and the earth and (in) the difference of night and day are tokens (of His sovereignty) for men of understanding. Such as remember Allaah, standing, sitting, and reclining, and consider the creation of the heavens and the earth, (and say): Our Lord! You created not this in vain. Glory be to You! Preserve us from the doom of Fire.” [Quran 3: 190-191]

His attitude towards his body, mind and soul

The Muslim pays due attention to his body’s physical, intellectual and spiritual needs.

He takes good care of his body, promoting its good health and strength. He is active, doesn’t eat in excess; but he eats enough to maintain his health and energy. He understands that a strong believer is more loved by Allaah than a weak believer. Allaah, The Exalted, Says (what means): “…Eat and drink; but waste not by excess, for Allaah loves not the wasters.” [Quran 7: 31]

The Muslim keeps away from drugs and stimulants. He also does not forget to exercise regularly to maintain his physical fitness.

The Muslim also keeps his body and clothes very clean. He bathes frequently. The Prophet placed a great emphasis on cleanliness and bathing. Cleanliness makes the Muslim more likeable to people. He also takes care of his mouth and teeth.

It is no surprise that the Muslim is concerned with his clothing and appearance. The Muslim does all of this in accordance with the Islamic ideal of moderation, avoiding the extremes of exaggeration and negligence.

Allaah Says (what means): “Say: Who has forbidden the adornment of Allaah which He has brought forth for His bondmen, and the good things of His providing? Say: Such, on the Day of Resurrection, will be only for those who believed during the life of the world. Thus do We detail Our revelations for people who have knowledge.” [Quran 7: 32]

As for his intellectual care, the Muslim takes care of his mind by perusing beneficial knowledge. He is responsible to seek knowledge whether it is religious or secular, so he may understand the nature and the essence of things. Allaah Says (what means): “…and say: My Lord! Increase me in knowledge.” [Quran 20: 114]

The Muslim does not forget that man is not only composed of a body and a mind, but that he also possesses a soul and a spirit, and feels a longing for higher things that make him rise above this materialistic life and scale the heights of goodness, virtue and light.

Therefore, the Muslim pays as much attention to his spiritual development as to his physical and intellectual development, in a precisely balanced fashion which does not concentrate on one aspect to the detriment of others.

His attitude towards people

With his parents, the Muslim is an example of sincere filial piety. He treats them with kindness and respect, infinite compassion, utter politeness and deep gratitude. He recognizes their status and knows his duties towards them. Allaah Says (what means): “And serve Allaah. Ascribe nothing as partner unto Him. (Show) kindness unto parents…” [Quran 4: 36]

With his wife, the Muslim exemplifies good and kind treatment, intelligent handling, deep understanding of the nature and psychology of women, and proper fulfillment of his responsibilities and duties.

With his children, the Muslim is a parent who understands his great responsibility towards them which is, as well as flooding them with love and compassion, to pay attention to anything that may influence their Islamic development and give them proper education, so that they become active and constructive elements in society, and a source of goodness for their parents, community, and society as a whole.

With his relatives, the Muslim maintains the ties of kinship and knows his duties towards them. He understands the high status given to relatives in Islam, which makes him keep in touch with them, no matter what the circumstances.

With his neighbors, the Muslim illustrates good treatment and consideration of others’ feelings and sensitivities. He puts up with mistreatment and turns a blind eye to his neighbor’s faults while taking care not to commit any such errors himself.

The Muslim relationship with his brothers and friends is the best and purest of relationships, for it is based on love for the sake of Allaah. He is loving, not cold towards them; he is loyal and does not betray them; he is sincere and does not cheat them; he is gentle and never harsh; he is tolerant and forgiving; he is generous and he supplicates for them (his brothers and friends).

In his social relationships with all people, the Muslim is well-mannered, civil and noble, characterized by the attitudes which Islam encourages.

The Muslim does not envy others. He fulfils his promises. He has the attitude of shyness. He is cheerful. He is not pushy. He is patient. He avoids slandering or uttering obscenities. He does not unjustly accuse others. He is shy and modest. He does not interfere in that which does not concern him. He refrains from gossiping, spreading slander and stirring up trouble. He avoids false speech and suspicion. When he is entrusted with a secret, he keeps it. He is modest and never arrogant. He does not make fun of anyone. He respects his elders. He mixes with the best of people. He strives to reconcile between the Muslims. He calls others to Islam with wisdom and beautiful preaching. He visits the sick and attends funerals. He returns favors and is grateful for them. He guides people to do good. He always likes to make things easy and not difficult.

The Muslim is fair in his judgements. He is not a hypocrite, a sycophant or a show-off. He does not boast about his deeds and achievements. He is straightforward and is never devious or twisted, no matter what the circumstances. He loves noble things and hates foolishness. He is generous and does not remind others of his gifts or favors. He is hospitable and does not complain when a guest comes to him. He prefers others to himself as much as possible. He relieves the burden of the debtor. He is proud and does not think of begging.

 The ideal personality of the Muslim

 Source :

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Sheikh Salman al-Oadah There is an old saying that goes: “The calmer the ocean, the deeper it is.” Another old saying goes: “An empty cart makes more noise than the full cart.”
These sayings point to the same thing: that calm is a virtue. There can be no doubt about the truth of this point.

The human mind works at its best when the surrounding environment is calm and settled.
Likewise, it works at its best when the thinker’s temperament is calm. When the human mind is beset with external or internal commotion, its powers become weak and it more easily falls prey to rashness and reckless passion.
It is a strategy of debate to get one’s opponent angry, since once the opponent loses his or her composure, his or her defeat is almost imminent, especially if one is able to keep one’s cool and a smile on one’s face.
Allah describes those who believe and rely on their Lord as being: “those who avoid the worst sins and shameful deeds, and, when they are angry even then forgive. [Sûrah al-Shûrâ: 37]
The Prophet (peace be upon him) warns us that: “Anger is a burning ember in the human heart that is stoked up.” [Musnad Ahmad(11158)]
We can draw a lesson from what happened when the Prophet’s uncle Abû Tâlib was on his deathbed. The Prophet (peace be upon him) entered his room to find him in the company of Abû Jahl and Abd Allah b. Abî Umayyah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “My uncle, declare that there is no God but God, so I may speak on your behalf before Allah.”
At this, Abû Jahl and Abd Allah b. Abî Umayyah said: “O Abû Tâlib! Do you desire something other than the ways of `Abd al-Muttalib?”
Abû Tâlib died, refusing to accept Islam though knowing it to be the truth, out of fear of public shame. Nevertheless, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “I will continue to seek Allah’s forgiveness for you as long as Allah does not forbid me from doing so.”
Thereafter, Allah revealed the verse: “It is not fitting, for the Prophet and those who believe, that they should pray for forgiveness for Pagans, even though they be of kin, after it is clear to them that they are companions of the Fire.” [Sûrah al-Tawbah: 113]
The Prophet (peace be upon him) was in a heart-wrenching situation. He loved his uncle who had in turn loved him and done so much for him. The issue was the most serious issue that can be considered: the issue of faith in Allah and his Messenger and of worshipping Allah alone. The Prophet (peace be upon him) sought nothing more from Abû Tâlib than to declare his faith before he died.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) was well aware that a person is all the more sensitive and unclear of thinking at the time of death. Therefore, he spoke to him calmly and clearly, saying: “My uncle, declare that there is no God but God, so I may speak on your behalf before Allah.”
The Prophet (peace be upon him) did not allow himself to get into an argument with his opponents when they taunted Abû Tâlib with the honor of the tribe of Quraysh and reminded him of the religion of his forefathers. He simply repeated to his uncle his calm request.
The Prophet’s conduct should remind us that just because we know we are in the right, this gives us no excuse to get angry. Indeed, if we are upon the truth, this should give us all the more reason to remain calm. Anger merely confuses things and makes it more difficult for us to think clearly and communicate our thoughts to others.
It is said that clam is the pinnacle of virtue. When we think about it, we see that a person who remains calm has the advantage under all circumstances – in agreement and disagreement, in acceptance and refusal. Calm enhances one’s good qualities and makes one’s bad qualities seem less serious. Even a wrongdoer, if he maintains his composure and good manners, is more likely to be excused for his wrongdoing.
We should remember the Prophet’s words: “The strong person is not the one who can throw his opponent. The strong person is the one who can keep control when angry.”
Posted by xeniagreekmuslimah
Source :

The Heart Ponders!

so that their hearts may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear ….
Scientists discovered that the human heart has more than 40,000 neurons that play a significant role in thinking, understanding, behaving and other metal processes. This fact was pointed out in the Holy Quran, as Allah says: "Have they not travelled in the land, so that their hearts may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear? For indeed it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts, which are within the bosoms, that grow blind" [Al-Hajj: 46].
In this verse we see significant sign to role of heart in learning and comprehension, and this is what exactly the scientists say.
By: Abduldaem Al-Kaheel
1.      Paul Pearsall, The Heart's Code: Tapping the Wisdom and Power of Our Heart Energy, New York, Broadway Books, 1998.
2.      Science of the heart, Institute of HeartMath.

Five Foods That Aid Weight Loss

The best way to lose weight and keep the weight off is to change the way you eat on a daily basis, by choosing a variety of healthy foods and eating in moderation. This will ensure an adequate supply of antioxidants vital for boosting immunity and protecting the body against disease.

Here are some foods that studies support as being effective fat-burners, thus potentially aiding weight lossdiet. when eaten as part of a balanced, healthy




Naringenin, a flavonoid in grapefruit, balances out blood sugar levels and helps to prevent metabolic syndrome, a pre-diabetic condition associated with weight gain. Scientists at the University of Western Ontario found it worked by programming the liver to burn up excess fat, rather than store it.

When patients drank grapefruit juice before each meal, they lost between nearly 4-10lb in weight over three months, according to a study at the University of California.

Chili Pepper

Capsaicin, the heat-producing molecule that gives chili peppers their kick, is thermogenic, meaning it speeds up metabolism and heat production. Research has found that cells can burn up to 25 per cent more caloriesMaastricht University found that chili peppers also reduce appetite by suppressing hunger and prolonging the feeling of fullness. after a person has eaten chili. Trials at

green tea

Green tea speeds up the rate your body burns cellular energy by up to 40 per cent, according to research reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

The plant also increases the rate of fat burning. Researchers have found this effect is caused by the combination of caffeine and flavonoids found in the tea, whether it is drunk hot or cold.



A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that when volunteers were given ricecinnamon, they produced less insulin after the meal. Insulin is the hormone that turns excess sugar into fat, so this means less weight gain. Furthermore, cinnamon may slow down emptying of the stomach, meaning it can make you feel fuller for longer. pudding with three grams of

Coconut oil

Coconut fat has found to have fewer calories per gram than other fats, producing only 6.8 calories per gram rather than 9 calories like most fats. Unlike many others, calories in coconut oil act more like carbohydrates, being burned by the liver for immediate energy.

According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the body digests coconut oil more easily than the fats in butter or spreads, rapidly converting it into a source of energy.

Five Foods That Aid Weight Loss

Source :

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Sadness is not encouraged in Islam

by Gulan

As Salamu Alaykoum!
Sadness is something that we have all experienced and are to experience throughout our lives. However, it is the way one deals with such sadness that differentiates them from others.

When we let sadness take us over, we are left in a state of depression, our soul is enervated from acting upon our will, and the body becomes inactive.

Undoubtedly, sadness brings nothing but negativity into our lives. Whether we have lost a loved one, a job, or have become sad due to a long term illness, there is only one answer. We must accept the situation, and supplicate to Allah (سبحانه وتعالى).

We are reminded of this in the Qur'an:

لَا تَحْزَنْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَنَا
Grieve not, for Allah is with us. [Qur'an 9: 40]
Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAAW) sought refuge from sadness with the following supplication:
O'Allah, I seek refuge in you from anxiety and grief.
The occurrences of sadness and grief are out of our control, however, we can strive to use such hardships as trials that will only make us stronger. Everything happens for a reason, so we must be patient.

With this, dearest brothers and sisters, I remind you of the following verse:

وَقَالُوا الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي أَذْهَبَ عَنَّا الْحَزَنَ إِنَّ رَبَّنَا لَغَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ
And they say: Praise be to Allah Who hath put grief away from us. Indeed our Lord is Forgiving, Bountiful. (Qur'an 35: 34)
WasSalaamu Alaykoum 

Source :    Sadness is not encouraged in Islam



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