Friday, November 03, 2006

Behold the Islamic Revolution of (my city’s name)!

Okay, not really. But something like an Islamic Revival is in the works, insha’Allah.

This new city of mine is a relatively small one, with an even smaller Muslim community. When my parents came back from Saudi after my father graduated from the Islamic univeristy, they moved here to be with my grandparents. My dad and some of the local Muslim dudes first rented out a house to serve as a musallah, and then managed to scrape up the funds to buy the place and turn it into a Masjid proper. During that time, they held Islamic duroos and halaqas, and my dad begun a sort of madrasah (Islamic school) for the Muslim kids. Soon after, however, we moved away and the duroos and madrasah stopped and never really started up again. The Muslim community here has spent the last 9 years dormant, just barely keeping the masjid running.

Now that we’re back, we’re planning on changing things for the better, insha’Allah. First, bringing back the madrasah. Only this time it’s going to be more formal, and bigger. Before it was a weekend thing for a bunch of little kids; now it’s going to be held 3 days a week, after school, for 2 hours, for kids up to age 18. My father has set things up already; he held the first class yesterday. Apparently quite a few people have signed up already, al-Hamdulillaah.

After that, we’re planning on having duroos and halaqas again for the adults, and regular programs for the Muslim youth, stuff that’ll be both fun and Islamically educational. We’re pretty much modeling it on the Islamic centre my dad used to run in my old city (which will henceforth be referred to as the Dar).

When it was Ramadan and we went to the Masjid for Taraweeh, I was pretty shocked at what I saw. It was sad, it really was, and I found it shocking because of what I was used to at the Dar. When I told my parents, they said that this was exactly the reason we were here – so that we could change things for the better, insha’Allah.

I can’t wait for things to start getting up and running. I miss my old city like mad, mostly the Dar ‘cuz that’s where I met all my friends, and listened and learnt at the feet of the wise women who were like second mothers to me, and studied Arabic, and pretty much just hung out and had fun… fond memories, indeed.
In the four to five months we’ve been here, I’ve been going crazy. The Masjid has NO regular duroos, no programs for the youth, nothing. It’s dead as a tomb most of the time, except for once a week on Jumu’ah (Fridays). People seem to only wake up during Ramadan, when they stumble in to pray Taraweeh, and then after ‘Eid day, they seem to vanish again.

The thing that I hate is the preparation, and waiting. I can’t *do* anything. I’m the type of person who loves being a part of the action, and it frustrates me to no end having to sit and wait for the adults to finish with all the paper work and setting up and stuff. Gah. What’s worse is that even with the Islamic school getting set up, we’re still going to have wait ‘till more people get to know us and get used to us, before we can start doing the stuff that we used to do at the Dar. Plus there’s stuff like resources (or rather, lack thereof) that’ll make things harder to do here than they were at the Dar. Even though the Dar was a relatively small place and the people who attended weren’t exactly wealthy (mostly working-class people, and several single parents as well), we had enough people that we could arrange regular activities for both adults and youth.
Here, there is a smaller population and even fewer resources, and all this is going to serve to make things even more difficult. Meh.

But al-Hamdulillaah. And insha’Allah, with lots of time and effort, we’ll eventually get something good going. Perhaps not the Islamic Revolution I’ve been dreaming about, but something that will benefit the Muslim community nonetheless.


Faraz said...

As a lifelong Easterner currently living in the West, I was a little surprised to see how far behind your old city was compared to my old city in a lot of Islamic aspects. It's overall a younger community, less well-established than the second-generation immigrant communities you see in the large cities in the East where Muslims lived for over 50 years. I imagine your new city is even less established, because of it's relatively small size.

All that being said, what you have is a golden opportunity. Think about it: you will be among the pioneers of Islam in that city. Future generations will benefit immensely from the infrastructure you and your family have established. And all the hasana they accrue will also insha-Allah be credited to your account on the Day of Judgement.

Khadiijah said...

Masha'ALlah, that was an beautiful blog. I hope your plans work well and you get the revolution, be it small, you want, ameen

Taysiir said...

Hehe, damn, your family is really something, specially your dad :) Well good luck to the community for teh future ;)