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  • Sri Lanka Muslim Council objects to Justice Minister's statement on Muslim community
    Sat, Nov 19, 2016, 11:12 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka. Nov 19, Colombo: The Muslim Council of Sri Lanka (MCSL) has strongly objected to the statement made by the Minister of Justice Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe in Parliament regarding the Muslim community. Justice Minister told parliament Friday that information has been uncovered on 32 well-educated Sri Lankan Muslims of 4 families joining the Islamic State in Syria. Issuing a statement today, MCSL president N M Ameen said Minister's statement implies that 32 Muslims have joined the ISIS recently. "We strongly object to this misplaced statement. The facts given by the Honorable Minister were reported in the media more than one year ago when a Sri Lankan combatant died fighting with ISIS," Ameen said. "There have been no new reports of any others involved since this was reported...
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  • Rajitha contradicts Wijeyadasa
    While rejecting Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakse's recent statement in Parliament that some 32 Sri Lankan youths had joined the IS, Cabinet spokesman Minister Rajitha Senaratne today said that the statement was completely incorrect and misleading. Addressing the weekly cabinet press briefing in Parliament, Minister Senaratne said according to the armed forces intelligence reports, only four Muslim youths had joined the IS but they have joined the militant group from abroad. “I have reliable intelligence reports that the information given to Minister Rajapakse was not correct. But unfortunately, the statement made by Minister Rajapakse in Parliament recently has created a confusion and anxiety among the Muslim community in Sri Lanka. Someone has given him misleading information. Not a single Muslim youth joined IS directly from Sri Lanka,”...
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  • An Open Letter to the Minister of Justice Hon. Wijedasa Rajapakshe
    19 Nov 2016 Hon. Wijedasa Rajapakse Minister of Justice Colombo An Open Letter to the Minister of Justice Hon. Wijedasa Rajapakshe Minister Rajapakse, The Muslim community takes serious exception to the censorious remarks made by you in Parliament on 17th Nov 2016.  You juxtaposed selected irrelevant issues to implicate and malign several respected Muslim organisations and the Muslim community. Your fearmongering remarks are increasing the degree of tension among all communities thereby jeopardising nascent peace emerging in the country.  The impact of your statement is not confined to the Muslims alone as it affects the whole country at a time when the President and the Prime Minister are forewarning the nation that anti-government saboteurs are scheming to bring Buddhist-Muslim clash as a strategy to bring down the government....
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  • Pearls of Wisdom: No.49 “Food for the Soul” SUBJECT: HEALING IN THE QUR’AN
    “Food for the Soul” SUBJECT: HEALING IN THE QUR’AN Allah, The Most Exalted, says: “And We reveal of the Qur’an that which is a healing and a mercy for Believers” ( Qur’an 17: 82)   “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: “There is no disease that Allah has sent down except that He also has sent down its treatment.” (Hadith – Bukhari ) Note: The Quran is not only guidance for humanity but Allah has also made it a spiritual cure and healing for all types of ailments. This includes treatment of all worldly problems, physical and psychological ailments, and spiritual. The Creator...
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  • Pearls of Wisdom: No.48
    Pearls of Wisdom: No.48 “Food for the Soul” SUBJECT: SHAITAAN(SATAN): “Our open enemy!” Allah, The Most Exalted, says: “O You who believe! Enter absolutely into peace (Islam). Do not follow in the footsteps of satan. He is an outright enemy to you.” (Quran: 2:208) The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: “Shaitaan places his throne upon water; then sends detachments (for creating dissension); one of them comes and says: I did not spare so and so until I sowed the seed of discord between him and his father or between him and his mother or his brothers. Then he (Shaitan) says: you did nothing. They will be made up with one another. Another one comes and says: I did not spare so and so until I sowed the seed of discord between him and his wife. The Shaitan goes near him and says: ‘You have...
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  • The Eternal Delight of Repentance!
    By Sister Jamine Khan When Allah created us, Allah pointed out the path of righteousness, and also the path which will lead to Allah’s displeasure. In addition, Allah gave us free will, in other words, we have a choice as to which path to follow. When we choose the path of sin we are turning away from our Creator. We are all born in a state of purity, with a natural predisposition to obey Allah. We enter the world in a state of submission to the divine known as the Fitrah. To return to our natural state we should turn away from doing what is wrong, and repent. With true repentance we dedicate ourselves to correcting our behaviour, it enables us to turn away from sin and return to the path of Allah. Allah’s infinite mercy has given this as a means by which we can strive for purification and thus return to our original sinless state of...
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  • Pearls of Wisdom: No.47
      “Food for the Soul” SUBJECT: KINDNESS Allah, The Most Exalted, says: “And verily, whosoever shows patience and forgives that would truly be from the things recommended by Allah” (Qur'an 42:43) The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: "Allah is not kind to him who is not kind to people” (Hadith Bukhari & Muslim) Note: Kindness is indeed a great virtue and a distinctive feature of good character. It is trait that every noble soul possesses. No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted or goes unnoticed in the sight of Allah Ta’ala. Kindness is a gift that everyone can afford to give and it has a ripple effect. It is the language which deaf can hear and blind can see. Be kind and kindness will be shown to you!
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  • Anytime Resolutions…5 Easy Tips!
    Anytime Resolutions…5 Easy Tips! By Abu Muhammad Yusuf The Islamic New has recently begun and people generally ponder about on how to approach this New Islamic Year and their work, health and relationships etc. In reality we don’t need a New Year or special occasion to make a resolution for doing or achieving good. It can be done instantaneously! Common resolutions include cutting down on chocolate/weight, quit smoking, getting in shape, etc. A lot involves benefits to the health and/or improving lifestyle. Others include giving more to charity, being closer to family which boosts a personal level of satisfaction etc. But this we as Muslims should be doing regardless.

    What about us? Have we set a goal or targets for ourselves? If so, was it because it was a New Year? Did you have to wait for the New Year to set it?...
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  • The Month of Muharram
      With the sighting of the new moon, the Islamic New Year 1438 is ushered in. The first month Muharram, is a month of great reward and virtue. Muharram itself means `sacred' and is from those months which have been mentioned as sacred in the Holy Qur’an. Almighty Allah states in the Holy Qur’an: "Four of them ( Zil-Qadah, Zil-Hijjah, Muharram and Rajab) are sacred."(Qur’an Surah At-Tawbah:36) From out of the four sacred months, Muharram has been blessed with certain specific virtues: The Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) said: "The best of fasts besides the month of Ramadhan is the fasting of Allah's month of Muharram."(Hadith-Muslim) "The one that keeps a fast in the month of Muharram will receive the reward of thirty fasts for each fast (in this sacred month)."(Hadith:Tabraani) Although...
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  • Pearls of Wisdom: No.45
    “Food for the Soul” SUBJECT:  GREETINGS Allah, The Most Exalted, says: “When ye are greeted with a greeting, greet ye with a better than it or return it. Lo! Allah taketh count of all things” (Qur’an 4:86) “When you enter houses, greet (with peace) one another with a salutation from Allah, blessed and good. As such Allah makes clear to you His verses so that you understand.”(Qur’an: an-Nur: 61) The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: “You will not enter Paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love one another. Shall I not tell you about something which, if you do it, you will love one another? Spread salaam (greetings) amongst yourselves” (Hadith Muslim) A man asked the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him): “What is the best thing in Islam?” He said,...
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The Miracle of Positive Thinking

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By Sister Shahnaaz Bemath
Thinking positive can work miracles. You may have been told to “guard your thoughts”, but felt the advice to be pointless. After all, your thoughts are private. How can they possibly affect someone else? The fact is, thoughts do seem to boomerang in some mysterious ways. Science has not found a way to measure them as they have invisible sound waves. In order to understand how positive thinking works, and how to use it efficiently, it is important to understand the power of negative thinking.

“Negative thoughts and tensions are like birds. We cannot stop them from flying near us but, we can certainly stop them from making a nest in our mind.”

 

Wilders’ Colleague From Fitna to Islam

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After abandoning his far-right party to embrace Islam, a former colleague of Dutch politician Geert Wilders has visited the holy lands in Saudi Arabia to perform his first `Umrah (lesser pilgrimage) in his life.

“If any person told me that I will visit the land of the two holy shrines, I would have told him that he must be insane,” Arnoud Van Doorn told Al-Madinah newspaper.

“Finding Islam is a dream came true,” a tearful Doorn added.


Doorn, a member of the far-right Freedom Party (PVV) has embraced Islam earlier this year after an extensive study into the religion.

He was among party leaders who helped produce an offensive film titled Fitna that linked Islam and the Qur’an to violence.

 

Halaal and Haraam Concept - An Analysis (IN SINHALA)

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Click here to read the full write up

This write-up appeared in LANKADEEPA local news paper on 19th December 2012.

 

Burmese Rohingyas lack ‘strategic value’

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World powers must intervene to stop the systematic extermination of the Muslim minority and provide much-needed aid in the form of medicines and food

By Tariq Al Maeena | Special to Gulf News

The threat of war against Syria and Iran has been grabbing headlines for weeks, accompanied by ever more sensationalist claims by the mainstream media. The tensions are naturally high and the scenario could be grim.

Michel Chossudovsky, a Canadian professor of economics and author of several books charges that “a sophisticated and all encompassing propaganda programme supports war in the name of world peace and global security. The underlying scenario of worldwide conflict goes far beyond the diabolical design of [George] Orwell’s 1984. The Ministry of Truth upholds war as a peacemaking undertaking by twisting realities upside down. In turn, the lies and fabrications of the mainstream media are presented with various innuendos in a complex web of deceit”.

 

Pharaoh vs. Moses in the Land of Egypt

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Egypt Scenario

by SYED HUSAIN PASHA

Egypt is no ordinary place. It is the land where tyranny runs deep and Pharaohs claim to be God.

And yet, paradoxically, Egypt also is the place from where the clarion cry of freedom rang out when Moses (May God Bless Him!) demanded from Pharaoh: Let My People Go!

Or, as the Qur’ān put it: Arsil ma’iya banee Israa-eel.

After thousands of years, that same timeless drama of Right vs. Wrong is being played out again. And this time, it is between a modern-day Moses in the person of Ikhwan’s candidate for President, Dr. Muhammad Morsi, and the forces of tyranny and corruption embodied in the Military regime of Mubarak and others.

 

Religious tolerance under scrutiny in Sri Lanka

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Vol - XLVII No. 22, June 02, 2012 | Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri

Nirmal Ranjith Dewarsiri is with the department of history, University of Colombo.

The recent attack led by Buddhist monks on the Khairya Jumma mosque located in the so-called “sacred zone” of the Dambulla rock temple in the central province is important even though it did not develop into a larger scale clash between the Buddhist and Muslim communities of Sri Lanka. The Dambulla Khairya Jummah mosque had been in existence for over 60 years and the mosque trustees have legal documents regarding its construction. On Friday the 20th of April 2012 a tense situation arose as regular Friday prayer at the mosque was prevented by a gang led by Buddhist monks who claimed that it was an illegal construction built on sacred Buddhist ground.

Many view this incident as an isolated event led by a group of extremists; an event which was easily quelled as it did not represent the sentiments of the majority Buddhist populace. Although this may be true, this line of thinking conceals some of the realities of the inter-religious relations in Sri Lanka within which the Dambulla incident could be located. In this short piece, I attempt to highlight existing problems in the religious setting in the Sinhala-Buddhist south of Sri Lanka giving special attention to the Dambulla incident.

 

Extremists out to deepen schisms

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Qadijah Irshad (Colombo Courier) / 11 May 2012

Almost three weeks after the vandalisation of a mosque in the Dambulla district by a 2,000 odd mob led by some Buddhist clergy, a Buddhist organisation called the Buddhist Protection Foundation held a protest march and a campaign on Monday 
in Kalutara demanding 
the removal of the in Dambulla.

Addressing media, the Executive Director of the Foundation Priest Puliyadde Sudhamma Thero said that the protest was just “a beginning of a series of protests against the Muslim mosque in Dambulla.”

 

Sacred Cities and Sadus’ Interpretations

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A common question among many who possess a little knowledge of Islam is, why no non-Muslims allowed in Makka and Madina, two most sacred cities of Islam.  The instant answer, that goes usually is, what business do they have in these cities? Picnic? Leisure? Official? Religious visit?  Absolutely no need exists for a non-Muslim to travel to these cities.  In the first place, they have never been tourist attractions, neither for Muslims nor for others.  And for that matter, Muslims never travel there for the purpose of merry-making.  They are meant for pure and focused worship of Allah alone.

 

From where does holiness come to holy lands?

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by Usthad Rasheed Hajjul Akbar

Amir, Sri lanka Jama’athe Islami

Holy lands are indeed sacred and they exist on this earth as sites that are respected and that should be respected, not only by the people who believe in the particular faith but by every one in the civilized world. As people who live by Islamic faith, we have sensitivity over this delicate subject because Islam too has its own proclaimed sacred places. These places belong to every Muslim in world and it is their refutable obligation safeguarding and cherishing those places. The countries that have those sacred places within their geographical areas cannot proscribe Muslims coming to their countries for just about any reason.

 

Terror war: The thunder, blunder and the plunder

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By Ameen Izzadeen

A year ago, the United States’ President, Barack Obama, announced that his country’s most wanted man had been killed in Abottabad, Pakistan. That the killing occurred on May 1, the day on which Labour Day is marked, is significant too, because Osama bin Laden, the leader of al-Qaeda movement, shook Corporate America or the so-called one per cent that own 42 percent of the US national wealth.

Bin Laden’s terror group took on the US at a time when the superpower arrogance was at its peak. The US bombed and invaded countries at will and arm-twisted developing countries to promote the interest of Corporate America, so much so, some even longed for the return of the Cold War, a period during which the Soviet Union checked the US moves to dominate the world.
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Sri Lanka's road to peaceful co-existence

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The intent to demolish Dambulla mosque tears at wounds of ethnic violence which are in the process of healing

By Tariq A. Al Maeena

Following a protracted and violent civil war that lasted for more than 26 years costing thousands of lives and destruction of property, it would have been natural to assume that Sri Lanka would set itself on the path of healing through national reconciliation with all its peoples; Buddhists, Tamils and Muslims.

Yet, within many Tamils there exists a widespread belief that the Sri Lankan government is trying to wipe out their Tamil culture and religious identity by constructing Buddhist temples in Tamil areas. Now many of another ethnic minority feel recent moves have taken another dimension.

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Sri Lanka's road to peaceful co-existence

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The intent to demolish Dambulla mosque tears at wounds of ethnic violence which are in the process of healing

By Tariq A. Al Maeena
Following a protracted and violent civil war that lasted for more than 26 years costing thousands of lives and destruction of property, it would have been natural to assume that Sri Lanka would set itself on the path of healing through national reconciliation with all its peoples; Buddhists, Tamils and Muslims.

Yet, within many Tamils there exists a widespread belief that the Sri Lankan government is trying to wipe out their Tamil culture and religious identity by constructing Buddhist temples in Tamil areas. Now many of another ethnic minority feel recent moves have taken another dimension.

In a dangerous precedent reminiscent of another time and place, the Sri Lankan Prime Minister D.M. Dayaratne ordered the demolition of a 65-year-old mosque in Dambulla stating that the area was sacred to Buddhists. He tried to appease local sentiments by saying that the mosque would be relocated to another area. This public statement followed events recently when Buddhist agitators stormed the mosque and vandalised it, threatening its destruction.

The incident undoubtedly angered the island's Muslim community who have seen enough suffering and were severely victimised during the civil war for which they had paid a heavy price. During the civil war, caught in the crossfire between the government and the Tamils, they were attacked and slaughtered in village after village, even while offering prayers in the sanctity of their mosques. Their paddy lands were looted, businesses closed and had their very means of survival taken away. The entire Jaffna Muslim population was booted out of their homes and their belongings and property were stolen from them.

They are shocked and hurt that the demolition order strikes at the very core of religious freedom in a country attempting to heal itself. Muslim Congress Secretary and parliamentarian Hassan Ali said the "community will not accept a mosque in another place even if it was built of gold".

He also added that "If the places of religious worship of the minorities are being attacked while the police and army are idly watching, it implies that they are
supporting the marauders and providing security to them, instead of the law abiding people". Faced with the initial opposition, the prime minister claimed that this decision was taken after consultations with Muslim politicians. However, it was immediately debunked as a ‘blatant manufactured lie' and strongly rejected by leading Muslim politicians: Senior Minister A.H.M. Fawzie, Deputy Minister M.L.A.M. Hizbulla, Western Province Governor Alavi Moulana and Parliamentarian Abdul Khader, all of whom categorically reject the prime minister's claims. They assert that the mosque was built on land legally bought in 1964 and simply dismiss the allegations of militant Buddhists who claimed this area was sacred just two years ago.

Misleading people

Asad Sally, chairman of the Islamic Solidarity Front (ISF) and former deputy mayor of Colombo, stated that "it is misleading to say that the mosque was in existence for two years as it has been there for more than 65 years. We have all the documents to prove that it is a legally constructed mosque under the Waqf Act. Therefore the statement by the prime minister claiming that the unauthorised construction of the mosque has been stopped is totally false. The land on which the mosque was located was bought by a Muslim lady in Jaffna from Englishmen. This mosque has existed since then.

"Later the adjacent land too had been bought by mosque authorities in 1995. This statement by the prime minister is misleading the Buddhists in the country. The prime minister should not make such irresponsible statements as the Waqf Board comes under him and he is contradicting his own statement. Besides statements like Muslims will not have a place to urinate are not only irresponsible but very dangerous too."

Though the leader of the United National Party Ranil Wickremasinghe is yet to make a public statement on the tense situation, his deputy Sajith Premadasa described the prime minister's order as "law of the jungle and nothing to do with Buddhism". Sajith wondered "how could we develop the country when the prime minister's
office issues such false statements?"

Some public figures deplored the political pandering of the prime minister to a few Buddhist thugs, stating that in any civilised society one would expect unruly elements who vandalise places of worship to be arrested and brought to justice. Instead they have been rewarded in violation of all principles of human decency.
Following Sri Lanka's recent and turbulent past, Tamils, Muslims and others had been looking forward to a period of peace and harmony. However the intent to demolish the Dambulla mosque tears at the wounds of ethnic violence still in the process of healing, and only serves to prove that reconciliation, peace and progress are nothing but distant dreams. The historical co-existence of Tamils and Muslims among the Buddhist Sinhalese people for more than 1,000 years is under threat.

Tariq A. Al Maeena is a Saudi socio-political commentator. He lives in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Courtesy: Gulf News
   

Dambulla Mosque attack: Is there a hidden hand?

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Riza Yehiya (Courtesy: GroundViews.Org)

The storming of the Dambulla Mosque on Friday the 20th April and chasing away of the Muslim worshippers attending Friday prayers by a mob led by Buddhist priests is epoch making in modern Sri Lankan history. The majority of the people of all communities are shocked and incensed by the way Buddhist priests lead this violent and destructive mob against the Dambulla Mosque.

 

Responding to China, Pakistan and the Iranian Bomb

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By Hameed Abdul Karim

According to Western public discourse there are two types of Muslim. One is a ‘fundamentalist’ the other is a ‘moderate’ Muslim. The former is one who wants to be independent from Western hegemony and the latter is one who cozies up to the Western agenda, wittingly or unwittingly. But now there is a new kid on the block. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the Rand Corporation Muslim. ‘Who the heck is he’, you might ask and quite rightly so. Well, for starters he or she is a Muslim or, more appropriately, one who wears the ‘Muslim’ name tag and one who is trained and financed by America’s Rand Corporation to dilute Islam to a point where its adherents will no longer be a stumbling block to the empire’s plans for total world hegemony. And Manzoor Ahamed, writing under the title ‘China, Pakistan and the Iranian Bomb’ (Ceylon Today’ Sat.  24 March, 2012) fits the description of a ‘Rand Muslim’ like a glove going by his vilification of Pakistan’s much maligned nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan  who  gave his country its ‘Islamic bomb’.