The most sacred and blessed days of the year have begun. Take advantage of them – one never knows which year will be one’s last.

In particular, we are encouraged to increase our dhikr (takbīr, tahmīd, tahlīl, etc.); Quran; charity; fasting (especially the 9th of Dhul Hijjah); qurbanī; and each and every good deed possible, as in these days, the blessings and rewards are magnified.

Of the most neglected of good deeds: being good to one’s family. Call up your relatives, visit your parents, and make an extra effort to fulfill the Islamic duties of the ties of kinship.

And of course, the single greatest deed that can be done in these days is the blessed pilgrimage to the House of Allah.

I will be beginning my journey for Hajj in a few hours insha Allah; in all likelihood my Facebook posts will not be as frequent during the next ten day.

May Allah accept our good deeds, cover up our faults, and forgive our sins!

Okay second try, this time the video should play – me debating Trump and Afghanistan with a retired US general on Ali Velshi’s MSNBC show earlier this week. Enjoy!

Whoever puts his trust in Allah, Allah will provide for him from where he never suspected.

The story of this man from a village in Ghana is going viral, and for good reason! A reporter for a Turkish newspaper was taking some video footage with a drone, and it mistakenly landed in front of this man’s house. As he picked it up to return it, he expressed a thought and desire that must have been languishing inside of him for many decades. “Do you have one large enough to take me for Hajj?” he wistfully asked?

The reporter laughed, and tweeted out that image with his question on it. And lo and behold, this man’s Dua was answered, and sponsors came forward to help this man perform the Hajj this year.

Just imagine the yearning and desire that this man had. Visualize how often and how sincerely he would have requested Allah to make this journey possible. Grasp the sheer impossibility that most would have assumed: no money, no passport, no means to get out of his village. And yet, out of nowhere, a small aerial messenger came and landed in front of his house, a harbinger of greater news.

Dua is the weapon of the believer. He uses it to fight each and every battle, even those that are deemed unwinnable. For when Allah wishes victory for you, no one can possibly defeat you, and Allah will create armies for you, and bring the world’s resources to your doorstep to answer you call.

What is the value of these trips? All of us are volunteers. None of us were paid a cent by Helping Hand to be out here. The fact that these youth decided to take from their summer vacations to be here is so admirable. This is my 3rd time volunteering with Helping Hand, and seeing the way that these young people leave transformed every time is a true thing of beauty. They don’t just leave with new perspectives on the refugee crisis, but with new perspectives on life in general. There are many times that the groups get overwhelmed and need an hour long crying session before they can get back to work. But every one of them would tell you that these trips are absolutely worth it. I’ve noticed a fascination with traveling to great historical sites around the world, which is a positive thing as we need to connect to our history. But lets also connect to our present.

Humanitarian trips make us more human. Support organizations like Helping Hand for Relief And Development, Islamic Relief USA, Shaam Relief, etc. that are doing great work here and beyond. Expose yourselves and your families to these beautiful stranded human beings around the world. Spend your next vacation with people who could only wish to have a home like you.

Look out for some trips to Kenya and Mali next year. Congratulations to the young brothers and sisters that took part this year!

Now off to Madinah insha’Allah.

Does Islam Need Saving? Our latest publication is out on human rights in Islam by one of our brightest up and coming fellows, Nour Soubani.

Does Islam Need Saving? An Analysis of Human Rights

[ New Publication ] Much of the discussion on human rights in Islam has become either apologetic—harmonizing Islam with modern secular human rights—or resistant—arguing that Islam inherently goes above and beyond Western human rights.

This paper provides an introductory overview of the rights tradition in Islam, in an attempt to clarify Islam’s stance—through the Quran, Sunnah, and legal tradition—on human rights.

Read “Does Islam Need Saving? An Analysis of Human Rights” by Nour Soubani.

Total solar eclipse. Amazingly powerful and majestic!!!

سبحان الله والحمد لله ولا إله الا الله والله أكبر

The eclipse from a camera

Solar eclipse from Nashville

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) mentioned that Cain has a share of the sin of every murderer since he was the first to shed his brother’s blood. This new trend of ramming cars into innocent people is so disgusting that I can only but imagine what the sin of those who normalized this craziness is.

Because people with disabilities deserve access to the house of their Lord too! This is a dream come true.

Help SUPPORT a pioneering journey of a lifetime for your Brothers and Sisters: #MUHSENUmrah 2017. Please see details and DONATE during these Blessed days of Dhul Hiijjah at!/