25 April 2005

'Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood.'

I’m amazed- the number of replies to last weeks email are shocking:) Therefore I will try my outmost to make these emails more beneficial in some way- for me and for you! And again, I must emphasise that feedback is more than welcome…

This past week was really busy- Raiman and Vees were here till Wed so I was understandably late for week every day of the week! But the cool thing about working 5 minutes away from work is that I get no traffic so still get to work earlier than most of my team…

Monday- we had a feast at Bismillah with all the guys- then moved on to serious consortium meeting! (You will be reading more about those meetings in Finance Week and Financial Mail in years to come!)
Tues- we invited to Raimans cuz for supper- good to eat a home cooked meal! Went for a movie to unwind after…
Wed- meeting with cii about impending youth show and then coffee at Nescafe…

Thurs- Instead of out normal meeting; went to Soweto to meet with the brothers of a Halqa group there. My first visit to Soweto and not what I expected! Ok, maybe it was a bit dumb to think it would be just miles of shacks, (like some foreigners think SA has animals roaming the streets!) but what’s really amazing is how big it is! Like a city on its own- we drove through Soweto for about 30min to reach the meeting place. Traffic is unreal- apartheid gov probably never planned for people all buying cars! Really worth a visit if you haven’t been yet- if to just better understand the lives of the people. The brothers there seem very committed and insightful, so hopefully together we can accomplish some good!

We got back just in time for Esha and I stopped at the first Musjid on my way home- Sultan Bahu in Mayfair. I know I may be stirring up something here, but here goes- they were having a Meelad celebration, which I assume was a celebration of the Prophets SAW Birthday. (If I’m not mistaken, it was also the day he passed away…)
Decided to look into the history behind the Meelad so to better understand. Correct me if I’m wrong, but this is what I found out:
It first started somewhere in the east, where Muslims decided that people were moving away from Islam and forgetting about the Prophet SAW. So they decided to use the month of his birth as an opportunity to learn and teach. This was done by speaking about the Prophets life and singing songs about him. Now today, we still have the songs being sung, but majority of the crowd does not understand the language so it has become a ritual with less than optimal benefit. So without commenting on the technical acceptability of these functions, I just feel they are definitely not serving the intended purpose! Not that many other Masaajid are doing anything better by the way- instead of speaking about what Biddah other people are committing, maybe the lectures of this week should concentrate in educating people on how to live their lives as Muslims, exemplifying the life of the Prophet SAW…

Fri- once again my car, ‘The Mighty One’ (as some refer to it!- no, not che’), gave up on me in the centre of town. Quite exciting getting stuck in the middle of town on a Friday afternoon:p Got it towed, to a different mechanic this time, really hope if gets sorted out this time!

Sat- Went to tutor basic computer literacy skills to underprivileged matrics at RAU- was quite fun and something worthwhile at the same time! They need more tutors and its not hectic stuff, so please let me know if you or anyone else is interested… Met up with the guys at Wits and then headed to Crowne Plaza, Sandton for a celebration of the Prophets Life by a Turkish organisation. Very posh event, and probably lots of money spent, but it was aimed at non-Muslims mainly so I was impressed with their effort. Some might say that the money would have been better spent on some poor community, but I think it’s about time we had Dawah aimed at the rich… And Ebrahim Rasool is just too good- he spoke for a few minutes, totally off the cuff, and he really left an impression on everyone there. He is extremely intelligent and seems to be on the mission to take Islam forward… Viva Ebrahim Rasool!
There was some function for article clerks but we didn’t end up going for it- with a name like JACASS (Joburg Article Clerk Assoc) it would have been interesting… stopped at Melrose Arch for a short while! (How could we not- we’re congregating Indians after all!)

Spent most of yesterday working on the Freedom Day newsletter- thanks to everyone who took the time to contribute! We will need help printing and distributing, so if you willing to assist please let me know…

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