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Can the West learn from Islam

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Event Name: Can the West learn from Islam
Transcription Date:Transcription Modified Date: 4/14/2019
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d of authentic morality among the the

politicians in the leaders and here's

another example I think that there is a

great public outcry for this type of

fairness the Prophet said what destroyed

those before you was that whenever an

aristocrat

install they would let indeed but when

one of the powerless among them stone

they would inflict the legal punishment

on that day for thinking about now I

hear if you feel enough let me give you

a prophetic each other people how to do

it you know okay once when the Prophet

was sending one of the companions to the

Yemen to be the governor he said beware

the plea of the oppressed for his areas

no screen between it and God now let me

turn to business matters I think the

passage from this futures magazine I

quoted and at the outset I think the

point of about the West having enshrined

the market and a religious tenant is

well taken and I think that is the

legitimate criticism and that it really

it leaves out too much of the whole

human being in order to be a

satisfactory guide a standard for what a

human life should be let me begin by

quoting the Quran from chapter women do

not consume your wealth among yourselves

in vain but may their betrayed I have a

mutual consent among you here I think

the expression mutual consent is

important to remember now there's quite

a bit in the things of the Prophet about

business ethics I think this is a

fascinating subject I've just got a

couple year with illustrates fundamental

principles one of which is the idea of

generosity charity the Prophet said may

God be merciful toward someone who is

generous in buying and selling and in

demanding payment the Prophet also said

there was a man who lent money to people

he used to say to his servant when you

give to someone who was poor be

forgiving that God may be forgiving to

us and that man met God and God pardoned

him now it comes to some more technical

things which have to do with the actual

structure of an economy

let me quote the Quran on this one first

whatever you give from excess profit

that it may grow even more invested in

people's wealth does not increase with

God but what you give in charity

speaking the presence in favor of God is

what will be compounded whatever you

give from excess profit that it may grow

even more invested in people's wealth

does not increased with God now you ever

wonder why I'm on the news when they

tell you they're gonna make a report on

the economy they tell you what the Dow

Jones averages today like that of effect

that money is not in the economy

actually anything did you think of that

some years ago there was a controversial

book partially translated here in

America called the Japan that can say no

and one of the offer was a chairman of

the Sony Corporation and this was his

criticism one of the main criticisms of

American business that money was

regarded as a means of making money and

not as a means of fostering production

now the profit for bad people to resell

foodstuffs they had purchased unless

unintel they had received full measure

and had paid the price and fault now I

take it to mean something singular that

arbitrage and speculation I'm not really

an honorable way of making money and are

not really good for the whole body of

the economy I think we've already had

the proof of that this is one reason why

I find the ancient injunctions so

interesting now here are some general

statements about business ethics and

this said by the way is one of the

so-called sacred hadeeth this is saying

not as a prophet but the thing the

Prophet relates as having been revealed

by God but not included in the Quran the

Prophet said God had said I will be the

adversary of three types of people

on the Day of Resurrection those who

offer in my name but then betray their

promise

those who sell a free individual and

consume the price obtaining and those

who hire workers and have work done that

do not give them their wages so I'll

turn to some general things having to do

with society here again that I think

these they're areas where the need that

we have here is quite obvious from our

everyday experience of what we see in

here you read some definitions of

righteousness from the Quran and chapter

on the cow it says it defines the

righteous in these times both we donate

goods and money in spite of their love

for it to relatives and orphans and to

the poor and Wayfarer and to the needy

and for freeing slaves and continues and

those who fulfill their promises when

they make them and who are patient in

suffering adversity and hard times they

are the truthful ones and they are the

conscientious and also it says do not

nullify your charity by reminders of

your generosity or by abusive behavior

and do those who spend their wealth to

be seen by the people I think that's

particularly pertinent package the idea

that charitable deeds whether individual

or collective shouldn't be just rachelle

they should be effective this is why I

think that in rebuilding a society

that's praying really critical to build

it from its real membership which is the

people rather than to imagine that all

we need to do is articulate program and

passed legislation so family of Iran

also has a good definition of the

conscientious they are those who are

generous in good times and bad and to

withhold anger and imparting people

the Chaplin women had said be good to

your parents and relatives and to

orphans and paupers and to neighbors

close by and neighbors removed and to

the companion at your side and to the

traveler and to your ward now there's a

great deal of mention of charity in

Islam I find it quite edifying and that

statements of the Prophet about charity

include both self supports and giving to

others at the very at the most basic

level of individual economic

independence the Prophet said charity is

incumbent upon every Muslim people

asking o prophet of God

what about one who had nothing to give

the Prophet said then one works with

one's hands to support oneself and to

give to others they act and if one

cannot find work the Prophet said then

one should be good and refrain from evil

for that in fact is charity for the one

who death though now that's not also

hard once again I do think that perhaps

no verifying thing about this attitude

is the idea that whatever your whatever

that you're doing even if it's working

for your own support already carry for

others and involved as part of here as a

part of your task this is a natural

recognition of a basic kind of the

social nature of the human being the

basic attitude reflecting this

recognition is illustrated in this thing

of the Prophet none of you as a believer

until you like for others would you like

for yourself now of course when we think

about that we need to think about what

we like for ourselves and whether that

is really something worthwhile one thing

in particular I think on the subject of

Western society and the possibility of

learning from Islam we might focus our

attention on this well I might now call

the market niche homo and entitled men's

spirituality

I get it some catalog it just came we

have a day quite felicitous me and let

me just read a couple of the

descriptions of the books under the

subject of men spirituality which I

think will underscore the need for for

the possible use of some of the Islamic

teachings on on living in society here's

one about this subtiles reflections on

becoming a man and it says the author

wrote these ten things because quote it

is increasingly harder to grow up male

in America there are no rites of passage

fathers are at a loss of words

when discussing what it means to be a

man the male child grows up uncertain

who he is

uncertain who he should be we are born

now we must learn to be a man

[Music]

there is nothing inside the men's

movements

this book takes you behind the scenes of

one of the most important and least

understood phenomena on reason time what

is driving men in ever-increasing

numbers into the woods to become and

share grief that they can't articulate

in their everyday lines what are men

discovering that keeps them coming back

to support groups

week after week now I don't know myself

I don't go to these things so I can't

after this what are they discovering but

I do think that there is some relevant

teaching in the Quran about this I quote

there is no good in most of their

private conferences except those who

enjoy charity or justice or

reconciliation among people now the

Prophet said one who looked after the

widowed and the poor is like the warrior

who struggles in the way of God or like

one who prays all night and fastball

there so what I would like to ask is a

lot of times out in the woods beating a

drum what about the widow are they out

there discussing what they can do about

the widows in the poor

- Elka I also hope there are no weekend

workshop widows you know that luck kinds

of widows in this civilization we even

talk about football widows and they

forward opening like that I think we

will find the abject failure of movement

those whose movements whose real aim

should be reconciliation among people

reintegration I think we will find them

to the abject failures if they do

actually create a new type of widowhood

so fellows if you want to be a man it's

not that there's no advice for example

the Prophet said when a man spends money

on his family I have a good deed and for

him it is a sacred act of charity the

Prophet also said you will not spend

anything in seeking the favor of God

without being rewarded for it even what

you provide for your wife and there are

many other opportunities here's another

and a beautiful story a prophet related

while a man was walking he became

extremely thirsty so he went down into a

well and drank from him then he came out

only to find a panting dog eating moist

earth and thirst

the man said the same thing had happened

to this creature has had happened to me

so he filled the shoe climbed out

holding it in the teeth and that gave

the dog water to drink

then God thanked the man and forgave him

people asked o Messenger of God are we

rewarded for our Treatment of Animals

the Prophet said there is a reward for

your treatment of every living thing now

here is that a nice saying which gives

something of a foretaste of what that

reward in the Prophet said God rendered

mercy into a hundred parts keeping 99

parts and ending one part down to that

by virtue of that one portion creatures

are merciful to one another such that

even the mayor if her hooves away from

her whole fearing she may step on it the

Prophet also said whoever is not

merciful will not be shown there

so one thing one can do while exercising

one affinity without one portion of

mercy on earth if cap one's mind up to

that time the ninety-nine were held back

and it surely is coming now let's go to

the home and family briefly I will just

touch upon being shall we say the center

of this unit the husband wife

relationship in the chapter enrollment

sense and among the signs of God is

having created for you mates from

yourselves that you may feel at home

with them and got the love and kindness

between you surely and that is a sign

for a reflective people and in the

chapter on women it says be reverent

toward God

by whom you ask of each other and be

reverent toward relationships for God is

watching over you now I'd like to read a

passage from a writing of a

distinguished Spanish Muslim of the 13th

century discussing the inner dimension

of the relationship between a man and a

woman in the context of explaining he's

saying of the Prophet three things in

this world have been made dear to me

women perfume in prayer wearing his

repose the coolness of my eyes now the

author says explaining this statement

about women when man contemplates God

and woman his contemplation rests on

that which is passive if he contemplates

God in himself he contemplates God in

that which is active and when he

contemplates God alone without the

presence of any form and all issued

there from his contemplation corresponds

to a state of passivity

in regard to God without intermediary

consequently his contemplation of God

and woman is most perfect for it is been

God as at once active and passive

that he contemplates whereas in the

purely interior contemplation he

contemplates God only in a passive way

so the profit and addiction and peace be

upon him was to love women because of

the perfect contemplation of God and

then one would never be able to

contemplate God directly in the absence

of all support for God's absolute

essence is independent of worlds but as

divine reality is inaccessible in

respect to absolute essence and there is

contemplation only in a substance the

contemplation of God in women is the

most intense and the most perfect and

the union that is most intense is the

conjugal act he who loves women in this

manner loves them by divine love but he

who loves them only by natural

attraction deprives himself of the

inherent knowledge of this contemplation

well I realize it might take a while to

develop this type of mindfulness and the

manhood of our nation but do we really

have a choice once again can we really

legislate away the kinds of abominations

and practicing us went in here

apparently not we do have laws I think

what we need is the change in heart

maybe people approach all the relations

but particularly especially relation

with one's meat the most intimate

relation in the world now of course

that's rather lofty let me come down to

your level we can perhaps understand

more immediately someone asked the widow

of the Prophet what the Prophet used to

do at home

she said he used to remain occupied

working in Christ

then he would go out when he heard the

call to prayer telling me sum up some

teachings that are I have to do

basically with your individual

conscience in your individual conduct in

the Quran that says in the chapter the

epic humanity is indeed at a loss except

those faiths and do good works and

enjoying truth and justice upon one

another and enjoying patience upon one

another no person be diminutive people

are desk assistant see why one of the

higher and a purgative de people health

care for Americans while arguing with a

pea paradise both it's really matter on

a visual conscious posture for

exhaustion

now just like charity is regarded as

part of a very fundamental and basic

economic responsibility

similarly individual piety it's not only

expressed in terms of social behavior

which is as much a form of worship

actually as a ritual performed

conventionally part as religious this

lemma calls from sayings for the problem

who ever believed in God in the last

days should not wrong his neighbor and

whoever believes in God in the last day

should treat his guests generously and

whoever believes in God in the last day

should speak of good or keep silent the

Prophet also said all that is

objectively recognized as good and fair

the sacred charity and he said the best

of you are the most good-natured so

religion isn't supposed to make you

crabby

and NASA to your neighbors now here's

one I think very very significant for us

two days the Prophet said God disregards

for me

whatever insidious suggestion occurs to

my people as long as they do not act on

it or express it in speech God

disregards for me whatever insidious

suggestion occurs to my people as long

as they do not act on it or express it

in speech I think that's important for

us today because the society we live in

here is not merely simply a permissive

society and as we often hear is the

suggestive Society suggestion is pounded

into us over the waves and even what is

not yet permitted it's already being

suggested so I think that the is it

certain any sort of nonsense can go

through one's head because also knots

actually projected through there even

through the overt media so if we are not

able to analyze it and dismiss it and

understand it's real and from at least

we can refrain from speaking about it

and acting on it and thereby promoting

the actualization of insidious

suggestion so ignoring see consider your

suggestion I think is one over one of

the best suggestions the prophet has for

us today

[Applause]

well let me just conclude with a few

general remarks this has to do with the

place of religion and everyday life and

the melding of religion in everyday life

again going back to the first statement

I read about the the idea of

reintroducing the sense of the holy now

in the Quran it says there isn't a

there's to be no compulsion in religion

there is to be no compulsion in religion

I realized that this is not the image of

Islam that is commonly projected in the

West I think that one reason for this is

because religion in general not just

Islam but but religion in general here

is often associated with compulsion and

compulsiveness hardly I think this might

have to do with the history of this

country and the reason why lots of the

people originally came here had to do

with religious persecution which

unfortunately and continue at once may

not onto these shores but I think that

[Applause]

fanaticism compulsiveness in religion as

in anything actually tend to alienate

and alienate an individual from other

people and of course the group from the

larger body society and you can

contaminate the individual from his own

real nature I believe so it says in the

Quran 2x tests in your religion the

Prophet said to his companion Abdullah

have I not been informed that you fast

all day and stand in prayer online

Abdullah replied yes o Messenger of God

the Prophet said don't do that fast then

eat and drink stand in prayer then sleep

for your body has a right over you and

your wife has a right over you and your

guest has a right over you

and I can't think of any better way to

end and by quoting them from the ending

of the my second chapter of the Quran

which again illustrates I think this

attitude that religion is supposed to

uplift us not intimidate us and

terrorizes the Quran says God does not

compel a soul to do what is beyond its

capacity it gets what it has earned and

is responsible for what it deserves our

Lord please do not punish us if we

forget or we errant and please our Lord

do not place on us a burden like that

you put on those before us and please

our Lord and do not make us carry that

for which we lack the strength and

please grant us pardon give us every on

us you know Peter helps against time

great now if from the audience

this will be the time and bring them up

please come to the mic if you will

oh well I guess we all have enough to

think about tonight

that's good we don't really have to do

this ritual

oh please step up to the mark what I

would like to hear you talk about own

bit well the relationship of women in

the society I understand that when

they're not allowing them all that true

and it's not do they have any formal

formal place or rituals and all that to

worship or whatever and then

particularly what is their relationship

in society women okay well the first I

can quote the proper thing if your wife

wants to go to the mosque don't prevent

her so it's any wives are prevented from

going to the mosques that's on their off

their husbands have to answer the proper

for that and it is going record also the

positive set aside time special times

for the women to talk with him I didn't

talk a lot about the issue of women in

society we're staying for a couple of

reasons it's one of those actually it's

one of the areas that is clouded with

lots of prejudice in Western society and

some of these prejudices are actually

quite ugly one thing is that this fire

if I do think about that but women

attended here on that evening precisely

able to evolve every get 7 million new

opener on this is it among it's about

within 4 or 3 also says in the words of

God I certainly do not overlook the work

of any worker among a male or female it

seems to suggest right of women to work

in society

I read in a interesting book by a

contemporary young writer on this

particular subject who said that the

there are a minority a song from women

who have objections to traditional role

in society his estimation of this is

that it's because the men are I'm going

to be men so I'd rather I'd like to

conclude this with this by saying that I

can be I think that in song talk to

learn from this long just to start with

on this one is that can't even really

see all of the place with one gender

delay because that isn't the way society

really is mmm how can talk about the

place of anybody in society and as we

talk about it relates that people those

other people in society so I think are

the real thing for us to ask ourselves

is how we normal to each other and if

there's any weekend or how can we event

so to me that is what you were there's a

lot about a lot of things written on

this specific issue issue in so called

women's issue but I think really if the

real issue is a couple vision actually

how many when you get along with each

other I thought of that I don't see

where where there is any discussion

frankly speaking no place for men and

women in society well sorry that I know

that was not terribly no what was that -

mother you got too harsh

anyone else you talk about the

historical interpretation of jihad and

then maybe what the practical value of

it is it's an islamic spirituality and

maybe how we could apply it out here

and understand the Islam better okay so

has me struggle okay oh this actually

brings up an interesting answer to the

soma question for women that's actually

saying for women's you have this taken

care of her husband I think that's

really true that's the prophetic general

statement yeah

now I think there's quite a lot to that

station let's think about that a little

bit um but I won't go further for me

I'll let y'all meditate on that one yeah

one of my favorite sayings of the

Prophet on this subject is we've

returned from the lesser struggle to the

greatest struggle and the left the

struggle is the struggle against an

enemies of truth

you know when over it attempts to

destroy the innocence and truthfulness

struggling against that is yeah that's

the lesser struggle the greatest

struggle is struggling against one's own

egotism so now I know what we certainly

yeah we have discussions about this in

our civilization here and I think we

definitely do need a more extensive

jihad against our own ignorance and

willfulness or any well okay very good

thank you very much