A Simple Thought: Thursday, 8th September ’16

A simple thought from The Community on Friday: The arrival of ICT and the internet plus multiple platforms of message conveyance, have undoubtedly removed the suspicions of those doubting Thomases who questioned the authenticity of the prophecy in which we believe that the arrival of the Hujja, will be known within moments by people all over the world.

This very essential component of his declaration, however has for the moment found so many other uses in which are loaded new challenges to all. Let’s face it, very few people literally benefit in terms of true development through the internet, for a large percentage of users, this is more of an entertainment avenue where we can project our best while prying on the activities of others. Whichever group we may refer to, we know how hard it is now to control the flow of information, let alone channelling it to the right recipients. In the past, few had more knowledge in a given field, so they spoke and others listened.

As things stand, everyone wants to talk, very few are ready to listen. The exponential spread of information to every corner of the world, has turned everyone into self made authorities about every subject at hand. Those with outward leaning personalities shout more, while those introverts are lurking waiting for their own moment. It would be fair to say that drowned in this sea of turbulent noise, is the voice of wisdom and justice. Humankind has become its own sworn enemy as advancement in standards of living aided by the leaps in technology pit each individual against another. So much is the obsession about information that people reading anonymous sources find greater reason to believe in it, than they are prepared to trust those they know personally.

Preachers everywhere, but who is learning after all? Women fighting it out on social media about why they choose not to wear hijab, and with every statement they make, tens other find time to rally in support. Paradoxically, many people say they have little time in a day to get things done, but sharing and forwarding at lightning speed for the accolade of being the coveted news bearer, is top on people’s agenda as barriers of respect keep crumbling down when people pretend to meet and spend quality time but all are seen sliding their forefinger against the responsive touch screen. The same finger that was also predicted to be the finger of witnessing on the day of judgement If the world stops learning, there is little one can expect that will change for the good.

Trying to outsmart each other in knowledge is against the principles of scholarly humility, spreading news without authentication is yellow journalism, and can lead to character assassination as well as blasphemy. Misusing technology in secretly taking photos, in cropping text to spread fitna, and many other actions, will haunt us immeasurably in the life to come, and how we will wish, we had paid heed. Remember, the gadget in your hands will only be of service to you if you use it to learn without losing your humility. Other than that, we will find ourselves enslaved to the inventions of geniuses in a rather precarious way.

This initiative is made possible by the kind courtesy of Abu Baseer Eye Clinic, Bande Khuda Sponsors, G1 Security, Highways Car Hire Ltd, Max Fries, Meadows Academy, SD Dental Clinic & Ceramic Lab, SokoniAdvertiser and Xpress Rent a Car, and for the ISAALE THAWAAB of Marhumeen of Bhimji and Nayani Family and Marhuma Sarubai Abdullah

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Mohamedarif Suleman

About the author

Mohamedarif is a marketing professional and educationalist with a penchant for writing as a hobby since childhood. As he experimented writing about sporting events at first and then current affairs, he quickly developed a skill for observation of his environment and began to write on reform topics, especially in connection with the community. To further feed his pursuit of writing, he founded several newsletters and bulletins at his school and at the Husayni Madrasah in the 1980's, all the time learning from others already in the field not just about writing, but also about pre-press and production processes. He was also the editor-in-chief of the Knowledge Magazine in 1995–1996. A decade later, importing a flurry of ideas into his new home, Nairobi, he first founded a two page community newspaper then became a regular writer of the Friday Faculty before establishing the Community on Friday, a fully fledged Madrasah magazine in 1996. And while his writing at the community continued, he simultaneously started writing for a business weekly, pairing in with his newfound role as a marketing professional. During his time in Nairobi, he wrote several speeches for sitting chairmen and presidents while also giving some himself, developing his concurrent role as a public speaker and trainer.

With changing times and a decrease in advertising sponsorship, as well as a fall in overall readership, Mohamedarif transformed this publication into an electronic blog. Thus was born the Community on Friday in its present format.
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