A Simple Thought: Tuesday, 4th October ’16

A simple thought from The Community on Friday: Character is a pattern of behaviour, thoughts and feelings based on universal principles, moral strength, and integrity – plus the guts to live by those principles every day. Character is evidenced by your life’s virtues and ‘the line you never cross’. From early on in the lives of the Prophets, character was an important element in the make up of religious propagation. We understand today, as well, that trust, which springs from the appreciation of another’s character, leads to long lasting business relationships.

Abraham Lincoln said, “ Reputation is the shadow. Character is the tree.“. It is no wonder, therefore, that Muslims face such incredible pressure when it comes to gaining the trust of others. Let me use a recent incident narrated to me by a friend, a young Ithna’sheri girl goes to a shop to get some work done. She is the type of girl who is not allowed the normal freedoms that other teenagers enjoy because of strict parental intervention and demands based on Islamic principles. So she snatches opportunities in their absence, and back in the shop is speaking in loud tones to her friend about different things not worried about what image she is projecting as a hijab wearing person. After a while, an Ithna’sheri young man, unknown to her, having stalked her some distance, follows her into the shop and forces her to look at what he has to sell. They exchange numbers, and life goes on.

Many thoughts come to mind, but what such and many other incidences reveal, is that because in our own lives, we are over focussing on the material and on enjoyment, we seldom know where to stop. So this becomes our second nature and so we cant stop talking, gossiping, buying and doing many other things we should not be doing.

We will probably see a lot of this on A’ashura, processions with minimal discipline and where mourners are actually appearing as though they are strolling in the park. Shabeeh, decorated to the best outfit ever hence confusing an onlooker as to how a sombre event can be so illuminated for light is the sign of joy. And yes, talking. Our people just cant seem to stop. The narrative about Aba Abdillah’s beheading is so intense that the hardest of hearts can be moved and our association with his persona, ordinarily puts us on a path of grief, but nowadays this has become the side show, as the scramble for preparing the nyaz, the noise making children and other dramatics dominate the scene. A day will come that it may be more rewarding to the heart to watch an online majlis rather than get into such rowdy crowds.

A final words to parents – your job really never ends, give the community, children who understand social behaviour, who exude confident discipline, who truly, not outwardly, relate to Imam Husain (AS). Anything less than that, is just increasing the problems Muslims already have.


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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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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