Five days of ‘Ilm-packed fun? Much indeed could be written of it, and it pays to sweat the details. With this list of nine, however, you will get a glimpse of some highlights of the class. We begin with day one…
9. It was 9am Saturday morning and the corridors of Willey hall were swarming with jubilant crowds, as students young and old waited to receive wristbands, books and morning snacks. Tables laden with savory food—Somali tea, muffins, chocolate donuts, warmed Sambusas and an assortment of fruit—were presented to the students, until finally class was officially in session. 10am sharp. A head count of over 260+ students attended Light of Guidance—our newest Qabeelah milestone, Alhamdulillah.
8. Sheikh Yasir Qadhi is, amongst various other scholars, distinguished for his eloquence in speech. Students during Light of Guidance recorded rigorously the precious quotes uttered by our Sheikh. We titled this collection of quotes and thoughts “Genuinely Enlightening Moments”—GEMs for short. No need to feel deprived ‘cause we got you covered. Check out our GEMs on the AlMaghrib forums here.
7. On the fourth day, Sheikh Yasir Qadhi enlightened us about various manifestations of Shirk. Talismans, omens, astrology, magic—even those little cracker treats that come you’re your order of lo mien fried chicken. Didn’t know they were Haram, did you? But that’s where Islamic fortune cookies come in! Sheikh Yasir Qadhi had our Ameer and Ameerah revise the content in a custom-made order, just for us. And you thought Halal marshmallows were good…
6. When YQ says “no cell phones on,” it’s no joke. To demonstrate the seriousness of this rule, our volunteers implanted a cell phone into a brother’s book bag, placed the Lion King ring tone (A Circle of Life) on the loudest volume and called the phone during class. “Is that some kinda Somali song?” he asked, while the phone was dragged and thrown into the box of shame. ReallyYQ, a Somali song?! Perhaps the Sheikh’s been away from Disney movies a bit too long, eh?
5. Sisters Q&A Session: The Sheikh voluntarily reserved an hour-long session for the sisters where questions on various topics could be addressed. Check out that pile of notecards. There was no way the sisters would let YQ leave without having squeezed as much knowledge from him as possible.
4. Shirk, Bid’ah, Kufr—WARNING! Completing two intensive weekends on Aqeedah doesn’t render us credible to throw around the labels “Shirk,” “Bid’ah” and “Kufr” at everything and everyone we see. “Use these terms with caution,” Sheikh Yasir Qadhi warned us. “Acting on Kufr doesn’t earn a person the title of a ‘Kafir,’ and reading a fortune cookie doesn’t earn someone the label of a Mushrik. That is only for Allah to decide.” Well said YQ, well said. Our master note-takers recorded with precision all main points from the seminar, and we hope to have them posted shortly Insha’Allah.
3. Announcing our next class: Only registered students witnessed a sneak peek “teaser trailer” for our next AlMaghrib seminar. “The Divine Link: Fiqh of Salah” with Sheikh Yaser Birjas. You got that right “ya jama’a,” he’s back! A special shout out awaits…
2. Think Q.Madinatayn would send YQ home empty-handed? Giving the Sheikh a gift is a thread amongst many in the fabric of AlMaghrib tradition, and there was no way we would let the opportunity pass. Days before the final class, our volunteers lent themselves to major research and brainstorming sessions. What could YQ possibly want? A personalized pen? U of M winter attire? Book holders? Or maybe something that would cater to his Hagen Daz addiction (shhh, we weren’t supposed to know that). After hours of discussion and heated debate, the idea of an ice cream scooper and Ben & Jerry’s gift card reigned supreme–an ice cream scooper amongst other things, of course. Yes YQ, we’ve got you (and your addiction) covered.
1. Popping Shirk: The universe began with a BIG BANG and our Light of Guidance seminar ended with a BIG BANG! This was our final class activity… Check it out:
May we see you all at the upcoming seminar, Insha’Allah.