Philadelphia, after five years, continues to tantalize me with the hope and potential it has for American Muslims. There simply is no other city in the States that has the down home feeling of Islam that Philadelphia has. I believe that is saying something given that I grew up within a 45-minute drive of one of the larger Muslim populations in the United States: Dearborn. The contrasting difference between Dearborn, Michigan, and Philadelphia, is that the population in question here is an indigenous one. There isn’t anywhere you can go in Philadelphia and not see the presence of Muslims: The hospital; the bus or public transportation [many Muslims work for SEPTA]; the University; all walk of life from menial to professional. But it isn’t just ubiquitous nature of Muslims in Philadelphia, it’s also their impact on the greater non-Muslim population. It is often noted and joked about that, as far as the Black population goes, you cannot easily distinguish who is and is not Muslim in Philadelphia. Non-Muslim Black men dress in that decidedly distinct Philadelphia Muslim fashion: thick beards, short pants, Timberland boots, etc. Even non-Muslim Black women imitate Muslims here [on the way home from work I sat on the bus with a woman who wore what appeared to be hijab. She greeted me with, “as-Salaamu ‘alaykum,” noting my dhikr beads. At the end of the conversation, she said she wasn’t Muslim but had many Muslims for friends]. And while I do feel that the indigenous identity has been compromised here by certain movements whose imagination is planted somewhere, as one scholar put it, “hovering over the Atlantic”, I still feel comfortable in branding Philadelphia as the United States premier city for Muslims. Continue reading “The Quba Institute”
Masjid Qubā’, in West Philadelphia, is proud to offer its Qur’ān Reading Circle. The reading circle focuses on reading the Qur’ān with a discussion in English. Starting March 19th, I will be participating in and leading the Qur’ān Reading Circle every 3rd Friday of the month. Other leaders will be Imams Anwar and Anas, may Allah preserve them both, as well as my wife. For more information, please contact the Masjid Qubā’.
The Muslim Development Course has been rescheduled! It is due to start up again on April 4th.
The Muslim Development Course is the class I will be teaching that is part of the Quba Adult Learning Program entitled, al-Qāfilah: ‘The Knowledge Caravan’. The objective of this course is to encourage the development of Muslim thought, action, and behavior, both individual and social, in such a way that it reflects a deeper and more personal understanding, ownership, and embodiment of the divine principles found in the Qur’ān and the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings upon him.
This course will examine the current conditions of Muslims – most immediately of those living in the Philadelphia area (though the principles may be applied to any) – with the aim of looking critically at our current condition and how we might apply the Qur’ān and Sunnah in our lives by actively engaging in its historical realities and processes. Such topics will include, but are not limited to: the life of the Prophet [s] – a.k.a., the sīrah up to the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah; the early Qur’ānic Revelation (Makkan period): the cultural context as well as its audience; pre-Islamic life in the Hijāz (the jāhiliyyah): what was pre-Islam Arabia like? How did pre-Islamic Arabs think?; the language of the Qur’ān: its history, its audience, its changes – how do we as an English speaking audience conceive of its meaning?; the socio-political order of Makkah and Madinah: what lessons are there for us today, both personal and collectively? Through engaging in a dialog with the collective of Muslim Revelation, history, thought, and language, we can better understand ourselves and, God willing, have a deeper commitment to the legacy of the Prophet Muhammad.
The class starts April 4th. Running time is from 10:00am until 12:30pm. The class will run for four Sundays: April 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th. This session, the second session, will be held at Masjid Mujahideen, in West Philadelphia:
The first cycle of this class was started on March 7th, and will is currently running until March 28th [taught by Imam Anas of the [Qubā’ Institute]. If you would like to sign up for this course, please contact the Qubā’ Institute as follows:
Phone: 215-473-8589. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. The course fee is $50 [this is less than $15 a day!]
Saturday, December the 5th, the Quba Institute will be presenting it’s 2nd-Annual Fundraising Banquet from 5 – 9pm. Quba Institute has been a leader in Islam in Philadelphia, helping to develop and grow the Muslim community here in Philadelphia. I personally have benefited tremendously from Imams Anwar and Anas. More than I will ever be able to repay. The theme is of this year’s banquet is, “Educating Tomorrow’s Leaders Today”. I hope you will be able to attend if you’re in the area.
Location: Regal Ballroom, 5411 Oxford Ave, Philadelphia 19104.
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You may purchase tickets online via
Eventbrite or via PayPal. General Banquet Tickets are $50.00 each, with a special discount for seniors: $45.00 each, as well as for students: $35.00 each (ages 13 – 18 years old). They are also providing Family Banquet Packet Banquet Tickets at $150.00 per packet (2 adults and 2 youth tickets). A savings of $20.00. The guest speaker will be Dr. Sherman “Abd al-Hakim” Jackson. For more information call 215-473-8589 or e-mail Quba at email@example.com. If you cannot attend, please consider donating to the Quba Institute [see the orange button on the right-hand side]. Quba’s 60+year legacy is a testimony to the endeavors, dreams, and supplications of the Muslims in Philadelphia. I pray Allah grants them another 60 and more successfully. Amin.
Hope to see you there, God willing.