Monday, December 26, 2005

Quote of the night - Politics

Man is by nature a political animal.

I write as I ponder. So well said by the master of the mightiest emperor and conqueror of the world, Aristotle. Alexender, the great was nurtured by the wonderful wisdom of Aristotle and learnt the lessons of life from him. He was the youngest and mightiest emperor of the world. From Macedonia and Rome to India and China, he led an army of th victorious and the bravest of all soldiers. Surely such a success must have required politics to flow in his blood and nerves.

What Aristotle said still holds true. Syedna al-Qadi Noman has written an entire chapter in Kitaab al-Himmah on how one should manage and control those who are under him. A man is the master of his family and will be questioned of how he educated and brought up his children and family. He will be questioned about how he governed their livelihood. Similarly every person is a governor in himself and will be questioned about his governance of his resources and his very own life. The responsibility increases as the status and the position of a person rises to kinghood or whatever level by which he has a say in other people's lives. He needs to be political at birth. Infact his being 'political' makes him a 'social animal' a term used commanly today in civics.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

The word "listen" contains the same letters as the word "silent"

The aquisition of Knowledge requires lots of patience and humbleness. We have often heard that the water flows from the high rised terrain to the lower lands as an example of ilm flowing from those of lofty means to the lower men like us. We have often heard that a fruit bearind branch is lowered in humbleness and these are anologies that well explain the behavior and the compasion of both the teacher and student.

We have always seen kids and even elders throw stone at the fruit bearing tree while it hangs its branches down and lowers itself in humbleness to part with its fruit. My teacher marhoom Shk Yusuf bhai Moayyadi (May Allah bless him with his rehmat and shafa'at of Daiz Zaman always used to portray a very natural example saying the the sky bends down on the earth with all its love and kindness and showers its bounty on it while the earth stands proundly and in its own ego centric way, its chest pulled high up, in ignorance.

It is very neccesary to keep not a silent mouth and tongue but a silent mind clear of astray thoughts to listen to the bliss of knowledge. That is why I think that both 'listen' and 'silent' have the same alphabets.

It is a season of Imtehan in Jamea and I have spent years listening at all classes in Jamea before I even learnt to speak a word. Maybe thats why I havent learnt to speak or have been thought numb. The library was my favourite spot of silence and that silence has filled me with the thrust and energy which keeps me going.

Those days are always remembered as of bounty and bliss, the happiness of picturizing the world with a different perspective everyday. The life and its blessings counted and accounted for each time a new point of knowledge popped up. I am so much in love with learning but have forgotten the art of silence as I speak. Or is it lost in the hush and fuss of life.

We all need to review on this side of life where we need to keep silence as we listen to our inner selves.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The Imtehan of Jamea Saifiyah

It has been a unique oportunity to take the Imtehan of Jamea for so many years. It was my luck and the blessing of Imam Husain (AS) and my Moula (TUS) that I know why I got the blessing of attending the revered institue of ilme Ale Mohammed (TUS). I see it as a bounty in itself.

The Imtehan is so unique that the Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University during his visit at Jamea in 1420 H was a witness to the unique event himself and a participant as well. A Scholar himself sat in the Shafahi Imtehan before Moula (TUS) who was in the Gurfah Mubarakah and proclaimed that this is the only examinations he has ever seen around the globe where the examiners themselves are also tested.

The rectors of Jamea Saifiyah, Omora al-Jamea, Shz Qasim BS Hakimuddin, Shz Abbas BS Fakhruddin, Shz Qaid Joher BS Izzuddin and Shz Mufaddal BS Saifuddin (DM) examine the students orally while Huzurala (TUS) himself presides over the event and overlooks the preceedings of the Shafahi Imtehan from the Gurfah Mubaraka (A Special room above from where the session is heard and visible.

The orals are held for the senior students from Year 7 to Year 11. At times Khidmat Guzaars from various departments of Dawat are also called by Huzurala (TUS) for the Imtehan. Certain Mumineen also get the oportunity to avail this barakat.

The written papers are also taken by many Khidmat Guzaars along with the students. Huzurala (TUS) has granted permission to for all Mumineen to partake in the Barakaat of Jamea by attending the Imtehan and also taking the papers. A special category for such Mumineen is created. These Mumineen are called Mustafideen.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Grief and Matam in Remembrance of the event of Karbala

The events of Karbala were recorded via Imam Zaynul Abidin and Sayyidna Zaynab binte Ali. The events were publically presented when they arrived back in Medina from Sham (Damascus).

"Purjosh Matam" is translated as intense matam with feeling and meaning. Imam Jafar Sadiq coined the saying "every day is Ashura and every place is Karbala". This is meant metaphorically to live and practice life as such. To recount the events of Karbala and the sacrifice of Imam Husayn daily in our hearts. The Imam Sadiq states in tradition that no event, whether joyous or sad, should go without recounting the events of Karbala, because they are a blessing and are barakat.

Imam Ali Ibn al-Husain (A.S) used to say: Every Mu'min, whose eyes shed tears upon the killing of Husain Ibn' Ali (A.S.) and his companions, such that the tears roll down his cheeks, Allah shall accommodate him in the elevated rooms of paradise.

Imam Muhammad Baqir (A.S.) said: He who remembers us, or in whose presence, we are remembered, and (as a result) tears flow from his eyes, even though they may be in the measure of a wing of a mosquito, Allah shall construct for him a house in paradise and make the tears a barrier between him and the fire (of hell). Al-Ghadeer, Vol.: 2, pg.: 202

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) said: He in whose presence we (and our miseries) are mentioned and, as a result, his eyes pour out tears, Allah shall make his face forbidden upon the fire of hell. Bihar al-Anwar, Vol.: 44, Pg., 285.

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) said (to Masma', one of those who mourned over Imam Husain (A.S.)): May Allah have mercy upon your tears! Do know that you are regarded as being of those who are deeply concerned about us and of those who are happy at our happiness and aggrieved at our sorrow. Do know that you shall witness the presence of my fathers near you at the time of your death. Wasail al-Shia'h, Vol.: 10, Pg.:397

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) said: There is none who recites poetry about Husain (A.S.) and weeps and makes others weep by means of it, except that Allah makes Paradise incumbent upon him and forgives his sins.

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) (while sitting on the prayer mat prayed for the mourners and those going for the ziarat of the Ahlul Bayt (A.S.) as follows): O' Lord, have mercy upon those eyes, which have shed tears in compassion for us; and upon those hearts, which have been restless and blistered for us; and upon those wailings, which have been for us. Bihar al-Anwar, Vol.:98, Pg.:8.

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) said: One who weeps for Imam Hussain (A.S.), surely, the Imam (A.S.) observes him and seeks forgiveness for him and requests his holy fathers to (also) seek forgiveness for him.

Imam Jafar Sadiq (A.S.) said: He whose eyes shed tears for our blood which has been shed, or for our rights which have been usurped, or for the humiliation meted out to us or to one of our Shi'ites, Allah shall accomodate him in paradise for a long time. Amali al-Shaikh al-Mufid, Pg.: 175.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

الزعيم غارم

Leadership is the nickname of responsibility. Those who accept leadership bare the burden of the errors and faults of the human race. Infact it is their destiny.

Laurence J. Peter has once said: "Democracy is a process by which people are free to choose the man who will get the blame."

Sunday, December 04, 2005

To Be or Not to Be

I find myself in a dilemma or to be precise a cross road of life. At this age of mine people say that half of the world tour has completed and a little pending. I see myself tired and struggling to settle down when suddenly I have been given a choice to start anew and though at times I see this as an opportunity I fear that I won’t be able to settle in the new world.

Imagine living in a country with a powerful currency that has a power parity that the economies of the developing nations wish eagerly and then shift to a place where inflation is high and the power parity of money is almost zero comparatively. It would surely mean hard. I am not talking about retiring when you spend what you have earned, rather, to start earning in a different manner.

Another dilemma to crossing the road would be to change my current lifestyle as well as those who are directly associated with me, my wife and my loving son. In addition to the educational responsibilities of my 2 year old that I burden.

Looking at the pros I have an opportunity to fly out of the current mess in my life and settle with respect and dignity. It would be an opportunity to elevate myself as I strive to seek the happiness of Moula which I do at the present moment as well. Today, my future is uncertain as well as my bread is insecure except for my belief in Allah but I do doubt that I would be secure if I took up the task I am being offered. What about my status quo will it be that of a khidmat guzaar who has taqarrur from Moula or will it be a mere temporary settlement then it would be no more then what I find myself in today. At the moment I am actively involved in ilmi khidmat with teaching as well as sabaqs and I wonder if I would even get such opportunities ever again or will the question of not being farigh appear before me.

As a Dawoodi Bohra who has had an ancestral history of khidmat I am a firm believer in my Moula (TUS) and I have the stamina to work non-stop keeping in mind Moula’s picture, my management skills are good and I can handle people well when I am told to work my way round in a team. I am a team player but I rarely give-up my ideas which are exceptional and beneficial always, but at times not too and I am ready to listen and merge-in provided my reason is satisfied. I do not go along being a sub-ordinate for several reasons. One I could say would be my own ego which is not much of a matter, maybe once in a hundred times but then I could work it out. Another reason is a major problem and that is, I have noticed and experienced that my superiors always see me as the one who tries to overtake them or topple them which I don’t intend to. I just innocently pop an idea and as a result they might feel stampeded by, resulting in politics and that’s why I have always suffered professional loss. Managing events single handedly would result in colorful results therefore I hate nose poking in my affairs. Similarly I keep my nose away from poking into the matters of others. This is where politics comes in again and I am no good a politician or a diplomat in my terms.

Finally I have left it to my destiny and want to stop thinking about it anymore. I have experienced that my Moula (TUS) has never let me down and had been walking me trough the path of life and carried me along the way during the most adverse of situations.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

My Hosting Experiance.

I have been around providing hosting since 5 years to a local client base. First I was with onefusion who suddenly vanished in the blues and then I shifted to surpass, have been with them since a year and a half or even more. My experiance with their support is very good. Their support is good and most of the problems easily solved.

My worst experiance with them is that their uptime. They were having problems with their Pass6 last March and it took them a month to restore all accounts to normal. I was really fed-up with my clients yelling at me but I had back-ups and I shifted them temporarily to windows account.

After that I am still very much concerned of their uptime. Surpass always has problems with uptime, though the server is back up as soo as you complain but this makes no sense. Dont they monitor their server??

Pass6 is the server where I am, I cant say much about other servers and their support is fine. I am not much concerned of the uptimeas it occurs when most of my customers are asleep, I have local customers mostly. But it does effect all of us as we miss out on mails at times. I hope the good people at surpass keep do something for providing a better uptime.

CPANEL and WHM is the control panel I love its features are excellent and good for end users as well as resellers.

Their price is also fine for me and I cant find a better price then theirs, if anyone has good experiance somewhere else for the same price let me know.

As for CPanel and WHM on linux I would like to have a dedicated managed server if I could get one for a good price and with a good company. End2End Management of the server is much more important.

As for ASPWEBSERVER all I can say is thumbs up. They are exellent people when it comes to problem solving and support. They have online live chat on yahoo and msn as well.

Their uptime is very good as far as I am concerned. I have been with them since the past 3 years and they are very good.

The only drawback is their Control panel which does not support mailing lists and they do not provide MS SQL database. I had asked them to provide me MS SQL for an extra price but they declined. I had to buy an account with jodohost for getting MS SQL and I guess I will have to leave aspwebserver, though I am not sure about it yet. I might downgrade my account with them if I was to continue wih aspwebserver and also jodohost.

I do not like the restriction of limited control panel that jodohost has. It limits our capability to resell the resources / accounts though their domain hosting is unlimited but the clients usually ask for control panels and that is a draw back of the h-Sphere conol panel. The panel is in itself 6 USD a year which adds to the cost.

I have just written my experiace with several hosts.
Ekhwan Web Solutions
Brotherhood Beyond Boundries.
I am here to stay in the hosting business-

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Double Standards

Most of us have experianced people playing double standards in life and we often do it ourselves. The govenment has policies set that are different for the rich, famous and influencial while the poor and underpreveleged suffer from mistreatment and discrimination. My father always says that this world is a bag of kajal (Some black stuff applied to the eyes, common on India), and one should always be careful that he does not get the black stain.

People call double face policies Diplomacy and I think it is nothing but a plot to fool people to reap ones own benefits. The capitalistic trend that the world is moving towards is nothing but a result of this policy and is based on it. Where the Large fish swallow the bigger ones and the big ones feed on the small. Maybe its a cycle fixed by nature as in the food chain.

Does spiritual teachings and religion teach such values and morals, then where did man get it. Someone told me that religion is a part of this world that should not be forgotten and therefore even the Pope and the Bishops have to play politics and act diplomatically. Double standards is what I call it.

The law if based on the divine laws of Allah and if acted upon would bring peace to the world. Amirul Mumineen Molana Ali (AS) was told to allow Mu'awiya as the governor of shaam until the be'at (Allegiance) to Ali was over. He replied that I would not take the astray as my supporters. But today we see that at times the government even seeks help from the criminals to reap selfish benefits covered by the so called benefit of the mass. The divine law permits truce and peace but it does not permit making cops out of criminals, does it? Well if the criminal is no longer so, then its a different aspect but not if he is still a criminal.

The above action could cause poblems to the loyal cops and interfere in the entire administration but who cares if the Police Cheif is benefiting from the public functions and under the table cash.

The police matter is just an example of the double standards that todays society has embraced and accepted as diplomacy.

The divine law is same for the poor and wealthy and if that policy is accepted then all would be fine. But alas men seek temporary and transitory benefits for the present.

Monday, November 14, 2005

The Quality of Service that ecompany (EIM) offers

I have applied for alshamil services on the 20th of September via telephone, their toll free number or any other and have enquired about my application status hunderds of times during the past 2 months but to my astonishement no one exactly knows what is the problem and no one can tell when I will get the connection. I am a regular customer of EIM paying monthly bills upto 200 Dhs at an average. The most common answer I get is that there are too many applications. If EIM staff cannot handle additional requests you should consider employing more personale. Even in places like India and pakistan it would not take so long as 2 months and no connectivity.

This is very serious and needs to be considered by the EIM management as it shows the quality of service they render to their clients.

One more frequent happening I witnessed when I contact the help desk it that each support person tosses the phone to someone else with waiting times raising upto 45 minutes at times. Is this the quality support and sevice that EIM is dedicated to?

If anyone is curious about my residential address and thinking it might be in some remote location, then I would like to point out that I live 2 KM away from the Etisalat main office in Sharjah in Maysaloon. And hardly 500 Mtr if we were to count the distance as the crow flies. I think UAE needs competition so that consumers see value for money.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Eid al-Fitr Wallpaper

Courtesy: Al Masarr Computers, Surat

Monday, October 31, 2005

Eid Greetings

Eid is for those who have offered ibadat and fasted throughout the month completing the count of Shehre Ramadan. Eid is for those who have obeyed Allah and His Wali Imamuz Zaman by obeying thier Dai Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS). The sight of the glowing chehra-e-anwar of Moula (TUS), the luminous moon that reflects the elahi noor of Imamuz Zaman and Panjatan is the true EID for us Mumineen. May Allah bless him with all the health and a long long life. Our life span be sacrificed on him.
Eid عيد is sounded and pronounced when the Arabic letter "Ain" preceeds the Arabic word "Yad". A Mumin's true Eid is the day when his EYE (Ain in Arabic) is placed on the heavenly and blessed hand (yad in Arabic) of MOULA (TUS).
May Allah bless us with the auspicious day as beautiful as Eid, when we are blessed with the deedar and qadambosi of Aqamola (TUS) Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS).
Wishing you a very Happy Eid al-Fitr.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Does your boss feed you?

Happens to us all the time. Everybody who is employed by another human being often sees to his boss as the provider of livlihood. Imam Ali Zainul Abideen (AS) in his dua for seeking rizq has stated that we often seek rizq from those who are themselves marzooq, in other words fed by Allah. This is very true for those who are business owners as well who rely on the customers for their bread rather then having faith on Allah.

I I do not want to divert my dialogue to the business category for which I might write someday but I do want to clear what I think about employment and the employer. For me my employer or lets say my boss is merely a medium of my income and not the source. At times the employer feels that he is doing great favours on the employee by underminig his mistakes and so does the employee as he feels that if the boss would have fired him he would have been begging for bread.

I feel this attitude is the point where productivity of the employee decreases at a corporate level and increases to the personal boss (employer) level. Keep him happy.

What would you say if your boss over-looked your mistakes just for the sake of keeping your bread rolling in or just to think within himself that he was doing a favour on you. Let me be more precise, you had a fight with your boss and he took the matters to a higher authority and turned down their offer to take action against you just to later tell your collegues that he had a chance of taking action but he didn't. I would leave the decision on you but what I think is that your boss thinks he is the provider of rizq to you.

My reasoning might not be correct but I have a few points to share,
1. If he were so rationale he would not have complained to your superiors at all. Which landing your career in a jeopardy and your past efforts baseless.
2. He let go the opportunity to fire you for being a nice boy to his superiors.
3. If he were so nice he would not have spoken of his generosity to your collegues which did make him a hero.
4. His attitude of doing a favour on you is the most important factor to prove that there is no favour at all but to feed the self ego.

I might be a pessimist and therefore evalution of the situation are welcomed. The only base of my argument is that no human feeds another. It is Allah who graces people by his blessings and bounties. I would never be tied to the favours of my boss if he thought he was doing a favour on me. This is but a thought that my rationality teaches me though I also do fear loosing my job all the time. The insecurity in the lives of salaried people is often the reason why they lack behind in religion. Religion teaches that the provider of all life and its support is none but the lord.

May Allah bless Aqamoula (TUS) a long life. Ameen

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The eminence of a Mumin - Riwayat of Abban.

The dignity of a Mumin.

Sadiq Imam once said to Abban: “When one of you, Mumineen, pass away his two (guardian) Angels will accompany his soul to the heavens after his dafn (burial).

They will then plead Allah that we have returned to paradise with the soul of this Mumin after burying him. Henceforth, we intend to worship you in the heavens and pray to you. The nobility of the Mumin is such that Allah will tell the Angels that “I need not your worship but you shall return to Earth and provide refuge and company to this Mumin from the fright and grief of the grave, bringing happiness to his heart.

The Imam then said: “O Abban, this is the distinction of a Mumin. Such is his dignity and eminence.”

All gratitude to Allah, and then for the Imam who showed us the importance of making a Mumin happy. Allah blesses those who keep a Mumin happy, and the sawab of pleasing the Panjatan, Imamuz Zaman and his Dai is surely in its multiples.

May Allah grant us the will to do deeds that would keep our Moula happy with us, and may He grant the bounty and blessing of Taqwa and vigilance to Mumineen.

Riwayat in Lisan al-Dawat

Translated from the Kalemaat of al-Dail Fatimi Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS).

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

If you are a parent

Put aside all your work and spend just few minutes...It will be an investment for your child's future....
By Azim H. Premji, Chairman Wipro Ltd.

If you are a parent, you have many aspirations for your child that may include him or her becoming a doctor, an engineer, scientist or another kind of successful professional. I believe these aspirations are driven by your thinking about your child's future, and her centrality in your life.

Since good education is often the passport to a good future, I presume it leads you to getting your child admitted to a good school. Then you encourage your child to study hard and do well in school exams. To bolster this, you send him or her for tuition classes. This would have primed your child for board exams and entrance exams, thereby leading to admission into a good professional course. Doing well at college increases the probability of landing a good job. And a good job means the child's future is ensured.

I am neither a psychologist nor an educationist, and what I will now state may seem counter-intuitive. I think that these aspirations and actions might be doing more harm than good to your child. To understand why, we need to re-examine some of our fundamental assumptions.

In the first place, I have seen time and again that living for some distant future goal also means you do not live in the present. The distant goal will always translate into an external measure of success, such as exams. And most exam-focused children start forgetting what it means to be a child - to be curious, mischievous, exploring, falling gettin g up, relating, discovering, inventing, doing, playing.

Childhood is very precious; precious enough not be wasted by the artificial pressures of contrived competition, by too many hours of bookish study, and by school report cards that simplistically wrap up an entire human being in numbers.

The second assumption is that education is merely a ticket to socio-economic success. Given the state of our country, this reality cannot be ignored. But restricting education to only this aspect is , I think, a very limiting notion of the aim of good education. The primary purpose of a school is to guide the child in her discovery of herself and her world, and to identify and nurture the child's talents Just as every seed contains the future tree; each child is born with infinite potential. Imagine a school which sees children as seeds to be nurtured - here the teacher is a gardener who helps to bring out the potential already present in the child.

This is very different from the current view which sees the child as clay to be moulded - where the teacher and parents are potters deciding what shape the clay should take. There is an old (and forgotten) Chinese saying " Give a seed to a potter, and you will get a bonsai".

Even in a commercial organization, to make profits we do not have to chase profits. Rather, we need to build an institution that gives every employee an opportunity to do meaningful and fulfilling work.

Create an organization driven by values of innovation, integrity, customer centricity and care. And as you practice these values everyday and moment, you will see that the profits take care of themselves.

Similarly, dear parent, this is my request to you. Do not give up your child's present to secure his or her future. Give your child the freedom to truly explore life with abandon. In doing this, you will see your child flower into a creative and sensitive human being. And when this happens, everything else - money, social success, security - will fall into place automatically.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Gibat (Backbitting)

I've been wondering lately about why we human beings like to gossip so much. I'm referring here to that whole family of actions that go by such names as gossip, slander, backbite, whisper, talk behind someone's back, criticize and so on. I realize each term is slightly different from the other, but I'm concerned here with their over-arching commonality. Please try to feel this with me for a moment.
You're sitting with a person, perhaps a casual friend whom you're hoping will become a close friend. You're both laughing, actively listening, affirming each other in the dozens of subtle, non-verbal ways that friends do, consciously or not. In the midst of your enjoyable conversation (you can almost feel the strengthening bond that's growing between you), Abid's name comes up. Your friend exclaims, "Oh, Abid! He's kind of odd, isn't he? He's quite a talker. And you know he struggles a little with needing to be the center of attention." Now, I think the world of Abid. I really do like him. But…….. At that very moment, a certain warm, delicious rush just shoots through your body. You lean closer. There's something inexplicably enjoyable about your new friend's having suddenly taken you into his confidence. You feel special somehow. A new, more intimate bond is developing between you two. It's not that you hate Abid - it's just that you want to keep moving forward with your new friend. "Yeah, I know what you mean," you reply. "I was with him last week, and he said . . ." And away you go.

So Why Do We Do It? Why is it that we enjoy (come on, admit it) talking about others behind their backs - and why do we enjoy listening to others who do it with us?  I think we enjoy backbiting so much because it makes us feel superior. If you and I feel a bit insecure with our friendship to start with, a false intimacy can quickly arise when we both identify a common inferior. For a brief moment we feel better about ourselves as you and I look down together on someone else. In a rather perverse sense, it's one way we go about being accepted by each other.

The Trust Factor -- I can't tell you how very, very secure this made me feel around Arwa. How much respect I had for her! Often I'd see her chatting with a friend, huddling close together and laughing. And I knew, with 100% certainty, that they were not talking negatively about me. Have you ever wondered to yourself, Gosh, if this person finds it so easy to drop little negative comments to me about others, I wonder what she's saying to others about me when I'm not around? I have wondered several times. It takes a little bit of the zing out of enjoying a session of backbiting, knowing that this present momentary thrill of intimacy will most likely be eclipsed by a betrayal in the near future.

I think our great fear about not joining in when gossip starts is that our friend will like us less, will pull back, and will now refrain from sharing other intimate things with us. But that's wrong thinking. In the very short term, it may seem so.  But in the long run, if over time we have developed a reputation as people who keep confidences and never backbite, we will find our friendships increasing and deepening.

Think of all the friends you have right now. Who are the ones you feel quite certain do not gossip about you? Who are the ones who wouldn't surprise you if they did talk about you behind your back? Whom do you respect more? Wouldn't it be great if Mumineen had the reputation (at work, at school, with neighbors) of not speaking negatively behind others' backs? We should be more like Arwa. Such a pledge may mean gently changing the topic when we sense backbiting is coming on, or even confronting someone about his or her loose tongue. But most of all we should want to develop the kind of character that takes a secret delight in saying positive things about another person - someone who can trust us to guard our tongue.

If you are unable to do three things, then you must do three (other) things: if you cannot do good, then stop doing evil; if you cannot benefit people, then do not harm them; if you cannot fast, then do not eat the flesh of the people. Remember What Maula who is Quran-e-Natiq quotes from the Quran that a person who does Gibat  is like a person who eats the flesh from his brother's dead body.

There are many methods and guises that are employed when one mentions another in a negative way:

Under the pretense of being informative, one could say that it is not one's habit to mention others, except for the sake of relating another's condition to someone. Or one could state that by Allah, indeed so-and-so is one to be pitied, thereby showing superiority over one who is to be rejected. Another method might be to say that so-and-so is a good person; however, he has such and such qualities. Again, one is justified in revealing another's faults. One could also simply state that we should forget so-and-so, and make supplication for their forgiveness as well as our own, intending only to belittle the one that was mentioned. There are some who are jealous about someone and hence backbite- just to criticize and defame him in the company of others.

Some people also backbite for the sake of humor, playfulness and lightheartedness. A person finds a certain amount of satisfaction from being appreciated for his story-telling abilities; speaking ill of someone in a humorous fashion adds flavor to a tale.

Others engage in backbiting by showing surprise and amazement at another's actions: "'How is it that someone could do such a thing?"

Another form of backbiting is relating someone's misfortune to their enemies, so that they, too, may find pleasure in putting them down.

In reality, all these tactics are designed to try to deceive Allah (the Exalted) and to please the creation; and in reality, the many that follow these methods only serve to deceive themselves.

From these examples, one can surmise that backbiting pertains to a disease of the mind... But you can get rid of it through Nuero Linguistic Programming (NLP). NLP is a science which deals with behaviour modification. It deals with your unconscious. Permanent  behavior modification can only take place when we reach our unconscious mind. Vows and pledges may help temporary change as this is done at the conscious level. I am an NLP practitioner and offer my khidmat  to help whoever wants to bring about any change in behaviour may it be backbiting or any behaviour which maybe against shariat..

 May Allah save us from this most evil of actions and protect us from its temptations.

Amte Syedna(TUS)
Nisreen Sh Abbas Merchant

Are we dis-respecting the Holy Book

The Holy Quran is respected by billions of people around the globe. Ask a muslim and he will tell you that the place for the Quran al-Majid is the highest in his heart and he does have a very special place to keep it in his home, somewhere high from the ground.
It is sad that no one has ever thought of how we are disrespecting this holiest revelation by printing it's verses in newspapers, palmplets, magazines and other such publications that are often thrown away in the garbage or are found lying on the floor with people often stepping on it or even wrapping stuff, which could be a thing that is not halal even.
The Quran al-Kareem is not supposed to be touched by non-muslims, more-over polytheists but what does happen when its published in wide spread publications. Though this is an altogether different subject but it does matter.
I noticed this fact when I saw Quranic Ayats published in condolence messages. I see that the newsboy had thrown the paper on our doorstep as usual in the morning as I had just finished the Quranic recital and it striked me that we are doing something not supposed to be. As today I saw these pages in garbage and it moved my soul. With due respect I would like to bring this to the notice of the ministry of information and the mass publications as well. Something must be done about this saddening situation.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Don't say "YES"when you want to say "NO".

Tell me if this sounds familiar -- someone asks you to do something that you really don't want to do or you honestly don't have time for. It might be a request or an unreasonable request from a friend, a neighbour, a close relative, a familty member, your office colleague or your boss for just working late. But you feel like you will let the other person down if you say no. You feel GUILTY already, and you haven't even responded yet! So you say, "Sure," even though doing so is going to put you under tremendous stress and PRESSURE. You know that you will probably end up resenting this activity, and maybe even ducking some of your responsibilities because your heart's just not in it, but you go ahead and agree anyway.

Why are we so afraid to tell people "NO"? For some reason, we have been taught that "no" is DISRESPECTFUL -- and even insulting. We seem to value other people's time more than our own -- feeling that we need to bend over backward to accommodate others, even if it inconveniences us. I know we're atoning for the "me" 1980's, but let's be reasonable! "No" is actually one of the healthiest words that can come out of your mouth. When you tell someone "no," you are really saying that you understand and accept your own LIMITS, and don't want to do a shoddy job by overwhelming yourself. That you value your time and priorities and aren't willing to take away from the truly important things in your life. A little selfishness is necessary, if you want to maintain a balanced and sane life!

So how do you say "NO" without insulting the other person, feeling consumed with guilt, or hurting your own credibility? We need to find a way to say "no" without dragging up all of those HIDDEN FEARS -- they'll think I'm lazy or selfish, that I have no career drive, that I'm not ambitious, that I have no concern for other people. And it's time to give up all of those roles you're so proud of -- supermom, martyr, hero -- but are keeping you from finding true peace. Once you've accepted that you have the right (and often responsibility) to turn someone down, you can do it in a way that doesn't seem like a REJECTION. Let me show you how:

Here are 20 ways to say "NO" without hurting others

or a simple, straight, direct "NO"

Contact for In-House Training on Assertiviness Skills.

With Kind Regards
Shabbar Suterwala
Corporate Trainer & Psychological Counsellor
Ph: +91 989 222 5864
ShabbarSuterwala @ Hotmail.Com

Friday, August 12, 2005

10 Tips for Teachers

Tips to help both new and experienced teachers build rapport, motivate students, use teaching aids effectively, and more.

1) Be Prepared
Before you set foot in the classroom, make sure you have a plan for the course and class. Share your plans with your class - distribute a syllabus on the first day and post the objectives for the day on the board at the beginning of each and every class.

2) Use a Variety of Approaches
Plan a variety of approaches and activities for each session. In a single class, you could have a teacher lecture, a small group discussion, and a written reflection assignment. Varying teaching strategies appeals to learning style differences and keeps participants attentive and engaged. Aim to get participants out of their chairs and interacting at least once per class.

3) Encourage Interaction
Have students work in pairs or small groups whenever possible: to check homework questions, to prepare presentations, etc. Not only does interaction acknowledge and draw upon the tremendous experience and knowledge adults bring to the classroom, but students gain confidence as they check and confirm answers with their peers. Having a network of friends can enhance a student's academic success.

4) Address Students by Name
Addressing students by name helps build rapport. While taking attendance, record students' names (and possibly identifying qualities) on a seating plan. Don't call upon students in a predictable pattern, and mark the plan each time you ask a student a question. This way, you'll routinely call upon everyone more or less equally. At some institutions, you can request a class list which includes photos from student cards. Otherwise, take Polaroids or digital images and cram before the next class.

5) Use the Board Effectively
Bring your own whiteboard markers and/or chalk and an eraser to every class. Record lesson objectives in a margin of the board at the beginning of class. Be sure to note key points, homework, etc. on the board. Monitor the size, pressure and legibility of your writing. Use a variety of colors for emphasis and clarity. Baby wipes are great for cleaning your hands at the end of class (They work well for cleaning overhead transparencies, too)!

6) Use Other Audio-Visual Aids Effectively
Audio-visual aids such as overhead projectors and transparencies, flip charts, audio and video players, etc. can be tremendous assets when used effectively, but great liabilities when not. Check equipment before class to ensure that it is working, that you know how to use it, and that tapes and counters are cued. Position the equipment and yourself so that everyone can see and/or hear clearly.

7) Manage Handouts
Try telling students that you will be giving a handout after presenting the material, but that you'd like them to listen and think for now. Don't just read handout material passively to students, present the main points and elicit support and examples from the class. Whenever possible, double-side handouts to conserve paper. Punch holes to help students file them neatly in their binders.

8) Check for Understanding
Asking students the question, "do you understand?" is an ineffective means of checking comprehension. Depending upon the focus of the lesson, check comprehension by 1) asking students to make a choice such as, "Is this statement true or untrue?" or "Is the best answer A or B?" 2) giving a demonstration of a practical task; or 3) brainstorming further examples to illustrate a point.

9) Give Feedback
Keep feedback focused and positive. For example, if you are giving a lesson on verb tenses, and a student provides an answer with correct verbs but incorrect articles, congratulate the student on their accurate use of the verbs. Try engaging the entire class by asking whether they agree or disagree with an answer. If some students disagree with an incorrect answer, elicit the correct response.

10) Ask for Feedback
Give students regular opportunities to provide anonymous feedback on your teaching and the course. New teachers are encouraged to invite feedback from experienced mentor teachers as well. Acknowledge and respond to feedback with grace. Clarify content or make adjustments to your teaching style as necessary.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Emirates Internet (EIM) and the reality

We might see the UAE as a very high tech economy with regards to the Internet but the situation is really different as compared to the other emerging economies around the globe the reason behind it maybe the monopoly of the eCompany or Etisalat. I doubt that if given an opportunity any multinational ISP would not be interested in stepping in the UAE and competition does have its own benefits. I would also like to point out that eCompany blocks sites that provide free SMS services like mtnsms or voice chats like skype which are a reality around the globe. In India its common to find places where INR 10 a minute is charged for an call anywhere round the globe via Internet phones that use routers and high speed Internet connections. Where does the UAE stand looking at this one may ask. Surely far behind if we were not to consider the profits made by Etisalat.

You better change yourself.

Don't Change the World
Once upon a time, there was a king who ruled a prosperous country. One day, he went for a trip to some distant areas of his country. When he was back to his palace, he complained that his feet were very painful, because it was the first time that he went for such a long trip, and the road that he went through was very rough and stony. He then ordered his people to cover every road of the entire country with leather. Definitely, this would need thousands of cows' skin, and would cost a huge amount of money.

Then one of his wise servant dared himself to tell the king, "Why do you have to spend that unnecessary amount of money ? Why don't you just cut a little piece of leather to cover your feet?"

The king was surprised, but he later agreed to his suggestion, to make a "shoe" for himself.

There is actually a valuable lesson of life in this story : to make this world a happy place to live, you better change yourself - your heart; and not the world.

Friday, August 05, 2005


Dr Gyaneshwar Rao's

This is a real story tell be a doctor to someone.. telling how you helped them and what actually they needed at that time..

This is a story about the battle between the human will to survive and nature's destructive instinct. Dr Gyaneshwar Rao is a well-known surgeon in Bhuj. After reading how he saved many lives the day the earthquake struck, you have little doubt that the winner is in the fight between man and nature.

I have lived in Bhuj since 1987. This is the city of unambitious people. It is so small that everyone knows everyone. On January 26, I was playing badminton when the unexpected earthquake shook us. Unexpected because I have built a bungalow and hospital here and no authority ever told me to be careful. My friend and architect Kumtekar did prevail on me not to build a basement because he said Bhuj is in a seismic zone. I have been associated with 20 institutions in Bhuj, but no one ever discussed this, not even any of the collectors posted here.

No one can ever accurately describe what we experienced on Friday morning. It was frightening, sickening. For many moments the tremors did not stop. I screamed again and again, "Oh God, why don't you stop?" Dhadak, dhadak... Buildings were crashing down and a monstrous cloud of dust covered the city. My father described it correctly. He said it was like a huge plane landing right on your head.

When I came out, Bhuj was dead. That was the worst 15 minutes of my life. I drove home and saw my family. My wife Alka and daughter were searching for me. They were crying. All five of us hugged each other and cried.

I thought of my patients and rushed to the hospital. I gave someone a lift. Believe me, I don't know who sat next to me. My senses were numbed. My staffs were smart -- they had led all the patients out onto the road. Thus, they were saved. When I arrived, one of my staffers said, "Sir, forget it (my hospital). It's gone." I met Dr Mahadev Patel, we hugged and cried.

Someone shook me and asked, "Doctor, tamhe dhila thasho to kem chalshe? (How can you lose heart?) " That resident of Bhuj asked me to act. I was not prepared. I said, "What can I do? Let us go to the general hospital." He said, "Don't you know? It's gone. It has collapsed." I was speechless. I looked around for my stethoscope.

People started arriving outside where my hospital had stood. In 10 minutes, there were 100 patients. This was around 9.30 am. All of them had multiple injuries. Someone's intestine had burst, some had broken hands, and others came with broken legs. All of them needed surgery as soon as possible. I instantly took one correct decision, don't ask me how. I asked the injured to follow me to the Jubilee ground. All hell then broke loose. I am still amazed that in 10 minutes so many injured people got to know that medical help was available on Jubilee ground.

In that mad rush so many good doctors of Bhuj were around, but for the first few hours I was the only surgeon. People started jostling to catch my attention. I requested two of the patients's relatives to flank me for my protection. I did not have any injections. I was helpless. I did not have needle and thread either.
Do you know what I did? I shook the patients. With affection, I told them to get out of the trauma. I shouted: "Breathe deeply! Breathe deeply!" There were so many serious cases. So many people were dead! Ninety per cent of them had head injuries. I asked people to help. I asked one young man to break into a chemist's shop and get syringes, glucose bottles, needle and thread. I told him not to worry, that I would take the blame.

He got some supplies, but hardly much. Get medicines, I screamed. When I shouted again, people got courage. I got what I wanted. It was around 9.40 am. I realised the magnitude of the problem and knew that what I was doing was not enough. In an hour, patients from Anjar arrived, many with serious injuries. Dr Patel, Dr P N Acharya, Dr Pujara and Dr Bharat Joshi had joined me by then. I wanted to operate. I was desperate. The city had collapsed, and not a single operation theatre was available.

I asked my colleague Bharat Chothani to rush to my hospital and bring the operation kit. I asked patients's relatives to get me red tiles, sheets of wood and cardboard to put patients's limbs in plaster. I asked someone to get Menanitol. I used pieces of shawls, shirts and sarees as bandages. When one patient complained of bleeding I tore his headgear and tied it tightly around his thigh.

One man rushed to me with a girl in his hands. "Doctor," he said, "please treat her first." I thought the girl was dead. The father wanted my confirmation of that fact. "Be quick doctor. If she is dead, then let me rush to look for my wife in the debris of my home."

He was in deep shock, emotionless. I told him, "Just keep her in our care and run for your wife." He left, leaving his daughter's dead body in our custody.

The most traumatic thing for me that day was when I had to ask relatives to take the quickest possible decision -- to allow me to save a life by cutting off an injured limb. I was rough. I normally don't behave like that, and I am sorry. I knew every third patient personally. They would scream at me, "Doctor, why don't you look at my leg? Don't you recognise me?"

For the first few hours I only had one needle. I told Dr Bharat Joshi to hold that needle. It was the most valuable thing I had. My colleagues arranged patients in such a manner that I could stitch three patients at one go. Hundreds of patients were lying on the open ground. With a needle, thread and a pair of scissors, I started suturing. I was shouting at the patients, "Don't cry. Keep quiet." Around us, the noise level was so high. People were screaming in pain, relatives crying in anguish.

I must have sutured 150 patients that day. By 11 am, the home guards arrived, then came member of Parliament Pushpdan Gadhvi. I finally got a table; I asked for a tent. Once they were in place I started operating. Again, it was a hard time. With only a pair of scissors I had to cut off a leg or arm of many patients. I did it to save lives. Other doctors tied the bandages. By 3 pm, I had 5 tables and lots of medical help.

Harish Thakkar, who has a food stall on the footpath opposite the bus stand, asked if he could help. I said, "get me a gas stove and a huge utensil to boil water." He got it in no time and also brought dabeli, a popular dish in Bhuj, for the patients and their relatives. Imagine, hundreds of pieces in a few hours. It was a miracle.

As I was treating patients, I got pieces of news. "Ramesh is no more," that some other friend had died. So many people I knew have died. One nice chap put biscuits in my mouth when I was stitching wounds. He was so caring. Slowly, things got organised. We don't know who got those things for us. Things poured in. Dicloran and Tetanus Toxide injections were made available.

After 7 pm, I was tired it was beyond my scope. I went to the district health officer's office. It's an administrative post. The man does not know anything about medicine. I wanted a mobile operation theatre and 100 operation kits. It was not made available even on Monday night. I pleaded with him and the politicians. "Don't call doctors. Get the operation stuff first." Two hundred doctors have arrived in Kutch, but we don't know how to use them in the best way. Thirty bright medical men came from AIIMS, Delhi, but without equipment. Eighty per cent of medical help is useless unless we have an operation theatre and equipment.

Someone sent a helicopter full of Cloramycin, not a great help. I need 1,000 pairs of gloves, please. I understand that the sender does not know the ground realities. As of late night, January 29, we don't have a functioning orthopaedic section and an operation theatre. The military hospital is doing a wonderful job under Colonel Lahiri's leadership, but their resources are limited.

All the private dispensaries are shut, the government hospital is gone, and where will the children and mothers go? We want a temporary hospital that will last us 6 months.

As told to Sheela Bhatt

Monday, July 18, 2005


Learn about self-esteem. 
Boost self-confidence. 
Manage your emotions better. 
Learn how to improve friendships. 
Discover the secret of smiling.
Get motivated and inspired to enjoy every day.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Memory and History

A long time from now, you might not remember this hour. You might not even remember this day, nor even this week or this month.

But you might remember this moment.

Your history is not about the dates you have lived, any more than history class should be about the dates of events. Your history is about the magical moments you create in your mind as you move through your life.

Make as many wonderfully memorable moments as you possibly can.

We all remember our personal past that all of us treasure. Our past experiances, some sweet and sour are easily remembered as we pass through time.

The same is true for the history of the world. People remember an era for prosperity and happiness and not by the dates. Events that have taken place are vital for a common man to learn and not the dates that make our history leason so dry and boring. Humans have the tendency to learn and grow by knowing the past. The prosperity of the past leads us a step forward while our mistakes make us cautious.

History has long been a target to a tug of war between science and art. Masters of these branches of knowledge have tried to pull the magnificient subject to their arena by thier own reasons and views.

The Fatimi philosophy of history revolves and evolves around the Sahib al-Zaman, whose presence is inevatibale at all times. The Fatimi legacy has undoubtedly argued that since the creation of man and his existence on earth the presence of Sahib al-Zaman is a compulsory and profound reason for creation. The Sahib al-Zaman is a guide of mankind towards Allah, the creator and a one who reveals his will to the world.

The question I have personaly raised over years of learning history, both world history and Islamic history, is that are the dates really important. Does the chronology of events really matter to a student of history, and what would be the gains to remembering dates to both the masters of the past and the common man.

Science is a branch of knowledge that looks for evidence and logical analysis. History can be considered its branch if you look at the mechanism and formation of days and night which enetually result in dates. Astronomy and Astrology are both part of history and thus history can be treated as science but not in a way of fact finding and interpretation of the human past.

Art on the other hand is the result of what the human mind perceives from its own experience and belief. A very common phrase can be quoted here "Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder." People have sexed up with history to prove their views and theories and their understanding to satisfy their ego. Its the thought of man the so-called great scholars who have written history according to their beliefs. They have successfully blended the method of scientific research andjustified their view of history by their home made evidence. Thus to an extent history is regarded as Art.

The Fatimi philosophy on the other hand has built its foundation on a generation of the trustworthy people. The generation of Sahib al-Zaman to interprete both world history and that of the human race. It is a philosophy which engulfs both Art and Science in its own unique way. To quote an example from Syedna Qadi al-Noman in Sharh al-Akhbar, he says, "I have collected and written the past from various authors and trustworthy men of the Shiate and Sunnni sects of Islam and finally presented to the Imam. The fact that he establishes are then kept and the rest is removed from my work."

This is why remembering events and the lifetimes of the Sahib al-Zaman is an important aspect of study to a student of the history, and not the dates.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Human Rights explained and upheld by the Fatemi culture.

The much talked about chapter in the modern world. Imam Ali Zainul Abideen is said to have shed great light on the subject and it was the earliest period of Islamic history. Islam is indeed a way of life that upholds human values and dignity. The Fatemiyeen have always upheld this law of Islam. The Imam Zainul Abideen (AS) has said to have spoken on various rights that are given to people during their lifetime. Infact during the roles that they have to play during their life time. It should be noted here that Imam Zainul Abidin (AS) is a person who has witnessed life in all its forms and seen clearly through its various perspectives. He was the witness to the historical tragedy of Karbala that brings tears and sorrow to the human eye even this day.

Below is an excerpt from the Imam's (AS) words of great knowledge and guidance.

The right of the one who trains you through knowledge is that you should glorify him, and respect him. You should listen well to him, and be responsive, help him for yourself, in the quest for knowledge that you need, by freeing your mind for him, and presenting your understanding to him, and purifying your heart for him, and looking at him by means of abandoning leisures and diminishing lust. You should know that regarding what he teaches you, you are considered as his messenger to teach when you meet the ignorant ones. Therefore, it is binding upon you to render on his behalf properly, and not cheat in the fulfillment of his mission, and strive to deliver what you undertake.

The right of your disciple is that you should know that Allah established you over them through His grant of knowledge and your authority over His treasures of wisdom. If you conduct your authority properly and treat them just as Allah has treated you with his treasures, byy being a sympathetic counselor who respects his master in the affairs of the slaves, the steadfast good-doer who, when he sees one who is needy, takes some of the property that he has control over to give away. Then you will be matured. And will be hopeful and faithful. Otherwise you will be regarded as betraying Him, and will be unjust to His creation, and will expose yourself to Allah's anger that will seize His Graces and Power from you.

The right of your leader in Salat (Namaaz) is that you should know that he has taken on the role of a mediator between you and Allah and has appeared in the presence of your Lord on your behalf. He speaks for you, but you do not speak for him; and he supplicates for you, but you do not supplicate for him; and he has beseeched for you and you do not beseech for him. And he has spared you the anxiety of standing before Allah and the question of interrogation for your prayer, but you do not spare him that. Should you perform the prayer imperfectly, he protects you and curtains it for you; and if he makes a mistake during the prayer, you shall not share the resposibility. That is why he is deemed superior over you. He protects you through himself, And he protects your prayer through his prayer. Therefore thank him for this.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Always write angry letters to your enemies. Never mail them.

James Fallows reminds us that nothing good comes from throwing harsh words at people, even when we need to express those words. Say what you must, but don't make other people even angrier at you.

BTW, his advice applies double to email!

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

لا يلدغ المؤمن مرتين

"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me."

My Father never told me this was a Chinese proverb when he would quote it, but it is a good lesson just the same. There should be no embarrassment in being duped by someone. Just don't let it happen again.

Reflecting my thoughts.

Having studied at Al-Jamea-tus-Saifiyah in Surat I had mastered the Arabic language particularly the classical version. IB was an integral part of the Jamea syllabus. I wonder how I had topped in biology at IB in Jamea being a novice. It reminds me of the days of childhood when I used to dream becoming a doctor and taking up medicine as a profession.

Wonder that dream changed or did it not and turned into a reality. In a much junior class we were given an assignment on "The best Profession". I remember and infact still have a copy of the eassy which had a basic level argument at that particular stage of mind proclaiming that "Teaching was the best profession".

I did end up in teaching fianlly. I wonder where my dream of becoming a medical professional evaporated or did it take new shape.

At a later stage in Jamea one of the books of Syedna al-Qadi al-Noman - A journal of the revered Chief Justice of the Fatemi Empire - gave me an insight that I still remember. One of the Imams was given a book by his father being told that it was on the subject of medicine, a very noble subject and field of knowledge as refered by the father. The Imam sat down night long reading the book and reported the next day having found nothing related to medicine. The father replied that it was indeed so. It had the know-how off curing the illness of the spirit. The knowledge of that would quench the thirst of desprate souls in search for salvation.

Jamea Saifiyah did give me an insight in the knowledge of spiritual medicine, a small breafing though, and a long way to go. I am no preacher or an expert teacher but do have a little insight in to the ilm of Ale Mohammed. It may be limited but I do continue to expand my boundries. I may not be an expert that can consult any jack and joe but I keep learning.

After being into the practical world leaving the student life of Jamea behind since 5 years I can say I am still a student of the Fatemi philosophy and do need lots of improvement. There are people who wish for a perfect world and pray for it but it never happens. All that can happen is a perfect self. I do believe in that. It happens to many and for most when they have no more to live. The time is already over.

Writing about my thoughts that are yet vivid is a passion to me. Joining the Nextgen and was a good experiance and having known so many people it feels good to be loved and understood. The knowledge of classical Arabic and English made me pen about the subject I am a student of. At several occasions I do find blocks and at times the words just dont seem to end.

I still wonder how I ended up into this tech biz. Web Hosting was an idea that popped up early in the year 2002 and I did loose a lot of money and time innitially as this was not a serious thought but a learning proccess. I have covered most of the losses I made but the profits are not luring any more. I wonder if I should continue but then I do want to preserve the identity of EKHWAN. The name was popped up when I was trying to get a brand for my self. Ekhwan means Brothers. Innitially I was thinking of Ikhwanus Safa but then Ekhwan seemed right and I branded my cyber or net exsistence as Ekhwan. This was what Dai Abi Abdillah used to call the Mumineen of Kutamah, who were his followers. The Dai of Imam Mehdi to North Africa. Since then I having been logging my thoughts in words and print hoping that someday it might take up a role of perfection in action as well. The quest is still a long way to go. The medical doctor has yet to become and will remain a student till the last breath.

I wonder if we should ever stop writing or talking on our beliefs of perfection in fear of criticism over our contraversial actions. Does not our talk leap us a step forward towards the dream of the staunchest critic, a dreamer who wants to see a perfect world. If so then all priest and preachers should seek an alternate job.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

"Happiness is not the absence of problems; but the ability to deal with them."


Yes, that's right. We all have problems, and Jack Brown is simply pointing out that if you can deal with your problems well, you will find happiness. Don't hitch your happiness to your problems, because the problems can become a heavy drag. Separate your problems and your happiness. That way, you can work on solving your problems while at the same time remaining happy.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh Inaugurates Saifee Hospital

Honourable Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh inaugurated the newly reconstructed Saifee Hospital in Mumbai in the presence of the world wide Dawoodi Bohra community spiritual Head, His Holiness Dr. Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS).

The function was part of Syedna's 94th birthday celebrations and attended by numerous . Ministers from several countries, politicians, diplomats and heads of international institutes.

Honourable Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh in his speech specifically lauded the human development contributions of the Dawoodi Bohras under the leadership of Syedna. “This architecturally graceful hospital will add to the beauty of Mumbai while providing invaluable services to its citizens” were the sentiments expressed by former Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee in his message.

The multi-specialty hospital was conceptualized and built by the 52nd Dai al-Mutlaq, His Holiness Dr. Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS), as a tribute to the memory of his illustrious father and predecessor, Dr. Syedna Taher Saifuddin.

“Under the directives of Syedna, Saifee Hospital shall endeavour to provide medical treatment that is safe, ethical and affordable to all human beings irrespective of caste, creed, or religion" said Shaikh Yusuf Qasimji, CEO of the hospital.

The 150 crore hospital project has entirely been funded by Syedna personally, with the contributions from the international Dawoodi Bohra community.

Strategically located at Charni Road in South Mumbai, the sea facing, 14 level ultra modern hospital with its 259 beds and 700 medical and support personnel shall offer comprehensive medical and surgical care by internationally renowned doctors using state-of-the-art technology all under one roof.

It offers the latest diagnostic and therapeutic facilities integrated with the hospital information system, latest radiology and imaging equipment, a dedicated ICU floor with 37 beds, 6 futuristic, sea facing operations theatres, distinctive maternity wards, and an exclusive domain for physiotherapy and rehabilitation.

It also offers holistic care that includes, Preventive Healthcare, Fitness facilities and Alternative Medicine. The 9th floor is dedicated to a state-of-the-art Fitness Centre, Acupuncture, Yoga, Homeopathy, Naturopathy, Unani and Ayurvedic medicines.

One wing of the hospital includes a modern sanatorium which is expected to be used as a resting place by out-patients and their families who come from outside Mumbai.

Huzaifa Shehabi, assistant medical director asserts "the Saifee Hospital is committed to excellence in healthcare with an unconventional, patient friendly ambience". "With its world class facilities the hospital is also an attractive medical tourism centre" he adds.

Saifee Hospital is a pioneer for healthcare:
• It is the first in the Asia-Pacific region to install Contura-560 model beds that allow patients to adjust the back rest, height tilting and knee-break at the touch of a button.
• First in India with Xenon lighting which replicates sunlight in the operation theatre.
• First in Mumbai with fibre optic cables for high resolution and fast data transfers.
• First in India with Primus RS, a physiotherapy rehabilitation technology employed to provide complete physical fitness workouts to patients and sports persons
• First in India with water treatment plan on the premises to provide water that will meet WHO potable standards throughout the hospital.

On the gala occasion, the Trustees of Saifee Hospital Trust handed over the keys of the newly constructed Adamjee Peerbhoy Sanatorium Trust to its Trustees in the presence of the Prime Minister.

Be kind to yourself.


You wouldn't chew somebody else out for a small error that was totally unintentional, would you? So don't beat yourself up over perfectly human mistakes, either. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt, and show confidence in that next time the mistake won't be repeated.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

I worry about every mumin - Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS)

"I travel a great deal. I remain away from you for long periods of time, but this separation is only on a physical plane. Be assured that I keep you in my sight, I have placed you in my heart. I swear in the name of Allah and Maula Imam-uz-Zaman that wherever I go, east or west, I have never forgotten you, I have always remembered you, remember you and will go on remembering you. Each day and each night I worry about every mumin, mumina and their children. Might somebody make my children stray from the straight and narrow path? Might somebody snatch away their reputations and dignity ? Might someone hurt their feelings ? Momineen, in this way, I remember you every minute and every second, I am sure, you, my children remember me, too. You love me and it is not possible that you can forget me either; but if under the circumstances of this world, it were ever to happen, even then, be assured that I, Mohammed Burhanuddin, have not for a moment forgotten You, and I never will."
Words of Dr. Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin Saheb, T.U.S.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005


Comes the hajj season, and I am reminded of the wonders of aab-i-Zumzum. Let me go back to how it all started.
In 1971, an Egyptian doctor wrote to the European Press, a letter saying that aab-i-Zumzum was not fit for drinking purposes. I immediately thought that this was just a form of prejudice against the Muslims and that since his statement was based on the assumption, that since the Khaan-i-Ka'aba was a shallow place (below sea level) and located in the centre of the city of Makkah, all the waste water of the city collecting through the drains fell into well holding the water.
Fortunately, the news came to Shah Faisal's ears who got extremely angry and decided to disprove the Egyptian doctor's provocative statement. He immediately ordered the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources to investigate and send samples of aab-i-Zumzum to European laboratories for testing the pot-ability of the water. The ministry then instructed the Jeddah Power and Desalination Plants to carry out this task. It was here that I was employed as a de-salting engineer (chemical engineer to produce drinking water from sea water). I was chosen to carry out this assignment.
At this stage, I remember that I had no idea what the well holding the water looked like.
I went to Makkah and reported to the authorities at the Khaan-i-Ka'aba explaining my purpose of visit. They deputed a man to give me whatever help was required. When we reached the well, it was hard for me to believe that a pool of water, more like a small pond, about 18 by 14 feet, was the well that supplied millions of gallons of water every year to hajjis ever since it came into existence at the time of Hazrat Ibrahim, many, many centuries ago. I started my investigations and took the dimensions of the well. I asked the man to show me the depth of the well.
First he took a shower and descended into the water. Then he straightened his body. I saw that the water level came up to just above his shoulders. His height was around five feet, eight inches.He then started moving from one corner to the other in the well (standing all the while since he was not allowed to dip his head into the water) in search of any inlet or pipeline inside the well to see from where the water came in. However, the man reported that he could not find any inlet or pipeline inside the well.
I thought of another idea. The water could be withdrawn rapidly with the help of a big transfer pump which was installed at the well for the aab-i-Zumzum storage tanks. In this way, the water level would drop enabling us to locate the point of entry of the water. Surprisingly, nothing was observed during the pumping period, but I knew that this was the only method by which you could find the entrance of the water to the well. So I decided to repeat the process. But this time I instructed the man to stand still at one place and carefully observe any unusual thing happening inside the well.
After a while, he suddenly raised his hands and shouted,"Alhamdollillah! I have found it. The sand is dancing beneath my feet as the water oozes out of the bed of the well." Then he moved around the well during the pumping period and noticed the same phenomenon everywhere in the well.
Actually the flow of water into the well through the bed was equal at every point, thus keeping the level of the water steady.
After I finished my observations I took the samples of the water for European laboratories to test. Before I left the Khaan-i-Ka'aba, I asked the authorities about the other wells around Makkah. I was told that these wells were mostly dry. When I reached my office in Jeddah I reported my findings to my boss who listened with great interest but made a very irrational comment that the Zumzum well could be internally connected to the Red Sea.How was it possible when Makkah is about 75 kilometres away from the sea and the wells located before the city usually remain dry? The results of the water samples tested by the European laboratories and the one we analysed in our own laboratory were found to be almost identical.
The difference between aab-i-Zumzum and other water (city water) was in the quantity of calcium and magnesium salts. The content of these was slightly higher in aab-i-Zumzum. This may be why this water refreshes tired hajjis, but more significantly, the water contains fluorides that have an effective germicidal action. Moreover, the remarks of the European laboratories showed that the water was fit for drinking. Hence the statement made by the Egyptian doctor was proved false.
When this was reported to Shah Faisal he was extremely pleased and ordered the contradiction of the report in the European Press. In a way, it was a blessing that this study was undertaken to show the chemical composition of the water. In fact, the more you explore, the more wonders surface and you find yourself believing implicitly in the miracles of this water that God bestowed as a gift on the faithfuls coming from far and wide to the desert land for pilgrimage.
Let me sum up some of the features of aab-i-Zumzum.
* This well has never dried up. On the contrary it has always fulfilled the demand for water.
* It has always maintained the same salt composition and taste ever since it came into existence.
* Its potability has always been universally recognised as pilgrims from all over the world visit Khaan-i-Ka'aba every year for hajj and umrah, but have never complained about it. Instead, they have always enjoyed the water that refreshes them.
* Water tastes different at different places.
* Aab-i-Zumzum's appeal has always been universal.
* This water has never been chemically treated or chlorinated as is the case with water pumped into the cities.
* Biological growth and vegetation usually takes place in most wells. This makes the water unpalatable owing to the growth of algae causing taste and odour problems. But in the case of the aab-i-Zumzum well there wasn't any sign of biological growth.
* Centuries ago, Bibi Hajra searched desperately for water in the hills of Sufwa and Murwa to give to her newly-born son Hazrat Ismail. As she ran from one place to another in search of water, her child rubbed his feet against the sand. A pool of water surfaced, and by the grace of God, shaped itself into a well which came to be called aab-i-Zumzum.
-Sent by Mustafa Mogri.
-Adapted from an article by Mr. Moinuddin Ahmed.


Are you grateful? Sure, you say "Thank you" to someone, perhaps out of politeness, upbringing or generosity. But are you grateful. Do you feel gratitude FOR what you have rather than TO somebody for doing something.
Thanking is about that nice person who helped you. Gratitude is about how you feel about what you have.

Take a deep breath and start feeling gratitude.


"He who postpones the hour of living rightly is like the rustic who waits for the river to run out before he crosses."
Horace reminds us about the importance of living in the present, of enjoying each moment.

Don't wait for your river to run out.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Azaan: Call to Prayer

An incredible medium for the proclamation of Tawheed of Almighty Allah and Risaalat of Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam, the sound of which constantly echoes around the globe. Amazing though it sounds, but fortunately for the Muslims of the world, it is an established fact. Have a look at a map of the world and you will find Indonesia (an Islamic country) right on the eastern side of the earth's central land mass. Indonesia consists of numerous small islands, the principle ones amongst them being Java, Sumatra, Borneo and Saibil, all of which are well known. It is the largest country in the world, with 180 million inhabitants. The number of non-Muslims here is negligible. As soon as dawn breaks on the eastern side of Saibil, at approximately 5:30 am local time, Fajar Azaan begins. Thousands of Muezzins in eastern Indonesia commence proclaiming the Tawheed (oneness) of the Almighty, Omnipotent and Omniscient Allah and Risaalat (Universal Apostleship) of the Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallim.  The process then continues and advances towards the Western Islands of Indonesia. The time difference between the eastern and western islands of Indonesia is one and a half hours. Hence, one and a half hours after the Azaan has been completed in Saibil, it echoes in Jakarta on Java Island. Sumatra then follows suit and before this auspicious process of calling Azaan ends in Indonesia, it has already begun in Malaysia. Burma is next in line, and within an hour of its commencement in Jakarta, it reaches Dacca, the capital city of Bangladesh. No sooner the calling of Azaan ends in Bangladesh, it has already prevailed in western India, from Calcutta to Srinagar. It then advances towards Bombay and the environment of entire India resounds with this august proclamation. Srinagar and Sialkot (a city in north Pakistan) have the same timing for Azaan. The time difference between Sialkot, Kota, Karachi and Gowadar city in Baluchistan, and a province of Pakistan) is forty minutes, and within this time, Fajar Azaan is heard throughout Pakistan. Before it ends there, however, it has already begun in Afghanistan and Muscat. The time difference between Muscat and Baghdad is one hour. Azaan resounds during this one hour in the environments of Hijaaz-e-Muqaddas (Holy cities of Makkah and Madinah), Yemen, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Iraq. The time difference between Baghdad and Alexandria in Egypt is again one hour. Azaan continues to resound in Syria, Egypt, Somalia and Sudan during this hour. Alexandria and Istanbul are situated on the same geographical longitude. The time difference between eastern and western Turkey is one and a half hours, and during this time it is echoed with the call to prayer. Alexandria and Tripoli (capital of Libya) are located at an hour difference from one another. The process of calling Azaan thus continues throughout the whole of Africa. Therefore, the proclamation of the Oneness of Allah and the Prophethood of Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam that had begun in the eastern islands of Indonesia reaches the Eastern Shore of the Atlantic Ocean after nine and a half hours. Prior to the Azaan reaching the shores of the Atlantic, the process of Zohar Azaan has already commenced in eastern Indonesia, and before it reaches Dacca, Asar Azaan has started. This has hardly reached Jakarta one and half hours later, and then the time of Magrib becomes due, and no sooner has Magrib time reached Sumatra, then the time for calling Isha Azaan has commenced in Saibil! When the Muezzins of Indonesia are calling out Fajar Azaan, the Muezzins in Africa are calling out the Azaan for Isha.
If we were to ponder over this phenomenon seriously and studiously, we would conclude the amazing fact that there is not a single moment when few thousands if not hundreds of thousands of Muezzins around the world are not proclaiming the Oneness of Almighty Allah and the Apostleship of the noble Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam on the surface of this earth!

Architechture of al-Jamea Tus Saifiyah

Al Jamea-tus-Saifiyah is a response to the way of life and thought of the Bohra community. The building complex attempts to embody the high Muslim ideals and values which this institution strives to inculcate in its students. Through form and materials, structure and layout, it tries to reinforce these ideals and values. To be successful it must not only provide all the facilities required by a modern residential academy for young men and women, but its very fabric and disposition should facilitate and contribute toward their physical, intellectual and spiritual growth.


Just as in life the controlling force is the will of Allah, so here the whole complex centres around the Masjid.  Its dominance is underscored by the fact that all the buildings follow its Qibia orientation. It lies at the heart of the campus, with the Minar on its central axis facing it. Around the courtyard between Masjid and Minar are those parts of the Jamea devoted to its next most important concern, education - the classroom block, the library and the seminar room. Other more social or private areas such as the dining hall and residential blocks lie beyond but because of their orientation they also relate strongly to the Masjid.


The solid stone of the Masjid, inside and out, contrasts with the white walls of the other buildings, distinguishing it further. This stone is meant to convey a sense of the unadulterated strength and purity of the Muslim tradition and the character of the Mujahids which this institution intends to produce. The Fatimi detailing of arches and columns is not ornamentation; it is there as testimony that the spirit of tenth century Egypt, the period of the greatest achievements of the Bohris' forbears, continues up to today as a living force.


The hierarchic organization of this disciplined community of masters and students is reflected in a hierarchy of scale and spaces, both within and outside the buildings. There is, for example, a progression from the loftiness of the Masjid to the high ceilings of the academic areas to the domestic proportions of the living quarters, and from the large sahan of the Masjid to the much smaller courtyards within the hostel blocks.


Because the location is suburban, the buildings spread out rather than rising high, so as to harmonize with the surrounding neighborhood, while at the same time their Qibla axis sets them apart. The highest feature, the Minar, has been placed at the end of two streets at right angles in order to finish these streets with something of visual interest and to contribute as much as possible to the environment.


Overall the aim has been to create a work which is not only appropriate to the functions of the Jamea and to our present age but, more significantly, appropriate to the spiritual needs and historical traditions of Bohra Muslims.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

[Health] The Powers of Haldi

The Humble Turmeric (or Indian "Haldi")

For years when I was young, ever since I can remember, my mother used to mix Haldi powder (Turmeric) with my milk and was forced to drink the strange tasting mixture. It left an ugly yellowish discoloration, much to my disgust, on my tongue which would not go away even after a couple of gargles. The only reason given to me was that it is good for you!

Turmeric is a popular element of Indian cooking all over, and now its panacea like versatile properties are being wowed over by scientists.

Its ability to heal wounds has always been a part of an Indian household in India it is sprinkled in case of burns or wounds as a stand by until professional help arrives, and since it is always handy and ready ingredient in any household.)

Recent scientific studies show that it could be useful in
1) Multiple Sclerosis
2) Fighting illnesses like cancer
3) Colitis
4) Alzheimer's

Interest in Haldi's neuroprotective abilities arose after scientists found out that elderly Indian people had a very low level of brain disease as compared to the western counterparts.

Early this month (June 2002) scientists at the Japanese Hamamatsu School of Medicine announced that turmeric may help to cure colitis (a painful condition of the intestines) since it contains curcumin, a compound which is responsible for its anti inflammatory properties.

A study on mice found that mice fed on a diet of 5% curcumin had a 30% less chance of death due to colitis.

According to lead researcher Chandra Mohan Natrajan (Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee) mice injected with curcumin showed little or no signs of Multiple sclerosis while animals without the treatment suffered paralysis. However, since the studies are preliminary, Multiple Sclerosis should be treated by a doctor's advice only though taking Haldi (turmeric) would not hurt.

The American Association for cancer research in San Francisco, while researching on Prostate cancer cells in California, has found that Curcumin enhances the cancer fighting power due to a naturally occurring molecule in it, TRAIL, which helps kill cancer cells. The combination treatment with curcumin was three times more effective then treatment alone.

With curcumin and TRAIL, the treatment killed 80% of cells in the culture, says Subhash Gautam, a lead researcher at Henry Ford Health System at Detroit, Michigan, which is remarkable.

So our forefathers certainly knew what they were doing!!

The information contained above is intended for general reference purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice or a medical exam. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before starting any new treatment. Medical information changes rapidly and while Infoworld/FIW/Family Ino World/Ekhwan sites and its content providers make efforts to update the content on the site, some information may be out of date. No health information on Infoworld/Ekhwan sites, including information about herbal therapies and other dietary supplements, is regulated or evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and therefore the information should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease without the supervision of a medical doctor.
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