Wednesday, September 05, 2007


So, two weeks into the semester, and I'm already bored of going to class. My four (and a half) engineering classes, anyway. My history class is really fascinating though, American Foreign Policy. I'm supposed to write a paper on the creation of the state of Israel, and I have to read all those documents like the Balfour Declaration and what have you, things people quote in bits and pieces for disturbing films on the current state of Palestine

But in only two lectures, and one paper so far on the origins of the Cold War, I've decided that America is actually pretty imperialist if you think about it. A premature opinion? It seems to me our government does exactly what it berates historical empires for, exactly what it fears other nations will do. I won't say it started with WW2, I know it's way more complicated, but I'm increasingly disillusioned with political rhetoric. Anyway, that is an interesting class. Despite not finishing the first paper entirely (ran out of time) I got a good grade on it and the professor recommended it for the rest of the class to read. Why does that matter? Because we're supposed to read each other's papers, that's why, and over half the class are graduate history students. That I'm able to keep up even, not having taken a single history class in 6 or 7 years (ok, it was AP US History in 11th grade!!) is impressive to me. I hope things stay that way.

I'm afraid my studies in general of Islam and Arabic in particular are falling behind and might stay behind for the time being. I'm overwhelmed academically, finding it difficult to fit in my current obligations. Although, one kid lamented to me before class how he has to read 50 pages for one class. Paltry in comparison to my assigned 200 pages/wk, I felt a little bit happier about what I had accomplished up to that point. A-l-h-a-m-d-u-l-i-l-l-a-h.

I am on the da'wah committee for presenting Islam publically, so doing those presentations should keep me on my toes, so to speak, as far as both public speaking and basic methods of giving da'wah. Moreover, I give a weekly khaatera after isha on Fridays on the book I've been reading, Purification of the Heart. So every week I have to read at least a chapter and summarize into notes to present. So far, after one introduction on the science and relevance of purification, I have done two diseases, miserliness and wantonness. This week inshaaAllah is hatred. During Ramadan I'll stop though, and resume afterwarsd inshaaAllah. The other way I'm keeping up my Islam is reading Qur'an. Reading it every day. I'm really glad I didn't wait until Ramadan to start this practice, so I would only leave it at the end. I'm hoping to finish it before Ramadan starts (making the 2nd time I've read it entirely) and read it again in Ramadan. I'm disadvantaged in taraweeh because I can't understand enough Arabic to really follow anything, but I swear reading Qur'an every day is probably one of the most spiritually invigorating things I've been able to practice regularly. It's a practice I really want to keep up for the rest of my life, to know the Qur'an backwards and forwards and be able to live it. I've realized that people who understand Qur'an at that level behave differently than other Muslims, and they seem much stronger in their faith as well... so I ask Allah to increase me in faith and make me someone who understands Qur'an and implements it.

So being busy like I am, without as much time on my hands in the lab like I've had in the past, I'll try to keep my blog up, posting a couple times a week, but the frequency is bound to die down from what it was over the summer. I'll try to make more meaningful posts though, and fewer trivialities. I hope people keep reading, and more people start reading. Happy September!

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