The Ijtema – Bringing Truth Forward®


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MINI BOOK HAUL 2


As salaamu alaii kumm wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

“I ate them like salad, books were my sandwich for lunch, my tiffin and dinner and midnight munch. I tore out the pages, ate them with salt, doused them with relish, gnawed on the bindings, turned the chapters with my tongue! Books by the dozen, the score and the billion. I carried so many home I was hunchbacked for years. Philosophy, art history, politics, social science, the poem, the essay, the grandiose play, you name ’em, I ate ’em.
~ Famous American novelist, Ray Bradbury in Fahrenheit 451.

Certainly not as passionate but of late I happened to purchase and or collect some of the books mentioned below, no, this isn’t an ‘unboxing’ – that 21st century (Internet) ritual that follows everything new you purchase. I’ll insha-Allah be previewing, reviewing some of the books if they are worth it.  Continue reading


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My Fair Lady.


As salaamu alaii kumm wa rahmatullah wa barakath,

The title of the post is inspired from an erstwhile (1913) English play and later Hollywood movie (1938) of the same name but believe me, after having read the story which I’m sharing with you today, I couldn’t come up with a better title than this, rest assured, the only similarity is in the titles and nothing else. 

Set in the Arab lands, the story talks about love post marriage, the narrator is Hadrath Sharih (rh) wherein he relates to Hadrath Sho’bi (rh) an account of his marriage to one Zainab (rh) of the Banu Tamim clan, I could only get one reference but if I get more, I’ll update the post insha-Allah.

“A happy man marries the woman he loves, a happier man loves the woman he marries” ~ Susan Douglas

The story begins:

Hadrath Sho’bi (rh) says, “Sharih once met me and said, “O’ Sho’bi, marry the women of the Banu Tamim, I have found them to be very intelligent.” Sho’bi asked, “What sign of intelligence did you see in them?”

Sharih explained thus:  Continue reading


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Imam Sudais and The Curse of His Mother.


As salaamu alaii kumm wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

Click on image to zoom

Click on image to zoom

Here I’d like to present you a story which has great lessons for all of us. Its said of the present Imam of Haramain Shareefain, Hadrath Qari Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, an account of his life which I came to know from respectable sources that whenever the mother of Imam Sudais used to get angry, she would curse him like:  Continue reading


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Book Preview of ‘Into The Land of Bones: Alexander The Great in Afghanistan’ by Frank L. Holt.


As salaamu alai kumm wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

Joseph Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) – the famous short story writer, novelist and poet who wrote mainly on the British Soldiers in India in one of his famous poems which has become even more relevant in this day and age, talked of the harsh conditions  and the hopelessness a soldier has to face up and when fighting the war in the plains of Afghanistan. 

itlbonesJust to get a feel of what he intended to convey to the future generation, I’ll just reproduce the last part of the poem titled: ‘The Young British Soldier’  Continue reading


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Such Was My Mother – Maulana Umar Palanpuri.


As salaamu alai kumm wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

The following is an anecdote from the life and times of Maulana Umar Palanpuri (may Allah SWT have mercy on him) is which he talks of his mother.

As we entered early childhood, we saw our mother praying prayers, making supplications and weeping vigorously while invoking Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala’s favor. In those days our mother taught us the meaning and exegesis of Surah Kahf (The Cave) of the Glorious Quran, which still sticks to our minds. I remember her detailing the history of that wicked ruler in the Koranic Surah Al-Buruj (The Towers) who had ordered the believers to be driven unto a ditch of fire.   Continue reading


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Book Unboxing and Preview of ‘Ibn Battuta’ by L. P. Harvey.


As salaamu alai kum wa rahmatullahi wa barakth,

Of the few pages and paragraphs (about 30 pages) that I read of the book, Ibn Battuta by L. P. Harvey, I felt like being in the company of a bitching wife (sorry for the strong word), who is deeply pessimistic and doubts if you really had work in the office when you said you’d be coming home late. Ibn Battuta 05

Which is why I feel the book should have been titled: ‘Ibn Battuta: A Perspective’ – this is what it really is, the British author, L. P. Harvey’s perspective on Ibn Battuta’s life and travels.  Continue reading


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What is common between Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi and the Greek Mathematician, Pythagoras?


As salaamu alai kum wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

A few years ago I came across a report which said that the Bahishti Zewar (The Heavenly Ornaments) – that famous book written by Hakeem al Ummah Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (may Allah have mercy on him) was not actually written by him! Continue reading


There’s something about 40 – The 40 days of Pythagoras, Greek Mathematician, Philosopher, Scientist & Mystic.


As salaamu alai kumm wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

Samos_Greece_by_burcii

Samos, Greece.

The image on your left is of the Greek island, Samos. The place where one of the most famous mathematicians of the past, Pythagoras is believed to have been born in 570 B. C., very little in known about the man himself except that he traveled a lot, visiting places such as Egypt in his search for knowledge and God knows what else, what we do know is that he dabbled in various sciences and is remembered throughout history as a mathematician, scientist, philosopher and…even a mystic, whoever he really was, I only remember him from the math class back when I was in school, where we were taught the Pythagoras theorem. I recall, it was pretty easy.

But was it knowledge that made his famous? Not at all as you’ll see. The following is a marvelous anecdote about him I came across a few years ago is an eye opener.

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There’s something about 40 – The 40 days of Paulo Coelho.


As salaamu alai kum wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

The alchemWhile I was checking my inbox this morning, I received an email from Goodreads inviting everyone who had read Paulo Coelho’s bestseller, ‘The Alchemist’ to ask him any questions if any for a discussion group event to be held on April 2nd 2013, as you may know, this is the Goodreads version of another social network’s similarly titled but much more famous discussion group where they invite celebrities et al for a tête-à-tête with readers across the world, now the book itself is something I had read a long way back, and one of those books I had read cover to cover, though I had a few questions I could ask Coelho, I still wanted to refresh my memory regarding the book itself, so off I went to Wikipedia’s page for ‘The Alchemist’. 

Of the many things I read, one thing caught my attention, the ‘The Alchemist’ itself was not Coelho’s first publication but his sixth and all of his previous books were failures, while this too appeared that it was going to tread the same path as the Alchemist’s first publisher, a local publishing house in Brazil, after having had very reasonable success with the book told Coelho in no uncertain terms that, that it was never going to sell, and that “he could make more money in the stock exchange”.

What Coelho did next is inspiring to all those Muslims wanting to bounce back and or reinvent, rediscover themselves. Continue reading


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The Return of a King.


As salaamu alai kum wa rahmatullahi wa barakath,

“Remember that all through history, there have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they seem invincible. But in the end, they always fall. Always.” – Gandhi.

I haven’t found a better quote to briefly describe what William Dalrymple’s latest book to hit the stands is about, titled, very aptly I must say, ‘The Return of a King’ – The Battle For Afghanistan. Continue reading