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Mohamed Ghilan
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On the Path: Counsels of Imam Al Junayd Ep 3 (Restrictions of the Path) https://youtu.be/e3ziTxLdfP8

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On the Path: Counsels of Imam Al Junayd Ep 2 (The First Obligation) https://youtu.be/Wa0P7VZ8skA

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For those involved in high contact sports and full contact martial arts, this is a great demonstration from UCLA's Dr. Christopher Giza showing why helmets don't protect against concussions. This type of brain injury happens because the brain literally shakes inside the skull, and it can't be prevented by simply adding another layer of protection overtop of your skin. As you can see here, the effects are global because the whole brain is being forced to move in ways it wasn't made to be able to handle. These can in certain cases last a lifetime and may even be responsible for the depressions and suicides NFL football players are committing post-retirement, an issue that's currently under investigation and intense research.

I get the whole competitive nature of sports and how involved athletes can get into it to the point of sacrificing their own physical well being. Don't think your young age is enough to counteract these effects. You don't want to look back when you're older and wish you had gone about your competitive choices differently because you have emotional or learning and memory problems that you could've avoided by overcoming your ego and knowing when to stop.

#Brain #Neurology #Concussion #Neuroscience #Football #Hockey #MMA #Soccer #Sports #Injury

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"Much of the spiritual crisis and doubts many experience can be attributed to the lack of personal investment and engagement in the actions prescribed by the Lawgiver. We have turned our rational powers from means to get to God into ends that everything, including God, must be subjected to. We live in a time when everything in Islam that deals with action is being explained away in a fashion that facilitates inaction. Nuance is being introduced increasingly into every aspect of Islam as it is being deconstructed to fit whatever happens to be the popular cultural movement. Instead of belief in God, we believe in ourselves, and we project a model of religion and God based on our own notions of what constitutes love, mercy, bigotry, and tolerance. There is a metaphysical effect to observing the Sacred Law that is undermined by its abandonment. Prayer is not a set of stretching exercises, the Hijab is not about men, and fasting is not about losing weight. Before one asks, “Where is God?” they must first cease from participating in this circumambulation around the ego in a collective act of self-worship. Only then will the world no longer be a veil between us the Unseen."

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One of the BEST articles I've read in a while on this business of "Islam needs a reformation" media movement:

Then there is Ayaan Hirsi Ali. The Somali-born author, atheist and ex-Muslim has a new book called Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now. She’s been popping up in TV studios and on op-ed pages to urge Muslims, both liberal and conservative, to abandon some of their core religious beliefs while uniting behind a Muslim Luther. Whether or not mainstream Muslims will respond positively to a call for reform from a woman who has described their faith as a “destructive, nihilistic cult of death” that should be “crushed”, and suggested Benjamin Netanyahu be given the Nobel peace prize, is another matter.

Yet the reality is that talk of a Christian-style reformation for Islam is so much cant. Let’s consider this idea of a “Muslim Luther”. Luther did not merely nail 95 theses to the door of the Castle church in Wittenberg in 1517, denouncing clerical abuses within the Catholic church. He also demanded that German peasants revolting against their feudal overlords be “struck dead”, comparing them to “mad dogs”, and authored On the Jews and Their Lies in 1543, in which he referred to Jews as “the devil’s people” and called for the destruction of Jewish homes and synagogues. As the US sociologist and Holocaust scholar Ronald Berger has observed, Luther helped establish antisemitism as “a key element of German culture and national identity”. Hardly a poster boy for reform and modernity for Muslims in 2015.

The Protestant Reformation also opened the door to blood-letting on an unprecedented, continent-wide scale. Have we forgotten the French wars of religion? Or the English civil war? Tens of millions of innocents died in Europe; up to 40% of Germany’s population is believed to have been killed in the thirty years’ war. Is this what we want a Muslim-majority world already plagued by sectarian conflicts, foreign occupations and the bitter legacy of colonialism to now endure, all in the name of reform, progress and even liberalism?
Islam isn’t Christianity. The two faiths aren’t analogous, and it is deeply ignorant, not to mention patronising, to pretend otherwise – or to try and impose a neatly linear, Eurocentric view of history on diverse Muslim-majority countries in Asia or Africa. Each religion has its own traditions and texts; each religion’s followers have been affected by geopolitics and socio-economic processes in a myriad of ways. The theologies of Islam and Christianity, in particular, are worlds apart: the former, for instance, has never had a Catholic-style clerical class answering to a divinely appointed pope. So against whom will the “Islamic reformation” be targeted? To whose door will the 95 fatwas be nailed?

Don’t get me wrong. Reforms are of course needed across the crisis-ridden Muslim-majority world: political, socio-economic and, yes, religious too. Muslims need to rediscover their own heritage of pluralism, tolerance and mutual respect – embodied in, say, the Prophet’s letter to the monks of St Catherine’s monastery, or the “convivencia” (or co-existence) of medieval Muslim Spain.

What they don’t need are lazy calls for an Islamic reformation from non-Muslims and ex-Muslims, the repetition of which merely illustrates how shallow and simplistic, how ahistorical and even anti-historical, some of the west’s leading commentators are on this issue. It is much easier for them, it seems, to reduce the complex debate over violent extremism to a series of cliches, slogans and soundbites, rather than examining root causes or historical trends; easier still to champion the most extreme and bigoted critics of Islam while ignoring the voices of mainstream Muslim scholars, academics and activists.

Read the article in full at http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/may/17/islam-reformation-extremism-muslim-martin-luther-europe?CMP=share_btn_tw

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"Bauerlein’s attack on the Internet as a medium for gaining knowledge was for me quite reminiscent of Guy Lyon Playfair’s attack on television in “The Evil Eye” and Neil Postman’s “Amusing Ourselves to Death“. As a medium, the available studies from cognitive neuroscience point to the inability of the Internet to engage the mind in the same way as reading a book can. This is not necessarily a problem in itself, unless the Internet becomes an alternative to reading books, which is what the youth have done. Bauerlein’s argument is not against the use of technology in education or the Internet per se. Rather, he cites assessment scores showing how exchanging traditional modes of education and reading completely for computer screens and gadgets has actually dumbed down this generation.

To add insult to injury, surveys designed to test student and engagement and satisfaction with education give the false impression that such changes are for the better. This is where Bauerlein brings up such surveys to show how we have done something quite radical in comparison to previous generations – instead of the wisdom of experience and adult insight, we now use youth happiness as the moral benchmark upon which we judge the youth. In other words, the adults have disposed of their responsibility to mentor the youth into adulthood, and relegated it to the youth themselves. In doing so, the adults have failed this generation. Furthermore, given their narcissism and ignorance of civic issues at a deeper level than their topical here-and-now immediate awareness, today’s Dumbest Generation may be paving the way for the collapse of democracy in America."

http://mohamedghilan.com/2015/05/12/the-dumbest-generation/

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Aamer Rahman explains the whole Osama Bin Laden saga in under 4 min and it's BRILLIANT!
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