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Month January 2011

Aisha – Mohammed’s Favorite Wife

Aisha is one of the foremost Islamic authorities of the early period. She is reputed to be the source of many sacred traditions about Mohammed (Hadith). When Mohammed was approaching death, he spent his last moments in the company of the 18 year old Aisha and died with his head in her lap. She remained unmarried for the rest of her life (Qur’an 33:53). Aisha died in the year AD 678 at the age of 65 during the month of Ramadan.

The Shi’a Expectation of the End Times

Shi'a (Shi'ite) Muslims believe in a hidden spiritual guide - called the Hidden Imam (leader) or Mahdi (the one who guides). Shia believe he will return soon along with Jesus. There will be a battle and thw ehole world will submit to Islam. Later there will be a general resurrection of the dead followed by the last judgement. Muslims generally have a strong belief in a future life consisting of a paradise for believers and eternal punishment for unbelievers but their ideas differ very profoundly from Christian belief. Shi’a Muslims generally have a much more concrete and intensive expectation of the end times to come than the Sunnis.

Khadijah bint Khuwaylid

Around the world literally hundreds of thousands, even possibly well over a million Muslim women are named Khadijah. Many of them know very little about the wife of Mohammed or her positive example in many aspects of life. Khadijah was the mother of Fatima (born in AD 605), who was the mother of Hussein and Hassan through Ali. The dates of Khadijah’s birth and death are not clear but it is probable that she was born in AD 555 and she probably died in AD 619.
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Conspiracy Theories in the Arab World

If one reads Middle Eastern newspapers, watches Arab television or simply talks with people fairly quickly one can hear things like: "September 11th was organized by the Americans and Israelis. The Arabs had nothing to do with it." The Syrian journalist, Hassan Hamada, has said that the January 2010 Haitian earthquake was obviously something which the Americans had brought about by their technology in order to take possession of that poor island nation.
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Preparing to Pray

In Islam it is impossible to pray correctly without the ritual cleansing by water, or in the absence of water with sand. Islamic instruction about prayer is filled with long passages on exactly how to accomplish the cleansing process. None of the steps can be sidestepped or done in an improper way, otherwise Islamic prayer looses its merit and validity. Here is a typical Muslim text about doing Wudu (the ritual cleansing):