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Author Topic: Imam Zaid at RIS  (Read 1844 times)
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« on: Jan 01, 2008 07:26 PM »

I'm pretty sure Imam Zaid's message was about parents who insist on wack culture. The article just sounds weird I don't get it?


Imam blasts immigrant parents
Visiting teacher at conference in wake of hijab teen's death

What to listen to -- the imam or the iPod?

For families with Canadian-born kids and Muslim immigrant parents, it's one of the many questions that can pervade the day-to-day life of trying to balance the trappings of Western culture and the traditions of Islamic faith.

But immigrant parents trying to live by their faith shouldn't have delusions that their Canadian-born kids will be immune to Western culture and act as if they're in a strict Islamic country, charged an imam at the Reviving the Islamic Spirit conference in Toronto yesterday.

Imam Zaid Shakir, who teaches at the Oakland-area Zaytuna Institute, yesterday spoke about the tragedy of teen Aqsa Parvez, who police allege was killed by her father. It emerged in the days after her murder that the 16-year-old's death could've been sparked by her refusal to wear a hijab, as her father apparently demanded.

Shakir then blasted immigrant parents for expecting their kids to be oblivious to the realities of their adopted homeland.

"If you want your children to be a Pakistani, to be an Egyptian, to be a Syrian, to be a Turk, to be a Sudanese, a Somali, then you should've stayed in Pakistan or Egypt or Sudan or Somalia," Shakir said, to applause.

Shakir said it wasn't the childrens' choice to immigrate, but the parents. "Parents, your children didn't ask to come here, to Canada or America or Britain. They didn't ask to come here. You chose to come here... there are consequences that come with that choice," Shakir said.

The three-day, sixth-annual conference at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre draws about 15,000 people each year, said spokesman Arsalan Shirazi. The conference doesn't subscribe to a single ideology or denomination, Shirazi said.

"It is part of our Islamic tradition to have differences of opinion, and to tolerate and appreciate those differences of opinions," Shirazi said.

Maqsud Baswa, 65, a parent of three grown children who grew up mostly in the U.S. and Canada after his architecture profession moved him from Pakistan, agreed with Shakir's speech.

"I think the first point is that it's very important to recognize that we have come to a difference culture, and there are some good things in this culture that we should adopt, and that we should also let our children adopt," Baswa said.

Shakir also referenced the Christmas Day killing of Iliada Zois, 22, who was stabbed to death along with her brother Jamie, 14. Shakir asked the crowd for a show of hands indicating who was familiar with Zois' tragic death. Barely anybody put up their hand. When he asked about Parvez, a significantly larger number of hands shot up. This angered him.

"As Muslims here in the West, we must know the story of and the plight of Iliada Zois as well as we know the story and the plight of Aqsa Parvez, because we have a standard where our Lord instructs us," Shakir said. "...One innocent life that's killed, be they Muslim, is no more valuable than an innocent life of that girl who is not a Muslim. They were both innocent, they were both humans, and their lives were both snuffed out in the flower of their youths."

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« Reply #1 on: Jan 13, 2008 05:00 AM »

 peace be upon you

I attended that lecture. The above article is only quoting certain parts of it.
Someone correct me if I'm wrong.... Imam Zaid Shakir was referring to cultural practices as opposed to religious ones. He said that it was the parents' choice to immigrate to "the west" generally for materialisitic purposes. If they migrated to the west to get what they wanted, it is only fair that they should allow their children to get what they want as well, within reasonable limits. Parents must understand that their kids are not growing up in the same environment as in Muslim countries and they have to make certain allowances for that. He encouraged the parents to strike a balance between the way of life in Muslim countries and the way of the life in the west within the limits of deen, instead of imposing cultural boundaries that may not always be applicable for those growing up in North America or Europe.
   The article does not mention this: Imam Zaid Shakir also encouraged the youth to listen to their parents because whatever their parents tell them to do or, whatever restrictions parents put on their children, is out of love and care for them.
   It was a pretty balanced speech addressing both the youth and their parents. Hope this clears up some of the confusion.

 sis salaam

When tested:
1- Thank Allah subhanahu wata'ala for the ability to recognize that this is a test
2- Thank Allah subhanahu wata'ala that you were not tested in your religion
3- Thank Allah subhanahu wata'ala that it wasn't worse than it was
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