The Islamic Bulletin
The Islamic Bulletin
We read your Islamic Bulletin
and were pleased with its clear,
informative style. We hope this
bulletin, along with other Islam-
ic activities, will help promote
the Islamic movement.
Unfortunately, with hope there
is also frustration and some-
times even anger over the slow
progress of the Islamic move-
ment. Many Muslims feel that
our respective scholars are the
creators of this frustration and
act as obstacles to the Islamic
This is caused by the fact that
the majority of Islamic schol-
ars, who reside in California,
are incompetent with the English language. This incompetence
produces a negative impact on the American Muslim population,
and the devastating results may carry on to our future generations
if nothing is done to correct this problem.
A good American Muslim friend of mine once said, “I am reluctant
to come to the local masjid, because the Imam doesn’t give an
English translation of his sermon, and I don’t understand what he’s
saying.” Don’t you think it’s about time we understand what our
Imams are screaming about?
Dear N. Akhtar:
First of all, I would like to thank you for writing and state that you
have a very valid point. I do believe that in order to further the
Islamic movement here in the United States, we do indeed need
our Imams to speak English and to give sermons in English.
But on the other hand, we need to give our Imams credit for being
so learned (hafiz) in the Quran. It is not their fault if they happen
to be of Pakistani, Arab, and Indian descent and therefore, their
knowledge of the English language is not fluent.
It would be ideal for our Imams to be fluent in English so that many
new Americans could learn about Islam. Since that is not always
the case, however, we must work with the current situation.
For example, here in San Francisco, we have a large number of
American Muslims who regularly attend the Friday prayers. Since
they obviously do not understand the Khutba, which is delivered
in Arabic by the Imam, we have a solution for this.
There is an English talk given by one of the knowledgeable En-
glish-speaking people before the actual Khutba. In this way, Amer-
ican Muslims attending feel happy to be a part of this program and
look forward to Friday prayers where they can pray in congregation.
One of the ways Islam was propagated in the world was through
Muslims good qualities. From the beginning of Islam, non-Arabic
speaking Muslim scholars like Abu Hanifa, Bukhari, Muslim, etc.
grew to become Muslim scholars and leaders of the whole Muslim
world in general.
So hopefully history will repeat itself. We are waiting for the day to
see Americans who will have the zeal and knowledge to lead the
ship of the United States to Islam.
Please do not feel embarrassed to explain to your Imam the need
for an English talk to be included. God willing, we will also talk to
your Imam in Stockton and explain to him this need.
There are many Americans interested in Islam who are turned-off
by the illusion that Islam is for Arabs only. That is not the case.
Islam is the religion for all people of every color and nationality.
Oldest Printed Copy of the Holy Qur’an
Venice - A 16th century copy of the Holy Qur’an, believed to be
the first printed copy, was discovered from the St. Michele Library
in Venice, Italy. The copy of the Holy Qur’an was found among
other old books that were kept without officials knowing about it.
Professor Sergio Noia of the Arabic language and literature at Mi-
lan University said the Qur’an was probably printed in 1537 by
an individual named Peganino Dei Peganini in Venice. Before this
discovery, the oldest printed copy of the Holy Qur’an dated back
to 1604, printed in Hamburg, Germany.
World Muslim Population Crosses the Billion Mark
Cairo - The world Muslim population has reached 1,225 billion,
according to an official at the International Islamic Center for Pop-
ulation Studies in Al-Azhar University of Cairo.
Dr. Imam Abdurrahim said about 800 Muslims were living in Asia,
approximately 309 million in Africa, 16 million in Europe, 5 mil-
lion in America, and about 1.5 million in Australia. - Reported by
Ashraq Al Aswat.
Editor, Islamic Bulletin
P.O. Box 410186
San Francisco, CA 94141-0186, USA
2645 Embrace Islam in Riyadh
Jeddah - A total of 2645 people from 39 different countries
embraced Islam during the last four years, according to a study
conducted by the faculty of Social Science at the Imam Mu-
hammed Ibn Saud Islamic University.
Of the sample survey conducted, 83% were Christians before
embracing Islam. The remaining 17% consisted of Hindus,
Buddhists and other minority religions.
The survey also reflected, 41 % embraced Islam through col-
leagues, 34% embraced through one of their friends who them-
selves embraced Islam at some point in life and 12% embraced
Islam through one of their family members.
Reading Islamic books led to the embracing of Islam by 40%,
while scenes of the prayers at mosques and performing of the
pilgrimage at Mecca observed on television convinced 13%.
Seminars and lectures conducted by the Islamic organizations
all over the world led 30% to Islam.
- Reported by Al-Muslimoon.
And Here in the US.....
Muslims in America Fight Stereotypes
It is unfortunate that some teachings of Islam have been dis-
torted and misrepresented in the West and the Communist
The main distortions relate to the status of women, marriage,
divorce, Jihad (holy war), the authenticity of the Prophethood of
Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him), and the distinctions
between the Holy Qur’an and the Ha’dith.
Shabbir Mansuri, a Muslim educational reformer from Califor-
nia, is working diligently in conjunction with other Muslims to
change the image of the Muslims in the United States.
Muslims are misrepresented by stereotyping them as terrorists,
as Bedouins, and quite other negative images in the American
school books, movies, newspapers and the marketplace.
Such negative images are fueled not only by the main events,
like the gulf war, but also by an abiding ignorance of the Muslim
Scott Easton of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Com-
mittee in Washington D.C. said, “We are concerned now
about more subtle forms of discrimination that have been
there all along, like the anti-Arab jokes on the radio. The
25,000 member civil rights organization marked the start of
the holy month of Ramadan by petitioning the U.S. Secretary
of Education for a task force on the treatment of Islam and
the Arab world in the elementary and the secondary school
system in United States.”
Former teacher Audrey Shabbas of Berkeley believes the war
opened a “window of opportunity” to learn more about Islam
and the Middle East. Books on the Middle East are selling briskly,
enrollment in a UC-Berkeley class on Muslims in America is 50
percent, and calls requesting information flood in to nonprofit
groups like Arab World and Islamic Resources in Berkeley and
Muslim mosques like our Islamic Center.
See also The S.F. Examiner Sunday March 31, 1991 Page
One of the factors that stimulated geographical research among
the Muslims was the annual pilgrimage to the Holy City of Mec-
ca (Hajj). The Muslims conceived Mecca as the central point
of the world and tried to find easily accessible routes, and the
distances and directions of different cities and towns from the
central point. It was also necessary to find the correct direction
of each place from Mecca so that Muslims could offer their daily
prayers facing the direction of Mecca.
As the Muslims influence and faith spread to far distant places
in the north, east, west, and south, efforts to find direction and
location of each region from Mecca became all the more nec-
essary. This led to the determination of points of longitude and
latitude of hundreds of towns and cities with greater exactness
and accuracy than before. The invention of the compass was
also made possible by this urge to find the correct direction of
Mecca from different parts of the world.
Again, the daily prayers necessitated the proper timing of each
prayer and proper times of fast. This urge to worship God at
the proper times and to fast for His pleasure during the correct
timing of the day in the different parts of the world led to great
efforts and research into these subjects.
Philop K. Hitti, “History of the Arabs”, rightly admits the influence
of worship and the Ka’bah in stimulating scientific studies by the
Muslims in the field of geography.
“The institution of the Holy Pilgrimage, the orientation of the
mosques towards Mecca and the need for determining the
direction of the Ka’bah at the time of prayer gave religious
impetus to the Muslims’ study of geography. Astrology, which
necessitated the determining of the latitudes and longitudes of
all places throughout the world, added its scientific influence.
Muslim traders between the 7th and 9th centuries reached
China on the east both by sea and by land, attained the island
of Zanzibar and the farthest coasts of Africa on the south, pen-
etrated Russia on the north and were checked in their advance
westward only by the dreaded waters of the ‘Sea of Darkness’
The main stimulus to acquire knowledge of everything, including
geography, came from the Quran and the Hadith of the Prophet,
which led the Arabs to find knowledge from the four corners
of the world. In this search they found instruments and tools in
Greek literature which proved very useful to them in their quest
for geographical knowledge.
As they advanced in geographical knowledge, these tools en-
abled them to make their studies more systematic and scientific.
But this in no way means that their geographical studies were
stimulated by the Greeks, because the stimulus to knowledge
had already been provided by the Revelation which encouraged
them to acquire all the existing knowledge through translating
useful works of other peoples.
However, they continued their studies of different regions and
lands and discovered new fields of geographical knowledge
unknown to previous nations, including the Greeks and the