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Monday, January 26, 2009

A New Awakening in the American-Arab Youth

A New Awakening In The American-Arab Youth PDF Print E-mail

Sunday, 25 January 2009

The Arab youth is out on the streets.

The horror pictures and stories coming out of Gaza are finally being taken notice by the international community. It is unfortunate that it took so many horrific deaths for the world to stand up for justice and speak against human right violations and war crimes.

After two weeks of protests in the Bay Area, one thing that stands out is the participation of the young American-Arabs. Although a majority of them are Muslims, it may be noted that Christians Arabs are an integral part of these protests. Interestingly, a South Asian presence can also be felt.

The assault on Gaza came at the most festive holiday season of the year. Instead of celebrating, these young teenagers and kids spent their time protesting as they watched disturbing and devastating images streaming into their living rooms and onto their computers.

This is a new generation of youth: a generation that grew up witnessing gross violation of US civil liberties, under the shadow of the Patriot Act. They grew up watching Iraq and Afghanistan being destroyed by US military weapons; they saw citizens of countries of their ancestors tortured and humiliated. Neither have they forgotten Israel's unjustified attack on Lebanon only two years ago.

They have learnt not to trust the American mainstream media. Their source of information is alternate media like Democracy Now, YouTube or blogs; social networking through instant messaging, Facebook and other such applications. At a time when Israel banned the media from entering Gaza, these channels of communication were used effectively to broadcast the personal horror stories and images coming out of Gaza.

The youth we see on the streets today is very different from the youth in the years soon after 911 years lived in fear, exactly the way Mr. Bush wanted them to. Today they are not afraid to speak out. They are defiant and determined to stand up for injustice. For the first few years after 911 most Muslims stayed away from political activism and limited their social activities to the mosque. A conscious decision was made to focus on Islam and Muslim issues within the US and stay away from speaking up against the atrocities being committed in countries where their roots are.

During the election campaign many discussions on mailing lists centered on why Muslims have no voice in the campaign. Some analysts concluded it was because Muslims are not part of the ?American story'.

What is an ?American story'? Can Americans from immigrant backgrounds really dissociate themselves from their countries of origin when their tax dollars are being used for military weapons to kill civilians in those countries?

The youth we see today protesting on the streets is an ?American story'. They are part of the story of wars waged in their countries of origin. These kids are writing essays in schools on their perspective on Gaza, Palestine and the protests they are participating in.

Some of them joined hands with African Americans to protest against the shooting of Oscar Grant by BART officer in Oakland. The racism they witnessed against Arabs throughout the election campaign is also their ?American story' and they recognize the importance of standing in solidarity with other communities in their struggles.

The Arab and Muslim youth has been getting more and more organized during the past couple of years. They realize that to become part of the "American story" it is important to participate in the local community and be involved in the political process.

Their participation in electing the first African American president of the U.S.A has given them new hope. They recognize the power of grass root community organization to bring about change. We can see the energy and determination in them. They will join hands with other student communities and continue to push the president for restoration of civil liberties and bring about change in foreign policy.

Islamic Group's President Fins Hope with Obama

From the Hartford Courant - January 25, 2009

Islamic Group's President Finds Hope With Obama

By ELIZABETH HAMILTON | The Hartford Courant
   January 25, 2009

For Ingrid Mattson, the defining moment of President Barack Obama's inauguration came during one declarative line, in the middle of his speech.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers," Obama said.

And in that moment Mattson, who was one of the lucky few to be sitting in the presidential box at the Capitol as the new president spoke, was nearly moved to tears.

"It felt very liberating and empowering for a community that has felt in many ways marginalized, under suspicion and out of place over the last few years," said Mattson, who is president of the Islamic Society of North America and director of the Macdonald Center for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary.

Mattson knows of what she speaks.

As has happened during past public appearances, Mattson's inclusion in the Obama inauguration — she was one of a dozen or so clergy invited to participate in Wednesday's National Prayer Service at the Washington National Cathedral — recently sparked some intense public criticism.

In this case, the criticism was related to a federal prosecutor's decision to list the Islamic Society of North America as an "unindicted co-conspirator" in a plot to fund the terrorist group Hamas. The designation was included in the government's terrorism case against the Holy Land Foundation, which was convicted last November of funneling millions of dollars to Hamas.

The Islamic Society of North America has denied any connection to Hamas and is seeking to have its name removed from the government's list. Also named in the federal case were two other prominent Islamic organizations in America — the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the North American Islamic Trust.

Although much of the past criticism of Mattson has been relegated to blogs, the high-profile nature of the inaugural celebration coupled with the seriousness of the government's accusation led this time to a whole new level of scrutiny.

The Associated Press put out a story, which was then picked up by some major news organizations, last weekend, that detailed Mattson's connection to the group and its inclusion in the Holy Land case.

The publicity didn't derail Mattson's participation in the prayer service — a spokeswoman for the inaugural committee instead defended Mattson's "stellar reputation in the faith community" — but it did serve as a reminder of the criticism she so frequently faces.

Hartford Seminary issued a statement of support for Mattson on Tuesday, saying that she has worked consistently to promote interfaith dialogue and "prepare peacemakers." The seminary also said Mattson has repeatedly denounced terrorism.

"I have to say that every time this happens I feel disheartened for a little while until all the expressions of support come in," Mattson said Wednesday shortly after her participation in the prayer service. "It's an opportunity for growth, and to have more empathy for others and experience the true grace of friendship."

Mattson said the Islamic Society is fighting both the substance of the government's claim against it, as well as the legal designation of "unindicted co-conspirator" — because it allows the government to levy the accusation without publicly disclosing its proof.

"There's also no forum to publicly defend ourselves against any charge," Mattson said.

According to news reports last July, federal prosecutors said they had a "wide array" of evidence linking the groups to Hamas. But the picture the government painted of Mattson's organization also detailed its collaborative work with the Bush administration.

Mattson said members of the organization have received awards from the federal government for their work.

"There's this really bizarre quality to the whole thing because, on the one hand, many people in government value our work, ask for our advice and support and have even honored us," Mattson said. "On the other hand, because of this one federal prosecutor's decision to put us in this category for the trial, we have this legal stigma around our neck."

Mattson said she believes the criticism of her comes from two distinct groups: those who "don't like Muslims to be involved in or recognized in society in any way" and those who "oppose anyone in academia or the clergy who advocates in any way for Palestinians."

Her position, and the position of the society, rubs the wrong way anyone who sees the Israel-Palestinian conflict as a "zero-sum game," she said.

"We believe the pro-peace position is both pro-Israel and pro-Palestine," Mattson said. "We advocate that American Muslim and Jewish communities should understand each other and communicate with each other."

Mattson, 44, has been president of the Islamic Society since 2006, which is when the public criticism of her really heated up, according to David Barrett, spokesman for Hartford Seminary.

Tuesday's statement of support for Mattson is "unfortunately not the first time" the seminary has had to publicly defend the scholar — and by extension itself — against accusations of being sympathetic to terrorists, he said.

"There's been criticism of the seminary for the same reason there's been criticism of Ingrid Mattson, which is 'You're supposed to be a Christian seminary. What are you doing getting into bed with Islam?'" Barrett said. "Our answer is that we think this is important and we will continue to teach about the three Abrahamic faiths because people will understand their own faith better if we do that."

Mattson, who is from Canada, converted to Islam as a young woman. She has been a professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary since 1998, Barrett said.

Wednesday, as President Obama, his wife and other high-ranking officials lined the front pews of the National Cathedral, Mattson stepped to the front of the altar in a row of other interfaith clergy and recited her brief prayer:

"On this day of new beginning, with hearts lifted high in hope, may we be a people at peace among ourselves and a blessing to other nations."

Afterward, she reflected on how the new president has been a source of comfort and inspiration to her.

"Having seen him go through his campaign and face all the attacks and insinuations he faced with such dignity was a good example for me," Mattson said.

Sufi Rising

Sufi rising
January 25, 2009

For years, the Islamic revival has seemed to be a story of ever-growing fundamentalism and political extremism, but around the world, Sufi orders are rapidly gaining strength -- in Turkey and Syria, Uzbekistan and Indonesia. Sufism is also growing quickly in Iran, as younger Muslims seek a liberal and liberating kind of spirituality utterly different from anything the ayatollahs can provide. In 1979, Iran had 100,000 Sufis; today, there may be 5 million.

Globally, the movement represents a close parallel to the explosive worldwide growth of charismatic and Pentecostal styles within Christianity. Both practice a passionate style of religion, and both have demography on their side. The Sufi revival is most obvious in the African and Asian lands that have some of the world's highest birth rates. Although the Sufi revival has its impact in many Muslim countries, the North African story is particularly important for Europe and the West because of the influence of migrants. As Morocco and Senegal spawn new forms of Sufi devotion, for example, these spread to African communities in Europe, and find expression in youth culture and hip hop, even in Sufi rap.

Always, these movements speak the language of peace, hope, and reconciliation, and condemn extremism. These are the Muslim voices that can compete with the calls to jihad and terror.

Philip Jenkins

Why Sufi Muslims... Could be... Most Valuable Allies... Against Extremism

From the Boston Globe - January 25, 2009

Mystical power
Why Sufi Muslims, for centuries the most ferocious soldiers of Islam, could be our most valuable allies in the fight against extremism

By Philip Jenkins
January 25, 2009

THIRTY YEARS AGO this month, the collapse of the Shah's government marked the launch of Iran's Islamic Revolution, and since that point the topic of Islam has rarely been out of the headlines. All too often, we hear about Islam in the context of intolerance and, often, violence -- of Al Qaeda savagery, of Taliban misogyny, of nuclear weapons in Pakistan and perhaps in Iran itself. Even in Europe, many fear the growth of a radical Islamic presence. For three decades, Western observers have worked fervently to comprehend Islam's global power and appeal, its ability to inspire the poor and to topple governments. But in all that intense attention, most observers have missed a crucial part of the story: a global web of devout religious brotherhoods that by all logic should be a critical ally against extremism.

Sufis are the power that has made Islam the world's second-largest religion, with perhaps 1.2 billion adherents. Not a sect of Islam, but rather heirs of an ancient mystical tradition within both the Sunni and Shia branches of the faith, Sufis have through the centuries combined their inward quest with the defense and expansion of Islam worldwide. At once mystics and elite soldiers, dervishes and preachers, charismatic wonder-workers and power-brokers, ascetic Sufis have always been in the vanguard of Islam. While pushing forward the physical borders of Islam, they have been essential to the spiritual and cultural fullness of the faith. Today, the Sufi tradition is deeply threaded through the power structures of many Muslim countries, and the orders are enjoying a worldwide renaissance.

To look at Islam without seeing the Sufis is to miss the heart of the matter. Without taking account of the Sufis, we cannot understand the origins of most contemporary political currents in the Middle East and Muslim South Asia, and of many influential political parties. We can't comprehend the huge popular appeal of Islam for

women, who so often seem excluded from Muslim life. Sufis are central to the ability of Muslim communities to survive savage persecutions -- in Chechnya, in Kosovo -- and then launch devastating insurgencies. They are the muscle and sinew of the faith.

And, however startling this may seem, these very Sufis -- these dedicated defenders and evangelists of mystical Islam -- are potentially vital allies for the nations of the West. Many observers see a stark confrontation between the West and Islam, a global conflict that entered a traumatic new phase with the Iranian revolution. But that perspective ignores basic conflicts within the Muslim world itself, a global clash of values over the nature of religious practice, no less than overtly political issues. For the Islamists -- for hard-line fundamentalists like the Saudi Wahhabis and the Taliban -- the Sufis are deadly enemies, who draw on practices alien to the Quran. Where Islamists rise to power, Sufis are persecuted or driven underground; but where Sufis remain in the ascendant, it is the radical Islamist groups who must fight to survive.

Around the world, the Sufis are struggling against violent fundamentalists who are at once their deadly foes, and ours. To look at Islam without seeing the Sufis is to be ignorant of a crucial clash of civilizations in today's world: not the conflict between Islam and the West, but an epochal struggle within Islam itself.

If the word "Sufi" conjures up any images for Americans, they normally involve mystical poetry or dance. Thirteenth century poet Rumi was a legendary Sufi, as are Turkey's whirling dervishes. But these are just the most visible expressions of a movement that runs deeply through the last thousand years of Islam.

Emerging around the year 800, they were originally pious devotees, whose poor woolen clothes showed their humility: "Sufi" comes from the Arabic word for wool. Above all, the Sufis sought the divine reality or ultimate truth that stands above all the illusions and deceptions of the material world. In order to achieve ecstatic union with God, they incorporated techniques of sound and movement -- chanting and music, swaying and dance. Believers joined in tight-knit brotherhoods or tariqahs, each following a charismatic leader (shaykh). Among the dozens of these orders, a few grew to achieve special influence, and some operate in dozens of nations, including the United States.

But the orders are more than confraternities of pious devotees. Early in their history, Sufis developed a powerful military streak, making them the knights of Islam, as well as the monks and mystics. Like the Japanese samurai, the brotherhoods trained their followers to amazing feats of devotion and overcoming pain. Fanatical dervish warriors were the special forces of every Islamic army from the 13th century through the end of the 19th.

The expansion of Islam outside the core areas of the Middle East is above all a Sufi story. Sufi orders led the armies that conquered lands in Central and South Asia, and in Southeastern Europe; through their piety and their mysticism, the brotherhoods then won the local populations over to Islam. They presented an Islam that incorporated local traditions and worship styles, including Christian saints and Hindu gods. Today, Sufi styles and practices dominate in the non-Arab Muslim world: in India and Pakistan, in Indonesia and Malaysia, Nigeria and Senegal, and in the Muslim countries of Central Asia, such as Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

Over the centuries, the territories where Sufi orders seeded Islam have evolved from the faith's frontiers to its demographic heartlands. These regions now encompass Islam's largest and fastest-growing populations. Of the eight nations with the world's largest Muslim communities, only one (Egypt) is Arab. A fifth of the world's Muslims today identify with Sufism, and for many millions more, Sufism is simply part of the air they breathe.

The Sufi orders enhanced their political role as Western empires encroached. When Islam was under threat, the Sufis were the trained soldiers, and their close-knit brotherhoods allowed them to form devastatingly effective resistance movements. Sufi orders led anti-colonial movements from Morocco to Indonesia. Most Americans, for instance, have heard of the stubborn Chechen guerrillas, but few realize how absolutely this movement is rooted in Sufism. When the Russians pushed south into Muslim lands in the 19th century, the heroic Sufi sheikh Imam Shamil launched a decades-long guerrilla war. Even Stalin's terror campaigns could not root out the Sufi brotherhoods. The fearsome leader of modern-day Chechen resistance, Shamil Basayev, was named for the original imam.

A similar story can be told of other oppressed peoples, in Kurdistan, Kashmir, Albania, Kosovo, and elsewhere, who owed their solidarity and cohesion to the immense power of the Sufi brotherhoods.

The Sufis might sound like America's worst nightmare. Not only do they ground political activism in religion, but their faith spreads through intense and secretive brotherhoods, led by charismatic masters: this recalls every sinister stereotype of Muslim fanaticism that potboiler thrillers have offered us over the decades. But it would be a terrible mistake to see the Sufis as enemies. Sufis certainly have fought Western forces through the years, and Sufi-founded movements have on occasion engaged in terrorist actions -- witness the Chechens. But in the vast majority of cases, such militancy has been essentially defensive, resisting brutal colonial occupations. This is very different from the aggressive global confrontation pursued by groups such as Al Qaeda.

Today, moreover, Sufi brotherhoods face a deadly danger from the strict puritanical or fundamentalist Islam represented by Qaeda and similar movements, which are as threatening to the Sufi brotherhoods as they are to the West. To the extent that we, like the Sufis, face a real danger from violent jihadi fundamentalism, our interests are closely aligned with those of the Sufis.

But the Sufis are much more than tactical allies for the West: they are, potentially, the greatest hope for pluralism and democracy within Muslim nations. The Sufi religious outlook has little of the uncompromising intolerance that characterizes the fundamentalists. They have no fear of music, poetry, and other artistic forms -- these are central to their sense of the faith's beauty -- and the brotherhoods cherish intellectual exploration. Progressive Sufi thinkers are quite open to modern knowledge and science.

From their beginnings, too, Sufi traditions have been religiously inclusive. Wherever the orders flourish, popular Islamic religion focuses on the tombs of saints and sheikhs, who believers venerate with song and ritual dance. In fact, they behave much like traditional-minded Catholics do when they visit their own shrines in Mexico or southern Italy. People organize processions, they seek healing miracles, and women are welcome among the crowds. While proudly Islamic, Sufi believers have always been in dialogue with other great religions.

This open-mindedness contrasts with the much harsher views of the fundamentalists, who we know by various names. Salafism claims to teach a return to the pure religion taught by the prophet Muhammad in the seventh century, and in that early Islamic community Salafis think they can find all they need to know about life and law. The most powerful and best-known version of this back-to-basics ideology is the Wahhabi movement that emerged in the 18th century, and which in modern times has built a worldwide presence on the strength of Saudi oil money. At its most extreme, this exclusive tradition rejects knowledge that is not clearly rooted in the Quran and Islamic legal thought, and regards other religions and cultures as dangerous rivals lacking any redeeming virtues. Al Qaeda and its affiliates represent an extreme and savage manifestation of this fundamentalist current.

As fundamentalist Islam spreads around the world, Sufism is one of its targets, even in such strongholds as Indonesia, Pakistan, and Nigeria. Often this comes in the form of ideological struggle, but open violence has broken out as well. Sudan's Islamist government attacks the black Sufi population of Darfur; in Iraq, suicide bombers target Sufi centers. Sufis have literally everything to lose from the continued advance of the Islamist extremists.

But Sufis are anything but passive victims, and in their resilience lies their true importance to the West. In many nations, Sufi brotherhoods exercise influence within local regimes, and those alliances allow them to drive back radicalism. Sufi brotherhoods have emerged as critical supporters of government in several post-Communist regimes, including in former Yugoslav regions like Kosovo and Bosnia, and in Albania. When a Qaeda-affiliated Islamist movement arose in Uzbekistan, the government's intimate alliance with the Sufi orders allowed it to destroy the insurgents quite thoroughly. Syria cultivates tolerant-minded Sufi orders as the best means of fending off Islamist subversion. For similar reasons, even the Chinese government openly favors Sufism. Hard as they try, fundamentalist radicals find it impossible to gain much of a foothold in societies where Islam is synonymous with Sufism, and where Sufi loyalty is deeply tied to cultural and national identity.

In 2007, the influential RAND Corporation issued a major report titled "Building Moderate Muslim Networks," which urged the US government to form links with Muslim groups that opposed Islamist extremism. The report stressed the Sufi role as moderate traditionalists open to change, and thus as potential allies against violence.

Some Western nations are just now grasping the rich rewards that would come from an alliance with the Sufi, with Muslim forces who can claim such impeccable historical and religious credentials. The British government especially has befriended the Sufi orders, and has made groups like the British Muslim Forum and the Sufi Muslim Council its main conversation partners in the Muslim community.

Sufis, better than anyone, can tell disaffected young Muslims that the quest for peace is not a surrender to Western oppression, still less a betrayal of Islam, but rather a return to the faith's deepest roots. And while Sufis have religious reasons for favoring peaceful and orderly societies, they also stand to benefit mightily from government support in their struggle against the fanatics. As the fundamentalists have expanded, they press hard on Muslim populations who are overwhelmingly drawn from countries where the Sufi current has always dominated Islamic life, from Pakistan, Turkey, and North Africa.

If this British model works, it would encourage the growth of a Euro-Islam that could reconcile easily with modernity and democracy, while yielding nothing of its religious content.

Nobody is pretending that building bridges with Sufis will resolve the many problems that divide the West from the Islamic world. In countries like Afghanistan or Somalia, warfare and violence might be so deeply engraved into the culture that they can never be expunged. Yet in so many lands, reviving Sufi traditions provide an effective bastion against terrorism, much stronger than anything the West could supply by military means alone. The West's best hope for global peace is not a decline or secularization of Islam, but rather a renewal and strengthening of that faith, and above all of its spiritual and mystical dimensions.

Philip Jenkins is Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Institute for Studies of Religion at Baylor University. He is author of "The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia -- and How It Died" (HarperOne, 2008).

© Copyright 2009 Globe Newspaper Company.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Indonesian, Australian & Philippine Muslim Leaders Meet

Article from the Manila Bulletin - January 26, 2009

Al-Azhar Hails First Female Interpretation of the Quran

From Ashraq Al-Aswat - January 25, 2009

Al-Azhar Hails First Female Interpretation of the Quran


Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat- Al-Azhar Scholars have welcomed the publication of the first Interpretation of the Quran [tafsir] written by a woman, saying that it confirms the equality between men and women in Islam.

Kariman Hamzah, the author of this Quranic interpretation and a former presenter of an Islamic television program in Egypt, told Asharq Al-Awsat that the Interpretation is the culmination of her 35 years working in the media. The Islamic Research Academy, the highest authority at the Al Azhar University, approved the printing and distribution of the first Quranic interpretation written by a woman, and which will appear in local bookstores soon.

Sheik Mohamed Al Rawi, head of the Quranic Interpretation Committee of the Islamic Research Academy stated to Asharq Al-Awsat that any work dealing with the Holy Quran must be subject to careful review, and is not approved until it is examined letter by letter and word by word, and has to be approved by all the scholar in the field of Quranic studies and Quranic interpretation. Therefore Muslims can be assured of the authorship of any interpretation approved by the Islamic Research Academy, and need not hesitate in accepting what has been written.

Sheik Abdul-Zaher Abu Ghazala, Director of the Islamic Research Academy's Research, Translation and Publication department revealed to Asharq Al-Awsat that the academy had approved a 20-part Quranic Interpretation by Kariman Hamzah, and that there were no inconsistencies between this Quranic interpretation and Islamic Shariaa Law. He confirmed that Kariman Hamzah's Quranic Interpretation was carefully reviewed before it was granted approval.

Sheik Abu Ghazala added that Kariman Hamzah's interpretation of the Quran is fully consistent with previous Quranic interpretations, and that it contained no inconsistencies or contradictions with Islamic Shariaa Law. He denied that this is a new Quranic interpretation providing a female point of view, emphasizing that this interpretation addresses men, women, the youth, and children, just as the Quran itself speaks to all. Therefore there is no such thing as a "male interpretation" or a "female interpretation" of the Quran; he said that "what is important for us is that the interpretation is consistent with the Quran itself, and does not contradict Islamic Law."

Sheik Abu Ghazala concluded by revealing that the Islamic Research Academy had recently approved a number of Quranic interpretations by women including one written by a pediatrician Dr. Fatin Al Faliki, and one by Mrs. Fawqiyah Ibrahim of Alexandria, Egypt.

Sheik Mohamed Al Birri of Al Azhar University welcomed Kariman Hamzah's Quranic Interpretation, saying that it shows the awakening of Muslim women, and their emulation of the female Companions [of the Prophet]. He added that the Quran makes equal between men and women in every way, including religious education, as well as the task of spreading the message of Islam.

Dr. Mustafa Al Shakaa, a member of the Islamic Research Academy of the Al Azhar University said that Al Azhar's approval of Kariman Hamzah's interpretation shows the equality between men and women in Islam, and confirms the women's right to religious education in Islam is the same as a man's. He added that Islamic Shariaa Law gives Muslim women the right to be religiously educated and make religious decisions in the same way that the female Companions [of the Prophet] did in the time of the Prophet (PBUH), and this refutes the rumors and slander which describe the Islamic religion as a religion that restricts the freedom of women, at the fore-front of this a woman's right to education.

The author of the first Quranic Interpretation to be written by a woman, Kariman Hamzah, informed Asharq Al-Awsat that this work is the culmination of 35 years of work whether it was presenting religious programs on television, or writing Islamic articles in newspaper or magazines, and which allowed her to witness a large proportion of Islamic culture. She emphasized that the object of this undertaking [of writing a Quranic Interpretation] was to serve Islam and spread its message.

Kariman Hamzah said that although she is not a graduate or Al Azhar, or another religious institute, her love for spreading the message of Islam has called her to enter this field [of Quranic interpretation]. She said that in writing her Quranic Interpretation she relied upon simplicity and clarity in the explanations and interpretations, and an easy and accessible language, in order for it to be understood by both the young and the old. Her Quranic interpretation is entitled "A Clear Interpretation of the Quran for the Youth."

She added that she relied upon a number of essential sources in order to complete her Quranic Interpretation including; Al Muntakhab Quranic Interpretation which is a selection of Interpretations by Al Azhar scholars, Sayyid Qutb's "In the Shade of the Quran" and "A Thematic Commentary of the Quran" by Sheik Muhammad Al Ghazzali, as well as "Mukhtasar Al Qasimi" by Salah Al Din Ergodan, and the Quranic interpretation by the former Grand Mufti of Egypt, Sheik Hassanayn Makhluf, amongst others.

Kariman Hamzah added that her Quranic Interpretation was written for all ages, but especially for young people, who she is keen to address. Her interpretation, which is a series of 20 books, will be published soon.

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