October 9, 2009 · 6:30 PM
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Are you a practicing Muslim? This is a question which is asked in various contexts of Muslims. It could be a fellow Muslim who is seeking to gauge the other's "Muslim-ness" or a non-Muslim who is seeking to do the same, but for very different reasons. For generations, Muslims living in Muslim-majority societies did not really confront this question. Social mores, cultural traditions, religious rituals and Islamic thought co-mingled without boundaries, and much practice was dictated by one's social or cultural context. As immigrants, they brought this amalgam with them to this country. At the same time African-American Muslims faced a very different path, but it was also circumscribed, in their case, living with repression which made all aspects of their life including practicing their faith extraordinarily difficult. Today, to a greater extent than ever before, each Muslim in this country is free to choose his or her own path and "practice". So, what does it actually mean to be a practicing Muslim? Is it praying 5 times per day and fasting during Ramadan? Is it about observing the hijab or going on the Hajj once in your life? Is it a state of mind and consciousness of God in one's thoughts and daily actions? Is it even a valid question? Please join us on Friday, October 9th as we attempt to scratch the surface towards answering these questions. Also, we are paying a modest rental fee for the space, so a very small donation (about $3-$5) to help offset the cost, would be greatly appreciated. ******** We begin gathering at 6:30, feel free to come in early and socialize! Discussion of the topic begins at 6:45. If you are among those who work past the beginning of the meeting, please feel free to join us at any point in the evening as your schedule permits. The discussion continues until about 9:00. Please note that the location is the John H. Holmes Community House located at 28 E 35th St, midway between Park and Madison. The building is a brownstone. Ring the buzzer when you arrive (RING BUZZER FOR "REAR LOUNGE").