About The FormaL IsLamic Prayer (Updated 1x)

I just reaLized the post I posted about how to perform SaLah (the formaL IsLaMic Prayer) didn’t have the way to wash before it. It’s caLLed  wuduu:

1. Make your intentions: say: in the name of ALLah I intend to do wuduu.
2. Wash the hands: wash the right hand first with the Left hand, then then wash the Left hand with the right.
3. Rinse the mouth: water shouLd reach every where in the mouth.
4.cLean the nose: inhaLe water through the nostriLs then bLow it out.
5. Wash the face: from right ear to LefT ear and from chin to above forehead.
6. Wash forearms:begin with right then Left, both from wrist to/ incLuding eLbows.
7.wipe the head: from front to back and from back to front.
8. CLean the ears: pLace index fingers inside ear and thumbs outside of ears and wipe top to bottom and bottom to top.
9. Wash the feet: begin with the right and say, “i bear witness there is no deity except ALLah,” then do the Left and say, ” and I bear witness Muhammad is His servant and messenger.”
10. The above is to be done with cLean water. This compLetes the abLution ( wuduu).

About My New Navy BLue Shirt

I just ordered a new navy bLue shirt with an American fLag with IT.  I used to wear a Lot of dark coLors but I feel as though I was forced out of them. I now pLan to start wearing more ( red,white,bLue) ( red, bLack, green) (green, bLack, white) (khaki/Tan/Sand) cLothes with an American fLag on them. That makes me feeL better with my PLan to continue teaching IsLamic Tao in America.

Message To The Weak And TroubLed

“And remember when ye were few and deemed weak in the Land, and we’re afraid. (ALLah) provided a safe pLace for yourseLves, strengthened yourseLves with His heLp, and provided yourseLves with good things, in order that ye maybe
thankfuL.

Qur’an 8:26

“‘Wu StyLe IsLam’ is for the weak and is immenseLy powerfuL. It’s immune to most adversaries aggression, even many with greatLy superior strength. When it’s properLy used, it’s aLmost invincibLe.”
-FuWuT’aiQuan (Wu StyLe) IsLam Tenet

We may not Like to think of ourseLves as weak but, it’s usuaLLy-if not aLways- better to accept the Truth and Live by it. Wu styLe IsLam is for those of us who know we are weak and in need of ALLah’s constant reminders of His heLp and Mercy, and who need constant conditioning in this art and practice, without which we are most LikeLy to faiL before we begin or shortLy thereafTer.
     It may be positive to think affirmativeLy in many instances but, onLy with the proper understanding that We can do nothing without ALLah’s heLp. If We’re cLear in our thoughts, we must acknowLedge that humanity is indeed weak compared with some of  nature’s other entities. Think of Tornadoes, Tsunamis, voLcanos, etc; though man with his ALLah given facuLties can meet and master many of ALLah’s chaLLenges, in accord with ALLah’s wiLL. Yet there are many peopLe who were originaLLy weak that ALLah Later strengthened and Later bLessed with sovereignty. This was the story of the Prophet Muhammad, his originaL beLiever community, Later MusLim organizations, and many beLievers of whatever faith they identified with.

“What if the mathematics ALLah decrees for me today seem to be subjugation, disappointment, and frustration?”
The 2 things I’d suggest when the above scenario reigns are practicing the concepts of hope and patience. The Qur’an instructs beLievers to never give up hope of ALLah’s Mercy. The Qur’an aLso says ,however, that when man is touched by eviL, he gives up aLL hope and is ,”Lost in despair”. This may be the normaL, human nature referred to. Speaking from personaL experience, I can say there were many times when I, in my weak faith, thought I was doomed. This may be the conditioning of ALLah; when the troubLes passed… it increased my faith in ALLah. The Qur’an teaches that the beLiever wiLL be tested with fear, among other things. As difficuLt as this may be at these times, for our own benefit we need to keep our eyes on the prize, an eternaL, HeavenLy home. Then, muster the truest strength we can: StiLL trying to pLease ALLah in the midst of our test and troubLes.
     As for Patience: it’s a big part of the beLiever’s faith. The Qur’an teaches “ALLah  Loves the Patient” and “ALLah is with the Patient”. The Tao Te Ching ( The CLassic of the Way and Goodness), a core book of the Tao ( The Way), impLies that humanity wiLL be muddLed  but some  can become cLear; some can “persist in motion; GraduaLLy become aLive.” I think the key word here is graduaL. GraduaL resuLts require patience.
     To receive ALLah’s Love, to accompany Him with us, to become cLear after confusion, to become ALive. These are some of the tremendous bLessings and fruits of being patient. Patience as IsLam teaches many times requires struggLe and the IsLamic schoLars teLL us requires practice. But struggLe can be Learned to be embraced and appreciated, or at Least toLerated and navigated,with the heLp of ALLah.

So, Mr Zhivago, what do you prescribe to the weak and TroubLed? Keep the Faith, be Patient, and keep practicing. There’s ALLah’s promise of Peace and BLessings with it, sooner or Later, if we’re FaithfuL.

ALLah says: “And We wished to do a favor to those who were weak in the Land and make them successors.” Qur’an 28:5

How Do We FeeL About It

“…Forgive and overLook, do you not wish that ALLah shouLd forgive thee? ALLah is Oft-Forgiving, Most MercifuL”
Qur’an 24:22

“TeLL those who beLieve to forgive those who do not expect the Days of ALLah …” Qur’an 45:14

“…So, when evenLy matched forces meet, the side that is MercifuL shaLL win.”
Tao Te Ching, chapter 69

-Yu Muhammad Zhivago

About My “SpLit PersonaLities” (Updated 1x)

I have 3 “spLit PersonaLities” I’m currentLy working on. I caLL them spLit PersonaLities but they are not reaLLy peoPLe I beLieve I am but peopLe I couLd be a Lot aLike under the proper conditions. I Learned this practice from a high schooL speaker that came to my high schooL. This is my personaL practice of “visuaLization” that I’m just beginning to understand. They teach this in Taoism which I began practicing about 2 years ago as a way of improving my WaLk on the “Straight Path” of IsLam. It’s part of the way of making the spirit, mind, and body One. In Taoism, they caLL this “Keeping/Embracing/Securing the One”. In IsLam, the core practice of the faith is “Tawheed” from what I understand, which means practicing the “Oneness” of the IsLamic faith.

The person I have been visuaLizing myseLf as recentLy has been
Chan Nguyen. He’s a haLf Native American-haLf VietNamese U.S. Marine and immigrant to the United States. He thinks he’s practicing Zen but it’s actuaLLy IsLam. It heLps with his frustrations. He’s very quiet and Peace Loving. He heLps me understand the  East Asian way of thinking with the universaL Lessons of the Tao Te Ching ( The CLassic of the Way and Goodness). I’m just Learning to appreciate his chaLLenges. The visuaLization of Chan Nguyen is bringing me increased Peace.

The other  “spLit PersonaLities/ visuaLizations i wiLL taLk about Later as I begin to think I have a LittLe visuaLization of them and comprehend them better, Lord WiLLing.

update: Sept, 2016: Due to a concern to be sensitive to a injured person that’s linked to an acquaintance I  know I’m changing Chan Nguyen’s name to Daak Kien Shan (Acquired Truth of Goodness).

-Yu Muhammad Zhivago

Happy Ramadan!( Updated 1x)

So, it’s the IsLamic hoLy month of Ramadan, the month when the Qur’an first began to be reveaLed to the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh: Peace be upon him). I mentioned in a previous post how the fast of Ramadan is not as difficuLt as one may think, provided you stick to some simpLe guideLines. If you’re new to IsLam, you probabLy don’t have the motivation or know how to “successfuLLy” compLete your fast during the actuaL month of Ramadan, this year ( or maybe severaL years even if your deaLing with some harmfuL addiction/dependency issue(s) Like I went through) because,being that the fast is during June and July, there’s a Long time to fast each day. But, Lord WiLLing, in the moderateLy near future you can fast/ or make up the fast with the beLief it was successfuL and you wILL be BLessed by ALLah for it.         From what I remember, there’s a saying of ALLah recorded where ALLah says something to the effect of everything His  servant does practicing their faith is for the benefit of themseLves  except fasting; fasting is done compLeteLy to pLease ALLah.
If you’re struggLing with nicotine addiction or something similar…I’d suggest that you  make up the fast during December, when the fasting time is a Lot Less because there’s so LittLe sunLight time ( the fast is from sunrise to sunset, about 7am to 430pm, roughLy). You may have to “fake it untiL you make it”. By that I mean you may not be abLe to fast the 29 or 30 days of the fast but at Least you can do what you’re abLe to do as it says in the Qur’an, ” I desire reform as much as I’m abLe.” Maybe you may have to smoke a cigarette during the fast but not eat anything during it. That wouLd probabLy stiLL give a feeLing of accompLishment and buiLd momentum towards compLetion of the goaL, uLtimateLy. TechnicaLLy, the schoLars of IsLam wouLd probabLy say your fast was incorrect and unacceptabLe but, IsLam teaches ALLah judges you by your intentions, as weLL as your practice. It wouLd probabLy bring you cLoser to “proper practice”. The Prophet Muhammad postponed his fast sometimes to a month other than Ramadan. The Honorable ELijah Muhammad originaLLy instituted the Nation of IsLam’s  fast during December as WeLL( they were extremeLy criticized for it but, it did have the support of the Prophet’s exampLe.)

Some suggestions for practicing your fast:
1. ReguLate your addictions beforehand: PersonaLLy, I drink about 8 caffeine drinks a day. Drinking them at fixed, weLL spaced times before the monthLy fast of Ramadan begins aLLows me to know how much of my caffeine drinks I need daiLy before the fast begins to Last untiL the fast ends at sunset. It takes me a LittLe over an hour to drink my koLas, tea, and coffee before sunrise. After about the second day of fasting the body adjusts. The first day is onLy sLightLy uncomfortable at a few pLaces, briefLy.

2. Eat a SMALL portion before the daiLy fast begins: A portion about the size of the PaLm of your hand without the fingers or sLightLy Less. Eating much more than this wiLL trigger your appetite and make the fast more chaLLenging

3. Hydrate: EspeciaLLy during the warm season when Ramadan comes you need to drink pLenty of water. Drinking ice coLd water after brushing your teeth and/or mouth is very refreshing during the warm season. You can teLL if you shouLd be drinking more water if your urine turns dark. If it does, you need to drink more water.

4. Eat your protein: not having protein enough before the daiLy fast wiLL probabLy make you uncomfortable and irritabLe which wiLL liKeLy make you contentious with others. During the fast, this is not how it’s supposed to be (and probably no other time, based on some of the things that the Qur’an–and the Tao Te Ching–say about being contentious).

5.Take your medication as prescribed:From what I remember reading about the schoLars beLief is this is totaLLy permissibLe. I never heard of IsLam denying a reLigiousLy LegaL, Legitimate need.

The above suggestions have made even these Long days of Ramadan fasting ( between about 530am to 830pm) seem not that difficuLt to me. I wish y’aLL the same.
LastLy, begin the monthLy fasting with the intentionaL prayer to fast Ramadan. This probabLy shouLd be done daiLy as weLL, Like in IsLam’s formaL prayers.

-Yu Muhammad Zhivago

Update 1(6.23.16): The Tao Te Ching says,”The sages don’t attempt the great deeds aLL through Life, thus they can achieve greatness” (chapter 63). The Qur’an suggests that we can be great when it says, “What Is the matter with you that you don’t desire the greatness of ALLah? (71:13)”. What does these 2 Lessons mean reconciLed and congruent, as we beLieve they were meant to be? It means go sLowLy and don’t bite off more than you can chew,in our opinion. It’s extremeLy difficuLt to beLieve you fasted “successfuLLy” this actuaL Ramadan month this year if you haven’t prepared properLy, beforehand, due to the warm weather and extended Length of the fast time. If you don’t have a LittLe excess weight or more, I would suggest not fasting more than 2 days at a time, to give your body an opportunity to repLenish its nourishment and recuperate. An IsLamic magazine I read reguLarLy for awhiLe said a Lot of MusLims actuaLLy gain weight by the fasting of the month of Ramadan. That’s probabLy due to the fact that your Metabolism may sLow fasting and because a Lot of peopLe break their fast Like a ceLebration meaL and eat a Lot. Some MusLims criticize this but , it may actuaLLy be the better way to fast this actuaL month of Ramadan and the actuaL Ramadan months in the next few years to come, Lord WiLLing. On a U.S. Army website, I read that they suggest you eat heavier for Like A month in advance if you’re going to try to compLete some of their more physicaLLy demanding courses. Fasting the actuaL month of Ramadan this year is physicaLLy demanding, especiaLLy if you haven’t conditioned your seLf properLy, beforehand.

About “The World Is Yours”

Minister Farrakhan when commenting on the teachings that the Honorable ELijah Muhammad brought to the BLack peopLes of America said that it was Light mixed with darkness. He compared it to the dawning of the day and how Light grows GraduaLLy, if I remember correctLy: It takes time to adjust to the Light. That basic principle is why I incorporated some Hip Hop music I Liked when I was first returning to IsLam to this bLog: to meet the newcomer to IsLam at their own beginning LeveL of adjustment to the Light.
     This song has some eLements that can be considered negative but overaLL it stiLL feeLs Like a breath of fresh air when I hear it. This is the type of music I pLayed when I feLt Like America’s uLtimate, BLack sheep underdog. It gave me a needed sLant in a hostILe environment.

-Yu Muhammad Zhivago