Nov. 9, 2016
Dear Family & Friends of ICSC,
"But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And God knows, while you know not." (2:216)
The results of yesterday's Presidential elections have, without doubt, caused a degree of collective worry of what a Trump administration would mean not only for the American Muslim community, but our country as a whole.
Rather than indulge in worry, let us use this as an opportunity to come together, remember our blessings, and work for our nation and our community.
"Verily with every hardship there is ease." (94:5)
One of our Center's great leaders, Dr. Maher Hathout, used to remind us that ease does not necessarily follow the hardship - that blessings exist simultaneously with the difficulty and it is up to us to look for those silver linings.
We are blessed to be Americans and live in a great nation guided by an inspired document like the U.S. Constitution.
We are blessed to have our interfaith and civic partners alongside us extending peace, support, and love. We are blessed to live in a country where, while imperfect, there is a fundamental goodness, sense of fairness, and adherence to the law.
Indeed, the economic and social status of Muslims in the U.S. is far above most Muslims in the world. We enjoy freedoms that many Muslims do not.
For these blessings, we are eternally grateful to the Almighty.
There is no question that our community's advocacy organizations such as MPAC will be keeping close tabs on our behalf. They need support now more than ever.
And should tough times come our way, let us have the right frame of mind.
Should we have to struggle, it is in some ways an honor - an honor for us to follow in the footsteps of the men and women who came before us, from various communities, that have endured trials to make our country stronger.
Should adversity befall us, let us look for the blessing - a blessing that God might be testing us as a mark of His love for us and to make us stronger. "If Allah intends good for someone, He afflicts them with trials." (Hadith Bukhari 5321)
Should we have to deal with increased misinformation and rhetoric about our faith and community, let us redouble our efforts, and view it is an opportunity to educate and take action about what Islam truly stands for.
We are blessed to be part of an Islamic Center actively working toward understanding. Our spiritual home is also a community center. This gives us a platform to connect with our greater Los Angeles community in ways that shine a light on our Islamic values of service, compassion, and justice.
Programs such as our weekly food pantry, our monthly dinner service at the Union Rescue Mission, citywide interfaith events, and much more, are all opportunities for us to be a part of actively educating our neighbors.
"Not equal are the good deed and the bad deed. Repel evil by that which is better, and then the one who is hostile to you will become as a devoted friend. But none is granted it except those who are patient and none is granted it except one having a great fortune." (41:34-35)
Our faith in God, coupled with our attitude, mindset and our rights as Americans, should provide us with a reservoir of hope and energy to go forward with certitude in our faith, and confidence in our nation.
We close with a hadith / du'a reported from the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) found in the books of At-Tirmidhi:
"Oh God, guide us among those whom You have guided. Grant us safety among those whom You have granted safety. Take us into Your charge among those whom You have taken into Your charge. Bless us in what You have given us. Protect us from the evil You have decreed, for You decree, and nothing is decreed for You. And there is no humiliation for whom You take as a ward. Blessed and exalted are You, my Lord."
May God bless our nation, may God bless our community and all communities, may God guide us all as we strive only in His cause.