2022 October 18 – LN female16 – the 7th Session
I was anxious to hear LG’s response about being late when I entered the classroom and saw two of my students already present. I swiftly removed my shoes, grabbed a prayer rug, and began my two rakkats without giving it too much thought. Soon after, LG quickly began teaching us three different techniques of meditation. Fortunately, we were able to select the one that best suited us and carry on with our meditation.
Following that, LG instructed the students who attended the prior class—which was optional—to describe what they did. They discussed a wide range of subjects, but one key one had my interest the rest of the time. A classmate of mine described how an unfamiliar man joined the class to pitch his idea of starting an SAT Prep course. I, as a junior in high school, loved the concept and wanted to learn more about it, but LG had other thoughts. LG made a point of stating that he feels as if he is “biting off more than he can chew” by considering creating in this course.
We changed the subject just before I was about to ask LG if the man had any prior teaching experience or if he had lately seen the new SAT format, however these were questions that were answered later on. The pupils had to introduce themselves to him the last session and discuss the concept and their opinions. After wrapping up the summary of the previous class, we moved on to discuss new topics.
We discussed what it means to be a Muslim and how the majority of people lose sight of Islam’s primary goal and the enduring impact that all Muslims should strive to have on the world by getting caught up in its nuances. We brought up the five pillars of Islam once more as the talk went on, but LG felt that we should include an additional one: hygiene. The importance of hygiene in Islam and in daily life calls for it to be given the same weight as the other pillars. He considered wudu as a factor in this. When LG questioned the class why we must perform wudu before prayer, the response was that it helps us to become spiritually and physically clean as well as enter the state of prayer. He explained why and how each of the wudu motions we perform cleans more than just the skin. For instance, when we cleanse our mouths, we remove all of the nasty words, profanities, etc. that we have spoken.
Later on, were introduced PAPAA, which stands for Prophet Allah Prophet Allah Allah, as the first concept. We were encouraged to use this acronym under tense circumstances. We used the example of seeing LG walk into a smoke shop and not knowing how to react to if to tell anyone, to help me comprehend the use of the acronym. The greatest course of action in this circumstance is to ask yourself: “What would a prophet do?” and “What would Allah think of that?” repeatedly until you reach the finest knowledge you are capable of. I took pleasure in learning this new way of thinking because it will not only enable me to make choices that will please Allah but also facilitate decision-making.
We were interrupted in the middle of class by someone who appeared to be a stranger. Later, I discovered that the individual who entered our class was indeed the person from the previous session who had the SAT idea. I was very excited since all of my unanswered questions may now be resolved. I had a lot of inquiries. He responded to all of them despite the fact that it probably irritated him.
After a short while, he left, and the class resumed its exploration of new subjects and concepts. LG told us how a Muslim doctor discovered a means to extend human life by implanting a pig’s heart in a human body. This did make me quite confused and made me wonder a lot of things. I was initially intrigued by the idea that it was a pigs heart. Does this deem it to be Haraam? As if reading my mind, LG responded by asking how it could be haraam if it was a way for you to protect your body. That made sense to me, but I wanted to know how switching your heart out related to you being hooked up to a machine. For instance, if your heart is incapable of beating on its own, you must rely on a machine to sustain you. When I asked him this, he immediately made a connection with painkillers.
I missed the connection. Being permanently connected to a machine is undoubtedly different from taking painkillers, which you take to temporarily alleviate a discomfort you are currently experiencing. At the moment, though, I was unable to recognize this distinction, so I disregarded it and allowed us to go on. LG then discussed the concept of waterless toilets and how there is a fierce competition taking place globally to find someone who can effectively design waterless toilets. I was considering how challenging that would be and how awful the stench most likely would be as he continued.
He continued to introduce acronyms as the lesson went on. This one was PPP and represented passion, poverty, and power. While LG spoke, I was attempting to determine how any of these relate. He reminded us that when your wealth increases, you tend to give less to charity. He said, “It’s human nature.” I wasn’t sure if I agreed with this entirely, but I was trying to come up of a case to indicate that what LG was suggesting wasn’t necessarily always the answer. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized he was correct. I questioned why it was in human nature to aspire to do and give more when one has less.
As I thought about what makes us more frugal with our money when we have more and more generous when we have less, I understood how it relates to power. Your worry of losing power increases as you gain more of it. At this point, you have something to lose, so you try your best to maintain it, even if that means refusing to help others because you worked hard to get your money and why shouldn’t they? Sometimes we lose sight of our origins, which causes us to forget who helped us when we were at our lowest points.They feel scared when they see someone with less than they have. So much so that they come to understand how easily they could lose everything and how important it is to preserve all of their possessions. It makes sense, I suppose.
This was one of my favorite classes thus far, in my opinion. I enjoyed how we bounced between several different topics and that there was no testing! I truly think I gained a lot from this lesson and had a lot of questions answered. Thank you LG.