2023 Aug Week 1 F 17

2023 August 20 – 

AL: Female 16 (week 1)

Today was my first day so I was feeling a little anxious. When I arrived at the classroom, I felt comfortable because it was my second time there and I saw the teacher talking to my sister FL about saying hi instead of As-salaam Alaikum, after the salutation, he told the students to take sit in the front, and the parents in the back. He gave us papers on how to make salah and asked us to put it in a plastic bag but some of us got it wrong so he said that we have to focus and be careful When the teacher sat in front of us, I thought that if it was only my mom, sister, brother, and me it would be very difficult, and as I was starting the think too much, he started by asking a question that left me uncomfortable. He asked if we watched the news, and what was happening in the world in my head I was like it’s it has been a few weeks since I watched the news but since he asked I said no and it felt very awkward saying no. he looked at us very seriously and he said that not from now on, every week we have to come with 3 news about what is happening in the world and every and each of us should have different news from the week. He said if somebody says something that I or someone else wanted to say we would have to change it and find something else new that happened in the world that week. Since we were 3 students, he said that each of us would have to come up with 3 news which would be 9 different pieces of information that we would have to memorize. He said that in this class for these incoming 6 weeks, we would have to be extremely retentive. That is how we got today’s class’s first emphasis, which was on retentiveness. Retentiveness, from what I remember is when you can recall or retain something. From that word on we officially started class on what direction we were facing, and I was taught why would need to know what directions were facing I was very impressed with the answer he told us. The teacher looked behind him, which was the direction we, the students were facing. He pointed at the flag that was. In front of us and asked what flag it and we responded that it was the flag of the United States. He asked us why they had a flag of the United States in a masjid where we learn about Islam. I said what I taught was the most obvious answer and I taught wrong. I said we have a flag of the United States in a masjid because they gave us an opportunity. By opportunity I mean they provide jobs, scholarships, and knowledge. He said that the answer that I gave was not that and the answer was that the United States gives us the right to freedom of religion, and I taught wow I completely forgot about that. That is where we started to talk about the Pledge of Allegiance which means a promise of loyalty to the United States. After came a topic that interested me very much which was the pledge of faith which is defined by the shahada. The pledge of faith is something very important for Muslims because it is the first pillar of Islam. They testify that there is no God, but One God, and Muhammad is the Messenger of God.” Which translates into Arabic and is something very common “Ash-hadu an la ilaha illa Allah, Wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan Rasulu-Allah.” he especially specifies that Mohamed is not the son of God like other people taught Jesus was. And he also specifies that there is no other God but one God so don’t think the contrary because it is shirk. He also said that we use shahada to repent from the sins we committed intentionally or unintentionally. He said that we can repent from the sins we committed from time to time like every Sunday or something like that. He said and I quote “Always come back to base, which is home; don’t break the standard. “A few seconds later we had guests coming into the classroom who by the way weren’t guests but S, who was a parent who from what I understood helped in the masjid and programs that are happening in the masjid. When the teacher saw S, he had the greatest idea of asking us to tell S, what we talked about since the beginning of class. I had a big problem focusing on the question he asked next which was to explain the Pledge of Faith. Since we had a big problem explaining he gave the answers and said that we are all smart, but we need somebody to knock it off our brain and he said that he was the one who will be doing it because he wants us to develop our writing and retentiveness for our college essays and he also wants us to be able to present and express fluently. He said he wants us to be smart because like he said, and I quote “farmers prefer goats because they are smart on the contrary to sheep who are stupid”. He also told us about Einstein who had an enormous brain and he said it’s because the brain is a muscle. That is how we got to another topic which is the pledge of knowledge. The pledge of knowledge is the teacher and that’s how he came up with “I trust the teacher will teach us right” because students what the teacher teaches them is good or bad. The next question was what the difference between humans and animals and were like the difference is our ability to learn, think, talk… but the answer was the reason. Humans can reason with themselves, to know what is good or bad but animals don’t. after hours of intense and interesting talks, we finally end with a major topic which was salat. He gave us a little book that shows us how to pray and what we say in prayer and gave us 15 minutes to memorize what we can memorize which we did but I had trouble with the ending before as salaam because I knew another dua that the one the others knew but he said it was okay as long as my mom gives him a proof that it exists and I am supposed to say it at that time. after that, we all performed salat and he would correct us if we did mistakes. He told us why we say Bismillah and you will be surprised to know that it is to feed our soul because when we are in our grave our body won’t be able to move so the soul will answer the questions asked by the two angles. We also talk about how difficult it is to focus during prayer and how Shaytan is a part of it. At the end of class, he reminded us of our homework for next Sunday inshallah and he asked if anyone had a question, we said no so we left in a very good mood, full of knowledge after only 5 hours. The teacher and Samer gave us the information we needed to know about this program and their contact for our homework.

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