Etcetera – the Existant http://theexistant.com the Assistant to your Existence Mon, 06 Aug 2018 10:44:53 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.6.1 http://theexistant.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/cropped-Logo_1484764201208-latest-1-100x100.png Etcetera – the Existant http://theexistant.com 32 32 Ever Wonder What its Like to be a British Royal? 10 Royal Restrictions Meghan Markle Will Face Once She Says “I Do” http://theexistant.com/ever-wonder-what-its-like-to-be-a-british-royal-10-royal-restrictions-meghan-markle-will-face-once-she-says-i-do/ http://theexistant.com/ever-wonder-what-its-like-to-be-a-british-royal-10-royal-restrictions-meghan-markle-will-face-once-she-says-i-do/#respond Thu, 31 May 2018 07:02:15 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37229 the Existant
Ever Wonder What its Like to be a British Royal? 10 Royal Restrictions Meghan Markle Will Face Once She Says “I Do”

Meghan markle restrictions

After the royal wedding, there was no doubt that Kate Middleton was transformed and is now a well-groomed and trained member of the British Royal family. With another royal wedding on the way on May 19th, 2018  to be exact), it is quite obvious that many of the inner fangirls around the world who were raised […]

Ever Wonder What its Like to be a British Royal? 10 Royal Restrictions Meghan Markle Will Face Once She Says “I Do”
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Ever Wonder What its Like to be a British Royal? 10 Royal Restrictions Meghan Markle Will Face Once She Says “I Do”

Meghan markle restrictions

After the royal wedding, there was no doubt that Kate Middleton was transformed and is now a well-groomed and trained member of the British Royal family. With another royal wedding on the way on May 19th, 2018  to be exact), it is quite obvious that many of the inner fangirls around the world who were raised admiring princesses, can’t help but wonder what it must be like to be one.

 

As fabulous and luxurious the status of being a princess or being the part of a royal family might seem, its not all glitz and glamor in the end. Life is pretty restrictive in the royal family of Great Britain- and the Netflix series “The Crown” does a great job at shedding some light on this life.

 

Besides the luxury of the life of a princess, what are other things that royals must deal with on a daily basis? Here are some royal restrictions that Meghan Markle will have to face once she says “I Do”!

 

 

  • No More Selfies

This, by far, is at the top of the list because it is possibly one of the most difficult. An avid social media star- one who loves to post and interact with her fan base, it will become quite difficult for Markle to stop taking and posting selfies! The Queen herself has stated that selfies seem “disconcerting” to her- this may be the reason for this rule!

 

 

  • Going out in public completely alone

This is most likely for safety protocol- but once married to a royal, you are a royal and have to follow the rules of a procession and traveling, especially who to travel with and when. She will have security with her wherever she goes.

 

 

  • Giving autographs

As such a prominent actress from “Suits” and her political work in NGO’s, it will become difficult for Markle’s fans to get her autographs. For this reason, any preexisting autographs of hers will possibly multiple in their value greatly!

 

 

  • ‘Gramming and Tweeting

After marriage, Markle will be joining William, Kate, and Harry on their shared Instagram page @KensingtonRoyal to share their achievements in their charity work and other event updates.

 

 

  • Vote

After becoming a British citizen, Markle would be able to vote- and although it is not forbidden by law for Royals to vote, it is deemed unconstitutional for any Monarch to vote in an election. Although this directly applies to the Queen, it is unclear how much this applies to other members of the Royal family.

 

This also applies to expressing political views. After maintaining quite a strong standpoint and voice politically, it will be a clear change for Markle to have to restrain speaking up. Good thing there is other charity work she is permitted to work on and support!

 

 

  • Carry giant purses

It is unclear whether or not this is a rule- but not a single lady of the royal family has ever been seen carrying a large purse- only clutches. Not Princes Diana, nor Kate. Is it a rule? Is it the lack of needing to do so? One can only wonder. It will have to wait to be seen!

 

 

  • Wear colorful or dark nail polish

Although this seems a simple wardrobe and style choice, the wardrobe choices of every Royal- whether close to the throne in succession or not- is very specific and supposed to be conservative as per respect to the Church and the status of those related to the Crown. Only natural colors are allowed via protocol.

 

 

  • Cross her legs while sitting

The special seating etiquette of side-tilted legs will have to be mastered by Markle, just as it has been by Kate!

 

 

  • Going to bed before the Queen

This seems quite obvious- out of respect for the Crown. However, this is of course only when sleeping in the same house as the Queen. Seems doable, with the Queen at such an age!

 

 

  • Sit wherever she wants, or enter a room whenever she wants

With the line of succession there is a protocol for those entering a room in the order that is assigned to them- and when sitting at an event, each seat is calculated and planned based on- not to say importance as the best word- but status.

 

 

For better or for worse, till death do they part! It may be a difficult thing to let go of some of these things that are against Royal protocol- but it’s all good in the name of love!

 

 

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Trump Climate Change Policy: 4 Major Disastrous Consequences of the US President’s Choices http://theexistant.com/the-trump-climate-change-policy-4-major-disastrous-consequences-of-the-us-presidents-choices/ http://theexistant.com/the-trump-climate-change-policy-4-major-disastrous-consequences-of-the-us-presidents-choices/#respond Tue, 17 Apr 2018 07:29:46 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37213 the Existant
Trump Climate Change Policy: 4 Major Disastrous Consequences of the US President’s Choices

donald trump climate change policy

President of the United State Donald Trump’s ignorance toward climate change truths has disastrous consequences for all

Trump Climate Change Policy: 4 Major Disastrous Consequences of the US President’s Choices
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Trump Climate Change Policy: 4 Major Disastrous Consequences of the US President’s Choices

donald trump climate change policy

 

In the long list of things that Donald Trump is putting an end to- acts for environmental protection are at the top of the urgent list.

 

After his decision to leave the Paris Agreement in early 2017, he has slowly but surely began to back out of all agreements to protect the environment and combat climate change and essentially, global warming.

 

As commonly understood, it is Trump’s firm belief that global warming is just a myth, and because of this incorrect belief, it is the rest of the planet that will have to pay the price.

 

It is quite easy to say that the choices of the American President will have direct consequences only on the American population. Yet, even in economic and other scenarios, what effects within the country will always have consequences through a ripple effect outside of the borders- that no Border Wall can blockade or block within.

 

This ripple effect is even clearer in relation to the climate. Every person on planet Earth shares the same air, the same sky, the same oceans, and waters. Each part of this planet is connected. There may be political and even physical barriers- but the congruency of Mother Earth is something that cannot be denied or ignored.

 

What goes around comes around. Pollution in any part of the world, ignorance in the face of the ever-changing Earth in the United States, will have long-term and severe effects on the lives of not only American citizens but every citizen of the Earth in every corner of the planet.

 

As the media is not significantly covering this long-term crisis enough- which has more severe effects long term on the planet than almost any other crisis in history- it is quite difficult at times to put a finger on the exact effects of such choices made by world power the President of the United States.

 

To clarify, here are 5 disastrous consequences of Donald Trump’s choices on the environment and the world.

 

  • Water resources and sea levels

2

Water resources on all parts of the globe are highly dependent on rainfall. With the temperature increase each year, the atmosphere is holding more and more water, causing a susceptibility to drought and record high heats and low rainfall each year. About 4% more of water resources are being held in the atmosphere for every degree of Fahrenheit that the temperature rises

 

In addition to the limitation on water resources, one of the most recognizable evidence of climate change and global warming is the rise of sea levels around the globe. With even the smallest change in temperature, the melting of glaciers in the North and South poles are causing disastrous increases in sea levels, threatening to flood major coastal cities, aquifer and soil contamination for farmers, as well as the loss of habitats for crucial plants and animals to our way of life.

 

 

  • Increase in wildfires

3

One of the most devastating yet never before seen natural disasters of this past year have been wildfires- with 2017 being the worst year for forest fires in American history.  Countless fires raged for miles and miles in California, with millions of people being forced to evacuate for safety.

 

With the increase in temperature, the soil’s retention of moisture becomes more and more difficult, making both the air, soil, ground and dead wood drier and more susceptible to forest fires. Not to mention the burning down of entire forests and towns, but the number of taxpayer dollars that will be needed to repair for the damages and relocate evacuees will only increase as a direct cause of Trump’s policies!

 

 

  • Severe drop in air quality

4

Soon enough, gone will be the days where any person can leave their house and breathe in the fresh air, with the smell of grass, flowers, and nature. In the livelihood of the American worker, the amount of pollution being chugged into the atmosphere with no reigning it in- and compete and blatant ignorance on behalf of the country’s president, will only contribute to higher levels of smog and an endless list of health problems for the average citizen.

 

Asthma is the top of the concerns with the drop in air quality, but it is followed by a long list of severe allergies due to pollen that will bloom either earlier or later, having devastating effects on people’s cardiovascular systems and a rise in need for healthcare- which has costs that are staggering as well.

 

 

  • Destruction of Infrastructure

    5

 

The ultimatum of all the disastrous consequences of ignoring the truths of climate change and global warming is the destruction of all infrastructure on the planet- the falling apart of almost every part of our daily lives. There will be a collapse of the system of roads, water supply, power grids, bridges, and more.

 

When there are droughts in one location, there will be excess of rainfall and flooding in another. Droughts can lead to wildfires, and excess rainfall can lead to the damaging of sewage pipes, roads, power lines, and bridges- all of which will cost millions of taxpayer dollars to repair. The cost of reparations for Hurricane Irma and Harvey alone was estimated to be about $200 billion, and adding the consequences of the countless Hurricanes such climate change harkens, there will be no end to paying for the future disasters for generations to come.

 

 

As the United States Government turns a blind eye and labels the serious threats to our way of life on this planet- the only planet we have- disastrous consequences will hit not only close to home but will be carried through winds and through the shared atmosphere that the entire planet shares.

 

Citizens of not only the United States- but all the generations of the entire planet Earth itself, will be here to pay the price.

 

 

Trump Climate Change Policy: 4 Major Disastrous Consequences of the US President’s Choices
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3 Ways to Encourage Reading in the Digital Age http://theexistant.com/3-ways-to-encourage-reading-in-the-digital-age/ http://theexistant.com/3-ways-to-encourage-reading-in-the-digital-age/#respond Thu, 12 Apr 2018 06:59:07 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37208 the Existant
3 Ways to Encourage Reading in the Digital Age

encourage reading

Despite the discouragement of the technology in instilling reading habits, there are still many ways that reading can be encouraged in children- and even adults!

3 Ways to Encourage Reading in the Digital Age
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3 Ways to Encourage Reading in the Digital Age

encourage reading

 

In the recent years, the shift from manual activities that take place face to face, to technologically- centered ways of life has most definitely benefitted humankind in many ways.

 

However, the most detrimental side effects of living in the digital age are its discouragement of reading. Throughout recent industrial history, the practice of reading is critical to career readiness, success, and intellectual capabilities and strength.

 

With this comes a threat to the futures of not only our own lives and skill but the lives of those of our future generations.

 

As impossible as it seems to battle with children and even our own selves to disconnect and force ourselves to read- there are still many ways to encourage and still habits of reading in children and adults alike.

 

  • Focus on Interests

Reading does not have to mean perusing texts that cause you or your child to snore. All people have topics and genres that intrigue them, interest them. By finding out what topics and genres are most captivating to either you or your child, it can be easier to encourage reading habits and make it a routine.

 

Besides, the point of reading is not only to practice readiness, but also to explore interests and learn new things.

 

 

  • Have Access to Variety- Using Technology!

With all the access to technology, why not take advantage of such tools for our benefit in this digital age? Reading does not always have to mean from a physical paperback text- it can be in any form.

 

Download a Kindle app, buy an e-reader, download variety of magazine or periodical apps to follow up and read daily. Some apps even come with reminders to read something every single day! Rather than allowing technology to become our downfall, we can take advantage of it and use it for our own good!

 

 

  • Find loved mentors and create relationships through texts

 This does not mean texts as in text messaging. Oftentimes, the best of friendships are rooted in a shared understanding and taste in texts- as in novels, articles, periodicals, genres.

 

For children, this can mean a mentor- an adult or teenager or someone they look up to who they can discuss readings with. For adults, this can mean being part of a book club where one reads and discusses what they have read with their fellow members and can even make new friends- or encourage reading alongside a good friend.

 

3

 

It is critical to remember the importance of reading high-quality texts- be it essays or novels or articles or even blogs- for not only our own lives but the lives of the future generations. Despite the difficulties faced in such practices, reading readiness is pertinent for our future generations.

 

These future generations- our children and their children- are the ones who will carry forth civilization and be the beacons of light that keep the world growing, surviving, and hopefully thriving, for generations to come.

 

 

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Is your iPhone getting slower? Apple faces lawsuits for slowing down old iPhones http://theexistant.com/is-your-iphone-getting-slower-apple-faces-lawsuits-for-slowing-down-old-iphones/ http://theexistant.com/is-your-iphone-getting-slower-apple-faces-lawsuits-for-slowing-down-old-iphones/#respond Wed, 24 Jan 2018 11:33:32 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37188 the Existant
Is your iPhone getting slower? Apple faces lawsuits for slowing down old iPhones

Apple lawsuit iPhone slowing down

Apple faces a lawsuit to deal with their age-old yet secretive practice of slowing down their old iPhones

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Is your iPhone getting slower? Apple faces lawsuits for slowing down old iPhones

Apple lawsuit iPhone slowing down

 

After finally admitting to slowing down it’s older iPhones- after years of speculation and suspicion, Apple has been facing weeks of bad press and frustration from all of its dedicated users.

 

According to Chicago-Sun Times, a lawsuit was filed in Illinois on behalf of iPhone owners who alleged that iPhones were engineered to purposely “throttle down” performance speeds and to push owners to chuck their old ones and go out to buy the ever glitzy, promising, and fast releasing new models.

 

People have been spending their hard-earned dollars on products they believed to be dependable and of the highest-tier of quality- the price tag on all Apple products would seem to be just so.

 

However, with this murky, concealed practice it seems that Apple itself does not have faith in its own products and feels the need to slow its older phones down to bring up sales even more.

 

Two law students from the University of Southern California have filed a lawsuit as well, claiming the same as their counterparts in Illinois, stating- “[Apple] breached the implied contract it made with [iPhone owners] by purposely slowing down older iPhone models when new models came out and by failing to properly disclose that at the time that the parties entered into an agreement”. Their class action lawsuit is hoping to represent all iPhone owners of those before the 8.

 

Although the common perception is that the $750 billion company is slowing down its phones so people ditch the old ones and run for the new ones- but another side of the story is being ignored in this case. There was generally a lack of transparency in Apple’s dealing with the handling of phones with aging batteries- that generally need replacements after they start to “die”

 

Lithium-ion batteries begin to lose their ability to hold a charge after being used for some time, and all phone manufacturing companies have to find a way to deal with or work around this squabble.

 

A large number of Apple’s iPhones shutting down unexpectedly due to this issue could have easily be solved by a gentle reminder to replace the battery- just another one of the many reminders that Apple has set in their iPhone software. Or, that the phone will continue to slow down until the battery is changed.

 

Any sort of simple yet direct reminder could have solved the issue if this was just Apple’s way to work around aging batteries.

 

But if it was truly a money-making scheme, then what was once a success is slowly but surely snowballing into not only bad press but a host of million dollar legal ramifications.

 

 

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Why the World Desperately Needs International Law- The UN’s Responsibility to Humanity http://theexistant.com/why-the-world-desperately-needs-international-law-the-uns-responsibility-to-humanity/ http://theexistant.com/why-the-world-desperately-needs-international-law-the-uns-responsibility-to-humanity/#respond Mon, 18 Dec 2017 06:20:04 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37162 the Existant
Why the World Desperately Needs International Law- The UN’s Responsibility to Humanity

international law

  It is no surprise that a world full of such a variety of nations and cultures, beliefs and customs- a world so diverse- can be considered anarchy.   True, many of the distinct societies established as developed or developing countries around the world have detailed, explicit sets of laws and regulations that keep the […]

Why the World Desperately Needs International Law- The UN’s Responsibility to Humanity
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Why the World Desperately Needs International Law- The UN’s Responsibility to Humanity

international law

 

It is no surprise that a world full of such a variety of nations and cultures, beliefs and customs- a world so diverse- can be considered anarchy.

 

True, many of the distinct societies established as developed or developing countries around the world have detailed, explicit sets of laws and regulations that keep the nation’s functioning.

 

However, there are more than just a few places in the world where national powers lose their control over situations, and more than a few situations can escalate out of hand to the point where local national governments can do no more.

 

The United Nations, as an organization, tied to their responsibility to protect those who cannot protect themselves, to defend those in need of defense, and to create a system of checks of balances of safety and security across the globe.

 

In an area of mutual understanding and concession, state representatives gather and agree as well as disagree on the correct form of actions to take in specific scenarios- be it terrorist attacks, or humanitarian crises, or crimes against humanity, or development of underdeveloped nations.

 

The truth is, that the world is in desperate need of an international law wherein nations who are a part of the United Nations agree to answer to the plans and laws laid out collectively. Thankfully, there is an established International Criminal Court, known also as the ICC, where international crimes that surpass the hands of the powers of nation-states must answer to the group of judges in these courts.

 

However, it is the case where many countries do not agree upon the lines designated to outline the laws and the extent to which these laws can reach and control. And it is because of the vital differences in culture and beliefs that these disagreements arise.

 

Such complications are the root of the reason that individual nations take care of their own populations.

 

But what happens crimes against the basic building blocks of humanity are committed and unable to be controlled by the nation in which it occurs? What constitutes the boundaries of respecting state sovereignty, and the allowance of interference when states desire their independence of action and reactions?

 

The world is in desperate need- not of a general court system of laws that may lead to a dystopian world order- but a system, guidelines to deal with the most severe of the unconquerable crimes against humanity that take place around the globe day after day.

 

It is not up to the general public to come up with this sort of thing- but it is a food for thought in the direction of a better, more stable world.

 

In its sometimes fruitless efforts, the United Nations must come up with strict rules and violation consequences for the sake of humanity- rights of the human and rights of the Earth that must be agreed upon, ratified, sanctioned against, and established among each nation in existence on this planet.

 

Only with the base establishment of humanity, and consequences of violations thereof, can the world move forward towards the seemingly unattainable peace of everyone’s dreams.

 

In all hypothetical situations- peace is an abstract term out of reach. We cannot hope to understand what peace entails- let alone how to achieve such a state.

The only fruitful, possible effort that can exist is to use the resources of the UN as a peacekeeping agency and international organization, to move towards peace by eradicating and controlling the most inhumane, anti-peace, peace-threatening deeds and atrocities of all.

 

Why the World Desperately Needs International Law- The UN’s Responsibility to Humanity
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The Nouman Ali Khan Allegations: Navigating Murky Waters http://theexistant.com/the-nouman-ali-khan-allegations-navigating-murky-waters/ http://theexistant.com/the-nouman-ali-khan-allegations-navigating-murky-waters/#respond Wed, 22 Nov 2017 06:43:29 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37145 the Existant
The Nouman Ali Khan Allegations: Navigating Murky Waters

Nouman Ali Khan

The gossip surrounding the allegations against Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan has made it difficult to understand truth from falsehood. How does one cope?

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The Nouman Ali Khan Allegations: Navigating Murky Waters

Nouman Ali Khan

 

I think I can easily say that Nouman Ali Khan is one of those speakers.

 

No, not what you are thinking. Think again.

 

In a generation frought with filth and consumerism and lust and greed- it has become rare enough that a scholar, a teacher, a mentor of any sort is enough inspirtaion to bring another person out of the light.

 

But it can easily be agreed upon that Nouman Ali Khan has been a source of guiding light and inspiration to many people on this Earth- Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

 

His Bayyinah TV initiative, his school, his lectures, his methodology of understanding the basics of Arabic and personalizing with the Quran and the life of the Prophet (pbuh) is more than the average man can do.

 

And putting the backlash and talk of hypocrisy aside, how much can one say that they are close to the Quran, or understand it enough to feel confident to teach others? With passion?

 

It is through the hands of Allah that any person guides another. No one is charismatic, or good with words, or illustrious in speech by choice. It is a gift, a blessing from Allah- the ability to guide and inspire.

 

It has been in the darkest moments of my life, and in the lives of others, that turning to the talks of Nouman Ali Khan, turning to his words of wisdom, sharing it with others, and using his inspiration to teach others.

 

As I am a teacher, he is my teacher, and from him I have learned to be a better person, a better teacher each day.

 

Returning the the heart of the matter- how does one navigate such a scandal, with screenshots and eyewitness accounts to back up such claims?

 

I refuse to take sides, and yet I refuse to take a neutral stance.

 

This is not a matter lacking of importance. Our generation, our youth- must learn to understand what we do when such a thing happens.

 

For a time, I scoured articles with proof to see just how valid it is. Then, I perused as many analyses of the situation as possible, searching for fatwas and statements by scholars.

 

I was lost. I was confused. I was distraught.

 

And most of all, I was afraid.

 

Afraid, that if such a man could amount to this- then what are we? What are our deeds worth? Can it truly be a fraud? Can HE truly be a fraud? Can the source of our wisdom be falsehood? Is our inspiration and hope based on lies and hypocrisy?

 

Although the majority of scholars have refused to speak on this topic, it is with a wisdom that I have taken a step back and begun to slowly, take steps towards healing.

 

First and foremost, we must face every single obstacle and worrying event with the lenses of Allah and his Messenger (pbuh). Through the concepts that Allah has blessed the charisma and words of Nouman Ali Khan as well, I have learned that in every obstacle, there is a simple solution. A way to go back to the basics.

 

What does Allah say in the Quran? How did the Prophet (pbuh) deal with such matters?

 

Every person makes mistakes. No person on this earth is perfect. But it is the repentance of the believer that is most valuable to Allah- the truthfulness of the heart begging Allah, connected to Him for His sake.

 

More importantly, it does not, or to put it in better words, it should not matter to us whether it is the truth or falsehood. We should not concern ourselves with that which does not concern us.

 

In reality, we believe that as a Muslim, no matter what allegations are made against a person, it is our responsibility to stay silent, to make 70 excuses on behalf of our brother or sister in Islam. When we hear gossip or backbiting, we must leave it.

 

Why does Allah command us to stay away from backbiting? Because even the truth can cause fitnah.

 

It can make people lose hope and faith, and believe the very source of their recharged, rekindled Iman and faith and hope is all but a lie, a false hope.

 

It can make people think that if this is true, then the world is lost.

 

But hope is not lost, the world is not lost.

 

It is through Allah’s hands that this man was able to inspire and guide so many.

 

The confusion and despair is normal- but it is not the business of you or I or anyone else who is not a part of his personal life whether or not he has done what social media propaganda is begging us to believe.

 

The truth is the truth no doubt, and wrong is wrong- it is not right to stay silent and bully and harass women who possibly have rightful claims. We cannot silence them, or silence any attempt to speak for the rights of women, whom Allah Himself protects and defends in Surah Noor, against false claims and to honor their speech.

 

But in the matter of the choice of Allah- it is Allah alone who knows what is in the hearts. Our Duniya neither our Akhirah must depend on the sins of others. It is our sins that will matter. It is our deeds that will count, for our very own selves.

 

And if it is part of Allah’s plan to choose to guide us through the words of a man that everyone seems to be hell-bent on discrediting, then it is Allah’s guidance alone that grants us that inspiration.

 

There is no reason for such talks, no matter the truths, to undo our inspiration, or cause hope to die and evaporate from our chests and leave our hearts heavy.

 

We protect each other, we pray for each other. We mind our own deeds. We speak not of that which we do not know. We ask Allah for guidance.

 

We stay silent. And most of all, we keep hope in the Almighty’s forgiveness and mercy and love and guidance.

 

I can hope and pray for God to forgive me if I have spoken falsehood- and forgive us all of our sins and keep our character and reputation intact.

 

 

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The KKK and America: What the Future of Our Country Holds http://theexistant.com/the-kkk-and-america-what-the-future-of-our-country-holds/ http://theexistant.com/the-kkk-and-america-what-the-future-of-our-country-holds/#respond Mon, 20 Nov 2017 05:09:44 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=37142 the Existant
The KKK and America: What the Future of Our Country Holds

KKK

The seemingly eroded ranks of white nationalism have gone there and back again. What does this mean for our country’s future?

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The KKK and America: What the Future of Our Country Holds

KKK

 

One of the longest standing movements throughout history has been the superiority complex.

 

Sounds like an interesting statement- but the fact of the matter is that the question of race, genetic superiority, and skin color has lasted throughout centuries as the leading factor in divisions, in ranks, in pride- all over the world.

 

At times it feels as though the people of the labeled “lesser colors” are the ones enabling such a concept, taking the leftovers and holding their hands above their lowered heads, begging for honor yet diminishing it in the face of the powerful white.

 

But the truth is, that whether there are enablers or disablers, or if the standing movements such as Black Lives Matter and those standing for the rights of all faiths- especially Muslims- are even working- it is a state of concern in an age where we consider ourselves the most advanced.

 

Consider the Civil Rights movement not too long ago- the  United States seemed to have moved light-years ahead in fighting for the rights of those of all color, of the African Americans who lost all culture and sense of homeland in actions furthered by the superiority of the white man.

 

And then there is imperialism- where the white man’s burden was to enlighten the people in deep Africa, in South Asia, to bring them a better “civilization” which they themselves were the only ones enlightened with.

 

Which brings to a manner of questioning- if a society or group of people is to consider themselves so advanced, to what advancement is the comparison of color?

 

The people of true advancement and education, of liberation and all things that are decent- the inner core is the true matter of consideration. It is one’s character, what one is made of that defines their place in the world.

 

Then, what is the point for arguing on behalf on a color that one does not choose? One chooses their actions, their words, their character, the way they carry themselves in the world, that is the true matter of substance.

 

When organizations such as the Klu Klux Klan decide to resurface in a world where a Black man had the honor to be the President of the free world, how then do we define the meaning of advancement?

 

Is it in the equalization of color, blinding ourselves to differences? Is it accepting the differences and appreciating the variety of God’s mankind- all the while valuing what makes every person unique yet at the same time, equally valuable?

 

Or is it the white pin-headed KKK members, burning torches against those who stand for equality, fighting on the fact that their blue eyes and blond hair are infinitely more valuable than the inner value of a man.

 

Look at the world around you- is there a need to list the instances of backwardness? Beyond the simple fact of the KKK and their rallies and place in the Trump regime- there are the persecution of the police force, the stares and slurs and hate crimes against Muslims, the snarls and anger for all those that do not fit the “white” category.

 

Are we then not back in the dark ages, in the age of imperialism, of the Heart of Darkness looking into our own advanced nation and seeing those not white, as to be savages?

Or is it, in truth, the white man’s burden that was the deep heart of Africa- the heart of darkness in truth- the true savagery and backwardness?

 

Looking forward, we must take into consideration, through every action of our every day.

 

Do we wish to look forward to a future of tomorrow? Or to relive the sins of our past?

 

The answer and option is in our hands, and it is up to us to raise our generations, strengthen our youth, teach tolerance and understanding- if we do not wish to move backward and lose all the hope and advancement we believe we have come close to achieving.

 

 

The KKK and America: What the Future of Our Country Holds
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Precious Knots- A Reflection On Attachments http://theexistant.com/precious-knots-a-reflection-on-attachments/ http://theexistant.com/precious-knots-a-reflection-on-attachments/#respond Tue, 15 Aug 2017 15:53:40 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=640 the Existant
Precious Knots- A Reflection On Attachments

attachment, goodbye

What does it mean to say goodbye? Where lies the root of our attachments?

Precious Knots- A Reflection On Attachments
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Precious Knots- A Reflection On Attachments

attachment, goodbye

 

What does it mean to say goodbye?

 

Our goodbyes are said when partying, when moving from one situation to another. We say goodbye when leaving home, when leaving school or work, when shutting the phone, when walking away.

 

At times, our goodbyes are much more long term-tears welling, hands trembling, body shaking, indistinct muttering. Closing a door, boarding an airplane, driving away. Packing up. Receiving a diploma. Shutting a coffin.

 

Moving on.

 

That’s what our many “goodbyes” are all about.

 

As humans, we are made to be able to adjust, to adapt. When you adapt to something, you spend a lot of time in that situation. When you adapt to someone, you tend to get emotionally attached.

 

Once emotionally attached to something with a knot so strong and tight, it’s hard to open that knot and find another rope to tie yourself to. Your rope would already be stretched from so much

pulling, and might find it hard to tie itself in a tight enough knot again.

 

Besides, what if you end up having to open, or even pull apart- the next knot as painfully as the previous one?

 

We are forever stuck in this process of tying and pulling and stretching our ropes until we might feel as if our ropes might just lose all their strands- never to be tied again.

 

What if we were to stop tying knots entirely? We wouldn’t be able to do that, however many introverts there are out there, and all people out there for that matter, are indeed humans,

and have that special ability to adapt.

 

Which of course, leads to attachment.

 

99.99% of the time.

 

A person can be attached to anything if they find comfort in it. A hobby, a habit, a person, a place, a ritual, a routine, or even an idea. In fact- a person having to let go of an idea they strongly believe in is said to go through the most trauma.

 

So, if it is so hard to say goodbye why must we go through the trouble, and always end up saying goodbye?

 

This life is a test, this life is the house of deception, and although some things may seem favorable over others, and some knots you may wish to tie seem extremely desirable- everything in this world is temporary.

 

And here is where we come back to having to move on. Like seasons change, like people grow and change in personality, like the way a butterfly emerges from the cocoon so intricately different from a caterpillar, our world is struck on and on with examples of change.

 

We must change, be it the end of a school year, moving to a new house, moving to a new country, or having to part from someone very near and dear, we have to change.

 

This life is temporary, and we too, we will have to move on to our next life, which has no change and has utter perfection. Where we look for perfection in the knots of this world, we will never find.

 

But in the hereafter, every pulled apart and queasy knot we have tied in this world-in a rightful manner- will be renewed like fresh fruit to never rot, filled with all of its sweetness.

 

We must realize that the solution is not within the knots. We can be puzzled about the pain of goodbye forever, scratching our heads and trying out goodbyes and flipping our situations this way and that.

 

What we may never do- sadly- is to look within ourselves. In reality, there lies the answer.

 

We have to realize that the solution to our painful goodbyes is within ourselves, in our perfect creation molded to excellency by the hands of Allah Almighty himself. We have the power within ourselves to choose our knots, and what we do with them.

 

Do we tie our knots very tight?

 

Do we stay away from certain knots that may hurt us?

 

Or do we just be patient and realize that this is a part of our test?

 

The power of choice is instilled within us. We can choose to tie knots with whatever and whomever we please. Truth be told, any pain caused is only the effect of our previous actions, and is a test for us.

 

It might have been that the knot was tied on a wrongful basis- like upon money, status, or physical appearances.

 

It might even be that as per circumstance, the knot was made at the wrong place at the wrong time. Or even that we became much too attached to something that is not eternal, upon something temporary.

 

If it is too painful to open a knot- we can do the one simple thing we never even think of doing and simply overlook. We can leave our knot as it is never to let go.

 

Yes- it sounds crazy, insane even- how on Earth are we supposed to keep tied knots that cannot be? What if we must move on? What if we must change?

 

Like a person values their memory, our heart thrives on our knots. Imagine a person who just had long term memory loss. How does it feel to be robbed of what you have rightfully earned- a lifetime full of memories that were yours and yours only?

 

Like this, our heart is driven mad- no matter how strong we pretend to be- by the opening of a knot. It practically opens up the heart. Yet, despite the morbid fact we think to be a fact that we just cannot keep all of our knots, we have to open our eyes and see that we can. Anything is possible.

 

And this is not the “anything” that is similar to pigs flying. This is something that if we do it, we can stop heartache, sadness, and depression almost instantly.

 

We can keep all of our ropes tied forever and beyond if we only learn to be patient and make ourselves strong, keeping in mind that this world is temporary at all times.

 

We can keep our ropes intertwined if never let go our grips on sanity and true human values like respect, care, thoughtfulness, patience, trustworthiness, truthfulness. If we open our every single knotour heart will be robbed.

 

Think again of the person with long term memory loss- and the thought of being robbed of every last memory. Our knots are what make up our memories. Our relationships, habits, ideas, anything we are strongly attached to, will always be a part of us. There is no need to rip apart our hearts. If we work for it- and if we wish it strongly enough- every part of our pasts- every knot will always be a part of us. If you wish to let go of an undesirable knot, it would be easy to let go of it. But those knots that are too difficult to throw away, we have the choice to keep. Granted, this world is temporary, and we should not have tied the knots so tight in the first place. But if the deed has been done and if we wish it strongly enough- our knots will always be alive.

 

Like memories, our knots will always be a part of us no matter what may happen, no matter if we must move on. Our goodbyes can be said, but not without the intention that this person, this thing, this situation we are saying goodbye to, will always be a part of us. Even if we change in this world, as it is a natural thing to do- we can mold our knots to our situations.

 

As us humans readily change, our knots never do.

 

True, as a person progresses, something one was once attached to may not be as important, but it will always be there, be the memory vivid or distant. Our attachments, our knots, will always be there, and aid us in our memories. Some memories fade away. Some knots fade away. But they are what make us, and these goodbyes are just a step from one stage, from one change to another.

 

Not a “goodbye”, as an end. But as a means to the final change into the hereafter, where we will be forever unchanged, our knots refreshed and clear, fresh, and new.

 

And now- with all of this into perspective- I ask you- what is the true meaning of saying goodbye?

 

To many people, yes, it can mean many things.

 

But if someone chooses to resist pain, and to keep their goodbyes merely as a transition and not an end, there is a pretty simple meaning to goodbye.

 

Goodbye is just a means of temporary parting. If you think about it, no goodbye is said without the intention of returning to that favorable situation again- even if it is for a short while, even if the person knows it is quite impossible to return to that situation. In our hearts, we will always have our knots with us, and we will never have to rip apart knots with painful goodbyes any longer.

 

True, we should not become too attached in the first place. But as in human nature, it is only natural for us to become attached.

 

Even the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) cried when he left Makkah, and when his 9 month old son had passed away.

 

Changing our knots, molding them to our changes, yet keeping them alive in the heart.

 

This is the true meaning of goodbye.

 

There is no ending in this world, not even in the next, just transition. And nothing can be thrown away, left behind, or left to die. If you wish it to be, everything; along with your knots and your memories; can stay very much alive, forever and ever.

 

When the Prophet left Makkah and migrated to Madina, his knot with Makkah was always strong. Allah allowed him to even go back, even if it was for a short while. The Prophet (pbuh) always loved Makkah, his home, and always will. He never let his knot break.

 

And the Prophet (pbuh) himself knew that although his tiny little son is in the heavens, one day he will be with him once more bi’idhnillah.

 

In my life, I have seen many people move on. People graduating, people moving away, people getting married, people changing for the better or for the worse, people slipping away and not being as close to you as they may have been before.

I used to feel pain that my knots have been untied and have been left to gush out and just keep gushing with every opened knot.

 

But what I learned is that even if people and situations changed, our memories and the knots we once had, will always be there.

 

There is no need for goodbye, because one day, if we are deserving enough, we will be reunited in Heaven under the grace of God, ever Merciful and Kind.

 

And I learned the lesson that although this world is temporary, and anything we become attached to will not always be the same, and that one day, if we work for it hard enough, we will have the hereafter that is eternal, never failing, never ending, never causing pain.

 

I sit back and think sometimes, staring at my best friend, my family, thinking of my loving parents and grandparents, my loved ones, my home sweet home.

 

I sit here, staring at my dear best friend, wondering how much time we have, wondering if breaking the knot would ease the pain, or to rather cherish every moment I have- pain regardless.

 

I sit here, tears gripping my eyes, wondering if tying a knot with anyone; be it with my parents, siblings, or friends, my significant other half; in the first place was even worth it.

 

But we already know the answer to that.

 

And if we truly work for it- we’ll have Heaven in our hands and our knots, tight, strong, and light to bear, spread across our shoulders like beautiful wings for the rest of eternity.

 

 

Precious Knots- A Reflection On Attachments
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Islam, Nationalism, and the 4th of July- A Discussion http://theexistant.com/islam-nationalism-and-the-4th-of-july-a-discussion/ http://theexistant.com/islam-nationalism-and-the-4th-of-july-a-discussion/#respond Wed, 05 Jul 2017 12:38:49 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=632 the Existant
Islam, Nationalism, and the 4th of July- A Discussion

islam july 4

July 4th- American Independence Day- just passed. What do Muslims believe about nationalism and celebrating the birth of a nation?

Islam, Nationalism, and the 4th of July- A Discussion
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Islam, Nationalism, and the 4th of July- A Discussion

islam july 4

 

There are many ways to tackle what any religion says about a certain topic, as taboo or non-taboo as it may be.

 

For Muslims, the most basic approaches to understanding what is right and wrong, what to believe, and what stance to take on any particular subject is to look directly to the Quran- the words of God or the Hadeeth and Sunnah- words of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon Him) and his life.

 

Saying what “a Muslim” believes about a certain topic ranges greatly in the amount of interpretations out there that exists. An extremely liberal Muslim might interpret a verse in one way, whilst a more conservative Muslim might believe something to mean another thing.

 

The truth is, Islam is the Middle Path- there is no extremism in religion. No extreme conservatism, and no extreme liberalism either.

 

In truth, whatever is in the middle and is a balanced way of life, is what Islam believes in. And this “middle path” is the middle, not too light and not to harsh way of translating and understanding the words of Allah and His Prophet (peace be upon him).

 

There are multitudes of scholars left and right who interpret the words of the Holy Quran to the best of their ability, and based on their own subjective levels of belief. Of course, the rule of thumb is to stick closest to the words of God and His Messenger as possible.

 

So, why this backdrop, if the topic is nationalism and the 4th of July? Why give a backdrop of the middle path, an understanding of the way Islam is understood, to understand American Independence Day?

 

Nationalism, in truth, oftentimes results in extremism. People with an extreme love for their countries end up doing things, and acting in ways that is not in par with their beliefs.

 

Islam teaches us that all of the Earth is made for all of mankind, that mankind can pray on any corner of the Earth, can migrate from one corner of the Earth to another.

 

From the beginning of time when there were barely any conception of differences between peoples, the newfound notion of a nation and pride based on imaginary, man-made borders is a thing to ponder about.

 

For the function of this day and age, it is true that nations are needed. For peace, for understanding, for relations, for the function of the modern society and globalized world at large- even for organization’s sake.

 

And yes, no country has been in existence for more than a certain amount of years. Almost every nation has a birth date, and this birth date is celebrated joyously, the beliefs upheld by each nation reveled at and remembered and celebrated.

 

As a Muslim, one must always obey the laws of the land as long as it does not interfere with the laws of Allah and religion and the beliefs and practices that fall beneath it. Having pride or belief in a nation’s purport and pride is nothing inherently wrong or out-rightly forbidden.

 

Yet, there is a nuanced understanding in the middle path that people seem to miss out on.

 

Be in American Independence or the independence of any other country on the planet, there is no reason in which the birth of a nation must be celebrated with an extreme nationalism where others are hated, where one is believed to be better than others, to be the conquerors by the sword- or by the nuclear power as today, per se.

 

Allah says in the Holy Quran, that He has created nations and tribes so that they may come to know one another.

 

God created diversity to appreciate and love, to understand and learn. To marvel at the beauty of God’s creation, and love and remember Allah all the more for it.

 

So what is the true stance on nationalism in Islam? Did we spend our July 4th’s wisely?

 

We don’t know for sure. Certainly, Allah did not choose to foretell the birth of the American nation in His Holy Quran, and neither did He choose to forbid or make incumbent upon mankind to celebrate its birthdate- a date fraught with atrocities and negativity in the history of a land of many natives and burdened, tortured souls. History plays on both sides of the coin, and it is the story of the conqueror we are told.

 

The fact of the matter is, we cannot practice extreme nationalism for any nation, for borders change, borders are made. It is the Earth we all belong to, and it is with respect to all mankind, people of all nations and tribes- we must live.

 

Is nationalism looked down upon in Islam? No. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) loved Makkah more than any city on Earth. But Allah commanded him to move to Madinah when it was not safe for him to live there anymore- and he was taught to love a land to which he did not belong, to live, grow old, and defend a land- have pride for a land- to which he did not belong.

 

For Muslims living in America, it is  okay to be a proud American. It is okay to stand for values that you find aligned to those you believe in. But it is never okay, to go to extremes. To love and celebrate the day of a bloody independence in the way you would celebrate the biggest occasion on the planet. It is never okay, to hate other lands simply out of extreme love for your land.

All of Earth is the same, and national borders are man-made, malleable.

 

I am not here to give you a ruling, to quote the Quran or to pass judgments on what is allowed and what is not- but just to provide an intimate discussion, some food for thought. So we can come back to the basics, rethink our daily lives.

 

And, rather than running with the cycle of things, take a step back from the wheel and take a much deeper, analytical look in the actions we take in our every day lives.

 

We are part of a nation, of nations. All of us have a mixture of many nations within us- some we are more proud of than others.

 

What matters is not what nation we belong to, but how we represent ourselves as human beings, as Muslims or Jews or Christians. As human beings.

 

And in the end, there is no nationalism that is stronger than the bond between each human being- the bond of being human.

 

So rejoice in what gives you pride, agree to disagree and agree to the laws of the land you believe to be free.

 

And as Muslims- one must always remember that we are all of one Earth, the same Earth. All of the Earth belongs to Allah, and to the Earth- and to Allah- we must all return in the end.

Islam, Nationalism, and the 4th of July- A Discussion
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The Truth About Regret http://theexistant.com/the-truth-about-regret/ http://theexistant.com/the-truth-about-regret/#respond Sun, 30 Apr 2017 06:19:05 +0000 http://theexistant.com/?p=611 the Existant
The Truth About Regret

Regret

The truth about regret is quite opposite to what we expect it to be- it is more than just negative emotion. It is the gateway to the future

The Truth About Regret
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The Truth About Regret

Regret

 

Let me tell you a story of regret.

 

In a fit of emotion, I have said things that at the time were the epitome of what I was feeling. My words reflected my state of mind right there and then.

 

I yelled, I became upset, my words flew out of my mouth without filter. It wasn’t until after all had boiled down and I, retreated to my room with anger and frustration, instantly felt another negative emotion, a feeling of dread.

 

This dread was different from what I initially felt that caused me to be angry. What I felt now, without even thinking about my actions, was regret.

 

Sounds like a pretty generic story, doesn’t it? Regret plays out when we do or say something, oftentimes completely consciously and in the heat of the moment, and after the fact, sometimes sooner and sometimes later, we regret it.

 

You see, the truth about regret, is that it plays many parts in our lives. It can come when we least expect it, when we make a decision and are simply so sure that this is the right decision to make. Sometimes, we regret doing something while we are doing it, but outside factors push us toward it.

 

This is all very theoretical, and there are thousands upon thousands of actual examples that can constitute what regret really is.

 

Underneath all circumstantial details, there are some truths to the regret that we feel that we must come to terms with, and that we cannot avoid.

 

 

  • A moral compass

For one, our regret represents that we actually feel bad for something. It indicates our moral compass is working. We only regret something that we know was wrong. Being able to distinguish right from wrong is the critical root of all regret- and is by far the most positive way of thinking about it as well.

 

There has to be light to be able to recognize the dark. Regret is the first step to redemption and truth.

 

 

  • What we value

Our regret also shines light on what matters to us and what doesn’t. The less we regret something, the less value is in the person we may have wronged or hurt, or the moral misdeed we have engaged in.

 

Which is to say, to feel little to no regret about wronging oneself is an indicator of a lack of self value- and an important warning sign that one should start caring about themselves. We must learn to value ourselves before we can value anyone else.

 

 

  • Unavoidable, constant change

Regret shows change, it shows that we are in a different place than we were way the time of committing an action. Although change is not always a good thing, it is not always a bad thing either.

 

Regardless of its good or bad, change is inevitable. Regret will happen undoubtedly with change- our values may change, the people who mean something to us may change. We all change as people, and regret is part of the package.

 

 

  • Intention matters

For those who feel regretful of actions in the face of God, and the determination of our deeds for entry into heaven or hell in the afterlife- or simply for someone who likes to keep a clean slate and be moral- it is important to remember that intention matters.

 

People are wired to make mistakes, we are imperfect. If we were perfect, we would never even try to aspire a better world, a better afterlife. WE would work hard for nothing, and that would defeat the purpose of our lives.

 

In a way, regret and directly from it, our mistakes and negative actiosn keep us humble and remind us of what really matters. We never get too full of ourselves for being good, and we balance our future actions along our regret.

 

We constantly strive to be better, and our hearts remain clean and constantly striving for good. We cannot have good hearts simple because we do good.

We have good hearts and good intentions, if we can identify the wrong, and strive actively on a daily basis to stay away from our mistakes. How can we ever be better people if we never knew the bitterness of being lesser?

 

 

  • Focus on what you CAN change

Another important thing we need to remember to keep us from wallowing in regret- is knowing that nothing can change the past. We can only change what we think of the past- even if sometimes we cant change how we feel about the past.

 

Because in truth, this is life. Regret is not something that can be avoided, we as human beings are constantly moving forward, and to never feel regret is to never move forward.

 

So, the next time you feel ultimately regretful for any decision or thought or action- no matter the size of the regrettable deed on the spectrum of small and unimportant to large and life-changing, remember that there is nothing you can do to change it.

 

Rather than taking our regret in a negative light, we can learn from it. It sounds cliché for sure, but clichés are often rooted in truth.

 

We can take our regret and examine it all we wish. We can even regret the fact that we feel regret. But in the end, we have to remember that to move forward in life and to be better with each passing day, we are bound to regret some, if not many, of the things that we leave behind.

 

And rather than allowing regret to be a feeling that keeps you from moving forward, we have to learn to use our regret as a motivator to success, as a means to be better than what we regret. To be better than we once were.

 

To regret things means that we desire for more than we once were. And rather than simply desiring and moping, we have to take action. Take a look at what you regret, and see just how you can change your future actions to ensure you do not repeat the same mistake again.

 

Prove to yourself that you are different. Make an effort to not only be different, but to be better. Our every instance of regret is one of those huge billboards shaped in an arrow- showing us the way forward. In a way, it is a shortcut to finding out how to move past the past and into the future that we dream of.

 

Your dreams can become reality. You just have to examine every aprt of yourself to get there- and the truth about regret is that it is an essential part of the journey to your destination.

 

The truth about regret, in the end, is that it is essential to life. Regret is not a nice emotion to feel, but the fruits that come from it, the future that takes flight from its seed, is something we could never even hope to attain otherwise.

 

 

 

The Truth About Regret
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