In the early hours of Sunday 27th March 2016 the clocks went forward an hour as the UK converted to ‘British Summer Time’. This means that the evening will have more daylight, and the mornings less.
This change is done in part due to a European directive that all European countries must implement a common ‘summer time’.
Why are you telling us
But why are we posting this information here on the Virtual Mosque blog? How does this affect us?
Well due to this change the Jum’ah (Friday) Prayers will start thirty minutes later at 1.00pm BST. Therefore our live broadcasts will start airing from around 12.55pm on Fridays instead of 12.25pm so please do make a note of the change otherwise you could end up missing some or all of the Khutba and Prayers.
A new YouGov poll has found the British public are generally proud of the British Empire and its colonial past.
YouGov found 44 per cent were proud of Britain’s history of colonialism, with 21 per cent regretting it happened and 23 per cent holding neither view.
The same poll also found 43 per cent believed the British Empire was a good thing, 19 per cent said it was bad and 25 per cent said it was “neither”.
At its height in 1922, the British empire governed a fifth of the world’s population and a quarter of the world’s total land area.
I wonder how many of the people polled actually know the true history of the devastating atrocities carried out under the British Empire during it’s rule over other countries.
Some people estimate more people died under British rule than during either of the World Wars, but whilst its hard to nail down the numbers the video in this link, which shows the estimated number of deaths, gives us a stark reminder of just how abhorrent one group of human beings can be to another in the name of economic prosperity.
There is a lot of fuss in the West about implementation of what they call ‘Sharia Law’. Generally, people fail to realise that many principles of Sharia have already been incorporated in the British law and others are being incorporated for the benefit of the general public. Law of Tort is one example of this. We look at the Islamic principles of Tort in this khutba.
Some Muslims are distributing leaflets saying that Muslims should not take part in elections in the Western Countries. They say it amounts to committing shirk.
They do not, however, produce any verse from the Holy Quran to support what they say. This khutba shows that, on the contrary, the Holy Quran gives clear instructions about who Muslims should elect as their leader as well as examples of how Allah expects leaders to behave. These are further supported by how the leaders of early Islamic communities behaved.
If we separate and isolate ourselves then we will become an irrelevance to the political and social structures of this country with no voice in the higher echelons of government and no influence on policy.
So we implor every Muslims in Britain to go out and vote tomorrow to influence and affect the political landscape of this country.
Eric Pickles, the Communities Secretary has sent the following letter to over a thousand Muslim community ‘leaders’.
We strongly support the request from the Communities Secretary to these Muslim leaders asking them to denounce violence and to say that they are proud to be British and uphold and promote values such as democracy, freedom of expression without insulting or offending others, respect for all religions and religious leaders, and equality of opportunity for all communities regardless of colour, creed or nationality.
It is unfortunate that most Muslim leaders failed to positively respond to his message. It is even more unfortunate that, except for this Islamic organisation, all others teach their members and the children under their care that Muslims are superior to all other humans and that jihad means forcible conversion of non-Muslims to Islam or to kill them.
The government has promoted faith schools which promote such deplorable values and continues to finance them. Although TV channels have been fined for broadcasting extremist programmes from overseas, this is not enough. More effective measures need to be taken against all organisations, which poison our society by promoting hate and bigotry.
Shahid Aziz, President of the UK branch of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Associations for propagation of Islam, said:
It is high time we developed a world vision of Islam for this age. We need pure Islam that is free from cultural and historical baggage, based on the Holy Quran and actions of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (s). A vision that is not founded on the interpretations of some well meaning jurists who appeared hundreds of years ago. They developed a vision of Islam for their time and country. Let us now do so for our time and our country and be proud to be British.
In its programme ‘Battle for British Islam’ the BBC exposed the fact that there is no difference between the so called conservative Muslims and extremists. The conservatives interviewed clearly said that Muslims should segregate themselves from the rest of the community and that the punishment for apostasy is death. Unfortunately, this will not change as long as the government continues to allow faith based schools, especially where children are taught that Muslims are superior to others.
The Holy Quran clearly teaches respect for all religions including idols of other religions. It forbids Muslims from denigrating those deities, other than Allah, worshipped by others because it will hurt their feelings.
The Holy Quran does not in any of its passages instruct Muslims to kill an apostate.
All such teachings were introduced by later scholars as part of Islamic belief.
In responding to the documentary, Shahid Aziz, President of the UK branch of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Associations for propagation of Islam, said
I am troubled by the fact that the conservative and extremist Muslims appear to be becoming the same in their thinking. The government should take note of such views and make sure that there is an effective counter to them. It is especially important to protect our children from such teachings. Let us hope it is not too late.
Professor Paul Baker of Lancaster University carried out a unique research entitled, ‘The Representation of Islam and Muslims in the UK Press 1998-2009’. Along with three other academics, Professor Baker embarked on a rigorous study that involved the analysis of more than 200,000 articles, equating to over 147million words of journalism. The use of “corpus linguistic methods” in creating an “acceptable bias” was amongst other objectives of their endeavour.
There were some interesting conclusions that were drawn from the research:
For every positive article there were 21 negative articles.
Words such as “extremist”, “radical”, “terrorist”, “fundamentalist” and “cleric” have become synonymous to Muslims in the media.
Remember the Birmingham Six, the Maguire Seven, the Guildford Four and Judith Ward? Behind the campaigning numbers were 18 innocent people who collectively spent scores of years in British jails after being falsely convicted of terrorism offences.
Their sin was to be Irish (or, in Ward’s case, to have spent time in Ireland) during that 1970s period when the Provisional IRA was bombing targets in the UK.
The police, convinced in each case that the 18 were guilty, extracted confessions under torture and/or intimidation, faked evidence and lied in court.
All of this is known, but all of this is too easily forgotten. Now, amid the hue and cry in Britain over the activities of the Islamic State (Isis), it is timely to recall the “mistakes” by the police, by MI5 and by a compliant media, of 40 years ago.
I couldn’t help but notice the triumphant and incautious tone in some newspapers last week when five men, aged 20 to 21, were arrested in London over “a suspected terrorist plot to mount an attack in Britain”.
We learned from some papers last Wednesday (8 October) that they had links to Syria and to Islamic State (Isis). The headlines were unequivocal: “Jihadi plot to attack UK smashed” (Daily Mail); “MI5 smash British ‘Isil terror plot'” (Daily Telegraph); “British medical student arrested on terror charges ‘may have just returned from Somalia'” (the Independent); and “MI5 nab surgeon” (The Sun).
The leaking to the press of such specific information, about Muslims being arrested, by the Police is extremely worrying, and is a repeat of how the Irish were treated not too long ago. But rather than learn from those harsh lessons the Police seem adamant on repeating them.
The criminal justice system in England and Wales has a long standing principle that people are presumed innocent, it is a part of the Human Rights act in both the UK and EU.
But as this Guardian article suggests, here in the UK if you are a Muslim you are presumed guilty and have to prove your innocence.
Newsreel archive British Pathé has uploaded its entire collection of 85,000 historic films, in high resolution, to its YouTube channel. This unprecedented release of vintage news reports and cinemagazines is part of a drive to make the archive more accessible to viewers all over the world.
“Our hope is that everyone, everywhere who has a computer will see these films and enjoy them,” says Alastair White, General Manager of British Pathé. “This archive is a treasure trove unrivalled in historical and cultural significance that should never be forgotten. Uploading the films to YouTube seemed like the best way to make sure of that.”
The above is fantastic news for sites like ours and the Woking Muslim Mission website as we can finally watch and share, at no cost, stunning videos from when the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement ran the Woking Mosque in the UK.
Imam Asim Hafiz is not surprised that more and more Muslims are joining the British military. He is in no doubt, either, that British Muslims can be good soldiers?. That is not because Mr Hafiz was the first Muslim chaplain for the Armed Forces when he was appointed in 2005. Nor is it because he is now an Islamic adviser to the MoD. Rather, it is because, as with an increasing number of Muslims, he believes that there is no contradiction between being of Muslim faith and choosing to defend Britain.
Hafiz was invested as an Officer of the Order of the British Empire earlier this month, during a ceremony that coincided with Islam Awareness Week. To mark this, the MoD announced that, since 2007, the number of Muslims serving in the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force has risen by more than 40 per cent. It goes against public perception, but Mr Hafiz says that it is to be expected. “The increasing number of Muslims in the armed forces is a natural change, because society is becoming more tolerant and young Muslim men and women feel more able to come forward and serve,” he says.
One of the objections, from our Sunni brothers, against the Promised Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib, is that he ‘supported’ the British rule in India. He did not support the British rule in India but he was grateful to them for rescuing Muslims from the situation they found themselves in when they lost political power and gave followers of every religion the opportunity to practice it openly and to preach it.
Sunni Muslims were on the one hand decrying Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib and on the other joining the British military and civil service. Sunni Muslims even attacked and killed Sunni Muslims of Turkey during World War I while fighting for the British Empire.
The same thing is happening now. In those countries where Muslims are in a majority they give sermons and speeches about the necessity of violent jihad but when they come to the West, they become pussy cats. Now their followers are joining the British army.