How does dance work as a tool? How do we integrate dance into our lives? What does a “new” dance have to do with the “old” dance? How does dance support social engagement? These are a few ideas we explored in a study published last month; we hope you’ll find them valuable.
The following text comes from a May 2012 article in the Toronto News, entitled, “Why we need to stop asking “Are you Muslim?””, written by a Toronto-based writer named Yasmin A. Chaudhry.
The article (as well as more recent articles and tweets from her) is titled “We need to stop asking Muslim people ‘Are you Muslim?”, and is based on articles from the Torontoist website (http://www.torontopinion.com/), and an article by Terence Corcoran (“The Liberal Media-Bite-Smashers”, Feb. 8, 2012) on the now-defunct Toronto Globe and Mail website (http://www.globeandmail.com/news/canada/toronto/toronto-jewish-activist-israhell-nassiff-islamist-islamism-article36992074/).
I will summarize her comments for you here.
To begin with, we need to define what constitutes “Muslim.” Many Muslim scholars define it as simply meaning a Muslim; some scholars make the distinction with Islam as a faith, and others with it as a creed. A Muslim must be Muslim, in order to be a Muslim. But, even if one is Muslim, and one is Muslim, it will not make someone religious and right. The word “Muslim” is the key to all the other concepts and labels we have, such as a Christian or a Jew. It is what makes a particular person a member of a particular religion, and not to be understood at any other.
In order for a person to declare themselves a Muslim, they must first have a certain amount or “blessings.” In fact, a number of Islamic scholars define the first two blessings of the Muslim as those in which Allah accepts a person into Islam. If a Muslim is chosen by Allah to be a Muslim and if he is able to complete three blessings, then his declaration that he is Muslim is valid:
Praised be Allah (for the blessings),
Praised be Allah (for the confirmation), and
Praised be Allah (for the religion).
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