Dear friends, donors, readers, helpers, and students, As-salamu ‘alaykum from Shaykh Nooruddin’s Islamic Study Center in Charlottesville, Virginia. We hope Allah finds you well, open-hearted, and at peace in Remembrance. We need your help. Our letter this time is not about all our activities when we are not quarantined, although they are several: jumuah, lectures, website, school, counseling, weddings, feeding people, celebrations. And, it is not about the after-school school, which, when not in Quarantine, is thriving and full of kids of all ages and from many countries, learning to read and recite the Qur’an and doing their homework with help from tutors. We are not even writing about the hundreds of people who hear Shaykh Nooruddeen speak every week at six different masajid and on the web. Yet for all of the above, we need your help. We are writing about the necessity for keeping this place, and others like it, alive and well in a cultural environment that seems to be favoring military reaction, fear, and distrust of the ‘other’. In a time like no other in recent history, when we return from Quarantine, we need places like this to keep their doors open. Since there is no ‘other’ in Islam, we accept all of us as one humanity. Night after night at the Study Center the conversation weaves around linguistics, history and geography. These conversations produce a worldview that does not permit the waving of anyone’s flag over everyone’s head. We honor all the great teachers and prophets sent by our Creator, and we accept that Allah has never left us for one moment without teachers and teaching. We are inheritors of the last and greatest teaching that includes all the others, and we are trying to provide a place for that teaching to be continued. We seek peace through justice, through loving teaching and relationships, and through hard personal effort, which leads to the free and open transformation of people. We endeavor to create and live in a place of tranquility in the midst of chaos. This work needs your help. This is a time of great opportunity for the Muslims. Islam is constantly on the minds of people in the press, on the net, on every kind of device. It doesn’t really matter if the news is good or bad; the important thing is that an ongoing discussion is taking place, and it is our chance to speak out about the true nature of our din, and to demonstrate its beauty in our lives. The Islamic Study Center is a place where that can happen and does happen. It needs your help. The schoolchildren are learning Qur’an and doing their secular homework, but they are also learning self control, adab before friends, elders and parents, how to pray, how to sit still, how to share food, how to let each person have his or her space. We hope and pray to develop in both children and adults the faith and inner conviction that leads them to live as Muslims in any environment. We want them to learn not only how, but why, so they can answer the questions that come at them and maintain their serenity. We think this is the best kind of da’wa. Will you help?
We need your help for the an-Noor Foundation in maintaining the Center, in keeping the school going, in opening our doors to whoever comes in to talk, to eat, to pray; in keeping up the schedule of the Shaykh, in keeping producing books and lectures, in maintaining the website where all the information is available. An-Noor is a non-profit 501-C-3 … donate for your tax deduction…! Please help now if you can!
Thank you in advance, and Allah bless you, your family, your neighbors, and those you love.