About Mawarid Lifestyle
Islamic websites and blogs often quietly pop up online without mentioning who is behind them and what they are about. Knowledge and information do not go together with anonymity in the Islāmic tradition. As Muhammad Ibn Sīrīn (ra) said, ‘… consider carefully whom you take your religion from.’ That’s something to think about in the age of the internet and social media.
So, just in case you share that same dislike, here’s my story and why I set up Mawārid Lifestyle. Many brothers and sisters know that I founded Ebrahim College in 2002/3 and have been in management there ever since. In March 2019, I took a short sabbatical from the majority of my duties, and in June I completely stepped down from management after 17 years.
Management and leadership are two very distinct things. Leadership one cannot escape, but management can be very soul destroying for someone whose passion lies elsewhere. I wanted to teach, write, and help solve urgent problems of the community. I was in a leadership position doing no leading. Most of my time was spent chasing after money to keep things afloat and managing different bits of the organisation that didn’t have management. No one was happy: not me, not the people under me. So, despite my love for EC having founded it myself, in March, I handed over to the trustees and other colleagues, and stepped away. I had to move on and Mawārid Lifestyle is one of the ways in which I am doing that.
Mawārid Lifestyle is an Islamic lifestyle website which, for now at least, reflects what I am personally passionate about. I want the Māwarid site to be my interface with my brothers and sisters in the community. A way to share my views, my work, and provide my service where I can. You can read more about that below.
Please pray that this effort is accepted by Allah (swt) and it is successful. If you benefit from it, make du‘a for me and those who are helping me and spread the word so others can benefit too.
Shams Adduha Muhammad
About Mawarid Lifestyle
I am passionate about spirituality and Islamic lifestyle. Not least because those two things represent my personal journey and personal challenges. I’m sure the same is true for many other Muslims. Yet, these are very broad labels that everyone uses. So what exactly do I mean by them?
I’m referring simply to living life as a Muslim. This involves being oriented in Islam so that Islam is our personal world view. This then results in being able to think like a Muslim. Sometimes people practise Islam but their minds are immersed in an alternative worldview, Western, liberal, secular, cultural, etc. The labels are endless. These things have serious implications on the validity of our faith and spirituality, and stops us from being compartmentalised Muslims. We all know people who pray 5 times but engage in haram business, and those who are honest and decent but do not pray.
Then, when it comes to practising Islam, for our worship to be meaningful, we have to commit to quality worship (as opposed to merely discharging it) and the worship has to come from the correct worldview as mentioned above.
When our worship and core religious obligations (farāiḍ) are not surrounded by an Islamic lifestyle built on sound faith, strong values, spiritual depth, family and community, and mental, emotional, and physical well-being, our faith and worship inevitably suffer. We become vulnerable to the harām and become attracted to sin, especially when our desires and goals align with them. Sin and the harām help fill the void left by the lack of Islamic lifestyle and spirituality. They are like light and darkness, day and night: where one is absent, the other is present.
With Mawārid Lifestyle, the focus will be on the things that make a good quality Islamic lifestyle. You can expect content on strengthening your īmān, dealing with doubts, improving our character, enriching our worship, key principles and values of Islam, marriage, parenting, family, learning, well-being, community, etc. Of course, there will inevitably be the odd Shams Muhammad rant here and there.
Sharing My Experience
Mawarid Lifestyle has partly been inspired by my own personal journey and struggles on the path of seeking knowledge, spirituality and living an Islamic lifestyle as well as bringing up my children upon it. It was also inspired by my commitment to serve the community in diverse ways and share with them what I’ve experienced over the last 30 or so years, the books I have read or am reading, the scholars I’ve met and benefited from, the Islamic lifestyle products and services I’ve used, the places I’ve travelled, and the people I’ve met. So in addition to my own posts, expect lots of signposting. There’s some amazing content and resources out there.
Teaching and Mentoring
I will also pursue my passion for teaching and mentoring through Mawārid Lifestyle. I will gradually launch a small number of courses on topics that are important to me and I feel are important to the community. As well as a couple of mentoring programmes. I’m not interested in filling the site up with every course imaginable, just a few focused and specific courses and programmes that are either hard to find elsewhere or I am or have been keen to teach or develop and haven’t been able to thus far.