24 Sept 2021

Prophets in the Quran

Learning Objective:
- To recap the role of the Prophets
- To be familiar with the named Prophets in the Quran
- To understand the concept of ismah, the infallibility of the anbiya.

Quran Verse:
Our Lord is He who gave everything its form and then guided it. Surah Taha 20:49-50

Allah has built within us a fitrah, a natural instinct to believe in God. However, this natural instinct is not sufficient for our guidance, and Allah has therefore sent Prophets (anbiya) and Imams (a’immah) to guide us to the right path, teaching us how to use our potential and become our best.

All 124,000 Prophets (Nabi, Pl. Anbiya) were sent with the same message of Tawhid to guide mankind. 21:25. Some of them were sent with a special message or a reveled book and these prophets are called rasul. There are 28 Prophets mentioned by name in the Quran.

Activity: Prophets in the Quran
Have a look through the contents page of the Holy Quran listing the titles of the surahs. Can you find the surah named after the Prophets? Read the following verses of Surat al-Anbiya (21) highlight and list the prophets mentioned. How many did you find?

A Nabi must have the following qualifications:
1. Must be sent by Allah.
2. Must possess ismah which means to be sinless and never disobey Allah. A person who has ismah and is infallible is called a ma'sum. 
3. Must be able to perform miracles.

It is important to understand that the ma‘sumin are not forced by Allah or unable to commit sins. They keep away from sin by their own free will. A ma‘sum keeps away from sin because of his or her deep understanding of how sin harms the soul of a person and also because he is aware and conscious of Allah’s presence at all times. This is just like ordinary people who have the free will to hurt their bodies but they don’t do it because they know how painful and harmful it will be. People commit sins because they don’t realise how much they are harming their souls. If they knew that, they would not even think of committing a sin.

Activity: Discussion about infallibility
- Why is it important for messengers to be infallible? Find and read Surah Najm 53: 3-4. What does Allah tell us about the Holy Prophet (S) and why do you think He said this?
- Does being a Ma'sum guarantee that your family will be safe too? What does Allah tell Prophet Nuh when he asks for his son to be saved? 11:45-46
- Are there any stories that made you think the Prophets had committed a sin? (P.Adam/P/Yunus)
Such ‘mistakes’ made by the anbiya are not actually sins that affect their position as spiritual guides. Instead, such actions are called Tark al-Awla which means ‘leaving the better option’. It is possible for the Prophets to sometimes make a choice that is not the best even though it is not a sin. 
- The fourteen ma‘sumin are Allah’s most perfect creation and do not commit even tark al-awla. Read Surah Ahzab 33:33 what does Allah say about them in the Quran?


23 Sept 2021

Perfection in Creation: The Fibonacci Sequence and Golden Ratio in Nature

Learning Objective:
- To understand the wonders of creation that indicate perfect and precise design. 
- To explore the golden ratio in the human body

Quran Verse: 
And He shows you His signs; which then of Allah's signs will you deny? Surah Ghafir 40:81

Lesson Introduction: 
Wherever you look in the universe, there is order, and proof of design. This precise order and design can be observed everywhere – from the orbits of the planets and the stars, right down to the microscopic level of our cells and our very DNA. This perfect design of our universe, the way it is so finely tuned as so often described by science, proves that randomness and chance can have had no part to play in the design of the universe. The presence of intelligent design proves the existence of an intelligent designer, i.e. Allah.

The Fibonacci Sequence in Nature 
Fibonacci's famous sequence: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8..., and so on, with each term equalling the sum of the previous two terms. This seemingly random sequence has baffled mathematicians and scientists alike, as the sequence and its converging ratio keep appearing in nature. 

- Tree start off with one trunk which splits into 2 and this pattern continues with each new branch.

Several flowers have petals that are numbers of the Fibonacci sequence. Lilies have 3 petals, buttercups have 5 petals, and daisies have 34 petals, for example.

- You are an example of the beauty of the Fibonacci Sequence. You'll notice that most of your body parts follow the numbers one, two, three and five. You have one nose, two eyes, three segments to each limb and five fingers on each hand.

The Golden Ratio
If you divide each term of the Fibonacci sequence by the previous result, you will find that as the numbers get bigger, the ratio converges to 1.618 known as the 'golden ratio'.

Activity: You are Mathematically Perfect!
In pairs, complete the Human Body Measurements Chart. Use inches and carefully measure in a straight line trying not to bend the tape. 

It is incredibly fascinating that even through we all look so different from each other, the proportions in the human body follow the Golden Ratio. Allah has created us with such precision and perfection!

For centuries, artists and sculptors have used the golden ratio to create sculptures and artwork of the ideal human figure. To this day, surgeons and dentists use it to restructure the human face.

Activity: You Can Never Count Allah's Blessings!
The golden ratio an irrational number which means that it never ends and all its digits can never be counted.  Look up Surah Nahl 16:18 in the Holy Qur’an. "If you try to count Allah’s blessings, you will not be able to count them." Doesn't this correlation leave you awe struck?! There is no randomness in creation!


Creation of the Universe in the Quran


Lesson Objective:

- To know Allah is Al-Fatir, Originator of the Universe
- To explore the creation of the universe through Quranic descriptions and verses

Quran Verse: 
Do the unbelievers not see that the heavens and the earth were joined together and We unravelled them, and We made every living thing out of water? Will they not then have faith? Surah Anbiya 21:30

Key Learning: 

There are many descriptions in the Holy Quran about the creation of the universe that are in agreement with modern scientific discoveries but the Big Bang theory does not explain where the original matter came from or who or what caused it. Allah tells us in the Quran that it is He who is Al Fatir, the Originator of all creation. 

Lesson Introduction:
Discoveries in astronomy and physics have shown beyond a reasonable doubt that our universe did in fact have a beginning. According to the Big Bang theory, all of the matter in the universe was compacted into a small dense singularity which then expanded over time. The gas moved away from the centre of the universe much like debris from an explosion. As the gas expanded it cooled, allowing structures like stars, galaxies, and planets to form. 

Science tells us that even now the stars continue to move away from each other and the universe is continuously expanding. The lands of earth once formed a single land mass called Pangea that broke up and drifted apart into the continents we know today, and these continents are still moving. 

Activity: Quranic Verses about the Creation of the Universe
Look up the following verses and match the descriptions from the Quran to the scientific discoveries of the creation of the universe. Put your findings into a Venn Diagram.
  • 21:30, 41:11, 51:47, 79:30, 42:11
Expansion from singular point 
Oxygen is created by nuclear reactions in stars. If you put hydrogen and oxygen together in the cold of space, you get H2O. There are enormous amounts of water in space.
Planets created from hot gas 
Universe continuously expanding 
Continents moving apart
Allah is Al Fatir, He is the originator of the heavens and the Earth.

Muslims regard the existence of the universe as proof of the existence of Allah. The creation of the universe cannot be simply a matter of chance.

Where did the original gas matter for the explosion to happen originate from?
Who caused the bang to occur?
Who caused the organisation of the explosion into such a perfect structure?
How can all this happen from nothing?

Islam is very clear about the belief that Allah was responsible for the creation of the universe.


21 May 2021

Masjid Al Aqsa

Quran Verse: 

Glory be to Him who made His servant go by night from Masjidul Haram to Masjidul Aqsa, whose surroundings We have blessed..” Surah Bani Israel 17:1

Masjid Al Aqsa is located in Jerusalem. It is not a single mosque but an area of land within which are many buildings. This area is also called Baytul Muqaddas and Allah tells us in the Quran that this land is blessed.

Activity: 5 Facts about Baytul Muqaddas
1. Masjid Al Aqsa is the only mosque, besides the Holy Kaaba, that is mentioned in the Qur’an.
2. Masjid Al Aqsa was the first Qibla for Muslims to face during salaa.
3. It was in Masjid al Aqsa that Angel Jibraeel told Maryam (as) about the birth of Prophet Isa (a).
4. The grey domed Qibly Masjid is where the Holy Prophet (S) led all the prophets in prayer on his way to the heavens during the miraculous Night Journey of Me’raj.
5. The journey of Me’raj began from the rock on which today stands the mosque known as the Dome of the rock famous for its golden dome.


9 May 2021

Quranic Highlights: Surah Al Insaan 76


Watch Quranic Highlights: Surah Al Insaan 76

Learning Objective:

- To become familiar with the surah through a short video presentation
- To engage with the Quran and personalize own copy by annotating and highlighting verses 
- To build a Quranic vocabulary

Quran Verses:
76:1, 76:3, 76:8-9

Quranic Vocabulary 
Insaan, Shakiran, Kafuran

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