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Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Sejarah keIslaman Dinasti Ming (Rahsia Islam di China)

China, negara yang mempunyai penduduk paling ramai di dunia, dengan jumlah populasi mencecah 1.3 bilion. Negara Tembok Besar ini pernah diperintah oleh maharaja dinasti sejak 5000 tahun dahulu sehingga menjadi sebuah negara republik pada 1912. Pada era pemerintahan Dinasti Tang, dakwah Islam mula bertapak di bumi China dan menambat hati sebilangan rakyatnya. Hingga kini, bilangan penganut Islam melebihi 30 juta orang. Tidak banyak fakta tentang masyarakat Islam di China yang dipaparkan oleh media. Kejayaan dan keutuhan ajaran Islam yang berkembang di bawah sistem pemerintahan komunis ini juga masih misteri.

Di sebalik lingkaran kemegahan tembok besar dan legasi dinasti maharaja China, tersembunyi lipatan sejarah kegemilangan Islam di benua Asia. Bermula daripada kedatangan delegasi Saad bin Abi Waqas yang disambut baik oleh Maharaja Yung Wei dari Dinasti Tang, Islam bertapak dan terus subur berkembang di bumi China. Walaupun empayar maharaja silih berganti hingga era pemerintahan republik komunis, sinar Islam tidak pernah pudar. Malah, sejak 618 M hingga kini, dakwah Islam yang dibawa oleh sahabat Nabi Muhammad terus kukuh di bawah acuan budaya dan nilai yang tersendiri sebilangan rakyat China.

Gemilang Di Sebalik Tembok Besar menyajikan dimensi menarik yang tersembunyi di sebalik payung pemerintahannya. Bermula dari zaman Dinasti Tang, buku ini membawa pembaca menelusuri beberapa dinasti bersama pahit dan manis di bawah pemerintahan dinasti yang silih berganti. Ditulis dengan gaya bahasa mudah, disusun mengikut rantai peristiwa serta dikukuhkan dengan gambar dan peta sejarah.



Petikan daripada ** Buku Rahsia Islam di China: Gemilang Di Sebalik Tembok Besar



Sejarah keIslaman Dinasti Ming ini amat jarang sekali disentuh oleh para orientalis yang mengkajinya mahupun dalam kalangan sejarawan-sejarawan China yang bukan Islam.

Misalnya dalam buku 'The Cambridge History of China' tidak ada langsung menyebut peranan orang Islam dalam menegakkan kerajaan itu, bahkan peristiwa kebangkitan kumpulan Islam seperti Kebangkitan Serban Merah hanya dikaitkan dengan pengikut agama Buddha sahaja.

Dalam bukunya 'Sejarah Islam di China, Jing Chee Tang telah memberikan beberapa alasan yang jelas menunjukkan bahawa Chu Yuan Chang, pengasas kerajaan Ming itu ialah seorang Islam. Ibrahim T.Y.Ma juga telah membuktikan perkara yang sama.

Yusuf Chang dalam sebuah artikelnya menyatakan bahawa Chu Yuan Chang (baginda menggunakan gelaran Maharaja Hung Wu) seorang Islam dari keturunan Semu (semitik) yang telah datang ke China dalam zaman Yuan. Seorang lagi sejarawan China seperti Muhammad Pai Shou Yi juga menyatakan bahawa selain Chu Yuan Chang, permaisurinya iaitu Ratu Ma Hou jelas beragama Islam kerana baginda berasal daripada keluarga Ma di An Hui.

Dikisahkan juga setelah menawan Nanking, Chu Yuan Chang telah mendirikan sebuah masjid jami'. Masjid ini dinamakan Masjid Chin Juieh yang bermaksud 'Pencerahan Murni'. Bahkan baginda sendiri telah menulis sebuah sajak untuk diabadikan pada dinding masjid yang dibinanya itu. (Ibrahim T.Y.Ma, 1979:126)

Ibrahim Tien Ying Ma, bekas mufti Peking (Beijing) dan salah seorang pegawai Republik China sebelum China jatuh ke tangan Komunis pada tahun 1949, telah menyatakan bahawa Dinasti Ming itu memang sebuah kerajaan Islam.

Beliau menjelaskan bahawa 'Ming' bermaksud 'gilang-gemilang atau terang-benderang'. Perkara ini mengingatkan kita kepada tindakan Rasulullah Saw ketika mula-mula sampai ke Yathrib pada tahun 622M. Baginda telah menukarkan nama kota itu kepada Madinah al-Munawarah atau 'Kota yang gilang-gemilang dan bercahaya'. Perkara ini bukanlah satu kebetulan. Ia memang disengajakan kerana pengasas kerajaan Ming adalah seorang Islam (1979:134).

Petikan daripada http://sejarah2u.blogspot.com/

Sumber:
1) Ma, Ibrahim T.Y., Perkembangan Islam di Tiongkok, Bulan Bintang, Jakarta, 1979
2) Chang, Yusuf, 'The Ming Empire: Patron of Islam in China and Southeast and West Asia', dlm. JMBRAS, Jilid 61, Bahagian 2, 1988.
3) Mote, F.W., Twitchett, D., (ed), The Cambridge History of China, Jilid 7, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1988.

Monday, 23 February 2009

Umayyads (711-1031 CE)

Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, died in 632 CE in Medina. Following his death, several of his close companions succeeded him as caliphs. The term caliph is a transliterated version of the Arabic word for "successor" or "representative." They included Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Ali.

During this time, Muslims had extended their rule outside Arabia to include much of today’s Middle East and parts of North Africa. Thus, they reduced the size of the Byzantine Empire and brought the Sasanid Empire in Persia to an end.

In 661 CE, opponents of Ali assassinated him. Then-governor of Syria, Mu’awiya, acquired leadership of the caliphate and moved the capital to Damascus. He was of a member of the elite Meccan tribe of Banu Umayya.

Mu’awiya designated his son, Yazid, to be his successor. In effect, this designation created the first Muslim dynasty: the Umayyads. During the next century, his descendants expanded Muslim rule northwards into Anatolia and Central Asia, eastwards to the borders of India and westward across North Africa.



In 711, Amazigh (Berber) commander Tariq ibn Ziyad led an Umayyad force across the Mediterranean into Spain. They defeated the army of the Visigothic king, Roderic. The caliph in Damascus appointed an Umayyad governor to rule most of Iberia. The Muslims called this new land “Al-Andalus.”

In 750 CE, the Abbasid family rallied support among opponents of the Umayyads and overthrew the dynasty. The Abbasids were a noble clan descended from one of Muhammad’s uncles. They took control of the caliphate and established their new capital at Baghdad.

While many of his relatives were killed, a young Umayyad prince named Abd al-Rahman sought refuge among his Amazigh (Berber) mother’s tribe in North Africa. He crossed over to Spain. In 755, he gained control of Córdoba. There, he became amir (ruler) of Al-Andalus, which was independent from the Abbasid caliphate.

Others followed Abd al-Rahman's example, such as Idris -- a descendant of Ali -- who established the Idrisid Dynasty in Morocco around 788.

The Umayyad amirate lasted until 929 CE. An Umayyad descendant named Abd al-Rahman (III), who was not content with the title of amir, declared himself caliph. In doing so, he openly challenged the Abbasids’ claim. He also countered the Shi’i Fatimids in North Africa, who had recently taken the title of caliph, as well.

The 10th century Umayyad caliphate in Spain represents the pinnacle of unity, power, wealth, and scientific and artistic achievement in Al-Andalus.

The rise to power of an ambitious palace official, Muhammad Ibn Abi Amir (Al-Mansur), initially enhanced the Muslims’ military strength in the peninsula. But, Al-Mansur’s military regime threatened the internal stability cultivated over several centuries, sowing the seeds for civil war.

In 1013 CE, Amazigh (Berber) troops seized control in Córdoba, killed Caliph Hisham II and sacked the palace city, Madinat al-Zahra. Amid chaos and tragedy, the leading religious authorities in Córdoba dissolved the caliphate. This move opened the way for former governors and city administrators to become local kings of a fragmented Al-Andalus.

Article refer to http://www.islamicspain.tv/

The Islamic Community In The United States

1) The Navigator of Columbus, who during the famous voyage, brought along a copy of a travel narrative written by Portuguese Muslims who had sailed to the New World in the 12th century. The narrative by al-Idrisi was called "The Sea of Tears". In this narrative he discusses he voyage of 80 muhagharrun (explorers) who lived in Lisbon during the reign of the Murabit amir, Yusuf ibn Tashufin. In the narrative it mentions visits to fourteen islands. Over half of these islands were later traced to be in either the Canary Islands or the Azores. However, the ones not traced could have been as far away or the Azores. However, the ones not traced could have been as far away as the Caribbean. An early travel from 942 A.D. is mentioned in the Annuals of al-Mas'udi. (Aramco World, May-June 1992)

2) Istafan, the Arab, was a guide for the Spanish that wished to settle the area that would later be called Arizona in 1539. Istafan was from Azamor, Morocco and had previously been to the New World in the ill-fated expedition of Panfilo de Narvaez to Florida in 1527. Brent Kennedy mentions him in his article in Islamic Horizons as being one of the first Moors and Muslims in America. Istafan was one of four to survive a five thousand mile tour of the American Southwest. Originally he was part of a three hundred member exploratory group. He would go on to become the first visitor from Europe or Africa among the Pueblo Indians. (Islamic Horizons November/December 1994, pp.24-27). He was also a guide for the Franciscan friar, Marcos de Niza and was in this capacity until he was killed in an Indian attack in Arizona and New Mexico in 1539.

3) Another early Muslim in this period was Nasruddin. He is famous for having killed a Mohawk princess who refused to marry him and for being the earliest permanent Arab settlers in the New World. [History of Green County, N.Y., pp. 19-22.]


4) Ayub Sulaiman ibn Diallo became a go between for his people and the British after his repatriation. I mention him because he continued to practice Islam during his two years of slavery in the 1730's in Maryland. He was versed enough in Arabic to write at least a half dozen letters in that language, translate coin inscriptions for the British Museum, and draw a map of West Africa writing place names in Arabic.

5) Salim the Algerian, who was a Muslim from a royal family of Algiers that studied in Constantinople. After returning from a visit to Constantinople, he was captured by a Spanish Man of War and later sold into slavery to the French in New Orleans. Eventually he became free after running from slavery, lived among American Indian tribes, and settled in Virginia. Salem was found in rags, almost naked, and was taught English. Eventually, it was ascertained that he knew Greek and he was given a Greek New Testament. Several future members of the U.S. Congress befriended him and he converted to Christianity. A new convert to Christianity he decided to go back home to spread the Gospel. After a disastrous journey to his homeland (where he was shunned as an apostate), he returned to America, met Thomas Jefferson, attended the 1st Continental Congress, and died an insane man having given-up his family and religion for America. While he was at the Congress his picture was painted by a Mr. Peale after the intervention of a member of the Congress Mr. Page. Near the end of Salem's life, he regained his long lost sanity. He had been insane since his trip to his homeland after his conversion to Christianity. Some say he renounced Christianity, other say died a Christian at the Page estate, and still others say he died in an insane asylum. [Graham's Magazine, 1857, pp. 433-437.] It should be noted that none of these men tried to spread Islam and only Ayub tried to preserve his own belief.

The Wahhab brothers were shipwrecked on the coast of North Carolina in the 1770's. They settled married and started a farm. Their ancestors today own one of the largest private hotel chains in North Carolina. The only contemporary reference I have on them is a letter from the North Carolina historian Thomas Parramore. Whether they or their ancestors stayed in the Islamic faith is something that I can not answer at this time. Around this same time a ship of 70 odd Moorish slaves landed in Maryland. No more is known on these Moors.

An important point is that these Muslims were not unique in being able to read and write Arabic. In fact, in many slave quarters in the Caribbean and Brazil there were clandestine Arabic and Islamic schools. One can find references to these in the works by Nina Rodriguez and in the two volume book TWELVE MONTHS IN JAMAICA by Robert Madden (Phil.: Carey, Lea and Blanchard, 1835).

Muhammed Abdullah Ahari from http://www.sunnah.org/history/

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Enforce Respect and Implementation of International Law, Human Rights, and UN Resolutions

We as members of Palestinian civil society welcome all recent initiatives to boycott Israel which have been launched in many parts of the world. For the sake of freedom and justice in Palestine and the world, we call upon the solidarity movement, NGOs, academic and cultural institutions, business companies, political parties and unions, as well as concerned individuals to strengthen and broaden the global Israel Boycott Campaign.

Israel Boycotts International Law and Human Rights – We Boycott Israel!

With greetings of solidarity,

Applied Research Institute Jerusalem (ARIJ)
Arab Center for Agricultural Development (ACAD)
BADIL Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights
General Federation of Trade Unions in Palestine (GFTUP)
High Coordination Committee of the Local Committees for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled – West Bank
LAW – The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment
Palestinian Center for Peace and Democracy (PCPD)
Palestinian Federation of Women Action Committees (PFWAC), Nablus
PNGO –Palestinian NGO Network
Palestinian Prisoners Society
Popular Committees of the Palestinian Refugees – West Bank and Gaza Strip
Residents of Destroyed Palestinian Cities and Villages in 1948 Palestine, Ramallah
Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC)
Union of Health Care Committees
Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees (UPMRC)
Union of Youth Activity Centers – Palestine Refugee Camps (UYAC).

Activists picket the Football Association in Soho Square in protest at the England vs Israel Euro 2008 qualifying match (24 Mar 2007)



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