Thursday, 5 May 2011

Discussing Green Deen

Guernica Magazine has published a conversation between Imam Khalid Latif, Imam of the Islamic Center at NYU and Ibrahim Abdul-Matin, authour of “Green Deen: What Islam Teaches About Protecting the Planet”. The conversation is an interesting and useful one, giving lots of good advice and food for thought about the importance of being a green Muslim. Below are a few excerpts from the magazine, I would definitely encourage readers to visit the site and read the full piece:

"What we know from our deen, the path or way of Islam, is that we are not the owners of anything in the universe. 

The conviction that the earth is a mosque is rooted in some core, ethical Islamic principles that we should comprehend when attempting to live a green deen

The earth is 70 percent water, and the somber trust that we have with our creator, to be stewards, khalifah of the earth, means we will be held accountable for our actions. These actions include those related to water. If the earth is a mosque, then 70 percent of our mosque is water. Our mosque is oceans and springs and rivers, lakes and springs and wells. It is our right to benefit from water. Indeed, we need it for sheer survival. However, we negate that right if we contaminate, poison, or withhold water from plants, animals, fellow humans, all of whom also need water for survival.
I say, we can “turn your Green Deen ‘blue’ by setting up a water recycling station in your mosque so the water used for wudu,” wudu is a ritual ablution before you pray, “can be used to water the plants and grass outside.

So the other section that I want to jump to is waste. What I discovered when I was thinking about this was that, really, what we’re talking about is consumption and over-consumption and the patterns of consumption and how do we use things and let them go and, then, what we do with them? What happens to things? What happens to ourselves when we use and consume things? Because things define who we are.

Islam teaches that we come with intrinsic value, we do not need to produce or acquire anything to be valuable, we are innately valuable from birth to death. We all have the noble beginning and noble end, our soul has value because it is made by God. And when we recognize our own value and nurture the relationship with the creator, we begin to take better care of ourselves, we see ourselves as a beautiful part of creation."

You can read the full discussion here.

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