By: John W. Whitehead
If ever Americans sell their birthright, it will be for the promise of expediency and comfort delivered by way of blazingly fast Internet, cell phone signals that never drop a call, thermostats that keep us at the perfect temperature without our having to raise a finger, and entertainment that can be simultaneously streamed to our TVs, tablets and cell phones.
Likewise, if ever we find ourselves in bondage, we will have only ourselves to blame for having forged the chains through our own lassitude, laziness and abject reliance on internet-connected gadgets and gizmos that render us wholly irrelevant.
Indeed, while most of us are consumed with our selfies and trying to keep up with what our so-called friends are posting on Facebook, the megacorporation Google has been busily partnering with the National Security Agency (NSA), the Pentagon, and other governmental agencies to develop a new “human” species, so to speak.
By: Muhammad ‘Abd al-Haqq
Bismillah. Alhamdulillah wa salatu wasallam ala Rasulillah.
The following is a list of quotes from writings and writers, ancient and modern, religious and secular, attesting to the Pagan origins and nature of celebrating one’s supposed day of birth. Of course many contemporary, secularized people will object and say that “birthdays” no longer have any religious significance(despite the fact that all the ancient pagan rituals are maintained and preserved in the modern celebrations). However if you profess to be a Muslim, a Jew, or a Christian, you should not be doing this; Especially after you become aware that the word “secular” has the same definition as `irjaa(separating beliefs from actions, i.e. separating public actions from privately held beliefs(religion)). Yet “religion” is, from the Latin “religare”, “that which binds”, thus making Secular Humanism a religion in its own right.
A creative exploration of architecture and human relationships with modern cities.Richard Bentley has a love for buildings and believes they are a living part of our cities and cultures. But he wonders how much we really see the great structures surrounding us as we move through our modern spaces.For three years, he has been a time lapse photographer, patiently turning his camera on some special buildings and encouraging us to consider what they reveal of our past, present and future.In Metropolis, Richard uses his photography to explore our relationships with the cities and structures that surround us.
How is our need to be constantly connected impacting our lives and could a digital detox be the solution?Al Jazeera’s Phil Lavelle is constantly connected, and can rarely be found without his face buried into one of his many mobile devices. He diagnosed himself as a digital addict – after researching the symptoms online, of course – but now feels the need to disconnect. We follow him as he checks into a digital detox facility and attempts to adapt to a life without his devices. Along the way, we explore the modern phenomenon of digital addiction.
Wildlife and astronomy lovers benefit from an initiative to reduce light pollution.
Outdoor artificial lighting may be a fact of modern life, but it is costing the environment dearly.
Astronomers estimate that in the UK alone, wasted electricity from street lights emits carbon dioxide equivalent to an extra 160,000 cars on the road each year.
It is not just wasted electricity, artificially lighted night skies disrupt the natural cycles of plants and animals, changing habitats and ecosystems.
Residents on the Isle of Sark in the Channel Islands, however, are turning down artificial lighting as part of a scheme to reduce light pollution and return the island to its natural day-night cycle.
Chu Owen, an amateur astronomer, finds out how wildlife and communities are reaping the benefits of dark skies in the Isle of Sark – declared the world’s first dark sky island.
For most people, purchasing a home is the largest financial transaction that they’ll ever make. The purchase decision is without a doubt, one that must be made with careful thought and attention to detail. A potential homebuyer has many things to consider when purchasing a home. A Muslim homebuyer has the added concern of finding Sharia -Compliant financing. With the help of our Guidance Residential Account Executives, who have decades of experience working in the home-finance and residential real estate industries, we’ve compiled a list of the top ten mistakes homebuyers tend to make.
By: Jennifer Horton
Humans have an insatiable fascination with wild animals. Every year, millions of people go on safaris, board whale-watching cruises and watch Jeff Corwin get attacked by snakes on Animal Planet; others drive to their localzoo for a full day of animal gazing.
This interest in animals is nothing new: Zoos have been entertaining people with exotic animal collections as far back as 1250 B.C.
Later, in early 13th-century England, Henry III moved his family’s royal menagerie to the Tower of Londonfor public viewing. For a small fee, visitors would be treated to glimpses of animals like lions,camels and lynxes. And if they brought a dog or cat to feed the lions, they got in for free
The first modern zoo — the Imperial Menagerie in Vienna, Austria — was established in 1752 and continues to attract visitors to this day. Nearby, in Germany, is the world’s largest animal collection: Zoo Berlin (formerly The Berlin Zoological Gardens) houses more than 15,000 animals from almost 1,700 species
All U.S. animal exhibitors, like the 265-acre (107-hectare) Bronx Zoo just a subway ride away from Fifth Avenue, must apply for and receive a license from the Department of Agriculture. Millions of people visit the thousands of zoos around the world, proving that we simply never grow tired of observing wildlife.
Depending on your point of view, though, zoos are either sanctuaries of education and entertainment or unnecessary prisons. While some people argue that zoos play an important role in conservation and research, others counter that they do more harm than good.
So which is it? Are zoos good or bad? And how do you differentiate between what’s good for one animal versus what’s good for the entire species? It’s a delicate question and one that can’t easily be answered. Let’s start with the good news.
Zoo Pros: Education, Conservation, Entertainment
Zoos have improved significantly in the last 4,000 or so years. Gone are the old steel-bar enclosures and cold cement cages. Most zoos these days use natural-looking barriers like moats or ditches to separate animals from people, and have mini-habitats that resemble the animals’ natural environment.
Adding another point for zoo pros, the procedure for acquiring animals has also changed. Whereas zoos previously captured most of their specimens directly from the wild, they now get many animals throughcaptive breeding programs and other zoos. Some breeding programs also help to restore threatened species. After 10 years of working to strengthen the population numbers of the endangered Californiacondor, a type of vulture, the Los Angeles and San Diego zoos were able to rebuild a population of fewer than two dozen birds to around 170 birds
Successful breeding programs brought the Pere David’s deer back from extinction. Though this Asian deer ceased to exist in the wild, Chinese and European zoo programs enabled four of the deer to be released back into the wild in 1985, where they’re now self-sustaining.
Some zoos also take in abandoned animals that wouldn’t otherwise have a home. Both the Baltimore Zoo and the Detroit Zoo have taken in polar bears rescued from a traveling circus, and the Bronx Zoo took in an orphaned snow leopard from Pakistan in 2007. The cub, Leo, now spends his time frolicking and chasing small animals that wander into his enclosure
And although zoo animals aren’t treated quite like guests at a four-star hotel, their care has improved tremendously. Zookeepers now understand that many animals, such as monkeys, bears and elephants, need engaging activities to prevent boredom and mental deterioration. This is why you’ll often see chimpsplaying with toys or tigers “hunting” for a meal.
Aside from taking care of captive animals, many zoos also contribute to the care of their wild counterparts. The Toledo Zoo, in conjunction with the Nature Conservancy, is helping to restore butterfly habitats in Ohio, and the Bronx Zoo has channeled more than $3 million toward conservation projects in central Africa
Zoos also present an opportunity for scientists to conduct research. In 2002, zoos participated in 2,230 research and conservation projects in more than 80 countries. The information they gather helps them to develop new medicines and techniques to improve animal health.
Beyond the positive impact zoos try to have on animals, they often affect the people visiting as well. Zoos don’t just entertain, they also aim to educate. With a variety of programs geared toward children and adults, zoos teach people about the needs of animals and the importance of conservation. And if people get excited enough, the thinking goes that they’ll be more inclined to donate money to conservation efforts — another zoo pro.
The fact that zoos impact people in a positive way is nice, but it’s not the people critics worry about — it’s the animals.
By: Abdullah Hakim Quick
Did you know? “• In the 9th Century AD, The Caliph Mamun of the Abbasid Dynasty in Baghdad, needed a means of solving problems of inheritance, land divisions, finances, Zakat, construction, agriculture, navigation and booty distribution. So the great Muslim Scholar Muhammad ibn Musa, Al-Khawarizmi, wrote a book called “Kitab al-Mukhtasar fi Hisab Al-Jabr (Algebra) wa al-Muqabalah” (The Abbreviated Book on Calculation by Completion and Balancing”. This was the basis of Modern Algebra and is still studied today. Muslims need to return to positive, broad minded thinking that connects us with the Creator and enables us to handle the challenges around us. Look at this design that was part of a Mosque in Cairo, Egypt. SubhaanAllah, Focus your eyes on it and see the different levels of design. This is how life is!!! Allahu Akbar (Allah Is the Greatest).