abida in the city

living it up

Al-Jazari (1136-1206) May 20, 2008

Al-Jazari was a mechanical genius of the muslim world. He was born Badi al-Zaman Abu al-Iz ibn Ismail ibn al-Razzaz al-Jazari. He was born in a place called al-Jazira situated between the Tigris and the Euphrates and what now known as northern Iraq and northeastern Syria.

His corpus was Kitáb fí ma’rifat al-hiyal al-handasiyya or Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices in which he wrote 50 types of mechanical devices. Like his father, al-Jazari served the Diyarbakir branch of the Turkish Artuqid dynasty as chief engineer.

Among his inventions:

Crankshaft and connecting rod mechanism
This mechanism transforms continuous rotary motion into a linear reciprocating motion. al-Jazari was the first to incorporate the mechanism into a machine. This mechanism is central to the operation of modern machinery such as the steam engine and the internal combustion engine.

Water-raising machines
From his crankshaft and connectiong rod mechanism, al-Jazari developed his crank-driven saqiya chain pump and the double-action reciprocating piston suction pump, both for the transportation of water without manual labour.

A water raising device

Automate according to the Britannica Encyclopedia are any of various mechanical objects that are relatively self-operating after they have been set in motion. al-Jazari was known to have invented automatic moving peacocks and gates driven by hydropower.
He also invented a fountain automata that flow into alternate tanks in an intervals and a musical automata with 4 automatic musicians on a boat to entertain guests at royal parties.

Musical automata

” While many of al-Jazari’s inventions may now appear to be trivial, the most significant aspect of al-Jazari’s machines are the mechanisms, components, ideas, methods and design features which they employ ” Donald Routledge Hill, Mechanical Engineering in the Medieval Near East.

See animations of Al-Jazari’s mechanical devices:
Al-Jazari, 800 years after http://muslimheritage.com/topics/default.cfm?ArticleID=851


First in my life May 16, 2008

Filed under: Islamic Spirituality — sugary @ 2:19 pm

We try to remember ALLAH in MASJIDS on FRIDAY…
Maybe, FRIDAY night…
And, the unlikely event of a MAGHRIB SALLAH .

We do like to have Him around during sickness…
And, of course, at funerals.
However, we don’t have time, or room, for Him during work or play…
Because.. That’s the part of our lives we think… We can, and should, handle on our own.

Then, I realized that this kind of thinking is…
Exactly, what has caused lot of the problems in our world today.

May ALLAH forgive me for ever thinking…
That… there is a time or place where..
HE is not to be FIRST in my life.

Received via email.


24 good reminders for us all

Filed under: abid in the city — sugary @ 2:34 am

24 good reminders for us all

1. Start off each day with ‘adhkaar al-istiyqaadh’ (waking up Supplications), thanking Allah for waking up in good shape.

2. Put Allah first in your life.

3. Broaden your horizons – learn 5 new verses from the Quran every day, travel to pray far in the mosque to brighten your day, take up a booklet having supplications and read them.

4. Pray Salaat Al-dhuhaa (after sunrise).

5. If someone says something mean; to you, just shrug it off and dismiss it in a friendly, laidback manner, and pray that Allah shall forgive them.

6. When you get angry, remember Allah, and how short and worthless life is to waste in being Angry.

7. Remember that you can never have too many friends, but you can have few quality friends that help you fulfill the purpose of your creation (i.e. live for Allah).

8. When you’re happy, try to share your happiness with others. Thank Allah for that, and pray its continuation.

9. When something bad or embarrassing happens to you, just think that it could always be worse, remember the reward of patience, and thank Allah that it’s not worse than it is.

10. Do something extra of goodness once in a while, like feeding a poor person, or caressing an orphan’s head.

11. Never stop believing that you can win Allah’s love and thus work For it. Then you can win the love of Allah’s slaves.

12. Spend some time thinking of Allah’s amazing creation.

13. Always love those who love Allah unconditionally. This way you will ensure that you live for Him, love for Him, and hate for Him (those who are enemies of Him).

14. Find the righteous ways to express yourself, and if you think that what you are about to say shall cause no benefit, maintain silence (this is tough!!).

15. Every now and then, give yourself a break. Play sports, give time to your family, friends, but always remember Allah and watch that He is watching you.

16. Pray for blessing to come to those being lost, and pray to Allah to guide them to the right path.

17. Hug your parents, kiss their hands and heads and always obey but stop at Allah’s orders.

18. Smile to everyone, for your smile makes a big difference to him or her and you are rewarded.

19. Forgive, forget and smile.

20. Tears are not for women only… tears are for all human beings with feelings remaining in them. Don’t restrain your tears when remembering Allah.

21. When people criticize your actions and effort, revise your actions and see if they please Allah or no. If they do; then ignore and remember how the Prophet (SAAW) and the Sahaba were criticized, made fun of and even physically harmed, so have patience.

22. Read the Quran daily and try to have a schedule for completing it as much as you could. As you open the Quran daily, read with observing not just passing your eyes through the words.

23. Don’t let popularity go to your head, for it never lasts and you may lose from it more than gain.

24. Never look down on anybody, for, to Allah, they may be better than you.

Ponder, reflect and start trying to dissimilate all of these into our life ok? insyaAllah and ameen =)

Received via email


Strong Woman vs Woman of Strength May 9, 2008

Filed under: The celebrated of the species — sugary @ 12:01 am

A strong woman works out every day to keep her body in shape…
but a woman of strength kneels in prayer to keep her soul in shape.

A strong woman isn’t afraid of anything…
but a woman of strength shows courage in the midst of her fear.

A strong woman won’t let anyone get the best of her…
but a woman of strength gives the best of her to everyone.

A strong woman makes mistakes and avoids committing the same in the future…
but a woman of strength realizes life’s mistakes can also be God’s blessings and capitalizes on them

A strong woman walks sure footedly…
but a woman of strength knows God will catch her when she falls.

A strong woman wears the look of confidence on her face…
but a woman of strength wears grace.

A strong woman has faith that she is strong enough for the journey…
but a woman of strength has faith that it is in the journey that she will become strong.


Ibn Sina (980-1037) May 8, 2008

Filed under: Muslim Scholar of the Week — sugary @ 12:24 am

Ibn Sina, known in Latin as Avicenna, was born Abu Ali al-Husin ibn Abdullah in the year 370H in Bukhara. He was given him the honorary title “Shaikhal-Rai’s” (Leader among Wise Men) by his compatriots and was the one of the most influential philosopher-scientist of Islam.
His corpus were 450 in number and the most outstanding were The Book of Healing and Qanun fi al-Tibb (Canon of Medicine). The Canon was made the standard medical text in many Islamic as well as European universities up until the 19th century.

The Canon of Medicine
The book is known for its introduction of systematic experimentation and quantification into the study of physiology,the discovery of contagious diseases and sexually transmitted diseases,the introduction of quarantine to limit the spread of infectious diseases, the introduction of experimental medicine, clinical trials, neuropsychiatry, risk factor analysis, and the idea of a syndrome in the diagnosis of specific diseases and hypothesized the existence of microrganisms.
It classifies and describes diseases,
with experimental medicine, evidence-based medicine, randomized controlled trials and efficacy tests and it laid out the following rules and principles for testing the effectiveness of new drugs and medications, which still form the basis of clinical pharmacology and modern clinical trials.


In chemistry, steam distillation was described by Ibn Sīnā. The technique was used to produce alcohol and essential oils.

As other muslim scholars, Ibn Sina studied other branches of science he was also an astronomer, Hafiz, logician, mathematician, poet, psychologist, physicist.

He refused to live life slow, stating that: “I prefer a short life with width to a narrow one with length”. On his deathbed remorse seized him; he bestowed his goods on the poor, restored unjust gains, freed his slaves, and every third day till his death listened to the reading of the Qur’an. He died in June 1037, in his fifty-eighth year, and was buried in Hamedan, Iran.

For more on Ibn Sina’s biography, corpus and works on him:


Are you proud to be a Muslim? May 7, 2008

Filed under: abid in the city — sugary @ 2:20 pm

Here are some reasons why you should be proud to be a muslim
1. Muslims are Khaira Ummatin, the best of people as stated in the Quran verse 110 of Surah Ali Imran which means : “You are the best of the nations raised up for (the benefit of) men; you enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong and believe in Allah; and if the followers of the Book had believed it would have been better for them; of them (some) are believers and most of them are transgressors.”

2. Also in Surah Ali Imran verse 139, which means: “And be not infirm, and be not grieving, and you shall have the upper hand if you are believers.”

3. HG Wells in his book, A Short History of the World, 1922 described: Islam, this faith he imposed upon the Arabs, much power and inspiration. One is its uncompromising monotheism; its simple enthusiastic faith in the rule and fatherhood of God and its freedom from theological complications.
Another is its complete detachment from the sacrificial priest and the temple. It is an entirely prophetic religion, proof against any possibility of relapse towards blood sacrifices. In the Koran the limited and ceremonial nature of the pilgrimage to Mecca is stated beyond the possibility of dispute, and every precaution was taken by Muhammad to prevent the deification of himself after his death.
And a third element of strength lay in the insistence of Islam upon the perfect brotherhood and equality before God of all believers, whatever their colour, origin or status.
These are the things that made Islam a power in human affairs.

4. Once upon a time when Europe faces their Dark Ages, Muslims were building cities from India to Spain. The streets were lit and cobbled. Muslims bathed in perfume oils and made clothes out of silk and luxurious fabrics.

5. “As a religion the Mohammedan religion, it must be confessed, is more suited to Africa than is the Christian religion; indeed, I would even say that it is suited to the world as a whole.” From The Sphere, by Lancelot Lawton (London, 1928)