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Another year, another Ilm Summit has gone by (Part I) August 11, 2009

Posted by Msfatima in Ilm Summit, Islam, Life.
1 comment so far

Asalaam O Alaykum,

Alhumdullilah, this year I had the opportunity once again to attend Ilm Summit, a two-week intense knowledge retreat hosted by Al Maghrib. The venue was none other than Houston, Texas (shout out to sister starbucks) where we stayed in a grand hotel, and I also got a nice view of the parking lot from my room =). I did not look outside much anyway.

When I came back to Toronto, everyone asked me that one infamous question, “how was Ilm Summit?” I’ve always had trouble properly defining Ilm Summit, surely one word cannot do justice to two weeks of amazing euphoria and learning Islam in ways one cannot imagine. All I could muster up was a word or two with the occasional stutter, “it was um…amazing…beyond amazing.”

In this post I will try to accurately describe my feelings; when I was preparing my self for this event, once I was there, and the returning journey. Insha’Allah.

When I applied for Ilm Summit, I was not expecting a really swift response. I did know they were accepting students in batches so I just kept my head up high, focused on the last few courses I had left for secondary school, and did lots of dua! Alhumdullilah, one day I was casually checking my e-mail and received the acceptance letter. Squeals of joy are an understatement as to what I was feeling when I found out I would be attending. I had already save up some money in my Ilm Summit travel funds box and was more than excited for July to come. I made sure I had all the proper equipment with me before I left and also made sure I was mentally ready. I knew that this year would be much more intense, which is why I told myself once I get there I would make a routine for myself in order to study hard and get good grades and be successful over all in retention of knowledge.

An ode to Ilm Summit September 16, 2008

Posted by Msfatima in Ilm Summit, Islam.
3 comments

Recently I had the chance of going to an intense two-week knowledge retreat in Houston, Texas. Ilm Summit was an out of this world experience and I had many people come up to me asking how it was. My usual response was in one word: perfect. Although it was hard to put it in words how the event was really like, which is why my friends and I decided to write this poem:

Arriving at the airport we were enthused
Not knowing what was ahead of us we became confused
Seeing our Muslim sisters calmed our hearts
Getting to know them we got a head start

Upon reaching Houston we had to wait a while
Eventually the Ilm Summit van rolled up in style
Walking into the ballroom anticipating a welcome speech
Little did we know we were embarking on a journey that would leave our hearts beseeched

Adabh Al Ilm starting off each day
Followed by Bukhari recited in the Hijazi way
A day filled with learning from 9 to 10
Our minds rejuvenated but the knowledge exhausted our pen
The sound of laughter resonating through the halls
As the shuyookh played ping pong with the ball bouncing off the walls

From time management to stories of jinn and exorcism
To the Fiqh of tahara and the evil of consumerism
To the balagha of Quran to Islam’s impact on medicine and the status of Muslims in the West
To the family life of the Prophet (saw) whose example was the best
This was just a taste of the wild card sessions
The purpose of them was to broaden our horizons

The real strengthening of Iman came
When we studied Aqeedah, Fitrah and the history of Spain
With a touch of Fiqh and Maqaasid Ash Shareeah
Attentively listening on edge as Sh Yasir Qadhi said, “onomatopoeia”
His dictionary comprised of dichotomy, ramification and magnum opus
As the students sat baffled trying to focus

How could we forget our intimate gatherings in the lobby
Where the Shuyookh sat surrounded by students answering questions from education to their number one hobby

As the days became more short and numbered
Studying for the exam became more incumbent
Pulling all nighters with coffee and cake
Amazed at how much information our brain could take
Falling prey to Sheikh Yasir’s indubitable advice
“Bring 3 pens as 2 will not suffice”

Coming out of the exam dazed and shaking
With our shuyookh consoling us, don’t worry you are alims in the making

A farewell banquet prepared with class
Speeches, which sieged our emotions that would not surpass
Islam’s true pure sincerity was brought to light
As brothers and sisters only strangers two weeks ago dreaded their departing flight