WINDS OF CHANGE ’13!
Few! What an epic few weeks! So the winds of change 2013 comes to and end. An epic lecture tour that lasted around 3 weeks has ended and left many hearts inspired and created a zeal for knowledge and activism.
I along with a few other brothers & sisters had the privilege of accompanying our esteemed guests from the UK right from the beginning till the end! We travelled to Lahore, around Islamabad, Rawalpindi and a day in Peshawar. This article is an ‘insiders’ observation of this lecture tour.
I was also present at the last WOC where we had our current speaker and the wonderful Hamza Tzortzis. That whole tour was successful alhumdulillah for many reasons. It actually inspired me personally to become active in dawah again after a few years break. I became heavily involved with Youth Club as a result of last year’s WOC and I’m sure many other brothers & sisters can relate.
Adnan Rashid, the hugely talented historian made his second trip and is probably the central figure behind WOC. He has that thunderous heavy voice and along with his vast historical and theological knowledge impacted many students and elders at the various institutes and other venues. What I learnt from him is that it’s not talent that helps you in public speaking he doesn’t believe in talent, it’s just a matter of doing it and not to worry at all about mistakes and embarrassment! A fearless ustaadh! He has that ‘veteran warrior’ look about him.
Adnan Rashid was all about historical references, Justice, Islamic civilization and ‘traditional scholarship’ and the leader of the group of speakers.
Yousuf Chambers was the English / Irish charming ol chap! This was probably the first time a white revert brother was lecturing Pakistan. His style involved a lot of humor, very articulate and many inspiring stories. He won many hearts with his style of speeches and workshops. He didn’t stay as long as Imran or Adnan but still left an impression with the young Pakistani audiences, particularly sisters because he is very passionate about empowering sisters.
So we come to our third speaker, the dynamic young 22 year old daii, a late inclusion to the WOC tour Imran Ibn Mnasur Hugely charismatic, supremely confident and extremely outgoing and friendly! I think he surprised many as he was relatively unknown to People in the UK let alone in Pakistan! I spent most of my time with Imran Ibn Mansur than compared to the other 2 speakers. We shall all remember his cavalier style at the podium. His laughter and then his tears! His Quranic recitation and his unique way of translating it into English. He completely wowed all the students that he spoke to. He completely lived up to his name as ‘ dawah man’ mashallah.
So there were a few objectives of this WOC. Some of which include making Islam look cool again and appeal to the youth. To intellectually refute the rising notions of secularism, Liberalism and Atheism amongst other erroneous ideologies at University campuses.
To learn from the vast experiences of these busy dua’aat.
To gain confidence in tackling these jaahil concepts in a cool confident manner.
To inspire the youth to return back to the worship of Allah (swt) and the main theme throughout was reinforcing our Islamic belief.
To become thoroughly convinced without a shadow of a doubt about the Existence of Allah (swt), the miracle of the Quran and believing that Prophet Muhammad (saw) was indeed the last messenger of God to be sent to mankind.
All of the above in a highly intellectual manner.
I observed firsthand the impact the lectures caused upon our young attendees. From Ali institute in Lahore to LUMS and then on various University campuses in the Federal capital area there was a constant theme of surprise, tears and laughter. I saw how many brothers who hadn’t prayed salah for years began praying salah! I listened to the feedback of many young guys and girls which included stuff like ‘this was the first time I ever attended an Islamic lecture’ and ‘this is Islam!?? I never heard of Islam like this before?! ‘.
So what now? Well many have been inspired to change themselves and those around them and it remains to be seen how many will get active on campus and whether or not get involved with YC and other organizations. The last thing we all want is a temporary change.
I appeal to the young brothers and sisters that ok you were impressed with the super style of lectures and workshops, the accent and charisma of our lecturers. That’s fine but do not forget the content, mainly which was to return to the worship of Allah (swt) and to stop and avoid all types of haraam from now on.
Become fans of the message rather than just the messengers!
“I appeal to the young brothers and sisters that ok you were impressed with the super style of lectures and workshops, the accent and charisma of our lecturers”- perfectly put. A common issue that most of us face. We attend lectures and we enjoy the ambience and feel a temporary iman boost, then move on, the same person as before. Need to focus on BEING the change instead of just cheering it on! JazakAllah khayr.
Become fans of the message rather than just the messengers! – this is the punch line.