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பல மாசம் கழிச்சி தியேட்டர் போனா … என்னய்யா பண்ணி வச்சிருக்கிங்க …

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Cancer from coconut

*CANCER IN YOUR COCONUT*

To all those tender coconut lovers who are unconsciously being POISONED by unscrupulous plantation owners.

Please take a look at this SHOCKING video clip. 👇

You may think that these men are actively digging around the palms to manure them..But the fact is something else.

It is shocking to note that they are root feeding deadly chemicals with an intention to get high yields and protect their trees from attack of pests and rodents.

The chemicals they use are aluminium phosphide, a highly toxic inorganic compound which is used as a rodenticide, insecticide and fumigant. This is mixed with carbofuran (Furadan), one of the most toxic carbamate pesticides.

They mix these in water and are then filled in sachets as seen here and this toxic cocktail is readily absorbed by the tree and will be in all its cells. The nuts and the tender coconuts will have very high toxins in them.

On a thirsty hot summer day, we unsuspectingly buy this SUPER TOXIC NATURAL DRINK to quench our thirst. We even buy it for hospitalized patients who already are fighting some other health problems.

To bring an end to this dangerous practice we should stop encouraging the chemically produced nuts to be sold in the wholesale or retail market.

90 % of BOMBAY summer supplies of tender coconuts comes from Kerala, where this malpractice has reached rampant proportions.

Even smallest quantities this deadly potion is enough to trigger stomach / intestinal CANCER.

Impotency & low sperm count is an almost immediate side effect.

*Beware*

Idiots

Akbar asked Birbal to look for five biggest idiots in his state and produce them in his court within a month.
After a month’s extensive search operations, Birbal brought to the court only two people!

“But I asked for five”, Akbar angrily asked.

“Give me a chance to present them one by one”, Birbal pleaded and went on to present his idiots:

“Maharaj, this man, while travelling in a bullock cart, was keeping his luggage on his head so as not to hurt the bullocks. He is the first idiot.

Pointing to the second man Birbal continued, “And this man here is the second idiot. Some grass grew on the roof of his thatched house and he was trying to force his cow climb up a ladder to graze on them.”

Birbal continued, “Maharaj, there were a lot of importants jobs for me to do in the state, but I ignored them and wasted a precious month in searching for idiots. According to me I am the third idiot.”

Birbal paused here for a moment.

“Who are the fourth and fifth idiots?”, Akbar thundered.

“Beg your pardon, Maharaj”, Birbal continued, “You are the king and are responsible for the wellbeing of the entire state and its people. You need wise persons to help you oversee the state affairs. Instead of looking for wise people you engaged me to look for idiots. According to me you are the fourth idiot.

And, Maharaj, the person who is glued to this Whatsapp, keeping aside all his high priority assignments, oblivious of pressing needs of his familiy, just to learn who is the fifth idiot, is the fifth idiot himself. You will not find a better idiot to beat this one. What do you say, Maharaj?”, Birbal concluded.

Akbar said, “Post it immediately in all groups. Lots of idiots are eagerly waiting”.
😆😆🤣🤣

Application

Amma

After a conference on cancer prevention

After a conference on cancer prevention

*Some interesting points*
1. No to refined oil
2. No to milks of animal origin (nido.)
3. No to cubes
4. No to the consumption of the gasified juices of the different breweries (32 pieces of sugar per liter)
5. No refined sugars
6. No Microwave
7. No to mammography before delivery but echomamaire
8. No to too tight bras or after returning to work
9. No alcohol
10. No for reheating frozen meals
11. No to the conservation of water in the refrigerator in plastic bottles …
12. All contraceptive pills are not good because they change the woman’s hormonal system and give cancer.
13. Deodorants are dangerous especially used after shaving.
14. Cancer cells eat mainly sugar, everything is synthetic sugar even brown.
15. A cancer patient who suppresses sugar in his diet sees his disease regressed and can live long: sugar = deadly enemy.
16. A glass of beer is made 5 hours in the body and during this time the organs of the system are operating at idle speed.

*Yes to:*

1. Vegetables
2. Honey in measured quantities in place of sugar
3. Vegetable proteins such as beans versus meat
4. Two glasses of water on an empty stomach before brushing teeth, water kept in the room having the same temperature as we woke up
5. Unheated Meals
6. Anti cancer juice: aloe vera + ginger + parsley + celery + promaline (middle of the pineapple) mix and drink on an empty stomach.
7. Other anti-cancer juice: corossol (seedless) + promaline.
8. Eat the raw or cooked carrot or juice each day.

*Just to share info*
The association of American doctors has given answers to the cause of cancer
1. Do not drink tea in a plastic cup (cup).
2. Do not eat anything hot in a paper or plastic bag. Example: potato (fried).
3. Do not cook microwavable foods using plastic material

*As a reminder :*
When plastic is in contact with heat, this creates chemicals that can cause 52 types of cancer.

*This message is better than 100 unnecessary SMS.*
Inform your loved ones in order to be free from these effects.

*⚠ Avoid drinking Coca Cola on pineapple or after you have eaten pineapple as a dessert.*
Do not mix pineapple juice with Coca.
*This mixture is deadly!* People are dying there and they mistakenly believe that they were poisoned …. They were victims of their ignorance of this fatal cocktail!

*Sms to share with loved ones.*
May God preserve us

*Please reads and transmits.*

Dr. Richard from the United States.
*Important Health Tips:*

👉 Answer calls to the left ear.
👉 Do not take your medication with cold water ….
👉 Do not eat heavy meals after 5 pm.
👉 Drink more water in the morning, less at night.
👉 Do not lie down immediately after taking medication or after meals.
👉 When your phone’s battery is low at the last bar, do not answer the phone, because the radiation is 1000 times more powerful.
👉 Can you pass this on to the people you love?
*I just did it, kindness costs us nothing …*

Green manure

TC at schools govt new system

*வேற ஸ்கூல்ல சேர்க்க டிசி தரமாட்டோம்னு பயமுறுத்துறாங்களா?கவலை வேண்டாம்*

பல பள்ளிக் கூடங்களில் மாணவர் சேர்க்கை நடந்து கொண்டிருக்கிறது.

பெற்றோர்கள் தாங்கள் விரும்பும் பள்ளிக் கூடங்களில் தங்கள் பிள்ளைகளை சேர்த்துக் கொண்டிருக்கின்றனர்.

இந்த சூழ் நிலையில், சில பள்ளிக் கூடங்கள், வேறு பள்ளியில் சேரப் போகும் மாணவர்களுக்கு மாற்றுச் சான்றிதழ் T.C தர மறுக்கின்றன.

இல்லையெனில் பெற்றோர்களை டி சி க்காக வேண்டி, பல முறை அலைய விட்டு நோகடிக்கின்றனர்.
இதனால் மனம் ஒப்பவில்லை என்றாலும் பெற்றோர்கள் தங்கள் பிள்ளைகளை அதே பள்ளியில் தொடர்ந்து படிக்க வைக்கும் நிலைக்கு ஆளாக்கப்படுகின்றனர்.
பள்ளிக் கூடங்களின் இந்த நெருக்கடியால் பலருக்கு நல்ல கல்வி கிடைக்காமல் போய் விடுகின்றது.

*இனி இந்தக் கவலை வேண்டாம்*

தமிழக அரசு கல்வித் தகவல் மேலாண்மை முறைமை. *Educational Management Information System* என்ற ஒரு இணைய த்தின் மூலம் அரசுப் பள்ளிகள், தனியார் பள்ளிகள் அனைத்தையும் ஒன்றாக இணைத்துள்ளது. இதன் மூலம் ஒவ்வொரு மாணவருக்கும் *Unique Emis எண்* வழங்குகிறது.

ஒரு மாணவர் டி சி இல்லாமல் , இந்த *EMIS எண்* மூலமாக வேறு பள்ளியில் சேரலாம்.

அவர்கள் சேரும் அந்த புதிய பள்ளியிலிருந்து இந்த மாணவர் ஏற்கனவே பயின்ற அரசு அல்லது தனியார் பள்ளிக்கு இந்த இணைய தளம் வாயிலாக *Online REQUEST* வேண்டுகோள் அனுப்பப்பட்டு டி சி வழங்க ஏற்பாடு செயப்படும்.இதனை அரசு அதிகாரிகள் கண்காணித்து வருவார்கள்..

*இனி என்ன கவலை ? டி சி இல்லாட்டியும் பரவாயில்ல… நீங்கள் விரும்பும் பள்ளியில் உங்கள் பிள்ளைகளை சேருங்க. டி சி தானா வரும்.*

சரிங்க… டி சி வாங்கவே முடியலைங்க ..இப்போ என்ன செய்றதுன்னு கேக்குறீங்களா?
உங்க குழந்தைக்கு என்ன வயசாகுதோ அந்த வயசின் அடிப்படையில் நீங்க டி சி இல்லாமலே *RTE ACT* மூலமாக 8ம் வகுப்பு வரை அரசு மற்றும் தனியார் பள்ளிக் கூடத்துல நேரடியாக சேர்க்கலாம்.

*இனி என்ன கவலை ? நீங்க விரும்பும் பள்ளிக் கூடத்துல உங்க பிள்ளையை படிக்க வைங்க*
அன்புடன்
செல்ல.செல்வகுமார்
மாநில பொதுச் செயலாளர்.
சமகல்வி இயக்கம்.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque Through the Ages: Part 1

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Islam,

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

Lost Islamic History

The Al-Aqsa Mosque Through the Ages: Part 1

When Prophet Muhammad ﷺ received the command from God to lead the Muslim community in five daily prayers, their prayers were directed towards the holy city of Jerusalem. For Muslims, the city of Jerusalem is an important site. As the home of numerous prophets of Islam such as Dawud (David), Sulayman (Solomon), and ‘Isa (Jesus), the city was a symbol of Islam’s past prophets. When Prophet Muhammad ﷺ made the miraculous Night Journey from Makkah to Jerusalem and the Ascent into Heaven that night (known as the Isra’ wal-Mi’raj), it acquired an added importance as the place where the Prophet ﷺ led all the earlier prophets in prayer and then ascended to Heaven.

For Muslims, however, Jerusalem would remain a far-off symbol during the life of the Prophet ﷺ and the years immediately after his death. As Muslims came to control Iraq and then Syria in the 630s, however, Jerusalem would become a Muslim city, and the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem would become one of the most important pieces of land in the Muslim empire. Throughout the complex and war-torn history of this city, the Mosque has been a center-piece of the struggle for Jerusalem. With Muslims, Christians, and Jews all considering the land under the Mosque as especially holy, the importance of understanding the history of this land is of utmost importance.

Part 1 of this article will look at the history of the Mosque before the arrival of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and the early Islamic period until the coming of the Crusaders in 1099. Part 2 will describe the al-Aqsa Mosque’s history from the Crusades to the modern day.

Before and After Prophet Muhammad ﷺ

For Muslims, Islam was not a new religion in the 600s when Prophet Muhammad ﷺ began preaching in Makkah. Instead, it is seen as a continuation and capstone of the traditions of earlier prophets that are revered by all three monotheistic faiths. The message of Muhammad ﷺ only continues and perfects the messages of Ibrahim (Abraham), Musa (Moses), and ‘Isa, which had been corrupted over time. Thus, for Muslims, the Temple of Solomon that was built Jerusalem’s Temple Mount in ancient times was in fact part of their own religious history.

The Haram al-Sharif, with the Dome of the Rock in the center of the picture and the al-Aqsa Mosque on the leftThe Haram al-Sharif, with the Dome of the Rock in the center of the picture and the al-Aqsa Mosque on the left

With this mindset, when Muslims conquered the city of Jerusalem in 637 during the caliphate of ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, they sought to resurrect Jerusalem as a place of worship. The ancient temple of Jerusalem had been rebuilt numerous times, most recently by Herod around 20 BCE. By 70 CE, however, the Romans destroyed the temple after a Jewish revolt in Palestine. Jews were forbidden from entering the city and Judaism all but died in Jerusalem.

The area where the temple stood remained as a wasteland for the next few hundred years. The Romans used the area as a garbage dump, so when ‘Umar entered the city and went to see where his religious forefathers such as Dawud and Sulayman had worshiped (which was also the place where Muhammad ﷺ had worshiped during the Isra’ wal-Mi’raj)  he found a the area filthy and unusable as a mosque. Nevertheless, he decided to clean the area and built the al-Aqsa Mosque. As was his custom, he worked alongside average Muslims in cleaning and purifying the area. They erected a basic mosque that could fit about 3000 people at the southern end of the Temple Mount, now known by the Muslims as the Haram al-Sharif, the Noble Sanctuary. A contemporary Christian pilgrim described the mosque as a large wooden structure built upon earlier ruins.

For the Muslims, they did not see this as trampling on the holy sites of other religions. Since the same prophets that are mentioned in the Old Testament of the Bible are accepted as Muslim prophets, the new mosque was seen as a continuation of those earlier places of worship. This went in line with one of the central themes of Islam – that it was the perfection of earlier monotheistic faiths.

The Haram al-Sharif

For decades, this simple structure built by ‘Umar remained the main building on the Haram. In 690, however, the caliph ‘Abd al-Malik of the Umayyad Dynasty rebuilt the al-Aqsa Mosque, much larger and more stable than the mosque that ‘Umar had built. The basic plan of the current mosque dates from this reconstruction. ‘Abd al-Malik’s real architectural achievement  however, was what was constructed about 200 meters to the north.

The Dome of the Rock, built by 'Abd al-Malik in 690The Dome of the Rock, built by ‘Abd al-Malik in 690

Above the rock from which some Muslims believed Prophet Muhammad ﷺ ascended to Heaven from, ‘Abd al-Malik built the magnificent Dome of the Rock. As part of the al-Aqsa Mosque, it was not a separate house of worship, nor was it meant to compete with the al-Aqsa Mosque, but was meant as a complement to it. Using the architectural traditions and mosaics that the Umayyads had learned from the Byzantines who ruled the area before them, the Dome immediately became one of the focal points of Islamic architecture in the 600s.

The Dome of the Rock was built at the very summit of the Haram complex, and is thus one of the most impressive and notable buildings of the city. It has an octagonal footprint, from which rises a 20 meter dome that was originally covered in lead sheets. Calligraphy adorned both the inside and outside of the building, with some of the oldest existing Quranic inscriptions being inside the dome of the building. Given the magnificence of the building, some modern historians have argued that ‘Abd al-Malik intended the building to be a rival to the Ka’bah in Makkah. Had he intended to do so, Muslim scholars of the time would have no doubt expressed outrage and recorded his blasphemous intentions in books written during that time. However, there exists no contemporary account of him having such an intention, and the earliest mention of this idea was written 200 years later, by someone with a strong anti-Umayyad bias.

After the fall of the Umayyads in 750, Jerusalem came under the control of the ‘Abbasid Dynasty. The new ‘Abbasid caliphs had their capital in the Iraqi city of Baghdad, and did not put as much emphasis on Jerusalem as the Umayyads had. As such, the Haram did not receive the attention and money it had during the Umayyad period. Nevertheless, despite the neglect it received from the caliphs, Jerusalem continued to be an important place of pilgrimage, and the al-Aqsa Mosque itself remained as the center of Islamic life in the city from the 600s through the 900s, despite many earthquakes during this period which required numerous renovations.

Decline Under the Fatimids

Jerusalem and the Haram al-Sharif began a tumultuous few centuries in the late 900s. The Fatimid Empire, which was based in Egypt, took control of Jerusalem in 970, after defeating ‘Abbasid troops in nearby Ramla. The Fatimids belonged to the Ismaili sect of Shi’ism, which many Islamic scholars historically have classified as outside of the fold of Islam itself. Periods of Fatimid rule had catastrophic repercussions for the al-Aqsa Mosque.

The interior of the Aqsa Mosque. The area near the mihrab (distant) dates to the Umayyad construction, while the pillars date to the Fatimid period. The interior of the Aqsa Mosque. The area near the mihrab (distant) dates to the Umayyad construction, while the pillars date to the Fatimid period.

Since the beginning of Muslim rule over Jerusalem, the mosque and the Haram in general had been centers of Islamic knowledge. Scholars regularly established schools in the mosque to educate students from the basics of Arabic grammar to advanced topics in Islamic law and theology. During the Fatimid period, these educational endeavors were curtailed by the Fatimid governors and replaced with official Shi’a establishments. The geographer al-Muqaddasi wrote in 985 that in Jerusalem, “jurists remain unvisited, pious men have no renown, and the schools are unattended for there are no lectures.”He goes on to lament the lack of Islamic education in the city that had been frequented by scholars such as al-Shafi’i in the past.

The worst period of Fatimid rule ended up being the reign of al-Hakim, which began in 996. He went far beyond previous Fatimid rulers in his oppression of orthodox Islam. He declared himself divine, demanding that his name replace the name of God in Friday sermons, outlawed the Muslim fast of Ramadan, and prevented Muslims from going to Makkah for pilgrimage. By the end of his rule in 1021, the city of Jerusalem had all but lost its status as a center of Islamic scholarship. Beyond that, he also oppressed Christians and Jews in Jerusalem, and destroyed the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in direct conflict with Islamic law and the promises of ‘Umar in 637.

After the disastrous reign of al-Hakim came some more moderate Fatimid leaders, who were more accommodating the mosque itself and its Islamic history. In the 1030s, after a disastrous earthquake, the al-Aqsa Mosque was renovated by the Fatimids. The resulting structure had a central nave and 7 grand arches on its facade that supported the massive roof. This was down from the massive 14 arches that were originally built by the Umayyads. Today’s mosque is more or less unchanged from the Fatimid construction.

The facade of the Aqsa MosqueThe facade of the Aqsa Mosque

In 1073, Jerusalem was conquered by the Seljuk Turks, who were recent converts to mainstream Sunni Islam from Central Asia. From an Islamic perspective, al-Aqsa was now back in the capable hands of a powerful Sunni state, which brought back Islamic scholarship to the city. Schools were established in the Haram area teaching the Shafi’i and Hanafi schools of Islamic law, and intellectual life in the city began to flourish again. Scholars began to emigrate to the city to learn as well as to teach from across the Muslim world. Notably, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali moved to the city in 1095. He lived in the Haram along the eastern wall of the city, and spent the next few years in prayer and seclusion in the Dome of the Rock and the al-Aqsa Mosque. During this time, he wrote the incredibly influential The Revival of the Religious Sciences, which revolutionized the way Muslims approached topics such as spirituality, philosophy, and Sufism.

The revival of intellectual Muslim life around the al-Aqsa Mosque would not last, however. The Haram’s Islamic nature itself would soon be erased in 1099 with the coming of the Crusaders, as we will see in Part 2 of this article.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque Through the Ages: Part 2

In Part 1 of this article, we saw the early history of the third holiest site in Islam: the al-Aqsa Mosque. From a Roman and Byzantine dumping site to a modest mosque built by ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, to a giant complex crowned by the Dome of the Rock in Umayyad times, Islam played a major role in the history of the Haram al-Sharif complex in the early centuries of Islam. As theFatimids came to power in the 900s, however, orthodox Islam was replaced with extremist Ismailism and Fatimid propaganda.

In the second part of this article, we will look at the threat the Crusaders posed to the mosque and the subsequent history of the area in Mamluk and Ottoman times.

Crusaders

In 1095, the Byzantine emperor Alexios requested help from Pope Urban II in Rome in his perpetual war against the Seljuk Turks in the Anatolian Peninsula. The Pope’s response was the First Crusade, whose purpose was not to fight the Seljuks, but instead to conquer Jerusalem from the Muslims and establish a Catholic kingdom in the Holy Land.

The Crusaders used the al-Aqsa Mosque as a palace in the 1100s.The Crusaders used the al-Aqsa Mosque as a palace in the 1100s.

Despite being in the heart of the Muslim world, Jerusalem was vulnerable to the Crusaders. Disunity was king in the Middle East among Muslim governors and generals. As the Crusaders pressed on towards Jerusalem, most cities refused to fight the Crusaders and allowed them to continue on their way to the holy city.

In 1099, the Crusaders reached Jerusalem, which had recently been recaptured by the Fatimids from the Seljuks. Because of the back and forth warfare between the Fatimids and the Seljuks, neither side was in a position to defend the city effectively. On July 15th, 1099, the Crusaders managed to fight their way over the walls and into the city.

When the Crusaders entered, one of the most horrific events in the history of the al-Aqsa Mosque was perpetrated. Since the Crusaders made clear that they would be taking no prisoners, a large portion of the Muslim population of the city fled to the mosque and sought safety there. Holy site or not, the Crusaders were determined to be done with every Muslim in the city. They entered the mosque with weapons drawn, determined to kill everyone in the mosque.

The subsequent massacre killed thousands of Muslims in the mosque. For the Crusaders, this was a necessary cleansing of the holy place. Numerous Crusaders wrote braggingly about the massacre. One even wrote about how wonderful of a site it was to see the Crusaders “up to their knees in blood” in the mosque. For the Muslims, this was the worst tragedy to befall the mosque in its history.

An aerial view of the Haram al-Sharif.An aerial view of the Haram al-Sharif. The Dome of the Rock is in the center of the image and the al-Aqsa Mosque itself is in the foreground with the silver dome.

For the Crusaders, the elimination of Jerusalem’s Muslims allowed them to go about transforming the Haram in their own vision. The first ruler of the new Kingdom of Jerusalem, Godfrey, took up residence in the al-Aqsa Mosque. The interior of the masjid was completely renovated to turn it into a palace with new internal walls, rooms, and gardens. Of course, all signs of its Muslim past were covered up. Calligraphy in the mosque was covered up, prayer rugs discarded, and the mihrab (prayer niche) was walled up with bricks.

As for the Dome of the Rock a few hundred meters to the north, the Crusaders also planned to allocate the building for their own purposes. They were mostly ignorant of the history of the building. Some even believed that it was the original temple built by Solomon [Prophet Suleyman]  in ancient times. In any case, they turned the building into a church known as the Temple of the Lord. Like in the al-Aqsa Mosque, the Islamic calligraphy was covered up and all signs of its Islamic past were erased. The rock under the dome was covered in marble and made into an altar for prayers.

Since Muslims were officially barred from entering the city, there were no congregational prayers in the mosque. There are limited examples of Muslim diplomats that came to Jerusalem who were allowed to pray there individually, but examples of this are few and far between.

Salah al-Din and the Mamluks

In the 1180s, the Kurdish sultan Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi managed to unite the various feuding Muslim states that surrounded Jerusalem. With his united Muslim army, he managed to liberate the city of Jerusalem from the Crusaders in 1187. Unlike the Crusaders 88 years earlier, Salah al-Din did not allow a massacre of civilians or soldiers. He did however, order the Crusaders out of the city and retook control of the Haram for Muslims.

The minbar of Salah al-Din, before it was destroyed in 1967.The minbar of Salah al-Din, before it was destroyed in 1967.

Salah al-Din vowed to clean up the al-Aqsa Mosque within a week of the city’s liberation, in time for the next Friday prayer. Like the second caliph, ‘Umar 550 years before him, Salah al-Din worked with his soldiers and followers to manually clean the mosque. The Crusader structures inside the mosque were torn down. The bathrooms and Crusader furniture were cleaned out of the mosque which was then sprinkled with rosewater by Salah al-Din personally. The mihrab was uncovered as was the Islamic calligraphy that had been covered up by the Crusaders. Salah al-Din even brought along a minbar (pulpit) that was constructed in Damascus in preparation for the liberation of Jerusalem. Besides just the mosque itself, Salah al-Din founded numerous educational institutes that took up residence inside the Haram, as he attempted to bring back the Islamic character of the city.

Despite a new Crusade that was launched in response to the Muslim conquest of the city, Salah al-Din was able to defend the city from Crusader attacks. After his death in 1193, the Ayyubid Dynasty of his descendants continued to rule over Jerusalem and take charge of its defense from Crusader attacks. In the late 1200s and early 1300s, the Ayyubid Dynasty gradually gave way to the new Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt, which was ruled by Turkish slave soldiers who would rise to power in Cairo.

During the Mamluk Sultanate, the European zeal for Crusading slowly abated, and Jerusalem was more secure from attack. Thus, the Mamluks were able to place much more emphasis on the construction of Islamic buildings in the city, particularly in and near the Haram.  A new collonaded porch was constructed on the western side of the Haram, bordering the markets of the city. The Dome of the Rock itself was renovated and the numerous fountains and domes were built in the Haram for use by worshipers.

Numerous schools of Islamic law were built on the borders of the Haram. Scholars considered it a special blessing to be in the city, and to be able to study Islam with the al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock within view was especially prized. Muslims from North Africa, Persia, and even as far away as India and China flocked to the mosque to study and worship. The great scholar of the 1300s, Ibn Taymiyyah even wrote a short treatise about the benefits of visiting the al-Aqsa Mosque and the correct etiquette and prayers to practice while there.

The Ottomans

The Dome of the Rock was renovated by Sultan Suleyman in the 1500s. The tiles put in at that time still adorn its exterior.The Dome of the Rock was renovated by Sultan Suleyman in the 1500s. The tiles put in at that time still adorn its exterior.

According to Ibn Khaldun, empires are forever destined to rise and fall every few hundred years. And such was the case for the Mamluks. By the early 1500s, the new mega-power of the Muslim world was the Ottoman Empire, based in the historic city of Istanbul. In 1513, the Ottoman Sultan Selim I went to war against the Mamluks, and in 1516, he appeared outside the walls of Jerusalem with his Ottoman Turkish army and was given the keys to the city peacefully by its local government.

As part of the world’s most powerful empire in the 1500s, Jerusalem experienced a new resurgence. It was made the capital of the sanjak of Jerusalem, an administrative district of the province of Syria. The Ottomans sent governors, soldiers, and administrators to the city to help manage it.

For the mosque, Ottoman control meant a new era of construction and beautification. Selim’s son, Suleyman al-Kanuni, came to power in 1520. During his reign, the Dome of the Rock was completely renovated magnificentely. The exterior of the building was covered in marble, colored tiles, and calligraphy. Verses from the Quran’s 36th chapter (Surat Yasin) adorned the top of the walls which still can be seen today. Suleyman also commissioned a fountain near the main entrance of the al-Aqsa Mosque, which is still used by worshipers to do wudu (ritual purification). For the city itself, Suleyman ordered his head architect, Mimar Sinan, to rebuild the walls around the city, which also survive today.

The British and the Israelis

For centuries under Ottoman rule, Jerusalem and the al-Aqsa Mosque maintained a healthy status quo. While Muslims were in charge of the administration of the city, Jews and Christians were given religious freedom in accordance with Islamic law and the Ottoman millet. That balance was disrupted by the emergence of the Zionist movement in Europe, which sought to turn Jerusalem and the surrounding area into an exclusively Jewish state.

When their requests were denied by Sultan Abdülhamid II in the late 1800s, the Zionists turned to the British in WWI. The Ottomans had entered the war against the British in 1914, and the British rapidly advanced through the Sinai Peninsula and Palestine from 1915 to 1918. In 1917, the British captured the city of Jerusalem. For the first time since the Crusades, the city was in non-Muslim hands. However, unlike the Crusades, a massacre did not follow. The Muslim community of Jerusalem was allowed to continue to control the Haram area, although with British oversight.

A map of the Haram al-Sharif. Click for higher resolution.A map of the Haram al-Sharif. Click for higher resolution.

For the Zionists, British control over Jerusalem meant increased Jewish immigration from Europe. Hundreds of thousands of Jews emigrated to Palestine, with many of them settling in Jerusalem. By the time the British pulled out of Palestine in 1948, the Zionists were able to establish a state called Israel and in the subsequent war, conquered a majority of Palestine. Half of Jerusalem, including the al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock, however, escaped Israeli control. Instead, neighboring Jordan took control of East Jerusalem and the Haram.

On June 7th, 1967, the third day of the Six Day War, the Israeli troops managed to conquer Jerusalem, along with the rest of the West Bank, due to a massive troop withdrawal by the Jordanian government. Israeli troops entered the Haram with relative ease and flew an Israeli flag from the top of the Dome of the Rock. For Muslims, this was an epic catastrophe that marked a turning point in the history of the mosque. Adding to the tension, a large part of the al-Aqsa Mosque was damaged by a fire in 1967 that was started by an Australian extremist who hoped that the mosque’s destruction would pave the way for the second coming of Jesus. Much of the ancient calligraphy was destroyed, along with the minbar of Salah al-Din.

With Israeli occupation of the city, any Muslim entrance into Jerusalem became strictly controlled. Even today, most Muslims not from Jerusalem itself are strictly prohibited from entering Jerusalem and praying in the al-Aqsa Mosque. A Muslim controlled waqf (religious endowment  officially controls the Haram area itself, but entrance into the Haram is managed by Israeli police, who reserve the right to prohibit people from entering.

As it has been throughout it’s long history, the al-Aqsa Mosque is once again the center of Muslim religious life in the city as well as tension with other groups. With Israeli encroachment and the Muslim world’s division and infighting, the future of the al-Aqsa Mosque is once again uncertain.

Footnotes:

1 – Armstrong, 258

 Bibliography:

Armstrong, Karen. Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1996. Print.

Montefiore, Simon Sebag. Jerusalem: The Biography. New York: Vintage Books, 2011. Print.
في امان الله

Your brother in Islam,
A Shabbir Ahmed

Battle of Malegaon: The Maratha army’s Muslim Heroes

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Islam,

  السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

Battle of Malegaon: The Maratha army’s Muslim Heroes

April 10, 2018 14:25 IST

At the Battle of Malegaon, Muslim soldiers in the Maratha army defied the British army for a full month when they had no hope of victory as the Chhatrapati and Peshwa had already surrendered.

These battles, says Colonel Anil A Athale (retd), are in contrast to the colonial mindset driven narrative of Muslim separatism.
The current politics of both communities ensures that the heroes of Malegaon — or for that matter personalities like Ibrahim Khan, who led the Maratha artillery at the battle of Panipat in 1761 — are forgotten.

IMAGE: The Malegaon fort. Kind courtesy: Wikipedia

On January 1, 2018, the bicentenary of the defence of Koregaon by a small British force — that had a number of Mahar troops — was observed with great fanfare.

The British — the victors in the third Anglo-Maratha war — erected a pillar to commemorate the event.

During the same war, Muslim troops of the Marathas defied British forces for a full month from May 15, 1818 to June 13, 1818.

Since the Marathas were on the losing side, this saga of bravery was obliterated from history by the British.

As we approach the bicentenary of that event it is time to remember the brave soldiers of the Maratha army who continued to fight even when they had no hope since the Chhatrapati had already been captured by the British and Poona and Satara were under British occupation.

The loyalty to the Maratha flag by its Muslim soldiers even in a hopeless situation deserves to be remembered.

My own research in 1990 began with a question posed by the late Major General D K Palit, a military history scholar of repute.

The question he posed was this: How is it that the Marathas — who spiritedly fought a 22 year-long guerilla war against the mighty Mughal empire — succumbed to the British without a fight?

It is this quest for truth that led me to research the story of the Anglo-Maratha struggles of the 18th and 19th century.

The Battle of Malegaon fought in May-June 1818 was the last major attempt at resistance by the Marathas.

On May 15, 1818, a brigade strength force under Lieutenant Colonel A MacDowell reached the vicinity of Malegaon fort.

The British expected that this show of force would be sufficient to overawe the defenders of the Malegaon fort.

The British were in for a nasty surprise.

In response to summons to surrender, the defenders fired on the British camp leading to panic.

The quadrangular fort of Malegaon is located near the bend in the Musam river so as to cover two side of the fort, Malegaon town being on the other sides.

The fort had two lines of defence built of masonry surrounded by a seven feet wall and a 25 feet deep 16 feet wide ditch.

The outer wall had watch towers built of mud and stone. The inner fort or the citadel was 60 feet high with 16 feet wide ramparts.

On May 16, Colonel MacDowell reached the west bank of the river and began work to erect barriers of breastwork to deploy guns for the final assault.

At 8 am the British began bombardment of the fort with 20 guns, an assortment of 12 pounders (the biggest calibre gun then in India), 8 pounders and mortars.

The defending soldiers sortied out of the fort, destroyed the batteries and killed two British officers and several soldiers.

At the same time 7 guns from the fort opened devastating fire on the British lines on the west bank of the river.

The ding dong battle continued for six days.

On May 22, after particularly heavy shelling from the fort, the British were forced to abandon the breastwork for the guns and retreated.

On May 26, the British — through constant bombardment — succeeded in creating a breach in the inner wall of the fort.

The next day the British launched a three pronged attack after a bombardment lasting nearly two hours.

One column was led by Major Greenhill and consisted of a native battalion of 1,000 soldiers with 100 Europeans to directly go into the fort through the breach.

Another column of 800 sepoys under Lieutenant Colonel Stewart crossed the river downstream to outflank the fort from the west.

The third column consisting of 300 sepoys and 50 Europeans under Major Macbean went towards the river gate.

Each column had pioneers with tools, mines and ladders to tackle the fortification.

But the defenders of the Malegaon fort proved equal to the challenge.

The attacking British were met with a hail of bullets and gunfire. The attempt to scale the inner wall failed. Many of the engineer officers leading the attack suffered injuries.

Both the columns led by Majors Greenhill and Macbean were ordered to withdraw.

Only Lieutenant Colonel; Stewart’s column met with some success and he occupied part of the town.

The stalemate continued till June 4.

On that day another column under Major Watson arrived from Ahmednagar with a battalion of native infantry and a large number of siege guns.

 For nine days, till June 13, the fort was subjected to heavy bombardment by the British guns.

On June 13, at 3 pm, the fort garrison accepted surrender and the Union Jack was hoisted in place of the Maratha saffron jari patka flag.

The next morning the garrison of 300 men marched out of the fort and surrendered their arms.

The British strength at Malegaon numbered over 2,000 troops. During the battle the British casualties numbered 11 officers and 220 soldiers (killed or wounded).

Thirty Maratha defenders died while 60 Maratha soldiers were wounded.

The British record states that in the end they used 36 guns, fired over 8,000 shells and used 35,500 pounds of gunpowder.

The British were so impressed with the valour and chivalry of the defenders that they permitted the surrendered soldiers to keep their daggers.

Historian N C Kelkar notes in his Marathi book Marathe ani Ingraj that at one stage the desperate British sent a message to the Muslim soldiers of the Maratha army that since the Chhatrapati had already surrendered, they should do likewise.

The doughty defenders replied that they were indeed aware that their king was in British captivity, but they were yet to receive instructions from him to surrender and therefore would keep fighting.

The devotion to duty and loyalty to their king was of the kind seen later only during World War II when many Japanese soldiers continued to fight even after Japan surrendered.

There is neither any victory pillar nor are the names of these brave soldiers engraved anywhere.

Even two hundred years after the event and the departure of British 70 years ago, the Muslim heroes of battle of Malegaon remain unknown, forgotten and unsung.

Two hundred years ago, the third Anglo-Maratha war fought in 1817 and 1818 ended in the Maratha Chhatrapati and Peshwa (prime minister) surrendering to the English.

After having defeated the Holkars and Shindias in early 1817, the British turned to the conquest of Maharashtra proper.

The full story of the Maratha struggle with the British has for long been swept under the carpet. In its place a modern myth of the British having directly taken over India from the Mughals or accidently acquired an empire has gained currency.

Ignoring the Marathas and their role in ruling most of north and central India was part of the grand colonial project of disinformation that sought to then play up Mughal-Rajput rule.

I recall an interesting news report some years ago, datelined Aligarh, where an Aligarh Muslim university ‘scholar’ had discovered that a major battle between the Marathas and the English had indeed taken place in Aligarh in 1803!

The worthy had, of course, never heard of the second Anglo-Maratha war that took place in 1803-1804 with battles at Delhi, Lassawari near Agra, Aligarh, Shekohabad etc.

The British had sound reasons to whitewash the Maratha period of our history.

Since the Marathas formed a formidable alliance with the Muslims, Jats and Sikhs in resisting the British, they posed a potential threat.

The distortions continued post-Independence as writing and teaching history was hijacked by the left-leaning Delhi elite. But those who ignore the Maratha or Sikh epoch fail to answer a simple question.

The Marathas fought three wars with the British, so did the Sikhs, the Gorkhas and Tipu Sultan in the south. Is there any mention of the Anglo-Mughal wars, even in the doctored historical narrative?

Note: The information about the Battle of Malegaon is based on a British Indian Army General Staff Publication (Simla 1910), Maratha and the Pindari War pages 89-91.

Colonel Anil A Athale (retd) is a military historian. This article is based on extracts from his forthcoming book, The Story of the Mighty Marathas and their Empire.

Article sourced from   http://www.rediff.com/news/special/battle-of-malegaon-the-maratha-armys-muslim-heroes/20180410.htm

في امان الله

Your brother in Islam,
A Shabbir Ahmed

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