As millions of Muslims from across the world made their pilgrimage to Mecca for Hajj, thousands of worshippers from the Islamic Center gathered at the Pasadena Convention Center for Eid al-Adha prayer on Sept. 12. This Eid is a commemoration of Prophet Ibrahim's willingness to sacrifice and submit to the will of Allah.
In the Eid khutba, Hassan Zeenni introduced Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) as a pioneer. All Abrahamic faiths, including Jews, Christians, and Muslims, trace their roots back to Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH), and although there are distinct differences between these faiths, all belong to the same family, the family of Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH).
Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) felt the submission to Allah in his heart and lived consciously. As Zeenni so eloquently shared, "Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) refused to be an imitator - to blindly follow what was passed on to him, even from his own parents. Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) was an independent thinker."
Independent thinkers don't rely on others to explain the world around them, said Zeenni, who adds that independent thinkers are pioneers. They observe and turn to critical thinking to make educated decisions in line with his/her authentic Truth (fitra), or the predisposition of humankind to want to be close to Allah.
"The Qur'an wants all of us to be pioneers in our own ways," Zeenni said, "With the strength of God in you. With the wings of being independent thinkers and hard work, you can soar to new heights. No matter what field you are in. It is your world, put your fingerprints on it and be pioneers in that regard. Anyone who chooses to do so, you will be the best leaders for our nation."
Although Zeenni was indirectly addressing the youth in his khutba, his valuable message of independent thinking was applicable to all attendees. Every person has the capacity to be an independent thinker - to discover God and to sacrifice in submission to Him. It comes down to making a decision based in Truth.
Please consider making a contribution to the Islamic Center and supporting our "pioneers." Your donation will help support programs such as our Junior Youth Group (JYG) and Muslim Youth Group (MYG) - two programs that encourage independent thinking and shape the future leaders of the Islamic Center.