Community Voice May 2017

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  Mental health has always been a taboo topic people have refrained from talking about. The feeling of shame, fear and sometimes even guilt rushes over individuals who deal with a mental health illness when talking about it with their family, friends and peers. It isn’t enough that those feelings arise on top of the mental health issue we deal with, that we feel pressured to stay quiet within the Muslim community about our illness, as if it’s a horrible thing we brought upon ourselves and that is all people will see when they look at us. You as an individual are not defined by your mental illness. You may be Amena with depression but your name is not depression. You may be Waheed with an anxiety disorder but your name is not anxiety. We need to ignite the compassion and empathy within ourselves and first and foremost recognize that a mental health illness is exactly that – it’s an illness. It is not “phase” your teenager is going through, it is not just brought on by an issue that you can pray away, it is not because your iman or faith in God is weak and it is definitely not “all in your head”. It is as valid as any physical disease, if not more – because mental illnesses can lead to physical symptoms – and we need to treat and care for our emotional/mental selves as much as we do for our physical beings. Talking to someone, seeking professional help – such as counselling/therapy or taking medicine for your mental health is not embarrassing nor is it shameful. Allah (swt) does not deprive us of cures and means to help us get better:

“…a group of desert dwellers asked him: “Should we not seek medical treatment?” 
He replied: “Yes, O worshippers of Allah, you should seek medical treatment, for indeed Allah has not set forth a disease without setting forth for it its cure, with the exception of one disease.” 
They asked: “O Messenger of Allah! What disease is that?” 
He replied: “Old age.” [Sunan Ibn Mâjah (3436), Sunan Abî Dâwûd (3855) and Sunan al-Tirmidhî (2038)].

                There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking help or a cure for your depression, anxiety, or any mental illness you are going through; it is in fact encouraged to seek treatment. To the individual that is reading this, I would like you to start a conversation about mental health within your circle. It can then perhaps grow into a larger conversation that can lead to action – such as khutbas, halaqas or events about mental health and the establishment of appropriate counseling services in your local mosque/Islamic centre – talking about it is a great start however, it needs to be followed by action as well. If you or someone you know suffers from a mental health illness, please reach out and seek help. The Prophet Muhammad (saws) said “No blessing other than faith is better than well-being” [Sahih Al-Bukhari (6482)]. You are not weak for wanting to get better, it entails great strength and bravery to get on the road of recovery and nothing matters more than your health. 


By: Sana Syed 


ISK Expansion Project

Prayer Timings

- Fajr and Isha times are calculated according to ISNA (sun is 15 degrees below horizon)

- Asr time is based on standard method (other than Hanafi). Asr may be prayed earlier if there is a
community event.

- Times shown for ICK are Iqamah times.

- Jum’a khutba starts at 1:20 (12:20 when standard time starts, November 5)