Sidewalk Bends

Exploring the soul and it's reaches.

Posts Tagged ‘Islam

The Sufi Way

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whirling dirvishA shepherd of men and women does not need a stick nor a lashing tongue. With his heart, he guides. He has no need to dismantle the gods of others, for he knows his place among all of creation. Superior to none, he does not dissuade those who are seen to be inferior. Blind to comparisons, he takes joy in all that is.

There is no better day, or another tomorrow; there is now. There are no loose threads, or misplaced beads; there simply is. There is no hope or regret; there is eternal acceptance. From the newest newborn to the most eldest among us, there are only wise men and women. There is no first or last and no best or worst. There is just the divine in infinite expression.

Written by Sidewalk Bends

July 15, 2011 at 4:24 am

Spiritual Guidance and Chat

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If you are seeking spiritual guidance or advice, or would just like to discuss spirituality even as it pertains to different belief systems, please join us in chat. All beliefs and opinions shall be respected. Please note that users may have beliefs contrary to your own. We encourage everyone to share their path. This venue is free to all and does not require any membership. Come as you will. Share as you will.

You, Becoming Me

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I am a Sufi.
I am a Jew.
I am a Christian.
I am a Buddhist.
I am Hindi.
I am you.

I am a man.
I am a woman.
I am you.

I am a teacher.
I am a preacher.
I am a lawyer.
I am a servant.
I am a slave.
I am you.

I am creation.
I am destruction.
I am you.

I am you, becoming me.

Blind Rituals

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Five Pillars of Islam

Is praying five times a day more important or is our relationship with God more important? Is fasting and abstaining from certain foods and activities more important, or is our relationship with God more important? Is making a pilgrimage to a holy site more important, or is our relationship with God more important? Is tithing and giving a certain percentage of our income more important, or is it the intent that drives the giving more important? In many religions there are rituals that we follow. Some are done because they are deemed as laws handed down by God. Some are done because it has been done for centuries. And still some are done because religious leaders say they should be done. How do we know who is right? Everyone has been following the same way for as long as anyone can remember, so how can it be any different? Could it be that the actions themselves are not so important, but instead it is the intent that drives them?

When we pray or meditate is the reason to ask for something for ourselves or for someone else, or is it to give ourselves to God? In prayer do we not bear ourselves to God? Do we not unload our worries and give our thanks for the life we live and the things that are given to us? Do we not ask for guidance and perhaps assistance in our daily lives? In doing these things, are we not building a relationship with God?

When fasting or abstaining from sex, do we do these things because it is said we should? What is the purpose? Is it not to remind us of the many blessings that God has given us and also of the many distractions that divert us from Him? Is it not to show us that if we build a proper relationship with God that nothing can distract us, neither the temptation of physical gratification, or the hunger pangs that our body might feel?

When giving to the poor, does one do it because they are made to do it? Is it done out of obligation or out of the kindness and generosity of one’s heart? If a person gives and then counts their losses, are they giving freely for lack of want, or out of the expectation of a divine reward? In giving freely, are we not reminded of our own blessings? In giving freely, are we not reminded that the shoe could be on the other foot?

Instead of blindly following rituals and laws written by men long before we can ever remember, perhaps it’s time to ask why we do the things we do? Perhaps it’s time to build our own relationship with God. Instead of chastising others for how they choose to worship God, perhaps it’s time to start looking at ourselves.


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Minarets are no more a symbol of extremist Islam, than church bells are a symbol of extremist Christianity. We see what we choose to see. Our fears drive us to seclusion. You cannot call yourself a Christian and then hide in church. You cannot call yourself a Muslim and then hide inside a mosque. You cannot call yourself a Jew and then hide in a synagogue. We cannot be close to God/Allah and then build walls that separate us from all others. We cannot be close to God/Allah and then call ourselves the chosen. God is at your doorstep, would you turn him away?

Written by Sidewalk Bends

November 29, 2009 at 5:45 pm

Three Little Words

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Archangel MichaelI cannot stop writing and I do not know why. A friend asked me to write and all that was said to me were three words. I thought about these words and all that I could think of is, we do it to ourselves. We do it to ourselves. Today the world seems chaotic. Some say it always has been, but we are just more aware of it because we are bombarded by the media. We all see ourselves spiraling towards some future we do not know. Some of us can see the poor decisions our nation’s leaders may make. We see the infighting and we ask ourselves why they can’t behave better. They are like children. We see the wars and the hate between Muslims and Jews, between Muslims and Christians, and between Christians and Jews, and we ask ourselves why they can’t behave better. They are like children. We are quick to spot the errors in other people’s ways, and yet we fail to look at our own short comings.

We are in this together, you and I. We share this world. We may never meet. You may never even know my name, and yet we still share this world. You might think my words ramble or that I am a foolish person who has gone out of his mind. That may be so, but we still share more than most will ever realize. This life is much more than our actions. It is our thoughts. It is our feelings. It is our past and it is our future. Others may destroy this world, but they alone will not answer for their actions. We all will answer. We all will answer because we are in this together. Whether by choice or by fate, we are in this together.

Divide and Conquer.

Written by Sidewalk Bends

November 26, 2009 at 6:31 am

Divided We Fall

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The world is divided. We are divided based on the country we choose to pay homage. We are divided based on our language and our culture. We are divided based on our religion. We are divided by what we choose to call God/Allah. We are divided by the wants of our mind and our heart. We are divided and yet we have no one else to blame but ourselves.

We choose sides and yet we have no idea what side it is that we really play on. We say we follow God’s laws, and yet we would honor our country before we would honor God. We say we are good Christians, Muslims, or Jews, and yet we would hold our prophets above God Himself. We say we are obedient children and yet we squabble over the scraps of a world full of illusions. We claim that we are without want except for God’s love, and yet we pray to the mighty dollar. We say in God we trust, but only when times get rough. We are divided and yet we have no one else to blame but ourselves.