Higher Education Teaching and Learning
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Higher Education Teaching and Learning
Issues and priorities arising around academic development, teaching and learning in Higher Education.
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Curtin Teaching and Learning - eLearning: eLearning advisors

Curtin Teaching and Learning - eLearning: eLearning advisors | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
The diverse team of eLearning advisors provide elearning workshops, send out periodic newsletter, provide customised consultation, support the eScholar program and more.

 

Use the 'Filter' pull-down menu above to search for topics by keywords.


Via Kim Flintoff
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Craig Patterson's comment, June 13, 2013 1:52 AM
Is this link working?
Kim Flintoff's comment, June 13, 2013 2:12 AM
The website was redesigned and we disappeared ... This scoop is simply a flag about who's curating... We didn't expect anyone wold ever want to visit us.....
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Tyler Cowen Says Online Professors Should Think Like Bloggers

Tyler Cowen Says Online Professors Should Think Like Bloggers | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it

This is the third episode of our new podcast series on the future of higher education. You can subscribe in iTunes to get prior and future episodes.

Many people know Tyler Cowen for his economics blog, Marginal Revolution. A couple of years ago Mr. Cowen, a professor of economics at George Mason University, looked at the rise of online lectures, course videos, and MOOCs, and decided that the next logical step from blogging was to start his own university. So he and a colleague did it. It’s called Marginal Revolution University, and it’s a rapidly growing collection of free online courses. There’s no campus for this university, of course, and it doesn’t grant degrees. It’s all just a website, so it’s not a real university, right?

"Very quickly, What’s a university and what is not?" said Mr. Cowen. "Those distinctions are crumbling. If we’re not a university, maybe no one else will be either."

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A Pedagogy That Spans Semesters

A Pedagogy  That Spans Semesters | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
T he college seminar is a productive space. Every semester, students’ discussions, papers, and projects produce a wealth of knowledge that expands the core focus of a course. But the life of this student-generated knowledge is almost always short. Class discussions rarely survive outside of the ephemera they produce, such as notes and forums. Even term papers and slide decks are at best saved but seldom shared. We often brag about the insightfulness of our students, but we do little to retain their insights, and we do even less to ensure that any knowledge that is preserved will help educate the next cohort.
Until this past semester, while I, too, was in awe of the knowledge my seminar students produced, I didn’t know how — and didn’t even really think about how — to carry their wisdom from one semester to the next. A handy digital tool, however, now allows me to do just that.
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What happened when a professor built a chatbot to be his teaching assistant

What happened when a professor built a chatbot to be his teaching assistant | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
These students were shocked to find out they'd been chatting with a robot all semester.
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NMC Beyond the Horizon > Getting Personal [WEBINAR]

NMC Beyond the Horizon > Getting Personal [WEBINAR] | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
May 25th @ 12pm Central US Time

Free for NMC Members
General: $125

Personalizing learning refers to the range of educational programs, learning experiences, instructional approaches, and academic support strategies intended to address the specific learning needs, interests, aspirations, or cultural backgrounds of individual students. Institutions are also harnessing technology to help students advance toward educational goals and create a culture dedicated to student success. In this online event, panelists will explore how this trend is fostering advancements in online learning environments and adaptive learning technologies, making it more possible to support learners’ individual learning paths. Additionally, they will reveal how personalized learning is empowering students to take ownership of their education and prime themselves for lifelong learning.
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TeachThought: A Diagram Of Pedagogy in the 21st Century

TeachThought: A Diagram Of Pedagogy in the 21st Century | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
We know that thinking in the 21st century seems different. What about teaching? Aside from the presence of dizzying technologies, added pressure for data-based improvements, and a persistent call for innovation, how is teaching different in 2016 than it was in, say, 1984?

Here are a few ideas as a kind of quick overview, with general summaries for each. I’ve added “tags” for each domain so that we can begin to see how existing and emerging initiatives (e.g., personalized learning), trends (e.g., the flipped classroom), and buzz words (e.g., digital footprint) might fit into each.
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How to Think (and Learn) Like a Futurist | Jane McGonigal SXSWedu 2016 Keynote [VIDEO]

How to Think (and Learn) Like a Futurist | Jane McGonigal SXSWedu 2016 Keynote [VIDEO] | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
"Thinking about the future can prepare you to be more creative, to invent, to innovate, to make a change, to make a difference. And that's because in order to create something new, you have to be able to imagine how things can be different." – Jane McGonigal

Best known for her work as a pioneering game designer and author of the bestselling books Reality is Broken and SuperBetter, Jane McGonigal, PhD, has also spent the past decade working as a futurist. At SXSWedu 2016, Jane led the entire audience in a playful one-hour master class on the three more important techniques for future forecasting.

Watch the full, How to Think (and Learn) Like a Futurist video now and explore more 2016 keynotes and featured sessions on the SXSWedu YouTube Channel.
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Higher Ed Slow To Shift to Digital Experiences -- Campus Technology

Higher Ed Slow To Shift to Digital Experiences -- Campus Technology | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it

Public universities could really use some help in sorting out how to use their digital content, technologies and practices to do a better job of interacting with their "customers" — students and families. Likewise, they're making glacially slow progress on meeting the expectations of prospective students. Those findings come out of a sponsored survey that examined the current state of content management practices in higher education.

According to "Digital Transformation in Higher Education," delivering "experiences" to education customers — above and beyond publishing content — remains "aspirational" for public universities. For example, people involved in content development — web managers, marketers and other decision-makers — know they should be doing more to engage prospective and current students. But they're simply "overwhelmed by the everyday tasks associated with maintaining their university's current web presence," said co-author Marianne Kay, DCG analyst, in a prepared statement. "They find it difficult to evolve from content publishing to digital storytelling." As the report noted, "They recognize the growing need, and they want to be able to respond. But cultural, organizational, and technology obstacles are significant."

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Festival of Learning 4-6 May 2016 - Staff News | Curtin University, Perth, Australia

Festival of Learning 4-6 May 2016 - Staff News | Curtin University, Perth, Australia | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
About the Festival

The theme for the 2016 Festival of Learning is The Global Classroom: Innovation for the future. The aim of the Festival of Learning is to showcase innovative and progressive learning and teaching by acknowledging academic staff in their efforts and sharing innovative teaching activities with colleagues and students. The Festival is used as a means of engaging and educating students and staff in Learning for Tomorrow by:

Showcasing examples of excellence already happening at Curtin
Celebrating achievements in the learning, teaching and the student experience
Demonstrating and sharing future technologies, teaching practices and the global classroom
Format and Timing

The 2016 Festival of Learning is to be held Wednesday 4 May to Friday 6 May 2016. The Festival will commence with an opening event on Wednesday 4 May, with sessions and activities to be held throughout the 3 days (no concurrent sessions), culminating in the Curtin Excellence in Innovation and Teaching award ceremony on Friday 6 May.
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Empowering Teachers to Meet the Digital Native Learners

This paper identifies and describes the challenges higher education is facing on the brink of the knowledge society, and presents one solution through a novel approach to teacher training through a learning program based on authentic, social media assisted learning.

Many researchers see a gap between higher education and 21st century skills.  Although these are the natural skills of digital native learners, they are not being supported in education. 

It is important that teachers acquire the competences needed in 21st century knowledge work and are prepared to fruitfully work with their digital native learners. The School of Vocational Teacher Education at Tampere University of Applied Sciences introduces a novel approach to teacher training by applying the principles of 21st century skills in social media environments. This approach has yielded extremely promising results in a markedly short time.
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What do test-optional admissions really look like? - eCampus News

What do test-optional admissions really look like? - eCampus News | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it


Institutions at varying levels of test-optional admissions implementation report resounding success across multiple factors.


The number of schools that “de-emphasize” the ACT and SAT in admissions decisions in U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Guide (2016 Edition) currently exceeds 200—an indication that the “test optional” college campus could soon become the norm rather than the exception. Institutions like Wake Forest University and George Washington University are openly revealing the impetus behind—and results of—their own test-optional efforts, while smaller schools are also experimenting with the idea of looking “beyond the numbers” and using multiple, non-test-oriented factors when admitting students.

Kim Flintoff's insight:
The US equivalent of letting go of ATAR...
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A Digital Badge Initiative: Two Years Later -- Campus Technology

A Digital Badge Initiative: Two Years Later -- Campus Technology | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it

The founders of Coastal Carolina University’s digital badge program report on their progress, the response from students and faculty, and what lies ahead.


Moving Forward

The digital badge initiative at Coastal Carolina University still faces some big questions. At the forefront of our minds are philosophical issues such as how to translate the value of these badges into a real-world currency for our students and how earning badges can positively impact learners with low expectations of these courses. Other technological issues also persist, such as the permanency of the badges and online storage space. However, one thing is certain: This initiative supports collaboration and pedagogical innovation throughout our first-year composition program, and it makes visible our commitment to student learning and success in our composition courses. In that sense, the Coastal Composition Commons has given us more than just neat badges for our first-year writers; it has instilled a sense of pride in our program, and that has deep and lasting value.

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Six Ways to Support Personalized Learning

Key Takeaways
Integrated Planning and Advising for Student Success grants support the winners in addressing three student-facing functions: education planning, counseling and coaching, and risk targeting and intervention.
To support personalized learning, grantees advised treating students as individuals, strengthening their engagement, accommodating different goals and styles, and building trust with students.
Institutionally, grantees recommended rethinking institutional structures and support and taking advantage of appropriate technologies.
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What metrics don't tell us about the way students learn

What metrics don't tell us about the way students learn | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
A big push is under way in higher education to measure how students are learning and how good lecturers are at teaching them. Universities can track how much time a student spent on a learning module or how often they accessed a journal article or online book. Some universities are starting to use these “learning analytics” to study how students are accessing data. But that is currently all they can do – because of the limits of using this kind of “big data” to measure the effectiveness of teaching and learning.

In the UK, the government has confirmed plans to measure teaching excellence at universities in England via a new Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). The Queen’s Speech revealed that a new Higher Education and Research Bill will be introduced to take forward regulation around the ideas set out in the higher education white paper.
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It’s Not Just About Teaching Online. It’s About Teaching, Period.

It’s Not Just About Teaching Online.  It’s About Teaching, Period. | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
I often hear online learning touted as a disruptive innovation that is turning traditional higher education on its head. Yet for all the excitement swirling around the rise of online learning, there are many longtime academics who seem to view it as a kind of conqueror, tearing down the old and the good.

And perhaps they have a point.

I’m a distance-learning administrator at a two-year college where the number of students taking online courses has risen sharply. The more I’ve gotten to know the committed faculty members who have been serving students for decades, the more clearly I understand that their resistance isn’t just about doing business differently; it’s also about preserving their very purpose and identity.
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A 3 Dimensional Model Of Bloom's Taxonomy -

A 3 Dimensional Model Of Bloom's Taxonomy - | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
Well, technically it’s a 2-dimensional representation of a 3-dimensional model, but being limited as we are in 2016 to 2D screens, it is what it is. (Soon you’ll be able to 3D print what you see–download the plans and print it. Or play with it in virtual reality. Eventually a hologram you can manipulate digitally–pass around the room like a tennis ball, then fling it into the ether….)

Rex Heer at Iowa State University, who created the graphic, explains:

Among other modifications, Anderson and Krathwohl’s (2001) revision of the original Bloom’s taxonomy (Bloom & Krathwohl, 1956) redefines the cognitive domain as the intersection of the Cognitive Process Dimension and the Knowledge Dimension.

This document offers a three-dimensional representation of the revised taxonomy of the cognitive domain. Although the Cognitive Process and Knowledge dimensions are represented as hierarchical steps, the distinctions between categories are not always clear-cut.
Kim Flintoff's insight:
First encounter this model as a 3D experience in Second Life circa 2008.   Doesn't seem to be well known by many educators... worth engaging with.
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How Education Innovation Will Change Your Classroom

How Education Innovation Will Change Your Classroom | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
With all the talk about virtual reality, wearables, makerspaces and big data, it can be hard to visualize what your classroom is going to look like in a few years. The good news is that you and your school will be heavily involved in creating a space that uses technology to help students learn and keeps them engaged — and that helps you do your job better.

Here’s a look at some of the biggest technology trends and how they’re leading to education innovation.
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Personalized Learning: Creating a Relevant Learning Culture for the Next Generation

Personalized Learning: Creating a Relevant Learning Culture for the Next Generation | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
Personalized learning – where students take ownership of their learning and collaborate with instructors to design an education plan that works for them – is enticing education leaders as a way to transform the traditional education model, increase student engagement and improve achievement.

But while personalized learning is certainly promising, a recent CDE survey of 215 IT leaders in K-20 education shows the concept has not been widely implemented in K-12 or higher education. Just 20 percent of K-12 respondents and 15 percent of higher education respondents reporting having created a personalized learning culture.

This Special Report helps educators understand what personalized learning is (and what it is not), identifies innovative approaches to personalized learning and provides potential solutions to the challenges institutions face on the path to personalized learning.
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Digital Promise Puts Education Research All In One Place

Digital Promise Puts Education Research All In One Place | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
Digital Promise, the congressionally authorized nonprofit charged with “accelerating innovation in education to improve opportunities to learn,” has developed a tool to help educators and ed-tech developers sort through relevant research.

“There is more and more pressure for people to use research in their work,” said Sarita Bhargava, chief communications officer for Digital Promise. “We hope this tool will provide the first step.”

The Digital Promise research team used Web of Science, a tool that allows users to search by citation, to put together a network of peer-reviewed research articles related to education. They’ve organized the research into 12 broad topics that include subjects like student motivation, teaching reading, and special education practices.
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The Future of Learning — Learning {Re}imagined — Medium

The Future of Learning - Learning {Re}imagined - Medium

was recently invited to give a keynote talk at Windays 16, a Microsoft sponsored event hosted on a beautiful island near Poreč, Croatia. The event brought together representatives from the business, education and government communities in Croatia to consider the future of work, the Croatian economy and the role of education. 


After my talk I was invited to give the following interview which is 9 minutes long where I discuss my thoughts on the future of learning, schools, the misuse of EdTech and the need to reimagine assessment and testing. A full transcript follows the video:

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, May 9, 10:43 AM
Dewey emphasized the immediacy of context for children and learning. It was not about far-off, distant goals.
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Motivating adults: what is andragogy?

Motivating adults: what is andragogy? | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it

Way back in 2015, I thought it would be relevant to discuss Andragogy and the work of Malcolm Knowles on the subject, in a webinar that I delivered as part of Adult Learners week. The following blog is a summary of the webinar, which covered:

- an overview of Malcolm Knowles and his work on adult learning
- differences between pedagogy and andragogy, and
- the history of the term Andragogy. 


I also considered Knowles’s Andragogical model and the five assumptions he wrote of, to describe the differences between adult learning and traditional classroom models. I find his papers to be some of the most accessible and useful from my studies on adult learning, so as we move through these five assumptions today, I will provide examples of how these have related to my life and work as an online learning consultant – and, more importantly perhaps, a dad.

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Mastering Assessment Language: Trusty Tips and Tools via GDC

Mastering Assessment Language: Trusty Tips and Tools via GDC | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
If you are set on mastering assessment language, here are some tips and resources to help you use the best words at the right times.

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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Encarna Llamas's curator insight, April 23, 6:16 AM
personalizing education
cherimacleod's curator insight, April 24, 12:09 AM
Bloom's taxonomy matched with verbs ;)
Mohamed Moosa's curator insight, May 3, 2:45 AM
PURIFICATION OF THE SOUL 

A`ūthu billāhi min ash-shaytānir rajeem. Bismillāhir Rahmānir Raheem. [Surat Al-Qasas ; 76-78] 

Introduction 

PURIFICATION OF THE SOUL A`ūthu billāhi min ash-shaytānir rajeem. Bismillāhir Rahmānir Raheem. [Surat Al-Qasas ; 76-78] Introduction We commence by praising Allāh , sending blessings and salutations upon Muhammad . We ask the Almighty to bless him and his entire household; those who supported him from day one. And we ask Allāh to bless all his companions as well as every single one of us and our offspring to come up to the day of qiyāmah. Not forgetting those who have struggled and strove through the years, in order to preserve this deen in a way that today it has come to us. May Allāh use us to do the same for the future generations? Beloved brothers and sisters in Islam, this evening we will be talking about the purification of the soul. The believer as you know is only successful if he develops his link with his maker and cleanses his heart. We refer to the heart, we refer to the soul. Allah speaks about cleansing oneself from the sins that are apparent as well as those that are hidden. So in the Qur’an he says, “Watharoo thāhira alithmi wabātinah” [Surah Al An'am chapter 6: 120] “Leave and abandon all sins whether they are outward or inward.” And I'm sure we all know that the outward sins are quite clear for everyone to see. Those which are inside are sometimes completely invisible to the rest. It is only through interaction that some of them can be picked up and sometimes even with interaction some of these sins cannot be picked up. So it is up to us to purify not only the soul but the heart, knowing that some of the scholars refer to the heart and the soul using the same term and some have separated the two. If the heart is pure and good, the whole body will be pure and good What we do need to understand is that the heart is described in the hadith of halāl and harām which appears in Sahīh Muslim, narrated by an-Nu'man ibn Bashir “Halāl is quite clear and harām is also quite clear”. And between the two there may be a grey area where people may not know is this halāl or is this harām.” So the hadeeth continues to say “Whoever stays away from that which is doubtful has protected himself and his religion and whoever falls into that which is doubtful has fallen into harām.” If I can stop there for a moment and quickly explain. If a person were to be told that this particular piece of food that you're about to eat is poisonous and as soon as you put it in your mouth you will die. And twenty people are saying that to him and another twenty say “No don't worry its fine, its okay, we've checked it out and so on and you can eat it.” That is a very clear example of what we are saying today, meaning in this hadeeth. If you were to put it in your mouth, it's as though you've committed suicide. You're gone. You've killed yourself, because twenty are saying this and twenty are saying that. And if you were to leave it, you would save yourself completely. So there is no risk involved by leaving it and yet by taking it you are definitely risking your life. This is as far as a food stuff goes which may be poisonous. But when it comes to the deen and what Allāh has revealed and sent down, there are things that are clear, things that are not clear for some and the clarity is either this way or that way. You know this is permissible and this is not permissible. That is clear. But sometimes there is a debated issue in the center. If you are to protect yourself from it, perhaps you will be able to safeguard your deen. And in this particular narration some may say that this is speaking more about food stuff and so on, but the wording of Rasoolullāh goes far beyond anything that can be termed halāl or harām is included in this particular narration. Then the hadith continues to say “Similar to a shepherd who has allowed his flock to graze upon the border of his land not knowing whether it has gone onto the land of the neighbor because the demarcation is not so clear.” So there is a point up to which he knows this is my land. Beyond that he is not so clear. Is this my land or is it not my land? So when he goes to that grey area, he doesn't know whether it's his or not. What a big risk. He is now grazing his sheep, as a shepherd, on land that may not be his. And this is why the narration continues to say “Behold every king has limits. Limits beyond which you are not allowed or you will not be allowed to cross. Every king has rules, regulations and indeed the limits of Allāh are those things he has made prohibited.” Don't go there! Subhān Allāh. Then it continues making mention of the heart and this is what we are trying to get to “Behold in the body there is a piece of flesh. If it is pure and clean and good, the entire body will be pure and clean and good. And if it is dirty, impure and not good, then the whole body will be dirty, impure and not good. Behold, that organ or that piece of flesh is the heart.” Subhān Allāh. So if your heart is clean, everything else will be okay. If your heart is dirty, everything else will be dirty. Accepting advice from others And when we say clean heart, it doesn't necessarily mean that you are just a person who's non-judgmental. You see sometimes they say “Don't judge me” when you're giving them advice. You say “Brother you're not supposed to be go to the nightclub”, “Hey stop judging me”, “What are you talking about, we're just advising you.” So don't use the term “Do not judge me” in order to run away from advice. Sometimes it becomes difficult for the scholars or for those who want to advise others. “Sister your hair is supposed to be covered, sister you're supposed to be dressing in a proper way”, “My brother you're not supposed to be bouncing around on the street with your backside half showing”. Allāhu Akbar. “Stop judging me”, “Well your backside's judging you!” Allāhu Akbar. And this happens and we get these answers on a daily basis. Well to be honest nobody's judging. But it does not mean that if a person has uttered these type of words that their heart is dirty. No brother, sister! They are advising you for your better. Wallāhi moments ago I was listening to a clip in the Urdu language of one of the cricketers in Pakistan. I don't even know exactly who he is but I believe he is one of the top cricketers of the globe. And he was making mention of who his real friends are. You know what he said? He said “The real friends are the `ulamā'. My real friends are those scholars who keep reminding me what is my duty to Allāh, what is halāl and harām and the fact that I am going to go into my grave with nobody, no cricket bat and no ball and no score and nothing from the Guinness Book of Records, but just me and my own records; the deeds I've done.” Imagine a cricketer, a man who's one of the top on the globe confirming that those scholars who continue reminding me, telling me that I am a person who's going to go into my grave all alone. Those are my true friends. Subhān Allāh. What about us? What do we have next to our names? Do we hate the people who remind us? If that's the case, purification of the heart and soul is required. We ask Allāh to help us purify. Wallāhi it is a difficult age that we are moving in because people do not realize that when others are reminding you to purify your soul, your heart, they are not judging you. They are helping you. They are giving you a word of encouragement. Don't just give that answer. That is an answer that sometimes the globe gives in order to get away with murder, to keep on committing sin. “We will not judge you, we love you my sister but we don't love your bad habit. We love you my brother, we don't love your bad habit.” I was about to say we don't love your backside. Allāhu Akbar. Wallāhi it's true. Thinking of people, wallāhi my brother we love you. We really want you, that's why we are telling you don't do that. We had an image doing its rounds on the internet, with some of the scholars had to say “Please don't, you know, send this around.” Because they were showing jumu`ah. I think it was two weeks ago in a masjid. Okay let's not say where it was in case you might recognize the brother, but they were showing him making his Sunnah as the khutbah is going on. And the people behind him was so harmed and hurt, they had to get up and some of them you know sharp enough to pick up their phones and say lets you know, tell the people what's happening around here. May Allāh safeguard us? We should not be exposing people but the people should not be exposing themselves. Allāhu Akbar. Cleansing the heart of hatred So my brothers and sisters, lets purify our souls for the pleasure of Allāh . How does this happen? We need to do something about it. Don't think that I just make a du`ā' “Ya Allāh clean me, purify my soul” and it will. Du`ā' is a part of it, definitely. “Allāhumma yā muqallibal quloob, thabbit qulubee `alā deenik.” The Prophet used to say “O Allāh in whose hands” or “O Allāh who is the owner of the movement of the hearts, move my heart towards the deen – on the deen. Keep it steadfast.” But that statement will be of no use if you do not have an intention to purify yourself. Work hard on matters like hatred. Remove that hatred for your fellow brothers in the deen and have hatred for sin rather than the individual whom you are supposed to be looking at saying “This is my brother in Islām.” If you are supposed to be hating people because of a sin they may be committing, remember everybody will hate everybody because none of us can put up our hands and say “We are sinless.” Can anyone now, here, put up their hands and say “I'm spotless, sinless, I have not sinned?” Not one! Subhān Allāh. Not one! Not even myself because we are human beings. So the reality, we will hate the sin, we will hate the shirk, we will hate the bid`ah, but we will work on the brother or the sister in a way that we will try to help them come out of that shirk, come out of that bid`ah, come out of that sin for example. But at the same time remembering that this is a person who has declared the shahādah and I have as well. They may have sinned differently to me, but in the same way I want to be helped, I need them to be helped and I will try my best to do that or at least make du`ā' for them. Making du`ā' and giving naseeha This is why we say, you see a brother with a bottle in his hand. A bad Muslim would go around Tweeting that and go around Facebook-ing it and WhatsApp-ing it and so on-ing it. Subhān Allāh. Why? Because they want the world to know “I saw that man with a bottle.” But a good Muslim will do one of two things or both. They will either go to the brother, say “Brother you know what this is something bad and you know you're a Muslim, come on you know insha'Allāh there's much goodness expected from you by the will of Allāh. You're such a great person, you have so much potential, and this thing is not going to do you any good.” Engage them. Not swearing. Engage them properly to say look this is something that is unacceptable in the deen. You know, it will cause a lot of damage, a lot of harm. If you quit this I think there are a lot of good habits that you have. Just quit this and so on and Allāh may open the brother's doors through your effort and you will be granted goodness. “For Allāh to use you to guide a single person is better for you than anything of the highest material value in this world.” May Allāh bless us all? That is point number one. You either go to him or someone who has an effect or impact on him or perhaps tell them to talk to him if you cannot talk to him. And secondly make du`ā' for that brother. “Ya Allāh, today I witnessed someone with a bottle. It hurt me, Ya Allah. Ya Allah, guide them, help them to remove the bottle. Help them to give up that bad habit and help me to give up whatever bad habits I have.” Allāhu Akbar. This is purity of the heart now. With that du`ā' and that naseeha, if Allah wills that person's heart will come onto the right path within a matter of time. We know so many people who had very bad pasts, but now when they've come up straight, subhān Allāh, they've gone very far in life in terms of the deen and become closer to Allāh . So many of us, perhaps we are much better today than we were yesterday. May Allāh grant us goodness? Remaining patient when giving naseeha This is why we say, brother when you have become religious, remember when you are inviting others towards religion, you also came about slowly. So give them a little bit of time. The problem with us, we come on the deen after fifty years and everyone else we give those five minutes. Wallāhi, it's a problem in the ummah. We are facing it, we are not patient. We are supposed to be patient as Muslimeen. It took you forty years to recognize your Maker. Why do you want to in four minutes create such a situation that remove a man from the whole fold of the deen. Kick him out, curse him to the degree that you've buried him alive and you haven't given him more than four minutes to repent. You took forty years my brother. Thank Allāh he showed you the light. Allāhu Akbar. Work on them, continue working on them. The Prophet's nubūwwah was not twenty-three minutes, nor was it twenty-three days, nor was it twenty-three months. It was twenty-three solid years. Allāhu Akbar. So purify your heart when it comes to your relation with others because there is something known has huqooqul`ibād through which a lot of what your heart conceals becomes manifest. We hate for the sake of Allāh the deeds that are done in the displeasure of Allāh. We may hate for the sake of Allāh those who have absolutely no goodness in them and they have damaged the deen or they have caused lots of damage to those who follow the deen. Giving da`wah – Every non-Muslim is a potential Muslim But remember even the non-Muslims, every single non-Muslim is a potential Muslim. If you lose focus on that, you have lost the path. For as long as they are breathing there is hope. Who is ready to invite them in the proper way? Allāhu Akbar. A very big statement that brings tears to the eyes. Every non-Muslim. When the Prophet made a du`ā' for the enemies of Islām, one of the prayers were “Allāhummah a`izzal Islāma biahadil `Umarain” “O Allāh, grant strength to this deen through the acceptance of Islām of one of the two `Umars.” One was known as `Umar ibn al-Khattāb later to be known as, and the other one `Amr ibn Hishām who was known as Abu Jahl. No sooner was the du`ā' made, response came from Allāh . This man came marching into this house of al-Arqam ibn Abi'l Arqam as the books of history have made mention. So Rasoolullāh knew that Allāh is the One who guides. Just like he guided me, he may guide you or anyone on the street. So remember, when we say cleanse your heart and do not be judgmental we need to understand what this statement means. May Allāh make us people who realize that we would like to help one another to become steadfast on the deen. And that help can happen in so many different ways, depending on the authority that Allāh has given you as well. Cleansing the heart of envy If we have hatred in our hearts. Now let’s talk about general hatred, not necessarily whilst giving da`wah. But at the same time hatred in our hearts for someone, for some reason, normally it stems from jealousy. Not every time but a lot of the times. Because Allāh has blessed someone with more wealth, with more knowledge, with more acceptance, perhaps with greater looks. You know you have a woman who's extremely beautiful or a girl who's extremely good-looking and sometimes you have other girls who make her life so difficult and her crime is just that she is gorgeous. I would have told you to say mā shā'Allāh, but it's abstract. There's no one in particular we're talking about. Allāhu Akbar. So al-hamdulillāh, all you can say is “In sha'Allāh.” Allāhu Akbar. My brothers and sisters, wallāhi, do not become jealous of the favors that Allāh has bestowed others, just because you don't have it. Don't! It will result in the dirty heart. The heart will become unclean, filthy and it will require cleansing. Cleansing the heart with Thikrullāh Cleansing of the heart is also done through what is known as thikrullāh because everything has a detergent and the detergent of the heart is the remembrance of Allāh. But I'd like to interpret the term thikrullāh in its broader context. Thikrullāh starts with understanding the meaning of the Qur'ān. That's where it starts. That's the beginning of it. Because the thikr that is mentioned in the Qur'ān so many times, it directly refers to the Qur'ān and at times it refers to the Sunnah of Muhammad . So remember you need to know the message of Allāh, in order to have your heart purified. What did Allāh say to me? I always, always say it is a big insult. Some of us, how old we are, how regular we are with our salāh, yet we have not made an effort to understand the meanings of what we utter in salāh. Wallāhi it is an insult. We don't even know what is meant by “Alhamdu lillāhi rabbi al`ālameen, Arrahmāni arraheem, Māliki yawmi addeen” [Surah Fathiha ; 2-4] Some people do not know the meaning and some people do not think of the meaning when they are uttering these words. So what value do you have? How is your heart going to be impacted? Look at the hearts of those who were the sahābah . When they heard a single verse their lives changed. When they heard one verse, their hearts were purified! `Umar ibn al-Khattāb himself, who was an enemy of Islam, the opening verses of Surah Tāhā were read to him. Not more than a few lines were read to him. He began to tremble. Immediately his heart was cleansed because he had that sincerity in his heart. For a moment it was struck with sincerity and he said “Take me to Muhammad .” Guided from kufr to īmān in a split moment because of the Qur'ān. And this has happened to so many people. It has happened to people around us in our midst, perhaps some who might be seated here. Reverted immediately. Allāhu Akbar. Why? They read the Qur'ān and realized, this is the word of Allāh. I always tell people, you know I have an MP3 disc in my vehicle, given to me by someone in Malaysia. A brother. Allāh grant him goodness. And on it, there is the entire Qur'ān just in the English language. So the `Arabic has been, you know separated. Now we know the importance of the `Arabic and the English and he says “This is extremely beneficial to those who speak the language.” And I thought to myself, look, to me the `Arabic is powerful, the English is fair enough trying to explain what the `Arabic is, but the word of Allāh is that particular `Arabic. You cannot compromise it. So I thought to myself let me put it in and try and listen to what is being said. And I had a non-Muslim sit in my car once. One who had come to do some work and I was taking him back to his place. I saw tears in his eyes. Four of five surahs were read within a short space of time in the English language alone and he told me “What is this?” And I said “What do you think it is?” He said “It's something powerful!” He said “It has to be the book you guys follow” I said “It is” “Can I come to your place of worship?” “By all means brother?” Subhān Allāh. I think within a short space of time, may Allāh grant him guidance to the deen. Ameen. That's when I realized, I said you know what? Sometimes when people are just going through even the meaning of it, because they understand it, it impacts differently. Without reducing the importance of the tilāwah in the `Arabic language. Because indeed that is on a level of its own. But at the same time remember the impact of that, if you understand what you're reading, is totally different. You need that as well. So your purification will start when you have made an intention to understand the word of Allāh. I said moments ago, they heard four verses of the Qur'ān, they embraced Islām. We have read what we know as khatmah upon khatmah upon khatmah once a month, sometimes once a week, sometimes once every two months. We've completed the entire mushaf, but brother you cannot give up your pornography. A`oothu billāh. Abstaining from Pornography It did not move you. Pornography is the problem of the age, wallāhi. It's a difficulty. It affects your eyes, your brain, your mind, your organs, your reproductive system, the way you look at the opposite sex, your marriage. Absolutely everything is made rotten through a cancer because of your eyes perceiving some dirty sexual movements of the opposite sex. Totally harām, completely unacceptable but available on your phone. Today I was speaking to some brothers on our journey back from Birmingham and I made mention of a very interesting point. Your mobile phone that you have my brothers, my sisters can take you to jannah or jahannam. Remember that. The way you use it. You have any scholar on the globe that Allāh has used to affect you and impact you at your fingertips. At the time of your convenience, in your bedroom, Subhān Allāh. Perhaps, whilst you're lying down, you can click every night either on a scholar where you can listen to something regarding your deen and go to bed feeling a good Muslim. Or you can click onto a pornographic site and perhaps you will be caught in that web which will take you very, very, far away. It's to do with how clean or dirty your heart is. If you want to purify yourself, you need to force yourself, before you go to bed. Click that phone, listen to a ten minute clip of a scholar of your choice, subhān Allāh, and then go to bed. Every day that ten minute dose will wake you up but if you have a one minute dose of that which is pornographic or ugly or dirty or unacceptable, wallāhi it is like a seed that grows and when the tree grows big, it's going to be very hard to uproot it. My brothers, my sisters get rid of it now. Now! Make an intention here and now “Ya Allāh if you take me before I exit this masjid, let me be a pure person. I seek forgiveness for all my sins. I change my life.” Allāhu Akbar. How many more scholars would you like to hear before you change your life? Before you decide to purify that heart of yours. Without an effort from you, the heart is not going to be purified. When you have your own kitchen and you've cooked your food and your pans are dirty, you cannot just look at the pans and expect them to become clean. Even if you've got a dishwasher, you've got to pick the thing up, put it in the dishwasher, chose the detergent, turn on the water, press the button. Then things happen. Subhān Allāh. We still don't have the eye control of the pan. And if you thought you did they'd take you to the hospital, believe me. May Allāh safeguard us? So these are powerful words of reminder for myself to begin with. My brother, my sister, how do you use your Twitter account? What type of a profile do you have? How do you use your Facebook account? It can take you to paradise or it can drive you to hell, very easily. Believe me, it's up to you when you press click and when you press like and it's up to you to go home and dislike or to dislike it here and now whilst we're talking. Because I know there are brothers, perhaps maybe even sisters busy on their phones whilst we're talking. To be honest, I actually don't see a single one, Māshā'Allāh. Allāhu Akbar. So I need to swallow back my word. But this is what it is. If your heart is dirty, it begins to show your own self. You can see it, your mind can figure it out. Why because you lead a life. What will happen to it? It will be full of bunk. You know it will be so narrow, full of depression, full of stress, full of lack of contentment. Where is my contentment gone? It's gone with the pornographic site. It's gone with the adultery that you cannot give up. Adultery is a seed. Wallāhi if you sow it and you water it; watering means you return to it, and you water it more, you return to it more, it grows a tree. When the tree becomes big and strong, it becomes more difficult to uproot it. You become hooked onto it, to the degree that it's just like second nature. No regret thereafter until you die in a condition. May Allāh safeguard us? We had some brothers who came to me some time back, telling me, you know what do we do, our father was looking like such a religious man and he died in the midst of two prostitutes with beer bottles. Do you want that to be the end of your life? May Allāh protect us all? A`oothu billāh. May Allāh safeguard us? Well if that's the case do not let that be a probability. Rather let salāh be a probability. If you engage in five salāh, the chances of you dying in salāh are very great. Do you know that? There are so many who have died in sujood and rukoo`. But if you don't read salāh there's no chance of that happening to you. Not at all. May Allāh take us away whilst we're in His obedience and may he protect us really, that we are not disgraced, dying in His disobedience.
PURIFICATION OF THE SOUL 

A`ūthu billāhi min ash-shaytānir rajeem. Bismillāhir Rahmānir Raheem. [Surat Al-Qasas ; 76-78] 

Introduction 

We commence by praising Allāh , sending blessings and salutations upon Muhammad . We ask the Almighty to bless him and his entire household; those who supported him from day one. And we ask Allāh to bless all his companions as well as every single one of us and our offspring to come up to the day of qiyāmah. Not forgetting those who have struggled and strove through the years, in order to preserve this deen in a way that today it has come to us. May Allāh use us to do the same for the future generations? Beloved brothers and sisters in Islam, this evening we will be talking about the purification of the soul. The believer as you know is only successful if he develops his link with his maker and cleanses his heart. We refer to the heart, we refer to the soul. Allah speaks about cleansing oneself from the sins that are apparent as well as those that are hidden. So in the Qur’an he says, “Watharoo thāhira alithmi wabātinah” [Surah Al An'am chapter 6: 120] “Leave and abandon all sins whether they are outward or inward.” And I'm sure we all know that the outward sins are quite clear for everyone to see. Those which are inside are sometimes completely invisible to the rest. It is only through interaction that some of them can be picked up and sometimes even with interaction some of these sins cannot be picked up. So it is up to us to purify not only the soul but the heart, knowing that some of the scholars refer to the heart and the soul using the same term and some have separated the two. If the heart is pure and good, the whole body will be pure and good What we do need to understand is that the heart is described in the hadith of halāl and harām which appears in Sahīh Muslim, narrated by an-Nu'man ibn Bashir “Halāl is quite clear and harām is also quite clear”. And between the two there may be a grey area where people may not know is this halāl or is this harām.” So the hadeeth continues to say “Whoever stays away from that which is doubtful has protected himself and his religion and whoever falls into that which is doubtful has fallen into harām.” If I can stop there for a moment and quickly explain. If a person were to be told that this particular piece of food that you're about to eat is poisonous and as soon as you put it in your mouth you will die. And twenty people are saying that to him and another twenty say “No don't worry its fine, its okay, we've checked it out and so on and you can eat it.” That is a very clear example of what we are saying today, meaning in this hadeeth. If you were to put it in your mouth, it's as though you've committed suicide. You're gone. You've killed yourself, because twenty are saying this and twenty are saying that. And if you were to leave it, you would save yourself completely. So there is no risk involved by leaving it and yet by taking it you are definitely risking your life. This is as far as a food stuff goes which may be poisonous. But when it comes to the deen and what Allāh has revealed and sent down, there are things that are clear, things that are not clear for some and the clarity is either this way or that way. You know this is permissible and this is not permissible. That is clear. But sometimes there is a debated issue in the center. If you are to protect yourself from it, perhaps you will be able to safeguard your deen. And in this particular narration some may say that this is speaking more about food stuff and so on, but the wording of Rasoolullāh goes far beyond anything that can be termed halāl or harām is included in this particular narration. Then the hadith continues to say “Similar to a shepherd who has allowed his flock to graze upon the border of his land not knowing whether it has gone onto the land of the neighbor because the demarcation is not so clear.” So there is a point up to which he knows this is my land. Beyond that he is not so clear. Is this my land or is it not my land? So when he goes to that grey area, he doesn't know whether it's his or not. What a big risk. He is now grazing his sheep, as a shepherd, on land that may not be his. And this is why the narration continues to say “Behold every king has limits. Limits beyond which you are not allowed or you will not be allowed to cross. Every king has rules, regulations and indeed the limits of Allāh are those things he has made prohibited.” Don't go there! Subhān Allāh. Then it continues making mention of the heart and this is what we are trying to get to “Behold in the body there is a piece of flesh. If it is pure and clean and good, the entire body will be pure and clean and good. And if it is dirty, impure and not good, then the whole body will be dirty, impure and not good. Behold, that organ or that piece of flesh is the heart.” Subhān Allāh. So if your heart is clean, everything else will be okay. If your heart is dirty, everything else will be dirty. Accepting advice from others And when we say clean heart, it doesn't necessarily mean that you are just a person who's non-judgmental. You see sometimes they say “Don't judge me” when you're giving them advice. You say “Brother you're not supposed to be go to the nightclub”, “Hey stop judging me”, “What are you talking about, we're just advising you.” So don't use the term “Do not judge me” in order to run away from advice. Sometimes it becomes difficult for the scholars or for those who want to advise others. “Sister your hair is supposed to be covered, sister you're supposed to be dressing in a proper way”, “My brother you're not supposed to be bouncing around on the street with your backside half showing”. Allāhu Akbar. “Stop judging me”, “Well your backside's judging you!” Allāhu Akbar. And this happens and we get these answers on a daily basis. Well to be honest nobody's judging. But it does not mean that if a person has uttered these type of words that their heart is dirty. No brother, sister! They are advising you for your better. Wallāhi moments ago I was listening to a clip in the Urdu language of one of the cricketers in Pakistan. I don't even know exactly who he is but I believe he is one of the top cricketers of the globe. And he was making mention of who his real friends are. You know what he said? He said “The real friends are the `ulamā'. My real friends are those scholars who keep reminding me what is my duty to Allāh, what is halāl and harām and the fact that I am going to go into my grave with nobody, no cricket bat and no ball and no score and nothing from the Guinness Book of Records, but just me and my own records; the deeds I've done.” Imagine a cricketer, a man who's one of the top on the globe confirming that those scholars who continue reminding me, telling me that I am a person who's going to go into my grave all alone. Those are my true friends. Subhān Allāh. What about us? What do we have next to our names? Do we hate the people who remind us? If that's the case, purification of the heart and soul is required. We ask Allāh to help us purify. Wallāhi it is a difficult age that we are moving in because people do not realize that when others are reminding you to purify your soul, your heart, they are not judging you. They are helping you. They are giving you a word of encouragement. Don't just give that answer. That is an answer that sometimes the globe gives in order to get away with murder, to keep on committing sin. “We will not judge you, we love you my sister but we don't love your bad habit. We love you my brother, we don't love your bad habit.” I was about to say we don't love your backside. Allāhu Akbar. Wallāhi it's true. Thinking of people, wallāhi my brother we love you. We really want you, that's why we are telling you don't do that. We had an image doing its rounds on the internet, with some of the scholars had to say “Please don't, you know, send this around.” Because they were showing jumu`ah. I think it was two weeks ago in a masjid. Okay let's not say where it was in case you might recognize the brother, but they were showing him making his Sunnah as the khutbah is going on. And the people behind him was so harmed and hurt, they had to get up and some of them you know sharp enough to pick up their phones and say lets you know, tell the people what's happening around here. May Allāh safeguard us? We should not be exposing people but the people should not be exposing themselves. Allāhu Akbar. Cleansing the heart of hatred So my brothers and sisters, lets purify our souls for the pleasure of Allāh . How does this happen? We need to do something about it. Don't think that I just make a du`ā' “Ya Allāh clean me, purify my soul” and it will. Du`ā' is a part of it, definitely. “Allāhumma yā muqallibal quloob, thabbit qulubee `alā deenik.” The Prophet used to say “O Allāh in whose hands” or “O Allāh who is the owner of the movement of the hearts, move my heart towards the deen – on the deen. Keep it steadfast.” But that statement will be of no use if you do not have an intention to purify yourself. Work hard on matters like hatred. Remove that hatred for your fellow brothers in the deen and have hatred for sin rather than the individual whom you are supposed to be looking at saying “This is my brother in Islām.” If you are supposed to be hating people because of a sin they may be committing, remember everybody will hate everybody because none of us can put up our hands and say “We are sinless.” Can anyone now, here, put up their hands and say “I'm spotless, sinless, I have not sinned?” Not one! Subhān Allāh. Not one! Not even myself because we are human beings. So the reality, we will hate the sin, we will hate the shirk, we will hate the bid`ah, but we will work on the brother or the sister in a way that we will try to help them come out of that shirk, come out of that bid`ah, come out of that sin for example. But at the same time remembering that this is a person who has declared the shahādah and I have as well. They may have sinned differently to me, but in the same way I want to be helped, I need them to be helped and I will try my best to do that or at least make du`ā' for them. Making du`ā' and giving naseeha This is why we say, you see a brother with a bottle in his hand. A bad Muslim would go around Tweeting that and go around Facebook-ing it and WhatsApp-ing it and so on-ing it. Subhān Allāh. Why? Because they want the world to know “I saw that man with a bottle.” But a good Muslim will do one of two things or both. They will either go to the brother, say “Brother you know what this is something bad and you know you're a Muslim, come on you know insha'Allāh there's much goodness expected from you by the will of Allāh. You're such a great person, you have so much potential, and this thing is not going to do you any good.” Engage them. Not swearing. Engage them properly to say look this is something that is unacceptable in the deen. You know, it will cause a lot of damage, a lot of harm. If you quit this I think there are a lot of good habits that you have. Just quit this and so on and Allāh may open the brother's doors through your effort and you will be granted goodness. “For Allāh to use you to guide a single person is better for you than anything of the highest material value in this world.” May Allāh bless us all? That is point number one. You either go to him or someone who has an effect or impact on him or perhaps tell them to talk to him if you cannot talk to him. And secondly make du`ā' for that brother. “Ya Allāh, today I witnessed someone with a bottle. It hurt me, Ya Allah. Ya Allah, guide them, help them to remove the bottle. Help them to give up that bad habit and help me to give up whatever bad habits I have.” Allāhu Akbar. This is purity of the heart now. With that du`ā' and that naseeha, if Allah wills that person's heart will come onto the right path within a matter of time. We know so many people who had very bad pasts, but now when they've come up straight, subhān Allāh, they've gone very far in life in terms of the deen and become closer to Allāh . So many of us, perhaps we are much better today than we were yesterday. May Allāh grant us goodness? Remaining patient when giving naseeha This is why we say, brother when you have become religious, remember when you are inviting others towards religion, you also came about slowly. So give them a little bit of time. The problem with us, we come on the deen after fifty years and everyone else we give those five minutes. Wallāhi, it's a problem in the ummah. We are facing it, we are not patient. We are supposed to be patient as Muslimeen. It took you forty years to recognize your Maker. Why do you want to in four minutes create such a situation that remove a man from the whole fold of the deen. Kick him out, curse him to the degree that you've buried him alive and you haven't given him more than four minutes to repent. You took forty years my brother. Thank Allāh he showed you the light. Allāhu Akbar. Work on them, continue working on them. The Prophet's nubūwwah was not twenty-three minutes, nor was it twenty-three days, nor was it twenty-three months. It was twenty-three solid years. Allāhu Akbar. So purify your heart when it comes to your relation with others because there is something known has huqooqul`ibād through which a lot of what your heart conceals becomes manifest. We hate for the sake of Allāh the deeds that are done in the displeasure of Allāh. We may hate for the sake of Allāh those who have absolutely no goodness in them and they have damaged the deen or they have caused lots of damage to those who follow the deen. Giving da`wah – Every non-Muslim is a potential Muslim But remember even the non-Muslims, every single non-Muslim is a potential Muslim. If you lose focus on that, you have lost the path. For as long as they are breathing there is hope. Who is ready to invite them in the proper way? Allāhu Akbar. A very big statement that brings tears to the eyes. Every non-Muslim. When the Prophet made a du`ā' for the enemies of Islām, one of the prayers were “Allāhummah a`izzal Islāma biahadil `Umarain” “O Allāh, grant strength to this deen through the acceptance of Islām of one of the two `Umars.” One was known as `Umar ibn al-Khattāb later to be known as, and the other one `Amr ibn Hishām who was known as Abu Jahl. No sooner was the du`ā' made, response came from Allāh . This man came marching into this house of al-Arqam ibn Abi'l Arqam as the books of history have made mention. So Rasoolullāh knew that Allāh is the One who guides. Just like he guided me, he may guide you or anyone on the street. So remember, when we say cleanse your heart and do not be judgmental we need to understand what this statement means. May Allāh make us people who realize that we would like to help one another to become steadfast on the deen. And that help can happen in so many different ways, depending on the authority that Allāh has given you as well. Cleansing the heart of envy If we have hatred in our hearts. Now let’s talk about general hatred, not necessarily whilst giving da`wah. But at the same time hatred in our hearts for someone, for some reason, normally it stems from jealousy. Not every time but a lot of the times. Because Allāh has blessed someone with more wealth, with more knowledge, with more acceptance, perhaps with greater looks. You know you have a woman who's extremely beautiful or a girl who's extremely good-looking and sometimes you have other girls who make her life so difficult and her crime is just that she is gorgeous. I would have told you to say mā shā'Allāh, but it's abstract. There's no one in particular we're talking about. Allāhu Akbar. So al-hamdulillāh, all you can say is “In sha'Allāh.” Allāhu Akbar. My brothers and sisters, wallāhi, do not become jealous of the favors that Allāh has bestowed others, just because you don't have it. Don't! It will result in the dirty heart. The heart will become unclean, filthy and it will require cleansing. Cleansing the heart with Thikrullāh Cleansing of the heart is also done through what is known as thikrullāh because everything has a detergent and the detergent of the heart is the remembrance of Allāh. But I'd like to interpret the term thikrullāh in its broader context. Thikrullāh starts with understanding the meaning of the Qur'ān. That's where it starts. That's the beginning of it. Because the thikr that is mentioned in the Qur'ān so many times, it directly refers to the Qur'ān and at times it refers to the Sunnah of Muhammad . So remember you need to know the message of Allāh, in order to have your heart purified. What did Allāh say to me? I always, always say it is a big insult. Some of us, how old we are, how regular we are with our salāh, yet we have not made an effort to understand the meanings of what we utter in salāh. Wallāhi it is an insult. We don't even know what is meant by “Alhamdu lillāhi rabbi al`ālameen, Arrahmāni arraheem, Māliki yawmi addeen” [Surah Fathiha ; 2-4] Some people do not know the meaning and some people do not think of the meaning when they are uttering these words. So what value do you have? How is your heart going to be impacted? Look at the hearts of those who were the sahābah . When they heard a single verse their lives changed. When they heard one verse, their hearts were purified! `Umar ibn al-Khattāb himself, who was an enemy of Islam, the opening verses of Surah Tāhā were read to him. Not more than a few lines were read to him. He began to tremble. Immediately his heart was cleansed because he had that sincerity in his heart. For a moment it was struck with sincerity and he said “Take me to Muhammad .” Guided from kufr to īmān in a split moment because of the Qur'ān. And this has happened to so many people. It has happened to people around us in our midst, perhaps some who might be seated here. Reverted immediately. Allāhu Akbar. Why? They read the Qur'ān and realized, this is the word of Allāh. I always tell people, you know I have an MP3 disc in my vehicle, given to me by someone in Malaysia. A brother. Allāh grant him goodness. And on it, there is the entire Qur'ān just in the English language. So the `Arabic has been, you know separated. Now we know the importance of the `Arabic and the English and he says “This is extremely beneficial to those who speak the language.” And I thought to myself, look, to me the `Arabic is powerful, the English is fair enough trying to explain what the `Arabic is, but the word of Allāh is that particular `Arabic. You cannot compromise it. So I thought to myself let me put it in and try and listen to what is being said. And I had a non-Muslim sit in my car once. One who had come to do some work and I was taking him back to his place. I saw tears in his eyes. Four of five surahs were read within a short space of time in the English language alone and he told me “What is this?” And I said “What do you think it is?” He said “It's something powerful!” He said “It has to be the book you guys follow” I said “It is” “Can I come to your place of worship?” “By all means brother?” Subhān Allāh. I think within a short space of time, may Allāh grant him guidance to the deen. Ameen. That's when I realized, I said you know what? Sometimes when people are just going through even the meaning of it, because they understand it, it impacts differently. Without reducing the importance of the tilāwah in the `Arabic language. Because indeed that is on a level of its own. But at the same time remember the impact of that, if you understand what you're reading, is totally different. You need that as well. So your purification will start when you have made an intention to understand the word of Allāh. I said moments ago, they heard four verses of the Qur'ān, they embraced Islām. We have read what we know as khatmah upon khatmah upon khatmah once a month, sometimes once a week, sometimes once every two months. We've completed the entire mushaf, but brother you cannot give up your pornography. A`oothu billāh. Abstaining from Pornography It did not move you. Pornography is the problem of the age, wallāhi. It's a difficulty. It affects your eyes, your brain, your mind, your organs, your reproductive system, the way you look at the opposite sex, your marriage. Absolutely everything is made rotten through a cancer because of your eyes perceiving some dirty sexual movements of the opposite sex. Totally harām, completely unacceptable but available on your phone. Today I was speaking to some brothers on our journey back from Birmingham and I made mention of a very interesting point. Your mobile phone that you have my brothers, my sisters can take you to jannah or jahannam. Remember that. The way you use it. You have any scholar on the globe that Allāh has used to affect you and impact you at your fingertips. At the time of your convenience, in your bedroom, Subhān Allāh. Perhaps, whilst you're lying down, you can click every night either on a scholar where you can listen to something regarding your deen and go to bed feeling a good Muslim. Or you can click onto a pornographic site and perhaps you will be caught in that web which will take you very, very, far away. It's to do with how clean or dirty your heart is. If you want to purify yourself, you need to force yourself, before you go to bed. Click that phone, listen to a ten minute clip of a scholar of your choice, subhān Allāh, and then go to bed. Every day that ten minute dose will wake you up but if you have a one minute dose of that which is pornographic or ugly or dirty or unacceptable, wallāhi it is like a seed that grows and when the tree grows big, it's going to be very hard to uproot it. My brothers, my sisters get rid of it now. Now! Make an intention here and now “Ya Allāh if you take me before I exit this masjid, let me be a pure person. I seek forgiveness for all my sins. I change my life.” Allāhu Akbar. How many more scholars would you like to hear before you change your life? Before you decide to purify that heart of yours. Without an effort from you, the heart is not going to be purified. When you have your own kitchen and you've cooked your food and your pans are dirty, you cannot just look at the pans and expect them to become clean. Even if you've got a dishwasher, you've got to pick the thing up, put it in the dishwasher, chose the detergent, turn on the water, press the button. Then things happen. Subhān Allāh. We still don't have the eye control of the pan. And if you thought you did they'd take you to the hospital, believe me. May Allāh safeguard us? So these are powerful words of reminder for myself to begin with. My brother, my sister, how do you use your Twitter account? What type of a profile do you have? How do you use your Facebook account? It can take you to paradise or it can drive you to hell, very easily. Believe me, it's up to you when you press click and when you press like and it's up to you to go home and dislike or to dislike it here and now whilst we're talking. Because I know there are brothers, perhaps maybe even sisters busy on their phones whilst we're talking. To be honest, I actually don't see a single one, Māshā'Allāh. Allāhu Akbar. So I need to swallow back my word. But this is what it is. If your heart is dirty, it begins to show your own self. You can see it, your mind can figure it out. Why because you lead a life. What will happen to it? It will be full of bunk. You know it will be so narrow, full of depression, full of stress, full of lack of contentment. Where is my contentment gone? It's gone with the pornographic site. It's gone with the adultery that you cannot give up. Adultery is a seed. Wallāhi if you sow it and you water it; watering means you return to it, and you water it more, you return to it more, it grows a tree. When the tree becomes big and strong, it becomes more difficult to uproot it. You become hooked onto it, to the degree that it's just like second nature. No regret thereafter until you die in a condition. May Allāh safeguard us? We had some brothers who came to me some time back, telling me, you know what do we do, our father was looking like such a religious man and he died in the midst of two prostitutes with beer bottles. Do you want that to be the end of your life? May Allāh protect us all? A`oothu billāh. May Allāh safeguard us? Well if that's the case do not let that be a probability. Rather let salāh be a probability. If you engage in five salāh, the chances of you dying in salāh are very great. Do you know that? There are so many who have died in sujood and rukoo`. But if you don't read salāh there's no chance of that happening to you. Not at all. May Allāh take us away whilst we're in His obedience and may he protect us really, that we are not disgraced, dying in His disobedience.
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The future matters in education, but not in the way that you think

The future matters in education, but not in the way that you think | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
We are currently in a state of denial which could lead to economies such as the U.S., U.K. and Australia being overtaken in the coming decades. It is a strange state, historically, and it betrays the near complete dominance of progressive educational thought in a particular aspect of education. We have returned to 1918, when John…
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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, April 17, 10:04 AM
Bobbitt is not who I would use to support this idea. Dewey, Whitehead, and Prigogine lay the groundwork extremely well, but their work is not easy to apply. We continuously need to learn from the past and decide what that means in the moment without bringing absolute certainty to the future.
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How Relearning Old Concepts Alongside New Ones Makes It All Stick

How Relearning Old Concepts Alongside New Ones Makes It All Stick | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
Researchers say 'drill and kill' approach isn't just boring -- it also stunts student learning.
Kim Flintoff's insight:
I'd be willing to bet that challenge-based models of learning address this issue in a very organic and applied way... 
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Video: What Is Personalized Learning?

Video: What Is Personalized Learning? | Higher Education Teaching and Learning | Scoop.it
Personalized learning refers to a variety of tools and technologies that can support each student’s unique learning style.
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