Islamic Awareness Week
1. Islam is an Arabic word that means “peace,” “security,” and “surrender.”
2. About 1/5 of the world’s population identifies as a Muslim, and Islam is considered to be the fastest growing religion in the world today.
3. Muslims believe they belong to the ummah, or worldwide Muslim community united by a religious bond that transcends tribal, ethnic, and national identities.
4. The Five Pillars of Islam are things every Muslim strives to do: 1) Shahada (declaration of faith), 2) Salat (praying five times a day), 3) Zakat (charity), 4) Siyam (fasting during Ramadan), and 5) Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca)
5. If all copies of the Quran in the world today were destroyed, the words would still be saved. There are “hafiz” (or “guardians”) who have memorized the text entirely.
Being one of the most diverse campuses, NJIT has a substantial Muslim population. When asking random NJIT students, the percentage of Muslim students was always estimated to be in the 10-20% of all students range.
To spread awareness and increase knowledge about the religion of Islam, MSA decided to host Islamic Awareness week. A large part of the week focused on lectures given by various leaders in the Muslim community. In conversation with Sheikh Mohammed Almathil, he passionately expressed the importance of not only spreading knowledge about Islam, but also learning about other religions in general:
“We must live in peace and harmony with each other, and to do just that we should learn about other cultures and religions. There are many different cultures present on the NJIT campus, and I urge everyone to learn about at least one new one. This will help everyone in understanding one another and treating each other with compassion, which is very important.”
The MSA also hosted a Hijab-a-Thon with an information table and cotton candy where students could try on a hijab and see the world from a whole new perspective. An MSA member, Adeena Samoni, said of the event, “We all see Muslim students all over campus and this was a good opportunity to get to know our culture better.”
The MSA has weekly meetings on Fridays during common hour and offers special services for students like a prayer room and speakers from the Muslim community. To keep up with MSA or to see any events that are coming up, like MSA on Facebook or follow them on Snapchat @njit_msa.