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American Muslims Intent on Learning and Activism
Founded in 1992, American Muslims Intent on Learning and Activism (AMILA) is committed to spiritual enrichment, intellectual freedom, and community service.




Selected Articles, Meeting Notes, and Book Reviews

What's on your mind? Here in the features section of the AMILA website, members write about what they have been thinking, what was discussed at some of our gatherings, and what books we've been reading. We hope it provokes thought and reflection on our readers. Here are some recent submissions:

Reflections on an Honor Killing
"This is just another version of the so-called "honor killings" taking place in other countries when brothers, fathers, or husbands believe that a woman has in some way tarnished the fragile family honor." In this article, N. Naima Bayton discusses the the tragic murder of a woman in San Francisco by her Muslim "boyfriend," who was apparently enraged that she would not wear her hijab at a friend's wedding. (More here)

Questions to ask when you're contemplating marraige
These questions are offered in the interest of helping Muslims to think through issues important to marriage. You may wish to ask these questions when you’re considering someone for marriage, either of them or just of yourself. You may also wish to ask them of an intermediary, who may be able to provide you an unbiased perspective. (More here)

Rising Above Terrorism
Many Muslims are strangely schizophrenic; on one hand they condemn the portrayal of Islam in the media as a violent religion, but at the same time they engage in inflammatory violent rhetoric against real or perceived enemies. In this article, Shahed Amanullah discusses the politics of terrorism in the United States. (More here)

Should we celebrate American holidays?
This discussion explores the history of popular American holidays such as Thanksgiving and Valentines' Day. This article, which includes the opinions of noted Islamic scholars, is a good reference for Muslims in America trying to understand the nature of these traditions. (More here)

Taking the blinders off: Muslims and the Africa Bombing
While it is important for American Muslims to remind our fellow Americans that the identity of the perpretators is not yet known, and that it is highly irresponsible to speculate that "Muslim extremists" committed these bombings, Nahid Khan explains that this approach is really only a first step in dealing with this and similar situations. (More here)

Book Review: "The Authoritative and Authoritarian
in Islamic Discourses" by Khaled Abou El Fadl

Anver Emon, Ph.D. candidate in Islamic Studies at UCLA, reviews this contemporary case study by Professor Khaled Abou El Fadl, Professor of Islamic Law at the UT at Austin. In this book, El Fadl provides a sophisticated and illuminating argument of how Islamic legal discourses should be conducted. (More here)