2016-2017 MSA President

My name is Mohammad Ashkar and I am the President of the Muslim Students’ Association. I hope to make this a very eventful and beneficial year for both the general body of the MSA and of the university. My main goal is to establish and promote events and discussions that evoke the students to think for themselves. I hope to abolish this understanding that people have of an organized religion. Islam is the way of life that God imposed onto us and that we must obey if we seek to truly worship Him. I plan to cultivate a critical mind in the students so as to prevent any notion of having to worship God through other means and various mediums. Allah (God) has given us the intellect to think.

We, as college students, are the most highly tested population on Earth. If it is not about our way of life that we will think critically, then what will we think critically about? We should question EVERYTHING, and come to our own conclusion of Islam based on the Qur’an. While others have attempted to evaluate the deep meaning of the Qur’an, that was in their time and this is our time. As society and technology constantly advance, we must revisit our prior conclusions about God’s signs and re-analyze them so as to create further insight into our way of life. Islam is simple: worship God alone and do not associate ANYTHING to him. All three Abrahamic religions have associated with God in one way or another. It is time that we wake up. Being Muslim isn’t enough anymore. We must become believers.

God says in the Qur’an (49:14), “The Arabs say: We believe. Say: You do not believe but say, We submit; because faith has not yet entered into your hearts.”

قَالَتِ الْأَعْرَابُ آمَنَّا ۖ قُل لَّمْ تُؤْمِنُوا وَلَٰكِن قُولُوا أَسْلَمْنَا وَلَمَّا يَدْخُلِ الْإِيمَانُ فِي قُلُوبِكُمْ ۖ

While the translation of this is crude, the Arabic does a much better job at deciphering its true meaning.

We must wake up from this state of heedlessness and understand that belief of God’s oneness is all that we have and all that we will be judged upon. Do not let anyone tell you how to believe in God alone. Read the Qur’an… then tell yourself.

Mohammad Ashkar

Syracuse University, Junior

President of Muslim Student Association

Neuroscience ILM Psychology

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