Thursday, October 21, 2010

Will You Reach The Finish Line? | One Month at Bayyinah Dream

Something which we learned in this past month at Bayyinah is that studying sacred knowledge of our religion is truly a privilege. Many people are given the opportunity to start seeking knowledge but not everyone has the chance to finish seeking it.

Alhamdulillah yesterday we completed our first month at Bayyinah. Our level of reading, writing, recitation, and comprehension fluency of the arabic language as progressed very far. Reading without tashkeel, comprehending most of what we are reading, and speaking is almost a norm for the students. Though we are still here, there is no guarantee that we will remain for the remaining nine months. At the same time we will only be speaking Arabic on and around the campus by the end of December, inshaAllah.

Since the start of classes till now a few students have had to pull out of the program due to medical and family emergencies. Think about it, they did not do something wrong which caused them to leave. Rather, it was simply the will of Allah. No one except our Lord knows what is good or bad for us.

There were some questions asked by some of the you guys. I've tried to answer them as thoroughly as possible:

1. What do you do after 3 pm?
After 3pm is our break time. Usually we shoot around some pool, play some ping pong, or simply go home. We have the facilities at Bayyinah to have a good time alhamdulillah. At the same time there are many brothers and sisters who stick around for an extra hour or so and continue with their studies and/or finishing up homework.

2. How much review is a student doing daily regularly?
As for Qur'an, the huffadh are currently reviewing about a juz a day along with tajweed lessons taught four days a week by Ustadh Wisam Sharieff. As for grammar, we usually study from 2-4 hours daily depending on our workload.

3. Is the schedule something you can see yourself doing seriously for 10 months or will a few breaks be necessary? (i.e. too intense all the time)
The schedule is very doable, alhamdulillah. People do end up getting tired, but it's not something which getting a drink or a power nap can't get rid of. As for breaks, we have off during Eid, national holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, 4th of July, etc), as well as every Friday. So there is more then enough room to breathe.

4. What helped students get in? (what things they studied or institutes they attended beforehand that helped them in the Dream Program, what things help the organizers of the Dream program determine whether to accept a student or not).
Well, for the most part getting in was not extremely difficult, alhamdulillah. Bayyinah wants students who are committed to learning and spreading the deen. But at the same time they want only the best-of-the-best. They prefer people who have good manners, productive study habits, and are willing to work to the edge. There are no specific institutes which someone must attend for Bayyinah to accept a student's application.

Some things which will help you get in are some common items:
  1. Good study manners + akhlaq. This will probably be one of the first (if not the first) item you should work on.
  2. Goals. Bayyinah wants to make sure you know what you are getting into when applying. One must understand that this will be a 24/7 commitment. Remember, you can go to Egypt, Syria, or Jordan to study as well. So make sure to have a reason as to why you picked Bayyinah..rationalize it!
  3. Quran Recitation. It doesn't have to be amazing. As long as you can recognize letters and generally read you should be okay.
  4. Knowledge, Qur'an, etc will follow. But if you have more Islamic seminars/classes under your belt it will hold some weight, but don't make it your focus. Make sure to perfect the above two and follow it with the third point.
Are there any international students at Bayyinah this year?
No international students are currently present in the program. All students are based in the United States.

How do sisters practice tajweed?
Generally everyone sits in the same class and recites along with Ustadh Wisam. Later on the students split up into groups and recite amongst each other; sisters and brothers in their own groups respectively.

Let us know what else you'd like to know!