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Edmonton Muslims Celebrate Prophet's Birthday

April 13, 2007

Fourteen hundred years ago, a merchant who could not read or write changed the face of Arabia. Today his influence has spread across every corner of the world and his legacy continues to shape our lives. Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) was born during Rabi'-ul-Awwal (the third month of the Muslim Calendar), around the year 570 CE to Bibi Amina; his father having died before he was born. His mother died when he was six.  The orphaned child was raised by his grandfather and later by his uncle.

As a young man, Muhammad was recognized for his thoughtfulness and integrity and was often called upon to mediate disputes. The other Meccans called him al-Amin (Arabic for "the trustworthy one").

Muhammad had taken to retiring in solitude in the cave of Mount Hira and meditate for long hours. At the age of 40, he received the first revelation of the Qur’an and Islam was revealed to the people by God’s command. In a relatively short period, Islam spread from southern Europe to China. It was Islam’s simple message of compassion, peace, social justice and equality before God for all, and the Prophet’s own impeccable qualities of integrity, kindness, loyalty, his care for the poor, the weak and the sick, and generosity in all walks of life and in every sphere of human activity that appealed to the first Muslims. The Prophet is quoted to have said that he came but to perfect the human moral values to their highest standard and his role as a messenger of God was simply to reaffirm what God had already revealed to humanity through the previous Prophets of God, including Abraham, Moses, and Jesus (peace be unto all of them).

To mark the occasion of Prophet Muhammad’s birth anniversary, the Edmonton Council of Muslim Communities and His Highness Prince Aga Khan Shia Imami Ismaili Council for Edmonton have organized a special celebration on Sunday April 22nd at 2p.m. at the TIMMS Centre, University of Alberta. The event will include a presentation by Dr. Amir Hussain, on “Faith & Pluralism, Challenges of the 21st. Century.”   Dr. Hussain is Associate Professor in the Department of Theological Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, where he teaches courses on world religions. His academic degrees (BSc, MA, PhD) are all from the University of Toronto where he received a number of awards, including the university’s highest award for alumni service.
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