An incredible seminar this weekend, Forever: the description of your soul’s journey after death, with Dr. Shaykh Waleed Basyouni brought people from across the nation to Dearborn, MI. Over 200 students gathered for the three-day Al-Maghrib seminar that was filled with laughter, emotional tears, and engaging material.
While students were sitting at the Henry Ford College of Dearborn, Michigan, Dr. Waleed Basyouni’s overpoweringly vivid description of the intensity of Hellfire, and the luscious tall trees, rivers, and fruits, of Paradise, made them feel like they are virtually experiencing that moment. There were 14 students who attended from out of state, ranging from Chicago all the way to New York; they were all incredibly touched by the hospitality of this Qabeelah.
Qabeelah Ittihaad Michigan, Al-Maghrib’s chapter of Southeast Michigan, was founded in 2005. Respect, integrity, manners, optimism, and helpfulness are all qualities of Qabeelah Ittihaad volunteers. As of today, the Qabeelah has hosted more than 67 seminars and one-day seminars. Their mission is to help their communities by providing them with opportunities to seek Islamic knowledge in a fun, engaging, and extraordinary way. It’s more than just sitting in a classroom and taking notes- bonds are built, memories are made, and seeds of friendship are planted. They’ve had more than four students complete the Al-Maghrib degree audit to its entirety, two of which are now Al-Maghrib instructors themselves.
The Qabeelah hosts seminars on various topics, covering Qur’anic Tafseer, pillars of faith, beautiful patience, Fiqh of marriage, modesty and clothing, ethics and manners in Islam, history, and many more heart-warming courses. Other than hosting seminars several times a year, Qabeelah Ittihaad’s volunteers get together to put their knowledge into action: they give back to their community. Of the many projects conducted, they’ve made almost 300 personal hygiene packages, brought hot food to a homeless shelter, helped pack clothing for the needy, and much more. They work as a team, strive as a team, and experience the incredible fruit of their efforts as a team, alike.
Dr. Waleed Basyouni has a Master’s in Theology, World Religions and Modern Religious Sects, and a PhD in Theology. He serves as the current Imam of Clear Lake Islamic Center, and is the Director of the Texas Da‘wah Convention. He gives fatwah as a member of the American Muslim Jurists Association (AMJA), and moreover, answers fiqh questions on Twitter. He enjoys extreme sports like scuba diving, and has been to numerous exotic places across the globe.
His pet peeves were made clear prior to class starting, such as sleeping in class or surfing your phone. His most famous quote is, “The optimist is the one who sees opportunities in their difficulties, and the pessimist is the one who sees difficulties in their opportunities.” Undoubtedly, he did a farfetched job planting seeds of optimism for Paradise in the hearts of the students.
Clearly, his teachings of the seminar, Forever, has touched the lives of students-forever. His incredible amount of knowledge of the topics, along with his unique sense of humor made the experience one to remember. Students testified to have cried, laughed, and felt a sense of anticipation for Paradise. The seminar touched base on the afterlife with a profound description of Hellfire and Paradise in an easy-to-follow, story-format. The way Dr. Waleed Basyouni described the beautiful pleasures and scenery of Paradise painted a vivid picture for his students.
The seminar only lasted three days, describing the eternal life, but inspired students with infinite hope for Paradise, and its gardens, luxuries, and endless pleasures.
As one volunteer put it, “I wish the class went on Forever.”