Muslim Alliance in North America (MANA) is an organization committed Muslims issues and concerns that especially impact indigenous Muslims—issues and concerns that we feel have been largely neglected. With the launch of this web site we are inviting masjids, organizations and individuals to join MANA.
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Introducing MANA’s Health Task Force

by Cheryl El-Amin (Health Task Force Convener)

Bismillah ir Rahman ir Rahim
MANA’s Health Task Force was formed after the 2008 MANA Conference and has been working diligently in an effort to develop the group’s mission and agenda as well as to plan their first health project — The FIT Muslim Challenge.   To find out more and to register click here.

Previous health conference workshops highlighted the fact that the Muslim community is affected by the same physical and emotional health challenges that impact the general population in the United States.  These conditions include depression, addiction, post traumatic stress, domestic violence and other emotional ills; as well as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and other chronic physical ailments.  Therefore, the Task Force has developed the following vision for MANA:

The vision of the MANA Health Task Force is to holistically restore the health of the Human Family hrough implementationand promotion of the Islamic lifestyle.

Holistic is defined as “spiritual, mental and emotional health & physical and social well being including but not limited to  spirituality, nutrition, exercise, sleep, education, social interaction and support.

Islamic lifestyle is defined as a consistent way of living as enjoined in the Quran and exemplified in the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH).  “…Maintenance of a moderate health balance in a state of dynamic equilibrium, neither exceeding the bounds, nor falling short in that balance.” (Amman Declaration on Health Promotion, 2000; Consultation on Islamic Lifestyles and their impact on Health Development and Human Development).    
There are several ayats in the Holy Qur’an that offer instructions to us regarding our health, including:

“Yea people; eat of what is on earth, lawful and wholesome.” (2:168)

“Eat of the good things we have provided for your sustenance, but commit no excess therein, lest my wrath should justly descend on you, and those on whom descends My Wrath shall perish indeed.” (20:81).
“And spend of your substance in the cause of Allah, and make not your own hands contribute to (your) destruction.” (2:195)

Many of today’s illnesses are caused by overlooking and even disobeying these very basic principles of the Qur’an.  The Medicine of the Prophet (saw) by Imam Muhammad Al-Akili offers three primary principles that the Health Task Force proposes to employ either as an independent entity or in support of other task force initiatives such as the Masjid Development and SHARE Centers.  These principles are:

  1. Health Preservation- Prevention, public health education programs, lifestyle counseling, exercise and fitness, etc.
  2. Combating Disease- identification of Muslim or Muslim friendly practitioners to actively provide medicine as appropriate to the disease.
  3. Restoration – Education, guidance, therapy and support toward adoption and maintenance of the Islamic Lifestyle of balance as appropriate for the individual or community.
In the coming months the Health Task Force will continue informing readers about the importance of living a healthy Islamic lifestyle in order to preserve, restore, and maintain emotional and physical fitness.  Also, look for additional information including recipes, makeovers, health events, and a special section on MANA’s website.  

The Health Task Force members include:

Sis. Cheryl El-Amin, (LMSW, ACSW) SHARE-Detroit Secretary; Health Workshop Coordinator 2008 Conference
Dr. Hasan Chughtai (Association of Muslim Health Professionals) New York, NY
Sis. Trinka Klima (Registered Nurse; Midwife) Dearborn, MI
Sis. Mubarakah Ibrahim (CPT Balance Fitness) Connecticut
Sis. Catherine Ziyad (MSW; Bd HUDA Clinic) Detroit, MI
Sis. Jeanette Hablullah (Dr. of Naturopathy) Maryland
Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knoweth best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance.

Quran: 16:125
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