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Monday, November 27, 2006

Baba Ali will be guest speaking @ Tampa 12/2 and @ San Diego on 12/9 InshAllah

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

I will be speaking at the above conference in TAMPA this Saturday (12/2/06) InshAllah (click on flyer above for more info). If you plan to attend the conference, please email the host at hassanhassan19@yahoo.com so he can make the proper accommodations. JazakAllah khair.


In the following weekend (12/9/06), I will be speaking at "The Reminder" screening in San Diego InshAllah. Below is the flyer for that event.
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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Accepting Allah's decree

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

Assalamoalaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarkaatuh

Having read Brother Ali's entry about the lost flash drive, I couldn't help but recollect this fantastic story which reminds us to always accept our situations, even when we can't see the good in what Allah has willed for us.

(click here to read the story)

So, when things aren't quite going as we hope, let's try to be a little imaginative and think how Allah may have planned our situation to end in a way better than we we expect.

Perhaps there's an episode topic which we've not yet thought of - one that will make a difference to hundreds of lives, and this is Allah's way of challenging our minds to find that topic.

Allahu Alam (Allah knows best)

Accepting what Allah has willed for us and being happy with it will make our lives so much more peaceful, stress-free and pleasant.

In knowing that Allah is the Controller of all our affairs, we will relieve ourselves of all the anguish we take on when believing that we are in fact masters and controllers of our lives.

The Companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them) would often refer to Allah as 'the One in whose hand their souls lay'.

If we take a moment to imagine this as best we can, we'll be overcome with simultaneous feelings of both His loving protection and of being at His mercy. This is the equilibrium we should aim to maintain throughout our day. The balance between fear and hope. The knowledge of both His love and His power.

Ok, so I've kinda gone off on a tangent - not the usual style of the ummahfilms blog, but I hope that insha Allah, this little reminder will also be of benefit to all the readers.

Fee amaanillah


Al Hamdu lillahi Rabbil 'Aalameen - All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds
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Sunday, November 19, 2006

LOST - Yeah, its all gone!

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

They say the best ideas are written on napkins. I use to write my ideas on anything I could get my hands on and eventually I realized that I needed to organize my thoughts if I wanted to put something together. So a few months ago, I started saving all my notes, ideas, suggestions, etc...on a USB device. Actually, it wasn't just any USB drive, but it was the world's smallest flash drie (see above). I figured the small size wouldn't make it a hassle to carry around. Unfortunately, it was too small and I lost it and all the data on it. After searching for it for over a week, in every possible place, I have come to the conclusion that it is gone.

The problem is that all the ideas that I had planned out for Season 2 was on that USB drive. So when it came to making a new episode last week, I had nothing but a blank piece of paper and a bad case writer's block. So after this whole fiasco, I decided to buy a laptop so I can start saving everything on it InshAllah. Also, I figure having a laptop will allow me to go mobile and maybe do an episode when I travel.

This week, I may be attending the MAS Conference in Los Angeles, On December 1st & 2nd, I will be guest speaking at a conference in Tampa. And the following weekend, I will be in San Diego for a screening of the Reminder - Season 1 InshAllah. With the above schedule and given the fact that I am starting over again, it looks like the next episode won't be until after December 9th.

Somethings weren't meant to be. No matter what, I have to say Alhamdulillah. Allah (swt) knows best why things happen. I pray to Him to bring me towards companions and projects that will bring me closer to Him and take me away from companions and projects that will take me away from Him. Maybe it was best to start over and skip the ideas I had on the USB drive.
Allah knows best. Allah Alim.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

More UF shirts? Shirt design is up to you

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,


The text looks a little warped because I tried to compress the file but on the shirt it will be excellent InshAllah.

The t-shirts have been sold out for a while now and my intention was just to get just one batch of shirts. Recently, I have been getting more requests to order more shirts so if people really do want them, then I'll order them. Otherwise, I'm not trying to get into the t-shirt business.

I believe simple is better. Above are some sample designs. On the left side of the page is what they will look like on a white shirt and the right side is what they will look like on black shirt. I figure $12 a shirt is a reasonable price for the shirts

Please answer the following questions:

A. Which design do you like?
B. Which color? white (left-side of page) or black (right-side of page)
C. What size?
D. T-shirt or Long Sleeve?
E. Is $12 a reasonable price (no extra charge for long sleeve and xxl size too)
F. Do you plan to order one or are you just like voting? haha

***NOTE: For those who are familiar with our store shipping is always a flat rate ($8 for USA and $10 for International), no matter how many items you order. Also, I send everything USPS Priority Shipping so you can get it fast InshAllah and there is no extra charge for priority. Thus, if you order to 2 shirts, a Mecca to Medina game, and a Season 1 DVD, its still $8 total for the shipping if you're in the US and $10 shipping if you live overseas and if your country excepts priority shipping, then by default it sent via priority.

JazakAllah khair for your feedback
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Wednesday, November 08, 2006

MySpace Networking

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

I have received many requests to open a MySpace account so back in July, I opened one but never really used it. My only friend was Tom (stop laughing).

Honestly, I really didn't see the point of getting on MySpace since Ummah Films already had a blog and a website. Plus there was negative stigma associated with it. I figure it is no different than any other tool. People can use it for good or bad reason, just like chats/websites/blogs/youtube/etc...So far the main benefit, I see from it is the networking aspect. So last weekend, I decided to go on and make it active.

Ideally, the purpose of it is to expand the videos to the MySpace audience, which is apparently suppose to be huge. I have also been able to put up my calendar there as well. I'm still not sure how to use this tool. Please comment but you can't respond? I don't get it. So if someone asks a question, then how do you answer it on your account? Plus, you are really limited in designing your page. I'm trying to move the calendar to the top of the page and after two days, I can't figure it out. Joke!

Ali's Myspace account: http://www.myspace.com/ummahfilms

Mahdi's Myspace account: http://www.myspace.com/thinkingbrother
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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

NEW Season 2 Intro (audio options) - Your vote counts

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

The intro was made by Iman Studios and was sent to us. The only thing that I did to it was take out the audio and replace it with three different types of Adhan. I have put together four possible intro options (each with a different audio) so please comment on which one you like most.

Your vote will decide on which intro will appear at the beginning of the future Reminder videos InshAllah.


**Note: We will not be able to modifications of the intro, since it was given to us. So when you are voting, please do so with the understanding that we will take the clip "as is". Also, I'm not here to promote nor defend Music. The purpose of this post is not to start a "music" debate. That can be done later if a future video ever covers it. I'm just want to put that out before the comment section ends up in a lon debate over music.
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Sunday, November 05, 2006

"Pilot for Keeping it Real"

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

"A Muslim Keeping It Real" is the first episode by Mahdi Ahmad. It is a different type of video blog than "The Reminder", because it deals with topics dealing with misconceptions people have about Islam and Muslims in a more serious tone. I'm posting the video so we can get feedback from the viewers. Please feel free to comment honestly.

If you like the new style and content, please say so and why. If you don't like it, please say so and tell us why.

We have been having a debating with each other on what type of dawah style will connect with the viewer. So we decided to leave it up to the viewers to decide. We will be reading your feedback InshAllah and then decide to continue with this style or not.

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Friday, November 03, 2006

"That's not Hijab" - Ummah Films Season 2 Premiere is here!

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,

"That's not Hijab" Video - Ummah Films - Season 2 Premiere

With over 500,000+ views on Youtube and Google Video, The Reminder series has become the biggest Muslim Video blog on the Internet. Without any further adue, here is the Season 2 video premiere, "That's not Hijab"


Please post your comments so I know you're watching and forward the video to those you know so they may benifit from the reminders InshAllah. JazakAllah khair


Why did you choose the topic of Hijab?
The hijab is a very sensitive issue for women. It can be very awkward for one sister to tell another sister that she isn’t wearing it properly but it is even more difficult for a brother to say anything. Sometimes it is easier hearing it from someone who doesn’t know you (that’s me) so that’s why I took the opportunity that I have with this video series to do an episode on Hijab.

What was the inspiration behind the topic?
I have received a lot of emails regarding covering an issue that relates to sisters. Since Islamically men can not act like women and women can not act like men, I have been unable to cover various Muslimah subjects since there numerous restrictions makes it challenging. Neverthless, these restrictions should not discourage us but rather it forces us to be more creative.

How difficult is it to come up with the content for the video?
The true challenge is to write in such a way that it will make the people think and remember. There are many informative videos on the web but the average person doesn’t watch them because they can’t relate to the speaker or their message. Then are many other videos which are only made for the sake of entertainment but there is nothing you can gain from them. I wanted to make videos that would make people think. The way I communicate my message is done so that people will remember it InshAllah.

How come you don’t talk about the common issues?
I think there are a lot of issues that often go unspoken because people are afraid of speaking about them. I ‘m not trying to be politically correct but rather I want to be honest. If we continue to ignore things, it doesn’t help anyone.

Who are you to tell sisters about Hijab?
I am not better than anyone who watches these videos. I not only make these videos as reminder for the viewers but I make them as reminders for myself as well. I am constantly striving to improve myself so I can be a better Muslim InshAllah. I know I have many faults so whenever someone reminds me of something of Islam, they do so because they care about me…not because they are attacking me. Thus, I don’t take it personal and I hope my viewers don’t take it personal either.

This may be the most controversial subject you have covered? Aren't you worried about what people will think?

My goal is to make people think. I'm not trying to be politically correct but rather I want to say the truth. I would rather have a black belt in keeping it real rather than ignore issues and pretend they don't exist. You know what I'm sayin?

Why is the video so dark?
I messed up during filming and put the light in the wrong part. I didn't discover the issues until I started editing it and it was too late. Its ok. This entire project is a learning process so I'm learning.

Who built the new Ummah Films intro at the beginning of the video?
The same brother who designed our website. www.imanstudios.com

Please COMMENT (so I know you're there) and RATE the video on youtube InshAllah.
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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Season Premiere is Tomorrow! (Friday Nov 3rd 2006)

Bismillah ar-Rahmaan ar-Raheem,


It has been a while since the last video post went up. Although I have posted it up numerous times on the blog, only about 69k actually have visited the blog. I don't think a large portion of the audience even knows that the blog exists so for those who are here, please email a reminder to your companions and let them know about Season 2 premiere is tomorrow.

Unlike last season where I was pushing myself to come out with an episode each Friday, this time around, I plan to spread it out so I have more time to work on it. Thus, I plan to have a new episode every other Friday InshAllah. Other than that, everything else is pretty much the same.

"The Reminder" series is just complete show by Ummah Films. I hope Ummah Films can come up with other types of shows InshAllah.
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