Recognize Allah in ease and He will recognize you in hardship...

What if you treated each day as a special day on which God sent every agent in your life just to refine your mettle? What if you became aware that every idiot, every genius, and every beloved - stationed in your path - was there to help produce a noble action? What if the rich remembered the poor in their daily will? What if the Blessed remembered the Wretched in their daily meals?

"Fear Allah wherever you are and follow up an evil action with a good action which will wipe it out. Treat people well." [at-Tirmidhi]
Abu Hurayra heard the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say,
"Three of the Children of Isra'il were respectively leprous, bald and blind. Allah wanted to put them to the test and so he sent an angel to them. He came to the leper and said, 'What would you like best?' He said, 'A good complexion and clear skin and the thing that I have which makes people find me unclean to be taken from me.' He wiped him and his impurity left him and he gave him a good complexion. He said, 'What property do you like best?' He said, 'Camels (or he said 'cattle' - the relator is uncertain)' and he gave him a pregnant she-camel.' He said, 'May Allah bless you in it.'

"Then he came to the bald one and said, 'What would you like best?' He said, 'A good head of hair and to have what people consider distasteful about me removed from me.' So he touched him and removed what he had and gave him thick hair. He said, 'What property do you like the best?' He said, 'Cattle,' so he gave him a pregnant cow and he said, 'May Allah bless you in it.'

"Then he went to the blind man and said, 'What would you like best?' He said, 'That Allah return my sight to me so that I can see people.' He touched him and Allah returned his sight to him. He said, 'What property do you like the best?' He said, 'Sheep,' and he gave him a pregnant sheep.

"These animals all gave birth and produced offspring. The one had a valley full of camels, the other a valley full of cattle and the other a valley full of sheep.
"Then he went to the leper in his own form and appearance and said, 'I am a poor man who has lost his means on his journey. Today I can seek none but Allah and then you. I ask you, by the One who gave you a good complexion and good skin and property, for a camel so that I can complete my journey.' He said, 'I have many obligations.' He said, 'I seem to recognise you. Were you not a leper, that people found unclean, and poor and then Allah was generous to you?' He said, 'I inherited this property, elder son from elder son.' He said, 'If you are a liar in your claim, may Allah return you as you were!'

"He went to the bald man in his own form and appearance and said to him the same as he had said to the other and he replied to him in the same way. He said, 'If you are a liar, may Allah return you as you were!'

"Then he went to the blind man in his own form and appearance and said to him, 'I am a poor man who has lost his means on his journey. Today I can seek none but Allah and then you. I ask you by the One who returned your sight to you for a sheep so I can complete my journey.' He said, 'I was blind and Allah restored my sight to me, so take what you want and leave what you want. By Allah, I will not be hard on you about anything which you take for Allah, the Mighty and Exalted.' He said, 'Keep your propery. You have been tested and Allah is pleased with you and angry with your companions.'" {Agreed upon]

(Riyad-Us-Salaheen, 65)


Can Animals Predict Disaster?

According to hadith, animals shake on Fiday in anticipation of the Day of Judgement.The ongoing debate on whether animals have premonitions of approaching looming disaster has made me want to look up some research. Surprisingly, there's a lot available online, here's a condensation of some of what was reported:

Tsunami:-Flamingo along India’s Southern Coast inexplicably fled hours before the Tsunami hit
-Sri Lankan dogs refused their morning customary walks.
-Buffalo in a Thai village stampeded up a hill, saving the lives of villagers, who followed them, with only minutes to spare.
-Among human carnage, animals survived miraculously.

In Other Incidents:- In 373 B.C., historians recorded that animals, including rats, snakes and weasels, deserted the Greek city of Helice in droves just days before a quake devastated the place.
-February 4, 1975 the Chinese successfully evacuated the city of Haicheng several hours before a 7.3 magnitude earthquake--based primarily on observations of unusual animal behavior. 90% of the city's structures were destroyed in the quake, but the entire city had been evacuated before it struck. Nearly 90,000 lives were saved.

Mr. Hamza Yusuf brings up excellent points from a Muslim perspective (worth listening to). For example, he points out even if animals can hear and detect ultrasound waves, still what prompts them to move away and not toward the disaster? He also mentions how disobedient people are given rain (as a blessing) as long as animals and plants are among them. How animals are a source of mercy to mankind. He also stresses the importance of guarding transmission (isnad), as it saved the lives of many who were well-versed in the traditions of their elders.

In any case, I'll let you find your own answers. Enjoy the links!

Signs From Allah: The Tsunami of Southeast Asia By: Hamza Yusuf

Etho-Geological Forecasting:
Unusual Animal Behavior & Earthquake Prediction

Can Animals Sense Earthquakes?

The Animals Lawsuit Against Humanity

Can Animals Predict Disaster?

Do Lost Pet Ads Predict Earthquakes?

Notetoself: Reflect on This...

Nisa asks, What if one can't find a teacher?

"Then you must do the prep work on yourself to bring yourself to the point where you can find a teacher. There is some truth to the old saying "When the student is ready the teacher will appear" ask yourself whet elements in your life are keeping you from finding a teacher, then ask yourself if you are willing to remove them.

You might be surprized just how often a person does not find what they are looking for because they are unwilling to give up the things that hold them back."

Mushtaq Ali


Ten Quick Ways to Analyze Children's Books for Racism and Sexism

Newling suggests that people choose books based on guidelines from Ten Quick Ways to Analyze Children's Books for Racism and Sexism, from The Council on Interracial Books for Children, and How to Tell the Difference, by Beverly Slapin and Doris Searle. Important points include:

General accuracy: Books should contain current, correct information. Consider how old the photos and pictures are. Modern stories should acknowledge recent events. For example, a book about South Africa should reflect changes in the apartheid system. While considering students' ages, stories should not force artificially happy endings.

Stereotypes: Beware of reinforcing stereotypes. Books should reflect individual people's lives, rather than assigning general personality traits or behaviors to an entire group of people. Writers should weave information about a culture into the flow of a story. A misleading book might discuss "the Mexican American experience" without considering the variety of experiences within a group. Workbooks particularly present a danger of caricaturing members of a culture, Newling says. Also consider who holds powerful positions. Who has problems? Who solves problems? Men and people of European descent should not provide all the solutions. What types of roles do girls, women, and people of color have?

Setting: Books should include accurate settings. Again, watch out for stereotypes. A stereotyped image might present all Native American people in tepees, but Native Americans historically have lived in various types of homes and Native Americans are part of present society.

Language: Be careful of books that separate characters into two groups: those who speak standard English and those who don't. This division can reinforce stereotypes that all people in a group speak in a particular way. If a book includes the language of a specific culture, the actual language should appear, not nonsense words or an invented language that mimics the authentic one. Translated works should convey the original content and not sound like awkward, word-by- word interpretations.

Epithets: Some books may contain epithets insulting people of a particular race or ethnicity. "There's a thin line between censorship and protecting children from what is really going to hurt them," Newling says. "I would tend to err on the side of protecting children."

Illustrations: Illustrations should convey the reality that members of any ethnic group look different from one another. The pictures in a common version of The Five Chinese Brothers are "downright insulting," says Newling. "They're caricatures--all depicted to look alike. It's demeaning to Chinese people." With photographs, captions should indicate a specific location and situation, not a general statement like, "In Africa..."

Author's perspective: Newling describes this as a controversial point. Some people believe that writers should belong to the cultures they describe; others believe that it's enough if writers empathize with members of a culture even though writing from an outsider's point of view. Writers should avoid treating cultural practices as exotic.

Appealing stories: To receive feedback, Newling lends books to teachers and asks for students' reactions. Themes like friendship, family, and school appeal to children within and outside of a given culture, she says.

Tough issues: In handling difficult topics, authors should present the complexity of issues and offer multiple perspectives. Michael Lecapa's picture book, Less Than Half, More Than Whole, does a good job portraying biracial issues, Newling says. "The book deals with a child's real confusion about being neither all white nor all Native American. There's no 'pie in the sky' resolution."

Alameda County's Multilingual/Multicultural Children's Literature Center recommends literature and gives educators an opportunity to browse books that they might want to purchase at other sites. To see the center's materials, please contact the center for an appointment: (510) 670- 4519 or 313 W. Winton Ave., Hayward, CA 94544. If you would like suggestions to expand your library, also contact the center. The staff can suggest appropriate books based on a budget and/or particular cultures you would like to have represented.


Multicultural/Diverse perspective

According to Banks (1990), multicultural/diverse perspective instruction is comprised of three different and important dimensions. The three dimensions are related to content integration, knowledge construction, and an equity pedagogy. A brief description of each dimension follows:

Content Integration
Sensitive, accurate, and non-biased content representing a variety of cultures and groups should be used to illustrate key concepts, principles, generalizations, and theories.

Knowledge Construction
As students construct knowledge about the content, they must be helped to view concepts, issues, and problems from diverse cultural perspectives. The mainstream-centric perspective is only one of several perspectives from which concepts, issues, or problems are viewed.

An Equity Pedagogy
To ensure equity for all students, teachers must modify their teaching in ways that will facilitate the academic achievement of students from diverse racial, cultural, gender, and social-class groups.

Notetoself: Finish Piaget...


HISTROY• 1896-1934, born in western Russia
• law degree from University of Moscow in 1917
• 1924, accepted psychology professorship at Moscow Institute of Psychology under
• died at 38 of tuberculosis
• writings banned in Soviet Union until 1956

• The major theme of Vygotsky's theoretical framework is that social interaction plays a fundamental role in the development of cognition
• Cognitive skills and patterns of thinking are not primarily determined by innate factors, but are the products of the activities practiced in the social institutions of the culture in which the individual grows up.
• All the higher functions originate as actual relationships between individuals.

-individuals create psychological tools to master their behavior - signs
-signs are culturally developed
-examples of signs are writing, numbering system, language
-speech - single most important psychological tool
-child undergoes a process of internalizing social speech
-follows process of internalizing social interactions
-Speech is internalized to become a major part of verbal thought process
- mind is a product of social-historical change
-influence of dialectical theory

Social Speech --> Ego Centric Speech --> Thought

• According to Vygotsky, all higher order psychological functions, including learning and problem solving, emerge first on a social, and then later on an internal plane.
• Vygotsky's theory was an attempt to explain consciousness as the end product of socialization. For example, in the learning of language, our first utterances with peers or adults are for the purpose of communication but once mastered they become internalized and allow "inner speech".
• Consequently, the history of the society in which a child is reared and the child's personal history are crucial determinants of the way in which that individual will think. In this process of cognitive development, language is a crucial tool for determining how the child will learn how to think because advanced modes of thought are transmitted to the child by means of words
• Language is not merely an expression of the knowledge the child has acquired. There is a fundamental correspondence between thought and speech in terms of one providing resource to the other; language becoming essential in forming thought and determining personality features
Zone of proximal development is the difference between the child's capacity to solve problems on his own, and his capacity to solve them with assistance
• Actual developmental level refers to all the functions and activities that a child can perform on his own, independently without the help of anyone else. On the other hand, the zone of proximal development includes all the functions and activities that a child or a learner can perform only with the assistance of someone else. The person in this scaffolding process, providing non-intrusive intervention, could be an adult (parent, teacher, caretaker, language instructor) or another peer who has already mastered that particular function.

EDUCATIONAL IMPLICATIONS• Vygotsky's zone of proximal development has many implications for those in the educational milieu. One of them is the idea that human learning presupposes a specific social nature and is part of a process by which children grow into the intellectual life of those around them According to Vygotsky, an essential feature of learning is that it awakens a variety of internal developmental processes that are able to operate only when the child is in the action of interacting with people in his environment and in cooperation with his peers.
• If speech internalized is to become a major part of verbal thought process, then the quality of speech becomes critical.
• Teachers need to be aggressive in their strategies to facicilatate the development of speech during the formative years, before internalization process concludes.
• Teachers should not overlook the extent to which outside assistance undermines child's independence? (force the child to rely on others rather than think for self)
• focus too exclusively on child's future development (rather than child's intrinsic interest)

Question: if development is largely a function of the environment, how do individuals introduce novelty and creativity into the system?

The Third Eye

You've heard of having a sixth sense, but you also may have a third eye. Eastern religions sometimes portray people with an eye in the middle of their forehead. Turns out, thay's located in about the same spot as the pineal gland in your brain. The pineal gland actually senses light the way your eyes would. Some animals can change their skin color when they sense different light -- even if their eyes are closed, because the pineal gland actually "sees" the light. In humans, the pineal gland may work the same way. (One interesting note: if you remove the pineal gland in rats, they then have an adversity to alcohol - and that may become a breakthrough that helps humans deal with addiction and control cravings.)

"You - The Owner's Manual," pp 241.



Ibn Ata Allah states:"He who is negligent awakens in the morning by considering what he is going to do, And he who is wise by considering what God will do with him."

(What an immense difference between the two! Ibn Ata Allah (ra) continues to impress! WOW!)

Seyyed Hossein Nasr

There is a traditional Islamic saying according to which Satan hates sharp points and edges. This old adage contains a most profound truth, which applies directly to the present-day situation. The Devil, being everywhere, manifests his influence by dulling all sharp points and edges which are accessible to him, so that sharp distinctions disappear in the milieu dominated by his influence. The edges of doctrines become corroded and their sharp form gradually fades away. Truth and error become ever more confused and even sacred rites and doctrinal formulations, which are the most precious gifts to God to man, become hazy and indefinite as a result of this corroding influence which makes everything appear indistinct and ambiguous.

To disuses the challenge of the modern world to Islam require, therefore, that this haze be dispelled through a rigorous application of intellectual discernment based ultimately upon the shahadah, whose first stroke when written in Arabic is, in fact, in the form of a sword. This word must be used to break the false idols of the new age of ignorance, idols which so many Muslim accept without even bothering to question their nature. It must be used to cut away and remove all the false ideas and ‘isms’ that clutter the mind of Modernized Muslims. It must help to chisel the soul of the contemporary Muslim from an amorphous mass into a sharp crystal which glows in the Divine Light, for a crystal glows precisely because of its shapely defined edges.


Tower of Babel

There’s a story in the Bible about a time when the human race united to build a Tower to reach the heavens. To prevent this project from succeeding, God confused their languages so that each race spoke a different language. The story always struck me as odd because why would God want to stop people from discovering Him. Isn’t that the reason we were created in the first place?

Coincidentally, the past few years have made me look at this Biblical story in a new light. I have a habit of checking news online, early in the morning, as I don’t watch TV news (except the daily show) or subscribe to a paper. In any case, sometimes I’ll read about deaths of people who’ve died only a mere 15 mins ago, in MALAYSIA or CONGO! Why is this relevant? Well let me ask you this, did news travel this fast back in the day? Didn’t it take months, if not years, for one culture to hear about a massacre in another country?

Take the cartoon controversy for example, within a day the entire world knows about this Danish newspaper, yet no one will give a rat's arse about it, a year from now. But here’s what’s crazy, we’ll all get rattled up, throw our opinions, pick a side, and go about our lives, as if we’ve actually made a difference. Corporations will continue to rule the world, and the masses – like donkeys- will continue to carry heavy tomes. Who really profited with that "Tower of Babel," the worshippers or the builders? Somebody got paid for that tower contract, I bet.

People back in the day only concerned themselves with what surrounded them, and in the process, refined and defined their culture and basic outlook on life. Malaysians worked to refine the Malaysians culture, while the Irish worked to refine their own customs. Even when people fought each other, in the long run they ‘learned’ from each other. If there were fanatics amongst a nation, there were also wise men, who upheld a balance.

When the tsunami occurred, it was touching to see how the world came together. But if only the human race carried itself with the dignity it has been offered. The builders have emerged and the Tower is in the making. Groupthink’s clutched the minds of mankind and we all dutifully take part in debates, pick sides, and yet will never dare to upset the balance of the group, locally.

While in the good ol’ days, while one nation was destroyed (mainly because of groupthink) there were still many more that flourished. I wonder, what’s in store for today’s world, a tiny community, thanks to our responsible media outlets. Woo.

So yeah, I think what the Biblical story is really trying to convey is that God’s confusion of language is not a punishment but a mercy, a chance for the human race to learn from each other, instead of screwing up royally and collectively, as one unit.

“O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honored of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and (with all things) is well acquainted. (Quran,49:13)


Maybe its Noor, maybe its Maybelline?

The believer’s greatest argument is his face. True religion lights up the face; false religion fills it with insecurity, rage and suspicion. This is perceptible not only to insiders, but to anyone who maintains some connection with unsullied primordial human nature in his heart. The early conversions to Islam often took place among populations that had no access to the language of the Muslims who now lived among them; but they were no less profound in consequence. Religion is ultimately a matter of personal transformation, and no amount of missionary work will persuade people - with the occasional exception of the disturbed and the desperate - unless our own transformation is complete enough to be able to transform others.

Hakim Murad


"[Illness] provides you the ability to grow, to evolve, to mature."

67:1-2 Blessed be He in Whose hands is Dominion; and He over all things hath Power;- He Who created Death and Life, that He may try which of you is best in deed: and He is the Exalted in Might, Oft-Forgiving;-

2:155-157 Be sure We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere, who say, when afflicted with calamity: "To Allah We belong, and to Him is our return": They are those on whom (descend) blessings from Allah, and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance.

-The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) visited me while I was sick. He said: Be glad, Umm al-Ala' for Allah removes the sins of a Muslim for his illness as fire removes the dross off gold and silver. [Sunan Abu Dawood Book 20, Number 3086]

-"The more severe the trial and hardship, the greater its reward. When God cherishes love for a group of people, He puts them to trial to cleanse them more and to make them pure. Hence those who acquiesce in the Will of God win the pleasure of God. And those who harbour resentment against God in the hour of trial, God also is displeased with them. [Tirmidhi]

-" No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins for that." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 545]

-"There is nothing (in the form of trouble) that comes to a believer even if it is the pricking of a thorn that there is decreed good for him by Allah or his sins are obliterated. [Sahih Muslim Book 32, Number 6241]

-"The example of a believer is that of a fresh tender plant; from whatever direction the wind comes, it bends it, but when the wind becomes quiet, it becomes straight again. Similarly, a believer is afflicted with calamities (but he remains patient till Allah removes his difficulties.) And an impious wicked person is like a pine tree which keeps hard and straight till Allah cuts (breaks) it down when He wishes." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 547]

-"If Allah wants to do good to somebody, He afflicts him with trials." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 548]

-I visited the Prophet during his ailments and he was suffering from a high fever. I said, "You have a high fever. Is it because you will have a double reward for it?" He said, "Yes, for no Muslim is afflicted with any harm but that Allah will remove his sins as the leaves of a tree fall down." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 550]

- Ibn 'Abbas said to me, "Shall I show you a woman of the people of Paradise?" I said, "Yes." He said, "This black lady came to the Prophet and said, 'I get attacks of epilepsy and my body becomes uncovered; please invoke Allah for me.' The Prophet said (to her), 'If you wish, be patient and you will (enter) Paradise; and if you wish, I will invoke Allah to cure you.' She said, 'I will remain patient,' and added, 'but I become uncovered, so please invoke Allah for me that I may not become uncovered.' So he invoked Allah for her." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 555]

-Narrated 'A'isha: Whenever Allah's Apostle paid a visit to a patient, or a patient was brought to him, he used to invoke Allah, saying, "Take away the disease, O the Lord of the people! Cure him as You are the One Who cures. There is no cure but Yours, a cure that leaves no disease." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 70, Number 579]

(Info taken from a paper by Rabia Mills)

Imam Ghazali

"Your five senses are like five doors opening on the external world; but, more wonderful than this, our heart has a window that opens on the unseen world of spirit.
In the state of sleep, when the avenues of the senses are dosed, this window is opened, and we receive impressions from the unseen world and sometimes foreshadowings of the future. Our hearts are like a mirror that reflects what is pictured in the Tablet of Fate. But, even in sleep, thoughts of worldly things dull this mirror, so that the impressions it receives are not clear. After death, however, such thoughts vanish, and things are seen in their naked reality."



Ibrahim Adham said, "Faith in God will be firmly established if three veils are cast aside:
1. "feeling pleasure in possessing anything;
2. Lamenting over the loss of anything;
3. "enjoying self-praise."

The Soul

The soul is neither from the East of the world of pure spirits, nor from the West of the world of material bodies. It is of three types: the one that incites to evil; the self-blaming one; and the recollected one.

The soul that incites to evil (an-nafs al-ammarah bi's-su') is that which inclines to physical nature and commands one to engage in sensual pleasures and carnal appetites. It draws the heart toward the lowest region and is the abode of iniquity and the source of blameworthy morals and evil deeds. It is the soul of the masses. It is tenebrous; and for it, the invocation is like a lamp lit in a dark house.

The self-blaming soul (an-nafs al-lawwamah) is that which is illuminated by the light of the heart to an extent commensurate with its degree of wakefulness from the slumber of forgetfulness. It is vigilant and begins by correcting its state, which wavers between the Divinity and creatures. Every time something bad issues forth from the self-blaming soul by virtue of its dark nature and character, the light of divine admonition suddenly comes upon it, and it starts blaming itself. The soul repents of its errors, asking God's pardon and returns to the door of the Forgiving, the Merciful…

[…] the self-blaming soul perseveres in invoking and turning to God in repentance until the power of the invocation triumphs over all those things and expels them. Then the soul approaches peacefulness and does not cease to gather furnishings for the house until the house is adorned with all kinds of praiseworthy things and is thereby made lustrous. The house is then suitable for the descent of the Sovereign Lord into it. When the Sovereign Lord descends into the soul and the Truth is revealed, the soul becomes recollected.

The recollected soul (an-nafs al-mutma'innah) is the one whose enlightenment is brought about by the light of the heart until it is stripped of blameworthy attributes and takes on praiseworthy virtues. Then it turns in the direction of the heart completely, following it in its ascent to the regions of the world of Holiness (`alam al-quds) far above the world of impurity, diligent in acts of obedience and tranquil in the presence of the "Exalter of ranks" until its Lord addresses it by His words: "But, ah! Thou soul at peace! Return unto thy Lord, content in His good pleasure! Enter thou among My servants! Enter thou My Garden!"

The Key To Salvation, pp. 52-53
Ibn' Ata' Allah


William Blake - Auguries of Innocence

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.


The wild deer, wand'ring here and there,
Keeps the human soul from care.
The lamb misus'd breeds public strife,
And yet forgives the butcher's knife.

The bat that flits at close of eve
Has left the brain that won't believe.
The owl that calls upon the night
Speaks the unbeliever's fright.

He who shall hurt the little wren
Shall never be belov'd by men.
He who the ox to wrath has mov'd
Shall never be by woman lov'd.

The wanton boy that kills the fly
Shall feel the spider's enmity.
He who torments the chafer's sprite
Weaves a bower in endless night.

The caterpillar on the leaf
Repeats to thee thy mother's grief.
Kill not the moth nor butterfly,
For the last judgement draweth nigh.


The poison of the honey bee
Is the artist's jealousy.


It is right it should be so;
Man was made for joy and woe;
And when this we rightly know,
Thro' the world we safely go.

Joy and woe are woven fine,
A clothing for the soul divine.
Under every grief and pine
Runs a joy with silken twine.


If the sun and moon should doubt,
They'd immediately go out.
To be in a passion you good may do,
But no good if a passion is in you.


Every night and every morn
Some to misery are born,
Every morn and every night
Some are born to sweet delight.

Some are born to sweet delight,
Some are born to endless night.

We are led to believe a lie
When we see not thro' the eye,
Which was born in a night to perish in a night,
When the soul slept in beams of light.

God appears, and God is light,
To those poor souls who dwell in night;
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realms of day.

Read more

...better than yours!

What amazes (sometimes amuses) me about today’s society is the widespread acceptance of this notion of ‘group-think’ in almost every aspect of our lives. Whenever a bunch of people get together, they suspend their natural judgment in lieu of collective foolishness. It happens in Washington, Hollywood, Bollywood, Masjids, Churches, Mandirs, Student Unions, etc. We even see it manifested in the shape of Sunni vs Salafi vs Shia vs Sufi fights on message boards. People argue to protect their tribe instead of addressing the situation at hand.

Anywho… as I stand here scratching my tind (head) in confusion wondering how delusional is Bush when he speaks of saving the world by bombing it, a bunch of people (namely congress) are confirming his delusions by clapping like demented seals in unison. What Gives?

Why are people in today’s world incapable of thinking and voicing their personal opinion in a group setting? Is public schooling to blame? (I know some tangent, right?)

The Senate Intelligence Committee concluded that "the Intelligence Community (IC) suffered from a collective presumption that Iraq had an active and growing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) program. This "group think" dynamic led Intelligence Community analysts, collectors, and managers, to both interpret ambiguous evidence as conclusively indicative of a WMD program as well as ignore or minimize evidence that Iraq did not have active and expanding weapons of mass destruction programs. This presumption was so strong that formalized IC mechanisms established to challenge assumptions and group think were not utilized."
Groupthink wiki

The central tenet of Groupthink is, as groups seek conformity and unity they sacrifice everything in order to maintain peace within the group, causing poor decision-making.

Symptoms of Groupthink are divided into three types in which they can manifest themselves: Type I: Overestimations of the group's power and morality
Type II: Closed-mindedness
Type III: Pressure toward uniformity

Eight Main Symptoms of Group Think
1. Illusion of Invulnerability: Members ignore obvious danger, take extreme risk, and are overly optimistic.
2. Collective Rationalization: Members discredit and explain away warning contrary to group thinking.
3. Illusion of Morality: Members believe their decisions are morally correct, ignoring the ethical consequences of their decisions.
4. Excessive Stereotyping:The group constructs negative sterotypes of rivals outside the group.
5. Pressure for Conformity: Members pressure any in the group who express arguments against the group's stereotypes, illusions, or commitments, viewing such opposition as disloyalty.
6. Self-Censorship: Members withhold their dissenting views and counter-arguments.
7. Illusion of Unanimity: Members perceive falsely that everyone agrees with the group's decision; silence is seen as consent.
8. Mindguards: Some members appoint themselves to the role of protecting the group from adverse information that might threaten group complacency.

Janis, I. L. & Mann, L. (1977). Decision making: A psychological analysis of conflict, choice, and commitment. New York: Free Press.



Please inoculate yourself before it gets you: Groupthink Vaccine