FRIDAY, FEB. 24: Allah (swt) says: ‘Travel in the land and see how Allah originated Creation’ (Qur’an, 29:20).

History has always fascinated me — even before I realized how intricately meshed the past is with the present.

The study of history allows us to learn from the mistakes of the past and hopefully to avoid making those same mistakes in the future. 

By studying our ancestors we should be proud of where we came from and thus motivated and inspired to continue even prouder into the future.

Ancient cultures devoted much time and effort to teaching their children family history.

It was thought that the past helps a child understand who he or she is.

With the knowledge of our history we should be better equipped to march forward for the progress of mankind in economics, government and technology, to name a few.

History allows us to understand how we arrived to the present state of the world.

We should learn from history that the human race is one.

We should learn from history as in the words of Dr Martin Luther King Jr, “we must stand together as brothers or perish together as fools”.

It has been said that he who knows the past controls the future.

It is a tragedy not to be aware of history. Knowledge of history helps us to better understand the world and how it works. 

World history is vital to understanding current world events.

Many don’t understand what is going on in the Middle East today because they have no knowledge of Middle Eastern history;  for if they did, they would be less subjective, and understand better how that history indeed shaped the world as we know it.

Islamic history has contributed to science, mathematics, medicine, architecture, art, and so much more.

History needs to be respected, however, many of us today feel history does not matter.

We feel we are living in modern times and should leave the past to the past. Many of us do not even respect our ancestors — how sad, small wonder we hold little respect for ourselves.

Oh yes, this is the last week of Black History Month.

February was chosen because it honours the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, pioneers in the liberation of black people.

Some argue that Black History Month is not needed; this can be further from the truth, as despite the end of slavery, much of the contributions of black people to society remains largely undocumented.

Hence the need still exists to ensure the opportunity for schools and communities to disseminate information on the contributions of blacks, which still largely remains out of textbooks.

Our children must know the shoulders of those we stand on. Black history should remind us of the rich culture and great history we come from and not the decadence that we so blatantly find ourselves in today.

We need to know how we persevered despite great adversity, we need to know this so that we may continue to be inspired and strengthened, because the battle, the struggle still continues for many of us.

Until black history is an integral part of history per se, until we can do better, we must continue to celebrate Black History Month with pride and vengeance.

“We should emphasize not Negro History, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice” — Carter Woodson.

Our guide going into the future comes from Allah when He says in the Holy Qur’an 3:102-103:

O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared and die not except in a state of Islam.

And hold fast together all of you to the rope of Allah, and be not divided among yourselves; and remember with gratitude Allah’s favours on you; for you were enemies and He joined your hearts in love, so that by His Grace you became brothers; and you were on the brink of the pit of fire, and He saved you from it. Thus Allah makes His signs clear to you that you may be guided.