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虚拟清真寺帮助穆斯林在线探索信仰

(2016-06-30 08:12:57)
分类: 科学与技术
https://share.america.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/IMG_2122-696x524.jpg无论你在哪里,你距离虚拟清真寺网站只有一键之遥。(State Dept./S. Brukbacher)

随着在线资源变得越来越重要,许多穆斯林,包括生活在美国和其他国家的穆斯林,正在转向一个网站,通过它帮助他们在学校、家庭和繁忙事业的忙碌生活中坚守信仰。在这个“虚拟清真寺”( Virtual Mosque),他们可以找到不时借用流行文化资源的文章和布道——这与网站创始人的嘻哈音乐主持人背景不无关系。

这个虚拟清真寺网站来自苏哈布·韦伯阿訇(Imam Suhaib Webb)的创意,他是俄克拉荷马州(Oklahoma)人,在大学期间开始信奉伊斯兰教。

现年44岁的韦伯是一个接受过传统培训的伊斯兰学者。他因在社交媒体上积极面向美国穆斯林年轻人——例如在Snapchat上的八秒布道(英文视频)和谈到说唱歌手妮琪·米娜(Nicki Minaj)的讲座——而出名。

韦伯说:“我创建虚拟清真寺的原因是,我注意到在美国穆斯林当中发生的转变。他们中的许多人开始在网上探索自己的信仰。虽然这个平台很好,但它缺少学术责任性——提供的答案常常不是来自提问者和回答者之间的真正对话。”

所以,“我们试图缩小这个差距……[通过鼓励]在提问者和回答问题的人之间公开的交流”,以及“通过创造一个空间,认识到穆斯林并非是单一化群体”,尊重在伊斯兰教内部的不同传统。

虚拟清真寺是韦伯在波士顿时启动的,他从2011年到2015年在那里担任波士顿文化中心伊斯兰协会(Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center)的阿訇。今天,韦伯负责主持位于首都华盛顿的一个基于信仰的社区平台华盛顿中心(Center DC)。

该网站上的文章从伊斯兰的角度探讨范围广泛的议题,包括性别关系(“伊斯兰教中的女学者和女传教者”[Female Scholars and Preachers in Islam]),夫妻生活中的困扰(“姻亲干扰”[ In-Law Interference])和年轻人关心的问题(“做不讨人嫌的教徒“[Being Religious Without Being a Jerk])。

所有虚拟清真寺的内容都使用英语。一些文章也有阿拉伯语、西班牙语和马来语版本。

韦伯说,该网站每天页面浏览量大约为13000人次,在斋月(Ramadan)期间更多 。

自启动以来,网站管理人增加了写作人手、编辑和其他工作人员。韦伯说: “虚拟清真寺的成长……是衡量我们成功的最好标准。“

点击更多了解美国的斋月,以及美国穆斯林如何在生活中实践信仰为社区服务


Virtual Mosque helps Muslims explore their faith online

As online resources become ever more important, many Muslims — in the U.S. and elsewhere — are turning to a website that helps them connect with their faith while they juggle school, family life and busy careers. They visit the Virtual Mosque, where they find articles and sermons peppered with pop-culture references that recall the founder’s past as a hip-hop DJ.

The website is the brainchild of Imam Suhaib Webb, an Oklahoma native who converted to Islam when he was in college.

Webb, 44, is a classically trained Islamic scholar who is widely known for his social media outreach to U.S. Muslim youth, including eight-second sermons on Snapchat and lectures that mention rapper Nicki Minaj.

“I started Virtual Mosque because I noticed a shift amongst American Muslims,” Webb said. “Many of them were discovering their faith online. And while that platform is great, it does not guarantee responsible scholarship — often, answers are given without a real conversation between the seeker and the person answering the question.”

So “we tried to close that gap … [by inviting] an open engagement between the questioner and the person answering the question,” and “by creating a space that recognizes Muslims are not a monolith” and that respects different traditions within Islam.

The virtual mosque was launched during Webb’s tenure in Boston, where he served as imam at the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center from 2011 to 2015. Today Webb runs Center DC, a faith-based community space in Washington.

The site’s essays examine a wide range of topics from an Islamic perspective, including gender relations (“Female Scholars and Preachers in Islam”), the challenges of married life (“In-Law Interference”) and the concerns of young people (“Being Religious Without Being a Jerk”).

All Virtual Mosque content is posted in English. Some essays are also available in Arabic, Spanish and Malay.

The site gets some 13,000 page views per day and even more during Ramadan, Webb said.

Since its launch, the site’s administrators have added more writers, editors and other staffers. “The growth of the Virtual Mosque … is the greatest measure of our success,” Webb said.

Learn more about Ramadan in America, and discover how American Muslims live their faith and serve their communities.

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