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Head2Heart

Human beings are comprised of a body, mind and soul. A mysterious harmony within us keeps our body in shape, mind sound and soul happy. Once this harmony is tampered with, all types of predicament befall us.

Each one of us is a complex living being, a miniature entity with limitless potential to become a force for good in our small planet. Our life within the cosmos is wondrous. Whatever our faith or understanding, we see our intricate body machine run with absolute precision and perfection. This is amazing.

As people of faith we believe that ‘God created us in the best mould’ (Qur’an 95:4) and He has ‘honoured the progeny of Adam’ (Qur’an 17:70). The dignity of human beings comes through faith, conviction and action. Faith comes from our heart, but can be cherished or demolished by our mind. Islam has asked its adherents to use their intellect (aql, in Arabic) to see things around them, think, feel, internalise and act good. Blind faith, a very lazy option, ends up in life’s cul-de-sac; stagnation, lethargy and inertia then cripple an individual and a people. The metaphor, ‘Minds are like parachutes – they only work when open’, has now become an illuminating maxim. The Qur’an urges believers to use intellect, reflect, travel and see the world.

Within each of us we are blessed with physical, mental, emotional and spiritual facets – to live our life and let others around us live in peace. This is the basis of our shared life – interwoven with one another. A people who broadly use all the facets in sensible proportion succeed; they can sustain their pre-eminence over others for a long time and create civilisations that others look to with admiration. Any people can do this; civilisations come and disappear like a cycle.

Our time is unidirectional; those who adapt with changing times, renew themselves continuously and do not lose proportion continue to be in the faster lane of life’s highway. With their wealth and power they have the ability to bring peace, justice and advancement in the world. However, they need to possess a good level of moral and spiritual capital. Arrogance or hegemonic hubris in the past brought powerful people down; we witness this on the verge of happening today with current arrogant nations. Time, indeed, is the best teacher.

Head2Heart is about a reminder, particularly for the youth who are at the receiving end of life’s multiple challenges, to diligently employ our heads to think and our heart to internalise in order to rationally act.

Time is of the essence, we ignore the gift of time at our peril.

About Muhammad Abdul Bari

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Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari is an educationalist, community activist, author, parenting consultant and commentator on social and political issues.

He began his research studies in the UK after training as an Air Force officer in Bangladesh. A physicist and educationalist by training, Dr Bari received his doctorate and qualified as a teacher from King’s College London, and gained a Management Degree from the Open University. He took an early retirement as a Specialist teacher (Behaviour Support) in 2011 to work with diverse communities, particularity the youth, and engage in writing.

He is a founding member of The East London Communities Organisation (TELCO), now part of the Citizens UK (CUK). He was Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain (2006 – 10), Chair of the East London Mosque Trust (2002 – 13) and non-executive board member of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG 2006-13). He served on the Good Childhood Inquiry Panel which was set up by the Children’s Society in 2006

He is a patron of Anchor House, an award winning homeless charity, the Ramphal Institute and Nida Trust, an educational charity. He is also a trustee of Muslim Aid, a leading international charity.

Dr Bari has written for various newspapers, blogs and journals including The Huffington Post and Al-Jazeera English, and is the author of a number of books on marriage, family, parenting, identity and community issues from contemporary British Muslim perspectives.

In recognition of his services to the community, he was conferred an MBE in 2003. He was awarded ‘Community Cohesion Champion’ by Sikhs in England in 2006. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, an Honorary Fellow of Queen Mary (University of London) and an Honorary Doctor of Education of the University of East London.

As well as being the founder of Head2Heart, Dr Bari is also the founding director of Amana Parenting, a consultancy on family and parenting issues.