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ISNA Failed Muslims






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ISNA Consultants Failed Muslims

ISNA consultants ratified a “naked-eye sighting” claim by a lone witness from Phoenix, AZ against unanimous opinion of the astronomers.  ISNA Muftis instantly approved this claim as “credible” against overwhelming odds and declared Eid on the last day of Ramadan.

What happened to the scientific rule of “repeatability” before accepting a claim? Why did ISNA experts fail to consider the simple fact that all others who were present at the same location with this person were unable to see any moon? Why did ISNA Fiqh Council throw the “Ghalabat-al-Yaqeen” (Near-certainty), and “Jam-un Azeem” (a large number of witnesses from a town, if the sky is clear) requirements out of the window for ending Ramadan month? Were they that desperate to have Eid with those who started Ramadan on Tuesday Oct. 4 that they asked Muslims to miss a day of obligatory Ramadan fasting?

Incompetent ISNA Astronomical Consultants

Let us analyze the role of ISNA’s two astronomical consultants (Mohib and Salamah) in Eid fiasco and their amazing  incompetence.                                                                                                      

ISNA, until 10:00pm on November 2, 2005 has been proclaiming:

All Muslim astronomical consultants are unanimous that with NAKED EYE it is IMPOSSIBLE to see it anywhere in North America.

At 10:00 pm ISNA declared: Tomorrow, Thursday 3 Nov 2005 CE is the first day of Shawwal (Eid al-Fitr).

How did this miracle happen?

ISNA consultants, Khalid Shaukat, ruled that naked-eye sighting claim from Phoenix is not credible. As usual he was ignored. Two other ISNA consultants assured the Muftis that the lone witnesses ISNA could find in whole of N. America were “Credible”. The two ‘astronomical experts’ (??) declared a naked-eye sighting “Possible” against unanimous opinion of all astronomers that it was IMPOSSIBLE for North America.

The written statement of the witness on Mohib’s web reads in part:

In Phoenix Arizona… out of a large group… (ONE witness) saw illusive Hilal at 5:42 …for a few seconds to the left of … the sun – (Hilal) spanning the distance from the seven o'clock and two o'clock hand of an analog clock.…continually observe it until about 5:41pm…One other brother … was able to see it…Our Imam saw it at first sight but… was not certain of his sighting.”

It is amazing how ISNA consultants found NO fault with this account.

1. Why did everybody in the "large" group NOT SEE what only one could see?
2. How a 29-day-Hilal could be visible within 4 minutes of the sunset?
3. Why was it visible only for “a few seconds”?
4. Why was the Hilal upside down - extended from 7 to 2 on a clock?
5. Why did the second witness not provide details to corroborate the claim?
6. Why did the third person (Imam) abandon his claim of sighting?
7. Why nobody from Phoenix to Pacific coast could see this moon again?

From his description of the observed object as “illusive” the witness appeared himself doubtful. The unfortunate tragedy lies with the two experts who accepted it. Note that there was no second witness’s statement in support of this faulty evidence.

ISNA experts have to answer all these questions with solid observational data to back their recommendation.         



ISNA Fiqh Council itself had earlier agreed that naked-eye sighting in N. America was IMPOSSIBLE.

Only Salamah surmised (without any supporting observational data) that a moon could be seen in southern US states. For him, it was an opportunity to prove his wild guess.

For Durrani, every claim, however spurious, is credible for decades. One wonders on what grounds he rejected Oct. 3 (for Ramadan), Oct. 31 and Nov. 1, 2005 claims of Shawwal moon-sighting but accepted the Phoenix claim?

ISNA Muftis must now explain which Fiqh principles they used to accept only one witness (the second and the third in Phoenix cannot be counted as the real witnesses).  All Fuqaha specify Ghalabat-al-Yaqeen rule for ending fasting month. Some might require only two, but the majority requires a larger number, 50-500 from a town to abandon fasting after 29th day of Ramadan. How could ISNA FC justify that only one witness from a whole continent was enough?

Phoenix observer later “corrected” his written statement: He said the Hilal was visible to him till 5:51 pm (and not 5:41). It makes his claim more doubtful. If he could see it for nine minutes then how could his large group, including the Imam, not see it?

Obviously, ISNA Fiqh Council and its consultants proved again that they are INCOMPETENT for determining the Ramadan and Eidain dates and not credible. They also bear the responsibility of all those MUSLIMS who DID NOT FAST ON THE LAST DAY OF RAMADAN as a consequence of their faulty decision.