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Duas Against The Surveillance State
ya allah only you are the all seeing and all knowing; revoke the power of the panopticon from those who wish us dead.
‘Inna lillahi wa ‘innaa ‘ilayhi raaji’oon, Allaahumma’-jurni fee museebatee wa ‘akhliflee khayran minhaa. We are from Allah and unto Him we return. O Allah take me out of my plight and bring to me after it something better.
Last week, Minneapolis started a revolution.
That’s what we get to call it, right? After a cop kills a man by kneeling on his throat for over eight minutes and the community responds by setting that same cop’s precinct on fire — doesn’t that qualify?
I began collecting duas from Black Muslims in response to George Floyd’s murder before the precinct burned. My motivation came after logging onto Twitter to see a number of my mutuals sharing their prayers. The wrath of the oppressed manifested in calls for brains to boil; for necks to be seized; backs to break; for the fruits of zaqqum boil in stomachs and tear through flesh. To be clear, I’m not complaining. Amiin.
To me, each of these duas read as against the surveillance state. When I say surveillance, I am thinking, of course, about the threat posed to protesters by the extent of the surveillance apparatus in and around Minneapolis. However, the threat of surveillance extends beyond the protests and technologies used there into the very mechanics that make up Black life in the city.
Minneapolis loves surveillance. Hell, it was a pilot city for the Department of Homeland Security’s Countering Violent Extremism, a surveillance program which primarily targeted Somali youth. Then of course, there is the particular racialized aspects of surveillance that made the conditions for George Floyd to be murdered in broad daylight. Think. Blackness as something always suspect, always watched.
My original plans for NAZAR were to open with an extended introduction. Instead, it feels more fitting to begin with a collection of duas against the surveillance state. I cannot express my gratitude to all those who contributed enough and the power of these duas cannot be overstated. There is a hadith which narrates the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Beware of the supplication of the oppressed, for there is no barrier between it and Allah.”
At the time of my writing this newsletter, the precinct burned last night. Watching it felt cathartic; like the city lost one of the many eyes it used to surveil Black people in my home.
It felt like an answered prayer.
Just as the turtle dies when flipped upside down, may Allah topple oppressing structures to their death.
O Allah show me guidance as guidance, and allow me to follow it. And show me error as error, and allow me to avoid it.
Allah ease my mother’s anxieties now that her records show that she’s on a watchlist because I am a Muslim. Allah forgive the coerced informant who shared my information out of fear due to their vulnerable legal state. Allah make my futures travel easy and because I don't want to miss another flight because I'm detained or delayed through extra restrictions. I ask that you grant me my FOIA files. May whatever sins and shortcomings in my past and future not be used by racists who seek to undermine the Black freedom movement. May the records law enforcement keeps on me be a testament to my good deeds and not used to harm others. Ameen.
Oh Allah, I seek refuge in You from grief and sadness, from weakness and laziness, from miserliness and cowardice, from being overcome by debt and from being overpowered by men.
- Safiyah Cheatam
O Allah, I yield to Your infinite wisdom and mercy. And I pray that You watch over us and continue to guide us in our battle against tyranny. I pray that You bring ruination to the oppressors, that the tyrants may fall with their institutions, and that they are ripped from the face of this earth. I pray that You blind those who would do us harm, who would seek us and hunt us, and who would attempt to extinguish this flame You have sparked. I pray for Your love to hold us, to grant us wellness, to keep us safe, and to embolden our communities. I pray that You continue to empower us to fight for justice in your image, and that You are merciful to those of us who cannot fight. And, O Allah, I am grateful for You, and humbly pray for Your wisdom as we work to build a more just world.
- Nisa Ihsan Dang
O Allah, Lord of the seven heavens, Lord of the Magnificent Throne, be for us a support against the justice system and it’s helpers from among your creatures, lest any of them abuse us or do us wrong. Mighty is Your patronage and glorious are Your praises. There is none worthy of worship but You.
اللَّهُمَّ ربَّ السَّمَوَاتِ السَّبْعِ وَرَبَّ الْعَرْشِ الْعَظِيمِ كُنْ لِي جَارًا مِنْ فلُاَنِ ابْنِ فلُاَنٍ وَأحْزَابِهِ مِنْ خَلاَئِقِكَ أنْ يَفْرُطَ عَلَيَّ أحَدٌ مِنْهُمْ أوْ يَطْغَى عَزَّ جَارُكَ وَجَلَّ ثنَاَؤُكَ وَلاَ إِلَهَ إِلا أنْتَ
Ya Allah! Protect our families from the racism that pours from every corner and institution in this society. In the midst of confusion, send ur angels to descalate tensions so that blsck men, women, and children can live to see another day. Tear down these systems of oppression and murder and replace them with equity and just system later that honor humanity. Give us good n this life and the next. Ameen
- K.C. Harper
I ask Allah SWT to liberate my people. I ask that we are able to envision a world in our full humanity is a fact and not a fmmedia spectacle. I pray that we have the vision to dream a future in which we are free and your mercy to ease us into it. SubunnahAllah
- Constructor of Dreams
اِنِّىْ مَغْلُوْبٌ فَانْتَصِرْ
Inni maghlubun fan-tassir
O Allah! I am oppressed, therefore come to my help
2. Our Lord! make us not a trial for those who practise oppression
رَبَّنَا لاَ تَجْعَلْنَا فِتْنَةً لِلْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ
Rabbana la tajal-na fitnatan-lil qawmi-dhalimeen
4. O Allah! God of Jibraeil, Makaiil and Israfil, and the God of Ibrahim, and Ismail and Ishaq, Grant me peace and security, and do not let anyone of Your creatures overcome me, with anything which I have no power to forbear. O Allah, break free the shackles of our prisoners and the prisoners of the oppressive state, and return them safely to their families. Grant victory to the wretched all over your Land. Ameen O Allah! Ameen O Allah! Ameen O Allah!
- A message from one Black muslim sister to her community; verily though Sabr & prayer all is made easy.
Oh Allah may you inflict pain on these pigs and make them suffer in this life and in the hereafter.
I pray Allah saves the worst
of His Wrath
for these white supremacist pigs.
And I pray He sends down angels
to protect Black bodies
that shield us from this police state.
Allahumma akfinnii bimaa shi't ( Oh Allah suffice me against them however You wish)
May the tentacles of the oppressor abandon their strongholds, suffocate their beliefs, and handicap their actions. May Black people never be overpowered by whiteness, white supremacy, and white hegemony. May the light of our nafs be a guiding lantern in the darkness of racism.
- Shahrazad H
My God, many an enemy drew up the sword of hostility against me, honed the dagger's edge, sharpened the arrows' points, made ready deadly poisons, leveled his bow at me, and, keeping an eye on me, harbored evil thoughts to force me to swallow, against my will, the deadly bitter poison. Thou came to know that I am too weak to bear hardships and too exhausted to withstand misfortunes, and took notice of my shortcoming that I cannot confront the enemy who had planned to attack me…
- Excerpt of Dua'a Jawshan Sagheer known as a high dignity Du'a profitable against calamity and oppressors in the Shi'i community.
May the white oppressors go forth in front of Allah, with bloody tongues and broken bodies, exclaiming their loss at the hands of Black people. May they weep and cry, with acid as tears, burning their flesh.
ya allah let us see the fruits of black revolution and resistance in this lifetime and the blessings and good deeds in the next. give those who have been murdered by this settler colonial state eternal peace and serenity in jannah tul firdaws and protect those who are still alive and still being watched. ya allah only you are the all seeing and all knowing; revoke the power of the panopticon from those who wish us dead. ameen.
- the moon and the stars, 19
I pray that God will bless you and anything that you do. I pray that you will grow intellectually, so that you can understand the problems of the world, and where you fit into that world picture. And I pray that all of the fear that has ever been in your heart will be taken out.
- Malcolm X
I feel a rage and sorrow that makes my eyes burn and chest tight. Ya Allah, deliver us from our oppressors and give us the strength to protect one another. Ya Allah! Ya Azeez (The Mighty)! You are Al Muzil (The Humiliator, The Witholder of Honor)! We ask you to humiliate our enemies like you did Pharoah and Abu Lahab. Humiliate them in their homes, the streets and wherever they flee. Ya Allah you are Al Hakam (Giver of Justice) Al 'Adl (The Utterly Just). Yours is the ultimate, all encompassing justice and we ask that your divine justice fall upon the heads of our enemies.
May the angels of Badr accompany the freedom fighters in Minneapolis until the justice of Allah is realized.
May the calamities of Allah fall upon our oppressors as they did in Egypt in the time of Musa (as). May the punishment of Allah descend upon our enemies as they did on the people of 'Ad and Thamud. May we die amongst those who strive for justice and may we be raised to an honored station in the Hereafter.
May the fruit of zaqqum boil in the stomachs of our oppressor like dregs of oil. Let it tear through their flesh as the flames of jahanam lick their wounds. Ya Allah remove your mercy from them and make rest forbidden for them as they made rest forbidden for us.
May the Most Merciful, the Bringer of Judgement slowly rot away the insides of the four murderers. May it feel like a burning hot rusted butter knife is slowly peeling away their flesh from the inside out. May these four devils find no comfort in this life or the next.
If this a prison,
I want to stay with her,
be with her,
pray to her.
If this is an act of God, may I praise thee in glory.
Oh, Allah please protect us,
look over us,
protect one from thyself to
Never leave you in this life or the next.
Please, help me to call on you and my ancestors for courage, vulnerability,
continue to fight
On the side of justice,
the remembrance that Oh, Allah you are always on the side of the oppressed.
Allow us to access your strength, might, vitality to continue
To live, fight, love, imagination, for me/us/the youth to
Lean onto to community because God speaks through people.
Oh, Allah please protect Queer Black Muslims, Please protect Trans Black Muslims,
look over us,
protect one from thyself to
Never leave you in this life or the next.
Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
& the difference to know that with you I am never alone
In my times of need. I call to you to remove anything that no longer serves me, to scythe out all the dead leaves weighing me down so I can too,
Channel my growth and bloom. To flourish like you, my goddess. Help me transform the turbulent storms into a calming ocean, to appreciate both, love both, be
May Allah swt protect and guide the righteous ones. May the Most High keep their feet steady, their resolve clear, and their hearts full of love of self and love of Blackness. May these justice seekers remember the elders and ancestors who continue to guide us and made our paths a little easier to walk. May these beloveds remember to fight not just for their freedom, but see how it is connected to others' freedom. May this nation be burned to the ground and returned to its rightful guardians. Amen. Ameen. Ashe'.
- Kayla, daughter of Cleveland
God, I am in need of whatever help you give me. (dua of Musa, Quran 28:24).
Allah, please shield us from the evil intentions and actions of our oppressors, please surround us with your protection, arm us with your strength and allow us to prevail. Ameen.
- Sara E.
Oh, Allah? Please give me and my family the ability to out live all who break us down.
- N.M. Shahir, PhD
Oh Allah, the most Just, creator of Justice and supreme creator of all the worlds. Send peace and blessings to our Beloved Prophet Muhammad SWS. Oh Allah burn the eyes tongue and skin of our oppressors, the police, their friends, and their supporters. Let them wake up to find blood in their sheets, let their teeth rot and fall out. Let their skin curdle and ooze. Distort their faces so they are marked and a horror to look upon. Break their legs and crush their spine when ever they think about committing an injustice. Oh Allah destroy these people where ever they may be. Protect the people with armies of armored angels and make them successful in this life and in the next. AMEEN
- Leila, Baltimore
I pray that Allah rewards us immensely in the akhira simply for being black. For Allah knew the great weight our people would have to uphold throughout history. All the while struggling to maintain our mental and emotional stability amidst battling a world that constantly degrades and exploits us. I pray for peace, love, justice and understanding to especially take place in our ummah. Our religion is perfect but our people needs work. May Allah protect us all and rectify all global injustices.
i wish i could live without fear
i wish i could breathe without weight and walk without pain
i woke up this morning and saw a man being killed today
he was recorded and documented and posted in on instagram today
his body was dragged across my timeline today
his life was pulled apart today
he died again and again today
i think i'll hear him in my sleep and in my dreams tonight
i hope i won't see this again but i know i will so instead:
Ya Allah protect my brothers and sisters from men who walk loudly
Ya Allah please protect them from men who shoot first and ask questions never
Ya Allah please protect them from a world that never will
ALLAHUMMA, Lord of the seven heavens, Lord of the magnificent throne, be for me to support against so and so and his helpers from among your creatures, lest any of them abuse me or do me wrong. Mighty is your Patronage and glorious are your praises. There is none worthy of worship but you.
a supplication to / for black people and black ummah only: ya Allah, may you shield our people from the terrors and violence of this empire and those traitors who continue to uphold it. ya Allah, steady our breath and untense our bodies in the encounter of militarized action for ya Allah we carry your message of jihad for justice. ya Allah, cloud their all their senses and illicit fear in their hearts, ya Allah, these are the days that we seize our freedom by its neck as we hold the justices of our ancestors and victims close to our beating hearts. ya Allah, steadily remind the oppressors of your wrath and their destruction for we have you on our side. ya Allah, grant our people a door in jannah for our mere existence is rahmah and our mere breath is jihad for you, ya Allah.
Amiin! Amiin! Amiin!