New Year’s Letter from Iraq

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

To begin the New Year, here is a letter sent by our dear Sister Sabbie, who organized the Book Drive for Iraqi Kurdistan. It was a great success, with fifty-eight large shipping containers filled with all manner of books sent. Alhamdulillah!  Thank you all who participated with books and donations. It was truly a blessing.

Sabbie’s Letter:

Salaams to all from Iraq and Kurdistan:

May Allah bless all and their families during blessed Eid.

Allah has been most merciful to your sister in Iraq, showing
unexplainable miracles and gifts each day. I would like to share three stories with you, the only gift I can give at this time, while working my community action work with my blessed Iraqis.

Normally during the winning of special events, like Iraqi soccer, one can hear celebratory fire from AK47’s …and what goes up, must come down. There was one early evening, after Maghrib prayer and listening to my Shaykh’s zikr over the internet…. I heard the sound of drums, dafs, and then La ilaha il Allah, Muhammad-ur-Rasool-Allah, coming from a
nearby mosque over the microphone… and then more zikr, an imam or leader chanting and many strong, loud voices behind his, through the microphone. My eyes and heart filled with love and awe. The International staff began to knock at my door, please tell us…what is this, should we be worried? I sat with them, heart full and explained zikr and the beauty of broadcasting zikr so publically, in a region where just an
individual’s word can cause attacks and violence. Celebratory gunfire has been replace by zikr, alhamdullah.

The second story, after a long and stressful day, I took the time for meditation playing a thunderstorm mp3 meditation, over and over again, then several zikrs, owwww….I wished to hear real falling rain, perhaps see snow, but I was too far south for snow. The winter has been unusually dry and warm, so much so we worry about drought. In the middle of
the night, Allah blessed us with rain, which turned to snow the next day. It was for 24 hours, a Huge blessing. Everyone was so happy! so I ask for dua, that we receive more rain for the crops and to calm the dust, but we give the greatest thanks to Allah for his blessed gift. I shout to the world – Allah is real, this is from knowledge and not simply belief,
my Beloved.

The 3rd story is short. Waking up very early on Christmas Day, the Chaldean Church, Assyrian Church, began prayers in Aramaic, broadcasting over the microphone, and the Imams from several Mosques, even though they had completed salat earlier, joined with the churches in Arabic, a
prayer different from salat. All voices joined together in prayer and zikr recognizing Isa’s, (peace and blessings be upon him), birth and life on this earth. It was amazing show of interfaith at its best.

Most people see Iraq through the media, the violence and sorrow. Truly I believe and know that Allah has blessed this place, if only we the people love him with pure hearts and intentions, there can be peace and prosperity. In the past when I visited Iraq, and finally moved here, I had seen and experienced the most fantastic, amazing and beautiful
gifts of Allah, like a vortex. It starts with each individual, and I know that many miracles are possible, inshAllah.

In closing, again, I wish you all a good Eid and many blessings for 2007 and a lifetime.



Ya Haqq!


12 Responses to New Year’s Letter from Iraq

  1. pbsweeney says:

    I love this update. Three great stories for the New Year. Thanks for sharing the letter.

  2. Eid Mubarak to you brother Irving and sister Sabbie and all brothers and sisters in throughout this divine paint!

    The stories was so beautiful , thank you very much sister Sabbie to write these and brother Irving to share these with us!

    Ya Haqq!

  3. Abdul Muneer says:

    Indeed blessed she is. May Allah help her to help other Iraqis. A nice new year present from you.

  4. Maliha says:

    What a nice warm way to start the year. How awesome! Thank you for sharing and thanks to Sr. Sabbie for bringing us beautiful stories to color our hearts with.

  5. melinda zelah witter says:

    Sabirah’s research focuses on the researching and studying applicable Islamic principles found in the Qur’an and Hadiths for the development of a distinctively Islamic approach to dialogue. This research is intended to investigate the role of Islam in peacebuilding and in communication, and how these are contextualized and understood among Muslims and within an interfaith context. These in turn will facilitate ways in which dialogic skills may be cultivated and employed as a peacebuilding tool within the American Muslim community and in relation to others.

    Ms. Ashki has had extensive experience in the private sector, education, and counseling in addition considerable experience in the study of religion and spirituality. She is deeply involved in Iraqi Kurdistan as an area of interest, and is currently the Mustafa Barzani Peace Fellow at American University Center for Global Peace. She completed her Master’s degree of International Service this past May, with the intent of pursing a degree in Islamic Studies.

  6. Sadiq says:


    the story of the Muslims, Imams joining out Christians brother and sister, praising Isa (as) and celebrating his coming to this world is what touched me most. This the world God wishes to see. People embracing each other, coming together in remembering Him.

    Thanks for sharing this brother Irving. Wish more brilliant success to the book drive and may all the children of Iraq come of the darkness of illiteracy and may they take up books instead of violence.


  7. Sadiq says:

    almost forgot,

    Happy NEW YEAR 2007!

    to you, br Irving and to all visitors.


  8. Irving says:

    Salaam Dear Brothers and Sisters:

    Thank you all for the kind comments :) Indeed, Sabbie is one of a kind, a beautiful soul who really does walk the walk in helping others and making this a more peaceful world.
    May Allah bless her and guide her work to fruition.

    Ya Haqq!

  9. rama says:

    Reading dear Sabbie’s letter – one’s heart is filled with joy and hope for the future. Truly, this is the news that needs to be broadcast to the whole world.



  10. sf says:

    Assalaam Alaikum Brother Irving,

    Indeed some soul-inspiring stories by our angelic sister Sabbie. Her gift of knowledge to this new generation of Iraq and Kurd will come a long way, inshaAllah, to bring about a peaceful and prosperous future . May Allah(SWT) bless and reward Sis Sabbie for all her great intentions and deeds.

    Jazaak Allah Khair for sharing, brother

  11. kevin says:


  12. Edward says:

    word of real hope and beauty coming out of a place we here so little of it.

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