Tag - Muslim

Having an Open Mind

Getting married is a huge, life changing, event. We can spend years searching for the perfect person to be our other half. And for some of us, we’ve spent even longer dreaming about who this person will be. We’ve imagined every single detail about him/her and we plan on settling for nothing less than the ideal version of a spouse that we have conjured up. Considering how much this person will impact our lives, why should we?

Allah (swt) controls the matters of the heart and it truly is beautiful to see it in progress. The whole reason we got into Muslim Matchmaking was to do our part in helping the Ummah pair up! Hearing the success stories of those who found their other halves through HOD is beyond rewarding. You would be surprised to hear how many of these stories begin with; “I would have never thought of considering this person due to age/race/relocation issues but I can not be happier that I did”. By keeping an open mind and taking a chance on someone who did not seem to be the ideal match at first they were able to see deeper into who the person really is; ultimately finding their ideal spouse.

This is not to say that preferences do not matter when looking for a spouse. However, getting to know someone offers you insight into them that simple statistics on paper can not provide. So for example, on paper you might dismiss someone because they do not fall into the ideal age bracket for you. Instead, had you given them a chance and gotten to know them you might find that they are compatible with you and the fact that they are slightly older/younger than what you had in mind does not bother you as much as you thought it would. The same thing can be said for any number of characteristics that are used to determine who a valid match may be.

The truth is, when it comes to matters of the heart there is no way to predetermine where it will lead us. A lot of times chemistry and compatibility can be found with the most unlikely of suitors. And while, no one should ever marry someone they are not attracted to or do not feel is right for them they should likewise never turn a person down simply because they do not seem to line up with the image they have set. Instead, one should give them a chance. Get to know them. And who knows you may be surprised to find out that you have more in common than you could have imagined.

Half Our Deen Offline Events Coming to a City Near You!

 

Here at Half Our Deen it is our goal to change the face of Muslim matchmaking both on and offline. We take a look at how things are normally done then come up with a way that makes it more efficient, private, and successful, with help of Allah (swt). Alhamdulilah, our past 4 offline events have been a great success and we are getting ready to launch a few more in the coming months. But before we get to that what is a Half Our Deen offline event?

A typical Muslim matchmaking get together is set up in the same was as speed dating. You speak to a person for 5 minutes, ask as many questions as you can, and then debate whether to give them your contact information or not. By the end of the night you might have a list of names and numbers of people you really don’t know much about. Not only that, the only way you can find out more about them is to get in touch with each and every one of them.

Half Our Deen offline turns these awkward matchmaking events into one that brings results, and here is how:

1- We keep our events private. Only people who have registered and paid are told the location of the event. You will have no drop ins or uninvited guests.

2- Everyone who registers is required to fill out a survey about themselves. This survey helps us place you with potential matches that are compatible.

3- One of the first activities we do at the event is a personality test. Everyone will get a sticker that shows what type they are to go on their name tag. This way you can learn about them without having to even say a word. There will also be more activities throughout the night to get to know each other better.

4- Everyone at the event is required to have a Half Our Deen offline profile. That way no personal information needs to be exchanged. If you find someone interesting simply jot down their profile and check it out when you get home. If you decide you don’t like them after all simply click the “I’d rather fast” button and you won’t have to hear from them again. However, if you are still interested you can take the next steps, answer their questions, ask them to answer yours, and see where it goes!

By the grace of Allah (swt), these factors have helped us bring together 1 marriage and 36 matches in our last 4 events. Add to that the over 320 matches made online in the past two years and it is no wonder why Half Our Deen is one of the top Muslim matchmaking sites.

InshaAllah over the coming months we plan on holding offline events in 5 cities:

  • Santa Clara, California – September 29 2012. Sign up here 
  • Southern California – November 2012 (Exact City/Date TBD). Sign up here 
  • Toronto, Canada – December 2012 (TBD). Sign up here 
  • New York City – February 2013. Sign up here 
  • London, England – TBD. Sign up here 

Spots will be limited so make sure to grab yours before they are gone. If you want to learn more about our offline events and what makes them unique be sure to check out this video:

Half Our Deen’s 2nd Anniversary!

Half our Deen turned 2 last week and we couldn’t be more excited! In fact, here is what Baba Ali himself has to say about this amazing milestone:

 

Since Half Our Deen launched in July 2010, no other Muslim Matchmaking site has been able to match the two features that we are known for; our Privacy and Price. With over 2200 active member using the site and over 320 success stories, Half Our Deen is one of the most successful Muslim Matchmaking sites on the net. It’s hard to believe so many success stories have come in just two years. Alhamdulilillah”

Two years ago we set out to create a Muslim Matrimonial website that was unlike anything else out there. We put our trust in Allah (swt), and made duaa it would be a successful means of bringing Muslims into healthy and happy marriages. While, we hoped for a great outcome we were happily surprised by how great of a response we had.

By the grace of Allah (swt), in this past year alone our number of matches have more than doubled to over 300, with new matches being made daily. The average time for a match to be found has also gone down to between 3-6 months. And with the number of active users at over 2200 and growing each day that time frame is bound to go down!

This past year has also been a productive one for us at Half Our Deen. Alhamdulillah, we were able to revamp and improve the website. We hoped to make it more visually appealing and functional for our users. So far the feedback we have received has been extremely positive. However, we are always looking for ways to make your matrimonial experience more convenient so if you have a suggestion on how we can improve make sure to let us know!

A new year of development is ahead of us and we couldn’t be more excited for what we have planned for this year. We couldn’t be happier that Ramadan is kicking off our new year. Ramadan is the perfect time for us to go back and re-evaluate our intentions and turn to Allah (swt) in duaa asking for his assistance in our our endeavours.

Ramadan is also an excellent time for all you out there searching for your other half! It’s a blessed time of renewal where duaas are accepted. It’s the time for you to turn to Allah in the middle of the night and ask for every specific thing you could dream of in a spouse and inshaAllah it will be granted to you when the time is right.

It is also the perfect time to break bad habits and build good ones With the hustle and bustle of normal life it is easy to continuously put off these goals of improvement. Ramadan, helps put what is important into perspective and gives you that extra push you need to start on your journey of betterment.

May Allah swt make this Ramdan a blessed and fulfilling one for all of us. Aameen!

Enhancing your Half Our Deen profile

What makes Half Our Deen special is that it does not utilize the typical, cookie cutter, approach that other Muslim matrimonial websites do. Instead of a typical profile that only lists superficial information the aim at Half Our Deen is to provide real insight into the individual and not just how tall they are. Becasue of that it is important that you take your time to fill out your profile, honestly and thoughtfully, just as you’d hope everyone else would.

Here are a few things to consider when doing so:

Picture
Choosing to post up a picture is a big deal for some people. It takes away the anonymity. At the same time, as humans we are visual beings so having a picture up would mean increased traffic to your profile. If you do choose to post up your photo post a photo of yourself as you would look on a typical day. Ovoid using pictures that seem staged, over dressed, or overdone.

About Me/Who I’m Looking For

These two sections are extremely important as they are you chance to express (in your words) who you are and who you are looking for. It is important that you know the answer to these questions before you write up your response. Be honest, explain yourself well, but try to keep the post brief and to the point. Think about what you would like to know about others through their profiles and include that information on yours. This is the chance you have to show off your amazing personality so make sure that it shows in what you write instead of coming off as a typical/generic response.

Questions That Matter

Posting up questions that matter to you give the other person even more insight into who you are. It also allows you to screen out potential matches based on their responses to your questions. Take some time to think about the questions you want to ask. If you’re not sure what to ask you can browse the 100 already written questions on Half Our Deen and add any of them to your profile. Keep in mind though, if you add too many questions it may deter others from answering them.

 

Compatibility Tests

Answering the survey questions not only helps others get to know you but may also teach you something about yourself. There are no right or wrong answers when it comes to these tests. They are simply a way for you to describe who you are and help match you with others who share the same thoughts and values.

It is our hope, InshaAllah, that by utilizing all of the profile features on Half Our Deen not only will you find a match in a timely manner but that you will both prosper together for years to come!

Another Match Made on Half Our Deen! 314 and counting….

“Stories like this inspire me to continue making Half Our Deen better”, Baba Ali, Half Our Deen. 

Author: Nawal Shahril

Source: http://www.nawal.my/2012/04/how-i-met-your-father.html

How I met your father

To my future children. By the time you are able to read this post, I am probably in my late 30’s and still look gorgeous as ever.

This post is about a man who rocked Ummi’s world. A man whom I respect and hold on to. An amazing man who came to my life by surprise. Responsible and love his children more than his life. He loves us unconditionally. He is most proud of us although he doesn’t show it. He is our provider and our cheerleader. He is…

…your daddy.

I have met so many wonderful people. Travelled all around the world. Worked in a different country. Enjoyed every moment. I was living life. Amidst all these, I knew that there is still a missing piece in my life that I wasn’t sure what was it. I turned to Allah and did my Umrah, Alhamdulillah. It was in front of the majestic Ka’aba that I prayed and wished that Allah would lead a wonderful man to me to complete that emptiness and fulfill my deen.

How can I find myself a husband?
I turned to the world wide web for answers. Muslim matrimonial websites were my indicators. I remembered to have registered for 3 different sites. I must say I met very interesting brothers Masyaallah. Some didn’t work out. Some…almost. Some…just pain in the butt. Different individuals have different needs and expectations. Too much of expectations in fact.
But..no matter how devastated one situation after another can be, I didn’t give up. I know I have to find someone and have faith for Allah will help me.
One day when I surfed YouTube, I stumbled upon a video by Baba Ali and his matrimonial website called Half Our Deen. Knowing Baba Ali and his cool ways of giving da’wah, I thought why not give it a go. What I’ve noticed was I can’t view any of the brothers’s pictures unless I pay for the registration. Unlike other websites I’ve been to, some are free and some allowed you to view pictures prior signing up. I took out my debit card and I remembered saying ‘I’m doing this because of Allah’ and BAAM! I was registered.

Again… the process continues. In and out and after few attempts, I decided to shut down my account and just give husband hunting a rest. After a month, I checked HalfOurDeen again and I was surprised that my account was put on sleep rather than being deleted for good. Since my account was paid for 1 year service, I mustered all my strength and give it one more go.

Probably 5 minutes after, I received a message from a man that I wasn’t interested in replying at all. He messaged me before this when I had my account active. I was like ‘ Maan!, this man is damn persistent ‘ and decided to give him a chance. His name is Valentino Chavez (Vito) and the rest is history.
We talked for 7 months and I flew to the USA to meet this man of my dream. I had no idea what to expect. Whether he might be a serial killer or sex psychopath but I was sure I did the right thing. He told me, even though I would be ugly in person..he would still marry me. pffttt! (see how annoying daddy is???) I have prayed Istikharah and alhamdulillah I was sure about this man. With my parents and family’s blessing I was married by Imaam Karim Abu Zaid at Masjid Abu Bakr, Denver Colorado on March 7th, 2012.

Wow. I’m a wife??? Until now, I still couldn’t believe that I am finally… married! wooohoo!!

Married life is a new dimension. The other phase in life that you’d be tested vigorously by Allah s.w.t. Whether good or bad, just enjoy and endure it. No matter how hard the day could be..in the end you know your soulmate is waiting, arms open for you.

I am grateful that I married a super hunk awesome muslim man. A man who accepted me thoroughly. A man who introduces me to a whole new world and a new family.

I couldn’t have asked for more…except for an iMac and a craft studio 😛

Children, now you know how I met your father. In life, you have to believe in your decision and go get ’em. Be persistent and be ready to overcome any obstacles. Don’t you ever ever give up because the moment you feel that there’s no hope, all door closes and you might not get what you wanted. Have faith in Allah and Insyallah..Allah will show you the path.

and to my husband..I love you Sweetheart. May we be the best of Muslims and be a great role model for our children.

..and to Allah.. Thank you so much! You’re the best!

Ads, Ads and more Ads

 

Have you ever felt like Muslim matchmaking sites not only charge too much for membership, but are also trying to sell you things while you search? “Cheap international calls!” “Social Muslim networking!” You’ll notice these banner ads, text ads, and if they hold your email address, you may be on a spam emailing list so even more ads are delivered to you personally. Isn’t it all a bit too much when you are trying to focus on finding a spouse?

In 2011, Half Our Deen had over 7 million page views, but yet, there was not one ad. That’s right, absolutely no banner ads, text ads, or any sort of ad whatsoever. Our monthly members paid only $9 a month and our annual members paid the lowest price for any Muslim Marriage site on the internet, at just $5 a month.

Even by charging a fraction of the competition, Half Our Deen pays monthly for four fast servers, so the site runs fast and smoothly, and even pays its entire staff because their effort is valued. So if you’re paying more than $9/month for Muslim Matchmaking, then you are most likely being overcharged.

Some companies have a goal of profit. Our goal at Half Our Deen is to bring single Muslim brothers and sisters together for the sole purpose of marriage. Alhamdulillah, 243 people from across the world have found their spouse through www.halfourdeen.com. Come and join us, and inshaAllah you too will find the one.

You won’t see an ad. We promise.

Half Our Deen Success Rate Update

Alhamdulillahir rabbil alameen, all praise is due to Allah.

In 2011, 243 Half Our Deen members told us they found their other half through the website mashaAllah! The actual number may be higher, as not everyone contacts us to tell us they found the one.

Baba Ali recalls,

“I remember one time I was standing in line at a Middle Eastern Festival and this guy walked up to me and said “Assalammu Alaikum Baba Ali, you don’t know me but I just wanted to tell you that my wife and I met on your site. Please don’t tell anyone”. His wife walked over and he signaled to her that “I told him” and then they walked away. At first, I found the whole 007 secret agent atmosphere strange, but then when I thought about it, I kind of understood. He wanted to get married but just like most of us out there, he didn’t want his picture all over the internet notifying the world that he is looking to get married and that’s why he chose Half Our Deen. Alhamdulillah.”

That is one of the best parts of choosing Half Our Deen- it is a completely private website, only accessible to paid members. So even if you find your husband or wife, you don’t have to tell us or anyone else how you did.

In February 2011, we had 24 people that found their other half. One year later, those numbers have flown up to over 200 people.

How did this happen? In many ways. With the blessing of Allah, first and foremost. Having members who are genuinely looking for marriage, mixed together with a private, and well developed space for them to contact one another, helps bring about successful outcomes. Time, money and effort has been spent creating a website that focuses on important marriage issues, and not just the eye color/hair color/height of people. Because we all know that these things do not create a long term and successful marriage.

So if you, or anyone you know, is looking for marriage, encourage them to join www.halfourdeen.com and who knows? Perhaps you could be the 244th couple to get married, inshaAllah.

Allah knows best!

Completing Your Profile Page on Half Our Deen

 

 

If you find yourself not receiving quite as many responses as you’d hoped to your profile on Half Our Deen or any other matchmaking website, the problem may be that your profile is not detailed enough. When people are seriously looking for marriage, they want to know as much as they can about you and the type of person you are looking for. Connections happen when people are open and honest, and although it may be difficult to put such important issues into words, it is necessary that you try. Here are a few points that you may want to consider:

1) Have you uploaded a photo(s) of yourself? This is the first thing a potential spouse sees, so be sure to include one.

2) Have you written a detailed description of yourself in the “About Me’ section? One or two lines is not enough for someone to decide if you’re suitable for them. Try writing a full paragraph or two. You may want to consider including:

* What part of the world you grew up in

* The particular sect/madhab you follow

* What kind of Muslim you see yourself as

* What the most important part of being Muslim is to you

* The kind of activities/hobbies you enjoy and why you enjoy them

* Why you want to get married

* Whether or not you are willing to relocate for a spouse

* If you have any children, what their ages are

* If you speak any other languages, what they are

3) Have you completed the “Who I’m looking for” section? This again needs to be detailed and well-thought out. You may want to consider including:

* Whether you are looking for a spouse who follows a particular sect/madhab

* The qualities are you looking for in a spouse- kindness is obviously a trait everyone is looking for, but do you want someone shy or outspoken?

* The activities you would like to do with your spouse such as skiing, mountain trekking, etc.

* If you hope your spouse will be willing to live with your parents

* Brothers- if you are looking for a wife in hijab, please state this.

4) On Half Our Deen there is a section titled “Questions that matter to Her/Him” where you get the chance to show any potential marriage partner what issues are important to you. For example, you could ask:

* When you are angry, how do you communicate?

* How often do you wake up for fajr?

* What is the most difficult part of Islam for you, and why?

* What is your biggest fear about marriage?

* Do you have friends from the opposite sex?

5) Have you completed all 4 compatibility tests?
Completing all tests will ensure you get matched with more people and also increase your compatibility with other members.

Take a good look at your profile page and consider whether or not it is lacking some vital information. If so, be sure to make it more detailed and interesting to anyone that may come across it. Most importantly, be patient and make dua for the right person to contact you.

May Allah be with you on your exciting journey!

Understand before being Understood!

 

Communication is one of the most important constituents in our life. Everyday we use some form of communication.  We know how to read, write and speak. In fact we do it very well. What about listening? Listening in a way that you understand the other person from his or her own viewpoint and feelings, not from yours. Before offering advice to anyone, like your spouse, and expecting them to accept it, you must really make the effort to first understand what they are trying to say. Not just the words that are coming out their mouth but the feelings attached to them as well. You have to listen with an open mind and no prejudice.  We usually listen so we can reply, we are either always speaking or preparing to speak and just can’t wait to tell them our take on their situation. We do all this before even understanding them.

Here are four things we typically do when others speak to us. We ignore them, not really listening. We pretend to listen and nod our head “Yeah. Uh-huh. Right Right.” We listen selectively and hear only bits and pieces. We listen attentively and really pay attention to the words. But not many of us listen with empathy. Listening closely to really understand the emotions and feelings behind these words. Your spouse won’t be talking to you if they didn’t feel the need to. You hold that special place in their lives; keep that respect by just listening.

Statistics say only about 10% of our communication is through words, 30% is by sound and 60% is body language. Listening with empathy means to not only use your ears, but your eyes and your heart. We are so quick to add how we feel and tell our side of the story; “OMG! Yeah I know EXACTLY how you feel. Same here, I also…” It’s not about you. They are talking to you to be expressive, to connect, to inform you because they feel you are worth their time. If it were about you, then you would be the one speaking and hoping your spouse would listen.

The greatest need for a human is to be understood, affirmed and appreciated. If we take this away then everything else is just superficial. Quite often we try to figure the other person out, we interpret and assume based on our own experiences, motives and behavior. Everyone is unique regardless of how many similar qualities you may share as a couple. Humans are so scripted that sometimes we already know the answer before the question has been heard.

The most honest and well-rounded person to walk this earth was the Prophet (SWAS). He(SWAS) wasn’t just our Messenger, but also a counselor, a wise judge, a devoted father and a righteous husband. Not only did he fulfill all his responsibilities but also excelled at each one. He treated everyone in his Ummah in a way that was compatible with that person’s character and personality. As much as he preached the message, he also listened to his companions and gave importance to their viewpoints and feelings. This only increased the respect given to him by his companions and others alike.

You choose your spouse as much as they choose you. Try for once to just listen to them and control the urge to interrupt with your personal experiences. Concur what they are saying by using words of affirmation and empathy. If you have listened well, they themselves will ask you for your advice or point of view. Just be patient, you will have your chance. A person is more receptive to advice if they are given the chance to be heard completely and understood wholeheartedly.

Understand before being understood. It’s only fair!

Looking for a spouse? Remember to pray Istikhara

 

 

As Muslims, we have been blessed with an endless list of duas. There is a dua for traveling, a dua for when it rains, even a dua for when you enter the bathroom. However, one of my personal favorites is the istikhara dua.

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) encouraged us to pray Salatul Istikhara when we are concerned about something, in order to ask for Allah’s guidance to help us see if the situation is good or bad for us. We pray two rakats, and read the istikhara dua, where we name the particular issue and ask Allah that if the situation is good for us in this life, and more importantly, the afterlife, to bring us closer to it. And should the situation be bad for us, we ask Allah to take it away from us and out of hearts, and to bless us with whatever is good for us.

And yet, so many Muslims fail to use this prayer when it comes to finding a spouse. People rely on looks, wealth, kindness, or their family’s opinion, and forget that the best of all guiders is Allah. Even if a Muslim matchmaking website says you’re 99.8% right for each other, Allah knows what we do not.

From the beginning of your search, put your feelings aside, and ask Allah for His guidance. Ask Allah whether this person is right for you and seek His help alone. It may take time, but you’ll know whether or not this a good match through His direction. Encourage brothers and sisters that you know that are looking for a spouse to carry out this prayer. You can perform istikhara up to seven times, and if a woman is unable to pray the two rakats, they can simply read the dua.

Whenever we make make dua, we should remember to ask Allah to make the things that are good for us in our religion easy and accessible for us, and that He makes whatever is bad for us in our religion very difficult, so that it is almost impossible to proceed with the bad, but the good becomes easier in the process.

We must always be sincere and genuine when making dua, and not ask with the hopes that the answer is yes, this is the one for you. Because if the person in question is not the one, no matter how we feel, Allah has a better plan, and will guide you to someone that is right for you.

Allah knows best.