This month, we invite you to listen to an episode from the Identity Politics podcast as hosts Ikhlas Saleem and Makkah Ali interview Imam Muhammad Mendes. Imam Mendes touches on several interesting points. In particular, he discusses how the Muslim community defines the terms imam and shaykh (23-minute mark), which are commonly used interchangeably among Muslims. Imam Mendes explains the etymology of the imam and shaykh and how the words are used today,
“These terms are often misunderstood and the community that’s using them whether it’s the scholarly community or your muslim community in general or if its the media. They all have different connotations. What a shaykh is in each of those communities means different things.”
At the 33:33 mark, Imam Mendes discusses why he chose to study Islam in West Africa and how the Black experience can be a unique Islamic experience. As you listen to the podcast, reflect on the terms imam and shaykh and what Blackness and the divine experience means to you.
Click on the link to hear the full interview, http://identitypoliticspod.com/episodes/ep-23-ask-a-shaykh-ft-muhammad-mendes/