The Chinese Master Calligrapher Haji Noor Deen was in town last month and in sha Allah will be returning later this month for the Islamic Arts Expo hosted by the National Islamic Arts & Culture Foundation. Mohamed Zakariya, the designer of the Eid stamp and Izzy Mo are also expected to attend.
Haji Noor has a noor or light that comes across in his manners and in his artwork. He began with a presentation on Islam in China and then demonstrated his artistic talents. Haji Noor only speaks Mandarin Chinese and Arabic so Imam Magid of the ADAMS Center began translating for him and then a sister that also spoke Mandarin took over for him.
Some of his works were on sale and he offered to create beautiful off-the-cuff works for those who asked. Most people asked him to write their names or the names of their loved ones and children. Some asked for more personal messages or hadeeth.
The first image reads Ya Rabb (O Lord) and resembles a worshipper raising his or her hands in supplication with the three dots representing the tears of the supplicant.
The second image is a hadeeth that should be familar to those that have taken AlMaghrib’s Fiqh of Love seminar or that have listened to the CD-set. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said when asked about his first wife Khadijah (may Allah be pleased with her)
قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم في خديجة – رضي الله عنها- : “إني رزقت حبها.”
“Inni riziqtu hubaha”, verily, I was filled with love for her or indeed, I was blessed with love for her.
Haji Noor also narrated a number of amusing stories like the time he went to a masjid and wanted to pray but the Arabic word “La” meaning no was written on the glass windows of the musallah so he asked a man why the windows said, no, no, no and was told that the person who wrote it did not know what the word meant but just thought it was beautiful.