A few years ago Marcus Ampe wanted to create two lifestyle magazines, one especially for Christians and an other one for the general public, providing a source of information for Christians and non-Christians alike, presenting poetry, positive news, informing and educating its readers on health, way of living, environmental and economical issues. In Belgium like in many other Western countries there are lots of royalty, fashion and lifestyle magazines putting the focus on wealth and materialism.
Nearly every magazine in the grocery store checkout line blares some indecent headline. Songs piped into public venues often glorify death, anger or sex. A multibillion-dollar pornography industry targets each of us on our computers and mobile phones every day. We could go on and on. With this much energy put into bombarding our lives with junk, evil has made it almost inevitable that we fall … over and over again.
People who would rather read inspiring stories, newscoverage and reviews from Christian world perspectives, helpful, biblical advice for shopping, parenting, cooking, and just about anything related to living your life as a Christian have not so much literature.
According to Mr. M. Ampe every Christian is responsible for their own decision to objectify another human or treat them with respect but also to be a good example for the community of believers. The way we dress and behave is very important and should receive much more attention than it gets in the media.
The world we live in has no time for God and prefers to enjoy all material luxury, not minding a culture filled with more junk and perversion than ever before. In Belgium , like in so many other countries we got full press review of priests having girl and boyfriends but also putting their hands on children, and ministry leaders falling to some sort of vice. When we look at humankind’s depravity today it looks like we are back in Roman times of games and pleasure, and gliding down the mountain to Gomorrah. If we’re not careful, it’ll make us cynical, or worse yet, this culture can desensitize us to sin’s snares, making us susceptible to its grips.
Christians should be academically excellent, manage time well, and work with all their hearts.They also should be willing to share the Good News and help others where they can. There may lots of interesting things on the market and many good things said somewhere. But it is impossible to follow it all and read everything which is published; By making selections and by introducing what you like to others, you can give them some idea so that they may make a choice for them, choosing the appropriate text for the time they are in and with.
Though after some months speaking to people and trying them to get interested in the idea of presenting a sort of Reader’s Digest for people who want to tackle their life seriously.
There where Mr. Ampe did not succeed the Muslim community in Belgium get their first own lifestyle magazine Aya.
In the United Kingdom they also had already Emel at the forefront of Muslim media for the past seven years, with a vision to promote a positive and confident message about the Muslim communities in the UK and beyond. ‘Emel’ – whose name sounds like the letters “M” AND “L”, standing for “Muslim Life” and resembles the Arabic word for “hope”, has been running since September 2003. The magazine has had an outstanding reception, by Muslims and non-Muslims alike, and has had extensive media interest worldwide.
At emel we seek to articulate the Islamic message in a clear, modern way by focusing on principles. We highlight the attributes of Divine Perfection, and make concrete those attributes in examples of daily life. We are innovative and professional in the presentation of the Divine Message for today’s society. By doing so we hope to give confidence to the Muslim community, whilst simultaneously showcasing the Muslim contribution to mainstream society, and promoting the common good.
In the Muslim world the faithful are not staying quiet like many Christians do. Islamic men and women are willing to come out for their believes and to share them with others, but also and more important willing to help others to open the eyes and to find a better way of living.
In fact, Muslim lifestyle magazines are just one of the many channels opening up in response to the consumption and spending power of the Futurists. For brands, they are one way to speak to this segment, but more importantly they indicate that this is a segment that is growing globally, and one which is yearning for brands to reach out to them.
The UK Emel magazine has been going from strength to strength and perhaps inspired others to pick up the pen as well. In Turkey, women’s glossy Ala magazine was recently launched. The only Western state which can claim to have many Christian lifestyle magazines, the USA, is also home to Muslim lifestyle magazines like Illume Magazine and the male-orientated publication Muslim Quarterly (with a lot of disturbing advertisements). According to South East Asia’s Aquila Magazine, such Muslim lifestyle mags target “well-heeled and cosmopolitan Muslim community”. And Malaysia’s offerings include Majalah Dian and Majalah Era Muslimah.
From the first of September “Aya” can be found by the newsagent. It is the first lifestyle magazine in Flanders created by Kawtar Nayar.
Titled AYA Lifestyle, the quarterly will address the same issues as other women’s magazines but will focus more on philosophical subjects, in accordance with their beliefs and interests.
“We, as Muslims, we needed our own magazine. A newspaper that reflects our traditions, norms and values (…). A family magazine with articles (…) full of information and inspiration about fashion, beauty, art, travel, cooking, career, family, life and much more”
says the press release from the magazine.
The magazine does not want to avoid particular Muslim issues. The magazine is not shy or wanting to hide philosophical questions about Islam and question which women are sometimes to shy to talk about. They want to reach out to, inform, broaden awareness and say they are open to other opinions.
This new review primarily focuses on Muslim women but also wants to explore “the contemporary Muslim world” to other women.
It would be nice to get the Flemish people to have a look in the internal kitchen and to take away wrong ideas about Muslim faith and Muslim way of living in the Low Countries.
Next to “From Guestwriters,” the lifestyle magazine Stepping Toes aims also, in time, to give people an insight of what the Torah, Bible and Koran really preach and how people made up their own teachings by twisting the words of those holy books. We do not know if Aya shall take up the courage to give a voice to the contemporary Muslim, showing how certain fundamentalist groups misuse the Words, Tittle and Name of Allah to bring terror over innocent people.
In case Aya and the other Muslim lifestyle magazines are willing to show the dangers of fundamentalism and wrong teachings, not according to what is really written in the Koran, there may be hope that the division which groups as Isis, Boko Haram and Al Quada are creating and hatred they sow can be made less bad.
The Flemish Muslim girls showed the Flemish Christian world they dare to come out and be part of the modern world, opening their mouth but not being afraid to bring their religion as the ‘gauge’ of what they want to share with others.
We are still looking for Christian writers who want to share their vision with us and our readers, showing others where we want to stand for and want to share our world with all creatures, all sorts of people of all sorts of religions and cultures, plus with plants and animals which we consider elements we have to take care for.
Preceding you may find our call to join us as an author and to prove that Christians also can work together and present a lifestyle magazine with a background in line with the Divine Creator His Wishes and Commandments: Do you have a writer or presenter in you?
Please do find additional reading:
- A glimpse into the growth of Muslim lifestyle magazines
- AYA Lifestyle, un nouveau magazine féminin pour les musulmanes flamandes
- Aya eerste magazine voor moslima’s
- Moslima’s krijgen eigen magazine
- Islamique magazine
- Observing the commandments and becoming doers of the Word
- Latest Islamic State Magazine Touts Foley Killing, Taunts Obama (algemeiner.com)
Al-Hayat Media, an important part of the Islamic State’s propaganda machine, released the third issue of its English-language jihadist publication Dabiq Friday. It released its first two editions of the magazine written in the style of Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula’s Inspire magazine earlier in August.A recent article in the New Republic compared the first two editions of Dabiq with Inspire, saying the new magazine provided a more “comprehensive attempt to recruit westerners” than its Al-Qaida predecessor.
- Moderate Islam Is Multiculturalism Misspelled (warsclerotic.wordpress.com)
You can’t find a moderate Islam in Saudi Arabia or Iran, but you can find it in countless network news specials, articles and books about the two homelands of their respective brands of Islam.You won’t find the fabled land of moderate Muslims in the east. You won’t even find it in the west. Like all myths it exists in the imagination of those who tell the stories. You won’t find a moderate Islam in the Koran, but you will find it in countless Western books about Islam.Moderate Islam isn’t what most Muslims believe. It’s what most liberals believe that Muslims believe.
- French Muslim minister wants respect after slurs (thehindu.com)
France’s new Education Minister called for more respect on Wednesday after becoming the target of Muslim slurs, while a top Socialist politician said a magazine should be convicted of inciting racial hatred for referring to her religion and ethnic background as a “provocation”.
The Morocco-born Ms. Vallaud-Belkacem, who doesn’t publicly speak about her religion, is seen as an easy target to attack the unpopular Socialist government led by President Francois Hollande.
She is a young, Muslim woman in a political landscape made up mostly of white, Catholic men. She’s an outspoken defender of gender and racial equality, and supported a divisive law legalising gay marriage last year. She also intervened in a national debate on the negative impact of halal meat, saying society should stop pointing the finger at Muslims.
- Muslims & Orthodox Judaism (lukeford.net)
The Muslim community in the United States has never been forthcoming as it should be in condemning Hamas, Hizballah, and their sympathizers. It is therefore very difficult to have real relationships with mainstream Muslim organizations. It is very rare to have a Muslim speak in an Orthodox synagogue. More often it is ex-Muslims who have become Christians, including one former terrorist, who travel around and speak at Modern Orthodox synagogues.
- The Myth of the Tiny Radical Muslim Minority (breitbart.com)
For years, American leaders have lectured Muslims on the nature of Islam, in the fruitless hope that pooh-poohing Islamic extremism as a fringe element will somehow convince Muslims all over the world that America is more of a friend to them than Islamic radicals are. This week, Barack Obama said, “ISIL speaks for no religion” — which comes a shock to those who live in the world of reality, given that ISIL certainly speaks for a certain segment of a religion. Eric Holder has said that radical Islam is not consistent with the teachings of Islam. For years, George W. Bush assured Americans that Islamic extremists represented but a tiny minority of Muslims. Hillary Clinton wrote in her new memoir Hard Choices that “Not all Islamists are alike…it is in America’s interest to encourage all religiously based political parties and leaders to embrace inclusive democracy and reject violence.”
here is the evidence that the enemy we face is not a “tiny minority” of Muslims, let alone a rootless philosophy unconnected to Islam entirely. It’s not just the thousands of westerners now attempting to join ISIS. It’s millions of Muslims who support their general goals, even if they don’t support the group itself.
tens of millions of Muslims all over the world sympathize with the goals or tactics of terrorist groups – or both. That support is stronger outside the West, but it is present even in the West. Islamist extremism is not a passing or fading phenomenon – it is shockingly consistent over time. And the West’s attempts to brush off the ideology of fanaticism has been an overwhelming failure.
- Moderate Islam is Our New Religion (sultanknish.blogspot.com)
There is no moderate Islam in the mosques or in Mecca. You won’t find it in the Koran or the Hadiths. If you want to find moderate Islam, browse the newspaper editorials after a terrorist attack or take a course on Islamic religion taught by a Unitarian Sociologist wearing fake native jewelry.
+The real Islam is a topic that non-Muslims of no faith who hold sacred only the platitudes of a post-everything society are eager to lecture on without knowing anything about it.Their Islam is not the religion of Mohammed, the Koran, the Hadiths, the Caliphs or its practitioners in such places as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq or Indonesia. Their Islam is a religion that does not exist, but that they fervently believe must exist because without it their way of life is as doomed as the dodo.
- On Biblical inerrancy and the priorities of fundamentalists (lotharlorraine.wordpress.com)
It is a widespread opinion in the Western world that the degree of kindness and humanity displayed by a Christian is inversely proportional to the intensity with which he or she takes the Bible seriously.
Conservative Evangelicals and fundamentalists can only uphold their belief in Biblical inerrancy by utterly distorting the genuine historical meaning of countless passages: in order to maintain the illusion of “the unity of Scripture“, they constantly have to resort to extraordinarily ad-hoc and implausible hypotheses for fitting conflicting passages to each others.
Given that, it’s still kind of a puzzle to me that Conservative Christians in America devote such an extravagantly disproportionate amount of their God-given time to the confrontation with the “sin” of queer people while trying to uphold crying inequalities between the healthcare of poor and rich children.If I were allowed to get a bit cynical at my lost hours, I’d surmise it’s a lot easier to harass a minority one is not a part of than to tackle with other sins which have a real grip on one’s own heart.
- We Are Living In Sodom And Gomorrah (shoebat.com)
We have tyrannical judges shutting down the votes of the American people who voted against homosexual marriage. This is all because of tolerance, and it is leading to the advancement of the sodomite agenda.
- Defend yourselves! (renewamerica.com)
A lively online exchange with Jim, a like-minded conservative, got me thinking of the various forces that have presently aligned to threaten the foundation of a healthy and prosperous civil society. This foundation is the American family, and God’s word provides the necessary framework to a people that must endure numerous trials, hardships, and adversities over the course of a lifetime (and throughout many generations). The obstacles come in various forms, as there are many who seek to lead the multitudes away from the tried and true paths of our forefathers. Brother Jim offers some excellent insights on the various challenges faced by today’s American family.
- Hate on the March (takimag.com)
Brussels is 40 percent Muslim, and there are 5.5 million Muslims in France alone, with no-go areas in Paris and other major cities. Britain has close to 4 million Allah followers, with thousands of imams teaching hate of the infidel to young and old alike while pusillanimous politicians and human rights lobbies ensure any dissenting Christian voices are stillborn. Would-be jihadists are free to come and go while European border controls subject middle-aged Europeans to stringent body searches, especially if Grandma is in a wheelchair.