Muslim Chaplain, Maged Senbel

About Islam

In essence, Islam (derived from an Arabic word inferring peace and submission) is the message of all messengers believed by their followers to be sent by God to guide humans. Islam teaches that true peace of mind and surety of heart is attained through submission to a single omnipotent omnipresent creator.

The most noble, in Islam, are the most pious. Piety emanates from patience, doing good and promoting it; and avoiding evil, and opposing it.

The Quran (which Muslims believe to be verbatim revelations of the word of God to prophet Muhammad) clearly states that this message of monotheism was the message of all messengers, including Noah, Abraham, Moses and Jesus, as well as many other prophets.

“O you who have believed, be persistently standing firm in justice, witnesses for God, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives, whether one is rich or poor. God can best protect both. So follow not [personal] inclinations, lest you not be just. And if you distort [your testimony] or refuse [to give it], then indeed God is ever, with what you do, Acquainted.” Noble Quran 4:135

Beliefs in more detail 

Central to the message of Islam is the belief in One God (Allah in Arabic), the Creator and Sustainer of the universe. An expression of this belief is the basic testimony of faith that “there is no deity that is worthy of worship except God and that Muhammad was God’s servant and messenger”.

 “The best of people are those who bring most benefit to humanity.” -Prophet Muhammad (PUH)

The pillars of Islam shape the life of a Muslim (one who believes in Islam). They begin with a testimony of faith and include: The five daily prayers, charity, fasting and the pilgrimage to Makkah (once in a lifetime for those who can afford it).

Daily prayers are a direct link between the worshiper and God. Even though congregational prayers are encouraged to foster a sense of community, there is no ordained clergy or priesthood in Islam.

A fixed percentage of one’s savings has to be given to those in need. However, additional charity is highly encouraged.

Fasting during the month of Ramadan (9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar) is required of all adult healthy Muslims. Fasting teaches self-control and heightens one’s awareness of one’s Creator. Optional fasting is encouraged throughout the year.

Chaplain profile

Maged Senbel

The academy, with its justified pursuit of research and evidence based knowledge, is a challenging home for religious faith. Faith can be elucidated with rational thought but cannot be rationally proven or disproven. It comes from the heart and resides within it. Its presence can sustain peace of mind, attentiveness to the human experience, humility, and love. Many in the academy privately have faith in a creator or a higher power while simultaneously and tenaciously answering questions of science, social science, and the arts. They believe themselves to be enriched as a result of their faith, and to have added measures of wonder, awe and purpose. They work productively and collaboratively with friends and colleagues from all walks of life with myriad traditions and non-traditions of practice and non-practice. I am one of them.

Maged's background

Trained as an architect and urban planner, I am a professional planner, researcher and teacher in the School of Community and Regional Planning at UBC. I have no education or training in Islamic arts, sciences, theology, philosophy, or law. My role here is to be a liaison between the UBC chaplaincy and the Muslim Students Association.

Scheduled services and events

Please visit MSA UBC for information regarding the location and times of the five daily prayers and the Friday congregation (Jummah) on campus.