Breaking Bread Intensive Seminar by Sheikh Omar Hedroug
The intensive weekend seminar by Al-Maghrib Institute, Breaking Bread: Fiqh of Food and Drink, took place from January 14th to 15th at the Memphis Islamic Center and was directed by guest speaker Sheikh Omar Hedroug. Sheikh Omar Hedroug is a full time youth director at the Islamic Center of Naperville, located in Illinois. Sheikh Omar went to the Islamic Foundation School and graduated from a pre-med track at Benedictine University. His journey towards seeking greater Islamic knowledge began in his college years, where he was given the opportunity to be a scholarship student at the Islamic University of Madinah. Upon accepting this opportunity, he learned amongst renowned scholars and later received an Associates Degree in the Arabic language as well as a Bachelor’s Degree from the College of Shariah.
The Fiqh of Food and Drink Workshop began at 10 AM each morning and ended at 7PM. The workshop was very well structured and highly interactive. Participants were given breaks every hour and throughout the session, Sheikh Omar opened the floor to questions and frequently engaged with the audience.
The workshop gave participants an in-depth understanding on the fiqh of food— everything related to halal and haram consumption of food and drink, the reasons behind food impermissibility in Islam and the default rulings on permissibility, to substances used for mental health or recreation. Participants left with a greater understanding of the legal side of eating and drinking, allowing them to become a more God-conscious consumer. Other topics discussed by Sheikh Omar included the rules of slaughter in Islam, issues related to medical drugs, and the effect eating and drinking have on spirituality, and the Prophet PBUH’s favorite foods and drinks.
Several Pleasant View sophomores and juniors attended the workshop and benefitted from the intensive seminar. Ibrahim Ali ‘24 , an attendee of the workshop, shared, “Alhamdulillah, I had an incredibly pleasant experience at the weekend workshop organized by Al Maghrib. It provided a lot of information that I did not know and I really enjoyed learning about the wisdom behind food and drink in Islam. Sheikh Omar was a great instructor and ensured that we understood everything by answering all of our questions throughout the entirety of the workshop…I look forward to more similar workshops in the future.’’