Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips is the Founder and Dean of the Islamic Online University operating also in USA and Canada.
According to his official bio:
Dr Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips is a Jamaican Canadian Islamic Scholar who converted to Islam in the early seventies after journeying politically and intellectually from Christianity to Communism. Shortly after his reversion to Islam, he embarked on a spiritual academic journey to the other side of the world seeking Islamic knowledge. This journey took him to Saudi Arabia where he completed a BA in Islamic studies in Madeenah, and an MA in Islamic Theology in Riyadh, then to the University of Wales, UK, where he completed a PhD in Islamic Theology in the early nineties.
After graduation from Madeenah, Dr Bilal became a teacher of Islamic studies for 10 years in an Islamic High School, Manaret Riyadh, and a lecturer of Arabic and Islamic studies in the American University in Dubai, UAE, for another 10 years. During his 10 years in the UAE, he founded and taught at the Islamic Information Center in Dubai, and during his subsequent 7 years in Qatar he has been an Islamic consultant and lecturer for the Islamic Information wing of Sh. Eed Charity.
Dr Bilal Philips has written, translated and commented on over 50 published books on various Islamic topics. He has also edited and published the 56 book Eemaan Reading Series for children and presented Islamic programs for a number of years on Riyadh Channel 2TV, Sharjah TV for ten years, as well as Peace TV, Huda TV, Islam Channel, UK, and the Deen Show, Chicago, USA.
In 2002 Dr Philips founded and headed the Islamic studies department of Preston University, Ajman, UAE, and in 2007 he founded and headed the Islamic Studies Academy, Doha, Qatar, while simultaneously launching the Islamic Online University (www.islamiconlineuniversity.com) which is currently offering free Islamic courses to over 100,000 registered students from over 207 different countries world wide, and for which he was included in the Jordanian publication, The 500 Most Influential Muslims (latest edition).
Dr Bilal subsequently founded and headed, in 2008, the English medium Islamic studies department of Knowledge International University, who’s Chancellor is Shaikh Dr. ‘Abdur-Rahman ibn ‘Abdil-Azeez Al Sudais and who’s President of the board of trustees is Shaikh ‘Abdul-Azeez ibn ‘Abdullah Al Shaikh, Mufti of Saudi Arabia. More recently, in 2009, Dr Bilal Philips founded and headed the College of Da’wah and Islamic Culture (English Section), Omdurman Islamic University, Sudan, and established and directed Preston International College (www.prestonchennai.ac.in) in Chennai, India.
In March 2010, Dr Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips launched, for the first time in history, an accredited tuition-free BA in Islamic Studies degree course at the Islamic Online University.
In multiple occasions throughout the first six months of 2012 Bilal Philips delivered sermons and lectures at Salaheddin Islamic Centre in Scarborough, Ontario.
Here are excerpts from Bilal Philips’ lecture entitled “Enlightenment on Surah Al-Fatiha” (August 5, 2007):
And He said the most important thing you can ask for, is what? الهداية guidance. اهدِنَــــا الصِّرَاطَ المُستَقِيمَ [Guide us to the straight path].This is the most important thing. It is the one thing that will carry us to paradise. Everything we ask for is useless. We die, we can’t take it with us. The only thing that we can take with us is guidance. If we are following the الصراط المستقيم [straight path] then we are following the essence of what this life is about. So this is the most important thing that we should ask [Allah for]. And Allah goes on to explain to us what is the الصراط المستقيم [straight path]. [Quoting from verse 7 of Surah-Chapter Al-Fatiha-The Opening of the Quran] صِرَاطَ الَّذِينَ أَنعَمتَ عَلَيهِمْ the path of those on whom is Your blessing, and Allah in the Quran describes this path as being the path of the prophets, the messengers, the righteous, the truthful and He goes on to say and it is not the path of those who on whom is His wrath غَيرِ المَغضُوبِ عَلَيهِمْ nor those who have gone astray وَلاَ الضَّالِّينَ. Now the Prophet Mohammad, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him, told us that المَغضُوبِ عَلَيهِمْ [those who on whom is Allah’s wrath] are the Jews and the الضَّالِّينَ [those who have gone astray] are the Christians. So follow the path of the the righteous, the truthful, the path of the prophets and not the path of the Jews and the Christians. Why? Why did he specify it, not the path of the Jews and the Christians? What is there about the Jews that we have to be aware of? The Jews have knowledge. They have the Torah. they still have the Torah. They may have changes in it, some, but the essence is there. They have the Book [Torah], but they don’t follow it. They don’t follow it. Allah said: أَتَأْمُرُونَ النَّاسَ بِالْبِرِّ وَتَنْسَوْنَ أَنْفُسَكُمْ [Quran, Surah-Chapter 2, verse 44] You call people to righteousness and forget yourselves? they have the knowledge, they talk about it, they don’t do it. They hide the knowledge وَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنْ كَتَمَ شَهَادَةً عِنْدَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ [Quran, Surah-Chapter 2, verse 140] There is no worse on this earth than he who hides a witness which he has received from Allah, the knowledge that has to be be given not only in words but in actions and has to be lived, because if you tell someone to do something and you do something else, then you are telling that person that you really don’t to do that, because if it so good and so important why aren’t you doing it? If you have knowledge and you don’t apply it then you are cursed. You are cursed. Allah’s wrath is on you. You become among the المَغضُوبِ عَلَيهِمْ [those who on whom is Allah’s wrath]. It is very serious. Can any of us say that we can stand having Allah’s curse on us? Of course not. We seek refuge from the wrath of Allah. That means that whatever knowledge we have, we have to apply it.