Sheikh Ibrahim was born to the late Sheikh Abdelrahman Dremali, whom he spent most of his time with during his younger years. With his father’s guidance and supervision he complete memorizing the Quran with Tafsir and reason of revelation when he was ten years old. During these years, he would also accompany his father during his classes, where he would read the books of Fiqh for him when he taught his students. He is grateful to his father for instilling in him the love for Fiqh, and continues the tradition of his father’s methodology of teaching today.
Sheikh Ibrahim graduated from Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt. He holds graduate degrees in Sharia with a concentration in Comparative Fiqh, and in Geology.
Sheikh Ibrahim is a professor at the American Open University teaching courses in Fiqh, Family Law, Islamic Finance and Criminal Law. He regularly teaches books of Fiqh (Jurisprudence), Aqeedah (Creed), Tafsir (Explanation of the Qur’an), and Hadith (Traditions of Prophet Mohammed). He is a member of the Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America (AMJA) and an advisor for the American Muslim Association of North America (AMANA). He has over twenty years experience in the United States as an Imam, and as a Director for Islamic schools from Pre-K to High School. He is a frequent speaker for Islamic centers, universities, dawah conferences, radio shows, and interfaith programs across the U.S. and overseas. With his background in the earth sciences, he also has a passion for teaching about the scientific miracles in the Quran.
In an effort to share his experience and passion for Islam, science, and education, Sheikh Ibrahim founded Dremali Foundation. Dremali Foundation is an organization that seeks to revive the value of knowledge. Knowledge precedes action therefore it is a leader and guide for one’s speech and action. Dremali Foundation will use various outlets to plant and disperse the many seeds of knowledge, with an overall goal of knowledge of our Creator Allah SWT. For knowing Allah breeds loving Allah SWT; and loving Allah leads to obeying Allah SWT.
Know Allah = Love Allah = Obey Allah
Diagnosis and Treatment
In 2006 Sheikh Ibrahim was diagnosed with Hepatits C, which is a virus that affects the liver. Hepatitis C is a chronic disease which can persist for many years without showing any symptoms, however at the same time it can be actively attacking the function of the liver. The Sheikh had a liver biopsy done in order to determine the level of his liver damage if any. Results showed that the virus had been steadily attacking his liver to the point where it was almost scarred. This necessitated therapy in order to keep the virus from further damaging the liver, and in June 2007 the Sheikh began an intense liver treatment plan consisting of weekly injections to control the virus. Although the treatment is needed for the virus, it also compromises his thalassemia, a type of anemia he has, and in order to counter those effects it is crucial that he undergo chemotherapy along with the liver treatment. Both treatments if taken alone are intensive with a myriad of side effects, and taken side by side these treatments caused him tremendous pain in his bones, joints, muscles, overall weakness, weight loss, nausea, vision problems, and many other side effects. The treatment started off being effective as the virus was steadily decreasing, and he was to complete the course of the treatment for one year. After 6 months, by the permission of Allah SWT the treatment was shown to have failed as the virus started to increase again.
The Sheikh was advised by medical specialists that he undergo a second attempt at therapy, this time an aggressive treatment plan consisting of stronger doses of daily injections of liver treatment, along with chemotherapy for a year and a half. Sheikh Ibrahim began this aggressive treatment in February 2009, and for a whole year the therapy steadily lowered the virus until it was almost zero percent. This treatment was successful in keeping the virus at close to zero percent for six continuous months. He was regaining his strength and health again and began resuming his regular classes and lectures. The Sheikh completed the treatment in July 2010 and upon taking the end of treatment testing, by the will of Allah SWT it was found that the virus had once again increased, resulting in yet another failed treatment.
Following the second failed attempt at therapy, the Sheikh had another liver biopsy done in order to determine whether he would need to undergo yet another treatment plan. There is a chance that although the virus is active again, the previous treatment would have at least inhibited the virus attacking his liver. By the permission of Allah SWT the results showed that he now has liver fibrosis (scarring of the liver) and cirrhosis (advanced scarring), which indicates that even with the aggressive treatment, the virus was still able to attack his liver to dangerous levels.
The Sheikh has since visited many doctors to seek out his options. While some doctors strongly recommend immediately starting another treatment for yet another year, other doctors are not as hopeful that it will succeed after two failures. Instead they are recommending newer alternative treatments which are currently being tested but are not yet approved in the United States. The newer treatments are believed to be effective and not as painful, however waiting for them to be approved runs the risk of the virus actually damaging the liver completely, resulting in liver failure. Specialists have advised the Sheikh in the meantime to get a liver transplant, which he has already begun the process of getting on the transplant list.
Recently it was found that the Sheikh's iron levels were extremely high in his liver and blood, which is actually causing his liver further damage and for him continuous pain and health complications. Meanwhile his blood level is steadily decreasing, as it has been for the past few years during his treatment, and which necessitated frequent blood transfusions. Medical doctors have recently diagnosed that the Sheikh has transfusion-induced iron overload, which is an excessive level of iron in the body due to blood transfusions. Iron overload is very critical and specific measures must be taken in order to reduce the iron to normal ranges. The problem he is facing now is that his blood levels are continuously dropping to very low levels, however he is not able to receive anymore blood transfusions due to the iron overload in his body. As a result he is suffering from the dangers and symptoms of low blood levels, to the point where he is so weak and fragile he is unable to walk on his own. The nausea and overall pain he endures on a daily basis confines him to his bed or back and forth to the hospital, where they help to stabilize his iron level, increase his blood levels, replenish his nutrients, and relieve his overall pain. It is crucial that the iron overload is completely resolved in order for him to proceed with the liver transplant. The liver transplant is a lengthy process and once it is done then he will have to seek his options for alternative treatment plans to control the Hepatitis C virus.
The Sheikh has a long fight ahead of him, and throughout it all insists on giving lectures and reminders to the brothers and sisters, insists on continuously working for the benefit of our Ummah. Although it is very difficult coping with all his health complications day to day, he is convinced that this is a big test from Allah SWT that he has no choice but to pass.
Several students of the Sheikh have put together videos and have started this facebook campaign, in an effort to help support him in his time of need. He has not been able to work for more than a year, and has continuous dire medical needs along with family and general needs. The Sheikh has supported so many for so long. Let's come together and support him in his time of need. Please, please, remember Sheikh Ibrahim Dremali in your du'aa.