Imam Aarij Anwer was born in Karachi, Pakistan and moved to Toronto, Canada at the age of 13. He grew up like any other immigrant kid: aspiring to get into the best university and to have a good career. He enrolled in the University of Waterloo's Computer Science program, where he met people who changed his life. These folks introduced him to an academic study of Islam and the Qur'an unlike he'd ever experienced growing up. Naturally gravitating towards it, this began the journey of seeking religious knowledge: attending lectures, learning how to read the Qur'an properly, memorising the meanings and the words of the ayaat became the focus of life.
Upon graduation and a brief stint in tech, he decided to quit the industry and begin formal religious training. He travelled to Alexandria, Egypt to study Arabic in 2009 and memorised the Qur'an. Even though he was in Egypt for 6 months, he managed to secure the most vital part of a student's journey: finding the right teacher and mentor to guide your studies. He began studying under Sh Muhammad Helmi - starting with the basics all the way to advanced topics - and has not ceased doing so till today.
Under Sh Muhammad Helmi's guidance, he enrolled in and completed BA in Fiqh and Usool from Al-Madinah International University (online). Currently, he studies advanced Arabic and fiqh with Sh Muhammad. He also reads hadith to Sh Hamed Ahmed from Al-Azhar.
Imam Aarij currently serves the Rexdale community of Toronto by teaching, lecturing and counselling at two mosques in the area: Masjid Khalid Bin Walid and Masjid IMO. One of the most notable programs that he's conducted in the community is called "Ramadan With Qur'an", which is a cover to cover translation of the Qur'an daily in Ramadan.
He is married with three daughters. In his free time, he loves to read about, watch and play basketball (despite having multiple knee and ankle injuries!). AlKauthar Institute is proud to have Imam Aarij as a guest instructor.