Jumaah #9

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaah wa Barakaatuh,

The tale of the Cave

This story is taken from Sahih Al-Bukhari, 4/3465:

Narrated Ibn Umar radiallahu anhu: Allah’s Messenger sallallahu alayhi salaam said,

“Once three persons (from the pervious nations) were travelling , and suddenly it started raining and they took shelter in a cave. The entrance of the cave got closed (suddenly by the falling of a huge rock) while they were inside. They said to each other, ‘O You! Nothing can save you except the truth, so each of you should ask Allah’s Help by referring to such a deed as he thinks he did sincerely (i.e., just for gaining Allah’s Pleasure).’

So one of them said, ‘O Allah! You know that I had a labourer who worked for me for one Faraq (i.e. three Sa’) of rice, but he departed, leaving it (i.e. his wages). I sowed that Faraq of rice and with its yield I bought cows (for him). Later on when he came to me asking for his wages, I said (to him): Go to those cows and drive them away. He said to me: But you have to pay me only a Faraq of rice. I said to him: Go to those cows and take them, for they are the product of that Faraq (of rice). So he drove them. O Allah! If You consider that I did that for fear of You, then please remove the rock.’

The rock shifted a bit from the mouth of the cave.

The second one said, ‘O Allah! You know that I had old parents whom I used to provide with the milk of my sheep every night. One night I was delayed and when I came, they had slept, while my wife and children were crying with hunger. I used not to let them (i.e. family) drink, unless my parents had drunk first. So I disliked to wake them up and also disliked that they should sleep without drinking it, I kept on waiting (for them to wake) till it dawned. O Allah! If You consider that I did that for fear of You, then please remove the rock.’

So the rock shifted and they could se the sky through it.

The third one said, ‘O Allah! You know that I had a cousin (i.e. paterna uncle’s daughter) who was most beloved to me and I sought to seduce her, but she refused, unless I paid her one hundred Dinars (i.e. gold pieces). So I collected the amount and brought it to her, and she allowed me to sleep with her. But when I sat between her legs, she said: Be Afraid of Allah, and do not deflower me but legally. I got up and left the hundred Dinars (for her). O Allah! If You consider that I did that for fear of You then please remove the rock.’

So Allah released them (removed the rock) and they came out (of the cave).”

This Hadeeth indicates that one can only ask Allah for help directly or through his performed good deeds. But to ask Allah through dead or prophets, saints, spirits, holy men, angels is absolutely forbidden in Islam and it is a kind of Polytheism.

Advertisements

In times of adversity..

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaah wa Barakaatuh,

Suicide. Articulating the words itself sends shivers down my spine. I cannot fathom how someone can be driven to take their own life but then again, I am not in their shoes, how could I possibly know?

Last weekend, I received a devastating news about a death of this young lady whom I vaguely know but have spoken to her a couple of times before. We used to have regular Islamic lectures in Uni and she wouldn’t miss them. Always seated in the front row, she would ask the Imaam endless questions about Islam. I would describe her as soft spoken and quiet but warms up when she knows you better.

She attended community iftaar (an event held for non-Muslims to experience fasting and breaking fast together with the Muslim community) for those years I have been living here. Last year she shared her experience as a non-Muslim fasting for the first time. When someone asked her if she would be embracing Islam soon, she simply replied that she was still studying about other religions; still searching for the truth.

When I learnt about her suicide, I was dumbstruck. It was unclear as to why she decided to take her own life but some sisters had said that in search for the truth, it made her depress as she couldn’t decide what to believe in.  It never occurred to me that she could possibly be in that state of mind. One of the few things that kept recurring in my head was the lecture Br. Yeshua Evans gave about how Bible led him to Islam’. At the end of it, he mentioned that as Muslims we have the responsbility to teach others about Islam and ultimately call them to this haqq. I wondered how different the outcome would have been if either one of us sisters had reached out to her. Allaah guides whom He wills but have we fulfilled this responsbility of teaching others about Islam? Or even simply clearing their misconceptions about Islam? I know I haven’t ..

I guess another image that kept replaying in my head when I heard the news was that on Yawm al-Qiyamah, those who commit suicide will keep reenacting their death on that day. Nauzubillah min zalik.. May we be protected from dying in su’ul khatimah. I wish I could make dua for her but… we can’t.. :(

Suicide has indeed becoming quite prevalent in our society. People taking their lives like it has no value when Allah has given it to us for a purpose in this Dunya. I fear hitting rockbottom one day and not being able to pull myself up again. The feeling of lowliness can induce someone to be suicidal. A friend whom I was close to, attempted suicide as she found it difficult to live anymore. It was all so surreal that fateful night when it happened- she started to convulse just as we arrived so we had to rush her to the ER. The whole scenario remains fresh in my memory even after years later..

A reminder for myself and all of you that when faced with difficulties..

1) Being constant in dhikrullah

Those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism), and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allah, Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest. [13:28]

2) Remind yourself that our Prophets (may Allah be pleased with them) suffered great trials themselves. There are ample examples in Qur’an of the hardships they were faced with.

“Or think you that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They were afflicted with severe poverty, ailments and were shaken.” [2:214]

3) Pray. Whenever Prophet sallallahu alayhi salam was faced with any difficulties, he would rush to pray and seek solace in it.

“O you who believe! Seek help in patience and the prayer…” [2:153] 

4) Every hardship that we face, Allah promised us that there will be ease.

“Verily, with hardship there is relief” [94:6]

5) Have patience.

And the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said to ‘Abdullah bin ‘Abbas (radiyallahu ‘anhu): “..Be mindful of Allah, you will find Him before you. Get to know Allah in prosperity and He will know you in adversity… And know that victory comes with patience, relief with affliction, and ease with hardship.” [Tirmidhi]

6) It is qadaa’ & qadar . Remember the hadeeth, ‘The pens have lifted and the inks have dried…’

“No calamity befalls on earth or in yourselves but is inscribed in the Book of Decrees – before We bring it into existence.” [57:22]

7) Last but not least, I use this reminder when any evil befalls me is that, Allah knows what’s best for me no matter situation I’m in..

But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not. [2:216]

Allahu Alam. May Allah give us the best in this Dunya and Akhirah. May He keep us steadfast in this Deen and increase our eemaan in difficult times. May we be of those who are firm in our eemaan even when evil befalls us. Ameen

Upcoming lectures

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaah wa Barakaatuh 🙂

Masha Allah in the next coming weeks, 4 overseas speakers will be coming down under 🙂 There were other Sheikhs like Sh. Navaid Aziz and Sh. Tawfique Chaudry but they remained in Melbourne for the MercyMission Convention. Abu Taubah’s visa was not granted so he couldn’t come.. what a pity!

1st May: Sh. Hussain Yee (studied under Sh. Albaani) & Sh. Aslam (studied under Sh. Ibn Uthaimeen)

7th May: Brother Omar Regan (Chris Tucker’s double) tittled “Hollywood to Brotherhood” [bringing my parents to this comedy show.. I think they will enjoy it insha Allah :)]

17th May: Imam Abu Hafsa Jerome Clare (The Blind Revert Imam)

We’ve been quite  fortunate to have speakers from various parts of the world coming down to this state especially since it’s often described to be a ‘retirement village’, ranking 3rd in the list of “Most boring cities in Australia” lol (really, there’s nothing much to do here!). Qari Saad Nomani (he can imitate 83+ different Qaris) had been here twice – bi yearly visit – and then last November Napolean Mutah Beale visited. We came an hour before the talk began but were not allowed to enter since people had been queuing way before that! Not going to take my chances this time round!

Healthy Heart

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaah wa Barakaatuh,

The “healthy heart” is one of the criteria for success in the next life. Allaah said:

26:88

26:89

“On a day that neither wealth nor children will benefit, except one who comes to Allaah with a healthy heart.” (Soorah ash-Shu’araa, 26:88-9)

The Prophet (sallallahu alayhi salam) also prayed for a healthy heart during his regular prayers.

Shaddaad ibn Aws reported that Allaah’s Messenger (sallallahu alayhi salam) used to say in his salaah:

Allaahummaa innee as’alauka ath-thabaata fil amri wal-’azeemata ’alar-rushi wa as’aluka shukra ni’matika wa husna ’ibaadatika wa as’aluka qalban saleeman wa lisaanan saadiqan wa as’aluka min khayri maa ta’lamu wa a’oothu bika min sharri maa ta’lamu wa astaghfiruka limaa ta’lam

[O Allaah! I ask You for the firmness in my affairs and drive for righteouness. And I ask You for gratitude for Your blessings and goodness in worshipping You. And I ask You for a healthy heart and a truthful tongue. And I ask You from the bset of what You know and I seek refuge in You from the evil of what You know and I ask Your forgiveness for what You know].

(Da’eef Sunan an-Nasaa’ee, p.45, no.80, Sunan at-Tirmithee, Kitaab: da’awaat- weak)

Signs of a Pure and Healthy Heart

Ibn al-Qayyim meantioned the following points in this regard:

  • One considers himself as belonging to the next world and not this world. He is stranger in this world anxious to reach his abode in the Hereafter.
  • One continues to be upset with himself any time he commits a sin until he finally and completely repents to Allaah.
  • One is more upset and unhappy if he misses his daily recitation of the Qur’aan and thikr, than if had lost his wealth.
  • One finds greater pleasure in worshipping Allaah than any pleasure in eating and drinking.
  • One’s worries and concerns about this world leave him whenever he begins his formal prayers
  • One’s only concern and worries are concerning Allaah and doing deeds only for His sake.
  • One is more concerned about the correctness of his deeds than with the performance of the deeds themselves.

(Ighaathah al-Lahfaan, vol. 1, pp. 70-3 quoted in Commentary on the Forty Hadith of al-Nawawi, vol. 1, pp. 471-2)

[**Transcribed from A commentary on Ibn Taymiyyah’s Essay on the Heart by Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips]

Jumaah #8

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaah wa Barakaatuh,

I was intrigued by Suraah Al-A’raf which means ‘The Heights’ after listening to this recitation by Qari Tawfeeq As Sayegh. One of the ayaah struck a chord in me:

7:50

And the dwellers of the Fire will call to the dwellers of Paradise: “Pour on us some water or anything that Allah has provided you with.” They will say: “Both (water and provision) Allah has forbidden to the disbelievers.”

[Transcribed from “Description of Paradise in the Glorious Qur’an” by Abdul-Halim ibn Muhammad Nassar As-Salafi]

In this verse, Allah informs us about the helplessness of the dwellers of Hell after they will have entered it and experienced its severe torments such as hunger and thirst – which are part of their recompense for their disobeying Allah and disregarding His commands while they were in this world (1).

‘Abdullah bin ‘Abbaas – may Allah be pleased with him and his father – said: “After the people of Heights will have entered Paradise, the dwellers of Hell will desire respite after a despair and they would say, ‘Lord, we have relatives from among the dwellers of Paradise, so permit us to see them and speak to them.’ They will then be allowed to look at their relations in Paradise and see the delight they are in and they will recognize them; but the people of Paradise will not recognize them due to their blackened faces. The dwellers of Hell will then call the dwellers of Paradise by their names and inform them about their blood ties.

One of the dwellers of Hell will call his brother or father from among the dwellers of Paradise and say, ‘brother, – or father – I am burning. Pour on me some water or anything that Allah has provided you with!’ But the dwellers of Paradise will answer them saying, ‘Allah has forbidden them to the disbelievers!’ (2)

Footnotes:

(1) See: Tafseer At-Tabarani 12/473; and Tafseer Al-Qur’an Al-A’zeem 3/419

(2) See: Ma’alim At-Tanzeel 2/475; Zad Al-Maseer 3/208; Al-Bahr Al-Muheet 4/305; Tafseer Ath-Thawri p113; and Tafseer At-Tabari 12/474

My sisters <3

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barakaatuh,

I received a parcel from a beloved sister back home consisting of a few items, amongst which is a wedding invitation card! 🙂 She informed us of her wedding couple of months ago and I thought I could push my schedule around but as a result of mid sems still underway, it’s unlikely that I would be able to attend. You know how guilty that makes me feel? Indescribable really 😦

Now here’s the catch: Her husband-to be is a Fijian so she will be migrating to Fiji the week after her wedding. It kills me knowing that I can’t attend her wedding firstly and then not able to bade or even a hug goodbye! Ugh 😦

There’s a saying.. when you are at the end, you start thinking about the beginning. I’ve been reminiscing a lot lately about the past. From how we met to how our friendship grew till now. All those wonderful memories and moments spent together will always remain etched dearly in my heart. This sister is one of those who would string pieces of me back together when I’m all torn up. She is the kind who waits with you at the bus stand and makes sure you are safely on it before walking alone in the dark. And she’s one whom you can spend hours on end talking about anything and realize that hours have gone by.

It all began at turntoislam forum. I was there mainly for the ilm but at the same time, wanted that feeling of closeness to sisters. Despite having sisters here in Australia, I just felt that they wouldn’t understand if I said I wanted to change my life around. It had to be one of the loneliest periods in my life but I was constantly making dua that He grant me righteous friends who would guide me through this Deen. Al-hamdulillah, it was through the forum itself that I forged bonds with this sister.

Along with another sister from the same forum, the three of us got together at a masjid in Sgp and were inseparable since 🙂 Almost each day, we would meet for dinners despite the two of them being exhausted from work and me having to travel sometimes up to an hour to see them. We were trying to learn the Deen together so everyday was like halaqah session where we shared our limited knowledge about Islam from articles and books we read. Being away from them did not deter our friendship to blossom even further – we still had our daily ‘halaqah’ but through the internet and messages.  And you know what they say, distance makes the heart fonder. I think being apart actually brought our friendship to whole new level.

Prophet Muhammed said:

A good and a bad companion are like the bearer of musk and the one who pumps out filth respectively. As for the bearer of musk, he will either give you a share, you will smell perfumed air, or you will purchase something from him as for one who pumps out filth, he will either burn your clothes or you will smell something filthy from him (Bukhari and Muslim)

The three of us were so inseparable that we felt our lives would be incomplete without each other. At one point of time we wanted to find a brother who would agree on marrying three of us at the same time lol. Or if that is not possible, we said that if either of us got married first, she would take in the other two as co-wives lol.. well doubt that’s going to happen!

Over time, we began attending classes at masjids and met more sisters. Our circle of friends expanded tremendously al-hamdulillah but unfortunately we grew slightly apart ever since. We would still have sisters gathering but now with a larger group, unfortunately the three of us don’t spend as much time together anymore. Nevertheless, we would still regularly update each other about our lives.

Now that she is leaving, I do wonder if our friendship would remain the same as it was before. When I finally decided that I wanted to return home for good this year, she had to break this news to me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very excited for her but just a little bummed out that she’s leaving. But I trust He has better plans in store for us 🙂

Well, I still have the other sister, don’t I? 🙂 I love Sis A and hope she doesn’t leave me behind too :S  So what do you think the chances of finding a brother who wants two wives now! (Lol hey, I’m totally kidding ok!)

Narrated Abu Hurairah, The Prophet  said, “Allah will give shade, to seven, on the Day when there will be no shade but His. These seven persons are: 
1) a just ruler,
2) a youth who has been brought up in the worship of Allah (i.e. worships Allah sincerely from childhood),
3) a man whose heart is attached to the mosques (i.e. to pray the compulsory prayers in the mosque in congregation),
4) two persons who love each other only for Allah’s sake and they meet and part in Allah’s cause only, 
5) a man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says: I am afraid of Allah,
6) a man who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given (i.e. nobody knows how much he has given in charity),
7) and a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and his eyes are then flooded with tears.”  

Videos on the niqaab ban.

Assalam alaikoum wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barakaatuh,

The first two videos are interviews of two sisters on the niqaab issue in France by different television channels – BBC and Ten (an Australian channel). I presume that most of us would have seen the debate between Srs. Hebah Ahmed and Mona Elthaway on CNN. For some annoying reason, Facebook deleted the video from my wall and I couldn’t find it on another sister’s wall too. [on a sidenote, please be more aware of what you write/share on Facebook. It is starting to creep me out after a recent incident]

Please watch the last video especially [there’s music]…Honestly, I don’t know what to make of it.

I know this is a satire to ‘ridicule the hatred of some and gain some inspiration of it’ as stated by them but do you think it can possibly be misconstrued as making a mockery out of the niqaab? What are your thoughts on this? Please share because I’m very curious 🙂