Tag Archives: Allah

Favours of Allah

We sometimes pray for a situation that we don’t realise is worse for us than what we are in, so the Almighty through His Mercy keeps it away from us & we keep thinking our prayers are not answered.

The favours of the Almighty upon us are countless.

Mufti Ismail Menk

Taqwa

Taqwa is one of those unique words in the Arabic language that cannot simply be translated into a word or two in English. As a result, many translators struggle to bring out the real meaning of the word taqwa.

Literally, taqwa means to protect and could be that one protects himself from the Wrath of Allah by protecting himself from indulging in things that Allah forbids. In the Shariah, taqwa as used in the Quran repeatedly, signifies the obedience to the Rules of Islam while avoiding Haraam, and additionally abstaining from unsuitable things in life.

Taqwa in the Qur’an

Taqwa is mentioned in the Qur’an many times over and Allah has ordered each and every Muslim to have taqwa.

A couple of verses that mention taqwa are presented below:

“It is not taqwa that you turn your faces toward East or West, but it is taqwa to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book and the Messengers, to spend of your substance out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer and practice regular charity; to fulfill the contracts you have made; to be firm and patient, in pain and adversity. Those are the truthful and those are the muttaqun.” [Qur’an 2:177]

“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has Taqwa. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” [Qur’an 49:13]

Taqwa in Ahadith

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “The most common thing which leads people to Paradise is taqwa of Allah and good conduct, and the most common thing which leads people to the Hell Fire is the mouth and the private parts.” [Tirmidhi]

Tafseer ibn Kathir mentions that Atiyah As-Sa’di said the Propeht (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “The servant will not acquire the status of those with taqwa until he abandons what is harmless out of fear of falling into that which is harmful.” [Ibn Majah, Tirmizi]

Sayyiduna Ali (R.A) defined Taqwa as being the ‘fear of Jaleel (Allah), acting upon the tanzeel (Quran), being content with qaleel (little), and preparing for the day of raheel (journeying from this world).

Hadrat Umar ibn Khattab (R.A) once asked Hadrat Ibn Ka’ab (R.A) the definition of taqwa. In reply Hadrat Ibn Ka’ab asked, “Have you ever had to traverse a thorny path?” Hadrat Umar replied in the affirmative and Hadrat Ka’ab continued, “How do you do so?”

Hadrat Umar said that he would carefully walk through after first having collected all loose and flowing clothing in his hands so nothing gets caught in the thorns hence injuring him. Hadrat Ka’ab said, “This is the definition of taqwa, to protect oneself from sin through life’s dangerous journey so that one can successfully complete the journey unscathed by sin.”

Hadrat Hasan Basri said, “Taqwa is the basis of Deen. Desire and greed destroy this basis.”

Hadrat Maulana Hafiz Ghulam Habib (r.a.) used to define taqwa as the shunning of everything and anything that causes a deficiency in one’s relationship with Allah.

May Allah give all the Muslimeen the ability to cultivate taqwa in our lives and grant us paradise, Ameen.

Put the Glass Down

A professor began his class by holding up a glass with some water in it. He held it up for all to see and asked the students, ‘How much do you think this glass weighs?’

’50 gms!’…. ‘100 gms!’…… ‘125 gms’ …… the students answered.

‘I really don’t know unless I weigh it,’ said the professor, ‘but, my question is: What would happen if I held it up like this for a few minutes?’

‘Nothing’ the students said.

‘Ok! What would happen if I held it up like this for an hour?’ the professor asked.

‘Your arm would begin to ache’, said one of the students.

‘You’re right, now what would happen if I held it for a day?’

‘Your arm could go numb, you might have severe muscle stress and paralysis and have to go to hospital for sure!’ ventured another student; and all the students laughed.

‘Very good. But during all this, did the weight of the glass change?’ asked the professor.

‘No’

‘Then what caused the arm ache and the muscle stress?’ The students were puzzled.

‘Put the glass down!’ said one of the students.

‘Exactly!’ said the professor. ‘Life’s problems are something like this. Hold it for a few minutes in your head and they seem okay. Think of them for a long time and they begin to ache. Hold it even longer and they begin to paralyze you. You will not be able to do anything’.

‘It’s important to think of the challenges (problems) in your life, but EVEN MORE IMPORTANT is to have trust in Allah (swt) and to ‘put them down’ at the end of every day before you go to sleep. That way, you are not stressed, you wake up every day fresh and strong and can handle any issue, any challenge that comes your way!’

So, as it becomes time for you to leave office today, Remember friend to ‘PUT THE GLASS DOWN TODAY’ and have tranquility by putting trust in Almighty Allah (swt).

Holy Quran: “He it is who sent down tranquility into the hearts of the believers that they might have more faith added to their faith”. (48:4) Tranquility is sign of strong faith while worries and stress is sign of weak faith.

Tell to your mind every day before you go to sleep: “YAA AYYATUHAN NAFSUL MUTMAINNAH, IRJI’II ILAA RABBIKI RADHIYATAN MARDHIYYAH, FADKHULII FII IBAADII WADKHULII JANNATII”. (Al-Fajr 89:27-30)

“O soul that is at rest satisfied. Return to your Lord well-pleased (with Him), well-pleasing (Him). So, enter among My servants, and enter into my Paradise”.

Love Allah

by Fatima Asmal

Rehana looked up from her cup of tea, and shook her head disapprovingly.

“How do I look, Azhar?” Tasneem, her 20-year-old daughter was asking her brother, as she made her way to the breakfast table.

“Fat,” giggled 14-year-old Azhar, returning to his plate of sausages and eggs.

“Fat is exactly what you are going to be, if you keep stuffing your face like that,” Tasneem retorted, admiring herself in the Defy oven.

Clad in her tightest pair of fitted blue jeans, beige clogs, and a transparent white cropped top, which barely covered her chest, let alone her tummy, Rehana thought her daughter looked…

“Disgusting.” She bit back her anger and tried to sound calm.

Tasneem shot her mother a furious look. “Who asked YOU? Why can’t you just leave me alone?”

“Tasneem, you make it seem as if I’m picking on you. But I’m not. At the end of the day my advice is only for your own -”

“Yes, yes, for my own good – save the speech for someone else Mummy. As you might have noticed, it was lost on me yesterday and the day before and the day before, so just put a lid on it now will you?”

Rehana shook her head again, at a loss for words. She looked in her husband’s direction, pleadingly. But he sat at the table, cup of coffee in one hand, newspaper in the other, engrossed in the sports pages. Perhaps he’s pretending, she thought. Like me he’s probably fed up with the endless arguments.

“I’ll be late, have evening lectures, so don’t ring me twenty thousand times, nagging me.”

Her daughter’s angry voice interrupted her thoughts. “Oh, so you aren’t going to eat now?”

Rehana suddenly noticed that Tasneem was slinging her campus bag over her shoulder, and making her way to the door. She motioned at her to sit down.

“No thanks – I’ve lost my appetite.”

“Gooood Fatty’s lost her appetite, she’ll get thinner now, and there’ll be more food for me…” Azhar sang, as he grabbed Tasneem’s plate.

“Shut up you little brat.”

“Tasneem.” Thankfully, this time, Iqbal did intervene. “Don’t be rude to your brother, he’s just joking. And listen to your mother and sit down. Unless of course you want your car to be taken away from you for a while.”

“Okay, okay, I hear you.” Tasneem grudgingly put her bag down, and pulled a chair opposite her mother.

Rehana smiled at her daughter. “I don’t mean to push you into doing anything you don’t want to do Tasneem. I’m not asking you to cover your face or anything like that. In fact, lately I haven’t even asked you to cover your hair. With the way you’ve been dressing lately, I’d be happy if you just wore longer tops and looser trousers.”

Tasneem sighed. “Look Mummy, we only live once. You had your fun – I’m not stupid. The whole family knows you and Daddy met at campus – and don’t tell me you were covering your hair then. So after having your fun, it’s very easy for you to sit back and preach to me.”

Tasneem, you are right, I only started covering my hair after you were born. And yes, I wasn’t a perfect Muslimah at campus – but don’t you see? I regret every minute of it, and that’s why I tried to encourage you to fear Allah from a tender age.”

“Fear of Allah is in the heart Mum. And you can’t judge what’s in my heart.”

Rehana nodded. “But at the same time, we have to project our fear of Allah on the outside too, Tasneem. And there’s a good reason we are instructed to dress modestly. Believe me Tasneem, you do want a boy to marry you for your inner beauty not for your body.”

Tasneem laughed heartily. “Mummmm, relax. I don’t have a boyfriend, and the last thing I’m thinking of right now is marriage. I just want to have fun, okay? Love you…See you later.” And with a frivolous peck on Rehana’s cheek, she was gone. Rehana put her cup of tea down. Once again her daughter had totally missed the point.

Iqbal smiled at her encouragingly. “At least you tried, Ray.” He shook his head sadly. “I gave up ages ago.”

“Oh, I won’t give up. We shouldn’t ever give up.”

“Tazzzzz – wow girlfriend, you look fantastic…” Aaliyah greeted Tasneem at the top of her voice, as they made their way to the campus cafeteria.

Tasneem giggled with delight. “Awww thanks. You look pretty cool yourself,” she said examining her friend’s new hairdo.

“Yeah, you two look great. I stayed up all night, studying for the Ecos test, no time to dress up this morning. I feel quite left out,” moaned Ayesha, rummaging through her bag, frantically searching for her mobile phone, which was bleeping away, signalling the arrival of a host of SMS-es.

“Ooooo Tazzz, look there’s Osama, checking you out again,” Aaliyah shrieked as they seated themselves at a table.

“Aaliyah don’t!” Tasneem rolled her eyes up in disgust.

“Hello? Am I missing something here? What are you two on about?” Ayesha tugged at Tasneem’s top.

Tasneem motioned in the direction of the table alongside theirs’. A heavily-bearded student, clad in a crisp white kurtaa, sat there, his face buried in a book.

“Is his name really Osama?” Ayesha asked.

“No silly…Aaliyah just calls him that, cos he’s always dressed in that garb and doing the Jumu’ah khutbahs.”

“Really?” Ayesha asked, interested. “So what does he talk about?”

“Oooo looks like you have competition Taz. Hands off Ayesh. He wants Taz.”

“Come on guys, I’m serious. What does he talk about?”

Aaliyah cleared her throat and waved her hand up in the air dramatically. “The temporary nature of this life…the frivolity and deception of youth…blah blah blah.”

“Okay, I’m definitely not interested.

Hey Tasneem, is he really into you? Did he like ask you out or something?”

“No way. Look at him, does he look the type?”

“Lower your voices,” Ayesha said. “I’m sure he can hear us.”

“Who cares if he does? Serves him right if he does -giving us Muslims a bad name, dressing like that, and always looking at the ground when he’s walking, as if his head is paralysed or something,” Tasneem replied, deliberately craning her neck and raising her voice.

For a fleeting moment, ‘Osama’ did look up, but he quickly returned to his book.

Aaliyah sniggered. “Well said Taz…Maybe you should be giving the Jumu’ah khutbahs.”

“Hey there’s someone who would look right at home, giving a Jumu’ah khutbah,” laughed Tasneem, revelling in their daily early morning session of juicy gossip. She pointed in the direction of the entrance, where a pretty girl, clad in a long-sleeved dress, and a neatly-tied scarf, was standing.

“Who is that Daadi-ma?” laughed Aaliyah.

“Come on girls, you’re just jealous, she’s actually very pretty,” said Ayesha.

This time ‘Osama’ definitely heard them. He looked up at the entrance and waved, a smile lighting up his serious expression. “Apaa, over here,” he called.

“What a strange name – ‘Apaa’.”

“Tazz. It’s not her name. It’s Urdu for ‘Big sister,'” Ayesha explained.

“Oh.” Tasneem’s voice reflected her disappointment. “His sister? And here I was thinking that maybe he wasn’t such a goody-goody after all.” She looked at her watch, and hurriedly stood up, detangling her bag from the back of the chair. She grabbed Aaliyah’s arm. “Come on., .we’d better make it for the English lecture now, if we want to catch an afternoon movie.”

“Yeah, okay.” Aaliyah followed her out of the cafeteria.

“What did you tell your Mum anyway?” Tasneem grinned.

“What else? The usual – evening lectures.”

Tasneem looked up at the sky, as she reversed out of the parking bay, It was a typically beautiful Durban day – ideal for the beach. Perhaps she should ring Aaliyah and Ayesha and tell them to meet her at Addington instead she thought, as she made her way out of the campus parking lot. “Nah, I don’t have my costume any way…” she said to herself. “Besides we’ve all been dying to watch this movie since it came out.” She turned on the radio, and smiled in delight as she recognised the familiar tune of Britney Spear’s latest hit, ‘Toxic’ She didn’t see him coming. There was a wave of white in front of her and a female screaming in the background as she slammed her foot on the breaks. It was too late.

“God, no,” Tasneem gasped, barely remembering to turn off the radio as she dragged herself out of the car. “Osama!” She was hysterical now, screaming incoherently and crying as she noticed the blood fast forming a puddle under him. “What have I done? No, no, no.” His sister was on the phone, trying to get medical assistance, her hand clutching her brother’s. “It’s my brother Sohail. We are on the main road outside Block B.”

Tasneem had seen someone die before. But looking at Sohail’s face, she realized that the death of that man, writhing and foaming after a drug overdose outside the night-club was very different to what she was witnessing now, Sohail’s face was serene, and he was smiling up at the sky.

“Sohail, I’m so s-orry,” she stammered. The smile didn’t leave his face.

“Love Allah Sister,” he said, in that same gentle tone which marked his khutbahs. And then without their assistance, he recited the Kalimah three times, and closed his eyes.

Tasneem looked up at his sister, afraid. “I’m so sorry,” she said.

“It wasn’t your fault, sister.” The tears finally came. “Sohail was in a rush to get to the mosque for ‘Asr, and he really wasn’t looking where he was going. I tried to pull him back, but-” She was sobbing now.

“It’s the Will of Allah Subhanuhu wa Ta’ala you know sister, but he was my little brother, and we were close.”

Tasneem shuddered as she thought of podgy little Azhar, and what she would do if someone knocked him down. One thing was for sure – the last thing she would be saying was that it was ‘the Will of Allah Subhanuhu wa Ta’ala.’ With a sick feeling in her stomach she recalled her nasty words of that very morning – to her mother, to Azhar…and worst of all – in the cafeteria: “…giving us Muslims a bad name, dressing like that, and always looking at the ground when he’s walking, as if his head is paralysed or something…”

“I’m so sorry Sohail,” she whispered again. Suddenly she felt naked. She made an attempt at pulling her flimsy top down towards her stomach, but failed miserably. Sohail’s sister, still crying, reached into her bag, and handed her a long black cardigan. The sounds of sirens approaching, Tasneem wore it hurriedly, her fingers quivering as she did the buttons.

She felt empty inside – I am giving them a bad name, she thought – Mummy and Daddy and Azhar, and Sohail and his sister…and Islam.. .I am giving them a bad name…

Rehana stroked her daughter’s hair, in an attempt to soothe her. It was well past midnight, but Tasneem lay on her bed, her eyes wide open, still visibly shaken from the events of the day. Iqbal came into the room, with a mug of hot chocolate. He kissed Tasneem on the forehead as he handed the mug to Rehana.

“I think you should sleep with her tonight,” he said. “Is she okay?”

Rehana nodded. “She’s going to be just fine.” As she put her daughter off to sleep, Rehana thought of the many events which had shaped her own character, and she remembered with certainty that not all of them were pleasant and happy events. Yet it was these very events which had brought her to where she was today: to wearing the hijab, to enrolling for the Islamic studies course, to Allah.. .to Allah…

May Allah Bless that little boy, she thought. In a day, in one sentence, he had managed, effortlessly, to succeed where she and Iqbal had not.

That evening, when Tasneem had appeared at the door, clutching the arm of a policewoman, her body wrapped in a cardigan, a scarf tied tightly around her neck, she had uttered the words which made Rehana realize the mistake she and Iqbal had been making, which made her remember how she had hated learning Qur’an as a little girl, because her madrasah teacher would hit her if she didn’t know her sabaq

“Mummy, mummy, I’m so sorry,” Tasneem had been hysterical. Holding on to Rehana, she had sobbed into her shoulder.

“Mummy, I killed a Muslim boy. But it was beautiful. I was scared. But he told me something before he died Mummy, something nobody had ever said to me before.

He said – he said, “Love Allah Sister.”

The Parable of the Pencil

The Pencil Maker took the pencil aside, just before putting him into the box. There are 5 things you need to know, he told the pencil, before I send you out into the world.

Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best pencil you can be.

ONE: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in Someone’s hand.

TWO: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, but you’ll need it to become a better pencil.

THREE: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make.

FOUR: The most important part of you will always be what’s inside.

FIVE: On every surface you are used on, you must leave your mark. No matter what the condition, you must continue to write.

The pencil understood and promised to remember, and went into the box with purpose in its heart.

Now replacing the place of the pencil with you; always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best person you can be.

ONE: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you place your Trust in Allah.

TWO: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, by going through various problems, but you’ll need it to become a stronger person.

THREE: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make.

FOUR: The most important part of you will always be what’s on the inside.

FIVE: On every surface you walk through, you must leave your mark.

No matter what the situation, you must continue to do your duties. By understanding and remembering, let us proceed with our life on this earth having a meaningful purpose in our heart.

Junaid Baghdadi and Love for Allah

Once at the time of Hajj, there was a gathering in Mecca of some friends of Allah; the youngest among whom was Junaid Baghdadi (ra). In that gathering, there was a discussion on the subject of ‘Love for Allah’ and as to who is the lover of Allah. Many of them expressed their views on the subject, but Junaid (ra) kept quiet. He was pressed to say something.

With his head bowed down and tears in his eyes, he said, “The lover of Allah is he who forgets his own self, remains engaged in Allah’s remembrance with due regard to all its requirements; sees Allah with the eyes of his heart, which is burnt by the heat of Allah’s fear; Allah’s remembrance affects him like a cup of wine, he speaks the word of Allah as if All-Mighty Allah speaks through his mouth; if he moves, he does so under the command of Allah; he gets peace of mind only through the obedience of Allah; and when such a stage is reached, his eating, drinking, sleeping, awakening and, in short, all his actions are for the pleasure of Allah; he neither pays heed to the worldly customs, nor does he attach any importance to unfriendly criticism by people.”

Source: islamcan.com

Allah

When things are down
And you are out of your mind
Remember just remember
Allah is The Kind.

When your life is in darkness
And nothing is right
Remember just remember
Through the darkness,
Allah is The Light.

When nothing makes sense
And your heading for demise
Remember just remember
It doesn’t make sense, but Allah is The Wise.

When times are troubled
And no one seems to care
Remember just remember
Allah won’t hurt you, He is The Fair.

When your heart is breaking
And your pain makes you fall
Remember just remember Allah Sees it all.

When you are weak
And the road seems long
Remember just remember
Seek strength from The Strong.

When life is a burden
And everything is unstable
Remember just remember
Allah is The Able.

When the way is cloudy
And there is no one by your side
Remember just remember
Allah is The Only Guide.

When no one wants to listen
Or is willing to lend an ear
Remember just remember
Allah is always ready to hear.

When you are poor and penniless
And you are stuck in a niche
Remember just remember
Allah is The Rich.

When you are down in your misery
And there is nowhere to run
Remember just remember
You can always run to The One.

And when your scars are hurting
And your heart is in fear
Remember just remember
Allah is really here.

Author unknown

Are we this foolish?

There lived in a town a very rich man, who was given every comfort and luxury by Allah. He had a servant who was slightly foolish. One day the rich man called him and presented him with a gift saying: “Keep this in a safe place until you find someone more foolish than yourself. When you do, give it to Him.”

The servant replied: “Very good, Sir!”

After some time, the rich man became very ill. Many doctors treated him but there was no sign of recovery. He finally lost hope and called for his servant and said to Him: “I am leaving now. If I have caused you any grief, please forgive me.”

Servant: “Sir, where are you going?”

Rich Man: “Where everyone has to go.”

Servant: “When wil you return?”

Rich Man: “I am going to a place from where there is no return.”

Servant: “I see…Have you made your preparations for your comfort there, sir?”

Rich Man: “No.”

Servant: “Sir, have you made arangements to safeguard yourself from heat and cold?”

Rich Man: “No.”

Servant: “What have you done about your food and drink, sir?”

RichMan: “Nothing.”

Hearing this, the servant laughed and said: “Sir, this is most surprising. In your temporary home, you have made all sorts of arrangements of joy and comfort; buildings and bungalows, gardens and parks, servants and maids, beautiful cars, shops, factories and all sorts of luxuries, but for your permanent home, you have made no preparations whatsoever.
Now tell me sir! Where will I find someone more foolish than you? Hence I am giving this gift to you.”

The moral of the story is that we should take time out and review frequently whether our actions are solely for the life of this world or for the eternal life in the hereafter.

Getting Closer to Allah

To gain closeness to Allah taala a person should do the following things:

[1] A believer should make it his/her habit to recite a portion of the Holy Qur’an every day. Recital of the Qur’an is also a strong means in cleansing the hearts of the dirt of sins.

[2] Stay away from all sins, especially back-biting, slandering and telling tales, as the Prophet, peace and blessings upon him, taught not only do these things deaden the heart, and thus lead a person to commit more sins, moreover they are the main cause for believers being punished in the Nextlife.

[3] Spend as much time as you can in the Dhikr of Allah taala. Specify an hour in the day and sit down and recite as much as you can, the Kalima; LAA ILAAHA ILALLAH, pondering over its deep meaning. The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings upon him, said it is the best of Dhikrs. Start by reciting it one hundred times and then the easier it gets the more you can increase the number.

[4] One of the most important things you must do, which sadly many people neglect, is that you should avoid bad company. People you should avoid taking as friends are those who speak too freely, who miss Salah, who do not dress modestly, who backbite etc. The company of such people is poison; just even sitting and talking with them will lead one to commit sins. Just as a person who sits for a longtime with a perfume seller begins to smell nice, and a person who sits by a gutter cleaner begins to smell awful, similarly a person who spends time in the company of the wicked eventually gets affected badly by them. Rather, you should seek out pious friends who fear Allah taala and who have the qualities of humility, charity, compassion, modesty and knowledge. If you sit with them you will always benefit and they will be a means for you to get closer to Allah taala.

[5]It was the practice of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings upon him, to ask Allah taala for forgiveness (by saying ASTHAGHFIRULLAH) a hundred times in a day. Our Messenger, peace and blessings upon him, was innocent and free of sin yet he did this, why? The scholars explain the reason he would ask Allah taala for forgiveness so frequently was because the act of turning to Allah taala and humbly seeking his forgiveness in itself is highly beloved to Him and thus is a means to get closer to him. We who sin day and night, are more deserving of making this a part of our daily routine.

Mufti Mohammed Sajjad

Wallahu Aalam bis-sawab

Source: As-Suffa Institute