Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Muslim in This World

The Muslim in this world is free and was born free. The Muslim should live free and die free. The Muslim in this world should never accept humiliation, oppression, and defeat. The Muslim never bows down to the Taaghut and oppressor even in the worst situation. How can oppression, humiliation, and such lowly states be connected to the Muslim when Allah swt created him free and honored him/her with the greatest of blessings, Islam?! How can the Muslim walk with his head lowered knowing his tawheed is the only thing lighting up this world? How can the Muslimah with her hijaab of honor and dignity walk with her head lowered in embarrassment knowing she is the daughter and descendant of the likes of Maryam Bint Imraan, Aasiyah the wife of firawn, the Mothers of the believers, and such great women who all practiced this hijaab? The women who are truly dishonored and humiliated are the disbelieving women who have no dot of Emaan in Allah in their hearts. What will their ending be? 

The word "humiliation" and "oppression" should not be tied to the Muslim when he is the best of people in this Dunya,having been honored with this mighty religion.  O Muslim, whether you are pious or corrupt remember you have a greater status in the eyes of Allah  than the greatest disbeliever! Why? Because of "la ilaha illa Allah!" Yes, because of your Tawheed. If you are pious and more God fearing than you are also more beloved to Allah than your fellow Muslim who is not practicing the Deen as he/she should be. This is what our prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) said; 

The strong beliver is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer, and there is good in both." [Sahih al Bukhari and Muslim]

The Muslim is honored by being a follower of the best of creation to walk this Earth, Muhammad ibn Abdillaah (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam). He is the  best of prophets and seal of prophethood, the most beloved of Allah and the leader of mankind on the Day of Judgment. The Muslim should be honored to be a part of the best of nations brought forth for mankind, the ummah of our Rasul (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam)  like the Most High said;

You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah . If only the People of the Scripture had believed, it would have been better for them. Among them are believers, but most of them are defiantly disobedient. [Surah Aal Imraan ayah 110]

We are the last ummah but the first on the Day of Resurrection as our Prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) has informed us, "We are the last (but) we would be the first on the Day of Resurrection, and we would be the first to enter Paradise…" [Sahih Muslim from the hadeeth of Abu Hurayra]

O Muslim, are you not proud to be a descendant of the best of people after the prophets? The sahabah and their followers? What is it then that makes you walk with your head lowered in humiliation? Is it because you have realized that we have failed to follow in their path and are living in the worst of humiliation now? Yes you are right. This is the greatest shame for us. 

How is that a few centuries ago this ummah was leading the world and filled the Earth with guidance and light and now it is being attacked from every corner and has become the lowest of nations? Whose fault is it? How did we fill this world with justice and guidance and now it is rampant with falsehood and the darkness of oppression and injustice roams its different corners? 

O Muslim, do not point fingers at the enemy first but look to yourself first. We left the guidance and so Allah humiliated us at the hands of our enemies. The prophet told us that if we stick to two things we would never go astray, " The Book of Allah and My sunnah." Look at the state of the ummah now. Many Muslims do not even pray 5 times a day, we are all chasing the Dunya, and how many of us end up selling our Deen for a little temporary gain and enjoyment? Wallahi what a great loss for one who says "la ilaha illa Allah Muhammadur Rasul Allah."

O Muslim, We need to turn back to our Deen, we need to turn back to our creator and master. Now is the time for change. If not now then when? Do we honestly think Paradise is that cheap? 

Or do you think that you will enter Paradise while Allah has not yet made evident those of you who fight in His cause and made evident those who are steadfast? [Surah Aal Imraan ayah 142]

The prophets and awliyaa of Allah where tested in the greatest forms. Some prophets were killed by their own people such as the many messengers and prophets who were sent to the Bani Israail. Some of the followers of the prophets like the Ashaabul Ukhdood (People of the Ditch, refer. Surah al Buruj) were killed by their evil tyrannical king. Many of the sahabah were tortured and killed by the Mushrik Arabs like Sumaya who was brutally killed by Abu Jahl, Bilal who was tortured and had a stone placed on his chest by Ummayah ibn Khalaf or like Az-Zubayr who would be taken out to the outskirts of Makkah and whose uncles tortured him there. And of course we have Khubayb ibn Adiy who was crucified by Quraysh in the midst of everyone. And there are many more examples. They were sincere and firm in their Islaam and they lived and died for La ilaha illa Allah.  So we ask Allah to make us follow in their footsteps and to give us firm belief and yaqeen in Him and in His promised victory. 

The point is, Jannah is not cheap. It is expensive and if we want the good of both this temporary world and the everlasting eternal one then we should focus on our Deen. Allah swt created us for one main purpose and that is to worship Him.

And I did not create Jinn and Mankind except to worship Me. [Surah al Dhaariyat ayah 56]

Sunday, June 21, 2015

REPOST: The Muslimah and RAMADHAN (edited version)

The Muslimah and Ramadhan

**The Muslimah and Ramadhan**

Ramadhan, the month of mercy, turning to Allah, and perseverance in worship. It is the month in which the Noble Qur'an was first revealed to mankind as a guide for those who seek guidance. It is the month of immense ibadah with which the servant engages in to get closer to his or her Lord.

Ramadhan is not just the month of worship for the Muslim man but also the same if not more for the Muslim woman. Unfortunately it has become the norm in many muslim homes that the Muslim women cook hours upon hours preparing for iftaar and waste much of their time doing so during the days of fasting in Ramadhan.  Ramadhan has become a month in which the individual avoids eating and drinking for a few hours, sleeps in during the day, eats load of food during the night, and goes for taraweeh some nights of Ramadhan if not the entire month. Ramadhan has become a month in which the individual kills time watching TV, playing video games and wal iyaadhu billaah listening to music! Ramadhan has become a real joke in our communities compared to what it was in the time of our righteous Salaf. We were meant to take this blessed month as a serious opportunity to get to closer to our creator.  We have been informed that  6 months before Ramadhan would approach, our righteous Salaf would ask Allah to allow them to reach it and when it had arrived they would ask Allah to assist them in performing righteous acts of worship, and when it had left they would ask Allah to accept their good deeds from them for that beautiful month.

My dear sister, know and realize that you are no different than any other servant of Allah in this month. It is upon you to realize that Ramadhan is not just taking a break from eating, drinking, marital relations, backbiting, lying and sinning. Ramadhan is also a great time to turn to Allah and raise your rank among the righteous female worshippers. Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala chose Maryam the daughter of Emraan as the the best woman on the face of the Earth. Why? Did she sit around and just earn this status or did she just earn this status due to her noble prophetic lineage? Far from it! Maryam (May Allah be pleased with her ) was a great worshipper of Allah. She was a woman who spent her days fasting and her nights in prayer. Her acts of worship and sincere faith definitely played a major role in earning her this mighty rank which every woman and human should envy.

My sisters, do not be among the losers of Ramadan. They are those who gain nothing from this blessed time except hunger and thirst. They are those who waste their hours in sleep, listening to filthy haram music, playing video games during the day and wasting hours watching movies and wasting their blessed time during the nights when they can be doing better. How can someone spend this blessed month this way when Allah (SWT) promised to forgive our past sins if we fast and pray with sincere belief and hoping for His reward? How can someone not read the Quran during this month when the Messenger of Allah read the most Quran during this month? Wallahi only a foolish person wastes their time during Ramadhan and does not benefit from it. Do we not remember the hadeeth where the prophet (pbuh) climbed the pulpit and said "Aameen" 3 times? The sahabah inquired about this and the prophet said Jibreel came and made duaa against 3 kinds of people. One of them being the one who witnessed Ramadhan and yet did not benefit from it and gained nothing!" O Allah do not make us of this kind!

This Ramadan my dear sisters, make sure to strive in knowing and perfecting your belief and creed. Knowledge of tawheed (the oneness of Allah) is extremely important.  If we do not know our Creator, what He requires from us, and what we should avoid then what good is our prayer and fasting? It is better to meet Allah with a mountain full of sins than to meet Him with a corrupt aqeedah (belief).  There are many beneficial books of belief the Muslimah can benefit from and go back to gain knowledge of Her Sustainer (Ar-Razzaaq) and Creator (Al Khaaliq):

Kitaab at-Tawheed by Shaykh al Islaam Muhammad ibn AbdulWahhab (rahimahullah)
Thalatha Usool (The 3 Fundamentals) by the same author
Al Waajibat al Mutahatimaat also by Ibn AbdulWahhab
Khud Aqeedatak (meaning "Take Your Aqeedah") by Muhammad ibn Jameel Zeno (rahimahullah)

and many other books.

After Aqeedah, it is important and necessary that you my sister gain knowledge of the basic fiqh of taharah(purification) and worship. The Messenger of Allah (sws) said that Allah does not accept the prayer without purity (taharah). (Sunan Ibn Majah and others). The Muslimah is in dire need of obtaining knowledge of these important and obligatory matters. Many sisters take the issue of learning the fiqh of taharah very lightly and end up in bad situations. Fiqh of Taharah entails knowledge of ghusl, rulings related to menses and post partum bleeding. Things the Muslimah needs to know about. The Muslimah should know what requires ghusl (bath) and everything from the basic fiqh of salah and fasting, like knowing what breaks your fast, when you are allowed to not fast, making up fasts, and so on. The believing woman should know the differences between the different bloods of nifaashaydh, and istihaadhah.  Alhamdulilah, the scholars have written tons of books on these issues and the Muslimah should benefit from these books because as mentioned before, this is obligatory/required knowledge.

Some basic books on some important knowledge of the fiqh of worship:

-Fiqh Made Easy by Shaykh Saalih Sadlan

-Fiqh as-Sunnah by Sayyid Saabiq

Learning these things are all a form of worship and one of the means of getting closer to Allah swt with. Ramadhan is a month of worshipping Allah swt more and being involved in more good deeds than usual. So my sister, make this blessed month a means of getting closer to Allah whether its through extra prayers,  recitation of the Quran, seeking knowledge of the important matters mentioned previously, and in general, getting to know your Creator. Allah swt stated that the main objective of fasting during Ramadhan is to gain one main thing: Taqwaa (Being conscious and aware of Allah swt). If we can not gain taqwaa in this blessed month then something is seriously wrong with us and we are need to go back to ourselves. Islam is a comprehensive deen. "Worship Allah and fear Him as much as possible" is what you should use as a guideline dear sister. If you are engaging in sins during Ramadhan and yet fasting, then there is a really great need to go back to our Islaam and we should ask ourselves, "Are we truly submitting to Allah?"

May Allah accept our fasting and other worship from us and make us from the successors!

Friday, May 22, 2015

The Beautiful Story of the companion Abu Aqeel al Ansaari (May Allah be pleased with him)

..then he raised his finger towards the sky, a gesture by which he meant to praise and thank Allah.

Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه, a man from the Ansaar, was one of the first people to be injured on the Day of Yamaamah. 
(Battle of Yamama - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.) 
He became hurt as a result of an arrow that struck him somewhere between his shoulder and his heart; it was a serious but non-lethal blow, and he was able to pull out the arrow. Nonetheless, his entire left side became weak, and so he returned to the Muslim encampment in order to seek medical attention. When the fighting became intense and the Muslims were forced to head back towards their encampment, Ma'an ibn 'Adee رضي الله عنه called out,

اللّه اللّه! والكرّة على عدوّكم

"O people of the Ansaar. (Remember) Allah! Allah! And turn around and bear down upon your enemies."

So as to set an example for others, Ma'an رضي الله عنه then raced ahead of everyone else, plunging directly into the ranks of the opposing army. And the people of the Ansaar, in response to Ma'an's plea, were right behind him.

At that point, Abu Aqeel رضي الله عنه got up, intending to catch up to his Ansaaree brothers. Some Muslims tried to convince him to stay where he was, saying to him, "O Abu Aqeel, you are not for fighting." Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه, referring to Ma'an's plea for help, said, "The caller mentioned me by name." Someone responded, "The caller merely said, "O people of the Ansaar." He was not referring to injured fighters."

Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه replied,

أنا رجل من الأنصار، وأنا أجيبه ولو حبو

"And I am from the Ansaar, and I will answer his call to his arms, even if I have to crawl (towards the enemy).

Because his entire left side was weak and numb, Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه was able to hold his sword with his right only; nonetheless, with pure grit and determination, he marched onwards toward the enemy, all the while calling out,

يا للأنصار، كرّة كيوم حنين

"O people of the Ansaar, let us launch a renewed attach like we did on the Day of Hunain"
(Battle of Hunayn - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Every member of that elite Ansaaree group then fought with high spirits, seeking out one of the two things: Martydom or victory. With their renewed attack, they forced their enemies to retreat and seek refuge in the "Garden of Death".
(Battle of Yamama - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).

During the course of this assault, Abu 'Aqeel's arm was cut off; in fact, he was inflicted with a total of fourteen wounds, each of which was lethal in and of itself.

قال ابن عمر: فوقعت على أبي عقيل وهو صريع بآخر رمق، فقلت: أبا عقيل

Later on, when Ibn Umar رضي الله عنه walked by him, Abu 'Aqeel was taking in his last few breaths. Ibn 'Umar رضي الله عنه said, "O Abu 'Aqeel," to which Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه responded with a heavy voice,

فقال: لبّيك. بلسان ملتاث لمن الدّبرة؟

"Here I am, answering your call. Who has won (today)?"

قلت: أبشر، ورفعت صوتي: قد قتل عدوّ اللّه

Ibn 'Umar رضي الله عنه replied, "Rejoice, for the enemy of Allah (i.e. Musailamah) has been killed."

فرفع أصبعه إلى السّماء يحمد اللّه، ومات -رحمه اللّه

Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه then raised his finger towards the sky, a gesture by which he meant to praise and thank Allah.

قال : رحمه اللّه، ما زال يسأل الشّهادة ويطلبها، وإن كان ما علمت من خيار أصحاب نبيّنا

'Umar ibn Al-Khattab رضي الله عنه later said about Abu 'Aqeel رضي الله عنه,
"May Allah have mercy on him. He has sought out martyrdom for a long time, and he has now achieved it. Verily, he is among the best of our Prophet's صلى الله عليه و سلم companions رضي الله عنهم أجمعين"

**Originally posted by Salaf-Stories Blog

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

3 Brothers, 3 Wishes

Once, the sons of the great companion, AlZubayr ibn al Awwam (radiyallahu anhu) sat together under the shade of the Ka'bah. These sons were; Abdullah, Mus'ab, and Urwa. They sat in the Yemeni Corner of the Ka'bah with another young man, AbdulMalik ibn Marwan, conversing as young men do.  Then one of them said, "let each one of ask of Allah to grant him what he loves most."

Abdullah went first and said, "My wish is to rule over Hijaaz (part of the Arabian Peninsula) and to take the khilaafa."

His brother Mus'ab said, "As for me, then I wish to rule over the 2 Iraaqs (Al Basra and Kufa) and for no one to differ with me over them."

AbdulMalik ibn Marwan responded, "If you two are satisfied with your wishes then I am satisfied with nothing less than to rule over the entire Earth. And to become the khalifa after Muawiyyah bin Abi Sufyan."

Urwa sat quietly listening intently to their wishes.  His companions turned to him and asked, "And what do you wish for O Urwa?"

Urwa smiled and said, "May Allah bless for you all your wishes in this world. As for me, I wish to become a scholar who practices his knowledge and who people will come to and learn the Quran and Sunnah of their prophet from and the affairs of their religion and that I may eventually succeed by attaining the pleasure of Allah and His paradise."

The days passed and it wasn't long before Abdullah ibn alZubayr was given the bay'ah (pledge) for the khilaafa thus ruling over the people of Hijaaz, Yemen, Khurasan, Iraq, and Egypt, all giving their solemn oaths to him. Soon after that, Abdullah paid the ultimate price for his position until he was killed near the Ka'bah not far from where he made his wish some years ago.

And it wasn't long before his brother Mus'ab ibn alZubayr became governor over Iraaq for Abdullah and he too ends up losing his life for his leadership.

As for Urwa, his wish also came true for he came to be one of the greatest scholars of the tabi'een and one of the seven great fuqahaa of al Madinah. For his wish and desire to come true, Urwa completely dictated his time and youth to seeking knowledge from those living from the companions of the prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam). So he would go to their homes, pray behind them, follow their circles and meetings of knowledge until he ended up narrating from the likes of Ali ibn Abi Taalib, Abdurrahman ibn Awf, Zayd ibn Thaabit, Abu Ayyoob al Ansari, Usaama ibn Zayd, Sa'eed ibn Zayd, Abu Hurayra, Ibn Abbass, and AlNu'man ibn Basheer. Urwa sought knowledge mostly from his maternal and beloved aunt, Aisha bint Abi Bakr.

So the point of this story of 3 brothers and their wishes is to never give up on whatever good it is that you are doing..even if it takes you decades!  The sincere person is persistent on the good whether it is personal ibaadah, helping others, or working to become a teacher, scholar, leader, etc. It also show us that for a person to fulfill his ambitions in life, he/she needs two main things: sincerity and hardwork. Sincerity is they key to all things good and bad. But it is praiseworthy and ONLY acceptable by Allah when it is a good deed. You must have a firm intention for whatever it is you wish to embark on. No hardwork comes easy except with sincere intention(ikhlaas). Of course as a Muslim, our intention for whatever good deed we do must be done for the sake of Allah first and foremost. After that, the deed should be in accordance with the Quran and Sunnah. Secondly, no wish comes true except by working for it. They say victory is but a half hour and the prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) said in the authentic hadeeth, "Victory comes with patience."

We see the hardship and struggles all three of these brothers underwent. Abdullah sought khilaafa and he indeed worked for it until he ended up defending it and finally giving up his life in its cause. Likewise, his brother Mus'ab also fought and worked hard to attain his position and in the end he gave his life for it. Urwa who was the prime example of a scholar, also worked hard day and night seeking knowledge and learning under the companions of the Messenger of Allah until this young man ended up becoming one of the greatest scholars of this religion. Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal was asked by his son, "O my father, when will the servant of Allah find rest?" Imam Ahmad replied, "With the first step he takes into Paradise." We are not here in this world to play and fool around. We are here to work and serve Allah. The prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) spends more than 2 decades in the Arabian Peninsula calling the tribes to Allah and it took him this much years for the land of Hijaaz to finally come under Islaam. 20 years. You may think thats not alot . Think of Nuh (alayhis salaam) who spends almost 1,000 years calling his people to Allah as well. Patience is the key along with sincerity. You can not persist in your work if you do not have patience.

Never give up on your dreams and always follow the truth. If you follow the truth sincerely, it will lead you to following your heart and being content with whatever Allah has written for you in this world.

-Source: Biography of Urwa ibn AlZubayr from Suwar min Hayaati- Taabi'een by Abdurrahman Pasha.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

World Hijab Day (WHD)


Indeed, the best guidance is the guidance of our beloved prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) for in this guidance lies our success in both this world and the next. Leaving and neglecting the guidance of Muhamamd ibn Abdillah will only lead to lost causes and utter failure. So, O you who seeks success, follow the Messenger of Allah!

Nowadays, it seems as though the Muslims are only drowning in further ignorance and corruption as never before. In these tough times, the prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) advised us to stick to our Deen very strongly, "A time will come upon the people where the one who is holding strong to his Deen will be like the one holding on to hot coals!" [Sunan at-Tirmidhi]

This hadeeth tells us that things will only get stranger as the masses further away from practicing the Deen properly. Those who follow the sunnah and call to it will be seen as either backward or extreme, the deviants will increase in number and many will follow them not knowing who they really are and what they are calling to.

We wish to meet the prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) at al Hawd on the Day of Judgment and to drink from it. Do we not? We ask Allah to not make us of those who will be turned away from the prophet (saws) when he calls out to Allah, "O Lord! My companions!"  and it will be said to him, "You do not know what they innovated after you."[Sahih al Bukhari]

This post is meant as an advice for my sisters in Islaam concerning World Hijaab Day or WHD. WHD has become a worldwide phenomenon since it first started in 2013 by sister Nazma Khan of New York and takes place February 1st of each year.

So what exactly is World Hijab Day and why even discuss it?  Well, firstly I am choosing to address WHD because Hijaab is a part of our Deen. In fact, it is Ibadah. Allah swt has ordained for the Muslim women to cover her body with the proper islamic jilbaab (outer garments). So our Hijaab is not just a piece of cloth or garment we wear for the sake of modesty. NO. Firstly, we don this hijaab out of obedience to the order of Allah swt and fulfilling this obligation. Secondly, we know that the hijaab represents the modesty of the muslim woman. Another main reason I wish to address World Hijab Day is because nowadays the proper islamic hijaab has been neglected.

The hijaab has been reduced to a "headscarf". The conditions of hijaab are not explained or discussed as they should be and this is a big issue. There are some who give da'wah and give the perception that anything can be hijaab as long as you are "modest." Which Deen are they referring to when they say such things? The Quran and Sunnah have made the conditions of the hijaab very clear and the scholars have explained these in every era.

So WHD as explained on the website was established:

"in recognition of millions of Muslim women who choose to wear the hijab and live a life of modesty."

After reading these words, I ask myself what basis does a Muslim have in Islam to establish such an annual event? What is the difference between this and lets say Father's Day, Mother's Day, International Women's Day, World Cancer Day, and so on? Do we really need an annual event to recognize women who wear the hijaab? Isn't this a form of imitating nonbelievers in their events? Is this helpful and good for the Da'wah? Will more good than bad come out of it?

As Muslims, we abide by the Quran and Sunnah and not by our own thoughts and reasoning for such matters. Now sister Nazma Im sure had the best of intentions in starting WHD but when delving into such matters, it is absolutely necessary that the Muslim refers back to the sources and principles of the Shari'ah. We can't just "do" based on our intentions and as they say "run on barakah." We must know the ruling of what we are doing, meaning if it is permissible or not.

The main issues with WHD are as follows:

1. WHD: A form of imitating the kuffar.

World Hijab Day is a good da'wah effort and I won't deny this. In a time where many western countries are banning the hijaab and niqaab ( now more so the niqaab), WHD helps educate non-muslims on hijaab and Islam. Some non-Muslim women have looked into Islam after attending a WHD event. May Allah guide these women to Islaam and keep them firm on it. May Allah guide them to wear the proper shari' hijaab as well and may Allah reward sister Nazma for her good intentions.

I have no problem with WHD if it is done according to the correct islamic guidelines for da'wah and if it is something permissible(i.e. not having it on a specific day of the year). This is the main issue, the correct guidelines are not followed. You have issues such as unnecessary gender interaction, promotion of an incorrect hijaab and lack of true education on Islaam and its fundamentals.

Imitating the disbelievers in their holidays is something the Shariah does not allow and WHD is just that. There are numerous ahadeeth and sayings from the companions and scholars of Islaam on this issue.

The prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “Whoever imitates a people is one of them.” [Narrated by Abu Dawood (4031) and classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Sunan Abi Dawood. ]

WHD is a form of Eid as is very clear. It carries the characteristics of a Eid:

1.Eid is something that comes  on a specific day, whether weekly, monthly, or annually.
2. The people gather together in such an event/it has now become an international phenomenon
3. Acts are done in order to celebrate this event whether the acts are acts of worship or not.

The Muslims should realize that establishing such an event should not be done if it contradicts the Shariah of Allah. The scholars and callers to good in the West should have given advice regarding this issue but instead you have some of the figureheads of the Da'wah in Western countries and the Muslim world promoting this! How sad and unfortunate. These callers are absolutely wrong and only Allah knows if they are truly ignorant themselves of the rulings on this issue because there are scholars who have rejected WHD and have given their proofs or if they are too cowardly and ashamed to speak the truth. May Allah guide them and forgive them.

2. The kind of hijaab that is being promoted is NOT the correct hijaab

Dear sisters, the hijaab is a fareeda (obligation) from The Most High for the believing women. It has conditions and it is not just anything thrown over the head and body. WHD fails to spread the true message of the hijaab and inviting sisters to it. 

The hijaab is addressed as "the headscarf" by WHD founder herself ( and others from the website (hijaab stories). Is the hijaab really just a headscarf? The WHD is meant to educate Muslims and Non-Muslims alike on Islam and Hijaab yet those who conduct WHD do not seem to look into the true meaning, ruling, and conditions of hijaab.  The scholars and callers to truth need to call to the correct hijaab in such a time when it is being misinterpreted like this but what can we do if those who are referring to the hijaab as "headscarf" are in fact "scholars" and knowledgable people? And there is no power and might except with Allah. May Allah swt rectify this ummah's affairs. 

What is necessary upon the Muslim women is to refer back to the Quran and Sunnah according to the correct understanding. It is not right for us to set up a day for hijaab and yet not call to the correct hijaab or educate others on it! This is in fact a contradiction.


3. Do we really need WHD?

Do we really need hijaab day? Many of those who support WHD say it is a good effort because in a time where the hijaab is being banned in many countries and the media is portraying the hijaab as oppression and subjugation of the Muslim women, we need something like WHD to clarify matters and educate non-Muslims on the true meaning and spirit of hijaab.

Well, this is a good idea but the hijaab is not just a cultural thing, it is ibadah. It is a form of worship. Therefore, in something like this, one needs to follow the Islamic guidelines. Our intentions may be good and I am sure the intention of sister Nazma Khan (founder of WHD) was a good one but we are not a people who act on our emotions and thoughts alone. We have 2 guiding sources that we need to stick to in all that we do. Al Quran and the Sunnah of our Beloved (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam).

Finally, I advice WHD founder and supporters to look into the matter well. We are not being extreme by being against WHD. In fact, we love this Deen and care about it just as you do. We are concerned about the Da'wah and the war being waged on the hijaab just as you may be concerned. But we choose to refer back to the Shariah in this issue. We do not support WHD because it does not care to really explain the correct hijaab or call to it. We advice the sisters to learn what is the ruling on hijaab and its conditions and to follow it. The hijaab is the true mark of beauty for the Muslim woman. When you go out in public whether to school, work, market, or anywhere public in this correct hijaab, remember you are representing Islaam so you should represent it well. Allah swt is rewarding you for any trial you may go through with this hijaab. It is your jihaad so be sincere to Allah and remain strong and firm. Do not let the barking of the enemies of the hijaab get to you. You are bringing to life the ayah,

O Prophet! Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go abroad). That will be better, so that they may be recognised and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. [Surah al Ahzaab ayah 59]

and the ayah,

And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent, and to draw their veils over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers or husbands' fathers, or their sons or their husbands' sons, or their brothers or their brothers' sons or sisters' sons, or their women, or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigour, or children who know naught of women's nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And turn unto Allah together, O believers, in order that ye may succeed. [Surah al Noor ayah 31]

May Allah guide the Muslim women to stick to the correct hijaab and may He keep them firm on it and we ask Allah to protect all our sisters from harassment and fitnah. May they be rewarded for there struggles and may Allah shower them with patience!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Advice/Tips on Memorizing the Quran for Sisters

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

All praise is due to Allah the Most High who says in the Noble Revelation,

  ولقد يسرنا القران للذكر فهل من مدكر

 "And we have indeed made the Quran easy to understand and remember, then is there any that will remember?" [Surah Qamar ayah 17]

And peace and blessings be upon the Final Messenger, Muhammad ibn Abdullah, Abul Qaasim, who said,

خيركم من تعلم القران وعلمه

"The best among you are those who learn the Quran and teach it." [Sahih al Bukhari from the hadeeth of Uthman ibn Affan]

Learning the Quran is a great virtue and very important for the Muslim. The salaf used to teach their children to read and memorize the Quran from an early age. However, the most important and hardest task for us as Muslims is to act on this glorious Quran and to live by, not to memorize it. In this day and age, you find many Muslims memorize the Quran and parents seem to make this an obligation upon their children, but what is most important and more necessary is to ACT on this Quran. This is what has been neglected.The sahabah were a typical people who understand "la ilaha illa Allah" not just as mere words but to mean "you dedicate your life to Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala!" The sahabah understood the Quran as knowledge and action.

They shook the thrones of Rome and Persia by sticking to their contract with Allah the Most High,  by adhering to this Quran. Allah the Most High raised their status with this Quran because they recited it, prayed with it and implemented it. And there are others whom Allah has brought low because of their abandoning this Quran. Umar ibn al Khattab narrated that the Prophet (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) said,

إن الله يرفع بهذا الكتاب أقواماً ويضع به آخرين

 "Indeed, Allah raises some people (in status) because of this Book and brings others low because of it." [Sahih, Sunan Ibn Majah]

Today the ummah is in need of the Quran. The Quran is the guiding source for the Muslim/ah.The Quran is filled with ahkaam (rulings), qisas (stories, of prophets and of bad individuals, like the nations of old, 'aad, thamuud,  and tyrants like firawn and haaman) and it also contains mawa'id (reminders).

The people of knowledge have said, "memorizing the Quran is a fadheela (virtue, a good deed) but acting upon it is fareedha (obligatory; whether you memorize the Quran or not)."

Memorizing the Quran is a beautiful and magnificent task, it is not like anything else. This is in fact the first step in seeking knowledge. The scholars would not learn anything else whether it was fiqh or aqeedah until they had learnt and memorized the Quran. If a person came to seek knowledge and study under a certain shaykh, that shaykh would ask him if he memorized the Quran, if he replied in the negative, the scholar would tell him to first memorize the Quran!

The most important and basic tips needed from the student of the Quran:

1. Sincerity. Make your intention solely for the sake of Allah first and foremost. Why are you doing this? What is your motive and goal? It must be to please your creator because this will allow you to gain much rewards and Allah will also help you in this journey.

Allah swt says: وما أمروا إلا ليعبدوا الله مخلصين له الدين حنفاء

"And they were not commanded but to serve Allah, being sincere to Him in obedience..." [Surah al Bayyinah ayah 5]

The Messenger of Allah (sws) said, انما الأعمال بالنيات وانما لكل امْرِئٍ ما نوى

Meaning, "Verily actions are (judged) by intentions, so each man will have what he intended."[ agreed upon]

Therefore, my sister whether you are a mother, wife, daughter, or grandmother, make sure you have ikhlaas (sincerity) in this endeavor and know that true guidance and tawfeeq are from Allah alone. Anyone can memorize the Quran if they have this key element of ikhlaas (doing it for the sake of Allah).

2. Duaa. Make lots of duaa to Allah as you learn the Quran. Do not think it is hard or difficult to do so when you have other duties such as being a wife and mother or working or attending school. Duaa makes a huge difference in everything. Allah wants us to ask of Him, the servant should not shy away from this.

Didn't Allah says,

 وإذا سألك عبادي عني فاني قريب

 "And when My servants ask you concerning Me - Indeed, I am near." [Surah al Baqarah ayah 186]

And didn't The Most Merciful also say,

وقال ربكم ادعوني استجب لكم

"And your lord says, "Call upon Me; I will respond to you!" [Surah al Ghaafir ayah 60]

So, do not fear or lose hope sister! Even if memorizing the Quran takes you many years, remember it will be worth it if you were sincere and constantly made duaa to Allah to make it easy for you. Imagine the rewards!

3. Make the Quran your best friend. Dear sister, make the Quran your number one companion. Let it always accompany you and do not let a day go by without sitting down with it and reciting its noble verses. It is important to understand what you are carrying with you sister. This Quran is not just a book. It is the words of Allah azza wa Jall. DO not abandon this Quran. Love it, understand it, recite it, and follow it. If you can't recite it as you like, listen to it being recited thus getting your ears used to it. Learn its meaning and ponder upon its ayaat. The Quran is not difficult to understand! It is only difficult for those whom Allah has placed a seal over their hearts!

أفلا يتدبرون القران أم على قلوب اقفالها

"Then do they not reflect upon the Quran, or are there locks upon their hearts." [Surah Muhammad ayah 24]

Remember the one who abandons reading the Quran and living by it is a big loser. Allah will make such a person's life miserable. Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala says

ومن أعرض عن ذكري فإن له معيشةً ضنكا

"And whoever turns away from My remembrance -, indeed, he will have a depressed life.." [Surah Taha ayah 124]

The Quran is the greatest form of dhikr (remembrance of Allah). Allah has called it such as well. This Quran, Allah told His Messenger (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam) to rule and judge the people with.  This Quran separates between those on the truth and those on falsehood. With it, the believers are guided. Allah ta'ala says,

إن هذا القرآن يهدي للتي هي أقوام ويبشر المؤمنين الذين يعملون الصالحات أن لهم أجرا كبيرا

"Indeed, this Quran guides to that which is most suitable and gives good tidings to the believers who do righteous deeds that they will have a great reward. " [Surah al Isra ayah 10]

When Muslims abandoned the Quran that is when Allah inflicted humiliation upon  them and allowed their enemies to gain power over them.  The key to true success and victory both in this world and the next can ONLY be through following this Quran.

So sister, make sure you follow the Quran and do not contradict it, make sure you recite the Quran in your home for the devils do not enter a house in which the Quran is recited; in fact, they flee from this house. Play the Quran from your radio, cd player, computer, or phone. Let the blessings flow about the house. This is good for you and your family. The house in which there is no Quran recited is like a graveyard! We need to recite the Quran in order to keep our homes alive!

4. Read Everyday! Make yourself a schedule! Don't let a day go by without reading your hizb (portion) of the Quran! This is really helpful, not in just attaining the rewards (In sha Allah!) but in getting your tongue used to the Quran as well. The more you read correctly, the more easy it becomes to memorize the Quran.

Another very important and necessary thing for memorizing the Quran is to MAKE YOURSELF A SCHEDULE. This is very much needed. Without a Quran schedule to review and memorize, you will find a hard time actually memorizing the Quran. Look at yourself and make yourself a suitable Quran schedule that you can stick to and keep up with. This will always keep you on track!

How we memorize the Quran varies from person to person. One person may be working full time, another may be attending school full time, and one person may be a mother of 4. Therefore, our schedules and how we memorize may vary. But what is important is that you do have a schedule to memorize the Quran.

5. Listen to the Quran! Sometimes you may not have the time to read the Quran as long as you want especially if you are cooking, cleaning,  or driving here and there (running errands) so in these situations, make it a good effort to play the Quran whether from your phone , computer, or cd player. Bring the blessings into your home and also get your ears used to the Quran.  Sometimes you can memorize an entire surah just from hearing it again and again. Umm Hishaam bint al Harith (ra) said she memorized Surah al Qaaf from the mouth of the Messenger of Allah because he would recite it in the khutbah every Jumah. [reported by Imam Muslim, Abu Dawud, and An-Nasai)

6. Learn Tajweed! This is extremely important! Allah ta'ala says,

ورتل القران ترتيلا

 "And recite the Quran in a slow( pleasant tone) style." [Surah al Muzzamil ayah 4]

Tajweed is important. We should make it an effort to recite the Quran in the way it was revealed to the Messenger of Allah (sala allahu alayhi wa sallam)! We should try our best to pronounce the huroof correctly and to learn the different ahkaam of tajweed. One of the greatest blessings of Allah is when you find yourself reciting the book of Allah in a correct manner. Compare this to when you first started learning and you will appreciate alot. Before, you did not know what idghaam or ikhfaa was and now you know what is madd and the types of madd and the ahkaam of the noon alsaakinah so praise Allah the Most High for your accomplishments and continue to learn and practice dear sister!

 Listen to good Quran reciters whose recitation is clear like Shaykhs; Mahmood al Husary, Al Minshawi, Abdullah Basfar, Ali al Hudhayfi, etc.

7. IMPORTANT: Make sure you have a Quran teacher!! It is absolutely necessary and important that you have a Quran teacher when learning to read and memorizing the Quran. You can not do this on your own. You need guidance in this great task. Each one of our great scholars started seeking knowledge by first memorizing the Quran, and when they were memorizing, they did so with a teacher. A teacher may notice what you would not; therefore, its important to have your mistakes corrected.

Sisters! Please try your best to find a female Quran teacher if possible. This is better and much easier. It is complicated to have a male teacher unless you are in a situation where you absolutely must have a male teacher(there are no female teachers around). You will feel more comfortable learning with a shaykha when it comes to the Quran and you will not have to worry about beautifying your voice( in fact feel free to do so!)

8. Review Review Review! Make sure you do not let a day go by without reviewing what you have memorized. If you do not review, you slowly lose what you learned! When you pray whether its a fardh or sunnah, recite what you have memorized whether it is a page, half a page, or 5 ayaat! This helps you to keep the Quran in memory.

The best time to review is before fajr, after fajr, and at night before you sleep. Anytime is good to review the Quran but the main thing is to make sure you review your Quran in a suitable time for you. When your kids are asleep, when you are done with house chores, and so on. If you are memorizing 3 pages of a surah, repeat the ayaat 10 times at least and always recite from the beginning of the surah and not the new page, this is so that you do not forget the previous ayaat.

9. Have a Quran companion! One of the best things about memorizing the Quran is knowing that you are not alone! If you are studying with a group, make sure that you and a sister from the group memorize and review together. This is a great form of encouragement. She will push you to not be lazy and to review what you must and you will remind her likewise.

**These are just some basic tips and advices and I am sure there are more but these are the main ones that should keep you going in sha Allah! May Allah make memorizing the Quran and acting upon it easy and a blessing for us!