Oh Allah, let us reach Ramadan || اللهمَّ بلِّغْنا رَمَضَان

 

Every Muslim home should have its own charity box that gets emptied and donated regularly for different charitable causes.

 

(Apologies for the delay)

Advertisements

Day 8: Thankfulness

By Jamaal Diwan

 

Ibn ʿAṭā said:

“Whoever is not thankful for graces runs the risk of losing them; and whoever is thankful, fetters them with their own cords.”[1]

This wisdom is based on the statement of God in the Quran:

 

“And when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will surely increase you; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.’”[2]

In this verse and in the wisdom we are presented with one of the greatest laws of this life: when you are thankful, God gives you more. When you are not, He does not. In this regard it is very important that we constantly work and seek to development a grateful view on our existence. This is in fact an act of belief and a cornerstone in the Muslim’s daily relationship with his or her Creator.

 

It is a simple concept but often very difficult to implement. This is especially true for those of us that come from cultures where we have been blessed with so much but at the same time it is common for people to complain about everything. We have to fight this and learn to be content with what we have and appreciate it. We cannot achieve happiness if we do not learn to appreciate the things that we have, especially the “little” things.

 

This Ramadan let us try and cultivate the habit of being thankful. Two things that we can do are:

–          Specify a few minutes each day to just think about all that we have been given and thank God for it.

–          Before we start eating we should pause and reflect about the food that we are eating and where it came from and how much God has given us. This simple practice, which is commanded from us in the Quran,[3] can make a huge difference in our lives as it pushes us to be people of gratitude.


[1] Translation from jannah.org

[2] Quran 14: 7.

[3] Quran 80: 24-32.

By: Abdel Rahman Mussa

9 days to go !

Does it feel like 21 days since we started posting on this blog ? What happened to the last 3 weeks ?

Why do we think that when Ramadan comes we will have all the time in the world?! It’s the same world my dear brothers and sisters. The speed with which the last 3 weeks just passed will be exactly the same speed with which the first three weeks of Ramadan will pass.

Exactly the same. Maybe quicker, even.

This article isn’t intended to be a guilt trip, nor should it be taken that way. It’s an objective assessment of where you are and where you are not.

This blog is intended to warm you up. To get you doing before hand, so lets review:

  • Quran
  • Fasting
  • Strengthening the family ties
  • Manners
  • Zuhd
  • Qiyam
  • Dhikr
  • Self accountability
  • Patience
  • Khushu’

All of these topics have been touched upon and more, so now…

Have you fasted Monday or Thursday and how many times ? Have you contacted family ? How have your manners been ? Quran, did you increase the amount you read ?

and so on… really take account.

The prophet (pbuh) taught us that Abu Bakr’s faith outweighs the faith of the whole ummah. He (pbuh) describes him as not beating us by actions alone, but rather that something stabilized in his heart (faith).

Any yet, in the famous incident where the prophet asks, after fajr, if any of the sahabah had helped a needy person, visited someone that was ill, helped an orphan… he kept asking. No one but Abu Bakr (raa) raised his hand… and he did so for every question !

The sahabah bettered one another in their race to Allah through their hearts. They supersede us because of their hearts. And we rank, and out rank, one another as per the purity of our hearts.

And most importantly, what’s in our hearts manifests into action. This is the only way that Abu Bakr (raa) was able to so blatantly out do all the sahabah in the example above.

What does it take to have a healthy heart ?

In verse 44 of surat al Naml the Queen of Sheeba says the same thing that the Prophet Mussa (pbuh) says in verse 16 of Surat Al Qasas:

“My Lord, I have transgressed against myself”

Would you hurt someone that you truly loved ? Impossible – unless it was a mistake or you didn’t realize what you were doing ! Right ?

The Prophet Mussa kills a man – accidentally. The queen of Sheba didn’t know better, but the second she saw the miracle, she realised.

They felt sorry for themselves – the way a parent feels guilty when they find out that they were unwittingly harming their child whilst thinking they were strengthening him or her. The parent adores his/her child.

How is it that we end up not loving, but instead loathing or despising ourselves ?

Well, for most people as they grow up, they are reprimanded whenever they DO something bad or naughty and they are praised whenever they DO something that is good.

Whilst there might not be anything wrong with that as a child, as you grow, you need to shed that programming. Approval comes from within.

Most people walk around disapproving of themselves, seeking approval from others – either through positive or negative attention seeking. They look for dunya to make them feel happy, not realising that they hold the key and the lock themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

This is the third video from 2006, dealing with a topic we struggle with everyday– and this to strive towards the best of speech.

Ibn ʿAṭā said:

“Let not obedience make you joyous because it comes from you; but rather, be joyous over it because it comes from God to you. ‘Say: In the grace of God and in His mercy, in that they should rejoice. It is better than that which they hoard.’”[1]

In this wisdom we are again confronted with an adjustment of the subtleties of the heart. It is again an issue of focus.

For one to be joyous over the good deeds that they have done is a manifestation of their own selfishness and a lack of their understanding the true nature of God as the One to be worshiped and the source of all good. No, you did not achieve what you did solely because you are wonderful or simply because you worked hard or did what you needed to do. Before and above any of that it was the pure bounty of the Most Gracious. In this we should rejoice and upon Him we should maintain our focus. The awakened heart realizes the beauty in the subtle difference between the two. In one the focus is on the self and in the other the focus is on the Creator and Sustainer of the universe. In one joy is placed in that which succeeds and fails and in the other joy is placed in He who never fails, glorified and exalted is He.

The tip for this reminder is simple and yet oft-forgotten. Every-time we are able to do something good, let’s make a sincere effort to turn our attention to Him, to thank Him and praise Him. Let us try to say what we were taught:

Al-hamdu lillâhil-ladhi bi’ni-matihi tatimmus sâlihât.” All praises are for Allah, by whose grace all good things are completed (Hakim)

And in our gratitude to Him, we will find the good deeds increase insha Allah.

In doing so we also realize the intent of the verse that Ibn ʿAṭā mentioned in the wisdom itself, “’Say: In the grace of God and in His mercy, in that they should rejoice. It is better than that which they hoard.’”[2]


[1] Translation from jannah.org

[2] Quran, 10:58.

Day 12: Plan Ahead

 

by AbdelRahman Mussa

The prophet (pbuh) informs and educates us that:

“…Whoever draws nearer (to Allah) by performing any of the (optional / nafl / sunnah) good deeds in (this month: Ramadan) shall receive the same reward as performing an obligatory deed at any other time, and whoever discharges an obligatory deed in (this month: Ramadan) shall receive the reward of performing seventy obligations at any other time… ”

[Narrated by Ibn Khuzaymah]

Truly Allah is The Most Kind, The Most Generous !

Due to this hadeeth and the likes of it, we see the mosques are crammed in tarawih, we see the optional acts everywhere and it’s so heart warming to see.

We look forward to Ramadan because we know of it’s blessings, but also – and especially in the West – because of the warmth of community. That buzz of meeting your brothers and sisters in Tarawih, or earlier if you break your fast together.

There is however one trend that is a little disturbing.

Brothers and sisters will come to the mosque for Taraweeh. This is an optional prayer. BUT THEY’LL MISS CONGREGATIONAL ISHA PRAYER !

They miscount the reward that Allah bestows upon them.

I asked a friend once: “Do you not finish work any earlier ? I noticed that you arrive just in time for the first rak’ah of Tarawih and that you miss Isha”

He replied telling me that he Read the rest of this entry »

Another 2006 “In the Shade of Ramadan” production brought to you again here, to benefit from an important lesson that we should try to get into the habit of before the blessed month arrives.

Tag Cloud