Some Pre-Conditions of Dua (Supplications)

31 01 2008

The Pre-Conditions of Dua (Supplication)

We know that Dua (supplication) is a type of worship, so it is essential to discuss the pre-conditions that are necessary if we wish for our Dua to be answered. Just like our Salat (prayer) will not be accepted until we perform the necessary pre-requisites, such as wudu (ablution), facing the Qiblah and covering the body. Likewise our dua will likely not be accepted until some pre-requisites are met.Let’s see what Allah (SWT) tells us about Dua for surely “Allah’s promise is the truth, and whose word can be truer than Allah’s?” (4:122)

The Realisation that Only Allah Responds to Dua

“Who else is there that responds to the call of the one in distress when he calls out, and He removes evil from him, and makes you inheritors of the earth ? Is there any other God besides Allah? Little is it that you remember!” (27:62)

We must fully believe that only Allah (SWT) is capable of hearing our prayer, and only Allah (SWT) has the power to grant us what we desire.

Sincerity in Dua to Allah Alone

“Will you call upon other than Allah if you are truthful?” (6:40)

“Those whom you call besides Allah are slaves like yourselves” (7:194)

“And those who you ask besides Him can neither come to your aid, nor can they help themselves!” (7: 197)

After we realize that only Allah (SWT) can respond to our Dua, then it makes sense that we pray to Allah (SWT) alone. We must be careful only to ask Allah (SWT). Idols, the sun to trees, animals, men, pious people, prophets, or even angels have no power to grant any of our Dua’s.

Let’s see what Prophet Muhammad said about Dua in the authentic Hadiths. “And he speaks not of his own desire. It is but a revelation revealed to him.” (53:3-4)

The Presence of an Attentive Heart

Prophet Muhammad said “Make dua to Allah in a state that you are certain that your dua will be responded to, and know that Allah does not respond to a dua that originates from a negligent, inattentive heart” (Tirmidhi)

This shows that our Dua must be made with a mindful heart, such that we know exactly what we are asking for, and who we are asking from, for Allah (SWT) is the Lord of Honor!

Purity of One’s Sustenance

Prophet Muhammad said “Oh you who believe! Eat from the pure and good foods We have given you” Then the Prophet mentioned a traveler on a long journey, who is dishevelled and dusty, and he stretches forth his hands to the sky , saying “Oh my Lord! O my Lord!” – while his food is unlawful, his drink is unlawful, his clothing his unlawful, and he is nourished unlawfully; how can he be answered?” (Muslim, Ahmad)

Therefore, among the necessary conditions of our Dua to be accepted is the purity and lawfulness of our food.

Lack of Hastiness

Prophet Muhammad said “You will responded to as long as you are not hasty, meaning that a person says, ‘I have prayed and prayed and my prayer has not been answered!'” (Bukhari, Muslim)

This shows that Dua should be continuous, and that we should avoid giving up our Dua because it has not been responded to. For Allah (SWT) is The Wise and we know that no Dua is ever wasted! This does not mean however, that we cannot pray that our Dua be answered quickly, for it has been narrated that the Prophet prayed for rain and said “quickly, and not delayed..” (Ibn Majah)

Summary

The above are conditions that can aid us in getting our Dua responded to. The response of our Dua depends on the Will of Allah (SWT), and He responds to whom He pleases. Therefore it is possible that the Dua of a disbeliever who does not meet any of these conditions is responded to, and it is possible that a Muslim who fulfills all of these conditions is not responded to. However without a doubt, if we strive to fulfill and put into practice all of these factors we will have a much greater chance of our Dua being answered.

We also know that a Dua of a believer is never wasted. If our dua is not granted and we are patient then Allah (SWT) either turns away some evil that was going to inflict us, or Allah (SWT) reserves its rewards for the hereafter. On the day of judgement when we see the huge rewards we get for our Dua’s not being answered, we will wish none of our Dua’s got granted on earth! So even if our Dua in not answered in this life we should hope for its rewards in the next.
One of the main purposes of Dua is that we have an attentive heart towards Allah (SWT). That we turn to Him and acknowledge His Power. This however requires patience, purity and sincerity. We need to call out to Allah (SWT) with a sincere heart, for verily Allah (SWT) does not accept any Dua made from a neglectful heart. How sincere is our heart? Right now the choice is ours!

We ask Allah (SWT) the Most High, the All-Powerful, to teach us that which will benefit us, and to benefit us by that which we learn. May Allah (SWT) grant blessings and peace to our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.

From this link: http://www.lutonmuslims.co.uk/duaprecondtn.htm

Etiquettes of Making Dua Part 1:

Etiquettes of Making Dua Part 2:

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One Of The Many Examples of Allah’s Mercy

27 01 2008

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Yesterday, I was listening to a lecture on Qadr by Sister Laila Nasheeba. During that lecture, she brought up a point that I had heard many times but something clicked yesterday.  The aha! moment so to speak. I love it when that happens. Anyway,She brought up the fact that Allah knows everything that we are thinking, every bad thought, every urge that we have, everything that is just on the tip of our tongue. Yet, we are not held accountable for that unless we act upon it or verbalize it.

This is such a mercy. I remember hearing Dr.Ali Shehata give a lecture in which he mentioned the tafsir (explanation) of the last few verses of Surah Al Baqara (the second surah of the Qur’an). I immediately looked up the tafsir (Ibn Kathir) and would like to share it here so that it may be an inspiration and serve as a reminder and source of hope for us all.

Allah states that His is the kingship of the heavens and earth and of what and whoever is on or between them, that He has perfect watch over them. No apparent matter or secret that the heart conceals is ever a secret to Him, however minor it is. Allah also states that He will hold His servants accountable for what they do and what they conceal in their hearts. In similar statements, Allah said,

[قُلْ إِن تُخْفُواْ مَا فِى صُدُورِكُمْ أَوْ تُبْدُوهُ يَعْلَمْهُ اللَّهُ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَمَا فِى الاٌّرْضِ وَاللَّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَىْءٍ قَدِيرٌ ]

(Say (O Muhammad ): “Whether you hide what is in your breasts or reveal it, Allah knows it, and He knows what is in the heavens and what is in the earth. And Allah is able to do all things) [3:29], and,

[يَعْلَمُ السِّرَّ وَأَخْفَى]

(He knows the secret and that which is yet more hidden.)

There are many other Ayat on this subject. In this Ayah [2:284], Allah states that He has knowledge of what the hearts conceal, and consequently, He will hold the creation accountable for whatever is in their hearts. This is why when this Ayah was revealed, it was hard on the Companions, since out of their strong faith and conviction, they were afraid that such reckoning would diminish their good deeds.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said, “When

[لِّلَّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَـوتِ وَمَا فِى الاٌّرْضِ وَإِن تُبْدُواْ مَا فِي أَنفُسِكُمْ أَوْ تُخْفُوهُ يُحَاسِبْكُم بِهِ اللَّهُ فَيَغْفِرُ لِمَن يَشَآءُ وَيُعَذِّبُ مَن يَشَآءُ وَاللَّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ ]

(To Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is on the earth, and whether you disclose what is in yourselves or conceal it, Allah will call you to account for it. Then He forgives whom He wills and punishes whom He wills. And Allah is able to do all things)

was revealed to the Messenger of Allah , it was very hard for the Companions of the Messenger . The Companions came to the Messenger and fell to their knees saying, `O Messenger of Allah! We were asked to perform what we can bear of deeds: the prayer, the fast, Jihad and charity. However, this Ayah was revealed to you, and we cannot bear it.’ The Messenger of Allah said,

«أَتُرِيدُونَ أَنْ تَقُولُوا كَما قَالَ أَهْلُ الْكِتَابَيْنِ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ: سَمِعْنَا وَعَصَيْنَا؟ بَلْ قُولُوا: سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِير»

(Do you want to repeat what the People of the Two Scriptures before you said, that is, `We hear and we disobey’ Rather, say, `We hear and we obey, and we seek Your forgiveness, O our Lord, and the Return is to You.)

When the people accepted this statement and their tongues recited it, Allah sent down afterwards,

[ءَامَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِن رَّبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ كُلٌّ ءَامَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَمَلَـئِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ لاَ نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِّن رُّسُلِهِ وَقَالُواْ سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ ]

(The Messenger believes in what has been sent down to him from his Lord, and (so do)the believers. Each one believes in Allah, His Angels, His Books, and His Messengers. (They say,) “We make no distinction between one another of His Messengers ـ and they say, “We hear, and we obey. (We seek) Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the return (of all).”)

When they did that, Allah abrogated the Ayah [2:284] and sent down the Ayah,

[لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ رَبَّنَا لاَ تُؤَاخِذْنَآ إِن نَّسِينَآ أَوْ أَخْطَأْنَا]

(Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned. “Our Lord! Punish us not if we forget or fall into error.”) until the end.”

Muslim recorded it with the wording; “When they did that, Allah abrogated it [2:284] and sent down,

[لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ رَبَّنَا لاَ تُؤَاخِذْنَآ إِن نَّسِينَآ أَوْ أَخْطَأْنَا]

(Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned. “Our Lord! Punish us not if we forget or fall into error”.)

Allah said, `I shall (accept your supplication),’

[رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْنَآ إِصْرًا كَمَا حَمَلْتَهُ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِنَا]

(“Our Lord! Lay not on us a burden like that which You did lay on those before us (Jews and Christians)”)

Allah said, `I shall (accept your supplication),’

[رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تُحَمِّلْنَا مَا لاَ طَاقَةَ لَنَا بِهِ]

(“Our Lord! Put not on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear. ”)

Allah said, `I shall (accept your supplication),’

[وَاعْفُ عَنَّا وَاغْفِرْ لَنَا وَارْحَمْنَآ أَنتَ مَوْلَـنَا فَانْصُرْنَا عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَـفِرِينَ]

(“Pardon us and grant us forgiveness. Have mercy on us. You are our Mawla (Supporter and Protector) and give us victory over the disbelieving people.”)

Allah said, `I shall.”’

Imam Ahmad recorded that Mujahid said, “I saw Ibn `Abbas and said to him, `O Abu Abbas! I was with Ibn `Umar, and he read this Ayah and cried.’ He asked, `Which Ayah’ I said,

[وَإِن تُبْدُواْ مَا فِي أَنفُسِكُمْ أَوْ تُخْفُوهُ]

`(And whether you disclose what is in yourselves or conceal it.)’

Ibn `Abbas said, `When this Ayah was revealed, it was very hard on the Companions of the Messenger of Allah and worried them tremendously. They said: O Messenger of Allah! We know that we would be punished according to our statements and our actions, but as for what occurs in our hearts, we do not control what is in them.’ The Messenger of Allah said,

«قُولُوا: سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا»

(Say, `We hear and we obey.’) They said, `We hear and we obey.’ Thereafter, this Ayah abrogated the previous Ayah,

[ءَامَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِن رَّبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ كُلٌّ ءَامَنَ بِاللَّهِ]

(The Messenger believes in what has been sent down to him from his Lord, and (so do) the believers. Each one believes in Allah), until,

[لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ]

(Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned.)

Therefore, they were pardoned what happens in their hearts, and were held accountable only for their actions.”’

The Group recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«إِنَّ اللهَ تَجَاوَزَ لِي عَنْ أُمَّتِي مَا حَدَّثَتْ بِهِ أَنْفُسَهَا مَالَمْ تَكَلَّمْ أَوْ تَعْمَل»

(Allah has pardoned my Ummah for what they say to themselves, as long as they do not utter it or act on it.)

The Two Sahihs recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«قَالَ اللهُ: إِذَا هَمَّ عَبْدِي بِسَيِّئَةٍ فَلَا تَكْتُبُوهَا عَلَيهِ، فَإِنْ عَمِلَهَا فَاكْتُبُوهَا سَيِّئَةً، وَإِذَا هَمَّ بِحَسَنَةٍ فَلَمْ يَعْمَلْهَا فَاكْتُبُوهَا حَسَنَةً، فَإِنْ عَمِلَهَا فَاكْتُبُوهَا عَشْرًا»

(Allah said (to His angels), “If My servant intends to commit an evil deed, do not record it as such for him, and if he commits it, write it for him as one evil deed. If he intends to perform a good deed, but did not perform it, then write it for him as one good deed, and if he performs it, write it for him as ten good deeds.”)

[ءَامَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَآ أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِن رَّبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ كُلٌّ ءَامَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَمَلَـئِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ لاَ نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِّن رُّسُلِهِ وَقَالُواْ سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ ]

لاَ يُكَلّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ رَبَّنَا لاَ تُؤَاخِذْنَآ إِن نَّسِينَآ أَوْ أَخْطَأْنَا رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْنَآ إِصْرًا كَمَا حَمَلْتَهُ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِنَا رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تُحَمّلْنَا مَا لاَ طَاقَةَ لَنَا بِهِ وَاعْفُ عَنَّا وَاغْفِرْ لَنَا وَارْحَمْنَآ أَنتَ مَوْلَـنَا فَانْصُرْنَا عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَـفِرِينَ-]

l(285. The Messenger believes in what has been sent down to him from his Lord, and (so do) the believers. Each one believes in Allah, His Angels, His Books, and His Messengers. (They say,) “We make no distinction between one another of His Messengers ـ and they say, “We hear, and we obey. (We seek) Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the return (of all).”) (286. Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned. “Our Lord! Punish us not if we forget or fall into error, our Lord! Lay not on us a burden like that which You did lay on those before us (Jews and Christians); our Lord! Put not on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear. Pardon us and grant us forgiveness. Have mercy on us. You are our Mawla (Patron, Supporter and Protector) and give us victory over the disbelieving people.”) The Hadiths on the Virtue of These Two Ayat, May Allah Benefit Us by Them Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Mas`ud said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«مَنْ قَرَأَ بِالْآيَتَيْنِ مِنْ آخِرِ سُورَةِ الْبَقَرَةِ فِي لَيْلَةٍ، كَفَتَاه»

(Whoever recites the last two Ayat in Surat Al-Baqarah at night, they will suffice for him.)

The rest of the six also recorded similar wording for this Hadith. The Two Sahihs recorded this Hadith using various chains of narration, and Imam Ahmad also recorded it.

Muslim recorded that `Abdullah said, “When the Messenger of Allah went on the Isra journey, he ascended to the Sidrat Al-Muntaha in the sixth heaven, where whatever ascends from the earth ends at, and whatever descends from above it ends at.

[إِذْ يَغْشَى السِّدْرَةَ مَا يَغْشَى ]

(When that covered the lote tree which did cover it!) [53:16] meaning, a mat made of gold.

The Messenger of Allah was then given three things: the five prayers, the last Ayat in Surat Al-Baqarah and forgiveness for whoever did not associate anything or anyone with Allah from his Ummah.”

Earlier we mentioned the Hadith regarding the virtues of Surat Al-Fatihah from Ibn `Abbas which stated, “While the Messenger of Allah was with Jibil, he heard a noise from above. Jibil lifted his sight to the sky and said, `This is a door that was opened just now in heaven, and it was never opened before.’ An angel came down through the door to the Prophet and said, `Receive the good news of two lights that you have been given and which no Prophet before you was given: the Opener of the Book (Al-Fatihah) and the last Ayat in Surat Al-Baqarah. You will not read a letter of them, but you will be granted its benefit.”’ This Hadith was collected by Muslim and An-Nasa’i, and this is the wording collected by An-Nasa’i.

You may search the tafsir of Ibn Kathir in English online by clicking this link: http://www.tafsir.com/

You may listen to live classes by Sister Laila Nasheeba as well as recordings by clicking this link:
www.sunnahfollowers.net or  view her videos and other thoughts on her personal blog http://lailanasheeba.wordpress.com





Great Women of Islam:Fatimah Bint Asad

24 01 2008

Fatimah bint Asad, was the mother of ‘Ali bin Abu Talib, and the mother-in-law of the Prophet’s daughter, Fatimah bint Muhammad. Her grandsons, Hasan and Husain are to be the leaders of the youths of Paradise. Besides ‘Ali, she had two other sons, Ja’far Tayyir who was a famous General. He led the forces of Islam in the battle of Mu’tah and was martyred in the same battle.

When the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] grew up and proclaimed himself to be the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] and Last Messenger of Allah, she still stood by him. All the relentless persecution did not deter her in any way. She was exceptionally fond of her son Ja’far, but for the sake of Islam she bore the separation from him and his wife, Asma bint ‘Omais, when they migrated to Abyssiniah on the Prophet’s orders with the first group of migrant Muslims.

Fatimah bint Asad, being one of the first to swear allegiance to Islam and its concept of the Oneness of Allah, faced the economic and social boycott of the Shi’ab Abi Talib for those three terrible years. She was also a member of the privileged group who migrated to Madinah.

‘Abdul Muttalib, who was a very discriminating man, had assessed her nature, her intelligence and her capabilities from the very beginning and proposed for her for his son, Abu Talib. When the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] was told by Allah to spread the Message of Islam among his kith and kin, it was she who immediately accepted this invitation and swore allegiance and entered the fold of Islam. When the Prophet’s grandfather, ‘Abdul Muttalib, passed away, the guardianship of the orphan Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] passed on to Abu Talib . His wife, Fatimah bint Asad, looked after him, loving him as if he were her own. He remembered in his later life that she would go hungry to feed him. He respected her so highly that whenever she visited him he would stand up and receive her with great love, addressing her as ‘Mother’.

His uncle, too, loved him deeply. Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] in his childhood was so well mannered and so fastidious about his personal cleanliness that Abu Talib would hold him up as an example to his other children. Normally boys would be dirty and tousled from playing rough games with the other boys, but Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] was always dignified with a neat appearance. People were impressed when they saw him. Abu Talib liked all the children to eat together because he felt that whenever Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] ate with other children, food would be sufficient, and when the children ate alone, they would remain hungry. Abu Talib often told his nephew that he was specially blessed, as there was plenty when he was around.

Fatimah bint Asad did not spare any pains and looked after the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] in his infancy, boyhood and youth. Once in his childhood he accompanied his uncle on a business trip to Syria. Some very unusual and surprising incidents took place on the journey, and Abu Talib described these to his wife when they came back.

The Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] placed the invitation to a religion with a new and rational perspective before the Quraish of Makkah, the worshippers of all the false idols in the Ka’bah were infuriated. They could not dream that the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] would dismiss their gods as useless helpless creatures, and they became his bitter enemies for propagating a new faith that did away with their traditional and inherited practices. They adopted a very antagonistic attitude and swore to crush him and Islam. During this period they resorted to the most cruel and sadistic forms of torture to make the converts give up the new faith and return to their old barbaric practices and rituals. It was only the power and influence of Abu Talib that prevented them from doing any harm to Muhammad. He stood by him with all his love and carried out the responsibilities of a guardian faithfully by giving him his protection. No enemy could dare to do anything to him as long as he was under the mantle of his uncle’s protection.

Fatimah bint Asad cooperated with Abu Talib wholeheartedly and she was a mother, pure and simple, where the safety and well being of Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] was concerned. No wonder he loved and respected her so highly. Considering the dangerous conditions which developed for the Muslims in Makkah, he thought it was better that the Muslims migrate to Abyssiniah where the ruler was known to be tolerant and hospitable. The leader of this first group of migrants was Ja’far bin Abi Talib, the brother of ‘Ali, and the favorite son of Fatimah bint Asad. She loved him more than the others because he resembled Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] very much, and was extremely intelligent.

He seemed to have inherited the family’s mastery over language and was also an eloquent speaker who could win people over to his viewpoint. It was with this same skill that he had won over the king of Abyssiniah when the Quraish appealed to him to surrender the Muslims to them.

The Quraish now decided to restrict the Muslims to one small area, besiege them and boycott them. Social and economic sanctions were imposed, and these three years were perhaps the toughest that the followers of lslam faced. Economically, it was certainly the worst ever. Children could be heard on all sides sobbing with hunger, and the elders looked on helplessly with tears in their eyes. To satisfy their hunger they started eating the leaves of trees and grass; they even sucked on wet skins to slake their thirst. Fatimah bint Asad passed this terrible period with fortitude and patience, and did not waver in the smallest degree. Ten years after the first revelation to Muhammad [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] appointing him the Messenger of Allah, this harsh siege was finally lifted. It was in the same year that the Prophet’s wife and most faithful supporter, Khadijah, passed away. The pangs of separation from her were very strong for the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] . He had not yet recovered from her loss, when he was dealt another terrible blow – his best ally, Abu Talib, also passed away. This year is known as ‘The Year of Sorrows’ in Islamic history.

The torture and torment, atrocities and cruelties reached such proportions that Allah finally ordered the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] to migrate to Madinah. Fatimah bint Asad was among these migrants.

“So patience is most fitting. And it is Allah Whose help can be sought against that (lie) which you describe.” (12:18)

Anas bin Malik says that when the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] got news of the death of Fatimah bint Asad, he immediately went to her house, sat beside her and prayed for her.

“My dear mother, may Allah keep you under His Protection. Many times you went hungry in order to feed me well. You fed me and clothed me on delicacies that you denied yourself. Allah will surely be happy with these actions of yours. And your intentions were surely meant to win the goodwill and pleasure of Allah and success in the Hereafter.”

He gave his shirt to be used as part of her shroud, saying he prayed to Allah to forgive her and give her the dress of Paradise.

‘When the grave was prepared the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] himself examined it and with his own hands placed her into the grave.

Thus, she was one of the few blessed people whose graves the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] himself examined.

“Fatimah bint Asad is that great lady for whom he gave the glad tidings that she would be blessed with a place in Paradise. He said that he shrouded her with his shirt, praying that Allah would give her the dress of Paradise. Allah pleased with them and they pleased Allah.”

Taken from the book: Great Women of Islam (Who were given the good news of Paradise) By: Mahmoud Ahmad Ghadanfar Revised by: Sheikh Safur-Rahman Al Mubarak puri which may be purchased at:http://www.dar-us-salam.com/store/main.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=Dus&Product_Code=125&Category_Code=Eng_Womenas well as other places.





You Might Not Like What You See….

20 01 2008

I would wager that the title of this blog will apply to  most people both Muslims and Non Muslims.  As human beings we have an inordinate need to please ingrained in us from a young age. We all want to the be the best at what we do. We want to excell and be pointed to as a model or perfect example of the correct way. However, many of us take this to one of two extremes. Either we deny that we care and go into a rebellious stage or we admit to ourselves that we do care and set out in life killing ourselves to be the best.

I have also noticed that people of the second category tend to take constructive criticism horribly. They may lash out and point out YOUR faults if you try to advise them or they may come up with “conspiracy theories” as to why anyone would dare to say something to them when they are clearly in the wrong.  They expect everyone to sweep their faults under the rug and remain silent as they continually commit wrong actions. Whereas, they are the first to point out anyone else’s wrong actions. In fact, most people of the second category take great pleasure in pointing out the faults of others. Perhaps, it makes them feel as if they are better, they are succeeding in their quest to be the best.

 On the other hand, the rebellious group just acts as if they could care less. Did I bring home a paycheck this week? Ummm…… Did I make my five daily prayers…..<shrug> I don’t remember. And so on…..

Both types of behavior are destructive. As Muslims, we should know better than to fall into either category, but Alas! we are humans and most of us do fall into one of the two categories mentioned here.

Not only do we compete as to who has the biggest house, the most intelligent children, or the nicest vehicle. We also make our religion a competition.  We compare which of us  have a greater following, which of us can speak the best, which of us can read Quran with the most beautiful voice, which of us get the most positive comments, which of us has the most viewers on our blogs (hence the need to put how many views we have on the front page) and so on.

 Don’t get me wrong, competing to do good deeds is good. Encouraging each other and motivating each other to fulfill our obligations and even try to do the voluntary actions is a very noble cause.

Sadly, though, our competition today is not like this. Our competition is a popularity contest. And I wonder sometimes if it is even for the sake of Allah (SWT) or if it is just to show each other up and appear to be the most pious. I wonder if it isn’t feeding some type of “me syndrome” the need to be the center of attention, the sort of teacher’s pet thing we deal with in elementary school or the desire to be in the “in crowd.” We take this competition to disgustingly low levels of slander, backbiting, and smear campaigns. We stop at nothing to drag the other people’s names through the mud so that we may come out on top, the shining example of piety and grace.

That’s something to think about. Something that I have been thinking about for several days now.  I think we all need to take the time to look inside ourselves and examine what we find, the good, the bad, and the downright ugly of it.  For me this time has been after the fajr (pre dawn) prayer. The house is quiet, peaceful, serene, and I have time to sort through my muddled thoughts and evaluate myself and my situation.  With the daily distractions around us, it is easy to jump to conclusions and assumptions. However, when it is just you and your Creator with all the worldly distractions gone, you may be surprised how you view things. I know I was surprised, shocked, and even terrified by what I saw when I sat down and really evaluated my life. I found that I had been in the wrong far too often….. Insh’Allah I will definatley be making changes. Will you?





Daily Evaluation

5 01 2008

Personal Daily Evaluation

It is suggested to our brothers and sisters whether beginners, illustrious workers, or responsible leaders, that they should have a daily period put aside for self-evaluation and examination. We should realise that all of us are going to be accountable for our deeds on the Day of Judgement. It is therefore wise that we continuously assess ourselves in this world and make amends before that final judgement by Allah when we will not be given an opportunity to make up for our misdeeds.The prophet said:

‘Everyone starts his day and is a vendor of his soul, either freeing it or bringing about its ruin.’ (Muslim).

‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, in one of his famous sayings said

“Judge yourselves before you are judged, evaluate yourselves before you are evaluated and be ready for the greatest investigation (the Day of Judgement)”

1. Did I offer my five daily Salat on time?
Guard stricly your Salat or Prayer, especially the middle prayer; and stand before Allah submissively (al-Baqarah 2.238).
The Prayer most loved by Allah is Prayer performed on time (Muslim).

2. Am I satisfied with the quality of my Salat?
If a man performs two units of prayer without the distraction of any worldly thoughts, all his previous sins will be forgiven (Bukhari)
When you stand for Prayer perform your Prayer as if were your last (Ahmad).

3. How many verses of the Qur’an did I memorise?
Indeed the one who memorises nothing of the Qur’an is similar to a deserted house (Timidhi)

4. What steps did I take to bring my family closer to Islam?
O you who believe! Save yourself and your family from a fire whose fuel is men and stones (66:6).

5. How many Salat did I offer in congregation?
A prayer with congregation is twenty-seven times superior to one performed individually. (Bukhari)

6. What part of the Qur’an did I read with understanding?
Do they not seek to understand the Qur’an, or are their hearts locked up by them? (47:24)

7. What did I do to fulfil my duty as a da’iyah (caller to Islam)?
Encourage one another in truth, and encourage one another in patience(al-Asr 103)

Who is better in speech than one who calls to God, acts righteously and says: I am of those who surrenter [unto Him]. (al Fusilat 41:33]

8. Have I treated my parents with love and respect and have I given due consideration to all their needs?
Your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you are to be kind to Parents whether on or both of them attain old age during your lifetime, say no to them a word of contempt nor repel them but address them in terms of honour. And out of kindness lower to them the wing of humility and say: My Lord: bestow on them your mercy even as they cherished me in childhood (17:23-24)

9. Did I safeguard my tongue from useless speech?
The faith of a man cannot be straight unless his heart becomes straight and his heart cannot be straight unless his tongue becomes straight. (Ahmad)

10. Did I commend others for the good things they may have done? Kind works and the covering of faults are better than charity followed by injury. Allah is free of all wants and He is Most Forbearing (2:263)

11. Did I take an interest in my health (diet, exercises, etc)?
Health for one who fears Allah is better than wealth (Hadith)

12 Have I been just in all my dealings?
O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice as witnesses to Allah even against yourself, or your kith and kin and whether they be rich or poor, for Allah can best protect both. (al-Nisa 4:135)

13. Did I backbite or slander anyone?
None of you should tell me anything about anyone, for I like to meet [anyone] of you with a clean heart. (Abu Dawud).

14. What acts of sadaqah did I perform?
There are 360 joints in the body and for each joint you must give a sadaqah (thanks or charity). (Bukhari)

15. Was I safeguard my eyes from the evil influences of Shaitan?
A gaze is a poisoned arrow from Satan. Whoever abstains from it in fear of God shall receive from Him an increase in faith, the sweetness of which he will feel in his heart. (Musnad of ibn Hanbal)

16. What have I read to improve my understanding of Islam?
(Al-Fatir 35:28)

17. Did I save a portion of my wealth?
Make not your hand be chained to your neck nor open it with a complete opening, lest you become blameworthy and destitute. (al-Isra 17:29)

18. Did I fulfil all my promises?
And fulfil your promise. Verily you will be answerable for your promises (al-Isra 17:34)

19. Did I make tawbah (seek Allah’s forgiveness)?
Allah will continue to hold out His hand at night so that he who sinned during the day might repent, and to hold out His hand during the day so that he who sinned at night might repent till the sun shoud rise from the West. (Muslim)

20. Did I implement what I read and said?
O you who believer! Why do you say that which you do not do? Grievously hateful is it in the sight of God that you should say what you do not do. (al-Saif 6x-243)

21. Did I perform my work with proficiency?
Verily Allah loves that when anyone of you does a job, he should perfect it.
(al-Bayhaqi)

22. Did I reflect on my accountability to Allah on the Day of Judgement?
And fear the Day when you shall be brought back to Allah. Then shall every soul be paid what it earned and none shall be dealt with unjustly (al-Baqarah 2:281)

That day we seal your mouths and hand speak out and feet bear witness, to all that they did. (Ya-Sin 36:65)

23. Am I satisfied with the way I spent the day?
Wise is the one who continually assesses himself and performs good deeds for the life after death. Foolish is the one who follows his desires and entertains very high hopes from Allah. (Timidhi).

‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, in one of his famous sayings said “Judge yourselves before you are judged, evaluate yourselves before you are evaluated and be ready for the greatest investigation (the Day of Judgement)”

“The World is three days: As for yesterday, it has vanished, along with all that was in it. As for tomorrow, you may never see it. As for today, it is yours, so work in it.” (Hassan al-Basri)

Source: www.islamactive.net