Lying….

30 12 2007

It’s just a “little white lie”…..So what if you exaggerate a little on your resume, you lead someone to believe that you make a little more money than you actually earn, or maybe you omit something that you should tell a potential spouse during the nikah (wedding) arrangements. These are all considered by many to be insignificant little lies.  However, little lies can and do add up and accumulate. Then, when the truth is revealed, it all comes crashing down destroying friendships, ripping apart families, and ruining careers…..and all that is just in THIS WORLD! Let’s not forget that lying is a sin and a sign of hypocrisy in Islam (and most other religions as well).

So, why is it so hard to tell the truth? Why do we feel compelled to lie? I guess we could chalk that up to human nature. We all want to please others and be pleased. Sometimes the truth hurts. Some people have such low self esteem that they think they need to lie to build themselves up and impress others. When, in actuality, the old adage of “be yourself” really is the best way to be! So cliche, I know. But…..it’s true!

So, anyway, I found this article written by Shaykh Ibrahim Dremali (a regular lecturer at www.sunnahfollowers.net) and thought that I would pass it on.

Al Khadhib-Lying

Written by Dr. Ibrahim Dremali   
Sunday, 09 July 2006
Lying, where it is not allowed (and there are only a few exceptions where it is allowed) is a heinous sin and puts one in grave danger of corruption, hypocrisy and even kufr.  It is a “slippery slope” to all manner of corruption and a character flaw from which it is difficult to return.  Fellow Muslims, search within yourself and rid yourself of all forms of lying, deception and falsehood.  Make sure that truthfulness is victorious over falsehood in your heart at all times.  Allah does not guide one who is a liar.  Allah said:

{Wa qaala rajulun mu’minun min aali fir’auna yaktumu imaanahu a taqtuloona rajulan an yaqoola rabiyya Allah wa qad jaa’akum bil-bayyinaati min rabbikum?  Wa in yaku kaadhiban fa ‘alaihi kadhibuhu wa in yakun saadiqan yusibkum ba’dhu alladhiy ya’idukum inna Allaha laa yahdiy man huwa musrifun kadh-dhaabun.}
{And a believing man from Pharaoh’s people who had been hiding his belief said: Will you kill a man simply because he says my Lord is Allah, though he has brought you clear proofs from your Lord?  If he is lying, his lie is upon him but if he is telling the truth, you will be afflicted by some of what he is warning you about.  Verily, Allah does not guide one who is given to excess and lying.}  Ghaafir:28

One of the worst forms of lying in which a Muslim can engage is to be phony about his/her Islam.  Al-Hassan Al-Basri, an early taabi’i, was a famous waa’idh (preacher) who could bring large numbers of people to tears in moments.  No one doubted his piety buy himself.  He used to go to his home every night after doing whatever good Allah knows for Islam and tremble in fear that his actions may not measure up to his words.  He did this in true contemplation and understanding of Allah’s statement:

{Yaa ayyuhaa alladhina aamanoo lima taquloona maa laa taf’aloona? (2)  Kabura maqtan ‘inda Allahi an taqooloo maa laa taf’aloona. (3)}
{O, you who believe, why do you say that which you do not do? (2) It is very hateful to Allah that you would say that which you do not do.}  As-Saff:2-3

The worst forms of lying is to tell lies (or speak without knowledge) about Allah, His Messenger and His Message (Islam).  The source of this knowledge is Allah (via the Qur’an) and His Messenger (via the athentic hadith).  There is no other route to this knowledge and the knowledge was sent by Allah is is being preserved by Allah.  Al-hamdu lillahi!  The knowledge is there for the seeking until yaumil Qiyaama.  The previous nations did not get this.  There were put in charge of preserving their messages and they lost them all.  Allah himself took charge of preserving the message of Islam – even if that was actually carried out by human means.  Allah said:

{Al-Haqqu min rabbika fa laa takun min al-mumtareena (60) Fa man haajjaka feehi min ba’di maa jaa’aka min al-‘ilm fa qul ta’aalau nad’u abnaa’anaa wa abnaa’akum wa nisaa’anaa wa nisaa’akum wa anfusanaa wa anfusakum thumma nabtahil fa naj’al la’nata Allahi ‘alaa al-kaadhibeena. (61)}
{The truth is from your Lord so do not be among those who doubt. (60) Then, if anyone disputes with you about it after that knowledge which has come to you, simply say to them:  Come, let us call our sons and your sons, our women and your women, ourselves and yourselves and let us make a solemn prayer and invoke Allah’s curse upon whoever is lying. (61)}  Aal ‘Imraan:60-61

This includes lying about Allah’s laws (the shari’a) and speaking about what is halal and what is haram without authentic knowledge from Allah and/or from His Messenger (sas).  Allah said:

{Wa laa taquloo limaa tasifu alsinatukum al-kadhiba hadhaa halaalun wa hadhaa haraamun li taftaroo ‘alaa Allahi al-kadhiba inna alladhina yaftaroona ‘alaa Allahi al-kadhiba laa yuflihoon.}
{Do not say about that which your lying tongues describe that this is lawful and that is not lawful, that you may forge a lie upon Allah.  Verily, those who forge lies upon Allah never succeed.}  An-Nahl:116

{Qul inna alladhina yaftaroona ‘alaa Allahi al-kadhiba laa yuflihoona (69) Mataa’un fiy ad-dunyaa thumma ilainaa marji’uhum thumma nudheeqahum al-‘adhaaba ash-shadeeda bi maa kaanoo yakfuroon. (70)}
{Say, verily those who forge lies upon Allah never succeed. (69) Some provision in this world but unto Us is their return and then we will make them taste the severe punishment for the kufr which they used to commit. (70)}  Yunus:69-70

In addition to lying about Allah being one of the greatest sins and a cause of punishment in the hereafter, in the above verses, we see that:

  1. Material gain is one of the motives for which people commit it.
  2. People who commit this will never succeed.
  3. They may get “goods” (mataa’) in this life, but will only eventually return to Allah and be serverely punished.
  4. What they did was kufr.

Lying about Allah’s creation is also a major sin and a source of many kinds of corruption, division and strife.

“Inna min a’dham al-firaa an yud’aa ar-rajulu ilaa ghairi abeehi, au yuriya ‘ainahu maa lam tara, au yaqoola ‘alaa rasooli Allahi maa lam yaqul.”
“The most heinous of forgeries as for a man to be ascribed to other than his true father, to claim that his eye saw what it did not see and to attribute to Allah’s Messenger (sas) something which he did not say.” Al-Bukhari

Adh-dhann

“Iyaakum wa adh-dhanni fa inna adh-dhanna akdhaba al-hadeeth.”
“Stay away from assumption, for assumption is the most lying of all discourse.”  Muslim & Al-Bukhari

transmitting everything you hear

“Kafaa bil-mar’i kadhiban an yuhadditha bi kulli maa sami’a.”
“A person will be filled with lies simply by narrating everything he hears.”  Muslim

Lying leads to further corruption and even hell-fire

“Inna as-sidqa yahdiy ilaa al-birri wa inna al-birra yahdiy ilaa al-jannati.  Wa inna ar-rajula la yasduqu hattaa yuktaba ‘inda Allahi siddeeqan.  Wa inna al-kadhiba yaydiy ilaa al-fujoori wa inna al-fujoora yahdiy ilaa an-naari. Wa inna ar-rajula la yakdhibu hattaa yuktaba ‘inda Allahi kadh-dhaaban.”
“Truthfulness guide to righteousness and righteousness guides to Paradise.  Verily, a man will be truthful until he is recorded with Allah as ever-believing.  And lying guides to moral corruption and moral corruption guides to the fire.  Verily, a man will continue to lie until he is recorded with Allah as a complete liar.”  Muslim & Al-Bukhari

A munaafiq is one whose apparent external reality is Islam, belief, practice of Islam, etc. but whose inner reality is disbelief and eveil intent toward Islam and the Muslims.  It is NOT simply “hypocrisy” (which covers many things which are not “nifaq”) and that is a very inadequate and misleading of the term.  The character flaw possessed by a munaafiq is called “nifaaq”. Nifaaq negates Islam even if one is “practicing” in the apparent

“Aayatu al-munaafiqi thalaathun wa in sallaa wa saama wa za’ama annahu Muslim:  idhaa haddatha kadhiba, wa idhaa wa’ada akhlafa wa idhaa ‘tumina khaan.”
“The signs of a munaafiq are three – even if he prays, fasts and claims/believes he is a Muslim:  when he speaks he lies, when he promises he breaks his promise and when he is entrusted he betrays the trust.”  Muslim & Al-Bukhari

These hadith clearly tell us that lying or truthfulness are character traits.  They are habit-forming, are “slippery slopes” and are not something that any human can turn on and off at will.  One who is a liar to people will also be a liar to Allah and vice versa.  That is why a Muslim must take utmost precaution and steps against ANY form of lying, deception or falsehood whether with/about Allah or with/about people.

Malik ibn Deenaar said:  “As-sidqu wa al-kadhibu ya’tarikaani fiy al-qalbi hattaa yukhrija ahaduhumaa saahibahu.”  “Truthfulness and lying are in combat in the heart until one of them expels the other.”

Lying is one of the weaknesses of the nafs and one of the wrong things to which it becomes attracted.

Luqman is reported to have said to his son:  “Yaa bunayya iyaaka wa al-kadhibi fa innahu shahiyyun ka lahmi al-‘usfoori ‘ammaa qaleelun yaqlaaho saahibuhu.”  “Dear son, beware of lying for it is surely attractive like the meat of a quail which its owner is just about to pluck off and eat.”

It is never beneficial, even if it appears to be so in the short run.

Ash-Sha’biy said:  “Iyaaka wa al-kadhiba haitha taraa annahu yanfa’uka fa huwa yadhurruka.”  “Beware of lying.  Whenever you think it will benefit you, it only harms you.”

www.dremali.com

Also check out these posts from Javeria’s blog!

Living without lying – why we lie?
http://javeria.wordpress.com/2006/12/07/living-without-lying-why-we-lie

Living without lying – why we should not lie
http://javeria.wordpress.com/2007/02/05/living-without-lying-2/

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Hardships Benefit the Believer-Why Muslims “Don’t Sweat It”

22 10 2007

Allah has decreed that, in this life, hardships and disasters strike both believers and non-believers. For a non-believer, they are inconveniences that hinder him from proceeding with his normal involvement in the worldly life. For a believer, on the other hand, they are instances of rest and remembrance, tests that promise great rewards, and indications of atonement and expiation of sins. Regardless of how little is the harm that strikes a believer, it carries with it good news of forgiveness and elevated rank ( in Jannah ). The Righteous Predecessors used to be pleased when a hardship afflicted them, seeing it as a token of Allah’s forgiveness and benevolence.

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 Maula (Patron, Suppor-ter and Protector, etc.) (Surah Baqara Verse 286)

Expiations of Sins

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet said: ” Hardships continue to befall a believing man and woman in their body, family, and property, until they meet Allah (S) burdened with no sins. ” [Tirmithee]

Sign of Allah’s Love

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” Whenever Allah wills good for a person, He subjects him to adversity” [Bukharee and others]

Sign of Eeman

Abu Hurayrah (RA) and Ka’b Bin Maalik (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” The parable of a believer is that of a fresh and moist plant; the wind tilts it this way and that way; and so is the believer; he continues to be subject to affliction. And the parable of a hypocrite is that of a firm cedar tree; it does not shake – until it is uprooted all at once.” [Bukharee and Muslim]

Sign of Righteousness

The prophets and righteous people are afflicted the most, and their rewards are the highest. Sa’d (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” The most in their suffering among the people are the prophets, then the best, then the (next) best. One is afflicted in accordance with his deen (faith). If his deen is firm his affliction is hard, and if his deen is weak, his affliction is light. Indeed, one would be so much subjected to adversity until he walks among the people without any sins. ” [Ahmad, Tirmithee]

Early Punishment

Anas (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” When Allah wills good for a servant of His, He expedites his punishment in this life; and when He wills retribution for a servant of His, He holds his sins for Him to judge him by them on the Day of Resurrection.” [Tirmithee]

Multiplication of Rewards

Anas (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” The amount of reward is in accordance with the amount of suffering. When Allah (SWT) loves some people, He tries them (with affliction). He who then is content (with Allah’s decree) has achieved the acceptance (of Allah), and he who is dissatisfied (with Allah’s decree) will attain the anger (of Allah).” [Tirmithee]

Rewards for Sickness

One should not look to sickness as a gloomy episode, but should remember the great good in it. It is one form of affliction with which Allah (SWT) tests His ‘ibaad (servants), giving them a
chance to acquire rewards, as was explained above, as is further emphasized below.

Removal of Sins and Elevation in Ranks

Abu Hurayrah (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” Whenever a Muslim is afflicted by harm from sickness or other matters, Allah will drop his sins because of that, like a tree drops its leaves.” [Bukharee and Muslim]

Abu Sa’eed al-Khudree (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: “A Muslim is not afflicted by hardship, sickness, sadness, worry, harm, or depression – even if pricked by a thorn, but Allah expiates his sins because of that. ” [Bukharee and Muslim]

Sa’eed said, ” I was with Salmaan (RA) when he visited a sick man in Kindah ( in Persia ), and he said to him: ” Expect good because Allah (SWT) makes a believers sickness an expiation (for his sins) and a period of rest. However, when a disbeliever falls sick, he is like a camel whose owner ties it then lets it loose – it does not understand why it was tied nor why it was freed.” [Bukharee]

‘Aishah (RA) narrated that once some pain afflicted the Prophet (SAW) causing him to suffer and turn about in his bed. she said: “Had one of us done this, you would have blamed him.” He (SAW) replied: ” An ailment is intensified for the righteous. whenever a believer is afflicted by a hardship, whether it is a thorn or more, a sin is taken off from him because of it, and he is elevated by one rank (in Jannah). ” [Ahmad]

Retaining Rewards for Deeds Before Sickness

Usually, when a believer falls sick, he would not be able to do the same amount of good (prayer, fasting, helping Muslims etc) that he used to do when he was well. But Allah out of His great mercy, continues to record for him the good deeds that he was forced to stop because of his sickness. Abu Moosa Al-Ash’aree narrated that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” For a traveling or sick person, his deeds will be recorded in accordance with what he used to do when he was resident or well.” [Bukharee]

‘Abdullah Bin ‘Amr reported that the Prophet said: “No (believing) person gets sick, but (his deeds) will be recorded for him in accordance with what he used to do when he was well.” [Bukharee] Anas (RA) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: ” No Muslims body is afflicted by Allah, but He will record (his deeds) foe him in accordance with what he used to do when he was well – as long as he is sick. Thus, if He takes his life, He forgives him; and if He cures him, He washes him (from sins).” [Bukharee]
‘Uqbah Bin ‘Aamir reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: “Each days deeds are sealed with it. thus, when a believer gets sick, the angels say, ” Our lord! Your servant such and such, You have restrained him (from doing good this day).” And the lord replies, ” Seal his day in accordance with his (usual) deeds, until he is cured or dies”. [Ahmad]

Reason for the Reward

‘Atta Bin Rabaah reported that Ibn ‘Abbaas (RA) told him, “Do you want to see a woman from the people of Jannah (paradise)?” He said “Yes”. He said: ” It is this black woman. She came to the Prophet (SAW) saying, ” I have (epileptic) seizures, and I get exposed, so supplicate to Allah for me.” He (SAW) said: ” If you wish, be patient and you will attain Jannah; or if you wish, I will ask Allah to cure you.” She replied, ” I will be patient ! But my body gets exposed (because of the fall), so supplicate to Allah for me that I do not become exposed.” and he (SAW) did.” [Bukharee and Muslim]

The scholars have differed in opinion as to whether a sick person will be rewarded for the sickness itself or for being patient during it. the correct opinion is that if he is patient and submits to Allah’s will, as in the above hadeeth, he would be rewarded for both the submission and the sickness, otherwise, he would not be rewarded at all; because he resented Allah’s decree. This is what should be understood from Ibn hajar al-‘Asqalaanees words: “The authentic hadeeths are clear in that the rewards are recorded once affliction strikes a Muslim. As for patience and acceptance, they are virtues for which a person may get additional rewards over those for the affliction.” ‘Abdullah Bin ‘Amr reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: “If a Muslim is pricked by (as little as) a thorn in the worldly life, and he seeks its reward from Allah, some of his sins will be removed, because of it, on the Day of Judgement.”[Bukharee]

“True believers are only those whose hearts are filled with awe whenever God is mentioned, and whose faith is strengthened whenever His revelations are recited to them. In their Lord do they place their trust.” (Chapter 8: Verse 2)

By: Md Ziya
Nagpur- India





US Companies Aim Advertising At Muslim Americans

24 09 2007
US Companies Aim Advertising at Muslim Americans
By Mohamed Elshinnawi
Washington
19 September 2007

Watch Advertising for Muslims / Windows Broadband  video clip
Watch Advertising for Muslims / Windows Dialup  video clip

A recent study by the nation’s largest advertising firm shows that the Muslim American community has an estimated purchasing power of about $170 billion. JWT Advertising conducted the study, and it is now working with a wide variety of companies to develop strategies to attract Muslim American customers. VOA’s Mohamed Elshinnawi examined the new trend in Dearborn, Michigan, near Detroit, where there is a dense population of Muslims.

These children are participating in an advertising campaign
The six to eight million Muslims in the U.S. are beginning to be sought after by marketers and consumer goods manufacturers

JWT Advertising says companies in the Detroit area are leading the way in using the cultural aspects of the Muslim faith to expand their share of the Muslim American market.

Ann Mack is JWT’s director of trends spotting. “Some marketers — I am not going to name them specifically — are having Ramadan advertisements,” she says, “and because they are speaking specifically to these populations, they will appeal, they will resonate and those consumers will tend to gravitate towards these brands.”

The study shows that the six to eight million Muslims in the United States are looking for recognition and respect, and that companies should make sure they are not neglecting or offending their community.

One company that is not is the Swedish furniture company IKEA. It has a store near Dearborn that initially attracted few Muslim shoppers. So the company consulted with Nasser Baydoun, Chairman of the American Arab Chamber of Commerce. He recalls, “What we were able to do was to teach them how to market to our community — how does our community get its information, how do they choose which store they go to and how does IKEA create a working staff that is friendly to the community.”

Ikea staff benefited from the diversity training, and became familiar with the Muslim community’s needs. Lisa Allen is IKEA’s public relations director. “When we are speaking to Arab Americans,” she says, “we can connect with them on that level, talk about their needs. For IKEA, it is all about how our product solutions fit your needs and your life style.”

A team of the company’s designers and marketers visited Muslim Americans’ homes to see how to adapt the stores’ products to customers’ customs and preferences. One plan is to offer decorations for the holy month of Ramadan and to add halal meals to the store’s food menu. Muslim American shopper Ismail Hakki says he is looking forward to seeing such offerings. “Like decorations for Ramadan, for the Eid [celebration after Ramadan] too, like some [halal] food or some cloth for the Eid.

Muslim-Americans, wear clothes which are marketed to everyone
Muslim Americans wear clothes that are marketed to everyone, as well as items specifically for them

Other companies are planning innovative approaches to cater to Muslim Americans’ needs. Amal Berry is the vice president of Comerica Bank. “Currently we are underway in a research project to understand exactly what Sharia law [Islamic law] says and whether the bank will be able to provide true Islamic bank products and services.”

McDonald’s in Detroit is offering halal chicken, Rite-Aide drug stores have Arabic signs and Comcast cable network is carrying the first nationwide Muslim American TV channel.

Fred Eaton is Comcast’s director of corporate affairs. “Comcast offered Bridges TV the opportunity for carriage on our cable system. In fact, Detroit was the market where Bridges TV was first launched,” he explained.

Marketing experts say advertising for the Muslim American community is a win-win situation. They say American companies will use it to expand their market share, while Muslim Americans will enjoy recognition and respect.