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Everything posted by ummitaalib

  1. On Tuesday 16th July 2019 a lunar eclipse is going to occur. In the UK, the eclipse will begin at approximately 9:07pm and last until around 1:17am. Read above articles
  2. Hajj & Qurbaani – The Legacy of Hazrat Ebrahim (alaihis salaam) and His Illustrious Family Beautiful spiritual lessons in Hajj and Qurbani newsletter_16_web.pdf
  3. By Mufti Taqi Usmani All praise to Allah. We praise Him and seek His help and His forgiveness and we believe in Him and rely on Him. We seek refuge with Him from the mischief of our selves and the vices of our deeds. There is none to lead him astray whom Allah guides and there is none to guide him whom Allah lets go astray. I bear witness that there is no God but Allah alone and that He has no partner. I also bear witness that our master, our authority, and our Prophet and our master, Muhammad is His servant and His Messenger. May Allah bestow upon him, his household and his Companions. His mercy and blessings in abundance. And Almighty Allah said: "But consort with them in kindness". (4.19) "You will not be able to deal equally between (your) wives, however, much you may wish to do so. But turn not altogether away (from one), leaving her in suspense, If you do good and be righteous, then surely Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful." (4:129) Importance of the rights of the servants (of Allah) Allamah Nawawi [ra] is commencing a discussion of the rights of the servants (of Allah) in the light of these verses and the traditions of the Holy Prophet I have already mentioned repeatedly that “the Rights of the servants are a very important branch of religion. Its importance lies in the fact that “the Rights of Allah” may be pardoned by repentance. If God forbid - some negligence ever occurs in the matter of Allah’s rights, it is very easy to remedy this negligence by means of repentance and seeking Allah’s pardon with a feelings of remorse and regret. The negligence can thus be remedied. As for the rights of the servants, if they are violated, they are not pardoned by repentance and feelings of remorse and regret and by seeking pardon, unless the usurped rights are restored to the right-holders or the latter willingly forgoe their rights in his favour. Therefore the matter of rights of people is a matter of serious consideration. Negligence in the matter of the Rights Serious indeed is the subject of the rights of the servants of Allah, yet equally serious is the negligence of people towards this subject in our society. There are only a few aspects of worship that we have taken as Deen (Faith), e.g. Prayer, Fasting, Hajj, Zakat, Remembrance, Recitation of the Holy Qur’an, the recital of some sacred names or words. We regard these items as Deen but we have excluded from Deen the Rights of the servants; similarly we have also excluded from Deen the rights concerning social living. One who is negligent in the discharge of these rights does not feel that he is committing any serious offence. Backbiting is a violation of People’s rights Take a simple example. If a Muslim is addicted (God forbid) to drinking wine he will be looked down upon by every Muslim who has even the least touch with the faith and the drunkard himself will feel ashamed that he is committing a sin. On the other hand a person who is addicted to backbiting is not hated in the society like the drunkard, nor does the backbiter himself feels that he is a sinner or criminal, although both the sins are equally heinous and base. But no, backbiting is more vicious sin than drinking wine: firstly, because it comes within the definition of the rights of the servants and secondly, because Almighty Allah has used for it in the Holy Qur’an a very horrid similitude the like of which He has not for any other sin. He has thus said in surah Al-Hujarat. verse no 12: "And do not spy: nor backbite one another. Would one of you love to eat the flesh of his dead brother: you would then abhor that. (49.12) Thus a backbiter has been compared to one who eats the flesh of his dead brother. So vicious is this in! Yet it has become common in the society. There is hardly an assembly where this sin is not committed. What is worse, it is not condemned at all as if the faith has nothing to do with this sin. ‘Ihsan is desirable at all times Hazrat Dr. Muhammad Abdul Hai may Allah exalt his status. is my spiritual Guide (Shaikh or Pir). One day he related the following incident: A man called on me and told me with a gusto of pleasure and pride that thank God, he had attained the rank of “Ihsan”. “Ihsan” is a very exalted status, as is mentioned in a tradition: (Sahih Bukhari the book of belief-chapter Inquiry in Hadith Jibrael tradition no: 50). This means that you should worship Almighty Allah, as you are seeing Allah and if this be not possible worship Him with the belief that He is seeing you. This is the rank of “Ihsan”. That gentleman told the respected Doctor Sahib that he had attained the rank of “Ihsan” Hazrat Doctor Sahib congratulated him on the attainment, as it was a great blessing of Allah and put to him this question: Do you realise the blessing of “Ihsan” only during the prayers or do you realise it also during your dealings with your wife and children that Almighty Allah is seeing you? He replied: What the Tradition says is that while pray one should feel that one is seeing Allah, or Allah is seeing him. I thought that “Ihsan” is related with worship only and not with other activities of life. Hazrat Doctor Sahib said to him: That is why I put this question to you, because it is generally misunderstood that “ihsan” is required during prayers, remembrance or recitation only, although it is required at all times and in all stages and walks of life. If you are sitting in a shop doing some business, “Ihsan” is required there also. You should realise in your heart that Almighty Allah is seeing you. “Ihsan” is also required when you are dealing with your subordinates. You should feel that Allah is seeing you even when you are dealing with your wife, children friends and neighbours. This is really what “Ihsan” means. It is not confined only to prayers and worship. That woman shall enter Hell It should be borne in mind very well that the teachings of the Holy Prophet cover every branch of life. It is narrated that once the people inquired from the Holy Prophet about a woman: O Prophet of Allah, there is a woman who remains engaged with worship all day and night. She is mostly busy with optional prayers, remembrance of Allah and recitation of the Holy Qur’an, she is always seen engaged in these acts of devotion. What do you think about the fate of this woman? The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] asked that Companion about her dealings with the neighbours. The Companion replied that she did not behave well with the neighbours. The women of the neighbourhood are not pleased with her. The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said: She will enter the Hell. (Bukhari p.48 tradition no: 911, chapter Does not trouble his neighbour) That woman shall enter Paradise At another time a question was put to the Holy Prophet about a woman who did not observe many items of optional worship and remained contented only with the obligatory and essential duties and sometimes she performed the Sunnah Muakkadah (the confirmed sunnah) prayer. She did not observe the optional prayers, rememberance, recitation, etc. more than this. Her dealings with the neighbours and others were however, amicable. The Holy Prophet replied: She will enter the Paradise. Who is a Pauper? The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has explained in these traditions that if anyone observes optional prayers it is very good, but if he does not do so he will not be asked in the Hereafter why he did not observe such and such optional forms of worship. This is because the very word Nafl (optional) means that if anyone performs this optional worship, he will receive reward, and if he does not do so, there is no sin on him. On the other hand the rights of the servants (of Allah) are something about which the people will be questioned on the Day of Judgement. The entry into Paradise or Hell depends on the nature of replies given to these questions. The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has explained in a Tradition as to who is a pauper; he is reported to have said: A person will bring with him on the Day of Judgement lots of good deeds; but in the world he usurped someone's rights, spoke ill of someone, injured someone’s feelings and hurt someone's heart. The result of all this will be that he will have to pay to others all the good deeds he brought with him and will have to take upon himself the sins of others while he has no good deeds left with him to compensate his creditors. The matter of the rights of the servants (of Allah) is thus a very important matter in the Shari'ah. (Tirmidhi. chapter on Accounts taking and Ransom Tradition no: 2533). The Rights of people are three-fourths of DEEN It has already been pointed out that if the “Islamic Jurisprudence” which deals with the injunctions of the Shari'ah is divided into four equal parts, only one part will be found to deal with matters relating to worship. and the remaining three parts will be found to contain injunctions with regard to matters that are related to people and their life. You may know the name of ‘Hidayah’ which is a renowned book of Hanafi jurisprudence in four volumes. The first volume deals with forms of worship in which poblems concerning Purity (Taharat), Prayer (Salat), Fasting, Zkat and Hajj have been discussed. The remaining three volumes are concerned with the subjects dealing with people and their rights, social living and the rights of the servants (of Allah). It can be easily inferred from this that the subject of the rights of the servants represents one-fourth of Deen (Faith). Therefore, a very important chapter is now commencing. May Almighty Allah help us, by His mercy, to read and listen to it with a firm mind, to act upon the injunctions. May He also help us to discharge the rights of the servants (of Allah) according to His pleasure and will. The miserable condition of women before Islam The first Chapter which Allamah Nawawi has included is the “Chapter of counsels about women”, meaning those counsels which the Holy Prophet has given about the rights of women. The reason for allotting this subject in the first chapter of the book is that the greatest shortcoming and negligence are committed in the matter of women’s rights. During the Days of Ignorance, before the advent of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam], women were treated like cattle, devoid of humanity, deprived of all rights, whatsoever. In those days of darkness the people did not recognise any rights due to women who were tolerated in the houses no better than pet animals like goats and sheep: but the conditions totally changed after the advent of Islam and under the sacred teachings of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. Amicable behaviour with women At that time the world was unaware of heavenly guidance. It was the Holy Prophet who for the first time made the world alive to the rights due to women whereunder they should be accorded nice treatment. At the very out set Allamah Nawawi [ra] has cited a verse of the Holy Qur’an that is very comprehensive on this subject: "But consort with them in kindness." (419) \ Almighty Allah has addressed all Muslims, comhanding them to behave, and consort with women in kindness; associate with them in life with goodwill and sympathy and never give them trouble. This is a general guidance. This verse is, as it were, the heading and the text of this chapter. The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has explained this verse by his words and practice. He gave such importance to the need of showing misbehaviour to women at that he is reported to have said in a Tradition: "Meaning: The best of you are those who behave well with their women and I am best of you in behaving well with my women. (Tirmidhi - chapter on right of a women over her husband Tradition no. 1172) The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] attached so much importance to the protection of the rights of women and ensuring good behaviour with them that he has explained this matter in many Traditions. The first Tradition on this subject is one narrated by Hazrat Abu Hurairah wherein the Holy Prophet is reported to have said: "I advise you to wish well for the women. You should accept this advice of mine." The Holy Qur’an enunciates only the principles Before proceeding ahead it is better to advise that the Holy Qur’an generally gives the basic principles, without going into the minute details of the issue. This procedure is followed even in describing the injunctions about the prayer which is such an important pillar of Deen (Faith) to the establishment of which reference has been made in the Qur’an at seventy three places. Yet the Holy Qur’an does not furnish any details about how prayer (salat) is offered. how many Rakaat should one offer and other injunctions validating or invalidating the salah. The Qur’an itself has not detailed these factors but left it for the Holy Prophet who taught the companions these details both by his words and practice. The same is the case with Zakat which has also been mentioned in the Qur’an almost at the same number of places. The Qur’an, however, does not clarify the prescribed value on which Zakat becomes due for payment, nor it speaks of possessions on which it is leviable. Like the prayer these details about Zakat were also left for the Holy Prophet to explain. Thus it becomes clear that generally the Qur’an mentions only the basic principles and does not go into minute details. Domestic life is the Foundation of the entire civilisation The relationship between man and woman and among the members of the family are so important that the Qur’an has described in clear terms its minutest details and has spoken in details relating to this important topic. Thereafter the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has explained fully those points. The edifice of the entire human civilisation stands on the relations between man and woman and on the domestic life of man. If the relationship between man and woman is sound, smooth and one discharges the rights of the other, then the affairs of the household shall run smoothly and the children shall be brought up on the right lines and this ensures the betterment of society on which stands the edifice of the social living as a whole. On the other hand, if the household affairs are mismanaged and there are differences and disagreements between husband and wife the children are affected adversely and you may very well imagine about the standard and character of the nation manifested by such spoilt and ill mannered children. The rules and regulations governing this aspect of the society are called family laws or household regulations. In view of their importance, the Holy Qur’an has dealt them in details: Is the woman born of crooked Rib? The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has set a nice example for this — an example that is unique in its effect and import. Some have explained it by saying that first of all Allah created Hazrat Adam [alayhis salaam] then He created Hazrat Hawwa (Eve) from his rib. Some learned men have said by way of explanation that the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has compared a woman to a rib which is crooked to see but its beauty and health consist in its crookedness. If anyone tries to remove its crookedness by straightening it, it will break and cease to be a rib. To restore to its previous state, it will have to be made crooked then joined together with plaster. The same idea has been beautifully expressed in a Tradition: "That is, if you want to straighten it. you will only break it." "And if you want to enjoy it you may enjoy it despite its crookedness." The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] has, thus set a wise example that its crookedness is its beauty and health which will be destroyed by straightening it. It is not a defect of woman Some people use this saying against women as being their defect in a woman. In other words, they say that since a woman has been created from a crooked rib, so is she crooked in her conduct and character, by her nature. This is, however, not the meaning of the Tradition of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. The deviousness of women is natural It needs to be borne in mind that Almighty Allah has created man and woman, each with different tendencies and attributes. On account of this difference between the nature and temperament of the two, man thinks about a woman that she is opposed to his masculine nature and sentimentality, although this natural tendency of a woman against a man’s natural bent and tendency is not a defect. It is the natural requirement of her nature that she should reflect in her character some innocent crookedness. That is why the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said: If you find in a woman something which is against your natural tendency on account of which you think that she is crooked, do not condemn her on this account: rather ignore it by thinking that it is the natural demand of her nature. If you want to straighten her she will break: if you want to benefit by her you can do so despite her crookedness. “Negligence” is a part of beauty in a woman Today the times have changed; as a result the values have also changed. A defect in a man is more often looked upon as a point of virtue and beauty in a woman. If we go through the Holy Qur’an carefully we shall see what, is generally considered a defect in a man is considered a point of beauty in a woman. For example. it is a defect in man to be ignorant and negligent, on account of which he is unaware of what is happening in the world. A man has been entrusted with the affairs of the world. To discharge these he needs learning and awareness. If he is devoid of these qualities and abilities, he is faulty and defective to this extent. As for a woman, negligence has been considered by the Qur’an as an item of beauty for her. Allah has said: "Surely, as for those who slander virtuous, negligent believing women..." (24:23) The word “negligent’ meaning that they are unaware of what is happening around them in the world. The Qur’an has considered here “negligence” or “unawareness” as an attribute of beauty. It is obvious from this that if a woman is ignorant of the affairs of the world, duties. excepted. this is not a defect but an attribute of beauty as described by the Qur’an. Do not try to straighten her bent by force Thus we see a defect in man is not considered a defect in woman and what is not a defect in man is sometimes looked upon as a defect in woman. A man is, therefore, not allowed to be harsh to a woman and misbehave with her if he finds her behaving in her womanly way. The very meaning of her comparison with a rib is that, by nature, she should be different in temperament from you. So now do not try to straighten her by force. The root cause of the entire conflict The above is based on a Tradition of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. Who can claim to know more about the nature of man and women than the Prophet of Allah? He diagnosed the root cause of all the conflicts between man and woman.Man insists that a woman should be exactly like himself in all her behaviours. This is not possible as she has been created different from him. Be conscious of her good habits In another tradition of this chapter Hazrat Abu Hurairah radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated: (Sahih Muslim-Book of suckling chapter counsel about women) In this Tradition the Holy Prophet has mentioned a wonderful principle that a believing man should not hate a believing woman altogether. In other words, the man should not condemn her totally on the false plea that she is no good. If she has some undesirable triats in her conduct she must have in her some desirable traits also. The first principle which the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has taught is that when two persons live together, some habit of the one is pleasant and some other habit unpleasant to the other. If the woman has some unpleasant habit in her, then do not condemn her on account of that habit altogether, rather look for and remember her pleasant habits and thank Almighty Allah for them. If you follow this practice it is quite possible that the hatred in your heart for the dark side of her conduct and character may gradually lose its severity and importance. Man, in fact, is ungrateful. If he finds any defects in her he totally changes his opinion about the person concerned and forgets about his good qualities. In view of those few faults and defects, he is always critical about him and misbehaves with him. Such attitude is unreasonable. Everything has virtues and vices in it There is nothing in the world which is all virtue and all vice. Almighty Allah has, by His wisdom, endowed everything of His creation with virtue and vice. You are sure to find some good qualities in every person, may he be an infidel, an idolater or even worse. An English proverb The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has said: A word of wisdom is a lost property of a believer. He must pick it up wherever he finds it. So there is no harm in picking up a word of wisdom even from an English Proverb. The proverb said that even a watch which has gone out of order speaks the truth at least twice every day. Suppose that the watch stopped at 12 hrs., 5 mts,. As the time 12-5 occurs twice during the 24 hours, the dead watch shall tell the correct time twice at 12-5 hrs, although it will remain silent at other times. The moral we draw from this English proverb is that if one is in search of goodness with hope and sincerity one can surely find this goodness even from the most condemned and throw-away objects. There is nothing bad in the workshop of Nature My father Mufti Muhammad Shafi’ Sahib [ra] used to recite frequently the following Urdu couplet of the late Dr. Muhammad Iqbal: There is nothing useless in the earth There is nothing bad in the workshop of nature. Whatever Almighty has created has created it with His wisdom and by His will. If you reflect on it you will surely find in Allah’s creation point of Wisdom and benefit. Instead man looks for faults and shortcomings only and ignores the good points and bright sides of things. Thus he becomes pessimistic and commits transgression and injustice. Always look for the good qualities of women Almighty Allah has said in His Book: "For if you hate them, it may happen that you hate a thing wherein Allah has placed much good." (4:19) If for some reason you do not like those women whom you have married, yet it is just possible that Almighty Allah may have endowed them with much goodness and blessings. Hence this command that you should look only for the good qualities of women. so that you may receive solace and comfort from them and thus the doors of mistrust and misbehaviour may not be opened. Educative story of A saint Hazrat Maulana Shah Ashraf Ali Thanawi [ra] has related the story of a saint who had a very ill mannered and aggressive wife. She always found faults with her hushand. Whenever the saint entered his house the wife started quarrelling with him. Someone asked him why he did not get rid of those daily wrangles and squabbles by resorting to divorce. The saint replied: it is very easy for me to divorce her but there is one reason for not doing so. Despite all her defects, she has one very good quality which prevents me from parting with her; and that is the quality of loyalty with which Almighty Allah has adorned her. Supposing I am arrested and imprisoned for some crime, for a term of fifty years, she will not move even an inch from the corner to which I confine her, and she will never cast a glance at anyone else. This This quality of loyalty is invaluable. Mirza Mazhar Jan-e-Jan’an and his over-sensitiveness Hazrat Mirza Mazhar jan-e-Jan an [ra] was a renowned saint of the Indian sub-continent. He was so touchy and over-sensitive in his temperament that if anyone put the glass on the pitcher in a tilting position or if he saw his bedding creased he would feel headache, unfortunately he had to deal with an ill-mannered wife. She was always murmuring something against her husband. Strange are indeed the ways whereby Allah tests His servants and raises their ranks. The wife of this pious saint was an ordeal for him which he tolerated with patience throughout his lifetime and expected that Allah may pardon his sins as a recompense for this ordeal. The women of our society are Nymphs of Paradise Hakimul Ummat, Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanawi [ra] used to say that the women of the Indo-Pakistan are like nymphs, because they are endowed with the qualities of faith and loyalty. Although these qualities are slowly fading under the impact of the modern Western civilisation and culture, yet the spirit of loyalty is so deep-rooted in them that they are always ready to sacrifice their lives for their husbands in all circumstances. and they can never cast their glances on anyone other than their husbands. In fact the saint, referred to above demonstrated obedience to the injunction implied in the following Tradition. If one habit of the woman is unpleasant, there must be some pleasant habit in her which should be taken into consideration and good treatment should be meted out to the woman on account of this one pleasant habit in her. People generally look at the dark side in the conduct and character of their women and lose sight of the bright side in them. This tendency is the root cause of the bitterness prevailing in our society. It is immorality to beat one’s wife The third Tradition of this chapter is as under: (Sahih Bukhari the book of marriage - It is hateful to beat women tradition no 5204) Once the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] delivered a sermon in which he mentioned many important topics of Islamic behaviour. The following is the point which he touched on the subject under discussion: He said: It is very bad that one of you beats his wife as a master beats his slave and on the other hand he uses the same wife to satisfy his sexual desire. Then how immoral and shameless it is that one should beat one’s wife so severely! Three steps of reforming a wife As I have already stated, the Holy Qur’an has taken great care to mention in detail concerning husband-wife relations: The differences and disagreements between husband and wife start when the husband feels offended at some action or habit of the wife. The Qur’an advises that in such a situation the husband should look for some lovely and pleasant quality in the character and dealings of his wife. If the husband fails to discover in his wife any such good points and feels that correction and reform are needed, then the Holy Qur’an has prescribed the following course to reform and rectify it. "As for those (women) from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and banish them to beds apart (from yours) and beat them." (4:34) First of all you should advise them in a lenient and polite manner and with love to give up their bad habits and reform themselves. This is the first step of reform. If they respond favourably to admonition and accept your advice, do not go further and treat the chapter closed. If this does not help and they insist upon their misconduct then the second step is to separate your bed and give up sleeping with them on the same bed. If they have sense, they will surely reform themselves and act upon advice. (Details of separating the bed will follow shortly). Physical punishment to a wife If the second step of the reform also fails then it will be necessary to resort to the third step, which is to inflict on the wife some physical punishment; but what kind of physical punishment and to what extent? The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] answered these questions in his sermon on the occasion of his Farewell Hajj in which he said: "(beat them very lightly so as not to injure them". To sum up, effort should be made so as to settle matters without the expedient of this punishment. If it is found unavoidable, it is permitted only with the condition that it should be very light, the intention being only to enforce discipline and not to inflict pain and injury. It is not lawful beating one’s wife in a way that should leave a mark on the body. (A Tradition on this subject follows). The behaviour of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] When the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] passed away from this world he left behind nine sacred wives. These wives were not angels sent down from the heaven: they were members of this world and society. Sometimes, bitterness occurred among them as is usual and natural among co-wives. Sometimes such problems also arose as usually arise between husbands and wives. Hazrat Ayesha [radhiallaahu anha] has narrated: Not only did the Holy Prophet ever raise his hands on any of his wives, but it was also his habit to enter the house with a smiling face. The Prophet’s Sunnah (practice) It is the Sunnah (practice) of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] that men should not raise their hands at women (to beat them). The permissibility of punishing physically is restricted only to abnormal and unavoidable situations. In fact beating women is not the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]; his Sunnah is what Hazrat ‘Ayesha has narrated. A miracle of Dr. Abdul Hai [ra] Hazrat Dr. Abdul Hai my spiritual guide sometimes related to us, by way of a lesson, that a period of fifty-five years had passed of his marriage, he never talked to his wife during these fifty five years in an angry tone. The walking of a man on the surface of the water and his flying in the air is taken as a miracle. It is more surprising that one should not talk to his wife even in an adverse tone for as long as fifty five years. And his respectable wife says that her husband, Dr. Sahib. never asked her to bring to him a glass of water. She, however, served him as best as possible of her own sweet will and as a blessed and virtuous duty. Tariqat is nothing but public service Hazrat Dr. Sahib used to say: I consider myself to be a servant whom Allah has sent to this world for service. This is my belief and with this belief I want to serve others and depart from this world. I am duty bound to serve all my friends, acquaintances, associates and pupils. I was not sent to this world as a master to be served by others. He considered the position of a servant of people to be an elevated rank. He then recited the famous persian couplet: Tariqat (spiritual way) is nothing but public service. It does not consist in the robes and the prayer-rag and the saintly garments (signs of godliness). Tariqat in fact, stands for public service. Dr. Sahib used to say: When I understood that I am a servant and not a master, how can a servant order others to do this and that? He spent his entire life by doing his personal work without the assistance of anyone else. This is a practical example of how the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] should be followed. As for ourselves we do follow the Sunnah in rituals only. It is necessary to follow the sunnah in dealings with others social living and in every mode of leading our private life. Verbal claim is not enough Living according to the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] is highly rewarding. Through such living man can smoothen his worldly life as well as his life in the Hereafter. But this success cannot be attained only by making empty claims. "This means that everyone claims to love Laila, but Laila herself does not acknowledge their claim)." This is achieved only by means of sincere work and devotion. By his character, conduct and practice man should ensure that he does not cause the least harm even to the person with whom he happens to be on unfriendly terms. In short, the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has illustrated, by his own practice. the THIRD STEP of reforming an errant wife. Throughout his lifetime he never raised his hands on any one of his sacred wives. However he was sometimes irritated by their behaviour, but he never reacted to it. Those who beat their wives are declared the worst men by the Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. (Tirmidhi book of Tafsir. chapter Surah Taubah Tradition no: 3087). Prophetic Address in the Farewel Pilgrimage In the above Tradition an extract has been given from the Farewel address of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. In this address he addressed the assembly of the companions in clear words that after that year he might not see them at that place. So in this address he included all those points that he feared that the Ummah might deviate from the right path, and thus he wanted to leave behind for the guidance of the Ummah a perfect code of life to be followed. In this address he tried to block all the possible paths of deviation and error. The address is quite lengthy but different parts of this address have been stated on different places. This is also a part of it in which the various aspects of relationship of man and woman has been discussed. Special stress has been laid on the need that men should acknowledge the rights of women and honour them. You may realise the importance of these rights from the fact that he delivered that sermon on the occasion of the Last Pilgrimage when he indirectly informed people that the next year he may not get an opportunity to address the people. Thus the mutual rights of men and women are one of the topics which he selected for discussing towards the close of his life on account of their importance. He wanted his Ummah to honour and follow the injunctions in all circumstances. Mutual relations between husband and wife This shows the importance of husband-wife relations in human life and how the law-maker the Holy Prophet himself felt this importance. If the husband and wife do not discharge each other’s rights properly and, instead, usurp these mutual rights, not only will this result in the violation of each other’s rights, but it will also adversely affect both the families as well as the children whose proper upkeep, development, mental and moral growth will be affected. As the family is the foundation of the entire civilisation, with its ruination civilisation is itself ruined. That is why the Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has laid great stress on the importance of mutual relation between husband and wife. Women are in your confinement Hazrat Umr bin al-Ahwas al-Jashim [radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated that in the Farewel sermon the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] praised Almighty Allah, offered consels and delivered a speech and then said: "Beware! I advise you to do good to women. Accept this advice." This is the sentence which occurred in the previous Tradition. His next sentence was: "because those women live with you confined in your houses." The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has mentioned an attribute of women that if man reflects over this attribute only, he can never think of misbehaving with them. A Lesson from an Ignorant Girl Our dear Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanawi used to tell his disciples to learn a lesson from an ignorant, uneducated girl who surrenders herself to a stranger after uttering at the time of the Nikah only two words of acceptance. She honours these two words so solemnly and completely that she leaves her mother, father, brothers and sisters and the entire family and becomes inseparably tied to and confined with her husband. An ignorant girl honours these two words so truly and sincerely that she surrenders herself to one person, her husband but you could not honour our pledge of these two words by surrendering yourself to Almighty Allah. This girl is much better than you. She honoured so completely her pledge of Nikah, but you did not honour your pledge of the two words of the article of Faith. Sacrifices of the woman for your sake The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has said in this Tradition. “How tremendous sacrifice the woman has undergone for your sake. If the matter was just the reverse and it were said to you, you would have to leave your family. your parents, after your marriage what an awkward situation it would be for you. As for the woman she has become confined to a strange surrounding, a strange house and a strange person and that, too, for the whole of her life. That is why the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said in his tradition: Will you not mind this sacrifice? Do take heed of this and treat her well and with love. You have no claim upon them Thereafter the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has spoken a very serious sentence of far-reaching consequences. When the meaning of this sentence is explained to men they get annoyed. That sentence is: "This means that according to the laws of the Shari'ah the only demand you can make of them is that they should live with you in your house". You have no other claim upon them Cooking is not the duty of a wife From this Tradition the Jurists have deduced a ruling of delicate nature and which makes men annoyed. The ruling lays down that according to the Shari'ah it is not the responsibility of a woman to cook food for the household. For this purpose the Jurists have divided women into two classes. Women of one class are those who do household work, including cooking food in their parent’s houses. The other class consists of women who do not cook food in their father’s house where cooks are employed for this work. If after marriage a woman of the latter class goes to her husband’s house she is not at all responsible to cook food, religiously, legally, morally or otherwise. On the other hand, that wife may ask her husband to hire a cook for her as man is obliged to provide her with food along with other necessaries of life. The Jurists write: "It is the responsibility of the husband to provide his wife with cooked food." The wife cannot be forced to cook food neither by force, nor by the law, because the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has said in clear words: "This means: You have a right to keep them in your house which it is not lawful for them to leave without your permission." With this exception the laws of the Shari'ah have imposed no responsibility on them. However, If she belongs to the first category the one who used to cook food in her parents’ house she too is not legally responsible to cook food i.e. she cannot be compelled by law to cook food. However, the responsibility falls on her only morally. In such a case the husband is responsible only to provide the food materials. Even then it is not her responsibility to cook food for the husband and the children. A wife in this class cannot ask her husband to provide her with cooked food. However, if she refuses to cook food for her husband and the children, the court cannot force her to do it. The respected Jurists have explained these problems at great length. Serving the In-laws is not obligatory There is another fact worthy of notice about which much negligence is observed among the people. When a wife is not responsible to cook food for her husband and his children, then she is more appropriately not responsible to cook food for the parents of the husband and his brothers and sisters. A custom has gained currency in our society that the parents of the son think that their right over the daughter-in-law has a priority over the right of the son. Therefore she is bound to serve them, no matter if she serves her husband or not. Such a misleading conception gives rise to quarrels and disputes among the daughter-in-law and other members of the family. The negative results of this conception are obvious to require any comments. To serve In-Laws is a virtue for a woman Bear in mind well that it is the responsibility of the son to serve his parents. It is, however, a matter of blessing and virtue for the daughter-in-law if she serves the parents of her husband willingly, as a righteous deed and source of reward for her in the Hereafter. The son does not have any right to force his wife to serve his parents in case she does not feel inclined to serve them of her own sweet will. It is also not lawful for the parents to force their daughter-in-law to serve them. As already mentioned, if the daughter-in-law voluntarily decides to serve her in-laws for the sake of recompense in the Hereafter she is welcome to do so. This will create happy and pleasant atmosphere in the household. Appreciate the services of a daughter-in-law If a daughter-in-law is serving his father and mother-in-law, she is doing favour out of her moral character because she is giving this service to them only of her free will and she is not in any way liable for such services. Her in-laws should, therefore, appreciate this voluntary service from her. They should try to requite her for this and encourage her. Ignorance of these rights and liabilities create various problems in social life which play havoc to the solidarity and welfare of families through quarrels and disputes. All these troubles are taking place simply because the people have banished from their minds the limits of these mutual rights and liabilities which the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has fixed in his Traditions. A Surprising Incident Hazrat Dr. Abdul Hai Sahib [ra] one day related a very wonderful event. He said that among his acquaintances, there was a couple who used to visit his assembly and receive spiritual training and instructions from him. One day both of them invited him to a dinner at their house. It was the habit of respected Dr. Sahib to utter at the end of the feast a few words of praise in favour of the lady who cooked the food just to encourage and please her. The lady who had prepared the food came and stood behind the curtain and greeted him. After replying to the greeting Dr. Sahib uttered a few words of praise and appreciation about the quality and taste of the food and the art of cooking. Dr. Sahib heard the woman sobbing from behind the screen. It was disturbing. Was there anything in Dr. Sahib’s words that pinched her? On being asked to state the cause of her grief and sobbing, she said, "I have been living with my husband for the last forty two years, but during this long period of association, I never heard from him a word of appreciation about my cooking. When I heard these words from you sir, I could not control myself from sobbing." The respected Dr Sahib used to relate this story in his assemblies off and on to emphasise that such callousness can never be expected from a husband who is able to realise that it is a great favour on the part of his wife that she is serving him so selflessly and faithfully of her own sweet will and is doing all this service for which she has not been made legally responsible by the Shari'ah. A man who thinks that his wife is a maid servant and has to serve him at any cost, has no need to drop a word of praise and appreciation if she is an expert cook and sincere worker. The Husband should serve his parents himself A question arises as to who should serve the parents when they are old, weak or otherwise helpless on account of sickness when there is none in the house except their son and his wife? Even in such a situation, the daughter-in-law is not bound, according to the Shari'ah to serve her in-laws. It is, however, a matter of blessings and virtue for her if she serves them of her own free will with the belief to please Allah and to receive reward in the Hereafter. The son should, however, realise that it is his responsibility to help and serve his parents personally or by employing a servant for this purpose. If the wife is looking after his old parents, the husband must appreciate this service and be thankful to her. Husband's permission for going out But here is another requirement to note in order to understand the true position. After knowing only one side of a case and being ignorant of the other side people begin to take undue advantage. It has already been explained in detail that it is not obligatory for a wife to cook food, according to the laws of the Shari'ah. In his Tradition the Holy Prophet has said that “women remain confined to your houses like captives”. It means that it is not lawful for them, to go out of the house without the permission of their husbands. Just as the jurists have explained in detail the issue of cooking food, in the same way they have also explained in detail that women cannot leave the house for meeting kinsmen, even their parents without the permission of their husbands. If the parents visit the house of their son-in-law to meet their daughter, the husband cannot prevent them from seeing her. The jurists have prescribed limits for such casual visits. The parents may visit their daughter only once a week and go back after seeing her. This is their daughter’s right which a husband cannot deny, yet she cannot go out of the house without her husband’s permission. Thus Almighty Allah has, in His mercy, created a balance between the rights and responsibilities of husband and wife. On the one hand the wife is not legally bound to cook food and, on the other hand, she is legally bound not to go out of the house without her husband’s permission. Mutual Co-operation is vital for smooth life Whatever has been stated above is only the legal side of the matter; but the beauty of mutual behaviour with each other is that each should try to please the other. Hazrat Ali and Hazrat Fatimah [radhiallaahu anhuma] had distributed the duties of the household between them in such a way that Hazrat Ali did all the outdoor work, while Hazrat Fatimah performed the indoor work. This is exactly the Sunnah (practice) of the Holy Prophet which should be followed. Husband and wife should not always involve themselves in the implications of the law. The best way is that both should behave with each other open-heartedly. The division of work between husband and wife on outdoor and indoor basis is a natural division to enable them both to keep the vehicle of life going smoothly. If she commits the immodesty If these women commit open lewdness, that lewdness cannot be tolerated in any case. In such a situation they should be dealt with according to the injunction laid down by the Holy Qur’an. First of all they should be admonished, then, if they insist-on their sin, let their bed be separated. If they still do not accept the admonition and continue in their Lewdness, then it is permitted to inflict them with light beating which should not cause any injury. If they refrain from the lewdness and mend their ways, then one should not find fault with them, but they should be let off, without further pinching them. Beware! These women have rights over you that you behave with them well. Be generous in discharging your obligations in the matter of providing them with clothes, food and their other needs. This does not mean that you should meet only their basic needs; you are expected to be generous and liberal in supplying their lawful needs. Pocket money for a wife Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanawi [ra] has dealt in his guiding sermons with some topics with special emphasis. I intend to reproduce two or three of these in this discourse, as they are generally overlooked by the people. Firstly. the liabilities about a wife does not mean that she should be provided only with food and clothes. It is also a part of this cost that she should be paid a suitable amount as pocket expenses in addition to the cost of living, making her free to spend this additional amount as she likes. There are persons who arrange for food and clothes but do not care for pocket expenses. Hazrat Thanawi has said that payment of some amount as pocket money is also necessary, because there are many items when a person feels ashamed to disclose to other that she needs a certain thing. The wife should, therefore, must have some extra amount as pocket money so that she may not seek other means to satisfy her needs. Hazrat Thanawi [ra] has warned that those who do not provide pocket money to their wives are blamable. Being generous for Family Another point to note is that one should be generous and liberal in spending money on the needs of the household. One must not limit expenses to basic needs. One should provide money with a generous hand so that the expenses of the household may be met with ease and freedom according to the financial means of the house-keeper. Some people complain that, on the one hand, there is stress that one should not be extravagant and at the same time there are instructions not to be miser in spending money on the household. A question now arises as to what is the line of demarcation between the two. What is extravagance and what is not extravagance? Simple or comfortable accommodation both are lawful To remove this confusion Hazrat Thanawi [ra] has said: that accomodations are of two kinds, a place which is just enough to accommodate the members of the family. It may be an ordinary hut, it is possible for a man to live some how even in such structures. This is lawful in the first degree. The second kind is that the house should provide living accommodation as well as a reasonable degree of comforts. For example, the house should be concrete-built, equipped with fans and electric lights. If a person provides this service in his house in order to make life easy and comfortable, this cannot be regarded as extravagance. Decoration is also lawful In the third degree, along with means of comfort a house should also have some decoration. For example, a man has a concrete built house with plastered walls, electricity and fans, but it has no paint on it. Even an unpainted house like this is fit for living, but without white-washing and proper painting it lacks in decoration. If the house owner gets the house colour washed and painted for the sake of decoration this too is lawful in the laws of the Shari'ah. In short to live in an ordinary house is lawful, it is also lawful to live in a house provided with certain comforts and amenities as well as some decoration. Decoration here means some additional improvement made in the house, like painting, etc, which is pleasing to the eyes and cheering to the heart. There is no harm in this and is permissible in the Shari'ah. Show off is not lawful Then follows the fourth degree which is mere “Show off’. The house-owner is doing something which aims neither at comfort, nor at decoration; the aim is to show his riches. Thereby he wants to impose his superiority on others and to show that he is a big thing. All this comes within the definition of “Show off’ which is not lawful in the laws of the Shari'ah. It is also extravagance. The limits of extravagance These four categories also apply to food and clothes, and in all other things of life. A man wears costly clothes in order to receive comfort, to please himself and the members of his household and his acquaintances, friends and visitors, there is no harm. On the other hand there is a person who wears valuable clothes with the intention that he may be considered a rich and wealthy man, a man of exalted position in society, then this is mere exhibition and show and therefore it is prohibited. Hazrat Thanawi [ra] has therefore drawn a clear line of demarcation between the two extremes. If money is spent on something for the sake of meeting a necessity, providing comfort or for decoration for his own pleasure and satisfaction, it is not extravagance. This is not Extravagance Once it so happened that I was coming back to Karachi from some other city, and it was the hot summer season. I requested someone to have my seat booked in an airconditioned coach and I gave him the required amount of money. Another man who was sitting nearby at once objected to this because in his opinion I was committing extravagance by sitting in an airconditioned coach. Many people are under the wrong impression that to travel in a higher class is extravagance. Bear in mind that if travelling in an upper class is for comfort, e.g. to save oneself from heat in the summer season, and the man can afford it. It is neither extravagance nor a sin. If one travels in an upper class simply to show that he is rich, then it is extravagance and it is unlawful. The husband should therefore, keep in mind these degrees in meeting the cost of living of his wife with generosity and liberality. Capacity differs from man to man, Maulana Maseehullah Khan Sahib [ra] once observed: There is a man who is all alone in this world, without relatives, without friends and without acquaintances. For such a man a bed, a dish and a jug are sufficient to pass his life. If he collects more articles, it will mean a show and will be reckoned as extravagance in his case. There is a man who receives guests, has a large circle of acquaintances and friends, and has many relatives. The standard of his needs and extent of requirements will be quite different. If such a man has in his house at times even one hundred sets of pots and beddings, not a single piece of this will be counted as extravagance, because all these are necessities of life. The standard of life differs from man to man. Where to search Allah Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham [ra] was once a great Ruler but he renounced the world in search of Allah. There are some people who seek from his life arguments to prove their stand. The story runs as follows: One night Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham saw a man walking about on the roof of the palace. Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham [ra] caught him and asked him what he was doing on the roof of the palace. The man replied: I have come here to search my lost camel. Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham said: Stupid fellow! Are you searching your camel on the roof at this hour of night? How can you find the camel here? The man asked with some surprise: Can I not find the camel here? Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham [ra] answered: certainly not! How can you find the camel on the roof of the palace? The man then retorted: If the camel cannot be found in this palace and the man who is searching the camel in this palace is a fool, how can you find Allah while staying in this palace? If I am a fool you are a greater fool than me. This answer of the stranger shocked the heart of Hazrat Adham. He at once relinquished his kingdom and took his way to the jungle. He took with him only a bowl and a pillow, so that he might eat food and drink water from the bowl and use the pillow while lying down on the ground. After walking some distance he saw a man drinking water from the river with his palms cupped together. He saw that he could also drink water in that way, so he threw away the bowl and resumed his journey. After walking some distance he saw that a man was sleeping on the ground with his hand placed under the head to serve for a pillow. He felt that he could very well do without the pillow so he threw it away, too. Emotions should not be followed After listening to this story some people may misunderstand that keeping a bowl and a pillow is also extravagance. May Allah exalt the rank of Hazrat Thanawi [ra] who has at his credit of separating right from wrong and wheat from chaff. He has advised that none should compare himself with those of Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham [ra]. Firstly, because the change that had come over him was due to an ecstatic state of rapture. A man in this condition should not be followed, because the man so overwhelmed goes out of himself and loses his normal consistency of thought and feeling. We are not, therefore, to follow in the footsteps of Hazrat Ibrahim ibn Adham [ra], because he was not at his normal when he decided to leave the palace. Besides, such renunciation of worldly relation is not permissible in Islam generally. It would mean that Allah cannot be found in palaces. Moderate way of spending The requirements of one man is different from that of other. The standard of spending also differs from man to man. The standards of a man with low income, and of a man with a moderate income or a man with a high income are different from one another. The liberality in spending of each person should, therefore, be proportionate to his income. It should not happen that the husband is a man of moderate means and his wife is asking for items of comforts and luxuries which she sees in the house of rich men that her husband cannot afford. Demand for such articles of luxury is not lawful. The husband should, however, try to meet the demands of his wife as far as possible within his means and should not be niggardly towards his wife. The rights of the wives over husbands? (Abu Dawud, the Book of Marriage - chapter on the Right of the wife over her husband, Tradition no.2142) Hadhrat Mu'amiyah ibn Hidah [radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated that he asked the holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] of Allah, What are the rights of our wives over us? The Holy Prophet said: when you take food, feed her also and when you wear clothes, provide her also with clothes to wear. Do not beat her on the face, nor curse her. Do not part with her but her but only within the (bounds of the) house. Leave sleeping with her as punishment As has already been explained, if you ever observe in the wife some lewdness, try first to admonish her. If she does not mind your admonition, then leave her bedding, and sleep on a separate bed. Leaving the bed does not imply that you should go out of the house; you should separate your bedding while remaining in the house. You may, however, change the room by way of a psychological punishment and as a sort of protest, and thus keep yourself aloof from her for some days. A proper way of separation The learned jurists have explained the meaning of this Tradition also by advising that on such occasions her bed may be separated, but the talking terms should not be terminated totally. The separation should not be so strict as not to offer salutations to each other from time to time and not to return the greeting if one bids it, nor to avoid answering important questions. A separation of this kind is not lawful. Wife’s permission for a long period journey While explaining this Tradition the learned Jurists have gone to the extent of saying that it is not lawful for the husband to leave the house for more than four months without the permission and pleasure of his wife. As such, Hazrat Umar [radhiallaahu anhu] had promulgated this order throughout his empire that the freedom-fighters who take part in Jihad should not remain away from their homes for more than four months. The jurists have, therefore, deduced that if anyone is going on a journey for a period not exceeding four months, it is not necessary for him to obtain his wife’s permission. If the journey takes longer than four months, it is essential for him to obtain his wife’s permission, no matter how desirable that journey may be. This ruling is applicable to the journey for the Hajj (Pilgrimages). If the pilgrim returns from the journey within four months no permission from his wife is necessary, but if he prolongs his stay in the Holy city beyond four months the wife’s permission must be taken. This ruling is also applicable to journeys undertaken for Tabligh, Da'wah and Jihad. If the wife’s permission is necessary for such blessed journeys then her permission will all the more be necessary for a journey undertaken for the sake of employment, business, etc. If journeys exceeding four months are taken without the wife’s permission it will be a violation of her rights and, therefore, unlawful in the laws of the Shari'ah. Who are the Best People? (Tirmidhi Book of Suckling, Chapter on the rights of a wife over her husband tradition no. 1162) Hazrat Abu Hurairah [radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated that the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said: The most accomplished of the believers in respect of Iman (Faith) is one who is the best of them in conduct and character. The more refined a man is in behaviour and character, the more accomplished he is in Iman (Faith). Perfect Iman, therefore, demands that a man should behave and deal with others politely. The best of you are those who are the best in their behaviour and dealings with their wives and women. The meaning of “Good Character” in the modern age We see that in our days the meanings of things have greatly changed and the values of all things have been reversed. Hazrat Maulana Qari Muhammad Tayyib Sahib [ra] of Deoband used to say: As compared with the past everything has turned upside-down in the present age. For example, in the olden days there was darkness beneath the lamp and now there is darkness above the bulb. Today values have changed and so has changed the import of everything, so much so that even the meaning of character has undergone a total change. Today only some outer acts and expressions of modern etiquettes are regarded as tokens of good character. For example, it is regarded sign of good character to meet someone with a smiling face or to utter formal pleasing words. I am very glad to see you, it is pleasing to meet you, etc. while the heat of enmity, jealousy and hatred is burning in the hearts. Today this way of behaviours has been named good behaviour and character. It has been recognised as an art, how to deal with others so as to make them impressed with our personalities. Books are being written today on the art of winning over sympathies of others. All energies are being utilised to achieve this aim: Do all that is possible to get others attracted by your superficial personality. This is called “character”. Bear in mind well that all this formal show has nothing to do with high morality which the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has enjoined upon his followers. This is a mere hypocrisy, ostentation, a trick to attract others to one’s own personality. This is nothing but love for honour, fame and regard and this desire, in itself, is a disease and immorality. This has nothing to do with Islamic concept of morality. Morality is a quality of the Heart Morals are in fact a particular state of the heart which find expression in the movements of the limbs and the organs. The heart should be tilled with the feeling of welfare for the creation of Allah and love for them, irrespective of what they are, friends foes, believers or unbelievers. One should remain alive to the fact that every being on the earth is a creation of His Master. Allah. This originates a kind of love for all in ones heart. This conception, in turn, generates good actions and deeds, and then man does good to others. Now the smile shining on ones face on account of this feeling is not artificial, nor is it displayed to arrest public attention: it rather springs up from the heart as a result of heart-felt longing and emotion. Thus. there is a world of difference between the morals taught by the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] and the artificial and superficial show of morals in modern society. How to acquire High Morals? Only reading books or listening to lectures is not enough to attain the standard of the desired degree of morals. For this purpose it is imperative to seek the company of some spiritual reformer and guide. The order of Tasawwuf (Mysticism) and the system of becoming a disciple of a spiritual Guide (Piri-Muridi) has been handed down from the past men of Allah. It aims at inculcating in high morals and eliminating the germs of immorality from a man. Anyway, the most accomplished in the realm of Iman (Faith) are those individuals who posses high morals, whose hearts generate right motives and these right motives are reflected in their acts and deeds. May Allah admit us all into the company of these perfect personalities Aameen! Do not beat the Maids of Allah (Abu Dawud. Book of Marnage. chapter on beating women Tradition no 2146) Hazrat Iyas bin Abdullah [radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated that the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam], while delivering a sermon said: Do not beat the maids of Allah, because beating women is not desirable. When the Holy Prophet prohibits something, the act becomes totally unlawful for one who heard the prohibition direct from the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. Now it is not lawful for him in any circumstances to beat women. Two kinds of Holy Traditions It may be noted carefully that there is a category of Traditions which we hear from someone or read in the books. They reach us through a long chain of authorities: giving us the names of the reporters in ascending order carrying to the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam]. The Traditions of this category are called Zanni because they reach us through a channel of reporters. It is obligatory to act upon the injunctions contained in such Traditions; and deviating from this is a sin. Traditions which the Companions heard direct from the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] are not Zanni (conjectural), but are Qatie (confirmed). If any one denies such Traditions, not only will he be a sinner, but he will also become an unbeliever. According to the juristic ruling the denier of an order of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] at once turns to be an infidel. Sometimes we entertain the foolish desire in our hearts to have lived at the blessed time of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam], to reap the virtues and blessings of that blessed time. We should remember that whatever Almighty Allah does, He does it in His infinite wisdom and it is He who has raised us in this later age. If He had raised us in the time of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam], who knows what would have happened to us. There is no guarantee that we would not have fallen into the dare ditch of ignorance? May Allah save us. The question of Iman in those days was a very delicate issue. A slight turn from the right path could change the destiny of man. The devotion with which the sacred Companions [radhiallaahu anhum] of the Holy Prophet rallied round him was exclusively their distinction. It was due to this that they reached the unique rank. Allah alone knows what would have been the fate of our selfish far-seeing and ease-loving persons as we are. It is indeed a great favour of Almighty Allah that He saved us from ruin and raised us up in an age in which we enjoy many facilities. We are in an age in which we have Zanni Traditions. If anyone denies it he will only be a sinner and not an unbeliever. As regards the sacred Companions, if anyone of them heard some Tradition from the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] and denied it he would instantly become an unbeliever. May Allah save us from such a fate. The Audacity of the women When the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] ordered the Companions not to beat their women, this punishment was totally suspended. It was not possible for the Companions to continue an act which the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] had forbidden them to do. Thus when the Practice of beating women ceased then after some time Hazrat Umar [radhiallahu anhu] called on the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] and said: "O Prophet of Allah , these women have now become lions (i.e. fearless and bold) with their husbands, because you have stopped us from beating them. Now none beats his wife, nor does he ever threaten her with that. That is why they have become fearless, are violating their husbands’ rights, and are misbehaving with them. So what are we to do now?" Then the Holy Prophet permitted them to beat their wives, if they violate their rights and when beating was unavoidable. Only a few days after the restoration of the order of beating, the women began to approach the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] and complained to him that their husbands were taking undue advantage from the permission of beating and were beating them severely. They are not good men Mentioning his own name, the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said: Many women are repeatedly visiting the house of Muhammad complaining against their husbands’ misbehaviour with them that they severely beat them. You should note it very carefully that those who resort to this beating are not good men. It is not the work of good believers to beat their wives. The Holy Prophet made it quite clear to the gathering that permission was given to beat their wives as the last alternative only in unavoidable circumstances and subject to the condition that the beating should be light, so as not to cause injury and leave its mark on the body. Despite this, it is the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] and also his sincere desire that no man should raise his hand to beat a woman. The mothers of the believers have narrated that the Holy Prophet never raised his hands at any woman. Therefore, this is what the sunnah demands. The Best thing in the world is a “virtuous Woman” (Sahih Muslim. Book of suckling chapter-the best object of the world a virtuous woman) Hazrat Abdullah bin Amr bin Al’Aas [radhiallaahu anhu] has narrated that the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] said: This world as a whole is an enjoyment, profit and advantage. The Almighty Allah has said in the Holy Qur’an: It is Allah who has created whatever there is in the world for your benefit, enjoyment and for meeting your needs. (Al-Baqarah. 29) The best of all these objects is a virtuous woman created for your service and enjoyment. The Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has said in another Tradition: (Kanzul-Ummal. Tradition no 18913) Of all the things of your earth there are three things that are dearest to me: (Here note the Phrase “Your earth” as he said about his approach this world in these works) viz., a woman, scent, and the coolness of my eyes lies in the prayer. Thus the foremost among the blessing of the world are these things. In another place he said: (Tirmidhi, the Book of Abstinence. Tradition no 2378) "What have I to do with the world? I am like a rider who takes rest for a short time under the shade of a tree. then he sets off, leaving behind that tree." Seek refuge from a bad woman In short one of the three desirable gifts is a virtuous woman, because the Holy Prophet [sallallaahu alyhi wasallam] has sought refuge from bad woman. "O Allah! I seek refuge from that woman who will make me old before I attain the old age. I also seek refuge from a child who proves to be a trial in the Hereafter. May Allah save us from them. Aamen! So if you are in search of a woman for yourself or for one of your children, try to find out one who is religious, virtuous and righteous. If God-forbid she is not righteous, then she may prove a distress. If a man is lucky enough to get a virtuous wife. he should value her, and should never degrade her. To value her means that you should fulfil her rights and behave with her nicely. May Almighty Allah assist us in acting upon these injunctions, Aameen! And we close with the call that all praise be to Allah. the Lord of the worlds. Madrasa In'aamiyyah
  4. Through Thick and Thin - The wife of Nabi Ayyoob Alayhis salaam The incident of Nabi Ayyoob (‘alaihis salaam) is well known to one and all. Initially, Nabi Ayyoob (‘alaihis salaam) was enjoying great prosperity. He had abundant animals and crops, many children and numerous homes. Allah Ta‘ala then decided to test Nabi Ayyoob (‘alaihis salaam). Hence, he lost all his wealth and even his children. Allah Ta‘ala even tested Nabi Ayyoob (‘alaihis salaam) with an illness that afflicted his entire body. The only two limbs of his body that were spared from this illness were his tongue and his heart. Nevertheless, even in this condition, he would keep his heart and tongue engaged in the remembrance of Allah Ta‘ala. While Nabi Ayyoob (‘alaihis salaam) was patiently enduring this test, most of the people abandoned him, until he was left alone in a corner of the town. However, his loyal wife never left him or abandoned him. She remembered his favour upon her when conditions were favourable, and hence she remained at his side through thick and thin, ever loyal and faithful. She would patiently tend to him and see to all his needs. In some narrations, it has even been mentioned that when her wealth was eventually depleted, she began to carry out domestic work in peoples’ homes in order to earn a living and see to her ailing husband’s needs. Together with this, she had lost her children and her husband was extremely sick. Through all these tests, she remained patient and did not complain, even though she went from a life of comfort and happiness to one of difficulty and sadness. (Al-Bidaayah wan Nihaayah vol. 1 pg. 262) Lessons: 1. The proverb “a friend in need is a friend indeed” is often quoted, highlighting the fact that a true friend is one who will remain with you in difficult times as well as good times. We can well imagine that if such loyalty is expected of a good friend, then what must be the high level of loyalty that is expected of a true spouse? After all, the relationship between the husband and wife far surpasses any friendship! Hence, a true, loyal wife is not one who will abscond to her father’s house when “the goings get tough”. Rather, she will patiently remain with her husband and assist him, to the best of her ability, as she would expect of him had she been in difficulty. 2. Undergoing tests is an unavoidable occurrence in life. We cannot choose the nature or time of our tests – but we can choose to pass the tests. To do so, we will have to hold firmly to sabr (patience) and remain pleased with the decision of Allah Ta‘ala. uswatulmuslimah
  5. Prepare for a truly spiritual Hajj Fazail-e-Hajj (Virtues of Hajj) By Shaykhul-Hadeeth Maulana Mohammed Zakariyya Kandhalwi (RA) freepdfhosting.com/ebd24b7b52.pdf
  6. Gone Fishing Imagine a newly wed couple who are together for the first time. The husband spends the entire night praising his wife and expressing words of love to her. However the very next morning he is gone fishing or golfing with his friends, leaving his wife all alone. This makes one wonder what the entire nights praises and "I love you" were all about? Did it come from the heart or was it mere lip service? Likewise when proceeding to Makkah Mukarramah we shout out "lab-baik", and out of love we announce "We are present O Allah Ta'ala." But then we slip out to Jeddah for some sight seeing, or for every one tawaaf we make of the Ka`bah, we end up making ten tawaafs of the shopping malls. Let not our "lab-baik" be an empty slogan of love. Let it be followed by sincere actions and dedication. uswatulmuslimah.co.za
  7. Jerusalem ziyarah guide: Facts and information on places of historical importance in Jerusalem (al-Quds) PDF We have A5 size print copies for sale from the UK. The cost is £3.00 each plus postage if applicable. Discounts are available for orders of 20 or more. If you require print copies, please email us on [email protected] in the first instance. Source
  8. ARTICLES The Internal Dimensions Of Hajj A True Hajj – Amazing Explanation of Imam Junaid al-Baghdadi Hajj – a Lesson in Submission Hajj – A Beautiful Journey Hajj - The Lover's Journey 15th October 2009
  9. Ziyaarah Times For Women To Enter the Rawdhah Mubarak
  10. A "Must Read" Book On Hajj For Women!
  11. Sisters' Ziyaarat in Madeenah
  12. Please click on the title to go to the relevant subjects WOMEN'S Issues during Hajj & Umrah What Are The Differences Between A Male And Female When Performing Hajj? Queries and Conditions Concerning Female Pilgrims Women performing Hajj during menses Women trimming each other’s hair in Hajj How much hair does a female required to cut? Are Women Required to Wear Certain Types of Clothing and Colors During Umrah and Hajj? Is It Permissible For A Woman To Wear Jewellery In The State Of Ihram? How Should A Menstruating Woman Perform Hajj? Covering The Face Of A Woman In The State Of Ihram Q/A Taking Pills In Hajj to stop Menstruation Hajj Without A Mahram? Women Performing salaah in the Haram of Makkah Tawāf Al-Ziyārah & Haydh (Menstruation) Omitting Tawaaf-e-Widaa’ due to Haydh or Nifaas
  13. Part Fifty The Inscription on His Ring: Hazrat ‘Amr bin ‘Uthmaan (rahimahullah) mentions that the ring of Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) had the following words inscribed on it, “I have brought Imaan in that Being who has created everything in its due proportion.” (Siyar A’laam min Nubalaa 2/156) Demise: Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was approximately 82 years old when he was martyred. (Taareekh-ul-Islam 2/481) He was martyred on Friday the twelfth of Zul-Hijjah in the year 35 AH (Siyar A’laam min Nubalaa 2/162) Period of His Khilaafah Hazrat Qataadah (rahimahullah) reports that the period of the khilaafah of Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was twelve years. (Siyar A’laam min Nubalaa 2/161)
  14. Absolute Submission Sayyiduna Mugheerah bin Shu’bah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) reports the following incident: On one occasion, I sent a proposal to marry a girl of the Ansaar. When I mentioned this to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), he asked me, “Did you see the girl?” When I replied in the negative, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) recommended to me, “Look at her, for it is more likely that there will be affection and love between you (i.e. if you marry her after looking at her and finding her pleasing to your eye, there will be a greater chance of your marriage prospering).” I thus proceeded to the girl’s home and told her parents what Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) had mentioned. Hearing that I wanted to look at their daughter, the parents were reluctant. Hence, I stood and began to leave their home. As I was leaving, the girl asked her parents to call me back. When I returned, she stood at the edge of the curtain and said, “If Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) instructed you to look at me then I permit you to do so. If not, then I strictly forbid you to look at me.” Accordingly, I looked at her and married her. Subsequently, she was extremely beloved to me and honoured in my sight. (Ibnun Najjaar – Kanzul ‘Ummaal #45619) Lessons: 1. The hayaa (modesty) of the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) and their protectiveness over their womenfolk was such that the parents of the girl were initially reluctant when Sayyiduna Mugheerah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) asked to see their daughter. Similarly, until she learnt that it was the instruction of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), the daughter was not prepared to allow any strange man to look at her. 2. The Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) were blessed with the quality of absolute submission before the instruction of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). Hence, they always put their own intellect, understanding and emotion aside and completely complied with the wishes and desires of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), understanding that this was the key to success in both worlds. Similarly, if we wish true happiness and success, we will have to adhere strictly to the teachings of Deen. 3. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) has taught us the guidelines that need to be adhered to regarding marriage, and has told us that following these guidelines are the key to a prosperous marriage. Hence, if we surpass the bounds of shari‘ah and begin to engage in impermissible practices, such as the boy and girl communicating or even dating before marriage, we will lose the barakah (blessings) and help of Allah Ta‘ala which is essential for the marriage to prosper. Thus, we should always refer to the ‘Ulama to find out the limits of shari‘ah so that we can ensure that we remain within the parameters of Deen. uswatulmuslimah
  15. Definitely as its on fear of Alah ta'ala that makes a person be just behind closed doors
  16. الْغَفَّارُ الْغَفُورُ الْغَفَّارُ and الْغَفُورُ will be discussed together as they have similar meanings and are used interchangeably. Translation الْغَفَّارُ is translated as The All-Forgiving and The Absolver. He is that Being Who hides the sins of His servants and drapes them with His compassion. Therefore there is the concept of covering/hiding in this word. Maghfirat comes from Ghaffaar and insha-allah Allah ta’ala will grant us Maghfirat in the Aakhirah, aameen. الْغَفُورُ is translated as The Forgiver and Hider of Faults. Allah ta’ala always has this Sifat of forgiveness and all are Mohtaaj (dependent) upon His Rahmah and forgiveness. So this is essentially connected to His Sifat of Rahmaan and Raheem as it is part of Rahmah to be forgiving, but Ghaffaar is more specific to the concept of forgiveness and hiding sins. The whole concept of hiding is that you hide things which are unclean and disliked so by hiding sins Allah ta’ala purifies and cleans a person. In the Qur’an الْغَفُورُ is mentioned 5 times in the Qur’an and الْغَفَّارُ is mentioned 91 times which is a lot compared to other names we have discussed so far. One of the ways Allah ta’ala mentions His Sifat of Maghfirat in the Qur’an is: وَإِنِّي لَغَفَّارٌ لِمَنْ تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا ثُمَّ اهْتَدَىٰ And lo! verily I am Forgiving toward him who repenteth and believeth and doeth good, and afterward walketh aright. [Surah Taha: 82] This verse shows that there are conditions attached to Allah ta’ala’s forgiveness. It is for that person who has the following traits: · • One who repents (does Tawbah) · • One who has Imaan – Imaan has different levels which means one should always be working on it · • One who does good deeds – the sign of true Tawbah is that the person is engaged in doing good deeds to make up for the life of sin and mistakes. Then that person will be guided. This is a cycle or cause and effect where if the person has these three traits then that person will find Hidaayah. The word اهْتَدَىٰ has the meaning of putting effort into something so to seek and struggle for it. In Surah Nisaa’ (verse 110) Allah ta’ala says, وَمَنْ يَعْمَلْ سُوءًا أَوْ يَظْلِمْ نَفْسَهُ ثُمَّ يَسْتَغْفِرِ اللَّهَ يَجِدِ اللَّهَ غَفُورًا رَحِيمًا If anyone does evil or wrongs his own soul and then seeks Allah's forgiveness, he will find Allah Forgiving, Merciful. So forgiveness is for the one who, after he does a bad deed or does Dhulm upon himself, he seeks forgiveness from Allah ta’ala. We often see Ghafoor and Raheem used together as Allah ta’ala’s Rahmah is vast and covers a lot of things and a lot types of people and part of that Rahmah is that He is forgiving. Allah ta’ala’s Rahmah comes automatically by default and His forgiveness, though it is there, to get it, some conditions have to be met and the main condition is to seek it, ثُمَّ يَسْتَغْفِرِ اللَّهَ is from the same root word but means to seek Allah ta’ala’s forgiveness and then Allah ta’ala will forgive. Differences between Istighfaar & Tawbah These two words are used interchangeably in English and mean more or less the same but there is slight difference. Istighfaar is to seek forgiveness for previous sins i.e. to say sorry and cover up past sins. Tawbah literally means to turn in a certain direction and decide not to go back. Therefore Tawbah includes the intention to not commit the sin again i.e. to make a resolution not to sin again and to make a promise to Allah ta’ala and to yourself not to sin again and so it is more for the future. Differences between الْغَفَّارُ and الْغَفُورُ These two words have almost the same meaning however Scholars have mentioned a slight difference. الْغَفَّارُ is that Being (Allah ta’ala) Who after true Tawbah forgives the sin and removes the signs of the sin i.e. covers up. Allah ta’ala covers up and wipes it away to such an extent that He makes the person forget and it is as if the person did not commit that sin. It is mentioned in Hadith, التَّائِبُ مِنَ الذَّنْبِ كَمَنْ لاَ ذَنْبَ لَهُ ‘The one who repents from sin is like one who did not sin.’ [Ibn Majah] This is for sins other than sins pertaining to other people i.e. Gheebat, having hatred in the heart for someone and being revengeful etc. This makes a person Mahroom (Deprived) of Allah ta’ala’s forgiveness. الْغَفُورُ – Allah ta’ala makes even the angels forget about the sin of that person. Sharing in these Sifaat Allah ta’ala hides our sins by being Ghafoor and we should also hide the faults and sins of other people. Allah ta’ala loves those who seek Forgiveness There are many Hadith which mention that Allah ta’ala loves those who seek forgiveness. In a beautiful Hadith Qudsi Allah ta’ala says that the crying of a sinner is more beloved to Him than the Tasbeeh of one who does His Tasbeeh. In another Hadith Qudsi is mentioned, “Allah Ta’ala says, ‘O Son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and have hope in Me, I shall forgive you for whatever you have done and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, if your sins were to reach the clouds of the sky and then you were to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, if you were to come to Me with an earthful of sins and were you then to face Me, without having ascribing any partner to Me, I would grant you an earthful of forgiveness” [Tirmidhi] Therefore this is the Kafiyyat (Condition) a person has to be in to attain the Rahmah and the Maghfirat of Allah ta’ala i.e. to feel remorse, shame etc. In Surah Najm (verse 32) Allah ta’ala say, الَّذِينَ يَجْتَنِبُونَ كَبَائِرَ الْإِثْمِ وَالْفَوَاحِشَ إِلَّا اللَّمَمَ ۚ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ وَاسِعُ الْمَغْفِرَةِ To those who avoid the major sins and shameful deeds and are guilty of only small offence, surely for them your Rabb will have abundant forgiveness. Allah ta’ala is not bound It is important to understand this point that though a person has this Kafiyyat, Allah ta’ala does not have to forgive. He is not compelled to forgive by the person’s asking for forgiveness. His being Ghafoor does not mean He is bound by it but because Allah ta’ala is Ghaalib, Azeez, He will forgive people. He only needs an excuse and a person’s asking for forgiveness is an excuse for Allah ta’ala to forgive so there is no price to His Rahmah. We do not know which good deed we might do which will get us Maghfirat and that is why we should not regard any good deed as small. As mentioned in hadith, even half a date in Sadaqah should not be regarded as small. Anything done with the right intention and accepted by Allah ta’ala can wipe away a lot. Forgiveness of Minor Sins As for the minor sins, they get forgiven through good deeds like Wudhu or when a bad deed is followed up by a good deed. “When a Muslim or a believer washes his face in ablution, then every sin that he committed with his eyes will be washed away with the last drop of water. When he washes his hands, then every sin that he committed with his hands will be washed away with the last drop of water. When he washes his feet, then every sin that he committed with his feet will be washed away with the last drop of water, until he emerges purified from sin.” [Muslim] “Be conscious of Allah wherever you are. Follow the bad deed with a good one to erase it, and engage others with beautiful character.” [Tirmidhi] Istighfaar – Seeking Forgiveness from Allah ta’ala The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam said, “By Allah, I seek forgiveness from Allah and I repent to him more than seventy times in a day.” [Bukhari] In another Hadith it is mentioned 100 times and He did not need to but he still did to attain the beauty and the Tajalli and Noor of this trait. In Surah Nasr Allah ta’ala says, فَسَبِّحْ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّكَ وَاسْتَغْفِرْهُ ۚ إِنَّهُ كَانَ تَوَّابًا So glorify your Rabb with His praises, and pray for His forgiveness: surely He is ever ready to accept repentance. This was addressing the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam meaning when you are free from your mission as a Prophet, then praise Allah ta’ala and seek His forgiveness. Seeking forgiveness is not just when we do something wrong. The Sunnah of the Prophet sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam is to seek forgiveness after even good deeds (and we find it hard after doing bad deeds), why? He realized that whatever good deeds we do are not according to the Shaan of Allah ta’ala. There will always be flaws and shortcomings. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam recited three times استغفر الله and thereafter the following du’a after Salaah; ‏اللهم أنت السلام، ومنك السلام، تباركت يا ياذا الجلال والإكرام‏ Therefore asking Allah ta’ala to forgive all shortcomings and any Riyaa that may have been felt. Other Hadith, “Glad tidings (tuba) for the one who, (on the day of judgement), finds an abundance of Istighfar in his book of deeds.” [Ibn Majah] “By Him in whose hand is my soul, if you did not sin Allah would replace you with people who would sin and they would seek the forgiveness of Allah and He would forgive them.” [Muslim] Allah ta’ala does not need our good deeds and He does not need our repentance but when we do Tawbah it invokes the Rahmah of Allah ta’ala and it brings humility in our lives. It is part of human Fitrah that we should want to beg for Allah ta’ala’s forgiveness for sins and for not fulfilling what we should have done. This is the higher level the Prophets had i.e. that we did not the rights of a deed and is full of shortcomings. It is the Karam of Allah ta’ala that He accepts Tawbah. Benefits of Istighfaar Glad tidings have been promised for who does Istighfaar in abundance as mentioned in the Hadith above. In another Hadith the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam said, "If anyone constantly seeks pardon (from Allah), Allah will appoint for him a way out of every distress and a relief from every anxiety, and will provide sustenance for him from where he expects not." [Abu Dawood] There is a story in the Qur’an of a people whom Allah ta’ala gave so much but they lost it all due to their ingratitude and not repenting. Allah ta’ala would have put Barakah in their wealth, given water, crops etc. had they repented. Incident in the time of Hasan Basri (رحمه الله) It is related in Tafsir al Qurtubi that Hasan al-Basri (r.a) was once seated. A man came saying ” O Master, I’m very sinful do tell me an act which I can do to be forgiven”. Hasan al-Basri (r.a) replied, “Go and do Istighfar”. Second person came and said, ” O Master, for many days rains have stopped and there is drought. Tell me an action through which Allah (s.w.t) will send down rain to us”. Hasan al-Basri (r.a) replied, “Go and do Istighfar”. Third person came and said, ” I am under a lot of debt. I am working, but please make dua that Allah (s.w.t) give me wealth so I can be saved from debts”. Hasan al-Basri (r.a) replied, “Go and do Istighfar to Allah” Fourth person came and said, “It is a wish of mine that Allah (s.w.t) give me an offspring. So please make dua that Allah (s.w.t) gives me pious offspring”. Hasan al-Basri (r.a) replied, “Go and do Istighfar” Fifth person came and said, “I have an orchard please make dua that it gives more fruits, so that the return will be more.” Hasan al-Basri (r.a) replied, ” Go and do Istighfar” Sixth person came and said, “If I was to get water spring in my house, I will be so pleased”. Shaykh Hasan replied, “Go and do Istighfar”. Shaykh Hasan al-Basri’s (r.a) disciple, Ibn Sabih (r.a) who was sitting close, was very surprised thinking, “Why is it that Shaykh Hasan al-Basri (r.a) is giving the same solution of Istighfar to whoever comes to him”? So Ibn Sabih (r.a) eventually asked “Why are you giving one response for all the problems”? On hearing this Shaykh Hasan al-Basri (r.a) recited what Allah (s.w.t) said in Qur’an: فَقُلْتُ اسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ إِنَّهُ كَانَ غَفَّارًا - saying: "Seek forgiveness of your Rabb, He is ever ready to forgive you. يُرْسِلِ السَّمَاءَ عَلَيْكُمْ مِدْرَارًا - He will send abundant rain for you from heaven وَيُمْدِدْكُمْ بِأَمْوَالٍ وَبَنِينَ وَيَجْعَلْ لَكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ وَيَجْعَلْ لَكُمْ أَنْهَارًا - help you with wealth and sons, and provide you with gardens and the flowing rivers [Surah Nooh: 10-12] Istighfaar is a way of having difficulties removed, widens every constriction and provides Rizq from sources we cannot imagine. It is the antidote to all problems and not just for when we sin. Therefore we should turn to Allah ta’ala in repentance when we have any problems. Unfortunately when we say to people to turn to Istighfaar in difficulty they say they haven’t done anything wrong but actually all of Bani Adam are sinners as we all sin to some extent but the best of the sinners are those who repent. كُلُّ بَنِي آدَمَ خَطَّاءٌ وَخَيْرُ الْخَطَّائِينَ التَّوَّابُونَ We should therefore generally do Istighfaar and think about our sins and repent and another benefit of Istighfaar is that it leads you to do Muhaasabah. We won’t need anyone telling us what mistakes we are making as consciously or subconsciously our mind will be working on where you need to make Istighfaar and then that leads you to making changes in your life. We may not act to make these changes but at least we will become aware. To say it with the Heart It is very important to do Istighfaar conscientiously and with feeling for full benefit and not just roll it off the tongue (which will still bring some benefit). Du’a in Hadith There are many Du’a for Istighfaar and many compilations by Scholars. One such very good compilation is by Mufti Abdur Rahmaan Mangera available here: http://www.whitethreadpress.com/prayers-for-forgiveness/ Another compilation by Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat, PDF available here: https://www.at-tazkiyah.com/publications/booklet_eng/istighfar14.pdf Look at these Du’a to realize how to make Istighfaar and even if you do not use the same wording, to have that feeling in the heart is important. There is a lot of inspiration in these Du’a. One very comprehensive Du’a is: أستغفر الله ربي من كل ذنب وأتوب إليه Forgiveness for Each Other For Istighfaar to be proper the conditions mentioned before are important and if it involves other people i.e. you have hurt someone, then ask for forgiveness and if it is felt that it will make matters worse then make Du’a for them. We should also be forgiving toward others. We want Allah ta’ala to forgive us so we should be forgiving to others. Levels of Forgiving There are different levels of forgiving: · Forgiving someone from the tongue: saying it with words but having negative feelings in the heart. · Forgiving from the heart but when the occasion arises you may remind the person i.e. saying something like, “You still haven’t changed, you are still doing this.” · Forgiving from the heart and not bringing up the hurt that the person caused even though you may think of it now and then. · The highest level is Ihsaan, the level of the Ambiyaa. You forgive and you treat them better than before. Counsel To be people who are forgiving and asking Allah ta’ala to forgive yourself and others. Sometimes it is easier to ask other for forgiveness than to forgive others from the heart especially if you have been hurt badly by someone close to you. Therefore make Du’a to be purified of all negative feelings.
  17. Part Forty Nine (Continuing with the Ahaadith relating to the fitnah in the time of Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu)) Hazrat Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that he heard Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) mention the following, “Indeed you will encounter after me a great fitnah.” Hearing this, one of the Sahaabah asked, “Who should we hold onto and follow during this fitnah, O Rasul of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)?” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) replied, “Hold onto the trustworthy one and his companions (referring to Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu)).” (Fadhaa’il-us-Sahaabah lil-Imaam Ahmed #723) Hazrat ‘Aa’ishah (radhiyallahu ‘anha) reports that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) once addressed Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) and said, “O ‘Uthmaan! Allah Ta‘ala will clothe you in the garment (of khilaafah i.e. Allah Ta‘ala will bless you with khilaafah). If there comes a time when people force you to remove this garment which Allah Ta‘ala has blessed you with (i.e. they want you to abdicate and step down from this position) then do not remove it for them (i.e. do not accede to their demands as you will be on haq).” (Sunan Tirmizi #3705)
  18. Ruqyah - a remedy for illness, evil, magic and Jinn from the Qur'an and Sunnah Published by Ummah Welfare Trust Ruqyah-Booklet.pdf
  19. Forgot to add: Aisha reported: When the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, would lie down for sleep, he would blow into his hands, recite the two chapters of refuge, Surat al-Falaq and al-Nas, and he would wipe his hands over his body. (Bukhari) “It is reported in the Sunan of Abu Dawud and Ibn Maajah from Asmaa’ bint ‘Umays (radhiya Allahu ‘anhaa) that she said, ‘Rasulullah (‘Sallallahu ‘alayhi wa ‘alaa aalihi wa sallam) said to me, “Shall I teach you some words that you should say at the time of كرب Karb or in Karb (heartache, distress, gloom)? Say: ‏أَللَّهُ ‏ ‏أَللَّهُ رَبِّي لَا أُشْرِكُ بِهِ شَيْئًا “Allahu Allahu Rabbi Laa Ushriku Bihi Shai’a” Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that whenever the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was faced with a serious difficulty, he would raise his head to the sky and supplicate, “Subhan-Allah al-’Azim (glory be to Allah, the Mighty).” And when he implored seriously and strongly, he would say, “Ya Hayyu, Ya Qayyum (O the Living, the Eternal One).” (Tirmidhi)
  20. wa'alaykumus salaam warahmatullah I came across this article when different people suggested different wazaaif for a major illness in my family with great emphasis on them. I was quite concerned about the emphasis and I consulted people of knowledge. I would like to share the advise so insha-allah there is greater awareness regarding this issue. 1 I was advised to read this article which explains everything very concisely yet with great depth 2 The Nabawi prescriptions are the best which include: a lot of Istighfaar a lot of Durood upon our Nabi sallallaahu 'alayhi wasallam Verse 173 of Surah Aali 'Imraan abundantly - "Hasbunallaah‎u wa ni'mal wakeel" Verse 87 of Surah Ambiyaa abundantly - "Laailaaha illaa anta subhaanaka innee kuntu minadh dhaalimeen" - لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِين The following du'a for cure are also from the Sunnah
  21. The Reality of Wazā'if Hadrat Mawlana Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullah When struck by an illness, difficulty or calamity, it is natural for us to try our best to relieve ourselves of it. Allāh ta'ālā, being our Creator, is well aware of this, and consequently He has not only permitted, but also encouraged us to adopt means that help us to remove the difficulty we find ourselves in. However, due to our limited understanding and knowledge we do not adopt the correct means, or if we do, then we do not adopt them suitably. There are two types of means that we can utilise to help us at a time of difficulty: spiritual and worldly. From these, we should always adopt spiritual resources first. Adopting spiritual resources means turning to Allāh ta'ālā. This in itself further comprises two parts: the first is to assess our lives and see where we are faltering in our obedience to Allāh ta'ālā; having realised this, we should strive towards rectification through tawbah and istighfār. The second part is to make du'ā to Allāh ta'ālā and ask Him to fulfil our needs and remove the difficulty. After this, we should adopt suitable and permissible worldly resources. Those who are ill should take advice from an experienced and qualified doctor and follow his advice. Those involved in a court case should seek help from an experienced lawyer. However, we must ensure that in adopting worldly resources we do not do anything contrary to the Pleasure of the Creator. Common Mistakes After understanding the correct procedure to follow when trying to remove difficulties, let us now look at some common mistakes made in this regard. Those Muslims who do not follow the Sharī'ah do not adopt spiritual resources at all. Their attention is entirely on worldly resources. We must remember that these means will only prove beneficial if Allāh ta'ālā wills. Therefore, without turning to Allāh ta'ālā there is no guarantee of success. Those who, to some degree, do follow the injunctions of the Sharī'ah, adopt spiritual resources, but do so according to their own limited understanding. A common mistake is giving too much importance to wazā'if. (Wazā'if refers to the recitation of certain verse(s), name(s) of Allāh ta'ālā etc. a certain number of times to fulfil a particular need.) Too much attention on wazā'if can lead people to overlook the importance given to du'ā by our Sharī'ah, and as a result, it is not valued as it should be. Du'ā is considered to be something 'common', 'ordinary' and 'simple'. And because wazā'if have special quantities, prerequisites etc. attached, they appear as something special. As a result, people are more inclined towards wazā'if than they are to du'ā, whereas in reality, du'ā is the key to solving our problems. Even though wazā'if can be of benefit, there is a very big difference between them and du'ā. Du'ā will be counted as an 'ibādah, even if it be for a worldly item, such as a job, good health or passing a driving test. However, as far as wazā'if are concerned, their recitation will not be rewarded as they are not classed as ibādah. Another distinction is that while making du'ā we rely solely on Allāh ta'ālā, aware that it is only Allāh ta'ālā who in reality can help us, solve our problems and remove our difficulties. With wazā'if, our attention diverts towards the 'power' of the wazā'if. The Reality of Wazā'if In essence, it is only Allāh ta'ālā who removes difficulties, and du'ā is to ask Allāh ta'ālā to do just that. What chance is there of attracting the Help of Allāh ta'ālā through wazā'if if the person reciting them does not have any connection with Him? Once a person came to Shaykh Ya'qūb Majaddidi rahimahullāh and asked him to explain the reality of wazā'if. The Shaykh did not give him a direct answer, but instead explained through an example, making use of a police officer who was present nearby. The Shaykh asked, "If you were to say to this policeman, 'You are fired!' What will happen?" The person replied, "Nothing, it will have no impact whatsoever." The Shaykh then asked, "What if you were to repeat the sentence a hundred times?" The reply was the same. The Shaykh further asked, "What if you were to sit with a tasbīh (prayer beads) and repeat it a thousand times?" Again he gave the same reply, that it would make no difference whatsoever. The Shaykh then asked him how he could fire the policeman. The person explained that he would need to join the police force and work hard until he became the policeman's superior. Then just saying 'You are fired' once would be enough to have him removed. The Shaykh then explained that this is the same case with wazā'if. If a person were to recite a certain verse, name of Allāh ta'ālā etc. a thousand times, it will have no effect until and unless the person acquires a position in Allāh's S eyes and becomes beloved to Him. Once he does so, he will just have to make du'ā once and Allāh ta'ālā will accept it. Rasūlullāh sallallāhu 'alayhi wasallam has said: "There are many who are dishevelled, covered in dust, turned away from people's doors, who, if they were to take an oath by Allāh, Allāh ta'ālā would surely carry it out." (Muslim) "(When my servant becomes my beloved) and he asks from me, I will grant him." (Al-Bukhārī) Turning To Allāh ta'ālā Completely There are many who do turn to Allāh ta'ālā and engage in du'ā, but do not realise that there are certain obstacles that prevent the du'ā from being accepted. One major obstacle is disobedience to Allāh ta'ālā; therefore, we need to turn to Allāh ta'ālā completely, after making a full assessment of our lives. For example, someone neglectful of Salāh needs to become punctual with Salāh; someone involved in a particular sin needs to stop that sin immediately and repent. This is because it is very possible that the difficulty afflicting us is due to a sin we are committing, and du'ā will not bear fruit if the cause of the difficulty remains. Therefore, repenting from sin and changing one's life for the better is also a necessity for the acceptance of du'ā. Allāh ta'ālā's Will If after adopting all these means, the difficulty is still not removed, then we should remember that Allāh ta'ālā is Al-Hakīm (The Most Wise) and Al-Hākim (The Supreme Ruler). It is very possible that Allāh ta'ālā has something better in mind for us. While wishing for the difficulty to be removed, we may be unaware of the benefits hidden in it. However, Allāh's S knowledge is complete and He knows what is better for us in the long term. Therefore, if a difficulty remains then we should remain content and happy with Allāh's S decision. From the Ahādīth we learn that the du'ās of a believer are invariably accepted (provided their requisites have been fulfilled), but their acceptance is manifested in either of the following three ways: a) sometimes Allāh immediately answers them and blesses the seeker with what was asked for; b) sometimes He substitutes what was asked for with something that in His Knowledge is better for the seeker; c) alternatively, through the blessings of the du'ā, He removes an impending calamity that was to befall the seeker. At times, none of the above is the case, and instead the du'ā is saved for the hereafter. Such unanswered du'ās will bear so much reward in the hereafter that the seeker will wish that none of his du'ās had been accepted in the world. (Kanz-ul-'Ummāl) Source
  22. Part Forty Eight In various Ahaadith, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) had prophesized that a fitnah would break out during the era of Hazrat ‘Uthmaan’s (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) khilaafah. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) also mentioned that Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) would be on the haq in this fitnah, however he would be martyred. Some of these Ahaadith are: Hazrat ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhuma) reports the following: On one occasion, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) made mention of a fitnah that was to occur in the future. At that moment, a certain Sahaabi passed by while covering his head with a shawl. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) gestured towards him and said, “In that fitnah, this person, whose head is covered with a shawl, will be killed unjustly.” Hazrat ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhuma) then said, “When I looked at the man, I saw that he was none other than Hazrat ‘Uthmaan bin ‘Affaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu).” (Fadhaa’il-us-Sahaabah lil-Imaam Ahmed #724) Hazrat Ka’b bin ‘Ujrah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) narrates: Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) once mentioned a certain fitnah to the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) and explained that this fitnah would occur in the near future. At that moment, a Sahaabi passed by with his head covered with a shawl. Referring to this Sahaabi, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said, “On that day (when the fitnah will occur), this man will be on guidance.” I moved to see who the person was and placed my hand on his arm. On noticing that the person was Hazrat ‘Uthmaan (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), I turned to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) for confirmation and asked, “Is this the person who will be on haq at that time?” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) answered in the affirmative and said, “Yes, he is the person.”
  23. ‘Arif Billah Dr. ‘Abd al-Hayy ‘Arifi said great sacrifices and strivings (mujahadah) were undergone in former times for the islah of the nafs (rectification of the self). Nowadays people, due to not having that courage, cannot undergo those strivings. I will show you a simple formula that is extremely concise, but very effective. These are four a’mal (actions) and these four are the core of Shar’iah and Tariqah, and are so easy that to practice on them does not cost money, time or effort. The person who makes these four things a habit will develop a special link with Allah Most High. He will experience its benefits during his life and the heart will be conducive towards islah (reformation). Eventually he will reach such a stage that even if he wishes to commit sin, he will be unable to do so. The four a’mal are: [1] Shukr (gratitude) [2] Sabr (patience) [3] Istighfar (seeking repentance) [4] Isti’adhah (seeking refuge) Whatever Dr. ‘Abd al-Hayy said on that occasion was written down by my brother Mufti Taqi Usmani and is printed in booklet form under the name Ma’mulat-e-Yawmiyah, and has been translated into many languages. One day he (Dr. ‘Abd al-Hayy) said; “Maulwi Rafi’! Do you read the Ma’mulat-e-Yawmiyah?” I replied: “Alhamdu Lillah, I read it.” He then said: “Read every single letter of it, and when it is completed, restart it.” Thereafter he smiled and said: “I actually prepared this booklet for you two brothers and I have this concern that the world will benefit from it and the two of you will forget about it.” He then related his own story: “Once my murshid Hakim al-Ummah (may Allah have mercy on him) presented me with a bottle of honey. I happily took it home thinking that if I eat this tabarruk (an object of barakah, usually given by an elder) without thought, it will be finished very quickly. Thus I should protect it and eat from it on certain special occasions. I wrapped it and kept it in a safe place. Many months passed and one day I was fasting, so I thought that I would make iftar with the honey. When I opened it I saw that the bottle was filled with huge ants and the honey was finished. I have this concern regarding the Ma’mulat-e-Yawmiyah also, that others will benefit from it and you will keep it in a place of safety.” Gift of the murshid Today I will present you with the gift of my murshid (spiritual guide) which he presented in the fourteen years of contact with him. I hope that you will appreciate it, for, my murshid used to say: “This is a gift from my murshid.” And his murshid (Hakim al-Ummah) used to say: “This is a gift from Allah and His Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace).” He would often say that “Develop the habit of shukr, sabr, istighfar and isti’adhah.” (1) Shukr The first point is Shukr, which should be inculcated foremost. Ponder lightly regarding yourself and the environment morning and evening before sleeping, over the gifts of Allah related to mundane and religious matters and thank Allah comprehensively. Especially on the gift of iman which Allah has given us, and on ‘afiyah (general goodness and safety). Thank Allah from the heart and make a firm intention to use the Divine gifts in an appropriate manner. Besides these, whenever remembering any ni’mah (favor), thank Allah quietly from the heart. In short, whenever anything happens which is according to your desire, which the heart becomes pleased with, then quietly say اَلْـحَمْدُ ِللهِ (Alhamdu lillah) or say اَللّٰهُمَّ لَكَ الْـحَمْدُ وَ لَكَ الشُّكْرُ (Allahumma lakal hamdu wa lakash shukr). Many occasions of shukr From morning till evening, so many things take place that is according to a person’s wishes and desire. When the eyes open in the morning, one’s health is in a good condition, then say Alhamdu Lillah (All praise belongs to Allah). You saw that the family is safe and sound, quietly say Alhamdu Lillah. You proceeded for the Fajr Salah and performed it with jama’ah (congregation), say Alhamdu Lillah. You ate breakfast on time, say Alhamdu Lillah. You left for work and had the worry that you will reach late, but reached on time, say Alhamdu Lillah. The traveller was worried that he will miss his transport but made it on time, he should say Alhamdu Lillah. He mounted the transport and was worried that he will not get a seat but found one, he should say Alhamdu Lillah. When returning home, one found the family well, say Alhamdu Lillah. During summer a cool wind blows, say Alhamdu Lillah. To summarize, anything big or small that takes place according to ones wishes, or a du’a gets accepted, or anything which pleases the heart and gives joy, or one is given the tawfiq (ability and guidance) to fulfil a good action, make it a habit to thank Allah with the heart and tongue. This doesn’t cost time, money, or effort. We enjoy countless bounties In fact, Allah forbid, if a difficulty or calamity befalls one, before remedying the situation, ponder over the countless bounties Allah has bestowed upon us without us being worthy of them, and which are a means of comfort to the heart. If these bounties were not with us, what would have been the situation in this calamity? (Without these bounties, the situation could have been much worse). Insha’Allah, by thinking in this manner, mental composure will be achieved, even though the emotional aggravation may remain. Without exaggeration, we enjoy countless bounties of Allah Most High at all times. If not on all, then in this manner shukr will be made on at least a few of His bounties. By practicing to make shukr in this manner, a person will develop such a habit of making shukr, that for every pleasing thing he will be making shukr in his heart and no one will even be aware of it. Also, he will be fulfilling a great ‘ibadah (worship) free from ostentation. The stages of such a person are raised to such levels that you cannot fathom. Anyway, man should be such that he makes shukr in every condition. Initially it may seem difficult, but by practicing on this, in most conditions one will remember and it will develop into a habit. By making shukr bounties are increased and one is protected from punishment Allah Most High says: “What has Allah to do (gain) by punishing you if you thanked Him and believed in Him” (Surah Nisa’). It is learnt from this that those with iman who make shukr will be protected from the punishment of Allah. Allah Most High says in another place: “If you give thanks I will give you more” (Surah Ibrahim). From this it is learnt that for whichever blessing shukr is made, the blessings will increase and this worldly life will become easier. If you doubt this, then try it yourself. It will become very clear to the person who does this and he himself will experience that there are pleasurable changes taking place in his life. This is a beloved ‘ibadah unto Allah How beloved this ‘ibadah of shukr is unto Allah Most High can be gauged from the following: From among the revealed books of Allah the greatest and dearest is the Noble Qur’an. Allah Most High began this kitab (book) with Surah al-Fatihah and He began this surah with the words Alhamdu Lillah. The summary of the entire Qur’an is in Surah al-Fatihah and this surah begins with the words Alhamdu Lillah. There must be a reason for placing these words of shukr in a place of such importance. And how much does Allah Most High love this surah? This can be judged from this that not only in every salah but He instructed us to recite it in every rak’ah. One of the reasons for this (instructing us to recite it in every rak’ah) is this surah contains the praises and glorification of Allah and Allah Most High loves to be praised. This ‘ibadah will continue in Jannah There will be no ‘ibadah (form of worship) in Jannah; salah, fasting, zakah, Hajj, all forms of worship will come to an end. There will be only pleasure and enjoyment. Only one worship will remain, and that is shukr. It is mentioned in a hadith that shukr will flow from the mouths of the people of Jannah continuously. Like in this world breathing takes place without being conscious of it, in a like manner will the people of Jannah be praising Allah (continuously and without being mindful of it). In this world when one develops the habit of making shukr for the small and big favours of Allah, the following benefits will be accrued: [1] Safety from the punishment of Allah. [2] Favours will be increased. [3] Through this ‘amal (action) the love for Allah is developed. [4] The bond with Allah is strengthened. [5] Proximity unto Allah Most High is enhanced. [6] Pleasurable changes come into one’s life. [7] One experiences the pleasure of contentment in ones condition. [8] Life becomes full of security and safety. The story of a woodcutter The like of the throne of Sayyiduna Sulayman (may the peace of Allah be upon him) was never possessed by any king. The jinns would carry it in the air. The birds would form shade over it. A huge amount of the creations of Allah would travel with the throne. This throne was being flown with all its might and glory when it was seen by a woodcutter. He involuntarily said: “Subhan’Allah!(Glorious is Allah!) The majesty and splendour of the family of Dawud!” The wind carried these words to Sayyiduna Sulayman (may the peace of Allah be upon him). He instructed the throne to be lowered and said: “Take me to the woodcutter.” The woodcutter became fearful and started shivering, pondering as to what blunder he had committed. Sayyiduna Sulayman asked him: “What did you say?” Because of fear, he could not remember what he had said. After thinking for a while he replied: “I only said Subhan’Allah! The majesty and splendour of the family of Dawud.” Sayydina Sulayman (may the peace of Allah be upon him) said to him: “You saw the army of Sulayman and became envious. What you do not know is that a thousand such armies are nothing compared to the Subhan’Allah you said once! You are also not aware of the lofty status you have received by saying Subhan’Allah just once!” Sabr and taqwa are developed from shukr The shukr of Allah is such a treasure that from it countless ease and bounties are achieved. When a person constantly makes shukr, the quality of sabr will also be developed. Thus he will never complain when in a difficulty. He will feel embarrassed when committing a sin, thinking that the Being whom I make shukr unto morning and evening, how can I now disobey Him? So this is the barakah (blessing) of this ‘amal, that because of making shukr, sins decrease. He achieves salvation from destructive diseases like jealousy, greed and lust, wasting and miserliness, etc. Pride is eradicated One of the great benefits of making shukr is that the person is protected from pride. He does not consider the ni’mahs he receives as his own achievement and accomplishment, but acknowledges them as bounties from Allah and keeps on saying it. So when he does not think of them as his own accomplishments and refers to them as gifts solely from Allah, then how will he be boastful and proud? Pride is such a dangerous major sin that Allah’s Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) has said: “That person will not enter Jannah who has an atoms worth of pride in his heart. (Narrated by Muslim from Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him)) (2) Sabr Thus far one action i.e. shukr has been discussed. Now I will explain the second action, sabr. Sabr means to refrain from doing anything impermissible when something occurs which is against ones wishes. Like from morning to evening, many things occur which are according to ones wishes, in a like manner many things occur that are against one, e.g. you reached the bus stop but the bus has already departed. Anything minor or major that occurs and is against one, focus on Allah and do not lose control over oneself. This is sabr and it is a very significant action of the heart. Through this (calamities), Allah Most High tests the strength of a person’s iman. So many things happen in life daily, morning and evening, which are displeasing and difficult on the self. Sometimes one is saddened by personal sickness or a friend’s sickness or problem, or by someone’s death, or there is harm to wealth or status. In short, anything that causes disruption to ones inner peace and tranquillity becomes a test of sabr. But because it is not by choice, it is wajib (compulsory) to believe that it is from Allah, for in this (attitude) there are many a wisdom and mercies. For such conditions Allah Most High Himself through His Grace and Mercy has granted a very beneficial and effective cure for peace of the heart. He exhorted us (to recite): إِنَّا ِللهِ وَ إِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُوْنَ Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un ((To Allah we belong and to Him is our return. (Surah al-Baqarah) )) By reciting this, mental peace and physical endurance will be formed. Thus, the easiest method of inculcating sabr is to recite ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un‘ whenever anything occurs that is against ones wishes, whether it is a major calamity or a minor displeasing matter. In this also, money or time is not used. Here in our country (refering to Pakistan) load shedding of electricity has made this action even easier. Whenever the electricity goes, recite ‘Inna lillahi…’, and whenever it returns, recite ‘Alhamdu Lillah’. So much so, in the narration it is mentioned that when remembering a past calamity, recite ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un‘ and you will receive the same reward which you received (for reciting it) at the time of the calamity. The recital of Inna lillahi… is not restricted to death It has become common in our society that Inna lillahi … is only recited when someone dies, whereas it is not correct to restrict its recital to death only. It is mentioned in a narration that once in front of Allah’s Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) a lamp extinguished and he recited ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un‘. Sayyidatuna A’isha (may Allah be pleased with her) thereupon asked him: “O Messenger of Allah! Is this also a calamity?” He replied: “Whatever troubles a Muslim is a calamity and there is a promise of reward for it.” In another hadith it is mentioned that a Muslim receives reward even when a thorn pricks him. In yet another narration it is mentioned that a Muslim is successful in every condition. For, when he receives joy, he makes shukr, and when a calamity befalls him, he makes sabr. And Allah Most High loves the servant who makes sabr and shukr. Mullah Nasiruddin By the way I have recalled something regarding Mullah Nasiruddin. He is the same person whose witty remarks are famous. It is mentioned that Mullah was very handsome and his wife was ill-looking. So once he said to his wife: “Wife! You are a jannati (one who will enter Jannah) and I am also a jannati.” She asked him “How is that’? He replied: “Because when you look at me you make shukr that you got such a handsome husband. When I look at you I make sabr, and the one who makes shukr and also the one who makes sabr are jannatis!” The mercy of Allah is on the sabir (on the one who adopts sabr) Sabr should be made on every displeasing matter, big or small, and ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un‘ should be said. This is because the closeness of Allah Most High is achieved through sabr. Allah Most High says in the Qur’an: “Verily Allah is with the patient ones.” (Surah Baqarah) Thus, who can harm that person whom Allah is with? Regarding those people who read ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un‘, the Qur’an says: “They are those on whom are the salawat (who are blessed and will be forgiven) from their Lord, and (they are those) who receive His mercy, and it is they who are the guided-ones.” (Surah Baqarah) To summarize, by reading these words at the time of difficulty, it will become evident and clearly felt that the Mercy of Allah is with one. I swear by Allah that if a person inculcates these four points within himself, in a few days he will perceive that someone (Allah) has placed His Mercy in his heart and that someone (Allah) is protecting him. Thus, his loneliness has been removed and joy will re-enter his life. Through this ‘amal, steadfastness, control, perseverance and dignity will be developed. The strength to overcome difficulties will be acquired, and the ability to be pleased with the decree of Allah Most High will be formed, and this is a very high level of servitude. Those with sabr are not inclined to anger and taking revenge regarding themselves. And if they do get inclined, it is short-lived. Such people are saved from these types of emotions. (3) Istighfar The third action is istighfar. This action also does not utilize wealth, effort, or time. Whenever a sin is committed, big or small, say: أَسْتَغْفِرُالله (Astaghfirullah), i.e. O Allah! I seek Your forgiveness. The challenge of Satan Satan laid a challenge just prior to Sayyiduna Adam (may Allah’s peace be upon him) was sent down to earth. He said: “O Allah! I will lead your servants astray and direct them to Jahannam (hellfire)” [because man is my rival and it is because of man that I have been dismissed from my high position]. Sayyiduna Adam (may Allah’s peace be upon him) pleaded unto Allah: “O Allah! You have given my enemy Satan so much power, which my progeny and I do not possess. He can adopt different forms and he can come in such forms in which we cannot see him but he can see us. He is a jinn and we are human beings. There are many differences in our dispositions. He will drive us into Jahannam!” The weapon given by Allah Allah Most High replied: “O Adam! Undoubtedly We have given him tremendous powers, but there is a weapon to overcome his powers. We will give you that weapon and as long as you use that weapon, no attack of his will be effective, and the name of that weapon is istighfar.” So, whenever a sin is committed, say Astaghfirullah from the depths of your heart. Sins are forgiven through istighfar Allah Most High does not send His punishment on those who make istighfar. The Noble Qur’an says: “He will not punish them while they seek forgiveness (from Allah).” (Surah Anfal) Allah Most High has placed the desire for sin in our hearts and has also placed (a certain amount) of pleasure in them, thus it is not easy to save oneself from sin. Man inadvertently goes towards them. Therefore, through His vast Mercy, Allah Most High has opened such an extensive door, when we commit sin, then with genuine regret, make istighfar and tawbah (repentance), forgiveness will be granted. The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) has said: “A person who makes tawbah from a sin is like that person who has not committed a sin at all.” (Narrated by Ibn Majah from Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him)) Make tawbah every time a sin is committed When a sin is committed once, make tawbah. When the same sin is committed again, make tawbah again, Allah Most High will forgive. So much so that if the same sin is committed seventy times and tawbah is made every time, it will be forgiven every time because the doors of tawbah are always open. So even if the tawbah is broken a thousand times, keep on repairing it, that Rahim (Merciful), Karim (Benevolent) will forgive a thousand times. A poet has explained this beautifully (in Urdu): Jam mera tawbah shikan, tawbah meri jam shikan Samne dher hai tutai huwe paymano ke My goblet breaks the tawbah, my tawbah breaks the goblet In front of me lies a pile of broken goblets and tawbahs. The [Urdu] word paymano is the plural of payman and also the plural of paymane. Payman means promise, and tawbah is also a promise unto Allah Most High that this sin will never be committed again. Paymana is a wine goblet, which is also called jam. So the poet is saying that my wine goblet breaks my tawbah, i.e. it encourages me to consume liquor and I start drinking, resulting in the tawbah breaking. But my tawbah also breaks the wine goblet i.e. it makes me break my wine goblet. I make tawbah and break the wine goblet. This series carries on; at times I am breaking my tawbah and at times the wine goblet. The result is that there is a pile of broken paymano (broken tawbas) and broken payman (broken wine goblets) lying in front of me. If death comes in this struggle wherein the tawbah is breaking the wine goblet and the wine goblet is breaking the tawbah, there will be success. The sin is committed and tawbah is made, the sin is again committed and tawbah is also made again, the sin is kept on being forgiven. The reality of tawbah is to repent from the sin and promise not to do it ever. Every sin is forgiven through tawbah. If it involves the rights of man then tawbah will not suffice. The aggrieved person has to also forgive or the outstanding right has to be fulfilled. The benefits of istighfar There are many benefits of istighfar; istighfar is an ‘ibadah, it is a means of forgiveness from sin, and it is a means of nearness unto Allah. When a person repeatedly makes istighfar, there will come a time when he will feel ashamed to commit sin and he will perceive the vastness of the Mercy of Allah Most High, that how many times I am committing sin, yet He is favouring me. Pride will never develop in that heart which constantly recognizes its faults and has regret over them, nor will there be vanity over taqwa. The reason for this is that he will be more conscious of his sins than his ‘ibadah. Anyway, istighfar is also an ‘ibadah which is not confined to any particular time but is required all the time as there are so many sins being committed intentionally and so many due to negligence. Sometimes sins are committed and we don’t even realize it and we don’t consider them sins! Thus, in all these conditions, whenever realization sets in, immediately, in the heart, with full regret, turn towards Allah Most High and with the tongue say Astaghfirullah. Say: “O Allah! I am extremely remorseful, so please forgive me and protect me from this in the future!” This is such an ‘amal that through it numerous and unparalleled Mercies of Allah Most High open up. With the regret of the heart, the cognition of belief is also built, resulting in the iman being protected and the achievement of the treasure of taqwa. Such a person then does not commit a sin wilfully, and if he does, it will be very seldom. Also, such a person does not harm the creation. Allah Most High, solely through His Grace and Mercy has granted His sinful servants the formula of istighfar so that they may gain success in this world and salvation in the hereafter. فَلِلّٰهِ الْـحَمْدُ وَ الشُّكْرُ To Allah all praises and gratitude. The buzurgs have advised that all sins of the past, major or minor, whatever you can recall, ponder, and with complete regret and remorse make tawbah and istighfar a few times, and this will suffice. Insha’Allah, all sins will be forgiven. Thereafter never become preoccupied in endlessly remembering past sins and agitating yourself. If any sin comes to mind by itself (without deliberately recalling it), then silently make istighfar once. If the sin is related to the rights of others, then to fulfil that outstanding right or to seek those persons forgiveness is fard (obligatory) and wajib (compulsory). (4) Isti’adhah The fourth action is isti’adhah. Isti’adhah means to seek protection. We usually recite أَعُوْذُ باللهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيْمِ (A’udhu billaahi minash shaytanir rajim) when commencing recitation of the Noble Qur’an. It means ‘I seek the protection of Allah from Satan the rejected’. This action of ours is also isti’adhah because it means: ‘O Allah! Take us into Your protection from the evil of Satan’. It is necessary to recite ‘A’udhu billaahi …’ before commencing the recitation of the Noble Qur’an. The Noble Qur’an itself has given this instruction. Recite A’udhu billaah at the time of every fear Life is full of calamities and happenings and we are always faced with the onslaught of the nafs (lower self) and Satan. We should, therefore, constantly seek protection from these. There are hazards and pitfalls in dealings and relationships, and at times one cannot fathom a way out, nor is there any choice. At such times the heart is strengthened by instinctively seeking the protection of Allah. So this should be developed into a habit that whenever any such thing is worrying, A’udhu billaah should be said from the depths of the heart. Man goes through various worrying thoughts and fears from morning till evening. He does not know what is going to happen tomorrow. Will he lose his job? Will his dignity and respect be lost? Will his belongings be stolen? Will an enemy attack him? Will there be a loss suffered in business? Will he suffer from a certain sickness or sudden death? Will anything bad happen, etc? No one is free from such fears and thoughts. The means of protecting oneself from all the fears of this world and the hereafter is the powerful ‘ibadah of isti’adhah. Whenever any worry or fear enters the heart, silently say A’udhu billaah. O Allah! I enter into Your protection. If a person does not know the Arabic words, he should say it to Allah in his own language. The more wealthy a person is or the higher his position, his worries increase accordingly. On the other hand, a person who does not possess wealth, fame, and position, his worries will be less, proportionately. The helplessness of a thief A thief entered a house. He went around the entire house but found nothing. Actually, there was nothing, no utensils, clothes, or any other goods. After searching for a while he saw a person on the veranda sleeping peacefully. The thief thought to himself that I cannot leave empty-handed, I must take something, or it will become bad luck. He looked closer and saw a heap of wheat at the head-side of the sleeping person. So the thief spread his shawl to fill it with wheat. He did not as yet touch the wheat when suddenly the sleeping person turned on his side on to the thief’s shawl! Instead of taking, the thief had to give (his shawl now caught under the sleeping person)! The sleeping person was in a deep sleep and it was a winter’s night. The thief sat down and waited, thinking that when he changes sides again, he will retrieve his shawl, but the sleeping person did not change sides! The poor thief becomes befuddled, thinking that even if I do not get the wheat, at least I should retrieve my shawl! While waiting, the adhan of Fajr commences. He thought that he has to leave now. When he reaches the door he hears a voice saying: “Close the door as you leave.” The thief was angry so he said to himself: “Forget it! Someone will also come and give you a shawl to cover yourself with!” (My shawl is under you, someone else will come and place another shawl over you!) So no one is free from fears. The higher the person, the more his worries, the lower the person the more security he enjoys. In short, at every worrying juncture say A’udhu billaah or say O Allah! I seek Your protection. If you have the fear of failure in any matter, if you fear loss or harm to wealth or life due to someone’s opposition or jealousy, if you fear that you may get involved in any type of physical or internal sin due to the evil effects of Satan and nafs, if you have the fear of being apprehended in the hereafter, if an impure desire enters the heart, then immediately recite A’udhu billaah or recite the following du’a: اَللّٰهُمَّ لاَ مَلْجَأَ وَ لاَ مَنْجَأَ مِنْكَ إِلاَّ إِلَيْكَ Allahumma la malja’a wa la manja’a minka illa ilayk. This means O Allah! There is neither a place of protection nor a means of salvation but You. This difficulty is from You. Safety from this is only in Your power and control. Cling to the robe of the archer A buzurg asked the people about a powerful archer who never errs in his aim. The sky is his bow and all the difficulties and calamities of the universe are the arrow. Tell me, what is the way of saving yourself from him? They answered that it is not possible to save oneself from him. The buzurg then said: There is only one way, and that is to cling to the robe of the archer. So brothers! Seek the protection of Allah Most High. Whenever any fear enters the heart, immediately say: O Allah! I seek refuge in You and Your protection. He is such a benefactor that He never refuses ones who asks with sincerity. You ask yourself if on a dark and rainy night bandits are chasing a lone child and the child is screaming save me, save me! Will you not give such a helpless and desperate child protection? Even if you are living in a shack, you will still grant him safety. After all, Allah is Rabb al-Arbab (Sustainer of all sustainers) and Arham al-Rahimin (Most Merciful of all those who show mercy). When His servant becomes agitated due to difficulties and seeks His protection, then He will definitely open the doors of protection and refuge. Isti’adhah is such an ‘amal through which a person witnesses the greatness, sustaining quality, and mercy of Allah Most High. He receives protection, satisfaction, and contentment in his heart from Allah Most High. He receives the treasures of tawakkul (trust in Allah) and tafwidh (assigning oneself to Allah). Such people do not develop the urge to harm others. So make this ‘amal a habit that whenever a fear is perceived in the heart, then say A’udhu billaah from the depths of the heart. When you seek the protection of Allah, you will witness that as the worries are developing, so is the Mercy of Allah opening up unique and astonishing ways of protection. Make these four actions a habit The result of this discussion is that there are four a’mal; shukr, sabr, istighfar and isti’adhah. Regularly practice on all four that they become habit, gradually your whole life will come in accordance with the din, Insha’ Allah. The din and dunya will be protected, hatred will be formed for sins, and an inclination towards the performance of good deeds will be developed. The proximity unto Allah Most High will keep on increasing and one will experience a special bond with Allah Most High. Three tenses are under protection There are three tenses in man’s life; past, present and future. The past becomes protected through istighfar. The present becomes protected through shukr and sabr and the future through isti’adhah. When all three tenses have been protected, the whole life has been protected. The person who makes these four actions a regular practice, will Insha’ Allah always enjoy the aid and mercy of Allah. Pass this gift to others This gift of my murshid is invaluable, very easy, and extremely effective. I have presented this gift to you. I request you to forward this gift to your acquaintances and also to your families. By practicing on this, one will be protected from countless sins, calamities and difficulties Insha’ Allah. Also make Isal al-Thawab (pass on thawab or reward) to my murshid ‘Aarif Billah Dr. ‘Abdul Hayy (may Allah have mercy on him), who presented us with this great gift. May Allah Most High grant us the tawfiq to regularly practice on these four a’mal. Amin. وَ اٰخِرُ دَعْوَانَا أَنِ الْـحَمْدُ ِللهِ رَبِّ الْعٰلَمِيْنَ ، Full article at Deoband.org
  24. Shortcut to Gaining on Laylatul Qadr Hazrat Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Daamat Barakaatuhu) mentioned: Nowadays we always look for shortcuts and an easy way to get our work done. So what is the shortcut and easy way to gain the maximum on Laylatul Qadr. Two ways come to mind: 1) The night starts from Maghrib (sunset) and ends at subah saadiq. Normally we are still fresh and have control of the time between Maghrib and Esha and by the time taraaweeh is over we are tired. Hence, maximise by doing ‘ibaadat after Maghrib. 2) We are advised in the hadeeth to recite this du‘aa on Laylatul Qadr: “Allahumma innaka ‘afuwwun tuhibbul ‘afwa fa’fu ‘anni” (O Allah! You are the One who forgives and You love forgiving. So do forgive me.) Hence, in the intervals between every four rakaats in Taraaweeh Salaah, you can easily recite this du‘aa approximately 10 times.
  25. يَوْمَ تَرَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ يَسْعَىٰ نُورُهُمْ بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَبِأَيْمَانِهِمْ بُشْرَاكُمُ الْيَوْمَ جَنَّاتٌ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا ۚ ذَٰلِكَ هُوَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ On the Day of Judgement you shall see the true believing men and the believing women, with their light shining before them and on their right hands, and it will be said to them: "Rejoice today, you shall enter the gardens beneath which rivers flow, in which you shall live forever, and that is the highest achievement." [Surah Hadeed: 12] Ways to attain Noor Mufti Shafi’ (Rahimahullah) has compiled a list of ways to earn Noor in Ma’aariful Qur’an. (For references of these ahadeeth, refer to the Tafseer of this verse (Hadeed: 12) in Maarif al Quran) “Give glad tidings to those who go to the mosque in the darkness of night that they will receive perfect light on the Day of Judgment.” “He who takes care of his five daily prayers [that is, performs them regularly fulfilling all their essentials], it will serve as light, proof and salvation for him on the Day of Judgement. He who fails to take care of it, there will be no light, nor proof or salvation for him on the Day of Judgement. The latter will be in the company of Qarun, Haman and Fir’aun.” “Whoever recites Surah Al-Kahf, there will be so much of light for him on the Day of Judgement that it will spread from his place to Makkah.” In another narration, “Whoever recites Surah Al-Kahf on a Friday, light will extend from his feet to the heights of the heaven on the Day of Judgment.” “Whoever recites just a single verse of the Quran, it will be a light for him on the Day of Judgement.” “Whoever sends salah (durood) to me, it shall be the cause of light on the Bridge of Sirat.” “The hair, that falls on the ground at the time of shaving it when coming out of the state of ihram, will be a light for him on the Day of Judgement.” “Stoning the Jamaraat in Mina will be a light on the Day of Judgement.” “He whose hair turns grey in Islam, it will be a light for him on the Day of Judgement.” (i.e. he remains steadfast on Islam for his whole life) “He who shoots even one arrow in Allah’s way while fighting in jihad, it will be a light for him on the Day of Judgement.” “He who remembers Allah in the marketplace will receive light for every strand of hair on the Day of Judgement.” (markets being the places where the temptations of dunya manifest themselves) “He who alleviates the calamity of a Muslim, Allah will create two compartments of light for him at the bridge which will brighten up a whole world. No one besides Allah knows its number.”
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