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Mar 31, 2011

My Love is in the Dock : Part 1

By Khadeejah Islam

Today, I wish to revisit my past and take you along to experience my journey to Islam and how it shaped my personality.

I was born into a non-practicing, “liberal” Muslim family and in an almost secular state (almost because it claims to be an Islamic state). I studied in a Christian missionary school for 11 years of my life. Naturally, I was exposed to a culture and way of life which did not resemble Islam. However, this background did pave the way for a lot of good things. For example, my parents did not force me to adopt rituals which I did not believe in. My school refrained from bombarding me with the “widely-accepted” theory of evolution (as Christianity is a theistic faith too), and enjoined modesty similar to that of nuns. However, I must admit that none of these good things shaped my personality the way Islam did. Alhamdulillah!

As far as I can remember, during my childhood, I was excessively reserved and shy, so much so, that my teachers and even relatives suggested that I see a psychiatrist. I was also very stubborn and would throw a tantrum, whether at a shop or at someone’s house, if I was not handed the doll I liked. I had the peculiar habit of scratching others if I was angered. Consequently, I was unable to express myself and remained lonely most of the time. What’s more, I didn’t have a proper diet and was down with an illness every now and then. Looking back, I wish my parents had intervened a little more to instill the basic values which are common in all religions. It was not a lack of genuine love and concern on their part and I am not at all ungrateful for the relentless efforts they have put into my upbringing, but since they did not practice Islam themselves, they were not able to nourish my personality to the fullest, that is, they did not know the right techniques.

Among all this, I believed in One Creator and never held malice towards any religion or cracked offensive jokes about religion. I never considered hijabis oppressed. Although I did not know about hijab (let alone observe it), I valued modesty as defined by my culture. Alhamdulillah! The culture I was born into was not “westernized” and even now, when the neighboring cultures have all increasingly succumbed to the Western culture, it is still far from being westernized and it enjoins a definition of modesty similar to that of Islam. According to this culture, women had to cover most of the body and drape the bosoms with a shawl or an extra piece of clothing. I was also a good student. I think all of this is the effect of fitrah that the following hadeeth points out: “Each child is born in a state of fitrah, but his parents make him a Jew or a Christian” [1]. Despite these Islamic beliefs, I was not a practicing Muslimah and was just a Muslimah by name. I did not have enough fear of Allah. I attribute this to my lack of knowledge. Yes, I would celebrate Eid, but I did not know the reason behind it. I had never read the Qur’an. No one spoke to me about Islam. There was not much daw’ah on TV and internet as is the case nowadays. I was unaware of the propaganda against Islam.

Moving on, my teenage years were no better. I was disrespectful to others and rebelled against rules at home and school. Now I know that those rules were only for my own betterment. It would have been better if those rules were enforced upon me. Perhaps, carrying the guilt of not being able to mix with others during childhood, I did open up and socialize, but not having proper guidance, I chose the wrong people. As a result, I often got involved in disputes. My grades were falling rapidly and I could not comprehend the value of education. I could not think of a definite purpose of life. I was living for today, but what was I achieving at the end of each day? I adopted the “I don’t care” attitude. It was a way of suppressing my guilt and pretending to be “strong.” Therefore, whenever I came to know of a certain girl’s aversion towards me, instead of resolving the issue calmly and evaluating my own errors, I would just trivialize the matter into statements – “I don’t care if she hates me. I am who I am.” I urge my sisters to avoid using these statements, because these magnify our individuality to an extent where we see no errors associated with it. Most of my time was wasted in gossip and idle hang-outs and parties. I was bowing down to the rules of the “in-crowd,” wasting my parents’ hard-earned money on things which I did not even require. I had done enough damage to my physical and mental strength. I was attractive, but not healthy. Emotions were fading and modesty was losing its place in my life. I was going far away from my family.

At one point in time, I did not have many friends. People avoided interacting with me, lest they too get into trouble! I was back to seclusion again, like that of my childhood. The only difference was that my tears had dried up and heart had hardened and absorbed all the negative emotions – hatred, jealousy, arrogance and disrespect. Even at this juncture, Allah kept me buoyant upon Islam. I understood the ordeal of the poor and the oppressed and did not turn a blind eye to them. I also had a few friends, who although were not practicing Muslims, but were still very modest and of soft-nature, maybe because they had practicing Muslim parents. Although they did not influence me to be as good as them, I was content with the fact that I was not having any dispute with them! I remember one of them playfully calling me “Khadeejah.” Back then, I laughed it off. Now I know how much it means to me!

The seclusion actually helped me to rediscover myself. Alienated from trouble-makers, I was not involved in anything meaningless. I had time to spend with my family members to form a bond that inshaAllah will never break. It was a well-deserved rehabilitation for me. Alhamdulillah! I was finally having a stress-free life. However, I still felt a void in my heart. It was during this time, at the age of 19, that I questioned the purpose of my life. I decided to pray and read the translation of Qur’an. What happened next changed my life dramatically – for good!

To be continued…

[1] Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 30, 2011

POEM: I couldnt even say I'm sorry, Mother

By Lyricall Gal

I know I hurt you with the words I say
I said I’d stay true and would always obey
But times came when those were just lies
I wish I wasn’t lame and didn’t hear your cries
The times I would ignore you and shout
Saying I was through and would walk out
Times when you sat down for me to talk
I used to frown and go for a walk
Always thought you were against me
How more wrong could I have been?
Because when the world was against me
You were still stood right next to me
I realised I could never pay you back
Then crying and asking why I ever did that
You’ve been through nine months of agony
You went through strain and then got me
Waking up to feed me in the night
Everything dark so you switched on the light
You tried forever to stop my endless cries
Until they swelled up: your eyes
You now cry and I’m the reason for yours
More and more pain to you I caused
You cleaned me and clothed me
You fed me and grew me
But I will never understand all you have been through
I’m full of disappointment as the hurt is not just a few
I will never be able to know or see
Until I have my own child with me
You were my strength when I was weak
To the length when everything was bleak
You were there for me you were unique
The times I was alone and afraid
When everyone left you stayed
I was weakened by anger and it would all just worsen
But you were there to listen to whatever was hidden
How badly I misunderstood you and only did argue
Like this I grew always running back to the crew
So easily I left your reassurance and comfort
I was becoming an expert in getting you hurt
You always forgave me and everything that I did
I constantly hid away from you like a little kid
All the harsh words I did say all day everyday
Went the wrong way was being led astray
As a result I did repay when it happened someday
I felt so lost and alone
I felt so cold on my own
I lost track because of the crack
I desperately wanted you back
Being full of hate now it’s too late
To be with you just us two
I wish everything I could undo
Back then I didn’t have a clue
My only chance with you I blew
Regretfully chose my friends over family
On them I would depend thinking I was free
Always ignored the part within that was missing
Again I want to start without the faulting
I want to see your face glowing not hurting
I want to see it smiling not crying
I guess I won’t be able to see it at all
Only memories of you I recall
The higher I flew the harder I fell
I could not even wish you farewell
Now there is no one there to tell
Times when I am not feeling well
I lost the chance to appreciate your love
Because you left and have gone above
Everything you did for me I was too blind to see
The reality check made me lonely it hurt so badly
If only I could go back and wake up earlier
But I’m too late this life has a timer
I wish we could’ve spent more time together
So I wouldn’t have to stay in regret forever
Wish you could stay some more
Before you left through the door
It was unfair because you were not there
Back then I didn’t care but now I am aware
Every action has a consequence
I thought that was just nonsense
Well nothings real unless you experience it
This struck me like being hit with a brick
I was a candle unlit
I was a broken culprit
If I saw you just once more
I would never let you go
I am hurting inside mummy
Time went by so quickly
I couldn’t even say I’m sorry
I learnt to appreciate what I got
What seems little is actually a lot
Especially if you can have it just once
You don’t want to miss that special chance
Last thing you need is regretting their absence.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 29, 2011

Misconceptions Of Backbiting

By Fahima Mahmood

We all remember a time we backbit another Muslim. We have all gossiped about a Muslim or non-Muslim at a certain time in our lives. It was probably your friend or another sister that did something outrageous. As Muslims, we know we shouldn’t backbite.

The Quran states “O you who believe! Avoid much suspicion, in deeds some suspicions are sins. And spy not neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah, verily, Allah is the one who accepts repentance, Most Merciful.” (Al-Hujuraat 49: 12)
Despite this ayat and many hadiths about backbiting, many Muslims today are unaware of what is considered backbiting.

Backbiting was also a problem during the Prophet Muhammad sal allahu alayhi wa saalam’s time. Abu Huraira (radiAllahu anhu) reported Allah's messenger sal allahu alayhi wa saalam as saying: Do you know what is backbiting? They (the companions) said: Allah and His Messenger know best. There upon he (the Holy Prophet) said: Backbiting implies you’re talking about your brother in a manner which he does not like. It was said to him: What is your opinion about this that if I actually find (that failing) in my brother which I made a mention of? He said: If (that failing) is actually found (in him) what you assert, you in fact have backbitten him, and if that is not in him it is a slander.

Many people who backbite use the excuse that it is true. Regardless of whether it is true or not, it is indeed backbiting and is punishable by Allah. Most importantly, Allah subhaana wa taa'la will be displeased with you. The punishment of backbiting is severe as the prophet sal allahu alayhi wa saalam described: “On the night of Miraj, I passed by some people who had metal hooks in their hands and were clawing at their faces and their necks with them. I asked Gabriel ‘Who were these people?’ He said ‘These are the people who eat the flesh of human beings and disgrace them’.

“We were just joking” is another excuse backbiters use to minimize their wrongdoings. Whether you are making fun of the way someone talks or looks, you are insulting Allah’s creation. Allah subhaana wa taa'la created every aspect of a human being. All of the languages and dialects we speak, all of the cultures that exist and all of the characteristics that we have are created because of Allah subhaana wa taa'la. In the Quran it states “O you who believe. Let not some men laugh at others, it may be that they are better than you. Nor let some women laugh at others it may be that they are better than you. Nor abuse each other, nor be sarcastic to each other by using offensive nicknames…” (Al-Hujuraat 49:11)

Of course, there are times when it is permissible to backbite. If someone you know is getting married, it is okay for you to investigate or tell them about their potential suitor. Also if you are in court, it is permissible to speak about the person you are asked about. In these situations, the intent is to seek truth or justice. In our own personal situations, we need to ask ourselves what our intention is and whether this will help us to be closer to Allah subhaana wa taa'la.

Backbiting is no small sin and should be taken seriously. We shouldn’t treat it with indifference because it is a major sin. As Allah warns us, “Behold, you received it on your tongues, and said out of your mouths things which you had no knowledge; and you thought it to be a light matter, while it was most serious in the sight of God” (24: 15).

We will also be held accountable for hearing gossip and slander. We will also be accountable for not stopping the backbiting. As the Quran states, “And why did you not, when you heard it, say "It is not right of us to speak of this: Glory to God, this is a most serious slander". (24:16)

We should all remind our fellow Muslims the punishment of backbiting and follow the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah sal allahu alayhi wa saalam who said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last day, let him either speak good or keep silent.

 I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 25, 2011

For The Sake of Allah

By Rubina Siddiqui

On the authority of Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him), who narrated that the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said: “Allah the Almighty said: I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assemble better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm's length, I draw near to him a fathom's length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed.” Related by al-Buhkari (Muslim, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn-Majah).

This beautiful Hadith shows us how Allah the almighty reciprocates our sincere and true efforts for His sake alone.

"For the sake of Allah subhaana wa ta'aala" is a very simple yet powerful term with far more implications. A question we should ask ourselves, how much do we really do for the sake of Allah subhaana wa ta'aala in our daily lives?

In our worldly life we usually make so many sacrifices and changes in ourselves for the different people we love in order to make them happy. Sometimes despite our best efforts fellow human beings fail to appreciate or acknowledge such sacrifices. This is a result of human weakness and imperfection. On the contrary Allah is As-Samie (the all hearing), Al-Baseer (one who sees all things), Al-Wadud (Most loving) and much more! Who better than Allah (the most merciful) to make changes for, in whose hands lie all the decisions of this world and the hereafter.

Acceptance of deeds in Islam depends on the intentions that accompany them. On the authority of Omar bin Al-Khattab, who said : I heard the messenger of Allah sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam say :"Actions are but by intention and every man shall have but that which he intended. Thus he whose migration was for Allah and His messenger, his migration was for Allah and His messenger, and he whose migration was to achieve some worldly benefit or to take some woman in marriage, his migration was for that for which he migrated." related by Bukhari and Muslim

Activities associated with our daily needs become worship if conducted in accordance with Allah subhaana wa ta'aala’s deen and for His sake alone.

Earning our livelihood takes up a major portion of our time today. By sincerely fulfilling our commitment to the work place for Allah‘s sake, time spent at work becomes worship. Often we do our best to please our boss or to impress our colleagues. If the same is done with the intention to please Allah subhaana wa ta'aala, we gain both our living and eternal reward in the hereafter.

Our free time is spent in social activities. When friends are made or company avoided to promote adherence to the deen we please our Creator and gain reward while having fun and doing what we like.

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said, "On the Day of Resurrection, Allah, the Exalted, will say: `Where are those who have mutual love for the sake of My Glory? Today I shall shelter them in My Shade when there will be no shade except Mine". [Muslim].
A positive environment is guaranteed by avoiding common but serious errors in social settings. Backbiting, competition fueled by jealousy and inability to accept constructive criticism is easily avoidable if our motivation is to do so for Allah’s sake alone.

In the month of Ramadan we go about our daily lives and try to fulfill our duties to the best of our ability without thinking of it as a hardship but a way to please Allah subhaana wa ta'aala. This attitude of being sincere towards our deen and dunya with the main driving factor of Allah’s pleasure should be our goal during the rest of the year as well.

When we give in charity we part with our hard earned wealth. If this is done for Allah’s sake then Allah subhaana wa ta'aala has promised a great reward.

“The likeness of those who spend their wealth in Allah's way is as the likeness of a grain which groweth seven ears, in every ear a hundred grains. Allah giveth increase manifold to whom He will. Allah is All-Embracing, All-Knowing. Those who spend their wealth for the cause of Allah and afterward make not reproach and injury to follow that which they have spent; their reward is with their Lord, and there shall no fear come upon them, neither shall they grieve.” (2:261-262).

If charity is given to gain status or praise in society, then that becomes our only gain. Seeking the blessings of Allah subhaana wa ta'aala before you engage yourself in any activity in your life is quintessential. Because at the end of the day this life is a gift from Allah (the most merciful).

May Allah the Exalted guide us to implement what we learn, live by halal means, perform all acts of worship for His sake alone. To be kind, merciful and just in our dealings with others. May Allah forgive our sins and include us amongst those who have gained his favors, Ameen.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 24, 2011

Understanding The Niqaabi Queen

By Khadeejah Islam

I’m not a niqaabi. Thus, this article was not born out of self defense and will have no hint of it, inshaAllah. It is also worth mentioning that this is solely intended for the Muslims (both brothers and sisters), especially those who have welcomed the hijab. My intention behind this is to stretch an amiable hand to a minority and achieve unity in this Ummah. I will also not touch upon the issue of whether the niqaab is obligatory or not inshaAllah. You can consult a scholar for that. Throughout this article, I will be talking about women who have chosen to wear the niqaab and have not been forced in any way. Although some people may frown at the title, I find it apt to call niqaabis as queens as an appreciation for their patience because more often than not, they have been scoffed at with hurtful labels like ’ghost’, ‘ninjas’, ‘jailed’, ‘tent’, etc. and the niqaabis have patiently endured it all. Such barbs coming from non-Muslims are understandable because perhaps they are ignorant about Islam, but most importantly, because they don’t believe. But when these same hurtful remarks come from Muslims, the effects are caustic and through this article, I wish to delineate just that.

The reason why I, being a hijabi, decided to write an article for this cause is: The believers are but brothers, so make settlement between your brothers. And fear Allah that you may receive mercy. [Qur’an 49:10]

And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided. And remember the favor of Allah upon you – when you were enemies and He brought your hearts together and you became, by His favor, brothers. [Qur’an 3:103].

Why are we, being believers, not willing to understand our sisters? We worship the same God and we believe in the same Quran. Despite our striking similarities, shall we allow a split among ourselves over a trifling scholarly difference of opinion? Some hide behind the debate on whether niqaab is obligatory or not to argue with niqaabis. As a matter of fact, many choose to wear the niqaab while believing it is not obligatory. Therefore, this is not always an issue of religious requirement. Perhaps, she is using it to save her life from a possible threat which we are not aware of. Perhaps, she is taking one harmless step further to improve her eemaan. Let’s not judge dear brothers and sisters because Allah knows her situation and Allah is the Judge. Moreover, we love modesty, so as long as they are enhancing their modesty with niqaab, we should not have any qualms about it. They are trying to emulate none other than the Mothers of believers (whom we wish to emulate) in an attempt to please none other than Allah (whom we serve). We should commend them for their eemaan and steadfastness. All of this should strike a harmonious chord between us and our niqaabi sisters. I have witnessed a few Muslims joining non-Muslims in their tirade against niqaabis; ignoring the fact that the difference we share with the non-Muslims far outweighs the difference we share with niqaabis (it’s just a matter of a face-veil!).

Let not believers take disbelievers as allies [i.e. supporters or protectors] rather than believers. [Qur’an 3:28]
A very common misconception is that niqaabis “shut themselves up from the world” and therefore remain uneducated, unsocial, lifeless, and threatening (if they venture out of their homes that is). Before I proceed to elaborate on each of these stances, I urge my brothers and sisters to reflect; do you not see that these are the same allegations non-Muslims often cast upon hijabis? So why are we even thinking of inflicting the same pain on our niqaabi sisters? By the Grace of Allah, I have had a glorious opportunity to interact with niqaabis and surprising as it may sound to some, they not only hold degrees of merit, but they also work diligently both at home and outside. They are also as feminine and bubbly as any woman would be. I can assure you that their warmth of amity can beat the winter blues! Before deeming them as threats, we should really bear in mind that these women are willing to cooperate with security checks. It is quite paradoxical if we begin to criticize everything that is being misused. For example, should we blame the knife which can be used for both slicing bread and injuring a person?

The most important statement that we should read again and again is this: O you who have believed, let not a people ridicule [another] people; perhaps they may be better than them; nor let women ridicule [other] women; perhaps they may be better than them. And do not insult one another and do not call each other by [offensive] nicknames. [Qur’an 49:11]

It is important to recognize that our speech and actions have an impact on ourselves as well as the entire community. In light of this, should we pose as tests of patience for our sisters?

And We have made some of you [people] as trial for others – will you have patience? And ever is your Lord, Seeing [Qur’an 25:20].
Remember that the trials of niqaabis are very similar to trials of hijabis; judgment based on looks instead of character and intelligence. So let’s take a stand against unfair treatment.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 23, 2011

Marriage Delayed

By Amal S


Marriage, seems to be the topic people are tired of hearing about, yet want to continue talking about. I think this topic rose to fame and has remained a favorite in the western Muslim community because of how difficult it has become; getting married (the halal) at this time is difficult, while temptation (and haram) by its very essence is easy. Many youth feel that they are ready to get married, but face a number of obstacles (all of which I could not enumerate or recognize as every sister’s circumstance is different, but I would guess family is one of the more common issues faced).

To digress for a moment here, I remember many years back, my friend and I had gone to the video store with her little sister and nanny. My friend’s sister ended up wanting a toy which the nanny said she couldn’t have, and so she was crying about the toy all the way home. The same happens with chocolate – we might tell ourselves "no more chocolate for this week," and then end up thinking about chocolate more than we do in the first place. This is essentially what happens when you want something which you are told you can’t have until a later date ,you think about it. By the same token this happens with the issue of marriage. Some youth are interested and can’t go ahead with it and then have it on their mind constantly trying to drive the thoughts away. So, what can youth in this situation do?

Firstly, it’s a good time to remember that marriage is a means, and not an end. Think about it, is your purpose in life to get married? Will you be 100% happy and trouble-free when you get married? The answer to both questions is no. We all know our purpose is to worship Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala. And, it’s not like after you get married, you and your husband will joyfully skip into the sunset and it’s happily ever after. Pure happiness, peace, and tranquillity can only be found in Jannah. Which brings me to my next point – let us not forget about what we really should have on our mind and be striving for, Jannah.

I began to reflect on some lines of a poem:

O single Muslim!
How intelligent are you!
While some make marriage their ultimate goal,
You know it's only a means,
To reach the final abode!

Questions started popping into my mind: why did I want to get married? What is marriage a means for? What is the end?

Why do people want to get married?

Many reasons, and again I could not list them all here. The main ones, are as follows:

  • To please and increase in the worship and obedience of Allah AzzawaJall, and to follow the sunnah of the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam)
  • To protect themselves from falling into zina and haram, and a halal way to satisfy their desires
  • They don’t have a good family life or have problems at home which they want to escape from
  • They like the idea of being loved, having a family, etc.
The first point should be the primary reason we want to get married, while if there are any other factors they should be secondary to that main one.

What is marriage a means for?

In relation to the previous question, once you set your main intention in order, you realize marriage is a means to complete half your deen. It is a tool for raising a family upon the religion in obedience Allah Azzawa Jall. And increase and better yourselves together. Ultimately all this is to please Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala and gain Jannah bi’ithnillah.

What is the end?

Thus, we now see that the main goal in our lives shouldn’t be to get married, but to live life in such a way that we can insha’Allah have the Mercy of Allah Azzawa Jall reach us. The end we want is Jannah (Jannatul Firdaus, insha’Allah)!

So we’ve got all that sorted but you still can’t get married…what do you do?

If it’s really not possible for you to get married at the moment, for whatever reason, then there is no point in obsessing over it and thinking about it every moment. If we consider the current situation rationally, we need to ask ourselves: is thinking about it going to change the circumstances? Nope. Accept the reality and stop ‘scouting’ out prospects X years in advance. Put your head down, and occupy your time with good deeds and activities that will please Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala. I’m not saying that you won’t think of marriage for the next X years, you will naturally think about it occasionally, but insha’Allah it won’t be on your mind 24/7. Busy yourself with ibadaat, learn more about your deen (there are so many books that one can read insha Allah wa mash’Allah), memorize Qur’an and understand tafsir, volunteer, get involved in projects serving the deen (online or in person), hold fundraisers, etc. And finally, work on yourself, for the sake of Allah AzzawaJall and your akhirah.

Our love for Allah AzzawaJall, and then the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam, and Jannah should be greater than our love for other humans in this dunya. Make the deen your life and focus. You may still get whispers from Shaytan telling you to impress that brother, but fight away those thoughts and keep on marching forward insha Allah. On the Day of Judgment, you will stand alone with your character and deeds, so don’t lose sight of death and the akhirah.

I would like to briefly address the sisters who believe that they are ready for marriage and can eventually convince their parents (gently and respectfully) or overcome the hurdle that is stopping them. My advice would be to go for it! Marrying young is the sunnah, and if you can marry, then why not? Start researching, learning, and reading books about marriage in Islam, its obligations and sunnah, evaluate yourself and what you realistically want in a spouse. And of course do istikhareh prayer before you make any big decisions.

Mar 22, 2011

The Fight of Submission : Knowing Allah and Our Enemies

By Ummi Ayesha

In the name of Allah, the Most Merciful, Most Compassionate.

“If you know your enemy and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles.”In order to obtain this we must first have a correct understanding of the relationship between Allah (God) and creation along with knowing the nature of our four spiritual enemies.It is only then that we will be able to truly submit to our purpose as worshipers of God.


To understand that “There is no deity but God“ is to know that all of creation is connected and depended upon Him. For He is incomparable and eternal, the true origin of all existence.

“To Him belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth: it is He who gives Life and Death; and He has Power over all things. He is the First and the Last, the Evident and the Hidden: and He has full knowledge of all things.” [Quran 57:2-3]

God’s omnipresence is what also makes Him so unique.

“He is with you wherever you are.”[Quran 57:4]

Traditionally, God is said to have ninety-nine names, or attributes, relating to different aspects of the divine. Although the essence of the divine is beyond human comprehension, and only known to God, these names are the means which brought the whole of creation into existence and are manifested in mankind. They have been divided into two categories based on the duality inherent in creation.

“And of each thing We created a pair.”[Quran 51:49].

The first one is feminine, also know as “names of beauty.” These include names like al-Rahman (the Merciful), al-Rahim (the Compassionate), and al-Wadud (the Loving). The second one is masculine, also known as “names of rigor or majesty.” These include names like al-Qahhar (the Conqueror), al-Mumit (the Slayer), and al-Jabbar (the Subduer). Therefore, none should associate any partners with Him. Instead, keep our hearts pure so that they may incline to Him.

“For one who associates others with God, God has prohibited paradise to him.”[Quran 5:72]


Our nafs (ego) is our first and most dangerous enemy. It constructs a self image and seeks to protect and maintain it at all cost. Since this is our nature state, we require the mercy and guidance of God to replace the negative image with a positive one. The first level is “Nafs Ammara” (the Commanding Ego). Commanded by its host of impulses and desires, it inclines towards evil to satisfy its wants. It then justifies its behavior to itself so that it may continue to fulfill its wants.

“…the (human) soul certainly incites evil…“[Quran 12:53].

The next level is “Nafs Lawwama” (the Blaming Ego). This ego is aware of God and struggles not to be controlled by its impulses. This change manifests in both the inner and outer forms as it attempts to keep it’s covenant with God.

“And I do swear by the self-reproaching soul.“[Quran 75:3].

The highest level is “Nafs Mutma’inna” (the Ego at Peace). This ego has learnt to control its impulses and ignore distractions in order to be closer to God. Then the soul becomes a place where signs of God are disclosed and manifested.

“(To the righteous soul will be said:) “O (thou) soul, in (complete) rest and satisfaction!”[Quran 89:24]

Our love for the dunya (this world) and hawaa (vain desires) are our second and third enemies. This world is merely a temporary testing place which determines our conditions in the afterlife. Part of preparing for the afterlife is taking from this world what is needed to survive and using it in obedience to God. Instead, our desires tell our nafs that what we need is what others have and more of it. More food, more materials, more money, and so on. Until we have became so preoccupied with being excessive with indulgence that we willingly neglect our obligations to God .

“O men! Certainly the promise of Allah is true, let not then this present life deceive you, nor let the Chief deceiver deceive you about Allah.” [Quran 35:5].

Shaytan, the devil, is our fourth enemy.

“Verily Satan is an enemy to you: so treat him as an enemy…“[Quran 35:6] Formed from “smokeless fire” [Qur’an 55:15].
He is a member of the Jinn race, whose creation predates that of mankind.5 Jinns are free willed, thinking beings that occupy the earth along with mankind.6 They are capable of good and bad deeds and are obligated to worship God.

“I have only created Jinns and men, that they may serve Me.”[Qur’an 51:56].

Before being removed from Paradise, God granted Shaytan’s request of respite on mankind until the Day of Judgment. [Qur’an 7:14-15] Shaytan has proclaimed to attack mankind from every direction, but from above. [Qur’an 7:17] Although Shaytan’s tricks seem to be many, he only has one - was’ waas (suggestive whispers). As reported by Mu’adhibn ibn Jabal (may Allah be pleased with him) who said that Abd-Allah ibn ‘Abbas said: “Satan told the Prophet Muhammad Sal’Allahu Alai-hi Wa-Sallam (may Allah honor and grant him peace),” Muhammad, I have nothing to do with misguidance; rather I am a whisperer of wicked suggestions and a tempter.”

In mankind’s battle to fully submit to God, we must gain the correct understanding and knowledge about His position, His unlimited power and our four spiritual enemies. According to Shaykh Ahmad ibn al-Mubarak, “The spiritual seeker must be genuine in resolve, effective in determination, firm in conviction, influenced by no one among the servants (of the Lord).” Without it we will become heedless creatures on the wrong path, with no chance of winning against our enemies.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 21, 2011


By Naima Mompoint

The Prophet Muhammad sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said that, the distance between a man and what he truly wants, is only as long as the distance between his knees and his feet. He was implying “Prostration”... I have found that whatever it is that I want, Allah grants it to me, Alhamdulillah. I know that there is nothing in this world that He would not ordain for me, so long as I am doing His will.

I have learnt that even the things that present themselves as misfortunes at first, normally work in my favor... I have especially noticed this, since His favor has become my favor, I want to please Him. Allah has surely conditioned my heart and sometimes when I compare my reasoning to my ways of reason in jahilliyah (or lack thereof) I become very emotional. Again, He has blessed me...

The question is; does distance cause the heart to become fonder or colder? This answer depends on the condition of the heart. The Shaitan can't stay in a heart that is clean. So how could a clean heart become hardened? There is a garden growing within my heart and the prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam also said that, there will not be one person with a proud or arrogant heart who will enter The Garden. It has gates...and so does my heart...

Therefore, from the proud hearted, I choose to also, keep my distance...



There is nothing that can stop the Qadr of Allah...not even distance... Even distance, is completely at His will...and will be used for His Qadr. (You can only ask of Allah to help you maintain the needed distance from things which would ultimately lead to distance from Allah himself.) May Allah reward those who read this (and make an effort to distance themselves from fitna)


I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 18, 2011

The Perfect Gift

By Umm Amin

Bismillahi Arrahmanirrahiim

Light lavender lilacs swayed overhead as I brought my daughter home that May. Bringing home our family’s first daughter marked the start of a special change. I wondered and dreamed...Will I be able to teach her everything she needs to know to be a good Muslimah? How will she experience the world? How will the world perceive her as she blossoms into a child and later a woman?

Later that summer the lilac blooms gave way to flat, outstretched green leaves. The remnants of the fragrant flowers lingered in my memory as we enjoyed the shade of the remaining leaves that shaded us – she in the jogger and me running. The lilac leaves yellowed, browned, and fell as we crisply brushed pass. One winter morning my daughter sat up ,peeked out and kicked her feet in delight – in the forest path ahead we spotted a fellow mother-daughter duo enjoying the foliage of the winter ferns and moss draped trees. We were startled as the mother reproachfully guarded her toddler behind her and censured me for wearing such an “oppressive thing” on my head. SubHan Allah wa ta alaa. Despite this event I have taught My daughter the sheer elegance in the truth of Islam and the merits of hijab. As my daughter has adventured into girlhood, she is confident in the beauty of her hijab – whether she is writing a short essay or practicing her karate!

Much like the passing of the seasons and the changing of the lilacs, our lives pass by quickly. Your children sprout up before your very eyes, and the clasp of a daughter’s hand in yours becomes a brief caress like if you bent down to dip your hands in a clear brook or stream – even the coolness and moisture left behind evaporates swiftly. Have you spent enough time in teaching your daughter all you want and need to share with her? Have you prepared her to stand firm and confident?

Motherhood entails the most precious gift you have to offer – your time, energy, knowledge and love. Your child’s mind is open and ready to learn. Initially ,we think of developmental feats – like when our little one crawls or pinches items in her fingers. From toddling and sputtering cute words emerges story telling and reading. Your child is a sponge that absorbs all you say and do, observing your mannerisms and copying the way you convey yourself. As our children grow by leaps and bounds, they become school aged and then young adults insha’Allah. You child’s number one teacher is their parents, so it is imperative to be conscious of your habits which they will emulate.

It’s essential to take the time to implant the seeds of Islam in the hearts of our children while they are young, nurture them in their youth, and then support them to stand strong like trees. This reminds me of an ayat from the Qur’aan, “Have you not considered how Allah presents an example,[making] a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed and its branches [high] in the sky? It produces its fruit all the time, by the permission of its Lord. And Allah presents examples for the people that perhaps they will be reminded.” (Surat al Ibraheem, ayah 24-25)

As a mother, you are your child’s best example and can support her as she flourishes into a young adult. Even if you have responsibilities outside the home, make daily and weekly goals to spend time with your daughter and nurture her as the Muslimah she’s growing up to be. Simple tasks like helping others, preparing a special meal or reciting Qur’aan together can become cherished moments and opportunities to teach Islamic ideals. May Allah help us take advantage of one of the most precious gifts of motherhood we have in order to impart the essence of Islam to our children– our time, energy, knowledge, and love, alHamdulilah.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 17, 2011

A simple reminder of Taqwa

By Naima Mompoint

I believe that the wisest thing that we can do in any situation is to remind ourselves that we are no big deal. Allah created us with the capability to do everything and anything except for defeat old age. This is great power and sometimes when we think that everything is going our way we can get a bit proud. Really, we are no big deal though.

What goes up must come down. What goes out comes back around. We make money and then it is gone. We meet people and a lot of them pass us by. When we are down, it is Allah’s will that we go up again. He mercies us with things that we perceive as failures as well as things that we perceive as huge blessings!

We have to remember that it is only by this mercy that we have anything. It is only by this mercy that we exist. It is only by his mercy that we are where we are and who we are and he makes no mistakes. Even when we have differences with others, it is by his mercy. He teaches us by way of opposites so that we may have "two wings instead of one" to soar to higher planes of taqwa with. It is true that sometimes the very things we hate are the things that are good for us. The very things we love may be bad for us.

Patience is a virtue and humility is grand. Confidence is wonderful if intentions are pure. Trials are very beneficial because they purify us. You see, Allah allows us to be tested by Shaitan but only to "iron out wrinkles" in us. His is the Master Planner. Shaitan is merely a pawn. So don't fear him. Fear Allah. It is Allah that is forever forgiving and knows everything that is to come. When we trust Allah, he guides us.

Allah allows us to be tested that we may be purified. Even people who are condemned to Hell will have a chance to go to Jannah. For instance, look at how we produce gold. It is never discovered by itself. There are always impurities in it. We use fire to burn away these impurities. To purify the gold.

We are like the gold in its beginning stage; impure. We go through pressuring circumstances in life that we may be purified. Those who are condemned to Hell will be purified by that circumstance and taught the best lesson. After that, they will be ready for Jannah. Allah is so merciful.

He even had to purify the heart of the prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam. (Anas, Sahih Muslim) When he was a child Allah cause him to pass out while playing and Jibreel opened his chest and took out the heart. He then extracted a blood-clot out of the heart and said: That was the part of Satan in thee." He then washed it with the water of ZamZam in a gold basin. After that the heart was rejoined together and restored to its place. The children ran and told muhammad's sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam foster parents that he was dead. When they went back to him they found him alright except for that his face was white. Anas said, "I have seen the mark that was left on his chest."

A very smart person once told me that "a donkey with a bunch of books is still a donkey". It is one thing to obey Allah, because we fear him (subhan Allah)! It is even better to obey Allah because we love him. If we do not feel with our hearts then what is taqwa? It is nothing because one cannot experience taqwa without truly knowing Allah. The person who truly knows Allah, really loves him and all of his creation. The more conscious we are of Allah, the purer our hearts are. The wiser we are.

All men are equal because of our conscious ability. Our taqwa is infinite. Some may have more taqwa than another but even a slave is equal to his master. A husband is equal to his wife. Siblings are equal to siblings. No one can ever say that the man with no taqwa will never have any or that the man with the most taqwa will always have the most. Verily, these things are up to Allah.

Allah guides whom he wills and judges us on our intentions. I believe that the truth of our intentions lies within our hearts. Not the physical heart, but our spiritual heart. Just as the physical heart is the center of blood circulation, our spiritual heart is the center of our taqwa. May Allah bless us all in the increase in consciousness of Him and Him alone. Ameen.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 16, 2011

A Strong Muslim

by Seema Muhammad Belushi

As a child, I was always inspired by the story of Hajar (may Allah be pleased with her) even though at the time I did not know exactly who she was. I do remember I was told about her and her infant son Prophet Ismael (alayhis salaam), how they were left in a desert with no food or water.

My young mind could not understand why they were left like that at the time? What was their fault. Unfortunately, I did not get my answers as a child, but when I came to know much later as an adult about the real story of Hajar (may Allah be pleased with her) then it really made me think deeply about her character that of a strong woman. Here is her story:

The story of Hajar offers the Muslim woman the most marvelous example of deep faith in Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala) and sincere trust in Him. Ibrahim (alayhis salaam) left her at the ka`bah in Makkah, above the well of Zamzam, at a time when there were no people and no water in the place. Hajar had no-one with her except her infant son Ismael. She asked Ibrahim, calmly and with no trace of panic: “Has Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala) commanded you to do this, O Ibrahim?” Ibrahim (alayhis salaam) said, “Yes.” Her response reflected her acceptance and optimism: “Then He is not going to abandon us.”(Reported by Bukhari in Kitab al-Anbiya)

Hajar (may Allah be pleased with her) was not a prophet, a saint or even a scholar. So, what made her faith so deep in Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala)? How she was honored by Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala)? Were it not for the deep faith and trust in Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala) that filled Hajar’s heart, she would not have been able to cope with such a difficult situation; she would have collapsed straight away, and would not have become the woman whose name is forever remembered night and day by those who perform Hajj and `umrah at the house of Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala), every time they drink the pure water of Zamzam, and run between the mounts of Safa’ and Marwah, as Hajar did on that most trying day.

This was her gift from Allah (subhaana wa ta'ala). She was truly a strong Muslim woman with such a strong character.

This is Allah subhaana wa ta'ala’s way of showing His love for His true believing slaves and He definitely rewards His servants in this world and the next as well...

Mar 15, 2011

Painting The Picture

By Sister Sunshine Smile

Baggage loaded: CHECK, Boarding Pass: CHECK, Immigration: CHECK, Security: CHECK, Boarding Wait: IN PROCESS. Never has a wait for boarding my flight ever been eventful and this one was living up to its definition letter by letter. So I tried to keep busy with Sudoku to not die out of boredom until boarding when I caught a group of Flight Attendants and Aviators making their way to the aircraft. I couldn’t help but linger my gaze at them as they passed by, recalling my long lost dream of becoming one too. Luckily, the sight meant that my wait wouldn’t be long overdue.

And then I lost all concentration and interest to continue further utilization of my time. So I sat back, took a deep breath and said to myself that it was all going to be ‘Just Fine’. This journey was a clear demarcation that was going to leave my past in the past and had me anticipating for what the future held for me. A journey that was going to change my life and I couldn’t help but feel anxiety eat me bit by bit, slowly and steadily.

When I boarded the flight and took my seat by the window, I felt utter strangeness and loneliness surround me as if almost choking the life in me. In a short time we were already moving for takeoff. I made Dua’ and remembered Allah (subhaana wa ta'aala) and asked -Him to protect me and guide me in this new endeavor of life and instantly felt at peace.

Soon a blanket of clouds hid us away from the world and the ambiance reflected colors of the sun mauve into the sky. I let my imagination go crazy as I wondered how every cloud looked like something or the other. There were animals, cartoon characters, aliens, maybe Dragons at some point too and then there were just clouds. I found myself staring out at nothingness when the flight suddenly got all turbulent due to passage through a cloud. Thanks to Science for teaching us density difference and all that yet I found myself silently uttering a prayer again.

It was then that I couldn’t help but relate life to an airplane ride. About how a journey is like ‘our’ journey between life and death. About how we perceive life and live in it. Life can be canvassed to that of an aviator’s or that of a random passenger’s, though our lives are pre-written but what we make out of every living day of ours is ultimately our choice.

What is accountable is, when your ultimate journey of life is destined to death then, which one are you?

An Aviator will have in numerous journeys through life from destination to destination. Sometimes the ride gets a little turbulent while passage through a souffle of clouds but none the less, clear skies are never far away.

Whereas, A random passenger will have in numerous journeys in life too but as random as random could be. The means of the journey could be any with the ultimate goal of reaching a particular destination.

In life, there will be in numerous random journeys with a different set of fellow passengers each time. The journeys maybe long or short, easy or difficult but with passage of time they will all come to an end and then,one fine day, you realize that your ultimate journey was actually between life and death. And what actually matters is not how expensive this ride was or not, how smooth that journey went, but how you fared through it. Yes, what matters is how you made it to the finish line: By being a mere passenger or an ambitious Aviator? The former being concentrated all towards just reaching a destination and the struggle in making it alive whereas the latter being, steering your way through rough skies and scraping your path from destination to destination.

I want to be the Aviator in my life so that by the end of my journey I have my head held up high and happiness glowing on my face Insha’Allah!

If I am to paint an image, the only constant in this whole picture of life is change: change through every small journey. Change of people, Change of surroundings, Change of opinions, Change of feelings, Change of everything, Small or Big. All in all, Change!

But on looking deeper, there is another hidden constant. A constant we tend to overlook too easily,A constant we take for granted, A constant in its best term, A constant we call Allah(subhaana wa ta'aala)!

And just like aviators need directions from the control station to navigate the flight in air,that is exactly how importantly we need the Quran and Sunnah to steer our life to our final destination.

Our fate is predefined, but that does not give us any less a reason to become a mere passenger through life. Just because I know that the story of my life is already written, doesn’t mean my character in it is complete. It is like saying just because I have to go back to sleep in the night, I won’t wake up in the morning in the first place.

Be reasonable to yourself. Work your way towards building your character in your own life story. Be the Hero/Heroine of your story but don’t settle for a random unnoticed side-kick. Be the best of yourself that you could think of being or at least try to aim towards that in life.

Be the change and strive towards making life better.

Be the inspiration and steer your life to ultimate happiness.

Your picture of life may be sketched already but paint the colors in it yourself.

And don’t forget to paint the hidden constant that lies deep within your picture, etched in your mind forever!

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

POEM: Because She Didn't Know

By Amal S

Because she didn’t know
Didn’t know she was beautiful
Maybe her family never told her she was
And maybe the magazines told her she was not
Not what was hot
So now she had formed her own opinion from the supposed ‘information’ she had got
She knew she didn’t need a guy’s validation for her self-esteem
But she didn’t know her value because beauty is not what society makes it seem:
Overlooking what’s within
Prohibiting us from loving our own skin
No, I don’t need to tan trying to look like Taylor
And no, I don’t need to lose 20 pounds to feel like Paris
Because I don’t need to be like anyone, I like being me
And if you happen to wonder then whom the like of I aspire to be
Khadijah, Asiyah, Maryam, and Aishah, Fatimah or the mum of Bukharee

She didn’t know
Didn’t know she was beautiful
Because she didn’t know what beauty truly was,
The one that lasts:
Beautiful is the one who fasts
Struggling to face her fears
Cries sobs and tears whom none but Allah hears
Beauty is praying and giving in charity
Beautiful is the one maintaining her chastity
Fighting her nafs, trying to attain ilm, adab, and piety

Beauty is natural
Effortless on the outside
So much work on the inside

Beauty defined by society
5 letters that cause girls to live on 300 calories a day
For those who have averted such self-destruction, that’s 3 apples, but hey,
It’s the same 5 letters defined by cultures
In which girls employ their fingers to undo what they’ve consumed,
Hunched over toilers like vindictive vultures

Starving when there is no famine
Beauty is supposedly dressing, obsessing, underdressing, and ultimately undressing
Girls’ minds have become programmed to be self-depreciating, self-loathing; it’s all quite depressing

She didn’t know she was beautiful
So let me say that in fact if you are Muslim, tidy on the outside and working on your inside, you are indeed pretty
You may say I’m cliché to say such a thing, but for you to think you are not is the greater pity
For I know that your beauty is more
More than the shape of your nose or pigmentation of your skin
Beauty is by your speech, actions, modesty, character, and from your heart, and all that’s within
It’s how I know a veiled woman is beautiful down the street
Because I can feel her heart glow,
And no before you ask, it’s not from the heat!


Sisters, we are the creation of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala, and thus we are all beautiful.

From 'Abdullaah Ibn Mas'ood radiyallaahu 'anhu who said that the Prophet sallAllaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said, "No one will enter Paradise who has an atom's weight of pride in his heart."
A man said, "What if a man likes his clothes to look good and his shoes to look good?"

He said, "Allaah is beautiful and loves beauty. Pride means denying the truth and looking down on people."
Related by Muslim (no. 131) 

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 9, 2011

The Laundry List

By Maryam Abd al Ghafur

I was asked to research what it takes to become a Shaykha. The person asking, wa Allahu Alim, was probably not asking for a laundry list of books and subjects to study. But in the course of my inquiry, I found some things that may not be what immediately comes to mind.

Did you know, the one who taught our Shaykha Umm Abdillah (may Allah preserve her and bless her) Qur'aan was initially not willing to teach her? This woman, who had never married, asked somewhat scornfully, why should she teach Umm Abdillah? After all, Umm Abdillah was young at the time, and unmarried. It was reasonable to assume that she would in fact marry, and then the knowledge would go to waste.

I was stunned by this opinion. Marriage is not obligatory; for the one who has no desire for it or who is unable to fulfill its responsibilities, not marrying is better: marriage is a conditional Sunnah. But to refuse or to be reluctant to teach a woman because she would probably marry and may have children, struck me as being as unjust and unreasonable as refusing to hire a woman who might marry and become a mother and have other demands upon her time.

It occurred to me that this teacher despite being hafiza of Qur'aan, lacked understanding of what she studied, and lacked understanding of the human condition. If formal studies are interrupted, there are the daily lessons of life to provide tests. Not tests of tajweed, rather, tests of 'eeman, of akhlaq and implementing the noble words that are in the blessed and noble Book of Allah subhana wa ta'alaa. And the daily application of what has been learned, of the tafseer explaining these matters, of the ahadeeth that teach the slave precisely how to obey and please the Master of all that exists.These are things that engrave the words upon the heart, and enable the slave to have the Qur'aan as a witness for her, rather than bearing witness against her.

It is related that the Sahabah, radhi Allaahu anhum, would memorize ten ayaat at a time and would not proceed beyond that point until they had implemented what was in those ayaat into their lives. While there is no denying the great importance of studying the 'Arabiya and learning to recite with the proper tajweed, to commit the words to memory without letting them enter the heart does not as much benefit as putting into practice the lessons and laws that are contained in Allaah's Kitaab.

I know of a woman who has committed at least one juz to her memory. Yet she views her children as impediments to her getting what she wants out of life and goes from marriage to marriage without completing her 'iddah. But she has the words in her mind!

I know of another woman who studies quite diligently. Yet she blames Caucasians for the hatred and enmity that exists between differing groups of Africans and Asians. Forgetting and not understanding that Allah did not neglect to tell us who our enemy is. That enemy is one who cannot be seen, although the enemy can and does influence the actions and thoughts of all whom Allah permits.

The list goes on, but you see my point: Umm Abdillah was discouraged by one who had memorized Qur'aan and more, because she would have children and husband with demands and rights upon her time. However, wa lillaahi al Hamd, Umm Abdillah did not waste her precious time, and she studied, and taught others, her children first and foremost. And this is something that women can do, be they married or unmarried, fertile or barren. Women are able to study, not in huge droughts of knowledge by sitting with a book from Fajr until 'Isha, rising only for the salawat, but in smaller swallows. And then, because to teach forces one to understand what is being taught, the lessons are better digested, and passed on to the child at the breast or the younger sister at the masjid. Eventually, as children grow,they no longer require close attention. For the one who is able to stay at home, housework is never ending, but daily scrubbing and scouring is not needed, "only" picking up. We no longer wash clothing by hand, slapping the wet fabric against stones, carrying them to and from the river. Even at the Laundromat, there is the time when the machine is doing all of the work, and the book can come out, the lesson can be listened to on MP3 player or CD.

The laundry list of books is easily acquired, as well as the list of subjects to study. What cannot be taught, however, is taking the time to read about mercy, and then being merciful to the neighbor, the homeless man on the street, the birds whose food is mixed with cigarette butts. Loving Rasul Allah, sall'Allahu alayhe wa salaam, is not just saying, "In Bukharee, Abu Hurairah, radhi Allaah anhu, narrated and it is hasan, it is sahih". It is smiling at your sister, giving of what you have to one who does not have, or, at least pointing her in the direction whereby she may, inshaa Allah, obtain it for herself.

May Allah help me and you, to remember His Words, and to act by them. We cannot afford for His Book to bear witness against us.

Salaamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullaahi.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 8, 2011

A Hijabi in Pursuit of Daw'ah

by Khadeejah Islam
This is not about my journey to hijab, but since daw’ah is closely related to hijab, I thought of writing this. Alhamdulillah! It has been almost two years since I started practicing Islam and subsequently, two years of daw’ah. I am not a scholar, but a simple practicing hijabi who has been learning and simultaneously disseminating the true message of Islam through blogging, e-mailing, Facebook, writing and engaging in one-on-one conversations, purely for the sake of Allah. With this article, I wish to share some of the lessons learnt through my experiences. Da’wah is more flexible and varies from person to person undertaking this duty. So there are no rules really.

The real challenge of da’wah is to talk to people in private. Given the struggle, I believe it is more rewarding too. Unlike Facebook discussions where most of us copy and paste, a private one-on-one conversation requires greater patience, effort, knowledge and wit. I had an encounter with an atheist sister while shopping. So my first request would be to take on this kind of da’wah as seriously as online da’wah because not everyone uses Facebook or Twitter. Reach out to friends, family, neighbours, colleagues, employees and yes, your hair-stylist too! Everyone has the right to know and we should not exclude anyone from our da’wah.

Alhamdulillah! Internet has undoubtedly opened up new ways to approach people and it has made knowledge available to us at our computer screens. However, it has also opened up gates of riyaa (showing-off) and insincerity. Some are now more interested in “becoming an admin” or “the creator of the largest page.” Some boast about the number of “certificates” they have gathered or “conferences of renowned Sheikhs” that they have attended. Some turn a discussion into a battlefield devoid of any beneficial words and they think they are doing a great service! There is no harm in being an admin or owning a large page, but your intention should be to give sincere advice irrespective of the position you hold and irrespective of the number of fans in the page. So you can advise others even if you are a member and even if the page has barely fifty fans. One way of counteracting riyaa is to do things anonymously. So promote a page without telling the admin or write an article for a site anonymously. Seek rewards from Allah and not the praises of people.

Do not be so busy with webinars, Facebook daw’ah, lectures, etc. that you trivialize other duties such as visiting the sick, praying or simply embracing your parents. The real success is to balance it out and prioritize among the duties.

Be an exemplary demonstration of Islam. Practice what you preach. Those who are absolutely new to Islam tend to identify Islam with our actions. So give them the opportunity to see how Islam has affected you – for the better. You cannot afford to light up the paths of others while remaining in darkness and ignorance yourself.

Do not abuse other religions! Your duty is to call others to the beauty of Islam first and foremost. If the other person criticizes Islam, only then should you opt to reveal the fallacy of other religions (you are still not allowed to abuse!). Some people start with “porn in Bible” and similar things. This incites hatred and puts off others. Instead, be friendly, gain a common ground (perhaps through the similarities) and be more vocal about what Islam has to offer. Islam is the solution right? So give them more of the solution. Make a fun and easy approach. Besides spiritual topics, talk about important worldly issues such as raising breast cancer awareness. Remember that Islam is a way of life and not a religion of monasticism.

Be gradual and selective in your approach. Do not overwhelm others with everything that you know. Speaking about the existence of God to atheists is more appropriate than telling them about the Sunnah of Hajj. Of course, there can be exceptions whereby the atheist might be interested just by reading about hijab. So you really have to know what is appropriate for whom. It is better to talk about prayer to a non-practicing Muslimah than to talk about the ruling on shaping eyebrows. Try to identify the problems of each individual and make da’wah accordingly. I know a sister who has a problem of backbiting, so I try to inform her more about this particular issue. You can also choose to be indirect if the other person is not welcoming your direct approaches. I know some sisters who are delaying hijab, so I share an article related to that on my Facebook profile without tagging them to make it appear as if it is for everyone in general. Remember that truth has to reach everyone, whether directly or indirectly. In any case, you must emphasize more on making da’wah about the basics of faith.

Keep it short and this goes for bloggers. Due to the hustle-bustle of life, majority of the people do not read long articles. So if you are copying and pasting an article, make sure to read it yourself and then copy-paste the important points only or post it in parts.

Always be sure of what you say, written or post. For this reason, seeking knowledge from authentic sources is obligatory. Do not confine yourself to just one site or one scholar. Explore and know the different opinions of scholars but be careful to stay away from misleading sources. Reading a lot of books and yes, your newspaper too will help you to gain collective knowledge. That way, you can give more and more real-life examples. Avoid relying on Google. Instead, ask Allah to help you, consult other sisters and read Qur’an and Sunnah to differentiate the authentic sources from the misleading ones. If you are not a good speaker, try distributing authentic books. There are numerous ways of doing da’wah. You have to choose ways which are suitable for you.

Lastly, maintain hijab and remember that hijab is also about the way you speak and walk and it is applicable online as well. So refrain from idle speech and futile argument. Always remember that you want the person you are advising to be with you in Jannah! If you don’t, there is something wrong with your intention. If someone starts a tirade against Islam, answer precisely to the questions, but ignore all the personal attacks that he/she may have made on you. Da’wah is a test of your patience. Do not incur any sin in this process which will not only negate your hijab but your overall scale of good deeds too.

For all the hijabis who have not yet embarked on this journey, I remind you that da’wah is obligatory. There are many ways of doing da’wah and it does not require you to have extra-ordinary qualities. Do not care about the response as long as you are carrying out your own responsibilities.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 7, 2011

Food And Health : Cereals In The Holy Qur'an

by Dr. Afrah Noushad

“And eat and drink but do not waste by extravagance, certainly He (ALLAH) does not like those who waste by extravagance”. Quran(7:31)
The health of our physical body is vital to our entire well-being. According to Islamic medicine , physical ailments have been thought to arise as a result of accumulation of excess waste substances in the body. Over eating, improper food choices and an unhealthy lifestyle were regarded as the sources of accumulated morbid matter and it was believed that when the digestion process became overwhelmed, disease resulted. These facts are today, subhanAllah, reinstated by various scientific medical bodies, centuries after Islamic scholars and physicians opined.

Prophet Mohammed sal Allahu Alaihi wa sallam used and advocated different types of remedies , both natural and divine for various ailments and conditions. According to a well-known hadith the Prophet sal Allahu Alaihi wa sallam said, “No human fills a vessel worse than his own abdomen. A few bites are enough for man to keep his body upright, but if it is indispensable then a third for his food, a third for his drink and a third for his breath.” ( Sahih Bukhari, Muslim and Tirmidhi)

“O you messengers! Eat of the good foods which Allah has made legal (meat of slaughtered eatable animals, milk products, fats, vegetables, fruits, etc), and do righteous deeds. Verily, I am well-acquainted with what you do”. Quran (23:51)
Good foods whether they are grains, vegetables, fruits or animal derivatives (meat and milk products) contain all the nutrients we need. The good foods are those that have not been processed and retain all their original nutrients. Foods like jams, fruit preserves are empty calorie foods lacking essential nutrients. Better substitutes would be fresh whole fruits. It is also suitable for those trying to lose weight.

Let us use the food pyramid to start analyzing the benefits of foods from different food groups and the conformity we find in the Holy Quran and the hadith of their use in our diets.

Starting with the base level of the pyramid we have breads and cereals, that have been advised by doctors and nutrition therapists to be consumed in a larger proportion of servings than other food groups. For thousands of years , cereals have formed the staple diet essential for human life. Grains, wheat and sprouts have been mentioned in the Quran numerous times.

“And we have sent down from the rain-laden clouds abundant water, that We may produce therewith corn and vegetation, and gardens of thick growth”. Quran (78:14-16)
The nutritional benefits of grains are numerous, providing us with carbohydrates, B-vitamins, fibres, iron, magnesium and zinc.

Barley was once the main cereal popularly used in the Arabian peninsula. It has a very low-glycemic index (causes slow rise of sugar in the blood after consumption). This cause low levels of insulin release in the blood, thus stabilizing the hormone, controlling hunger pangs and reducing obesity which makes it an ideal food for those suffering from diabetes.

Authentic hadiths have shown that the Messenger of Allah sal Allahu Alaihi wa sallam was particularly fond of barley porridge. Aisha, the wife of the prophet sal Allahu Alaihi wa sallam said, “When a family member of the Prophet’s house-hold would fall sick, he would order barley soup and the invalid would be urged to have some of it”.

The Prophet used to say, “It strengthens the heart of the sad person and relieves the heart of illness, just as one of you would wash dirt off her face with water”. (Tirmidhi and Ahmed)

Barley soup can be easily prepared by boiling one portion of barley grains in five portions of water under moderate heat until the water is reduced to two-fifths of its volume.

It is easily available in the supermarkets as whole grain barley, polished barley, barley flakes, barley flour and barley syrup.

Wheat, is more popular among all culture groups and communities and is widely harvested throughout the world. Whole wheat is the most nutritious form, high in fibre, mineral and vitamin content. It is packaged in many forms like wheat flour which is widely used in cakes and breads, semolina- mainly used in porridge and puddings, couscous- traditionally used in Moroccan cooking and pasta.

Rice, is a common grain forming the staple diet of many people across the world. There are many types of rice and their nutritional value depends on the degree of refining and milling. Of the most nutritious forms are red rice and brown rice which are least refined and contains higher fiber, mineral and B-vitamin content than white rice. It also helps those who are trying to control weight gain.

Corn, is a rich source of carbohydrates, fibre and minerals like potassium, magnesium and phosphorus. They are available as are corn flakes- which makes for a nutritious breakfast added with milk and fruit, sweet corn-used widely in soups and salads and corn meal- used in muffins, cakes and breads.

Popcorn can especially turn out to be a wonderfully nutritious snack provided it is consumed without too much salt and butter.

Oats are high in vitamin E, essential fatty acids and iron, making it an ideal food for those suffering from high cholesterol levels, and are an excellent source of carbohydrates for diabetics due to its low-glycemic index.

Other wheat grain sources like rye, millet, quinoa and buck-wheat are low in gluten and high in fibre value.

“The likeness of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah is as the likeness of a grain (of corn); it grows seven ears and each ear has a hundred grains. Allah gives manifold increase to whom he pleases. And Allah is all-sufficient for his creature’s needs, All-knower”. Quran (2:261)
It is a fact that curing the ills of the physical body without curing those of the heart and soul is an effort duly wasted. And the best remedy for curing the ills of the soul and heart is through recitation of the divine revelations of the Holy Quran.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 4, 2011

Are You Ready To Take The Big Step

By Farheen Naaz

I’m not ready yet!


Read on!

Your life is going smoothly. You’ve just entered your early twenties, are racing to go places and reach new heights. You see a friend of yours getting married and think, ‘I guess she has lost her mind! Does she even realize what she is doing?!’ Suddenly one or both of your parents or someone from the extended family mentions “marriage”, the biiiig day and you go into fretters! “Omg! Marriage?! Nikah?! Me?! So Soon?! I’m not even ready!”

These are the typical reactions from lots of girls worldwide. Those who are not of this type, well, hats off to you! Now let us deal with overcoming this fear of attending your own Nikah! We need to get to know ourselves properly, learn to accept our fears and overcome all the unreasonable fears.

It is indeed difficult, stressful and scary to, all of a sudden, imagine yourself in a new role. But just because something seems a little difficult to imagine, it doesn’t mean you should simply run away from it. Marriage sure is a great responsibility, but with it stems a lot of happiness. That is the beauty of this relation. You being afraid of getting married is quite normal. But look at what Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says in the Quran. Allah (swt) describes marriage in the Quran as: “And from his signs are, He created for you wives from among yourselves, so that you may live in tranquility with them, and instilled love and mercy between your hearts . . . “ (30:21)

The bond of Nikah has been divinely established for the welfare and upkeep of a healthy, progressive and strong community; and has been beautifully described in the Quran and a number of Hadiths,

A many women fear Nikah as they perceive it to be an end to their adventurous and fun loving life. Sisters, you need to realize that marriage is not the end of your adventurous life, in fact, marriage makes your life more adventurous, leads you to new avenues, helps you become a better person. Life itself is a constant stream of challenges, and getting married is one such challenge, not only for you, but also for your would-be-spouse.

Our fears are often unreasonable, which in turn become unrealistic expectations. This is also a major problem with us women who, as Jane Austen rightly quoted – “A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment”. People have unrealistic ideas about their spouse-to-be, and often end up expecting perfection in all aspects. This, more often than not, ends up creating unnecessary problems. Enter any relationship with an open mind, as Allah has created humans as imperfect beings, which means that many mistakes will be made throughout a lifetime, and you, as a best friend, need to stand by your spouse and help overcome the difficulties. A spouse should be that kind of a friend that you’d want to keep for life. But do remember, your spouse is someone to share happiness with, not someone to demand happiness from. Do you still not want to experience this beautiful relationship?

Do not for once assume that marriage means only to share meals, chores and some small talk together. It is much more than that. It involves building a strong relationship by spending quality time together. Sometimes we think we’re too young to enter into a huge relationship, and so, have everything planned out. Complete your education, get a job and then magically (like in movies) someone perfect for you appears out of nowhere and asks for your hand in marriage! That, my friends, is too good to be true though it looks awesome on the silver screen! Reality is far more disheartening that that! When someone approaches you and he appeals to you in all aspects, then please don’t let age stand in your way. Age is just another number. It does not reeeally reflect your maturity. Being a Muslim, you need to have that faith in Allah that Allah’s plans are the best and most beneficial.

Usually the beauty of this relationship in the eyes of Allah is neglected. A major part of Verse 187 from Surah 2 (Al-Baqarah) describes this relationship as follows:

“. . . they are clothing to you and you are clothing for them . . . “ (2:187)

Another similar translation of it is as follows:

“. . . your wives are garments to you, and you are garments to them . . .” (2:187)

The way in which clothing protects us from external elements such as heat and cold; spouses protect one another from external desires that originate from many different sources. Through marriage, these desires are satisfied in a halal way. Clothing also saves us from the shame of being naked and incomplete; and it beautifies us. Similarly, spouses beautify and complete each other. When a person is not married, s/he is not yet complete and has not reached his/her full potential. Marriage is an essential part of being fully human, just like clothes are an essential part of being civilized.

If you think you aren’t ready for marriage and that you need more time to grow religiously or any other way, then start the process now! Be honest with yourself. Work towards your aim alongside with preparing yourself for a married life. But do keep in mind that this religious growth that you are aiming for can also be achieved along with your partner, and the sweetness of it is incomparable. If you still consider yourself not ready to experience such a beautiful Sunnah, then be honest with yourself and those involved n your life. Make lots of dua. A woman’s primary need is emotional; channelize this need in the right direction and towards halal means.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 3, 2011

Cashing in on Taqwa : Secure Duniya, Secure Akhira

by Umm Sulaym
A short night,
a heavy heart,
The list is long,
O Rabb! From where do I start?
You know it all,
You know what I hide,
So heal me Ya Rahman,
and let this pain subside!
I'm that little girl,
whose world was candy and dolls,
I'm that very girl whom You taught
how to walk after many falls.
I turn to You now,
Much stronger than before,
Please do not desert me tonight,
for I love You to the core!

“Whoever finds comfort with Allah finds unwholesome the company of anyone else.”

Dearest Readers: Assalamualaykum warahmatullah,

Things happen. They always do. You had planned otherwise but Allah subhaana wa ta’aala has planned better things for you. The brother may have all the qualities you were looking for but it just didn't work out. Or that degree you worked so hard for didn't land you a job. It is possible that someone, with whom you planned to stay forever and raise children, left you stranded. Maybe you have difficult parents who just do not understand. Funds might be lacking and there's a household to run. Grades are not what you want them to be in order to get into a certain professional school. Someone dear to you passed away or you just lost the “apple of your eye”, your little angel whom you had to bury with your own hands.

It hurts. I know it does. Nobody said that it doesn't and nobody said it's not going to. It's what means you take from here on that matter. You may think it's unfair but this is what Allah subhaana wa ta’aala says:

These are the Verses of Allâh: We recite them to you (O Muhammad SAW) in truth, and Allâh wills no injustice to the 'Alâmîn (mankind and jinn all that exist). [3:108]

These all are lessons to make you see what you could not see, to clear the fog from that lens which could focus only on the dunia and not to make you grieve. That wasn't the intention at all, dear Muslimahs:

...There did Allâh give you one distress after another by way of requital to teach you not to grieve for that which had escaped you, nor for that which had befallen you. And Allâh is Well Aware of all that you do. [3:153]
Some of us may not understand what to do next and we may get stuck in the abyss of hopelessness because we no longer know how to fulfill our needs. How do we call onto Allah subhaana wa ta’aala to help us? What changes do we make in our life so that He subhaana wa ta’aala is pleased and grants our duaas?

Duaa is like a weapon, and a weapon is only as good as the person who is using it; it is not merely the matter of how sharp it us. If the weapon is perfect and free of faults, and the arm of the person using it is strong, and there is nothing stopping him, then he can lay waste the enemy. But if any of these three features are lacking, then the effect will be lacking accordingly. [Ibn al Qayyim]

My dear sisters, we must really internalize that He is our Lord and we are His slaves. If He wishes, He has the full capability to keep His blessings away from us. Yet He subhaana wa ta’aala doesn't do that. Allah subhaana wa ta’aala has provided us with a solution that will take care of all our needs in this dunia and Akhira. It is that thing you hear in almost every Friday Khutbah and lecture. It is that beautiful provision of Akhira which makes you independent of His creation but so very dependent on Him. Do you know what that is?

A man once came to Hasan al Basri (Rahimullah) and sought help from him in financial matters. He (Rahimullah) replied, “Have Taqwa of Allah Subhanahu Wa’Ta’la! I haven’t seen a Taqi (one who has Taqwa) who is in need.”

What is Taqwa really?

The Arabic word taqwa comes from the root word 'Waqi' (wow, qaaf, ya) which means to build a shield or a protection against something. Taqwa is, therefore, the feeling that saves the person from sinning: (1) out of fear of punishment and (2) resulting in the slave always being conscious of his actions.

Imagine this world and Akhira as a huge grocery store where only Taqwa is accepted as the currency. You can only buy what you need through Taqwa. Why not then adopt the Taqwa lifestyle?

It has multiple benefits and there isn't even an electron's weight of loss. Some of the few benefits of the Taqwa lifestyle are as follows:

1. Antidote for loneliness and lack of love. Adopt taqwa and He subhaana wa ta’aala promises you His love, His friendship, His companionship and His protection:

Yes, whoever fulfils his pledge and fears Allâh much; verily, then Allâh loves those who are Al-Muttaqûn. [3:76]
2. Do you have a lot of problems in your life? Embrace the Taqwa lifestyle and you give yourself the promise of the One who never breaks His promises:

And whosoever fears Allâh and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allâh, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allâh will accomplish his purpose. Indeed Allâh has set a measure for all things. [65:2-3]
3. It's not your education, house's architecture, ethnic affiliation and definitely not your job that makes you honorable. It's only Taqwa that adorns you with honor and, hence, status!

O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa [i.e. he is one of the Muttaqûn. Verily, Allâh is All-Knowing, All-Aware. [13:13]
4. Sick of bad news around the world and in your life? Taqwa ensures good news of this world and HereAfter:

Those who believed (in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism), and used to fear Allâh much (by abstaining from evil deeds and sins and by doing righteous deeds). For them are glad tidings, in the life of the present world (i.e. through a righteous dream seen by the person himself or shown to others), and in the Hereafter. No change can there be in the Words of Allâh, this is indeed the supreme success. [10: 63-64]
So with so many benefits, what's stopping you from adopting the Taqwa lifestyle? Throw away the pile of worries and heartache. Your new lifestyle doesn't have room for junk. Join me on my journey of success, a journey of Taqwa inshaAllah! Success is not what you own outside of yourself. Success is what you own within yourself.

Verily, for the Muttaqûn,there will be a success. [78:31]

May Allah subhaana wa ta’aala soothe our hearts and give us a glorious end in Jannatul Firdaus as we tread the path to Taqwa. Ameen.

And Allah SWT knows best.

Umm Sulaym

P.S. Next article: How do we adopt Taqwa in our lives? Stay tuned.

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)

Mar 2, 2011

Endangered Feelings

by Shaharban

Two years ago, a viral fever took away my mother’s partial hearing ability. It was a great shock for our family and for her. I mean, come to think of it…she could hear for almost half of her life and one day suddenly, she cannot. Sometimes, I shut both my ears very hard and feel that silence. It scares me…gives me the creeps. Then I look at her and feel miserable. I know why she doesn’t go out much these days…but it kills me inside to see her sit away while all her friends are talking and laughing away at weddings and I control my tears. But she always tells me Alhamdulillah, I can still hear partially. And I say…Alhamdulillah; I still have her with me.

Last week my father was admitted in the hospital and lay in the ICU for two days. His blood pressure suddenly rose to his brain. According to his doctor, if we were to reach the hospital 10 minutes later he would have either died on spot or be paralyzed. Those two days outside the ICU on that bench and one week in the hospital with him, I started thinking of how life would be without him. Alhamdulillah, he is back home now fit and fine.

Sometimes we need a ‘wake up call’ to realize the importance of our parents whom we otherwise take advantage of unknowingly. Prophet Muhammad sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam pointed out among the minor signs of Qiyamah that – “Obedience to spouse and disobedience to parents would be the order of the times. Spouses would pusillanimously (most timidly) submit to the un-islamic whims and dictates of each other. Whilst mothers would be disobeyed and fathers treated like strangers, preference would be given to friends who would be entertained with warm receptions and generous hospitality.”

Crying or moaning after they are no more amidst us is useless. We often forget the huge sacrifices they have made for us and complain about the little compromises we have to do. We forget that they have listened to our babbles endlessly and patiently…but do we find time to sit with them and talk socially? What happens very commonly in our society is that at a certain age girls get married and get settled at her in-law’s and guys get married and fly abroad with their wives. What about the parents? Where is their stand? Sending them cash or buying them things alone does NOT complete our responsibility towards them. It’s not just flora and fauna that are getting endangered these days….it’s us humans too…the real living ones…We have to find time to be with them, to listen to them, to cook for them, to take them outside, to talk with them, to hug them, to kiss them and to tell them everyday how much we love them….we have to…otherwise we will end up someday crying in some corner thinking “I should have…” There is today, there is them…and there is chance…don’t let it go waste…

Here are some hadiths from Sahih Bukhari which reflect on our duties towards our parents.

Ibn 'Abbas said, "If any Muslim obeys Allah regarding his parents, Allah will open two gates of the Garden for him. If there is only one parent, then one gate will be opened. If one of them is angry, then Allah will not be pleased with him until that parent is pleased with him." He was asked, "Even if they wrong him?" "Even if they wrong him" he replied.
Sa'id ibn Abi Burda said, "I heard my father said that Ibn 'Umar saw a Yamani man going around the House while carrying his mother on his back, saying, 'I am your humble camel. If her mount is frightened, I am not frightened.' Then he asked, 'Ibn 'Umar? Do you think that I have repaid her?' He replied, 'No, not even for a single groan.'
"Allah curses whoever curses his parents" and “Allah prolongs the life of someone who is dutiful towards his parents.”

'Abdullah ibn 'Amr said, "A man came to the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, wanting to do jihad. The Prophet asked, 'Are your parents alive?' 'Yes,' he replied. He said, ' Then exert yourself on their behalf.'"
Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Disgrace! Disgrace! Disgrace!" They said, "Messenger of Allah, who?" He said, "The one who fails his parents or one of them when they are old will enter the Fire."
May Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala grant us the hidaayat to be the kind of children who lives in this world being dutiful to our parents without being disobedient to Allah and in the Aakhira, enters the Jannatul Firdaus. Aameen. And never forget to pray for them everyday after our obligatory prayers. “Rabbir-hamhuma kama rabbayani sagheerah.” (My lord, have mercy upon my parents; the way they had mercy upon me when I was young).

I'd love to hear your views on this article. Please tell me in the comments section below :)