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Sep 30, 2013

Resolving conflicts in the workplace the halal way - Part 1

By Arty

Part 2

Bismillah 


But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you, [O Muhammad], judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and submit in [full, willing] submission
[Surah An-Nisa 4:65] 

Whether at work, at home, among your friends or anywhere else, we are all prone to enter into conflicts with others, muslims or non muslims and, in all cases, we should learn from Allah Subhannahu wa ta’ala and His messenger, salallahu alayhi wa salaam, what is expected of us as believers. Indeed, in disputes, a muslim is to make Allah and His messenger the judge. It should not be ‘how do I feel like doing such and such, but rather what do Allah and His messenger, salallahu alayhi wa salaam, say about how I should behave towards those I disagree with’. With that in mind, here are a few lessons from Qur’an and Sunnah that we can implement when trying to resolve conflicts in the workplace.

1. Patience
Whenever a conflict arises, the first thing we need to do is to wear our ‘patience’ hat. Having a lot of patience when confronting someone goes a long way in quickly resolving the conflict and keeping it under control. Indeed by being patient, we are able to make a better judgement of the situation in order to resolve it. By being patient, we are also ensuring the blessings of Allah Subhannahu wa ta’ala in whatever situation we find ourselves. Indeed, Allah Subhannahu wa ta’ala promises us that He is with the patient.

O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient. [Surah Baqarah 2:153]


2. Dua (supplication) 
A believer realizes that nothing is made easy without the assistance of the Almighty Allah Subhannahu wa ta’ala. Therefore, the believer makes sure to always seek the help of His creator through prayer and supplication. Dua (supplication) is the best weapon of a believer and as such, it brings success to whatever we undertake. In disputes, we should immediately make dua to Allah to help us make the best of the situation.

3. Being objective and placing ego aside 
Conflicts at work are often caused by too much ego. Coworkers, who cannot put their ego aside and who are more interested in seeing their ideas being selected and praised by any means necessary, cannot be objective and will usually hurt the progress of a team. The focus should be put on the productivity of the team, not on ‘who is right or wrong’. Ego is exactly what caused enmity between Shaytan and mankind. Shaytan along with the Angels were commanded to bow to Adam and everyone did as commanded except Shaytan. Shaytan refused to be a team player because he felt he was better than Adam. His ego caused him his place in heaven.

[ Allah ] said, "What prevented you from prostrating when I commanded you?" [Satan] said, "I am better than him. You created me from fire and created him from clay." [ Allah ] said, "Descend from Paradise, for it is not for you to be arrogant therein. So get out; indeed, you are of the debased. [Surah Al A’raf 7:12-13] 

We should learn from Shaytan’s mistake and make sure that our ego is not causing us to hurt our productivity and team spirit at work. Indeed, if we do not control our ego, we risk earning the displeasure of our coworkers and this may even lead to us losing our job.

4. Saying good or remaining silent
And when they hear ill speech, they turn away from it and say, "For us are our deeds, and for you are your deeds. Peace will be upon you; we seek not the ignorant." [Surah Al Qasas, 28:55] 

The above ayah always reminds me of the teaching of our beloved prophet, salallahu alayhi wa salaam, who also told us to ‘say good or remain silent’ (1). Working with others often places us in situations where we may not see eye to eye with someone on a project. Knowing how to voice our criticism will help a lot in avoiding conflicts. If we remember to say what we think in the best and kindest manner possible while at the same time remaining silent on aspects that might make the situation worse and displease our Creator, we would be able to avoid conflicts or at least keep them to a minimum.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this topic inshaAllah.

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below!

References:
(1) Bukhari
(2) http://www.livestrong.com/article/230684-how-do-i-resolve-conflict-with-coworkers/

Sep 29, 2013

Short Story: MY WIFE IS A NINJA CHAPTER 8

By Alawiya Abdalla

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Bismillah

Shaimaa

It has been three months since my Nikah to Osman was finalised. The day of the Nikah was so weird for me, because my mum and dad were sooo happy for me but all I wanted to do is tell them the truth.

Then I remind myself why I am doing this in the first place, I am doing this for them. My “HUSBAND” was a complete joke! He was busting jokes to my family in English, when they do not understand a single word!

And he kept asking me to show him my face, and I refused because part of the plan was that this marriage was in paper only. So why should I show my face to someone I am going to divorce in a year’s time??

He can keep dreaming! And my uncle explained that my “Mother in law” does not know about the will or the inheritance money, so we need to act like a normal couple infront of her! That is going to be tricky! And the worst thing is we have to share a room.

How can I share a room with this joke of a man? And what if he tries and….
I think I need come up with a plan, to keep this MORON away from me! And I THINK I know EXACTLY what to do.

During the three months, my uncle and Osman went back to England to prepare the paperwork for me to come in the country.

Now all that is left is for me to go to the airport and wave goodbye to my family TODAY!!

“Is this it sweety? You’re leaving us?”, asks mum choking up from the tears coming down her cheek.
“Ummi, please don’t say that. I'm not leaving you guys, I'm going to England to find a job so you don’t have to work ever again Inshallah”, I remind her.
“And don’t forget your husband”, says dad, wondering why I had not mentioned him.
“Yeah and him of course”, I say, feeling stupid for not stating the obvious to prevent them from suspecting anything.
“Hunni, I want you to take good care of Osman and his family. I want you to treat his mother and father with the utmost respect, just they way you treat us because they are you’re new family”, my dad reminds me of my duties.
“Of course I will dad Inshallah”, I obey my dad’s wishes, but feeling guilty for not letting know the truth.
“I guess this is goodbye?”, he asks and he starts welling up as well!
“Dad please don’t cry, I can’t handle seeing you cry! I promise I’ll visit as soon as I can afford a plane ticket walahi I will”, I promise them with tears running down my cheek thick and fast.
“Why do you keep talking as if you’re a single girl. You have a husband now, he will help you for sure. Right?”, he asks suspiciously.
“I guess I'm just not used to being married yet, that’s all dad”, I reassure him.
“Ok daughter, Fi Aman Allah”, he tells me as I bend down to hug him and I just cannot let go of him.

I turn and hug my mother, and she looks at me as if she wants to remember my features so she will not forget me!!

I leave my home, and for a split second I want to turn around and run back inside to tell my mum and dad the truth. But I remind myself that I'm doing this for them….

Ya Allah, Help me with this journey that I'm about to embark as No one knows the unknown but YOU, Ameen.


Osman

OH MY DAYS! NINJA IS ARRIVING HERE IN LESS 10 MINUTES!

My dad went to the airport to pick her up, he said it was because he wanted to make her “feel at home”. I am thinking, Yeah right! It is all to do with the money. He wants to make sure she will not freak out and run back to Egypt.

Have to say when we told my mum three months ago that I have done my Nikah in Egypt, She flipped. She was cursing and swearing at my dad for allowing Shaimaa to trap me into marrying her, without her inspection first.

So me and my dad thought that for health and safety reasons, we will not tell her about the ninja thing just yet. We will make it as a surprise for her!

And how am I feeling? NOTHING. I could not give a damn to be honest, I do not care if she is coming and I do not care what is she going to do once she arrives.
I am not planning to be her friend and take her out and stuff. If she was not wearing THAT THING I was actually gonna consider being nice to her, and take her out and maybe do husbandy stuff with her ;)
But NAH, that thing is a turn OFF for me thanks! And the feeling is mutual from her side as well so I am not being mean here!
Although, that would not stop me from annoying her :D I know these girls are like strict and stuff, so it would be fun to hold her hand and see her jump and mutter vodoo stuff under her breath (Laughing at the thought in my head)

Oh this is gonna be fun! Just as I was laughing I get a phone call from Amber my “girlfriend”.

“Hey babe what’s up” I say as soon as I pick the phone.
“ I'm FINE, Ozzy DON’T mess me about yeah? I heard from Kev that you got married?”, she asks in an angry tone.
“So? it’s just a business deal alright! Stop freaking out. I told you millions of times I do what I want WHEN I want, and I don’t like clingy chicks”, I remind her of my principles.

“I'm not just a chick. I'm your girlfriend and I have the right to know”, she starts warbling.
“No, I told you we’re in an OPEN relationship. Go look up the term in your dictionary”, I start getting agitated at her voice.

“Well maybe I wanna be exclusive. I don’t anyone to have you but me”, she demands.
“Go and find someone else then! You know my rules and if you don’t like it, tough luck”, I tell her just like that.

“You would give up on me just like that?? You wouldn't fight for me??”, she starts crying.
“Oh for god's sake! I hate all this drama Amber. You’re giving me a headache!!”, I say it while getting bored with this conversation already!

“I'm sorry I won’t talk like that anymore I promise. I just love you so much that’s all and I don’t wanna share you with anyone. But if it upsets you I won’t mention it anymore” She finally calms down.
“Good girl. Now I have to leave because my business wife is here”, I tell her upon hearing the door bell.

“Ozzy”, she calls my name.
“Yes?”, I reply.
“I love you”, she tells me.
“Sure. Thanks”, I reply as I always reply to that phrase.

I hurry downstairs quickly to stop my mother from seeing Shaimaa! I do not know for how long I can keep hiding her, but we need to keep Shaimaa to be happy if she is going to go ahead and survive a year in this house.

I do not know, maybe we can hid her in a tower like Quasimodo or something! I know not a good idea since we do not have a TOWER!!
I see her at the door with my father, and I quickly greet her and tell her

“Hi, let’s go to my bedroom”
“TO YOUR WHAT?”, she asks horrifyingly.
“Not like that!! Errm let’s talk in my bedroom. Come on where did you think you were going to stay?”, I ask her whispering in case my mother comes downstairs.
“I AM NOT SLEEPING IN YOUR ROOM”, she says STILL shouting.
“Shuuuuush” I try and shush her but TOO LATE!!

My mum appears to be coming downstairs to check her out, HIIDEEEEEEEEEE

“So? Where is this…………………..”. my mum cuts her sentence short when she sees Shaimaa with the Niqab.
She just stands there with her eyes popped out, and she doesn't blink for SEVERAL MINUTES!

“Okaaaayyy Fifi, I'm just walking past you and taking my wife upstairs SLOWLY. And I’ll come down and speak to you when you start blinking again. Dad care to join us into welcoming Shaimaa to my room”, I look at my dad to come upstairs to explain to Shaimaa that she NEEDS to sleep in the same room if he doesn't want my mum to suspect a thing.
“Yeah ok. Fifi I’ll talk to you in a couple of minutes”, my dad tells her looking scared at her lack of blinking!

We go upstairs and my mum’s gaze does not leave Shaimaa’s side…………OH BOY THIS SHOULD BE INTERESTING!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)


Sep 27, 2013

Gadgets and Children?

By Farheen Naaz

Bismillah 

We all are well aware of the fact that today’s world runs on gadgets and it is hard to escape from the clutches of such tools. Parenting today has gone to another level with all these readily available devices. They give parents an easy way out to entertain the curious minds of their children. Enough has been said about kids misusing technology and the need for parents to keep track of their children’s online activities. Today, let us discuss the repercussions of giving gadgets to toddlers.

Apart from being handy and readily available at any time of the day, gadgets are also easily accessible and take up less space. A child is crying or misbehaving? Hand him a gadget and shut him up! It is as easy as that. Often we fail to think about the long-term effects of this action.

Toddlers learn from what they see. Once learning takes place for a toddler, it stays on his mind and goes a long way in shaping his personality. Therefore, it is essential for us, as parents and elders, or as people who take care of children, to ensure that we set the right examples for them.

Yes, of course gadgets are a great source of learning for children. There are a wide variety of applications and games that can help your toddler learn his alphabets, rhymes, or numbers. As an elder, it is your duty to select the right kind of application for your child. Another great way of ensuring that gadgets are not spoiling your little one is to set time limits for usage. Set aside a specific time of the day when the device is to be used. Furthermore, do not use any gadget whatsoever as a bait for your child when he is misbehaving. A gadget can be as harmful for a kid as it can be beneficial. Toddlers might get addicted to a gadget more easily than children of any other age group, as they might feel that it is something that they get if they cry or throw a tantrum. They might not realize exactly why you are giving them the gadget when they cry.

The majority of today’s technological devices come with a number of features that an owner might not even realize exist because there is no need for their usage. But, one cannot escape those extra, unwanted features and are forced to put up with them and ignore them while using the other features. As adults it is easy for us to do so, but for kids it is easy to explore and use things that they should not be using.

Kids these days are not experiencing the joy of playing outside. This is mostly due to the parenting style of today – parents get paranoid if their kid gets dirty in the mud or run behind a kitten, puppy, or even a butterfly. We need to realize that we, as little kids, played outside all day long, in the mud, in the park, in the lanes, but still no germs were strong enough to ruin our adulthood for us. A benefit of playing outside in the roughs is a strong immune system, which is fast waning these days.

All the senses of a child need to be developed as a whole and being exposed to music, gadgets, cartoons etc. all day long will not give them that needed development. Yes, it is necessary to be aware of our surroundings and the advancements in technology and teach them to our kids, but the right time is to be decided based on our parenting efficiencies. Think twice the next time you hand your smart phone to your kid. :)

In the next part of this article we shall look at some options to spend quality time with children without using gadgets.

Leave your thoughts about this topic in the comments section below :)

Sep 25, 2013

Poem: Imprisoned

by Amal Mila Filza

Bismillah



Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind” [Quran 22:46] 

Imprisoned, in a white walled room. 
Tears falling down like bombs in a battlefield. 
This field that once felt so trusted 
Now became a see-through shield. 

Chained, to a poisoned society 
Where escape is made impossible 
and the ransom is not worth the liberty 

Restrained, from the expression of true love 
It is a reflection of perfection, 
yet your sight is left unseen, 
the worst disease, a blinded heart. 

Bruised, from the uttered words 
Words that should have been left unspoken 
Yet you unlocked that door and left me bruised.. 

Hope, a feeling that remains 
My goal is left undamaged 
As I know this hurt too will fade away 
The mercy of my Lord is bound to stay. 
Alhamdulillah. 



I'd love to her your views on this topic. Please leave comments in the section below!

Sep 23, 2013

Book Review: Medicine of the Prophet by Ibn Qayyim al-Jawaziyya, a translation by Penelope Johnstone

by Anum Ali

Bismillah 


Medicine of the Prophet, authored by the great and widely-acclaimed theologian - Ibn Qayyim al-Jawaziyya (751AH-1350AH), bridges Islamic medicine and medical science together. The author has summarized Islamic prescriptions of health, prevention and cure from a collective mix of authentic resources; the Hadith (sayings) and Sunnah (lifestyle) of Prophet Muhammad sal allahu aleyhi wasallam and the wisdom from the Qur’an. The summary works in relativity with the references of medicinal views by the Muslims of the thirteenth and fourteenth century. The original Arabic text; an absolute favorite in the Muslim world, is a part of Ibn Qayyim's collective work Zad al-Maad. However, this English translation by Dr. Penelope Johnstone; a Ph.D. in the history of Arabic medicine and herbals, is a contemporary and more comprehensive version with better presentation and authentication of Hadith and Sunnah. Dr. Johnstone has undertaken field work in Syria-Jordan and spent a year with the Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine, Oxford. She now teaches Arabic at Oxford University.


The book has been categorically written in two parts. Part I 'Medicine' introduces the definitions and kinds of sickness, prevention and cure and works its way to discuss various maladies; mental, physical and spiritual. The author has discussed, in reference to Hadith, common ailments like fevers, diarrhea, epilepsy, sciatica, headache, etc. Also, the more serious and contagious maladies like plague, leprosy, poisonous intoxication, and etc. have also been mentioned. The 13th and 14th century Arabic medicine (Tibb) has been referenced alongside to incorporate authenticity of traditional treatments like cupping and cautery and also by using rare herbs and elements. It concludes by establishing healthy etiquettes of food and drinks and way of life as prescribed by Prophet Muhammad sal allahu aleyhi wasallam in reference to authentic Hadith. Part II is an index of 'Simple Drugs and Foods'; fruits, vegetables, grains, naturally occurring and chemical elements, and other products of use. It elaborates on the benefits by suggesting wise methods of consumption/usage for extracting the best out of each provision. And highlights the harmful effects while suggesting a combination of other foods to be used along with a particular one to counter the harms.

Medicine of the Prophet; while re-establishing some widely accepted medical practices of prevention and cure, tends to suggest alternative, spiritual treatments contrary to medical science but authenticated by Qur’an and Hadith, for instance a detailed chapter on preventative spiritual incantations (ruqyah) for treating evil-eye spells, magic and scorpion stings. However, no scientific arguments for and against the Islamic wisdom have been added to the original text because it is an unaltered translation preserved for providing only the authentic work of Ibn Qayyim.

The late Hakim Mohammad Saeed (1920-1998); founder of Hamdard Foundation, Pakistan, in his appraising foreword for the book, writes:

"I myself have found this masterly translation a significant and welcome addition to the treasury of translated Islamic medico-religious literature and to the historical and cultural heritage of Islam." 

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below!

Sep 22, 2013

Short Story: MY WIFE IS A NINJA CHAPTER 7

By Alawiya Abdalla

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Bismillah

Shaimaa

It is close to midnight since my uncle and his son Osman left, and I still have not decided what my response is. On one hand I feel like telling them to go back where they came from, but on the other hand I feel like this IS my dad’s inheritance after all.

I do not understand why would my grandma insist on me marrying Osman? I mean when she visited, she would always tell me that she wishes I marry her nephew Osman and fix him but I used to always decline politely. So I figured that would never come up again.

I cannot tell my dad because he was so excited to see my uncle, and he actually kept saying that finally he has a family in this world that cared enough to ask about him. I heard him tell my mum that, whatever grudge he held against his brother had evaporated.
He does not know that his brother is only here for his own gain! What kind of world do we live Ya Allah? He knew my dad is in a wheelchair all those years ago and he never bothered to ask for him, or send him money for treatment.
He does not know how my dad suffers daily because he cannot even leave the house. Me and my mum offer to take down his wheelchair as we live on the third floor, but his pride stops him. So he is stuck watching the world from the balcony maskeen, if I get that £500,000 for him, we can move from here to a nicer and posher area in a villa even. We would be able to make the house wheelchair friendly, so my dad can do everything himself instead of relying on me and my mum.

Do not get me wrong I love helping him, but every time I see the embarrassed look on him I feel sad for him. So basically this money would be a life saver to us.
However, I cannot shake the feeling that it is just SO wrong. I always dreamt that I would marry someone I love, and that he would share my values in life and my love for my religion not this arrogant person that was here hours ago!

I mean the LOOK on his face when he saw me! What was that about? What is it got to do with him? Subhanallah and he is Muslim! If I marry him and move to England how would the NON Muslims react to me then?
All these questions are going through my head at the moment. If I move to London, I would be able to get a job that pays well so even my mum would not have to go to work anymore.

I am going to weigh the pros and cons of this life changing decision before I give them my final word. Right now I will pray Istikhara and I will see how I feel in the morning.


Osman

“A ninja??? dad do you know how bad this is gonna look?? I’d be MORTIFIED to walk anywhere with her” Osman tells his dad as soon as they enter the hotel room.
“STOP saying ninja!! She wears a niqab, so? What’s the big deal??”, replies Khalifa to his son’s outburst.
“Dad, how can I show my face to people if I married her? All my friends will mock me for it. What about mum ha?”, he reminds me.
“What about her?? She’s just gonna have to deal with it. You’re just gonna have to pretend that you’re a changed man and all that hoopla”, he suggests.
“You know what dad. I was happy when you suggested that nothing has to happen between us as a married couple. PHEW good thinking!”, I tell him.
“I didn't suggest that for you! I did it for her. I feel like crap already, and I want her to get out of this with her head held high and not feeling used by you”, says my dad.
“Whatever! I know you don’t care about me and all that, so it’s fine” I answer him feeling rejected by his comment.
“I don’t care about you?? So you think I'm doing this for myself?? Walah you and your mother are ungrateful. You don’t know half of what’s going on with my life. All you two care about is yourselves”, he says in anger.
“Because I learnt from you innit? All you care about is money money and guess what MORE money”, I tell him the facts that he’s afraid to admit.
“This conversation is over!”, he yells at me.
“FINE! I just want my share and I’ll be out of your life for good!”, I yell back.
“Do what you wish son. I have lost interest in your little tantrums”.

We end the conversation and we sit silently just staring at the wall, until I decide I need to get out of here and hit the bars in Egypt boy. I am gonna make myself forget about everything in this world, maybe get some Egyptian chick too.


Khalifa

I just had a fight with my son, and as usual instead of apologizing to me he will come back wasted. To be honest, it is my own fault he turned out this way.
From a young age I wanted to take him under my wings and teach him everything I know in life, but his mum would not let me.
If I wanted to spend time with my son, she would suggest that instead of wasting my time I should be having meetings or something to generate more money!
At first I fought with her, but as the nagging went on I stopped trying. I thought to myself what harm could my lack of presence in my son’s life do?
Never in a million years have I wished this! The boy is beyond repair. Looking at Mohamed’s daughter Shaimaa, I realized how messed up my son is.

She is the most polite and intelligent girl I have ever seen in a long time Mashallah. And seeing Mohamed my brother in a wheelchair was really tough too, I mean whatever is gone in our lives is something and seeing my brother like that is something else man!
I feel so sorry for him, and offering help right now would look like such a hypocrisy.

When Shaimaa told me that she and her mum have been taking care of my brother all these years, it made me look so small.

She is only 18 and instead of running away, she has been their rock. What an amazing girl Mashallah! I just hope that she agrees to the marriage, because there is nothing left for me but money right now. It is kind of my security blanket, my only friend!

“Ouch!” I shout while holding my left arm, which has been hurting for quite sometime now! Very odd indeed! I better get myself checked out when I get back to England.


Shaimaa

Ok, I saw a weird dream last night and I think I made my decision. I saw my grandma and she was holding my hand, and taking me to a house and pointing to Osman saying -
“That’s your husband Shaimaa”, she says while taking my face in her hands.
And I look towards him and I see him covered in blood asking for my help! I got freaked out and I jumped out of my bed and recited Aayat al-Kursi, and I could not go back to sleep after that.

I know this looks like a nightmare, but somehow I felt that I am needed in my uncle’s house? I felt at peace with my decision……….
I am going to say yes to my uncle……….. I am going to marry Osman and get the financial help that my family so desperately need………even though leaving them would be the hardest thing in the world, but I gotta go and find a way to help my mum and dad and my brother Amr…….

I am going to England, and I am certain that Allah will guide me to the right path Inshallah, Ameen.

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I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)

Sep 20, 2013

A Couple Made a Deal the Night of Their Nikah...

by Unknown




A couple made a deal the night of their Nikah to NOT open the door of their room to anybody who comes knocking in the morning for any reason, In the morning the parents of the husband came and knocked on the door, the husband and the wife were looking at each other and as they agreed before, they did not open the door.


After a while the parents of the bride came knocking at the door… to check on them, the couple were looking at each other, then the bride dropped a tear and started crying, she said :”I cannot keep them knocking and not open the door, I miss them already”



The husband did not say anything and he let her open the door for her parents.



Years and years passed and the couple had 5 children, the first ones were boys and the 5th was a little girl, when she was born the father was extremely happy that Allah blessed him with her and he made Aqeeqa for her in grand style, people were so amazed with his joy and his happiness that they asked him, why are you so happy with her more than you were before with her older brothers?



He answered simply:”She is the one who will open the door for me”



Baby girls are the comfort of the eyes of their father
They hold the key to their mothers hearts
Daughters are really unique. They care for their parents even after they are married.
You do not simply hear of daughters abusing their parents.



To all the daughters out there, my sincere dua for you -



“May Allah (swt) make you like Fatima (peace and blessings of Allah be upon her), the daughter of our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) who cared so much for her dear Father. Ameen!”


I'd love to hear your opinions on this topic.  Please post in the comments section below :)

Sep 18, 2013

Short story: The Rich Man

by Unknown


Bismillah


A wise and pious rich man, sensing his approaching death, called his son to his side and gave him these instructions: "My son, I shall be leaving you very shortly. On the day when I die, and they have washed my body and come to wrap it in the shroud, I want you to put one of my socks on my foot. This is my final request of you."


Soon after this, the old man did indeed die, leaving behind his goods and property, his children and his dependents. Family, friends, acquaintances and neighbors attended his funeral. The body had been washed and was almost completely wrapped in the shroud, when the son remembered his father's wish. Finding one of his old socks, he handed it to the washer of the dead, saying, "In accordance with my father's last request, please put this sock on his foot."



"That is quite impossible,” said the man. "Such a thing is utterly impermissible in Islam. I cannot act against the Sacred Law." Despite this valid objection, the son insisted, "That was my father's final request; it must certainly be carried out."



The washer of the dead was unmoved. "If you won't take my word for it," he said, "go and ask the mufti. He will confirm what I tell you, that it is not permissible." Holding up the funeral, they consulted the mufti, preachers and scholars, all of whom declared that this was not permissible in Islam. Just then, an aged friend of the deceased interrupted the debate with these words to the son: "My boy, your late father entrusted me with a letter which I was to hand over to you after his departure. Here, this letter belongs to you." So saying, he gave him an envelope. Taken by surprise, the boy opened the envelope and read out the contents of his father's letter:



"My son, all this wealth and property I have left to you. Now you see: at the last moment, they won't even let you give me an old sock to wear. When you yourself come one day to be in my condition they will also refuse to let you keep anything but your shroud. Few yards of shroud are all you will be able to carry over from this fleeting world into the Hereafter. So pull yourself together and be prepared. Spend the fortune I have left you, not for the satisfaction of vain desires, but in ways pleasing to Allah, that you may achieve honor in both worlds." ........




I'd love to hear your opinions on this topic.  Please post in the comments section below :)

Sep 16, 2013

It May Take a While


by: Tyler Perry



It's funny how a song, a taste, a scent, or something as simple as a change in weather can trigger a memory. Certain times of year make me think about when I was homeless. Especially the winter. I started thinking about this one lady in particular who helped me out during that time. She was a good soul who saw me in need and gave me money and food. She didn't have much but what she had she shared out of the kindness of her heart. I told her that when I got successful I would pay her back. She smiled and said, "You don't have to pay me anything. I just felt led to help you."


I couldn't stop thinking about her the other day so I did some research and found her. Imagine her shock when I called her. She didn't even think that I remembered her. It's funny how something that was a small gesture to her was a huge blessing to me. As we went on talking, she reluctantly told me that she had just lost her job and was facing foreclosure. Of course, I did some things to help her out.


Why am I telling you this? I'm glad you asked. She gave to me out of the kindness of her heart. She gave to me from a pure place and expected nothing in return. The thing that brought tears to my eyes and blessed me so about this situation was this: this woman planted a seed in my life almost twenty years ago. But what she didn't know at the time was that the seed she planted would one day come back and bless her life just when she needed it most.


So what am I saying? I'm saying that if you are a giver of whatever you have... time, money, love, help, whatever it is... if you plant it in pureness it has got to come back to you. It may take a while but you will reap a harvest from that seed. Don't be weary in well-doing. It will come back to you. I know sometimes it may seem that all the good you do goes unnoticed by people, but if they don't notice, it doesn't matter. If they don't acknowledge your kindness, it does not matter. You know why? Because I promise you God sees it all and He is the only one that matters. And He is bound by His word, and that word says you will reap what you sow. So sow on, sow good seeds. They will grow and come back to you when you least expect it.


God bless you today.

I'd love to hear your opinions on this topic.  Please post in the comments section below :)

Sep 15, 2013

Short Story: MY WIFE IS A NINJA CHAPTER 6

By Alawiya Abdalla

Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Bismillah

Shaimaa

It has been a few days since I got fired from my job and I have not told my parents yet! Every time I try and open my mouth, I see their hopeful faces and my tongue gets stuck. I just cannot do it! I get out of the house everyday and go to the mosque to kill time before I go back home. I know I cannot hide it forever, but I just need some time to figure out a plan.

I went out to look for work as soon as I got fired, but nobody is willing to give me a chance wearing a Niqab :( I cannot just give up wearing it for a bunch of ignorants, I WILL NOT.
I will pray for Allah to show me a way out of this. My mum suffers from osteoporosis and making her work full time is out of the question.
Ya Allah help me find a way to provide for my family who have been nothing but good to me.

I was deep in my Duaa when I heard a knock on our door. I was a bit surprised because we do not get that many visitors, apart from our neighbour who visits my mum daily but she left about an hour ago as usual. I wonder who this could be?


Osman

I am standing outside this HIDEOUS door waiting to meet the girl I am about to marry, and I say that in confidence now because LOOK AT THIS OLD DOOR! Why would she refuse? So pardon me when I say EEEEUGGHHH!!
I made my dad knock because I did not want to catch any germs from this door. This trip has been nothing but annoying so far.
As soon as we landed in the airport, I was hit by pollution. I think I need a mask and I am not even lying! I thought going to Egypt would be soooo cool. I thought we were going to go to Sharm El Sheikh or something, but noooo we are going to this filthy FILTHY place to meet her!
I mean how poor can someone be? I swear I used to think Tottenham, Hackney and Leyton were eeuugghhh but this place wins hands down bro.

When the driver dropped us, I was SURROUNDED with people begging for money! And all I was thinking about was STEP AWAY FROM THE ARMANI SUIT PEOPLE!
Anyway I keep reminding myself of the £100.000, I got a lot from my dad, do not get me wrong but this is an offer I could not refuse.
Imagine how the chicks will react when they know I have that amount! So I will just grin and bear the pollution, the hideous door and the people.
I just hope this Shaimaa person is HOT MAN, I mean she better be otherwise I will be stucked with her FOR A YEAR! The thought is killing me here!
We were waiting for someone to open when A SPIDER CAME DOWN FROM THE CEILING AND LANDED IN FRONT OF MY FACE! I have to say I screamed.
THE ONE THING that scares me is Spiders! It is the legs, it makes my whole body shudder. And now I am standing here screaming like a girl because of it!
At that moment the door opens and we are greeted by a boy, who looks about nine years old.

“Asalamu Alykum son, I'm your uncle Khalifa. Is your dad here?”, asks my dad.

The boy does not reply and he runs back inside, but moments later a man in a very old looking wheelchair comes to the door. I guess that is my uncle?
“KHALIFA MY BROTHER? IS THIS REALLY YOU STANDING HERE IN FRONT OF ME?”, asks my uncle feeling very emotional and surprised at our impromptu visit.
“Yes Mohamed, it really is me”, replies my dad in a choked up voice that I see for the first time in ages.
“Come in, come in. SARA tell Shaimaa to go and buy some Gateaux from the bakery shop around the corner”, he tells his wife.
“No brother, please don’t bother yourself. There’s no need for all that”. My dad tries to stop them from making a big fuss because he can see that they obviously cannot afford it.
“Nonsense!. SHAIMAA, come and say Salam to your uncle”, yells my uncle to my future wife YIPEEEEEEE.
It takes a few minutes for my hopefully VERY SEXY wife to come and greet us, and now the door is opening…..My heart will go on is playing in my head and HERE SHE IS MY………………
NINJA? WHOA WHOA WHOA WAIT A MINUTE! Maybe that is Shaimaa’s friend?
NOPE NOPE, the ninja is coming to greet us. HEEEELLLLL NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!


Shaimaa

Apparantley MY UNCLE IS HERE? What is that about! All of a sudden he remembers he has a brother? What is going on here?
To make it worse my dad wants me to go and buy a Gateaux! I am trying to save money until I find a job. But I cannot break my dad’s word, so I put on my niqab and I go to greet him and buy the cake.

When I walk out of my room, I see two people sitting on the sofa next to my dad. I guess he brought his son with him? I look at them both and it feels like they just saw a ghost from the look of shock on their faces!

Whatever! I say my Salams and I was about to go, when my uncle stops me.

“Shaimaa, please don’t bother yourself daughter. Mohamed, tea will do walahi”. He pleads with my dad.
“Ok then if you insist”, replies my dad.

As I was about to get up, my uncle asks me to sit down to talk to me about something.

“Mohamed, I'm asking for Shaimaa’s hand in marriage for my son Osman”. starts my uncle and pointing towards the man who looks like he has seen a ghost.
“Ha? where did this come from? I'm sorry I mean this is just so sudden!”, wonders my dad.
“No sudden or anything Mohamed. I was looking for a good girl for my son for ages, and who is better suited to him that a good daughter like Shaimaa Mashallah”, explains my uncle and looking towards the ghost, I mean Osman!

“I’d be honoured brother, but the decision lies with Shaimaa”, says my dad looking towards me in amazement.

I am feeling very suspicious about this whole thing. My grandma used to always tell me that my uncle always has an agenda before he speaks, so I ask my dad to be alone with my uncle and Mr I am about to die from the shock.
My dad goes to his room, and my mum brings the tea to us and excuses herself to be with my dad. I do not say anything and I just sit here staring at them from behind my niqab.

“Dad, why is she staring at us like that?? Dad she’s not blinking like when my mum gets angry”, says “my suitor”.
“Ozzy!! It’s the way you are reacting to her. Look at yourself behaving like a woman who saw a ghost”, my uncle replies to his son obviously thinking that I do not speak English so I do not understand what they are saying.
“Nah man, forget this. I ain't marrying a ninja man, I thought she was gonna be like HOT and not a ninja!”, says Osman.
“You know ninja is the same word in Arabic, so STOP embarrassing me”, my uncle tells his son quietly.
“I don’t want this money anymore. You can keep all the inheritance money, I don’t give a flying…..” Osman tells his dad before he gets to finish the swear word he was about to say.
“DON’T SWEAR! These people are respectful not like you”, he says and getting frustrated by his son’s lack of interest in me.
“Shaimaa habibti, you’re not saying much. Is there anything you wanna ask me?”, my uncle asks me in Arabic.

“No, I pretty much get it now”, I answer in an American accent.
They both look at each other in shock, and they seem embarrassed by their conversation.
“Ok look. The story is my mother, your grand mother left us an inheritance of £1 million pounds split into half between me and my brother”, he starts explaining.
“But the only way to get it, is for my son to marry you for a year and everyone goes their separate ways”, he continues.
“I know it sounds so materialistic to you daughter, but we really need it and from the looks of things here. I feel that this money will make a big difference to your family too right?”, he asks me with eyes that is almost pleading for me to say yes.

“I don’t know what to say to be honest uncle. You show up after all these years, and my dad feels happier for the first time in a while. I do not wanna crush his heart and tell him that his brother is only interested in a business deal with his daughter”, I reply.

“I know I'm a horrible person. But I'm desperate, please consider it. I mean the marriage could be a piece of paper, you don’t have to do anything with this boy”, he pleads.
“Yeah, BELIEVE ME you don’t have to feel obliged  I give up my rights honestly”, adds Osman in a matter of fact way, as the thought of marrying me looks like it’s terrifying him A LOT.
“I need to think this through. You will get my answer tomorrow Inshallah, after I pray Istikhara”, I give them an answer.

“Ok, we will come back again to get the response from you. But please put your dad into your consideration. imagine what £500.000 could do for all of you”, my uncle reminds me of the benefit of this deal.
“Me and my mum have been taking care of my dad all this time, so we know what’s best for my dad, uncle, not trying to be rude or anything”,  I remind him.
“Of course”, he says.
“Let’s act normal around my dad, so he won’t find out the real reason behind this visit. Like I said before, he doesn't need any heartbreak”, I tell them.
“Sure” They both say in unison.

So I leave the room, and go to get my dad to come back and spend time with his brother. I go back to my room, and sit there wondering what I should do?

What would YOU DO???
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I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)

Sep 9, 2013

Being A Mom

by Unknown




We are sitting at lunch one day when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of "starting a family." "We're taking a survey," she says half-joking. "Do you think I should have a baby?"

"It will change your life," I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral.

"I know," she says, "no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous vacations."

But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her. I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes.

I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so raw that she will forever be vulnerable.

I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without asking, "What if that had been MY child?" That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her.

That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die.

I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a bear protecting her cub. That an urgent call of "Mom!" will cause her to drop a soufflé or her best crystal without a moments hesitation.

I feel that I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by motherhood. She might arrange for childcare, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think of her baby's sweet smell. She will have to use every ounce of discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.

I want my daughter to know that every day decisions will no longer be routine. That a five year old boy's desire to go to the men's room rather than the women's at McDonald's will become a major dilemma. That right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom.

However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother.

Looking at my attractive daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself.

That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. That she would give herself up in a moment to save her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years, not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her child accomplish theirs.

I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor.

My daughter's relationship with her husband will change, but not in the way she thinks.

I wish she could understand how much more you can love a man who is careful to powder the baby or who never hesitates to play with his child.

I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.

I wish my daughter could sense the bond she will feel with women throughout history who have tried to stop war, prejudice and drunk driving.

I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike.

I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or cat for the first time.

I want her to taste the joy that is so real it actually hurts.

My daughter's quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes. "You'll never regret it," I finally say. Then I reached across the table, squeezed my daughter's hand and offered a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings.

Please share this with a Mom that you know or all of your girlfriends who may someday be Moms. May you always have in your arms the one who is in your heart.



I'd love to hear your opinions on this topic.  Please post in the comments section below :)


Sep 8, 2013

Short Story: MY WIFE IS A NINJA CHAPTER 5

By Alawiya Abdalla


Previous Chapter | Next Chapter


Bismillah

Shaimaa

“May Allah forgive you for that”, 18 year old Shaimaa says it while she leaves the shop.

Ya Rabbii what am I gonna do now? My boss FIRED ME for wearing the Niqab! He said that I will not be attracting customers if I continue to wear it.

I was lucky enough to get that job in Omar Affandi, selling ties. Allah only knows how long it took me to find a job after my dad’s accident.I could not let my mum work full time cleaning houses, I see how she much she suffers already. I had to find work to make ends meet, and the sales assistant job was just what we needed. The money wasn't much, but it was enough to put bread on the table and now I have lost it for something that has nothing to do with my abilities as a sales assistant.

As soon as I walked in the store that Monday, he called me to talk to me and told me that he has no problem with Niqabis but it was not going to work out with my job. If only he knew why I chose to wear it, he will understand. Actually, I do not talk to anyone about that night, I would not dare tell a soul ESPECIALLY my father.

I was coming back from work and it was late at night, because we had to do stock take in the store. What happened next is too horrible for me to recall. From that day on I hated myself, I hated my face. I decided that no man is gonna see me EVER again, no man is gonna look at me and think MEAT.

It all started when that singer SHAKIRA came into the public eye. Every person I meet would point out how similar we were, and how much we look alike. At first I did not think much of it, and I dismissed the whole thing. I could not really care less about her as I was busy with my life to worry about trivial things. But as Shakira’s popularity rose, men’s interest in me became more. The fact that I wore my hijab didn’t stop them annoying me with

“HEY SHAKIRA GIVE US A DANCE WIIL YOU?”
Or
“MY HIPS DON’T LIEEEE, MY HIPS DON’T WHAT? THEY DON’T LIIIEEE” In a really thick Egyptian accent.

Like I said before, all these things did not bother me until that fateful night! That was when I decided that enough is enough. I am going to cover my face altogether to escape the pain of what happened. I know it was not really a religious reason to wear but I just had to. However, my love for this piece of clothing started to grow day by day as time went on. I loved the respect I got whenever I walked past anyone. Men would make way, and women would smile at you in respect. Any traces of SHAKIRA were erased, and with that I put what happened on that night at the back of my mind.

But now THIS happens and I have NO idea what to do!

Back in England Khalifa forces Osman to tell his mother Fifi about the impending proposal, because he was TOO afraid of her reaction.

Khalifa

He told his son to tell her that he saw a picture of Shaimaa on facebook, and that they were chatting for months before they decided to confront us about “their love”
Khalifa planned it like that because he knew that deep down Fifi would not be able to resist her son’s requests. He knew that if HE was the one to say anything, she would get suspicious so he decided that it should come from his son.

Now he is standing outside the living room door listening intently, hoping that his son succeeds in this mission. As much as he hates his brother, he still wouldn't like his brother’s daughter to be treated badly by his wife ESPECIALLY if they want the year to finish in peace.

“MAAFAYLE I NEED TO TALK TO YOU”, Shouts Osman as he enters the living room to talk to his mother.
“WHAT DID I SAY ABOUT CALLING ME THAT HIDEOUS NAME HA DONKEY?”, Fifi says in a VERY agitated tone.
“Come on! Maafayle is one sexy name. I mean I told myself I am NEVER going to marry a girl unless she is called Maafayle like you ma”, he tells her while chuckling loudly.
“Don’t you dare! Anything but that. Maafayle my foot!”, replies Fifi angrily.
“So you DON’T want me to choose a girl called Maafayle right?”, he asks her to confirm.
“YES, what are you getting at here? I have an appointment to get my nails done and I cannot be bothered with your silly games Ozzy ALRIGHT?”, she replies and getting more annoyed by the second.

“Ma, I want to get married. I have found my princess who’s gonna complete my life through facebook”, he tells her in a serious tone.
“Oh really! and who might she be? a millionare’s daughter I hope”, she answers and pretending to go along with this nonsense.
“MONEY is not what am after mother. I'm after love, LOVE that is so deep that you or ANYONE can understand it ”, he tells her in a dramatic manner.
“I don’t want no poor girl in my house yeah! Are you crazy? She better be from a well respected family”, replies Fifi with a worried voice as she starts to wonder if her son is joking or not.
“Nothing and NO ONE can come between me and my cousin”, shouts Osman to add more drama to the conversation.

“Cousin??? What cousin? My sister’s daughter? No way in hell I'm telling you now Ozzy”, she orders him.
“Actually, erm….it’s Shaimaa my dad’s brother’s daughter”, he tells her while covering his ears for what is about to come.
“WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT?? ”, she shouts so loudly that she loses her voice a little bit.
“Come on ma, she can belly dance to me like this”, he starts to belly dance in a questionable way.
Fifi responds with throwing shoes at him!!

“It’s not fair!! You know how much I like belly dancing. I mean I love Shaimaa and NO ONE is gonna stop me from marrying her”, says Osman as he leaves the living room before he falls laughing next to his dad who was standing outside.
“GET UP! She might see you!!”, whispers Khalifa to his son.
“Ok Khalifa. I done my bit and now it’s your turn”, Osman reminds his dad about the agreement.
“£100.000 here I cooooommmmeeeee”

Khalifa stands outside the living room for a while, to make sure no flying shoes comes his way!

“Fifi, what’s going on?? I heard your screaming”, asks Khalifa by acting puzzled.
“YOUR SON MET YOUR BROTHER’S DAUGHTER ONLINE AND SHE MADE HIM FALL IN LOVE WITH HER”, she says loudly.
“WHAT??? I'm soooo gonna stop this from happening”, replies Khalifa.
“You MUST STOP THIS I'm telling you. This could be such a disaster to my reputation” she informs him.
“Although……”, says Khalifa holding his chin and pretending to think.
“Although what??”, asks Fifi.
“If we force him not to marry her, he will do it anyway. You KNOW your son, and that way we would lose him to THEM”, explains Khalifa.

Fifi calms down and tries to take in what Khalifa is telling her.

“You see if we agree to this, she’ll be under our watchful eyes and that way she can’t CONTROL him”, Khalifa emphasis on the word control as he knows how much his wife loves to be in control of things.

“That does make sense! No way is that low life taking MY SON away from me”, she agrees.
“So you think we should say yes?”, asks Khalifa to make it look like she is the one who made the decision all by herself.
“I suppose!! But I'm gonna have to do A LOT of work to make into a girl of a high class manner. I mean she lives in Egypt!! Uff what a disaster!!”, she replies.
“All up to you love”, says Khalifa and leaving Fifi to ponder on the situation.

Khalifa feels like a weight has been lifted off his shoulder, and all he has to do is convince his brother and Shaimaa about this……..

Egypt here we come!!!!! GULP
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I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)


Sep 4, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey

By M


Bismillah

Ah, the tribulations of physicality, the ever pertinent topic of a woman’s weight.

What causes our obsession over it, how do we get it, how do we lose it, and how in the world do we keep it off?

Why do we gain weight? 
Many factors influence weight gain. It is an undefinable mixture of things that leads to its gain, varying from person to person, personal experiences and periods in life. A simple fact: food plays an important role in our daily lives, related to celebratory events, sad moments, unmanageable loads, or just as a past time.

We could each pick one or our own special concoction of reasons for eating at varying parts of our lives.
  • Enjoyment of it and times of celebration 
  • Unhappiness and the periods that lead us to comfort eat 
  • Lack of self-discipline when we may indulge or when the opportunity poses itself 
  • Age 
  • Metabolism 
  • Sickness 
  • Laziness 
  • Overindulging 
  • A sedentary lifestyle 
  • Sitting at a desk the entire day 
  • Stress 
So how to get it off and keep it off? 
It really is both an easy and challenging endeavour  And doing it little by little but consistently is the key, really. Rather than making a huge effort with very little motivation to repeat, start somewhere.

Physical 
Low impact exercise. Yes, It is a great way to start. This could mean walking, light brisk walks, or gentle cycling through the neighbourhood  For instance, if walking is your exercise of choice, slow 30 minute walks about 3 to 4 times a week could be a solution. Gradual and eventual weight loss is healthier than dramatic dieting or over-exerting exercises. Personally, I found walking out in the open after sunrise, before the streets choke with the traffic of those rushing to work, provides a rewarding, calming and seriously enjoyable experience. The sound of birds and rustling leaves, babbling streams, and the fresh smell of the open air intertwined with floral scents- despite the occasional bad odour from litter- really is an experience to be enjoyed. Even admiring the beautiful architecture of homes en route tends to add to the charm. What becomes fun too is the appreciation and anticipation of it.

Eating right 
And just as important as consistent exercise, is the attempt to have a balanced diet. This does not mean one cannot indulge. If done correctly, one could manage to sneak in a little treat ever so often, but it is important to cut down ones regular dose of unhealthy, deep fried, sugar -laden options. For instance, instead of an ice-cream, try frozen yogurt. And indulge by adding a touch of a sweet topping. Dark chocolate is a perfect treat - healthy, without harmful sugars, and full of antioxidants. Try smoothies instead of milkshakes or tea, water and juices instead of soft drinks. A little substitution goes a long way.

Main meals should follow suite, again, cutting down on deep fried foods and substituting it with grills. Curries are fantastically and surprisingly healthy. They contain a large amount of cooked tomatoes, which are high in vitamins. And in its cooked state, it activates lycopene, an anti-carcinogenic. In addition, onions, good-for-you vegetables, are just as important. Grilled chicken, homemade burger patties and tomato sauces, a healthy dose of salad and sautéed greens still retaining their crunchiness are amongst the many foods one should include in a healthy diet.

And the main dishes of most cuisines can be modified to remain healthy but still retain the delicious identity of those dishes. Have fun and experiment. And eat less. Drink more water; hydration is key to the body’s cells functioning.

Attitude of gratitude 
Above all, try to develop a healthy positive attitude. Understand that our bodies are not meant to look like they do in airbrushed magazines.

We are individuals with different body types, sizes, bone structure, height and physical capabilities. Love the body you have and try to treat it with respect and care. Try to appreciate it for its miraculous structure. It is yours. Love it for the beauty it is.


I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)

Sep 2, 2013

Relationship with the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam)

by Shazia Arif

Bismillah

As a Muslim, it is one’s duty to believe in the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) as the last and final messenger. And of course we all do that. But have you ever wondered who is the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam)? Do you believe in him just because you have to or is it out of love? Do you know him as well as you know yourself? I am pretty sure almost all of us had skeptical answers to these questions. So do you not think it is about time we learn who the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) was and build our relationship with him?

The Seerah

To build a strong relationship with someone, you have to know them. Just because the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is not alive anymore, it does not mean we cannot get to know him. Rather, we should read and study his biography (Seerah). Once you learn about what an amazing and inspiring man he was, the love for him will grow in your heart inshaAllah.

When reading the Seerah, do not treat it like a regular story book; rather, immerse yourself in it and truly realize all the trials and tribulations the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) went through for us, all the pain he endured to make sure Islam spread far and wide to reach every generation, all the humiliation he had to face from his own people, JUST FOR US!

Hadith and Sunnah

Now reading the Seerah and learning about the Prophet’s (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) life, battles, struggles etc. is beautiful indeed. But after you have read it, you will also feel the desire to know and internalize the exact teachings of our beloved Prophet. The scholars of the past were able to preserve the Hadith and the Sunnah of the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) in books for all future generations to benefit from. 

What is Hadith? It is a written account of the Sunnah, everything the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) did, said, or silently approved of. We need to learn and implement the Sunnah in our own lives. After learning about the teachings of the greatest man to ever step foot onto this earth, why should not one follow in his footsteps? 

There’s a bonus for following the Sunnah! And that is...

Say, [O Muhammad], ‘If you should love Allah, then follow me, [so] Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.’ ” (3,31) 

Just for following the Sunnah, you gain two things: love of Allah, and forgiveness from Him of your sins. Are not those the two things we all are in desperate need of? Indeed he (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is a mercy for all of mankind!

Loving the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is a part of Imaan

...by Him in Whose Hand my soul is, (you will not have complete faith) until I am dearer to you than your own self." (Bukhari) 


To have a strong relationship with someone, you need to love them. To love someone, you need to know them. By learning his Seerah and Hadith and following his Sunnah, you will gain ‘true love’ for the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) in your heart. This love will be genuine, straight from the heart, the type of love every Muslim needs to have for him.

As mentioned in the Hadith above, loving him is part of Imaan, part of your faith. You will not truly believe in Islam unless you love him the most!

Stay Away from Bid'ah

As time progressed, many acts of bid'ah (innovation) came into the religion. Many people have attributed these innovations to the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam). Obviously, this is wrong because it is attributing a lie to the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) and to do so is a major sin. Some may argue that these innovations encourage more good deeds. However, acts of encouragement in Hadiths have their own blessings and we should stick to those acts.

Think about it. If you love someone, would you lie about them? Would you attribute a lie to them because you feel they are not good enough and you have to make them look good? What if someone did the same to you?

Durood

When you love someone and feel that your relationship is starting to build with them, you want to do something that will benefit them. Although the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is not alive among us anymore, it does not mean we cannot be of benefit to him. We can pray for him and send peace and blessings upon the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) and his family!

One of the ways of doing so is as follows:

للهم صل على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما صليت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم إنك حميد مجيد، اللهم بارك على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما باركت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم إنك حميد مجيد 

As we all strive to build a relationship with the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam), let us not forget that nothing comes without dua! Do your best and make dua to Allah to put that love in your heart for the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam), that it remains there, and that this love only leads you to do much more good in life, InshaAllah.


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