Friday, 21 September 2018

Abu Ayub Ansari, a prominent companion




HIS name shines on the horizon of Madinah. He was the first who offered full hospitality to Holy Prophet (peace and mercy of Allah be upon him) when he arrived in Madinah. Later he proved that he was not only an extraordinary host and a warrior, but also Katib-e-Wahi, a Hafiz Qur’an and a Faqih whose fatwas were trusted. Abu Ayub Ansari also served as imam of the Prophet’s Mosque during the Caliphate of Uthman bin Affan. He took part in all the famous battles including Badr, Ohud, Khandaq, Hunain, Khayber and Tabuk.

Abu Ayub Ansari belonged to Bani Najjar tribe. It was not a new relationship for the Holy Prophet (pbuh). His great-grandfather Hashem married a lady named Salma from Banu Najjar of Madinah, later he went to Shaam for trading and died at Ghazza and was buried there. Salma gave birth to a boy. Later when Thabet bin Manzar (father of Hassan bin Thabet) visited Makkah he informed Muttaleb about his brother Hashim’s marriage in Madinah and the birth of a boy. Muttaleb visited Madinah and brought his nephew. This boy was named Abdul Muttaleb, later to become the grandfather of the Prophet (peace be upon him).

When the Prophet (peace be upon him) migrated to Madinah the whole city erupted in jubilation with young boys and girls welcoming the Prophet (peace be upon him) with noble songs.

The residents stood on the way asking the Prophet to stay with them. The Prophet said, “I will stay at the place where my camel sits.” The camel moved for a while and sat at an open place. He asked whose house is nearby. Abu Ayub Ansari burst with joy and said: “This is my house, this is my house, I am here to serve you.” Asad bin Zararah took the camel to his house. The Prophet (peace be upon him) stayed at Abu Ayub’s house for about seven months until the Prophet’s Mosque was built on the open space where his camel had stopped. Thus Abu Ayub became the Prophet’s closest neighbor who always served him during his life. This house was later known as “Maktaba Aarif Hikmat Bey” about 10 meters from the present Bab Baqie of the Prophet’s Mosque.

It is reported that once Abu Bakr and Omar came out of their houses because of acute hunger. The Prophet (peace be upon him) also joined them and they went together to the house of Abu Ayub. He was filled with joy to see the honorable guests. He rushed to the garden and brought dates. He later slaughtered a goat and offered it to them. They ate it and thanked Almighty Allah for His great bounties. In the meantime Prophet (peace be upon him) took a piece of meat, placed it in a loaf and said, “Abu Ayub, take this to Fatimah, she has not tasted the like of this for days.”

Abu Ayub devoted his life and property for the sake of Islam and participated in most of the campaigns during and after the life of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him). He was born in around 590 AD. He had three sons — Khalid, Ayub and Mohammed and a daughter named Umrah. Their descendants are found in Egypt, India, Pakistan and Turkey.

During the rule of Ameer Muawiya when a call was made for jihad against Constantinople, he raised his sword and participated in it. Though he was one of the favorites of the Holy Prophet, he preferred to leave Madinah and fight in distant lands for the sake of Islam. During this campaign he fell sick and instead of returning to Madinah he said before his death: “Convey my salaams to the Muslim army and tell them: ‘Abu Ayub urges you to penetrate deep into the enemy territory as far as you can so that you carry me (my dead body) with you and that you bury me under your feet at the walls of Constantinople.’”

Then he breathed his last. The Muslim army fulfilled the desire of the companion of the Messenger of God. They pushed back the enemy’s forces in attack after attack until they reached the walls of Constantinople. There they buried him.

Later, Ottoman Caliphs built nice tomb and a mosque. The locality is now called Ayub Sultan on the European part of Istanbul. Besides the grave of Abu Ayub Ansari there are 28 more companions buried in Turkey who laid their lives for the sake of Islam on this land. Ayub Sultan has become a sacred locality and many Ottoman caliphs were crowned at this place and later many nobles were buried near him.

This is a Hadith narrated by Abu Ayub Ansari (May Almighty Allah give him high ranks in Paradise), Allah’s Messenger said, “It is not lawful for a man to desert his Muslim brother for more than three nights. (It is unlawful for them that) when they meet, one of them turns his face away from the other, and the other turns his face from the former, and the better of the two will be the one who greets the other first.”

Link

Thursday, 20 September 2018

I lost my mum to domestic violence but I won't let fear or racists keep me silent




At Rookwood Cemetery in Sydney's west, Islamic Burial Section 8 is by the telegraph tower and the train line.

As I pull over, I notice other people conversing quietly with God by the graves of their loved ones. It looks like a funeral has recently taken place. I remind myself, inna lillah wa inna illayhi raji'un: we belong to God and it is to Him we return.

I'm here to visit the grave of my mum, Salwa Haydar, who was just 45 years old when she was murdered by my father in 2015. She was preparing her dinner in the kitchen after a long day's work when he attacked her with a knife.

My sister, who was 18 at the time, fought him with her bare hands and was injured in the attack. My father's actions were cowardly, merciless and unrelenting: my mum died at the scene from about 30 stab wounds.

Arriving at my mother's resting place, I empty the vases that flank her tombstone and fill them with fresh water and blooms — daisies and dahlias — before turning to her neighbours.

In an adjacent row, 16-year-old Mahmoud Hrouk is buried. I take my spare flowers to him.

Mahmoud was sexually assaulted and murdered in 2015 by Aymen Turkmani who left his body in an abandoned house in Villawood. Turkmani was subsequently found guilty and sentenced to a maximum of 45 years in prison.

Mahmoud's youthful face is never far from my thoughts — his funeral happened soon after my mum's and the sadness of their two stories seems to have fused in my mind.

I notice that the lilies by his tombstone are still in the bud. I think of his mum.

I then wander towards the back of Section 8, where, right by the fence line, lays baby Omaira: "Born without breath, but not without love".

Omaira died at 5 months' gestation when her pregnant mother was attacked by her abusive male partner. Omaira's tiny, humble grave has been decorated with pebbles and rainbow windmills. I remind myself to bring more flowers next time.

Children without parents, parents without children. Who else is here because of male violence? I ponder the question as I drive away with a heavy heart.

Why don't we talk more openly about the effects of male violence on our families? For Muslim women in particular, the answers are complex.

Recently, however, I've noticed a growing number of us are standing up to the forces that keep us quiet and I'm energised by the community's willingness to listen.

The double bind Muslim women find ourselves in
In its ongoing series, ABC News has been investigating the role of religion in influencing the behaviour of perpetrators and victims of domestic violence in different faith communities.

The most recent piece reported on the confusion and harm being caused by popular translations of verse 4:34 in the Quran, which some Islamic scholars argue permits men to beat "disobedient" wives.

Such interpretations hinder the work being done by Muslims to tackle gender-based violence. Meanwhile, contemporary, non-violent interpretations of the same verse have not yet gained consensus.



Full article

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

In my homeland of Pakistan, women aren’t seen as people




In Dera Ismail Khan, Pakistan, a 14-year-old girl is abducted by a gang while out with her cousins to fetch water from a nearby well. She is then made to parade naked through her own neighborhood in Garahmat Village.

It’s later found out that the reason behind all this cruelty is a century old one: honor.

The girl’s brother had been engaged in a love affair with another woman from the village. When the village council found out, they ruled that the sister of the fornicator be punished for her brother’s sins.

nother such incident took place in Multan, Pakistan, where a 16-year-old girl was brutally raped by the men of another family, residing in the same village as her. And just like the first incident, this tear-jerking one was a matter of family honor.

The teen victim’s brother had raped a 12-year-old girl.

Following that assault, the members of the victim’s family decided that the fitting punishment was to brutally rape the sister of the perpetrator, too.

When will this abhorrent mentality of revenge-rape come to an end?

I simply don’t understand why the lives of women are ruined for the faults of their family members. For as long as I can remember, women in Pakistan have been known more as the flag bearers of the family name than their own person. They are treated like badges if they achieve something in life, and stains if anyone around them dares to break the norm. We are NOT anyone’s possessions.

Why burden us by linking everyone else’s honor to us?

In rural areas of Pakistan, women’s bodies are treated like battlegrounds to resolve disputes.

The brash village councils (panchayats) ruin thousands of lives every single day despite not even being registered as proper judicial establishments. These councils are usually run by the utterly inhumane and illiterate “elders” of the village and are not bound by any rule of law. These so-called leaders can do whatever they want, to anyone at any given time.

And they are not at all fearful because they are fully aware of the prevailing lawlessness in Pakistan.

They know that if anyone dares to lodge a single complaint against them at a local police station, all it will take to close the case forever is a few thousand rupees worth of bribe money in the already-brimming pockets of the police station’s head.

The plights of our women are trivialized by everyone around them. They are told to “get over it” and “just pray no one finds out” so they can live happy lives.

But thankfully, our media is now active enough to come to the rescue of women who have had to bear with such atrocities.  And like countless others, these women’s voices found solace in confiding to the media.

Our inefficient Pakistani authorities finally took notice of these heinous acts and detained the allegedly involved men.

Rape, in the 21st century, continues to be one of the greatest fears of women in my dear country.

Women fear their voices will be muffled to a point where they lose all sense of self and let go of the reins of their lives, altogether. They know that no person around them will have the balls to defend their honor.

Instead, she will be belittled over and over again for something that was completely out of her control.

Men from her vicinity will refuse to be seen around her and so all her chances at a normal life will cripple because of the quest of every man on Earth to find his own pure little Virgin Mary.

The revenge factor in these rapes will become non-existent the day all potential perpetrators realize that society will let women integrate regardless of what has happened to them in the past.

And this will only happen if men and their families stop making women feel like trash because of something that’s completely out of their control. They need to see beyond girls’ pasts and must get to know them for who they really are in lieu of baselessly passing judgments.

Trust me, this is the only thing survivors of rape need and it CAN be done. So play your part: stop labeling them as baggage, and start letting them thrive.

For if a woman grows, so does an entire generation.


Link

Monday, 17 September 2018

Never Judge People By their Appearance | Nouman Ali Khan |



Important message from Ustadh NAK. Look at peoples deeds, actions and intentions. Do not concern yourself with the external and superficial.

Saturday, 15 September 2018

Happy Islamic New Year


“The number of months in the sight of Allah are twelve (in a year). So ordained by Him the day He created the heavens and the earth; Of them four are sacred: That is the right religion. So wrong not yourselves therein.” (At-Tawbah: 36)

While all of us know the names of months as January, February, March,..., they belong to Roman or Julian calendar. Most people are not aware of the names of Isamic months and the Islamic calendar.

As mentioned in the Qur'anic verse above, we have 12 months as well, based on the lunar calendar.

"They ask thee, (O Muhammad), of new moons. Say: They are fixed seasons for mankind and for the pilgrimage…" (Al-Baqarah 2:189)

So what are the names of the Islamic months?

Muharram
Safar
Rabi' al-awwal (Rabi' I)
Rabi' al-thani (Rabi' II)
Jumada al-awwal (Jumada I)
Jumada al-thani (Jumada II)
Rajab
Sha'ban
Ramadan
Shawwal
Dhu al-Qi'dah
Dhu al-Hijjah

I have copied the names along with the links from Islam Awareness Homepage.

We have just started the year 1440 A.H. A.H. stands for After Hijrah. The dating of the Islamic years was introduced by the second caliph, `Umar ibn Al-Khattab, in 638 CE (16 AH) in an attempt to circumvent all the various conflicting dating systems used during his time. After consulting his companions, he set the Hijrah—the flight of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) from Makkah to Madinah—as the most appropriate reference to the new Islamic era. The Hijrah, historically speaking, is the central event of early Islam, the turning point in Islamic history that led to the foundation of the first Muslim state.

Since the Islamic calendar is lunar, its year is 10 or 11 days shorter than the Gregorian year. This means that Muslim months fall in different seasons. For example, Ramadan and Hajj can fall in the summer as well as in the winter. It takes about 33 years for the Islamic dates to rotate through the solar seasons.

So what are these sacred months Allah عزّ وجلّ refers to? According to the authentic traditions are the months of Zhul Qa’dah, Zhul Hijjah, Muharram and Rajab. All the commentators of the Holy Quran are unanimous on this point, because the Holy Prophet in his sermon on the occasion of his last Hajj, has declared:

“One year consists of twelve months, of which four are sanctified months, three of them are in sequence; Zhul Qa’dah, Zhul Hijjah, Muharram, and the fourth is Rajab.”

The Holy Prophet  has said:

“The best fasts after the fasts of Ramadan are those of the month of Muharram.”

Although the fasts of the month of Muharram are not obligatory, yet, the one who fasts in these days out of his own will and choice is entitled to a great reward by Allah Almighty. The Hadith cited above signifies that the fasts of the month of Muharram are most reward-able ones among the Nafl fasts i.e. the fasts one observes out of his own choice without being obligatory on him.

So lets plan to learn the names of Islamic months this year and hopefully we will learn more about Islam and Qur'an this way.

Thursday, 13 September 2018

The dark secret of Thailand’s child brides




 Absolutely disgraceful, we fail our own children.:(
The legal loophole has also created what Thai children’s rights activist Anchana Heemmina described as the “big business of cross-border marriage” – Malaysian men crossing into southern Thailand to easily engage in underage or polygamous marriages for which getting approval in Malaysia would be impossible or a very lengthy process.
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Mohammad Lazim runs one such business, helping arrange cross-border marriages for Malaysian men. He works with more than 50 bridegrooms a year, mainly wanting a second or third wife – but insists never with underage brides. He says that his business is tiny compared with some.
“People come from all over Malaysia to do this,” he said. “Business is booming: instead of applying to a sharia court in Malaysia and answering all their difficult questions – a process that takes sometimes a year – the shortcut is to come to Thailand. Here there is no law.”
The practice is also particularly lucrative for imams practising on the Thai side of the Golok river, who charge four times as much to conduct a marriage for a visiting Malaysian as they do for people from their own community. In Malaysia, Che Abdul Karim would have found it difficult or impossible to obtain permission to marry Ayu; in Thailand, he simply paid the imam 4,500 baht (£105), and it was done. He has since been fined 1,800 Ringgit (£340) in a sharia court in Malaysia after pleading guilty to polygamy and conducting the marriage without the court’s permission.
Wannakanok Pohitaedaoh was forced into a violent marriage when young and now runs Luk Riang, a children’s shelter in Narathiwat. She said: “The biggest problem with child marriage in Thailand is that nobody wants to talk about it – not the Islamic Council, not the imams and not the government. It has always been swept under the rug, and that’s where they want it to stay.”
Her opposition is deeply personal. Wannakanok, now 34, was just 13 when she was forced into marriage by her parents and says the experience “haunts my soul to this day”.
“When he asked me to have sexual intercourse, I wasn’t ready for it. I didn’t even know really what that meant, so I refused, and then he raped me,” she said, sobbing at the memory. “He was very violent and every time he wanted to have intercourse, he would use violence. We were living at home, and my parents would hear me screaming.
“And it was the same for so many of my friends. Many of my friends who were 12 or 13 had been married to men who were a lot older than them, maybe in their 30s or 40s. But the girls were young like me and didn’t want sex, so violence was very common. We had no idea about sex at that age.”

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Jewish Woman Wanted To See Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)



I'm reading this wonderful scholar's book 'The first Muslim' at the moment and would very much reccomend it.

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

The true story of Fatima al-Fihri, the founder of the world’s first known university



 A role-model for all times <3 br="">
Fatima al-Fihri was a Muslim woman from Tunisia who founded the first known university more than 1,000 years ago: the University of al-Qarawiyyin in Fez, Morocco. Guinness World Records acknowledges it as the oldest existing and continually operating educational institution in the world. 
Much of the information about al-Fihri’s early life is lost to time, but we do know that she was born into a wealthy merchant family who prized education – even for women. Fatima and her sister, Mariam, were well schooled and devoutly religious. In the early 9th century, the al-Fihri family, along with many other Arabic people, left Tunisia and emigrated to Fez – considered a bustling, cosmopolitan metropolis by the standards of the time. When her father died, Fatima inherited his fortune. The sisters then decided to invest the money in something that would benefit their local community. 
In AD859, al-Fihri decided that a place of higher learning was much needed in the city and founded the al-Qarawiyyin Mosque and University, naming it after her hometown. She oversaw construction of the building – 30 metres long with a courtyard, prayer hall, library and schoolrooms.
In the beginning, the educational part of al-Qarawiyyin offered courses in religious instruction and the Qur’an, but its curriculum gradually expanded into Arabic grammar, mathematics, music, medicine and astronomy, and then began conferring degrees on its graduates. The university swiftly became a famous spiritual and educational centre, visited by scholars and intellectuals from all over the world. Al-Fihri attended lectures there until her later years.
 Al-Fihri established the concept of a university as we know it today. Her idea for an educational hub that provided opportunities for advanced learning spread throughout the world in the Middle Ages, resulting in the founding of Europe’s oldest institutions in the following centuries, including the University of Bologna (founded 1088) and the University of Oxford (founded around 1096).
 After al-Fihri’s death, the institution continued to be extended. The mosque became the largest in Africa, with a capacity of 22,000. Al-Qarawiyyin university is still going strong – alumni include Fatima al- Kabbaj, one of its first female students, who later became the sole female member of the Moroccan Supreme Council of Religious Knowledge.