Friday, 16 August 2019


Thursday, 15 August 2019

Hearts and Minds

 From FB of Shakh Yasir Qadhi:

Once, the Caliph `Umar saw a group of people around a campfire in the middle of the desert. Instead of calling out to them with the phrase, 'O people of the fire!', he chose, 'O people around a light,' to make sure that a potentially negative phrase didn't affect them.
At another time, the grandsons of the Prophet (salla Allah alayhi wa sallam) saw an old man performing wudhu, but making many mistakes. Instead of berating him, they went up to him and said, 'The two of us are arguing which one has the better wudhu, and we'd like you to be the judge between us.' When he saw how perfect their wudhu was, he said, 'It is my wudhu that needs to be corrected, not yours.'
A famous preacher of the last generation - during a time when there was a raging debate regarding the theological verdict of the one who abandons the prayer, is he a Muslim or not - was asked, "What is your opinion about the one who abandons the salat?" The person that asked him was not a scholar, but rather someone who listened to debates and liked to revel in his self-taught knowledge. The Shaykh smiled and said, "My opinion is that we should hold on to the hand of the one who abandons the salat and encourage him to come to the masjid with us!"
A lot of times, its not the message itself, but how you present it, that moves hearts and changes minds. And not every single controversy needs to be laid out in front of every single person: speaking to your audience correctly is half of knowledge.
May Allah grant us the wisdom to preach in the wisest and best of manners!

Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Hadiith of the day

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "After my time, governors will arise whose falsehood will be believed and who will be assisted in their oppression by those who enter their presence. They have nothing to do with me and I have nothing to do with them. . .But those who do not enter their presence, believe their falsehood and help them in their oppression, they belong to me and I belong to them." Al-Tirmidhi

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "The people before you were destroyed because they inflicted legal punishments on the poor and forgave the rich." Sahih Al-Bukhari

Saturday, 10 August 2019

Dua for Arafah Day, Takbir & Tashreeq

If Laylat al Qadr is the most powerful night of the year, then the Day of Arafah is most certainly the best day. It was on this day that Islam was perfected (Qur’an 5:3) and when also Rasool’Allah (pbuh) gave his last sermon. Here are three things you should try to do on day of Arafah.

1. Ask for forgiveness

Millions will fast on this day to wipe out their sins of the previous and coming year, as recommended by the Prophet (pbuh). As Allah (swt) descends to the skies and showers His mercy on the millions of Hajj pilgrims gathered on Mount Arafah, there is no better time to make dua and ask for forgiveness. Here is the best dua you can make on the Day of Arafah.

2. Do a good deed

The Prophet (pbuh) said ‘There are no days during which good deeds are more beloved to Allah than these days (first ten days of Dhul Hijjah).’ [Bukhari]

So, in these last remaining days, give an Eid Gift for £20 and provide presents and clothes to deserving children over the coming days.

3. Feed the poor

Many of us will have finalised our preparations for Eid, including buying all the delicious food we plan to share and eat.

This Eid, help feed those with nothing, including the Yemeni Refugees now living in Somalia. Or, if you haven't done so already, you can still give your Qurani and provide the poor with something to eat on the blessed days of Eid.

You should also start reading Takbir from the day of Arafah all the way till the last day of the Eid

More about Dhul Hijjah here.

More about Hajj, Umrah and Eid-ul-Adha (Bakri Eid) here.

Monday, 5 August 2019

Ali ibn Abi Talib's Letter to Malik al-Ashtar, the Governor of Egypt

'Develop in your heart the feeling of love for your people and let it be the source of kindliness and blessing to them.'

'Should you be elated by power, ever feel in your mind the slightest symptoms of pride and arrogance, then look at the power and majesty of the Divine governance of the Universe over which you have absolutely no control. It will restore the sense of  balance to your wayward intelligence and give you the sense of calmness and affability.'

'Maintain justice in administration and impose it on your own self and seek the consent of the people, for, the discontent of the masses sterilises the contentment of the privileged few and the discontent of the few loses itself in the contentment of the many. Remember the privileged few will not rally round you in moments of difficulty: they will try to side-track justice, they will ask for more than what they deserve and will show no gratitude for favours done to them. (…) They will feel restive in the face of trials

and will offer no regret for their shortcomings. It is the common man who is the strength of the State and Religion. It is he who fights the enemy. So live in close contact with the masses and be mindful of their welfare.'

'Keep at a distance one who peers into the weaknesses of others. After all, the masses are not free from weaknesses. It is the duty of the ruler to shield them. Do not bring to light that which is hidden, but try to remove those weaknesses which have been brought to light. God is watchful of everything that is hidden from you, and He alone will deal with it. To the best of your ability cover the weaknesses of the public, and God will cover the weaknesses in you which you are anxious to keep away from their eye.'

'Do not make haste in seeking confirmation of tale-telling, for the tale-teller is a deceitful person appearing in the garb of a friend.'

'Do not disregard the noble traditions established by our forbears, which have promoted harmony and progress among the people; and do not initiate anything which might minimize their usefulness. The men who had established these noble traditions have had their reward; but responsibility will be yours if they are disturbed.'

​'Remember that the people are composed of different classes. The progress of one is dependent on the progress of every other, and none can afford to be independent of the other'
'He who does not realise his own responsibilities can hardly appraise the responsibilities of others.'

'Beware! Fear God when dealing with the problem of the poor who have none to patronise them, who are forlorn, indigent, helpless and are greatly torn in mind – victims of the vicissitudes of time. Among them are some who do not question their lot in life and who, notwithstanding their misery, do not go about seeing alms. For God’s sake, safeguard their rights, for on you rests the responsibility of protecting their interests.'

Do not treat their interests as of less importance than your own, and never keep them outside the purview of your important considerations, and mark the persons who look down upon them and of whose conditions they keep you in ignorance. Select from among your officers such men as are meek and God fearing who can keep you properly informed of the condition of the poor. Make such provision for these poor people as shall not oblige you to offer an excuse before God on the Day of Judgement for, it is this section of the people which, more than any other, deserves benevolent treatment.'

​'Seek your reward from God by giving to each of them (the poor) what is due to him and enjoin on yourself as a sacred duty the task of meeting the needs of such aged among them as have no independent means of livelihood and are averse to seek alms. The discharge of this duty is what usually proves very trying to rulers, but is very welcome to societies which are gifted with foresight. It is only such societies or nations who truly carry out with equanimity their covenant with God to discharge their duty to the poor.'

'For I have heard the prophet of God say that no nation or society, in which the strong do not discharge their duty to the weak, will occupy a high position.'

'I enjoin on you not to succumb to the prompting of your own heart or to turn away from the discharge of duties entrusted to you.’

‘I seek the refuge of the might of the Almighty and of His limitless sphere of blessings, and invite you to pray with me that He may give us together the grace willingly to surrender our will to His will, and to enable us to acquit ourselves before Him and His creation, so that mankind might cherish our memory and our work survive.'


Sunday, 4 August 2019

Home, After 24 Years in Jail: ‘My Memory Fails Me, I Lost Everything’

In a low ceilinged room inside his home in downtown Srinagar, Mirza Nisar Hussain, 40, struggles to recognise the man who just hugged him. As the two men embrace, Nisar’s weak eyes turn for answer towards his elder brother.

“He is our uncle, our mother’s maternal cousin,” Nisar is told by Zaffar Hussain, his brother who works as a private teacher.

Yet Nisar seems clueless. His empty, moist eyes gaze at the man with the curiosity of a newborn. Having spent the past 24 years in jail, he is visibly struggling to reconnect with his roots.

“What can I do? Memory fails me. I spent 24 years of my youth in jail. I lost everything,” he says.

Mirza Nisar is one of four men from Jammu and Kashmir acquitted Monday by the Rajasthan High Court after the prosecution’s failure to prove charges of their involvement in the 1996 Samleti bomb blast.

Nisar was 16 when sleuths from the Delhi Police’s Special Cell arrested him and another brother of his, Mirza Iftikhar, from Nepal’s capital Kathmandu for their role in the bombing of Delhi’s Lajpat Nagar market, also in 1996, which killed 13 civilians and injured 39.

The two brothers had a flourishing shawl business started by their father, now deceased. “Once in jail, whenever there was a blast in the country, we were questioned and tortured because we were Kashmiris and Muslims. We kept telling them we are innocent but they didn’t listen to us,” says Nisar.

The two brothers’ sudden arrest led to the closing of their business as their eldest brother, Zaffar, had to follow the case in court. “I was studying for medical entrance which I had to give up. I started a small coaching centre and also got three sisters married in the meantime. No one should go through what we have endured in all these years,” Zaffar tells The Citizen.

While Iftikhar was acquitted in 2010 of his involvement in the Lajpat Nagar bombing, Nisar was booked in the Samleti blast case, casting a shadow on prospects of his early release.

“In all these years, I read religious books which gave me comfort and solace in the darkness of the barracks in jail,” he says.

On Monday, a convict held at Jaipur Central Jail had gone to court for an appearance. “When he returned, he broke the news of our acquittal. I couldn’t believe it at first. When I told others they cried in joy,” says Nisar.

At their home in Srinagar’s Fateh Kadal locality, a Kashmiri chef (waza) has taken over the kitchen to deal with the deluge of visitors coming in to congratulate the family for the “miracle”.

The rush of visitors keeps Nisar on his toes. Men and women are sitting in separate rooms but everyone wants to witness the miracle. As his close relatives shake his hand and hug him, Nisar initially looks at them with empty eyes.

“He is Papa,” Zaffar says of the man, their mother’s cousin, who has just hugged Nisar. A spark lights up in Nisar’s eyes as he again stands up to hug ‘Papa’.

“We had given up hope. When I shared the news of Nisar’s acquittal with my mother and sisters, they were shocked. God is great. This is nothing less than a miracle,” Zaffar says.

Along with Nisar, Mohammad Ali Bhat and Lateef Ahmed, both residents of Srinagar, were released from jail on Tuesday after the court acquitted them of all charges in the Samleti blast case.

“Now the fight for justice begins. We will sit down, all of us who were released, and chalk out a legal strategy to seek compensation for what we have lost. The government can’t return the 24 years I spent in jail. At least they can provide us compensation so we can start our lives afresh,” says Nisar.


Thursday, 1 August 2019

Ten Blessed Days: First Ten Days of Dhu'l-Hijjah

By His wisdom, Allah عزّ وجلّ gave preference to some places and times over others. For Muslims, Friday is the best day of the week, Ramadan is the best month of the year, “Laylat al-Qadr” is the best night in Ramadan, the day of “Arafah” is the best day of the year. Likewise the first ten days of the month of “Dhul-Hijjah” are the blessed days for Muslims.

Allah عزّ وجلّ says in the Quran what means: {By the daybreak, by the ten nights, by the even and the odd, by the passing night – is this oath strong enough for a rational person?} (Al-Fajr 89:1-5)

Early Muslim scholars differed on what is meant by the “ten nights”. But most of them agreed that the ten nights refer to the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

In another verse Allah عزّ وجلّ says: {… to attain benefits and mention God’s name, on specified days.} (Al-Hajj 22:28)

Most of the Quran commentators view that the specific days are the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

What a great virtue attached to those days which pass unnoticed by many people nowadays.

On the merits of the first ten days, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: "There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days." The people asked, "Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?" He said: "Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, except in the case of a man who went out to fight, giving himself and his wealth up for the cause, and came back with nothing." (Al-Bukhari)

In what follows are suggested ideas on how to make the best use of the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah:

Repent to Allah عزّ وجلّ

Make a sincere repentance to God and promise Him that you will not do bad deeds again. This may be your last chance. You are not sure if you will live till next year.

Pray at the Mosque

Try to perform the five daily prayers in the mosque. If you have time after Fajr prayer, try to sit in the mosque, read a juz' (part) of the Quran, make duaa, or recite some Adhkar (remembrance of Allah عزّ وجلّ). Then offer two rakahs before you go home. If you do so, you are reviving a tradition that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to do, a tradition which these days has been neglected by many Muslims.

Observe Fasting in the First Nine Days

Abu Sa`id al-Khudri said: I heard the Prophet saying, "Indeed, anyone who fasts for one day for Allah's Pleasure, Allah عزّ وجلّ will keep his face away from the (Hell) fire for (a distance covered by a journey of) seventy years." (Muslim)

Do not observe fasting on the tenth day because it is an `Eid day and it is prohibited to fast that day.

Good deeds are rewarded abundantly in these first ten days; and as fasting is a good deed, it is recommended to fast these nine days.

Do not Miss Fasting the Day of Arafah

On the day of Arafah, non-pilgrims are highly recommended to maintain fasting. It is reported that the Prophet was asked about fasting on the day of Arafah, whereupon he said: "It expiates the sins of the preceding year and the coming year." (Muslim)

He also said: "There is no day in which Allah frees a greater number of His slaves from the Hellfire than the Day of Arafah." (Muslim)

Make a Lot of Supplications (duaa) on the Day of Arafah

The Prophet said: "The best supplication is that of the Day of `Arafah, and the best thing that I and other Prophets before me said, is: La ilaha illa allahu wahdahu la sharika lah, lahu al-mulku wa lahu al-hamdu wa huwa `ala kulli shai'in qadeer (There is no god but Allah alone. He has no partners. To Him belong the sovereignty and all praise. He has power over all things.) (Al-Tirmidhi)

Try to Do Something New this Year

If you used to recite a part of the Quran last year, try to finish reading the whole Quran this year. Try to pick some verses everyday and check the books of Tafsir (exegesis of the Quran) to reflect on their meaning in order to derive lessons from them in your daily life.

If you do not read Arabic, I recommend Muhammad Asad's translation of the Quran. If you are well-versed in the Quran recitation, try to teach a group of new Muslims how to read the Quran correctly.

Maintain your Family Relations

Visit your relatives even for a few minutes. If they live far away, give them a call. Do not forget your parents. Be kind to them, visit them, and attend to their needs. Some new Muslims think that after their conversion, they should cut off their family members. God orders Muslims to be kind to their parents even if they are non-Muslims. This occasion might be a good opportunity to talk about Islam to your non-Muslim parents.

Give to Charity

Make it a daily habit to help the needy. Look for humanitarian organizations in your neighborhood and help them in any way you can.

Don't Miss Offering at Least Two Rakahs of “Tahajjud” at Night

Offer many extra prayers, as much as you can. God promised a great reward for offering extra acts of worship. The Prophet said: "Allah said, 'I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine. And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me, is what I have enjoined upon him; and My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (praying or doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him, so I become his sense of hearing with which he hears, and his sense of sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he grips, and his leg with which he walks; and if he asks Me, I will give him, and if he asks My protection (refuge), I will protect him; (i.e. give him My refuge) and I do not hesitate to do anything as I hesitate to take the soul of the believer, for he hates death, and I hate to disappoint him." (Al-Bukhari)

Reciting the Takbir

It is an act of Sunnah to say “Takbir” (Allah is the Greatest) in the first ten days.

The “Takbir” should be pronounced everywhere; in the mosque, at home, in the streets, etc. It is reported that: “Ibn `Umar and Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with them) used to go out in the marketplace during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, reciting Takbir, and the people would recite Takbir when they heard them.” (Al-Bukhari)

There are many forms of Takbir, but the most common one is: Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbaru, la illaha illa Allah, Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbar, wa lillahi al-Hamd.

In another version of the Hadith mentioned above on the merits of the ten days, there is this addition: "… so increase saying Tahlil (saying la-illah illa Allah), Takbir (saying Allahu akbar), and Tahmid (saying Al-hamdullilah)" (Ahmad) Therefore, these kinds of “dhikr” should be recited day and night.

The Best Good Deed in These Days is to Offer Hajj

Go to Hajj, if you are physically and financially able to perform it. If not, try to offer a sacrifice if you have the means. By doing this you are commemorating the story of sacrifice of both prophet Ibrahim and his son Ismail (peace be upon them). The poor and the needy have a share in the sacrifice and feeding them is one of best deeds that can be done on the day of `Eid.

I pray to Allah عزّ وجلّ to accept our good deeds in these days of Dhul-Hijjah and throughout the year. When our good deeds are accepted by God, we will be admitted to Paradise, by His Mercy.

Read More Here:

The Repentance of Abu Nawas