IslamicArtDB.com QuranicNames.com QuranClub.net Asmaa.org Islamic Art and Quotes on Tumblr

We no longer maintain this blog. Please visit Hawramani.com for new articles

The English translation of the Quran for the Kindle

Download link [Ebook - .mobi - 856 Kilobytes]

The file linked above is Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan and Dr. Muhammad Taqiyuddeen al-Hilali's translation of the Quran, the Noble Quran, for the Kindle.

It has a working table of contents which helps greatly with browsing chapters.

Thanks to Abdullah Hashim of SayfSolutions.com for providing the file.

This file should also work on any device supported by the Mobipocket reader or one of the Kindle applications.

On freedom

When prophet Adam disobeyed God, he proved to God his unworthiness of Paradise. God transfered him to Earth and asked him to prove himself worthy of Paradise in order to get back into it.

Our job on Earth is to prove to God that we have learned from prophet Adam's mistake, and to prove that we indeed are worthy of Paradise.

The proof, of course, will come from obeying God's commands.

Every human being on Earth is forbidden from entering Paradise until he proves that he is worthy of it.

Humans are prisoners in this world. At the moment of their death, God decides their future. The decision is based on their conduct. If they obeyed His commands and proved themselves worthy of Paradise, they will be freed. If on the other hand they disobeyed His commands, they will be transfered to a far worse prison, to stay in there forever.

Arabic Quran optimized for the Kindle [Downloads]

For those who own Kindle devices and wish to read the Quran on it, here is a version that has worked well for me. I made the fonts big for better viewing, as you can see in the screenshot below [taken using alt+shift+g on the Kindle]. The size of the file is only 2 megabytes, therefore it should be pretty easy to save it and email it to the device.

Screenshot of the Arabic Quran file for the Kindle

Download link:

Arabic Quran for the Kindle [Ebook - PDF].

Technical notes
The file should work on the device without hassle. If you choose to email the file to your Kindle rather than transferring it directly from your computer, do NOT add the 'convert' statement to your email subject line. The file has to be transferred without conversion.

The Arabic text comes from Harf Information Technology, a Quran software company. The text has been verified and approved by Azhar University. There is a note [in Arabic] at the end of the PDF file regarding the file's origins and its verification process.

Different version

Screenshot of the Arabic Quran for the Kindle

If you'd like to read a version that looks more like an ordinary mushaf [pictured above], you can download the following version, taken from qurandownload.com. Please note that I haven't verified that authenticity of this version.

Download link:

Arabic Quran - Original format [Ebook - PDF].

You can choose to view it in landscape format to get bigger text.

Yet more versions

You may also try out the Kindle Quran versions at Quran Ebooks. I haven't personally verified their content, please feel free to share what you think of them in the comments.

Also check out Quran E-library which seems to have a large collection of Kindle-formatted versions of the Quran.

Eliminating distractions

Narrated 'Uqba: I offered the 'Asr prayer behind the Prophet at Medina. When he had finished the prayer with Taslim, he got up hurriedly and went out by crossing the rows of the people to one of the dwellings of his wives. The people got scared at his speed . The Prophet came back and found the people surprised at his haste and said to them, "I remembered a piece of gold lying in my house and I did not like it to divert my attention from Allah's worship, so I have ordered it to be distributed (in charity)." [Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 12, Number 810]

Why we shouldn't worry about Pastor Terry Jones and his likes

Note: This article was written before 9/11/2010.
Say: "If both humanity and jinn banded together to produce the like of this Qur'an, they could never produce anything like it, even if they backed each other up." [The Quran, 17: 88]
A few days ago, I was watching the news when I saw a report about Pastor Terry Jones who is planning to burn the Qur'an on 9/11. At first, I got really sad and upset and I wanted to cry at the thought that the beautiful words of Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala were going to be burnt. I wonder if Terry Jones ever read the Qur'an, and if he did, wasn't he at least touched by its beauty? The more I watched the report, the more disturbing it became. I found myself helpless in front of such a blatant insult and offense towards the Qur'an and the Muslims. But then, I got an epiphany.

This man could not burn the Qur'an. He can burn pieces of paper on which the
Qur'an is printed, but he certainly can not burn the Qur'an. Because the Quran is preserved in al-lawh al-mahfuz (The Preserved Tablet):

21. Nay; but this is a glorious Qur'an,
22. Inscribed on a well-guarded Tablet. [From Surah 85 of the Quran]
We have sent down the Reminder, and We will preserve it. [The Quran, 15: 9]
This is the promise from Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala. Even if the whole world came together to corrupt it or destroy it, they wouldn't be able to. Let's rejoice brothers and sisters, man can not destroy the Qur'an. If we trust in Allah, which we should as Muslims, then there is nothing to worry about.

The Qur'an further states that:
It is nothing less than a message to all nations. [68:52]
Therefore, regardless of our attachment to this book, it doesn't belong to us. It was revealed to all of humanity, this pastor is burning his own book.

Let us then remember that the believers are those who believe in the Unseen and the will of Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala. If Allah allows this to happen, then alhamdulilah, because the words of Allah can not be extinguished by man.

And finally, the Qur’an says:
Therefore excuse them and proclaim, "Peace"; for they will soon come to know. [43:89]

Benefits of the National Burn A Koran Day

  1. Driving more people away from intolerant versions of Christianity.
  2. Generating even more interest in Islam. People will be interested in a book that they are told to burn. If I told you to burn W. Somerset Maugham's book, Moon and Sixpence, your first reaction will probably be to go to Google and see what the book is about. You may even end up reading it.
  3. Increasing the profits of companies that print the Quran.
Similar to what I suggested about Draw Prophet Muhammad Day, my suggestion about this event is this: do nothing about it.

That path to happiness

Imaam Ibnul-Qaiyym relates to us:
One of the scholars once said: I pondered over what wise men strive for, and found that their endeavor is all for the same target, even if their ways of seeking it are different. I found them all striving to demolish worry and grief from their lives; one by eating and drinking, one by trade and earning a living, one by marriage, one by listening to songs and delightful sounds, and one by entertainment and playing.

So I said: this endeavor is the endeavor of wise men, but not all the ways (taken by them) lead to it. Rather, most of them probably lead to the exact opposite of their endeavor. I didn't find any of these paths leading to the (intended) goal except the path of turning to Allaah, caring about Him, and preferring His pleasure over everything else. If the one who takes this path misses his share of this life, he has still triumphed by attaining the highest share with which their is no loss (i.e. the Hereafter); whoever attains it has attained everything, and whoever loses it has lost everything. And if he, on the other hand, also gets his share in this life, he will attain it in the most comfortable way.

The servant, thus, has no better path to follow, from the available paths, (other than the path of Allaah) that can take him to the (intended) pleasure, delight, and happiness. And with Allaah is success.*

------------------------------
* Ad-Daa' wad-Dawaa', p. 210, published by Dar Ibn al-Jawzee in Cairo.

If the kings only knew...

It is reported that Ibraaheem ibn Ad-ham (one of the righteous predecessors) once said:
If the kings, and the sons of the kings, only knew what we are in of joy and comfort, they would fight us over it with their swords to attain what we possess of the taste of life and the scarcity of discomfort.1
It is, indeed, sad when we consider this saying, then we look at the attitude of some Muslims today. Due to their lack of understanding of the Deen, they crave for the disbelievers' way of life, behavior, clothing, culture, and even their lousy movie and music "stars".

We should understand the statement of Ibraaheem ibn Ad-ham in the context of tasting the sweetness of faith. No doubt the stronger the faith of the servant, Allaah may test him with harder trials to test him and increase his reward. But the "scarcity of discomfort" is evidenced by the true believer's patience and gratitude for Allah's decrees.

Our comfort, our honor, and our success is only in understanding our Deen and applying it in our lives, in general, and in detail. It is reported from 'Umar ibn al-Khattaab that he said:
We were the most dishonored nation until Allaah honored us with Islaam. So whenever we try to seek honor through anything other than what Allaah honored us with (i.e. anything other than Islaam), then Allaah will humiliate us.2
-----------------------------
1) Reported by Abu Nu'aym in Hilyatul Awliyaa' (7/370)
2) Saheeh; reported by al-Haakim (207); see Saheeh at-Targheeb (2893)

Two programs for making your computer screen less bright at night

Recently I read a study that correlates sleeping problems with using computers at night. Apparently the light from computer screens trick our brains to think it is still daytime, and this prevents us from feeling sleepy.

For this reason I decided to adjust my computer's screen brightness according to the time of day (bright during the day, less bright at night). I soon found two programs that helped me with this goal, and I'll list them here so that others can benefit from them.

The first one is a free program called F.lux. When the sun sets, the program changes your computer's "color temperature" to a temperature that is more comfortable on the eyes. You'll need to give it your location so that it knows the time of sunset for you. It also serves as a reminder for the magrib prayer. :) When the color changes, you know it is time to pray.

The second program is also free and it is called MonitorBright. I found that f.lux helps but my monitor still stayed a little too bright. Therefore I now use this program to decrease brightness. Once you download it and open it, right click on its taskbar icon and enter a percentage (such as 20%). The bigger the percentage, the darker your screen will become.

The goal here is to make your monitor's brightness the same as the brightness of the room. Making the monitor too dark compared to the room's brightness will probably hurt your eyes.

How faithful are we to Allaah?

It is narrated that a qualified medical worker from India emigrated to Canada to live a better life. This Muslim brother had a beard. He applied to many different places for a job and was called for interviews. Though he was highly qualified for the jobs, the interviewers hesitated to hire him because of his beard. One by one, he was rejected from all the companies. One interviewer actually mentioned to him indirectly that his beard was an obstacle to getting the job.

Truly, it was a big test for him from Allah. Hopeless and exhausted, the brother decided to remove the obstacle, which was to shave off his beard. Then he returned to that company and requested for another interview. When the interviewer saw him without a beard this time, he refused to give him the job again. The brother became confused and asked to know the reason. The interviewer said “If you are not faithful to your God, how will you be faithful to us?”1

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said:
من التمس رضا الله بسخط الناس رضي الله عنه وأرضى عنه الناس ومن التمس رضا الناس بسخط الله سخط الله عليه وأسخط عليه الناس
Whoever seeks the pleasure of Allaah on account of the people's displeasure, Allaah will be pleased with him and will also make the people pleased with him. But whoever seeks the people's pleasure on account of Allaah's pleasure, Allaah will be displeased with him and will make the people displeased with him."2
---

1) Adapted from Qisas.com
2) Reported by ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh (275) and al-Qudaa'ee in his Musnad (471); see also Saheeh at-Targheeb wat Tarheeb (2250)

Beauty of Allah's creation: Butterfly

Beautiful blue butterfly
Photo source.

Surah Al-Baqara verse 286

A verse submitted by Seba:
رَبَّنَا لاَ تُؤَاخِذْنَا إِن نَّسِينَا أَوْ أَخْطَأْنَا رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْنَا إِصْرًا كَمَا حَمَلْتَهُ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِنَا رَبَّنَا وَلاَ تُحَمِّلْنَا مَا لاَ طَاقَةَ لَنَا بِهِ وَاعْفُ عَنَّا وَاغْفِرْ لَنَا وَارْحَمْنَا أَنتَ مَوْلاَنَا فَانصُرْنَا عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَافِرِينَ

Our Lord, please do not punish us,
when we forget or slip up.

Our Lord, lay not on us a burden like that which You did lay on those before us.

Our Lord, put not on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear.

Please pardon us, forgive us, and show us mercy,
You are our Protector,
so support us against disbelieving folk!

The more you say

"The more you say, the less your words mean." -Anonymous.

Choose your rewards

وَمَنْ يُرِدْ ثَوَابَ الدُّنْيَا نُؤْتِهِ مِنْهَا وَمَنْ يُرِدْ ثَوَابَ الْآَخِرَةِ نُؤْتِهِ مِنْهَا وَسَنَجْزِي الشَّاكِرِينَ
... and whoever desires a reward in (this) world, We shall give him of it [and it will be of no benefit to him in the Hereafter]; and whoever desires a reward in the Hereafter, We shall give him thereof. And We shall reward the grateful. [Quran, 3:145]

Help build the GR Michigan mosque

Grand Rapids mosque
Photo of the mosque.
Grand Rapids, Michigan (USA), has a huge Muslim population and they are in serious need of a big mosque that can accommodate them. The Muslim community there is now building a mosque and they have already finished the first floor. They now need more funding to finish up the building.

If you were looking for a great cause to donate it, this might just be it. It is a big project and it will help a lot of people.

Check out their site: GRmasjid.com. They have a donate button on the right hand side of the page.

What kind of sites do Muslims need?

This is a question I have been asking myself a lot lately. Do you wish that some kind of website existed that as a Muslim you'd benefit from?

There are already many Islamic social networks, forums, blogs, even torrent trackers. What are we lacking?

Surah Isra' verse 80

A beautiful verse submitted by Seba:
وَقُلْ رَبِّ أَدْخِلْنِي مُدْخَلَ صِدْقٍ وَأَخْرِجْنِي مُخْرَجَ صِدْقٍ وَاجْعَلْ لِي مِنْ لَدُنْكَ سُلْطَانًا نَصِيرًا

And say, Allah let my entry into any task be good, and let my exit from any task be good. And grant me from You an authority to help me (or a firm sign or a proof).* [Quran, 17:80]

* Some interpretations consider this entry and exit to be Prophet Muhammad's entry into Madinah and his exit from Mecca (during the hijra). Instead of taking sides, it is better to consider both interpretations to be true (any Quranic verse can have multiple valid meanings.)

Strangers

Islam Strangers poster

With everything that happens around us everyday, the word 'stranger' beautifully describes how Muslims feel in this world.

Surah Hud verse 23

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَأَخْبَتُوا إِلَى رَبِّهِمْ أُولَئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَنَّةِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

Verily, those who believe (in the Oneness of Allâh) and do righteous good deeds, and humble themselves (in repentance and obedience) before their Lord, - they will be dwellers of Paradise to dwell therein forever. [Quran, 11:23]

Like fighting pigeons

QuranClub's long time friend and commenter Elfatih submits this great story [edited by QuranClub]:

Once I was in a place where they had a lot of wild pigeons. I asked the people if they could catch such pigeons and they replied, "We can't, because they are very wild."

One day when I was in a gathering, I went to the window to get some fresh air and suddenly I saw two pigeons. I snatched at them and caught them both. I rushed back to the gathering and asked them, "What is in my hands?"

I had already hidden the pigeons behind my back. They kept guessing and giving wrong answers until I showed them the pigeons. They were amazed and they asked me how I caught two when catching one was impossible? I answered: "They were fighting so hard that their beaks were buried in each other's skin. They were blind to me. All I had to do was grab both of them from their heads with a single hand."

I added; I wonder how blind we Muslims are these days, fighting on small differences while our enemy is having all the advantage to plot and plan against us as a whole.

We should open our eyes before it is too late.

-Taken from a program named {The Unity} hosted and presented by the beloved Sheikh Adnan Al'ar'oor.

How to get your sins erased

Reader Seba sends in this hadith:

It has been narrated that the Messenger of Allah ( may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) said:
Fear Allah wherever you are, follow up a bad deed with a good one and it will wipe it out, and behave well towards people."*
*Narrated by Al-Tirmithi as a good (hasan) hadith.

When giving charity is the right thing to do

Giving charity to the "wrong" person is still the right thing to do. Remember this hadith the next time you fear your sadaqah will be spent only on things like alcohol or cigarettes:
Abu Hurayrah reported Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) as saying: ‘A man expressed his intention to give charity, so he came out with charity and placed it in the hand of an adulteress. In the morning, the people were talking and saying: “Charity was given to an adulteress last night.” He (the giver of Sadaqa) said: “O Allah, to Thee be the praise – to an adulteress.”

He then again expressed his intention to give charity; so he went out with the charity and placed it in the hand of a rich person. In the morning the people were talking and saying: “Charity was given to a rich person.” He (the giver of charity) said: “O Allah, to Thee be the praise – to a well-to-do person.”

He then expressed his intention to give charity, so he went out with charity and placed it in the hand of a thief. In the morning, the people were talking and saying: “Charity was given to a thief.” So (one of the persons) said: “O Allah, to Thee be the praise (what a misfortune it is that charity has been given to) the adulteress, to a rich person, to a thief!”

There came (the angel to him [the giver of charity]) and he was told: “Your charity has been accepted. As for the adulteress (the charity might become the means) whereby she might restrain herself from fornication. The rich man might perhaps learn a lesson and spend from what Allah has given him, and the thief might thereby refrain from committing theft.”’
-- Found in both Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim.
[Editor: Even though logically the story has no problem when compared to what the Quran says, I think it is more likely that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was making a point by telling people about these possible scenarios. We know that in the Quran angels only appear to prophets (and their relatives), and the story doesn't say this man was one. But of course it is possible that this man was the prophet of a past nation.]

QuranClub Photo: The Sea

Scenic sea and seagulls
Photo source.

Lord of all

I love this verse's passionate praise of Allah:
فَلِلَّهِ الْحَمْدُ رَبِّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَرَبِّ الْأَرْضِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ
So all the praises and thanks are to God (everything good in this world is attributable to Him), the Lord of the skies and the Lord of the earth, the Lord of all that exists. [Quran, 45:36]

Draw Prophet Muhammad Day

I read that some Facebookers are trying to anger Muslims by encouraging people to draw pictures of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

It should be pretty obvious to all of you what you should do about this, but here I'll say it for those of you who aren't sure: Do nothing.

Non-believers have been making fun of believers since the beginning of time. They have made fun of all prophets and all religions. We Muslims aren't special in this regard.

The Quran has the perfect example for us to follow in this situation:
وَعِبَادُ الرَّحْمَنِ الَّذِينَ يَمْشُونَ عَلَى الْأَرْضِ هَوْنًا وَإِذَا خَاطَبَهُمُ الْجَاهِلُونَ قَالُوا سَلَامًا

And the slaves of the Most Beneficent (God) are those who walk on the earth in humility and sedateness, and when the foolish address them, they reply back with mild words of gentleness. [Quran, 25:63]
Note that the verse says 'with mild words of gentleness'. You shouldn't get angry at them, but more importantly, you shouldn't laugh at them or call them stupid.

It is not our job to correct their mistakes, and it is not our job to stop them from carrying out whatever it is they want to do.
وَلَوْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ مَا أَشْرَكُوا وَمَا جَعَلْنَاكَ عَلَيْهِمْ حَفِيظًا وَمَا أَنْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ بِوَكِيلٍ
Had God willed, they would not have taken others besides Him in worship. And We have not made you a watcher over them nor are you set over them to dispose of their affairs. [Quran, 6:107]
Keep your dignity and do not argue with them or try to correct them. They don't deserve your attention.

So why did I write about this? Because I don't want to see another pointless Muslim Facebook group trying to fight this. Save your energy for better things.

Good advice

Never argue with fools. They will bring you down to their level and beat you with experience. - Popular online quote.

Surah Ghafir verse 14

فَادْعُوا اللَّهَ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْكَافِرُونَ
So call upon God and make your worship purely for Him, even though the disbelievers may dislike it [that you are Muslim, that you don't live like them]. [Quran, 40:14]

Surah An-Naml verse 64

أَمَّنْ يَبْدَأُ الْخَلْقَ ثُمَّ يُعِيدُهُ وَمَنْ يَرْزُقُكُمْ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ أَئِلَهٌ مَعَ اللَّهِ
Who begins creation,
then performs it all over again?

Who provides for you
from Heaven and Earth?

Is there any deity alongside God?

[Holy Quran, 27:64]

Prophet Noah's Ark found in Turkey

Noah's Ark photo
Photo of the inside of the Ark. Photo source: Aljazeera.
Prophet Noah's vessel, which is called Noah's Ark in English, was found in the Ararat mountains in Turkey according to Aljazeera.net [Arabic] and many other news sources.

The researchers who found the vessel say they are 99.9% sure it is Prophet Noah's Ark. Using carbon dating they found that the vessel is 4800 years old.

One common mistake that is repeated in English sources is that Prophet Noah put a couple of every species on the vessel. The Bible and the Quran both say a couple of every type, which can mean every type of animal useful to humans at that time (such as horses, cows, chickens, etc). The storm didn't necessarily kill all organisms on Earth, it might have just affected a limited area.

What are we working for?

We sometimes get so immersed in our lives that we forget what we are working for. Is it to gain high status? Money? Marriage? Or is it to get the pleasure of Allaah (glorified and exalted be He)? Allaah says in the Glorious Qur'aan:
إِنَّ سَعْيَكُمْ لَشَتَّى
"Your efforts and deeds are certainly diverse (different in aims)". [Surah al-Layl, 4]

The scholar As-Sa'dee (may Allaah have mercy on him), says in his commentary of this verse (see translation below):

أي: إن سعيكم أيها المكلفون لمتفاوت تفاوتا كثيًرا، وذلك بحسب تفاوت نفس الأعمال ومقدارها والنشاط فيها، وبحسب الغاية المقصودة بتلك الأعمال، هل هو وجه الله الأعلى الباقي؟ فيبقى السعي له ببقائه، وينتفع به صاحبه، أم هي غاية مضمحلة فانية، فيبطل السعي ببطلانها، ويضمحل باضمحلالها؟

English translation:
The verse means: O those who are responsible (to keep your duty to Allaah)! Your efforts certainly differ from one another a great difference. And that includes even similar deeds according to their amount and the activity (of the person in performing them), and also according to the intention behind performing that deed; is it for the sake of Allaah, Who is the Eternal, so that the effort will not be lost and the person benefits from the deed? Or is it for the sake of some lowly mortal (creature), such that the deed will be null and void as soon as that creature (for whom it was intended) perishes?
We should always think about this in order to purify our intentions in our deeds; if we are intending the pleasure and recognition of people (this behavior is known as Riyaa'), we should remind ourselves that all those creatures will some day die and our actions by which we intended their pleasure will also die and become null with their death. But if we are intending by our deeds the pleasure of Allaah, then it is Him only who does not perish, and our deeds shall remain and be rewarded by Him.

We ask Allaah for the purity of intention and the acceptance of deeds.

Locating Allah's mercy

إِنَّ رَحْمَةَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ مِنَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ
Indeed, Allah's mercy lies close to good-doers. [Holy Quran, 7:56]

Surah al-Hajj verse 40

A gem I found today inside my Quran:
لَيَنْصُرَنَّ اللَّهُ مَنْ يَنْصُرُهُ
Indeed, Allah helps the person who helps His cause. [Holy Quran, 22:40]

'All Natural' food is not organic

Organic food is good for you, 'all natural' is not.

This post is to inform our readers that 'All Natural' is just a meaningless and dishonest marketing term. Companies use it on their products to make buyers feel better about what they buy. Never trust a product to be natural and healthy if it doesn't say Organic.

Organic food is a meaningful label since it refers to a special type of farming, one that doesn't use pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers and hormones. Here is a chart (found on Organic Valley's website) to make this more clear:

Natural vs Organic food chart

To be Muslim, you need to live like one

This is reminder to myself and everyone that Islam is meant to be a way of life:

I've seen people who live as non-Muslims, think and behave like non-Muslims, but try to make up for it by giving money to Islamic charities, or by staying up on the night of Qadr. This misses the whole point of Islam.

What is the use of an Islam that doesn't purify your heart, that doesn't change your behavior? Doing Islamic acts of worship when a person doesn't live as a Muslim doesn't come from piety, it comes from greed: The person thinks he or she can enjoy this world in non-Muslim ways, and still have a good afterlife by doing these Islamic acts.

One cause of this problem is our imams, they keep telling us about these huge acts of worship that put prostitutes and all kinds of evil people into Paradise.

My advice to you: Get your Islamic knowledge and inspiration from the Quran, not from speakers and imams. I'm not saying imams are bad (far from it), they mean well, but their words can be very confusing, and they may cause you to focus on the wrong things (doing 'good' deeds instead of living like a Muslim).

Salaam.

The closely-knit Muslim community

On the authority of Anas bin Malik, the servant of the messenger of Allah, that the Prophet said :
None of you [truely] believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself. [Related by Bukhari and Muslim]
Of course we've all heard this one before, but have we ever really given it our "best shot"? Although this hadeeth can be interpreted many different ways, how about this idea: There's something you've wanted to buy for the past week and you've finally got the chance to go to the mall. A nice eau de toilette, perhaps? Now imagine how happy you're brother/sister in Islaam (maybe not a brother/sister nationally or genetically) would be when you tell him/her what came to mind while you were standing in front of that expensive prized-possession...

What is the reason?

يَا أَيُّهَا الْإِنْسَانُ مَا غَرَّكَ بِرَبِّكَ الْكَرِيمِ
O humans! What has made you careless concerning your Lord, the Most Generous? [Holy Quran, 82:6]
Allah is asking you that question. Do you have an answer?

Emotional story - Death of Sara [Video]

As Salaamu Alaykoum
I want to share this very heart touching video of a true story. There is not much to say, the story highlights many different issues. Above all:
كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَائِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ ثُمَّ إِلَيْنَا تُرْجَعُونَ
Every soul will taste of death. Then unto Us ye will be returned (Quran 29: 57)


WasSalaamu Alaykoum

Etiquette of Conversation

These are 10 reminders that can serve as an aid for having fruitful conversations. They can be used by couples when talking with one another, by Muslims in giving Da'waah to non-Muslims, or any other situation:

1) Don't challenge. It is important not to challenge the other party as this can agitate their Kibar (pride) and make them more prone to disagreeing.

2) Don't say "You are wrong." When you try to show their error bluntly, they are more likely to hold on to their position even if they come to realize that they are wrong.

3) Admit you are wrong. If you realize that you are wrong about a certain point, don't hesitate to acknowledge it. This will make them know that you are seeking the truth, and not trying to impose your own opinion.

4) Honest praise. Praise the good qualities of the other person. This is definitely a heart-softener. Do make sure that your praise is truthful and in its place.

5) Ask confirmatory questions. Ask questions for which you expect an affirmative reply from the other party. These will make them more close to the correct position you are trying to show them.

6) Leave the food for the bird on the ground; don't expect it to come to you. When you want to get your correct position over to the other party, it is a good idea to propose it in the form of a suggestion and let the other party arrive at their decision by themselves; don't force them to, for they won't comply.

7) Don't interrupt, listen attentively. This is very important. Nobody likes to be interrupted when they are speaking. Everybody likes to be listened to. Let them say all that they want to say and listen attentively, and when they are finished, start speaking. What is worse is to disagree with them while they are expressing their opinion.

8) Adapt their position. Put yourself in the other person's position to see what is wrong with it. If you see nothing wrong, then there is probably nothing to argue about.

9) Common grounds. Try to highlight your common grounds so that you can resolve the issues in which you are disagreeing over. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta'aalaa) commands us to give Da'wah to the Christians by showing them our common grounds and then rectifying where they went wrong (Surah Aali 'Imraan, verse 64).

10) Move their feelings. Emotions play a major role in people's decisions. Moving somebody's feelings in a positive way (not hurting their feelings!) is likely to bring about good results.

The upshot of these points is to ask Allaah to help you and the other party to see the truth as truth and accept it, and see falsehood as falsehood and reject it, and to know that it is only by the will of Allaah that these points can bring about benefit.

--------------------

Originally adapted from a lecture by Shaykh 'Adnaan 'Abdul-Qaadir.

Download the Sunni Farsi Tafseer Noor, the new and improved version

I have already expressed my love for this tafseer in the past. Since I use it a lot I have worked on it some more to make it look better. I have also cleaned up the extra white space between the lines.
I have made two versions of the tafseer. They are identical, however, the Microsoft Word version is easier to search, while the Adobe PDF version looks better and is easier to read.

Download Microsoft Word (.doc) file (use right-click, save-as)
Download Adobve PDF (.pdf) file (use right-click, save-as)
Mobile Phone version

On envy

Narrated Abu Hurayrah: "The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: 'Avoid envy, for envy devours good deeds just as fire devours fuel or (he said) grass.'"
(Sunan Abu Dawud)

Salim narrated on the authority of his father (Ibn 'Umar) that the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: "Envy is not justified but in case of two persons only: one who, having been given (knowledge of) the Qur'an by Allah, recites it during the night and day (and also acts upon it) and a man who, having been given wealth by God, spends it during the night and the day (for the welfare of others. seeking the pleasure of the Lord)."
(Sahih Bukhari and Muslim)

Honoring a guest

He who believes in Allaah and the Last Day should honor his guest. (Saheeh Al-Bukhaari)
As Muslims, it is our duty to honor our guests whether they are Muslims or non-Muslims. Every little step towards good makes a huge difference...

May Allaah give us the power and strength to work for good, and may Allaah make our intentions pure.

Creating a good impression

Bismillaah,

Making a good impression is not something "useless". As a believer of Islaam, it is crucial that when interacting with non-Muslims (or sometimes even Muslims), one must keep in mind that he or she is not only representing his or her own self, but he or she is also representing one's family, country, culture, but at UTMOST importance, a Muslim represents Islaam.

Don't freak out if you're excluded at Immigration or your neighbors give you bad looks. Other people's actions should never effect yours. You're a Muslim, thus a believer of the Qur'aan and of all the suwar (Surahs) in the Qur'aan, including Surah Fussilat (AKA Surah HaaMeem Sajdah) and Ayaat 33 through 35:
(33) The good deed and the evil deed are not alike. Repel the evil deed with one which is better, then lo! he, between whom and thee there was enmity (will become) as though he was a bosom friend. (34) But none is granted it save those who are steadfast, and none is granted it save the owner of great happiness. (35) And if a whisper from the devil reach thee (O Muhammad) then seek refuge in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower.

Color language

أَلَمْ تَرَ أَنَّ اللَّهَ أَنْزَلَ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ مَاءً فَأَخْرَجْنَا بِهِ ثَمَرَاتٍ مُخْتَلِفًا أَلْوَانُهَا وَمِنَ الْجِبَالِ جُدَدٌ بِيضٌ وَحُمْرٌ مُخْتَلِفٌ أَلْوَانُهَا وَغَرَابِيبُ سُودٌ (27) وَمِنَ النَّاسِ وَالدَّوَابِّ وَالْأَنْعَامِ مُخْتَلِفٌ أَلْوَانُهُ كَذَلِكَ إِنَّمَا يَخْشَى اللَّهَ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ الْعُلَمَاءُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ غَفُورٌ

27. See you not that God sends down water (rain) from the sky, and We produce therewith fruits of varying colours, and among the mountains are streaks white and red, of varying colours and (others) very black.

28. And of men and Ad-Dawâb (moving living creatures, beasts, etc.), and cattle, in like manner of various colours. It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear God. Verily, God is All-Mighty, Oft-Forgiving. [Holy Quran, 35:27, 28]
In my opinion, we do not appreciate colour until we see its importance in the animal kindgom. If it was not for 'Colour Language' many animals would be extinct.

A mother bird is able to recognise whether her chicks need food or not from the colour of their gapes. And for many organisms the colours that exist on formations such as skin, scales and fur play an important role in the continuity of life due to their characteristics of absorbing or diffusing heat.
تُسَبِّحُ لَهُ السَّمَوَاتُ السَّبْعُ وَالْأَرْضُ وَمَنْ فِيهِنَّ وَإِنْ مِنْ شَيْءٍ إِلَّا يُسَبِّحُ بِحَمْدِهِ وَلَكِنْ لَا تَفْقَهُونَ تَسْبِيحَهُمْ إِنَّهُ كَانَ حَلِيمًا غَفُورًا
The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him and there is not a thing but glorifies His Praise. But you understand not their glorification. Truly, He is Ever Forbearing, Oft-Forgiving. [Holy Quran, 17:44]
The language of colours is truly fascinating and clearly the backbone of most beautiful things. Even if one is not able to see colours, they can be told of its significance as one of the many blessings of Allah (SWT) upon all living beings.

WasSalaamu Alaykoum

Ten things we waste

(By Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah)

1. Knowledge:
Wasted when not taking action with it.

2. Actions
:
Wasted when we do anything without sincerity. Intentions count.

3. Wealth:
Wasted when used on things that will not bring us âjr (reward). We waste our money, our status, our authority, on things that have no benefit in this life or in âkhirah (The Hereafter).

4. Hearts:
Wasted when empty from the love of Allah, and the longing for Him/Her, and devoid of peace & contentment.

5. Bodies:
Wasted when we don't use them in ibâdah (worship) and service of Allah in serving humankind.

6. Love:
Wasted when our emotional love is misdirected, not towards Allah, but towards something/someone else.

7. Time :
Wasted when not used properly, by not doing what is righteous.

8. Intellect
:
Wasted on things that are detrimental to society and the individual, not in contemplation or reflection.

9. Service:
Wasted when in service of someone who will not bring us closer to Allah.


10. Dhikr
:
Wasted when it does not have an effect on our hearts.

The Price of Imaan

Several years ago an imaam moved to London. He often took the bus from his home to the downtown area.

Some weeks after he arrived, he had occasion to ride the same bus. When he sat down, he discovered that the driver had accidentally given him twenty pence too much change. As he considered what to do, he thought to himself, you better give the twenty pence back. It would be wrong to keep it.

Then he thought, oh forget it, it's only twenty pence. Who would worry about this little amount? Anyway, the bus company already gets too much fare; they will never miss it. Accept it as a gift from Almighty Allah and keep quite. When his stop came, the Imaam paused momentarily at the door, then he handed the twenty pence back to the driver and said "Here, you gave me too much change."

The driver with a smile replied,
Aren't you the new Imaam in this area? I have been thinking lately about going to worship at your mosque. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change.
When the Imaam stepped off the bus, his knees became weak and soft. He had to grab the nearest light pole and held for support, and looked up to the heavens and cried,
Oh Allah, I almost sold Islam for twenty pence!
Remember, we may never see the impact our actions have on people. Sometimes we are the only knowledge of Quran someone will read, or the only Islam a non-Muslim will see. What we need to provide, Insha Allah is an example for others to see. Be careful and be honest everyday, because you never know who is watching your actions and judging you as a Muslim

-Source Unknown

The widow and the needy

The Prophet (pbuh) said:
The one who looks after and works for a widow and for a poor person is like a warrior fighting for Allah's Cause or like a person who fasts during the day and prays all the night. (Sahih Bukhari)

How Much Will you Pay for Half of your deen?

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said:
"When the servant marries, then he has completed half of the deen. Then let him fear Allah with regard to the remaining half" (Saheeh ul-Jaami no.443)
Marriage as an Institution
It is the oldest practice of mankind, an act whose existence coincided with the first creation: Adam and Hawa, the first man and the first woman were nothing less than husband and wife. Since then, the institution of marriage has been held as the only divinely accepted form of companionship between a man and a woman. Even in our so modern society, marriage is still recognized as a positive event, a union that celebrates and brings together two families. We are raised to understand that marriage and weddings are happy events that should be welcome, brides and grooms congratulated and blessed. Even mere strangers are joyful and happy when they randomly see an unknown bride and her groom taking pictures on a random street.

Picture perfect weddings, amazing food, entertainment that is to die for, those are the things people expect at a wedding. A union of two people is indeed an extraordinary thing in our so ordinary world. Islam in particular deems this union so important that it states that marriage is equivalent to half of the deen (religion).

Half of your deen
Photo Source


People often understand this as meaning that it is half of your deen to get married. The act of getting married in itself is considered the accomplishment of half of your Islamic obligations. Thet couldn't be more wrong. Indeed the act in itself is just the picture-perfect fairytale that we are raised to believe, forgetting that the only perfect couple is the one sitting on top of the wedding cake. They are the bride and groom who have an unconditional, eternal smile on their face because ironically they never have to talk to each other.

When the Prophet saw said that marriage was half of our deen, what he meant was the way you behave in the marriage and your actions as husband/wife should draw you closer to Allah. In other words, about half of all of our Islamic virtues such as love, patience, honesty, fidelity, tolerance, chastity, forgiveness, compassion, striving, family, parenthood, mercy…. find their natural expression through married life. Indeed the excellence of a husband’s manners towards his wife, or that of a wife towards her husband will draw them closer to their Lord.


Love and Compassion
Photo Source

In the Holy Quran, Allah says
And one of His signs is that He created mates for you from among yourselves that you may find rest in them, and He put between you love and compassion; most surely there are signs in this for a people who reflect. (Ar-Rum 30: 21)

In this verse, Allah in His Infinite Wisdom used the expression “from among yourselves” to remind us that our spouses are an extension of ourselves and we are an extension of our mates. There is no room for selfishness in a marriage, only oneness. ‘I’ and ‘Me’ don’t exist anymore; they should be replaced with ‘Us’ and ‘We.’ Decisions are made together, not individually. They should reflect the wellbeing of everyone, and not just one member of the family unit. Love,mutual understanding and Compassion are what should be felt not resentment, animosity or enmity. These are not my words; these are the words of the One who Created words, Allah Himself. Words that when followed, two different people can strive to achieve one of the most beautiful institutions that He legislated.

How Much Will you pay?
Photo Source
This is why good character and taqwa (God-Consciousness) are at the top of the list of things to look for in a spouse. When a husband and a wife can't find it within themselves to behave in a loving and compassionate manner towards themselves, then they need to reevaluate their Islam and their devotion to Allah. In the words of our beloved Prophet Muhammad saw :

The best of you, is the one who is best to his wives, and I am the best of you toward my wives.

A Muslim man can acquire no benefit after Islam greater than a Muslim wife who makes him happy when he looks at her, obeys him when he commands her, and protects him when he is away from her in herself and in his property.
When you have a good marriage, most likely you will have a good Islam. It is so much easier for spouses to express and practice the Islamic virtues that are an integral part our faith when they are in a good marriage. So brothers and sisters, how much will you pay for half of your deen? Will you give up your ego to practive half of your deen? Will you give from yourself to attain excellence? How much can you afford? Name your price, how much is half of your deen worth?

Raindrops of Mercy

As Salamu Alaykoum!

I have always loved rain. Since a very young age I was told to make du'a when it rained. I never thought to ask why, but after coming across the following verse, from the Quran, I fell in love with rain even more.
وَهُوَ الَّذِي يُنَزِّلُ الْغَيْثَ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا قَنَطُوا وَيَنْشُرُ رَحْمَتَهُ وَهُوَ الْوَلِيُّ الْحَمِيدُ
And He it is Who sendeth down the saving rain after they have despaired, and spreadeth out His mercy. He is the Protecting Friend, the Praiseworthy.
(Quran 42: 28)
The next time it rains be thankful because rain is mercy*. Do not complain of the coming of rain, but rather rejoice and take the opportunity to make du'a.

WasSalaamu Alaykoum

*The well-being of the entire environment depends on it.

Gentle recitation of Surah Nazi'aat

Guess Who's Doing Tawwaaf

Nothing was unusual that day, except maybe the extra clouds and cool breeze. It was 'Asr time and I got myself quite a sick spot in the first row. I still couldn't believe it was time for Salaatul 'Asr because the amount of my sweat wished to differ. For those of you who ever visited Makkah and prayed in Masjid Al-Haraam, we all know how the heat is absolutely unavoidable. Unfortunately, for some people it's unbearable, and then we (the people of Makkah and outlining boroughs) hear occasional yelps and barks from the depths of the hotels—angry fathers to their perky children, grouchy grandpas to gaudy grandchildren — actually, I'm exaggerating... Please feel free to not get shocked when Qur`aan Club's newest post is "We've Fired Bin Muhammad"

To find out who I saw, click here.

Last time it was the President of Sudan with his entourage. Shout out your guesses in the comment box and see if you guess the lucky guest of Masjid Al-Haraam.

Supporters of each other

An inspiring verse I read today:
وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَاءُ بَعْضٍ يَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَيُقِيمُونَ الصَّلَاةَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَيُطِيعُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ أُولَئِكَ سَيَرْحَمُهُمُ اللَّهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ
The believers, men and women, are Auliyâ' (helpers, supporters, friends, protectors) of one another, they enjoin what is good and discourage people from what is bad; they perform prayers and give the Zakât, and obey God and His Messenger. God will have His Mercy on them. Surely God is All-Mighty, All-Wise. [Holy Quran, 9:71]

The story of Prophet Muhammad and the praying mat

Narrated 'Aisha:
The Prophet prayed in a Khamisa (a square garment) having marks. During the prayer, he looked at its marks. So when he finished the prayer he said, "Take this Khamisa of mine to Abu Jahm and get me his Inbijaniya (a woolen garment without marks) as it (the Khamisa) has diverted my attention from the prayer." [Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 8, Number 369:]
I wonder what the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) would say about the ornamented walls and floors of today's mosques, not to mention the praying mats in our homes.

Da'wah tip from Prophet Muhammad

Narrated Anas bin Malik:
The Prophet said, "Facilitate things for people (concerning religious matters), and do not make it hard for them. And give them good tidings and do not make them run away (from Islam)." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Volume 1, Book 3, Number 69]

True love

As Salamu Alaykoum!

Many of us have different views on love, but we can all agree on the fact that it is a blessing to be loved and to love. I felt the need to point out a few things that one easily forgets.
Our love for Allah (swt) and His love for us is the source of all other kinds of love.
In our search for true happiness, we may seek love and comfort in humans. However, we forget that true happiness is derived from love for our Most Merciful Creator. The most flourishing soul belongs to the person who aspires and strives for the love of Allah (swt), as referred to in the following verse:

O ye who believe! Whoso of you becometh a renegade from his religion, (know that in his stead) Allah will bring a people whom He loveth and who love Him, humble toward believers, stern toward disbelievers, striving in the way of Allah, and fearing not the blame of any blamer. Such is the grace of Allah which He giveth unto whom He will. Allah is All-Embracing, All-Knowing. (Qur'an 5: 54)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا مَنْ يَرْتَدَّ مِنْكُمْ عَنْ دِينِهِ فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ يُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لَائِمٍ ذَلِكَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَنْ يَشَاءُ وَاللَّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ

We have all heard of many different love stories within different cultures and eras, which all ended in disaster. There is also love of power and status as evident in the story of Fir'aun (The Pharaoh), such a love destroyed him. Finally, there is divine love; Hamza, Ja'far and Hanzala (May the blessings of Allah be upon them) died for the cause of true love for Allah (swt) and Muhammad (saaw). There is a significant difference between the love that these noble companions possessed, all those believers who are like them, and the rest of humanity.

True love is from Allah (swt), our love for our parents, children, siblings, spouse and friends is all a blessing from Allah, a blessing that we are to be forever thankful for.

WasSalaamu Alaykoum.

Fasting for Allah vs starving for no good reason

A striking analogy was demonstrated to me today when discussing what to eat for dinner with my husband. He had decided to fast today which is something that I forgot during our phone conversation this afternoon.

Near the end of our conversation I exclaimed passionately, "I haven't eaten since 9:30 this morning". He did not share my sentiment. It wasn't until after we hung up, that I remembered he was fasting, and thus, hadn't eaten in an even longer time than I.

How was it that I was more hungry than he? Was I imagining my feelings? Was I exaggerating my hunger? Well, yes and no--I concluded that what I was experiencing was primarily based on my frame of mind. I was able to acknowlede that in the past when I did something for the sake of Allah, the task was often easier for me. Today my husband made the intention to fast, fee sabeelillah, and I did not. I was going hungry for no good reason; which made me all the more hungry!

As Muslims we should think about everything in the right frame of mind. If we understand and acknowledge that whatever we are suffering through we are doing it for Allah, then the experience becomes less difficult.

Think of it like this: When you don't eat or drink for 9+ hours for Allah, it means you are fasting.  But when you don't eat nor drink for 9+ hours, for any other reason, it only means that you are on the path to starvation.

On Believers and the Munafiqun

Al-Hasan al-Basri (21-110 AH/642-728 CE) was an influential Muslim scholar and ascetic of the Tabi'een (the generation that succeeded the Sahabah). His view as to who was a Munafiq is somewhat different from what many Muslims today think of as the Munafiqun, those hypocrites who lived in Madinah during the lifetime of the Prophet (pbuh). Hasan believed that his type of Munafiqun was all around him:
If all the Munafiqs were to go out of Basrah, the city would remain vacant.
On the other hand, his description of a Believer is excellent; may we all aspire to be Believers as Hasan described them. Ameen.
The Believer is a man who is the best of all men in regard to work, the most fearful of all men. He is a man of such a nature that the more he does good works, pious deeds, and acts of serving God, the greater the fear he feels within himself, and feels that he will not be saved. The Munafiq is a man who says, 'There are so many people around me (i.e., who are doing the same thing). I shall be forgiven. Nothing bad will happen to me.' Thus he goes on doing evil while indulging a hope that God (will forgive him).
(From Hilyah al-Awliya as quoted in Toshihiko Izutsu's book, The Concept of Belief in Islamic Theology, pp. 65-66.)

Give me back my camel

An Ethiopian leader attacked Mecca with the aim of destroying the Ka'ba. Prophet Muhammad's grandfather, Abdul Mutallib, went to the leader. The leader had stopped his army outside the city.

"Give me back my camel." Said Abdul Mutallib.

"You are worried about your camel, but not about the Ka'ba?" Said the leader.

"I am the master of the camel, but the House (The Ka'ba) has its own Master who will protect it!"

Quranclub Daily Photo: Morning landscape

Morning landscape with fogPhoto source.

Sadness is not encouraged in Islam

As Salamu Alaykoum!
Sadness is something that we have all experienced and are to experience throughout our lives. However, it is the way one deals with such sadness that differentiates them from others.

When we let sadness take us over, we are left in a state of depression, our soul is enervated from acting upon our will, and the body becomes inactive.

Undoubtedly, sadness brings nothing but negativity into our lives. Whether we have lost a loved one, a job, or have become sad due to a long term illness, there is only one answer. We must accept the situation, and supplicate to Allah (سبحانه وتعالى).

We are reminded of this in the Qur'an:
لَا تَحْزَنْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَنَا
Grieve not, for Allah is with us. [Qur'an 9: 40]
Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAAW) sought refuge from sadness with the following supplication:
O'Allah, I seek refuge in you from anxiety and grief.
The occurrences of sadness and grief are out of our control, however, we can strive to use such hardships as trials that will only make us stronger. Everything happens for a reason, so we must be patient.

With this, dearest brothers and sisters, I remind you of the following verse:
وَقَالُوا الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي أَذْهَبَ عَنَّا الْحَزَنَ إِنَّ رَبَّنَا لَغَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ
And they say: Praise be to Allah Who hath put grief away from us. Indeed our Lord is Forgiving, Bountiful. (Qur'an 35: 34)
WasSalaamu Alaykoum

Video: One year in sixty seconds

Let's be thankful

Life bestows upon us many burdens, of which some seem unbearable.

A wise Muslim would contemplate upon such burdens as blessings from our Most Merciful Creator.

This life is truly hell for the believer and heaven for the disbeliever (as Prophet Muhammad, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him, says), but surely our comfort comes from the fact that our next life will be a reflection and a reward for our struggles in this temporary life.
قَالَ يَا مُوسَى إِنِّي اصْطَفَيْتُكَ عَلَى النَّاسِ بِرِسَالَاتِي وَبِكَلَامِي فَخُذْ مَا آَتَيْتُكَ وَكُنْ مِنَ الشَّاكِرِينَ

He (Allah) said: O Moses! I have preferred thee above mankind by My messages and by My speaking (unto thee). So hold that which I have given thee, and be among the thankful. (Qur'an 7: 144)
Like Prophet Moses, let's hold that which Allah has given us and be among the thankful. Let's be content, for we are promised to be amongst the richest of people. Rich in faith (Imaan) rather than temporary pleasures in life. We have many blessings to be thankful for, so let's remember Allah in times of joy and in times of grief.

The woman who trusted Allah

Umar Ibin Al Khattab narrated that he heard Allah's Messenger say, "If you were to trust in Allah genuinely, He would give you provision as He does for the birds which go out hungry in the morning and come back full in the evening. [Tirmidhi and Ibin Majah (sahih)]
This is a beautiful story of a sister who put her trust in Allah! A true reminder that whomsoever puts their trust in Allah will not be disappointed.



Ibn 'Abbas said,
'Allah is enough for us and the best Guardian.' Our dear prophet Ibrahim (عليه السلام) said this when he was thrown into the fire and Prophet Muhammad, (صلى الله عليه وسلم), also said it when they said, 'The people's great army have gathered against you, so fear them.' But that merely increased their faith and they said: 'Allah is enough for us and the best of Guardians.' (Holy Quran, 3:173) (This hadith is from Sahih al-Bukhari)
So brothers and sisters, where is your trust? Do you trust your husband? your wife? your parents? your children? your siblings? your coworkers? your boss?.....

Isn't Allah enough for you?

I pray to You, O Allah, to make us trust you and only you.

Islamic anger management

"If you are angry and you are standing, sit down. If you are sitting down, lie back." Said Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) to Abu Dhar AlGhaffari when advising him about anger. -From the book, Abu Dhar AlGhaffari, by Abdul Hameed Jawdat Sahhar.
This advice might sound underwhelming to some of us. But have you ever tried it?

The Thorn

Whatever hardship a Muslim faces - even if it as minor as the prick of a thorn - Allah (swt) makes it an atonement for his sins. (Sahih Bukhari and Muslim, and Malik's Muwatta)

Dealing with Stress

Islamic poster
Photo Source.
What do you do when you are stressed? Sometimes, situations, work, school or even family could add an ounce of stress in our life. How do you deal with it?

Some people deal with it by going on a shopping spree and are called compulsive shoppers. They shop to deal with their stressful life. Compulsive shopping hides a more serious problem and is only a symptom of the serious issues people might be dealing with. Drug addicts or alcoholics just have different symptoms for the same issue. They smoke or drink to escape from their stressful life.

You shop to escape from yours. The truth is, after that initial adrenaline rush, after the euphoria of adding a new dress, pair of shoes or whatever it is to your collection, you are not any better. Why? Because you are not being honest with yourself, you are not tackling the issues; you are using something to get rid of the symptom, but not of the disease.

Stress, doctors say, usually comes from fear of the unknown, the future, and death. However, Allah (SWT) has already provided us with prevention against those fears.
"And We will most certainly try you with somewhat of fear and hunger and loss of property and lives and fruits; and give good news to the patient" (2:155).
So next time you face a stressful situation, identify the cause and then work to reduce or eliminate that cause. In this new year, conquer stress, rather than letting it conquer you. Happy 2010!

The Fine Line

One website that I read occasionally touches on the topic of Islamophobia. While many people there have wrestled with the question of whether Islamophobia is either racism or bigotry, another question that was recently asked is, "If someone publicly disagrees with Islam, does that make him or her a bigot?" What follows is my answer:
As a Muslim, even I would say that not all publicly expressed disagreements with Islam classify a person as a bigot. But there is a fine line between bigotry and non-bigotry; on the Internet, this bigotry - Islamophobia - is usually expressed through the tone of the person's writings. The writer usually takes an attacking, accusatory mode, and rarely allows him or herself to acknowledge that he or she is wrong, let alone that the Islamic/Muslim point has merit. Moreover, the bigot/Islamophobe has no real desire to learn about Islam or Muslims. They already know what they know, so to speak, and are content to remain in a state of ignorance. For a Muslim to correct them would be "to confuse the issue with facts."

Ironically, this is the correct tact to take with Muslims: instead of attack, attack, attack (and showing we Muslims just how ignorant and closed-minded you really are), try asking questions instead and creating a dialog. Instead of assuming that Western conventional wisdom is correct for interpreting Islam and Muslim society, try asking Why? Most often, Western conventional wisdom is wrong in that it doesn't understand why the way things are (with respect to the Qur'an, with respect to Islamic practices, with respect to Muslim society, and so on). Context matters, and most Muslims understand that context far better than non-Muslims do. So don't be afraid to admit to yourself that maybe, just maybe you don't really know the subject as well as you think you do and that you may very well be wrong, and respectfully ask a Muslim for their point of view.

Very few Muslims, if any, would think of a person who comes across as sincerely desiring to learn about Islam and Muslims as an Islamophobe.

Video: Star size comparison


For those who haven't seen it.

Definition of atheism

Funny definition of atheism

The following is an atheism-related polemic I wrote that currently doesn't have another home, for this reason for now at least it is staying on this page. Since you are interested in a definition of atheism, you may find it interesting:

No matter how smart an atheist thinks he is, there will always be someone smarter, and more knowledgeable, who believes in God[1]. Therefore why all the arrogance, and why all the self-congratulation when you realize that you with your IQ of 120 are smarter than a religious person with an IQ of 90?

If you look at the world's greatest men and women, the world's greatest achievers, you will find that none of them are atheists (people who identify with the fact that they don't identify with religious people's beliefs), whether they believe in God or not.

What I see is that low IQ people follow the doctrines of their society, whether it is love for God or hatred for him, or indifference. The fact that a lot of dull people are religious doesn't say anything about religion, it says a lot about dull people. They blindly follow whatever is given them. Higher IQ ones question the doctrine, and this is what, in decaying religious societies, leads some of them to become atheists. But those with even higher IQs are too smart to define themselves by what they have found to be false, they instead continue to look for the truth. Only a very near-sighted and arrogant people would define themselves by referring to what they are not. Atheists are proud of the fact that they are not theists, not realizing that the whole time they are parading the medallion of their lack of intelligence: Their incapacity to come up with better systems of life, instead being content with not following the most obviously false doctrines[2]. Great men create their own philosophies of the world, they go on their own journeys in search of truth, they don't stay at home and argue with people less intelligent than themselves to gain little bits of stimulation from the constant ego-inflation that feeling superior to others gains one.

Atheists are people who are smart enough to reject the shallowness of the masses, but dull enough not to see beyond them, instead being happy with not being part of the masses: all they know and hold onto dearly is the fact that they are smarter than the dullest of humanity.

Not believing in God, or the corrupted ideas about God that are believed in your society, doesn't make you dull. But being proud of not believing in God makes you so, because it shows a lack of intelligence or laziness on your part. Not believing in God because idiots believe in him is the same as not believing in scientific facts because idiots believe in them (idiots believe whatever they are told). You may now say, well it is all in the scientific books, just look, science is all rational and well reasoned! And I say, you fool, how often have you studied religious books written by people as intelligent as you or more intelligent? You only compare the words and creations of the most intelligent of humanity (whether theists or atheists), and you assign these to yourself[3], then you compare that to the beliefs and sayings of the dullest of the religious people, and you, in your arrogance and short-sightedness, think this is a fair comparison. Have you studied Ghazzali, Kierkegaarde, Aquinas, or Tolstoy, and found them to be lacking, or did you, like all those dull people you look down upon, content yourself with following what you are told to follow, which today is dislike for religion, without looking to verify anything on your own?

Don't be an atheist. Be you.

[1] It seems like most atheist brains lock up when facing this fact, due to an inherent or acquired incapacity to compute it.

[2] It is exactly like being proud of not believing that 1+1 equals 3. Here, have a prize.

[3] "I am science and so can you!" is the attitude of every accomplishment-free, mob-following atheist you meet on the internet, thinking that parading his rejection for God puts him in the company of great men, men too intelligent and sophisticated to be atheists.

Manners of Prophet Ibraaheem

Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta'aalaa) relates to us the conversation of Prophet Ibraaheem ('alayhys salaam) with his father wherein he invites him to leave idolatry and worship Allaah alone, saying:

يَا أَبَتِ إِنِّي قَدْ جَاءنِي مِنَ الْعِلْمِ مَا لَمْ يَأْتِكَ فَاتَّبِعْنِي أَهْدِكَ صِرَاطاً سَوِيّاً
"O father! Verily, there has come to me of knowledge that which has not come to you. So follow me. I will guide you to a Straight Path." [Surah Maryam, 43]

Shaykh as-Sa'dee (rahimahullaah) says in his excellent commentary on this verse:
وفي هذا من لطف الخطاب ولينه، ما لا يخفى، فإنه لم يقل: "يا أبت أنا عالم، وأنت جاهل" أو "ليس عندك من العلم شيء" وإنما أتى بصيغة تقتضي أن عندي وعندك علما، وأن الذي وصل إلي لم يصل إليك ولم يأتك، فينبغي لك أن تتبع الحجة وتنقاد لها.ا

"And in this statement (of Prophet Ibraaheem) there is obvious gentleness and humility; for he didn't say "O father! I am a man of knowledge and you are ignorant" nor did he say "You have no knowledge whatsoever!" But rather, he used a phrase that implies "I have knowledge, and you have knowledge; but the knowledge that has reached me has not reached you so you should follow the evidence and the clear signs and submit to them."
May Allaah guide us to good manners of speech and to follow the truth regardless of the person who yields it.

Prophet Muhammad's promise to the Christians of St. Catherine monastery

I've never heard about this before. Amazing if true*.
In 628 CE, a delegation from St. Catherine’s Monastery came to Prophet Muhammed and requested his protection.

He responded by granting them a charter of rights, which I reproduce below in its entirety. St. Catherine’s Monastery is located at the foot of Mt. Sinai and is the world’s oldest monastery.

It possesses a huge collection of Christian manuscripts, second only to the Vatican, and is a world heritage site. It also boasts the oldest collection of Christian icons. It is a treasure house of Christian history that has remained safe for 1400 years under Muslim protection.

The Promise to St. Catherine:

"This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them.

Verily I, the servants, the helpers, and my followers defend them, because Christians are my citizens; and by God! I hold out against anything that displeases them.

No compulsion is to be on them. Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries. No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims' houses.

Should anyone take any of these, he would spoil God's covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter against all that they hate.

No one is to force them to travel or to oblige them to fight. The Muslims are to fight for them. If a female Christian is married to a Muslim, it is not to take place without her approval. She is not to be prevented from visiting her church to pray. Their churches are to be respected. They are neither to be prevented from repairing them nor the sacredness of their covenants.

No one of the nation (Muslims) is to disobey the covenant till the Last Day (end of the world).
"
* Though even if the document doesn't exist, it is still a good illustration of The Prophet's attitude toward non-Muslims as documented by biographers.

Source: Middle East Online

Beauty of Allah's creation: Two beautiful landscapes

Beauty of Allah's creation
Photo source.

Beauty of Allah's creation
Photo source.
Older Posts Newer Posts