Benefits of Da’wah

encouragesDa’wah linguistically means “to invite”. But it can also mean to try persuading people to follow a particular sect, religion or team. Islamically it means preaching of Islam; the art of conveying the creed, rules and morality of Islam.

Giving Da’wah has two types of benefits, firstly, to a Da’ee himself, and secondly for the society.

Benefits for the Caller (Da’ee) himself:

  1. The Da’ee is saved from Allah’s curse, and Allah accepts his repentance as mentioned in the verse below:
    “Indeed, those who conceal what We sent down of clear proofs and guidance after We made it clear for the people in the Scripture – those are cursed by Allah and cursed by those who curse, Except for those who repent and correct themselves and make evident [what they concealed]. Those – I will accept their repentance, and I am the Accepting of repentance, the Merciful.” (Surah Baqarah:159-160)

Furthermore, Abu Hurairah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Whoever is asked about some knowledge that he knows, then he conceals it, he will be bridled with bridle of fire.” (Jami’ Tirmidhi: 2649) The warning against keeping knowledge is severe. In another hadith Hudhaifah bin Al-Yaman narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “By the One in Whose Hand is my soul! Either you command good and forbid evil, or Allah will soon send upon you a punishment from Him, then you will call upon Him, but He will not respond to you.” (Jami’ Tirmidhi: 2169)

However, there is destruction for all who neglect enjoining the good, and forbidding the evil.
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said ‘‘If the people see an evildoer and does not take him by the hand [to put a stop to his evil], soon Allah will punish all of them.” (Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4338; al-Tirmidhi, 2168; and al-Nasaa’i – with a saheeh isnad. Also classed as Saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi, no. 2448)

 

  1. He is continuing the mission of the Prophet Muhammad:
    Narrated Talha bin Musarrif: I asked `Abdullah bin Abu `Aufa “Did the Prophet make a will?” He replied, “No,” I asked him, “How is it then that the making of a will has been enjoined on people, (or that they are ordered to make a will)?” He replied, “The Prophet bequeathed Allah’s Book (i.e. Qur’an).” (Sahih al-Bukhari 2740)
    Imagine a scenario where we are bequeathed with an expensive, valued item, what do we do with it? We tend to make it known to the world. But, the most expensive and valued item ever bequeathed to anyone is Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him). It has been bequeathed to us, and we have to share it with the world.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever calls others to guidance will have a reward like the rewards of those who follow him, without detracting from their reward in any way. And whoever calls others to misguidance will have a burden of sin like the burden of those who follow him, without detracting from their burden in any way.” (Muslim)

  1. Sending of Salat (peace) upon the caller:
    Narrated Abu Umamah Al-Bahili, “Two men were mentioned before the Messenger of Allah. One of them a worshiper, and the other a scholar. So the Messenger of Allah said: ‘The superiority of the scholar over the worshiper is like my superiority over the least of you.’ Then the Messenger of Allah said: ‘Indeed Allah, His Angels, the inhabitants of the heavens and the earths – even the ant in his hole, even the fish – say Salat upon the one who teaches the people to do good.'” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2685)

Imagine enjoying that privilege of receiving the salat of Allah, Your Lord and Creator!

  1. Endless chain of rewards:
    Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “When a man dies, his deeds come to an end, except for three: A continuous charity, knowledge by which people derive benefit, pious son who prays for him.”

(Muslim: Book 7, Hadith 55)

Sharing the deen, is a form of beneficial knowledge, and Inshallah it will be for you on the Day of Accounts.

 

Benefits for the society:

There is a widespread hatred, immortality, dishonour, communal/sectarian and chauvinism seen in not only in non-Muslims, but also in Muslim societies. There are many depressed people searching for happiness which would last longer; they want success. We know that only in Islam there is success, contentment, Paradise for whoever lives their life according to what the Giver of life has commanded. Only by following Allah, can one be satisfied, and happy in life. Allah says:
“And let there be [arising] from you a nation inviting to [all that is] good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong, and those will be the successful.” (Surah Aal Imran 3:104)
It is an obligation on every Muslim that he calls people to the good i.e Islam, and informs them about the consequences of following their evil desires. Every soul has the potential to differentiate between the good and bad. The caller (Da’ee) is supposed to make the Mad’oo realize the good in practicing it and leave the wrongdoing.
“You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah. If only the People of the Scripture had believed, it would have been better for them. Among them are believers, but most of them are defiantly disobedient.” (Surah al-Baqarah 3:110)
Let’s live up to this description, by enjoining the worship of Allah, and forbidding the denial of Allah or association of partners with Him.

Doctors can help in our physical recovery but the Qur’an will help in your soul’s recovery. A Da’ees contribution to the society is valued because they help with our spiritual connection. Let’s use the resources and means before us to continue the legacy of the Prophets.

 

Maliha Rahmat,

Writer, AAT

 

Ar-Rabb

 

yarabb

One of the beautiful Names of Allah is “Ar-Rabb,” which is also one of the greatest names. It has occurred 900 times in the Qur’an which makes it the second most occurred name after the name ‘Allah’. Allah (May He be glorified) says:

قُلْ إِنَّ صَلَاتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

“Say, “Indeed, my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah, Rabb of the worlds.” (Surah Al-an’am:162)

Ar-Rabb means the Creator (Al-Khaliq), the owner (Al-Malik) and disposer of all affairs who bestows His blessings upon His creatures and looks after His righteous servants by setting their hearts aright. It is from this name that the category of Tawheed Ar-Ruboobiyyah is derived. This is the name of Allah which has multiple meanings.

Ibn Jareer Tabree (may Allah have mercy on him) says: “In the Arabic language, there are many usage of the word ‘Ar-Rabb’. The leader of the group of people whose command is obeyed is also known as “Rabb”, whoever plays a character of peace-maker in any affairs is also called by this name and the possessor of any thing is also called “Ar-Rabb”.

Ibn Atheer (may Allah have mercy on him) says: “when this name is used to refer other than Allah it is spoken with any regard to it. But when used for Allah it is without any relation.” For example: rabb al-‘usrah i.e., the head of the family.

Rabb is the All-able, the Creator, the Originator, the Fashioner, the all-Modest, the all-Sustainer, the All-Knower, the All-hearer, the Benefactor, the most Generous, the Advancer, and the Delayer who can astray whoever He wills, guide whoever He wills, blesses with happiness and wretches whoever He wills, gives respect to whoever He wishes and gives humiliation to whoever He wishes.(Bad’ii Al-Fawaaid 2/212)

Allah’s Divinity (Rabbaniyyah) and Lordship (Ruboobiyyah) has three categories:

  1. Ruboobiyyah Aammah (common): This includes all His creation. Be it obedient or Promiscuous, believer or non-believer, guided or mislead. This nourishment is for all. He gives provision, formulates, rewards, restricts, elevates, gives life and death, promotes and demotes, limits and liberates, and hears the helpless. Allah says:

يَسْأَلُهُ مَنْ فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ ۚ كُلَّ يَوْمٍ هُوَ فِي شَأْنٍ

“Whoever is within the heavens and earth asks Him; every day He is bringing about a matter.” (Surah Ar-Rahman: 29)

The above ayah illustrates that, one day He bestows might upon some people and the other day he ruins them owing to their disobedience and committing sins. One day He bestows health and youth and another day He inflicts weakness upon certain people. One day He removes grief and sorrows from hearts and the other day He causes certain people to feel grief and sorrow.

  1. Ruboobiyyah khaassa (special): This is special for His friends only. He strengthens their Iman (faith), keeps them in His worship, gives them food of mercy and forgiveness, takes them from darkness to light, provides them with easiness and keeps them away from difficulties, facilitates them in every good and protects them from every evil.
  2. Ruboobiyyah khaass al-khassa (very special): This is for the Prophets and Messengers only.

We find that in the Qur’an and Sunnah the Prophets and the Believers supplicate Allah starting with “Rabbana” in hope for this special nourishment. Glory is to Allah!

It is essential that the one who believes in “Rabb” must also practice pure worship of Allah.

إِنَّ هَٰذِهِ أُمَّتُكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً وَأَنَا رَبُّكُمْ فَاعْبُدُونِ

“Indeed this, your religion, is one religion, and I am your Lord, so worship Me.(Surah Al-Anbiya: 92)

يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اعْبُدُوا رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُمْ وَالَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

“O mankind, worship your Lord, who created you and those before you, that you may become righteous,” (Surah Al-Baqarah: 21)

Our Lord! Grant us good in this world and good in the life to come and keep us safe from the torment of the Fire.

آمين

Maliha Rahmat,

Writer, AAT

99 Names of Allah

c9ba8ab923dd988ba5ff3583d01333cfThe Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has ninety nine names, one hundred less one. And he who perfects it shall enter paradise.”(Bukhari and Muslim)

I’m sure we are all in search of short cuts to Jannah. An easy way there, an express ticket perhaps?

How easy is it for us to attain paradise? We memorise the names of celebrities, tv shows, lyrics and famous quotes…why? To fit in to society! Why not memorise the names of Allah, to fit into Jannah?!

Learning the names of Allah, is a method of getting to know Allah. When we know Allah and understand Him, only then can we appreciate His numerous blessings upon us. It is also a means of coming closer to Allah and Inshallah, tasting the sweetness of Iman.

The focus of the hadith is to ‘perfect’ the Names of Allah. The question arises; how? It is to affirm them, memorise them, understand them and apply them in our lives. We have to believe in these Names of Allah completely, without doubt or distortion.

The application of the names of Allah can be through duaa, by calling on Him by means of those names, or it can be through knowledge of the names and acting upon them. For example; knowing that Allah is Al-Baseer, understanding the implications of this name, i.e. Allah is All-seeing, He sees everything that is secret or done publicly, and His sight is eternal and unlike ours. A person would act upon this name by refraining from sin in public and private; as they are aware that Allah sees them at all times, and in every place. This is how we can apply the Names of Allah in our daily lives.

It’s not difficult to learn the names of Allah, and implement them in our lives. But we have to make the effort. Let’s reserve our place in Jannah, and begin learning the names of Allah.

Bibi Zainab Dowlut

Traversing the realms of culture

Isn’t it rather weird, when someone assumes that you speak Arabic, merely because you wear the hijab? Has it ever happened to you? I wish it was true that I could miraculously speak Arabic when I don my hijab, but sadly it’s not.

Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent to the world, he was sent as a mercy to mankind. He was not the prophet of the Arabs, and nor was his message limited to Arabs. Islam is universal; its teachings are meant for everyone from every type of background and culture. Muslims span the four corners of the world and the majority of them do not speak Arabic. Perhaps they know a few words here and there, but religion or clothes does not necessitate ability to converse in any given language, let alone Arabic.

In the multicultural society that is promoted in today’s world, often it is difficult to distinguish between the limits of a culture and the religion of a person. That’s not to say religion and culture are not allowed to mix. Rather, people carry a cultural baggage with them, that is so heavy and burdensome, yet they are unwilling to put it down and embrace the simplicity of their religion. Cultural practices are woven into Islam to such a degree, that some have come to believe that the cultural practice is part of the religion.

Islam allows culture. Allah says in the Qur’an, “O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you may despise each other). Verily, the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (of all things).” (Al-Hujurat 49:13) Islam promotes multi-culturism and inter-cultural activities; yet Allah makes it clear, that it is righteousness, that is priority. The deen of Allah takes precedence over culture.

Cultural practices that are in accordance with Islamic ruling are fully permitted, however those that are in conflict with the laws and limits of Allah, have to be abolished. We have to let go of the cultural baggage that ties us down, as it may be the cause of our downfall. Let’s look to the example of the Sahabah, they ensured that Islam reached us in its full purity. They did not tarnish it with cultural practices, or attach extra luggage to it. They abandoned their cultural practices that were not in line with Islamic teachings, in order to preserve this deen and reap the most benefit from it. They stopped the killing of new born girls, the consummation of alcohol, the divination of arrows, music and so many other practices that were part of their culture. They took hold of Islam with a firm grasp. May Allah be pleased with them all.

We ask Allah to help us keep our religion pure, and unite us with the Sahabah in Jannah. Ameen.

Those condemned by Allah

Do you ever remember being desperate, depressed. Everything seemed blue and wretched. Your life was perhaps totally screwed up, and what you desired for or what you really wanted seemed to be too far fetched or impossible.

Your despondency shrouded you like a cloak of darkness and you craved for at least one ray of hope, one glimmer of light that might dispel away your anguish…

Perhaps, dear friends we don’t recall these terrible times, after all isn’t it typical of us to forget the favours that the Almighty has bestowed on us, but I suppose that each and every one of us has had our ups and downs in life, may be the intensity gradient may have differed, but nevertheless, we may have been through such turbulences.

When we do happen to be in such travails, isn’t it characteristic of us then to turn to our Lord, THIS is the time we start acknowledging the Might of The Almighty, we fall on our knees in submission, we lengthen our prayers, we hasten to do good deeds to please Him, we pray whilst sitting, standing even whilst we are laying, our distress haunts us and we turn then to our Creator.

And Subhan Allah when Allah cures us of our agony, then what do we do, dear brothers and sisters? Do we stick to our resolutions, our promises? Perhaps for a short interval of time we may, but don’t we then revert back to our old habits, our old ways?

Dear friends are we aware of the fact that this characteristic pattern of our nature has actually been recorded in the Holy Quran,

10_12

“And when harm touches man, he invokes Us, lying on his side, or sitting or standing. But when We have removed his harm from him, he passes on as if he had never invoked Us for a harm that touched him! Thus is made fair seeming to the wasteful that which they used to do.” (Surah Yunus 10:12)

Doesn’t it create a ripple of fear in our hearts, dear friends to actually realize that we too fall in the aforementioned criteria?

Allah the most Exalted condemns and criticizes those who behave in such an abhorrent way or those who have these qualities by saying:

“Thus is made fair seeming to the wasteful which they used to do.” (Surah Yunus 10:12)

I plead you all, dear friends, to repent to Al Ghafoor (the Most Forgiving) for all the ungrateful attitudes that we have indulged in, for indeed a true believer doesn’t fall in the aforementioned category and we should also always try to be grateful to The Most Merciful.

Moreover it is imperative that we try to remain firm in the resolutions that we make, I know, “Old Habit Die Hard” but they DO die. We have to work hard in order to completely annihilate them, please perceive that truly too much is at stake were we to behave in a way that results in criticism by the King of the Kings!

O Allah! I beg of you to forgive me, I beg of you to make me among those who are grateful to you, I beg of you to make me among the true believers, I beg of you to make me remember and acknowledge each and every favour that you have bestowed on me for verily each and every thing that we have is undoubtedly a blessing from You, I beg of you to strengthen and help me, I supplicate to You, Ya Rabb to protect me from anything that may result in obtaining YOUR criticism.

Indeed, You are the Al-Seeing, the All Hearing

Ameen Ya Rabbal Alameen

Bint Ayesha

Writer

AAT

Good Manners With Allah

1448561598Our Character #4

On the authority of Abu Sa’eed al-Khudree in a narration ascribed to the Prophet: ‘The most complete of the believers in their Iman are those who have the best manners, who are humble, who join hearts and their hearts are joined. There is no good in the one who does not join the hearts nor is his heart joined.’

Good manners with Allah may be difficult to understand at first, as Allah is not present in front of us, so it may appear confusing as to how we can have good manners with Allah. So we need to understand some important issues regarding it.

What is good character with Allah?

Good character is being pleased with Allah’s legislative, universal rulings and decrees (Qadr). Legislative rulings being the Do’s and Dont’s in the Shariah. It also means to submit to the legislation, that is to accept everything Allah has said without any complain or dissatisfaction.

How many of us have done so every time we learn about something in Islam that is displeasing to our situation? We say it’s ok to pluck our eyebrows, because our husbands say so, we can wear our pants below our ankles as I have to look formal for work, we won’t keep a beard as we don’t want to be recognized as terrorists. We make excuses all the time. This not good manners with Allah, it shows we are displeased with the laws of Allah. If we truly want to be good Muslims with good character we need to accept everything with a smile and remember that everything in Islam is best for us. We can never negotiate anything with the orders of Allah, we can never change the Deen. We cannot make petty excuses for not following the Qur’an or Sunnah. Accepting, and being content with everything with our eyes closed is good manners with Allah. We will come to see that every word that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has uttered is 100% fact. Some have been proven by science and some maybe not in the present but in the future we will see them proved. Allah is the Creator and only the creator can know what is good for His creation. We are part of the creation. Who are we to judge what Allah has said? Indeed, can we question if we don’t have knowledge? We have to accept the laws of Allah, who is the All-Knowing, All-Aware, with a content heart.

We cannot question as to whom Allah chose as Prophets, Allah has mentioned them in the Qur’an praising them. We cannot speak badly about the Prophet’s companions as they were the best of people and Allah has mentioned them too in the Qur’an.

Moreover, we should always be pleased be with what is written in our predestination (Qadr) and not ask questions, such as ‘Why does Allah do this to me?!” Being sad with something that has a bad impact on us is normal, but we have to understand that whatever Allah decrees is a test for us, as to how much patience we exhibit.

How can we acquire good Character with Allah?

We need to start by obeying the rulings of Allah having firm belief, with certainty and conviction, in one’s heart and soul, not tainted by doubt or uncertainty. This will enable us to complete the obligatory actions, Salah, Fasting, Charity etc., and doing them in the best possible manner which includes pure intentions, on time, with humility etc.,

We can gain more knowledge and act upon all the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah trying to act upon hem in the best possible way. We can come closer to Allah, and acquire good character with Him, by engaging in voluntary acts.

We should refrain from questioning the actions of Allah, what He chose and what He has done. We should be grateful and pleased with what Allah has decreed. We always have to make Du’aa to asking Allah to refine our character the best, for nothing is possible without Allah’s help.

Lastly we must educate ourselves about good character. We will need reminders to implement it, because it is not easy. Reminders will serve to help us to revive the struggle for attaining good character.

May Allah beautify our characters.

Fatima Damad

Writer, AAT

Signs of the Hour

signdsAllah Says, “The Day you shall see it, every nursing mother will forget her nursling, and every pregnant one will drop her load, and you shall see mankind as in a drunken state, yet they will not be drunken, but severe will be the Torment of Allah.” (Al-Quran, 22:2)

In the aforementioned verse, the state of this ummah on that Day is predestined. It is said that the people would be horror-struck. They would be affrighted with the severe torment of Allah (Glory Be To Him). Of course who wouldn’t be in a state of intense fear when the time to take their accounts has approached?!

My dear brothers and sisters in Islam, the life of this world is transient. It is impermanent and momentary. It is an enjoyment of deception.

And the life of this world is only a deceiving enjoyment.” [57:20]

When the Day of Judgement, or Yawm-al Qiyamah, approaches, the worldly life will come to an end and all will be destroyed. Each and every individual will have to account for his/her actions, and their final fate will be decided by Allah.

Let us discuss and learn some of the minor signs of the Hour.

1• The disappearance of knowledge and the appearance of ignorance
.

This has been reported by Bukhari, Muslim, Ibn Majah and Ahmad. The knowledge of the Qur’an would disappear and ignorance would become prevalent. The hour will not come until ignorance will become widespread. As in, there would not be any single knowledgeable person alive who would enjoin the good and forbid the evil! Allah will not remove knowledge from the people, rather He will remove the knowledgeable people.
2• Honesty will be lost.

This has been reported by Al Bukhari. The Hour will not be established until there will be widespread fallacy. The people at that time would be deceitful and defrauding. In every single matter, they would be devious. May Allah (Glory Be To Him) make us steadfast upon deen and honesty. Ameen

3• A man will pass by a grave and wish that he was in their place.

Some renowned scholars of Islam say that this sign before the Day will be caused due to the cumbersome life a person would be facing that time. Remember my dear brothers and sisters, whatever burdens you might be facing in this life, will go one day. They are transient. Wishing for death, if the reason for it is difficulties in worldly matters, is forbidden because wishing for death in that case is indicative of impatience or panic as a result of the calamity that has befallen.

In conclusion, the signs of the hour are already beginning to appear. I would like to arouse all of us to prepare for the Day when we all will face our Lord. Make each second count and utilise it for gaining rewards. May Allah make us all among the inhabitants of the highest level of Jannah. Ameen

Bint Nayeem
Writer, AAT

Islam Encourages Terrorism?!

Misconception #2

Islam encourages terrorism

A terrorist is one who favours or uses terror-inspiring methods of governing or of coercing government or community. (The Concise oxford Dictionary)

Islam encourages terrorism. How does that sound to you? Sound like the truth? I think not! How about, absurd? Questionable? Now, that’s more like it. Which religion, way of life, and system of government that has had billions of followers throughout it’s history, would encourage such ruthlessness?

I appeal to your rationality. Think logically. If Islam encouraged terrorism the 1.6 billion muslims today would be very bad terrorists, unable to ‘do the job.’ If islam really did encourage terrorism, do you believe that you would be alive today? Do you think Islamic societies would really thrive upon the innocent blood of millions killed? Do you think Islam, really would be able to contain and maintain such a large number of geographically dispersed people through terrorism? The answer is no.

Moreover looking at recent statistics; the majority of terrorist acts, recently and before collected statistics prove that Terrorism is not encouraged in Islam. Rather as Allah says in the Qu’ran, “Whoever kills a soul, unless it be for murder or spreading corruption in the land, it is as if, he has slain mankind entirely.” (Surah Mai’dah 05:32) Islam takes the killing of innocent human beings seriously. No one no one has the right to take the life of another, unless such a person was a criminal or murderer. Life is not something to be played with.

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Source: http://www.counterfire.org/news/17599-graphic-islamist-terror-accounts-for-only-0-7-of-attacks-in-europe

Even suicidal attempts are condemned in Islam. Suicide bombings are not from Islamic teachings. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills himself with something will be punished with it on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari and Muslim) Suicide bombings are among the major sins in Islam and are as such impermissible.

Islam, is not about establishing a great empire, colonising, acquiring lands, and riches, or even destroying people and culture. Islam is here to simply establish the worship of One God alone, without associating partners with him. Allah says, “And He created you into nations and tribes that you may know one another. Verily the most honoured in the sight of Allah, is the most righteous.” The purpose of nations and tribes, as we understand from this verse, is not for one to overcome the other. Rather it is to create unity and increase righteousness between us; terrorism has no place in Islam.

Moreover, Allah says, “And We have not sent you (Muhammad) except as a mercy for the Alameen (mankind, jinns, and all that exists),” (Al-Anbiyaa 21:107) Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent to teach us good manners, and instruct us in the worship of Allah. His aim was not to establish a large empire by instilling fear in the hearts of people, or committing acts of terror against them. If he really wanted an empire he would have accepted the offer of kingship and wealth from the tribe of Quraysh, if he would stop teaching Islam. But did Muhammad give up his message or accept Kingship? No. Rather, his famous saying was, “if they put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left, I would not give up this message.” Meaning even if they gave me control over the solar system and the greatest of the celestial bodies, I would not give up preaching Islam. Muhammad (Peace be upon him) had no interest in building up an empire like the colonialists, Romans or Persians. His only objective was to preach the Oneness of God.

Islam teaches us to be patient, and peaceable. It teaches us to repulse evil with that which is better.  Allah says, “and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just: that is nearer to piety.” (Al-Ma’idah 05:08) Justice is of high value in Islam, it is not be neglected even in the most dire situations. To use the mistakes of a few and generalise it to the religion is incorrect. The actions of 9/11, 7/7 and others was an injustice and wrongdoing upon the people. Renowned and obscure scholars across the muslim world, have time and again denounced such actions. Terrorism is a form of transgression, hence it has no connection to Islam.

Allah says, “Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion, and did not drive you out of your homes. Verily Allah loves those who deal with equity.” (Al-Mumtahanah 60:08) Muslims are to deal justly with neighbours, acquaintances, co-workers, colleagues, and anyone they meet; be they muslim or not.

Islam protects the rights of non-muslims, especially if they live under muslim rule. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills a mu’aahid, will not smell the fragrance of paradise, although it fragrance can be detected from a distance of forty years.” (Bukhari)  What is meant by the word mu’aahid, is a non-muslim, living in muslim lands, or a non-muslim who has a deal or treaty with the muslims. Thus, Islam protects their lives, and ensures they are granted safety. How can we claim that Islam promotes terrorism?

Nonetheless, it is only natural that if you are attacked that you defend yourself. Those in Iraq, Palestine, Syria, have every right to fight back. But as the saying goes, ‘one man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist.’ It seems that those who stand up to defend their lives as long as they are muslims, they are labelled as terrorists. Islam is not a way of life that accepts humiliation. The concept of Jihad which has been exploited by the media, is in place to defend and protect muslims, and convey the word of Allah. Jihad was not prescribed to target innocent civilians, or encourage violence or inspire fear amongst masses. Jihad is not a Holy War, or a form of terrorism. The word Jihad translates as ‘struggle’ or ‘strive’ and it can be applied to any situation in which a muslim struggles and strives to practice their religion.

In addition, when muslims are commanded to fight, they have codes of conduct to uphold. Firstly, they are to fight those that fight them. In the Qu’ran Allah says, “And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you, but transgress not the limits.” (Al-Baqarah 2:190) This is clear evidence that muslims are not on a rampage, destroying everyone and everything in their path.

Secondly, we have no right to target women, children or the old. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Fight, but do not steal (from the captured goods), commit treachery, mutilate the dead, or kill a child, or those who reside in houses of worship.” (Muslim)

Lastly, we are to stop, when the opponent stops. Allah says, “And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility except against wrong-doers.” (Al-Baqarah 2:193)

Now, I ask you, how can jihad be termed as terrorism? Look at the above mentioned rules governing combat in Islam. It does not infringe upon anyone’s rights. It ensure justice and fairness, amongst combatants. How can Islam be a religion of terrorism or encourage terrorism? Islam is a religion whose followers are increasing daily. Do you honestly feel that 1.6 billion plus people are following a religion inclined to violence? I’ll leave you to be the judge.

I ask Allah to guide us all to the truth.

Seeing with our Hearts

Heart Softeners #1

Born and raised in the West, I never realised the beauty of nature surrounding me. I was always too busy with the fast-paced world called life. I never really stopped a moment to truly appreciate the beautiful sun reflecting off the pure white snow or the different sounds made and colourful birds outside my window. Before I became Muslim, I would often use my sight for things that added little or no value to my spiritual and emotional self. I never appreciated the true beauty around me until I reverted to Islam. Subhana’Allah, when Allah Guides us, He not only opens our eyes but also our hearts! For verily, even though I could see, I never looked beyond anything except for its physical value.

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“Have they not travelled through the land, and have they hearts wherewith to understand and ears wherewith to hear? Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind.” (22:46)

I once travelled through the earth as a creature who could see everything yet my heart was full of darkness! When the gift of Islam touched me, I felt true to Allah’s Mighty Words and as I read the Qur’an more and more, I could not believe the truth and Powerful Words of our Lord! The Signs of Allah were everywhere for us to see and to reflect:

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“Do you not see that Allah sends down rain from the sky, and We produce thereby fruits of varying colours? And in the mountains are tracts, white and red of varying shades and [some] extremely black.” (35:27)

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“And among people and moving creatures and grazing livestock are various colours similarly. Only those fear Allah , from among His servants, who have knowledge. Indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Forgiving.” (35:28)


It is He who sends down water for you from the sky, from which comes a drink for you, and the shrubs that you feed to your animals. (16:10)

Everything became clearer to me and I looked at the world in a different light. The things I used to take for granted, were now things I marvelled at with awe and excitement. It is as if I could see for the very first time! All the colours and the sounds of nature surrounding me were all beautiful creations of Allah the Almighty. How Perfect is our Creator! He Who brings the night into day and the day into night! He, Who Provides us with everything we need. How grateful we should be for all the blessings and bounties! We may not realize just how blessed we are because we often take our health and wealth for granted. We walk about the earth with eyes lowered to our phones or our laptops. When we take a simple moment to lift our heads from our electronic devices, we will truly realize just how blessed we are. To be able to see the birds flock together, to be able to turn your head to the sky with eyes wide and bright, reflecting on the clouds that Allah has held up without any pillars! Glory be to Him the one who made us something out of nothing! What a beautiful gift it is to be able to see and to breathe and to hear all the beautiful things that surround us. If you never took the time out to explore the Signs of Allah all around you, then now is the time. Do not let the darkness of the heart take over or the darkness of the grave overcome you. Look with your heart and you will truly see with your eyes all the true Blessings of Allah subhanahu wa ta a’la and it is only until then, you will realise that you are truly a blessed creation by your Merciful Creator.

Umm Abdur-Rahman,

Writer, AAT

Non-Mahram

Muharamaat #4

 

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With the upcoming so-called Valentine’s Day, I thought it would be important to address the topic, from a different perspective. We all are fully aware, I’m sure, of the prohibition of imitating the disbelievers, and joining in their celebrations, be it Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s or any other invented celebration not from the Sunnah. (For more information about this, please visit www.aateam.org/blog/celebrating-christmas/)

Let’s tackle this celebration from a different angle. The occasion of Valentine’s day, runs deeper than a mere celebration. It is a promotion of customs that are prohibited, and alien to Islam. The Western world has embraced the idea of boyfriend/girlfriend relationships; and now many muslims are welcoming it into their lives and homes. Little do they realise the enormity of the sin behind these relationships, and the devastating consequences thereof.

Islam puts an end to a crime before it even occurs. That’s why Allah says, “and do not approach zina.” (Al-Isra 17:32) Allah warns not to even go close because He is All-Knowing, and knows that one small baby step leads to the next. It seems harmless, a look, a touch…but Allah knows, that one simple look may be the cause of a later regret. So He tells us to end it from the beginning.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “no man is alone with a (non-mahram) woman, but satan will be the third among them.” (Tirmidhi)

The Prophet has forewarned us that Shaytaan will keep us company in such a situation. And what else is Shaytaan’s aim, except to make you fall? He’s occupied that vacancy for centuries, and he’s perfected his techniques. None is insensitive to his pervious tricks. You may think that you’ve got it under control; but that is also one of Shaytaan’s tricks. Once you believe you are safe, and nothing will happen, shaytaan has you round his little finger, and he will strike from where you least expect.

In addition, what leads to haram, is haram too. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “if you were to be stabbed in the head with an iron needle, it would be better for him that touching a woman whom he is not permitted to touch.” (At-Tabarani) This is the seriousness of the issue. Imagine an iron needle being driven into your head. Sounds painful right? Extremely painful. You can almost feel the agony, just by imagining it. The Prophet said that was better for you. Subhanallah, touching a non-mahram is a great sin!

People have become careless about this issue, and do not pay heed to the sayings of the Prophet. Societal and peer expectations have infiltrated the mind of the youth, so much so that it is necessary to have ‘relationship’ to be accepted amongst friends. If a person does not have a ‘valentine’ often they are deemed as ugly, or nerdy and are usually ignored.

As muslims we have higher standards. We do not need to be accepted by people, friends or society. We do not need to blend in. Rather, all we need is to attain the acceptance of Allah and His pleasure, and Allah will sort the rest out. Allah is our ‘Wakeel’ (close protecting friend), and no one else matters. Truth is, we claim Islam, and we call ourselves muslims, yet we try to fit into a non-muslim society! Why?!!! Allahu-Alam!

Be not fooled. Every part of the body is capable of falling into zina. For the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “the eyes may commit zina, the hands may commit zina, the feet may commit zina, and the private parts commit zina.” (Ahmad) In another hadith, the Prophet (peace be upon him) clarified this further, he said, “the zina of the eyes is looking, the zina of the ears is listening, the zina of the tongues is speaking, the zina of the hand is touching, and the zina of the foot is walking. The heart wishes and longs and the private part confirms that or denies it.” This hadith makes it clear that every part of the body is responsible for zina. One baby step leads to another. Shaytaan, makes you start small.

Shaytaan’s priority is to lead mankind astray, through every means possible. His primary tool is deception, by which he makes sins fair-seeming. On the Day of Judgment we will be held responsible for the actions of our entire body. Then we will have to bear the consequences of our actions, and we will be recompensed for our deeds.

May Allah keep us safe.

Bibi Zainab Dowlut

non mahram