- Umar ibn al-Khattab established the Islamic Calendar uniting the different dating methods of his time by counting back to the year of the Hijrah (migration to Madina) to determine when to start.
- 16 July, 622 CE = 1 Muharram, 1 AH
- Islamic Calendar begins with sacrifice (hijrah of the Prophet and the Muslims to Madina) and ends with sacrifice (hajj, hijrah of Hajira).
- Not from someone’s birthday, or some king or ruler’s orders, but from the foundation of the Islamic community - on brotherhood and unity we begin and end.
- Lunar: Based upon the moon - accurate, close, visible, reminder of the beauty, order, submission of Allah’s creation but also its imperfection, its rise and fall, it needs the sun to shine. We interact with the signs of Allah when we look for the new moon every month, it is not passive time-keeping and time-passing, it’s natural. Animals, sea-creatures, oceans, plants, even human cycles are lunar timed.
- We rotate through the seasons - dynamic, perpetual. Summer is not just in June. Eid is not just in winter. A nation of all times and all seasons, we remain steadfast no matter what the season.
- Note the meaning of the names of the months:
- Muharram ["Forbidden" - it is one of the four months during which time it is forbidden to wage war or fight]
- Safar ["Empty" or "Yellow"]
- Rabi al-Awwal ["First spring"]
- Rabi al-Thani ["Second spring"]
- Jumada al-Awwal ["First freezing"]
- Jumada al-Thani ["Second freezing"]
- Rajab ["To respect" - this is another holy month when
fighting is prohibited]
- Shaban ["To spread and distribute"]
- Ramadan ["Parched thirst" - this is the month of Islamic daytime fasting]
- Shawwal ["To be light and vigorous"]
- Dhul-Qida ["The month of rest" - another month when no warfare or fighting is allowed]
- Dhul-Hijja ["The month of Hajj" - this is the month of the annual pilgrimage to Mecca, again when no warfare or fighting is allowed]
- Nadwi: "The Islamic Era did not start with the victories of Islamic wars, nor with the birth or death of the Prophet (peace be upon him), nor with the Revelation itself. It starts with Hijrah, or the sacrifice for the cause of Truth and for the preservation of the Revelation. It was a divinely inspired selection. God wanted to teach man that struggle between Truth and Evil is eternal. The Islamic year reminds Muslims every year not of the pomp and glory of Islam but of its sacrifice and prepares them to do the same."
- We look at history through the life of the Prophet, peace be upon him, the greatest life ever lived, everything is either before or after Hijrah. “Allah has renewed time”, it’s a universal new beginning in the history of man and civilization with the Hijrah of the Prophet and our forerunners at its centre piece.
Saturday, November 27, 2010
"You know better the affairs of your worldly life." [Muslim]
The above hadith is one on which some people base their evasion of the legal injunctions in the spheres of economics, civic and political duties, and the like, because these matters - so they claim - are among worldly concerns, and we know them better, and the Messenger, peace be upon him, entrusted them to us! But is this really what the noble hadith intends?
By no means. Among the purposes with which God sent His messengers is that they should stipulate for the people the principles of justice, the balanced norms of equity, and the regulations of the rights and duties in their worldly life, so that their standards should not clash, nor their ways differ. [Quran, Al-Haidid, 57:25]
So texts of the Book and the Sunnah have come which order and regulate everyday concerns - selling and buying, partnership and mortgaging, leasing and lending, and other matters - to the extent that the longest verse in the Book of God was sent down on the arrangement of a matter that is slight among the worldly matters, namely the writing down of debts. [Quran, Al-Baqarah, 2:282]
This hadith is interpreted by the occasion that prompted it, namely the incident of the pollination of date-palms. The Prophet's indication to the people about this was his conjecture, for he was not an agriculturist, he had grown up in a valley not endowed with crops. But the Ansar supposed his opinion to be by way of a revealed or religious command, and so they abandoned pollination. Its effect was bad for their yield.
"Approaching the Sunnah: Comprehension & Controversy" - Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, pp. 126, 127
"God leads astray whom He wills and guides whom He wills."
God has two kinds of Will. One is His (pre-eternal) Decree concerning the creation, including responsible, conscious beings. This Will, called Mashiah, is absolute with regard to things and unconscious beings, while it takes into consideration the (future) will of responsible, conscious beings. That is, God knows beforehand in what way those beings will use their free will and decrees accordingly. God's other Will (iradah) entails what He demands from His servants and denotes those things with which He is pleased.
In this verse God leads astray whom He wills means that He lets go astray those who choose to follow Satan and the promptings of their carnal soul, with the result that they follow their fancies and personal ideas and commit evil deeds that, though not based on true knowledge, seem just to them. As for, He guides whom He wills, this denotes those who choose to resist the temptations of Satan and their carnal soul, and instead follow the guidance that God sends through His Messengers, and they see as good whatever God decrees as so.
"The Quran: Annotated Interpretation in Modern English" - Ali Unal, p. 896
Saturday, August 7, 2010
- It is based upon power, and power is inclined toward oppression.
- It seeks to realize individual self-interest, even though this causes people to rush about madly trying to earn possessions.
- It considers life as a struggle, which causes internal and external conflict.
- It unifies through national and/or racial separatism, and feeds this selfish solidarity by swallowing the resources and territories of "others," both of which engender terrible conflict.
- It strives to satisfy novel caprices or aroused desires (whether the satisfaction is real or not), and so brutalizes people's tastes and aspirations.
Islamic civilization on the other hand is founded upon five positive principles:
- It rests upon right (not power), which requires justice and balance.
- It encourages virtue, which spurs mutual affection and love.
- It considers life as consisting of mutual help, which leads to unity and solidarity.
- It unifies people through a common religion in a common state, leading them to internal peace, and brotherhood and sisterhood, and it creates a willing self-defence against external enemies, guiding people to the truth.
- It elevates people, through knowledge and moral perfection, to higher ranks of humanity.
The Words, "The 12th Word," Said Nursi, p. 147
If you find yourself not doing much during Ramadan because you’re tired most of the time or feel sleepy because you’re fasting, here’s a little cool productivity tip to get lots of work done during a Ramadan day:
Get ONE of your most important tasks done first thing in the morning right after fajr prayer.
Here are 2 reasons why this technique would work:
1. You just had suhoor before fajr, therefore, your energy levels should be at its highest (note: assuming here that you have suhoor as late as possible).
3. If you get this ONE important task done after fajr, guess how you’ll feel rest of the day? Super productive! This feeling will propel you to be productive rest of your day and just hack through your workload so effortlessly!
This phrase has several meanings:
- Whatever evil people have done, or whatever sin they have committed, they repel (its effect) immediately by repentance.
- Whatever evil they have done, they immediately do a good deed in atonement for it.
- They repel the evil done to them by doing good to those who did evil to them.
- "When they are deprived (of anything), they give; and when they are wronged, they forgive."
Fethullah Gulen writes about this matter:
The most distinctive feature of a soul overflowing with faith is to love all types of love that are expressed in deeds, and to feel enmity for all deeds in which enmity is expressed. To hate everything is a sign of insanity or of infatuation with Satan.
Accept how God treats you. Make it the measure by which you treat others, so that you may represent the truth among them, and be free from the fear of loneliness in either world.
"The Quran: Annotated Interpretation in Modern English" - Ali Unal, p. 506
- Make a resolve to win the maximum favour of Allah: perform extra voluntary prayers (Nawaafil), make frequent Du'a and increase remembrance (Dhikr).
- Try to recite some Quran after every Prayer. In fact if you read 3-4 pages after every Prayer you can easily finish the entire Quran in Ramadan! Study theQuranic Tafseer (commentary) every morning.
- Invite a person you are not very close with to your home for Iftar, at least once a week. You will notice the blessings in your relationships!
- Bring life to your family! Everyday, try to conclude the fast with your family and spend some quality time together to understand each other better.
- Give gifts on 'Eid to at least 5 people: 2 to your family members, 2 to your good friends, and 1 to a person whom you love purely for the sake of Allah.
- Commit to an Islamic study circles to enhance your Islamic knowledge and practice. Plan to complete reading a book on Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) life in these 30 days.
- Donate generously to the masajid, Islamic organizations, and any where people are in need. "This is a month of sharing!"
- Share Ramadan and its teachings of love & patience with your neighbours.
- Initiate a project to promote or revive a ‘forgotten’ social cause in the Muslim and non-Muslim community: fight against racism, AIDS, drugs, cancer, smoking…etc.
- Did you know, our society, which constitutes only 20% of world’s population, actually consumes 80% of world’s resources! Volunteer at food bank or Anti-Poverty campaign, while fasting!
- Seek the rare and oft-neglected rewards of 'the night better than a 1000 months', Laylatul-Qadr.
- Weep in private for the forgiveness of your sins: It is the month of forgiveness and Allah's Mercy! It's never too late.
- Learn to control your tongue and lower your gaze. Remember the Prophet's warning that lying, backbiting, and a lustful gaze all violate the fast! Abandon foul language forever.
- Encourage others to enjoin and love goodness, and to abandon everything evil. Play the role of a Da'ee (one who invites to Allah) with passion and sympathy.
- Experience the joy of Tahajjud prayers late at night and devote yourself purely and fully to Allah in the I'tikaf retreat during the last 10 days of Ramadan.
"Inter Personal Relations" - Khurram Murad, pp. 10, 11
This verse is perhaps one of the most far-reaching of the Quranic enactments which offer guidelines on the restrictions that may be imposed on freedom of speech.
Words uttered in public which hurt another person by violating his/her honour or causing him/her physical harm or loss of property, whether directly or indirectly (such as by abusing his close relatives or homeland), are all covered by this verse. Hurtful speech, in this text, comprises that which is addressed to an individual, to more than one person, or to the community at large. Furthermore, the text is broad enough to comprehend all modern methods and facilities which are used for publicity and broadcasting.
In their commentaries on this verse, the commentators (mufassirun) indicate that the text here denounces the utterance of offensive speech absolutely, that is, regardless of the end it may serve or the context in which it may occur. The text does not, for instance, draw any distinction as to whether the speech so uttered consists of truth or falsehood, or whether it contemplates any kind of benefit. The only exception here is made for a person who has been wronged, and his/her cry for justice must be granted a hearing even at the expense of it being hurtful.
"Freedom of Expression in Islam" - Mohammad Hashim Kamali, pp. 167, 168
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Tell My servants (O Muhammad), to always say that which is best. Verily it is Satan who sows discord among men. Satan indeed is an open enemy to man.
In their discussions with the unbelievers and polytheists, in fact with all opponents of their faith, Muslims should refrain from losing their temper. Additionally, they should not resort to exaggerated and extremist statements. Even in the face of provocation from their opponents, Muslims should not utter even a word that is contrary to the truth; nor should they lose their temper at the vulgarities which are flung at them by their opponents, nor should they be provoked to the point of paying back their opponents in the latter's own coins. Instead, they should keep their composure and say only that which is balanced and true, and is in keeping with the grace and dignity of the faith which they seek to uphold.
The Quran tells believers that whenever in the course of their discussion on contentious issues with unbelievers, they feel overly provoked and overwhelmed with rage, they should immediately realize that such reactions are instigated by Satan who is keen to hurt the cause of their faith. Satan will certainly try to prompt the believers to give up, as their opponents had done, all efforts of reform, and to become entangled in futile wrangling and strife. For it is Satan's aim that all mankind remain perpetually enmeshed in such controversies.
Compiled From:"Towards Understanding the Quran" - Abul Ala Mawdudi, Vol. 5, p. 51
Saturday, April 17, 2010
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
ابو ھریرۃ رضي الله عنه سے روایت ہے
" ایک شخص ساٹھ سال تک نماز پڑھتا ہے
مگر اسکی ایک نماز بھی قبول نہیں ہوتی"
پوچھا گیا : وہ کیسے ؟؟
انہوں نے کہا : کیونکہ نہ وہ اپنا رکوع پورا کرتاہے اور نا سجود
نا قیام پورا کرتا ہے نا اس کی نماز میں خشوع ہوتا ہے
حضرت عمر رضي الله عنه نے فرمایا :
ایک شخص اسلام میں بوڑھا ہوگیا
اور ایک رکعت بھی اسنے اللہ کے لیے مکمل نہیں پڑھی
پوچھا گیا کیسے یا امیر المومنین ؟
اسنے نا اپنا رکوع پورا کیا اور نا سجود
امام احمد بن حنبل رحمہ اللہ نے فرمایا
ایک زمانہ لوگوں پر ایسا آئے گا"
لوگ نماز پڑھیں گے مگر انکی نماز نہیں ہوگی
اور مجھے ڈر ہے کہ وہ زمانہ یہی زمانہ ہے"
امام اگر آج کا زمانہ آکر دیکھ سکتے تو کیا کہتے ؟؟
امام غزالی رحمه الله نے فرمایا:
ایک شخص سجدہ کرتا ہے اس خیال سے کہ اس سجدہ سے اللہ کا تقرب حاصل کرے گا
اس اللہ کی قسم اگر اس کے اس سجدے کا گناہ تقسیم کیا جائے تو سارا بلد ھلاک کر دیا جائے
پوچھا گیا وہ کیسے ؟؟
وہ اپنا سر اپنے اللہ کے سامنے جھکاتا ہے
مگر اپنے نفس ،گناہوں، اپنی شہوات اور دنیا کی محبت میں مصروف ہوتا ہے
تو یہ کیسا سجدہ ہے ؟؟؟
ہمارے نبی صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم نے فرمایا
میری آنکھون کی ٹھنڈک نماز میں رکھی گئی ہے
تو کیا کبھی آپ نے ایسی نماز پڑھی جو آپکے آنکھوں کی ٹھنڈک بنی ہو ؟؟؟
کیا کبھی آپ گھر کی طرف تیزی سے پلٹے صرف دو رکعت کی ادائیگی کی نیت سے ؟؟
کیا کبھی نماز کی محبت نے آپ کو بے چین کیا ؟؟
کیا کبھی آپ نماز کے لیے ترسے ؟؟
کیا کبھی آپ نے رات کا بے چینی سے انتظار کیا
تاکہ آپ اپنے رب کے ساتھ اکیلے نماز میں ملاقات کر سکیں ؟؟
اللہ سبحانہ کا ارشاد ہے :
(( ألم يأن للذين آمنوا أن تخشع قلوبهم لذكر الله ))
کیا ابھی تک مومنوں کے لئے اس کا وقت نہیں آیا کہ اللہ کی یاد سے ان کے دل نرم ہوجائیں؟؟؟؟
ابن مسعود رضي الله عنه فرماتے ہیں
ہمارے اسلام لانے کے چار سال بعد یہ آیت نازل ہوئی
اس ایت میں اللہ سبحانہ نے ہم سے شکایت کی
ہم سب بہت رویے
اپنے قلۃ خشوع پر
پھر ہم گھروں سے نکلتے تو ایک دوسرے کو عتاب کرتے اور کہتے
کیا تم نے اللہ سبحانہ کا یہ فرمان نہیں سنا ؟؟؟
(( ألم يأن للذين آمنوا أن تخشع قلوبهم لذكر الله ))
کیا ابھی تک مومنوں کے لئے اس کا وقت نہیں آیا کہ اللہ کی یاد سے ان کے دل نرم ہوجائیں؟؟؟؟
تو لوگ گر جاتے اور رونے لگتے
اللہ کے اس عتاب پر
تو کیا کبھی آپ نے یہ محسوس کیا اس آیت سے؟؟
کہ اللہ تعالی آپ سے شکوہ کر رہا ہے ؟؟
اپنی نمازوں کو ضائع ہونے سے بچائیں
اپنے تمام دوستوں کو یہ میل نشر کریں
اور اگر آپ پر یہ بھاری ہو تو جان لیجیئے
آپ کے گناہ اس کام میں رکاوٹ ہیں
إذا ضاقت عليك الأرض بما رحبت، وضاقت عليك نفسك بما حملت فاهتف ... يا الله
لا إله إلا الله رب السموات السبع ورب العرش العظيم
Our Lord! grant us good in this world and good in the hereafter, and save us from the chastisement of the fire.
Ours is a society that thrives on showing off: showing off how much money a person makes, what clothes a person wears, even showing off who one dates! Take sports stars, actors, actresses, and musicians, most live a life of luxury and live that life very publicly.
Many of these people will develop a complex in which they feel they have earned these luxuries on their own, and through their own hands they achieved their fortune. As a result, these individuals no longer see that God blessed them with their current lives and hence they are not thankful to God.
As if bragging and flaunting aren't bad enough, what comes after this is jealousy and envy. Enough becomes not enough and we begin to envy those with more than ourselves. We may create jealousy in others. Even worse, we begin to belittle others we perceive as beneath us. For example, if we purchase a new pair of Jordan's or a Coach purse, we may tell others to "check this out; I got it for $120. I'm the first person to get them. They're limited edition."
If Allah has blessed us with money, then it's understandable we purchased such an item. But we see this quite a bit in middle school students - they begin to point out - going with the shoe example - shoes and say things like "look at those shoes, they are from Pay less" or "those Nike (or Converse, etc.) are out of style; no player wears them," and they mock the student wearing those shoes.
When we make people feel bad for what they are wearing or we make them feel embarrassed, then this is a clear indication that we are in need of an ego check. Think about the many examples throughout history of people who would show off and boast and how Allah humbled them.
"The War within Our Hearts: Struggles of the Muslim Youth" - Haseeb Quadri and Sa'ad Quadri, p. 76.
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:
"Recite the Quran as long as your hearts are inclined to it. When they differ from it, then get up [and remove yourselves] from [reciting] it." [Bukhari, Muslim]
Ibn Katheer has stated that in this hadith, the Messenger of Allah has instructed this Community to recite the Quran as long as their hearts are attune to the recitation, thinking and pondering over its meaning. They are not to be reciting it while they are preoccupied or bored with its reading. In those cases, they will not be achieving the goal of its reading. Hence, they should discontinue reading under conditions like that.
"Purification of the Soul: Concept, Process and Means" - Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo, p. 305
It takes just a signal or one word and everything, great or tiny, is done. In fact there is nothing to distinguish great from tiny; it is all part of how human beings see things. Nor is there a question of time, not even the twinkling of an eye; it is merely a metaphor to help people understand. Time is no more than a human conception that arises from the position of the earth and its rotation. As far as God and His plans are concerned, it has no significance.
The command is given just once and this entire universe comes into existence. Similarly, any change in it can be accomplished. Just one command and it will all go away as God wishes. In everything, the command is given once only: bringing anyone into life, taking it here or there, causing it to die, bringing it back in some shape or form, resurrecting all creatures from all generations to gather them for the reckoning and reward. It is a once only command that requires no effort or time, because it comes from the Almighty in due measure and with perfect ease.
"In the Shade of the Quran" - Sayyid Qutb, Vol 16, p. 271
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Here is the good news. How successful people think can be learned. Good thinking can take you to a whole new level - personally and professionally. If you change your thinking, you can change your life!
Three things you need to know about changing your thinking:
1- Changed Thinking is Not Automatic: Sadly, a change in thinking doesn't happen on its own. Good ideas rarely go out and find someone. If you want to find a good idea, you must search for it. If you want to become a good thinker, you must work at it - and once you begin to become a better thinker, the good ideas keep coming.
2- Changed Thinking is Difficult: The only people who believe thinking is easy are those who don't habitually engage in it. Nobel Prize-winning physicist Albert Einstien, one of the best thinkers who ever lived, asserted, "Thinking is hard work; that's why so few do it." Because thinking is difficult, you want to use anything you can to help you improve the process.
3- Changed Thinking is Woth the Investment: Author, Napoleon Hill observed, "More gold has been mined from the thoughts of man than has ever been taken from the earth." When you take the time to learn how to change your thinking and become a better thinker, you are investing in yourself. Gold mines tap out. Stock markets crash. Real estate investments can go sour. But a human mind with the ability to think well is like a diamond mine that never runs out. It's priceless. Compiled From:
"How Successful People Think: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life" by John C. Maxwell
Sunday, February 7, 2010
How is integrity a source of self-worth? Having it leads to inner peace. And if you have inner peace you can handle most anything, even mean girls, heart-wrenching breakups, and major embarrassments.
Now, if you're like most other teens, you'll make mistakes and have to work on this integrity thing. No one's perfect. So, if you mess up, make up. Never try to cover up a mistake. It only makes things worse. NBA coach Rick Pitino said: "Lying makes a problem part of the future; truth makes a problem part of the past."
"The 6 Most Important Decisions You'll Ever Make" - Sean Covey, p. 277
Ibn Taymiyya narrated, 'When the angels were commanded to bear the Throne [of God], they said: "Our Lord, how can we bear Your Throne when upon it is Your greatness and might?" He said, "Say: lâ hawla wa lâ quwwata illâ bi Allâh (There is neither power nor strength save in God.)" Upon pronouncing this, they carried the Throne.'
These words have the striking effect of helping one to accomplish difficult work, bear fatigue, visit kings and endure fear or dreadful experience. They also have the striking effect of warding off poverty. For according to a hadith related by Ibn Abi l-Dunya, the Messenger of God said, 'For whoever says "There is neither strength nor power save in God" one hundred times, no day shall be afflicted by poverty.'
"The Invocation of God" - Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, pp. 99, 100
"Assuredly We have sent Our Messengers with manifest truths, and We have sent down with them the Book and the Balance so that humankind may live by equity. And we have sent down iron, in which is stern might and benefits for humankind, so that God may mark out those who help God and His messengers, though they do not see Him. Surely God is All-Strong, All-Glorious with irresistible might."
Iron is perhaps the most important and necessary matter for technology. It is also our most elemental material, as it is the core of the earth. So, this verse may also be referring to the origins of the earth. In addition, iron is indispensably necessary to make weapons to fight in God's cause to uphold His Word, and to eradicate injustice.
From another point of view, this verse is very significant in assessing a sound society and government. The Messengers are the God-appointed leaders of humankind, who always guided them to the truth and led them in all aspects of life throughout human history. The Book is the compilation of knowledge, instructions, and laws essential to humankind's happiness in both worlds. The Balance is the criterion to attain what is right in belief, thinking, and action, and also to realize justice in human individual and social life. Iron symbolizes force or power in human social life. Without the Book, iron (force) destroys justice and brings about injustice. Without the Balance, iron misuses the Book according to its own benefits. Without iron, the Book and Balance are not sufficient to form a good society and government. Said Nursi remarks: "Principles of wisdom and laws of truth have no effect upon ordinary people unless the former are combined with the state's laws and the latter with power." (The Letters, "Seeds of the Truth," 2:306).
"The Quran: Annotated Interpretation in Modern English" - Ali Unal, pp. 1113