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Friday, April 30, 2004

1. On The Nature of God

Who is God? God explains in His Final Book that it is quite simply impossible for us to completely understand Him. We cannot pinpoint a definition of the Creator,

"Glory to the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth - the Sustainer, in almightiness enthroned - from all that they may attribute to Him by way of definition" [43:82]

Our inability to completely understand God does not mean that He is completely remote from us. In spite of our limited understanding, we are all quite capable of turning to God, and He is not unaware of our efforts,

"...and unto thy Sustainer turn with love." [94:8]

"Behold, for those who stand in awe of God although He is beyond the reach of their perception, there is forgiveness in store and a great reward" [67:12]

God has not left mankind entirely in the dark regarding His Nature. He refers to Himself by approximately 100 names in various places throughout the Final Book. Each name is a descriptive attribute of God, and they are all meant to help us understand the Creator. To gain this understanding involves simply thinking about God and reflecting on His names, and this type of awareness is a central pillar of faith (i.e. when one actively remembers God and is conscious of Him). A second benefit of these names is that some of them provide mankind with ideals to try to attain. For example, since God is the Most Forgiving, Most Patient, and Most Knowledgeable, we should each strive to be forgiving, patient, and knowledgeable (educated in our case). Of all His attributes, God emphasizes a single one above all others in His Final Book: that HE IS ONE. God is not two, three, four, or more beings. There is only one deity, and He is God,

"Say: `He is God, Unique God the Eternal, the Independent. He begets not, and neither is He begotten. And there is nothing that could be compared to Him.'" [112:1-4]

In other places of the Final Book, God emphasizes His Greatness and the impossibility of fully grasping Him by using the plural sense of pronouns for Himself - but He is strictly One and Unique with no other partners or deities.

After this aspect of Unity, God chose to emphasize two of His other names more often than the rest in the Final Book: "the Most Merciful, the One who acts Mercifully." In fact, each chapter but one in the whole Book starts with, "In the Name of God, the Most Merciful, the One who Acts Mercifully." These two names cannot be emphasized enough. They are meant to stress we should not let our sins keep us from coming back to God and calling to Him at all times, in joy or sadness. The Creator is more aware of our imperfections than we are, and so when we stumble and feel bad, God is far more likely to be kind than angry.

The Last Messenger and Prophet of God (i.e. the person whom God chose to deliver the Final Book to the rest of mankind) commented on God's mercy by informing us that,

"When God decreed the Creation He pledged Himself by writing in His book which is laid down with Him: `My mercy prevails over my wrath.'" - the Last Messenger

"God says: I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with Him when He makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me a hand's span, I draw near to him an arm's length; and if he draws near to Me an arm's length, I draw near to him a fathom's length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him with speed." - the Last Messenger
The dwelling-places of the jinn

The jinn live on this earth where we do. They are mostly to be found in ruins and unclean places like bathrooms, dunghills, garbage dumps and graveyards. Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us to take precautions when entering such places, by reciting the adhkaar (prayers) prescribed by Islam. One of these was reported by Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him), who said: "When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) entered the toilet, he would say, 'Allaahumma innee a'oodhu bika min al-khubuthi wa'l-khabaa'ith (O Allaah, I seek refuge with You from the evil ones, male and female).'" (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 142; and Muslim, 375). Al-Khattaabi explained that khubuth is the plural of khabeeth (evil or dirty - masculine form), and khabaa'ith is the plural of khabeethah (evil or dirty - feminine form), and that what is meant is male and female shayaateen.


Some jinns are Muslims and some are kaafirs

Allaah tells us that some of the jinn said (interpretation of the meaning):

" 'And some of us are Muslims, and of us some are al-qaasitoon (disbelievers - those who have deviated from the Right Path). And whosoever has embraced Islam, then such have sought the Right Path. And as for the qaasitoon, they shall be firewood for Hell.'" [al-Jinn 72:14-15]

The Muslims among the jinn are of different levels as regards righteousness and taqwa. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

"[Some jinn said:] 'There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary; we are groups, each having a different way (religious sects, etc.)'" [al-Jinn 72:11]

The story of how the first jinn of this ummah became Muslim was narrated by 'Abd-Allaah ibn 'Abbaas, who said: "The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) went out with a group of his Companions heading for the marketplace of 'Ukaaz. This was when the shayaateen were prevented from getting any news from heaven, and shooting stars had been sent against them. The shayaateen went back to their people, who said, 'What is the matter with you?'
They said, 'We cannot get news from heaven, and shooting stars were sent against us.' Their people said, 'Nothing is stopping you from hearing news from heaven except some new event that must have happened. Go and look in the east and the west of the earth, and see if you can find out what it is that is stopping you from hearing news from heaven.'
Those who went out in the direction of Tihaamah came upon the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) in Nakhlah, when he was on his way to 'Ukaaz, and found him leading his Companions in Fajr prayer. When they heard the Qur'aan, they listened to it and said, 'By Allaah, this is what is stopping us from hearing news from heaven.' When they went back to their people, they said, 'O our people, we have heard a wonderful Recital (the Qur'aan). It guides to the Right Path, and we have believed therein, and we shall never join (in worship) anything with our Lord (Allaah). [al-Jinn 72:2 - interpretation of the meaning].

Protection from the harm of the jinn

Because the jinn can see us while we cannot see them, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us many ways to protect ourselves from their harm, such as seeking refuge with Allaah from the accursed Shaytaan, reciting Soorat al-Falaq and Soorat al-Naas (the last two Soorahs of the Qur'aan), and reciting the words taught by Allaah in the Qur'aan (interpretation of the meaning): "Say: 'My Lord! I seek refuge with You from the whisperings (suggestions) of the shayaateen (devils). And I seek refuge with You, my Lord, lest they may attend (or come near) me.'" [al-Mu'minoon 23:97-98]

Saying Bismillaah (in the Name of Allaah) before entering one's home, before eating or drinking, and before having intercourse will also keep the Shaytaan from entering the house or partaking with a person in his food, drink and sexual activity. Similarly, mentioning the name of Allaah before entering the toilet or taking off one's clothes will prevent the jinn from seeing a person's 'awrah or harming him, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, "To put a barrier that will prevent the jinn from seeing the 'awrah of the sons of Aadam, let any one of you say 'Bismillaah' when entering the toilet." (Reported by al-Tirmidhi, 551; Saheeh al-Jaami', 3611).

Strength of faith and religion in general will also prevent the jinn from harming a person, so much so that if they were to fight, the one who has faith would win. 'Abd-Allaah ibn Mas'ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: "A man from among the Companions of Muhammad met a man from among the jinn. They wrestled, and the human knocked down the jinn. The human said to him, 'You look small and skinny to me, and your forearms look like the front paws of a dog. Do all the jinn look like this, or only you?' He said, 'No, by Allaah, among them I am strong, but let us wrestle again, and if you defeat me I will teach you something that will do you good.' The human said, 'Fine.' He said, 'Recite, 'Allaah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever-living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists.' [Aayat al-Kursi - al-Baqarah 2:255 -interpretation of the meaning]. The human said, 'Fine.' He said, 'You will never recite this in your house but the Shaytaan will come out of it like a donkey breaking wind, and he will never come back in until the next morning.'"
(Reported by al-Daarimi, 3247).

This is a brief summary about the jinn, and their nature and characteristics. Allaah is the Best of protectors and the Most Merciful of those who show mercy.

My Advice to the Women - The Manners of the Woman Leaving (exiting) the home (house)


Umm ‘Abdillah Al-Waadi’eeyah ( the daughter of Shaykh Muqbil bin Haddee al-Wadee [Allah Yarhamu])

The Hijaab
Not using perfume
A light walk, so that the (bing) noise of her shoes is not heard, Allah ta’ala says:
“ . . . and let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment.”Surat-Noor: Verse 31
And if she walks with her sister and there are some men she does not speak with her companion, and this does not mean that the woman’s voice is ‘awrah, but the men hearing the voice of the woman, it is possible that it could lead to fitnah.
That she should ask for permission from her husband if she is married
If she is going a distance which is considered traveling, she doesn’t exit except with a mahram
Not mixing with men
To be endowed with shyness
To lower her gaze
Not taking off her clothing in other than her house, if she means with that displaying (herself), verily it comes on the Prophet (saw) that he said, “any woman who takes off her clothes in other than her husband’s house, verily revealed (unveiled) the sutrah between her and her Lord”


Nottingham Muslim wins discrimination case




IACN was contacted by a young Muslim in his early twenties who had been sacked from work for apparently “praying too much”.

The young man (Mr X) who cannot be named for legal reasons obtained a job through a recruitment agency.

On his first day at work, he approached his supervisor soon after his arrival and commented that he will need to pray about three times during his shift. He also informed his supervisor that each prayer will take about five minutes and that he will make up for that time by working through his last fifteen minutes break.

The supervisor referred him to a manager who said that he could not pray at work. The manager took Mr X to his office and called the recruitment agency. During the conversation, the manager said "I don't want these kind of people".

Mr X completed his ten hour shift that day and also performed his prayers. The next day he arrived at work only to be told ten minutes later that “the agency has made a mistake, they shouldn't have sent you.” He was further told that his recruitment agency has sent a taxi to collect him.

When he arrived at the agency, he was told that: "You were praying too much" and hence sacked.

When IACN contacted the agency, we were told that he was sacked for being ‘slow’ at work. The agency simply refused to accept what they had said earlier.

IACN filed a discrimination case against the agency and alhamdulillah we have recently won this battle on behalf of Mr X and he has received satisfactory compensation.

The cancer of Islamophobia is on the rise and Muslims continue to suffer everyday. It is absolutely essential that we do not suffer in silence. Do not let the Muslim-haters get away. Ensure that you report any instances of Islamophobia no matter how insignificant you may think it may be.

Islamophobes are encouraged when no action is taken against them. If you let them get away today, then chances are that they will harm your brother or sister tomorrow.

Islamic Threat



In recent years, a great deal of attention in the media have been given to the threat of "Islamic Fundamentalism". Unfortunately, due to a twisted mixture of biased reporting in the Western media and the actions of some ignorant Muslims, the word "Islam" has become almost synonymous with "terrorism". However, when one analyzes the situation, the question that should come to mind is: Do the teachings of Islam encourage terrorism? The answer: Certainly not! Islam totally forbids the terrorist acts that are carried out by some misguided people. It should be remembered that all religions have cults and misguided followers, so it is their teachings that should be looked at, not the actions of a few individuals. Unfortunately, in the media, whenever a Muslim commits a heinous act, he is labeled a "Muslim terrorist". However, when Serbs murder and rape innocent women in Bosnia, they are not called "Christian terrorists", nor are the activities in Northern Ireland labeled "Christian terrorism". Also, when right-wing Christians in the U. S. bomb abortion clinics, they are not called "Christian terrorists". Reflecting on these facts, one could certainly conclude that there is a double-standard in the media! Although religious feelings play a significant role in the previously mentioned "Christian" conflicts, the media does not apply religious labels because they assume that such barbarous acts have nothing to do with the teachings of Christianity. However, when something happens involving a Muslim, they often try to put the blame on Islam itself -- and not the misguided individual. Certainly, Islamic Law allows war --- any religion or civilization that did not would never survive --- but it certainly does not condone attacks against innocent people, women or children. The Arabic word "jihad", which is often translated as "Holy War", simply means "to struggle". The word for "war" in Arabic is "harb", not "jihad". "Struggling", i.e. "making jihad", to defend Islam, Muslims or to liberate a land where Muslims are oppressed is certainly allowed (and even encouraged) in Islam. However, any such activities must be done according to the teachings of Islam. Islam also clearly forbids "taking the law into your own hands", which means that individual Muslims cannot go around deciding who they want to kill, punish or torture. Trial and punishment must be carried out by a lawful authority and a knowledgeable judge. Also, when looking at events in the Muslim World, it should be kept in mind that a long period of colonialism ended fairly recently in most Muslim countries. During this time, the peoples in this countries were culturally, materially and religiously exploited - mostly by the so-called "Christian" nations of the West. This painful period has not really come to an end in many Muslim countries, where people are still under the control of foreign powers or puppet regimes supported by foreign powers. Also, through the media, people in the West are made to believe that tyrants like Saddam Hussein in Iraq and Moamar Qaddafi in Libya are "Islamic" leaders -- when just the opposite is true. Neither of these rulers even profess Islam as an ideology, but only use Islamic slogans to manipulate their powerless populations. They have about as much to do with Islam as Hitler had to do with Christianity! In reality, many Middle Eastern regimes which people think of as being "Islamic" oppress the practice of Islam in their countries. So suffice it to say that "terrorism" and killing innocent people directly contradicts the teachings of Islam.

The Final Book

Some people reject God because they can find no evidence for Him which satisfies both their hearts and minds simultaneously. Then there are others who accept God on the basis of emotional or irrational reasons which satisfy their hearts, but leave their minds unsure. These two groups of people have never found a satisfying answer to the question of their relationship with God. Then there are yet others who have found the correct path which God intended for us: to accept Him and His message to us using our minds first and foremost, and the heart follows easily and naturally as a consequence.

Instead of searching for the answer, there are also some people who chose to simply brush the question aside and ignore it unfortunately. This is the easy way out of what appears to be a very difficult, mysterious question which may seem to have no final solution. Most of these people are unaware of a very powerful message which completely and unequivocally establishes the correct path to God. This message squares with both the mind and the heart, and it has no equal since it comes to us straight from God Himself.

The message comes in the form of a book. In fact, God has given us several Books of guidance through the years, but each one was ultimately corrupted and changed by dishonest people. Each Book essentially contained the same fundamental message as the previous Books. Mankind was expected to guard these Books from harm, but unfortunately failed to live up to this expectation. Slowly but surely, each Book was edited and tampered with, destroying its authenticity. This is partly why God kept sending us more revelations.

However, almost 1400 years ago, God sent us another Book with the same basic message as the earlier ones, but with a small but very important difference. This time, God decreed that this Book would be the last Book sent down to us because God would protect it Himself. Regarding this Final Book, God said,

"Behold, it is We Ourselves who have bestowed from on high this reminder: and behold, it is We who shall truly guard it" [Chapter 15, verse 9]

Today, if we compare the 114 chapters in every copy of this Final Book with each other, we will find they match perfectly word for word - from the oldest copies made 1300-plus years ago to the ones printed just a few hours ago. No human hand has changed it.

The rational person has every right to be doubtful, of course, if he or she has never read this book. For such people, here is a small sample of what the Final Book contains. Suppose we wanted to ask God several questions about Him and about ourselves. Short of Him speaking to us directly (such a privilege has been granted to only one person out of all humanity), the Book has the best answers one can find. It is on the strength of these answers that an honest person may be struck with the conviction that the Final Book is from none other than God Almighty. Again, here is only a small part of the information one might find.
6. Messengers and Prophets

Who delivered God's Message to mankind? God has sent us many `reminders' of Him and of our obligations to Him over the centuries, culminating in the Final Book almost 1400 years ago. Every one of those `reminders' was delivered to us via a selected human being, one who was strong enough to deliver God's message to his people. These human beings are called the Prophets. They were not supernatural or immortal or different in any way from other human beings except that they were entrusted by God to speak in His Name,

"For [even] before thy time, [O Prophet], we never sent [as Our messengers] any but [mortal] men, whom We inspired - hence [tell the deniers of the truth] `If you do not know this, ask the followers of earlier revelation' - and neither did We endow them with bodies that ate no food, nor were they immortal." [21:7-8]

Some of the Prophets were allowed to perform supernatural miracles but only with God's permission (i.e. if He willed it). However, the Final Book stresses that every Prophet is no more than a servant of God - they do not have a share in His Divinity.

There is also a small group of Prophets who were also Messengers. Every Prophet has called his people to the Truth, but Messengers were additionally given a rejuvenated Message from God to convey. Every Messenger is a Prophet, but not every Prophet is a Messenger. There have been many Prophets, of which here are the names of a few mentioned in the Book: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Lot, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Aaron, Elijah, Elias, David, Solomon, Jonah, Job, Zacharias, John, Jesus, and, of course, the Last Messenger.

4. The Presence of Evil

Why does God allow men and women to be hurt? There are some people who use the presence of suffering and evil in this world as grounds to lose hope and perhaps even to reject God. However, according to the Final Book, the limited free will and reason of human beings destroys that argument. We are responsible for what we do, and must bear the consequences - that is the liability or price of freedom. The evil that we do and suffer from is chosen by us and not by God,

"...God wills no wrong to His creation." [3:108]

However, God also guarantees us that aside from our own evil actions and their effects, God Himself will put us through some trials and tribulations here on earth - but the key is they will never be more than we can handle, and they may even be good for us,

"If misfortune touches you [know that] similar misfortune has touched [other] people as well; for it is by turns that We apportion unto men such days [of fortune and misfortune]: and [this] to the end that God might mark out those who have attained to faith, and choose from among you such as [with their lives] bear witness to the truth - since God does not love evildoers - and that God might render pure of all dross those who have attained to faith, and bring to nought those who deny the truth. Do you think that you could enter Paradise unless God takes cognizance of your having striven hard [in His cause], and takes cognizance of your being patient in adversity?" [3:140-142]

"God does not burden any human being with more than he is well able to bear: in his favour shall be whatever good he does, and against him whatever evil he does..." [2:286]

An integral part of our being aware of God is hope and patience in times of hardship. In fact, the loss of hope is actually one of the symptoms of rejection of God,

"[Prophet Abraham] exclaimed, `And who - other than those who have utterly lost their way - could ever abandon the hope of his Sustainer's grace?'" [15:56]

The greatest source of hope is that God shall allow those people who accept Him to enter Paradise and, more importantly, to be close to Him. The Final Book contains many references on Paradise, and also on Hell, the destination of those people who knowingly reject God. Paradise is quite literally a place of indescribable joy, whereas Hell is its indescribable opposite (both places are given only partial descriptions in the Book). While the inhabitants of Paradise are permanent dwellers, the inmates of Hell are not necessarily imprisoned there forever; there are some who shall ultimately be freed,

"[But] verily, as for those who attain to faith and do righteous deeds - the gardens of Paradise will be there to welcome them; therein will they abide, [and] never will they desire any change therefrom." [18:107-108]

"And whoever rebels against God and His Apostle and transgresses His bounds, him
will He commit unto fire, therein to abide; and shameful suffering awaits him." [4:14]

"There shall come out of Hell-fire he who has said `There is no deity except God' and who has in his heart goodness weighing a barley-corn; then there shall come out of Hell-fire he who has said `There is no deity except God' and who has in his heart goodness weighing a grain of wheat; then there shall come out of Hell-fire he who has said `There is no deity except God' and who has in his heart goodness weighing an atom." - the Last Messenger
8. Forgiveness of God

If we sin, what should we expect from God? If we subsequently feel guilty and repent after doing something evil, God wants us to expect Him to be forgiving, forgiving, and more forgiving. However, there is one sin which God will not forgive: worshipping anything besides Him (unless the person realizes his or her error and returns to worshipping the One God),

"Verily God does not forgive the ascribing of divinity to anything beside Him, although He forgives any lesser sin to whomever He wills: for he who ascribes divinity to anything beside God has indeed contrived an awesome sin." [4:48]

"Say, `O you servants of Mine who have transgressed against your own selves! Despair not of God's Mercy: behold, God forgives all sins - for verily, He alone is much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace.'" [39:53]

Again, the most common phrase in the Final Book is "In the Name of God, the Most Merciful, the One who Acts Mercifully." The Last Messenger commented on God's forgiveness on many occasions as in the following case,

"God has said, `O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as it [i.e. the earth]'". - the Last Messenger
7. Eternal Salvation

Are certain people arbitrarily guaranteed the Favor of God, while others are excluded? The Mercy of God is not restricted arbitrarily to any one peoples. Everyone and anyone is free to accept the path to God using their own free will and reason,

"And they claim, `None shall ever enter Paradise unless he be a Jew' - or `a Christian'. Such are their wishful beliefs! Say [to them, O Prophet]: `Produce an evidence for what you are claiming, if what you say is true!' Yea, indeed: everyone who surrenders his whole being unto God, and is a doer of good, shall have his reward with his Sustainer, and all such need have no fear, and neither shall they grieve." [2:111-112]

The consequence of this is responsibility - everyone will be held accountable on the Day of Judgement. Some of us may be uncomfortable with this, but it is simply the price of freedom,

"It may not accord with your wishful thinking - nor with the wishful thinking of the followers of earlier revelation - [that] he who does evil shall be requited for it, and shall find none to protect him from God, and none to bring him succor, whereas anyone - be it man or woman - who does good deeds and is a believer, shall enter paradise, and shall not be wronged by as much as [would fill] the groove of a date-stone." [4:123-124]
3. Free Will and Reason Applied

Has God given mankind a clear path to Him? In essence, every rational reader would like to know if they can trust the authenticity of the Final Book. It is perfectly natural to feel that way; after all, this is the outcome of our God-given gift of reason. However, our own skeptical minds are the keys here: the Final Book, according to God, is addressed to people who think, pure and simple,

"...In this, behold, there are messages indeed for people who think." [39:42]

"Thus clearly do We spell out these messages unto people who use their reason." [30:28]

No one but God can make a human being believe in the Truth of the Final Book, but that human being has to read it with an open mind, applying his or her powers of reason. The price of limited free will is that we must choose to be guided. Those people who do search for the Truth with an open mind and heart may find that the Final Book, while vast, is surprisingly clear,

"Nay, but this [divine writ] consists of messages self-evident in the breasts of those who have been given knowledge - and none could knowingly reject Our messages unless it be such as would do wrong [to themselves]." [29:49]

"This divine writ - let there be no doubt about it - is a guidance for all the God-conscious..." [2:2]

The guidance of the Final Book is available to anyone who goes in search of it,

"[O men!] We have now bestowed upon you from on high a divine writ containing all that you ought to bear in mind: will you not, then, use your reason?" [21:10]

One of the most interesting aspects of the authenticity of the Final Book is the quantity of scientifically accurate statements in it - on subjects not even dreamed of 1300 years ago. A sample of these includes the following:

A large explosion marking the start of creation (Big Bang) [21:30]
The initial smokey (nebulous) nature of the skies [41:11]
The expansion of the universe [51:41]
The presence of a huge amount of time before mankind appeared [76:1]
The existence of sun and moon orbits [21;33]
The finite sun and moon lifetimes [13:2]
The final destination of the sun (Solar Apex) [36:38]
The origin of all life based in water [21:30]

In fact, God states that the amazing beauty and intricacy of the natural world around us, as well as our own complex biological makeup, will ultimately lead us to Him as we grow in understanding,

"In time, We shall make them fully understand Our messages [through what they perceive] in the utmost horizons [of the universe] and within themselves, so that it will become clear unto them this [revelation] is indeed the truth. Is it not enough that thy Sustainer is witness unto everything?" [41:53]

The Muslim Faith is winning Western admirers despite hostile media coverage.
Unprecedented numbers of British people, nearly all of them women, are converting to Islam at a time of deep divisions within the Anglican and Catholic churches.




The rate of conversions has prompted predictions that Islam will rapidly become an important religious force in this country.[1] "Within the next 20 years the number of British converts will equal or overtake the immigrant Muslim community that brought the faith here", says Rose Kendrick, a religious education teacher at a Hull comprehensive and the author of a textbook guide to the Koran. She says: "Islam is as much a world faith as is Roman Catholicism. No one nationality claims it as its own". Islam is also spreading fast on the continent and in America.

The surge in conversions to Islam has taken place despite the negative image of the faith in the Western press. Indeed, the pace of conversions has accelerated since publicity over the Salman Rushdie affair, the Gulf War[2] and the plight of the Muslims in Bosnia. It is even more ironic that most British converts should be women, given the widespread view in the west that Islam treats women poorly. In the United States, women converts outnumber men by four to one, and in Britain make up the bulk of the estimated 10, 000 to 20, 000 converts, forming part of a Muslim community of 1 to 1.5 million. Many of Britain's "New Muslims" are from middle-class backgrounds. They include Matthew Wilkinson, a former head boy of Eton who went on to Cambridge, and a son and daughter of Lord Justice Scott.

A small-scale survey by the Islamic Foundation in Leicester suggests that most converts are aged 30 to 50. Younger Muslims point to many conversions among students and highlight the intellectual thrust of Islam. "Muhammad" said, "The light of Islam will rise in the West" and I think that is what is happening in our day" says Aliya Haeri, an American-born psychologist who converted 15 years ago. She is a consultant to the Zahra Trust, a charity publishing spiritual literature and is one of Britain's prominent Islamic speakers. She adds: "Western converts are coming to Islam with fresh eyes, without all the habits of the East, avoiding much of what is culturally wrong. The purest tradition is finding itself strongest in the West."[3]

Some say the conversions are prompted by the rise of comparative religious education. The British media, offering what Muslims describe as a relentless bad press on all things Islamic, is also said to have helped. Westerners despairing of their own society - rising in crime, family breakdown, drugs and alcoholism [4] - have come to admire the discipline and security of Islam. Many converts are former Christians disillusioned by the uncertainty of the church and unhappy with the concept of the Trinity and deification of Jesus. .
Quest of the Convert - Why Change?
Other converts describe a search for a religious identity. Many had previously been practising Christians but found intellectual satisfaction in Islam. "I was a theology student and it was the academic argument that led to my conversion." Rose Kendrick, a religious education teacher and author, said she objected to the concept of the original sin: "Under Islam, the sins of the fathers aren't visited on the sons. The idea that God is not always forgiving is blasphemous to Muslims.

Maimuna, 39, was raised as a High Anglican and confirmed at 15 at the peak of her religious devotion. "I was entranced by the ritual of the High Church and thought about taking the veil." Her crisis came when a prayer was not answered. She slammed the door on visiting vicars but travelled to convents for discussions with nuns. "My belief came back stronger, but not for the Church, the institution or the dogma." She researched every Christian denomination, plus Judaism, Buddhism and Krishna Consciousness, before turning to Islam.

Many converts from Christianity reject the ecclesiastical hierarchy emphasising Muslims' direct relationship with God. They sense a lack of leadership in the Church of England and are suspicious of its apparent flexibility. "Muslims don't keep shifting their goal-posts," says Huda Khattab, 28, author of The Muslim Woman's Handbook, published this year by Ta-Ha. She converted ten years ago while studying Arabic at university. "Christianity changes, like the way some have said pre-marital sex is okay if its with the person you're going to marry. It seems so wishy-washy. Islam was constant about sex, about praying five times a day. The prayer makes you conscious of God all the time. You're continually touching base.

Footnotes:

1- This is one of the reasons why there is an onslaught of bad press against Islam and the Muslims. Whoever considers Islam carefully with its principle belief Tawheed (the Uniqueness of Allah, His and His sole right to subservience, worship and legislation), the sum total of its injunctions, formulated by Allah (which are harmonic and define the true nature, position, rights and responsibilities of both sexes), and its justice in every sphere of life (social, economical and political) for all categories of people - wives, husbands, children, orphans, women, the poor and indigent, the poverty-stricken - will realise why it poses a threat to the leading elite of the western civilisations (i.e. those who benefit most from the unfair and unjust forms by which the people are governed). It is in the hands of such people that the control of peoples beliefs and ideas lie (via television, Magazines, Films, Education) and naturally this advantage is used to maintain the existing status quo. Muslims are not governed by and enslaved the false beliefs and ideas of humans, they are enslaved to and governed by Allah alone. This is the essence of Islam - That enslavement is to none but to Allah alone and everything besides Him is undeserving of worship and subservience. .

2- It is now an established fact that around 5,000 of the US Troops who were stationed in Saudi Arabia became Muslims during and shortly after the Gulf War.

3- Much of the alleged oppression of women is due to localised culture which is based on a superstition that is more akin to Hinduism. It is, however, portrayed as being Islamic in origin which in turn seriously affects the 'independence of thought' of those who do not bother to pursue the matter in an objective manner - which includes most people. .

4- One of the biggest industries in the West is that of entertainment and amusement. This is essential to maintain the false idea of progress, that what comes next is better and worth enduring for. Peoples minds are preoccupied with their own pleasures and other pursuits while others are being murdered, slaughtered, women raped, innocent babies and children butchered with axes and knives, innocent by-standers in robberies and muggings killed, the aged battered to death by adolescents, thousands dying of drug abuse, thousands of innocent lives destroyed by the consumption of alcohol, drunkards beating their women and children... the list is endless. The entertainment industry is one of the effective tools in the 'normalisation of the thought process', the 'desensitisation of the humanistic concern', and the intensification of the 'my pleasure and gratification is what is most important syndrome.

"No calamity befalls on the earth or in yourselves but it is inscribed in the Book of Decrees (Al-Lauh Al-Mahfuz) before We bring it into existence. Verily, that is easy for Allah." "In order that you may not grieve at the things over that you fail to get, nor rejoice over that which has been given to you. And Allah likes not prideful boasters"

[Translation of the meaning of Surah al-Hadid, Ayah 22-23]

9. The Straight Way

What is the name for the way of life described in the Final Book? It is Islam, and it means "self-surrender [to God]". Any man or woman who accepts Islam is a Muslim. The Final Book is called the Qur'an (meaning "the Recitation"), and it is addressed to all of mankind in spite of being revealed in Arabic, the language of its Messenger and his people: Muhammad bin Abd-Allah. The life of the Prophet serves as the other base of Islam (the first being the Qur'an), and it is known as the Sunnah. Muhammad is the Last Prophet and Messenger of God as the Qur'an says,

"[And know, O believers, that] Muhammad is not the father of any one of your men, but is God's Apostle and the Seal of all the Prophets..." [33:40]

And God has revealed to us His proper name, and it is ALLAH.

The Qur'an contains a great deal of guidance and information for anyone looking for final answers. The information given in this small essay is only the tip of the tip of the iceberg. There is no substitute for reading the Qur'an itself in its entirety - it is the closest we can come to having God speak to us directly and personally here on Earth. The Qur'an answers many questions which are commonly asked by today's men and women. Its scope is wide: from fundamental issues such as the nature of the Creator and mankind's limited free will and reason, to the more mundane such as marriage laws and whom to give charity to. Islam as described in the Qur'an is vastly and almost completely different than Islam as understood by most non-Muslims and even a few Muslims. The negative image of Islam today is an incredibly misleading deception. It is based on the moral weakness of some people who claim to be Muslims, and also on the unawareness of non-Muslims. Behind this image is the presence of a Truth which answers the fundamental questions we have, and which can reunite us with God. It is there for us to listen to, or to ignore.

And Allah Knows Best.

"And [know that] We have not created the heavens and the earth and all that is between them in mere idle play..." [21:16]

"Will they not, then, try to understand this Qur'an? Had it issued from any but God, they would surely have found in it many an inner contradiction!" [4:82]

"We did not bestow the Qur'an on thee from on high to make thee unhappy." [20:2]

"[O men!] We have now bestowed upon you from on high a divine writ containing all that you ought to bear in mind: will you not, then, use your reason?" [21:10]

"...so remember Me, and I shall remember you; and be grateful to Me, and deny Me not." [2:152]

"Verily, those who attain to faith and do righteous deeds will the Most Gracious endow with love." [19:96]

"Say [O Prophet]: `If you love God, follow me, [and] God will love you and forgive you your sins; for God is much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace.'" [3:31]

"Say: `If all the sea were ink for my Sustainer's words, the sea would indeed be exhausted ere my Sustainer's words are exhausted! And [thus it would be] if we were to add to it sea upon sea.'" [18:109]
The story of a Punk who embraced Islam

Let's start at the beginning (always a good place). Life began for me in a place called Chatham in Kent in England, way back in 1963. I am a girl, an only child. My parents and their parents and their parents, etc., were all English along with myself so as you can see I am not from an Islamic background.

Anyway, when I was only a little tot of barely 4 years my parents packed up and whooshed us all across the Atlantic to North America. My parents loved it over there but I grew up to hate it. I never got on there no matter how hard I tried. With my limited knowledge I felt English at heart (may Allah protect me from feelings of nationalism and other such nonsense) and my mission in life was to return to the UK. I had a long wait in front of me.

All my life, in spite of the usual selfish non-Islamic lifestyle I led, my love towards my Creator was always in the background. But, due to my pride and insecurity, I clung to the antics of my generation. This was the age of punk rock. I became drawn into this scene when I was 14. Due to my difficult upbringing from a household full of violence and perversion, I entered into this rage with gusto - (may Allah forgive me)!

Those whom I called my friends back then were merely inmates within a prison we had made for ourselves. I never completed school, never acquired a career and was generally an aimless individual. I was the epitome of what a person is when she does not worship her Creator. I worked and saved my money until I had enough to finally get back to England. I was 25 years old. All I had was a suitcase in my hand, the future ahead of me, and my sins behind me.

All my life (as I had mentioned above) especially in the quiet moments, you know when the hustle and bustle of daily life comes to an end and it's night-time and there you are alone in your bed, I would think of Allah although I only knew Him as God. I knew my mistakes, I knew my sins. Well you do when you're alone and you don't have to pretend in front of anyone. Many nights I cried and prayed in my clumsy way for help.

I still dressed outrageously with spiked hair, bizarre eye make-up, leather jacket - the works. I was weak - as we all are, but weakness combined with insecure pride is a volatile combination.

Over the years here in England not much changed. More and more I remembered how every time throughout my life I had seen something to do with Islam it always touched me deeply in a place where nothing had ever touched me. I always used to wonder at this because the feeling felt so pure, so unique, so true and dignified. Over the years I didn't pursue its implications because I suppose it frightened. But since being in England the feeling for Islam became stronger and stronger until it was on my mind daily. I had a room-mate whom I was close to and I would sometimes talk about my feelings for Islam and how I didn't understand the strength of the feeling. I did not know any Muslims and nothing about Islam except that Muslims read the Quran. I knew that there was a mosque sort of near by and sometimes I saw people who I thought were Muslims and that was it.

Then, one day, almost 4 years ago myself and my then room-mate were walking down one of the main roads we have. It was a pleasant sunny day and the shade of the trees was cool and still I was dressed in my ridiculous gear. Out of nowhere I stopped and turned to my friend and said, "I've got to do it, I've got to become a Muslim today." How can I explain to you the feeling I felt at that moment which made me say these words. It had been building up gradually for a little while and on that pavement I felt such joy, such tearful joy and I was truly overwhelmed. Allah had chosen the time!

My friend was shocked and I had to try hard to stop myself from audibly crying. It was the most incredible thing. Without embarrassment as to my appearance I went to the Masjid I had seen a long time before and took my Shahaadah (declaration of faith). Out of the choice of names I chose the one that meant the most to me and began my new life. A sister gave me a Hijab and a Niqab (a veil which is optional for the Muslim woman) the next day and since then I have worn nothing else when leaving my home. I was like a baby again.

When I began attending study circles I saw how the other sisters carried themselves. Always, always they mentioned Allah's name with such ease and for the first time felt the joy of being in the company of those who loved Allah. It was then that I realised the answers to so many questions I didn't realize I had been asking all my life. Al-hamdu lillaah (all praise is due to Allah), my Fitrah (natural pure state humans are born upon) won through and Allah guided me to the Deen (His religion – Islam).

To look at me then, any person would have thought me such an unlikely candidate, but Allah sees us for who we really are and He guides whom He wills. I have taught myself to read Arabic and I am learning Tajweed (correct pronunciation of reciting Qur'an). I am surrounded by so many Muslims who fear Allah and whom I see often. I mean none of my above mentioned achievements as pride, indeed I wouldn't mention them at all if it wasn't for this introduction because I want to stress how Allah can change a person so incredibly, if He chooses as He (SWT) changed me.

It is a real blessing, how far I have come. My time now is spent studying, endless computer work towards the Deen, and giving da'wah (calling to Allah's religion). I seek guidance from Allah to increase my knowledge and understanding and that He (the Most High) will be pleased with me, Aameen
Conversion

440. The Islamic law expressly recognizes for non-Muslims the liberty to preserve their beliefs; and while it forbids categorically all recourse to compulsion for converting others to Islam, it maintains rigorous discipline among its own adherents. The basis of the Islamic "nationality" is religious and not ethnic, linguistic nor regional. Hence apostasy has naturally been considered political treason. It is true that this crime is punished by penalties, but the necessity scarcely as history has proved. Not only at the time when the Muslims reigned supreme from the Pacific to the Atlantic Oceans, but even in our own age of political as well as material and intellectual weakness among Muslims, apostasy of Muslims is surprisingly non-existent. This is true not only of regions where there is the semblance of a Muslim State, but even elsewhere, under the colonial powers who have made all humanly possible efforts to convert Muslims to other religions. Islam is gaining ground today, even among Western peoples, from Finland to Norway to Italy, from Canada to Argentina. And all this in spite of the absence of any organized missionary activity.
Palestine is now part of an arc of Muslim resistance

Across the Middle East, western-backed occupations are fuelling terror


Seumas Milne
Thursday March 25, 2004
The Guardian

Ariel Sharon's decision to incinerate a 67-year-old blind quadriplegic cleric outside his local mosque will certainly go down as one of the most spectacularly counter-productive acts of violence in the history of the Israel-Palestine conflict.

Quite apart from the morality of assassinating Sheikh Yassin, it is the Israeli people themselves who will suffer from certain retaliation. Israel has the right to defend itself, President Bush declares, while apparently denying the Palestinians the same luxury. But the killing can have no military value at all. Whatever his authority as the founder and figurehead of Hamas, the idea that Yassin was involved in planning armed attacks is preposterous. When Israel rocketed the apartment block he was visiting last September, the ailing sheikh was reported not to have even realised that an attack had taken place. And regardless of the domestic political calculations of the Israeli government, such attempts to destroy a popular movement by decapitation are doomed to failure.

From Algeria to Vietnam, the past century is littered with evidence that such strategies invariably come to nought. Where resistance has deep roots - as Hamas's undoubtedly has in the occupied territories - it will always re-emerge, however savage the repression. Yassin has been succeeded by Abd al-Aziz Rantissi, and if the Israelis incinerate him, another will take his place. What Monday's killing has done is simply widen the range of targets on each side, expanding the arena of terror.

The chances of a lasting settlement should in reality be higher than ever before. For the first time, every significant political and armed Palestinian group - including Hamas and Islamic Jihad - is now prepared to accept a de facto end to conflict in return for an independent state in the West Bank and Gaza - just 22% of historic Palestine.

The sharp-tongued Rantissi is widely regarded as more hardline than Yassin. But, as he told me in Gaza a couple of months back, Hamas is ready to call a ceasefire that "should be seen in terms of years" in exchange for full Israeli withdrawal from the territories it has illegally occupied for the past 37 years. On another occasion, referring to the Hamas dream of Islamist rule throughout Palestine, he has said: "We can accept a truce ... live side by side and refer all the issues to the coming generations." And the organisation's new number two in Gaza, Mahmoud Zahar, confirmed its commitment to a West Bank/Gaza state in yesterday's interview with the Guardian.

But instead of seizing the opportunity for peace offered by such political signals, the Sharon government is deliberately undermining the basis for a two-state solution by carving up the occupied territories with its electrified fences, closed zones and ever-expanding settlements. At the same time, it is planning a partial withdrawal from the most heavily populated areas, while effectively annexing other areas of the West Bank and confining Palestinians to walled bantustans that can never form the basis of a viable state.

Such a rearrangement of the occupation will clearly not resolve the conflict. And considering that the US arms and funds Israel to a greater degree than any other state on the planet, such leverage might be seen as an ideal opportunity for the much-vaunted project of western humanitarian intervention. But instead of applying pressure to achieve a just settlement, the US and its friends refuse to talk to the elected Palestinian leadership, while insisting that no end to occupation is possible unless it stamps out resistance.

After September 11 2001, Tony Blair promised hope to the slums of Gaza and convinced his supporters that he would deliver US commitment to a Middle East peace deal in exchange for backing the invasion of Iraq. Now his main contribution appears to be extra funding for Palestinian police and prisons to provide security to the occupier - while Gordon Brown's response yesterday to the killing of Sheikh Yassin was to announce the freezing not of Sharon's, but of Rantissi's, (probably non-existent) assets in Britain.

None of this, of course, justifies the targeting of civilians by Hamas and others - defended by Rantissi as a "deterrent" to the killing of Palestinian civilians. If deterrence is the intention, it appears to be a failure, as Palestinian civilian and military deaths outstrip the Israeli toll by more than three to one (and five to one when it comes to children). In any event, the offer by Hamas last year of a mutual commitment to avoid civilian deaths was rebuffed by Israel.

The killing of Yassin, along with the wider bloodletting in the occupied territories, will further heighten the Arab and Muslim anger that is fuelling Islamist terror attacks. Justice for the Palestinians should self-evidently be pursued on its own merits. But given the extent to which Palestine has become a focus of global Muslim grievance, it has also become a necessity for international security. And the failure of western leaders to confront the crisis in a remotely even-handed way is now a threat to their own people.

The most dangerous delusion of our time must surely be the notion - trotted out by all manner of public figures, from George Bush to Clive James - that Islamist terror is motivated by hostility to freedom and the western way of life. As anyone who is familiar with the Arab and Muslim world, or even bothered to read successive statements by al-Qaida leaders, it is in fact overwhelmingly driven by hostility to foreign, and especially west ern, domination and occupation of Arab and Muslim countries. Of course, there are other factors in play. But from the start of his campaign in the 1990s, Bin Laden's call to arms focused above all on US foreign policy in the Middle East: its troops in Saudi Arabia, backing for pro-western dictatorships like Egypt, sanctions against Iraq and support for Israel against the Palestinians - along with the subjection of Muslim populations in Kashmir and Chechnya. Since September 11, US interference in the region has gone much further, with the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. The result is an arc of foreign occupation across the Middle East, unmatched anywhere else the world.

That has in turn spawned an arc of resistance, while anti-US feeling among Muslims has reached unprecedented levels, as demonstrated in this week's Pew opinion survey. Muslims now find themselves in perilously unequal conflict with the world's military powers: the US, Russia, India, China and Israel. There are also dangers that the boundaries between nationally based mass resistance movements against occupation and socially disconnected (though widely supported) terror networks of the al-Qaida type become blurred. But to address the swelling and legitimate grievances that underlie both is now a global imperative. Unless and until the occupying powers - notably the US, Britain and Israel - do that, they will be fuelling, not fighting, terror.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,2763,1177404,00.html

Thursday, April 29, 2004

To begin with: This post is not to judge nor to criticise anybody. It is to raise awareness of my sisters on the urgent need of wearing HIJAB.

In view of all what is happening in France, and soon of what will happen in other european countries , Allahu Alam, regarding the HIJAB, I am calling to all my non hijabi sisters to make an effort and to cover NOW!!!!!!
Sisters, there is no more time for excuses, tomorrow may never come. Affirm yourselves as MUSLIMAHS today.
BE PROUD instead of being SHY of the PEOPLE....
All around the world, us , Muslim sisters who cover, whether just with hijab or with niqaab, are taking a lot of stick from non muslims AND muslims alike. Help us by covering.

We understand your hesitations, even your reservations, your fears but the time has come to follow Allah's command. We cannot say that we are Muslimahs and take what we want from Islam and leave what we do not want. It does not work like this.

By more sisters covering, the more powerful we will be, and we will have a voice, because we will have strength in number.

So sisters, help me and help other sisters who are trying to stick to Allah's command.

While some of us are still going around as exactly as if we have not said the Shahadah, then , non muslims will have a degree over us and it should be the opposite.
Our blessed Prophet, Sallalahu Aleyhi wa Salam, said "Do not be the first to greet a Jew or a Christian. If you meet one of them along the path, force them to a narrow portion" (related by Muslim, taken from Minhaj Ul Muslim, by Sh. Abu Bakr al Jazairi) .
This does not mean that we have to be rude to non muslims it means that we have to be proud to be Muslims and that a muslim should not be shy in front of non muslims (my interpretation, though).

My unveiled sister, it is only the first step that is hard. Look at babies when they learn to walk. How many times do they fall on their bottoms??ow many times do they bump into things??? They cry but do they give up? NO. Because it is what they have to do, walk. Like us, the Muslimahs, we have been commended to cover.

Allah the Majestic said (meaning of the translation ):
"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies. That will be better that they should be known as (free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed" . (33:59)

HIJAB is not man made law but a DIVINE law. So we have no choice but to apply it. Allah knows what is best for us and we do not question it and we are not afraid of what people say or think because we are secure in the knowledge that we are following Allah's command and therefore Allah will never abandon us.
"Who seek Allah's pleasure regardless of people's anger, Allah will make him independant of the people ; but the one who seeks the pleasure of the people by making Allah angry, Allah will abandon him to the people" [/b](related by At Tirmidhi, taken from the Islamic guidelines, Sh. Muhammad Bin Jamil Zino)

[b]We, the Muslimahs, are all sisters in Islam. So let 's help each other in what is rigth.

Lets be proud of being Muslimah and lets not be afraid to show it to the world. Wear Hijab and lets keep our head high. It is when we do not wear it that we should lower our head embarrassed.
Lets show the whole world that we, veiled Muslimahs, are not afraid of anybody and that we are not oppressed and that we are educated, articulate ...even intellingent....OI!

Shaytan has find allies in the disbelievers... we should not let him find an ally in us and we should not listen to his whispers. He will give us a list of excuses as long as tomorrow..... and we say " another day, next year, when the time is right...etc..." And Shaytan is dancing of joy, him and his helpers, all around us, while we are unaware . If we leave our affairs in our hands, the t ime will never be right.

One of the excuses is "my job". Sorry sis, but if you walk like if you own the world, then no one will never dare saying anything(well in your face anyway). But if you walk around with your hijab looking like you are guilty of some crime, of course, people will start having a go at you and disrespect you. Our problem nowadays is that even though we say we put our trust in Allah, there is always this little element of doubt that make us do the wrong thing. But if we do things or give up things solely for the sake of Allah Subhanahu Ta'ala, doors that we never knew existed will open for us.

So, my unveiled sister, I am asking for your support in these times of great fitnah.

Look around you, look around the world.For example, in Turkey , women are going to prison for the right of wearing hijab...will you let their ordeal be for nothing??????? will you let them suffer and sometimes be subjected to worst tortures just because you are afraid of putting a scarf on????

Tomorrow may never come, my dear Sister. Do not let your fears of people overcome your duties to Allah and from now on , close your ears to the whispers of the Shaytan. It does not matter if these whispers come in f orm of your mother, husband, sister..... Remember Shaytan is our ennemy, has always been and will always be and will use anybody and anything to keep us on the wrong track.

...By covering ourselves , not only do we please Allah and raise ourselves in His eyes, but we will also help all your sisters around the world who are fighting for the right to wear hijab and who are seeing this right taken little by little everyday.

Sister, Will you just stand by and do nothing?????


Remember, this post is not to criticise nor to judge. It is a cry for help and support from our sisters ...
I. Miswaak Quick View of Benefits:

Advantages of the Miswaak:

1. Miswaak strengthens the gums and prevents tooth decay.
2. Miswaak assists in eliminating toothaches and prevents further increase of decay which has already set in.
3. Miswaak creates a fragrance in the mouth.
4. Miswaak is a cure for illness.
5. Miswaak eliminates bad odors and improves the sense of taste.
6. Miswaak sharpens the memory.
7. Miswaak is a cure for headaches.
8. Miswaak creates lustre (noor) on the face of the one who continually uses it.
9. Miswaak causes the teeth to glow.
10. Miswaak strengthens the eyesight.
11. Miswaak assists in digestion.
12. Miswaak clears the voice.
13. The greatest benefit of using miswaak is gaining the pleasure of Allah.
14. The reward of Salaah (Prayers) is multiplied 70 times if Miswaak was used before it.

Times when usage of Miswaak is Sunnah:

1. For the recitation of the Qur'an.
2. For the recitation of Hadith.
3. When the mouth emits and odor.
4. For the learning or teaching of virtues of Islaam.
5. For making Dhikrullah (Remebrance of Allah, meditation).
6. After entering ones home.
7. Before entering any good gathering.
8. When experiencing pangs of hunger and thirst.
9. After the signs of death are evident.
10. At the time of Sehri.
11. Before meals.
12. Before undertaking a journey.
13. On returning from a journey.
14. Before sleeping.
15. Upon awakening.

How long should a Miswaak be?

A Miswaak should not be longer than a "span" i.e. the maximum distance between the tips of the thumb and little finger, and it should not be thicker than a finger's breadth.

How should it be used?

A Miswaak should be held in such a manner that the small finger and thumb is below the miswaak and the remaining fingers on its upper side.

So, dear friends, do you see how easy it is to gain the pleasure of Allah SWT and also stay in good health?!

So... GET YOURS TODAY!

Now let's get into more details...


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II. Miswaak: The Whole Story

THE MISWAAK

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) laid great stress on the use of the Miswaak (a tree-twig used for cleansing the teeth). One of the Sunnats of Wudhu is to use a Miswaak. Wherever a Miswaak is available and is not used, the full beauty and complete Sawaab of the Wudhu is not realised. There are numerous benefits and advantages in using a Miswaak.


HISTORY OF THE MISWAAK

The Miswaak, a tree-twig, was in use for brushing and cleansing the teeth long before the advent of our Holy Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). In fact the records of our Nabi Muhummad's (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) Ahadith indicate that the Miswaak was the "Sunnah" or practice of all the Ambiyaa (Prophets of Allah)—Peace be upon them.



"Abu Ayyub (R) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'Four things are amongst the practices of the Ambiyaa —circumcision, application of perfume, Miswaak and marriage'."

(AHMAD AND TIRMIZI)

Several other Ahadith of our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) also mention the Miswaak to have been the practice of the Prophets (Upon Whom Be Peace). Thus, we can safely claim that the practice of using the Miswaak is as old as mankind itself since Mankind's origin on the planet was with the appearance of the first Nabi of Allah, viz. Adam (A.S.). Therefore, among the many advantages and benefits of using the Miswaak, one of the greatest benefits is the good-fortune of being associated with the Ambiyaa in this holy practice. On the other hand, those who neglect the use of the Miswaak invite upon themselves a great misfortune by being deprived of the tremendous amount of Sawaab (Reward) which this noble practice carries.

Allamah Ibn Ismail says:

"It surprises me how people could forgo such a great Sunnah, the significance of which many Ahadith of our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) explain. Remember that it is a great loss to neglect the Miswaak."


THE IMPORTANCE OF THE MISWAAK IN ISLAM

Islam has accorded an elevated status to the Miswaak. Its importance has been stressed in many Ahadith of our Holy Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). The statements and examples of the Sahaba and the Ulama of Islam regarding this practice bear testimony in abundance of the significance of the Miswaak.

Ibn Umar (R) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'Make a regular practice of the Miswaak, for verily, it is healthy for the mouth and it is a Pleasure for the Creator (i.e. Allah is pleased with the Muslim who uses the Miswaak)'."

(BUKHARI)

It is clear from this Hadith that two types of benefits accrue from the use of the Miswaak. These could be categorised as follows:

(1) UKHRAWI or Benefits which relate to the Hereafter;
(2) DUNYAWI or Benefits which relate to this worldly life.

The Ukhrawi category comprises the various Sawaabs (Rewards) which the Servant of Allah will obtain in the Hereafter for using the Miswaak. The Dunyawi category comprises the immediate benefits or advantages accruing to the physical human body by the constant use of the Miswaak.

The prime motive of the true Believer in his use of the Miswaak is his desire to obtain the first category of Benefits, i.e. Ukhrawi, the obtainal of the second category being a necessary corollary. This is so, since the only factor which governs the motive and intention of the Believer in his Ibaadat (Worship) is the Pleasure of Allah, our Creator, Nourisher and Sustainer. Hadhrat Ali (R), the fourth Khalif of Islam said:

"Make the Miswaak (i.e. its use) incumbent upon you, and be constant in this practice because Allah's Pleasure is in it and it increases the Reward of Salat from ninety-nine times to four hundred times."

In fact, the importance of the Miswaak is such that at one stage our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) was under the impression that Allah Ta'aala might decree the use of the Miswaak Fardh (compulsory) upon the Ummah (Islamic Nation).

Abu Umamah (R) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'Use the Miswaak, for verily, it purifies the mouth, and it is a Pleasure for the Lord. Jib-ra-eel (A.S.) exhorted me so much to use the Miswaak that I feared that its use would be decreed obligatory upon me and upon my Ummah. If I did not fear imposing hardship on my Ummah I would have made its use obligatory upon my people. Verily, I use the Miswaak so much that I fear the front part of my mouth being peeled (by constant and abundant brushing with the Miswaak)'."
(IBN MAJAH)

"Abu Hurairah (R) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: 'Was it not for my fear of imposing a difficulty on my Ummah I would have ordered that the Miswaak be used for every Salaat'."

(BUKHARI)

Hadith:

Hadhrat Shah Waliullah (R) relates the following

"The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'I was commanded to use the Miswaak to such an extent that I thought the Miswaak would be made obligatory'."

(AHMAD and TIBRANI)

Ibn Abbas (R) narrates the following Hadith:

"The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'I was commanded so much to use the Miswaak that I thought Wahi of the Qurtaan (Revelation) would be revealed, regarding it (i.e. its use)'."

(ABU YA'LAA)

Although the use of the Miswaak was not made Fardh (compulsory) upon the Ummah, nevertheless its use was Fardh upon our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). This is borne out by the following Hadith:

"Aisha (R) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam): said:

'These (practices), viz., Miswaak, Witr Salaat and Tahajjud Salaat, are Sunnat for you and Fardh for me'."

Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (R) narrates:

"The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) would use the Miswaak (regularly) prior to sleeping and after rising from sleep."

(MUNTAKHAB)

Imam Ghazali (R), in his Ihya-ul-Uloom, has enum,erated ten Aadaab (Respects or duties) of sleep. The very first of these being purity and the use of the Miswaak (before sleeping).

Allamah Sha'rani (R) states in the Kitaab, Kashful Ghummah, that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam): advised:

"Whenever you retire for sleep, use the Miswaak."

Shaikh Abu Hamid (R) has said likewise in his Kitaab known as RAUNAQ.

Hadhrat Ibn Umar (R) says that many a time Rasulullah used the Miswaak as much as four times in a single night. Hadhrat Aishah (R) narrates:

"Verily, the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) would use the Miswaak before making Wudhu (ablutions) whenever he arose from sleep, whether it be during the night or during the day."

(ABU DAWOOD)

Similar Ahadith have been narrated by Imam Ahmad (R) and Abu Yatlaa (R). Imam Ghazali (R] has mentioned in his Ihya-ul-Uloom that a person before sleeping at night should keep his water and Miswaak ready and close at hand. As soon as he wakes from sleep during the night he should immediately use the water and the Miswaak, and engage in the remembrance of Allah. Hadhrat Ibn Abbas (R) states:

"The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam): would use the Miswaak at night time (i.e. Tahajjud time) after every two Rakaats Salaat he (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) performed."

(IBN MAJAH)

Allamah Aini (R) has recorded the following in Bunayah

"It is Mustahab to use the Miswaak after every two Rakaats of Tahajjud Salaat (i.e. the Salaat which is performed after midnight), as well as on Fridays, before sleeping, after Witr Salaat and when rising in the morning."

(BUNAYAH)


MISWAAK UPON ENTERING HOME

"Shuraih (R) narrates that he asked Aisha (R): 'What was the first thing Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) did upon entering the house?'

Aisha (R) replied: 'Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) would use the Miswaak'."

(MUSLIM)


MISWAAK UPON LEAVING HOME

"Whenever Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) left the house he would use the Miswaak."

(KASHFUL GHUMMAH)

MISWAAK BEFORE AND AFTER MEALS

"Abu Hurairah (R) said:

"I have used the Miswaak before sleeping, after rising, before eating and after eating, ever since I heard the Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) advising so'."

(AHMAD)


MISWAAK BEFORE RECITING THE HOLY QUR'AAN

"Hadhrat Ali (R) said:

'Verily, your mouths are the pathways of the Qur'aan (i.e. you recite with your mouth), therefore cleanse your mouth with the Miswaak thoroughly'."

(IBN MAJAH)

"The use of the Miswaak has greater emphasis when one intends to perform Salaat, Wudhu and reciting the Qur'aan."

(BUNAYAH)


MISWAAK ON FRIDAYS

"Ibn Sabaaq (R) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said on one Friday:

'O Gathering of Muslims, Allah has made this Day (Friday) a Day of Eid for Muslims, therefore, bathe (on this day), use perfume and regard the use of the Miswaak (on this day) as an obligation upon you'."

(MUATTA IMAM MUHAMMAD)

'Suhail Bin Hanief states that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said that to bathe and use the Miswaak on Fridays are of the Hugooq (Rights or Duties) of Friday."


MISWAAK DURING FASTING

"Aamir Bin Rabiyah (R) narrates:

'I have seen Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) using the Miswaak many a time while fasting'."

(IBN MAJAH)

In another Hadith our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said that one of the best characteristics of a fasting person is his use of the Miswaak.

The majority of the Ulama have opined that it is Sunnat to use the Miswaak while fasting. It is recorded in Fataawa Siraajiah that a fasting person may use a dry or a moist (i.e. fresh, green) Miswaak.

It is recorded in many Ahadith that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and his Sahaba were in the habit of having their Miswaaks on their persons while on a journey or during battles. In the Kitaab, Kashful Ghummah it is mentioned that during battle the Companions of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) would store their Miswaaks in the scabbards of their swords for use at the time of Salaat.

Allamah Sha'rani (R) states in Kashful Ghummah that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

"Whoever spurns or rejects the Miswaak is not of us (Muslims)."

Hadhrat Ibn Mubarak (R) said:

"If the inhabitants of a city spurn and reject the use of the Miswaak, the Ruler should wage battle against them like he would wage war against the renegades or murtad-deen."

(KHAANIYAH)

All the aforegoing Ahadith of our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and the statements of the learned jurists of Islam point clearly to the tremendous importance of the Miswaak in Islam. However, despite its elevated status, significance and importance, this noble practice is neglected and generally discarded by present day Muslims. Needless to say, this is one of the examples of the spiritual and worldly decadence that have set into the Muslim Nation.

The revival of the practice of using the Miswaak instead of the various substitutes is of utmost importance to Muslims. In times such as the present age when we are confronted and surrounded by the satanic forces of irreligiosity, materialism, atheism, vice and immorality, it is of greater importance that Muslims strive most ardently to re-instate the practices or the Sunnah of our beloved Nabi it;. And, of these is the Miswaak. Substitutes, e.g. toothpowders, brushes, etc., should only be resorted to in the event of the non-availability of the Miswaak. To revive a "lost" or a forgotten Sunnah of our Nabi it:—a Sunnah which the followers of Islam have murdered—carries a great and mighty Thawaab (Reward). In this regard our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

"He who holds on firmly to my Sunnah at a time when my Ummah are (grovelling) in corruption will receive a reward of a hundred martyrs."

And, indeed the MISWAAK IS A GREAT SUNNAH.


THE SAHABAS (COMPANIONS) AND THE MISWAAK

The Sahabas (R) who were the best and the noblest examples and teachers of the Sunnah of our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) viewed the Miswaak in a very serious light and regarded it as a practice of supreme holiness. Their constant use of the Miswaak, their continuous exhortations to use the Miswaak and their warnings to those who neglect the Miswaak are ample evidence of the nobility and the importance attached to this practice of using the Miswaak.

Ibn Abbas, Ali and Ataa (R) said:

Ataa (R) said:

"Regard the Miswaak as an obligation on you, and do not be neglectful of it. Be constant in using it, for verily, in it lies the Pleasure of Allah, The Merciful, and in it is greater reward for Salaat . . ."

Hassaan Bin Atiyyah (R) said:
"Miswaak is half of Imaan, and Wudhu is half of Imaan."

(SHARHU IHYA-UL-ULOOM)

Abdul Aziz Abu Dawood (R) said:

"Two things of a Muslim are among the best of practices—

(1) Performing Tahajjud Salaat, and

(2) Constancy in the use of the Miswaak."


THE ULAMA AND MISWAAK

Hadhrat Shaukani (R) said:

"Miswaak is one of the Laws of Shariah. And, this fact is as clear as daylight. This has been conceded by the peoples of the world."

( NAILIL AUTAAR)

Hadhrat Sha'rani (R) said:

"A pledge has been taken from us on behalf of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) that we be steadfast in the use of the Miswaak at the time of making Wudhu. Should any of us be forgetful then he should tie the Miswaak with a string and hang it around his neck or keep it in his turban (so that it will be at hand when making Wudhu). The general public has broken this pledge . . . It (constancy in the use of the Miswaak) is indicative of the strength of one's Imaan and the degree of respect one has for the Laws of Allah and His Rasool (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) emphasised the use of the Miswaak. And, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) was not satisfied merely with issuing an order once, but repeatedly exhorted his followers (regarding its use).

"O my Brother. Be constant in the Sunnah of Muhammad if: so that you may attain the great rewards of the Hereafter. Verily, for every Sunnah there is a rank in Jannat and this rank is obtained only by fulfilment of that Sunnah.

"To the indolent and neglectful people who say that it is

permissible to leave this practice (Miswaak) it will be said on the Day of Qiyamah: 'Today, it is permissible to deprive you of this Rank in Jannah.'

"Abul Qaasim Ibn Qasi (R) has stated this in his Kitaab. Khulun Na'lain."

(LAWAAQIUL ANWAAR)

Allamah Aini (R) says:

"Abu Amr (R) said that upon the significance of the Miswaak concensus of opinion exists. There is no difference of opinion on this score. According to all learned men of Islam, Salaat performed after using the Miswaak is far nobler than a Salaat without Miswaak. Auzaai (R) said that Miswaak is half of Wudhu."

(AL-BUNAAYAH)

Shaikh Muhammad (R) said:

"Verily, over a hundred Hadith have been narrated regarding the significance of the Miswaak. Therefore, it is a great astonishment to behold that so many among mankind as well as among the learned neglect such an important practice which has been emphasized to such an extent. This is a great loss."

(SUBL)


AADAAB OR RESPECTS TO BE OBSERVED REGARDING THE MISWAAK

The majority of the Ulama hold the view that the use of the Miswaak is not Fardh (compulsory). Howeyer, despite it not being decreed Fardh by the Shariah, it is of utmost importance. It is likewise essential that all the Aadaab pertaining to the Miswaak be observed. Neglect of the Aadaab is a sign of spiritual indolence and weakness of Imaan. In order to achieve the Sawaub of a particular practice in full measure it is necessary that the Aadaab relating to the practice be observed. If neglect is shown towards the Aadanb, the final result will be the neglect of that very practice. In the Kituab, Ta'leemul Muta-allim the following is stated:

"He who becomes neglectful about the Aadaab is deprived of the Sunnats; and he who becomes neglectful of the Sunnats is deprived of the Faraa-idh (compulsory acts); and he who becomes neglectful of the Faraaidh is deprived of the Hereafter."

(TA'LEEMUL MUTA-ALLIM)

Faqih Abu Laith Samarqandi (R) states:

"As long as the Servant of Allah safeguards the Aadaab Satan does not attempt to assault him (i.e. mislead him). However, when he neglects the Aadaab Satan makes advances into the Sunnats (i.e. misleads the Servant from the Sunnats). Thereafter follows Satan's assault on the faraa-idh (compulsory duties). This is followed by Satan's assault on Ikhlaas (sincerity), and finally on Yaqeen (Faith). Hence, it is necessary for a
person to protect the Aadaab of all his affairs and actions, e g. the Aadaab of selling and the Aadaab of Wudhu, Salaat, buying, etc.

(BUSTAANUL AARIFEEN)


TYPES OF MISWAAKS

It is permissible to take for a Miswaak all types of tree twigs provided these are not harmful or poisonous. It is forbidden to use a Miswaak from a poisonous tree. Miswaaks from the following trees are not permissible:

(1) Pomegranate
(2) Bamboo
(3) Raihaan
(4) Chambelie

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) FORBADE THE USE OF Raihaan as Miswaak because it causes the sickness, Juz-zaam

The following are the types of Miswaak are recommended:

(1) Peelo tree
(2) Zaitoon or Olive tree
(3) Bitam or
(4) Any bitter tree
(5) Walnut tree

Miswaak of the Peelo Tree

"And, the best of Miswaaks is the Peelo, then the Olive."

(KABIRI)

The best type of Miswaak is that which is taken from the Peelo tree. In the Kitaab, Ta-heelul Manaa-fi' it is mentioned that the miswaak of the Peelo tree is excellent for obtaining the glow or glitter of the teeth.

Our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) also praised and recommended the Peelo tree for Miswaak purposes. Besides recommending the Peelo tree, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) as well as the Sahaabas (R) used Miswaaks of this tree. Ibn Sa'd (R) narrates that Abu Khabrah (R) said:

"Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) presented me with a Miswaak of the Peelo tree, and he (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said:

'Use the Miswaak of the Peelo tree'."

Ibn Masood (R) said:

"I always kept a stock of Peelo Miswaaks for Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)"

In the Kitaab, Mawaahib, it is stated that the Companions of Imam Shafi (R) have recorded Concensus of Opinion among them on the fact that the use of the Peelo Miswaak is Mustahab (i.e. an Islamic practice which carries much Sawaab (Reward) if upheld, and in the event of not fulfilling it no punishment will be meted out).

Miswaak of the Olive Tree

Rasullulah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) has spoken highly of the Miswaak of this tree as well. The following Hadith brings out the significance of the Olive tree Miswaak:

"Use the Miswaak of the Olive tree. It is the Miswaak of a Mubarak (auspicious or gracious) tree. It purifies and makes wholesome the mouth. It removes the yellowishness of the teeth. It is my (i.e. Rasulullah's (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)) Miswaak and the Miswaak of the Ambiyaa (Prophets) who came before me."

(MUNTAKHAB)

Miswaak of the Bitam Tree

In another Hadith it is stated that in the absence of the Peelo tree the Olive tree should be used, and in the absence of the Olive Miswaak, the Bitam tree Miswaak should be used.

(MUNTAKHAB)

Miswaak of some bitter tree

If none of the three abovementioned types of Miswaak is available, a Miswaak of any bitter tree should be used

(KUHASTANI)

" . . Thereafter it is Mustahab to use a Miswaak of a bitter tree because the Miswaak of a bitter tree removes odor of the mouth to a greater extent."

(KABIRI)

In Alamgiri it is stated that the Miswaak of a bitter tree makes the mouth wholesome, strengthens the teeth and the gums.

Mlswask of the Walnut Tree

Mistwaak of the Walnut tree has been recommended in the Kitaab, Taise.


NIYYAT OR INTENTION OF USING THE MISWAAK

"Niyyat of using the Miswaak should be made prior to its use."

(SHARE MINHAAJ)

The following duaa should also be recited at the time of using the Miswaak:



Translation: "O Allah, Purify my mouth: Enlighten my heart: Purify my body; And make my body unlawful to the Fire."

(BUNAYAH)


AADAAB (Etiquette) OF THE MISWAAK

(1) The Miswaak should be a straight twig, devoid of roughness.

(2) The Miswaak should be clean.

(3) The Miswaak should not be too hard nor too soft.

(4) The Miswaak should not be used while one is lying down.

(5) The new Miswaak should be approximately 8 inches (a hand-span) in length.

(6) The Miswaak should be the thickness of the forefinger.

(7) Before using the Miswaak, it should be washed.

(8) After use it should be washed as well.

(9) The Miswaak should not be sucked.

(10) The Miswaak should be placed vertically when not in use. It should not be thrown onto the ground.

(11) If the Miswaak is dry it should be moistened with water prior to use. This is Mustahab. It is preferable to moisten it with Rose water.

(12) The Miswaak should not be used in the toilet.

(13) The Miswaak should be used at least thrice (brush three times) for each section of the mouth, e.g. brush the upper layer of teeth thrice, then the lower layer thrice, etc.

(14) The Miswaak should not be used at both ends.

(15) The Miswaak should not be taken from an unknown tree as it may be poisonous.


ADVANTAGES AND BENEFITS OF THE MISWAAK

(1) Eliminates bad odour and improves the sense of taste

Allamah Ibn Daqiq (R) says: "The wisdom underlying the use of the Miswaak after rising from sleep is that during sleep bad vapours rise from the stomach towards the mouth. This causes bad odour in the mouth as well as a change in the sense of taste. Use of the Miswaak eliminates the bad odor and rectifies the change which occurred in the taste."

(NALE WA TA'LEEQ)

(2) Sharpens the Memory


Hadhrat Ali (R) said that "Miswaak sharpens the memory.

(3) Sharpens the Intelligence

"Four things increase the Intelligence—
(i) Shunning of nonsensical talks
(ii) Use of the Miswaak
(iii) Sitting in the company of the pious, and
(iv) Sitting in the company of the Ulama."
(TIBBE NABAWI)

(4) Eliminates Slime

Hadhrat Ali (R) said that "Miswaak removes slime."

(IHYA-UL-ULOOM)

(5) A Cure for Illness

Hadhrat Aisha (R) said that "Miswaak (its constant use) is a cure for all illness excepting Death."
(REPORTED BY DAILAMI IN FIRDAUS)

(6) Miswaak creates fragrance in the mouth.
(7) Miswaak strengthens the gums.
(8) Miswaak prevents tooth decay.
(9) Miswaak prevents further increase of decay which has already set in the teeth.
(10) Miswaak is a cure for headaches.
(11) Miswaak assists in eliminating toothaches.
(12) Miswaak creates lustre (Noor) on the face of the one who continually uses it.
(13) Miswaak causes the teeth to glow.
(14) Miswaak removes the yellowishness of the teeth.
(15) Miswaak strengthens the eye-sight.
(16) Miswaak is beneficial for the health of the entire body.
(17) Miswaak assists in the process of Digestion.
(18) Miswaak is a cure for a certain mouth disease known as Qilaa'- This is stated in Hujjatul Baaleghah.
(19) Miswaak clears the voice. This is stated in TibbeNabawi.
(20) Miswaak facilitates the appetite (Tibbe Nabawi).
(21) Miswaak increases the eloquence of one's speech.

Abu Hurairah (R) said that "Miswaak increases the eloquence of a person." (AL-JAAMI')

(22) Miswaak (i.e. its constant use) will be ~ factor to ease the pangs of Death. The continuous use of the Miswaak makes it easy for the Rooh (Soul) to depart from the body when its appointed time arrives. (SHARHUS SUDOOR)

(23) Miswaak increases the Thawaab (reward) of Salaat (prayer) from seventy times to four hundred times. (HADITH)

(24) Miswaak is a factor which will earn higher ranks in Jannat for the one who uses it

(25) The Angels sing the praises of the one who uses the Miswaak.

(26) Use of the Miswaak displeases Shaitaan.

(27) Use of the Miswaak graces one with the companionship of the Angels.

(28) And, the greatest benefit of using the Miswaak is the attainment of Allah Ta'ala's Pleasure.


SUBSTITUTES FOR THE MISWAAK

(1) The Fingers

In the case of the non-availability of the Miswaak the fingers should be used to cleanse the teeth. This method will serve the purpose of the Miswaak as far as the

Sawaab is concerned, i.e. if a Miswaak is not availa e the Sawaab (Reward) attendant to the Miswaak will be realised by using the fingers as a substitute provided that Niyyat (intention) of Miswaak be made when the fingers are used for this purpose.

"Rubbing the teeth with the forefinger and the thumb
(MUHEET)

Hadhrat Amr Bin Auf Muzni (R) states that the fingers could be used as an adequate substitute for the Miswaak in the case of the latter's absence.

"Imam Tahtaawi (R) says: 'The promised Reward (of using the Miswaak) shall be obtained in the event of the non-availability of the Miswaak, and not in the event of its availability'."

In other words, if a Miswaak is available and you are able to use same then the Sawaab of it will not be realised by using a substitute.

(2) Cloth

A coarse piece of cloth may also be used in case of the non-availability of a Miswaak. Those who have no teeth should use the fingers or a cloth as substitutes for the Miswaak, and they will obtain the Sawaab. But Niyyat of the Miswaak should be made.

"And, the significance of the Miswaak shall be obtained even though the finger or a cloth be used in the event of the non-availability of the Miswaak."

(SHURAMBALI)

(3) Toothbrush

If the toothbrush is made of bristles (pig's hair) then its use is not permissible. If bristles are not used, the use of the toothbrush is permissible. However, the toothbrush will not serve as a substitute in the case of the Miswaak being available. If a Miswaak is available Reward will not be realised by using the toothbrush. The same applies to toothpowder or any other means of cleansing the teeth. It should be remembered here that during the time of our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) substitutes, e.g. toothpowder, etc., existed, but our Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) never equated these with the Miswaak. Therefore, the argument of the modernist that the toothbrush today takes the place of the Miswaak is fallacious and a good example of the apologetic attitude adopted by modern Muslims of today
Chain Letters

Have you ever received an email about someone who had a dream about “Hazrat” Zaynab or Aisha, the Holy Prophet (saaw) or some old man with a white beard – asking you to forward it on to x number of people in order to receive good fortune??? And those that don’t pass it on may face some curse or hardship from Allaah (swt)? If you have, and have been unsure what to do with such an email then please read the following article...

To put it simply my brothers and sisters, such emails should NOT be forwarded and instead the delete button should be hit without hesitation. Such emails create doubt in one’s heart and fall into the category of shirk (associating partners with Allaah). This is the only sin which if we were to die upon; Allaah (swt) has informed us He will never forgive!

Thinking that forwarding the email may in some way change our fate, either by benefiting us or warding off some bad luck, is in fact to put faith in other than the Mighty Will of Allaah (swt). Dear brothers and sisters, we should know that not a single event occurs without the knowledge of our Creator, al Alim. Know that EVERY matter that exists was ordained 50,000 years before the creation of the heavens and the earth. And know that every last breath, movement, and occurrence was written down by Allaah (swt) in al-Lauh ul-Mahfudh, the 'Preserved Tablet'. Allaah, Ta’ala tells us in the Qur`aan:

“Do you not know that Allaah knows all that is in heaven and on earth? Verily, it is all in the Book. Verily! That is easy for Allaah.” (Surah al-Hajj 22: 70)
With regards to receiving the email, we should know that sending it or even not sending it, will not change our fate one bit, except for what Allaah has already ordained. In the wise words given to Ibn Abbas, the Prophet (saaw) said, “Remember that if all the people come together to bring you benefit they cannot benefit you except for what Allaah has written. On the other hand if they come together to cause you any harm they will not be able to do it except for what Allaah has written. The pens have been laid aside, and the scrolls have dried.” (recorded by al Tirmidhi)
You may now ask that what if it was in your fate to receive the email and so your Qadr was decided accordingly. The answer to this lies in the Qur`aan and sunnah of the holy Prophet (saaw) and the simple rule is not to have faith in anything except the will of Allaah. No man or woman can inform you of your future, as we are told,

“Say! None in the heavens nor the earth knows the unseen except Allaah” (Surah an-Nahl 27:65).
Similar situations existed at the time of our noble Prophet and so the evidences are bountiful. One such example as narrated by Imraan ibn Husayn, that the Prophet (saaw) once saw a brass bangle on a man’s upper arm, and he said to him, “Woe be on you! What is this?” The man replied that it was to protect him from a sickness called al-Waahinah. The Prophet (saaw) then said, “Cast it off, for verily it would only increase your weakness. And, if you died with it on, you would never succeed.” (collected by Ahmad, Ibn Maajah and Ibn Hibbaan)

Also, it has been reported by Abu Hurayrah and al-Hasan that the Prophet (saaw) said, “Whosoever approaches a fortuneteller and believes what he says, has disbelieved in what was revealed to Muhammad.” (Collected by Ahmad, Abu Dawud)
From this, I ask dear brothers and sisters, how can it be that an electrically typed message, no matter how religious the people described were, or how many people sent or received it, can make the slightest of difference when compared to what Allaah Ta’ala has willed?

From this I would sincerely advise that you spread this message to anyone who may have originally sent a chain message to you – not because it will bring you good fortune or that it may keep away some harm, but in order to inform others of what is correct. Finally, although we may be saddened at how easily and quickly doubt can be put in the hearts of the believers, we should always remember the words of Muhammad (saaw) in his final sermon,

“Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.”
THIS STORY IS A HOAX!
I contacted "Voice of Islam" directly and they say it did not originate from them as stated in the article below. You can visit them HERE or contact their webmaster, Gemal Seede at gemal@ix.netcom.com
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 1999 20:00:40 -0700
From: Gemal Seede
X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.6 [en]C-compaq (Win98; I)
X-Accept-Language: en
To: Fareena Alam
Subject: Re: URGENT HELP NEEDED

Assalamu Alaikum Fareena,

This story did not originate on the Voice of Islam web site, and I have no direct knowledge as to its accuracy.

Regards,
Gemal Seede

Jermain Jackson's Conversion to Islam
from the International Edition, "Voice of Islam" 4th Apr 1999
In a startling interview, Jermaine Jackson, brother of world-famous star Michael Jackson, tells how he embraced Islam.


Islam is a religion, which transcends all petty prejudices of color, race and territorial boundaries. That is why the followers of other religions, with a nearsighted vision, have a sense of overflowing pride and relief when they embrace Islam. Deserting the religion of one's forefathers is one of the most difficult decisions, but the golden principles and the virtues of broadmindedness of Islam have persuaded mankind to adopt it as a way of life.

Now, therefore, Islam has emerged as the greatest religion of the world. Jermaine Jackson, brother of world-famous Michael Jackson is one of those men who have left the religion of their forefathers and made Islam the inseparable part of their life. From Jermaine Jackson, he has re-named as Muhammad Abdul-Aziz. He lives in one of the luxurious palaces in the outskirts of Los Angeles (USA). The palace of Abdul-Aziz is surrounded by beautiful gardens. This is the place where he and his sisters compose their music. This remains under surveillance of more than 15 security vans round the clock. This area which is known as eeFalisAE in Los Angeles is considered one of the most expensive areas the world over, London based Arabic "Al- Mujallah" has recently published an interview of Jermaine Jackson for the first time since he became Muslim. In this interview, he has expressed his passionate love for Islam.

Let us see how he responded to various questions: -


When and How did you start your journey towards Islam?

It was way back in 1989 when I, along with my sister, conducted a tour to some of the countries of Middle East. During our stay in Bahrain, we were accorded warm welcome. There I happened to meet some children and had a light chitchat with them. I put certain questions to them and they flung at me their innocent queries. During the course of this interaction, they inquired about my religion. I told them, "I am a Christian." I asked them, as to what was their religion? A wave of serenity took over them. They replied in one voice "Islam." Their enthusiastic answer really shook me from within. Then they started telling me about Islam. They were giving me information, much in piece with their age. The pitch of their voice would reveal that they were highly proud of Islam. This is how I paced toward Islam. A very short interaction with a group of children ultimately led me to have long discourses about Islam with Muslim scholars. A great ripple had taken place in my thought. I made failing attempt to console myself that nothing had happened but I could not conceal this fact any longer from myself that at heart I had converted to Islam. This I disclosed first to my family friend, Qunber Ali. The same Qunber Ali managed to take me to Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia. Till that time, I did not know much about Islam. From there, in the company of a Saudi family, I proceeded for Mecca for the performance of "Umrah". There I made public for the first time that I had become Muslim.


What were your feelings after you proclaimed that you were a Muslim?

Having embraced Islam, I felt as if I were born again. I found in Islam the answers to those queries which I had failed to find in Christianity. Particularly, it was only Islam that provided satisfactory answer to the question relating to the birth of Christ. For the first time I was convinced about the religion itself. I pray my family members might appreciate these facts. My family is the follower of that cult of Christianity, which is known as AVENDANCE of JEHOVA (Jehovah's Witness). According to its creeds, only 144,000 men would finally qualify to enter into paradise. How come, it remained always a perplexing creed for me. I was surprised to know that Bible was compiled by so many men, particularly about a volume scripted by King James. I wondered if a man compiles a directory and then ascribes it to God, but he does not fully comply with these directions. During my stay in Saudi Arabia I have had the opportunity to buy a cassette released by the erstwhile British pop-singer and the present Muslim preacher, Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens). I learnt a lot from this as well.


What happened when you got back to the US after embracing Islam?

When I returned to USA, American media orchestrated heinous propaganda against Islam and the Muslims. The gossips were let loose on me which really disturbed my peace of mind. The Hollywood was hell-bent upon maligning the Muslims. They were being projected as terrorists. There are many things where there is consensus between Christianity and Islam, and Quran presents Holy Christ as a virtuous Prophet. Then, I wondered, why Christian America levels baseless allegations against Muslims? This made me gloomy. I made up my mind that I would do my best to dispel the wrong image of Muslims, portrayed by the American media. I had not the slightest idea that American media would not digest the news of my accepting Islam and raise such a great hue and cry. It was virtually acting against all its tall and much-publicized claims about the freedom of expression and the freedom of conscience. So the hypocrisy of American society came to surface and lay uncovered before me. Islam unknotted many complications for me. As a matter of fact, I came to think of myself as a complete human being, in the literal sense of the word. After becoming Muslim, I felt a tremendous change in me. I discarded all thing prohibited in Islam. This made things difficult for my family too. In short, the Jackson family tumbled altogether. Threatening letters poured in, which further intensified the worries of my family.


What sort of threats?

Well, they would tell me that I had nurtured the animosity of American society and culture, by entering into the laps of Islam, you have deprived yourself of the right to live with others. WE would make life unbearable for you in America so on, so forth. But I confess that my family is broadminded. We have held all religions in esteem. Our parents have trained and groomed us in that way. Therefore, I may say that the Jackson family enjoys friendly relation with people belonging to almost all religions. This is the result of that training that I am being tolerated by them so far.


What was the reaction of your brother Michael Jackson?

On my way back to America, I brought a number of books from Saudi Arabia. Michael Jackson asked me himself for some of these books for study. Before this, his opinion was influenced by the propaganda of American media against Islam and the Muslims. He was not inimical towards Islam, but he was not favorably disposed towards Muslims either. But after reading these books, he would keep mum and not say anything against Muslims. I think perhaps this is the impact of the study of Islam that he diverted his business interests towards Muslim traders. Now, he has equal shares with the Saudi billionaire prince Waleed bin Talal, in his multi-national company. It was said earlier that Michael Jackson was against Muslims, then there are rumors that he had become Muslim.


What is the real story?

I testify this fact, at least there is nothing in my knowledge that Michael Jackson ever said anything derogatory against Muslims. His songs, too, give message of love for others. We have learnt from our parents to love others. Only those who have their own ax to grind hurl allegations on him. When there can be a nasty uproar against me when I became Muslim, why can it not be so against Michael Jackson. But, so far, media has not subjected him to scathing criticism, although he is threatened for his getting somewhat closer to Islam. But who knows what would it look like when Michael Jackson embraces Islam.


What are the views of the rest of the members of your family about you?

When I returned to America, my mother had already heard the news of my conversion to Islam. My mother is a religious and civilized woman. When I reached home, she put forth only one question, "You have taken this decision all of a sudden, or is it the outcome of some deep and long thinking behind it?"

"I have decided after a lot of thinking about it," I replied, let me say we are known as a religious family. Whatever we possess, is due to the blessing of God. Then why we should not be grateful to Him? This is why we actively participate in the charity institutions. We dispatched medicines to the poor African countries through special aircraft. During Bosnian war, our aircraft were engaged in supplying aids to the affectees. We are sensitive to such things because we have witnessed abject poverty. We used to live in a house which was hardly a few square meters capacious.

Did you ever discuss about Islam with your sister pop star Janet Jackson?

Like other members of my family, my sudden conversion to Islam was a great surprise for her. In the beginning, she was worried. She has stashed into her head only one thing that Muslims are polygamous, they do have as many as four wives. When I explained this permission granted by Islam with reference to the state of the present American society, she was satisfied. This is fact that promiscuity and infidelity is very common in the western society. In spite of the fact that they are married, western men enjoy extramarital relations with a number of women. This has caused devastating moral decay in that society. Islam safeguards the social fabric from this destruction. As per Islamic teachings, if a man is emotionally attracted towards a woman, he should honorably give this relation a legal shape otherwise he must be contented with only one wife. On the other hand, Islam has laid down so much conditions for second marriage that I do not think that an ordinary Muslim can afford to meet these conditions financially. There is hardly one percent Muslims in the Islamic world who have more than one wife. To my view, the women in an Islamic society is just like a well-protected flower which is safe from the stray penetrating looks of the viewers. Whereas western society is devoid of the vision to appreciate this wisdom and philosophy.


What are your spontaneous feelings when you look at the Muslim society?

For the larger interest of humanity, Islamic society presents the safest place on this planet. For instance, take the example of women. American women are clad in their out-fit in such a manner that gives temptation to the male for harassment. But this is unthinkable in an Islamic society. Besides, the prevalent sins and vices have disfigured the moral fabric of western society. I believe if there is any place left where the humanity is still visible, it can not be anywhere else than in an Islamic society. Time would come when the world would be obliged to accept this reality.


What is your candid opinion about the American media?

American media is suffering from self-contradictions. Take the example of Hollywood. The status of an artist is measured here keeping in view the model of his car, the standard of this restaurant that he visits, etc. This is the media that raises someone from the dust to the skies. They do not consider the artist as a human being. But I have met so many artists in the Middle East. They have no misplaced arrogance in them. Just look at the CNN, they do that much exaggeration about some news that it appears that nothing else has happened except that event in the world. The news of fire in the forests of Florida was given such a wide coverage as it gave the impression that the whole globe has caught fire. In fact, it was a small area, which was affected by that fire. I was in Africa, when the bomb-blast took place in Oklahoma City. The Media, without any proof, started hinting at the involvement of Muslims in that blast. Later on the Saboteur turned out to be a CHRISTIAN!!! We may term this attitude of American media as its willful ignorance.


Can you maintain a Linkage between your Islamic personality and the culture of your family?

Why not? This linkage can be kept up for the achievement of good things.


After becoming Muslim, did you ever happen to see Muhammad Ali?
Muhammad Ali is our family friend. I have met him a number of times, after embracing Islam. He has provided useful guidance about Islam.


Have you visited Shah Faisal mosque in Los Angeles city?

Yes, of course! This is a beautiful mosque. I am myself interested to construct a similar mosque in eeFaliseAE area because there is no mosques in this area and the Muslim community is not resourceful enough purchase a piece of land for a mosque in such a posh area. God willing, I would do it. Who is ignorant of the services of Saudi Arabia for the glorious cause of Islam? No doubt it has leisurely financed the projects for mosques. But this American media even does not spare Saudi Arabia; it spreads quite strange news about this country. When I first visited Saudi Arabia, I had the impression that there would be muddy housed and a very poor communication network. But when I reached there, to my great surprise, I found it culturally the most beautiful country of the world.


Who has influenced you, so far as Islam is concerned?

Many persons have impressed me. But the fact is that first I turn to the Holy Quran, therefore I do not run a risk of getting strayed on the way. However, there are many Islamic scholars that one can be duly proud of. God willing, I plan to go to Saudi Arabia with my family to perform, eeUmrahAE.


Your wife and children are Muslims too?

I have seven sons and two daughter who, like me, are fully Islamic-oriented. My wife is still studying Islam. She insists on going over to Saudi Arabia. I trust InshaAllah, she would sooner join Islam. May God Almighty give us the courage and perseverance to remain on this true religion, Islam. (Ameen)

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