Local Time

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A little boy

A long time ago, there was a huge apple tree. A little boy loved to come
and play around it ev-eryday. He climbed to the treetop, ate the apples,
and took a nap in its shadow.

He loved the tree and the tree loved to play with him. Time went by and
the little boy had grown up and no longer played around the tree every
day.

One day, the boy came back to the tree and he looked sad. "Come and play
with me", the tree asked the boy. "I am no longer a kid and I don't play
around trees any more," the boy replied. "I want toys.

I need money to buy them." "Sorry, but I do not have money, but you can pick all my apples and sell them. Then, you will have money." The boy
was so excited. He grabbed all the apples on the tree and left
happily.The boy never came back after he picked the apples and the tree
felt sad.



One day, many years later, the boy who had now turned into a man
returned. The tree was excited and said, "Come and play with me." The
boy replied, "I do not have time to play. I have to work for my family
and we need a house for shelter. Can you help me?"

"Sorry, I do not have any house. But you can chop off my branches to
build your house". So the man cut all the branches of the tree and left
happily. The tree was glad to see him happy but the man never came back
since then. The tree was again lonely and sad.

One hot summer day, the man returned and the tree was delighted. "Come
and play with me!" the tree said. "I am getting old. I want to go
sailing to relax myself. Can you give me a boat?" said the man. "Use my
trunk to build your boat. You can sail far away and be happy." So the
man cut the tree trunk to make a boat. He went sailing and never showed
up for a long time.

Finally, the man returned after many years. "Sorry, my boy. But I do not
have anything for you anymore. No more apples for you", the tree said.
"No problem, I do not have any teeth to bite," the man replied. "No more
trunk for you to climb on". "I am too old for that now," the man said.
"I really cannot give you anything, the only thing left is my dying
roots," the tree said with tears



"I do not need much now, just a place to rest. I am tired after all
these years," the man replied. "Good! Old tree roots are the best place
to lean on and rest, come sit down with me and rest." The man sat down
and the tree was glad and smiled with tears.

Now, replace the tree in the story with parents. When we are young, we
love to play with our Mum and Dad; but when we grow up, we leave them,
only to come to them whenever we need support - material or emotional,
or when we are in trouble. And no matter what, our parents always are
there by our side and give us everything they can just to make us happy.
Always, we take them fo granted and don"t appreciate all they do for
us, until it"s too late.

It's the same with our divine parent too.

Whenever we are beset with problems, we cry out to Him for help, how many times do we think of Him when everything is going pleasant and beautiful in our lives?


Something to think about ???

Does Islam believe in several gods because the Qur’an uses the word ‘We’ when God speaks in the Qur’an?

Islam is a strictly monotheistic religion. It believes in and adheres to uncompromising monotheism. It believes that God is one, and unique in His attributes. In the Qur’an, God often refers to Himself using the word ‘We’. But this does not mean that Islam believes in the existence of more than one God.

Two types of plural

In several languages, there are two types of plurals, one is a plural of numbers to refer to something that occurs in a quantity of more than one. The other plural is a plural of respect.

a. In the English language, the Queen of England refers to herself as ‘We’ instead of ‘I’. This is known as the ‘royal plural’.
b. Rajiv Gandhi, the ex-Prime Minister of India used to say in Hindi "Hum dekhna chahte hain". "We want to see." ‘Hum’ means ‘We’ which is again a royal plural in Hindi.
c. Similarly in Arabic, when Allah refers to Himself in the Qur’an, He often uses Arabic word 'Nahnu' meaning ‘We’. It does not indicate plural of number but plural of respect.
Tawheed or monotheism is one of the pillars of Islam. The existence and uniqueness of one and only one God is mentioned several times in the Qur’an. For instance in Surah Ikhlas, it says :

"Say He is Allah the One and Only."
[Al-Qur’an 112: 1]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Question:

If Allah has sealed the hearts of the Kuffar i.e. non-Muslims, then why are they to be blamed for not accepting Islam?

Answer:

1. Allah has sealed the hearts of those who are continuously bent on rejecting the truth
Allah (swt) mentions in Surah Al Baqarah chapter 2 verses 6 and 7

"As to those who reject Faith, it is the same to them Whether thou warn them or do not warn them; they will not believe.

Allah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing, and on their eyes is a veil; great is the penalty they (incur)."
[Al-Qur’an 2:6-7]

These verses do not refer to common Kuffar who reject faith. The Arabic words used are al-lazina kafaroo, those who are bent on rejecting the truth. It will not make any difference to such people whether you warn them or not, they will not believe. Allah has set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing and on their eyes is a veil. It is not because Allah has set a seal on their hearts that these kuffar do not understand and believe, but it is the vice-versa. It is because these kuffar are bent on rejecting the truth and whether you warn them or not they will not believe, that Allah has set a seal on their hearts. Therefore Allah is not to blame, but these kuffaar who are bent on rejecting the faith are responsible.

2. Example of teacher predicting a student will fail
Suppose an experienced teacher, before the final examinations, predicts that a particular student will fail in the exams, since the student is very mischievous, not attentive in class and does not do his homework. If after the student appears for the examination, he fails, who is to be blamed for the student failing: the teacher or the student? Just because the teacher predicted, it does not mean that the teacher is to be blamed but the student himself is responsible for his failure.

Similarly Allah (swt) knows in advance that there are some people who are bent on rejecting the faith and Allah has put a seal on their hearts. Thus these non-Muslims themselves are responsible for rejecting the faith and not Allah (swt).

Muslims believe in the theory of abrogation, i.e. they believe that certain earlier verses of the Qur’an were abrogated by verses revealed later. Does this imply that God made a mistake and later on corrected it?

1. Two different interpretations

The Glorious Qur’an says in the following verse:

"None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: knowest thou not that Allah hath power over all things?"
[Al-Qur’an 2:106]

A reference to this is also made in chapter 16 verse 101 of Surah Nahl. The Arabic word mentioned is ayat which means ‘signs’ or ‘verses’ and which can also mean ‘revelations’. This verse of the Qur’an can be interpreted in two different ways:
a. The revelations that are abrogated are those revelations that were revealed before the Qur’an, for example the Torah, the Zaboor and the Injeel.

Here Allah (swt) says that He does not cause the previous revelations to be forgotten but He substitutes them with something better or similar, indicating that the Torah, the Zaboor and the Injeel were substituted by the Qur’an.

b. If we consider that the Arabic word ayat in the above verse refers to the verses of the Qur’an, and not previous revelations, then it indicates that none of the verses of the Qur’an are abrogated by Allah but substituted with something better or similar. This means that certain verses of the Qur’an, that were revealed earlier were substituted by verses that were revealed later. I agree with both the interpretations.

Many Muslims and non-Muslims misunderstand the second interpretation to mean that some of the earlier verses of the Qur’an were abrogated and no longer hold true for us today, as they have been replaced by the later verses of the Qur’an or the abrogating verses. This group of people even wrongly believe that these verses contradict each other.

Let us analyze a few such examples.

2. Produce a recital like the Qur’an / 10 Surahs / 1 Surah:

Some pagan Arabs alleged that the Qur’an was forged by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Allah (swt) challenges these Arabs in the following verse of Surah Al-Isra:

"Say: If the whole of Mankind and Jinns were together to produce the like of this Qur’an they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support."
[Al-Qur’an 17:88]

Later the challenge was made easy in the following verse of Surah Al-Hud:

"Or they may say, "He forged it." Say, "Bring ye then ten Surahs forged, like unto it, and call (to your aid) whomsover ye can, other than Allah, if ye speak the truth!’."
[Al-Qur’an 11:13]

It was made easier in the following verse of Surah Yunus:

"Or do they say, "He forged it"? Say: "Bring then a Surah like unto it, and call (to your aid) anyone you can, besides Allah, if it be ye speak the truth!’."
[Al-Qur’an 10:38]

Finally in Surah Al-Baqarah, Allah (swt) further simplified the challenge:

And if ye are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant, then produce a Surah like thereunto; and call your witnesses or helpers (if there are any) besides Allah if your (doubts) are true.

But if ye cannot – and of a surety ye cannot – then fear the Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones – which is prepared for those who reject faith".
[Al-Qur’an 2:23-24]

Thus Allah (swt) made the challenges progressively easier. The progressively revealed verses of the Qur’an first challenged the pagans to produce a book like the Qur’an, then challenged them to produce ten Surahs (chapters) like those in the Qur’an, then one Surah and finally it challenges them to produce one Surah somewhat similar (mim mislihi) to the Qur’anic Surahs. This does not mean that the later verses that were revealed i.e. of Surah Baqarah chapter 2 verses 23 and 24 contradict the earlier three verses. Contradiction implies mentioning two things that cannot be possible simultaneously, or cannot take place simultaneously.

The earlier verses of the Qur’an i.e. the abrogated verses are still the word of God and the information contained in it is true to this day. For instance the challenge to produce a recital like the Qur’an stands to this day. Similarly the challenge to produce ten Surahs and one Surah exactly like the Qur’an also holds true and the last challenge of producing one surah somewhat similar to the Qur’an also holds true. It does not contradict the earlier challenges, but this is the easiest of all the challenges posed by the Qur’an. If the last challenge cannot be fulfilled, the question of anyone fulfilling the other three more difficult challenges does not arise.

Suppose I speak about a person that he is so dumb, that he would not be able to pass the 10th standard in school. Later I say that he would not be able to pass the 5th standard, and further say that he would not be able to pass even the 1st standard. Finally I say that he is so dull that he would not even be able to pass K.G. i.e. kindergarten. One has to pass kindergarten before one can be admitted to school. What I am stating is that the person is so dull as to be unable to pass even kindergarten. My four statements do not contradict each other, but my last statement i.e. the person would not be able to pass the kindergarten is sufficient to indicate the intelligence of that person. If a person cannot even pass kindergarten, the question of him passing the first standard or 5th or 10th, does not arise.
3. Gradual prohibition of intoxicants

Another example of such verses is that related to gradual prohibition of intoxicants. The first revelation of the Qur’an to deal with intoxicants was the following verse from Surah Baqarah:

"They ask thee concerning wine and gambling say: ‘In them is great sin, and some profit, for men; but the sin is greater than the profit’."
[Al-Qur’an 2:219]

The next verse to be revealed regarding intoxicants is the following verse from Surah Nisa:

"O ye who believe! approach not prayers with a mind befogged, until ye can understand all that ye say" [Al-Qur’an 4:43]

The last verse to be revealed regarding intoxicants was the following verse from Surah Al-Maidah:

"O ye who believe! intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination of Satan’s handiwork; eschew such (abomination), that ye may prosper."
[Al-Qur’an 5:90]

The Qur’an was revealed over a period of 22½ years. Many reforms that were brought about in the society were gradual. This was to facilitate the adoption of new laws by the people. An abrupt change in society always leads to rebellion and anarchy.

The prohibition of intoxicants was revealed in three stages. The first revelation only mentioned that in the intoxicants there is great sin and some profit but the sin is greater than the profit. The next revelation prohibited praying in an intoxicated state, indicating that one should not consume intoxicants during the day, since a Muslim has to pray five times a day. This verse does state that when one is not praying at night one is allowed to consume intoxicants. It means one may have or one may not have. The Qur’an does not comment on it. If this verse had mentioned that one is allowed to have intoxicants while not praying then there would have been a contradiction. Allah (swt) chose words appropriately. Finally the total prohibition of intoxicants at all times was revealed in Surah Maidah chapter 5 verse 90.

This clearly indicates that the three verses do not contradict each other. Had they been contradicting, it would not have been possible to follow all the three verses simultaneously. Since a Muslim is expected to follow each and every verse of the Qur’an, only by following the last verse i.e. of Surah Maidah (5:90), he simultaneously agrees and follows the previous two verses.

Suppose I say that I do not live in Los Angeles. Later I say that I do not live in California. Finally I say, I do not live in the United States of America. This does not imply that these three statements contradict each other. Each statement gives more information than the previous statement. The third statement includes the information contained in the first two statements. Thus, only by saying that I do not live in the United States of America, it is obvious, that I also do not live in California nor New York. Similarly since consuming alcohol is totally prohibited, it is obvious that praying in an intoxicated state is also prohibited and the information that in intoxicants is "great sin and some profit for men; but the sin is greater than profit" also holds true.
4. Qur’an does not contain any contradictions

The theory of abrogation does not imply that there is a contradiction in the Qur’an, since it is possible to follow all the verses of the Qur’an at the same time.

If there is a contradiction in the Qur’an, then it cannot be the word of Allah (swt).

"Do they not consider the Qur’an (with care)? Had it been from other than Allah, they would surely have found therein much discrepancy (contradictions)."

[Al-Qur’an 4:82]

Why do certain Surahs in the Qur’an begin with Alif Laam Meem, Haa Meem, Yaa Seen. What is the significance of such terms or phrases?

1. Abbreviated Letters

Alif Laam Meem, Ya Seen, Ha Meem’, etc. are known as Al-Muqattaat i.e. the abbreviated letters. There are 29 letters in the Arabic Alphabet (if hamza and alif are considered as two letters) and there are 29 surahs i.e. chapters in the Glorious Qur’an that have the abbreviated letters prefixed to them. These abbreviated letters some times occur alone, sometimes in a combination of two letters and sometimes in a combination of three, four or five letters.
a. Three surahs are pre-fixed with only one letter:

(i) Surah Sad chapter 38 with Sad
(ii) Surah Qaf chapter 50 with Qaf
(iii) Surah Nun or Qalam chapter 68 with Nun

b. The combination of two letters occurs in 10 surahs:

Three of them occur only once each:
(i) Surah Ta Ha chapter 20 has Ta Ha
(ii) Surah Al Naml starting with chapter 27 has Ta Seen
(iii) Surah Ya Seen chapter 36 has Ya Seen

Ha Meem occurs in seven consecutive Surahs from Surah 40 to Surah 46:

(i) Surah Ghafir or Al-Mu’min chapter 40
(ii) Surah Fussilat or Ha Meem chapter 41
(iii) Surah Al Shura chapter 42
(iv) Surah Al Zukhruf chapter 43
(v) Surah Al Dukhan chapter 44
(vi) Surah Al Jathiyah chapter 45
(vii) Surah Al Ahqaf chapter 46

c. There are three combinations of three letters each occurring in 14 surahs.

Alif Laam Meem occurs in six surahs

(i) Surah Al Baqarah chapter 2

(ii) Surah Ali ‘Imran chapter 3
(iii) Surah Al ‘Ankabut chapter 29
(iv) Surah Al Rum chapter 30
(v) Surah Luqman chapter 31
(vi) Surah Al Sajdah chapter 32

Alif Laam Ra occurs in six consecutive surahs: Surah 10 to Surah 15:
(i) Surah Yunus chapter 10
(ii) Surah Hud chapter 11
(iii) Surah Yusuf chapter 12
(iv) Surah Al Rad chapter 13
(v) Surah Ibrahim chapter 14
(vi) Surah Al Hijr chapter 15

Ta Seen Meem occurs in two Surahs:

(i) Surah Al-Shura chapter 26
(ii) Surah Al-Qasas chapter 28

d. Combination of four letters occurs twice:

(i) Surah Aaraf chapter 7: Alif Laam Meem Sad
(ii) Surah Anfal chapter 8: Alif Laam Meem Ra

e. Combination of five letters occurs twice:

(i) Surah Maryam chapter 19 begins with Kaf Ha Ya Ayn Sad
(ii) Surah Al-Shura chapter 42 begins with Ha Meem Ayn Seen Qaf

Surah Al-Shura chapter 42 has a double combination of abbreviated letters one set of two letters followed by one set of three letters.
2. Meanings of these abbreviated letters

The meaning and purpose of these letters is uncertain. There have been a variety of explanations offered by Muslim scholars through the ages. A few among them are:
i. These letters might be abbreviations for certain sentences and words for instance, Alif Laam Meem means Ana-Alahu -a’Laam or Nun meaning Noor (light), etc.
ii. These letters are not abbreviations but symbols and names of Allah or something else.
iii. These letters were used for rhyming.
iv. These letters have some numerical significance as the semitic letters also have numerical values.
v. These letters were used to attract the attention of the Prophet (and later his audience).

Several volumes have been written on the significance of these abbreviations.
3. Best explanation of abbreviated letters:

Of all the explanations given by various scholars, the one which is authentic and also supported by Tafsir of Ibne-Kathir, Zamakshari and Ibne-Taiymiyah is the following:

The human body is composed of various fundamental elements that are found in nature. Clay and dust are composed of the same fundamental elements. Yet it would be absurd to say that a human being is exactly the same as the dust.

We can all have access to the elements that are found in the human body, and add a few gallons of water, which is the constitution of the human body. We know the elements in the human body and yet we are at a loss when asked the secret of life.

Similarly the Qur’an addresses those people who reject its Divine authority. It tells them that this Qur’an, is in your own language, and over which the Arabs took pride. It is composed of the same letters that the Arabs used to express themselves most eloquently.

The Arabs were very proud of their language and Arabic was at its peak when the Qur’an was revealed. With the letters Alif Laam Meem, Yaa Seen, Ha-Meem, etc., (in Engllish we would say A, B, C, D) the Qur’an challenges mankind to produce a Surah at least somewhat similar to the Qur’an in beauty and elegance, if they doubt its authenticity.

Initially, the Qur’an challenges all the men and jinn to produce a recital like the Qur’an and adds that they would not be able to do it even if they backed each other. This challenge is mentioned in Surah Isra chapter 17 verse 88 and in Surah Tur chapter 52 verse 34.

Later the Qur’an repeats the challenge in Surah Hud chapter 11 verse 13 by saying produce ten surahs like it and later in Surah Yunus chapter 10 verse 38 produce one surah like it and finally the easiest challenge is given in Surah Al-Baqarah chapter 2 verses 23 and 24.

"And if ye are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant, then produce a Surah like thereunto; and call your witnesses or helpers (if there are any) besides Allah if your doubts are true.

But if ye cannot – and of a surety ye cannot – then fear the fire whose fuel is men and stones – which is prepared for those who reject faith."
[Al-Qur’an 2:23-24]

To compare the skill of two artisans, they must be given samples of the same raw material and their performance evaluated in performing the same task. If they are tailors they must be provided with the same fabrics. The raw materials of the Arabic language are these letters Alif Laam Meem, Ya Seen (in English it is A, B, C, D, etc.) The miraculous nature of the language of the Qur’an does not lie only in the fact that it is the Word of Allah, but also in the fact that although made up of the same letters in which the pagan Arabs took pride, it has not been rivalled.

The Arabs are noted for their rhetoric ability, eloquence and meaningful expression. Just as the constituents of the human body are known to us and can be obtained by us, the letters comprising the Qur’an, such as Alif Laam Meem are known to us, and used frequently to formulate words. Life cannot be created by us, even if we possess knowledge of the constituents of the human body. Similarly we cannot capture the same eloquence and beauty of expression that we find in the Qur’an, despite knowing the letters that constitute the Qu’ran. The Qur’an thus proves its Divine origin.
4. Miraculous quality of Qur’an mentioned immediately after these broken letters

Therefore immediately after these broken letters are mentioned in the Qur’an, the following verses speak about the miracle of the Qur’an, and its authority e.g. in Surah Baqarah Chapter 2 verse 1-2:

"Alif Laam Meem.
This is the Book; in it is guidance sure, without doubt, to those who fear Allah."
[Al-Qur’an 2:1-2]

A Nurse

A nurse took the tired, anxious serviceman to the bedside.

"Your son is here," she said to the old man.

She had to repeat the words several times before the patient's eyes
opened.

Heavily sedated because of the pain of his heart attack, he dimly saw
the young uniformed Marine standing outside the oxygen tent. He reached
out his hand. The Marine wrapped his toughened fingers around the old
man's limp ones, squeezing a message of love and encouragement.

The nurse brought a chair so that the Marine could sit beside the
bed.All through the night the young Marine sat there in the poorly
lighted ward, holding the old man's hand and offering him words of love
and strength. Occasionally, the nurse suggested that the Marine move
away and rest awhile.

He refused. Whenever the nurse came into the ward, the Marine was
oblivious of her and of the night noises of the hospital - the clanking
of the oxygen tank, the laughter of the night staff members exchanging
greetings, the cries and moans of the other patients.

Now and then she heard him say a few gentle words. The dying man said
nothing, only held tightly to his son all through the night.

Along towards dawn, the old man died. The Marine released the now
lifeless hand he had been holding and went to tell the nurse. While she
did what she had to do, he waited.

Finally, she returned. She started to offer words of sympathy, but the
Marine interrupted her.

"Who was that man?" he asked.

The nurse was startled, "He was your father," she answered.

"No, he wasn't," the Marine replied. "I never saw him before in my
life."

"Then why didn't you say something when I took you to him?"

"I knew right away there had been a mistake,

but I also knew he needed his son, and his
son just wasn't here.

When I realized that he was too sick to tell

whether or not I was his son,

knowing how much he needed me, I stayed."

The next time someone needs you ... just be there. Stay.

************ **

WE ARE NOT HUMAN BEINGS GOING THROUGH A
TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE.

WE ARE SPIRITUAL BEINGS GOING THROUGH A TEMPORARY
HUMAN EXPERIENCE.
(love this line)


HAVE A GREAT DAY AND BLESS SOMEONE ELSE IN SOME LITTLE WAY TODAY!
GOD IS SO GOOD.......Innahu samee'un qareebun. Verily He Is Hearing, Nearmost. ;o)

A little Advice

The Secret Of Happiness~~~There are so many points of views about that it is too difficult to define it comprehensively. These kinds of discord are because of man’s different views the life and it’s purpose.

If you ask a young man who has finished his high school education and is waiting to enter University, “who is lucky?” He answers: “The one who successfully passes the university entrance examination. Also, if you ask a single young man who wants to marry a respectable woman, he asks: “the one who marries a capable and fit wife is lucky.”

And then, if you ask a woman with a hot-tempered and immoral husband, she answers: “the one who has a well behaved husband is lucky.”

On the other hand, you cannot find a person who is completely successful in achieving his wishes and desires, because of the obstacles and limitations of this world it is hardly likely that one can reach all of one’s goals.



The Holy Qur’an and the Confinements of Nature:



The Holy Qur’an has also pointed out this reality and we will mention three of its verses:

“And there is not a thing but with us are the treasures of it, and we do not send it down but in a known measure.” (15:21)

“…Allah indeed has pointed a measured for everything.” (65:3)

“And He gives you of all that you ask Him, and if you count Allah’s favors, you will not be able to number them.” (14:34)



In the first and second Verse, the Holy Qur’an has introduced the creation of the world on the basis of “measure” and “quantity. And it can be inferred from the third verse that no one will be able to achieve all of his desires and wishes, but everyone will achieve a certain quantity of them.

Based on the above-mentioned viewpoint it is difficult to define a lucky man. Although those who have restricted human desires to the limited circle of the material, believe that the goal of life is satisfying human desires and benefiting from material achievements. And thus they try to explain “prosperity” within these terms.



Prosperity from Two Viewpoints:

From the viewpoint of a materialist, a lucky man is a person who has more and more possibilities, and unlucky is the one who is deprived of them. As we pointed out before, from the religious viewpoint destiny and limitation, contrast and mortality are necessities of this world.

Therefore, there is no prosperous man, because, supposing that all the factors of convenience and welfare are prepared, they are still unable to escape the unpleasant and occasional accidents such as fatal diseases, senility and finally death?

Now if we look at mankind from another viewpoint, where the curtain of materiality is pushed aside, we will discover that the human being is a collection of external and the internal, body and soul. Man’s happiness cannot be limited to only material affairs, rather it can be found in spiritual well being.

Therefore, a lucky man is the one who under the umbrella of faith and remembrance of Allah overcomes his carnal desires, and controls his behavior, actions and even thoughts. According to this ideology, he will consequently achieve the position of confidence and spiritual serenity. The world gradually becomes meaningless and insignificant in his mind and only God is seen as great and significant.

Imam Ali (AS) describes the virtuous person as follows. “Allah becomes great in the eyes of their souls, and everything except He becomes small.” (Nahjul-Balagha, Sermon No. 193)




Prosperity in difficult times:

From the viewpoint of a pious man, most of the troubles and restrictions of this world are actually good and most of the affairs with a pleasant appearance are actually unpleasant.

Therefore, he will never be fooled by these apparent affairs.

Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (AS) states that:

“When Allah loves His servant, He plunges him into waves of afflictions. `O Sadur! (A companion of Imam Sadiq AS), you and I will spend our day and night perpetually with troubles and calamities.’” (Usule Kafi, Vol. 2, p. 253.)

A truly pious man, not only tolerates unpleasant events very easily, but also looks upon them as mercy and grace and will be able to tolerate disappointments and difficulties with the weapon of trust in Allah. When someone sees a person in the throes of difficulties and problems he says:

“What a troubled man. Thank God we don’t have such problems.” They see such situations as a sign of misfortune and God’s anger.

On the contrary, if they look at a rich and comfortable man, they view him as a successful person whom Allah considers special. These kinds of opinions are against Islamic training and ideology. It is caused by mistakes in interpreting the ruling system of the universe. This Islamic ideology does not mean that every troubled man is beloved in the eyes of Allah or that every rich man is out of favor by Allah. We believe that according to the Qur’anic Verses, although having ease such as a beautiful house and a loving wife are signs of prosperity, difficulties and problems are necessities of life, which are effective in the shaping of the human personality.



Briefly, prosperity is a reality, which everyone wants to have, and searching for it only within the material sphere is pointless and unachievable.

In a nutshell, the secret of prosperity depends on one’s faith, good deeds and patience in the face of unpleasant events. And this is a door that the Holy Qur’an has opened towards mankind when He states in Surah 103 that:

“I swear by Time, Most surely man is in loss. Except those who believe and do good, and enjoin on each other truth, and enjoin on each other patience.”

When the world and its transient pleasures become small and insignificant in man’s eyes, his eyes become open to the spiritual goals of life, which is more sublime than material pleasures, and enjoyments.

There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own situations. Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled. If you want to feel rich, just count all of the things you have that money can't buy. Real Treasures, Allah has bestowed upon us, the gift of sight, sound and smell. The gift of family and friends ;o)


Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around~~

Ya Allah, Make you all among those about whom the Noble Qur'an has said: "And they give them preference over their own selves even though they are in need". (Hashr 59:9) ......... Ameen

MCB Press Release:

Press Release

6 June 2008



Sukuk Can Attract Billions of Pounds into the UK Economy, MCB Welcomes UK Government's Continuing Support for Issuing a Sukuk


The Muslim Council of Britain welcomes the UK Government's latest initiative to solidify London's reputation as the Western hub for Islamic finance, thereby attracting billions of pounds into the UK economy.

Following the recent announcement by the Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister Kitty Ussher of the Government's response to the consultation on a sterling sukuk issuance, the MCB continues to make available its resources to support the Government's work on Islamic finance.
The Business & Economics Committee of the MCB has responded to all consultations by the UK Government on the proposed sukuk issuance, drawing upon its members who include market-leading professionals - some of whom are also members of the HM Treasury Islamic Finance Experts Group and the HMRC Islamic Finance Technical Committee.



Welcoming the recent announcement, Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari , Secretary General of the MCB, stated that "the process of consultation and robust analysis by HM Treasury show that the UK Government wishes to create a sukuk that has the potential to become a market-standard, rather than merely rushing to be the first to market. The careful analysis and transparent wide consultation by HM Treasury is a beacon for an industry which some fear is running before it can walk".



"However, just as the process of consultation by HM Treasury has been transparent and commendable, any resulting sukuk must be equally transparent. Muslims are rightly concerned that the proceeds of any sukuk issuance must not be used to fund activities that are not Shariah compliant. That would be contrary to industry standards and would undermine the valuable hard work undertaken the Government to date" he added.



Note for Editor:

1. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK's largest Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.

2. The Business & Economics Committee of the MCB (the BEC) organised the seminar Islamic Finance and Trade Conference in 2006 where the Rt. Hon. Gordon Brown MP (then as Chancellor of the Exchequer) announced his intention to make the UK "the gateway for Islamic Finance and Trade.� The Committee recently led a delegation of over 35 professionals to the 4th World Islamic Economic Forum in Kuwait to promote the achievements and know-how of Britain in the field of Islamic finance and governance for the social and economic development of Muslim countries.



3. Media enquiries should be emailed to media@mcb.org.uk and any other enquiries should be emailed to admin@mcb.org.uk

4. This press release and other MCB publications are available on the MCB website at www.mcb.org.uk



The Muslim Council of Britain

PO Box 57330

London

E1 2WJ

Tel: 0845 26 26 786

Fax: 0207 247 7079

Email: admin@mcb.org.uk



MCB Elects Leadership, Defines New Vision

Monday 9th June 2008



Press Release



MCB Elects Leadership, Defines New Vision



The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) yesterday concluded its 11th Annual General Meeting with the re-election of Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari for his second and final term as Secretary General. Delegates from national, regional and local affiliates attended the AGM which was convened in the London Muslim Centre.

At its first session the MCB's newly elected Central Working Committee also re-elected Dr Daud Abdullah as Deputy Secretary General and Mr Farooq Murad as Treasurer, replacing Mrs Unaiza Malik who stood down from the post.

In his acceptance speech, Dr Abdul Bari thanked his colleagues for reaffirming their trust and confidence in his leadership. He pledged to consolidate upon the achievements of the past two years and complete a number of key projects initiated in his previous term.

The Annual General Meeting aimed to establish a new milestone for the organisation in its tenth anniversary year. The MCB's Central Working Committee endorsed the new vision statement for the organisation: "To empower the Muslim community to contribute towards achieving a cohesive, just and successful British society." In the coming months, the MCB will unveil a series of initiatives and activities that will be guided by this objective.

The Meeting also heard from a panel of academics and activists who discussed "Beyond the Terror Narrative, the British Muslim Community in Ten Years Time". Chaired by Dr Abdulwahab el-Affendi of the Centre for Democracy, Westminster University and author of Who Needs an Islamic State? panellists included Dr. Marie Breen Smith a counter-terror academic from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, Matthew Wilkinson, a History teacher and researcher at King's College and Tassadiq Hussein of the Green Lane Mosque, Birmingham.

[END]

1. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK's largest Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.
2. Affiliates elect a Central Working Committee who then elect the Secretary General and other office bearers. The Secretary General can only stand for a maximum of two consecutive terms, each lasting two years each.
3. Videos of all the sessions will be come available on the MCB website shortly.

For further information please contact the MCB:
The Muslim Council of Britain,
PO Box 57330,
London,
E1 2WJ
Tel: 0845 26 26 786
Fax: 0207 247 7079
media@mcb.org.uk



MCB Press Release:

Press Release



10 June 2008



Not A Day Longer - MCB Joins Coalition to Oppose Extension of Pre-Charge Detention



The Muslim Council of Britain joins human rights groups, a growing body of thinkers and policymakers dealing with our security, together with the vast majority of the British public who oppose the extension of pre-charge-detention. Any further extension of pre-charge detention risks being counterproductive, damaging community relations and undermining the UK's moral authority around the world. We oppose terrorism in all its forms. We are all concerned about the right to security, free from terror, but this proposal serves to compound the problem, not resolve it.

"We do not believe that the government has made a convincing case for extending the pre-charge detention period from 28 days to 42 days. We are very concerned about the negative impact that this proposed legislation could have on relations between younger members of the Muslim community and the police. Of course it is right that we take proper precautions against the threat of terrorism, however, it is our view that this legislation will be counterproductive and will play into the hands of extremist groups," said Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain.



ACT NOW



Sign the petition


We urge everyone to sign the petition organised by Amnesty International on the Downing Street website http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/notadaylonger/

Write to your MP
Make sure you tell your MP where you stand, find your MP here http://www.writetothem.com/

Seek common cause



This isn't just a 'Muslim' issue, nor is it just a security issue, it is what we hold dear in Britain, freedom and justice - ancient traditions that are important to all of us. Seek out other faith groups, charities and concerned citizens and help form a united coalition against this proposal.



Notes for Editor:

1. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK's largest Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.



2. Through this Press Release, the MCB is encouraging all its affiliates, the Muslim community and all concerned citizens to join hands in this campaign



3. MCB's stance in opposing terrorism is clear, and can be found here: http://www.mcb.org.uk/article_detail.php?article=announcement-656



The Muslim Council of Britain

PO Box 57330

London

E1 2WJ

Tel: 0845 26 26 786

Fax: 0207 247 7079

Email: admin@mcb.org.uk


The Duck & the Devil

There was a little boy visiting his grandparents on their farm. He was given a slingshot to play with out in the woods. He practiced in the woods,but he could never hit the target. Getting a little discouraged, he headed back for dinner.
As he was walking back he saw Grandma's pet duck. Just out of impulse, he let the slingshot fly, hit the duck square in the head and killed it.He was shocked and grieved! In a panic, he hid the dead duck in the wood pile, only to see his sister watching!
Fatima had seen it all, but she said nothing. After lunch the next day Grandma said, ' Fatima, let's wash the dishes.' But Fatima said, 'Grandma, Ahmed told me he wanted to help in the kitchen.' Then she whispered to him,'Remember the duck?' So Ahmed did the dishes.
Later that day, Grandpa asked if the children wanted to go fishing and Grandma said, 'I'm sorry but I need Fatima to help make supper.'
Fatima just smiled and said, 'Well, that's all right because Ahmed told me he wanted to help.' She whispered again, 'Remember the duck?' So Fatima went fishing and Ahmed stayed to help.
After several days of Ahmed doing both his chores and Fatima's, he finally couldn't stand it any longer.
He came to Grandma and confessed that he had killed the duck. Grandma knelt down, gave him a hug and said, 'Sweetheart, I know. You see, I was standing at the window and I saw the whole thing, but because I love you, I forgave you. I was just wondering how long you would let Fatima make a slave of you.'
Thought for the day and every day thereafter?
Whatever is in your past, whatever you have done... and the devil keeps throwing it up in your face (lying, cheating, debt, fear, bad habits, hatred,anger, bitterness, etc.)...whatever it is...You need to know that Allah was standing at the window and He saw the whole thing. He has seen your whole life. He wants you to know that He loves you and that you are forgiven.
He's just wondering how long you will let the devil make a slave of you.
The great thing about Allah is that when you ask for forgiveness, He not only forgives you, but He forgets. It is by Allah's grace and mercy that we are saved.
Go ahead and make a difference in someone's life today. Share this with a friend and always remember: Allah is at the window!

Here is just such a simple solution, presented in the form of three keys, that when remembered and practiced, keep us going in the right direction and while we walk the path, they also are the catalysts in bringing happiness.

Key 1 - Keep Your Heart Free From Hatred

When people, events and circumstances go against our wishes, desires or expectations, they create reactions of anger and frustration within us. These reactions are natural and must not be denied or ignored - rather their underlying reason must be seen and overcome - that of our pre-decided ideas and expectations being thwarted.

These emotions occur as a natural progression of painful events and are fine as long as they are felt and released. The problem lies when we cannot let go of the feelings and they tend to seep into our hearts where they fester till treated. If such is the case, these negative feelings tend to influence our way of thought, and necessarily, of action and become an integral part of our outlook towards life itself. Then everything that originates within us carries the subtle flavour of these very negative feelings.

The first secret of happiness says that no matter what emotions we feel temporarily, our hearts must remain free of hate.

Key 2 - Keep Your Mind Free From Worry

We worry when our thoughts travel either to the future, or linger in the past. Worry is a phenomenon which depletes energy and divides attention - leaving us incapable of giving our best to the moment before us.

The only way to give a 100% of yourself to the task at hand is to be totally present in the present moment without thinking of what's gone by or what is still to come - both cases where we have no say or control anyway.

Performing the action totally and to the best of one's ability brings back a positive result based on the law of karma - "As you sow, so shall you reap" - a result which would not be possible had we divided our inner being with worry.

The second secret of happiness is to always perform actions based on careful thought and planning, but without worry.

Key 3 - Give A Lot, Expect A Little

It is crucial for our happiness to come to the realisation early in life that it is our own expectations and pre-conceived ideas and hopes, which when frustrated, cause most of our pain and agony.

Once this understanding has stabilised within us, we begin to live for the moment, and within ourselves instead of seeking outward or external reinforces for our self-esteem or happiness.

It is not enough for us to be passive spectators of our own life, we must also be willing to give and share freely of our best qualities without waiting for a similar return.

It is both wise and practical to remember the advice of numerous spiritual masters that "It is in the giving that we receive." The free giving of your own self without strings attached bring both peace and contentment in the long run.

The third secret of happiness is to give a lot and expect very little.

The Qur’an says that only Allah knows the sex of the child in the womb of the mother but now science has advanced and we can easily determine the sex of the child in the womb by ultrasonography. Isn’t this verse of the Qur’an conflicting with medical science?

Allah is Omnipotent and Omniscient. Allah has granted knowledge of certain things to humankind. But Allah has knowledge of the seen as well as the unseen.
1. Allah has knowledge of all things

Many people believe that the Qur’an claims that Allah alone knows the sex of the child in the mother’s womb. The Glorious Qur’an says:

"Verily the knowledge of the Hour is with Allah (alone). It is He who sends down Rain, and He who knows what is in the wombs…."
[Al-Qur’an 31:34]

A similar message is given in the following verse:

"Allah doth know what every female (womb) doth bear,
By how much the wombs fall short (of their time or number) or do exceed. Every single thing is before His sight, in (due) proportion."
[Al-Qur’an 13:8]
2. Sex can be determined by Ultrasonography

Today science has advanced and we can easily determine the sex of the child in the womb of a pregnant mother, using ultrasonography.
3. The word ‘sex’ is not mentioned in the verse of the Qur’an

It is true that many translations and commentaries of this verse of the Glorious Qur’an say that only Allah knows the sex of the child in the mother’s womb. If you read the Arabic text of this verse, there is no Arabic word corresponding to the English word ‘sex’. In fact the Qur’an says the knowledge of what is in the womb is with Allah alone. Many commentators have misunderstood it to mean only Allah knows the sex of the child in the womb, which is a mistake.
4. No one besides Allah can determine the nature of the child

This verse does not refer to the sex of the child in the womb but it refers to, how the child in the mother’s womb will be. How will his nature be? Will he be a blessing or a curse to his parents? Will he be a boon or a bane to the society? Will he be good or evil? Will he go to heaven or hell? The complete knowledge of all things is with Allah alone. No scientist in the world, no matter how advanced his equipment, will ever be able to accurately determine the knowledge of these things about the child in the mother’s womb.

According to the Qur’an when a man enters paradise, he will get hoor, i.e. beautiful maidens. What will a woman have when she enters paradise?

1. Hoor mentioned in the Qur’an

The word hoor occurs in the Qur’an in no less than four different places:

(1) In Surah Dukhan chapter 44, verse 54

"Moreover, We shall join them to companions
With beautiful, big and lustrous eyes."
[Al-Qur’an 44:54]

(2) In Surah Al-Tur chapter 52 verse 20

"...And We shall join them to companions, with beautiful,
big and lustrous eyes."
[Al-Qur’an 52:20]

(3) In Surah Rahman chapter 55 verse 72

"Companions restrained (as to their glances), in goodly pavilions."
[Al-Qur’an 55:72]

(4) In Surah Al-Waqiah chapter 56 verse 22

"And (there will be) companions with beautiful, big and lustrous eyes."
[Al-Qur’an 56:22]

2. Hoor Translated as Beautiful Maidens

Many translators of the Qur’an have translated the word hoor as ‘beautiful maidens’ especially in the Urdu translations. If hoor means ‘beautiful maidens’ or girls, then they are meant only for the men. Hence, what will the women get if they enter Paradise?

3. Meaning of Hoor

The word hoor is actually the plural of ahwar (applicable to man) and of haura (applicable to woman) and signifies a person having eyes characterized by hauar a special quality bestowed upon a good soul, male or female in paradise and it denotes the intense whiteness of the white part of the spiritual eye.

The Qur’an describes in several other verses that in paradise you will have azwaj which mean a pair or spouse or companion which means you will have spouses or companions pure and holy (mutaharratun means pure, holy).

"But give glad tidings to those who believe and work righteousness, that their portion is gardens, beneath which rivers flow. Every time they are fed with fruits therefrom, they say: "Why, this is what we were fed with before", for they are given things in similitude; and they have therein companions pure (and holy); and they abide therein (forever)".
[Al-Qur’an 2:25]

"But those who believe and do deeds of righteousness, We shall soon admit to Gardens, with rivers flowing beneath – their eternal home; therein shall they have companions pure and holy: we shall admit them to shades, cool and ever deepening". [Al-Qur’an 4:57]

Therefore the word hoor has no specific gender. Mohammad Asad has translated the word hoor as spouse and Abdullah Yusuf Ali as companion. Therefore according to some scholars a man in paradise will have a hoor that is a beautiful maiden with beautiful big and lustrous eyes and a woman in paradise will get a man with beautiful big and lustrous eyes.

4. Women will get something exceptional in Paradise
Many scholars say that in context, the word hoor used in the Qur’an refers only to ladies since gents are addressed. A reply that would be accepted by all types of people would rather be the answer given in the Hadith when a similar question was posed that if a man gets a hoor, a beautiful Maiden in Paradise, then what will the women get? The reply was that the women will get that which the heart has not desired for, the ear hasn’t heard off and the eye hasn’t seen, indicating that even the women will get something exceptional in Paradise.

The Qur’an says that Allah has put a seal on the hearts of the Kuffar and they will not believe.

Science tells us today that the brain is responsible for understanding and believing and not the heart. Isn’t the Qur’an contradicting Science?

Answer:

1. Allah has set a seal on the heart of the Kuffar
The Glorious Qur’an says:

"As to those who reject Faith it is the same to them
Whether thou warn them or do not warn them;
They will not believe.
"Allah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing and on their eyes is a veil
Great is the penalty they incur."
[Al-Qur’an 2:6-7]

2. The word qalb in Arabic means heart as well as intelligence
The Arabic word qalb used in these verses means the heart. It also means intelligence. Thus the above verses also mean that Allah has put a seal on the intelligence of the kuffaars (unbelievers) and they will not understand and believe.

3. In the Arabic language heart is also used as a centre of understanding
In the Arabic language the word ‘heart’ is also used to connote one’s centre of understanding.

4. Several words used in English language whose literal meaning is different
Even in English language there are several words which are used to explain something, though the literal meaning of these words are different. Consider the following examples

a. Lunatic - Struck by the moon:

The word ‘lunatic’ literally means struck by the moon. Today people use the word lunatic for a person who is insane or mentally unstable. People very well know that a mad or a mentally unstable person is not struck by the moon. Yet even a medical doctor uses this word. This is normal in the evolution of a language.

b. Disaster – An evil star

The word ‘disaster’ literally means an evil star. Today the word disaster is used for a great or sudden misfortune or calamity. We know very well that a misfortune has nothing to do with an evil star.

c. Trivial – Three roads meet

The word ‘trivial’ literally means where three roads meet. Today the word ‘trivial’ is used for something of small nature or little importance. We know very well that if something is of small value it has nothing to do with where three roads meet.

d. Sunrise and Sunset

‘Sunrise’ literally means rising of the sun. Today when the word ‘sunrise’ is used most of the people know that the earth is rotating and is moving in relation to the sun. Most of us know that the sun does not rise during sunrise. However even an astronomer uses the word ‘sunrise’. Similarly we know that during sunset, the sun does not actually set.

5. In the English language heart is the centre of love and emotion
In the English language heart means an organ in the body which pumps blood. The same word heart is also used for the centre of thought, love and emotion. Today we know that brain is the centre of thought, love and emotion. Yet while expressing emotions a person is likely to say "I love you from the bottom of my heart". Imagine a scientist telling his wife, "I love you from the bottom of my heart" and the wife replies, "Don’t you even know the basics of science, that the brain is responsible for the emotions and not the heart? In fact you should say I love you from the bottom of my brain."

6. Arabs know that the word heart in Arabic is also used for centre of thought and understanding
No Arab will ever ask the question as to why Allah has sealed the hearts of the kafir because he knows that in this context it refers to the centre of thought, understanding and emotions.

If Allah has sealed the hearts of the Kuffar i.e. non-Muslims, then why are they to be blamed for not accepting Islam?

1. Allah has sealed the hearts of those who are continuously bent on rejecting the truth

Allah (swt) mentions in Surah Al Baqarah chapter 2 verses 6 and 7

"As to those who reject Faith, it is the same to them Whether thou warn them or do not warn them; they will not believe.

Allah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing, and on their eyes is a veil; great is the penalty they (incur)."
[Al-Qur’an 2:6-7]

These verses do not refer to common Kuffar who reject faith. The Arabic words used are al-lazina kafaroo, those who are bent on rejecting the truth. It will not make any difference to such people whether you warn them or not, they will not believe. Allah has set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing and on their eyes is a veil. It is not because Allah has set a seal on their hearts that these kuffar do not understand and believe, but it is the vice-versa. It is because these kuffar are bent on rejecting the truth and whether you warn them or not they will not believe, that Allah has set a seal on their hearts. Therefore Allah is not to blame, but these kuffaar who are bent on rejecting the faith are responsible.
2. Example of teacher predicting a student will fail

Suppose an experienced teacher, before the final examinations, predicts that a particular student will fail in the exams, since the student is very mischievous, not attentive in class and does not do his homework. If after the student appears for the examination, he fails, who is to be blamed for the student failing: the teacher or the student? Just because the teacher predicted, it does not mean that the teacher is to be blamed but the student himself is responsible for his failure.

Similarly Allah (swt) knows in advance that there are some people who are bent on rejecting the faith and Allah has put a seal on their hearts. Thus these non-Muslims themselves are responsible for rejecting the faith and not Allah (swt).

Muslims want Equality before British Law

MCB Welcomes Lord Chief Justice's scholarly discussion on the nature of Islamic law


The Muslim Council of Britain warmly welcomes the Lord Chief Justice's valuable contribution to the discussion on the role of Islam and Muslims in Britain's legal traditions. In a scholarly speech outlining the development of the equality laws in the English legal system Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers spoke of the "widespread misunderstanding" of the nature of Sharia law.


Speaking at the London Muslim Centre in Whitechapel, he said "There is no reason why Sharia principles, or any other religious code, should not be the basis for mediation or other forms of alternative dispute resolution [with the understanding] that any sanctions for a failure to comply with the agreed terms of mediation would be drawn from the Laws of England and Wales."


Commenting on the speech that the Archbishop of Canterbury had made in February this year, the Lord Chief Justice said, "It was not very radical to advocate embracing Sharia law in the context of family disputes, for example, and our system already goes a long way towards accommodating the Archbishop's suggestion. It is possible in this country for those who are entering into a contractual agreement to agree that the agreement shall be governed by a law other than English law."



Supporting the Lord Chief Justice's principled position on the issue, the MCB Secretary General said, "It is a credit to this country's strong and independent judiciary that Lord Phillips has put the demands of justice above those of the prevailing political narrative. The MCB reaffirms its commitment to the principle of equality before the law and welcomes Lord Phillips' call for Muslims to be allowed to apply elements of Islamic law to the governance of personal relationships where this does not conflict with the laws of the land. The MCB also strongly supports the appeal of the Lord Chief Justice for suitably qualified Muslims to join the judiciary."



Dr Abdul Bari, the Secretary General of the MCB reaffirmed his appeal for a thoughtful discourse on the place of certain elements of the Islamic law in the English Legal system devoid of the hysterical overreaction and misrepresentation, as was the case in relation to the Archbishop of Canterbury's speech in February this year.


Notes for Editors:



1. The Muslim Council of Britain is a representative British Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.



2. The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Phillips of Worth Matraver, spoke at the London Muslim Centre in Whitechapel on 3 July 2008.



For further information please contact the MCB:
The Muslim Council of Britain,
PO Box 57330,
London,
E1 2WJ
Tel: 0845 26 26 786
Fax: 0207 247 7079
media@mcb.org.uk

Love

The word 'ishq ('love') is derived from 'ashiqa, a type of garden vine that grows at the base of trees. First of all it secures its roots in the ground, then it rises up and clings to the tree. It keeps going until it has taken over the whole tree and chokes it until no moisture is left in the veins of the tree. All the nurishment that reaches the tree through water and air it plunders until the tree withers.

Likewise, in the world of humanity, which is a microcosm of creation, there is a tree that stands erect and is connected to the seed of the heart, which grows in the ground of the celestial kingdom. Everything that is therein possesses soul, as is said:

Everything that is situated in that place stands on the rock and soil of the soul.

The heart-seed is a seed planted by the gardener of Pre- and Post-Eternity from the storehouse of the 'souls arrayed in ranks' in the garden of the celestial kingdom of the 'spirit at my Lord's command.'. (Qur'an, 17:85) He tends it himself.

The hearts of men are between two of the Merciful's fingers: He turns them however He wills.

When the water of knowing that 'everything lives through water' (Qur'an, 21:30), along with the breeze of 'blasts of God's breath in the days of you time' from the felicity of God's right hand, reaches this heart-seed, hundreds of thousands of spiritual branches spread from it. And that freshness and verdure is contained in the words, 'I perceive the breath of the Merciful from the direction of the Yemen.' Therefore, the heart-seed, which is called the 'good word,' is a reflection of this tree in the world of generation and corruption, which is called 'shade' and 'body' and 'the tree of erect stature.' When this good tree begins to grow tall and reach perfection, love pops out from a corner and curls around it until it reaches the point that none of the moisture of humanity is left. The more love twines around this tree, the more the reflection, which is the tree of erect stature, grows weak and pale, until all at once the connectionis severed. Then the tree becomes absolute!
soul
and is worthy to take its place in the divine garden.

Enter among my servants; and enter my paradise. (Qur'an, 89:30)

Since this wothiness is to be had through love, love is a pious work in that it causes one to attain the rank where

unto him ascendeth the good speech; and the righteous work will he exalt. (Qur'an, 35:10)

Piety means receptivity to this stage. When it is said that So-and-So is 'pious', what is meant is that he is receptive. Then, even though it takes the soul to the world of everlastingness, love brings the body back to the world of annihilation because, in the world of generation and corruption there is nothing that can endure the burden of love. A great master has said in this regard:

May the enemy whose desire has fallen in with union with you have access to joy for not one instant.

No, no, I do not curse him after this: even if the enemy is made of iron, love for you is sufficient [to break him].

The Qur’an mentions in several places that the heavens and the earth were created in 6 days but in Surah Fussilat it says that the heavens and the earth were created in 8 days.

Isn’t this a contradiction? The same verse also says that the earth was created in 6 days and then later on the heavens were created in 2 days. This is against the Big-Bang theory that the heavens and the earth were created simultaneously.

Answer:

1. Heavens and the Earth created in Six days

I do agree that the Qur’an says that the heavens and the earth were created in 6 days i.e. 6 epochs and it is mentioned in

Surah Al A’raf chapter 7 verse 54
Surah Yunus chapter 10 verse 3
Surah Hud chapter 11 verse 7
Surah Al Furqan chapter 25 verse 59
Surah Al Sajdah chapter 32 verse 4
Surah Qaf chapter 50 verse 38
Surah Al Hadid chapter 57 verse 4

The verses of the Qur’an which according to you say that the heavens and the earth were created in 8 days are Surah Fussilat chapter 41 verses 9 to 12

"Say: Is it that ye deny Him Who created the earth in two days? And do ye join equals With him? He is the Lord of (all) the Worlds;

He set on the (earth) mountains standing firm, High above it, and bestowed blessings on the earth, and measured therein all things to give them nourishment in due proportion, In four days, in accordance with (the needs of) Those who seek (sustenance)."

Moreover, He Comprehended in His design the sky, and it had been (as) smoke. He said to it and to the earth. "Come ye together, willingly or unwillingly. They said: "We do come (Together), in willing obedience."

So He completed them as seven firmaments in two days and He assigned to each heaven its duty and command and We adorned the lower heaven with lights, and (provided it) with guard. Such is the decree of (Him) the exalted in might, full of knowledge."
[Al-Qur’an 41:9-12]

On the face of it, it seems that these verses of the Qur’an give the initial impression that the heavens and the earth were created in 8 days.

Allah says in the beginning of this verse that those who exploit this information contained in this passage to raise doubts about its authenticity are equally interested in promulgating blasphemy and denying His unity. Allah is telling us that in course of time, there will emerge unbelievers who will make use of this apparent contradiction.

2. Summa means moreover

If you analyse these verses carefully, it speaks about 2 different creations: the earth and the heaven. The earth excluding the mountains was created in 2 days and the mountains were set on the earth standing firm and blessed and measured its sustenance in 4 days. Therefore the earth along with the mountains was created in 6 days according to verse 9 and 10. Verse 11 and 12 says, moreover the heavens were created in 2 days. The Arabic word used in the beginning of verse 11 of Surah Fussilat is summa which means; ‘then’ or ‘moreover’. There are certain Qur’anic translations, which have, used ‘then’ for the word summa which, indicates ‘afterwards’. If ‘then’ is wrongly used for summa then the total of the creation of heaven and earth will be 8 days which will conflict with other verses of the Qur’an which says heavens and earth were created in 6 days and will also conflict with the Big Bang Theory as well as the verse of the Qur’an Surah Al Ambiya cha!
pter 21
verse 30 which says that heavens and the earth were created simultaneously.

Therefore the correct translation of the word summa in this verse would be ‘moreover’. Abdullah Yusuf Ali has rightly translated the word summa or moreover which clearly gives an indication that while the earth along with the mountains, etc. was created in 6 days simultaneously the heavens were created in 2 days. Therefore the total does not come to 8 days but 6 days.

If a builder says that he will construct a 10 storey building and surrounding compound wall in 6 months and after completion of his project he gives a more detailed account saying that the basement of the building was built in 2 months and the 10 storeys took 4 months and simultaneously, while the basement and the building was being constructed, he also constructed the surrounding of the building along with the compound wall which took 2 months. Therefore both his first and second descriptions are not contradicting but the second statement gives a more detailed account for the construction.

3. Heavens and the Earth created simultaneously

The Qur’an describe the creation of the universe in several places, sometimes it says the heavens and the earth (7:54, 10:3, 11:7, 25:59, 32:4, 50:38, 57:4) while in other places it says earth and the heaven (49:9-12, 2:29, 20:4) thus further supplementing the verse of Surah Al Ambiya chapter 21 verse 30 which speaks about the Big-Bang and that the heavens and the earth were created simultaneously.

Similarly in Surah Al-Baqara chapter 2 verse 29

"It is He Who hath created for you all things that are on earth; Then He turned to the heaven and made them into seven firmaments. And of all things He hath perfect knowledge."
[Al-Qur’an 2:29]

"It is who has created for you all things on the earth summa simultaneously made the heaven into seven firmaments".

Here also if you wrongly translate summa as ‘then’ only then would this verse contradict the Big-bang theory and other verses of the Qur’an. Therefore the correct translation of the word summa is ‘moreover’ or ‘simultaneously’.

On The theme OF Unity~~~~

Racism is one of the severe diseases of human society in this age. Everyone remembers how black Africans were transported across the oceans, packed in specially designed ships, thought of and treated like livestock. They were made slaves, forced to change their names and religion and language, were not entitled to hope for true freedom, and were refused the least of human rights. Because among some Western people the attitude to non-Westerners has unfortunately changed little in modern times, the political and social condition of black people often remains, even where they live amid the native Westerners as theoretically equal fellow-citizens, that of despised inferiors.

When Allah's (SWT) Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings, was raised as a Prophet, the same kind of racism, under the name of tribalism, was prevalent in Makkah. The Quraish considered themselves in particular, and Arabs in general, superior to all the other peoples of the world. Allah's (SWT) Messenger came with the Divine Message and proclaimed that no Arab is superior over a non-Arab, and no white is superior over black and superiority is by righteousness and God-fearing alone (Surat Al-Hujurat, 49:13). He also declared that even if an Abyssinian Black Muslim were to rule over Muslims, he should be obeyed.

Allah's (SWT) Messenger eradicated the problem of racial or colour discrimination so successfully that superiority is not by birth or colour or blood, but by God-fearing and righteousness.

The message of Islam is for the entire human race. According to Islam, Allah (SWT) is the God of the entire world and the Prophet Muhammad (saw) is a messenger for the whole of mankind. Islam unites the entire human race under one banner without any kind of discrimination.

Allah (SWT) says in Surat Al-Hujurat, "O Mankind! We have created you from a male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the sight of Allah is he who has most Taqwa among of you. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware." Noble Qur'an (49:13)

With this verse, Islam declares equality among people as one human race, one humanity, that is because Islam respect a human for being a human not for any other reason; Islam does not distinguish between two races, or two groups of people, or between two colors, and the Prophet Muhammad (saw) addressed the people signifying that concept during the last Hajj pilgrimage, saying: "O People! Your God is one; your father is one; no preference of an Arab neither over non-Arab nor of a non-Arab over an Arab or red over black or black over red except for the most righteous. Verily the most honored of you is the most righteous."

Not only did Islam emphasize the equality principle theoretically, but did it practically in some of the worship acts that translated this principle into a sensible fact that does not escape people minds, thus: in the mosques where Friday prayer is held once every week, as well as the five daily prayers; equality is exercised practically and all the differences vanishes among people. That is, whoever came to the Mosque first, took his place in the front rows despite his financial states or position, and whoever come late, his place is late and if you look at any row among the prayer's rows, you would find in that row the rich and poor, the knowledgeable and the one with no knowledge, the Arab and the non Arab, no differences all the same in sight of Allah (SWT), their direction during prayer, as well as their reveled book, as their Lord is one and also their movements during the prayer following one Imam.

Also in the holy land where the annual Hajj pilgrimage and the Umrah is performed, the equality is even clearer and stronger that is because during prayer people may differ in their clothes but during Hajj pilgrimage and Umrah the Ihram situation oblige every one to only wear simple white clothes which equates the rich and the poor, the governor and governed, all walking around the Holy Kaaba asking one lord.

Also, another practical application of equality in Islam, is the equality among people in front of the law and regulations. What is allowed is for all people and what is forbidden as well upon all people. The obligations are upon everyone, and whoever deserved punishment gets it, regardless.

An example of such was when some of the companions (Sahaba) talked to Osama Bin Zaid, the favorite of the Prophet Muhammad (saw), to intervene for the sake of the well reputed woman from Quraish tribe who deserved punishment for stealing (that is cutting her hand), Osama Bin Zaid talked to the Prophet Muhammad (saw), the Prophet Muhammad (saw) got angry and said, "Those before you were districted, that is because the renowned is untouched when he steals, and the poor is punished, verily if Fatimah daughter of Muhammad stole, I would have cut her hand."

This is Islam: emphasizing the equality and applying it in the society since 1400 years ago, when during that time mankind used to suffer the worst distinction among people and individuals in society and readied the enslaving of the human to his brother the human. The eradication of racism consciousness is one of the outstanding moral achievements of Islam.

This is the secrete that made Islam and Muslims prevail nations in the past. It is a mistake to think that Islam prevailed only because Muslims like dying in the battles as other like to live. Islam did not prevail through battles only, but because Islam is a complete unique guidance for life, unique in it's rituals, beliefs, dealings and morals and from all with all that the religion of Allah is comprised, and with all that Muslims won and prevailed in the past, and with it Muslims can prevail and rule these days or any other time.


Islam and Discrimination: Wedding of Jowaibir and Zalfa (Equality in Islam, Racism and Islam)


"How beautiful it were if you could marry and establish a family, ending this forlorn and isolated life? You could fulfill your natural urges and also she could help you in your temporal and spiritual needs and goals."

"O Messenger of Allah, I have neither wealth nor beauty; nor I have a noble descent or lineage. Who will marry me? And which woman likes to be wife of a poor, short, black and ugly man like me?"

"O Jowaibir! God has changed the individual's worth through Islam. Many people were high-placed in the pre-Islamic society and Islam brought them down. Many were despised non-entities and Islam bestowed them with honor and high rank and brought them up. Islam abolished the un-Islamic discrimination and pride of lineage. Now all people irrespective of their color and origin are equal. Nobody has superiority over others but through piety and obedience to Allah. Among the Muslims, only that person would be higher than YOU whose virtues and deeds are better than you. Now do as I tell you."

These words were exchanged one day between the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and Jowaibir when the Prophet Muhammad (saw) came to see the Companions of the Suffa (Ashab al-Suffa).

Jowaibir was a native of "Yamamah" where he came to know about the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and the advent of Islam. He was poor, black and short, but at the same time intelligent truth seeking and a man of determination. He came to Medina to look at Islam from near; in a short time he embraced Islam. Since he had neither money, house nor any friends, he temporarily was accommodated along with other poor Muslims in the Mosque by permission of the Prophet Muhammad (saw). When it was revealed unto the Prophet Muhammad (saw) that the Mosque was not a place of habitation, it became necessary to shift them elsewhere. The Prophet Muhammad (saw) selected a site outside the Mosque and erected a shed for them. The place was named as "Suffa" and the residents were known as "Ashab al-Suffa" - all of them poor from places far away from Medina.

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) came to visit them one day. Noticing Jowaibir among them he decided to bring him out of this forlorn life. It was beyond the fancy of Jowaibir to own a house and have a wife in his condition. And that was why he replied to the Prophet Muhammad (saw) as to how it was possible for anyone to accept him in matrimony when the Prophet Muhammad (saw) advised him to marry. But the Prophet Muhammad (saw) removing his doubts explained to him the changes brought about in the social outlook of the people by Islam.

After bringing Jowaibir out of his inferiority complex, he directed him to the house of Ziad ibn Lubaid to request him for his daughter's hand in marriage.

Ziad ibn Lubaid was one of the wealthiest persons of Medina and commanded high respect among his tribes. When Jowaibir entered his house, he was surrounded by his relatives and some of his tribes-men. Jowaibir took a seat, paused for a moment and then raising his head said, "I have brought a message from the Prophet Muhammad (saw). Do you like to hear it confidentially or openly?"

Ziad ibn Lubaid: "A message from the Prophet Muhammad (saw) is an honour to me, better you tell it openly."

"The Prophet Muhammad (saw) has sent me to request you for your daughter for myself".

Ziad ibn Lubaid asked: "Did he himself make this suggestion to you?"

Jowaibir replied: "I don't speak on my own accord. Everybody knows me, I am not a liar"

Ziad ibn Lubaid said: "Strange! We don't give our daughters to persons of unequal status nor outside our tribe. You go back I shall go to the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and have a talk with him myself."

Jowaibir left the house murmuring, "By Allah (SWT), whatever the Noble Qur'an teaches and whatever is the purpose of the prophethood of Muhammad (saw) is totally against what Ziad ibn Lubaid says."

Those nearby heard the murmurings of Jowaibir. Zalfa, the lovely daughter of Ziad ibn Lubaid, and the beauty queen of Medina, heard these words of Jowaibir. She came to her father and asked: "Father, what was that man who just went out saying? And what did he mean?"

Ziad ibn Lubaid said: "He had come to ask for your hand in marriage and was claiming that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) had sent him for this purpose".

"Isn't it possible that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) had really sent him, and thus your rejection may amount to disobedience of the Prophet Muhammad's (saw) order?"

Ziad ibn Lubaid asked: "What do you feel about it?"

Zalfa said: "I feel you should bring him back before he reaches to the Prophet Muhammad (saw), and then go yourself to find out the truth."

Ziad ibn Lubaid brought Jowaibir back to his house with due respect, and then himself hurried up to the Prophet Muhammad (saw). When he saw him he said:

"O Messenger of Allah, Jowaibir came to my house and brought such and such a message from you, I would like to inform you that our custom is to give our daughters to persons of equal status and belonging to our tribe, who are all your helpers and companions."

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: "O Ziad, Jowaibir is a faithful man. That dignity and honor which you are talking about has now been abrogated. Every believer man is equal (for marriage purpose) to every believer woman."

Ziad ibn Lubaid returned to his house and explained the matter to his daughter, Zalfa. She said, "Please do not reject the proposal put by the Prophet Muhammad (saw). This matter concerns me. I accept Jowaibir whatever his condition may be. If the Prophet Muhammad (saw) is pleased with it, I am also pleased."

The wedding was duly solemnized; Ziad ibn Lubaid paid "Mahr" (dowry) from his own wealth and offered good articles to the newly married. They asked the bridegroom, "Have you got a house where to take the bride?" Jowaibir said, "No, I had never thought that I would get a wife and settle in domestic life. It was the Prophet Muhammad (saw) who came suddenly and had a talk with me and sent me to Ziad ibn Lubaid's house".

Ziad ibn Lubaid arranged for him a house equipped with complete household equipments, and transferred the bride superbly adorned with ornaments and perfumes.

Night came. Jowaibir did not know where the house was meant for him. He was guided to the house and led to the bridal-chamber. When he saw the house and its equipments and looked at the dazzling bride, his past came to his mind and he said to himself, "How poor I was when I entered this city. I had nothing - neither money nor beauty, neither any lineage nor family - now Allah (SAW) made these affluences available to me through Islam. Indeed it is Islam that has brought such changes in the social outlook of the people beyond any imagination. How grateful I am to Allah (SAW) for bestowing upon me all these Blessings!"

In spiritual ecstasy he went to a corner of the room; spent the night in recitation of the Noble Qur'an and prayer. It was dawn when he came to himself and then decided to fast in gratitude to Allah (SAW).

When women came to see bride Zalfa in the morning they found her untouched. They kept the matter secret from Ziad ibn Lubaid. Two nights and days passed in the same manner. Jowaibir was fasting during days and praying during nights. The women of the family of the bride were worried. They thought perhaps Jowaibir was impotent and had no need for a woman. At last, they put the matter before Ziad ibn Lubaid. He informed the Prophet Muhammad (saw).

The Prophet Muhammad (saw); called Jowaibir and asked, "Don't you have any desire for woman?"

Jowaibir replied: "Incidentally, I have very intense desire of that kind".

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said; "Then why didn't you go near your bride?"

"O Messenger of Allah, when I entered the house I found myself amidst that affluence. A state of gratitude and devotion took me over. I thought it necessary to offer thanks and prayers to Allah (SWT) before doing anything. Tonight I shall go near my wife."

Jowaibir and Zalfa lived a most happy life. When the call for a Jihad (Holy war) came, he participated in it with the enthusiasm typical of a brave Muslim, and achieved martyrdom under the banner of Islam. After his martyrdom, Zalfa was the most sought after woman for a wife and people were eager to pay the greatest Mahr for her.


Islam and Discrimination: A white has no superiority over a black (Equality in Islam)


The following scene took place on a BA flight between Johannesburg and London.

A white woman, about 50 years old, was seated next to a black man. Obviously disturbed by this, white woman called the air Hostess.

Madam, what is the matter, the air hostess asked?

You obviously do not see it then? White woman responded.

You placed me next to a black man. I do not agree to sit next to someone from such a repugnant group. Give me an alternative seat.

Be calm please, the air hostess replied.

Almost all the places on this flight are taken. I will go to see if another place is available. The air Hostess went away and then came back a few minutes later. Madam, just as I thought, there are no other available seats in the economy class. I spoke to the captain and he informed me that there is also no seat in the business class. All the same, we still have one place in the first class.

Before the white woman could say anything, the air hostess continued. It is not usual for our company to permit someone from the economy class to sit in the first class However, given the circumstances; the captain feels that it would be scandalous to make someone sit next to someone so disgusting. Air Hostess turned to the black man, and said. Therefore, Sir, if you would like to, please take your hand luggage because a seat awaits you in the first class. At the moment, the other passengers who were shocked by what they had just witnessed stood up and applauded.

This is a true story which is not usually told. If you are against racism, please send this message to all your friends. According to the teachings of Islam, all mankind is from Adam and Eve; an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over a black, nor does a black have any superiority over white except by piety and good action. Learn that every Muslim is the brother of another Muslim, and that Muslims constitute one brotherhood and one humanity

It is mentioned in one verse of the Qur’an that Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests. How can you explain this verse of the Qur’an scientifically?

1. Qur’an mentions Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests

The verse of the Qur’an which refers to Allah being the Lord of two easts and two wests is the following verse from Surah Ar-Rahman:

"(He is) Lord of the two Easts and Lord of the two Wests:"
[Al-Qur’an 55:17]

In the original Arabic script, the words east and west have been used in the dual form. It implies that Allah is the Lord of two easts and two wests.
2. Allah is the Lord of both the extremes of East and West

The science of geography tells us that the sun rises from the east, but the point of sunrise keeps shifting throughout the year. Only on two days of the year known as ‘equinox’, does the sun rise exactly from due east. On the remaining days, it rises either from a little north or a little south of due east. During summer solstice the sun rises from one extreme of the east and during winter solstice it rises from the other extreme. Similarly, the sun sets in one extreme of the west in summer solstice. It sets in the other extreme of the west in winter solstice. This phenomenon can be easily seen in Bombay or any other city, by people living in certain areas, or in tall skyscraper buildings, from where the rising or setting of sun can be seen. They are able to notice that during the summer solstice the sun rises from one extreme of east and during winter solstice it rises from the other extreme of east. In short, through out the year, the sun keeps rising from different po!
ints of
the east and sets on different points of the west. Thus when the Qur’an refers to Allah as the Lord of two easts and two wests, it means that Allah is the Lord of both the extremes of east and both the extremes of west.
3. Allah is the Lord of all the points of the East and West

Arabic language has two types of plurals. One is the dual plural i.e. the plural that implies the existence of two. The other is the plural for more than two, i.e. three and above. In Surah Rahman verse 17 the Arabic words used are mashriqaini and magribaini which are in dual plural and therefore imply two easts and two wests.

Consider the following verse of the Qur’an:
"Now I do call to witness the Lord of all points in the East and the West."
[Al-Qur’an 70:40]

The Arabic words for east and west used in this verse are mashaariqi and magharibi’ which are plurals that imply the existence of more than two.

We can thus conclude that the Qur’an refers to Allah being the Lord of all the points in the east and all the points of the west, as well as the Lord of both the extreme points of east and both the extreme points of west.
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ONE DAY IN THE SIGHT OF ALLAH IS 1,000 OR 50,000 YEARS

Question:

A particular verse of the Qur’an says that one day in the sight of Allah is equal to 1000 years. In another verse of the Qur’an it says that one day is equal to 50,000 years. Isn’t the Qur’an contradicting itself?

Answer:
1. Time of Allah is incomparable to earthly time

The Qur’an says in two verses, (22:47 and 32:5), that the measure of one day in the sight of Allah is equal to 1,000 years of our reckoning. In another verse (70:4) it says that the measure of one day in the sight of Allah is equal to 50,000 years of our reckoning.

These verses generally mean that the time of Allah (swt) is incomparable to the earthly time. The examples given are of one thousand years and fifty thousand years of the earthly time. In other words thousands of years or a very, very long time of the earth a day in the sight of Allah is equal to:
2. Yaum also means Period

The Arabic word used in all these three verses is yaum, which, besides meaning a day also means a long period, or an epoch. If you translate the word yaum correctly as ‘period’ there will be no confusion.
a) The verse from Surah Hajj reads as:

"Yet they ask thee to hasten on the Punishment! but Allah will not fail in His promise. Verily a Day in the sight of thy Lord is like a thousand years of your reckoning".

[Al-Qur’an 22:47]

When the unbelievers asked to hasten the punishment the Qur’an says Allah will not fail in His promise. Verily a period in the sight of Allah is like a thousand years of your reckoning.
b) The verse from Surah Al-Sajdah says:

"He rules (all) affairs from the heavens to the earth: in the end will (all affairs) go up? To Him, on a Day, the space whereof will be (as) a thousand years of your reckoning".

[Al-Qur’an 32:5]

This verse indicates that a period required for all the affairs to go up to Allah (swt), is a thousand years of our reckoning.
c) A verse from Surah Al-Maarij says:

"The angels and the spirit ascend unto Him in a Day the measure whereof is (as) fifty thousand years".
[Al-Qur’an 70:4]

This verse means that the period required for angels and the spirits to ascend unto Allah (swt) is fifty thousand years.
d) The period for two different acts need not be the same. For example the period required for me to travel to destination ‘A’ say Vashi is one hour and the period required for me to travel to destination ‘B’ i.e. Kashmir is 50 hours. This does not indicate that I am making two contradictory statements.

Thus the verses of the Qur’an not only do not contradict each other, they are also in perfect harmony with established modern scientific facts.

Take Pride in Islam - al-Jumu'ah Magazine

In face of the attacks on Islam by the disbelievers, some Muslims turn to the defensive with an inner feeling of defeat as they try to show that the Islamic values are no different from the western ones. If they are told that the Islamic political system is dictatorial, they respond by trying to show it is democratic. If they are told that Islam spread with Jihad, they respond that Muslims fought only to defend themselves when attacked.

If they are told that there is a problem with the status of women in Islam, they try to prove that Islam allows polygamy only under strict conditions which most men do not fulfill and hence they conclude it is virtually not allowed! Such apologetic attitudes should be put behind. Islam is a way of life given to us by Allah, it cannot be put on the same level as other man-made ideologies or corrupted revelations. Muslims should have enough confidence in themselves to go on the offensive rather than stay on the defensive like an accused person.

When Quraysh accused the Muslims of violating the sanctity of the sacred months on the occasion of the fight between the Muslim brigade of Abdullah bin Jahsh and the disbelievers, Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala revealed: “They ask you concerning fighting in the Sacred Months (these are the 1st, 7th, 11th and 12th months of the Islamic calendar). Say: ‘Fighting therein is a great transgression but a greater transgression in the Sight of Allah is to prevent mankind from following the Way of Allah, to disbelieve in Him, to prevent access to al-Masjid al-Haram (Makkah), and to drive out its inhabitants, and polytheism is worse than killing. And they will never cease fighting you until they turn you back from your religion if they can.

And whosoever of you turns back from his religion and dies as a disbeliever, then his deeds will be lost in this life and in the Hereafter, and they will be the dwellers of the Fire. They will abide therein forever.” (Qur’an 2:217) This is how the Qur’an argues with the disbelievers. The Qur’an starts by attacking them on their greatest crime: their disbelief in Allah and their association of partners with Him. One should not present a false interpretation of our religion for the purpose of pleasing the disbelievers.

Some Muslims try to hide their Islamic identity for fear of being labeled as “fundamentalist”. Men are shaving their beard and women are trying to make their hijab look like the latest fall fashion. If presented with food or drink that is haram, they say we are full at the moment, or they say we do not like the particular food. Only few say that they cannot eat it because it is unlawful in Islam. This is not the way of the companions of the Prophet, sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam, behaved. When the companions accepted Islam, they became proud of it and felt that all other ideologies and ways of life are inferior to what has been revealed to them from above seven heavens.

In the battle between the Muslims and the Persians, Rostom, the leader of the Persian army, asked to negotiate with the Muslims. Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas, the Muslim leader in that battle, sent a group of companions among which was Rabi`e ibn Amir. The Persian leader prepared a magnificent reception in order to impress those “Bedouins” and weaken their position. The Persians asked Rabi`e to enter without his arms. HE refused and entered with his arms and his horse and tied his horse next to Rostom. Rstom asked: “What brings you?” Rabi`e said: “Allah has sent us to convert mankind from the worship of people to the worship of Allah and from the narrowness of this life to its wideness and from the oppression of the religions to the justice of Islam.

Allah has sent us to His creatures with His religion. Whoever accepts it, we accept from him and whoever refuses, we fight him until we get the Promise of Allah?” “And what is His Promise?” asked Rostom. “Paradise for those who die and victory for those who survive” answered Rabi`e. Rostom said: “Can you delay this matter until we think about it?” Rabi`e answered: “Yes. How many days you need, one or two?” Rostom said: “More. Until I write to my people.” Rabi`e said: “We can’t. Our Prophet does not authorize us to delay our enemies more than three days. So make up your mind."

This companion came from a society which was materially far behind the Persian empire. Nevertheless he had in himself the seed of Truth and righteousness that allowed him not to be distracted or impressed with the glamour surrounding the Disbelievers. Civilization starts with the correct belief and faith. The material aspects of civilization will come later as a by-product. On the other hand, the disbeliever, no matter how materially advanced he might be, is an uncivilized person and bears in his soul the germs of his own destruction. This is why you should take pride in your religion. This is why you should take pride in Islam.

Courtesy Of: Islaam.com

Oppression - Shariffa Carlo

Abu Huraira narrated that the Prophet said, "On the Day of Resurrection, Allah will grasp the whole (planet of) earth (by His Hand) and shall roll up the heaven with His right Hand and say, 'I am the King. Where are the kings of the earth?'" Sahih Bukhari vol 9: Hadith 479.

Narrated 'Abdullah, Allah's Apostle said, "Everyone of you is a guardian and is responsible for his charges. The ruler who has authority over people, is a guardian and is responsible for them, a man is a guardian of his family and is responsible for them; a woman is a guardian of her husband's house and children and is responsible for them; a slave ('Abu) is a guardian of his master's property and is responsible for it; so all of you are guardians and are responsible for your charges." Sahih Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 46, Number 730.

Allah has given us each a responsibility. We are all shepherds over our flocks, rulers over our kingdoms, kings and queens over our domain. But with the power comes an awesome responsibility. We are very responsible for our actions and those under our care.

Unfortunately, some of us take this responsibility too lightly. Men: You have been given reign over the women in your lives, your wives. You have been given reign over the children you procreate. You have even been given reign over your ailing parents. What are you doing with this power? Remember that on the day of Judgment you will be asked about this.

If a sister wants to do something which is neither dangerous, nor haram, nor a fitna, she should be allowed to fulfill her needs within limits. Remember brothers, yo are over her a degree, but with that degree comes a need for wisdom and mercy. The Best among you to his family was RasoolAllah. Look at his wives. Look to Aisha, she was a doctor, a scholar, a scientist. She taught and gave fatwas. She was present in wars and battles. She was a woman of action while being a woman of virtue. Look to this as the best example. And remember that oppression is a sin that we must avoid at all costs because it carries such strong consequences.

Allah says, Say: My Lord forbiddeth only indecencies, such of them as are apparent and such as are within, and sin and wrongful oppression, and that ye associate with Allah that for which no warrant hath been revealed, and that ye tell concerning Allah that which ye know not. 7:33

And Allah says, The way (of blame) is only against those who oppress mankind, and wrongfully rebel in the earth. For such there is a painful doom. 42:42

The Prophet also warned about oppression against others. Especially against Muslims.Narrated 'Abdullah bin Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim, so he should not oppress him, nor should he hand him over to an oppressor. Whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother, Allah will fulfill his needs; whoever brought his (Muslim) brother out of a discomfort, Allah will bring him out of the discomforts of the Day of Resurrection, and whoever screened a Muslim, Allah will screen him on the Day of Resurrection . " Sahih Bukahri: Volume 3, Book 43, Number 622.

And Narrated 'Abdullah bin Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim, so he should not oppress him, nor should he hand him over to an oppressor. Whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother, Allah will fulfill his needs; whoever brought his (Muslim) brother out of a discomfort, Allah will bring him out of the discomforts of the Day of Resurrection, and whoever screened a Muslim, Allah will screen him on the Day of Resurrection . " Sahih Bukhari: Volume 3, Book 43, Number 622.

At any rate, oppression of any type is haram, and we have to guard for it. We especially have to be aware of the consequences. Do we know that the quickest dua responded to is the dua of the oppressed?

Allah Says, And We desired to show favour unto those who were oppressed in the earth, and to make them examples and to make them the inheritors. 28:5

And the Prophet warned: Narrated Abu Ma'bad, that the Prophet said, "... and be afraid of the curse of an oppressed person because there is no screen between his invocation and Allah." Sahih Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 24, Number 573.

And Narrated Abu Bakrah: The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: There is no sin more fitted to have punishment meted out by Allah to its perpetrator in advance in this world along with what He stores up for him in the next world than oppression and severing ties of relationship. Sahih Muslim: Book 41, Number 4884:


This is a warning to the oppressor, and an assurance to the oppressed. How? Well, In this verse and hadith , Allah grants respite to the oppressed in the form of blessings and extra attention to the dua. I am again reminded of a personal experience of a friend. This lady's father died when she was quite young. Her father was due the inheritance of some land upon the death of his father. When the man died, the father gave all of the land to his other son, leaving his dead son's children without an inheritance. The mother of the children was besides herself. Without this land, which they had been living on and living from, she and her children would be in a dire position. She had no recourses to get the rights of her children, so she turned to the Only One who could help her. She turned to Allah. She begged Allah to return to her her children's rights. A few days later, completely unexpectedly, the second son of this man died. Allah knows Best if this was the answer to her dua!
, but
the land was returned to her and her children as a result. The woman never meant harm to anyone, but Allah is the Most Just, and His Judgement is the Most Fair.


So we must beware of this dua - the dua of the oppressed, and we must take heart from knowing that when someone oppresses us, the answer is not to retaliate with more haram, but to rely on Allah. Many sisters complain to me about the oppression they suffer at the hands of their husbands. Many times, they either can not leave the man, so they are forced to continue suffering. My advice to them is to never forget the power of the dua, and to remember that Allah Hears them and knows of their case. Also, I must remind them that two wrongs do not make a right. A prime example is when a woman is forced to perform a task that she considers demeaning, but which is not haram for the man to ask for. I remember a speech by Muhammad Sayd Adly. He was talking about obedience to the husband. He said, "Sister, we did not fall from heaven. We are only men. If your husband tells you to do something, do it. If he says stand on your head. Allah knows why he wants you to do this, but he tells y!
ou to do
it to please him. Sister, if you can stand on your head , then do it. Your reward is from Allah." Sisters, I add to this, if you consider it oppressive, do it anyway, as long as it is not haram, and appeal to your Lord to remove this burden from you. Appeal to Allah to change his heart. Appeal to Allah for relief. And remember that this oppression is the deed of the man for which he must pay. Never blame Allah for it.

Allah says, Then there are among men such as say, "We believe in Allah"; but when they suffer affliction in (the cause of) Allah, they treat men's oppression as if it were the Wrath of Allah! And if help comes (to thee) from thy Lord, they are sure to say, "We have (always) been with you!" Does not Allah know best all that is in the hearts of all creation? 29:10

What more can we do? We can help those whom we know are doing wrong. Too many times I hear a sister complain that she is suffering from her husband. (You will notice I use the example of the sister being oppressed more so than I do the brother, the reason is that the woman is more likely to suffer from oppression because of her nature and her responsibilities). Even, she may be suffering from being beaten by her husband. When the sister goes to the masjid for help, too often she is told to be patient, or she may not even be believed. Brothers, you have an upper hand over women. You also have a way to help your sister, and this is your responsibility. If you accept for this woman to continue suffering because you do not want to involve yourself, you are helping the oppressor to oppress her. If we know of a situation where a Muslim is being oppressed we have to help the oppressed and the oppressor.

Narrated Abu Musa: Allah's Apostle said, "Allah gives respite to the oppressor, but when He takes him over, He never releases him." Then he recited, "Such is the seizure of your Lord when He seizes (population of) towns in the midst of their wrong: Painful indeed, and severe is His seizure.' (11.102) Sahih Bukhari: Volume 6, Book 60, Number 208.

And I give you the following warnings, heart softening words and duas:Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "(The Prophet) Abraham migrated with his wife Sarah till he reached a town where there was a king or a tyrant who sent a message, to Abraham, ordering him to send Sarah to him. So when Abraham had sent Sarah, the tyrant got up, intending to do evil with her, but she got up and performed ablution and prayed and said, 'O Allah ! If I have believed in You and in Your Apostle, then do not empower this oppressor over me.' So he (the king) had an epileptic fit and started moving his legs violently. " Sahih Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 85, Number 82.


My servants, these deeds of yours, which I am recording for you, I shall reward you for them. So he who finds good should praise Allah and he who does not find it should not blame anyone but himself. Sa'id said that when AbuIdris Khawlani narrated this hadith he knelt down. Sahih Muslim: Book 31, Number 6246.

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