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Archive for the ‘Emaan’ Category

al-Imam al-Bazzar wrote a long, first hand account of the life of Ibn Taymiyyah, who was his personal friend and companion. The book is called ‘al-A’lam al-’Aliyyah fi Manaqib Ibn Taymiyyah,’ and this is a very, very small glimpse from it:

“During the nights, he would separate himself from everybody, secluding himself with his Lord, strictly maintaining his recitation of the Mighty Qur’an, and repeating the various types of daily and nightly worship.

When the night was over, he would rejoin the people for the Fajr prayer, praying the optional prayer before meeting them. When he would begin the prayer, your heart would want to fly from its place just from the way in which he would make takbirat al-ihram. When he would begin the prayer, his limbs would shake, moving him left and right. When he would recite, he would elongate his recitation, just as was authentically reported in regards to the recitation of the Messenger of Allah. His bowing and prostration, as well as his coming up from them, are from the most complete of what has ever been reported in regards to the obligatory prayer. And he would severely lighten his sitting for the first tashahhud, and would say the first taslim out loud, to the point that everyone who was present would hear it…

…And I came to know that it was his habit that nobody would speak to him unless absolutely necessary after the morning prayer. He would remain in a state of dhikr of Allah, listening to himself. Sometimes, he would let those sitting next to him listen to his dhikr, all the while constantly turning his eyesight to the sky. He would remain in such a state until the Sun rose, and the time in which prayer is forbidden had passed.

During my stay in Damascus with him, I would spend some of the day and most of the night with him. He would draw me near to him, sitting me beside him. I would hear what he would recite and repeat, and I saw that he would repeat ‘al-Fatihah’ over and over again, and would spend all of his time between Fajr and sunrise doing this.

So, I kept thinking to myself, wondering: why would he recite this specific chapter of the Qur’an in exclusion to the others? Eventually, it became clear to me – and Allah Knows best – that his intention in doing so was to combine with his recitation between what was narrated in the ahadith and what was discussed by the scholars, in regards to whether the narrated adhkar should take precedence over recitation of the Qur’an, or vice versa. So, he saw that in repeating ‘al-Fatihah,’ he could combine between both opinions, and reap the benefits of both actions, and this was from his strength in logic and depth of insight.

After this, he would pray Duha, and if he wanted to hear Hadith in another place, he would rush to that place with whoever was with him at the time.

It was rare that any intelligent person would see him and not come and kiss his hands. Even the busiest of businessmen would walk from what they were doing to greet him and seek his blessings. With all of this, he would give everyone of them their share of time, greetings, etc.

If he saw any evil in the street, he would work to remove it, and if he heard of a funeral taking place, he would rush to pray in it, or would apologize for missing it. Sometimes, he would go to the grave of the deceased after he finished listening to Hadith and pray over it.

Afterwards, he would return to his mosque, where he would remain either giving fatawa to the people or fulfilling their needs, until it was time to pray Dhuhr in congregation. He would spend the rest of the day in such a manner.

His classes were general for the old, the young, the wealthy, the poor, the free, the slave, males, and females. He appealed to everyone that would pass by him of the people, and everyone of them would feel that Ibn Taymiyyah was treating them better than he was treating anyone else present.

He would then pray Maghrib, and would follow it up with as much optional prayer as Allah made possible. I, or someone else, would then read his writings to him, and he would benefit us with various points and notes. We would do this until we prayed ‘Isha’, after which we would continue as we were before, delving into the various fields of knowledge. We would do this until much of the night had passed. During this entire time – night and day – Ibn Taymiyyah would constantly remember Allah, mention His Oneness, and seek His forgiveness.

And he would constantly raise his eyesight to the sky, and would not stop doing this, as if he saw something there that kept his eyesight hooked. He would do this for as long as I was staying with him.

So, Subhan Allah! How short were these days! If only they were longer! By Allah, until this day, there has never been a time in my life that is more beloved to me than the time I spent with him, and I was never seen in a better state than I was at that time, and this was for no other reason than the barakah of the Shaykh, may Allah be Pleased with him.

Every week, he would visit the sick, especially those at the hospital.

I have been informed by more than one person – whose trustworthiness I do not doubt – that the entire life of the Shaykh was spent in the way that I witnessed (and described above). So, what worship, and what jihad is better than this?”

(Taken from Bro Abu Sabaya’s site)

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Shaykh Saalih Aal ash-Shaykh explains the admonishment of Aboo ad-Dardaa’ (radiyallaahu anhu)

It has been relayed that Shaykh Saalih Aal ash-Shaykh – may Allaah bless and preserve him – said:

From the sayings of Aboo ad-Dardaa’ – may Allaah be pleased with him – :

Once when Aboo ad-Dardaa’ passed by a man who had committed a sin and the people became aware of it and were insulting him because of it – and Aboo ad-Dardaa’ was so keen and insightful in helping people recovering from their religious ills and reviving sickened hearts – so he said:

Had you found him at the bottom of a well, wouldn’t you be helping him up and out of it?

They said, “Of course!” So he replied:

Then praise Allaah who has excused you (from his trial), and do not insult your brother!

He said, “Praise Allaah who has excused you (from his trial) and do not insult your brother!” Look at this parable – that the believers would surely help someone in sin and they would not abandon him like how people would naturally help someone stuck in a well. Would believers insult someone who is in physical need and say to them, “Why have you gone into this well? or such-and-such situation?” No, they would only struggle and try their best to help such a person!

Thus, insulting someone is negativity, and it is not permissible in the Sharee’ah (Islaamic legislation). Instead, we ask Allaah to guide our brothers and we praise Allaah for excusing us (from what they are being tried with), and then we work to save them from the evil of their sins and disobedience. They have only sinned due to their giving in to the plots of Iblees, Allaah’s enemy and our enemy.

So this admonition – dear believer – is a great one! When you see someone who has committed a sin, you must work to help him!

Dear brothers, if we were to think about our times, we would find that many people speak about others’ sins. They say, “This guy did such-and-such, that one travels and does such-and-such, this family has gone through such-and-such…” You find them extremely critical and insulting, perhaps even mocking people, and Allaah’s Refuge is sought. When you ask them what they have done to help your brother stop these sins, they say: Nothing.

As a result, he has actually become one of Shaytaan’s devices (to keep people sinning) as well, since the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said:

Whoever says that the people are destroyed, he is the one who destroyed them.

Meaning: He has become a reason for their destruction. And the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) forbade use from speaking about everything we hear. He (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said:

Whoever speaks about everything he hears is one of the two liars (or one of the liars).

So we must work hard to fix mistakes, advise sinners and conceal their (hidden) sins, and spread good reports. When we see someone who has done good, we say, “He has done such-and-such good thing,” since, by behaving this way, we spread good behavior, and the people will follow each other’s good leads. However, if we were to spread evil, then people would be lenient in their approach to those things and in doing them, saying, “Yea, So-and-So has done this sin, and this guy has done such-and-such, and that guy has done such-and-such!” People would then be led to assume that there is so much more evil than good, and thus weaken their stance against bad things and begin doing them.

May Allaah be pleased with Aboo Ad-Dardaa’ and reward him well for his dealings with his companions and the Ummah after him!

Source: A recording entitled: Admonitions of Aboo ad-Dardaa’ (a khutbah by Shaykh Saalih Aal ash-Shaykh)

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Imam ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullah said:

“Anyone whose heart is attached to the creation, hoping for someone from the creation to help him or provide for him or guide him, then his heart submits to them and to the degree that his heart submits to them, he becomes their slave. This holds true, even if he is outwardly a ruler or guardian over those whom he treats as masters. The wise one looks at realities and not at appearances. So if a man’s heart is attached to his wife, even though that is permissible, his heart remains a prisoner to her and she may rule over him as she pleases – though outwardly he is her master and her husband. In reality, he is her prisoner and her slave, especially if she knows how much he is in need of her and how much he is in love with her and how much he feels she cannot be replaced by anyone else. At that point, she rules over him as the tyrant master rules over his subjugated slave, who cannot escape of go free. Indeed for the heart to be taken as a prisoner is a much greater matter than for the body to be taken as a slave or prisoner. Even a body that is a slave can have in it a serene and peaceful and happy heart. As for the heart that is a slave to other than Allah (the Exalted), then that is true humiliation, imprisonment and slavery.”

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“…And the worshipper – the more humble, needy, and subdued he is before Allah – the closer he will be to Him, and the dearer he will be to Him, and the greater in status he will be to Him. So, the happiest of the Creation is the one who is greatest in servitude to Allah.

As for the Creation, as it is said: be in need of whoever you wish, and you will be his prisoner; be sufficient from whoever you wish, and you will be his adversary; be kind to whoever you wish, and you will be his authority…

So, the greatest in status and honor the slave is with others is when he is not in need of them in any way, shape, or form. If you are good to others while not being in need of them, you will be greater in their eyes. When you are in need of them – even if for a sip of water – your status is reduced in their eyes in accordance with what it is you need from them. And this is from the Wisdom and Mercy of Allah, in order that the Religion all be for Allah, and that nothing be associated with Him.

Because of this, when Hatim al-Asamm was asked: ‘With what can one protect himself from people?’ he answered: “That you freely give them from what you have, and that you are cold and indifferent towards what they have.” However, if you are in a position to be compensated from them, and they are also in need of something from you, and the needs of the two sides become equal, you become like two merchants, none of whom has any virtue over the other. If they are the more needy side, that is when they will become subdued.

So, with the Exalted Lord, the most generous you are to Him is when you are most in need of Him. With the Creation, the most insignificant you are to them is when you are most in need of them…”

[‘Majmu’ al-Fatawa’; 1/67]

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Here are 10 ways that we can brighten up our Iman starting from today!

1. Recognise and Repent

As humans we all commit sins no matter how hard we try to avoid them because were created to be imperfect. Engaging in evil deeds decreases our Iman. Actions like lying, cheating and stealing, to name only a few, take a toll on the human heart and soul which makes us more susceptible to being lead astray from the Path of Allah. It is important for us to reflect upon our deeds and weed out the ones that are contrary to the teachings of the Holy Qur’an and Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (S). Allah has gifted us with an innate sense of justice and the ability to reason and make sound judgements. Our fitrah (natural disposition) necessitates that we all know when we are committing a sin. And if we don’t know, we certainly have a bevy of resources to find out from!

Conditions for the acceptance of repentance

The word tauba which is rendered as repentance in English, is not a simple term as most people believe. It is very rich in meaning and implication, and is not simply a word of mouth after which the sinner continues in his sins. Says Allah, Glorified be He: “Seek forgiveness of your Lord and then turn to Him in repentance.” (Hud: 3). Do you notice how turning to the Lord in repentance has been added to the search for His forgiveness?

It is quite in keeping with its importance, therefore, that repentance should have, as the scholars have stated, conditions attached to it for its acceptance.

They are as follows:

First: Giving up of the sin itself.
Second: Remorse over what has been committed.
Third: A resolve not to repeat it, and, Fourth: Compensating those who have been wronged or obtaining their forgiveness.

2. Perform Salah Regularly

Completing the five daily prayers, on time and according to the Sunnah, is an excellent way to increase our Iman. Not only are we performing an obligatory deed when praying, but by doing so we have a standing audience with the Creator of this world where we can ask for help and mercy. The effect of the salah on the human soul is cooling as Muhammad (S) once said that it cooled his eyes. The salah connects us with our Creator and, along with obedience to Allah, helps us to enjoin what is good and forbid what is evil.

Allah Almighty says in the Holy Qur’an:

“The believers are only those who, when Allah is mentioned, feel a fear in their hearts and when His Verses -this Qur’an- are recited unto them, they (i.e. the Verses) increase their Faith; and they put their trust in their Lord (Alone); Who perform salah and spend out of that We have provided them. It is they who are the believers in truth. For them are grades of dignity with their Lord, and Forgiveness and a generous provision (Paradise)” (Al-Anfal: 2-4).

Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah (RAA) Rasulullah (SAW) said: The similitude of five prayers is like an overflowing river passing by the gate of one of you in which he washes five times daily. Hasan said: No filthiness can remain on him. (Sahih Muslim Book 4, Hadith # 1411)

Narrated Abu Hurairah (RAA) Rasualullah (SAW) said, “Martyrs are those who die because of drowning, plague, an abdominal disease, or of being buried alive by a falling building.” And then he added, “If the people knew the Reward for the Zuhr prayer in its early time, they would race for it. If they knew the reward for the ‘Isha’ and the Fajr prayers in congregation, they would join them even if they had to crawl. If they knew the reward for the first row, they would draw lots for it.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari Volume 1, Book 11, Hadith # 688)

For the people who don’t pray:

Informing us about the inhabitants of Hell, Allaah (SWT) says “(The people in Hell will be asked, ” What has caused you to enter Hell? They will say: “We were not of those who used to offer their Salât (prayers). Nor did we feed the poor. And we used to talk falsehood (all that which Allaah hated) with vain-talkers. And we used to belie thc Day of Recompense. Until there came to us that which is certain (i.e., death). So no Intercession of intercessors will benefit them. (Sura Al-Muddaththir, ayah 42-48)

Rasulullah (SAW) said “The covenant between us and them is prayer, so if anyone abandons it he has become a disbeliever.” (Agreed upon by Ahmad, Tirmidhee and Nasaa’ee to be authentic)

In an other Hadith of Rasulullah (SAW) said “What lies between a man and disbelief is the abandonment of prayer.”( Agreed upon by Muslim, Abu Dawood and Nasaa’ee as sahih authentic)

3. Qur’anic Recitations

Medical studies have shown that simply listening to a recitation of the Holy Qur’an has a physiological effect on our bodies. Research has also proven that the Qur’an has healing qualities on the body, mind and spirit. What better way to increase our Iman than to listen to the recitation of the Holy Qur’an on an audio device! Listen to the melodious rhythm of the Qur’an and while doing so try to reflect upon the meanings of what you are listening to.We should always strive to read as much of the Qur’an as possible as reading the word of allah especially with the meanings will significantly increase our imaan and elevate us in this world and the next!

Hazrat Abdullah bin Masud radhiyallahu anhu narrates that The Messenger of Allah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: “Whoever reads one letter of the Quran receives the reward of one good deed. And one good deed is multiplied ten times.

Hazrat Abu Huraira radhiyallahu anhu reports that Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: “Whoever listens to one verse of the Book of Allah, a good deed that multiplies continuously is recorded. And one who reads a verse of the Quran, that verse will be a Noor for him on the Day of Judgement.”

Hazrat Anas radhiyallahu anhu reports that Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said:”Whoever reads the Quran, Allah grants that person ten good deeds for every letter. And for one who hears the Quran being recited, Allah grants a good deed for every letter, and such a person will be resurrected among those who will recite and ascend the stages of Jannat.”Hazrat Ibni Abbas radhiyallahu anhu narrates that Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: He who listens to one letter of the Quran, ten good deeds are recorded for him, ten sins are forgiven, and his status is elevated by ten stages.”

4. Engage in Dhikr

“…Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.” (13:28)

Remembrance of Allah indeed is the greatest virtue.(29:46).

O ye who believe let not your wealth and your children divert you from the remembrance of Allah . (63:10)

O ye who believe, remember Allah much. And glorify Him morning and evening (33:42-43)

When the signs of the Gracious Allah are recited unto them, they fall down, prostrating themselves before Allah weeping.(19:59)

According to these verses the attitude of those who truly remember Allah is the following:

1. Their hearts are filled with the fear of Allah because they are reminded of the status and the Glory of their God.
2. Their skins creep, i.e., the hair on their bodies rise due to their state of fear.
3. Their bodies are softened, their hearts become tender.
4. They prostrate, i.e., they start worshiping Allah .
5. They cry or weep.

Remembering Allah much through acts of dhikr brings much peace and tranquility to the heart. It also gives us a sense of taqwa(fear of allah), a consciousness that makes us realise that Allah Almighty is ever near and that we should always strive to please Him.

Some beneficial dhikr include:

Subhan’Allah- ‘Praise be to Allah’
Al-Hamdullilah- ‘Thanks be to Allah’
Allahu Akbar – ‘Allah is the Greatest.’
La ila ha illallah– There is no worthy of worship except allah

Abu haraira(ra) Narrates: Prophet(saw) said: whoever says: Subhanallahi Wa Bihamdihi – (I deem Allah free of any resemblances to anything whatever in any repeat, and I glorify his praises) one hundred times a day will have his sins forgiven even though they may be as much as the foam of the sea – (Bukhari,b73:c19)

Read much of this zikr:

Subhaan-Allahi walhamdu-lillaahi, wa laa ilaa-ha illa-la ill-lal-lahu wallahu Akbar, walaa haula wala quoow-wata illa billa hil-Aliyyil-azeem.

“Glory is for Allaah and all Praise is due to Allah. There is none worthy of worship except Allaah. Allaah is the greatest. There is no power and no strength except with Allaah the Most High, the Great.”

5.Voluntary Fasting

Fasting can be thought of as a prescription for us, which cures the maladies of the human soul. There are innumerable benefits to fasting nawafil fasts. Fasting helps us be thankful to Allah for His Bounty, control unlawful desires, have compassion for the less fortunate and it weakens the effects of waswas, the insinuating whispers from the Shaytan.

Here is an explanation of the spiritual meaning of the Islamic Fasting:

1. It teaches man the principle of sincere Love: because when he observes Fasting he does it out of deep love for God. And the man who loves God truly is a man who really knows what love is.

2. It equips man with a creative sense of hope and an optimistic outlook on life; because when he fasts he is hoping to please God and is seeking His Grace.

3. It imbues in man the genuine virtue of effective devotion, honest dedication and closeness to God; because when he fasts he does so for God and for His sake alone.

4. It cultivates in man a vigilant and sound conscience; because the fasting person keeps his fast in secret as well as in public. In fasting, especially, there is no mundane authority to check man’s behavior or compel him to observe fasting. He keeps it to please God and satisfy his own conscience by being faithful in secret and in public. There is no better way to cultivate a sound conscience in man.

5. It indoctrinates man in patience and selflessness, as through fasting, he feels the pains of deprivation but he endures them patiently.

6. It is an effective lesson in applied moderation and willpower.

7. Fasting also provides man with a transparent soul, a clear mind and a light body.

8. It shows man a new way of wise savings and sound budgeting.

9. It enables man to master the art of Mature Adaptability. We can easily understand the point once we realize that fasting makes man change the entire course of his daily life.

10. It grounds man in discipline and healthy survival.

11. It originates in man the real spirit of social belonging, unity and brotherhood, of equality before God as well as before the law.

12. It is a Godly prescription for self-reassurance and self-control.

6.Carrying out Good Deeds

Doing good deeds for others can be like switching on a light bulb in a darkened room. No matter how awful we are feeling there is just something about offering a helping hand to someone in need that lifts our spirits and brightens our Iman. We should get to the stage where we crave to do good deeds! Because our good deeds are our eternal investment which will benefit us for the rest of eternity rather than investment into this life which is very temporary indeed! So what investment sounds better? Eternal investment which will give us eternal bliss or temporary investment which has a chance of failing even though we spend our whole lives investing in it! You choose!

Allah Almighty says in the Holy Qur’an:For those who believe and work righteous deeds is a reward that will never fail(Fussilat: 8).

Time in Islam is more than gold or any precious material thing in this world. Of all religions, only Islam guides mankind not only to the importance of time but also how to value it. Allah I the Almighty and His Messenger, the Prophet Muhammad r, very clearly tell us the value of time, why we must not waste it and how we can make use of our time wisely to increase our iman (faith) and thus attain success, especially eternal success in the life Hereafter.

Bin ‘Abbas narrated t that Allâh’s Messenger r said,“There are two blessings which many people lose: (They are) health and free time for doing good.” (Bukhari 8/421)

Abdullah Bin Mas’ud t narrated: “I asked the Prophet, ‘Which deed is the dearest to Allah?’ He replied, “To offer salaat (the prayers) at their early fixed times.” I asked, “What is the next (in goodness)?” He replied, “To be good and dutiful to your parents.” I’ again asked, “What is the next (in goodness)? “He replied, “To participate in jihad (religious fighting) in Allah’s Cause.” (Bukhari 1/ 505)

Abu Qatada, Bin Rab’i t narrated that the Prophet , said, “Allâh the Exalted said: ‘I made five times (daily) prayers obligatory on your people. And I took a guarantee that if anyone observes them regularly at their times, I shall admit him to Paradise. If anyone does not offer them regularly, there is no such guarantee of Mine for him.” (Abu Dawood 430)

If we fear Allah for His wrath and hope for His rewards in the eternal world to come, time has come for us to give due value to the importance of time. We should try not to waste most of our time seeking worldly pleasures. It is for our guidance that we must take admonition from the following authentic hadîth:

Abu Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, Be prompt in doing good deeds (before you are overtaken) by turbulence which would be like a part of the dark night. During (that stormy period) a man would be a Muslim in the morning and an unbeliever in the evening or he would be a believer in the evening and an unbeliever in the morning, and would sell his faith for worldly goods.” (Muslim 213)

Abu Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said,“Hasten to do good deeds before six things happen: the rising of the sun from the west, the smoke, the Dajjal, the beast and (the death) of one you or the general turmoil.” (Muslim 7039)

“Call then upon Allâh with sincere devotion to Him even though the Unbelievers may detest it.” Qur’an 40:14

Verily, time is very important for our success both in this temporary world and the eternal world to come. If we waste time, if we abuse it, then we waste and abuse our lives. In the Life Hereafter we will be among the losers, who will suffer the torments in the Hell-Fire, if Allah I the Almighty will not forgive us. Therefore, if we really give value to our lives then, we must give due value to the importance of time.

7.Remembering Death

Every soul shall taste death

Allah has said in the Qur’aan:“Every soul will taste death.”

From this verse we know that death is such a thing that you can’t escape from even if you are in a house, which is built with metal walls, and has a massive padlock. Death will not only come when hair and the beard turn white, but it can come at any time, even when you are a baby, or an old person or a teenager or of middle age. Even if you are a king, a Prime Minister or a leader of one of the tribes.

Merits of the Remembrance of Death

Know that the person, who is engrossed in the world and cheated by its charming coquetries, is unmindful of the remembrance of death. They do not remember death and when they are reminded of it, they do not like it. Allah has said regarding such a man:“The deaths from which you flee away will meet you. Thereafter you will be led to the Knower of the world seen and unseen. You will then be informed of what you did.”

Hazrat Bilal bin Masood and Umar bin Abdul Aziz Radiallaho Anho said, “O People! You are not created for being destroyed”. You will travel from one home to another home. For a believer, death is a gift.

Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wassallam has said, “The gift for a believer is death”.

Due to the hardship which the believer goes through in this world, death becomes easy for him and all of his anxieties disappear. Therefore, it is described as a gift in the Hadith.

Hazrat Mahmood bin Labeed says that the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wassallam said, “Mankind likes two things very much. One of these things is life, though death is much better for him, and the second is wealth though poverty makes accounting easy.

Hazrat ibn Umar Radiallaho Anho says, “This world is paradise for the non-believers (they are engaged in their worldly desires and aspirations). This world is a jail or prison for the faithful (momins). They are bound by the laws of Shari at in every matter. Therefore, when the soul of a momin leaves his body (at the time of death), it is as if a captive has been freed from the cell. He cleans himself by turning in the dust.

8.Gaining knowledge

To seek knowledge is a sacred duty, it is obligatory on every Muslim, male and female. The first word revealed of the Qur’an was “Iqra” READ! Seek knowledge! Educate yourselves! Be educated.

Surah Al-Zumr, ayah 9 reveals: “Are those equal, those who know and those who do not know?”

Surah Al-Baqarah, ayah 269 reveals: “Allah grants wisdom to whom He pleases and to whom wisdom is granted indeed he receives an overflowing benefit.”

Ibn Mas’ud (Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (S) said: The position of only two persons is enviable; the person whom Allah bestowed wealth empowering him to spend it in the way of righteousness, and the person whom Allah gave wisdom with which he adjudges and which he teaches to others

According to Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah, Ibn Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (S) said: A single scholar of religion is more formidable against shaytaan than a thousand devout persons.

Islam is our greatest gift. We have to be thankful for this gift. We have to render to Allah His due. Allah has given us so much by making us a part of the Ummah of the Prophet Muhammad (S) so we must totally commit ourselves as followers of the Prophet (S). We must become true Muslims.

A person without knowledge is like someone walking along a track in complete darkness. Most likely his steps will wander aside and he easily can be deceived by shaytaan. This shows that our greatest danger lies in our ignorance of Islamic teachings and in our unawareness of what the Qur’an teaches and what guidance has been given by the Prophet (S). But if we are blessed with the light of knowledge we will be able to see plainly the clear path of Islam at every step of our lives. We shall also be able to identify and avoid the dangerous paths of Kufr, Shirk and immorality, which may cross it. And, whenever a false guide meets us on the way, a few words with him will quickly establish that he is not a guide who should be followed.

Every one of us, young or old, man or woman, should at least acquire sufficient knowledge to enable ourselves to understand the essence of the teachings of the Qur’an and the purpose for which it has been sent down. We should also be able to understand clearly the mission, which our beloved Prophet (S) came into this world to fulfil. We should also recognize the corrupt order and system, which he came to destroy. We should acquaint ourselves, too, with the way of life which Allah has ordained for us.

No great amount of time is required to acquire this simple knowledge. If we truly value Iman, it cannot be too difficult to find one hour every day to devote for our Iman.

Hadith states:

“He who acquires knowledge acquires a vast portion.” AND “If anyone going on his way in search of knowledge, God will, thereby make easy for him the way to Paradise.”

May Allah (SWT) give us strength to behave and act just as He likes us to do and be pleased with us, and that should be the purpose of our lives. Rabbi zidnee ilma (O Lord, increase us in knowledge). Aameen.

9.Making much dua(supplication)

Dua is defined as any invocation or prayer addressed to Allah (SWT). In our times, we find many reasons why people do not make Dua; we forget, don’t know how, or just do not think it will be answered. Fundamental to this is the loss of dependence and trust upon Allah. As Muslims there is something very wrong when we believe our Duas won’t be answered.We do not turn to Allah in our times of need and instead put our trust, dependence and hopes on worldly things that we think willhelp us. Although these temporal things are the means through which our Duas can be answered, the root of our being should be trained automatically to turn to Allah and not anything or anyone else. Through Dua, we strengthen our Imaan and our relationship with Allah, as well as heighten our awareness of cause and effect that can help inspire and motivate us to be closer to Islam in our lives.

We find many reassurances throughout the Quran for those who make Dua. Allah the Exalted, has said: “And your Lord says: Pray unto me: and I will hear your prayer” (Quran 40:60), “Call upon your Lord Humbly and in secret” (Quran 7:55),
“When My servants question thee concerning Me, I am indeed close (to them): I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calleth on Me” (Quran 2:186), “Is not He (best) who listens to the (soul) distressed when it calls on Him, and who relieves its suffering.” (Quran 27:62)

Aisha radhiallaahu anha said, “No believer makes Dua and it is wasted. Either it is granted here in this world or deposited for him in the Hereafter as long as he does not get frustrated.”

In fact, it is even wrong to never make Dua, “Whosoever does not supplicate to Allah, He will be angry with Him.”[Saheeh Jaami`as-Sagheer #2414]

We can and should make Dua in every condition, i.e. in hardship and in prosperity.

There are also some special times to make Dua where it is more likely to be accepted:

1. When one is oppressed
2. Between the time of Athan and Iqama
3. At the time of the call for prayer
4. At the time of fighting when warriors are engaged with each other
5. When it is raining
6. When one is sick
7. The last third of the night
8. Ramadan (especially Lailatul Qadr)
9. After the Fard part of prayer
10. When traveling
11. When breaking fast
12. In Sujood
13. Fridays, some say on Friday after Asr prayer
14. While drinking the water from the well of Zamzam
15. At the start of prayer (Dua of Istiftah)
16. When one begins the prayer, i.e. with “all praise be to
Allah, the Pure and the Blessed one”
17. While one recites al-Fatiha (which is a Dua)
18. When Ameen is said in the prayer (also relating to Fatiha)
19. At the time of raising the head after the Rukoo
20. In the last part of the prayer after conveying blessings unto the Prophet (SAW)
21. Before finishing the prayer (before Tasleem (saying the Salaam to the angels))
22. At the end of Wudu
23. On the day of Arafah
24. On waking up from sleep
25. At times of adversity
26. Prayer after the death of a person
27. Dua when someone’s heart is filled with sincerity and when it is focused on Allah
28. Dua of the parent against or for his children
29. When the sun moves from its meridian but before the Dhuhr prayer
30. The Dua of a Muslim for his brother without the latter’s knowledge
31. At the time the army advances to fight in the way of Allah.

Dua can be beautified and perfected by certain actions:

1. Have Wudu, face Qibla, be neat and clean
2. Raise both hands up to the shoulder with palms open facing up
3. Use words of Allah and Muhammad (SAW)-i.e. Duas found in Quran and Hadith
4. Ask by Asma alHusna- Allah’s Beautiful Names
5. Ask Allah by your good deeds
6. Be insistent-repeat (i.e. 3x’s)
7. Glorify Allah and recite Durud for the Prophet (SAW) at both the beginning and end
8. Show humility, entreaty, desire and fear while making Dua
9. Repent and try to make amends where one has wronged
10. Confess mistakes, shortcomings, and sins
11. Keep voice between a whisper and speaking aloud
12. Show the need for Allah’s help and implore Him for release from weakness, hardship and tribulation.
13. Seize the opportunity of time, situation and circumstance in which prayers are answered
14. Avoid rhymed prose to keep concentration
15. Crying when making Dua
16. The Dua of Dhun-Nun (Yunus) by which he invoked Allah from within the belly of the whale was:
“LAa ilaha illa Anta, Subhanaka innee kuntu min aDH-DHaalimeen.”

No Muslim ever makes Dua with it but Allah answers it.” [at tirmidhi in his sunan, ahmad and hakim reported it and hakim declared it authentic and adh dhahabee agreed]

17. End with “Alhamdulillah rabbil alameen

Allah Almighty says in the Qur’an:

“When my servants ask you concerning me, (tell them) I am indeed close (to them). I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calls on me.” [2:186] The place of duaa is so high to Allah, that the Prophet had said: “Nothing is more honourable to Allah the Most High than du`a.”
[Sahih al-Jami` no.5268].

He also said: “The most excellent worship is du`a.”
[Sahih Al-Jami` no. 1133];

In order to warn those who are arogant, or careless in making duaa, the Prophet said: “The most incapable person is the one who does not make du`a, and the most miserly person is the one who does not give salaam.”
[Sahih Al-Jami` no. 1055],

And let not there be anyone who says: “… my Lord won’t answer my prayer, because of this and that.. or because of so and so..”. No! Indeed Allah is the Most Generous King. Is there anyone who met a king, and praised and glorified him, and then asked, yet the request was not granted? So what about Allah, the King of the Heavens and the Earth – who has total control over your life, your wealth and your future. Why would He not grant you your request? I

Indeed, our beloved Prophet had said: “Verily your Lord is the One modest and Generous, and when His servant raises his hands to Him in supplication, He is diffident (in some wordings, shy or hesitant) from returning them empty.”
[Ahmad, Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi – Hasan]

10.Having Trust in Allah

The best way for us to increase our Iman is to completely submit our will to Allah and have full trust in him and we can do this by doing out utmost to follow every command in the Qur’an and Sunnah. We should live our life according to them and we will find success around every corner of our lives inshallah. If we turn to Allah in happy times then he will help us in times of distress and anguish. We should have patience in Allah’s Decree and accept it that it is for the best and is meant to happen because he is the knower of all things and the almighty and always remember that no matter what trials or tribulations we do face in this World, one day we will be called to account for our deeds which were hopefully sent forth with much goodness and patience.I pray that inshallah on qiyamah we be given our good deeds in our right hands and allah has mercy on us and gives us Jannatul Firdaus.[B] Ameen[/b]

In Surah At-Tauba: 51, Allah (SWT) says “Say: ‘Nothing will happen to us except what Allah has decreed for us: He is our protector’: And on Allah let the Believers put their trust.”

In Surah Ash-Shu’araa:217 Allah (SWT) says “And put thy trust on the exalted in Might, The Merciful.”

In Surah Al-Imran:159, Allah (SWT) says “…Then, when thou hast taken a decision, put thy trust in Allah. For Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).”

If Allah helps you, none can overcome you: If He forsakes you, who is there, after that, that can help you? In Allah, then, Let believers put their trust. 3:160

It does not matter what you do, obey or disobey, the result will be that you will receive what Allah has ordained for you. You can not add to it or subtract from it. What you do is either benefit yourself with the blessings of obedience or harm yourself with the fruits of your disobedience. We have been told that what is for us can’t miss us and what is not for us can’t hit us.

We have to learn to trust that Allah will take care of us when we obey Him and that He wills withdrawal His Great Mercy when we disobey. Every morning the bird goes out to seek the provision Allah has given him, and every night he comes home with it. Allah has promised us our provision.

Umar Ibin Al Khattab narrated that he heard Allah’s Messenger say, “If you were to trust in Allah genuinely, He would give you provision as He does for the birds which go out hungry in the morning and come back full in the evening. Tirmidhi and Ibin Majah (sahih).

Trusting in Allah means that when we hear a command, we obey it. We recognize that we are limited and that Allah has no limits. He knows what we do not know. We do not try to explain away the commands of Allah by saying that it is for another time or another people. We don not say that what Allah has commanded for us is oppressive. We accept and obey. This is faith and trust.

There is much reward in trusting Allah, paradise. There is sin in distrusting Him. We need to stop relying on our desires our minds our version of logic and realize that Allah is the one who knows while we know not. Allah is the Wise, and His judgements are wise by default. Allah is the Just and His verdicts are Just by default. We can not see everything in every issue as Allah can, so why do we insist on believing that our minds can be trusted before or instead of Allah?

I pray to You, O Allah, to make us trust you and only you. May you make us of the Trusting and keep us from trusting or worshipping our minds before you. Ameen.

Finally let’s have full hope in Allah, for verily Allah the All Mighty says:
“Be not deceived by the [uninhibited] movement of the disbelievers throughout the land. [It is but] a small enjoyment; then their [final] refuge is Hell, and wretched is the resting place.” [Aal-Imraan 196-197]

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