Benefiting From The Majesty Of Divine Will | Thirteen Points In Making The Best Of The Situation

In the Name of God most Merciful Most Compassionate

Peace Be Upon Prophet Mohammad, His Family, Companions and Brothers. Ameen

“God will never punish them while they are seeking forgiveness” (al-Anfāl, 8:33)

As we observe imposed isolation or social distancing to prevent the spread of the virus that has disrupted life as we know it, maintaining and elevating our faith becomes both a necessity and a great opportunity. The awakened believer is the one who never excludes the hand of God in everything that happens in the world–good or bad. We ask Allah Almighty to show us kindness and mercy in everything that He decrees for us.

“And We have already sent [messengers] to nations before you, [O Muhammad]; then We seized them with poverty and hardship that perhaps they might humble themselves [to Us]. (42) Then why, when Our punishment came to them, did they not humble themselves? But their hearts became hardened, and Satan made attractive to them that which they were doing. (43) So when they forgot that by which they had been reminded, We opened to them the doors of every [good] thing until, when they rejoiced in that which they were given, We seized them suddenly, and they were [then] in despair. (44)” (al-An’ām, 6:42-44)

Now is the time of seeking forgiveness and repenting to Allah. Now is the time we seek the counsel of our rich tradition in how to deal with collective and universal calamities and hardship. The awakened believer looks at what Allah brings about in His universe with a Divine Light and resists the calls of ignorance and heedlessness in any form they appear.

From the pure well of Prophetic guidance we draw thirteen beautiful, practical, and spiritual counsels:

The pandemic that is frightening everyone is the creation of Allah released by His Power for reasons He only knows. Losing sight of this basic fact is a sign of the blindness of our inner eyes. And your Lord creates what He wills and chooses; not for them was the choice. Exalted is Allah and high above what they associate with Him. (Al-Qaṣaṣ, 28:68)

1. When the Masjids are closed and Jumu’ah is suspended and the Honored Ka’bah and the Prophetic Mosque are emptied and there is rampant panic, the guided believer rushes to Istighfār. Let’s repeat and teach our children and households one of these Prophetic expressions of seeking forgiveness:

 Astaghfirullāh wa Atūbu ilayhi, at least 100 times a day. (Muslim)

أَسْتَغفِرُ اللهَ وَ أَتُوبُ إِلَيْهِ

or

 Rabbī Ighfir Lī wa Tub ‘alayya Innaka Anta Attawābu ArRahīm, at least 100 times a  day. ( Al-Tirmidhī, Abū Dāwūd, Ibn Mājah)

رَبِّ اغْفِرْ لِي، وَتُبْ عَلَيَّ، إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ التَّوَّابُ الرحيم 

The Best time for Istighfār is before Fajr.

Let’s be among those who seek the forgiveness before dawn that God praised in the Qur’ān:

“Those who say, “Our Lord, indeed we have believed, so forgive us our sins and protect us from the punishment of the Fire,” the patient, the true, the obedient, those who spend [in the way of Allah], and those who seek forgiveness before dawn.” (Āl-‘Imrān, 3:17)

2. Pray two Rak’āt of repentance often throughout the day.

3. Make our living spaces spiritual abodes by designating a place in the house as a Muṣallā. This is a forgotten Sunnah that the companions of the Prophet, God bless him and grant him peace, established. Let’s revive this Sunnah in our homes.

4. Perform prayers at the beginning of the time in congregation with an Adhān and Iqāma (assign our children to do so). If we can’t pray together while we are all quarantined in our houses then we surely have a bigger problem than coronavirus.

5. Stay after the prayers in your place and make Du’ā’ and Istighfār.

6. Don’t miss any Sunnah prayers before or after the obligatory prayers.

  • Make it a habit to pray Ḍuḥā prayer after sunrise or by midmorning as 2, 4, 6, or 8 Raka’āt.
  • The Prophet, God bless him and grant him peace, used to say that the prayer of Ḍuḥā is the prayer of the Awwābīn (repenters). (Muslim, Ibn Abī Shaybah, al-Ḥākim, Ibn Khuzaymah).
  • 4 Raka’at before Dhụhr and 2 after. 2 Raka’āt before Aṣr. 2 Before Maghrib and 6 after. 2 before Ishā’ and 4 after.
  • Make your Witr a Prophetic Witr: 11 Raka’āt before Fajr. If you can’t wake up, then pray it after Ishā’.

7. Read the Qur’ān every day even if just for 15 minutes.

8. Constant Dhikr and remembrance of Allah Ta’ālā with all kind of expressions while giving precedence to the expression of Tawḥīd لا إله إلا الله   since it is the best expression of Dhikr as the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said. (Al-Tirmidhī)

9. Be a good subordinate and adhere to your community’s collective decisions and experts regarding gatherings, Jamā’ah prayers, Jumu’ah, social distancing, and cleanliness. Our recalcitrance and selfishness sometimes appears in a religious form. At times of hardship going against the consensus is spiritually damaging even when we realize that we might be partially right. Not all debates have to be won.

من أطاع الأمير فقد أطاعني 

Whoever obeys the leader has indeed obeyed me.” (Muslim, al-Bukhārī)

10. The best among us are those who are the best to their spouses. Spending more time with each other should add to our compassion and respect for each other. Let us understand that   everyone going through this situation is experiencing a level of anxiety that might affect their normal behavior. Many of us are not used to staying at home for such a long period. Let this be an opportunity to connect with each other and strengthen the bonds of the family. Let’s Fear The Thieves !! (See point 12.)

11. Attend at least one of the online events that your community is offering even if you know everything that is known about the religion. Showing the sentiments of solidarity by attending these events encourages those who spend time preparing and sacrificing their time to continue their Da’wah work that is necessary for the community.

12. Fear the thieves for yourselves and your loved ones: None of the suggestions above will bear any fruit in advancing our cause with Allah and in bringing us towards a genuine reconciliation with ourselves if we spend all day with WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Netflix and such. In the digital wasteland and on our phones or glued to the TV all day, sharing and re-sharing nonsense makes us lost, nonsensical and trivial people. The last thing we want to find ourselves doing is spreading forgetfulness and heedlessness under the guise of spreading useful information.

Let’s not readily and voluntarily enlist as the agents of Shaytan at the time we have to be servants of God. Think before you send anything shared with you because you will be asked about it. One post a day is too much for those who are busy with all the obligations we all have. By now, everything that needs to be known about the epidemic has probably reached all corners of the globe. Let’s be wary of succumbing to the appeals of our lower selves or nafs and finding ourselves losing this great opportunity with Allah. The same advice goes for our children as it is a great opportunity for them to be creative in how they constructively spend their leisure time.

13. Give in charity, no matter how small, to your local and national Muslim organizations who might be going through difficulty meeting the needs of those who have lost their wages due to the freezing of the economy. This is both a pandemic and an economic crisis and sadaqa is our spiritual remedy to financial matters.

Benefiting From The Majesty Of Divine Will | Thirteen Points In Making The Best Of The Situation

COMMENTARY OF THE NARRATION REGARDING THE INTELLIGENT PERSON

Question

Please provide a brief commentary on the following Hadith:

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) has said: The intelligent person is the one who subjugates his soul/takes account of himself, and works for what is after death and the incapable is the one who follows his desires and thereafter entertains hopes in [the mercy of] Allah.

Answer

See the reference for this Hadith here

In the Hadith above, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) has stated that a truly intelligent and successful person is he who subjugates himself to the worship, obedience, and decree of Allah Ta’ala.

A very effective way to do this is to constantly take account of one’s self for every action, both good and bad. One should ponder over every statement and movement, along with every scenario or situation and how he reacted and/or conducted himself therein. If he finds that he has engaged himself in good praiseworthy actions then he should express his gratitude to Allah Ta’ala and praise Him [for it is only through Allah’s kindness that He gives a person the ability to do good].

On the other hand, if he finds himself having done wrong [unpraiseworthy actions], then he should repent and rectify himself accordingly. The intelligent one is he who after taking stock of himself, rectifies himself in the worldly life and strives to earn good deeds drawing towards him the mercy of Allah Ta’ala for the Hereafter.

Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu ‘anhu) has summarized it so beautifully saying: ‘Take account of yourself before your accountability is taken by Allah!’.

Many a times things are better understood in light of their opposites [for example, darkness is understood better after a person experiences light]. Therefore, after describing the truly successful and intelligent person, Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) described the unintelligent unsuccessful person. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) described this person as being unable and incapable of correctly using the faculty of the mind and brain that he was blessed with. Instead of using this faculty to understand the reality of the Hereafter and prepare himself to the best of his ability, he uses it to chase after his whims and desires thinking that Allah Ta’ala will simply forgive him for everything despite the absence of any attempts to repent or rectify himself. Such a person has become a slave to his carnal desires and continues to feed it again and again. He has failed to understand the reality of the Hereafter and the system of Allah Ta’ala.

There are many verses in the Quran along with Hadiths to show that -as per the justice system of Allah Ta’ala- a person will not be forgiven unless he repents and attempts to rectify himself. Indeed, it is possible that Allah Ta’ala can still forgive such a person being the All Merciful, but from the above Hadith itself Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) has explained that to continue sinning without any attempts at repenting and rectifying one’s self whilst still hoping for forgiveness is absurd. The commentators of Hadith have mentioned that the word تمنى, depicting [farfetched] hope, was specifically used in the narration to allude to the fact that such a person is hoping for something which is near impossible.

May Allah Ta’ala make us all amongst the intelligent ones thereby granting us the ability to take stock of our actions and rectify ourselves accordingly before it is too late.

(References for all of the above: Mirqat, Hadith: 5289; Also see Faydhul Qadir, Hadith: 6469)

And Allah Ta’ala knows best

Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar

How do I know if my Ramadan was accepted?

I relate to you one of the earliest of tragic events to have unfolded on Earth, as it relates to two sons of Prophet Ādam (ʿalayhi al-Salām); the very first human being to tread the Earth. This is the story of Qābīl and Hābīl. Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) said in the Sūrat al-Mā’idah:

وَاتْلُ عَلَيْهِمْ نَبَأَ ابْنَيْ آدَمَ بِالْحَقِّ إِذْ قَرَّبَا قُرْبَانًا فَتُقُبِّلَ مِنْ أَحَدِهِمَا وَلَمْ يُتَقَبَّلْ مِنَ الْآخَرِ

“And recite to them the story of Ādam’s two sons, in truth, when they both offered a sacrifice [to Allāh], and it was accepted from one of them but was not accepted from the other…”

Having realised that his sacrifice was rejected, whilst that of his younger brother – Hābīl – was accepted, how did he react? You would think that he would repent, reassess his relationship with Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā), or re-evaluate his īmān in order to attempt to pinpoint what went wrong, but his reaction was starkly different;

قَالَ لَأَقْتُلَنَّكَ قَالَ إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُتَّقِينَ

“He said, ‘I will kill you.’ The former said, ‘Indeed, Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā[caution of Allāh].’”

In other words, why not focus on the source of your problem that caused your sacrifice to be rejected – i.e. your lack of taqwā – instead of focusing on eliminating my existence?

Hābīl continues addressing the older brother:

لَئِنْ بَسَطْتَ إِلَيَّ يَدَكَ لِتَقْتُلَنِي مَا أَنَا بِبَاسِطٍ يَدِيَ إِلَيْكَ لِأَقْتُلَكَ إِنِّي أَخَافُ اللَّهَ رَبَّ الْعَالَمِينَ

“If you should raise your hand against me to kill me – I shall not raise my hand against you to kill you. Indeed, I fear Allāh, Lord of the worlds.”

إِنِّي أُرِيدُ أَنْ تَبُوءَ بِإِثْمِي وَإِثْمِكَ فَتَكُونَ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ النَّارِ وَذَلِكَ جَزَاءُ الظَّالِمِينَ

“Indeed I want you to obtain my sin and your sin so you will be among the companions of the Fire. And that is the recompense of wrongdoers.”

As time passed, the idea of murdering brother grew more and more fair-seeming;

فَطَوَّعَتْ لَهُ نَفْسُهُ قَتْلَ أَخِيهِ

“And his soul encouraged him to murder his brother…”

This is the nature of al-Nafs al-Ammārah (the commanding soul): it rationalises the crime for a person; it offers him justifications; reassures him in its regard; and lessens its weight, until one feels confident enough to click the button, make the call, agree to the meeting, complete the prohibited transaction, and so on.

فَقَتَلَهُ فَأَصْبَحَ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ

“…So he killed him and became among the losers.”

He left the motionless corpse of his brother above the ground, not knowing what needs to be done next, as this situation is unprecedented.

فَبَعَثَ اللَّهُ غُرَابًا يَبْحَثُ فِي الْأَرْضِ لِيُرِيَهُ كَيْفَ يُوَارِي سَوْءَةَ أَخِيهِ

“So Allāh sent a crow searching in the ground to show him how to hide the disgrace of his brother…”

قَالَ يَا وَيْلَتَا أَعَجَزْتُ أَنْ أَكُونَ مِثْلَ هَذَا الْغُرَابِ فَأُوَارِيَ سَوْءَةَ أَخِي فَأَصْبَحَ مِنَ النَّادِمِينَ

“He said, ‘O woe to me! Have I failed to be like this crow and hide the body of my brother?’ And so he became of the regretful.” [1]

He was amazed at himself at how he, an upright and intelligent human being, failed to know what a crow, a much lowlier creature, knew about the burying of the dead.

This incident, therefore, marked the very beginning of the struggle between truth and falsehood and Qābīl was the first to introduce the act of killing. Commenting on this, the Prophet (sall Allāhu ʿalayhi wa sallam) said:

لَيْسَ مِنْ نَفْس تُقْتَلُ ظُلْمًا إلاَّ كَانَ عَلَى ابْنِ آدَمَ الأوْلِ كِفْلٌ مِنْ دَمِهَا، لأَنَّهُ كَانَ أوَّلَ مَنْ سَنَّ القَتلَ

“There is no person who is unjustly killed except that the first son of Ādam will receive a portion of its sin. That is because he was the first to introduce the act of killing.” [2]

There is one statement from this story that I would like to point out, one that you read minutes ago but perhaps did not give it the full attention it deserves, despite it being an expression that kept our predecessors up at night and haunted them by day.

“Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā.”

Yes, carrying out a good deed is a blessing, but it is one that cannot be considered complete until it is coupled with another blessing; Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)’s acceptance. For the wakeful Muslim, this is a cause of concern. As we smile, celebrate and exchange greetings during anyʿEid, there should be a thought that hovers over us:

ليت شعري، من المقبول فنهنيه، ومن المحروم فنعزيه

“O, I wonder who has been accepted by Allāh so that we should congratulate him, and who has been rejected so that we may mourn him.” [3]

Meeting Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) with few good deeds is a calamity, but worse is meeting Him with many good deeds which crumble away before your very eyes, and years upon years of supposed hard work is turned down by Him. How could this happen?

“Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā.”

Let us consider how our predecessors reacted to this āyah.

ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib (raḍiy Allāhu ʿʿanh) said:

كُونُوا لِقُبُولِ الْعَمَلِ أَشَدَّ هَمًّا مِنْكُمْ بِالْعَمَلِ، أَلَمْ تَسْمَعُوا اللَّهَ يَقُولُ :إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُتَّقِينَ

“Be more concerned with Allāh’s acceptance of a good deed than with the doing of the good deed itself. Have you not heard Allāh saying: “Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā.” [4]

ʿAbdul ʿAzīz b. Abī Rawwād (raḍiy Allāhu ʿanhu) said, speaking about the approach of our predecessors to good deeds:

أدركتهم يجتهدون في العلم الصالح، فإذا بلغوه وقع عليهم الهمّ أيتقبل منهم أم لا

“I witnessed a people who would make great efforts in attaining knowledge, and when they would finally attain it, they would be struck with grief, not knowing whether Allāh will accept from them or not.” [5]

A beggar once asked the companion ʿAbdullāh b. ʿUmar (raḍiy Allāhu ʿanhu) for money, to which ʿAbdullāh said to his son, “Give me a dinar.”

When the beggar walked away, his son said to his father, “May Allāh accept from you, O father.”

ʿAbdullāh responded:

لَوْ عَلِمْتُ أَنَّ اللَّهَ تَقَبَّلَ مِنِّي سَجْدَةً وَاحِدَةً، أَوْ صَدَقَةَ دِرْهَمٍ وَاحِدٍ، لَمْ يَكُنْ غَائِبٌ أَحَبَّ إِليَّ مِنَ الْمَوْتِ، أَتَدْرِي مِمَّنْ يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ، إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُتَّقِينَ

“If I knew that Allāh has accepted from me a single prostration or a single dirham in charity, there would not be any visitor whom I would love to meet more than death. Do you know who Allāh accepts from? ‘Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā.’” [6]

Their consciousness of this concept was so intense that some of them would be seen weeping during their dying moments, fearing the implications of this āyah.

ʿĀmir b. ʿAbdullāh b. al-Zubair (raḍiy Allāhu ʿanhu) was seen crying profusely during his last illness. He was asked, “What makes you cry?”

He responded with:

أَيَّةٌ فِي كِتَابِ اللَّه تعالىِ: إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُتَّقِينَ

“An āyah from the Qur’ān: ‘Allāh only accepts from the people of taqwā.’” [7]

With that said, the key question must be asked: Are there signs for Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)’s acceptance, which are, in turn, signs that our hearts are working towards a path of taqwā? What is the use in filling a bucket if it has holes within it, and what is the use of siting an exam if you had been revising for the wrong paper, and what is the use of climbing a ladder if it was leaning on the wrong wall? Furthermore, we may ask: What use is there in the doing of a ‘good deed’ if it is eventually turned down by Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)?

In a bid for our ʿEids to be truly worthy of celebration, consider the following indicators of an accepted act of worship to measure yourself against:

The first: A true intention of not returning to sins abandoned in Ramaḍān

For those who had fasted the month of Ramaḍān, having put many sins on hold but planned a secret reunion with them from ʿEid onwards, then they will have just discovered one of the clearest signs of an act of worship that is highly prone to rejection.

Yaḥyā b. Muʿādh said:

من استغفر بلسانه وقلبه على المعصية معقود، وعزمه أن يرجع إلى المعصية ويعود، فصومه عليه مردود، وباب القبول في وجهه مسدود

“Whoever asks for forgiveness with his words whilst his heart remains resolute on a sin, determined to return to it afterwards, then his fasting is rejected and the door to Allāh’s acceptance is closed.” [7]

This does not refer to those who fall weak post-Ramaḍān and commit sins. That applies to every single one of us, and the door of Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)’s mercy is vast. This quote, however, refers to those whose intention during the month of Ramaḍān was merely a temporary halting of the habit, conversation, transaction, or their likes. Is this not a form of mockery of Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā), the One who sees our intentions even clearer than we do?

Sahl al-Tasturī said:

الطاعة يفعلها البر والفاجر ولا يترك المعصية إلا صديق

“Good deeds are carried about by the righteous and rebellious. However, it is only the sidīq [truthful one] who abstains from sins.” [8]

In Ramaḍān, we were all praying, reciting Qur’ān, remembering Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā), and some were even in iʿtikāf. Good deeds are easy and most certainly appreciated by Him. What differentiates true righteous from counterfeit piety, however, is this factor: how we behave when those sins reoffer themselves to us.

The second: The easing of the path worship

One of the most beautiful realities of good deeds is that they give birth to more good deeds, just as sins give birth to more of their likes. Hence, the doer of good is rewarded by Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) with another opportunity of worship to open up before him. He pounces at it with enthusiasm, so He opens yet another door of worship, until his entire life becomes an alternation from one form of worship to another. If you are experiencing this, then you are enjoying another hopeful sign of Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)’s acceptance.

Imām Ibn al-Qayyim said:

وَإِذَا اسْتَنَارَ الْقَلْبُ أَقْبَلَتْ وُفُودُ الْخَيْرَاتِ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ كُلِّ نَاحِيَةٍ، كَمَا أَنَّهُ إِذَا أَظْلَمَ أَقْبَلَتْ سَحَائِبُ الْبَلَاءِ وَالشَّرِّ عَلَيْهِ مِنْ كُلِّ مَكَانٍ

“If the heart illuminates, then the delegations of goodness will flock in his direction from everydirection. Similarly, when a heart darkens, then the storms of evil will gust towards him from every direction…” [9]

This meaning is found in the Qur’ān. Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) said:

فَأَمَّا مَنْ أَعْطَى وَاتَّقَى (5) وَصَدَّقَ بِالْحُسْنَى (6) فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْيُسْرَى (7) وَأَمَّا مَنْ بَخِلَ وَاسْتَغْنَى (8) وَكَذَّبَ بِالْحُسْنَى (9) فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْعُسْرَى (10)

“As for he who gives and fears Allāh, and believes in the best reward. We will make smooth for him the path of ease (goodness). But as for he who withholds and considers himself self-sufficient, and denies the best reward. We will make smooth for him the path for evil.” [10]

Now that Ramaḍān is over, how inspired do you feel to pray Ṣalāh al-ʿIshā’ and Ṣalāh al-Fajr in the masjid? How enthusiastic are you now to offer Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) a smaller portion of fasting and night prayer all throughout the year? How determined are you to maintain those high standards of ijāb that you had set for yourself back in Ramaḍān? If the answer is a positive one, then rejoice at yet another hopeful indicator of Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā)’s acceptance.

The third: The frequent utterance of “Astaghfirullāh [Allah forgive me]”

This is a statement that you should repeat outwardly and inwardly, engaging both your mouth and heart. It is a constant apology to Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā), having not considered what you had put forward too great for Him, and realising that deficiency is an inbuilt trait within us, even as we worship. Your hope, therefore, is for Him to overlook your trespasses and erase those impermissible yearnings once and for all in preparation for a life of purity post-Ramaḍān. For this reason, ʿUmar b. ʿAbdul ʿAzīz would write to the Muslim provinces around the world after Ramaḍān, saying in his letter:

“Now is the time to repeat the words of your father, Ādam (ʿalayhi al-Salām):

رَبَّنَا ظَلَمْنَا أَنْفُسَنَا وَإِنْ لَمْ تَغْفِرْ لَنَا وَتَرْحَمْنَا لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الخَاسِرِينَ

‘Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves, and if You do not forgive us and have mercy upon us, we will surely be among the losers’ [11]

Repeat the words of Prophet Nūh (ʿʿalayh al-Salām):

وَإِلَّا تَغْفِرْ لِي وَتَرْحَمْنِي أَكُنْ مِنَ الخَاسِرِينَ

‘And unless You forgive me and have mercy upon me, I will be among the losers’ [12]

Repeat the words of Prophet Ibrāhīm (ʿalayhi al-Salām):

وَالَّذِي أَطْمَعُ أَنْ يَغْفِرَ لِي خَطِيئَتِي يَوْمَ الدِّينِ

‘And Who, I hope, will forgive me my mistakes on the Day of Judgment.’ [13]

Repeat the words of Prophet Mūsā (ʿalayhi al-Salām):

رَبِّ إِنِّي ظَلَمْتُ نَفْسِي فَاغْفِرْ لِي

‘My Lord, indeed, I have wronged myself, so forgive me.’ [14]

Repeat the words of Prophet Yūnus (ʿalayhi al-Salām):

لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ

“None has the right to be worshipped but You, glory be to You, I have been among the wrongdoers.” [15]

A concluding message:

أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَلَا تُبْطِلُوا أَعْمَالَكُمْ

Obey Allāh and obey His messenger and do not invalidate your good deeds. [16]

And:

وَلَا تَكُونُوا كَالَّتِي نَقَضَتْ غَزْلَهَا مِنْ بَعْدِ قُوَّةٍ أَنْكَاثًا

Do not be like her who undoes the thread which she had spun, after it had become strong…’” [17]

During seasons of worship, you had been spinning the threads of good deeds for weeks on end, building your estate in Jannah and putting out sins, so do not let any day of ʿEid – one that is intended to be of happiness and gratitude to Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) – be a means of undoing all of the good that you had saved up.

Congratulations for your patience, congratulations for being a Muslim, and congratulations for the decision that you have made to live according to a new standard of repentance, worship, and planning for Jannah. With such accomplishments and intentions to your name, no one on Earth deserves to be happier than you.

Source: www.islam21c.com

Notes:

[1] Al-Qur’ān 5:27-31

[2]Al-Bukhārī and Muslim, on the authority of Ibn Masʿūd

[3] Latā’if al-Maʿārif, Ibn Rajab

[4] Ibn Abī al-Dunyā, Al-Ikhlās

[5] Abū Ṭālib al-Makki, Qūt al-Qulūb

[6] Ibn ʿAbdul Barr, Al-Tamhīd

[7] Tafsīr al-Ṭabarī

[8] Abū Nuʿaim, Hilyāt alAwliyāh

[9] Al-Jawāb al-Kāfī

[10] Al-Qur’ān 92:5-10

[11] Al-Qur’ān 7:23

[12] Al-Qur’ān 11:47

[13] Al-Qur’ān 26:82

[14] Al-Qur’ān 28:16

[15] Al-Qur’ān 21:87

[16] Al-Qur’ān 47:33

[17] Al-Qur’ān 16:92

RAMADHAAN – ADORNING THE ROOH

RAMADHAAN – ADORNING THE ROOH

Once Hadhrat Moulana Maseehullah Rahmatullahi alayh advised a person who complained bitterly about his evilness and extreme weak spiritual state that: “Do not focus so much about your sins. Rather use your energies to reform yourself by making Taubah.”

The person responded by saying “Hadhrat, every time I make Taubah, I break my Taubah. So what is the sense of making Taubah?”

Hazratjee replied: “Clean clothing gets dirty after a day or two. It is understood that the clothing needs to be washed. No one says: “What’s the sense of washing my clothing. It will get dirty again. Similarly, the soul gets dirty when sin is committed. Just as one regularly washes and changes one’s clothing, so is there a need to “wash” the soul regularly even though you fear that you will sin again.”

Subhanallah! What a brilliant method of explaining the need for continuous Taubaah. What a wonderful remedy to cure the wasaawis (whisperings) of Shaytaan. We did sin and soil ourselves but, with the Fadhl of Allah, we shall humbly walk through the doors of Taubah, with cap in hand… again and again. His is the Court whose doors never close. His is the Mercy which embraces the worst of the worst. His is the Forgiveness which with just one heartfelt “Astaghfirullah” (I seek forgiveness), an entire life of sins is forgiven though the sins may be more than the foam of the oceans.

Yes, Ramadaan is here! Yes, it is the month of Mercy and Forgiveness. Yes, it is time for a good scrub which paves the way to Taqwa. Taqwa is obtained by combating the nafs. The nafs feeds upon excessive eating, excessive sleeping and excessive association. Ramadaan is a time when Allah Ta’aala has compelled us to restrict the eating, drinking, sleeping and cohabiting.

The benefits of combating the nafs is that its power to incline towards evil, vice and wickedness is substantially diminished. The reprehensible qualities such as greed, malice, pride, jealousy, love of the world, vanity, love for fame, love for wealth and anger is diminished substantially. Obliteration is impossible for man is saddled with this basic animalism called nafs until death. He is not under any obligation to uproot his nafs, he is only obliged to control it. Fasting snips, cuts and smothers the power of the nafs. It removes the sting and steam from it.

The rooh, which is the opposite of the nafs, is strengthened whenever the nafs is opposed. The rooh is the source of good qualities. It is the engine of goodness, purity and nobleness. When the rooh is strong and pumps with vitality, virtuous qualities flow freely from that person. Tauheed, sincerity, truth, generosity, patience, tolerance, humility, and fear of Allah etc. becomes secondary to one’s disposition. Ramadaan is a month to lessen our association with the Creation and bond ourselves to our Creator. This bond cannot be acquired by indulging in fanning the flames of greed and negligence by entering competitions, shopping, feasting and indulging in an abundance of socialising, amusement and fun.

Ramadaan is a time for training the rooh to submit to Allah’s Will. Food there is plenty but a true Muslim submits and refrains from eating, the bed is comfortable but a true Muslim stands for Taraweeh and trains his nafs to submit to the Shariah. After the scrubbing, comes the adorning of the rooh with the apparel called Taqwa. “And the clothing of Taqwa, that is best” (Qur’an)

NEVER LOSE HOPE

During the Battle of Uhud, one of the painful tragedies suffered by Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was the martyrdom of his beloved uncle, Sayyiduna Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). The person responsible for killing Sayyiduna Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was none other than Sayyiduna Wahshi bin Harb (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). At that time, he was not a Muslim, but Allah Ta‘ala later on blessed him to accept Islam and become a Sahaabi. The incident of his accepting Islam is as follows:

After Allah Ta‘ala blessed Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) and the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) with the conquest of Makkah Mukarramah, the heart of Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) became filled with fear. Being responsible for the death of Sayyiduna Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), he feared that the Muslims would seize him and kill him in retaliation, and hence he fled for his life. He would remain in hiding throughout the day and travel throughout the night in an effort to distance himself from the lands of the Muslims. Eventually, Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) reached the Himyar tribe and settled down in their area.

After some time, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) sent a messenger to Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), inviting him to accept Islam.Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) replied, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! How can you invite me (towards Islam) whereas you claim (i.e. the Quraan Majeed mentions) the following regarding the one who commits murder, engages in shirk or indulges in zina:

يَلْقَ أَثَامًا ﴿٦٨﴾ يُضَـٰعَفْ لَهُ ٱلْعَذَابُ يَوْمَ ٱلْقِيَـٰمَةِ وَيَخْلُدْ فِيهِۦ مُهَانًا

He (who commits these sins) will meet a punishment. The punishment will be doubled for him on the Day of Qiyaamah and he will remain therein humiliated.

I have committed these sins, so do you find any chance for me (gaining forgiveness)?” On that occasion, the following verse of the Quraan Majeed was revealed:

إِلَّا مَن تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ عَمَلًا صَالِحًا فَأُولَـٰئِكَ يُبَدِّلُ اللَّـهُ سَيِّئَاتِهِمْ حَسَنَاتٍ وَكَانَ اللَّـهُ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا

Unless he repents, brings imaan, and carries out righteous deeds, for Allah Ta‘ala will change the evil of such persons into good, and Allah Ta‘ala is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.

(On hearing this verse,) Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) remarked, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! This condition (of repenting, bringing imaan and remaining steadfast on righteous deeds without falling into sin) is difficult. Perhaps I will not manage to fulfil this condition completely?”

Allah Ta‘ala then revealed the following verse:

إِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَا يَغْفِرُ أَن يُشْرَكَ بِهِ وَيَغْفِرُ مَا دُونَ ذَٰلِكَ لِمَن يَشَاءُ

Indeed, Allah Ta‘ala does not forgive that partners be ascribed to Him, but He forgives all other sins for whomsoever He wishes.

(Hearing this verse,) Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) responded, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! I see that in this verse, Allah Ta‘ala mentions that He will forgive the sins of those whom He wishes. However, I don’t know whether Allah Ta‘ala will wish to forgive me or not. Is there anything else that you can tell me (that will give me hope in the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala)?”

Thereupon, Allah Ta‘ala revealed the following verse of the Quraan Majeed:

يَـٰعِبَادِىَ ٱلَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا۟ عَلَىٰٓ أَنفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا۟ مِن رَّحْمَةِ ٱللَّـهِ ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّـهَ يَغْفِرُ ٱلذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا ۚ إِنَّهُۥ هُوَ ٱلْغَفُورُ ٱلرَّحِيمُ

“O My servants who have transgressed against their souls! Despair not of the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. Allah Ta‘ala forgives all sins, for He is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.”

Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) exclaimed, “Yes! This verse (has given me hope)!” Saying this, he accepted Islam.

The Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) then enquired from Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), “O Rasul of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! Does this (promise of forgiveness) apply to us as well?” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) replied, “This applies to all the Muslims.”

(Tabraani – Majma‘uz Zawaaid #11363 and Ad-Durrul Manthoor vol. 5, pg. 620)

Lessons:

1. The blessed heart of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was naturally grieved and hurt when his uncle, Sayyiduna Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), was martyred. However, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) had such love and concern for the Ummah that he put his pain aside, forgave Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) and invited him to Islam. This is the type of heart that we should try to have – a heart of love and forgiveness.In many cases, a person is wronged in some small or trivial way, yet he bears a grudge for years thereafter and cannot let go – even though the person who wronged him may be his own brother or relative. Hence, we should take lesson from the blessed example of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) who not only forgave but even had an ardent desire for Sayyiduna Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) to enter Jannah.

2. A Muslim should never ever lose hope in the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. No matter how many sins we may have committed, or how serious our sins may be, the extent of Allah Ta‘ala’s forgiveness and mercy definitely exceeds all our sins. Hence, instead of becoming depressed and despondent, we should feel hopeful and turn to Allah Ta‘ala in sincere repentance. After crying over our sins in repentance, we should try our best to make amends, by fulfilling the outstanding rights of Allah Ta‘ala (e.g. qadhaa salaah, fasts, zakaah, etc.), as well as the outstanding rights of the creation (e.g. settling unpaid debts, returning usurped wealth, asking people for forgiveness, etc.). Thereafter, the effort is to remain firm on the taubah by not returning to a life of sin. However, if perchance we later happen to fall back into sin, we should not delay in getting back to our feet and repenting. In fact, even if we fall a thousand times, we should sincerely repent a thousand times and not lose hope in the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. Furthermore, we should refer to the pious ‘Ulama for guidance so that they may show us how to refrain from sin in the future.

uswatulmuslimah.co.za

Breaking a promise

Q: What is the kaffaarah for breaking a promise made to Allah? Also, if I make a promise to someone and I don’t fullfil it, do I have to pay kaffaarah?

A: Making a verbal promise to Allah Ta’ala constitutes an oath. It is not permissible for one to break the oath one has made with Allah Ta’ala. If one breaks his oath, he will be sinful and will have to give the kaffaarah for breaking the oath. The kaffaarah for breaking an oath is for one to feed ten poor people two meals or give them the amount of sadaqatul fitr (i.e. each poor person should be given the amount of sadaqatul fitr). Alternatively, one can clothe them with such clothing in which one is able to perform Salaah. If one is unable to fulfil this then one should fast for three days consecutively with the intention of atoning for the broken oath.

If one makes a promise to someone and the promise is of a permissible nature then one should fulfil the promise. Without a valid excuse, it is not permissible for one to break the promise. However, if one had broken the promise without a valid excuse then one should make sincere tawba to Allah Ta’ala and ask the person to whom the promise was made for forgiveness. Nevertheless, through breaking a promise, kaffaarah does not become not compulsory.

And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.

لَا يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللَّـهُ بِاللَّغْوِ فِي أَيْمَانِكُمْ وَلَـكِن يُؤَاخِذُكُم بِمَا عَقَّدتُّمُ الْأَيْمَانَ فَكَفَّارَتُهُ إِطْعَامُ عَشَرَةِ مَسَاكِينَ مِنْ أَوْسَطِ مَا تُطْعِمُونَ أَهْلِيكُمْ أَوْ كِسْوَتُهُمْ أَوْ تَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ ذَلِكَ كَفَّارَةُ أَيْمَانِكُمْ إِذَا حَلَفْتُمْ وَاحْفَظُوا أَيْمَانَكُمْ كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّـهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ ﴿المائدة: ٨٩﴾

عن علي وعبد الله بن مسعود أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال: العدة دين. رواه الطبراني في الأوسط والصغير، وزاد فيه عن علي وحده: ويل لمن وعد، ثم أخلف يقولها ثلاثا. وفيه حمزة بن داود ضعفه الدارقطني.(مجمع الزوائد 4/166)

عن عبد الله بن أبي الحمساء قال: بايعت النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ببيع قبل أن يبعث وبقيت له بقية فوعدته أن آتيه بها في مكانه فنسيت ثم ذكرت بعد ثلاث فجئت فإذا هو في مكانه فقال: يا فتى لقد شققت علي أنا هاهنا منذ ثلاث أنتظرك.(سنن أبي داوود، الرقم: 4996)

الخلف في الوعد حرام كذا في أضحية الذخيرة، وفي القنية: وعده أن يأتيه فلم يأته لا يأثم، ولا يلزم الوعد إلا إذا كان معلقا، كما في كفالة البزازية وفي بيع الوفاء كما ذكره الزيلعي.(الأشباه والنظائر مع شرح الحموي 2/464-465)

قوله: “الخلف في الوعد حرام” قال السبكي: ظاهر الآيات والسنة تقتضي وجوب الوفاء، وقال صاحب العقد الفريد في التقليد: إنما يوصف بما ذكر أي بأن خلف الوعد نفاق إذا قارن الوعد العزم على الخلف، كما في قول المذكورين في آية: لئن أخرجتم لنخرجن معكم، فوصفوا بالنفاق لإبطانهم خلاف ما أظهروا، وأما من عزم على الوفاء، ثم بدا له فلم يف فلا، فهذا لم يوجد منه صورة النفاق، كما في الإحياء من حديث طويل عند أبي داود والترمذي مختصرا بلفظ: إذا وعد الرجل أخاه ومن نيته أن يفي فلم يف فلا إثم عليه، انتهى.
وقيل عليه: فيه بحث ، فإن أمر: أوفوا بالعقود  مطلق فيحمل عدم الإثم في الحديث على ما إذا منع مانع من الوفاء.
قوله: وفي القنية: وعده أن يأتيه فلم يأته لا يأثم، قال بعض الفضلاء: فإن قيل : ما وجه التوفيق بين هذين القولين، فإن الحرام يأثم بفعله، وقد صرح في القنية بنفي الإثم.
قلت: يحمل الأول على ما إذا وعد، وفي نيته الخلف، فيحرم لأنه من صفات المنافقين، والثاني على ما إذا نوى الوفاء وعرض مانع، انتهى.(شرح الحموي على الأشباه والنظائر2/464-465)

فتاوى محموديه 29/404

قال الأيمان على ثلاثة أضرب اليمين الغموس ويمين منعقدة ويمين لغو فالغموس هو الحلف على أمر ماض يتعمد الكذب فيه فهذه اليمين يأثم فيها صاحبها لقوله عليه الصلاة والسلام من حلف كاذبا أدخله الله النار ولا كفارة فيها إلا التوبة والاستغفار وقال الشافعي رحمه الله فيها الكفارة لأنها شرعت لرفع ذنب هتك حرمة اسم الله تعالى وقد تحقق بالاستتشهاد بالله كاذبا فأشبه المعقودة ولنا أنها كبيرة محضة والكفارة عبادة تتأدى بالصوم ويشترط فيها النية فلا تناط بها بخلاف المعقودة لأنها مباحة ولو كان فيها ذنب فهو متأخر متعلق باختيار مبتدأ وما في الغموس ملازم فيمتنع الإلحاق والمنعقدة ما يحلف على أمر في المستقبل أن يفعله أو لا يفعله وإذا حنث في ذلك لزمته الكفارة لقوله تعالى { لا يؤاخذكم الله باللغو في أيمانكم ولكن يؤاخذكم بما عقدتم الأيمان } وهو ما ذكرنا (الهداية 2/478)

المواعيد لا يتعلق بها اللزوم، ولكن يندب إلى الوفاء بالوعد.(المبسوط للسرخسي 4/132)

قال النووي: أجمعوا على أن من وعد إنسانا شيئا ليس بمنهي عنه فينبغي أن يفي بوعده، وهل ذلك واجب أو مستحب؟ فيه خلاف ; ذهب الشافعي وأبو حنيفة والجمهور إلى أنه مستحب، فلو تركه فاته الفضل وارتكب المكروه كراهة شديدة، ولا يأثم يعني من حيث هو خلف، وإن كان يأثم إن قصد به الأذى قال: وذهب جماعة إلى أنه واجب ; منهم عمر بن عبد العزيز، وبعضهم إلى التفضيل. ويؤيد الوجه الأول ما أورده في الإحياء ; حيث قال: وكان – صلى الله عليه وسلم – إذا أوعد وعدا قال: عسى، وكان ابن مسعود لا يعد وعدا إلا ويقول: إن شاء الله تعالى، وهو الأولى. ثم إذا فهم مع ذلك الجزم في الوعد، فلا بد من الوفاء إلا أن يتعذر، فإن كان عند الوعد عازما على أن لا يفي به فهذا هو النفاق. اهـ. وهذا كله يؤيد الوجوب إذا كان الوعد مطلقا غير مقيد بعسى أو بالمشيئة ونحوهما، مما يدل على أنه جازم في وعده، فقوله: وهو الأولى محل بحث كما لا يخفى.(مرقاة المفاتيح 8/626-627)

Answered by:

Mufti Zakaria Makada

Checked & Approved:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)