It was Ramadaan...
- In the Name of Allah, The Most Beneficent, The Most Merciful
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Add Den Nun Nasiha.
An-Naziat (The Setting Stars)
Chapter 79: Verses 40-41
Impediment to Spiritual Purification
"But as for he who feared standing before their Lord's (tribunal) and prevented the soul from lower desires, then indeed Paradise will be their refuge."
Ibn al-Qayyim noted that the desires lead to one's wants and goals being distorted or ruined. This causes the person to commit sins.
Al-Qurtubi quotes ibn Masud as saying, "You are living in a time in which the desires are steered [and controlled] by truth. There will come a time in which the truth will be steered [and controlled] by the desires."
Ibn Taimiyyah once noted that the root of deviation from the straight path lies in either giving preference to one's own deductions and conclusions over the text of the Quran and Sunnah or in following one's desires rather than the Command of Allah.
Furthermore, a very dangerous facet concerning desires is that they can afflict a person even after he has attained knowledge. In fact, Sayyid Qutb noted, "Ignorance is easy to cure. However, desires after knowledge are a destructive force in the soul that needs a long-term, difficult jihad to cure."
To make matters even worse is that the desires and lusts in the soul are of numerous varieties. Perhaps if one can control one or some of them, he may not be able to control the others. Some of them are actually quite natural to the human being. For example, the innate desire for wealth and sexual pleasure aids in establishing civilizations on earth as well as propagating the species. However, in order for them not to have a negative effect, they must be nurtured and restrained according to the teachings of the Quran and Sunnah.
One can become enslaved to what he is desiring such that desire becomes the controlling factor in his life. It is said, "The slave [human] is free as long as he is content [with what Allah has given him] and the free one is a slave as long as he desires."
"Purification of the Soul" - - Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo, pp. 394-397
1. It was Ramadaan...
2. RED ALERT
3. Enumerating The Blessings Of Allah, And Giving The Necessary Thanks For Them
4. Voluntary Fasting
1. It was Ramadaan...
The Musjids were filled with worshippers. The atmosphere was generally one of submission to the Will of Allah Ta'ala. ...It was the month of Ramadaan visiting the Ummah of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
Fountains of sympathy, love and affection for the poor and needy, irrespective of nationality, race or religion, poured forth from the hearts of Muslims. Generosity as wide as the oceans was pre-eminent in the month, with charity exceeding all limits. Visits to hospitals, prisons, old-age homes, the hospice, the sick and disabled became the order of the day, together with care and concern for many a Muslim....
Speeches, talk shows, broadcasts on Radio Stations and a flood of literature covered almost every subject from Salaah, Fasting, Zakaat and Haj to the duties of a Muslim and fulfilment of the rights of all Muslims and non-Muslims.
Intensifying the surge of 'Islamism' was the contribution on Islamic politics, Islamic business and financing, Islamic etiquette, Islamic schools, etc. The Ummah was kept apprised of the unfolding events in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Africa, America and other parts of the world. Analysis upon analysis and solutions upon solutions were offered. ...Alhamdulillah, 'Da'wah' was the buzzword in many organizations, societies, associations and trusts. Masha-Allah. May Allah Ta'ala accept all activities which were conducted according to Qur'aan and Sunnah.
In Ramadaan, the Qur'aan Sharif was recited in Musjids, Madrasas, halls, offices, factories, tents, huts, aeroplanes and ships, by rich and poor, sick and healthy, men and women, young and old....
...It was recited in Taraweeh, individually and in congregation, from cover to cover, by millions throughout the world. 'Khatams' upon 'khatams' were made.
The fasting Muslim was conspicuous by his abstinence from food and drink. He was even more conspicuous in his absence from cinemas, theatres, discos, raves, casinos, video shops, etc. Such venues even lamented the loss of Muslim patronage.
Masha-Allah. May Allah Ta'la accept all the Ibaadaat (worship): the salaah, zikr, tilawat, du'aa, the piety, God consciousness, and efforts to advance and uplift the Ummah through various projects. May Allah Ta'ala perpetuate these good deeds. May Allah Ta'ala grant us all steadfastness on the principles of Islam which had been expounded in this month. May Allah Ta'ala grant us complete submission to His Will, as well as the ability to follow the perfect example of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
But what will the end of Ramadaan herald? ...What will the Eid moon bring?
�Will it bring glad tidings to the world, of a spiritually charged Ummah, which has emerged with purified souls, ready to face mighty challenges? One of the greatest challenges being that of inviting the lost souls, in a world filled with corruption, evil, immorality, obscenity, tyranny and rebellion against the Creator, towards servitude and submission to Allah Ta'ala and obedience to Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Will it bring an Ummah now ready to demonstrate in their living, the key lesson of Ramadaan, which was the development of Taqwa in every department of one's life and total submission to the Will and Command of Allah Ta'ala and His Beloved (sallallahu alayhi wasallam)?
The month of Ramadaan had offered us a fertile 'training ground' to become true vicegerents of Allah Ta'ala on earth.
The 'achievement' of Ramadaan is having learnt to obey Allah Ta'ala and His Beloved Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) in all walks of life - as an employer or employee, father or child, ruler or subject, teacher or student, husband or wife, master or servant, commander or soldier, trader or customer, dealer or client - with a determined pledge to maintain the code of Shariah throughout one's life.
Alhamdulillah, so much of time, attention and effort was given to the Qur'aan Sharif in the month of Ramadaan. Yet the Qur'aan Sharif is not exclusive to Ramadaan. Its revelation and its objective is not only its recitation. Its teachings are to encompass our lives - in every day, of every month, of every year, of every Muslim's life.
We all believe that the Qur'aan Sharif, the Message of Allah Ta'ala, is a guide for all of mankind; not just the Muslim. We also believe that it is authentic, unaltered, unparalleled, unpolluted.
However, the Believers in Allah Ta'ala, themselves, first and foremost, need to make the Qur'aan Sharif their guide in all matters of life: a Guide in the beliefs they should hold; a Guide in forms of worship; a Guide in business deals; a Guide in morals, etiquette and conduct; a Guide in politics and in establishing government on earth, which will ensure peace, harmony, preservation and fulfilment of human rights; and, a Guide towards eliminating corruption, oppression, tyranny, and every evil from society.
When we do this, then the guidance of the Qur'aan Sharif will become manifest for all. Then all will become recipients of its guidance. Otherwise, the Believers will have a share in bearing the burden of having delayed, if not completely obstructed others from salvation in the Hereafter.
Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has said:
"O you devotees of the Qur'aan! Do not use the Qur'aan as a pillow, but read it properly (some part of the) day and night, as it ought to be read Propagate the Qur'aan (by writing, speech, practice). Read it in a good voice and ponder over its contents so that you may succeed."
Hazrat 'Umar (radhiallahu anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said :
"Allah exalts many people by means of this Book (the Qur'aan Sharif), and He also degrades and disgraces many others by means of the same."
Those who practically apply the Qur'aanic teachings in their homes, businesses, politics, government, social and cultural life will be elevated. Those who do not practise or are selective by practising on parts of the Qur'aan Sharif, should heed the Divine warning of punishment, given to the Bani Israeel, in the following words.
"...THEN IS IT ONLY A PART OF THE BOOK THAT YOU BELIEVE IN, AND DO YOU REJECT THE REST? BUT WHAT IS THE REWARD FOR THOSE AMONG YOU. WHO BEHAVE LIKE THIS, BUT, DISGRACE IN THIS LIFE? AND ON THE DAY OF JUDGEMENT THEY SHALL BE CONSIGNED TO THE MOST GRIEVOUS PENALTY. FOR ALLAH IS NOT UNMINDFUL OF WHAT YOU DO." (Surah Baqarah 2 : 85)
From east to west, north to south, the world is in a chaotic state. The only solution to the evils which the societies of the world are submerged in, is without doubt, the Final Divine Revelation: The Qur'aan Sharif.
Hazrat Ibn Abbas (radhiallahu anhu) has reported: "Hazrat Jibraeel (alayhis salaam) once informed Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) that many fitnahs will certainly appear. Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) asked: 'What will be the way out, O Jibraeel?' He replied: 'The Book of Allah.'"
However, as Believers we have done a great injustice in our duty to the Qur'aan Sharif. The teachings of the Qur'aan Sharif have to come out of the book, out of the media, out of the Institutions of learning, out of the conferences and seminars, and into the lives of Believers.
When mankind will read the Qur'aan Sharif as well as the Ahadith of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and also see these teachings in the lives of the Believers, they will enter the religion of Islam in large numbers, as in the past, without much effort.
May Allah Ta'ala remove the difficulties, trials and hardships that the Ummah is facing in Palestine, Kashmir, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Iraq and other parts of the world. May He cause the winds of Hidayat and guidance to blow throughout the continents. May He bless the Ummah with the grace to maintain the spirit of Taqwa gained in Ramadaan, throughout life. May He protect us from returning to the sins we had given up in Ramadaan.
May Allah Ta'ala create the conditions for the release of thousands of prisoners, unjustly detained, throughout the world, by tyrant rulers, especially those suffering under inhuman conditions in Guantanamo Bay.
I wish all my Muslim brothers and sisters a Mubarak Eid.
Hazrat Moulana Yunus Patel Sahib
2. RED ALERT
URGENT SANHA ALERT !!!
KNORR SALAD DRESSINGS
The following Knorr Salad Dressings contain a PORK ENZYME and are thus declared HARAAM.
HONEY & MUSTARD
GARLIC & HERB
PLEASE ABSTAIN !!!
3. Enumerating The Blessings Of Allah, And Giving The Necessary Thanks For Them
Allah Most High has said: Say: Praised be Allah! [27:59] and: If you would count the blessings of Allah you would not be able to reckon them, [14:34] and: Of the blessings of your Lord, speak out, [93:11] and: Remember Me, and I will remember you, give thanks to Me, and reject Me not, [2:152] together with other verses concerning Allah�s gifts to His slaves, and His reminding them thereof.
Bukhari relates that Abu Dharr, radhiallahu `anhu, said, "Whenever the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam, went to bed at night, he would say, �In Thy name do I die and am I given life again,� and when he awoke he would say, �Praised be Allah Who gave me life after He caused me to die."
Muslim relates the following hadith from Suhayb, radhiallahu `anhu, "The affairs of a believer are astonishing, and are all good; this is something which is true of him alone. For when something good comes to him he gives thanks, while when something bad comes he is steadfast, which is good for him also."
Abu�l-Hasan al-Kindi recited the following lines:
If you have been given blessings, then look after them
for sins do away with blessings.
Al-Junayd said, "I once heard al-Sari saying, �Because to give thanks for blessings is itself a blessing, one can never cease to give thanks."
Imam al-Shafi`I writes at the beginning of his Treatise [Risalah, one of the formative texts of Islamic legal theory]: "Praised be Allah, Who, whenever He is thanked for one of His blessings, provides another blessing which in turn obliges one to thank Him again!"
According to Ibn Abi�l-Dunya, the following verses were composed by Mahmud al-Warraq:
If my thanking Allah for His blessings is a blessing,
then I must thank Him in the same measure again.
How can one thank Him save by His grace
as time goes on, and life goes by?
If a good thing comes, I rejoice heartily;
if a bad one comes, I receive a reward.
In both cases He gives me a gift too large
for the minds of men, and the land and sea.
Source: The Seventy-Seven Branches of Faith
4. Voluntary Fasting
Now that Ramadan is over, a unique season of worship has come to an end. For a whole month we have been fasting from dawn to dusk, willingly depriving ourselves of eating and drinking when our bodies have been crying for want of both food and drink. It is this element of willing obedience and compliance with an order which is in conflict with our basic needs that gives fasting its unique place among all acts of worship. To fast in the month of Ramadan is compulsory to every Muslim who has attained the age of puberty. We know, however, that we can offer voluntarily more of any type of obligatory worship. Such voluntary worship earns very high reward. In the few articles we have recently carried on fasting, references were made to voluntary fasting. This needs discussion in more detail.
Since fasting is such a great act of worship that God singles it out for a special reward which is measured only by God�s kindness and generosity, some people may wonder that the surest way of earning admission into heaven is to fast voluntarily, as frequently as possible. What if someone is able to fast day after day and year after year. To such a question we reply that it is against the guidance of the Prophet (peace be upon him). We have a Hadith in which the Prophet reproaches Abdullah ibn Amr for fasting continuously for long periods. In fact, the Prophet speaks against such fasting on more than one occasion. His own guidance was that he himself used to fast some days and not to fast on others. The maximum of voluntary fasting was to fast on alternate days. He described this as the best one can achieve since it was the practice of Prophet David (peace be upon him).
Having said that, it is important to know which days are recommended to fast. The first thing that comes to mind here is that the Prophet recommends us to fast six days after the end of Ramadan. We obviously cannot fast on the Eid day. The prohibition is for several reasons, one of which is that fasting on Eid day could be seen as an extension of Ramadan, when no one can add to Ramadan any extra days. Although most scholars agree that the six recommended days should be in the month of Shawwal, some scholars argue that this is not necessary. The reason why six days have been chosen is that the general rule for the rewarding of good actions gives every such action 10 times its worth. Hence, if one fasts the month of Ramadan, he is rewarded for fasting 10 months. Six more days of fasting earn the reward of fasting sixty days or two more months. That makes up for the whole year.
The Prophet also recommends us to fast three days of each month. Again the reason for choosing only three days is the multiplicity of reward by ten times the value of the action. Thus, three days earn the reward for fasting the whole month, and if one keeps up this habit, he is rewarded for fasting the whole year. Scholars have different preferences for which days of the month to fast. Some suggest that the beginning of the month is better, some the end, while others suggest that one day in every ten is more appropriate.
If one makes these three days the middle days of the month, starting with the thirteenth, he fulfils another recommendation by the Prophet who speaks favorably of fasting the three �white� days. The middle days of the month are considered to be the �white� days because the night is made light by the moon which is seen in its fullness.
The fact is that any three days in the month will earn the same reward. The only proviso that can be given in this context is that one should not choose Friday for fasting unless he joins it with fasting either the preceding Thursday or the following Saturday. Muhammad ibn Abbad reports that he asked Jabir, a companion of the Prophet, whether the Prophet spoke against fasting on Friday, and he answered in the affirmative. (Related by Al-Bukhari). Juwairiyah bint Al-Harith, one of the Prophet�s wives, reports that the Prophet once entered her home on a Friday on which she was fasting. He asked her: �Were you fasting yesterday?� She answered in the negative. He asked her then whether she intended to fast the following day and she again answered in the negative. He told her that in this case she should end her fast without completing the day.� The reason is that Friday is normally a day of rest and festivity. Hence, it should not be singled out for voluntary fasting.
There are also suggestions that fasting on Mondays and Thursdays is recommended. This view is based on some reports which quote the Prophet as recommending that. This may be the case, but the Prophet used to fast voluntarily on any day. Apart from singling out Friday in the preceding fashion, any day of voluntary fasting is a praiseworthy act of worship. The Prophet fasted on all days. One of his companions suggested that any time he wished to see the Prophet fasting, he saw him doing so. That obviously means on different occasions. Moreover, Aishah answers a question on whether the Prophet selected any particular day for fasting, and she answered in the negative. He used to fast on any day in the week.
At no time did the Prophet fast a whole month voluntarily. The only month he fasted from beginning to end was Ramadan. This was to make certain that no one could ever suggest that fasting any particular month could be recommended by the Prophet. Yet, the Prophet used to increase the number of days he fasted voluntarily in the month of Shaaban, which immediately precedes Ramadan. Perhaps this was to prepare himself for the approaching fasting month. There are certain reports which suggest that the Prophet fasted the whole month of Shaaban, but these are not authentic. It may be that the Prophet fasted many days in Shaaban which could have been interpreted by one or two of his companions as fasting the whole month. Indeed, that was not the case.
There are special occasions on which we are recommended to fast. One such occasion is fasting on the tenth of Muharram. This was the day when the Muslims were required to fast before God made fasting in Ramadan obligatory to all Muslims. Fasting on that particular day is thus made a matter of choice. Similarly, fasting on the day of Arafat, which immediately precedes the day of the Eid of Sacrifice, is also recommended, except for those who are doing the pilgrimage. It was on that day during his pilgrimage that the Prophet made certain that all his companions saw that he was not fasting. Apart from these two, no special occasions are recommended for fasting. That includes fasting on the 27th of Rajab, the 15th of Shaaban and on the Prophet�s birthday. None of these days is recommended to fast.
Voluntary fasting earns reward and we should encourage each other to fast voluntarily, in accordance with the Sunnah of the Prophet. Perhaps three days every month is the ideal, since it gives us the reward of fasting the whole year round.
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