Sunday, February 27, 2011
A righteous lady married to the biggest tyrant,
Her husband denied the truth so vehemently,
Yet she worshipped the One True Lord secretly,
Of Islam she was a strong adherent.
She was most beloved to the worst oppressor,
But she gave up riches amongst richest and chose to suffer,
She wasn’t willing to give up the truth,
When she was tortured for days on end, Islam was there to sooth.
A smile on her face she constantly had,
And they even resorted to calling her mad,
It was the truth and beauty of Islam that she had tasted,
Her life was for Allah only and nothing was wasted.
Years before the seeds had already been planted,
She was inspired to take in the baby Moosa (Peace and Blessings be upon him),
When it was the baby boys heads that Fir’aun (Pharaoh) wanted,
Allah’s plan triumphed and He provided the answer.
Aasiyah (May Allah be pleased with her), indeed your sacrifice was not in vain,
Allah was the witness of your suffering and pain.
Promised Jannah (Paradise) by Allah Most High,
Your beautiful story makes me want to cry.
Your love for Allah was so much,
And I can only wish that I had your strength,
You are a true and perfect example for us,
Clearly epitomising what's important in life.
May Allah Almight be Pleased with this amazing woman and may Allah give us strength the way Allah gave strength to Aasiya. Inshaa Allah!
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Recently I was out shopping with my mother and sister. We were looking for Islamic clothes. Even though we live in South Africa, most of the people selling Islamic clothing like abayas, etc, are foreigners from countries like Egypt and Pakistan. Well, the truth is that you can find really beautiful abayas, but they are all black. So my mum asked the man in the shop why they don’t have any other colours besides black and he said, “because black is the Islamic colour for women”.
Some women have said that black is the chosen colour for women because it’s dark and thus covers a woman’s body as you can’t see through it. But then I have to ask; in that case why not dark green, or navy blue, or maroon or even brown? Surely all these dark colours would serve the same purpose.
Another thing is that in my opinion black makes a woman look radiant. It’s elegant, and especially with the fashionable Islamic clothing these days, many women end up looking really stunning and perhaps even attracting more attention. I don’t always wear black, I try to choose different colours in the clothes I’m wearing, but one day I wore a black cloak and matching black hijab and some of my friends actually remarked that they thought I looked really good in the black. I never got such reactions when wearing other colours. So once again, I had to wonder.
I’d really like to hear people’s opinions on this, because it is something that interests me and I don’t believe that I have enough knowledge on the matter. I mean, I really don’t understand why women have to wear only black. Again, I have no problem with it. I’d just like to understand why some people are so adamant about the restriction of other colours. I think it would be great if I could find the Islamic clothes I was looking for in different colours. I know that in some countries this is possible, but here in South Africa and in many other countries, all we find is black clothes for women. I guess I’m just someone who likes to have colour in my life and an all black wardrobe somehow just doesn’t sit well with me.
I wonder what types of colours women wore in the time of the Beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon Him). Perhaps this is something that I need to do more research on. If anyone knows anything about the issue, I’d really like to hear it!
Remember-I’m looking forward to hearing your comments on this issue so please feel free to share your opinions.
And Allah Almighty is the Knower of all things!!!
Image taken from: http://islamicwear.webs.com/
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
As I waited at the hospital for this aunty to emerge from the room where her husband had just passed away I didn’t know what to say or think. Every time someone passes away it’s the same thing, the inevitability of death hits you hard. When she emerged I couldn’t believe that it was the same person I knew. It’s been a while since I last saw her but not that long. Today she looked tired, thin and sad. A vague resemblance of the bubbly and vibrant woman I’d sit with and happily discuss all types of issues. This reminded me of exactly how fragile life is. People are here and then before you know it, they’re gone. We take our health for granted, but this is something we should be more thankful of.
In our ladies workshops we learn about the stories of the Prophet’s (May Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon them all). It’s strange that just this morning we learnt about a lady in the time of Nuh (AS) who came to complain to the Prophet Nuh that her baby had died. When Nuh (AS) asked her how old the baby was, she said he was something like 350 years old (I hope I have the number correct). Then Nuh (AS) told her that there will come a time when people will only live for about 70 years, and she said that if she had such a short lifespan she’d spend every day in sajdah (prostration to Allah). This is how precious our time on this earth is, but still we take life for granted.
We live like we’re going to live forever, we’ve forgotten that death is around the corner and that the grave awaits us. We’ve overlooked the hereafter and we act like we will have forever to repent and to change our ways. Life is fragile, it’s over in a flash, before you know it the people who were laughing and talking are gone! Soon, we will be amongst those who have passed. Have we prepared enough?
Life is so short, on the day of judgement it will seem like we were on this earth for a day only. The hereafter is eternal. I know it’s hard and we get caught up in this world, but Inshaa Allah perhaps we should all try to work harder for the hereafter and remember that life is indeed extremely fragile.
May the Almighty give peace to all those who have passed away. May Allah save them from the punishment in the grave and give them Jannah (paradise). And May Allah make it easy for the families of those who have passed. Inshaa Allah Ameen.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
Yes, indeed it is that time of the year again; the time where every shop has bold displays of chocolates, hearts and teddy bears. Where the colour red can be seen from miles away and when suddenly people seem to remember that they have loved ones. They call it Valentine’s Day!!!
Now seriously, I know that being completely against Valentine’s Day might make me come across as a cold hearted, destroyer of love, type- Which I am not. There are many reasons to be against this day. At this time of the year many Muslims will be telling you why Valentine’s Day should not be a practice to follow. It’s based on a pagan ritual, we do not need to follow what everyone else is doing, we should follow the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him). These are all very important points, but I am not going to write about all that today, mainly because I know that other much more knowledgeable people will be able to write about it much better than me.
(You can check out a really good article on Valentine's Day at the following link: http://eislaminfo.blogspot.com/)
The main reason that I don’t like Valentine’s Day is because it’s all just so superficial! One “special day” in the year to “celebrate” your “love”. I’ll tell you why I take up issue with this. Firstly, why do you need one specific day in the year? If you really love someone shouldn’t you be showing this to them all the time? Why should you show them how much you love them on that one day, just because someone else is telling you that’s the day you should be expressing your love? Secondly, celebrating love with chocolates, teddy bears and hearts. (Okay, chocolates I understand, who doesn’t feel loved when they get chocolates?:)) But seriously now, is that really a way to express love, with worthless gifts. It’s not like most people even take the time to buy a special gift based on their loved ones likes or even needs. Most people just end up buying the nicely wrapped up red and white gifts on display. Then the day or the week or the month after Valentines Day, how many people remember that they love the person they showered with gifts the day before? Then it’s all back to the normal routine and suddenly all the chocolates, roses and teddy bears are nowhere to be seen, and neither is the "love" that was so vividly expressed on Valentine's Day.
I remember back in my school days, people would show off about the amount of Valentine’s gifts they received. From cards to roses, chocolates, teddy bears...people would walk around school flaunting their gifts. It was a mark of popularity, a testimony that you are lovable. Those unfortunate people that didn’t receive anything ended up feeling like they were unworthy of love. It was always a big deal when it came to Valentine’s Day, events would be planned long beforehand and girls and boys would wait to see what they would receive. The strange thing is that many years after people leave school, things are still the same, and if a spouse does not shower you with Valentine’s gifts then many people regard this as a lack of love.
I feel irritated just writing this, not because I don’t believe in love, not because I am unromantic. I actually do believe in love and that this is truly a mercy from Allah Almighty. I also believe that romance is important. But it should be based on real feelings and it should have meaning. There should not be one” special” day, love should always be celebrated. It should be celebrated in the way in which couples treat one another, how they respect and honour one another, how they appreciate one another. Compliments should be paid to each other often, not only on Valentine’s Day. Gifts should be given at any time, and thought should be put into the gift. I truly believe that real love is very far away from the idea of love portrayed through Valentine’s Day, which is quite ironic since this is claimed to be the “Day of Love”. I can’t help but see the superficiality in all of this every year when the hearts, teddy bears, red roses and chocolates are to be seen all over the place, I can’t help but wonder why a fake ideal of love is so easily soaked up by people.
The best way to celebrate love is to start by thanking Allah (SWT) for giving you a partner to love because this is a mercy from Allah and it should be recognised as this. The second way to celebrate love is with mercy, respect, understanding and compassion, not one day in the year, but every single day. With this comes acceptance of one’s partner. Accepting the good and the bad and not ever wishing that you had something better. This is real love, love in its truest form as it was modelled to us by our most beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). If we learn the seerah (life of the Prophet) we will see the beautiful manner in which he celebrated love. There may not have been any roses, chocolates and teddy bears, but there definitely was mercy, compassion, warmth, laughter and acceptance. There was true love instead of the fake romanticised ideals of love which are so often thrown out at us.
Let’s try and start our own traditions, let’s celebrate love in our own ways. We don’t need other people to tell us when and how to show love. Let us relate to one another in meaningful ways. Let’s do things that matter. Let’s be genuine people, that’s all I’m trying to say here!!!
Image taken from: http://free-extras.com/images/anti_valentines_day-13244.htm
Saturday, February 12, 2011
As-salaamu alaykum- A very big thank you to the sweet Rose Water for giving me this award. I really enjoy reading your blog sister and you definitely deserve the award, but I pray that Allah Almighty awards you far more in the hereafter, inshaa Allah!
There are some rules connected with these Blogger-awards and they are here:
1. Thank and link back to the person who gave me the award
2. Share seven things about myself
3. Award 15 recently discovered great bloggers
4. Contact these bloggers to tell them of their award
So here are 7 Things About Me:
1. I love dark chocolate.
2. I've always wished that I could have a house on the beach.
3. Hot weather depresses me and I much rather prefer winter.
4. I have never seen actual snow, (except for like very little snow which I saw a few years ago).
5. I really enjoy cooking and baking, its therapeutic for me.
6. I'm not that much into fashion and am almost clueless in that regard.
7. I usually tend to write way too much about anything so I'm trying hard to keep this short and sweet.
And now, without further ado... The Stylish Blogger Award goes to (in no preferential order):
1.Ranii @ Daily Shine
2. Amira @ The Strangers Diary
3. Ati @ True Colours Revealed
4. Tasmia @ Hijab Barbie
5. Stylish Muslimah @ http://stylishmuslimah.blogspot.com/
6. Azra @ No Ordinary Day
7. Shums @ Hijabi
8. Sara @ Divine Peacefulness
9. Spill Beans @ http://www.spill-beans.blogspot.com/
10. Mustika @ Vanilla Ice Cream Floats
11. FarahD @ My scrapbook of life
12. Riham @ Beauty of Islam
13. Old Muslim Woman in the Shoe @ http://www.oldmuslimwomanintheshoe.blogspot.com/
14. Holy Crackers @ http://holy-crackers.blogspot.com/
15. Rukphar Mor @ http://rukhparmor.blogspot.com/
May the Almighty Allah accept all of our efforts and May He give us a wonderful reward in the hereafter.
Image taken from: http://www.theoffside.com/world-football/would-you-rather-win-the-ballon-dor-or-the-fifa-world-player-of-the-year-award.html
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Indeed, identical name branded clothing and shoes can be found worldwide and this is regarded as a mark of progress towards globalization. Let's not even talk about fashion trends; All that has to happen is for some model or actress to promote a certain style of clothing and suddenly the whole world is dressing that way.
A while ago I walked into a store in the Oriental Plaza, a shopping centre in Johannesburg, which comprises of mainly Muslim owned shops. I remember shopping at this particular shop with my mother and sisters when I was much younger. We used to go there when we were looking for Eid Clothing because they always had suitable Islamic clothes; fashionable clothing yet modest. I was quite shocked when I walked into this store after a long while. Now the racks of the shop displayed sleeveless dresses and tight fitting pants, as well as short tops and skirts. Perhaps it was intended for people to put together a suitable outfit, but this store looked very far off from the store I once knew and it struck me that it very closely resembled one of the other global fashion stores.
Then the other day I was driving through the Johannesburg CBD and I noticed two young African women in tight blue jeans and sleeveless tank tops. Their image was exactly the same as the people we see on TV. This once again reminded me that more and more cultural forms of dress are beginning to disappear. In Johannesburg you can still spot women dressed in traditional African garb, bright colourful materials with African prints. This is usually long stylish skirts and tops, and often it includes matching headgear. I always admire women who are dressed that way, but I have to say that these women are in the minority.
A while back I was at a conference and someone came up to me wanting to talk about my work on Muslim women that was displayed. She said to me “I was wondering whose work this was but I assumed it’s you since you’re dressed traditionally”. On that day I wore a knee long top and a pants and of course my headscarf. But that’s exactly what things have become-anyone who doesn’t fit within the global norms of dressing is dressed “traditionally”, and they stand out like a sore thumb.
So since the only blueprint for Muslims to follow is the Holy Quraan and Sunnah of the Prophet (Peace be upon Him), I guess in a global society we will never be able to fit in completely. Our form of dress alone will always make us stand out and thus people will inevitably regard us as different. So what do we do? Do we follow suit and join the globalized world? Or do we continue to assert our identities as Muslims? I guess in the end the choice is up to each individual. This just reminds me of a talk by Sheikh Khalid Yasin entitled “The Strangers”. (Available at the following link http://kalamullah.com/khalid-yasin.html). He said in that talk something to the effect that Islam began as a stranger and Muslims were regarded as strangers in the time of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him), and Islam will end as a stranger and Muslims will once again be regarded as strangers. It just seems to me that in the global world of today perhaps this is inevitable.
Almighty Allah knows best about everything!
Image taken from: http://senthamizhvanan.blogspot.com/2010/11/globalization-impact-on-employment.html
Monday, February 7, 2011
For anyone interested in reading about different ways to deal with things, check out my other blog- It's called "How To Deal" and its an integration of Islamic and Psychology principles. I actually started that blog first but I've been slower to put posts up because it actually requires researching topics.
I've just posted something on desensitization and how to deal with that.
Hope you guys find something useful there inshaa Allah!!!