Saturday, June 28, 2014

Ramadhaan Greetings

I wish you all the best for the blessed month of Ramadhaan. we are fortunate that we are alive to once again have the opportunity to experience this beautiful month.

May Almighty Allah give us the good of this month and help us to be among those who receive maximum benefit. Inshaa-Allah may this Ramadhaan help us to attain closeness to Allah as we have never experienced before, may Allah shower His blessings, mercy and forgiveness upon us and may Allah help us to maintain the true spirit of Islam even after this beloved month passes.

Finally, may Allah accept all of our duaas Inshaa-Allah Ameen!

Have a beautiful month filled with peace and blessings!

The wisdom behind different factors of Salaah (Prayer)- Final Part

The wisdom behind the prescribed order in Salaah

  •    The act of standing represents a high position of pride, and this was corrected by Ruku (bowing).
  •   Following the act of bowing, the order was given to stand again. This can be explained as follows:

o   When a person becomes proud or arrogant, Allah debases him, and for the one who humbles or debases himself, Allah raises his ranks.

  • When the  servant of Allah came to know this secret (mentioned in the above point), he assumed an even greater humility by going in to prostration (sajdah).

  •  On this act his respect was increased further in that he was allowed to sit in Allah’s presence. This is the sitting position between two prostrations.

  •  In recompense for the second prostration, he was blessed with a longer and relaxed duration of sitting in the Glorious court.

  • After this he is once again given a lofty rank by Allah when he stands up again.

The wisdom behind saying salaam (peace) at the end of the Salaah

  • The word “salam” indicates that the worshipper was not present here but had gone somewhere else.

  • Hence, as for a traveller, it became necessary for him to greet those present with Salaam.

  • It is written in the books of Fiqh (jurisprudence) that the Imam (one who leads the prayer) should make the intention to include in his greeting (salam) the followers, the angels and Allah’s pious servants,

  • The followers should make the intention of greeting their fellow worshippers sitting by them, the Imam, the angels, and the pious servants of Allah.

Source: My Salaat  by  Moulana Muhammad Idris Ansari, translated by Dr. Imtiaz Kamal Madani. 

I pray that Allah Almighty guides each of us to understand the beauty and wisdom of Salaah and to realize what a wonderful gift it is so that we come to appreciate and love it. 

Since it's the wonderful month of Ramadhaan, now would be the best time to start focusing on making our prayers better and more sincere. May Allah help me and everyone else to attain concentration in Salaah, to gain peace from it and to love it and may Allah, most Glorious accept all of our Salaah and all of our efforts. Inshaa-Allah Ameen!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A wonderful way of looking at prayer

I have shared a three video series on duaa with you because I personally have found this so amazing. With the beautiful month of Ramadhaan a few days ago I think that the approach mentioned in the videos will be extremely useful. 

I hope you find this as useful as I have, and may Allah bless brother Muhammed Al Shareef with all that is good and accept his efforts Inshaa-Allah!

Raise Your Dua: Belief In Dua

Raise Your Dua: Wording of Your Dua

Raise Your Dua: Taking Action!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The vast sea of knowledge

Do you ever feel like there’s so much to learn and so little time? If you do then this post would most definitely resonate with you.

Learning has always been an integral part of my life. Since I can remember I have always relished learning new and different things. As a child I’d raid my father’s bookshelf looking for new books to read and I’d be willing to read anything, because I was taught from a young age that knowledge is power, and that we should always seek knowledge.

I suppose this is why I find it so difficult to deal with the fact that people have turned studying into a meagre economic thing, where choices of what to study are determined by the amount of money that goes with it, and not to mention that crazy amounts that students have to pay just to get knowledge. Even when I studied at university, it was never about the career that would go with the course I was doing. I wasn’t focused on the money I could make after graduation or the so-called prestige that would come with having a degree behind your name. I was interested in the knowledge I was getting and I have to admit that I would excitedly browse through the course options every time I needed to choose because the idea of learning new things appealed to me.

Earlier this year I was sent a link to a free online course and this opened up a whole new learning experience for me. I was surprised to see so many course offerings on so many different topics, and it can all be done online. It’s wonderfully structured, and there’s deadlines which forces you to complete the course. Once again I find myself grappling with learning choices, and it’s just so hard to choose because nowadays my time is more limited and really there is so much to learn in so many different subject areas. Now you understand why blogging has taken a back seat for me. Instead of blogging or reading other blogs I have devoted my time to studying online courses and while I do feel out of touch with some of my oldest blogging friends, I know that I will not always have the time or circumstances to learn and so I have been swimming in the huge ocean of knowledge, trying to find my way around.

Some of you might be wondering why I feel the need to learn more. There’s a misconception with some people that you should only learn what you need to. I would answer you by saying that any knowledge can be beneficial if it helps you to better yourself and by teaching and sharing it, others have the chance of bettering themselves as well. Also, since Allah created everything, I think an understanding of different things in this world will help us to get closer to Allah by appreciating and reflecting on just how amazing and perfect Allah Most glorious is. For example, I was studying a course on the human body and while listening to the lectures on the heart and how it functions I couldn’t help but marvel at the complete masterpiece which is the human body, and hence I couldn’t deny that Allah is the most amazing creator. Besides all this though, learning new things helps to develop the mind and in turn we begin to see the world in many different ways.

I could go on about the benefits of learning, but I won’t. I decided to share my learning experience with you so that you too could benefit. So below you will find the link to the site I have been studying on and if you do learn anything, please feel free to share your experiences with us.

Here's another link to a great site I've been learning from for some time now. May Allah reward everyone involved with this for sharing such beneficial Islamic knowledge.

Besides this there are many other ways to learn and I think that each person should decide in which way they learn best. 

May Almighty Allah bless us all with knowledge that will be beneficial to ourselves and others and may Allah help us to practice what we learn, and may we not be like donkeys carrying books but never benefiting from it, and may Allah Most Glorious save us from believing that the little knowledge we have is something to be proud of, because the knowledge we have been granted through Allah’s mercy only is but a drop in the ocean and since it means so little it does not make sense for us to be arrogant over it.

Image 1 from here 

Image 2 and 3 from here 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

The wisdom behind different factors of Salaah (Prayer)- Part 2

Please forgive me for taking so very long to post the next part of this. Insha-Allah I will be posting Part 3, the final part very soon. I pray that you find this as beneficial as I did. 

The wisdom behind prostrating (sajdah)

  • By standing in the presence of Allah (the Exalted, the Greatest). And being purified of one’s sins, the worshipper experiences a special condition. The rays emanating from the closeness to the Lord have an effect on him/her so that he/she gains a spiritual brightness and tranquillity.

  • Naturally man would think that if being present in front of Allah from a distance created such a condition in him, how much greater would be the sweetness of the experience if he came closer. Hence, his nature demanded that he came closer.

  •  In this world, there is no other way to attain this sort of closeness to Lord of the Worlds than by performing sajdah (prostration). It is as though one were prostrating at the feet of Allah Almighty.

The wisdom behind two sajdah’s in one rakaat (cycle)

  •      After the first sajdah man has achieved the loftiness of having gained entrance to the special court of the Kings of the kings, and in this special closeness to his Lord, there is a possibility that he may have become proud of his position, like Shaytaan (Satan). Hence he was ordered to prostrate a second time so that he may not feel pride over his pious life, because as Allah (the Most Exalted) says- “We created you from the earth and into it shall we return you.” The one who is always aware of his true nature is very rarely arrogant.

  • Another reason for prostrating twice is this:

  •  When Allah Almighty gave the order for the angels to prostrate in front of Adam (May Allah’s peace be upon him), all of them prostrated, except Shaytaan[1] who did not. When the angels stood up from prostration and saw that Satan had been disgraced because of disobeying Allah’s order they went into prostration a second time to thank Allah that they were not disobedient. Allah (Exalted his He) prescribed two prostrations for believers so that the worshipper may gain the rewards of all the angels for this act of worship.

  • The first sajdah is an expression of obedience to Allah. The second sajdah is a fortress to shelter man from Allah’s curse and a canopy of Allah’s mercy.

The wisdom behind standing up after sajdah
  •      From  the two sajdah’s, two of man’s conditions have become evident.

  •       From the first sajdah the reality of his birth was demonstrated (that is man’s creation from dust).
  •      From the second sajdah it was shown that after Allah created man, death will come, when a second time man will return to the dust. And from this same dust, Allah will resurrect man and make us stand up on the day of judgement.

-          Hence, to remind himself/ herself of this reality, the worshipper says “Allahu-Akbar” (Allah is the Greatest) and stands up.

Reference: My Salaat  by  Moulana Muhammad Idris Ansari, translated by Dr. Imtiaz Kamal Madani,

[1] Please note that Shaytaan was not an angel but instead was of the Jinn (made from fire). We learn that he was one of the greatest worshippers of Allah and for this he was given special privileges to be in Jannah (Paradise) with the angels.