Friday, 10 September 2010

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EID MUBARAK

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Homerun

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
The blessed month of ritualistic practice and great rewards has come to an end, However Eid-ul-Fitr is Tomorrow Alhamdulillah! (Praise be to All Mighty God, Creator of all the worlds).
What better time than to give myself a lesson in etiquette. The day of Eid is not merely a festive occasion. A Muslim can acquire great rewards as he/she moves closer to God if the day of Eid is spent in accordance to the teachings of our beloved Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him).

Here are ten pointers I will try to adopt in order to make my Eid a special one:

1.  To rise up as early as possible.
2.  Take a bath (Ghusal) and Brush my teeth (Miswaak).
3.  Wear my best clothes.
4.  Apply a fragrance (itr).
5.  Eat something sweet before departing for the mosque.
6.  To give alms before leaving for the mosque.
7.  Take part in the Eid prayer.
8. Walk to the mosque.
9. To recite dhikr while walking to/from the mosque.
10. Choosing a different route when returning home.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Dhikr *Eid special

اللّهُ أكبر اللّهُ أكبر
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar
Allah is Great, Allah is Great

اللّهُ أكبر
Allahu Akbar
Allah is Great

لا إلَهَ الا اللّه
La illaha il Allah
there is no God, but Allah

اللّهُ أكبر اللّهُ اكبر
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar
Allah is Great, Allah is Great

و لِلّه الحمدَ
walilahil Hamd
to Him belongs all Praise

اللّهُ أكبرُ كَبيِرَا
Allahu Akbaru Kabeera
Allah is the Greatest

وَالحَمدُ لِلّهِ كَثِيرا
wal-Hamdulilahi katheera
And all Praise is due to Him

Monday, 6 September 2010

Zakat/Zakat-ul-Fitr

Zakat
One of the five core pillars of Islam, the literal translation of the Arabic word Zakat is ‘to cleanse’ or ‘purify’. Paying Zakat on your wealth purifies and increases the remainder of it, also serving as a reminder that everything we own belongs to Allah.

‘Take Sadaqah (alms) from their wealth in order to purify them and sanctify them with it, and invoke Allâh for them. Verily! Your invocations are a source of security for them, and Allâh is All-Hearer, All-Knower’ Surah Al-Tawba - Repentance, Dispensation verse 103

Items from which wealth can be derived include: gold, silver, and merchandise for business. Zakat must be paid on cash deposits held in bank accounts. Any personal items from which one cannot derive wealth, e.g. cars, utensils, food, clothing, shelter, furniture and which are not to be used for trade, are not included in the calculation of zakat. A lot of people choose Ramadan as the month in which they pay their zakat because the reward for good deeds done in this blessed month is multiplied.


Zakat is distributed among the poor, the needy and the destitute, people who have nothing other than the very basic necessities. Zakat cannot be used to build mosques, to bury the deceased, or to clear the debt of the deceased.

Zakat-ul-Fitr
It is an obligation that every self-sustaining Mulsim adult should pay Zakat-ul-Fitr as prescribed by Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) those Muslims should pay for themselves and on behalf of dependants. It must pay it before one participates in the Eid Prayer
The quantity the Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) described as one saa’ of food. One saa’ is equivalent to four madd. A madd is the amount that can be scooped up when one puts their hands together. If we translate this into a monetary value based on the price of a staple food such as flour or rice, it is approximately £3.50.

Therefore the amount due for each person is £3.50 which is $5.50 and 4.26 Euros

Sunday, 5 September 2010

The Five Bounties

Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) has said,

My Ummah has been given fve things in regards to Ramadan which has not been given to any other Ummah before them.

  • that the odour of the mouth of the fasting person is more fragrant, to The Almighty, than musk.
  • that the angels continuously seek forgiveness on their behalf until they end their fast.
    • that The Almighty, everyday adorns his Heaven and then says (to it), ‘The time is near when my pious servants shall be freed from difficulties and provisions, and they will come to You’.
      • that the devils will be shackled and restrained from performing the mischief that they can perform outside Ramadan.
        • that they (the fasting) will be forgiven in the last night of Ramadan.

        Saturday, 4 September 2010

        Silence is Orange

        Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
        My biggest challenge this Ramadan was to be mindful when conducting my words. I was becoming negligent on the way I speak, which, ultimately got me into allot of trouble; another way in which I brung hardship on myself. I believe that noble characteristics are something we all should aspire towards. Prophet Mohammed (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) was a man who was revered for his kindness, he often overlook things that displeased him. This is a testament to his warm heart, politeness and sympathy. I myself continuously study his legacy and believe he was the most compassionate man to have ever been documented into this world, the very reason God chose him to be the seal/last of the prophets. It would be fair to say that the gentle characteristics of this man won over my devotion to Islam. My Lord the All Mighty Ruler of mankind has bestowed upon us a man with sincere humility ingrained in his heart. I believe we must all slaves to the Creator and the beloved Prophet himself would say the same thing!

        "Allah has sent me as an apostle so that I may demonstrate perfection of character, refinement of manners and loftiness of deportment." Prophet Mohammed 

        There is no better role model for me to look toward when looking to improve my characteristics. I am guilty at times of hot headedness and losing the ability to control what I say out of anger. I want to focus on tackling this now rather than later, especially now that it is Ramadan.
        Guarding my tongue is a form protection from lying and bad language which is both forbidden in Islam. I must learn to limit what I say in order to stick closely to a conversation topic. The ability to choose my words more carefully would be something that will benefit me in articulation. I am told I talk too fast so slowing down isn’t going to harm anyone especially myself. I know I am guilty of not fulfilling promises I make, this is something I want to abstain from so there is a need to think about what I say before I say it, again something that can be solved if I just slow down and think before I speak! I find that I engage in convocations that have no relevance to my interests or ideals. My friends and I sit and converse about every topic under the sun, I guess that’s what friends are for, however, there are many subjects which I see no relevance in discussing or engaging in.

        The Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) said, “From a person’s Islam being good is his leaving what does not concern him.” Tirmidhi

        I think its most important to make sure that I do what I say. I know what a hypocritical example it sets to say something and do something completely different. I will make an effort to better my character to be more befitting to a Muslim. Our beloved Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) gave us a complete instructions on how to control/conduct ourselves. All of which are stated in the Quran and Hadith collections. I have seen a dramatic improvement in myself but pray I can grow in becoming more familiar with the Quran and its guidance for mankind. I hope to be more kind/compassionate/loving/charming towards everyone I have the pleasure of meeting. pray for me! Thanks for again for reading.

        The Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) said, “All of the speech of the Child of Adam will be held against him, it will not be in his favor; except commanding good, forbidding wrong, or the remembrance of Allah.” Tirmidhi

        Increase the Peace

        Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
        We are approaching the last week of Ramadan. Those Muslims who have neglected the virtues of this month are the losers, but how those who have implemented the goodness of this Holy month are surely feeling the benefits already.

        The Messenger of God (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) went to the podium and said:  “Ameen, Ameen, Ameen.” It was said to him, “O Messenger of Allah, why did you do that?” He said, “Jibreel said to me, ‘May Allah rub his nose in the dust, that person who Ramadaan comes and his sins are not forgiven,’ and I said, ‘Ameen’. Then he said, ‘May Allah rub his nose in the dust, that person who lives to see his parents grow old, one or both of them, but he does not enter Paradise,’ and I said, ‘Ameen’. Then he said, ‘May Allah rub his nose in the dust, that person in whose presence you are mentioned and he does not send blessings upon you,’ and I said, ‘Ameen.’” Narrated by Ibn Khuzaymah, al-Tirmidhi

        I have researched and highlighted ways in which we can make the most of the rest of Ramadan. It is important a Muslim is constantly increasing in faith (Iman); it is this faith which makes us visible to our Lord, The Most Beneficent.

        Praying (Salat) daily prayers which the first commandment to all Muslims, make supplications (Dua) to Him and stay focused in His remembrance.

        Contemplating on verses of the noble Quran, Nothing will bring you more tranquility. trust me!

        Try to pray in congregation, for God has guaranteed the believer that the one who prayers in congregation will neither be abandoned nor humiliated in this world and the hereafter

        Performing repetitive supplications (Dhikr), keeping God Al'Mighty on your tongue will surely raise your level of faith not to mention the countless virtues they will bring to one’s life

        Seeking guidance and keeping the company of the loving and righteous people. "The person is with one he loves." Al-Bukhari

        Maintain that God knows all and watches over us, and knowing that He is with you:
        "Have you not considered that God Al'Mighty knows what is in the heavens and what is on the earth? There is no private conversation of three but that He is the fourth of them, nor are there five but that He is the sixth of them - and no less than that and no more except that He is with them [in knowledge] wherever they are. Then He will inform them of what they did, on the Day of Resurrection. Indeed Allah is, of all things, Knowing." Surah Al-Mujadilah - The Woman Who Disputes verse 7

        Visit a grave as a reminder:
        "Every human being is bound to taste death, [and] in the end unto Us shall all be brought back" Surah Al-'Ankabut - The Spider verse 57

        Call unto your Lord aloud or in secret and supplicate to Him especially in the third part of the night:
        “The Lord descends every night to the lowest heaven when one-third of the night remains and says: ‘Who will call upon Me, that I may answer him? Who will ask of Me, that I may give him? Who will seek My forgiveness, that I may forgive him?’” Al-Bukhari

        Thursday, 2 September 2010

        Make/Break Fast

        Make Fast

        بسم الله
        Bismillāh ir rahman ir rahim
        In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful



        An intention is an action of the heart. The fasting person should resolve in their heart that they will fast the following day; this act is better known to Muslims as a Niyyah. The supplication that is advised before any positive action is the Bismilla.

        Break Fast

        اللَّهُمَّ اِنِّى لَكَ صُمْتُ وَبِكَ امنْتُ وَعَلَيْكَ تَوَكَّلْتُ وَعَلَى رِزْقِكَ اَفْطَرْتُ
        Allahumma inni laka sumtu wa bika aamantu wa 'alayka tawakkaltu wa 'ala rizq-ika aftarthu
        O God! I fasted for You and I believe in You and I put my trust in You and I break my fast with Your sustenance.

        The Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) used to recite this supplication as it was time to break his fast. He used to break his fast with dates (both old or fresh) then he drank some mouthfuls of water.

        Wednesday, 1 September 2010

        Itikaf

        Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
        During this blessed month of Ramadan, a believer in Islam can gain reward in many ways by following our exemplary Prophet, the messenger Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him). The divine guidance of the beloved Prophet affirmed attributes which were considered as noble characteristic for mankind. I’d like to elaborate on a tradition that was very significant in his life, the Itikaf, which is to gain individual growth spiritually. Henceforth, I’d like to focus on some of the virtues of this practice.

        Itikaf is best translated in English as the spiritual retreat. It can only take place under certain circumstances. The places that have been highly recommended  for Muslims to observe the Itikaf is the Grand Mosque in Makkah & the Holy Mosque of the Prophet in Medina, both situated in Saudi Arabia in addition The Holy Mosque of Kufa & the Holy Mosque of Basrah which are both situated in Iraq, are also desired for Itikaf. However, those willing to take part in Itikaf and cannot be in the most favored locations, a Mosque which holds Friday prayers in any town or city is also appropriate.

        Itikaf is usually performed during the last ten days of Ramadan.  A person who chooses to take part will spend the whole day and night at the mosque devoting their time reading the Quran & performing obligatory and optional prayers. In order to validate the Itikaf, it is paramount that the intention regarding the number of days the devotee will spend in the mosque be made in the beginning. In addition, following thorough with the original intention completes the act of worship. The whole Itikaf would be void if participant changes their mind or invalidate any ruling concerning the observation. The minimum duration is three consecutive days with a maximum of ten.

        It is important to remember that Itikaf is an optional act of worship, however, it becomes obligatory due to the intention. There is a requirement for the devotee to be fasting during this time as well as having firm conviction in God. This will allow the heart of the devotee to be fully occupied and engrossed in the remembrance of his Lord, Most Gracious. As a result, the worshiper will be content with his Lord and not distracted with worldly matters or people. Such virtue prepares the devotee to feel the isolation of the grave, where there is no one else but God alone to accompany the thoughts of the believer. This I found to be the ultimate reward of completing an Itikaf. It is safe to conclude that the solace of one’s mind leads one towards the path of God.

        "Allah's Messenger (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) used to perform Itikaf for ten days of every Ramadan, then when it was the year in which he died he performed Itikaf for twenty days." Bukhari

        "Aisha the wife of Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) reported that the Prophet, used to practice Itikaf during Ramadan till he died and then his wives used to practice Itikaf after him." Bukhari

        This ritual carried out by the noble Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) is not as popular today as it was during or after his legacy. Such is an indication on how the society today, especially Muslims, have become reliant on modern day conveniences. We must be clear that the Prophet himself never abandoned the practice of Itikaf. There are no Islamic scholars who deny the Itikaf as a blessed sunnah with many hidden benefits.

        All deeds manifest from heart, as the Messenger of Islam (may the peace and blessings of Al'Mighty God be upon him) states:

        “In the body there is an organ which if it is sound, the entire body will be sound, and if it is corrupt, the entire body will be corrupt. That organ is the heart.” Bukhaari & Muslim

        The Prophet continues by explaining that the heart is corrupted most by distractions such as food, drink, sex and excessive sleeping (to mention but a few) which diverts people from the remembrance of God. So the All Mighty has prescribed fasting to protect the heart from countless negative effects of these distractions. Just as fasting is a shield which protects the heart from the influences of physical distractions such as excessive indulgence, Itikaf also offers immense benefit, mainly the protection from the effects of excessive socializing. When a person has all the means of purifying his heart by keeping away from things that can distract him from worship, experience of Itikaf will be more effective in helping him to turn towards God with humility.

        “So glorify the Praises of your Lord, and ask His forgiveness. Verily, He is the One Who accepts the repentance and Who forgives.” Al-Nasr - The Victory verses 1-3

         “We commanded Ibrahim and Ismael that they should purify My House (the Kabah) for those who are staying Itikaf, or bowing or prostrating themselves.” Baqarah