Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Who am I to judge?

 "O you who believe! stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of any people make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-acquainted with all that you do. " [Sûrah al-Mâ'idah: 8] 

A really important topic that I most definitely need to address is the one that we all commit with or without knowing! For most of us, it comes naturally and it is only after we realise it, that we must remind ourselves that what we are doing is not right! I am talking about judging others. Many of us do it and again, I am no exception. In fact, I was brought up in a culture that did nothing but judge. Judged the amount of wealth you had, judged one based on their waist size, judged one by their abilities so on and so forth. I really can't blame people for judging but I do not encourage it either. Living in a Western society where media often promotes "bigger, richer, stronger" to its people, we are programmed to compete with each other and look down on others if they do not have something that we have. The media dictates to us that being the best requires one to have the top most luxurious brands in the world and if you are rich, then you are successful and everybody wants to be friends with the successful. We can't just be happy for people, we need to judge them. We are taught to have a sense of selfishness and that we are BETTER than everyone because we have something they don't have.

The (modern) Chinese culture is very materialistic and based mainly around status and wealth. They judge you based on what you have and don't have and they love to gossip about it behind your back. I never liked the Chinese culture and I always tried so hard to stay as far away from it as possible. But because of family members, it was hard to stay away from this mentality even if I tried. Judging people just turns you into a shallow human being who is  closed-minded and selfish. Judging people will never make you grow as an individual because you are too busy worrying about putting other people down! If we keep judging people and forgetting to worry about ourselves, then we will never succeed as an Ummah! 

Alhamdulillah for Islam, which has taught and continues to teach us how to live life as a good human being. Our beautiful deen always teaches us to focus on how to better ourselves and to learn how to follow the manners of the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). Getting rid of old bad habits is something that we all should strive to do, especially if it causes harm between you and your sisters and family! 

So, the reason why I wanted to write about this subject is because it was something that I had really fallen into and I wanted to share with everyone how it destroyed me and was making me into someone that I really did not like to be. I became Muslim to exit out of all the bad habits but I found myself naturally falling into judging others. It started off with these reminders from the Qur'an and Sunnah : 

“You (true believers in Islamic Monotheism, and real followers of Prophet Muhammad and his Sunnah) are the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind; you enjoin Al-Ma‘roof (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam has ordained) and forbid Al-Munkar (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden), and you believe in Allaah” [Aal ‘Imraan 3:110] 

 The Prophet (peace and blessing
 sees an evil action, let him change it with his hand [by taking action]; and if he cannot, then with his tongue [by speaking out]; and if he cannot, then with his heart [by feeling that it is wrong] – and ths of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever among youat is the weakest of faith.” (Narrated by Muslim, 49) 

“The Prophet(SAW) said, (three times), “The Religion is naseeha (sincerity and sincere advice).” We said, “To whom?” He said, “To Allaah, His Book, His Messenger, and to the leaders of the Muslims and the general people.”  [Saheeh Muslim No.55] 

and it began with pure intentions to really enjoin the good and forbid the evil. I really wanted others to be aware of their sins and faults so that they could change for the sake of Allah. I am sure that most of us begin with these intentions (and try to stick to them) but there is an art and etiquette on giving advice without seeming judgmental. I would worry about judging others while forgetting myself and my own sins. This can come off as arrogant (audhubillah) and definitely the person whom you are advising will not pay any attention to your words. I thought that I was doing something right but I later realised, because of all the negative feedback I was getting (from people who did not know how to advise either! lol) I knew that this way was not correct and it did not bring love amongst me and my sisters (for the sake of Allah) and I was not respected because I was not respecting others. I felt in my heart, this was not correct and I didn't want to continue like this because it could be potentially earning the Wrath of Allah (Audhubillah!) 

Alhamdulillah, Allah guided me to the correct understandings and I realised I needed to make many changes (hence why I stopped blogging for a long time). It really made me into an ugly soul and I really felt that this is not what Islam teaches. This is not the Muslim that prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) tried to be. I made excuses that I was allowed to be harsh because he (peace and blessings be upon him) would be harsh to some of his companions and to the people when it called for it! ! 

We really need to be careful and mindful on how to give our sisters advice, without coming off as arrogant. We should not abandon them either! And we should never call them kafirs and treat them like one (astughfurAllah!) as this is forbidden in Islam! 

1732. Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, "When a person calls his brother (in Islam) a disbeliever, one of them will certainly deserve the title. If the addressee is so as he has asserted, the disbelief of the man is confirmed, but if it is untrue, then it will revert to him.''
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Just because they sin openly or privately, it does not give us the right to call them kafirs. How do you know what is in their hearts? What if they have repented over and over to Allah and they are struggling so hard to change their ways? That is for Allah to Know and for us to leave! If we see a sister who wears too much makeup and she is advertising her beauty online, we should keep her in our duaas and advise her gently in private. She may not take heed initially, but it may get around to her eventually. Maybe your good manners will speak to her and she will consider what you have said! I know for a fact that most of these sisters get a LOT of hateful, rude, judgmental  comments on a daily basis and if those comments really worked as advice, then they would obviously stop what they were doing ! These judgemental comments can even cause a sister with weak faith to leave Islam completely (audhubillah!!!!!!) Of course, I do not support tabarruj (beautifying oneself in public for non-mahram) in any way, shape or form (as you all know lol) but I also do not think that being harsh and being a keyboard warrior would help either. They are still our sisters in Islam and WE TOO started somewhere. We were not perfect with hijab or niqab when we first became Muslim and even if we were, it does not give us the right to look down on others because they do not dress the same way as us. We all had that one sister who helped us along our journey and who never judged us, why not reciprocate for the sake of Allah and be that sister ? Maybe these ignorant sisters are just looking for a friend who does not judge them with everything and who is just looking for support!

I never truly understood "every body is at different levels of faith" until I came across some sisters who were extremely kind and even though could improve on their outward appearance, they still believed in the Oneness of Allah and were trying their best to be a good Muslim. So until I actually came across sisters who may not outwardly show their dedication, they still had better character than I did! 

O you who have believed, when you went forth in the cause of Allah, investigate; and do not say to one who gives you [a greeting of] peace, “you are not a believer,” aspiring for the goods of worldly life; for with Allah are many acquisitions. You [yourselves] were like that before, then Allah conferred His favor upon you, so investigate. Indeed Allah is ever, with what you do, Acquainted. (Suratul Nisaa: 94) 

Everybody starts somewhere and at the end of the day we are judged according to our own deeds. So wouldn't it be better to be judged for being kind and gentle to our sisters in Islam rather than being judgmental and rude? Another problem I noticed is that we all (and I am included) like to judge who is more righteous and knowledgeable than others! A lot of us judge each other based on the length of their beard (or no beard, and  lets not forget some men are not able to grow facial hair as easy as others, like my dad!), the colour of hijab, the niqab style etc...Just because one wears the niqab or has a beard DOES NOT mean that they are more righteous or religious. I have seen with my own eyes on many social networks, sisters in niqab claiming they are "salafi", mock others and post things that have explicit language ! So you can not judge someone just because of their outer appearance and claim them to be more righteous just because of the way they dress! And lets not forget the ones who claim they are more on the Sunnah than others! Many put others down because they think they have more knowledge than others. Knowledge is a BLESSING from Allah and we should be humble with it and never use it to flaunt to others because just as easily as Allah gave it to us, He can take it away. I will not go into full detail with this one because insha'Allah I want to dedicate an entire post on this issue! But I think we must be very careful in judging others just because they don't do certain acts of worship the way you do! Again, every one will be judged according to their own deeds and and surely, Allah is the One who knows who is righteous and who is not! 

Verily, your Lord knows better, who (among men) has gone astray from His Path, and He knows better those who are guided. (Surah Qalam:7)

Subhan'Allah this Hadith pretty much sums up everything about WHY we should not judge others. 
Narrated Abu Hurairah رضي الله عن ه: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (ﷺ) say: “There were two men among Banee Israa’eel, who were striving for the same goal. One of them would commit sin and the other would strive to do his best in the world. The man who exerted himself in worship continued to see the other in sin. He would say: ‘Refrain from it.’ One day he found him in sin and said to him: ‘Refrain from it.’ He (the other man) said: ‘Leave me alone with my Lord. Have you been sent as a watchman over me?’ He (the first man) said: ‘I swear by Allaah, Allaah will not forgive you, nor will he admit you to Paradise.’ Then their souls were taken back (by Allaah), and they met together with the Lord of the worlds.
He (Allaah تعالى) said to this man who had striven hard in worship; {Had you knowledge about Me or had you power over that which I had in My hand?} He said to the man who sinned: {Go and enter Paradise by My mercy.} He said about the other: {Take him to Hell.}”
Abu Hurairah said رضي الله عنه: By Him in Whose hand my soul is, he spoke a word by which this world and the next world of his were destroyed.
[Sunan Abu Dawood (4901) and graded as “Saheeh” by Shaikh al-Albaanee]

I can't stress this enough, but our Ummah is becoming more and more divided because we are becoming more and more judgmental. YES , we should not mix with everybody (i.e- the extremist sects who's shirk and extremism brings them outside the folds of Islam) but we should not abandon those who dress differently or do things differently because we should be the ones helping them and trying to show them that they are still our sisters in Islam and we should maintain respect and kindness among each other! We should try our best to think good of our sisters in Islam and we should not be judging them and making them feel uncomfortable. It will not please Allah and it is something that causes division and we are in a time now where we should be sticking together and helping each other. Islam is being criticized too much and we are not doing anything to show that Islam is the perfect religion! If we claim that we follow the Qu'ran and Sunnah then we really should start acting like it insha'Allah! We need to STOP judging one another, focus on working on our own selves and remembering that Allah will judge us all according to our own deeds. If you want to advise a sister, do it with kindness and wisdom and try to put yourself in their shoes. How would you like to be advised?  

the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “Avoid suspicion, for suspicion is the greatest of lies in talk and do not be inquisitive about one another and do not spy upon one another and do not feel envy of one another, and nurse no malice, and nurse no aversion and hostility against one another. And be fellow-brothers and servants of Allah.” (Sahih Muslim, No: 2563)

May Allah grant me the ability to take my own advice and put it into practice and may He continue to guide us all and give us the ability to follow the proper teachings of our prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) AMEEN!! 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Don't let it be too late!

" By Al-Asr (the time).Verily! Man is in loss. Except those who believe (in Islamic Monotheism) and do righteous good deeds, and recommend one another to the truth (i.e. order one another to perform all kinds of good deeds which Allah has ordained, and abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which Allah has forbidden), and recommend one another to patience."
 (Al-Asr 103:1-3)
Something that we all take for granted in our every day lives is the very thing that we should be grateful for. Time. So many of us, me included of course, forget that the time Allah subhanahu wa ta a'la has given us, is something that we should cherish and make good use of. It is something that we should be using to our advantage and being thankful for. Time is what we should be using so that we can increase in our good deeds and our remembrance of Allah. We should be using our time wisely and we should be very mindful of not wasting time. 

Should I not inform you of the best of deeds, and the most sanctifying of deeds before your Lord, which does more to raise your positions (with Him), and is better for you than the disbursement of gold and money, or battle with the enemy?” They (the companions) said: “Indeed inform us.” He (SAW) then said: “Remembrance of Allah.” [Narrated by At-Tirmidhi, 5/459; Ibn Maajah, 2/1245]

These are all the things we SHOULD be doing with our time but what do we really do with our time these days? One of my biggest weaknesses is being lazy and procrastinating (audhubillah!) These are the worst things to have as a weakness because you take your time and health for granted! A few months ago, I went through a personal health problem which I am still getting over. Alhamdulillah for everything and everything that happens is a test from Allah, but it really made me realise that I really took my time and health for granted! Sometimes I would go through moments that would make it so hard for me to function and do my daily activities that I take for granted! Subhana'Allah, it really made me realise just how weak I am and how much I need and rely on Allah. This experience really has been and continues to be an eye opener for me. (May Allah help me and remove this hardship from me . Ameen) It really makes me realize the hadith : 

"Take benefit of five before five: your youth before your old age, your health before your sickness, your wealth before your poverty, your free time before you are preoccupied, and your life before your death" (al-Hakim 4/306)

is something that hold a lot of truth and that we must really overcome our weakness of procrastination and laziness! Every moment we spend, should be spent remembering Allah the Almighty! We should be working hard in this dunya for things that will benefit our Akhirah! We should be spending time with those who will make us a better Muslimah and who will remind us about death and how we should hasten to do good before our live comes to an end. 

Ibn Abbas reports that the Prophet (saw) said "There are two blessings which many of the people lose: Health and Free time"(Bukhari 8/421)

Health and free time are the biggest blessings that Allah, the Almighty has given us! Could you imagine, even if we had all the money in the world but we had bad health and no free time? The money would be useless! Just as if we had the best job or the highest education degree but we were afflicted with bad health and no time? We would not be able to do anything! We waste so much time in chasing the dunya and we race with each other to compete for the "finer" things in this life but we forget that this dunya is only meant for us as a test. This dunya is meant for us to work hard and struggle so we can attain success in the Akhirah! 

“O Mankind, remember the favour of Allah upon you. Is there any creator other than Allah who provides for you from the heaven and the earth? There is no deity except Him, so how are you deluded?” [35:3] 

We must really remember the beautiful blessings that our Lord has given us! We do not want to regret the moments we spent on this earth. Being heedless of Allah's Commands and committing evil acts of disobedience and NOT being able to repent when comes the time of need! Let it not be too late before the Angel of death takes our soul and we are are not able to take back all our sins and heedlessness ! The worse thing in this world would to be to die upon carelessness and forgetfulness of Allah! We must take advantage of our own selves and use the blessings that Allah has blessed us with and use it for His Sake! 

“Until, when death comes to one of them, he says: “My Lord! Send me back so that I may do good in that which I have left behind” [23:99-100]

I just wanted to share this reminder with everyone including myself! Whenever I write these posts, it serves as a good reminder to myself first and foremost and I just share them with you, hoping that you too will benefit and take heed (insha'Allah !) Remember my DEEN QUEENS! Time on this earth is limited and nothing is ever guaranteed! We are only here temporarily and we should not make this dunya our biggest concern. I know that is easier said than done but we can try our best to take heed to Allah's Commands and try our best to win the race to Jannah! We are all in this together and we must always strive day after day to make sure that when we meet Allah, He will be Pleased with us! How we can be successful is by leaving out the things we KNOW waste time (i.e- watching television shows that we know are bad influences, listening to music that we know will blacken our hearts, and socializing with the opposite sex which we know will only lead to haram and heartbreaks) and how we can leave those things, is to replace them with things that will benefit our time in this dunya and the akhirah. Maybe you can pick up a hobby and try to take on some baking projects with some friends and family! Go for walks and enjoy the nature and start a scrapbook of your findings and include verses of the Qur'an that really speak to you about Allah's creations! Take up a new language! Start a blog! The possibilities are endless!! But as long as it helps you remember Allah and to get rid of the haram things that you know will waste your time then that is a beautiful start! 

For all my lazy procrastinators out there :p think about death often and always ask yourself "I could do that tomorrow, but what if I don't even live to see tomorrow? What if I were to return to Allah today....would He be pleased with me and what will I bring to Him?" This is something I often worry about and wonder about myself...I wonder how will I face my Lord, Allah, and what will I bring to Him !? (May Allah forgive me and us and help us strive harder for His sake! Ameen) 

“O Allah! I seek Your protection from anxiety and grief, from incapacity and laziness, from stinginess and cowardice, and from the burden of debt and domination of people.” [Bukhari]

Monday, December 1, 2014

Women love to talk.

"And tell My servants to say that which is best. Indeed, Satan induces [dissension] among them. Indeed, Satan is ever, to mankind, a clear enemy." [Quran 17:53

By nature, women love to talk. We have a thousand things running through our minds and our mouth just automatically opens so we can express everything we are feeling, thinking, and experiencing! We love to tell stories, we love to talk about anything and everything! That includes some things that we must be extremely careful about...gossiping, backbiting, and slandering ! Many of us fall prey to these horrible self indulgent activities which I am no exception to! Allah Musta'an ! Gossiping has become a favourite pastime for many of us and it is a serious disease of the heart. It is something that creates enmity, false judgement and division amongst the ummah. It is a serious illness and we must really try our best to rectify our own state of affairs by the Permission of Allah. 

 "Woe to every slanderer and back-biter!" (Al-Humazah,104: 1)

Well, before I can go on to talk about this issue in detail, I want to first provide definitions to the words gossip, backbiting, and slander just so we can all understand if we are falling into these heinous acts of evil. Taken from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary, 

gossipinformation about the behavior and personal lives of other people

to say mean or spiteful things about (as one not present)

slanderto make a false spoken statement that causes people to have a bad opinion of someone

It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Do you know what gheebah (backbiting) is?” They said, “Allah and His Messenger know best.” He said, “Saying something about your brother that he dislikes.” It was said, “What if what I say about my brother is true?” He said, “If what you say is true then you have backbitten about him, and if it is not true, then you have slandered him.” 

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbas said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) passed by two graves and said, “They are being punished, but they are not being punished for anything that was difficult to avoid. One of them used to walk about spreading malicious gossip (nameemah), and the other used not to take precautions to avoid getting urine on himself when he urinated.” Then he called for a green branch, which he split in two and planted a piece on each grave, and said, “May their torment be reduced so long as these do not dry out.” [al-Bukhaari, Muslim] 

If any of us have fallen into any of these three,or all three, then we must repent to Allah the Oft Forgiving and really educate ourselves about the dangers of such evil acts of shaitan! Allah, the Almighty says: 

"O you who believe! Avoid much suspicion, in deeds some suspicions are sins. And spy not neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah, verily, Allah is The One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful" (Qur'an 49: 12)

Subhana'Allah ! We always hear about crazy psychopath serial killers eating the flesh of their victims (audhubillah!) but can you imagine the three evil actions of gossiping, backbiting and slandering could very well account as the same thing ?! These evil things really harm our sisters in Islam and it also harms ourselves! We must be very, very careful! 

I believe that these three evils are caused by many different factors. Many reasons include: having low confidence with oneself, envy of what the other person has, low self-esteem, boredom, ignorance and low emaan. When we dig deep into ourselves and find out the reasons why we gossip, backbite, and slander, we realise that there are some flaws within ourselves that need to be addressed. Having a loose tongue is something very dangerous and it is something that I am working on changing, by the Permission of Allah. I am sure it is something we all strive hard to change because nobody is free from these flaws! We can even fall into this by accident and not realise that even saying " I don't want to backbite, but...." is backbiting! Or, " so and so did this and that, but i'm not sure if it is true" is considered as gossiping and slandering! 

We should put ourselves in the other person's shoes and think "would I want someone talking about me behind my back and saying something that was not true?" or maybe you don't mind if someone talked about you, but what if someone talked about your mother, father, sister  or brother ? Would you like that? 

I know that gossiping is something the kafirs love to do! It is what they are programmed to do because of the drama series and movies they watch! Wait! What about the NEWS?!!! The news is one big gossip fest!!! Slandering at its finest! Always making it seem like this and that person is evil and wicked! Always saying that Islam and Muslims are terrible people who are nothing but terrorists! Subhana'Allah! We don't even need to watch drama series or movies and we already are surrounded by wicked, evil gossip and we don't even know it!!!! We are subconsciously programmed to gossip! 

Ok, well this all has to stop! We really need to remember that every single thing we say or do is being and will be recorded until our last breath! Even as I am typing this right now, it is being recorded ! Everything that we do will be with us until the Day of Judgement. So how will we answer to Allah when He Asks us why we talked bad about so and so...what will we say when He Asks why we started rumours about so and so?! How will we answer? What will we say!? I really believe that we need to really rectify our affairs with regards to these malicious acts. eke!

If we have a problem with a sister, we should address her face to face in private. If we feel jealous about someone and it causes us to put them down verbally in front of people, then we really need to remember Allah and fear Him. We need to remember that all bounties and blessings that other people have are ONLY from Allah and His Wisdom. We may think blessings that others have may be something amazing but maybe it is a big test for them! We can not be jealous of others nor should we be bringing them down just because they have something that we want! This is something that we all need to work on (myself included of course!!) We must remember the next time we want to say something about somebody, we should THINK TWICE before speaking. Bite your tongue so hard until it bleeds if you have to! At least the only person you will be hurting is yourself and also you will be rewarded for keeping your mouth shut! Do not do something that you will regret in the long run! 

Our sisters are our family. We all belong to Allah and we all belong together under the banner of Islam. We should not show enmity towards them because they did something we did not like. Nobody is perfect and we are all human. We must remember that. If we expect others to be forebearing with us and if we expect others not to talk behind our backs and start rumours, then why should we do the same? That would be hypocritical (audhubillah) and we know what Allah says about the hypocrites in the Qur'an (and I am not calling anyone a hypocrite, I am just saying the actions are hypocritical) ! We must be just to ourselves and just to our dear sisters in Islam. There is already enough enmity in this world, and shaitan has worked very hard in dividing everyone (even the kafirs), so we must really hold onto that beautiful sisterhood of Islam and be mature and act like adults with every situation. 

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever has wronged his brother with regard to his honour or anything else, let him seek his forgiveness today, before there will be no dinar and no dirham, and if he has any good deeds to his credit they will be taken from him in a manner commensurate with the wrong he did, and if he has no good deeds, then some of his counterpart’s bad deeds will be taken and added to his burden.” [al-Bukhaari].

If you have backbitten, gossiped or slandered someone in the past, please I urge you to repent to Allah and ask for His Forgiveness. Also, rectify your affairs with that sister and try to rebuild and rekindle what you have broken. Nobody is perfect and we are all on a spiritual journey to build ourselves into the best Muslimah for the sake of Allah. May Allah help us all and free us from the diseases of the heart and may He rectify our affairs with one another and put love in our hearts for others for His Sake! Ameen!

Prophet Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) was once asked: "Who is the best Muslim?" He  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) replied: "He is the one from whom Muslims are safe from the evil of his tongue and hands." [Muslim]

Thursday, November 27, 2014

My Niqab.

The niqab. How ironic it is that though the NIQAB is just a piece of cloth (which probably has more material than a bikini top and bottom) it has sparked ENOUGH controversy all around the world?! A black piece of cloth that is meant to cover the entire face (except for the eyes) has been given more negative attention than if a women who were to walk down the street in her nasty bikini! Subhana'Allah. Like seriously, why should a piece of black cloth that covers the face (which by the way IS one of THE most attractive part of a woman) be scrutinized and detested by half of society? Why does society dictate to women what they can and CAN'T wear ? Who are they to say that we are oppressed JUST because we properly cover our body from head to toe ? Why do we have to be mistreated and condemned for our religious beliefs and for our choice?!

Why, Why, Why is the niqab hated by SO many people?

Well, let's try to clear up some if not ALL misconceptions about the niqab. 

Let us first distinguish between the two: 


Niqab: this is the piece of cloth that ties around the head and covers the face except for the eyes (while the body is of course covered).

Burqa: covering the entire face (and body of course) with mesh over the eyes so that the eyes are not visible

Both Burqa and Niqab are a part of Islam  (contrary to what many ignorant Muslims believe and preach i.e-"cultural" it is NOT CULTURAL. It is mentioned in the Qur'an- exegesis, and aHadith of the Prophet peace be upon him), however many scholars of Islam have differences of opinions in such matter (ikhtilaaf). Some scholars say that it is obligatory, and some say that it is mustahaab (recommended). NO BODY is FORCED to wear it (and if they are, then there is something wrong with their understanding of the religion- "Let there be no compulsion in religion.." (Qur'an 2:256.)

and now lets us distinguish between THESE two :


Culture: the ideas, customs, and social behavior of a particular people or society.

Religion: a particular system of faith and worship directed to a Higher Power (that being Allah the God of the entire universe that which is in the heavens & the earth and everything in between)..

Doing something culturally means that you are doing it because it is a norm in the society that you live in, whereas religion is based solely around divine acts of worship to please the Creator, Allah, the Almighty. Doing something because of culture does not result in the same rewards as doing something for your religion because doing something culturally would mean gaining the approval and praise of the creation whereas when we do something for our religion, we are doing it to get the reward from the Creator and we are worshiping Him by doing what He has Commanded. Cultural practices may be the norm in a society but it does not always mean that it is correct or morally correct.

So to continue,

Many ignorant people feel inclined to criticize the niqab because they think that the religion (Islam) forces women to cover their faces thus making them oppressed and weak (lol). They think that this piece of cloth that hides all sorts of facial expression is a barrier between the woman and society and they think that it is oppressive and very "old-fashioned." Most of the people who hold such opinions are usually non Muslims however we DO have the occasional ignorant non-practicing Muslim siding with them and the media with regards to this subject, which is totally fine, but to be on the safe side, it is better to not learn Islam from them. 
Most niqabi-haters follow blindly the television and everything that is thrown to them and they do not have a mind of their own to determine what is truth from falsehood. They revolve their education around the television, Islamaphobe websites and Islamaphobe people. They have never met or talked to a single Muslim woman in their life and they are making assumptions based on their lack of knowledge and understanding. They are too arrogant (and lazy) to actually go and do proper research and speak to a practicing Muslim woman, so instead they need to scrutinize, criticize, and patronize these veiled women for their chastity, innocence, and modesty. Subhana'Allah. 

So is it really the piece of cloth that oppress our Muslim women? 

You want to know something interesting?! Before I converted to Islam, I already felt oppressed by society. I felt that there were so many unrealistic standards that I had to live up to! All the beautiful women I saw in public and in the media were always subconsciously pushing me to go above and beyond my limits into attaining true beauty JUST so I could fit into society. I felt ungrateful for everything I had and it made me complain all the time and feel depressed and miserable. I felt ugly, worthless, and unloved because I thought that I was never good enough like those women gallivanting freely on the streets and in the clubs like wild dogs who were unleashed! I just couldn't live up to society's (extreme, unrealistic) expectations! 

Well, after Islam, I felt liberated. I felt that I no longer had to be constricted and tied down to the shackles of society! I had my freedom and I felt beautiful, pure and at peace. I could dress the way I WANTED to, I chose what other people could see of me and my body and I didn't have to compete with women who were not even in the same category as me! 
HOWEVER, I still feel oppressed. The ironic thing here is, it is not my religion that oppresses me, but it is society and it's ignorant masses! The people who judge me for what I wear and who I pray to, the very people who hate my religion because of what the media teaches them, the people who think my religion is the religion of terror because of what their government dictates! How oppressive is that?! I thought that the Western society was all about freedom of choice, freedom of dress, and freedom of religion? I guess it's just something they SHOW in the media (how ironic!) but when it really comes down to it, all society does it talk, talk, talk and no action. Freedom this! Freedom that! But really, who is free and where is freedom? Nowhere to be found! NOWHERE in this dunya! Freedom can only be found in Islam, Alhamdulillah! 

Though society may oppress me because I don't dress the way they want me to or act the way they teach me to, I choose to wear my niqab with pride and honour. I look to those who look to me with evil eyes, and I can't help to feel sorry for them because I was once in their shoes. I feel sad for them because they are so lost in their own dark world that they can not see the light in front of them! They are lost in their darkness and they keep trying to run free from it, but the shackles of society hold them back. That is why my DEEN QUEENS, we must show the ignorant masses the true Islam, the beauty of Islam and the freedom of Islam! We have the best blessings anyone could ever have so we should not keep it to ourselves! We must spread the love and show them that our clothing, the piece of cloth on our face, and our love for modesty is something that we value and cherish. Many reasons why non-Muslims think of us women as oppressed, is simply because they have nobody else to teach them about Islam except for Fox news, CNN and any other deceiving media outlet ! 

We must take some time out of our busy schedules and learn to reconnect with Allah and learn more about following the Qur'an and the Sunnah and its importance! When we want to genuinely understand our deen, then we can learn it, apply it and preach it! It is one thing for us to sit and let others criticize our religion, but it is another thing to do something about that ! Islam is about knowledge and implementing the knowledge! So let us seek more correct knowledge, fall in love with our deen and take the actions to show the ignorant masses the truth (in permissible ways within the Sharia'ah of course!) . May Allah grant us all success in achieving the ultimate goal of spreading the truth and beauty of Islam! Ameen!!! 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

What kind of man do you want?

“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women because of what Allah has preferred one with over the other and because of what they spend to support them from their wealth.” [Sûrah an-Nisâ’: 34]

One of the many beautiful things our religion has to offer us, is that the Muslim man is supposed to be the protector and provider of the family . The Muslim man (despite what feminists believe, Allah has created the man with this purpose and we can not deny it no matter how hard we try) is the breadwinner, the shepherd, and the teacher in his household. He works hard to keep his family comfortable, he teaches his wife how to raise his children and he protects his family like how a shepherd is responsible for his flock.

it was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet (SAW) said: “Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock. The ruler is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock; the man is the shepherd of his family members and is responsible for them; the woman is the shepherd of her husband’s house and children and is responsible for them; the slave is the shepherd of his master’s wealth and is responsible for it. Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock.” [al-Bukhari #853 and Muslim #1829]

The Muslim man who fears Allah and the Last Day, knows that he is responsible for protecting his precious family and not endangering them in any way! I wanted to raise awareness about this issue because I know many sisters (including myself) have noticed that many of our sisters in Islam, who are married, may not know the severity of being married to a man or just being a part of a family where their brothers, fathers, uncle etc have no gheerah (jealousy)

The Dayooth in english literal terms means "a cuckold," which means a man who has an adulterous wife or a man who allows other men to engage with her sexually or look at her sexually etc... So this type of man allows his wife, mother, sister, and daughter dress in the immodest ways and allows them to beautify themselves before going in public only to attract unnecessary attention from strange men. This type of men has no jealousy at all for their womenfolk. He is relaxed and has no concern for other men staring at their women (May Allah protect us all from such kind of men! Ameen!). This man's fitrah is most likely corrupted, and he may also be someone who has no fear of Allah and does not lower his gaze. Though I don't want to make assumptions about our brothers and why they do what they do, I will give them the benefit of the doubt and say that perhaps some of these men have been raised in a household that never really exercised the whole "jealousy" thing as an issue or maybe he is a revert who, in his culture, being jealous over his women was not something considered as important. Or he may very well just be ignorant about his feelings and the severity of being a dayooth!  

Abdullah ibn Umar reported that the Prophet (saw) said:
"Three people will not enter paradise, and Allaah will not0 look to them on the Day of Judgement: the one who is disobedient to his parents, the woman who imitates men and the ad-Dayooth." (Ahmad)
Ad-Dayooth[1] is the man who permits women for whom he is responsible (eg: mother, wife, sister etc.) to engage in illicit sexual relations, or to display their beauty to strange men, thereby stimulating their sexual desires.
1. {According to the Scholars of Hadeeth, there are various levels of Dayooth according to how negligent or careless he is with displaying the women under his care. For example, some do not care if strange men look at his wife, others don't care even if strange men touch his wife, or kiss his wife, or ultimately sleep with his wife. Punishment is met out to such a person accordingly.}

Can you imagine! Allah will not even look at these people nor will He enter them into Paradise! It is really THAT serious! We must re-evaluate ourselves and our spouses and ask ourselves if this is really the kind of man we want to marry or be married to? My beautiful sisters in Islam! We are all queens of the deen! Alhamdulillah that is why Allah has Commanded :

Allah the Exalted says in Surat an-Noor, ayah 31:

"And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and guard their private
parts and not show of their adornment except only that which is apparent,
and draw their veils over their (necks and) bosoms and not revel their
adornment except to their husband, their fathers, their husband's fathers,
their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers, or their brother's sons,
or their sister's son, or their women, or their slaves, or male servants
who lack vigour, or small children who have no knowledge of women's awarah
(that which is covered). And let them not stamp their feet to reveal what
they hide of their adornment. And turn you all to Allaah in repentance, O
believers, that you may be successful."
And He says in Surah al-Ahzaab, ayah 59:

"O Prophet! tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the
believers to draw their outer garments close around them. That will be
better, that they may be known and so not be bothered. And Allah is
Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful."

and He has Commanded us to not make ourselves open for invitations to strange men and to cover our beauty! We are not like any other women. We are special! Allah has made us special and raised our rank above other women in this society! Allah has given us Islam and the protection of hijab so that it will help us safeguard ourselves and remain pure and chaste for only those deserving! Alhamdulillah for this big blessing! Sometimes it is good to be reminded about why we are commanded to cover and not display our beauty and adornments (from tight fitting clothing to makeup and fancy jewelry) in public. We as women, should know that this is what is expected from us and just because our husbands, fathers, and brothers may allow us to go out dressed immodestly and freely mixing and mingling with non-mahrams, that should NOT be an excuse to allow ourselves to do such acts of no self-respect! Queens of the Deen, remember that Allah is All-Hearing, All Seeing, All Knowing! We can blame the men all we want, but at the end of the day, we TOO are responsible for our own selves! When death has overtaken us, we will be in our graves, all alone and we will be held accountable for our own deeds. We had a right to say "NO! my husband/father/ brother may not care about me showing my beauty or talking with other men, but I CARE! I care because I value myself as a woman and I want to be like Maryam (may Allah be pleased with her) and because I love Allah!!"  

What we need to realize here, is that, it is a two way street. It takes two to tango (so to speak, i dont encourage dancing of these sorts at ALL lol- so please do not take this literally lol) and for a man to not care about his wife or women family members being seen by all strange men, and for women to LET her mahram to allow her to do as she pleases, we must know that there is a lack of emaan within the household. There is a lack of emaan, and there is no fear for Allah, the Almighty! The couple must be engaging in something that does not bring barakah to their marriage nor does it make them a better husband and wife to one another. 
That one thing, would be the TV- the satellite dish. 

This is the root of all evil, the toy of shaitan (may Allah protect us from him and his evils and we all seek refuge in Allah from shaitan and his army , ameen) and surely you may not realize "well, what's the harm? It's not like we are watching explicit content!" and I commend you for that Alhamdulillah! But you know, the television is the way to open up the door(s) for shaitan! It allows him to enter in through many ways! The tv is a tool used to desensitize human beings from the reality and to make the haram things halal and to make the halal things haram! Wallahi, this is the truth and I couldnt stress this ENOUGH!!!! I speak from experience from jahaliyya days, the tv is something evil and it ruins families and it corrupts your fitrah!! Most things you see on television (shows, dramas, movies, and even commercials!!) all promote what??!!! FREE MIXING!!! beautiful men and women mixing joyously together, free sex (dating), flirting, chatting etc etc...!!!! How can your man lower his gaze even if he tried! How can he not value your beauty alone even if he tried ? How can you be thankful for your spouse when you compare him to the men from Korean dramas (lol) ?!! How can you even be thankful for your blessings when you have a television that dictates to you what you should be thankful for? How can we remember Allah and fear Him when we have a television that dictates to us how to eat, sleep, and breathe? How can we expect our men to be strong, protective manly men when all he sees on tv are men who allow their women to hang out with them and their best friends?! Once you allow the tv to control your life, you become desensitized from everything else around you. You forget the Qur'an , you forget the Sunnah and most importantly, you forget Allah.

To be honest, I didn't want to make this post SO LONG lol, but once i started writing, I just couldn't stop (Masha'Allah la hawla wala quwatta ila BiLLAH!) i apologize if it is a bit lengthy, but I promise and I hope that it is worth the read insha'Allah !!! But anyway, my QUEENS of the Deen! Remember Allah has favoured you and your husband, father, and brothers over others! He has raised already your rank in this dunya by making you Muslims! ALhamdulillah! So we should really take this blessing to heart, and not take advantage of it and throw it away! We should really cherish and know that having a protective father, brother, husband, son etc is something that is beautiful! It is something that just makes you go "WOW!!! AMAZING!!!" (lol) and to be honest, it was something I always wanted in my jahaliyya days! Wanting a protective spouse who shows you how much he loves you by protecting you and cherishing you is something we all should want (even if you deny it, deep down, your fitrah will even tell you without you knowing!) we should want that man who cares about us and worries about how we look when we leave the house! I love that feeling of protectiveness! Don't you my queens of the deen?! 

So let us reflect and re-evaluate our situations and let us try to understand the importance of trying to be modest and not making ourselves a fitnah for non-mahrams ! Just as the men have their duties to protect us, we also have our duties to protect ourselves first and foremost with the hijab of taqwa! We must learn to reconnect with Allah and open our hearts to His Bounties!!! How blessed we are to be Muslim queens!!! Queens of the DEEN!!! Then once we realize this gift, we can slowly leave out the things that He has prohibited and leave those things that will not benefit us in this life nor the next! 

May Allah protect us all from evil and harm, may He continue to guide us and keep us firm and steadfast with His beautiful deen, and may He open all our hearts to accept the truth ! May He forgive us all and grant us all al-Firdaus AMEEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!