Saturday, February 28, 2015

With eyes to see

Born and raised in the West, I never realised much of the beauty of nature surrounding me. I was always too busy with the fast-paced world called life and I never really stopped a moment to truly appreciate the beautiful sun reflecting off the pure white snow or the different sounds made and colours of the birds outside my window. Before I became Muslim, I would often use my sight for things that added little to no value to my spiritual and emotional self. I never appreciated the true beauty around me until I reverted to Islam. Subhana'Allah, when Allah Guides us, He not only opens our eyes but also our hearts! For verily, even though I could see, I never looked beyond anything except for it's physical value.

"Have they not traveled through the land, and have they hearts wherewith to understand and ears wherewith to hear? Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind." (22:46)


I once traveled through the earth as a creature who could see everything yet my heart was full of darkness! When the gift of Islam touched me, I felt true to Allah's Mighty Words and as I read the Qur'an more and more, I could not believe the truth and Powerful Words of our Lord! The Signs of Allah were everywhere for us to see and to reflect: 

"Do you not see that Allah sends down rain from the sky, and We produce thereby fruits of varying colors? And in the mountains are tracts, white and red of varying shades and [some] extremely black" (35:27)

"And among people and moving creatures and grazing livestock are various colors similarly. Only those fear Allah , from among His servants, who have knowledge. Indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Forgiving." (35:28)

It is He who sends down water for you from the sky, from which comes a drink for you, and the shrubs that you feed to your animals. (16:10)

Everything just became more clear to me and I looked at the world in a different light. The things I used to take for granted, were now things I marveled at with awe and excitement. It is as if I could see for the very first time! All the colours and the sounds of nature surrounding me were all beautiful creations of Allah the Almighty. How Perfect is our Creator! Who brings the night into day and the day into night! He, Who Provides us with everything we need. How grateful we should be for all the Blessings and His Bounties! We may not realize just how blessed we are because we often take our health and wealth for granted and we walk about the earth with eyes lowered to our phones or our laptops. When we just take a simple moment to lift our heads from our electronic devices, we will truly realize just how blessed we are. To be able to see the birds flock together, to be able to turn your head to the sky with eyes wide and bright, reflecting on the clouds that Allah has Held up without any pillars! Glory be to Him the one who made us something out of nothing! What a beautiful gift it is to be able to see and to breathe and to hear all the beautiful things that surround us. If you never took the time out to explore the Signs of Allah all around you, then now is the time. Do not let the darkness of the heart take over or the darkness of the grave overcome you. Look with your heart and you will truly see with your eyes all the true Blessings of Allah subhanahu wa ta a'la.

 (source : http://aateam.org/blog/seeing-with-our-hearts/ written by me for this blog)

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Those who preoccupy themselves with refuting!

With regards to the student of knowledge being known as someone whose preoccupation is gaining knowledge and not the permissible differences that occur between the Muslims, Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al ‘Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah) was asked:
Noble Shaykh, how would you advise the youth who are practising (their Religion) and amongst whom there has spread differing and bad feeling and hatred; and some of them make accusations against others of them – up to the point that they have forgotten their standing in front of Allah, the Mighty and Majestic (on the Day of Judgment)?
He replied:
I advise them with that which has preceded from my speech – that this (behaviour) is not from the affair of the Muslims.
Rather Allah, the Most High, said to His Prophet Muhammad (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam):
Indeed those who divide their religion and became sects, then you have no concern with them at all. Their affair is only with Allah who will inform them of what they used to do.
[Soorah al An’aam (6):159]
We do not deny that there will be differences occurring in the ummah; differing has been amongst the Islamic nation since the era of the Messenger ‘(alayhissalaatu wa salaam).
However, we do reject that this differing – that in which ijtihaad is allowed – should give rise to enmity and hatred, to the extent that your (own) brother from your mother and your father should become an enemy to you on the basis of this!
And I have already explained in the first part of (my) speech that this is the cause of time being wasted and barakah (blessing) being removed from one’s lifetime and knowledge and action.
And that it is befitting for a person that he busy himself with that which is of concern to him and which will benefit him.
And in the hadeeth that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa ‘alaa aalihi wa salaam) (said):
From the excellence of a person’s Islam is that he leaves off that which does not concern him.
From:
Wasaayaa wa Tawjeehaat li Tullaab il Ilm p.91

Monday, February 23, 2015

To those who refute,

Assalamualaikum dear sisters,

I appreciate all those who try to "warn" others of fulan and fulan. Please do not involve me in these things as I do not want to be part of the slandering and backbiting! These individuals as far as I know, and ALLAH KNOWS, are upon the correct Aqeedah. As I mentioned in my latest post you innovator! I do NOT want to partake in this war of "he said, she said, he is not a salafi , she is not a salafi" ...at the end of the day Allah Knows best. And if their Aqeedah is sound then I will continue to listen to them DESPITE their differences of opinions in certain matters. Please dear sisters, reflect upon this post and my previous post. You will be held accountable for your slandering and backbiting and spreading false rumours and lies. Remember, no human being is free from mistakes, and you do not know whether they repented or not, so please keep busy with increasing your knowledge and beautifying your character and manners and do not busy yourself with things that are out of your knowledge. BarakAllahu Feekum.


Questioner: Ahsanallaahu ilaikum, do you have any blessed advice which you can direct to your sons and brothers from the students of knowledge throughout the Islamic ummah?
Al-Fawzaan: Yes, I advise you to fear Allaah, and to continue pursuing knowledge, doing so eagerly, and to act according to what Allaah has taught you, and to call to Allaah عز وجل, and to teach the people what you’ve learnt—and to leave squabbling, that which has taken place amongst the students of knowledge, hating [one another], cursing, setting people against each other, until they split the ummah and split the students of knowledge, [saying]: ‘Beware of so and so! Don’t sit with so and so! Don’t read to so and so!’—this is not allowed.
If so and so has a mistake, advise him one on one, as for you spreading it amongst the people and warning against him whilst he is a scholar or a student of knowledge or a righteous person who has made a mistake [then no], such a mistake does not necessitate that it be spread, “Lo! Those who love that slander be spread concerning those who believe, theirs will be a painful punishment in this world and the Hereafter. Allaah knoweth and ye know not. [Nur 24:19]
What is obligatory is to sincerely advise one another, what is obligatory is to love one another, especially the students of knowledge, especially the scholars, to respect the scholars, and not to recommend against some of them, and warn against them. This is the cause of many evils, the cause of fighting and hatred, the cause of fitnah—steer clear of these things.
May Allaah reward you all with good.
Be as Allaah wanted you to be: “And indeed this, your religion, is one religion, and I am your Lord, so fear Me. [Mu’minun 23:52] “And be not like the ones who became divided and differed after the clear proofs had come to them. For such there is an awful doom. [Aali-Imran 3:105]
Aspire to bring about harmony. Seek to sincerely advise one another. Desire to co-operate in righteousness and piety.
Be on your guard against those things which split the Muslims—especially in this day and age. The Muslims are in need of unity, in need of eliminating discord amongst themselves, in need of cooperating in righteousness and piety. Don’t become a source of support for the enemy in breaking up the Muslims and disuniting them.
If disunity occurs between the scholars and the students of knowledge, who’s left for theUmmah?
The evil/damage [of such a predicament] isn’t on the masses, it comes back on the students of knowledge, those who reconcile between people, those who teach the people.
Leave these things, this wrangling, these altercations, these blameworthy characteristics.
“And do not spy or backbite each other. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his brother when dead? [Hujuraat 49:12] “And obey not every worthless habitual oath-monger. Hinderer of good, transgressing, sinful. [Al-Qalam 68:10-12]
Don’t obey these people, such that you will end up being an aid to the Devil in splitting the Ummah and weakening it.
Sincerely advise the one you find a flaw in—if [indeed] it is established [that he really did make it in the first place!]
Don’t believe rumours.
“O you who have believed! If there comes to you a disobedient one with information, verify it, lest you harm a people out of ignorance and afterwards become regretful over what you have done. [Hujuraat 49:6]
“O you who have believed! When you go forth in the cause of Allaah, investigate and do not say to one who gives you [a greeting of] peace, ‘You are not a believer.’” [Nisaa 4:94]
Allaah جل وعلا encouraged the Muslims to unite, and for them to be united in their word, and to cooperate and sincerely advise one another.
We’re not saying leave the mistake, no. Correct the mistake, we say correct the mistake, don’t leave the mistake, but correct it with legislated means.
May Allaah give all the success to do that which He loves and is pleased with.
وصلى الله على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين 
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VIraFVURaA)

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Fear Inc. - The Islamaphobia Network.

A new follow up report on the Islamophobic network in America is available, which has been provided here for information purposes to gain an insight into the main players and donors of this well-funded group.
Note: we don't necessarily agree with every single opinion contained in the report or endorse any of the parties or groups mentioned therein.
Excerpt from the Introduction:
In 2011, the Center for American Progress published “Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America”1 in order to identify and expose the organizations, scholars, pundits, and activists comprising a tightly linked network that spread misinformation and hateful propaganda about American Muslims and Islam. The report found that seven charitable foundations spent $42.6 million between 2001 and 2009 to support the spread of anti-Muslim rhetoric.2 The efforts of a small cadre of funders and misinformation experts were amplified by an echo chamber of the religious right, conservative media, grassroots organizations, and politicians who sought to introduce a fringe perspective on American Muslims into the public discourse.

Appendix: Key organizations, donors, and media outlets of the Islamophobia network

Organizations
Society of Americans for National Existence
Key individuals: David Yerushalmi
The Middle East Forum
Key individuals: Daniel Pipes
Stop Islamization of America
Key individuals: Robert Spencer, Pamela Geller, and David Horowitz
Investigative Project on Terrorism
Key individuals: Steven Emerson
Jihad Watch
Key individuals: Robert Spencer and David Horowitz
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Key individuals: David Horowitz and Robert Spencer
Center for Security Policy
Key individuals: Frank Gaffney and David Yerushalmi
Act! for America
Key individuals: Brigitte Gabriel
The Clarion Project
Key individuals: Rabbi Raphael Shore
Top eight funders
- Donors Capital Fund
- Richard Mellon Scaife Foundations
- Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation
- Newton D. & Rochelle F. Becker Foundations and Charitable Trust
- Russell Berrie Foundation
- William Rosenwald Family Fund, Middle Road Foundation, and Abstraction Fund
- Fairbrook Foundation
- Alan and Hope Winters Family Foundation
The religious right
The Eagle Forum
Key individuals: Phyllis Schlafly, Brigitte Gabriel and Frank Gaffney
The American Family Association
Key individuals: Bryan Fischer
The Tennessee Freedom Coalition
Key individuals: Lou Ann Zelenik
American Center for Law & Justice
Key individuals: Pat Robertson
Christians United for Israel
Key individuals: John Hagee
Right wing radio
- The Rush Limbaugh Show
- The Sean Hannity Show
- The Savage Nation
- The Glenn Beck Program
- The Mark Levin Show
- Focal Point

Friday, February 20, 2015

Islam encourages terrorism?

Misconception #2
Islam encourages terrorism
A terrorist is one who favours or uses terror-inspiring methods of governing or of coercing government or community. (The Concise oxford Dictionary)
Islam encourages terrorism. How does that sound to you? Sound like the truth? I think not! How about, absurd? Questionable? Now, that’s more like it. Which religion, way of life, and system of government that has had billions of followers throughout it’s history, would encourage such ruthlessness?
I appeal to your rationality. Think logically. If Islam encouraged terrorism the 1.6 billion muslims today would be very bad terrorists, unable to ‘do the job.’ If islam really did encourage terrorism, do you believe that you would be alive today? Do you think Islamic societies would really thrive upon the innocent blood of millions killed? Do you think Islam, really would be able to contain and maintain such a large number of geographically dispersed people through terrorism? The answer is no.
Moreover looking at recent statistics; the majority of terrorist acts, recently and before collected statistics prove that Terrorism is not encouraged in Islam. Rather as Allah says in the Qu’ran, “Whoever kills a soul, unless it be for murder or spreading corruption in the land, it is as if, he has slain mankind entirely.” (Surah Mai’dah 05:32) Islam takes the killing of innocent human beings seriously. No one no one has the right to take the life of another, unless such a person was a criminal or murderer. Life is not something to be played with.
stats
Source: http://www.counterfire.org/news/17599-graphic-islamist-terror-accounts-for-only-0-7-of-attacks-in-europe
Even suicidal attempts are condemned in Islam. Suicide bombings are not from Islamic teachings. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills himself with something will be punished with it on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari and Muslim) Suicide bombings are among the major sins in Islam and are as such impermissible.
Islam, is not about establishing a great empire, colonising, acquiring lands, and riches, or even destroying people and culture. Islam is here to simply establish the worship of One God alone, without associating partners with him. Allah says, “And He created you into nations and tribes that you may know one another. Verily the most honoured in the sight of Allah, is the most righteous.” The purpose of nations and tribes, as we understand from this verse, is not for one to overcome the other. Rather it is to create unity and increase righteousness between us; terrorism has no place in Islam.
Moreover, Allah says, “And We have not sent you (Muhammad) except as a mercy for the Alameen (mankind, jinns, and all that exists),” (Al-Anbiyaa 21:107) Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent to teach us good manners, and instruct us in the worship of Allah. His aim was not to establish a large empire by instilling fear in the hearts of people, or committing acts of terror against them. If he really wanted an empire he would have accepted the offer of kingship and wealth from the tribe of Quraysh, if he would stop teaching Islam. But did Muhammad give up his message or accept Kingship? No. Rather, his famous saying was, “if they put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left, I would not give up this message.” Meaning even if they gave me control over the solar system and the greatest of the celestial bodies, I would not give up preaching Islam. Muhammad (Peace be upon him) had no interest in building up an empire like the colonialists, Romans or Persians. His only objective was to preach the Oneness of God.
Islam teaches us to be patient, and peaceable. It teaches us to repulse evil with that which is better.  Allah says, “and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just: that is nearer to piety.” (Al-Ma’idah 05:08) Justice is of high value in Islam, it is not be neglected even in the most dire situations. To use the mistakes of a few and generalise it to the religion is incorrect. The actions of 9/11, 7/7 and others was an injustice and wrongdoing upon the people. Renowned and obscure scholars across the muslim world, have time and again denounced such actions. Terrorism is a form of transgression, hence it has no connection to Islam.
Allah says, “Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion, and did not drive you out of your homes. Verily Allah loves those who deal with equity.” (Al-Mumtahanah 60:08) Muslims are to deal justly with neighbours, acquaintances, co-workers, colleagues, and anyone they meet; be they muslim or not.
Islam protects the rights of non-muslims, especially if they live under muslim rule. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “whoever kills a mu’aahid, will not smell the fragrance of paradise, although it fragrance can be detected from a distance of forty years.” (Bukhari)  What is meant by the word mu’aahid, is a non-muslim, living in muslim lands, or a non-muslim who has a deal or treaty with the muslims. Thus, Islam protects their lives, and ensures they are granted safety. How can we claim that Islam promotes terrorism?
Nonetheless, it is only natural that if you are attacked that you defend yourself. Those in Iraq, Palestine, Syria, have every right to fight back. But as the saying goes, ‘one man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist.’ It seems that those who stand up to defend their lives as long as they are muslims, they are labelled as terrorists. Islam is not a way of life that accepts humiliation. The concept of Jihad which has been exploited by the media, is in place to defend and protect muslims, and convey the word of Allah. Jihad was not prescribed to target innocent civilians, or encourage violence or inspire fear amongst masses. Jihad is not a Holy War, or a form of terrorism. The word Jihad translates as ‘struggle’ or ‘strive’ and it can be applied to any situation in which a muslim struggles and strives to practice their religion.
In addition, when muslims are commanded to fight, they have codes of conduct to uphold. Firstly, they are to fight those that fight them. In the Qu’ran Allah says, “And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you, but transgress not the limits.” (Al-Baqarah 2:190) This is clear evidence that muslims are not on a rampage, destroying everyone and everything in their path.
Secondly, we have no right to target women, children or the old. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Fight, but do not steal (from the captured goods), commit treachery, mutilate the dead, or kill a child, or those who reside in houses of worship.” (Muslim)
Lastly, we are to stop, when the opponent stops. Allah says, “And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility except against wrong-doers.” (Al-Baqarah 2:193)
Now, I ask you, how can jihad be termed as terrorism? Look at the above mentioned rules governing combat in Islam. It does not infringe upon anyone’s rights. It ensure justice and fairness, amongst combatants. How can Islam be a religion of terrorism or encourage terrorism? Islam is a religion whose followers are increasing daily. Do you honestly feel that 1.6 billion plus people are following a religion inclined to violence? I’ll leave you to be the judge.
I ask Allah to guide us all to the truth.
(note: I do write for this blog, but this is not written by me. source: http://aateam.org/blog/islam-encourages-terrorism/ )

Thursday, February 19, 2015

YOU INNOVATOR! SAYS WHO?!!!




Shaykhul-Islam Imaam Muhammad Naasiru-Deen al-Albaani (rahimahullaah) said:
“Listen my brother. I sincerely advise you and other youths like you, who stand upon a type of deviation – as it seems to us, and Allah knows best – that do not waste your time in refuting each other, saying that such and such has this in him, and such and such has that in him. This is because firstly: there is no knowledge at all in this, and secondly: this mannerism only breeds enmity and hatred in the hearts, and causes contempt and rancour to develop in the hearts. So it is upon you to seek knowledge. It is knowledge that will make clear to you the reality of the speech which is in praise of a particular person having many mistakes, and whether he is deserving of being labelled as an innovator. Yet why do we wish to delve into such issues? Indeed I advise you not to delve into such issues. The reality is that we complain about this splitting which has occurred between those who ascribe themselves to the da’wah to the Book and the Sunnah – or as we say, ad-Da’watus-Salafiyyah – the greatest cause of this splitting, and Allah knows bests, is the following of whims and desires and the evil dictates of one’s soul. It is not due to the presence of differences in thoughts and ideas. So this is my sincere advice.”


Shaykh Saalih as-Suhaymee said, "...O servant of Allah, beware of taking speech [of other salafis about scholars, students of knowledge or innovators] out of context.
Beware of forcing [other salafis to take your position, by saying things like] "So and so accompanies so and so, therefore he is a deviant." No O servant of Allah! The Messenger used to visit the disbelieving tribes.
[Or they say things like] "We saw so and so accompanying so and so, so and so visited so and so"…it could be that the visit was for a reason and benefit greater than what you perceive!
Be careful!..
Beware of forcing your brother [to declare a certain salafi scholar or student of knowledge an innovator or to praise a certain person, while all of that]...is not binding upon him!..
Beware of taking his [another salafis] speech out of context [by reading into his words regarding scholars, salafi students of knowledge or innovators that which he didn't say or intend]!
Beware of attributing to your brother that which he did not say [in regards to a particular scholar, salafi student of knowledge or a certain innovator]!
Beware of lying on him [claiming he praised or refuted a certain salafi scholar or student of knowledge or claiming he gave a unrestricted general praise of a misguided group/organisation or an innovator]!
Beware of believing gossipers [about what your salafi brothers views maybe on a particular scholar or student of knowledge or about what his views are on a particular innovator]!
Beware of believing those who are quick to spread news [when they tell you your brother has said this and that about shaykh so and so, and student of knowledge so and so or this innovator or that misguided group/organisation]!
You have to verify [information]!
[Allah says] {O you who have believed, if there comes to you a disobedient one with information, investigate, lest you harm a people out of ignorance and become, over what you have done, regretful.} (49:06)
[Allah says] {O you who have believed, when you go forth [to fight] 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} (4:94)
Aspiring to be known! Aspiring to be different so that you stand out
If you find any means to interpret your brother's speech in a good manner, do so as Umar said (may Allah be pleased with him). He said that it’s upon you to search for an excuse for your brother as long as it is possible to do so. ..."
Translated by Ismaeel Beaumont
Ref: Translation of an answer to a question posed to Shaykh Saalih as-Suhaymee in the Prophet’s Masjid, Saudi Arabia after Fajr on 5th December 2014 (13th Safar Rabi Al-‐Awal, 1436) which has been slighty adapted by ahlusunnahwaljamaah.com to give more clarity and a better understanding

SHAYKH FAWZAN: 

Questioner: Ahsanallaahu ilaikum, do you have any blessed advice which you can direct to your sons and brothers from the students of knowledge throughout the Islamicummah?
Al-Fawzaan: Yes, I advise you to fear Allaah, and to continue pursuing knowledge, doing so eagerly, and to act according to what Allaah has taught you, and to call to Allaah عز وجل, and to teach the people what you’ve learnt—and to leave squabbling, that which has taken place amongst the students of knowledge, hating [one another], cursing, setting people against each other, until they split the ummah and split the students of knowledge, [saying]: ‘Beware of so and so! Don’t sit with so and so! Don’t read to so and so!’—this is not allowed.
If so and so has a mistake, advise him one on one, as for you spreading it amongst the people and warning against him whilst he is a scholar or a student of knowledge or a righteous person who has made a mistake [then no], such a mistake does not necessitate that it be spread, “Lo! Those who love that slander be spread concerning those who believe, theirs will be a painful punishment in this world and the Hereafter. Allaah knoweth and ye know not. [Nur 24:19]
What is obligatory is to sincerely advise one another, what is obligatory is to love one another, especially the students of knowledge, especially the scholars, to respect the scholars, and not to recommend against some of them, and warn against them. This is the cause of many evils, the cause of fighting and hatred, the cause of fitnah—steer clear of these things.
May Allaah reward you all with good.
Be as Allaah wanted you to be: “And indeed this, your religion, is one religion, and I am your Lord, so fear Me. [Mu’minun 23:52] “And be not like the ones who became divided and differed after the clear proofs had come to them. For such there is an awful doom. [Aali-Imran 3:105]
Aspire to bring about harmony. Seek to sincerely advise one another. Desire to co-operate in righteousness and piety.
Be on your guard against those things which split the Muslims—especially in this day and age. The Muslims are in need of unity, in need of eliminating discord amongst themselves, in need of cooperating in righteousness and piety. Don’t become a source of support for the enemy in breaking up the Muslims and disuniting them.
If disunity occurs between the scholars and the students of knowledge, who’s left for theUmmah?
The evil/damage [of such a predicament] isn’t on the masses, it comes back on the students of knowledge, those who reconcile between people, those who teach the people.
Leave these things, this wrangling, these altercations, these blameworthy characteristics.
“And do not spy or backbite each other. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his brother when dead? [Hujuraat 49:12] “And obey not every worthless habitual oath-monger. Hinderer of good, transgressing, sinful. [Al-Qalam 68:10-12]
Don’t obey these people, such that you will end up being an aid to the Devil in splitting the Ummah and weakening it.
Sincerely advise the one you find a flaw in—if [indeed] it is established [that he really did make it in the first place!]
Don’t believe rumours.
“O you who have believed! If there comes to you a disobedient one with information, verify it, lest you harm a people out of ignorance and afterwards become regretful over what you have done. [Hujuraat 49:6]
“O you who have believed! When you go forth in the cause of Allaah, investigate and do not say to one who gives you [a greeting of] peace, ‘You are not a believer.’” [Nisaa 4:94]
Allaah جل وعلا encouraged the Muslims to unite, and for them to be united in their word, and to cooperate and sincerely advise one another.
We’re not saying leave the mistake, no. Correct the mistake, we say correct the mistake, don’t leave the mistake, but correct it with legislated means.
May Allaah give all the success to do that which He loves and is pleased with.
وصلى الله على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين 
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VIraFVURaA)
So, I don't even know where to begin. lol. 
As some of you may know, from my recent post about "why i stopped blogging"  I had taken a hiatus from writing. I needed to gather my thoughts and renew my intentions because I didn't like the tone I was writing in and something just didn't feel right. While I was in my phase of being harsh and reprimanding everyone and everything, I also fell into the trap of refuting everyone and telling everyone to not watch/listen to this speaker or that speaker. AstughfurAllah wa itooboo ilayh! This has become an ongoing problem in the Ummah today. YES, we should not listen to EVERY person and we must always make sure that they are following the correct AQEEDAH but some of us are taking this just a litttt-le bit too far. I know this for a fact because I used to be one of those people who would say " DO NOT listen to fulan (this person) and fulan (this person)! Fulan and Fulan is not Salafi this and fulan and fulan is not following the Qur'an and Sunnah that!" SUBHANA'ALLAH ....how ignorant I was to think that I, a new Muslim convert with little to no knowledge about fiqh matters and issues, thought that I had the right to tell people who to listen to and who NOT to listen to?! This is a very serious crime and many of us have fallen into this dangerous trap. It has caused a lot of enmity and division amongst the ummah. Many people who claim to follow the Qur'an and Sunnah have this "my way( i.e-my shaykh) or the HIGHWAY!" and if you don't agree with them or listen to their shaykh, you are deemed as an innovator and a Muslim who is not upon the HAQQ. Audhubillah. Since when did Islam become like this? We know very well that the sahabah and even the scholars of Islam used to differ in fiqh matters YET their Aqeedah was ONE and their good manners and their fear for Allah the Almighty was what kept them together as brothers. Today we see many individuals who claim to be "students of knowledge" attack, degrade, and humiliate many of our brothers and sisters who are TRYING to spread the deen of Islam. I have watched quite a few lectures from speakers that I once told people NOT to follow, and from their speech and proofs that they provided, nothing seems to be OUT of the fold of Islam NOR do they speak out of their own desires. Many of them follow the texts of the Qur'an and Sunnah and just because some of them do not follow shaykh so and so it does not mean they are not Muslims upon haqq! Most people who refute Muslims have never watched any lectures or read anything from the Muslim that is being refuted and if they have watched or read, it is only clips that were outdated or cut so that it would be misunderstood and misinterpreted! Perhaps that speaker has repented from their mistakes and since then Allah has guided them to the right knowledge?! Where is the mercy for our brothers and sisters in Islam?

Wallahi, this is a big problem in today's society and Alhamdulillah Allah gave me insight and opened up my eyes and heart to this disease. I am only addressing this in a blog post because I feel that it is obligatory upon me since I had experienced it myself and have realised that THIS is NOT from the Salaf and other people need to know about this.

I really do not know how this sectism came about but it is really sad. I noticed many sisters on social networks who changed their attitude towards me when they saw I posted certain things by certain speakers and they would warn me about fulan and fulan when their proofs that they provided were really irrelevant and had no basis at all. Most proofs provided are not even from a student of knowledge or scholar AND if they provide any proof about such and such is an innovator, it is mostly a short video clip that has been edited and so ambiguous and the scholar himself never even mentioned the name of the person being refuted NOR did the scholar even refer to any specific person. It is just a clip that had been cut at that specific moment to make it seem like it is applicable to the person being refuted. Does that make any sense? lol.
Even students of knowledge do not have the right to refute people nor do they have the right to deem so and so as an innovator. I agree that we must be careful with many of the speakers of today as some of them may introduce innovations to the religion or they may mislead ignorant people, but most of the speakers DO call to tawheed and DO talk about things that soften the heart and bring people closer to Allah the Almighty. I noticed a lot of the "salafi" callers only call to what is HALAL and HARAM and don't do this and don't do that ...there is not much wisdom behind their dawah and many of these people who try to call others to their teachings are either harsh and very unforebearing. This is NOT from Islam and it is definitely not from the Qur'an and Sunnah. We should leave things that do not concern us (refuting others without years and years of studying and learning etiquette of refuting and etiquette of differing) and we should focus on bettering ourselves and our manners. As I have been mentioning a lot lately in my posts, the UMMAH is becoming so divided because all we ever do is judge and judge. We do not preach in a gentle manner nor do we try to lead by example. We seek knowledge yet we do not apply it. We seek knowledge just for the sake of saying I KNOW MORE THAN YOU (audhubillah)! But how effective would knowledge be if we can not even apply it to our daily lives? What point would it be if a doctor studied years and years of medical school yet he never even practised anything he learnt? How can we expect others to learn about the Qur'an and Sunnah when all we do is push them away by our harsh and rude manners? Subhana'Allah. I now know why many Muslims think that the term "salafi" is extreme and something they want to stay away from. It is because many Muslims who claim the term "salafi" show them that Islam is about being strict and harsh and that there is nothing to do with showing gentleness and kindness. It is like a "YOU can't sit with US" kind of attitude?! AstughfurAllah....May Allah forgive me and our brothers and sisters for misleading the Ummah ameen.

A great example, a sister told me that she knew a sister from Toronto,Canada who used to attend a "salafi" masjid and she did not stick to just one masjid and when this "salafi" masjid found out, they told her and her family NOT to return because that other masjid they went to, was not apparently NOT "salafi" !!!?!?! Subhana'Allah! Is this really going to help us be better Muslims and want to get closer to Allah? This kind of attitude only causes more enmity and division and even turns people away from Islam (audhubillah!). If you want others to follow what you are trying to preach, then you must do it with wisdom and patience. How do we expect success in the Ummah when we can not even treat each other kindly with respect and honour despite our differences? May Allah help us and rectify the affairs of ourselves and of the ummah. I mean really, none of us were born "religious" and we all started somewhere. It is only by ALLAH's MERCY that He guided us to the correct aqeedah and made it easy for some of us to avoid the haram and be obedient to Allah. We really need to remember this. Most of us get so caught up with ourselves and feel this certain air of pride (audhubillah) that we are better than others because we think we know more than others (and yes, I was guilty of this, may Allah forgive me for my ignorance ameen)! YES, it is important to know what is halal and haram in Islam because that is one of the many ways to earn Allah's Pleasure and Love. But we must also know that a clean and pure heart is what Allah looks for and He will only accept a pure heart into Jannah! We also must remember the importance of good manners and character and how much Allah loves those with good character and manners (insha'Allah I will be writing about this in one of my upcoming posts bidhniAllah). Most of these "salafi" individuals act as if they are the only ones going to Jannah and that Jannah is with their shaykhs (audhubillah!). I am not claiming that this is how they think but their actions and the way they treat our brothers and sisters in Islam, is as if they are the only ones going to Jannah.

Remember these ahadith: 


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]


The Prophet (PBUH) was asked: "O Messenger of Allah, such-and-such a woman spends her nights in prayer, fasts during the day, and so on, and she gives in charity, but she offends her neighbours with her sharp tongue." The Prophet (PBUH) said: "Her good deeds will be of no avail: she is among the people of Hell." They said, "And so-and-so prays only the obligatory prayers, gives charity in the form of left-over curds, but does not offend anyone." The Prophet (PBUH) said: "She is among the people of Paradise.
(Reported by Bukhari in al-Adab al-Mufrad, 1/210, Bab la yu'dhi jarahu)

Now I just wanted to clarify, I have nothing against our sisters who I know are only trying to spread good and they are trying to follow the right path to Allah and to Jannah. Allah Knows best their intentions and the reason for this post is to raise awareness to others about the extreme approach certain individuals have under the name of  as-salafiyyah (which basically means, following the pious predecessors before us - like the prophets and the companions and the righteous scholars after them). I don't blame our sisters who try to spread good and who try to seek knowledge for the sake of Allah, but sometimes we end up falling into sectism and we forget about the true purpose of calling others to Islam. The importance of calling others to Islam is so that they too can reap the beautiful benefits of this dunya and the reward of eternity in Paradise and also to let them taste the sweetness of emaan and being close to Allah, the Almighty. Some times we get so caught up with ourselves and our shayookh that we forget that Jannah is with Allah and not our shayookh. Jannah is for the one with good manners and beautiful character. Jannah is for the one who wants the best for their sisters. Jannah is for the one who does not gossip and slander their sisters in Islam and Jannah is for the one who fears Allah! Most of the people giving dawah today are doing a great thing (sure they can improve on certain aspects, but couldnt we all?) At least they are doing something for the sake of Allah and trying their best to please Him by calling others to Allah. I don't think it is our place to say who and who is an innovator and this and that person is not following the Qur'an and Sunnah. How do you know? Nobody can base such an assumption just because of a few mistakes they made! Nobody is infallible! We all make mistakes and nobody is perfect. We must remember that. So let us busy ourselves with improving ourselves and our characters. Let us learn more about the wisdom of calling others to Allah and let us apply the knowledge that we work so hard to seek! Renew your intentions and remember that the manners of the Salaf were the most beautiful of manners and they were the true representation of Islam. The Salaf were kind, forebearing and gentle and they DID differ on certain matters of the religion BUT their Aqeedah was the same. Don't fall into this evil trap and if you really want to do good for yourself, be kind to your sisters in Islam and try to show them what the Qur'an and Sunnah truly is. 

Below are just some amazing reminders about those who busy themselves with things that do not concern them. Please do watch every one of the videos (the last one is the longest, and I know some people refute Abu Mussab- lol- but lets remember his Aqeedah is upon haqq and therfore he is a Muslim - and also lower ur gaze please when watching his lecture!)  May Allah forgive us and guide us and keep us FIRM on His Straight Path. May Allah rectify this Ummah and all of our affairs and may He unite us all upon the Qur'an and Sunnah. Ameen 






Sunday, February 8, 2015

Unity.


So there is a big issue which I have written a long post about, and insha'Allah I will be posting it soon. In preparing for that post, I found it necessary to post this important reminder. There has been A LOT of enmity in the ummah amongst the "salfis" these days because someone does not follow their shaykh and because they follow another opinion on a matter. This is not from Islam to hate your sister in Islam just because she thinks wearing niqab is not fard and you do. A lot of sisters call themselves "student of knowledge" just because they are listening to a few lectures online and read a few paragraphs on some websites. The ummah is becoming too divided as it is and this enmity that shaitan is trying to cause between us is taking its course. We must be wise and forebearing and understand that difference of opinion is acceptable in Islam as long as the Aqeedah is the same between one and another. This beautiful explanation should be clear and may we all understand the importance of sticking together under the banner of Ahlul Sunnah wa jamm'ah!!!!! 

Question 55Is there something you want to add concerning the qualities of the saved sect?
The Answer: The truth of the matter is that there isn’t anything to add, since the four fundamental matters that we have mentioned are clear and sufficient. However, it might need some details with respect to the matter of manners. So, the most important aspect of manners is unity and agreement on the truth, the thing that Allaah (Azza wa Jal) has enjoined on us:
Your Rabb (Allaah) prescribed for Noah, and that which We revealed to you –[O Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم)], and that which He prescribed for Ibraaheem, Moosaa, ‘Eesaa–that you should establish the Religion, acting upon what is prescribed, and not split into sects regarding it. [Qur’aan, soorat ash-Shooraa (42): 13].
And He (Allaah Azza wa Jal) informed us that those who split their Religion into sects, Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) is clear of them:
Verily, those who divided their religion and break up into sects, you Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) have no concern of them in the least. [Qur’aan, soorat al-An’aam (6): 159].
So agreement and unity of the hearts are from the most distinguished qualities of the saved group, ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah. In case disagreement amongst them occurs due to Ijtihaad,[74] in matters where Ijtihaad is applicable, then they do not hold enmity, hatred or hostility against each other. Rather, they believe that they are brothers even if this kind of disagreement takes place amongst them. This is true to the extent that each of them would pray behind the Imaam believing that the latter is not in a state of Wudoo´ whilst the Imaam believes he does have his Wudoo’. An example for this is that each of them would pray behind someone who ate camel meat believing that it nullifies the prayer whilst this Imaam believes that it does not. Thus each of them consider that the prayer behind this Imaam is correct, even though if he would have prayed the same prayer [after eating camel meat] by himself, he would have consider it incorrect. All of this is because they consider that the difference in opinion arising from Ijtihaad, in cases where Ijtihaad is permissible, is, in reality, not a disagreement. Since each one of the disputants follows what is incumbent upon both for them to follow from the evidence that is impermissible for either one to relinquish. They see that if their brother disagrees with them regarding a certain action and does this in compliance with the evidence, then in reality he is in agreement with them. This is because they themselves call for the following of the proof wherever it may be. So if he disagrees with them based upon his conformance with what he regards as valid proof, then in reality he is in agreement with them, since he is in conformity with that which they call for and aim to, from judging by the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).
And it is well known to many scholars what took place between the companions with regard to similar matters of disagreement, even during the time of their Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم). He (صلى الله عليه و سلم) did not harshly denounce anyone of them. When he (صلى الله عليه و سلم) returned from the battle of al-Ahzaab, Jibreel came to him and directed him to set out for Banee Quraydhah who broke the covenant with the Muslims. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) then ordered his companions and said: “None of you should pray ‘Asr except at Banee Quraydhah.” [75] So, they left Madeenah for Banee Qurayadhah, and when the time for ‘Asr prayer arrived some of them delayed their prayer until they reached Banee Qurayadhah and therefore prayed it outside of its time. They did not pray until after sun set, since the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “None of you should pray ‘Asr except at Banee Quraydhah.” Others prayed on time and said that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) intention was for them to make haste in setting off. [76]
Those were the ones who were correct in their understanding. In spite of this, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) did not blame anyone of them, and none of them held any enmity or hatred against each other because of their disagreement in understanding this text. That is why I believe that it is a binding duty upon the Muslims who belong to the Sunnah that they should be one nation, and that factionalism should not occur amongst them–a person belongs to this group and another belongs to another group, and the third belongs to a third group and so on. In such a manner, they fight amongst each other with the spears of their tongues. They hate each other and take enemies out of each other because of a disagreement whose ruling is permissible to deduce by way of Ijtihaad. There is no need for me to specifically mention each group. But the sensible person would understand and the matter would be clear to him. So, I believe that it is incumbent upon ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah to unite even though they may dispute in that wherein they have been differing as a result of their understanding of what is necessitated by the texts. All praise is due to Allaah, for this is a matter in which there is ample scope for accommodation.
What is important is agreement and unity of the hearts. And there is no doubt that the enemies of Islaam love that the Muslims are divided, regardless whether they are enemies who openly express their hostility, or enemies who pretend to be friends of Muslims or Islaam, while in reality they are not. So, the obligatory thing is that we should be distinguished with this distinctive mark and that is we are from the saved sect that agrees to unity.
References
[74] Ijtihaad: Deduction of reasoned decisions to suit particular circumstances based upon fundamental guidelines from the Qur’aan and/or authentic Sunnah.
[75] Saheeh al-Bukhaaree, vol.2, p.34, and Saheeh Muslim, vol.3, no.4376. In the report by Muslim, it is Thuhr prayer instead of ‘Asr.
[76] So that when the time for ‘Asr prayer arrived, they would already be at Banee Quraydhah.
Translated by Dr Saleh as Saleh rahimahullaahSource : Understanding Worship – Fiqh ul-‘Ibadah – Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen – Page 145

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Finding Allah (my story to Islam)


The beauty of Islam can be seen through the many different races and nationalities of Muslims. Islam is filled with Muslims who are from all across the world. Our religion invites everyone despite the colour of your skin and the language that you speak. I always feel so blessed to be a part of this beautiful religion that is more colourful than the rainbow. I am Umm Abdur-Rahman and I am a revert for almost 4 years now, Masha’Allah. I was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and my parents are both from Hong Kong. I am a Chinese Canadian and Muslim, Alhamdulillah!
Growing up as an only child, I was always lonely and spent a lot of time by myself. This resulted in my developing a close bond with god from a young age. Though I had no concept of Islam and I did not know what tawheed was, I always called upon god for the smallest of things when I was young. From not letting my parents find out about my bad grades, to achieving good grades or even becoming sick, I always called upon god for help. I was raised as a Christian and later on my parents starting practicing Buddhism. I merely followed whatever they followed.
As I grew older, I began losing my spirituality and faith in god. I became care free and reckless. I always wanted to try things on my own and did not care about the consequences. I was a true rebel. The years went on and I became more and more reckless. I had no direction in my life. Even though I thought I had it all figured out, I had no drive or determination to get to where I wanted to be. I thought my purpose in life was to get rich and famous and that would be how I would gain happiness. I knew there was more to life than seeking the worldly gains but I had no idea where to look for happiness and purpose. If I did look, it was in all the wrong places! My character became worse and worse as I matured, I became very selfish, inconsiderate and extremely disrespectful. I did not care about who I hurt or what I did as long as my needs came first. I didn’t know it then, but it was just a downward spiral if I continued living the way I did. I was into fashion, so I planned to become a fashion designer. I attended fashion school but realised later just how materialistic and tiring it was to always maintain an outer image.
I met a lot of people in my life who made me learn a lot about myself. Many individuals had hurt me and through all those pains and struggles, I started to become unhappy in my heart and I knew that I needed to “find myself”. I attended a lot of parties and social gatherings and thought that I would live my life as a party socialite; which would make me happy and popular. I tried to chase after the worldly life at lightning speed but I ended up getting tired after the first try. I kept trying and trying to fit into society, eventually becoming a slave to society, chained by the shackles of lies and deceit. I fell into despair and loss hope, and that was when Allah sent down the gift of Islam upon me!
Cut as long story short, I met my husband at the place where I worked and I noticed his manners were very different from most people. He would lower his gaze when he spoke to me and I was very shocked at this. I used to work at a MMA (mixed martial arts) gym in which most of the members were men. I had to constantly engage in small talk, to encourage them to join the gym. I would ask him more about himself and he told me he was a Muslim. One day while watching the television at the gym, I saw a documentary on National Geographic about Hajj. My eyes lit up when I saw Makkah and al-Haram, so I asked my husband what this place was and what it was about, he told me it was a pilgrimage for the Muslims. However, since I was uninterested in religion, I just left it. I had no idea what Islam was and who Muslims were. I was so ignorant that I thought Muslims were affiliated with hindus and sikhs! My husband moved back to his home country and Allah began to open my heart to Islam! I researched more and more and my husband gave me his friend’s wife’s number so I could contact her and ask her more about Islam. I learnt about Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) and Khadijah (may Allah be pleased with her) and I was mesmerized and loved their story and who they were! I started reading a bit of the Qur’an and I started learning more and more about the rituals of Islam. Something about the religion just spoke to me and it just felt right. Nothing felt wrong or out of place. Allah opened my heart to take my shahadah on March of 2011 at my sister’s home with her mother. That day I truly felt the burden of oppression fall off my back and I cried as a newborn baby cries when they are first born. I felt a sense of calmness yet fear as I didn’t know what to expect on my new journey on the path to Allah. Alhamdulillah, Allah guided me to His beautiful deen and saved me from my own demise.
(Source: http://aateam.org/blog/finding-allah/)