Thursday, March 26, 2009

Vote Earth On Saturday March 28, 2009, 8:30 pm is Earth Hour

Rasulullah (s.a.w) said, "If any Muslim plants any plant and a human being or an animal eats of it, he will be rewarded as if he had given that much in charity." (Sahih Al-Bukhari, 8:41)

It’s that time again! I remember how amazing it was and how good it felt to take part on Earth Hour. I can honestly say that I’ve changed some of my ways since that day. I know many say, “it’s just one hour, how’s that going to help?” It’s all about awareness and then taking action and changing our ways.

As human beings and especially as Muslims we should take part in this. We can do it with the right intentions and InshaAllah we will be rewarded for trying to take action on saving this planet, making a better place to live and worship Allah (swt).

Allah (swt) has created the Heavens and the Earth for us, and we are the vicegerents of this world, so is it not our responsibility to take care of this Earth? Will Allah (swt) not question us on how much food we waste and on how much water we waste everyday? Will He not question us on how we polluted the earth with toxins harming not just ourselves but also all the living creatures that He (swt) has created? Knowing that all of these creatures are in constant dhikr of Allah, the Most High. Just as this body of ours is an Amana (trust) of Allah (swt) and we will be held accountable for how we used it, the same is with this world and all it contains (water, earth, air, wildlife, etc) that Allah (swt) has created for us to use. The earth is like our mother, we came from her and we will return to her.

“God is one, who sends water down from the sky. For you there is a drink and out of it (grow) shrubs in which you let cattle graze freely. There with for you He makes sown fields, olive, palm trees, and all kinds of fruits grow.” (Surah Al-Nahl 16: 10-11)

There are millions of people (many of them Muslims) with no clean water, no food and here we are continuously consuming, and wasting everything we have.

So spread the word, vote earth and turn off your lights for an hour. In that time we can do dhikr of Allah (swt) and spend time with our families talking and reflecting on how we live in this world and what we can do to change it for the better.

Check out these links for more info:
Ecology in Islam: Protection of the Web of Life a Duty for Muslims
Islam: Environmental Protection
Islam and Earth Day
Environment In The Eyes Of Islam
Islam and the Environment

Monday, March 23, 2009

Part 1 for Brothers and Sisters Seeking to get Married

Part 1 for Brothers and Sisters Seeking to get Married

Just as I promised, my post for people seeking to get married! This is Part 1, because it turned out so long and I know some of you see a long post and just don’t feel like reading it.

Well, I hope inshaAllah that it helps all the seekers out there. This first post is all about making du’a, because it all starts from there. Islamically we can’t date, “There is no courtship in Islam!” as many like to say, so how do you start looking for the right person? You don’t start with looking; you start with asking for the right person. We don’t know our future, who will come into our lives and heck, we don’t even know our very own selves, so why not ask the one who knows everything and all! Of course that’s Allah (swt), our Creator. And SubhanAllah, the beauty of it all is that He (swt) wants us to ask Him, so why not!

“Invoke Him only, making your religion sincere to Him” (Qur’an 7:29).

“And your Lord says, ‘Call on Me. I Will answer you [i.e., your prayer]. Surely those who are too proud to serve Me will enter Hell abased’” (Qur’an 40:60).

“And when My servants ask you concerning Me, (tell them) I am indeed near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls” (Qur’an 21:187)

“Invoke your Lord with humility and in secrecy” (Qur’an 7:55)

“So invoke Allah making your worship pure for Him” (Qur’an 40:14)

Anas bin Malik (r.a) relates that Rasulullah (s.a.w); said, “Du’a is the essence of Ibadah (worship)” (Tirmidhi)

Abu Hurairah’s narrated that Rasulullah (s.a.w) said; “Anyone who does not invoke Allah, will cause Allah to be angry with him.” (Ahmad)

He also narrated a Hadith in which Rasulullah (s.a.w) said, “There is nothing as venerable in the sight if Allah as du’a” (Tirmidhi)

Ibn Abbas(RA) narrated that Rasulullah (s.a.w) said; “If you ask, ask Allah and if you seek help, seek help from Allah.” (Ahmad, Tirmidhi)

He (s.a.w) also said, Du’a is a weapon of the believer, a pillar of Islam, and the light of the heavens and the earth” (Mustadrak)

Start making du’a for a good spouse now, even if you’re only 15 years old. I remember when I went for Hajj, my mother explicitly told my sisters and I that we had to make du’a for a good husband, and I was just disgusted. I said something along the lines of, “Ew! A husband? I’m only 15; I’m not getting married right now! That’s gross!” She told me it didn’t necessarily mean now, but it would be for whenever I did get married so that I wouldn’t end up with a bad husband. It made sense so I started making du’a for the perfect husband. Obviously my expectations changed as I got older and what not, but I didn’t stop with the du’as until the very end, and I’m still doing it (For my one and only of course).

So through experience I can guarantee that it works, alhamdulillah! I had a huge list of what I wanted my hubby to be like, I had all the details I could think of (don’t worry, I didn’t go too extreme), and I made sure that whenever I made du’a I would go through the whole list. Call me crazy, but having faith in Allah (swt)’s control of your life, is all you need. Alhamdulillah for me, I got my gift perfectly wrapped and made by Allah (swt), just the way I wanted, mashaAllah. But you know, at the end of the day, if someone did make their du’as and they didn’t get what they wanted, we must remember that Allah (swt) knows us inside out, more then we know ourselves and does things with His infinite wisdom.

Remember to make proper du’as with all its adaab (etiquettes, to read more on the etiquettes of making du’a, click here. You can make detailed du’as like these, “Oh Allah (swt) give me a spouse who is amongst those that you love and favour, who loves You and your Nabi (s.a.w), who will bring me closer to You, who will love me and make me happy for your sake, who will have taqwa especially in matters of our marriage, who has ilm of your deen, who’s family has taqwa, who’s family will accept me as their own, he/she who will me be the coolness of my eyes, who will help me become a better person, who will accept who I am, who is intelligent, humorous, romantic, caring, down to earth,, soft, loves to read, go out, have fun, play sports/games, etc, etc, etc, etc….these are just examples of what you could be asking for. You don’t need to go to extreme details, like asking for a spouse with certain features, hairstyle, etc. Now that would just be crazy.

Another great du’a to always say, married or not,

Rabbana hab lana min azwajina wa dhurriyyatina qurrata a’yun(iw), wa `j’alna li `l-muttaqina imaman.
Our Lord! Grant us spouses and offspring that wil be the comfort of our eyes, and give us [the grace] to lead the righteous. (Qur’an 25:74)

Here are some du’as I found from,

“Some scholars have mentioned that it is good to make the Qur'anic du`a, "Rabbana aatina fi'd dunya hasana wa fi'l aakhirati hasana wa qina `adhab an-nar." [O Lord! Grant us good in this life, and good in the next, and save us from the torment of the Fire] (Qur'an, 2: 200), intending a suitable and righteous spouse with "fi'd dunya hasana" (good in this life).

This is taken from one of the more specific explanations of this verse, as mentioned by major imams of tafsir such as Khazin, though the most general meanings of good are understood to be primarily meant. [see: Hashiyat al-Jamal `ala al-Jalalayn, 1.161] “
“The best of duas are those that are heart-felt. Make dua from your heart, out of neediness and slavehood.”

Also from Sunnipath,

“Aum Alawi (Habib 'Ali's sister) went back home and our hearts feel like a piece is missing. She taught us girls a du'a/dhikr for a good spouse (actually, I'm not sure if it is specifically for a husband or for just a spouse in general, I never asked):

It's the ayah:
Rabbi innee limaa anzalta ilayya min khayrin faqeer
136x's everyday
[My lord, I am in absolute need of the good You send me]”

I had also read this du’a but I found it in a book, but I can’t remember from which book…

Performing the Prayer of Need (Salat al-Haja) also helps! It’s very simple, and you can read about how to perform it and what to read here.

Don’t forget to ask others to make du’a for you also, like your parents. Well, we know our mothers probably started making du’a for us from the moment, if not before we were even born, so that helps!

So what’s next you ask? Part 2! Keep a lookout for it! InshaAllah, it’ll be posted soon.


Path to Piety April 2009

Every time I see links and emails regarding the events being held in the GTA it makes me really miss home! Path to Piety brings back a lot of good memories and that conference just blew my mind away last year mashaAllah. Unfortunately, I remember the days leading up to the conference with not having high hopes for it, but SubhanAllah it had in every way exceeded everything including all hopes and expectations. MashaAllah.

I had learned so much especially at the workshop, I still have my notes and look through them often. Shaykh Hussain's workshop really changed great aspects in my life since then, Alhamdulillah. So there really is something to look forward too. Take advantage with what you have and are getting oh people of the GTA! I really wish I could be there for it this year, looks very promising but alas, I won't be able to.

So go for it! I mean it’s a great blessing to have such notable scholars close to you for 3 days just teaching Ilm. It’s the perfect opportunity to gain closeness to Allah (swt), to earn His pleasure and bank in on some rewards inshaAllah. To everyone going, please remember me in your du’as while you’re there, also remind my sister to give me a text message so I can call her and listen in to bits of the talks inshaAllah.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

good news and bad news

Oh I got some good news and some bad news. Let's start with the bad news, unfortunately I'm not doing Riyadus Saliheen anymore at the halaqah . I decided to stop as I'll be starting a Seerah series for the youth sisters (high school and university) every week. So Riyadus Saliheen is on hold for now on the blog as well. The good however, is that I was thinking I'd post some tips on marriage and tips for those wanting to get married inshaAllah. That should be interesting, no? Yeah, I know some of you would love to read it! I guess I'll start with those wanting to get married then.

So you'll have to check back again for the next update. Don't worry, I'll make sure it's soon, inshaAllah!