Sunday, November 20, 2005

The Mercy of Allah!

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullah,

Another extract from the beneficial book by Faqih Abu Lais Samarqandi (A.R.), titled "Admonition for the Neglectful" (Part 1) (Original version: 'Tambhi ul Gafileen'). [Also on: Articles Library]

A Thought Provoking Incident

Hadhrat Jibreel (A.S) related to Rasulullaah (sallAllaahu-alaihi wasallam) the incident of a person who lived on an island and worshipped Allaah for five hundred years. The island was surrounded by salty water, but Allaah caused a small spring of sweet water to flow near him, from which he drank. Allaah also caused a pomegranate tree to grow for him to eat from.

Daily he ate from the tree, drank from the water and made wudhu therewith. Allaah even accepted his du’a to die while prostrating. Hadhrat Jibreel (A.S) told Rasulullaah (sallAllaahu-alaihi-wasallam) that whenever they ascended and descended from the heavens they found him in prostration before Allaah.

Allaah will then instruct the angels to take this person to Jahannam. As they proceed, he will say, “Oh Allaah! Enter me into Jannah by Your mercy.” Allaah will then command the angels to bring him back. When they again present him before Allaah, Allaah will ask him the following questions:

Question: Who created you?

Reply: Oh Allaah! You did.

Question: Was this (creation) due to your actions or due to My mercy?

Reply: Due to Your mercy.

Question: Who granted you the guidance and the ability to engage worship for five hundred years?

Reply: Oh Allaah! You did.

Question: Who took you to the island in the centre of the ocean? Who caused a spring of sweet water to flow amidst the salty water of the ocean? Who caused the pomegranate tree to grow? Who acceded to your request and allowed your soul to leave your body while you were prostrating?

Reply: Oh Allaah! You did.

Allaah will then tell him, “All of this was on account of My mercy, and I shall admit you into Jannah by My mercy as well.”

(SubhanAllahi Wabihamdihi Subhanallahil Adheem)

(Source: Article Library)

[From the kitab: "Admonition for the Neglectful" [Part 1] by Faqih Abu Lais Samarqandi (A.R.). Translation edited by: Mufti A.H. Elias]

Purchase the Kitab Online:

"Admonition for the Neglectful" [Price: £3.00]


Saturday, November 12, 2005

Allah is All-Forgiving, Most Merciful

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullah,

Currently reading a brilliant kitab by Faqih Abu Lais Samarqandi (A.R.), titled "Admonition for the Neglectful" (Original version: 'Tambhi ul Gafileen'). Many Sufi Scholars use this book for their mureeds (disciples) spiritual upbringing (as mentioned in the 'Forward'.)

I've scanned a small extract from the kitab:

THE EXCELLENCE OF THE UMMAH OF Rasulullaah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam)

The Tauba of the previous ummahs (nations) was that Allah made a halaal thing haraam due to their sins. Allah also used to write their sin on their doors or on their limbs.

However, Allah has been extremely bountiful to the ummah of Rasulullaah (sallAllaahu-alaihi-wasallam) by not exposing their sins in this manner.

Whenever the sinner turns to Allah asking for forgiveness, Allah says, “My slave has sinned and has realized that he has a Rabb Who is Forgiving and Who has the power to take him to task.” Allah then forgives the person.

Allah says, “Whoever commits a sin or oppresses himself, and then seeks forgiveness from Allah, he shall find Allah to be Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” A person should repent every morning and evening for his sins.

[From: Admonition for the Neglectful; by Faqih Abu Lais Samarqandi (A.R.)
Translation edited by: Mufti A.H. Elias]


Monday, October 10, 2005

Intermingling of the sexes II - Ummati blog

Post number 2 - from


Intermingling of the sexes II

Assalamualaykum readers.

In this post I will be continuing with my previous topic regarding the intermingling of non-mehram men and women that takes place in person as well as on the internet.

I apologise for the lack of clarity in my words. I was specifically targetting the 'chatting' that is taking place in todays age that has become the norm. We no longer consider it to be an evil but instead it seems to be encouraged.

However, there is a type of communication in Islam that is permitted. This is the contact between a non-mehram man and woman who communicate for the sake of Islam. But please note only in extreme cases of necessity. Those whose sole purpose is to gain knowledge for the betterment of their own imaan, as well as the entire ummah.
Truly, this can be seen taking place at the time of the Prophet (saw) and his blessed companions. The Mother of the Believers hazrat Aishah (ra) has related many hadiths to inform the ummah of the blessed ways of our Prophet(saw) These hadiths were asked by the noble companions of the Prophet (saw) upon which hazrat Aisha use to reply behind a screen in the most modest manner. Yes, indeed this is a perfect example that clearly shows such communication is permitted in Islam.

However, I ask you, what has become of us today? We use this very excuse of propagating Islam and instead misuse it to suit our desires. Yes, once in a while an Islamic issue may crop up but other times? Other times, readers we are involved in deep conversations be it MSN or any other way, we are involved in many hours of zina. What is the need in speaking to a non-mehram about personal issues, about petty issues which are simply not necessary.

Ofcorse one may say 'my intentions are pure' truly I do not doubt that for one moment. However, all would agree that Shaytan makes it a duty upon himself to convert these intentions to please him. Muslims are urged 'Believing men and women keep your gazes down' This shows that despite having pure intentions one can easily fall into the trap of shaytan, therefore even the slightest bit of temptation is prohibitted from the start. Before any thing even takes place. Id like to apply this same aspect to internet chatting. Readers do not even go near unnecessary chatting between non-mehrams on the internet for this is the path leading to zina. We are mere mortals, we can not always control our desires, it may begin as an 'islamic issue' but result in zina.

I would like to conclude by saying that yes you may find the views outlined in my entries very extreme. However as is often said 'the truth is bitter' An ill person has to undergo severe treatment and drink bad tasting medicine as a cure. Similarly this post is being put before you regardless of how bitter it sounds. I apologise for anything said that may have caused offence.

Jazakallah for reading



Friday, October 07, 2005

Unjustifiable Contact With the Opposite Gender

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

Insha-Allah, this should be a three part series, where I will be posting two posts from the beneficial blog: The third post will be on the protection of Sisters, how to save oneself from the fitna of the net world.

Without further ado:


Intermingling of the sexes: Post 1 (

I begin in the name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful.

The topic in discussion is one that will surely create some controversy amongst the minds of many. Some of you may read the first paragraph and decide you would like to read no further. Others may read the entire post and quietly dismiss what is said. However I place a small request before you: please do ponder upon what is said. Jazakallah.

You may all agree that having a physical relationship with a non-mehram is totally forbidden in Islam. And if one was to trangress these boundaries then punishment would be the inevitable consequence. However, if one was to put it simply then we would agree that any form of communication that is likely to lead to ones carnal desires being aroused, is strictly forbidden. One does not know whether one's desires will be aroused or not- though there is always a possibility, hence such communication is forbidden.

By communication I mean conversations between a non mehram man and a woman in person, or via the phone, even by a mere look and yes, let me utter the deadly words, the most common form of communication amongst non-mehrams is taking place on the internet. It is the most easiest form and sadly it is succeeding beyond measure in corrupting our minds and leading us astray.

(Let me stress, this form of contact I am referring to is one that is kept unnecessarily, there are instances where non-mehrams can communicate, these shall me mentioned later on inshallah)

One specific ploy used by people who want to make an excuse to chat to the opposite sex, is to refer to them as their 'brother' and 'sister.' Does this really convince you that what you are doing is islamically acceptable? Yes, every muslim is a brother and sister to one another, but these so called brothers and sisters of ours are people who we can marry, hence the ruling of it being forbidden.

Neither does the excuse of being 'friends' work because such a thing as friends between a non-mehram man and a woman exist in Islam.

I would like to end by asking, what do we derive from an hours long conversation or even merely keeping in contact with a guy/girl? Yes, it is a form of pass-time, or maybe we think it to be 'fun' and lastly, and most definitely we derive pleasure out of it. I ask you, what is our pleasure in comparison to that of the displeasure of Allah (swt)? What is our comfort in comparison to that of the discomfort and pain of the Blessed Prophet (saw)?

Is it fair, that this very Prophet who experienced such hardhship and pain for the sake of his ummah to remain strong on his/her Imaan, so that Allah may grant his ummah salvation from hell, this very Prophet's teachings are being torn to shreads. Do we feel even the slightest bit of remorse?

In conclusion I would like to say that this post is not directed at a specific individual, but rather to the entire ummah as a whole. I would like to apologize if I may have said anything that has caused any one of you readers to feel offended. This is not my attempt to be judgemental but rather I am placing a genuine concern before you, I pray that this entry creates an awareness of the evils of men and women chatting online. I pray that Allah gives me and all you readers the hidayah to practice upon what has been said.

Jazakallah for reading.



Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Suggested Timetable for Ramadhan


by Shaykh Muhammed Saleem Dhorat

In order to maximise our time and perform our ‘ibaadat with ease, we should try to follow a set routine or timetable.

1. We must wake up for suhoor as it is a Sunnah of our Rasoolsallallahu alayhi wasallam. He has informed us that the food of suhoor is full of barakah: “Eat suhoor, because in it lie great blessings.” (Bukhaari, Muslim)

We should arrange our time for suhoor in such a way that we are also able to perform at least 4 to 8 rak‘aat of tahajjud together with du‘aa for about 15 minutes or more.

sallallahu alayhi wasallam has said that the du‘aa in the darkness of the night (after tahajjud) is readily accepted by Allah. (Tirmizi)

2. The ideal way to perform tahajjud with suhoor is to wake up early and perform tahajjud and make du‘aa before suhoor. Everyone in the house should wake up and engage in ‘ibaadat in the darkness and isolation of their own rooms. Shed tears and ask Allah ta‘aalaa for your needs just as a small child cries and gets his needs fulfilled. Rasoolullah
sallallahu alayhi wasallam has encouraged his followers to cry when making du‘aa.

Crying and weeping attracts mercy. Just as a mother who, upon seeing her child crying for a sweet, will succumb at the sight of the child’s crying and treat it with mercy, similarly when one sheds tears whilst beseeching his Lord, the Mercy of the Lord will enshroud him.

3. After tahajjud and suhoor, we must pray our Fajr Salaat with congregation. Ladies should also perform their obligatory Salaat.

4. After Fajr remain engaged in ‘ibaadat till15-20 minutes after sunrise and perform 4 rak‘aat ishraaq.

5. Before zawaal, perform Salaatud Dhuhaa (chaasht). Rasoolullah sallallahu alayhi wasallam said, “There is charity is due to you in lieu of every joint that exists in your body. To say sub’haanallah is a form of charity, to say alhamdulillah is also a charity, to say laa ilaaha illallah is also a charity, to command goodness and forbid evil is also a charity, and two rak‘aat at the time of dhuhaa (chaasht) is sufficient for all this charity (i.e. to compensate the favour of every joint that Allah has given you).” (Muslim)

6. Perform Zuhr with congregation. If possible, engage in ‘ibaadat for a while and have a short rest with the intention of qayloolah – a Sunnah of our beloved Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam.

7. Perform ‘Asr. The time between ‘Asr and Maghrib is very valuable especially for du‘aa. We must make the effort to perform our ‘Asr with congregation and then remain in the masjid until Maghrib. Unfortunately Shaytaan and nafs have deceived us so much that many of us cannot do without food in the masjid at the time of iftaar. My friends, we should try to change our habits and keep the aakhirah in our minds. Shaytaan and nafs will take us home for some food, which should only take a few minutes, and will not let us come to the masjid until just before Maghrib. This is the best part of the day, which we do not value, only because of our desire for food. Rasoolullah sallallahu
alayhi wasallam said, “There are three groups of people whose du‘aa is not rejected; the fasting person until he breaks the fast........” (Ahmad)

When Allah has made a promise through His Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam, there is no doubt in the acceptance of these supplications. In spite of this, we find some people whose prayers are not answered. This does not mean that their prayers have been rejected. It is Allah’s Favour upon us that should He find that granting us what we ask from Him is in our interest, He grants, otherwise not. Another point to remember is that there are certain conditions in the absence of which they may be rejected. Among these is halaal food and making du‘aa with attention and concentration. If our hearts and minds are not in our du‘aa, then they may not be answered. My friends, we must make the habit of bringing a few dates with us at the time of ‘Asr and after ‘Asr we must engage in zikr, tilaawat, tasbeeh, etc. until just 15-20 minutes before Maghrib when we should raise our hands in du‘aa until Azaan. In this way, everyone will be engrossed in their own ‘ibaadat and we will find that if some of the individuals are crying, others will also get the inclination to do the same. Therefore value this time between ‘Asr and Maghrib and do not waste it in worrying about food. The saintly people are such that not even gold and silver will distract them from the Worship of Allah, let alone food. Their concentration in their du‘aa is not affected even if heaps of treasure were to be placed before them, whereas, we would not be able to concentrate if only a small morsel was to be put in front of us. I would request my sisters not to spend the time between ‘Asr and Maghrib in the kitchen.

8. After performing Maghrib, we shoud perform 6 rak‘aat of awwaabeen after the two rak‘aat sunnat and two rak‘aat nafl of Maghrib. However; those who do not feel inclined to do this, some ‘ulamaa have said that two rak‘aat sunnat and two rak‘aat nafl of Maghrib can also become part of the 6 rak‘aat awwaabeen. Hence, performing only two rak‘aat after the sunnat and nafl of Maghrib will suffice.

9. During the winter months in Britain there is a lot of time between Maghrib and ‘Ishaa. After food, we should sit the household together and read from ‘Virtues of Ramadhaan’ compiled by Shaykhul Hadeeth Maulana Muhammad Zakariyyaa for at least 15 minutes, followed by tilaawat, with all the members of the family joining in. This will create a good atmosphere and environment in our homes and at the same time Ramadhaan will pass joyfully with an abundance of barakah in the home, inshaa’allah.

10. Thereafter return to the masjid and engage yourself in ‘ibaadat. Take great care not to get involved in any worldly talk. It is very upsetting and disheartening to see people wasting their time in futile talk in the masjid even during the month of Ramadhaan. Try and restrain yourself and remain engaged in ‘ibaadat until ‘Ishaa. The sisters should note that 20 rak‘aat taraaweeh is sunnat-e-mu’akkadah for them too. They must perform taraaweeh after ‘Ishaa.

11. After taraaweeh, go straight home. Do not loiter around outside the masjid wasting time. At home, remain in ‘ibaadat until you go to sleep. Sleep with the intention of waking up for tahajjud and suhoor.

12. Apart from the above, we know that in Ramadhaan there are always various programmes taking place in the masjid led by our ‘ulamaa. These are for our own benefit. There are many of us who are very sinful and during this month our hearts are softened and more receptive; by listening to the wise words of our ‘ulamaa the chances of bringing good deeds into practice are greater. Although the month of Ramadhaan is solely
for ‘ibaadat, we should try and attend these programmes in the masaajid because by listening to these discourses, inshaa’allah, changes will come into our lives for the better. Our hearts are blackened by and full of sins and by listening to these discourses and sitting in the company of the ‘ulamaa and the pious, change will definitely occur in our hearts, inshaa’allah.

Allah’s Mercy is in abundance throughout the year, but especially during this month. We should yearn in our hearts for this Mercy because we need mercy, blessing and forgiveness from Allah. We are sinful and in this month we want to win Allah’s Attention so that we can become His Beloved Slaves. If we are eager to perform good deeds then, inshaa’allah this month will become a month of great blessing for us.

NOTE: Everyone should try to take rest in order to conserve energy for the compulsory ‘ibaadat. There is no point in remaining in nafl ‘ibaadat and not getting rest, which will result in tiredness and laziness at the time of compulsory Salaat, etc. Hence, every person should fix a convenient time for rest and include it in the timetable set out above.

May Allah accept our efforts and make every moment of this month a means of receiving His Mercy, Blessing and Forgiveness. May we all be granted a place in Jannah. Aameen.

[Source: Islamic Daw'ah Academy]

Sunday, October 02, 2005

The Path to Perfection

The Path to Perfection new publication

An Anthology of the Spiritual Teachings of Hakim al-Umma Mawlana Ashraf Ali Thanawi

by Shaykh Masihullah Khan Sherwani

"A critical and profound insight into the essential themes of spiritual thought in South Asia during the 20th century"

—Dr Mahmood Chandia, Subject Leader in Islamic Studies at the University of Lancashire, UK

"This work clearly presents a selection of the most important, and the most profound, of Mawlana Thanawi's teachings" —Shaykh Yusuf Talal DeLorenzo, Shari'a scholar and translator

Shaykh Masihullah Khan, a renowned student of the eminent Mawlana Ashraf 'Ali Thanawi, wrote Shari'at & Tasawwuf to pass on to future generations of Muslims the numerous benefits of his teacher’s wisdom. The teachings gathered here are notes of admonition and encouragement written by a man who has walked the path to his Creator; and at their core, these teachings are sustenance for the ailing hearts and souls of our time.

White Thread Press makes this invaluable work available in elegant and moving prose, while remaining true to its traditional origins. The result, a profound awakening of the heart, is within the reach of all. Those new to the spiritual sciences will delight in the range and profundity of the psychological and spiritual disciplines of Islam, while those already on the Path will gain new insights and perspectives.

At a time when the discourse surrounding Islam is generally inauthentic and shallow, The Path to Perfection presents a much-needed antidote. It goes beyond simply diagnosing the spiritual ailments that afflict us; it puts forward means of eradicating them, so that we as individuals, as communities, and as an Umma can reap the benefits of a spiritual way of life.

Product Details

No. of Pages: 184

Format: Softcover 6" x 9"

ISBN: 0-9728358-7-3

Pub. Date: June 2005

See also:

Click to purchase this book online

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Sha'ban: Merits, Do's, and Dont's

Sha'ban: Merits, Do's, and Dont's

By Mufti Taqi Usmani

- The Night of Bara'ah

- What Should be Done in this Night?

- What Should Not be Done in This Night

- Fast of the 15th Sha'ban

Sha'ban is one of the meritorious months for which we find some particular instructions
in the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam. It is reported in the
authentic ahadith that Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, used to fast
most of the month in Sha'ban. These fasts were not obligatory on him but Sha'ban is the
month immediately preceding the month of Ramadan. Therefore, some preparatory measures are
suggested by Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam. Some of these are given

1. The blessed companion Anas, Radi-Allahu anhu, reports that Prophet Muhammad,
Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, was asked, "Which fast is the most meritorious after
the fasts of Ramadan?" He replied, "Fasts of Shaban in honor of Ramadan."

2. The blessed companion Usama ibn Zaid, Radi-Allahu anhu, reports that he asked
Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam: "Messenger of Allah, I have
seen you fasting in the month of Sha'ban so frequently that I have never seen you fasting
in any other month." Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, replied:
"That (Sha'ban) is a month between Rajab and Ramadan which is neglected by many
people. And it is a month in which an account of the deeds (of human beings) is presented
before the Lord of the universe, so, I wish that my deeds be presented at a time when I am
in a state of fasting."

3. Ummul Mu'mineen 'Aishah, Radi-Allahu anha, says, "Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu
alayhi wa sallam, used to fast the whole of Sha'ban. I said to him, 'Messenger of Allah,
is Sha'ban your most favorite month for fasting?' He said, 'In this month Allah prescribes
the list of the persons dying this year. Therefore, I like that my death comes when I am
in a state of fasting."

4. In another Tradition she says, "Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam,
would sometimes begin to fast continuously until we thought he would not stop fasting, and
sometimes he used to stop fasting until we thought he would never fast. I never saw the
Messenger of Allah, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, fasting a complete month, except
the month of Ramadan, and I have never seen him fasting in a month more frequently than he
did in Sha'ban."

5. In another report she says, "I never saw the Messenger of Allah, Sall-Allahu
alayhi wa sallam, fasting in a month so profusely as he did in the month of Sha'ban. He
used to fast in that month leaving only a few days, rather, he used to fast almost the
whole of the month."

6. Ummul-Mu'mineen Umm Salamah, Radi-Allahu anha, says: "I have never seen the
Messenger of Allah fasting for two months continuously except in the months of Sha'ban and

These reports indicate that fasting in the month of Sha'ban, though not obligatory, is
so meritorious that Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, did not like to miss

But it should be kept in mind that the fasts of Sha'ban are for those persons only who
are capable of keeping them without causing deficiency in the obligatory fasts of Ramadan.
Therefore, if one fears that after fasting in Sha'ban, he will lose strength or freshness
for the fasts of Ramadan and will not be able to fast in it with freshness, he should not
fast in Sha'ban, because the fasts of Ramadan, being obligatory, are more important than
the optional fasts of Sha'ban. That is why Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam,
himself has forbidden the Muslims from fasting one or two days immediately before the
commencement of Ramadan. The blessed Companion Abu Hurairah, Radi-Allahu anhu, reports
Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, to have said, "Do not fast after the
first half of the month of Sha'ban is gone."

According to another report Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam has said:
"Do not precede the month of Ramadan with one or two fasts."

The essence of the above-quoted ahadith is that Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu
alayhi wa sallam, himself used to fast most of the month of Sha'ban, because he had no
fear of developing weakness or weariness before the commencement of Ramadan. As for
others, he ordered them not to fast after the 15th
of Sha'ban for the fear that they would lose their strength and freshness before Ramadan
starts, and would not be able to welcome the month of Ramadan with enthusiasm.

Back to Top

The Night of Bara'ah

Another significant feature of the month of Sha'ban is that it consists of a night
which is termed in Shariah as "Laylatul-bara'ah" (The night of freedom
from Fire). This is the night occurring between 14th and 15th day of Sha'ban. There are certain traditions of Prophet Muhammad,
Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, to prove that it is a meritorious night in which the people
of the earth are attended by special Divine mercy. Some of these traditions are quoted as

1. Ummul-Mu'mineen 'Aishah, Radi-Allahu anha, is reported to have said,
"Once Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, performed the Salah of the
night (Tahajjud) and made a very long Sajdah until I feared that he had passed away. When
I saw this, I rose (from my bed) and moved his thumb (to ascertain whether he is alive).
The thumb moved, and I returned (to my place). Then I heard him saying in Sajdah: 'I seek
refuge of Your forgiveness from Your punishment, and I seek refuge of Your pleasure from
Your annoyance, and I seek Your refuge from Yourself. I cannot praise You as fully as You
deserve. You are exactly as You have defined Yourself.' Thereafter, when he raised his
head from Sajdah and finished his salah, he said to me: 'Aishah, did you
think that the Prophet has betrayed you?' I said, 'No, O Prophet of Allah, but I was
afraid that your soul has been taken away because your Sajdah was very long.' He
asked me, 'Do you know which night is this?' I said, 'Allah and His Messenger know best.'
He said, 'This is the night of the half of Sha'ban. Allah Almighty looks upon His slaves
in this night and forgives those who seek forgiveness and bestows His mercy upon those who
pray for mercy but keeps those who have malice (against a Muslim) as they were before,
(and does not forgive them unless they relieve themselves from malice).'"

2. In another Tradition Sayyidah' Aishah, Radi-Allahu anha, has reported that Prophet
Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, has said, "Allah Almighty descends (in a
manner He best knows it) in the night occurring in the middle of Sha'ban and forgives a
large number of people more than the number of the fibers on the sheep of the tribe,

Kalb was a big tribe the members of which had a very large number of sheep. Therefore,
the last sentence of the hadith indicates the big number of the people who are
forgiven in this night by Allah Almighty.

3. In yet another Tradition, she has reported Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa
sallam, to have said, "This is the middle Night of Sha'ban. Allah frees in it a large
number of the people from Fire, more than the number of the hair growing on the sheep of
the tribe, Kalb. But He does not even look at a person who associates partners with Allah,
or at a person who nourishes malice in his heart (against someone), or at a person who
cuts off the ties of kinship, or at a man who leaves his clothes extending beyond his
ankles (as a sign of pride), or at a person who disobeys his parents, or at a person who
has a habit of drinking wine."

4. Sayyidna Mu'adh ibn Jabal, Radi-Allahu anhu, reports that Prophet Muhammad,
Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, has said: "Allah Almighty looks upon all those created
by Him in the middle Night of Sha'ban and forgives all those created by Him, except the
one who associates partners with Him or the one who has malice in his heart (against a

Although the chain of narrators of some of these traditions suffers with some minor
technical defects, yet when all these traditions are combined together, it becomes clear
that this night has some well founded merits, and observing this night as a sacred night
is not a baseless concoction as envisaged by some modern scholars who, on the basis of
these minor defects, have totally rejected to give any special importance to this night.
In fact, some of these traditions have been held by some scholars of hadith as
authentic and the defects in the chain of some others have been treated by them as minor
technical defects which, according to the science of hadith, are curable by the
variety of their ways of narration. That is why the elders of the ummah have
constantly been observing this night as a night of special merits and have been spending
it in worship and prayers.

Back to Top

What Should be Done in this Night?

In order to observe the Night of Bara'ah, one should remain awakened in this night as
much as he can. If someone has better opportunities, he should spend the whole night in
worship and prayer. However, if one cannot do so for one reason or another, he can select
a considerable portion of the night, preferably of the second half of it for this purpose,
and should perform the following acts of worship:

(a) Salah. Salah is the most preferable act to be performed in this
night. There is no particular number of Rak'at but preferably it should not be less
than eight. It is also advisable that each part of the Salah like qiyam, rukoo' and
sajdah should be longer than normal. The longest surahs of the Holy Qur'an one
remembers by heart should be recited in the Salah of this night. If someone does
not remember the long surahs, he can also recite several short surahs in one rak'ah.

(b) Tilawa. The recitation of the Holy Qur'an is another form of worship, very
beneficent in this night. After performing Salah, or at any other time, one should
recite as much of the Holy Qur'an as he can.

(c) Dhikr. One should also perform dhikr (recitation of the name of
Allah) in this night. Particularly the following dhikr is very useful:

One should recite Salah (durood) on Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa
sallam, as many times as he can. The dhikr can also be recited while walking, lying
on bed and during other hours of work or leisure.

(d) Dua. The best benefit one can draw from the blessings of this night is
prayers and supplications. It is hoped that all the prayers in this night will be accepted
by our Lord, insha-Allah. Prayer itself is an 'Ibadah, and Allah Almighty
gives reward on each prayer along with the fulfillment of the supplicator's need. Even if
the purpose prayed for is not achieved, one cannot be deprived of the reward of the prayer
which is sometimes more precious than the mundane benefits one strives for. The prayers
and supplications also strengthen one's relation with Allah Almighty, which is the main
purpose of all kinds and forms of worship.

One can pray for whatever purpose he wishes. But the best supplications are the ones
made by Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam. These are so comprehensive and
all-encompassing prayers that all the human needs, of this world and the Hereafter, are
fully covered in the eloquent expressions used in them. Actually, most of the prophetic
prayers are so profound that human imagination can hardly match their greatness.

Several books in various languages are available which provide these prophetic prayers,
and one should pray to Allah Almighty in accordance with them, whether by reciting their
original Arabic text or by rendering their sense in one's own language.

(e) There are some people who cannot perform any additional Salah or recitations
for any reason, like illness or weakness or being engaged in some other necessary
activities. Such people also should not deprive themselves completely of the blessings of
this night. They should observe the following acts:

(i) To perform the Salah of Maghrib, 'Isha' and Fajr with Jama'ah in
the mosque, or in their homes in case of their being sick.

(ii) They should keep reciting the dhikr, particularly the one mentioned in para
(c) above, in whatever condition they are until they sleep.

(iii) They should pray to Allah for their forgiveness and for their other objectives.
One can do so even when he is in his bed.

(f) The women during their periods cannot perform salah, nor can they recite the
Qur'an, but they can recite any dhikr, tasbeeh, durood sharif and can pray to Allah
for whatever purpose they like in whatever language they wish. They can also recite the
Arabic prayers mentioned in the Qur'an or in the hadith with the intention of
supplication (and not with the intention of recitation).

(g) According to a hadith, which is relatively less authentic, Prophet Muhammad,
Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, went in this night to the graveyard of Baqi' where he
prayed for the Muslims buried there. On this basis, some of the fuqaha hold it as mustahabb
(advisable) in this night to go to the graveyard of the Muslims and recite Fatihah or
any other part of the Qur'an, and pray for the dead. But this act is neither obligatory
nor should it be performed as regularly as an obligatory act.

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What Should Not be Done in This Night

1. As mentioned earlier, the Night of Bara'ah is a night in which special
blessings are directed towards the Muslims. Therefore, this night should be spent in total
submission to Allah Almighty, and one should refrain from all those activities, which may
displease Allah. Although it is always incumbent upon every Muslim to abstain from sins,
yet this abstinence becomes all the more necessary in such nights, because committing sins
in this night will amount to responding to divine blessings with disobedience and felony.
Such an arrogant attitude can invite nothing but the wrath of Allah. Therefore, one should
strictly abstain from all the sins, particularly from those mentioned in the Hadith No. 3
quoted earlier in this article, because these sins make one devoid of the blessings of
this night.

2. In this night some people indulge in some activities which they regard as necessary
for the celebration of the Night of Bara'ah, like cooking some special type of meal, or
illuminating houses or mosques, or improvised structures. All such activities are not only
baseless and innovated in the later days by ignorant people, but in some cases they are
pure imitation of some rituals performed by non-Muslim communities. Such imitation in
itself is a sin; performing it in a blessed night like the Night of Bara'ah makes it
worse. Muslims should strictly abstain from all such activities.

3. Some people spend this night in holding religious meetings and delivering long
speeches. Such activities are also not advisable, because these acts can easily be
performed in other nights. This night requires one to devote himself for the pure acts of
worship only.

4. The acts of worship like Salah, recitation of the Qur'an and dhikr should
be performed in this night individually, not collectively. The Nafl Salah should
not be performed in Jama'ah, nor should the Muslims arrange gatherings in the
mosques in order to celebrate the night in a collective manner.

On the contrary, this night is meant for worshipping Allah in solitude. It is the time
to enjoy the direct contact with the Lord of the Universe, and to devote one's attention
to Him and Him alone. These are the precious hours of the night in which nobody should
intervene between one and his Lord, and one should turn to Allah with total concentration,
not disturbed or intermitted by any one else.

That is why Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, observed the acts of
worship in this night in total seclusion, not accompanied by anyone, not even by his
favorite life companion Sayyidah 'Aishah, Radi-Allahu anha, and that is why all forms of
the optional worship (Nafl Ibadah), are advised by him to be done in individual,
not in collective manner.

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Fast of the 15th Sha'ban

On the day immediately following the Night of Bara'ah, i.e. the 15th of Sha'ban, it is mustahabb
(advisable) to keep fast. Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, is reported
to have recommended this fast emphatically. Although the scholars of hadith have
some doubts in the authenticity of this report, yet it is mentioned earlier that the fasts
of the first half of Sha'ban have special merits and Prophet Muhammad, Sall-Allahu alayhi
wa sallam, used to fast most of the days in Sha'ban. Moreover, a large number of the
elders (salaf) of the Ummah have been observing the fast of the 15th of Sha'ban. This constant practice indicates that they have
accepted the relevant hadith as authentic.

Therefore, it is advisable to fast the 15th of Sha'ban as an optional (nafl)
fast. One can also keep a fast of qada on this day and it is hoped that he can also
benefit from the merits of this fast.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005

**Islamic Stance on the Recent London Bombings**

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

A famously long article by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam. This one is an absolute must to read:

Islamic Stance on the Recent London Bombings


What is the Islamic stance regarding the recent attacks on the London underground tube network? Can it be justified in any way? I hear many non-Muslims accusing Islam of terrorism. What can I say?


In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

The recent tragic events in London and elsewhere have unfortunately prompted many non-Muslims to associate Islam with violence and terrorism. Muslims worldwide are experiencing a very difficult stage of their existence, and facing many trials and tribulations. We are being accused of terrorism, extremism and fundamentalism. The idea that Islam is a violent religion is becoming more and more widespread to the point that even some ignorant Muslims are being affected with this propaganda.

The truth is that Islam is a religion of peace and mercy. One of the meanings of “Islam” is peace. There is no place for extremism in Islam. Our Creator the Almighty says in the Qur’an:

“O People of the Book! Commit no extremism in your religion, nor say of Allah aught but the truth.” (Surah al-Nisa, V: 171)

Even though the above verse was in relation to the People of the book being extreme in their religion to the point that they considered Jesus (peace be upon him) to be the son of God, it has a general application to it, as is the case with all the verses of the Qur’an. Hence, Islam was sent down by God to preserve and protect the life, wealth and honour of human beings. Islam teaches its followers to be gentle, kind and tolerant towards other people including non-Muslims.

The beloved Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace), who was sent as a mercy for the whole of mankind, demonstrated such kindness, compassion, generosity and politeness towards non-Muslims that it is difficult to find similar examples in history.

When Makka was in the grip of famine, he personally went out to help his enemies who had made him leave his home town. At the conquest of Makka, all his enemies came under his power and control, yet he set them all free saying that not only are you being given amnesty today but rather you are also forgiven for what you have done in the past. When non-Muslim prisoners of war were presented before him, he treated them with such kindness and tenderness as one would treat one’s own children. His enemies inflicted upon him all sorts of injuries and pain but he never raised his hand in revenge neither did he wish ill for them, rather he would pray for their guidance. A delegation from the tribe of Banu Thaqifa (who had yet not embraced Islam) came to visit him, and was given the honour of staying in the Mosque of the Prophet, a place regarded by Muslims to be the most sacred of places. (See: Ma’arif al-Qur’an, 2/51)

There are many more such examples in the life of the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace). The episode of Ta’if, the treaty of al-Hudaybiyya and many other such events quite categorically demonstrate the viewpoint of Islam with regards to the treatment of non-Muslims.

Islam totally rejects and condemns violence, terrorism and the taking of innocent lives. There can be no justification whatsoever in Islam for crimes against humanity, such as the recent London bombings. The act of bombing trains and buses, killing and injuring innocent people is without doubt prohibited and unlawful in Islam. There are many evidences found in the Qur’an and sayings of the Messenger of God (peace and blessings be upon him) in support of this view. A few are presented below:

1) Islam does not allow the killing of innocent civilians and non-combatants under any circumstance. It is unlawful to kill a human being, Muslim or non-Muslim, without an Islamically justified reason (such as someone guilty of murder, and this too is only permitted for those who have political authority). The killing of innocents is against basic humanity, and has absolutely no place in Islam. The Shariah of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) was sent to protect five fundamental interests or universals (maqasid/kuliyyat): preservation of religion (hifz al-din), preservation of life (hifz al-nafs), preservation of intellect (hifz al-aql), preservation of lineage (hifz al-nasl), and preservation of wealth (hifz al-mal). Things that harm any of these five universals are contrary to the very foundations of Divine Law.

Allah Most High states clearly in the Qur’an:

“For that cause, We decreed for the Children of Israel that whosoever kills a human for other than manslaughter or corruption in the earth, it shall be as if he had killed all humanity; and whoso saves the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind.” (Surah al-Ma’ida, V: 32)

And He Most High states:

“Allah forbids you not, with regards to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loves those who are just.” (Surah al-Mumtahina, V: 8)


“Take not life, which Allah has made sacred, except by way of justice and law: thus dose He command you, that you may learn wisdom.” (Surah al-An’am, V: 151)


“O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you 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.” (Surah al-Ma’idah, V: 8)

In the above verses, Allah Most High commands us to treat non-Muslims justly and honourably. The dislike of their beliefs should not prompt a Muslim to treat them unfairly, neither is it allowed to harm those who do not fight Muslims for their faith or drive them out of their homes; rather, a Muslim must deal with them in a just and kind manner.

It is related in Imam Muslim’s Sahih, that the Companion Hakim ibn Hizam (may Allah be pleased with him) passed by a group of people in Sham who had been made to stand in the sun after oil had been poured over their heads. He asked, “What is this?” He was told that they were being punished for failing to pay their land tax. Hakim ibn Hizam (may Allah be pleased with him) responded: “Truly, I have heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) say: “God shall torment those who torment others in this life.” (Sahih Muslim, no: 2613)

In the Sunan of Imam Abu Dawud, it is related from the Companion Ribah ibn al-Rabi’ (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said: “We were with the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) in warfare when he saw a group of people gathered around something. Hence, he sent a man to inquire what people had gathered over. The man returned saying they had gathered around a dead woman The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “This woman did not come here to fight (hence to kill her was not permitted)”. (Sunan Abu Dawud, no: 2669)

Based on this, classical and contemporary Muslim jurists (fuqaha) have quite clearly reiterated that the killing of innocent people, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, is not allowed under any circumstance in Shariah.

In the recent attacks on London, almost all of the people were innocent civilians; hence, in light of the abovementioned evidences, the prohibition of this act is quite clear. The attacks killed many men, women, children, non-Muslims as well as Muslims. The BBC website recently published the list of the bomb blast victims and amongst the many killed, there were also Muslims. The majority of the victims killed in the recent Egypt bomb blasts were Egyptians and Muslims. Hence, the perpetrators of these acts are killing innocent non-Muslims as well as Muslims.

Some people argue that innocent Muslims are being killed by non-Muslims; hence Muslims should be allowed to kill innocent people in retaliation. This argument is completely wrong, dangerous and not in line with Islamic teachings. Two wrongs do not make a right. Islam does not allow Muslims to respond to “a mistake” by another mistake.

Allah Most High says in the Qur’an:

“Revile not you those whom they call upon besides Allah, lest they out of spite revile Allah in their ignorance.” (Surah al-An’am, V: 108)

It is not allowed for a Muslim to follow up an evil with another evil. If Muslims feel that the UK and US governments are killing innocent civilians in Iraq and elsewhere, it does not give them the right to kill innocent citizens in London or New York.

2) The second reason for the prohibition of these barbaric acts is that under no circumstances are Muslims allowed to attack women, children, the old and the meek, the sick, and those that are worshipping. Even in the midst of a war, the Muslim army is ordered to avoid killing women and children.

The two most authentic books of Prophetic traditions according to the Muslims, Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, relate from the Companion Abd Allah ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said: “A woman was found to have been killed in one of the battles, hence the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) forbade the killing of women and children.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, no: 3014)

The Companion Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) reports that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace), when sending off an army, would say: “Leave in the name of Allah, but do not kill an old man, nor a young child and neither a woman…” (Sunan Abu Dawud, no: 2614)

The Companion Abd Allah ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) reports that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) would say when sending off his armies: “Do not kill those who are worshipping in their places of worship.” (Musannaf ibn Abi Shayba, no: 14078)

The Companion Jabir ibn Abd Allah (may Allah be pleased with him) reports that they (Muslims) would not kill traders of the polytheists (enemies).” (Musannaf ibn Abi Shayba, no: 14076)

Accordingly, Muslim jurists are quite clear that even in the midst of a war, it is prohibited to kill and attack old people, women, children, worshippers, those who are merely there for trading purposes, disabled people, sick and weak people, etc. Hence, bombing trains and buses where many such people may be present can never be justified in light of the guidance given by the Messenger of Islam (peace and blessings be upon him).

3) Thirdly, Islam places a great deal of emphasis on preserving and protecting the wealth of human beings to the point that the Messenger of Islam (may Allah bless him & give him peace) safeguarded the wealth of non-Muslims even in the midst of a war.

Allah Most High says:

“O you who believe! Consume not your wealth among yourselves in vanities: But let there be amongst you Traffic and trade by mutual good-will: Nor kill (or destroy) yourselves: for verily Allah has been to you Most Merciful. If any do that in rancour and injustice, soon shall We cast them into the Fire: And easy it is for Allah.” (Surah al-Nisa, V: 29-30)

Thus, the Shariah preserves and safeguards the wealth of individuals, Muslims and non-Muslims. To damage or destroy the wealth of others is clearly prohibited and sinful in the eyes of Islam.

4) Fourthly, Muslims (and also non-Muslims) are obliged to obey the law of the land they are residing in. When one lives in a particular country, one agrees verbally, in writing or effectively to adhere to the rules and regulations of that country. This, according to Shariah, is considered to be a covenant, agreement and trust. One is obliged to fulfil the trust regardless of whether it is contracted with a friend, enemy, Muslim, non-Muslim or a government. The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) and his Companions (Allah be pleased with them all) always stood by their word and did not breach any trust or agreement, as it is clear from the books of Prophetic traditions and history. To break a promise or breach a trust of even a non-Muslim is absolutely unlawful and considered a sign of being a hypocrite.

Allah Most High states:

“And fulfil (every) engagement (ahd), for (every) engagement will be enquired into (on the day of reckoning).” (Surah al-Isra, v. 34)

And regarding the one who breaks an agreement and is guilty of treachery, Allah Almighty says:

“Allah loves not the treacherous.” (Surah al-Anfal, v. 58)

The Companion Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “The signs of a hypocrite are three: When he speaks he lies, when he makes a promise he breaks it, and when he is given a trust he breaches it.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, no. 33)

The practice of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) and his Companions (Allah be pleased with them all) also clearly illustrates the importance of fulfilling a covenant, and the unlawfulness of treachery.

During the battle of Khaybar which took place between the Muslims and Jews, the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) and his Companions (Allah be pleased with them all) besieged the fort of Khaybar wherein the Jews were residing. A poor Shepard who was working for his Jewish master had already heard about the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace), and upon seeing the Muslim army, he thought it was a good opportunity to inquire about Islam. He came out of the fort with the goats and sheep he was looking after and asked the whereabouts of the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace). Upon being directed towards the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace), he inquired about the basic teachings of Islam, and then said: “What will my status be if I accept Islam?” The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) replied: “I will embrace you, you will become my brother and enjoy the same rights as other Muslims.” He said: “I am very poor, in a bad state and have bad odour coming from my body and cloths. How will you embrace me if I am in such a condition?” The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) replied: “I shall embrace you, for all of Allah’s servants are equal in His sight.” He said: “If I embrace Islam, what will my fate be?” The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “I bear witness that if you accept Islam, Allah will change the darkness of your body to light, and the bad odour to good fragrance.” These words of the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) had their effect on his heart, thus he embraced Islam.

After entering into the fold of Islam, he asked the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) what he was obliged to do? The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him & give him peace) said that the Muslims were presently in the midst of a war, thus the obligation at this moment and time was to participate in Jihad. However, the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said to him: “The first and foremost thing you need to do is return these animals to its Jewish owner and then engage in Jihad.”

As mentioned earlier, these animals belonged to a Jew who was in the opposing army, but the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) ordered him to go back and return them to its owner. The reason being is that he had taken these goats and sheep on a trust, and it is necessary by Shariah to return the belongings taken on trust back to its owner.

Thereafter, he participated in the holy battle (jihad) and was amongst the martyrs. The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) recognised his body and addressed his Companions saying that he saw this Shepard being given a bath in the sacred water of paradise, and Allah had changed his darkness to shining light and his bad foul smell to refreshing fragrance.

The above is an amazing example of fulfilling a trust of even an enemy. The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) was in the midst of a war with the Jews of al-Khaybar, yet he ordered the herdsman to go back and return the animals. This Shepard had taken these animals under a contract before the war, hence he was ordered to fulfil the contract and return them to its rightful owner sound and safe.

Therefore, from an Islamic perspective, it is obligatory for a Muslim to honour a commitment or a pledge. One must obey the law of the land unless the law commands one to forgo one’s basic religious rights. If one disagrees with the foreign policy of a country one lives in, one should use lawful means in getting one’s concerns heard. If an individual is angry with Britain’s role in Iraq, then one should use legal and lawful means to prevent that. It will not be permitted to retaliate against the British government by killing innocent civilians living in the UK.

To conclude, the above are just four of the many reasons found in the Qur’an and Prophetic Traditions (sunna) prohibiting clearly what took place recently in London. The perpetrators of this act need to realise that their actions are not only unfruitful rather they are doing more damage and harm to the Muslim community than benefit. Islam teaches us to be kind and loving towards other people. Islam teaches us to be merciful and not transgress on the life, wealth and honour of innocent people.

At the same time, we sincerely advise the British government to rethink its foreign policy. Terrorism is rejected whether it comes in the form of young people blasting bombs in London or F-16 fighter planes dropping bombs over Baghdad. Terrorism is defined as “the unlawful use of force against a civilian population as a way to intimidate that population into submitting to some political agenda or some other objective. Hence, the killing of civilians is unacceptable according to everyone by the Geneva Convention, yet the US in world war two killed hundreds of thousands of civilians with intent in Japan by bombing them. It was understood that these civilians would die. Thus, violence, terrorism and the killing of civilians is rejected by Islam and Muslims wherever this takes place.

Also, we sincerely urge the British government to take measures in protecting innocent Muslims who fear reprisal over the London bombings. Abuse (physical and verbal) and hate crimes must be dealt with in a rigorous manner. Any kind of assault on innocent people and damage caused to places of worship must not be tolerated.

Similarly, Muslims should not be singled out and targeted by the police in stop-and-search operations. There is a genuine fear and concern within the Muslim community that they are being targeted by the police. Many are frustrated by the increased use of stop-and-search and the new “shoot-to-kill to protect” policy for suicide bombers. Muslims should not be discriminated against by police trying to prevent potential terror attacks. Stop and searches should be based on good intelligence, not just skin colour.

Finally, we pray for peace, tranquillity and harmony in this world. We pray for the defeat of extremism and terrorism in the world, whether individual terror or state terror, whether in London, the US, Iraq or elsewhere. We ask Allah, our God and creator, to make matters easy for us and that the shedding of innocent blood stops forever, Ameen.

And Allah knows best

(Shaykh Mufti) Muhammad ibn Adam
Darul Iftaa
Leicester, UK

Friday, August 05, 2005

Removing hijab when there is "fear"?

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

From the Hanafi (Sunnipath) Mailing list:

Removing hijab when there is "fear"?

QUESTION: Recently a known British Muslim scholar has been reported in news stories as advising women who fear being harmed physically or verbally to remove their hijab so as not to be identified by those who are hostile to Muslims. What is your opinion on this matter. Can one remove hijab for fear of being targeted violently by others?


Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

Major scholars of the Muslim world have expressed their dismay at this statement, and regarding similar statements that ultimately harm the religious practice of individual Muslims and have a negative effect on the recognition of Muslim religious rights.


(1) Hijab is something personally obligatory, and upholding it in one's practice is from upholding one's religion--which is the central objective (maqsid) of the Shariah.

(2) When other matters that the Shariah came to protect--such as life and safety--seem to be in threat when upholding religious duties, then one must consider whether this threat is true and genuine; and whether it can be dealt with through reasonable alternatives that allow upholding one's duties.

(3) The threats to safety can be dealt with by travelling in safe ways; avoiding being out alone in places where one's safety may be at risk; and by wearing clothing that (while fulfilling Islamic rulings of modest, covering dress) does not attract 'undue attention' or backlash. It should also be
noted that a lot of the attacks have simply been on people looking 'ethnic'--even if, they weren't dressed 'Islamically', and in some cases even when they weren't Muslim in the first place.

(4) The way to deal with challenges to Muslim religious rights isn't to seek
the path of least resistance but, rather, to stand up for one's individual and community rights as citizens of democratic societies that recognize and uphold such rights. As such, someone who has reason to fear for their safety should seek appropriate recourse with the authorities--and it is only by standing up that one's voice will heard and one's rights respected.

And Allah alone gives success.

(Shaykh) Faraz Rabbani

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Women in Islam - Islam's Elevation of Women...!

Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

Praying you are all in the best of health and Iman, Insha-Allah.

Over 1400 years ago Islam gave women rights and privileges, which had never before been enjoyed under any other constitutional or religious systems. These rights were bestowed to females at a time when existing civilisations were not even prepared to regard or treat women as a human being! It was Islam which changed all this and elevated the status of women.

Islam does not give women identical rights as to men. This is because women and men are not the same. Had we been given the same exact rights as men, we would be simply their duplicates, which we are not (Alhamdulillah). Men and women are by nature physically and biologically different, and Islam has taken these factors into consideration and has treated both men and women on the basis of equality when there is a natural scope for it and has differentiated when such differentiation agrees with nature.

Islam gave rights to women right from the beginning. Unlike the Western women, women in Islam did not have to struggle for rights nor did we have to form any organisation or launch any movement. These rights were given to us without us even having to ask or demand for them. Islam bestowed innumerable rights on women in almost every field of human life as a bounty to us. All Praise be to Allah!

Learn about women in Islam, the rights of women in Islam, responsibities, status, duty, dressing, marriage and more by clicking on the links below. Upto 200 articles dedicated to women in Islam, uploaded on the Shariah Program:

  • Headscarf and Niqaab (Veil)

  • Life Sketches of Ummuhat ul Momineen (R.A)

  • Family Life

  • Guidance for Muslim Women

  • Stories of Women Reverting to Islam

  • Status and Rights of Women in Islam

  • Women and Islamic Dressing

  • Women's Islamic Q and A

  • Marriage in Islam

  • Audio Lectures on Women's Issues

  • Study, read, learn, educate yourselves.

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    Saturday, April 23, 2005

    Muasharat (Social Conduct)...


    It should now be realized that Muasharat is an inseparable part of the Deen. A perfect Muslim will, therefore, be one who adopts all the branches of the Deen. In all aspects he has to behave like a Muslim. There has to be no resemblance with the kuffaar.

    People have generally understood Muamalaat and Muasharat to be beyond the scope of the Deen. It is indeed surprising that a person regards his dealings and his social conduct beyond the confines of Divine Law, but at the same time he acknowledges that his dealings and social conduct are governed by the laws of worldly governments. No one ever ventured to tell the state authorities that the government has no right in our private business enterprises, etc. People readily submit to governmental laws and restrictions applicable to their trade and commerce, etc.


    The need for proper observance of Muasharat is of greater importance than Muamalaat. Rectitude in Muamalaat largely ensures the protection of material wealth while Husn-e-Muasharat (Beautiful conduct with others) ensures the protection of the hearts of the Muslims. It is quite obvious that the rank of the heart is greater than that of material wealth. In the rectification of Muasharat is also the protection of the honour and reputation of others. After the protection of lmaan, safeguarding honour and reputation is of the greatest importance. Man is prepared to sacrifice everything in the endeavour to safeguard his honour. On the occasion Hajjatul Wida, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) declared the sanctity of the blood, honour and wealth of the Muslimeen. Until the Day of Qiyaamah the honour and reputation of the Believers heve been declared sacred. This sanctity cannot, therefore, be violated.

    [From 'Aadaabul Muaasharat' (Etiquettes of Social Life) by Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi Rahmatullahi Alayh]

    Sunday, April 17, 2005

    The Five Branches of the Shariat


    The Shariat consists of five branches or parts:

    Aqaa-id, Amaal, Muamalaat, Akhlaaq, Husn-e-Muasharat.

    AQAA-ID (Beliefs), e.g. beliefs in the Oneness of Allah Ta’ala and the Risaalat (Prophethood) of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).

    A’MAAL (Righteous deeds) e.g. Salaat, Saum.

    MUAMALAAT (Transactions Contracts) e.g. trade and commerce.

    AKHLAAQ (Moral character) e.g. humility, generosity, etc.

    HUSN-E-MUASHARAT (Beautiful social conduct), i.e. good relationship with people, e.g. abstention from acts which cause others inconvenience such as disturbing a person in his sleep.

    The above mentioned five departments are collectively known as the Shariat. It is essential for Muslims to adopt all five departments of the Shariat. But, in the present age people have abbreviated the Shariat. Some have taken only Aqaa-id, believing that only the proclamation of La ilaaha il lallaahu suffices for immediate entry into Jannat. Such persons, while they believe Salaat, Saum, etc. are Fardh, they do not obtain the good fortune of practically executing these acts of worship. Others again, along with Aqaaid observe Salaat, Saum, etc., as well. However, they have discarded Muamalaat. In their transactional dealings they are not concerned with the Deen, whether their acts are lawful or not. They are indifferent to the question of halaal and haraam regarding their earnings and dealings. Then there are those who maintain their Muamalaat on a healthy footing, but are unconcerned with the reformation of their moral character. Those who are concerned about Akhlaaq are exceptionally few. In fact there are even such persons who spend considerable time to reform others while others are inconvenienced and annoyed by their behaviour and attitude. They remain unaware of the difficulty they are causing others by their actions and behaviour. They are completely uncaring about their own detestable condition. There are numerous such persons who will not venture to offer Salaam to a poor Muslim along tne road. On the contrary they wait in expectation of the Salaam to be initiated by the poor.

    Some people, along with Aqaaid, Amaal and Muamalaat are concerned about the reformation of Akhlaaq, hence they adopt ways and measures for the treatment of their morals. But, they have discarded Husne-Muasharat. In fact, they have excised it from the Deen. They assert that there is no relationship between the Shariah and social conduct with people.

    They therefore behave as they please, thinking that the Shariah has no say in such matters. Many people are pious with good qualities such as humility, but in Muasharat they are lacking. They are not concerned whether they annoy and inconvenience others by their behaviour. In most insignificant things they bring about difficulty and inconvenience to others. Their attention is totally diverted from little things which cause difficulty to others while in the Hadith there are numerous incidents narrated which show that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) cared for the little things just as much as he cared for important matters.

    [From 'Aadaabul Muaasharat' (Etiquettes of Social Life) by Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi Rahmatullahi Alayh]

    To be continued in next post, Insha-Allah...

    Saturday, April 09, 2005

    Harmful Effects of Sinning

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    I got the following from the book 'Pearls of Wisdom 2', Compiled by Mufti Saiful Islam, Bradford. Take a read:

    Harmful Effects of Sinning

    Every sin produces the following outcomes:

    1. Allah's (Subhanahu Wa Ta'aala) anger and displeasure.
    2. Shaytaan's triumph and delight.
    3. Moving further away from Jannah.
    4. Approaching Jahannam.
    5. Harming one's own soul and self.
    6. Stains appear and cover the heart with black spots.
    7. Pain and causing harm to the angels who accompany the individual.
    8. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) becomes grieved (because the Ummah's actions presented to him regularly).
    9. The ground upon which the sin had been committed will testify against the sinner.
    10. It causes great harm to the creation because through sins, Allah's (Subhanahu Wa Ta'aala) Mercy is reduced due to which even the lifeless creatures are badly affected.

    [From: 'Pearls of Wisdom 2', Compiled by Mufti Saiful Islam. Online Web Address:]

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    Monday, April 04, 2005

    A Beautiful Dua from 'Desire for the Aa-khirah' by Maulana Ashraf 'Ali Thanvi (Rah.)

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    Some time back, a sister asked for the Arabic to the dua that I have put up on one of the sideboxes on my blog (See 'Beautiful Dua' box). I've finally got around to scanning it from the kitab onto my computer and uploading it. I found this dua in the book "Desire for the Aa-khirah" by Maulana Ashraf 'Ali Thanvi (Rahmatullahi Alayh). See below:

    From 'Desire for the Aa-khirah' by Maulana Ashraf 'Ali Thanvi (Rah.)

    Ameen to the dua!

    EDIT: The above file is kind of blurry, so you may have found it difficult to read. Alhamdulillah, made the following files of the dua, which look awesome. (Jazakallahu khair ahsanal jaza!). Check them out:

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

    Friday, April 01, 2005

    Who's The Real Fool?


    Question: THE FIRST OF APRIL is regarded as a day to play practical jokes on people. Generally a person is told something which perturbs or even shocks him. However he shortly thereafter realizes that what he was told is not true but it was rather a joke. According to the Shariah is it permissible to play such practical jokes on people?

    Answer: This is a very pertinent question. Hence it is appropriate that it be dealt with in some detail. The aspect of playing practical jokes on the first of April is much more serious than what most people generally regard it to be.

    Firstly it must be understood well that to deliberately cause any inconvenience to anybody is totally Haraam and a grievous sin, irrespective of how apparently trivial and insignificant it may seem. This is applicable even if the inconvenience was caused merely in jest and in a light-hearted manner.

    Secondly, the practical jokes played on people involves lying. Speaking lies is also totally forbidden. Allah Ta’ala declares in the Glorious Qur’an:

    “The curse of Allah is upon the liars.”

    Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is reported to have said:

    “Destruction to the one who speaks lies in order to make people laugh. Woe unto him, woe unto him” (Abu Dawood).

    In another narration it is reported that:

    “a person is not a complete Believer until he forsakes lying in joking” (Kanzul Ummaal).


    Making people “April fools” also involves one in the serious sin of khiyanah (deception). Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is reported to have said:

    “It is a great khiyanah that you say to your brother something regarding which he believes you to be true but you are in fact lying to him” (Mishkaat).

    Another Hadith pronounces the declaration of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) thus: “The one who deceives us (Believers) is not from among us” (Mishkaat).

    These aspects alone make it apparent that engaging in “April fool” antics involves one in a host of major sins.


    Over and above this is the fact that playing tricks is a custom of the Kuffaar. According to the Funk and Wagnall's New Encyclopedia, playing tricks on the first of April “is a custom among European peoples” (vol.2; pg.263). The World Book Encyclopedia records that the observance of April Fools’ Day “began in France after the adoption of the reformed calendar by Charles IX in 1564” (vol. 1; pg. 557).

    Thus the aspect of tashabbuh (imitating) the kuffaar also becomes applicable. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is reported to have said: “He who imitates a nation, he is from amongst them” (Mishkaat).

    Hence when playing April fool tricks involves one in such serious sins, how can a person who claims to love Allah Ta’ala and His beloved Rasul (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) ever engage in it? If one has played such tricks in the past, one must sincerely repent and seek the pardon of those who were deceived in such a manner.

    [Source: Al Haadi (Madrasah Taaleemuddeen, South Africa)]

    Friday, February 18, 2005

    The 10th of Muharram

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    The following is an extract from an article by Mufti Taqi Usmani (db):

    The day of 'Ashurah'

    Although the month of Muharram is a sanctified month as a whole, yet, the 10th day of Muharram is the most sacred among all its days. The day is named 'Ashurah'.

    According to the Holy Companion Ibn 'Abbas (Radhiallaahu Ánhu). The Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam), when migrated to Madinah, found that the Jews of Madinah used to fast on the 10th day of Muharram. They said that it was the day on which the Holy Prophet Musa (Moses) (Alayhis salaam) and his followers crossed the Red Sea miraculously and the Pharaoh was drowned in its waters. On hearing this from the Jews, the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, "We are more closely rotated to Musa (Alayhis salaam) than you" and directed the Muslims to fast on the day of 'Ashura'. (Abu Dawood)

    It is also reported in a number of authentic traditions that in the beginning, fasting on the day of 'Ashura' was obligatory for the Muslims. It was later that the fasts of Ramadhan were made obligatory and the fast on the day of 'Ashura' was made optional. Sayyidina 'Aisha (Radhiallaahu Ánha) has said: "When the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) came to Madinah, he fasted on the day of 'Ashura' and directed the people to fast it. But when the fasts of Ramadhan were made obligatory, the obligation of fasting was confined to Ramadhan and the obligatory nature of the fast of 'Ashura' was abandoned. Whoever so desires should fast on it and any other who so likes can avoid fasting on it." (Sunan Abu Dawud)

    However, the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) used to fast on the day of 'Ashura' even after the fasting in Ramadhan was made obligatory. Abdullah ibn Musa (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) reports that the Holy Prophet Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) preferred the fast of 'Ashura' on the fasts of other days and preferred the fasts of Ramadhaan on the fast of 'Ashura'. (Bukhari and Muslim)

    In short, it is established through a number of authentic Hadiths that fasting on the day of 'Ashura' is Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) and makes one entitled to a great reward.

    According to another Hadith, it is more advisable that the fast of 'Ashura' should either be prefixed or suffixed by another fast. It means that one should fast two days: the 9th and 10th of Muharram or the 10th and 11th of it. The reason of this additional fast as mentioned by the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) is that the Jews used to fast on the day of 'Ashura alone, and the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) wanted to distinguish the Muslim way of fasting from that of Jews. Therefore, he advised the Muslims to add another fast to that of 'Ashura'.

    Some traditions signify another feature of the day of 'Ashura. According to these traditions one should be more generous to his family by providing more food to them on this day as compared to other days. These traditions are not very authentic according to the science of Hadith. Yet, some Scholars like Baihaqi and Ibn Hibban have accepted them as reliable.

    What is mentioned above is all that is supported through authentic sources about Ashura. However, there are some legends and misconceptions with regard to 'Ashura' that have managed to find their way into the minds of the ignorant, but have no support of authentic Islamic sources, some very common of them are these:

    - This is the day in which Adam (Alayhis salaam) was created.
    - This is the day in which Ibrahim was born.
    - This is the day in which Allah accepted the repentance of Sayyidina Adam
    (Alayhis salaam)
    - This is the day on which the Qiyaamah (doomsday) will take place.
    - Whoever takes bath in the day of 'Ashura' will never get ill.

    All these and other similar whims and fancies are totally baseless and the traditions referred to in this respect are not worthy of any credit.

    Some people take it as Sunnah to prepare a particular type of meal in the day of 'Ashura'. This practice, too, has no basis in the authentic Islamic sources.

    Some other people attribute the sanctity of 'Ashura' to the martyrdom of Sayyidina Husain (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) during his battle with the Syrian army. No doubt, the martyrdom of Sayyidina Husain (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) is one of the most tragic episodes of our history. Yet, the sanctity of 'Ashura' cannot be ascribed to this event for the simple reason that the sanctity of 'Ashura' was established during the days of the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) much earlier than the birth of Sayyidna Husain (Radhiallaahu Ánhu).

    On the contrary, it is one of the merits of Sayyidna Husain (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) that his martyrdom took place on the day of 'Ashura'.

    [Read more of the above article by Mufti Taqi Usmani: The Month of Muharram ]

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    Tuesday, February 15, 2005

    The Month Of Muharram

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    Take a read of the following beneficial article by Shaykh Maulana Saleem Dhorat hafizahulla, of Islamic Da'wah Academy, Leicester:


    by Shaykh Maulana Muhammed Saleem Dhorat

    Muharram, the first month of the Islamic calendar, is one of the four sacred months mentioned in the Glorious Qur’ãn:

    Lo! The number of the months with Allah is twelve months by Allah’s Ordinance in the day that He created the heavens and the earth. Four of them are sacred: that is the right religion. So wrong not yourselves in them...(9:36)

    The specification of these four sacred months is stated in a Hadeeth narrated by Aboo Bakrah radhiyallahu anhumaa that Rasoolullah sallallahu alayhi wasallam said, “Verily time has completed its cycle and returned to its original stage as it was on the day Allah created the heavens and the earth. The year consists of twelve months, four of which are sacred. Three of them occur consecutively; Zul Qa‘dah, Zul Hijjah and Muharram, (the fourth being) Rajab of Mudhar (named after the tribe of Mudhar as they used to respect this month) which occurs between Jamãdiul Ãkhir and Sha‘bãn.” (Bukhãri)

    From out of the four sacred months, Muharram has been blessed with certain specific virtues. The noble Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam said, “The best of fasts besides the month of Ramadhãn is the fasting of Allah’s Month of Muharram and the best of salãt besides the fardh (compulsory) salãt is the tahajjud salãt (performed after midnight before dawn).” (Muslim)

    In another Hadeeth, Ibne ‘Abbãs radhiyallahu anhu reports that the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wasallam said, "He who fasts on the day of Arafah (9th Zul Hijjah), his fast will be a compensation for the sins of two years and one who keeps a fast in the month of Muharram will receive the reward of thirty fasts for each fast." (Tabrãni, at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb)

    [Source: Islamic Da'wah Academy website; Read more of the above article: ]

    More Articles on/related to Muharram

  • Lessons of Aashura

  • Martyrdom

  • The Month of Muharram by Mufti Taqi Usmani.

  • And finally, I know I'm a bit late... better late than never I guess... but anyway, read the following: Valentine's Day

    That's all.

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    Thursday, January 27, 2005

    Tsunami Crisis - Masajid still left standing!!! (SubhanAllah!)

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    Below are pictures of just some of the Masajid that remained standing whilst all around them was a mass of chaos. Check out the pictures and see for yourself how Allah (SWT) saved these Masajid from destruction and be a witness of the truth so clearly evident:


    (The above pictures were originally on Yahoo!. They can also be found on the following sites with descriptions regarding each individual Masjid: and

    After seeing these pictures, can one still be blind to the truth of Islam? Can one deny the Power of Allah? Do we still fail to recognize our Creator? His Might, His Glory, His Power, His Splendour?

    "For the worst of living creatures in the sight of Allah are the deaf and the dumb - those who understand not." (Surah Al-Anfaal 8:22)

    "Even if We opened to them a gate from heaven and they were to keep on ascending therein, they would surely say: "Our eyes have been dazzled: Nay we have been bewitched." (Surah Al-Hijr 15:14-15)

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

    Tuesday, January 18, 2005

    Eid ul Adha

    Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    Insha-Allah, the majority of the Masajid over here (in Leicester) will be celebrating Eid on Thursday 20th January 2005. But in any case, whichever day you are celebrating it, Eid Mubarak! Hope you have a wonderful day. Kindly remember the Muslims all over the world in your duas.

    Below is part of an article by Shaykh Maulana Saleem Dhorat on Eid ul Adha. Take a few minutes of your time to read it, Insh-Allah:


    By Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat

    First Ten Days of Zul Hijjah

    Ibne Abbaas radhiyallahu anhumaa relates that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam said:

    "Good deeds performed on other days are not superior to those performed on these (first ten days of Zul Hijjah)." The companions radhiyallahu anhum inquired: "Not even Jihaad?" He replied: "Not even Jihaad, except for that person who goes out putting himself and his wealth in danger and does not return with anything." (Bukhaari)

    Night of 'Eed

    The nights of both ‘Eeds are described in the hadeeth as amongst the great and sacred nights in the Muslim calendar. To remain awake on the nights of ‘Eed and perform ibaadah is a source of great virtue and reward.

    Mu'aaz Ibne Jabal radhiyallahu anhu relates that Rasoolullah sallallahu alayhi wasallam said:

    "Jannah is waajib (incumbent) for those who stay awake with the intention of making ibaadah on the following nights: 8th & 9th, the night of 'Eedul Adh‘haa (10th of Zul Hijjah), the night of ‘Eedul Fitr and the night of the 15th of Sha'baan." (Targheeb)


    Qurbaani is a practice commanded by Allah:
    so turn in prayer towards your Lord and sacrifice (animals). (108:2)

    Aa'ishah radhiyallahu anhaa said:

    "There is nothing more dearer to Allah during the days of Qurbaani than the sacrificing of animals. The sacrificed animal shall come on the Day of Judgement with its horns, hair and hooves (to be weighed). The sacrifice is accepted by Allah before the blood reaches the ground. Therefore sacrifice with an open heart." (Tirmizi, Ibne Majah)

    Sunnahs on the Day of ‘Eed

    1. To rise early.
    2. To clean the teeth with miswaak.
    3. To have a masnoon bath.
    4. To dress in one's best garments in an Islaamic manner.
    5. To use ‘Itr
    6. To avoid eating before ‘Eed Salaat
    7. To go early for ‘Eed Salaat.
    8. To go walking for ‘Eed Salaat.
    9. To read the Takbiraat of Tashreeq in a loud voice while going for ‘Eed Salaat.
    10. To use different routes to and from the place of ‘Eed Salaat.
    11. To eat the meat of Qurbaani (sacrifice) of ones own offering, after the ‘Eedul Adh‘haa salaat.

    Mas'alah: It is haraam to fast on the 10th, 11th, 12th, and 13th Zul Hijjah, (i.e. ‘Eed day and three days after) and the day of ‘Eedul Fitr.

    (Click here for the full article and to learn about the method of performing Eid Salaat.)

    Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.