Friday morning…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

As I took out the trash this morning I was reminded of a little story … The Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was seen by one of his companions while taking out the trash.  His companion was alarmed and said to the Prophet: Oh Messenger of God, you are taking out the trash!  The Prophet replied: who should I have take out the trash, the mother of the believers?

Following the Sunnah is really not that difficult… Blessed Jumuah!

Ramadhan Reminders: Take a chill pill… (it won’t break your fast)

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

Ramadhan is not just about depriving yourself of food and drink. Remember to cool down, mind your language and your temper, it’s very easy to get emotional and worked up on an empty stomach but it’s part of the test.  Don’t sacrifice your fast to prove a point. Over look the faults of others and Insha Allah your faults will be over looked too.

…and remember… “The deeds most loved by Allah are those done regularly, even if they are small.”

Ramadan Reminders: What Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) said…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

The best reminder yet, a Ramadhan sermon by Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W):

“O People! Indeed ahead of you is the blessed month of Allah. A month of blessing, mercy and forgiveness. A month which with Allah is the best of months. Its days, the best of days, its nights, the best of nights, and its hours, the best of hours. It is the month which invites you to be the guests of Allah and invites you to be one of those near to Him. Each breath you take glorifies him; your sleep is worship, your deeds are accepted and your supplications are answered. So, ask Allah, your Lord; to give you a sound body and an enlightened heart so you may be able to fast and recite his book, for only he is unhappy who is devoid of Allah’s forgiveness during this great month.

Remember the hunger and thirst of the day of Qiyamah (Judgement) with your hunger and thirst; give alms to the needy and poor, honour your old, show kindness to the young ones, maintain relations with your blood relations; guard your tongues, close your eyes to that which is not permissible for your sight, close your ears to that which is forbidden to hear, show compassion to the orphans of people, so compassion may be shown to your orphans. Repent to Allah for your sins and raise your hands in dua during these times, for they are the best of times and Allah looks towards his creatures with kindness, replying to them during the hours and granting their needs if he is asked …

“O People! Indeed your souls are dependant on your deeds, free it with Istighfar (repentance) lighten its loads by long prostrations; and know that Allah swears by his might: That there is no punishment for the one who prays and prostrates and he shall have no fear of the fire on the day when man stands before the Lord of the worlds.

“O People! One who gives Iftaar to a fasting person during this month will be like one who has freed someone and his past sins will be forgiven. Some of the people who were there then asked the Prophet (s): “Not all of us are able to invite those who are fasting?”

The Prophet replied: “Allah gives this reward even if the Iftaar (meal) is a drink of water.” “One who has good morals (Akhlaq) during this month will be able to pass the ‘Siraat’ … on the day that feet will slip … “One who covers the faults of others will benefit in that Allah will curb His anger on the day of Judgement … “As for one who honour an orphan; Allah will honour him on the day of judgement, “And for the one who spreads his kindness, Allah will spread His mercy over him on the day of Judgement. “As for the one who cuts the ties of relation; Allah will cut His mercy from him … “Who so ever performs a recommended prayer in this month Allah will keep the fire of Hell away from him … “Whoever performs an obligatory prayer Allah will reward him with seventy prayers [worth] in this month. “And who so ever prays a lot during this month will have his load lightened on the day of measure. “He who recites one verse of the Holy Quran will be given the rewards of reciting the whole Quran during other months.

“O People! Indeed during this month the doors of heaven are open, therefore ask Allah not to close them for you; The doors of hell are closed, so ask Allah to keep them closed for you. During this month Shaytan (Satan) is imprisoned so ask your Lord not to let him have power over you.”

May we All benefit from this month Insha Allah!

Ramadhaan Reminders: Dinner Parties & Iftaar…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

Many people use the following Hadith to justify and encourage Dinner/Iftaar parties during the month of Ramadhaan:

“Whoever gives food to a fasting person with which to break his fast, will have a reward equal to his, without it detracting in the slightest from the reward of the fasting person” – Tirmidhi.

I think it’s important to see the wisdom behind such inspiration and not to abuse it. Dinner/Iftaar parties can often distract people from the real virtues of Ramadhaan and may even facilitate and encourage Back-biting, gossip, etc. The key is to avoid any situation that would distract you from attaining the pleasure of Allah.

Charity is very closely associated with the month of Ramadhaan and some scholars are of the opinion that the above Hadith relates to the food/Iftaar provided to the poor and needy. I’m not in any way implying that providing Iftaar to people who can afford it won’t earn you the reward but what I am saying is make sure the Dinner/Iftaar is done for the right reasons and in the right environment. Invite a different person over for dinner everyday instead of hosting a Dinner/Iftaar party for a huge group of people in one sitting.

May Allah allow us to benefit from this auspicious month…

Taking Care Of Your Children Through Good Deeds…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

Many of you might be familiar with the story of Musa (A.S) and His encounter with Al-Khidr. For anyone who isn’t, watch this space and Insha Allah I will summarise the story at a later time. There were 3 events that took place on this journey, in summary, they were:

  1. Al-Khidr made a hole in the boat of the men that assisted them to cross the sea
  2. Al-Khidr killed a child
  3. Al-Khidr reinforced a broken wall in a town whose people were selfish and inhospitable
I’d like to focus on the 3rd event that took place as there is a great lesson to be learnt.  Beneath the wall lay a treasure that belonged to 2 orphans, so in order to protect the treasure from the people of the town, Al-Khidr fixed the wall. It was revealed that the reason he was ordered to fix the wall for the orphans was because their father was a righteous man.
“And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the city, and there was beneath it a treasure belonging to them, and their father was a righteous man; so your Lord desired that they should attain their maturity and take out their treasure, a mercy from your Lord, and I did not do it of my own accord. This is the significance of that with which you could not have patience.” (Surah al-Kahf)
Sa`id bin Jubayr narrated from Ibn `Abbas: “They were taken care of because their father was a righteous man, although it is not stated that they themselves were righteous.”

In this is a great lesson for parents today. Uphold the commandments of Allah and Allah will take care of your children whether you are with them or not.

Remembering Allah: Alhamdulillah…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

Make a habit if saying Alhamdulillah and acknowledge Allah in everything you do. It’s very easy to forget and to neglect this. Acknowledging Allah as often as possible will save you from becoming selfish, self-centered and proud.

…and remember… “The deeds most loved by Allah are those done regularly, even if they are small.”

Ramadhaan Preps: Clear up the clutter…

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

The month of Ramadhaan is fast approaching and with only a few days to go, it’s time to consider a few Lifestyle Optimisation Strategies. Clear up the clutter now so you can take advantage of every opportunity during the month of Ramadhaan.

  • Make up previous year’s missed fasts / Pay Fidyah, etc. depending on your circumstances
  • Read Quran – if possible, complete your current recitation and begin a new one in the month of Ramadhaan
  • Get a good sleep cycle going so you can handle waking up for Suhoor/Sehri
  • Go easy on socialising and social media so you can avoid unnecessary talk/chat, etc
  • Limit the amount of Entertainment/Television/Gaming, etc
  • Plan your meals early – Ramadhaan is not just about food but since we need to eat and drink, plan your menu in advance and make all necessary preparations so you don’t waste time in the kitchen.
  • Shop now – get your shopping done early, stock up on groceries and your Eid clothes too so you’re not frequenting the shops when you can be benefiting from  the virtue of this auspicious month.
It’s been a year since the last Ramadhaan, take this opportunity to get into the Ramadhaan zone so you don’t waste valuable time trying to find your feet. Prepare early, prepare well and get ready for the month of Mercy.
May Allah extend our lives so we may witness the month of Ramadhaan Insha Allah.