The Muslim Woman and Herself

She keeps company with righteous people and joins religious gatherings

In order to attain this high status, the Muslim woman chooses righteous, Allah-fearing friends, who will be true friends and offer sincere advice, and will not betray her in word or deed. Good friends have a great influence in keeping a Muslim woman on the Straight Path, and helping her to develop good habits and refined characteristics. A good friend – in most cases – mirrors one’s behaviour and attitudes:

  • “Do not ask about a man: ask about his friends, / for every friend follows his friends.”47
  • Mixing with decent people is an indication of one’s good lineage and noble aims in life:
  • “By mixing with noble people you become one of them,/ so you should never regard anyone else as a friend.”48
  • So it is as essential to choose good friends as it is to avoid doing evil:
  • “If you mix with people, make friends with the best of them,/ do not make friends with the worst of them lest you become like them.”49
The Muslim woman is keen to attend gatherings where there is discussion of Islam and the greatness of its teachings regarding the individual, family and society, and where those present think of the power of Almighty Allah (SWT) and His bountiful blessings to His creation, and encourage one another to obey His commandments, heed His prohibitions and seek refuge with Him. In such gatherings, hearts are softened, souls are purified, and a person’s whole being is filled with the joy of faith.
  • Abdullah ibn Rawahah (RAA), whenever he met one of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH), used to say, “Come, let us believe in our Lord for a while.” When the Prophet (PBUH) heard about this, he said, “May Allah have mercy on Ibn Rawahah, for he loves the gatherings that the angels feel proud to attend.”50
  • The rightly-guided khalifah `Umar al-Faruq (RAA) used to make the effort to take a regular break from his many duties and the burden of his position as ruler. He would take the hand of one or two men and say, “Come on, let us go and increase our faith,” then they would remember Allah (SWT).51 Even `Umar (RAA), who was so righteous and performed so many acts of worship, felt the need to purify his soul from time to time. He would remove himself for a while from the cares and worries of life, to refresh his soul and cleanse his heart.
  • Mu`adh ibn Jabal (RAA) would often say to his companions, when they were walking, “Let us sit down and believe for a while.”52
The Muslim is responsible for strengthening his soul and purifying his heart. He must always push himself to attain a higher level, and guard against slipping down: ( By the Soul, and the proportion and order given to it; and by its enlightenment as to its wrong and its right – truly he succeeds that purifies it, and he fails that corrupts it!) (Qur’an 91:7-10)
 
So the Muslim woman is required to choose with care the best friends and attend the best gatherings, so that she will be in an environment which will increase her faith and taqwa:(And keep your soul content with those who call on their Lord morning and evening, seeking His Face; and let not your eyes pass beyond them, seeking the pomp and glitter of this Life; nor obey any whose heart We have permitted to neglect the remembrance of Us, one who follows his own desires, whose case has gone beyond all bounds.) (Qur’an 18: 28)
47. See ‘Adiyy ibn Zayd al-‘Ibadi by the author, 172.
48. Anonymous.
49. See ‘Adiyy ibn Zayd al-‘Ibadi by the author, 172.
50. Reported by Ahmad (3/265) with a hasan isnad.
51. Hayat al-Sahabah, 3/329.
52. Ibid.
[Taken from “The Ideal Muslimah – The True Islamic Personality of the Muslim Woman as Defined in the Quran and the Sunnah” by Dr. Muhammad Ali Al-Hashimi]

Don’t Be Sad

In dedication to Ah Ying

Do not be sad: for Allah defends you and the angels ask forgiveness for you; The believers share with you their supplications in every prayer; The Quran is replete with good promises; And above all is the mercy of He Who is the Most Merciful.

Do not be sad: the good deed is increased so that its value is multiplied tenfold or seven hundred fold or even much, much more.  Meanwhile, the evil deed is valued without increase or multiplication, and your Lord can forgive even that.  How many times do we witness Allah’s generosity, generosity that is unmatched by any! 

Do not be sad: you have the ability to supplicate to Allah and thus excel at humbling yourself at the doorstep of the King of kings.  You have the blessed last third of the night to invoke Allah and to rub your head upon the ground in prostration.

Do not be sad: Allah has created for you the earth and what is in it.  He has caused gardens of beauty to grow, filling them with many kinds of plants and flowers in pairs, both male and female.  And He has made tall palm trees, shining stars, forests, rivers and streams.

Do not be sad: for do you not see how the black clouds disperse and the violent winds subside?  Your hardships will be followed by comfort and your future is bright.   

An Arab poet said:

“Some eyes are restless while other are in sleep, In meditating that which may or may not occur, So leave worrying as much as possible, As carrying the burdens of anxiety is madness, There is your Lord, who provided you with solutions to yesterday, And He will similarly provide for what is to come tomorrow.”

Another said:

“Let events flow in their predestined path, And do not sleep except with a clear mind, Between the period of the blinking of the eye and its opening, Allah changes things from one state to another.”

فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا

إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا

“How wonderful is the affairs of the believer!  His affairs in their entirety are good for him…”

[Excerpts taken from: “Don’t Be Sad” by ‘Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni]

Gaza – A Test for the Believers by Dr. Ibrahim Dremali

This is a powerful Khutbah that reminds the believers that through Allah’s great mercy, He puts us through hardships in order to test us, to distinguish who the true believers are, and to purify us. 

Our Ummah is going through a lot of trials and tribulations at the present time, but the Sheikh gives examples of some of the greatest trials in the past that resulted in victory.  During the time of Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahu Allah), the Muslim Ummah went through severe harships.  The Tatars invaded the Muslim countries, killing everybody, from men, women, soldiers, children, animals… making piles of bodies.  But those killers, those Tatars, those Mongolians entered Islam after that and Islam became victorious with those people ya Allah.  Look at the number of Muslims in China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, and the surrounding areas!  The Mongolians carried Islam there.  Subhan’Allah.  

The situation in Gaza right now is inhumane in a way that is beyond belief.  But there is hope, a light, something that will come sooner or later.  The Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) swore that Islam would prevail and be victorious, bringing peace to the earth.  May Allah SWT reparate Ghazzah, and grant victory to them, and Muslims all around the world.  Ameen Ya Rabb!

Don’t ever lose hope.  Hasbi Allah wa naimal wakeel – Allah is sufficient for us and the best of Guardians!

Reflections of the Hijra

With the start of the Islamic new year a few weeks ago, there are many bounties and lessons to be reflected on.    Although we do not take the Islamic New Year as a holiday or celebrate it, we should reflect on what led to the development of the Islamic Calendar – which is the greatest event during the prophethood of Rasulullah (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) – The HIJRA.  It is so important in many aspects, and today we can see the fruits of this major event and efforts of the Prophet, the Sahaba, and the Ansar – as there are Muslims literally in every corner of the earth united under the banner of La ilaha illa Allah.
 
It is just as important to instill these lessons in our children, who will be our future leaders in Islam.  With the state of our Ummah now, and at the same time with how much Islam is growing, it is crucial that we remember the great efforts taken to unite this Ummah, and to try and renew these efforts.  As I tried to convey these points to my son, I wrote a poem for children about the Hijra that I wanted to share.
 
Al-Hijra
A Celebration of Light and Unity
 
My hero, my Prophet, I strive to be like him
He changed the entire Ummah, with the migration
He travelled across the desert, from Makkah to Yathrib
In search for peace and unity, for our Ummah this he did
 
The only thing he fought for, and wanted to preserve
Was the religion of al-Islam, so Allah alone we could serve 
For 13 years he taught Tawheed, until the hearts were firm
With knowing Allah is the Only God, to worship, love and yearn
 
The time had come to leave Makkah, under Allah’s command
Then the Prophet and his followers, migrated to a new land
A place where they could establish, the laws set by Allah
The Ummah was small but united, in Madinah al-Munawarrah
 
The migrants went with happiness, leaving all their wealth behind
Being with the Prophet, was the only thing on their mind
The Ansar or the “helpers”, welcomed the Prophet to their land
To him they pledged allegiance, for Islam they took a stand
 
They all sang songs of welcome – Men, women, and the youth,
For Islam brought to humanity – Justice, Peace and Truth
And from that trip in 622, Islam spread far and near
To every corner on the earth, to every hemisphere
 
Muslims standing together, with no cultural boundaries
It doesn’t matter if you’re black or white, Arab or Chinese
The only thing that unites us, so beautiful and strong
Is the belief in the Shahadatain, and you cannot go wrong
 
The year is now 1429, after the Hijri year
And still we continue to grow in size – O Muslims listen here
Smile for this Ummah – Be proud of our Deen
The stronger we will stand, and more united we will be
 
Here’s a special message from our family
We’re thankful for the Hijra, a celebration of light and unity!

~ Um Yusuf as-Siddiq