The Advice

I am reading a small booklet by one of our great scholars, Muwaffaq ad-Din Ibn Qudama Al-Maqdisi, better known as Ibn Qudama.  The title of this booklet is called Al-Wasiyyah (The Advice) and it is the kind of writing so typical of our great scholars (may Allah have mercy on them all).  A few statements and paragraphs when read slowly and contemplated on, carry such a deep and beautiful meaning.  One can really appreciate the magnitude and depth of their words, as they spread the fruits of their wisdom and Taqwa.  It reminds me of the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam), where there was so much power and meaning behind what seemed to be a simple statement Subhan’Allah.

I had to share with you all just a few paragraphs of this work. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did. At the least I found quite a few great reminders in it, where we can remind ourselves, our kids, family, students, and those around us.  I just love the wording and can only imagine how much more beautiful it is read in the original Arabic language.  May Allah help us all to learn Arabic for His sake; Ameen.

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Excerpts from Al-Wasiya
The Advice of the esteemed scholar Ibn Qudama al-Maqdisi
Section I: Hastening to Act

I say, and Allah is enough for us, and an excellent guardian.  The world is an opportunity, so gain benefit from it.  Know, may Allah have mercy on you – that this world is the field whose harvest is the next world, the market where it is gained, and the place where provision and profitable goods are obtained.  In it the forerunners emerge, the Godfearing win, the true are successful, those who work reap profits and the falsifiers lose.

This abode is the place of the hopes of the people of the Garden, and the people of the Fire.

Allah, exhalted is He, says about the people of the fire,

They will shout in it, ‘Our Lord, take us out and we will act rightly, differently from the way we used to act.’  ” (35:37)

He, exhalted is He, says,

If only you can see when they are standing before the fire and saying, ‘If only we could be sent back again, we would not deny the signs of our Lord and we would be among the believers.’ ” (6:27)

It is related that Ibn Masood said,

The souls of the martyrs are like green birds which go about in Paradise wherever they wish and return to the lamps hanging from the Throne.  When they are like that, your Lord will look at them and say, ‘My slaves, ask Me for what you wish,’ and they will answer, ‘Our Lord, we ask you to return our souls to our bodies, and then return us to the world to be killed again.’  When He sees that they do not ask for anything else but that, they are left.” (Muslim)

Know my brother, may Allah have mercy on you, that Allah, exhalted as He, knows that they will ask that and yet they will not be returned to this world.  Rather, so that they become desirous of it He wants to inform the believers in this world that in the Garden their wish will be to be killed in His cause.

Ibrahim At-Taymi (one of the great Imams and Jurists in Kufa) said, I imagined myself in the Garden eating from its fruit, embracing its virgins, and enjoying its bliss, and then I asked myself, “My self, what do you desire?”  It replied, “I want to return to the world to do more of the deeds by which I attained this.”  Then I imagined myself in hell burning with its fire, gulping down its hot water and eating its bitter fruit.  I asked myself, “What do you desire?”  It answered, “To return to the world and perform actions by which I can deliver myself from this.”  So I told myself, “My self, you have what you wished, so ACT!”

Know, may Allah have mercy on you, that in the graves people wish that they can say a single glorification of Allah to increase their good actions, or to repent some of their bad actions, or perform a single rakah to elevate their degree.

If you were to compare this life to unending eternity, you would know that every breath is equal to more than a trillion years in bliss beyond number, or the opposite of that.  Something like this is priceless.

So do not squander the gems of your precious life doing nothing, and do not waste them without achieving recompense.  Strive to take no breath except in an act of obedience or an act by which you draw near to Him.  It would sadden you to lose one of the gems of this world after possessing it.  Indeed, if you were to lose a dinar, it would trouble you, yet you waste your hours and minutes without grieving for your life that is passing by without recompense!

Make your heart reflect on the blessings of Allah for which you should be thankful, on your wrongdoing so that you ask forgiveness for it, on your neglect so that you repent, on the creations of Allah and His wisdom, so that you recognize His immensity and wisdom, on what is before you so you seek to prepare for it, or on the judgment respecting something you need to learn.

Moisten your tongue constantly with remembrance of Allah, supplication to Him, asking for His forgiveness, reciting the Quran, reading or teaching knowledge, commanding what is right and forbidding what is wrong, or in putting things right between people.

Occupy your limbs with acts of obedience and let the most important of them be performing the obligatory prayers in their times in the most complete form – and then in what will be of benefit to people.  The best of that is what will be beneficial to their deen, like teaching people deen and guiding them to the Straight Path.

Reflections

Assalamu Alaikum

Qadr of Allah my grandfather on my father’s side just passed away at the age of 96.  He lived in in the Guangzhou Province in Southern China, in a very poor village with most of my father’s side of the family living there as well.  When I went to China a few summers ago, I was going to meet him for the first time.  Qadr of Allah I never made it to Guangzhou – I was extra sad because this is also where the first Masjid in China was built by Saad ibn Abi Waqqas (radiy Allahu anhu) and I really wanted to visit it with my father.  Next time Insha’Allah.

When I phoned my father to ask how he was doing, he told me he would be flying to China in 2 weeks for the burial.  When I asked why they were waiting 2 weeks to bury him, he replied, they had to look at the calendar for the best day (there are “good luck days” and “bad luck days” to perform certain actions like getting married, moving, burying a deceased, etc), and then everyone attending would go and make certain ritual prayers to the gods.  Subhan’Allah – these are but 2 common cultural traditions, totally based on shirk, that I grew up with almost ALL my life.  By Allah’s favor He has taken me far away from it to the point where I even forgot about them.  So when I was reminded about it from my father, it hit me like a ton of bricks.  I used to live and follow these types of beliefs as if they were mere instructions in a manual, without even thinking twice about them. without even thinking that anything was even wrong with it.  Now Alhamdulillah I realize the magnitude of these baseless, DARK practices, and the great harm in them.  On one hand I was so grateful to reflect on where I was and how Allah SWT took me from that darkness into light, and how Allah SWT has guided me to Tawheed, for my son and myself Alhamdulillah.  Then on the other hand I listened to my father speaking and became very sad, because I understood my family’s mentality very well as I was raised by them with the same exact mentality.

I understood how my family sees there is nothing wrong with these things, as they are just cultural traditions.  I understand and greatly appreciate how Allah freed me from those shackles and guided me to Islam.  As much as I am thankful, I am also sad that my family is still in that state of darkness.  Hediya is from Allah SWT, and He will guide only those whom He wills.  I will not stop making du’aa for them and trying with them, as anyone can be guided at any moment if Allah wills – and I do not question His Qadr either way.  But this whole incident was a huge reminder to me on how temporary life is in this Dunya.  The means to Jannah are spelled out for us and through His mercy we can attain it, yet there are so many internal and external deterrances that distract us from our purpose here.  We fight so many demons and weaknesses on a daily basis, and without Allah’s mercy we would be losers.  Allah SWT gives us so many favors.  Although I am grateful for them, I personally feel I fall short in many ways and can do much more to show my appreciation.  May Allah SWT help us all to thank Him, remember Him and worship Him in the best way.  Subhan’Allah things can change in a person’s life in a split second, but when the angel of death comes, there is no turning back.  Whatever we have done in this life will earn us punishment or reward by His mercy, but our ending is what counts.  Death is always a reminder especially for the believers, and this was particularly a big reminder for me, as I reflected on my family and my personal path, by Allah’s will.  May Allah keep us all firm on the Deen and help us all to die in a state of Islam, leaving this Dunya with a good ending.  Please make du’aa for me and all of our Ummah.  Please, also make a du’aa for my family’s guidance Insha’Allah, as well as all of our families.  You are all in my du’aa as well.

Jazaka Allah Khayran

What I Love About My Muslim Wife

Taken from sistersmagazine

Brothers from different walks of life tell us what they love most about their wives – may Allah reward them with good!
 
“What I love about my wife” 
How would life be without my wife? 
The emptiness, 
the strife, 
Would all be rife 
I care not to think of that plight amiss 
So much I love ’bout her, too long is the list. 
Her faith in her Lord and her pure and dear heart 
Tis the reason I married her, but that’s just the start 
Beauty pervades her, in every way and thought 
These are blessings so countless … can never be bought 
Her smile, her gentle face, the sparkle in her eyes 
When our kids are causing havoc, logic defies 
So hard-working, striving to make her family content 
Yearning foremost to make her Lord happy 
Reasons enough for a singler’s lament 
Desire and doing in her life is her worth 
Allaah upon us Your Mercy shower,
And increase our blessed state 
And Your Mercy enshroud her when she’s raised from this earth 
So when you asked us to write “what you love about your wife” 
That blessings so countless, I dare not think of life 
And after so many years our love still gets stronger 
Allaah I cannot thank you enough for all that you have given me 
Just allow me to be with her in Jannah 
And make our bond stronger. 
Ameen
By Abu Abdillah 
34yrs old from London, UK

What do I love about my Muslim wife?
Everything. My wife is the closet partner and friend I’ve ever had. She is the ‘backbone’ of our household. After a very long day at work, it is very comforting to come home and just be with my wife (& the screaming kids). She is my ‘treasure box’ and the ONLY key is with me, alhamdulillah. The most satisfying thing to hear from my wife is to hear how much she loves me, which builds further the bond between us.
Should I be allowed to re-run this life again, surely this would be the one thing I would not change.
Tansar Hussain, UK
 
What I love about my Muslim wife is her ability to adapt to different
situations and surroundings. It’s not easy for women who marry and move away
from home, having to start all over again, leaving behind their family and
friends….its something us men take for granted!
Imran
 
 
“My wife, masha Allah, loves to learn about Islam and takes time out of her busy schedule to read authentic Islamic books on issues of Tawheed, ‘Aqeedah, Islamic manners etc… My wife does her best to implement Islam in our family life and does not just practise Islam when it is easy to but also when it gets difficult alhumdulillah.  She is very patient with me when I am angry in trying to calm me down and does not leave me until she has found a way to please me. She is playful and likes to joke around once in a while and lightens the mood when life gets stressful.  My wife is very particular about the house and works very hard to keep it as clean as possible, masha Allah.  I find her to be a very good mother attentive and loving to her kids’ needs as well as in disciplining them when it is needed.  She is careful to thank me for every good that I do (i.e. provide money for groceries and needs, take her out on a date etc) – she has even expressed guilt at forgetting to say thank you to me after she bought groceries! 
Abu Taimyyah, Age 37, United States
 
Allah is so Merciful and Gracious that if I tried to count the blessing that my Lord has bestowed upon me I would not be able to do, I just might lose my fingers! And one of those blessing is my wife. All praise is for Allah and no one else. In His infinite wisdom he gave me a prize, a jewel, the blessing of a righteous wife, masha Allah. She has this unconditional love that is tremendous and beautiful, Allahu akbar! We have six children and this August, insha Allah, it will be eleven years that we have been married and the only thing I would trade her for is Jannah. I love my wife ‘big much’. I ask Allah to keep us together until He calls us back to him, ameen. I ask Allah to bless those Muslim marriages out there with love and goodness from His Rahma, ameen.
Amir Abu Hudhayfah Ali-Dorsey, East Orange NJ, Masjid Rahmah

 
Her patience – especially with me
Her support – when others would have given up
Her understanding
Her wisdom
Her strength
Her kindness
And I thank Allah that we are together and may He keep us that way.
Anonymous Brother

Men and Women in Islam: Both Equal and Complementary

Equality of Men and Woman in Islam, and their complementary nature to one another

In one sense, equality between men and women is possible and reasonable because they are both human, with similar souls, brains, hearts, lungs, limbs, etc. In another sense, equality between men and women is impossible and an absurdity due to their natural differences in physical, mental, emotional and psychological qualities, inclinations and abilities. Between these two we must tread to illuminate how they are equal, and how they are complimentary.

If total equality between all members of the same gender is impossible due to natural differences in strengths and other qualities, regardless of whether the gender is masculine or feminine, then it is definitely impossible between the two genders. Allah, the Exalted and Almighty, says in the Glorious Qur’an:

(And of everything We have created pairs, that you may remember (the Grace of Allah).)

[51:49]

Even atoms exhibit this dual quality with inter-related and complementary roles played by the positive and negative particles and ions, yet each is an integral part of the whole system of the so called binary basis of all life. Most living beings have male and female sexes for reproduction. As the science of biology teaches us, all mammals have similar traits in their molecular and glandular structures that determine differences in gender. These basic physical, psychological and sexual traits have their definite effects on other spheres of life.

It is natural for a man to need and find fulfillment with a woman and for a woman with a man, since they are created one from the other and for one another. They both are inseparably bound to each other. Neither can they find fulfillment except when in the company of the other as legal and honorable mate and spouse, as Allah (The Almighty) says in His Majestic Book, the Qur’an, mentioned in the two verses cited in the preface:

(O Mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the Sight of Allah is the believer who has Taqwa (piety and righteousness). Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.)

[49:13]

In many instances Islam treats women as equals to men. Some of them are given below. In the coming sections we will expand on these themes in various contexts throughout the book.

1) Equality in Basic Humanity

Both the male and the female are equal in terms of their humanity. Islam does not categorize women, for instance, as the source of evil in the world for some & original sin that caused Adam (Peace be Upon Him) to be dismissed from Paradise, or to be the cause of evil in the world by setting loose a Pandora’s box of vices, as some other religious doctrines and fables teach.

Allah, the Exalted and Almighty, states in the Glorious Qur’an:

(O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from him (Adam) He created his wife (Eve), and from them both He created many men and women…)

[4:1]

Allah also states in the Glorious Qur’an:

(Does man think that he will be left neglected without being punished or rewarded for the obligatory duties enjoined by his Lord (Allah) on him? Was he not a mixed male and female discharge of semen pouring forth? Then he became a clot; then (Allah) shaped and fashioned (him) in due proportion, and made him into two sexes, male and female. Is He not able to raise to life those who are dead?)

[75:36-40]

Allah illustrated in the verses that He created both sexes from one single source. There is no difference between the two sexes in terms of qualifications in humanity, and each complements the other as the two genders of the species. Islam has abolished and abrogated all the previous unjust laws that demoted women as inferior in quality and nature. The Prophet of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said:

Verily, women are the twin halves of men.

[Abu Dawood #234 , Tirmidhi #113 & others]

2) Equality in Religious Obligations

Equal religious duties and rituals are required from both women and men. Testimony of Faith (Shahaadah), Prayer (Salah), Obligatory Charity (Zakah), Fasting (Saum), and Pilgrimage (Hajj) are equally required of both genders. In some cases the requirements are a bit easier on women to alleviate their special cases of hardship. For instance, in consideration of her health and physical condition, menstruating women or a woman in the state of postnatal bleeding and recuperation are absolved from the duty of prayers and fasting. She is required to make up the days of fasting missed due to menses and postnatal bleeding, but not her prayers, as that would be too burdensome.

3) Equality in Rewards and Punishments

Both males and females have similar rewards for obedience and penalties for disobedience in this world and the Hereafter. As stated by Allah in the Glorious Qur’an:

(Whoever does righteous acts, whether male or female, while he is a believer, verily, to him We will give a good life, and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do.)

[16:97]

And the Lord Most Majestic says:

(Surely for men who submit to Allah and for women who submit to Allah, for believing men and for believing women, for devout men and devout women, for truthful men and truthful women, for steadfast men and steadfast women, for humble men and humble women, for charitable men and charitable women, for fasting men and fasting women, for men who guard their chastity and women who guard their chastity, for men who remember Allah much and for women who remember Allah much, for all of them Allah has prepared forgiveness and a mighty reward.)

[33:35]

4) Equality in Preservation of Honor and Nobility

Women have the same moral obligations and are entitled to the same general rights as men in guarding chastity, integrity and personal honor and respect, etc. No double standards are allowed. For instance, those who falsely accuse a chaste woman of adultery or fornication are publicly punished, just as if a man is slandered. Allah, the Exalted, states in the Glorious Qur’an:

(And those who accuse chaste women, and produce not four witnesses, flog them with eighty lashes, and reject their testimony forever. Indeed, they are those who are disobedient to Allah.)

[24:4]

5) Equality in Financial Dealings and Property Ownership

Women are equally qualified and allowed to engage in financial dealings and property ownership. According to Islamic law women can own, buy, sell and undertake any financial transaction without the need for guardianship, and without any restrictions or limitations – a situation unheard of in many societies until modern times.

6) Best of you is the Best to his Womenfolk

Islam indicates that a man who honors, respects and deals with women justly and integrally, possesses a healthy and righteous personality, whereas a man who mistreats them is an unrighteous and unrespectable man. The Prophet of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said:

The most complete believer is the best in character, and the best of you is the best to his womenfolk.

[Tirmidhi #1162 and verified]

7) Equality in Education and Cultivation

Islam entitles women to the same rights as men in terms of education and cultivation. The Prophet of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said, as reported and authenticated by the scholars of prophetic traditions:

Seeking knowledge is compulsory for each and every Muslim (i.e. both male and female).

[Ibn Majah #224 al-Baihaqi and verified]

Muslim scholars collectively agreed that the word Muslim when used in revealed scriptures includes both male and female, as we indicated in parenthesis. Thus, Islam entitles women to the same right of education in order to understand the religious and social obligations, and obligated them both to raise their children in the best manner, in accordance with the right Islamic guidance. Of course women have certain obligations in bringing up their children that are commensurate to their abilities and men have complementary obligations to finance, protect and maintain according to their added responsibilities in the family unit.

The Prophet (Peace be Upon Him) said:

Whoever takes care of two girls until they reach puberty, he and I will come on the Day of Resurrection like this.” The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) then joined his fingers to illustrate this.

[Muslim #2631]

About female slave girls, the Prophet of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said:

Whoever has a female child with him (under his guardianship from slavery), and trains her in the best behavior, and teaches her well, and then frees and marries her, will have a double reward.

[Bukhari #97 & Muslim #154 ]

8) Equality in Social Responsiblities

Men and women have similar obligations and responsibilities to reform and correct the society to the best of their capability. Men and women shoulder the responsibility of enjoining good and forbidding evil equally, as Allah, the Exalted, states in the Qur’an:

(The believers, men and women, are helpers, supporters, friends and protectors of one another, they enjoin all that is good, and forbid all that is evil, they offer their prayers perfectly, and give Zakah (Obligatory Charity) and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah will bestow Mercy on them. Surely Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.)

[9:71]

9) Right to Receive Fair Share of Wealth

Men and women have set and determined rights to receive their fair share of wealth, just as they are obliged to give Zakah (Obligatory Charity) according to the set calculation. All Muslim scholars unanimously agree upon this. A woman has her set share of inheritance, as will be discussed in more detail later, which was a right unthinkable in many societies.

Allah (The Almighty) says:

(There is a share for men from what is left by parents and those closely related, and there is a share for women from what is left by parents and those closely related, whether the wealth be small or large: a legal mandatory share.)

[4:7]

10) A woman, just like a man, can give someone the right of seeking refuge and security among the Muslims

Allah, the Exalted, says:

(And if one of the polytheists seeks refuge, give him until he hears the words of Allah, then take him to his place of security.)

 

The Messenger of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said:

And the protection of Muslims is one, and the least among them can give protection; and whoever usurps the right of a Muslim then the curse of Allah and His angels and all the people is upon him, and no repentance or ransom will be accepted from him

[Bukhari #3008]

This is also proven by the famous story of Um Hani’ (Mother of Hani’) when she gave protection to a polytheist who sought refuge with her on the day of the conquest of Makkah after her relative threatened to kill that person (for some past enmity) so the Messenger of Allah (Peace be Upon Him) said,

We protect and give asylum to whomever you give asylum O Um Hani’.

[Bukhari #350]

How Does the Heart Fast?

How does the Heart fast?
by Shaykh Aa’id ‘Abdullâh al-Qarnî

 
 
And if anyone believes in Allah, (Allah) guides his heart (aright)’ (64:11). 

The guidance of the heart is the basis of all guidance, the law of all success, the origin of every deed and head of every action. The Prophet saws said:
 ‘Truly there is a piece of flesh in the body which, if it be wholesome, the whole body will be healthy and which, and if it be diseased the whole body will be diseased. Truly it is the heart.’

Thus the goodness of your heart is the guarantee of your happiness in this world and in the hereafter. Likewise, its corruption is the surest way to destruction, the extent of which only Allah knows.
 ‘In this, behold, there is indeed a reminder for everyone whose heart is wide-awake – that is [everyone who] lends ear with a conscious mind’ (50:37). 

Every creature has a heart. In reality though they are two hearts, a heart that is alive and pulsating with the light of faith. It is filled with intense conviction and God-consciousness. The other is a dead heart, covered and diseased with every wreckage and rubbish.

Allah Almighty says concerning the hearts of the foolish folk:
 ‘In their hearts is disease, and so God lets their disease increase’ (2:10). 

 ‘But they say, “Our hearts are already full of knowledge.” Nay, but God has rejected them because of their refusal to acknowledge the truth: for, few are the things in which they believe’ (2:88). 

Allah also says:
 ‘Will they not, then, ponder over this Quran? — or are there locks upon their hearts?’ (47:24). 

 ‘And so they say, [as it were:] “Our hearts are veiled from whatever thou callest us to, [O Muhammad,] and in our ears is deafness”’ (41:5). 

From all these verses we learn that the hearts can become ill, they can be covered, locked and they die. The enemies of Allah have hearts in their bosoms but they do not perceive with these hearts. Hence the Prophet saws used to say:
 ‘O dispenser of hearts make my heart firm in Your religion.’

The heart of the believer fasts during Ramadan and outside of Ramadan. The fasting of the heart is done by emptying it of all corrupt material such as destructive forms of polytheism, false beliefs, evil suggestions, filthy intentions and degenerate thoughts. The heart of the believer is adorned with the love of Allah. It knows its Lord by His names and His qualities as He has described Himself. This heart explores with a discerning eye the lines of His names and qualities and the pages of Allah’s making in the universe and the books of His creations.

Continue reading How Does the Heart Fast?

All for a Palm Tree in Jannah

In life there will always be those people who are opportunists, or those who take advantage of any opportunity to get what they want no matter what the cost is.  Opportunists are usually thought of in a negative, “out for yourself” perspective.  In reality this depends on your intention, your acts, how you go about getting what you want, and at what costs.  In Islam, being an opportunist is not seen as cut throat, but rather it is encouraged to compete as opportunists, and even considered a praiseworthy act.  This is because an opportunist racing towards the pleasure of Allah and towards getting good deeds in this life will have success awaiting for them on Judgment Day and in the Afterlife.  This goal is more important to reach “no matter what the cost in this world”.  Here is the beautiful story of one opportunist who did not let go of his chance to get guaranteed pleasure in the Hereafter.

Abu Darda (may Allah have mercy on him) was one of those people who found an opportunity to win what is greater than the heavens and the earth.  There was a companion of the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) who cultivated his garden next to the property of an orphan. The orphan claimed that a specific palm tree was on his property and therefore belonged to him. The companion rejected the claim, so the orphan boy went to the Messenger of Allah (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) to complain.  The Messenger of Allah (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) measured the two gardens and found that the palm tree did indeed belong to the companion. The orphan erupted crying. Seeing this, the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) asked the companion, “Would you give him the palm tree and for you is a palm tree in Jannah?” However, the companion in his disbelief that an orphan would complain to the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam), missed the opportunity and went away angry.

But someone else saw the opportunity – Abu Darda (radi Allahu anhu). He went to the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) and asked, “Ya RasulAllah, if I buy the tree from him and give it to the orphan shall I have that tree in Jannah?”

The Messenger of Allah (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) replied, “Yes.”

Abu Darda (radi Allahu anhu) had chased after the companion and asked, “Would you sell that tree to me for my entire garden?”  (Abu Darda had a garden of 600 trees)

The companion answered, “Take it, for there is no good in a tree that was complained to the Prophet about.”

Immediately, Abu Darda (radi Allahu anhu) went home and found his wife and children playing in the garden. “Leave the garden!” shouted Abu Darda. “We’ve sold it to Allah! We’ve sold it to Allah!” Some of his children had dates in their hand and he snatched the dates from them and threw them back into the garden. “We’ve sold it to Allah!”

When Abu Darda was later martyred in the battle of Uhud, RasulAllah (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) stood over his slain body and remarked, “How many shady palm trees does Abu Darda now have in Paradise?”

What did Abu Darda lose? Dates? Bushes? Dirt? What did he gain? He gained a Jannah whose expanse is the heavens and the earth.

Subhan’Allah, how beautiful is this story, of one Sahabi who gave up everything he had, just to have one palm tree in Jannah.  Allahu Akbar.