Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Rebuttal to ‘Should Muslims Reconsider Animal Slaughter on Eid?’


Let’s play again Mama : The importance of play in a child’s upbringing- Part 3

Toys/ Activities to Nurture a Child’s Development

image“You are your child’s favourite toy;

You don’t need to fancy toys and there are no rules to play.”

The best and most effective toys are those that are selected based on age appropriateness and developmental levels and interests. It is important to give children toys that help them learn while having a great time. A lot of toys can be open-ended, making them usable in different ways. Educational toys will help children learn through play.

Blocks, for example, are great toys for children of all ages. Blocks made of wood are one option, but shoe boxes, cereal boxes, plastic bowls, and paper bags filled with crumpled newspaper and taped shut can also be used. These simple blocks are best for children ages two and under, while wooden unit blocks are good for ages two and up.

Engaging toys are often homemade or readily available items such as fabric and cardboard boxes-the options are practically limitless.When choosing materials for toys, it is important to consider the children’s communities and cultures as well as safety of the children.

Some of the stages of learning and some ideas for toys/activities that can help children learn in those stages are as follows:

Birth to 2 Years old

Learning & Development: Children learn mostly through exploration of their environment. The young explorers learn more about body language and gestures during this time and begin to learn how to talk.

Playtime/ Toys: Talking to them and using body language in front of them can help them learn. Toys that talk is also a great idea. Colourful toys that are easy to grasp, things they can taste, hear, smell, and touch will provide needed stimulation.

Adults also serve as play things. Finger plays, song/rhymes, mobiles, toys that make gentle noises and toys with different shapes and textures give more learning opportunities.

3 to 5 Years

Learning & Development: They use their imagination and learn through what is known as socio dramatic play. They are full of stories and experiences they can draw on. They also learn how to control movements more and how to speak even more.

Playtime/ Toys: Since imaginative play is very important, toys that help them with their imaginative play will help them to develop and learn even more.

6 to 8 Years

Learning & Development: Children usually learn more by investigation. They are ready for more formal styles of learning at this stage. They are able to learn patterns and to make decisions. They should also get involved in play that is a bit more structured, though they could still do with some socio dramatic play.

Playtime/ Toys: Toys that promote learning by investigation, such as games and puzzles can be very helpful to children of this age.


Children use their five senses to learn things. As they go through the different stages of growing up, they are learning different things at each level and in different ways. They explore, experiment, and build confidence. Play on an appropriate level allows them to learn on their own and to begin to understand many different concepts that they will end up using as they grow up.


The Man Who Succumbed to Temptation and the Woman Who Embraced Islam

It is related that a group of people were once seated in the company of Al-Hasan Al-Basri, when some men passed by, dragging along with them a body of a dead man. When Al-Hasan saw the dead man, a glint of instant recognition could be discerned in his eyes, and he fell unconscious from the shock of some memory that had just been rekindled.

imageWhen he regained consciousness, his companions asked him what was wrong with him.

He said: This man – referring to the dead man being dragged along on the ground – used to be one of the best worshipers and one of the most renowned ascetics (in the world) (renouncing all the temporary pleasures of this world because he was so busy and devoted to worship).

One day he left his home, intending to go to the Masjid to pray, but on the way, he saw a beautiful young Christian women, who became an immediate temptation to him.

When he proposed to her, she refused, saying; “I will not marry you until you become an adherent of my religion.”

He went on his way, but as time went on, his yearning for her continued to increase. He then succumbed to her wish and exited from the fold of (Islam) the religion of pure, unadulterated Monotheism.

After he became a Christian and some time passed, the woman came out to him from behind the curtain and said, “You are a man who is bereft of goodness. You have forsaken your religion, which was important to you for your entire life, simply for the sake of a lust that is of no value. Indeed, I too am forsaking my religion, but not for the same reason. I am doing so in order to achieve a blissful existence that never comes to an end, an eternal existence under the care of the One, the As-Samad (i.e., Allah; The Self-Sufficient Master, Whom all creatures need, He neither eats nor drinks).” She then recited the entire Chapter of Al-Ikhlaas:

“Say (O Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam): “He is Allah, (the) One. Allah-us-Samad (The Self-Sufficient Master, Whom all creatures need, He neither eats nor drinks). He begets not, nor was He begotten; And there is none co-equal or comparable unto Him.” [Qur'an:112:1-4]

When the people had heard about what she had said, they approached her and asked, “All along, you had this Chapter memorized?“

“No,” she answered. “By Allah, I had never known it before. But after this man continued to insist upon having me, I saw a dream; I saw Hellfire, and my place in it was shown to me. I became terrified and panic-stricken. Maalik – the custodian of the Hellfire – said to me: ‘Do not be afraid or sad, for Allah has ransomed (i.e., saved) you with this man (i.e., he will take the place in Hellfire that you would have taken had not Allah saved you).’ He then took me by the hand and admitted me into Paradise. Seeing a line written inside of it, I read it; among what was written were these Words:

“Allah blots out what He wills and confirms (what He wills). And with Him is the Mother of the Book (Al-Lauh Al-Mahfooz).” {Qur’an 13:39]}

He then recited the Al-Ikhlaas Chapter to me, and I began to repeat it. Then I woke up and had it (the Al-Ikhlaas Chapter) memorized.”

Al-Hasan then said, “The woman then embraced Islam, and the man whose corpse you just saw being dragged away was killed for having apostatized. And I ask Allah to make us firm and steadfast upon guidance and to grant us safety and success.” [1]

[Transcribed from: Glimpses From The Lives Of Righteous People - Pages 53-55 - Compiled by: Majdi Muhammad Ash-Shahawi - Darussalam]


Who can give a Fatwa?

It is reported that Imam Maalik – Allah have mercy on him – was asked, “Who is allowed to give religious rulings (fatwa)? He replied:

imageIssuing fatwa is not allowed except for a person who knows what the people have differed in. It was said, ‘Do you mean the different views of the people of opinions (those who depend more on analogy and speculation)? He replied, “No, [I mean] the different views of the Companions of Muhammad – Allah’s praise and peace be upon him. And he must also know the textual evidence that abrogates [other rulings] and that which is abrogated [by other texts], both in the Quran and the hadeeth of Allah’s Messenger – Allah’s praise and peace be upon him. Such a person can issue fatawa.

Ibn ‘Abd Al-Barr, Jami’ Bayan Al-’Ilm wa Fadlihi article 1529.

It is reported that ‘Abdullah b. Al-Mubarak – Allah have mercy on him – was asked, “When can a person issue an edict (fatwa)?” He replied, “When he is knowledgeable about the narrations (hadeeth and traditions of the Salaf), and has insight into [juristic] opinion.

Ibid. article 1532.

Who are the Scholars?

The Danger of Rushing to Issue Fatwas

Ibn al-Qayyim said:

The Salaf, the Sahaabah and Taabi’een, used to regard it as makrooh to rush to issue fatwas. Each of them would wish that someone else would take care of it, but if he realized that he had no alternative but to answer, he would do his utmost to find the ruling from the Qur’an and Sunnah or the words of the Rightly-Guided khaleefahs, then he would give his fatwa. ‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Mubaarak said: Sufyaan told us from ‘Ataa’ ibn al-Saa’ib from ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Abi Layla who said: I met one hundred and twenty of the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) – and I think he said, in the mosque – and there was none of them who had to speak but he wished that his brother would take care of it; there was no one who had to give a fatwa but he wished that his brother would take care of it. Imam Ahmad said: Jareer told us from ‘Ataa’ ibn al-Saa’ib from ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Abi Layla that he said: I met one hundred and twenty of the Ansaar from among the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and there was no man among them who was asked about something but he would wish that his brother would take care of it, and there was none who had to speak but he would wish that his brother would take care of it.

Maalik said, narrating from Yahya ibn Sa’eed that Bukayr ibn al-Ashajj told him, narrating from Mu’aawiyah ibn Abi ‘Ayaash that he was sitting with ‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Zubayr and ‘Aasim ibn ‘Umar, when Muhammad ibn Iyaas ibn al-Bukayr came and said, ‘A man from among the desert people has divorced his wife three times, what do you think?’ ‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Zubayr said, ‘This matter is something about which we know nothing; go to ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Abbaas and Abu Hurayrah, for I have just left them with ‘Aa’ishah the wife of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), then come and tell us (what they say).’ So I went and asked them, and Ibn ‘Abbaas said to Abu Hurayrah: ‘Give him the answer, O Abu Hurayrah, for here there is a problem.’ Abu Hurayrah said: ‘One talaaq makes her divorced, and three makes her forbidden to him until she has married another husband.’

Maalik narrated that Yahyaa ibn Sa’eed said: Ibn ‘Abbaas said: Everyone who issues fatwas to the people concerning everything that they ask him about is crazy. Maalik said: I heard something similar from Ibn Mas’ood. This was narrated by Ibn Waddaah from Yoosuf ibn ‘Adiy from ‘Abd ibn Humayd from al-A’mash from Shaqeeq from ‘Abd-Allaah; and it was narrated by Habeeb ibn Abi Thaabit from Abu Waa’il from ‘Abd-Allaah.

Sahnoon ibn Sa’eed said: the most audacious of the people in giving fatwas is the one who has the least knowledge; a man may have a grasp of one branch of knowledge and he thinks that all the truth is to be found in this branch.

I say: being audacious in giving fatwas may be because of a lack of knowledge or because of an abundance thereof. If he is lacking in knowledge he gives a fatwa on everything concerning which he is asked without knowledge. If his knowledge is abundant he will be able to answer a lot of questions. Hence Ibn ‘Abbaas was one of the Sahaabah who issued the most fatwas. We have mentioned above that his fatwas were compiled in twenty volumes. Sa’eed ibn al-Musayyib also issued a lot of fatwas, and they used to call him al-Jaree’ (the Bold), as was mentioned by Ibn Wahb from Muhammad ibn Sulaymaan al-Muraadi from Abu Ishaaq, who said: I used to see a man at that time entering and asking about some matter, and the people would divert him, sending him from one gathering to another, until he was sent to the gathering of Sa’eed ibn al-Musayyib, because they did not like to issue a fatwa. He said, And they used to call Sa’eed ibn al-Musayyib, al-Jaree’ (the Bold).

Sahnoon said: I memorized some issues concerning which there would be eight opinions from eight of the leading scholars, so how could I hasten to answer before I am certain which one is correct? Why should anyone blame me for not giving an answer? Ibn Wahb said: Ashhal ibn Haatim told us from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Awn from Ibn Seereen who said: Hudhayfah said: The one who gives fatwas to the people is one of three: either he knows what has been abrogated of the Qur’an, or he is a leader who has no choice (but to issue a fatwa) or he is a fool who is doing something that is not his job. He said, perhaps Ibn Seereen said: I am neither of the first two, and I do not want to be the third.

I’laam al-Muwaqqi’een, 1/28, 29

Can he give fatwas based on what he hears or reads?

If someone asks you a question and you know the ruling on it from books and tapes whose authors are trustworthy, or from a trustworthy program, then it is obligatory for you to tell them of the shar’i ruling, because if you know the ruling from the sources we have mentioned, then it is an obligation for you to tell people of the shar’i ruling if you are asked, otherwise you will be included among those who conceal knowledge. But it is good if you say “So and so said such and such in such and such a program” or “So and so said on such and such a tape” or “So and so said in such and such a book” so that you will be absolved of responsibility. End quote.

Shaykh Muhammad ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him). Fataawa Noor ‘ala al-Darb.


Refuting Those Who Say the Shia are Our Brothers

Question: Some of the Du’at (Callers to Islam) and students of knowledge definitively say that the Shia and the Raafidhah are our brothers. Is it permissible for us to say this and what is required [of us] in this regard?

imageAnswer by Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan: We absolve and clear ourselves to Allah of them and this speech. They are not our brothers. [Swearing by Allah] They are not our brothers. Rather they are the brothers of Shaytan because they blaspheme and slander the Mother of the Believers Aa’isha (May Allah be pleased with her), the wife of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).

Allah chose her for His Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him). As-Siddiqah Bint As-Siddiq. The truthful, daughter of the truthful (her father, Abu Bakr as-Siddiq). They also declare Abu Bakr and Umar to be disbelievers and curse them both. They declare the Sahaba in their entirety to be disbelievers except Ahlul Bayt, [one of whom is] Ali Ibn Abi Talib (May Allah be pleased with him).

Nevertheless, they are enemies of Ali Ibn Abi Talib. He is innocent of and free from them. Ali is our Imam and not theirs. He is an Imam of Ahlus-Sunnah and not of the malevolent and wicked Raafidhah. So we free ourselves to Allah from them and they are not our brothers.

Whoever says that they are his brothers, he must seek forgiveness from Allah and resolve to change. Allah has made mandatory upon us al-Bara’ah (absolving and distancing oneself) from the people of misguidance and drawing near to the people of Emaan.


Erroneous Principles Of The Jahmiyyah, By Ibn Taymiyyahopen

Regarding the Jahmiyyah, Ibn Taymiyyah said:

image“They (the Jahmiyyah) say: ’They (the Companions) did not actualize the principles of the religion as we have actualized it.‘

And at times they would make excuses for them by saying that they were preoccupied with Jihaad!

These individuals have so much speech similar to this (1) – which the Raafidhah and their likes from the people of innovation agree with and which they use to oppose the Book, the Sunnah and the Ijmaa’ – that this is not the place that we can go into detail about that.

Rather we have only been warned about the principles of their religion and the reality of their statements. Their objective behind all this is that they claim that intellectual understanding and rhetoric speech that oppose the Book and the Sunnah exist in the foundations of the religion. Their speech contains such contradictions and corruptions that resemble that of the atheists.

So they are from the ranks of the Raafidhah – they have no clear intellect or authentic text.

Rather, their ultimate objective is to impose Sophistry (philosophical reasoning) into intellectual proofs and Karmathianism (Qaraamitah) into the textual proofs. This is the main objective of every innovator that opposes something form the Book and the Sunnah, even in knowledge based matters and fiqh issues.”

[Dar' Ta'aarud Al-'Aql Wan-Naql, 2/14-15]


(1) For example they say ‘the way of the salaf is safer, but the way of the khalaf is more knowledgeable and more wiser.’ They say this because they can find no proof from the Salaf to support their claims regarding the interpretations they give for the Names and Attributes of Allaah.

For example they that Allaah does not have a Hand (even though there are numerous proof for this) but instead the word ‘Hand’ means ‘power’.

As Ahlus-Sunnah we know that Allaah has a hand unlike the hand of the creation. Just as Allaah is Alive, and we are alive, but us humans being alive is different to the meaning of Allaah being Alive. Allaah does not require air to live yet we do. Allaah does not require oxygen to breath in to stay alive, yet we do. So just as Allaah being Alive is different to us being alive, then the same is said about the rest of Allaah’s Names and Attributes. We know their meanings, yet their reality differs from the way we know it.

So Allaah has a Hand unlike the hand of creation. And this concept (of one name having more than one meaning) is also found in the creation itself. For example, the word hand can mean a human hand, yet it can also refer to the hand of a clock, or the hand of a table. So just as the hand of a table does not resemble the hand of a human, likewise when we affirm that Allaah has a Hand, we are not resembling Allaah to the creation.

The Jahmiyyah say that Allaah does not have a hand because if we affirm Allaah having a hand it would mean we are resembling Allaah to the creation (which is not the case as I have described above), so in order to dodge this ‘supposed’ resemblance of Allaah to the creation, they deny the Name/Attribute and give it another meaning. However for this new meaning, they can find no proof from the Salaf, hence why they say such absurd statements like ‘the way of the salaf is safer, but the way of the khalaf is more knowledgeable and more wiser.’


Nine Points of Advice for the Newly Practising Muslim – by Shaykh ‘Alee al-Haddaadee

As Salaamu ‘Alaykum wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barakaatahu, to proceed:

imageCongratulations on being granted the great success of repenting to Allah and returning to Him, for indeed this is truly a great blessing, a great gift that few are given, and a lot are prohibited from.

I ask Allah that He allows all of us return to Him in repentance and dependence.

My noble brother, the well known contemporary term ‘Iltizaam’ [adherence to/ practice of the Sunnah] is not known from the Book of Allah, the Sunnah, or the statements of the Salaf.

This is why instead of using it, I will use the legislated term [i.e. guidance] which is more suitable as well as having a better meaning.

Indeed being guided to uprightness with its understanding today – that a person who was deficient in the rights of his Lord, a person who was neglectful of a lot of obligations, one who used to practice a lot of evil and sinning; such as shaving his beard, allowing his garments to drop lower than his ankles, smoking, listening to music, forsaking the prayer in congregation and maybe even forsaking prayers altogether or just some prayers.

So when he ‘Ilatazam’ – adheres/practices, he shortens his garments, grows his beard, prays in congregation and prays the Sunnah prayers and accompanies those who are on this same path.

There is no doubt that being granted success to follow the prophetic guidance in clothing and conduct and preserving the prayer are from the greatest of blessings from our Lord to His servant; however, there are some affairs of tremendous importance that a lot of people are heedless of, this is why I will take this opportunity to draw your attention to them, so that your uprightness is upon what your Lord loves and is pleased with.

1. Uprightness must be upon what Allah ordered His servants as He the Elevated said:

So be upright as you were ordered

Based upon this, you must have knowledge of what Allah and His Messenger – sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam – ordered you with so that you may be steadfast upon that.

This means that you must study your religion and gain knowledge of its rulings:

“Whoever Allah wants good for, He would grant him knowledge and understanding of His religion.“

2. The greatest affair that Allah has obligated upon you is monotheism, that you single him out with all forms of worship, such as Du’aa, Isti’aadha, Istighaathah, Rajaa, Tawakkul, Dhabh, Nadhr and other forms of worship whether they are physical or spiritual, whether they are actions or speech.

Monotheism has a lot of branches, so it is imperative that you give it a lot of attention by learning and understanding it. One of the best books authored concerning Monotheism is Kitaab at Tawheed by Shaykhul Islam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul Wahhaab, may Allah have mercy upon him.

The greatest thing that Allah has prohibited you from, is associating partners with Him, by presenting some worship to other than Him. Whoever presents worship to other than Allah, whether it be a king, messenger or others lesser than them, this person would be removed from the fold of Islam, and whoever meets his Lord in such a state would have met Him with the greatest of sins that would never be forgiven, and from Allah alone do we seek refuge.

Indeed Allah does not forgive that partners are be set up with Him (in worship), but He forgives other than that (anything else) to whom He wills.

3. Know that Shirk continues to be wide spread in Muslim countries due to the lack of caution against it, and the great numbers of callers towards it, and those who spread it, and with Allah is assistance sought.

4. Remember that this Ummah will split into seventy three sects, all in the hell fire except one, as was authentically reported from the Prophet – sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam; so be keen on being with the saved sect, and know that all sects claim to be the saved one, and all of them use verses from the Quran as evidence for their group. But the true saved sect is the one that adheres to the Qur’an, the Sunnah and the methodology of the Sahabah may Allah be pleased with them.

This is because the Prophet – sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam – described the saved sect as “those who are upon what I and my companions are upon.”

So this is the gauge that would clear up the anguish of confusion and uncertainty for you with regards to the different opposing views.

5. You will hear some practising youth criticizing the rulers, busying themselves with their faults and turning people against them, especially the Saudi rulers – may Allah grant them success. Know that this is evil, and leads to detrimental consequences.

There are a lot of statements from the Prophet, the sayings of the Sahabah, the righteous predecessors and Rabaanee scholars about this; amongst them, the noble Shaykh ‘Abdul ‘Azeez ibn Baaz and Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saaleh al ‘Uthaymeen and many others.

6. You will hear some practising youth criticizing the major scholars, claiming that they are:

scholars of the rulers,

or scholars who remain silent concerning the truth to appease others,

or scholars who do not speak and stand firm by the truth,

or scholars who do not speak about major contemporary affairs that are important to the Ummah…

and other such descriptions that repel people from them.

Know that this is from the greatest of evil; the scholars are not to be mentioned except with goodness. Criticizing them only serves to repel people from them and the knowledge that they possess, and a lot of evil would take place as a result.

The Ummah cannot do without the scholars concerning knowledge of their religion; if the scholars are disliked, then the ignorant would lead and cause great mischief.

7. You will find a lot of audio tapes out there; some about storytelling, others with Nasheed that are called ‘Islamic Nasheed’, other audios that speak about interpreting dreams. You will find video files with ‘Islamic plays’ and ‘Islamic films/movies’.

All of this is not from the guidance of the Salaf as-Saalih, rather they rebuked and criticized this severely. They permitted the listening of poems that are free of prohibitions – which are plentiful (i.e. permissible poems). Amongst the prohibitions is that they do not have a tune like that of songs.

8. There are many ‘Da’wah groups/organizations’ out there, amongst them are Sufi groups that propagate ignorance amongst the Muslims. They would take an ignorant person and tour the globe with him for days, weeks or months calling to Allah as they claim, while this person knows nothing of the religion.

You will find other incendiary political groups that are the inheritors of the Khawaarij and their followers. They cultivate the youth secretly; in private gatherings in the countryside and other places.

Each group has a leader and cultivator who teaches them and gives them commands and prohibitions. He rewards those who obey him and punishes those who disobey.

These groups isolate their members from their families and from their society, especially while they are young, during their adolescent years, so that they may mould them and direct them in whichever way they want.

Beware of these groups and be upright upon your religion, be obedient to your parents and family, establish your prayers, worship your Lord, seek knowledge, be obedient to your rulers in good.

Beware of every shady gathering that is shrouded in secrecy, and outings that are not accepted by common sense.

9. I advise you to give your attention to the major scholars of this Ummah, such as;

The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia

Al ‘Allaamah ‘Abdullaah al Ghudayaan,

Al ‘Allaamah Saalih al Luhaydaan,

Al ‘Allaamah Saalih ibn Fawzaan al-Fawzaan

and their likes from the scholars of Ahlus Sunnah.

Beware of ideological tapes that are propagated by a lot of those who are known as ‘the Du’aat of revival’, those who increasingly delve into political and ideological affairs with the claim of ‘Fiqh al Waaqi’.

There is barely any knowledge in them while they consist of a great deal of harm.

In conclusion:

I ask Allah to grant both me and you success and steadfastness, guidance to the path of truth and correctness, just as I ask Him to grant the rulers of the Muslims success in achieving what He loves and is pleased with, that He grants ‘Izz to Islam and the Muslims, and to abase polytheism and polytheists, that He grants victory to the Sunnah and raises its light, and that He quenches innovation, its people and the callers to it, indeed He hears all and responds to all.

Was Salaamu ‘Alaykum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakaatahu.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Prophet Muhammad’s Kindness to Animals

By Aisha Stacey

imageWhen we mention the religion of Islam, often the first word that comes to mind is peace. The word Islam is derived from the infinitive ‘sa-la’ma’ which also is the root for the word salam, which means peace. Islam is a way of life that promotes peace, dignity, respect, tolerance, justice and mercy and all of these qualities are tempered with serenity (calmness) that comes from submission to God. Perhaps the greatest of these qualities is mercy. It is one of the overriding themes throughout the Quran.

“Certainly, We have brought them a Book (the Quran) which We have explained in detail with knowledge, - guidance, and a mercy to a people who believe.” (Quran 7:52)

Mercy is that ethereal quality that embodies gentleness, piety, care, consideration, love, and forgiveness. When these qualities are observable in this world, they are a mere reflection of God’s mercy towards His creation. God said clearly that Prophet Muhammad, may God praise him, was a mercy for all of creation, not just his family and friends or the Arab nation, or the people of the 7th century CE, and not for human beings alone.

“And We have sent you O Muhammad not but as a mercy for all of humankind, jinn, and all that exists.” (Quran 21:107)

Prophet Muhammad was the embodiment of mercy, he showed compassion to all those around him, family, orphans, friends, strangers and even enemies. He also treated the environment and animals with respect and mercy. He taught his followers that because animals were part of God’s creation they should be treated with dignity and due care.

The traditions of Prophet Muhammad remind us that humankind was put on this earth to be the custodian of God’s creation. Treating animals with kindness and mercy is just one of the responsibilities embedded in that custodianship. Prophet Muhammad’s words and behaviour make it clear that causing defenceless creatures pain and suffering is not only completely unacceptable, but we will also be answerable to God for such actions.

“If someone kills a sparrow for sport, the sparrow will cry out on the Day of Judgment, “O Lord! That person killed me in vain! He did not kill me for any useful purpose.”[1]

The Prophet, may God praise him, said, “Whoever kills a sparrow or anything bigger than that without a just cause, God will hold him accountable on the Day of Judgment.” The listeners asked, “O Messenger of God, what is a just cause?” He replied, “That he will kill it to eat, not simply to chop off its head and then throw it away.”[2]

Islam expects humankind to treat all animals (all living creatures - birds, sea creatures, and insects) with respect and dignity. Prophet Muhammad continuously advised people to show kindness. He forbade the practice of cutting tails and manes of horses, of branding animals at any soft spot, and of keeping horses saddled unnecessarily. [3]If the Prophet saw, any animal over-burdened or ill fed he would speak mildly to the owner and say, “Fear God in your treatment of animals.”[4]

However, refraining from physical cruelty is not enough; abstaining from mental cruelty is equally as important. Even a bird’s emotional distress should be treated seriously. One of Prophet Muhammad’s companions narrates, “We were on a journey and during the Prophet’s absence, we saw a bird with its two chicks; we took them. The mother bird was circling above us in the air, beating its wings in grief. When Prophet Muhammad returned he said, “Who has hurt the feelings of this bird by taking its chicks? Return them to her.”[5]

In another narration, a Companion of the Prophet came to him carrying baby chicks in his clothing and mentioned that the mother bird had hovered over them. He was directed to return the chicks back to the same bush.[6]

In pre Islamic times, pagan superstitions and polytheistic practices included acts of torture and cruelty to animals. Islam condemned this and put a stop to all such practices. When Prophet Muhammad and his companions migrated to Medina, they noticed that people cut off camels’ humps and the fat tails of sheep for food. The Prophet forbade them from them from doing this and said, “Whatever is cut off an animal while it is still alive, is carrion and is unlawful to eat.”[7]

In Islam, the rules pertaining to slaughtering animals are very strict and fixed. Protecting animals from pain and undue suffering is paramount.

“God has ordained kindness (and excellence) in everything. If the killing (of animals) is to be done, do it in the best manner, and when you slaughter, do it in the best manner by first sharpening the knife, and putting the animal at ease.”[8]

When you set your dog (for the chase), mention the name of God if he catches the game, and you reach it while it is still alive, cut, its throat quickly (so it won’t suffer).”[9]

Humankind must strike a balance in their treatment of animals. All living creatures were put on this earth by God for our benefit. They are not at the same level as human beings but neither should they be treated cruelly. It is humankind’s responsibility to see that they have food, water, and shelter from the elements. Living creatures must not be overburdened, abused, or tortured and doing so will surely result in God’s just punishment. A true believer in God demonstrates his or her belief by respecting the entire creation, and Prophet Muhammad’s character and actions are a shinning example of respect for all that exists.


[1] Sunnan An Nasai

[2] Ibid

[3] Saheeh Muslim

[4] Abu Dawood.

[5] Saheeh Muslim

[6] Abu Dawood

[7] At-Tirmidhi

[8] Saheeh Muslim

[9] Saheeh Bukhari & Muslim


On Asking Others to Make Du’a for You and Its Connection to Perfection in Tawheed

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) stated as occurs in Majmu’ al-Fatawa (1/193):

imageAnd whoever said to another (person) amongst the people: “Make du’a (supplication) for me” or “for us” – and his intent is to benefit that person commanded to make supplication and to benefit himself as well by commanding him, and that person commanded does (what he was commanded with), just as he (may) command him with all the (other) actions of goodness, then he (the one requesting this du’a in this manner, with this intent) is a follower of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam).

As for when his intent is but to seek his need and he did not desire to benefit that (person) and be benevolent towards him [by making him earn reward for performing worship through supplication] then this one is not from the followers of the Messenger, (from those) who mimic him in that regard. Rather, this is from the non-preferable (deeds) which if abandoned through aspiring for Allah and (following his) Messenger is superior to aspiring for the creation and asking them.


This is another manifestation of the perfection in one’s Tawheed when a person follows the way of the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) which is that the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam), when he asked others to supplicate, his intent was to benefit the person whom he asked, by commanding him with a righteous deed through which he will be rewarded, so this is ihsaan (benevolence) to that other person. So whoever follows this way and makes sure that his requests for supplication from others are not purely just to benefit himself, then he is a follower of the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam). And through this, a higher rank in the perfection of one’s Tawheed is attained.

These are understandings and implmentations of Tawheed and its perfection that are relished by the Muwahhidoon. Such delights and pleasures which the saint and grave worshippers are deprived of, those who humiliate and lower themselves by aspiring to other than Allah and making known their abject need from them, in both speech and deed. So when the difference in these two intents behind asking others to supplicate for you indicates a variation in the perfection of Tawheed and in making ittibaa’ (following) of the Messenger, then what great difference is there in rank, honour and dignity between the followers and imitators of the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) in the perfection of Tawheed and those besides them from those whose aspirations for their dead saints reach the level of Major Shirk?!


Some of the Reasons for Falling into Errors in ‘Aqeedah

Shaykh Saalih Ibn Fawzaan al-Fawzaan (hafidhahullaah) said:

image“So if one does not know the correct ‘Aqeedah, and they do not learn it, then verily they are susceptible to falling into a defect in their ‘Aqeedah without realizing by keeping up with what some people do, or by following du’aat (preachers, callers) who are misguided – those who call the people to the corruption of their ‘Aqeedah.

As He, The Most High, said:

اللَّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا يُخْرِجُهُمْ مِنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّور وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَوْلِيَاؤُهُمُ الطَّاغُوتُ يُخْرِجُونَهُمْ مِنَ النُّور إِلَى الظُّلُمَاتِ أُوْلَائِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

Allah is the Walee (Protector or Guardian) of those who believe. He brings them out from darknesses into light. But as for those who disbelieve, their Auliyah` (supporters and helpers) are Taaghoot [false deities and false leaders, etc.], they bring them out from light into darknesses. Those are the dwellers of the Fire, and they will abide therein forever. (Surah Al-Baqarah (2):257)

They (misguided preachers, callers) bring them out from the light – from the correct ‘Aqeedah and the guidance – into the darknesses – into Shirk, bid’ah, into newly invented matters in the Religion, into superstitions, into darknesses.

And refuge in Allah is taken from that!

And so in this is a warning for a Muslim from his ‘Aqeedah becoming defected while he perceives not, or from trusting misguided du’aat.

The Prophet (salallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: Akhwafu ma akhafoo ‘ala Ummati al-Aa`imma al-Mudhaleen (One of the matters that I fear most for my Ummah are the Imams who lead the people astray.) And how very many of them there are. May Allah not increase them in their number!

From here, it is made clear that it is obligatory for a Muslim to take care of his ‘Aqeedah and to learn it from its authentic sources. And all praise is for Allah, books have been authored – both lengthy and brief – on the explanation of ‘Aqeedah and its proclamation and the proclamation of that which contradicts it or corrupts it. And so a Muslim only has to read these useful books on the topic of ‘Aqeedah, so that he may become upright upon it and so that he is cautious of what contradicts it or corrupts it. This matter is not made ready. This matter is very important.”

Source: ‘Aqeedah, by Shaykh Fawzaan


Ingratitude towards parents

"Say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honour." [Quran 17:23]

imageIn Islam, it is obligatory for us to show kindness, respect, and obedience to our parents. The position of parents, and the mutual obligations and responsibilities, have been addressed in Islam in great detail. In fact, kindness and obedience is so strongly emphasized that Allaah has linked showing gratitude to one's parents with showing gratitude to Allaah. In the Noble Quran, Almighty Allaah Says (which means):

"And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents: in travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in years twain was his weaning: (hear the command), "Show gratitude to Me and to your parents: to Me is (your final) return." [Quran 31:14]

Sadly, we are living in a time where children speaking disrespectfully to their parents and about their parents, is the norm rather than the exception. However, Islam places great emphasis on respectful and considerate behaviour to even our enemies, so to not uphold the obligations laid down by Allaah to our parents is actually one of the major sins.

In the Quran

Let's see what the Quran says about parents. "This is the Book; in it is guidance sure, without doubt, to those who fear Allaah." [Quran 2:02]

Treat parents with honour and speak to them graciously and with humility

Allaah Says (which means):

"Your Lord hath decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honour. And, out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood." [Quran 17:23]

Be grateful to parents but do not obey them if they strive to make you associate anything with Allaah

Allaah also Says (which means):

"...Be grateful to Me and to both your parents; to Me is the eventual coming. But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which you have no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration), and follow the way of those who turn to Me (in love): in the end the return of you all is to Me, then will I inform you of what you did." [Quran 31:15]

These verses make it clear that we must honour our parents, appreciate their sacrifices and efforts for us, and do our best for them. This is required regardless of whether they are Muslims or not.

Be good to parents and everyone whom you meet

The Quran states (which means):

"Worship Allaah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good- to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbours who are near, neighbours who are strangers, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (ye meet), and what your right hands possess: For Allaah loves not the arrogant, the vainglorious." [Quran 4:36]

If the Quran tells us to be good to a stranger, then how can we even think of disrespecting our parents?


Let's see what Prophet Muhammad said about parents in the authentic Hadeeth (narrations). Almighty Allaah Says (which means): "Whatsoever the Prophet gives you, take it and whatsoever he forbids you, refrain from it." [Quran 59:7]

Undutifulness to parents is a major sin

Anas narrated from Prophet Muhammad about the major sins. He (the Prophet) observed: 'Associating anyone (or anything) with Allaah, undutifulness to parents, killing a person and false utterance.' [Muslim]

One of the dearest deeds to Allaah is being good and dutiful to parents

'Abdullaah Ibn Mas'ood narrated: I asked the Prophet "Which deed is the dearest to Allaah?" He replied, "To offer the prayers at their early stated fixed times." I asked, "What is the next (in goodness)?" He replied, "To be good and dutiful to your parents" [Al-Bukhaari]

Being dutiful to parents is one of the keys to enter Paradise

Abu Hurayrah reported Prophet Muhammad as saying: Let him be humbled into dust; let him be humbled into dust; let him be humbled into dust. It was said: O Allaah's Messenger, who is he? He said: He who accompanies either of his parents during their old age or one of them, but he does not enter Paradise (by being undutiful to them). [Muslim]

Acts of kindness we can do for our parents after their death

A man of the tribe of Salamah came to Prophet Muhammad and said: 'O Apostle of Allaah! Is there any kindness left that I can do to my parents after their death?' He replied: 'Yes, you can invoke blessings on them, forgiveness for them, fulfill their promises and pledges (to do righteous deeds), maintain ties with kinfolk for the mere reason of being dutiful to them (i.e. parents), and honour their friends.' [Abu Daawood]

The High Status given to Mothers

A man came to the Prophet and asked him for permission to fight Jihaad. The Prophet asked him if he had a mother, and when he replied affirmatively, he said, "Stay with her, for Paradise is at her feet (i.e. she is the way leading to it)." [Ahmad]


Sometimes we may take our parents for granted and overlook their importance. As Muslims, we should constantly be alert to guard ourselves from sins; however, are we guarding ourselves from one of the biggest major sins? Are we honouring and respecting our parents as per their right? Or are we neglecting one of the dearest deeds to Allaah?

Right now the choice is ours!

We ask Allaah the Most High, the All-Powerful, to teach us that which will benefit us, and to benefit us by that which we learn.


Accusing chaste women of adultery

Allaah Almighty Says in the Noble Quran (what means):

image"The [Unmarried] woman or [unmarried] man found guilty of sexual intercourse— lash each one of them with a hundred lashes, and do not be taken by pity for them in the religion [i.e. law] of Allaah, if you should believe in Allaah and the Last Day. And let a group of the believers witness their punishment. The fornicator does not marry except a [female] fornicator or polytheist, and none marries her except a fornicator or a polytheist, and that [i.e. marriage to such persons] has been made unlawful to the believers. And those who accuse chaste women (of adultery) and then do not produce four witnesses — lash them with eighty lashes and do not accept from them testimony ever after. And those are the defiantly disobedient. Except for those who repent thereafter and reform, for indeed Allaah is Forgiving and Merciful." [Quran 24: 2-5]

Islamic law (Sharee'ah) prescribes a very heavy penalty for adultery. However, Islam does not legislate such a penalty without first putting in place sufficient legislation that protects people against falling in sin. It also ensures that the punishment is not enforced except in cases where there is certainty about the offence and its perpetrators. Islam is a complete code of living that is not based on punishment. Its basis is to provide all that promotes a clean and morally pure life. If some individuals then abandon such a clean and easy life in order to deliberately submerge themselves into filth, they incur such heavy penalty.

In the case of adultery, Islam requires four witnesses to testify that they have seen the offence, or else, a clear and confirmed confession by the perpetrators.

It may be suggested, then, that the punishment is unreal and unenforceable, which renders it ineffective as a deterrent. Punishment is not the basis of the Islamic approach; its basis is prevention, education and cultivating people’s finer feelings and consciences so that they refrain from even contemplating this offence.

Imaam Maalik narrated that a man confessed to fornication in the time of the Messenger of Allaah . The Messenger of Allaah called for a whip, and he was brought a broken whip. He said: "Above this," and he was brought a new whip whose knots had not been cut yet. He said: "Below this," and he was brought a whip which had been used and made flexible. The Messenger of Allaah gave the order and he was flogged. Then he said: "O people! Observe the limits of Allaah. Whoever has committed any of these ugly things (adultery or fornication) should cover them up with the veil of Allaah. Whoever reveals to us his wrong action, we shall perform what is in the Book of Allaah against him (i.e. the prescribed penalty)." [Maalik]

Prescribing a very harsh punishment for adultery is not sufficient, on its own, to protect the Muslim community and ensure the purity of its atmosphere. Therefore, a supplementary order is given to isolate the adulterers from the rest of the Muslim community. It goes further to remove the air of the offence from the Muslim community, prescribing a heavy punishment for those who accuse chaste women of adultery without providing firm evidence in support of their accusation. Allaah Almighty Says in the Quran (what means):

“And those who accuse chaste women of adultery and then do not produce four witnesses — lash them with eighty lashes and do not accept from them testimony ever after. And those are the defiantly disobedient. Except for those who repent thereafter and reform, for indeed Allaah is Forgiving and Merciful".” [Quran 24: 2-5]

Allowing people to accuse chaste women, whether married or not, without a clear proof means that people could always make up such accusation, fearing no repercussion. This means that the Muslim community finds itself with a stained reputation. Every individual is threatened with false accusation. Every man suspects his wife, and every wife suspects her husband, and people doubt their legitimacy. In such an intolerable state of doubt and suspicion, every family is undermined. Moreover, when such accusations are frequently made, those who steer themselves away from adultery will begin to think that the crime is common in society. Thus, people begin to think about adultery in a different spirit, with its ghastly nature sounding less ghastly as a result of its frequent mention. Those who would not have contemplated it at all may begin to think of doing so, feeling that many others are doing it.

Thus, in order to protect people’s honor and their suffering from suspicion as a result of uncorroborated accusations, the Quran prescribes for false accusation a punishment that comes close to that of adultery. The punishment is flogging with 80 stripes, rejecting their testimony in any case or situation, and giving them the label of transgressors. The first part of the punishment is physical, while the second is moral. It is sufficient that the accuser is deprived of the right to testify, and considered deceitful. The third part of the punishment is a religious one. The one guilty of false accusation is following a line that deviates from that of faith. The only way to protect himself from such punishments is that the accuser should provide four witnesses who have seen the offence being committed, or three alongside him if he himself has seen it.

It is agreed upon by Muslim scholars that for adultery (or fornication) case to be authentically proven, four witnesses must simultaneously see, by their own eyes, the man's sexual organ inserted in the woman's sexual organ. Only when these four witnesses give such testimony is the accusation proved and the punishment of adultery (or fornication) is enforced on the perpetrators.

Such restrictions are set forth by Sharee'ah in order to limit to the least minimum the possibility of falsely accusing chaste women of adultery (or fornication), which leads to social and psychological troubles for the accused women. Even when such a sin –adultery (or fornication) - is committed, such restrictions laid by Sharee'ah will guarantee the suppression of the crime and prevents its spread among the people, which contaminates the morally pure Muslim community.


When a Person dies, does he directly go to Paradise or Hell, or Does he Remain in his Grave until the Day of Judgement


imageWhen a person dies, do they go to paradise or the hell-fire (immediately) after their death, or do they remain in the grave until the Day of Judgement? We ask you for clarification of this matter with some additional facts relating to it – thank you.

Shaykh Muhammed ibn Sâlih al-Uthaymîn:

As for the body of the dead, then it will remain on earth, in the place that it was buried in, until the Day of Judgement. Allaah said:

“And the Trumpet will be blown (i.e. the second blowing) and behold! From the graves they will come out quickly to their Lord.” [Surah Yasin 36:51]

And He said:

“And behind them is Barzakh (a barrier) until the Day when they will be resurrected.” [Surah al-Mu’minoon 23:100]

Therefore the body (of the deceased person) will remain on earth. As for their soul, then it is either in Paradise or Hell. Allaah said:

“Those whose lives the angels take while they are in a pious state (i.e. pure from all evil, and worshipping none but Allah Alone) saying (to them): Salamun Alaikum (peace be on you) enter you Paradise, because of (the good) which you used to do (in the world).”

[Surah An-Nahl 16:32]

So Allah has made clear that this statement (of the Angels) will be at the time of death, meaning that they will enter into paradise on the day of their death, and this only for the soul, not for the body.

It has also been reported from the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam)

that he said:

“If the dead person in the grave is a believer, then a door to Paradise will be opened for them, and its comfort and bliss will come to them. As for the non-Muslim, then their soul is (likewise) taken to the punishment.

Allah said about the people of Fir’aun:

“The Fire; they are exposed to it, morning and afternoon, and on the Day when the Hour will be established (it will be said to the angels):

“Cause Fir’aun’s (Pharaoh) people to enter the severest torment!” [Surah Ghafir 40:46]

And He said:

“Verily! As for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves (as they stayed among the disbelievers even though emigration was obligatory for them), they (angels) say (to them): „In what (condition) were you?‟ They reply: „We were weak and

oppressed on earth.‟ They (angels) say: „Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you to emigrate therein?‟ Such men will find their abode in Hell – What an evil destination!‟” [Surah an-Nisa 4:97]

And He also said.

“And if you could see when the angels take away the souls of those who disbelieve (at death), they smite their faces and their backs, (saying): „Taste the punishment of the blazing Fire.‟”

[Surah an-Afnal 8:50]

So this is evidence that the deceased person who is a believer will meet their reward in Paradise on the day of their death, and the non-Muslim will meet their punishment on the day of their death. This is in regards to the soul. As for the body, then indeed it will remain on earth until the Day of Judgement, and the soul will become reunited with it, either (being) punished or blessed, as the narrations indicate.


When parents cause terror

It’s the responsibility of parents and guardians to make their children (boy/girl) grow strong physically, mentally, psychologically and to make them responsible beings and to give them the best Islaamic manners, habits and to be for them a good Muslim role model possible which they will imitate grow and behave likewise.

imageThere are broadly two types of parents: Those who warn their children about wrong and encourage them to do right thing and then those who let their lives teach them lessons, and Islaam supports the first type of parents because life is a bad teacher.

While warning them about wrong and during making them responsible, most of the times parents go overboard. Instead of encouraging them to stay away from wrong ways and telling them about their responsibilities, they cause a sort of fear and terror in their hearts. For example, if the girl is lazy, her mother tells her – “You are fine here just because I am alive, after I die, you will see the reality!“ Or “After you will marry, your husband will take out your laziness!“ Or (to a boy) “If you remain lazy like this, you will suffer in the long run!“ Or “Do you think it’s easy to take care of family, it demands blood and sweat!“ These types of things are not encouraging him/her to do better but rather they are making him/her feel as if hell-fire is about to engulf them. This should not be done at any cost, make them understand about the reality of life rather than just causing fear in their hearts!

There is no doubt that children must be warned of their mistakes and they should not have laziness, but not like this by terrorizing them! Parents should learn the Prophetic method of upbringing children. Parents should not compare their children with other children even if they are better than your children. Children must be taught that this life is a test and laziness make a big issue in this test because a believer child cannot be lazy. There are so many ways by which children can be taught in a safe, kind and respectable manner, rather than causing terror in their hearts.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Paying through installments

Definition: It is a postponed payment executed in a fixed number of instalments at determined times, with a price higher than the cash price.

imageIs such a sale allowed? Scholars have two opinions:

1-The first opinion: Many scholars of the Hanafi, Maaliki, Hanbali, and Shafi’ee schools of jurisprudence rule that it is allowed. They present the following proofs:

A- This form of sale is an example of the sales that are allowed in the Quran where Allaah Says (what means): “…Allaah has permitted trade and has forbidden interest…” [Quran: 2:275] And also: “…Except when it is an immediate transaction which you conduct among yourselves…” [Quran 2:282]

B- Some prophetic narrations show the permissibility of the increase above the cash price. For example, the Prophet ordered ‘Amr bin Al-'Aas to equip an army, so ‘Amr would buy a camel for the price of two due to the payment being in instalments. [Al-Haakim & Bayhaqi]

C- In Islam, trades and transactions are generally allowed, provided they are conducted with a mutual consent of the contractors, unless the particular type of transaction is specifically forbidden by the Sharee'ah (Islamic Law). Since there is no convincing proof that this type of sale is prohibited, it remains allowed. Whoever claims otherwise has to provide proof.

2-The second opinion: This is that of Imaams Zayn Al-‘Aabideen 'Ali bin Al-Husayn and Al-Jassaas from the Hanafi School of Jurisprudence, as well as others who stated that increasing the price in exchange for postponing a payment is similar to increasing the debt in exchange for postponing its fulfilment. Their proofs are:

A- The verse where Allaah Says (what means): “…Allaah has permitted trade and has forbidden interest…” [Quran 2:275] means that sales that include an increase of price in exchange for deferring payments are forbidden, because they are examples of Riba (interest).

B- The Prophet has forbidden the addition of extraneous conditions to a sale, or to have two sales in one.

C- There is an analogy of this type of sale with the case where some of the debt is forgiven when the debtor pays before the due date. This would mean that time has compensation, and this is plainly Riba.

D- The increase of price because of the deferred payment is an increase in exchange for nothing in return, therefore it is a case of Riba, which, by definition, means to hike up the price in exchange for nothing.

The majority of the scholars have refuted the above proofs, presented by those who prohibit this sale, as follows:

A-To say that this type of sale is like Riba because of the increase of price is refuted. The Prophet, has determined the cases of Riba, and some scholars have limited themselves to these cases while others have added other cases they thought were considered Riba because they fulfil the same causes. These cases are, however, the object of disagreement between the scholars. But the matter that is disagreed about in this particular case is beyond what was mentioned by the Prophet and related cases, for it is about a sale in which the kind of merchandise and the evaluation of the price have differed.

B- To say that Riba means an increase in price is also refuted because almost every sale includes an increase in the price. The abovementioned verse [Quran: 2:275] mentions the unlawfulness of Riba in general, but the types of Riba were enumerated by the Prophet and they were six types. Sale by instalments is not included in these six types of Riba, nor is it included in the types added to them by some scholars.

C- Taking as proof the Hadeeth (prophetic narration) that forbids two sales in one, or extraneous conditions in a sale, is refuted because the forbidden sales in that Hadeeth are in fact sales where either the price or the merchandise is not specified, which is not the case of the instalment sale.

In conclusion, the most acceptable opinion is the one adopted by the majority of the scholars, which allows this type of sale, because of their strong proofs and because they convincingly addressed the proofs presented by the other side. Also, the common interest of all the Muslims requires that it be accepted due to the benefit for both the buyer and the seller.

Two Fatwas (Legal Rulings) Concerning Instalments:

Question 1: What is the Islamic Ruling concerning the increase in the price when there is a deferred payment executed in instalments?

Answer: Payment by instalments in sales contracts is allowed if it includes legitimate conditions and permissible if the monetary amount of the instalments is defined and the times of payment are fixed; as Allaah Says (what means): “O you who believe! When you contract a debt for a specified term, write it down…” [Quran 2:282] And also, due to the Hadeeth: “Whoever loaned something, let him lend it in a known measure, or a known weight, and for a fixed term.” In addition, we have the authentic story of Bareerah who emancipated herself from her masters in exchange for nine Ooqiyyaat (the plural of Ooqiyyah, one of which is equivalent to three hundred and sixty Dirhams), paying one Ooqyyah a year, and this was a payment in instalments, and the Prophet did not condemn it; rather, he approved of it. [Shaykh Ibn Baaz]

This narration indicates that it is permissible to pay in instalments.

Even though the texts state that it is permissible to delay payment, there is no text that explicitly states that it is permissible to increase the price in return for the delay.

Hence, the scholars differed concerning the ruling on this issue. Some scholars said that it is prohibited, on the grounds that it is the same as Riba. They stated that this was due to the increase in price in return for the deferment, which is Riba. On the other hand, the majority of scholars, including the four Imaams, were of the view that it is permissible. The comments of the scholars of the four Schools of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) concerning this include the following:

·The Hanafi School: “The price may be raised in return for delaying payment,” [Badaa’i’ Al-Sanaa’i’, 5/187]

·The Maaliki School: “For more time some amount may be added to the price.” [Bidaayat Al-Mujtahid, 2/108]

·The Shaafi’ee School: “Five in cash is equivalent to six in deferred payment.” [Al-Wajeez by Al-Ghazzaali, 1/85]

·The Hanbali School: “Delay adds something to the price.” [Fataawa Ibn Taymiyyah, 29/499]

Question 2: A man living in the United Sates asks if instalments used in car sales that include a fee for deferring payment is allowed. This fee increases when the buyer fails to pay on the agreed due dates.

Answer: If someone sells cars or other merchandise for a known fixed price that is payable by instalments that are fixed both in time and amount, in such a way that the price does not change when the fixed time of payment changes (i.e., payment is delayed), then this sale is allowed, for Allaah Says (what means): “O you who believe! When you contract a debt for a specified term, write it down…” [Quran 2:282] But if the price of the merchandise increases if an instalment is paid after the due date, as it is understood in this question, then this is forbidden by consensus of the scholars, because this is a case of Riba, which is mentioned (and explicitly forbidden) in the Quran. [The General Committee for Religious Research, Fatawa, Da’wah, and Guidance]


Ruling on the woman going out of her house during ‘iddah following divorce (talaaq)

I want to go to classes to memorise Qur’an. Is it permissible for me to go out when I am in ‘iddah, or it is not permissible?


Praise be to Allah.

We understand from this question that was submitted to the website that what is meant by the ‘iddah in this question is the ‘iddah following divorce (talaaq). Based on that, it should be pointed out to the sister who is asking this question that the ‘iddah following divorce (talaaq) must be one of two things:

1. Either ‘iddah following a revocable divorce

2. Or ‘iddah following an irrevocable divorce.

In the first case: she is observing ‘iddah following a revocable divorce. She may go out to the mosque or to Qur’an classes on condition that her husband give her permission, because the woman who is revocably divorced is still a wife, with the same rights and duties as other wives.

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar that he used to say: If a man has divorced his wife once or twice, she should not go out of her house except with his permission.

Narrated by Ibn Abi Shaybah in his Musannaf, 4/142

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said: The more correct view is that if the divorced woman’s divorce is revocable, then she is like a wife who has not been divorced, i.e., she may go out to visit her neighbours or relatives, or to go to the mosque to listen to talks and so on. She is not like the one whose husband has died. With regard to the verse (interpretation of the meaning): “and turn them not out of their (husbands’) homes, nor shall they (themselves) leave” [at-Talaaq 65:1], what is meant by turning them out is leaving, i.e., she should not leave the house and go out and live somewhere else.

End quote from Fataawa Noor ‘ala ad-Darb.

An-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: If she is revocably divorced, then she is still a wife; he still has to take care of her maintenance, and she should not go out except with his permission.

End quote from Rawdat at-Taalibeen, 8/416

In the second case: she is permanently divorced, whether she is completely divorced and cannot go back to her husband unless she marries another man in a genuine marriage, then he divorces her or dies (baynoonah kubra), such as when the number of talaaqs has been used up, or she is completely divorced but may go back to him with a new marriage contract (baynoonah sughra), such as when she has asked him for khula‘ in return for compensation, or the marriage has been annulled because of some defect. In this case it is permissible for her to go out, even if it is without permission, because she is no longer a wife.

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) that he used to say: If a woman has been divorced, then she may come to the mosque and it is her right to do so, but she should not stay overnight anywhere except in her house, until her ‘iddah has ended.

Al-Mudawwanah, 2/42

It says in Mughni al-Muhtaaj, 5/174: The woman in ‘iddah who is completely divorced by means of khula‘ or three talaaqs is not entitled to of maintenance or clothing at all, because she is no longer a wife. Her case is similar to that of the one whose husband has died. End quote.

In Haashiyat al-Bayjurmi, 4/90 it says: With regard to the one who is entitled to maintenance, such as one who is divorced but still in her ‘iddah, or one who is completely divorced but pregnant, they should not go out for that except with the permission of the husband, like any other wife, because he is still obliged to provide them with maintenance. However, the one who is pregnant may go out for purposes other than seeking maintenance, as mentioned by as-Subki and others. End quote.

To sum up:

If a woman is in ‘iddah following a revocable divorce, it is not permissible for her to go out except with her husband’s permission. But if she is in ‘iddah following an irrevocable divorce, then she may go out if she needs to, even if that is without permission, because she is no longer a wife.

And Allah knows best.

Islam Q&A


Should one who joins the prayer late recite the opening du‘aa’?

The opening du‘aa’ (du‘aa’ al-istiftaah) should come at the beginning of the prayer. If I join the congregation at the beginning of the second rak‘ah, for example, should I recite it or have I missed the time for it? In other words, should the opening du‘aa’ be recited only in the first rak‘ah, and after that should it not be recited? Or is it that whenever the worshipper starts his prayer, he should say it even if he did not say it in the first rak‘ah?


Praise be to Allah.

The opening du‘aa’ is Sunnah according to the majority of scholars, and whenever the worshipper catches up with his imam in the first or second rak‘ah, he should recite the opening du‘aa’, so long as he is not worried that the imam will bow (too soon). But if he is worried that the imam will bow, then he should recite al-Faatihah only, because reciting it is obligatory.

An-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: If one who joins the prayer late starts to pray, then the imam says Ameen immediately after he has started to pray, then he should say Ameen and then recite the opening du‘aa’, because the saying ameen is brief. If the one who joins the prayer late catches up with the imam in the final tashahhud, he should say takbeer and sit down, then if the imam says the salaam as soon as he has sat down, then he should stand up (to make up what he has missed of the prayer) and not say the opening du‘aa’, because he has missed the place for it.

End quote from al-Majmoo‘, 3/275

He also said: If he catches up with him when he is still standing, and he knows that he will be able to recite the opening du‘aa’ and seek refuge with Allah and recite al-Faatihah, then he must do so. This was stated by ash-Shaafa‘i in al-Umm, and also by our companions. … If he knows that he will only be able to recite part of the opening du‘aa’ and seek refuge with Allah and recite al-Faatihah, and he will not be able to do all of it, he should do what he is able to do. This was stated in al-Umm.

End quote from al-Majmoo‘, 3/276

Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

If the latecomer joins the prayer when the imam is reaching the end of his recitation, before bowing, should he start his prayer with the opening du‘aa’, or should he join the imam and remain silent?

He replied:

If the latecomer arrives when the imam is bowing, he should bow with him, and not recite the opening du‘aa’ or recite any Qur’an; rather he should say takbeer and bow. But if he comes when the imam is still standing and there is plenty of time, then he should recite the opening du‘aa’ and al-Faatihah. This is what is prescribed for him: to recite the opening du‘aa’ and then al-Faatihah, even in the prayers in which the imam recites out loud. If there is a pause where the imam falls silent, he should recite it at that time; otherwise he should recite it to himself, then after that he should listen attentively to the imam. But if he comes late, when the imam is bowing, then he should say takbeer and bow, and the requirement to recite al-Faatihah is waived in this case, because he is excused.

End quote from Majmoo‘ al-Fataawa, 30/150

And Allah knows best.

Islam Q&A


Sunday, October 27, 2013

Magic: The Deadly Kufr (Part 1)

By Anum Ali



The roots of magic can be traced way back in history until before the time of Prophet Sulayman (Solomon), peace and blessings upon him. An explicitly declared kufr (disbelief) by Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala in the Qur’an, that continues to plague the world through human beings who sell their soul to the devils (Shayatin). Sorcerers know of spells that can separate a man and his wife, cause physical harm, ruin social and financial affairs, and create hurdles in the way of one’s happiness and success. The knowledge of Qur’an and Hadith; however, is very essential to realize that sorcerers are powerless unless their magical antics are allowed to harm a human being for the purpose of testing faith. Self-defence exists for those who seek to find it in the Wise Words of Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala and the teachings of Prophet Muhammad sal Allahu aleyhi wasallam.

Origin of Magic: Harut and Marut of Babylon & Prophet Sulayman

Surah Al-Baqarah in the Qur’an narrates the origin of magic in the city of Babylon (Babil in Arabic). During the time of Prophet Sulayman, but before his prophet-hood the devils used to ascend to heaven and eavesdrop on conversations of the angels. The angels talked about future events on earth that had been planned by Allah’s Will. These events were news concerning incidents, accidents, deaths, lives, and other unseen matters. With this secret knowledge, the devils would descend back to Babylon and convey the affairs to fortune-tellers These fortune-tellers would then narrate the knowledge of the unseen to the people who would consider them as all-powerful folk of great knowledge; hence, committing shirk.

The bond of trust between the devils and fortune-tellers began to malfunction as the devils began to lie and make up false news. Their deceitful words, trickery, and curses were recorded in books by the people. Two angels, Harut and Marut existed in human form at that time and were vested with responsibility from Allah to test and try the people by leading them to the source from where they could learn magic. Whenever a man would approach the angels and ask them to teach him magic, they would first explain that magic is a form of disbelief (kufr) and should not be learned unless one wishes to provoke the wrath of Allah upon himself. They openly revealed that they were planted as a test for the people by Allah. If however the person continued to insist, they would direct him to a place where Satan met him and taught magic.

When Prophet Sulayman was sent as a Prophet, he collected the books from the people and had them buried under his throne, hidden from sight, never to be used. A death penalty was ordered for any of the Children of Israel who claimed that the Jinns knew of the unseen.

Time passed on after the death of Prophet Sulayman, and gradually all scholars and folk who knew of the secret of Prophet Sulayman’s throne passed away. Satan appeared in the form of a human in the new generation and informed the people that a treasure lay under Prophet Sulayman’s throne. Myths and legends and movies address “Solomon’s Treasure” as well. The books of magic; therefore, were retrieved. Satan falsely persuaded the Children of Israel to think that Prophet Sulayman was a sorcerer and his gifted miracle of communicating and controlling Jinns and animals added to the evidence. The people therefore, began to learn magic from these books.

Selling the Soul to the Devil

A person who teaches, learns, and practices magic has sold his soul to the devil and Allah’s curse is upon him. This fact can be elaborated from the narrative of Harut and Marut of Babylon in the Qur’an. Whoever insisted to learn magic was directed by Harut and Marut to a place where they were asked to urinate on a pile of ashes. As the person would do so, the shining light of faith within them would depart from his body and he would see it fly away until it disappeared into the heaven. A black smoke, described as Allah’s anger, would descend and enter his ears and the rest of his body. The learner of magic learns from the Shayatin and his affairs are conducted by them. He invokes Shayatin, instead of Allah, to carry out actions to harm people. This is a perfect equation for shirk i.e. associating partners with Allah and hence, kufr.


The danger of changing the meaning of Allaah's Names and Attributes

When dealing with the issue of belief in Allah's Names and Attributes, we have to bear in mind the following important points:

1) Placing Allah, The Most Exalted, above any likeness to human beings and beyond any imperfections.

2) Belief in the Names and Attributes established in the Quran and Sunnah (the sayings, actions and approvals of Prophet Muhammad ), without ignoring them, expanding upon them, changing or overriding them.

3) Abandoning any desire to discover the form of those attributes by realizing the following:

A: The attributes of Allah Almighty bear no resemblance whatsoever to any human attribute. Allah Says in the Quran (what means): “There is nothing like Him…” [Quran 42:11]

B: The only names and attributes to be ascribed to Allah Almighty are those mentioned in the Quran and Sunnah.

C: We are required to believe in these names and attributes without inquiring after their nature and manner or investigating their essence.

This is so because attributes vary according to the self they characterize; finding out how they manifest themselves depends upon knowing the self and how it acts.

If someone were to ask: “How does Allah Almighty descend to the lower heavens?” We would reply by asking: “What is His nature?” If the questioner says, “I do not know Allah’s nature", we say: “And we know not how He descends!"

Tawheed of Names and Attributes is violated by the following:

1. Ta’teel (Negation): This is done by negating Allaah's Names or Attributes, and denying their existence in Allah. For instance, negating the perfection of Allah by denying His Names and Attributes, or negating the proper conduct towards Allaah by abandoning worship, or barring the created from its Creator, such as those who deny the fact that Allaah Almighty created the universe and claim that it developed and evolved by itself.

The deviant Islamic sect who adopted this crooked creed is called 'Al-Jahmiyyah', the followers of Jahm Ibn Safwaan. They deny the Attributes of Allah, the AlMighty and Exalted; in fact, their extremists deny the Names and say: "It is not permissible to affirm a Name or an Attribute of Allaah; for if you were to affirm a Name for Him, you have likened Him with things with (similar) names, or an Attribute, then you have likened Him with things of (similar) attributes!! And whatever Allah assigns to Himself from the Names; then it is just in a metaphorical sense; and not the case of actually naming with these Names (literally)!!"

2. Tashbeeh (Resemblance): This means to resemble the attributes of the Creator to the attributes of the created as the Christians, Jews and some deviant sects in Islam compare the face of Allah with the human face, Allaah’s Hand to the human hand and so on. [Al-As'ilah Wal-Ajwibah Al-Usooliyyah, p. 35]

The people who adopted this deviant creed affirm the attributes of Allaah, and say: "It is a must to affirm the attributes of Allaah, as He affirmed them for Himself", but they say: "Indeed they are like the attributes of the creation."

So, these people went into extreme in affirmation, and the people of At-Ta'teel went into extreme in elimination of seemingly anthropomorphic Attributes.

So these people claimed: "It is a must for you to affirm the Face of Allah, and this Face is like the Face of the most beautiful one from the children of Aadam." They also claimed:"Because Allah addressed us with what we understand and comprehend; (so Allah) said (what means): "...And remains the Face of your Lord full of Majesty and Honour." [Quran 55:27], so we do not understand or comprehend from the Face except what we witness, and the best of what we see is the human."

According to their claim - we seek refuge in Allah from such heresy - (the Face of Allah) is like the best one of the human youth!! And they claim that this is rationally logical!!

3. Tahreef (Distortion): This is done through false interpretation or change. For example, the change of the wordings of names and attributes, by adding to them, subtracting from them or changing the grammatical constructions, such as the verse (which means): “And Allaah spoke directly to Moosa (Moses).” [Quran 4:163) where the word Allaah they claimed to be in the objective case, thus indicating that it was Moosa may Allah exalt his mention who spoke to Allah and not vice versa. Thus, they denied Allah’s attribute of talking.

Al- Jahmiyyah also adopted this innovation through such claims as that the Istiwaa' (Allah's Ascending above the Throne) means 'conquering and having dominion over'; and like the saying of some of the innovators that 'Anger' when referring to Allah means 'intending to send blessings', all of which goes under Tahreef. The true saying, however is that Istiwaa' means ascending and being above- as is clear in the Arabic language. The Quran came to show that its meaning is ascending and being above the Throne in a manner which befits Allaah's Majesty and Greatness.

4. Takyeef (to try to describe "how" an Attribute is, e.g., to say: How Allah's Hand is? It is like this and that, or: How His Descending is? It is like this and that): This is done by attempting to determine the manner in which Allah’s Attributes take form and also determining their essence. The method of taking Names and Attributes mentioned in the Quran and Sunnah at face value, without any comparison, change, negation, nor give the "how of" is the method of the Companions may Allah be pleased with them, their followers and those who followed their followers, may Allah have mercy them.

Takyeef differs from Tamtheel and Tashbeeh in two ways:

1- Takyeef is to Relate How Something is, with restriction or not by way of resembling. While Tamtheel and Tashbeeh indicate how something is, in a restricted sense, by way of a likeness or resemblance respectively. Takyeef is more general. All who do Tamtheel are doing Takyeef. But vice versa is NOT the case.

2- Takyeef is Particular to Allaah's Attributes, while Tamtheel is concerned with His Decree, Description and Self.

Ahlus-Sunnah Wal-Jamaa'ah (the mainstream moderate Muslims) affirm for Allah -The Most Exalted -what He has affirmed for Himself in His Noble Book, or what has been affirmed for Him by His Messenger Muhammad in the authentic Sunnah, without Tamtheel. They free Allah - the Most Exalted - from any resemblance to His creation, whilst also rejecting and being free from Ta'teel.


The sheer number of adherents to a creed does not in any way indicate the soundness of that creed….

A point that Allah has alluded to in numerous places in the Quran is that the sheer number of adherents to a creed does not in any way indicate the soundness of that creed. For example, Allah says,

image“And if you obey most of those on earth, they will mislead you far away from Allah’s Path. They follow nothing but conjectures, and they do nothing but lie. Verily, your Lord! It is He Who knows best who strays from His Way, and He knows best the rightly guided ones” (Surah Al-Anaam 116).

Thus, one should never be fooled by or deceived by mere numbers. It is very possible that the masses – even the Muslim masses – may be deceived and may follow falsehood. Those who recognize and follow the truth may be a very small number indeed.

However, the important point that each and every Muslim must remember is not the number of companions but whether they are in fact along the Straight Path that is pleasing to Allah. As long as one can be certain that what he is following or believing in can be clearly proven from the Quran and Sunnah – the ultimate authorities – he never has to worry whether or not it is consistent with what the masses are following. In fact, Allah told the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him),

“Yet no faith will the greater part of mankind have, however ardently you [O Muhammad] do desire it” (Surah Yoosuf 103)

Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) is one scholar who clearly understood this concept and realized that a Muslim must be ready to face a situation where he, by following the truth, is very much in the minority and may even be despised. However, the truth must always be supported and adhered to, no matter how great the opposition. Such is a virtuous act indeed.

In responding to a question put forth to him, ibn Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) wrote,

“Know first that if the truth shines forth and is clear, it is not harmed by the large numbers who oppose it and the small numbers who agree with it. You know how some aspects of tawheed have become strange, although they are clearer than the prayer and fasting; and that [strangeness] does not harm it at all.” [1]

Ibn Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) also wrote,

“I do not know of anything more virtuous in getting one nearer to Allah than adhering to the path of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) during times of ‘strangeness.’ If one adds to that striving against the disbelievers and hypocrites, that forms the completeness of faith. In fact, the most virtuous jihad is striving against the hypocrites during times of ‘strangeness.’” [2]

The outsiders will call such people who adhere to the truth, regardless of what the masses are following, “sectarians.” In reality, though, this is the proper or acceptable type of “sectarianism.”

If the people as a whole are ignoring the truth, one has to adhere to the truth, even though it will make him appear as an outsider or a “sectarian.”

It is as the Companion ibn Mas’ud told Amr ibn Maimoon after advising him to stick to the jama’ah (“congregation, community”) and then told him to pray alone if the rulers delay the prayer. This seemed to be a contradiction to Amr, so he asked ibn Mas’ud about that.

Ibn Mas’ud explained to him, “The jama’ah is whoever is in agreement with the truth, even if it be just you by yourself.” [3]

In other words, it is the truth that one must adhere to, even if that makes one “an outsider” with respect to the masses who may be following a different way.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) spoke of a time in which this will be the proper course of action for a believer. In fact, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

“Islam began as something strange and it will return as it began [that is, as being something strange]. So glad tidings of Tooba [a tree in Paradise] for the strangers.” (Recorded by Muslim.)

Another narration describes those “strangers” as:

“Pious people among evil people. Those who disobey them are more than those who obey them.” [4]

Ibn Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) also gave the following advice, “If you find it difficult to go against what the people are doing, ponder over Allah’s words…” and then he quoted the following verses of the Quran:

“Then We have put you (O Muhammad) on a plain way of (Our) commandment. So follow you that, and follow not the desires of those who know not. Verily, they can avail you nothing against Allah (if He wants to punish you). Verily, the wrongdoers are protectors to one another, but Allah is the Protector of the pious” (Surah al-Jaathiyah 18-19); and,

“And if you obey most of those on earth, they will mislead you far away from Allah’s Path. They follow nothing but conjectures, and they do nothing but lie” (Surah al-Anaam 116). End quote. [5]

Some Muslims find it very strange that people, even Muslims, can be presented the truth from the Quran and Sunnah yet they refuse to follow it. However, Allah has explained the real motivation and reality behind such acts when He consoled the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him),

“But if they answer you not, then know that they only follow their own lusts. And who is more astray than one who follows his own lusts, without guidance from Allah? Verily! Allah guides not the people who are wrongdoers” (Surah al-Qasas 50).

Finally, the present time is a time in which the commoners do not distinguish between what Allah has said and what the ignorant or the so-called “educated” among the humans say.

This is very true. One can have a verse or a hadeeth in front of oneself and a contrary statement of an individual—a scholar, a writer, a speaker or whatever—and a Muslim may give the two equal weight.

Indeed, the statement of the individual may even be given more weight because he is writing “in the current times…,” in the 21st Century where things have changed and need be looked at afresh.

Sadly, today there may not be the trees and shrubs that the people of Najd venerated before the influence of ibn Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah), but there are new idols. Perhaps these idols are even stronger idols, in the form of “ideas” and “isms,” such as modernism, feminism, democracy, nationalism and so on. Many Muslims are being swept away by these concepts and ignoring or forgetting about the noble, perfect and perpetual guidance of the Quran.

Source: Taken from the book, The Life, Teachings and Influence of Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhaab page 350-354


[1] Muallifaat al-Shaykh al-Imam Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhaab, vol. 3, section on Fatawa, p. 88.

[2] Muallifaat al-Shaykh al-Imam Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhaab, vol. 7, p. 288.

[3] Muallifaat al-Shaykh al-Imam Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhaab, vol. 7, p. 236.

[4] Recorded by Ahmad. According to al-Albaani, this narration is saheeh. See al-Albaani, Saheeh al-Jaami, vol. 2, p. 728.

[5] Muallifaat al-Shaykh al-Imam Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhaab, vol. 7, pp. 256-257.


Who is a Muslim

The word "Muslim" means one who submits to the will of God. The first principle of Islam is known as the Shahaadah (Testimony of Faith), and is as follows: "There is no one worthy of worship except Allaah (God) and Muhammad is the Final Apostle (Messenger) of God.”

imageIn a broader sense, anyone who willingly submits to the will of God is a Muslim. Thus, all the prophets preceding Prophet Muhammad, , are considered Muslims.

One cannot judge Islam by looking at those individuals who have a Muslim name, but in their actions, they are not living or behaving as Muslims. Muslims are ordinary people like other humans; among them are the good and the bad. They are not infallible creatures and, therefore, make mistakes.

When we mention the characteristics of a Muslim, we do not assume that all Muslims have these characteristics, but only those who follow -- to the best of their abilities -- the teachings of Islam.

We can thus summarize the teachings of Islam about the Muslim character concisely in the following way:

A Muslim is truthful, not dishonest

He is humble, not arrogant

He is moderate, not an extremist

He is honest, not corrupt

He is reserved, not garrulous

He is soft-spoken, not boastful

He is loving and solicitous to others, not unmindful of them

He is considerate and compassionate, not harsh

He is polite and helpful, not insulting and disrespectful to people

He is generous and charitable, not selfish and miserly

He is refined and gentle in speech, not prone to swearing or cursing

He is cheerful and generous, not bitter and resentful

He is grateful for what he has, not ungrateful

He is cheerful and pleasant, not irritable and gloomy

He is chaste and pure, not lustful

He is alert, not absent-minded

He is dignified and decent, not graceless

He is sincere and straightforward, not hypocritical

He is optimistic and hopeful, not cynical or pessimistic

He is confident and deep in faith, not doubtful and wavering

He is spiritually oriented, not materialistic

He always has faith in God’s mercy, not losing heart or becoming desperate

He is diligent and vigilant, not negligent to his duties

He is thankful to God and constantly prays to Him, not forgetful of His innumerable blessings

The Muslim personality is balanced. He pays due attention to his body’s needs and his outward appearance, without letting it distract him from nurturing his inner characteristics, as befits man whom God has honored and made His angels prostrate to him, and subjugated for his benefit all that is in the heaven and earth. The Muslim is also concerned with that which will form sound intellectual development and ways of thinking, so that he understands the nature and essence of things. He does not forget that man is not only composed of body and mind, but he also possesses a soul and a spirit, and feels a longing for higher things that makes him rise above this materialistic life and ascend the heights of goodness, virtue and light. Therefore, he pays as much attention to his spiritual development as he does to his physical and intellectual development, in a precisely balanced fashion, which does not concentrate on one aspect to the disadvantage of others.

With his parents, he is an example of sincere filial piety, good treatment, infinite compassion, politeness and deep gratitude.

With his wife, he is an example of good and kind treatment, intelligent handling, deep understanding and proper fulfillment of his responsibilities and duties.

With his children, he is a parent who understands his great responsibility towards them. Although he floods them with love and compassion, he pays attention to things that may affect their Islamic upbringing.

With his relatives, he maintains the ties of kinship and knows his duties toward them. He understands the high status given to relatives in Islam, which makes him remain in touch with them regardless of the circumstances.

With his neighbors, the true Muslim is an example of good treatment and consideration of others’ feelings and sensitivities. He puts up with mistreatment and turns a blind eye to his neighbor’s faults while avoiding committing any such errors himself. He always adopts the Islamic attitude, whereby treating neighbors well was made a basic principle of Islam. His relationship with his brothers and friends is the best and purest of relationships, for it is based on love for the sake of God. This pure, sincere, brotherly love derives its purity from the guidance of the Quran and Sunnah (traditions and approved actions of Prophet Muhammad, ) that became a unique system in the history of human relations.

In his social relationships with all people, he is well mannered, civil and noble, characterized by the attitudes which Islam encourages. Good behavior which is taught in the Quran and Sunnah, has been made a religious duty in Islam, for which man will be brought to account.

This is the clear, beautiful picture of the Muslim whose personality has been formed by Islam and whose heart, mind and soul are filled with its divine light.

The development of a society is not measured solely in terms of its scientific achievements and material inventions. There is another, more important standard by which a society is measured. That is the prevalence of human values such as love, empathy, altruism, sacrifice, uprightness and purity of thought, behavior and dealings with others.

If individuals are the basis of a society, then rightly guided societies pay attention to human development and enhance the positive, constructive aspects while seeking to eliminate evil, destructive motives, so that the individual will become a model citizen. It is from groups of such model citizens that clean, civil, strong, healthy, righteous societies are formed.



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