Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Dua: Individual , collective, after prayers and wiping the face

[40:60] Your Lord has said, .Call Me, I will respond to you. Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam (Hell) with disgrace.


Making dua, supplicating to Allah (SWT), humiliating and beseeching our Creator (SWT) is the ultimate objective of a servant to his Master (SWT). It is regrettable that in our times, due to rampant materialism and preoccupation with futile activities, debates and discussions what should been the pinnacle of servitude for a believer has turned into an issue of dispute. Where and how the hands should be raised? Should they be wiped on the face or merely dropped after making dua? Should the dua be done individually or collectively? When should the dua be made and when should it not be made?

It is of paramount importance that as a Muslim we should seek to match every aspect, every action of Sayyidina Rasul-ullah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam). Thre is no pathway, no route, and no gateway to Allah (SWT) except through the noble Sunnah of Sayyidina Rasul-ullah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam). There is no proof of love of Allah (SWT) except for the love, devotion, obedience and following of Sayyidina Rasul-ullah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam). It is declared emphatically in the Qur’aan:

قُلۡ إِن كُنتُمۡ تُحِبُّونَ ٱللَّهَ فَٱتَّبِعُونِى يُحۡبِبۡكُمُ ٱللَّهُ وَيَغۡفِرۡ لَكُمۡ ذُنُوبَكُمۡ‌ۗ وَٱللَّهُ غَفُورٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ۬

[3:31] Say (O Prophet): If you really love Allah, then follow me, and Allah shall love you and forgive you your sins. Allah is Most-Forgiving, Very-Merciful.

If it isn’t the Sunnah, ditch it!

Dua should be made to whom?

Islam demands and requires total rejection of all deities and total submission to Allah (SWT). None has the power to grant (anything) except Allah (SWT). To call upon anyone except Allah (SWT), to prostrate or to seek aid from anyone other than Allah (SWT) is clearly forbidden and impermissible.

إِنَّمَا تَعۡبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ أَوۡثَـٰنً۬ا وَتَخۡلُقُونَ إِفۡكًا‌ۚ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ تَعۡبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ لَا يَمۡلِكُونَ لَكُمۡ رِزۡقً۬ا فَٱبۡتَغُواْ عِندَ ٱللَّهِ ٱلرِّزۡقَ وَٱعۡبُدُوهُ وَٱشۡكُرُواْ لَهُ ۥۤ‌ۖ إِلَيۡهِ تُرۡجَعُونَ

[29:17] You only worship idols beside Allah, and you invent a lie. In fact those whom you worship beside Allah do not have power to give you provision. So seek provision with Allah and worship Him and be grateful to Him. To Him you are to be returned.

What is Tawassul?

Tawassul and Waseelah literally means to make a request or supplicate through a means. It is permissible for one to request Allah Ta'ala to accept his du'aa through the medium of some deeds or the rank of certain individuals as this may be closer to acceptance. There are various forms of Tawassul and Waseela:


To make Tawassul to Almighty Allah that He accepts the Du'aa due to one having performed a certain good deed is permissible and unanimously accepted. It is supported by the Hadith of Sahih Bukhari in which three people were trapped in a cave. Each of them made Du'aa to Allah Ta'ala to move the obstructing rock and they requested Allah Ta'ala to accept their du'aas due to some good deed that each of them had done.


To make Tawassul with the names and attributes of Almighty Allah: This is also permissible and is supported by the following verse, 'And Allah has beautiful names, so call unto Him through them.' (Surah A'araaf v.180). Example: If someone says, 'Oh Allah, I ask you through your attributes and beautiful names to grant my specific wish.'


To make Tawassul to Allah Ta'ala through the rank and position of certain individuals, alive or deceased, in the sight of Almighty Allah This includes the Prophets [alayhimus salaam], the martyrs and any other pious servant of Allah. Example: If one says, 'Oh Allah, I beseech you to accept my du'aa due to the status of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) in Your eyes.' This form of Tawassul is also permissible according to the vast majority of the Ulama (scholars) and it has in fact remained part of their practise.


Some scholars even mention a fourth type of Tawassul, where a person requests some living pious servant of Allah to make du'aa for him: This is also unanimously accepted.

Status and power of Dua?

We are reminded in the Qur’aan by Allah (SWT) that He (SWT) is near to us and ready to respond to our duas.

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِى عَنِّى فَإِنِّى قَرِيبٌ‌ۖ أُجِيبُ دَعۡوَةَ ٱلدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ‌ۖ فَلۡيَسۡتَجِيبُواْ لِى وَلۡيُؤۡمِنُواْ بِى لَعَلَّهُمۡ يَرۡشُدُونَ

[2:186] When My servants ask you about Me, then (tell them that) I am near. I respond to the call of one when he prays to Me; so they should respond to Me, and have faith in Me, so that they may be on the right path.

Abstaining from dua is not a sign of the believers but a manifestation of pride and a source of inviting Allah (SWT)’s anger and wrath. Allah (SWT) doesn’t like haughty, arrogant souls who turn away from him but loves those who submit to him in a state of complete humility, destitute and helplessness.

وَقَالَ رَبُّڪُمُ ٱدۡعُونِىٓ أَسۡتَجِبۡ لَكُمۡۚ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ يَسۡتَكۡبِرُونَ عَنۡ عِبَادَتِى سَيَدۡخُلُونَ جَهَنَّمَ دَاخِرِينَ

[40:60] Your Lord has said, .Call Me, I will respond to you. Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam (Hell) with disgrace.

Making dua is an act of worship (in its right) as emphatically declared by Sayyidina Rasul-ullah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam):

وقال الإمام أحمد : حدثنا أبو معاوية ، حدثنا الأعمش ، عن ذر ، عن يسيع الكندي ، عن النعمان بن بشير - رضي الله عنه - قال : قال رسول الله - صلى الله عليه وسلم - : " إن الدعاء هو العبادة " ثم قرأ : ( ادعوني أستجب لكم إن الذين يستكبرون عن عبادتي سيدخلون جهنم داخرين

Sayyidina An-Nu’man ibn Basheer (RA) reported: I heard the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) saying, “Supplication is worship.” Then he recited the verse, “Your Lord says: [40:60] Your Lord has said, Call Me, I will respond to you. Definitely those who show arrogance against worshipping Me shall enter Jahannam (Hell) with disgrace. [Ahmed]

Dua has the power to change certain predetermined acts (in destiny), avert difficulties (before they befall) and deliver from hardships when they afflict. There is explicit text in the Sunnah which proves that dua can avert certain acts (predetermined) and there are numerous examples from the stories of Prophets (AS) in the Qur’aan where hardships were eased due to supplications.

حدثنا محمد بن حميد الرازي وسعيد بن يعقوب قالا حدثنا يحيى بن الضريس عن أبي مودود عن سليمان التيمي عن أبي عثمان النهدي عن سلمان قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم لا يرد القضاء إلا الدعاء ولا يزيد في العمر إلا البر قال أبو عيسى وفي الباب عن أبي أسيد وهذا حديث حسن غريب من حديث سلمان لا نعرفه إلا من حديث يحيى بن الضريس وأبو مودود اثنان أحدهما يقال له فضة وهو الذي روى هذا الحديث اسمه فضة بصري والآخر عبد العزيز بن أبي سليمان أحدهما بصري والآخر مدني وكانا في عصر واحد

Sayyidina Salman (RA) reported: I heard the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) saying, “Nothing can change the Divine Decree except dua.” [Tirmidhi]

وَذَا ٱلنُّونِ إِذ ذَّهَبَ مُغَـٰضِبً۬ا فَظَنَّ أَن لَّن نَّقۡدِرَ عَلَيۡهِ فَنَادَىٰ فِى ٱلظُّلُمَـٰتِ أَن لَّآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّآ أَنتَ سُبۡحَـٰنَكَ إِنِّى ڪُنتُ مِنَ ٱلظَّـٰلِمِينَ (٨٧) فَٱسۡتَجَبۡنَا لَهُ ۥ وَنَجَّيۡنَـٰهُ مِنَ ٱلۡغَمِّ‌ۚ وَكَذَٲلِكَ نُـۨجِى ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ (٨٨) وَزَڪَرِيَّآ إِذۡ نَادَىٰ رَبَّهُ ۥ رَبِّ لَا تَذَرۡنِى فَرۡدً۬ا وَأَنتَ خَيۡرُ ٱلۡوَٲرِثِينَ (٨٩) فَٱسۡتَجَبۡنَا لَهُ ۥ وَوَهَبۡنَا لَهُ ۥ يَحۡيَىٰ وَأَصۡلَحۡنَا لَهُ ۥ زَوۡجَهُ ۥۤ‌ۚ إِنَّهُمۡ ڪَانُواْ يُسَـٰرِعُونَ فِى ٱلۡخَيۡرَٲتِ وَيَدۡعُونَنَا رَغَبً۬ا وَرَهَبً۬ا‌ۖ وَڪَانُواْ لَنَا خَـٰشِعِينَ

[21:87] And (remember) Dhunnun (the man of the fish, namely Yunus X), when he walked away in anger and thought that We would never put him to trouble. Then, he called (Us) in depths of darkness saying, .There is no god but You. Pure are You. Indeed I was among the wrongdoers.[21:88] So We responded to him and rescued him from the distress. And this is how We rescue the believers. [21:89] And (remember) Zakariyya when he called his Lord, .My Lord, do not leave me alone and You are the best of inheritors.[21:90] So, We responded to him and gave him YaHya and made his wife good for him. They used to race towards the good deeds and call Us with hope and fear; and they were humble to Us.

وَٱذۡكُرۡ عَبۡدَنَآ أَيُّوبَ إِذۡ نَادَىٰ رَبَّهُ ۥۤ أَنِّى مَسَّنِىَ ٱلشَّيۡطَـٰنُ بِنُصۡبٍ۬ وَعَذَابٍ (٤١) ٱرۡكُضۡ بِرِجۡلِكَ‌ۖ هَـٰذَا مُغۡتَسَلُۢ بَارِدٌ۬ وَشَرَابٌ۬ (٤٢) وَوَهَبۡنَا لَهُ ۥۤ أَهۡلَهُ ۥ وَمِثۡلَهُم مَّعَهُمۡ رَحۡمَةً۬ مِّنَّا وَذِكۡرَىٰ لِأُوْلِى ٱلۡأَلۡبَـٰبِ

[38:41] And remember Our servant, Ayyub–when he called his Lord saying, .The Shaitan (Satan) has inflicted weariness and pain upon me. [38:42] (Allah said to him,) .Strike (the ground) with your foot: Here is a cool water to bathe, and a drink!.[38:43] And We let him have his family and the like of them besides, as a mercy from Us, and a reminder for the people of understanding.

Imaam Ibn al-Qayyim (RA) beautifully summarised the power of dua, its prerequisites and its status:

والأدعية والتعوذات بمنزلة السلاح ، والسلاح بضاربه ، لا بحده فقط ، فمتى كان السلاح سلاحا تاما لا آفة به ، والساعد ساعد قوي ، والمانع مفقود ، حصلت به النكاية في العدو . ومتى تخلف واحد من هذه الثلاثة تخلف التأثير

Du’aa’s and ta’awwudhaat [prayers seeking refuge with Allaah] are like a weapon, and a weapon is only as good as the person who is using it; it is not merely the matter of how sharp it is. If the weapon is perfect and free of faults, and the arm of the person using it is strong, and there is nothing stopping him, then he can lay waste the enemy. But if any of these three features is lacking, then the effect will be lacking accordingly.

Hands should be raised in dua:

Shaykhul Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (RA) declared that as of Prophet Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) raising his hands in dua, then this has been narrated in so many Ahadeeth which cannot be counted.

وقال ‏ ‏أبو موسى الأشعري ‏ ‏دعا النبي ‏ ‏صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ ‏ثم رفع يديه ورأيت بياض إبطيه

Sayyidina Abu Musa Ashari (RA) reported that the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) made a dua, and I saw him raise his hands, until I could see the whitness of his armpits. [Bukhari]

وقال ‏ ‏ابن عمر ‏ ‏رفع النبي ‏ ‏صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ ‏يديه وقال اللهم إني أبرأ إليك مما صنع ‏ ‏خالد

Sayyidina Ibn Umar (RA) narrated that the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) raised his hands and said, "O Allah! I ask your protection for what Khalid has done". [Bukhari]

قال أبو عبد الله ‏ ‏وقال ‏ ‏الأويسي ‏ ‏حدثني ‏ ‏محمد بن جعفر ‏ ‏عن ‏ ‏يحيى بن سعيد ‏ ‏وشريك ‏ ‏سمعا ‏ ‏أنسا ‏ ‏عن النبي ‏ ‏صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ ‏رفع يديه حتى رأيت بياض إبطيه ‏

Sayyidina Anas (RA) also narrated that the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) raised his hands until I saw the whiteness of his armpits. [Bukhari]

Praising Allah (SWT) and salutations upon the Prophet (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) before and after the dua:

وعن فضالة بن عبيد رضي الله عنه قال‏:‏ سمع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم رجلا يدعو في صلاته لم يمجد الله تعالى، ولم يصلِ على النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم، فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏"‏عجل هذا‏"‏ ثم دعاه فقال له -أو لغيره‏:‏ إذا صلى أحدكم فليبدأ بتحميد ربه سبحانه، والثناء عليه، ثم يصلي على النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ثم يدعو بعد ما شاء‏"‏

Sayyidina Fadala ibn 'Ubayd (RA) said, "The Messenger of Allah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) heard a man making supplication in his prayer without glorifying Allah Almighty or praying for blessing on the Prophet. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'This one was in a hurry.' Then he called him and said to him - or to someone else - "When one of you prays, he should begin by glorifying his Lord, glory be to Him! and praising Him, and then pray for blessing on the Prophet. Then he should ask for anything else he wants afterwards.'" [Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi]

العلامة ابن القيم رحمه الله فقال : إحداها : أن يصلي عليه قبل الدعاء وبعد حمد الله تعالى . والمرتبة الثانية : أن يصلي عليه في أول الدعاء وأوسطه وآخره . والثالثة : أن يصلي عليه في أوله وآخره ويجعل حاجته متوسطة بينهما

Imaam Ibn al-Qayyim (RA) beautifully summarised the method and structure of dua, as follows:


Blessings should be sent upon him before supplication and after praising Allaah.


The second place is to send blessings upon him at the beginning of the du’aa’, in the middle and at the end.


The third place is to send blessings upon him at the beginning and at the end, and to mention one’s need in the middle.”

Wipe the hands on the face after the dua:

It is permissible, Sunnah, authentically proven and the practise of the Salaf to wipe the hands on the face after concluding the Dua.

حَدَّثَنَا ‏ ‏أَبُو مُوسَى مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْمُثَنَّى ‏ ‏وَإِبْرَاهِيمُ بْنُ يَعْقُوبَ ‏ ‏وَغَيْرُ وَاحِدٍ ‏ ‏قَالُوا حَدَّثَنَا ‏ ‏حَمَّادُ بْنُ عِيسَى الْجُهَنِيُّ ‏ ‏عَنْ ‏ ‏حَنْظَلَةَ بْنِ أَبِي سُفْيَانَ الْجُمَحِيِّ ‏ ‏عَنْ ‏ ‏سَالِمِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ‏ ‏عَنْ ‏ ‏أَبِيهِ ‏ ‏عَنْ ‏ ‏عُمَرَ بْنِ الْخَطَّابِ ‏ ‏رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ ‏ ‏قَالَ ‏كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ‏ ‏صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ‏ ‏إِذَا رَفَعَ يَدَيْهِ فِي الدُّعَاءِ لَمْ يَحُطَّهُمَا حَتَّى يَمْسَحَ بِهِمَا وَجْهَهُ ‏

{jb_bluebox}Musaa Muhammad ibn Al-Muthannaa and Ibraahim ibn Ya'qub and more than one stating that Hammaad ibn 'Eesaa Al-Juhani narrated to us from Hanthalah ibn Abi Sufyaan Al-Jumahiy from Saalim ibn Abdullah from his father (Abdullah ibn Umar) from Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA) who said that Rasulullah (Sallalaho Alaihe Wassallam) when raising his hands in du'aa, would not put them down until he had wiped his face with them. [Tirmidhi]

Imam Tirmidhi (RA) gives a verdict on this narration:

قَالَ ‏ ‏مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْمُثَنَّى ‏ ‏فِي حَدِيثِهِ ‏ ‏لَمْ يَرُدَّهُمَا حَتَّى يَمْسَحَ بِهِمَا وَجْهَهُ ‏ ‏قَالَ ‏ ‏أَبُو عِيسَى ‏ ‏هَذَا ‏ ‏حَدِيثٌ صَحِيحٌ غَرِيبٌ ‏ ‏لَا نَعْرِفُهُ إِلَّا مِنْ حَدِيثِ ‏ ‏حَمَّادِ بْنِ عِيسَى ‏ ‏وَقَدْ تَفَرَّدَ بِهِ وَهُوَ قَلِيلُ الْحَدِيثِ وَقَدْ حَدَّثَ عَنْهُ النَّاسُ ‏ ‏وَحَنْظَلَةُ بْنُ أَبِي سُفْيَانَ الْجُمَحِيُّ ‏ ‏ثِقَةٌ وَثَّقَهُ ‏ ‏يَحْيَى بْنُ سَعِيدٍ الْقَطَّانُ

At-Tirmithi continues, "This hadith is Sahih ghareeb (narrated by one person-as is the nomenclature of the scholars of hadith) , we do not know it save from the hadith of Hammad ibn 'Eesaa, and he alone narrates this [from Hanthala]. He has few hadith and the people reported from him. And Hanthalah ibn Abi Sufyaan al-Jumahiy is thiqah (highly trustworthy), and he was declared thiqah by Yahyaa ibn Sa'id Al-Qattaan."

Al-Hafidh Imam Ibn Hajar Asqalani (RA), Author of the one of the most trusted commentaries of Saheeh Bukhari narrates this Hadeeth in Bulughul Maram and then writes:

وَلَهُ شَوَاهِدُ مِنْهَا:

There are other traditions which support this narration, of which are:

حَدِيثُ اِبْنِ عَبَّاسٍ: عَنْ أَبِي دَاوُدَ . وَمَجْمُوعُهَا يَقْتَضِي أَنَّهُ حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ .

The Hadeeth narrated by Ibn Abbas (RA) related by Abi Dawud and others. Put together, they confirm that it (this Hadeeth) is Hasan.

Imam Shawkani (RA) accepts this narration as Hasan in Mawlul Awtaar.

Muhammad bin Ismail Al-Sanani (RA) wrote a commentary of Bulughul Maram (printed by Darus-Salam publications, Riyadh KSA) in which he writes:

وفيه دليل على مشروعية مسح الوجه باليدين بعد الفراغ من الدعاء

...And it (this Hadeeth) contains a proof for the legitimacy of wiping one's face with the hands after making du'a.

Shaykh Nawab Sideeq Hasan Khan (RA) accepts this narration as Hasan in commentary of Bulughul Maram.

Shaykh Abdullah Al-Bassam mentions in Taudeehul Ahkaam (his commentary of Bulooghul Maraam) that this Hadeeth has supporting Narrations which strengthen each other, thus the Hadeeth gains strength from these routes and a number of scholars have chosen this position that it is Hasan (Authentic) and from them is Ishaq Ibn Rahwaiyya (RA) (an early scholar of Hadeeth) and Imam Nawawi (in one of the positions which he has adopted), Imam Ibnul Hajr Asqalani (RA), Al-Munawi (RA) in Faidul-Qadeer Fi Sharhil Jami As-Sagheer (commentary of Jami As-Sagheer of Imam Jalul-ud-deen Suyuti (RA), Imam Shawkani (RA) and others.

Shaykh Bin-Baaz (RA) in his Ta'leeqat of Bulughul Maram comments that in the chain of this Hadeeth is Hammaad ibn 'Eesaa Al-Juhani whom scholars have declared weak and Shaykh Ibnul Hajr Asqalani (RA) has also followed them and declared him weak in "Tahdhib al-Tahdhib" to the 9th degree; yet he has declared this Hadeeth Hasan and this must be due to Shawahid (supporting Narrations).

Narration of Ibn Abbas (RA) in Abi Dawud:

حَدَّثَنَا ‏ ‏عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ مَسْلَمَةَ ‏ ‏حَدَّثَنَا ‏ ‏عَبْدُ الْمَلِكِ بْنُ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ أَيْمَنَ ‏ ‏عَنْ ‏ ‏عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ يَعْقُوبَ بْنِ إِسْحَقَ ‏ ‏عَمَّنْ ‏ ‏حَدَّثَهُ عَنْ ‏ ‏مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ كَعْبٍ الْقُرَظِيِّ ‏ ‏حَدَّثَنِي ‏ ‏عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ عَبَّاسٍ ‏ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ‏ ‏صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ‏ ‏قَالَ ‏ ‏لَا تَسْتُرُوا الْجُدُرَ مَنْ نَظَرَ فِي كِتَابِ أَخِيهِ بِغَيْرِ إِذْنِهِ فَإِنَّمَا يَنْظُرُ فِي النَّارِ سَلُوا اللَّهَ بِبُطُونِ أَكُفِّكُمْ وَلَا تَسْأَلُوهُ بِظُهُورِهَا فَإِذَا فَرَغْتُمْ فَامْسَحُوا بِهَا وُجُوهَكُمْ ‏ قَالَ ‏ ‏أَبُو دَاوُد ‏ ‏رُوِيَ هَذَا الْحَدِيثُ مِنْ غَيْرِ وَجْهٍ عَنْ ‏ ‏مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ كَعْبٍ ‏ ‏كُلُّهَا وَاهِيَةٌ وَهَذَا الطَّرِيقُ أَمْثَلُهَا ‏ ‏وَهُوَ ضَعِيفٌ ‏ ‏أَيْضًا

Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas (RA) :The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said: "Do not cover the walls. He who sees the letter of his brother without his permission, sees Hell-fire. Supplicate Allah with the palms of your hands; do not supplicate Him with their backs upwards. When you finish supplication, wipe your faces with them." Abu Daawud says, "This hadith is is reported from other directions (of narration) from Muhammad ibn Ka'ab, all of them containing weakness (waahiyah), and this path (tareeq) is an example of that. It is Dha'if (weak) as well."

This is a weak Hadeeth but previously stated it has been used by many including Imam Ibnul Hajr Asqalani (RA) to strengthen the overall status of Ahadeeth on this subject.

Mursal of Imam Zuhri (RA) and action of Taba'een:

وفي مصنف عبد الرزاق 2/247 : عن معمر عن الزهري قال : كان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يرفع يديه عند صدره في الدعاء ثم يمسح بهما وجهه

Narrated by Abdur-Razzaq (RA) in his Musnaf [2/247] that Mumar (RA) narrated from Zuhri (RA) that the Prophet (Sallaho Alaihe Wassallam) was raising his hands upto his chest for dua and then wiping them on his Chest.

قال عبد الرزاق : وربما رأيت معمرا يفعله وأنا أفعله

Abdur-Razzaq (RA) then says that indeed I saw Mumar (RA) doing this (wiping hands on the face after dua) and I also do it.

وهذا مرسل صحيح والمرسل حجة عند الجمهور وغير حجة عند الشافعي

This is a Mursal Saheeh and acceptable according to Jamhoor (majority) except for Imam Shaf'ae (RA).

The great Muhadith Faqeeh Ishaq ibn Rahawayah approved action on these Ahadith as quoted by Muhammad ibn Nasr Al-Marwazi : "I saw Ishaq liking action on these Ahadith" (Qyam Al-Layl p 232)

Imam Muhammad ibn Nasr Al-Marwazi narrates from Mu'tamar that he saw Abu Ka'b Abd Rabihi ibn Ubayd Al-Azdi, the author of Tahrir, invoking raising his hands and then he was wiping them on his face after finishing. I asked him why he was doing and he answered that Hassan Al-Basri was doing this. (Qyam Al-Layl p 236)

Imam Ahmad was asked about wiping hands on face in Witr and he answered : "It is narrated from Al-Hassan that he was wiping them on his face in his invocation" (Masail Imam Ahmad from narration of ibn Abdillah v 2 p 300)

Collective dua after a lecture of Islamic talk or a gathering is permissable:

There is nothing wrong with making a collective dua after a lecture, Islamic talk, Islamic gathering where someone supplicated loudly and the people respond with Ameen.

(حديث مرفوع) حَدَّثَنَا عَلِيُّ بْنُ حُجْرٍ ، أَخْبَرَنَا ابْنُ الْمُبَارَكِ ، أَخْبَرَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ أَيُّوبَ ، عَنْ عُبَيْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ زَحْرٍ ، عَنْ خَالِدِ بْنِ أَبِي عِمْرَانَ ، أَنَّ ابْنَ عُمَرَ قَالَ : " قَلَّمَا كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُومُ مِنْ مَجْلِسٍ حَتَّى يَدْعُوَ بِهَؤُلَاءِ الدَّعَوَاتِ لِأَصْحَابِهِ : اللَّهُمَّ اقْسِمْ لَنَا مِنْ خَشْيَتِكَ مَا يَحُولُ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَ مَعَاصِيكَ ، وَمِنْ طَاعَتِكَ مَا تُبَلِّغُنَا بِهِ جَنَّتَكَ ، وَمِنَ الْيَقِينِ مَا تُهَوِّنُ بِهِ عَلَيْنَا مُصِيبَاتِ الدُّنْيَا ، وَمَتِّعْنَا بِأَسْمَاعِنَا وَأَبْصَارِنَا وَقُوَّتِنَا مَا أَحْيَيْتَنَا وَاجْعَلْهُ الْوَارِثَ مِنَّا ، وَاجْعَلْ ثَأْرَنَا عَلَى مَنْ ظَلَمَنَا ، وَانْصُرْنَا عَلَى مَنْ عَادَانَا ، وَلَا تَجْعَلْ مُصِيبَتَنَا فِي دِينِنَا ، وَلَا تَجْعَلِ الدُّنْيَا أَكْبَرَ هَمِّنَا وَلَا مَبْلَغَ عِلْمِنَا ، وَلَا تُسَلِّطْ عَلَيْنَا مَنْ لَا يَرْحَمُنَا " . قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى : هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ غَرِيبٌ ، وَقَدْ رَوَى بَعْضُهُمْ هَذَا الْحَدِيثَ عَنْ خَالِدِ بْنِ أَبِي عِمْرَانَ ، عَنْ نَافِعٍ ، عَنِ ابْنِ عُمَرَ .

It was narrated that Sayydina Ibn ‘Umar (RA) said: The Messenger of Allah (Sallaho Alaihe Wassallam) rarely left a gathering without offering these supplications for his companions: “O Allah, give us a share of fear of You that will prevent us from disobeying You, (a share) of obedience to You that will help us to reach Paradise, and (a share) of certainty that will enable us to withstand the calamities of this world; cause us to enjoy our hearing, sight and strength so long as we are alive, until we die; avenge us against those who wrong us; support us against those who wrong us; do not make our calamity in our religious commitment; do not make this world our main concern and all that we know about; do not send against us those who will show no mercy to us.” [Tirmidhi]

Collective dua after prayer is neither Sunnah nor practise of the Salaf!

Question: Many Mosques are used to make du'a after prayer which is bid'at according to your fatwa because it replace the sunnat and that's not good however the Mosque I go we pray fard salaat after that everybody recites silent for their own Ayatul kursi, 33x Subhan Allah etc. if everybody is done and there are sunnat prayers that is going to be prayed then everybody does that first if it's like Asr after fard there is no sunnat then we again make collective du'a which is AFTER the sunnat du'a which everybody does after fard prayers so is this still bid'at ? Because we make the sunnat by saying the du'a silent everybody for their own but after we make again collective du'a.


بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

In the recent past the issue regarding dua after salah has been the subject of many discussions. Below is a brief explanation on this issue. This issue could be divided in four parts:


Dua after salah.


Raising the hands in dua.


Adhkaar and dua’s to be recited after salah.


Collective dua.

The subject of debate relates more to the fourth topic. Therefore, hereunder we shall discuss the first three topics very briefly and then elaborate on the fourth point.

Dua after salah:

Our illustrious Fuqaha have clearly mentioned that it is mustahab to make dua after salah. There are many narrations that support this. Below we shall just mention one such narration:

تتمة في الأمور المتعلقة بالفراغ من الصلاة فمنها الدعاء قال الشرنبلالي في نور الإيضاح ثم يدعون لأنفسهم و للمسلمين رافعي أيديهم ثم يمسحون بها وجوههم السعاية 2/257 سهيل اكيدمي لاهور

Maulana Abdul Hayy Lucknowi (RA) mentions: “From amongst those actions that should be done after salah is to make dua. Allama Shurunbulali (RA) mentions in Nurul Idah: then (after salah) they (the musali’s) whilst lifting their hands should make dua for themselves and for the general Muslim public. After dua they should wipe their hands over their faces.” (al Si’aya 2/257 Suhail academy)

عن أبي أمامة قال : قيل لرسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم أي الدعاء أسمع ؟ قال جوف الليل الآخر ودبر الصلوات المكتوبات قال هذا حديث حسن ترمذي 2/187 سعيد

“Abu Umamah (RA) narrates that Nabi (Sallaho Alaihe Wassallam) was asked: Which dua is most heard? Nabi (Sallaho Alaihe Wassallam) replied: The dua made in the last third of the night and the dua after Fardh salah.” (Tirmidhi 2/187 H.M Saeed)

Raising hand in dua:

Maulana Abdur Raheem Rewari (RA) mentions that there is consensus (ijma sukooti) that whilst making dua one should raise his hands. (al Nafais al Margouba 44)

قال الشيخ محمد أنور كشميري إنما الرفع كمال في السنة تحصل السنة به و بغيره فلا سبيل إلى تبديع من رفع و لا إلى تجهيل من ترك (النفائس المرغوبة 31) مير محمد كتب خانـ

“Maulana Anwar Shah Kashmiri (RA) mentioned: Raising the hand in dua is perfection in following the sunnah, the sunnah (of dua) could also be attained without raising the hands. Therefore there is no reason to call the one who raises his hands an innovator. Likewise there is no reason to call the one who does not raise his hands an ignorant person.” (al Nafais al Margouba 31)

Adhkaar and dua’s to be recited after salah:

و بهذه الاخبار اجمع العلماء على استحباب الذكر بعد الصلوة

“Maulana Abdul Hayy Lucknowi (RA) mentions that there is consensus amongst the Ulama that

The Pillars Which Support the Correct Da’wah

October 7, 2013 · by dawatussalafiyyah · in Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan. ·

Da’wah to Allah rests upon firm pillars and is established upon foundations which are absolutely essential. If any of these are missing, the da’wah will not be correct, nor will it produce the desired results – no matter how much effort is expended, nor how much time is wasted. And this is the reality which we witness with regards to many of the present-day calls, which are not supported by those pillars, nor built upon those firm foundations.

These pillars which support the correct da’wah are clearly shown in the Book and the Sunnah, and can be summarised as follows:

[1] Knowledge of That Which One Calls To

Since the ignorant person is not suitable to be a da’i (caller). Allah – the Most High – said to His Prophet sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam:

“Say, O Muhammad sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam, this is my way: I call to Allah (i.e. the testification that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah alone, having no partner) upon certain knowledge – I and those who follow me.” [Surah Yusuf 12:108]

And Basirah is knowledge. So the da’i is certain to encounter those who are scholars of misguidance, those who will attack him with doubts and futile arguments, in order to rebut the truth. And Allah – the Most High – says:

“And argue with them in a way that is better.” [Surah an-Nahl 16:125]

Furthermore, the Prophet sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam said to Mu’adh: “You are going to a people from the people of the Book.” [2] So if the da’i is not armed with sufficient knowledge for him to face the doubts, and contend with the opponent, then he will be defeated in the first encounter and will be halted at the beginning of the way.

[2] Acting In Accordance with That Which He Calls To

So that he will be a good example – his actions attesting to his words, and leaving no excuse for the opponents of the truth. Allah – the Most High – said about His Prophet Shu’ayb, that he said to his people:

“I do not wish to forbid you from something and then do it myself. Rather, I only wish to rectify you as far as I am able.” [Surah Hud 11:88]

And Allah – the Most High – said to His Prophet Muhammad sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam:

“Say, O Muhammad sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam! Indeed my Prayer, my sacrifice, my living and my dying are all purely and solely for Allah, Lord of the Worlds. There is no share of any of that for other than Him. That is what my Lord has ordered me, and I am the first of this nation to submit to Allah as a Muslim.” [Surah al-An’aam 6:162-163]

“Who is better in speech than the one who calls the people to Allah and does righteous actions.” [Surah Fussilat 41:33]

[3] Al-Ikhlaas (Purity of Intention)

Such that the da’wah is done purely and sincerely to seek the Face of Allah and His reward. It is not done for show, nor repute, nor status, nor leadership, nor desiring worldly goals – since if any of these goals adulterate the da’wah then da’wah will not be purely for Allah; rather it would then be a call for oneself, or for the attainment of a worldly goal, as Allah informs that His Prophets said to their respective people:

“I do not ask you for any reward for conveying this Qur‘an.” [Surah al-An’aam 6:90]

“I do not ask you for any monetary recompense for my admonition.” [Surah Hud 11:29]

[4] Beginning with What Is of Primary Importance, then with What Comes Next in Importance, and So On

So firstly he calls to the correction of ’aqeedah (beliefs and creed), by ordering that all worship is made purely for Allah, and that shirk is forbidden. Then ordering the establishment of the Prayer, and the paying of the Zakah, and that the obligatory duties are carried out and that the forbidden matters are avoided. This was the procedure followed by all the Messengers, as Allah – the Most High – says:

“We sent a Messenger to every nation, ordering them that they should worship Allah alone, obey Him and make their worship purely for Him; and that they should avoid everything worshipped besides Allah.” [Surah an-Nahl 16:36]

“We did not send any Messenger before you, O Muhammad, except that We revealed to him that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah, so make all your worship purely for Allah.” [Surah al-Anbiya 21:25]

Furthermore, when the Prophet sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam sent Mu’adh to Yemen, he said to him: “Indeed you are going to a people from the people of the Book, so let the first thing you call them to be the testification that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah. So if they accept this, then inform them that Allah has obligated five Prayers upon them in each day and night … ” [3]

Then there is in his sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam’s way and method of giving da’wah, the best example and the most perfect and complete methodology – in that he sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam remained in Makkah for thirteen years, calling the people to Tawheed and forbidding them from Shirk, before he ordered them with Prayer, Zakaah, Fasting and Hajj, and before he forbade them from usury, fornication, theft and murder.

[5] Patient Perseverance in Facing Difficulties Encountered in Calling to Allah, and in Facing Harm from the People

For the path of da’wah is not strewn with roses, rather it is covered with hardships and hazards. The best example of this is the case of the Messengers – may Allah’s praises and blessings of peace be upon them all – with regards to the harm and the mockery which they suffered from their people. As Allah – the Most High – said to His Messenger sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam:

“Indeed Messengers were also mocked before you, but those who mocked them were overtaken by the punishment that they made light of.” [Surah al-An’aam 6:10]

And He said:

“Indeed Messengers were also denied before you, but they bore these denials with patient perseverance, and they suffered harm until Our help came to them.” [Surah al-An’aam 6:34]

Likewise, the followers of the Prophets met with the same harm and hardship, in proportion to their efforts in calling to Allah, following the example of those noble Messengers – may Allah’s praise and purest blessings of peace be upon them all.

By Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan

1. From the Shaykh’s introduction to the book: Manhajul-Anbiyaa fid-Da’wah ilallaah fîhil-Hikmah wal-’Aql (pp.10-16) of Shaykh Rabee ibn Haadee. The translations of the meanings given for all Qur‘anic Ayat are summarised from the tafseers of at-Tabaree, al-Baghawee, al-Qurtubee, Ibn Katheer and ash-Shawkaanee.

2. Related by al-Bukhari (no.7372) and Muslim (no.29) from ’Abdullaah Ibn ’Abbas radiallaahu ’anhuma.

3. Related by al-Bukhari (no.7372) and Muslim (no.29), from Ibn ’Abbas radiallaahu ’anhu.

Fear Allah with the Right that He Should be Feared With

I am going to speak about two or three verses from this Soorah (Aali ‘Imraan). They are the statements of Allah:

“Oh you who believe fear Allah with the right that He should be feared with and do not die unless you are Muslimoon… And hold fast to the rope of Allah all together and do not be divided. Remember the favor of Allah upon you when you use to be enemies to one another then He (Allah) brought harmony between your hearts. Then you became brothers by His (Allah’s) favor. And you were on the brink of a pit of fire and He (Allah) saved you from it. Thus Allah makes clear to you His Ayat (proofs, verses, signs etc…) in order that you may be guided.”” (Aali ‘Imraan, 102-103)

In these verses there is an encouragement from our Lord The Magnificent, The Majestic, The Great to fear Him and that we fear Him with the right that He should be feared with.

“Fear Allah with the right that He should be feared with”

Ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him) explained the verse with his statement:

“Fearing Allah with the right that He should be feared with is that He is to be remembered and not forgotten. He is to be thanked and not shown ungratefulness. He is to be obeyed and not disobeyed.”

This is a tremendous explanation of this verse. Allah is to be remembered and not forgotten. He is to be thanked and not shown ungratefulness. He is to be obeyed and not disobeyed. The chain of narration is authentic tracing back to Abdullaah ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him).

Therefore, obey Allah with the right of obedience. Fear Him with the right that He should be feared with. Thank Him with the right that He should be thanked with.

“…and do not die unless you are Muslimoon.”

It can be said that the person does not have control over this matter for himself. However it is said: Upon him is to take the means (that will enable him to die as a Muslim). It is that he is upright in this life upon the true religion of Allah. It is that he obeys Allah with the right of obedience. It is that he thanks Him and ask Allah for establishment upon this religion just as the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) used to do and he was the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam):

“Oh Turner of the hearts, establish my heart upon Your religion.”

We establish the rights of Allah according to what we have the ability to do. We also establish these three affairs which Ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him) explained this verse with from the gratitude, the obedience and an abundance of the remembrance of Allah.

From the sunan of Allah in His creation is that when a person lives upon a matter he dies upon it. And when he dies upon something he is resurrected upon it. Therefore (if) you (were) to live upon the obedience of Allah, being grateful to him and remembering Him, In shaa’ Allah, Allah will give you a good ending (in life). As a result of that you die upon Islam. We must take the means which will give us this result and this magnificent outcome, and it is that we die upon Islam.

As for the acts of disobedience and the affairs of innovation (the refuge is sought with Allah from them) can be a reason for having an evil ending and dying upon other than Islam. The affairs of innovation and the major sins can be from the causes of having an evil ending and the refuge is sought with Allah.

Therefore be cautious with every caution from the acts of disobedience and the affairs of innovation. Whoever falls into something (from these matters) let him hasten in the repenting to Allah. If the people of falsehood have deceived him with an affair of innovation or caused him to fall into an act of disobedience, let him pull (out of that state) immediately and hasten to repenting to Allah The Blessed and The Most High. Let him have the severe regret then remain (steadfast) upon the obedience of Allah. For Indeed Allah from His kindness, generosity and justice, He does not waste the (good) deeds of those who perform them.”

On The Difference Between the Dialogue that Takes Place Between Ahlus-Sunnah Among Themselves and the Speech Directed From Ahlus-Sunnah to the People of Innovation

Questioner: The first question, are there differences between the discussions that take place between Ahlus-Sunnah and the addresses that are directed from a Sunni to an innovator? And what are they?

Al-Albaani: Are there differences …

Questioner: Yes …

Al-Albaani: Are there differences between what goes on between Ahlus-Sunnah …

Questioner: … between the discussions that take place between Ahlus-Sunnah and the addresses that are directed at an innovator from a Sunni? And what are they?

Al-Albaani: Without doubt the differences may sometimes exist and the difference is clear between the dialogue and discussions that go on between Ahlus-Sunnah themselves and what goes on between Ahlus-Sunnah on one hand and the innovators on the other, [and] that is that the discussions, dialogues and refutations between Ahlus-Sunnah themselves are only done based upon statements of His, the Blessed and Most High, like:

“By time. Verily, mankind is in loss. Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience.” [Asr 103:1-3]

So the starting point of any discussion or dialogue that goes on between Ahlus-Sunnah must spring forth from aayahs like this:

“… and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience.”

And the issue should be likewise between Ahlus-Sunnah on one hand and those who oppose them in the Sunnah, and they are the innovators, on the other. But the method [employed] between Ahlus-Sunnah amongst themselves and between Ahlus-Sunnah on one hand and the innovators on the other may differ.

And that is because when a debate takes place between Ahlus-Sunnah themselves they are supposed to bear His Statement, the Most High, in mind, [a statement] which He characterised the Muslims in general with:

“… merciful among themselves …” [Fath 48:29]

As for when a debate takes place between these Muslims from Ahlus-Sunnah and the people of innovation then there may be some harshness and severity in the method [employed] which is appropriate to the persistence of the people of innovation in their innovations—this is the distinguishing factor between Ahlus-Sunnah among themselves on one hand and Ahlus-Sunnah when they debate or refute the people of innovations on the other.

But it is fitting that in both these [people] and those we take note of an issue [which is that] we do not vindicate one group over another with it, or slander one group instead of another, the reason for this being that [doing so] is a breach of the principle [laid down] in His Saying, the Blessed and Most High:

“Invite to the way of your Lord with wisdom and good instruction, and argue with them in a way that is best.” [Nahl 16:125]

Thus many times when a Sunni responds to another Sunni it so happens that the wisdom [as mentioned in the aayah] was not stuck to in the rebuttal—in fact, that which is even more important than that is not adhered to which is what our Lord, the Mighty and Majestic indicated in His Statement, the Blessed and Most High:

“… and do not let the hatred of a people prevent you from being just—be just, that is nearer to righteousness.” [Maa’idah 5:8]

So, many times what happens firstly is evil/bad methods are used when a Sunni refutes/responds to another—and even more than that: not observing trustworthiness and truthfulness in rebutting each other.

So unfortunately this occurred in the past and is becoming obvious now in this present time anew in a form which we had hoped we would not see occurring in the Sunni community, the one we call the Salafi community.

This is what has presented itself to me as an answer to this question.

Al-Hudaa wan-Noor, 698. [2/6/274]

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Shaykh Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah) clarifies the application of the term 'Shaykh'

Questioner: Is it correct to apply the term ‘Shaykh’ to everyone from amongst the people? Especially since this term has become widely used, so we hope for some clarity in this.

Shaykh Uthaymeen: The term ‘Shaykh’ in the Arabic language is not used except upon the kabeer (elder), either due to their being elder in age, or senior due to the level of knowledge they possess, or due to his wealth, and what is similar to this; and it is not applied to the sagheer (little one, i.e.: little in age, knowledge, etc.) But as you have stated, it has become widespread now such that the ignorant person or the one who doesn’t know anything is referred to as ‘Shaykh’; and this in my view is not befitting.

Because if you applied to this person the term ‘Shaykh’ and he is ignorant and doesn’t know, the people will be deceived by him. And they will think he has some knowledge with him, and they will consult him for fatwas (Islamic rulings) and other than that, and a great harm will result because of this.

And many of the people — we ask Allah to guide us and to guide them — they don’t mind to give a fatwa if they are asked, even if they answer without knowledge. Because he thinks that if he says, “I don’t know” this will decrease his status. But in reality if the person says about that which he does not know, “I don’t know”, then that is the completeness of his status. But the souls are accustomed to want to impress others, except those whom Allah the Mighty and Majestic protects from this. So what I see is that the term ‘Shaykh’ is not applied except to those that deserve it, either by his age, or by his nobility, or due to sovereignty over his people, or because of his knowledge.

And in a like fashion some of the people apply the term ‘Imam’ to the common scholars, even if this scholar is from the blind followers: they say he is an ‘Imam’. And this also is not befitting; it’s befitting that the term ‘Imam’ should not be applied except on the one, who deserves to be an ‘Imam’, and he has followers, and his statements are held in high regard amongst the Muslims.

And finally, you gave the salaams as did the brother before you when you wanted to ask a question, and this is not from the Sunnah. Because the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, when they wanted to present a question to the Messenger of Allah peace and blessings are upon him, they would not give him the salaams except for the one who was arriving at the sitting; this is the one who would give the salaams.

Were the Muslims to put into practice this deen….

When Islam ruled the world, and when the strength and power were with the Muslims, and when Islam was in the state of superiority hundreds of years or so ago, then the world was led with justice, and the world was led with goodness, and the world was led with safety, security, and objectivity, all of those matters that the people call today “human rights,” Islam gathered them, Islam put them in the proper place, Islam reserved them and preserved them without ifraat or tafreet – meaning, without exaggeration in either direction – without exaggeration in extremeness or in shortness.

As Allah says in [the] Qur’an:

“Thus We have made you [true Muslims - real believers of Islamic Monotheism, true followers of Prophet Muhammad sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam and his Sunnah (legal ways)], a Wasat (just) (and the best) nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger (Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alayhi was allam) be a witness over you.” [al-Baqarah 2:143]

And the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) stated:

“Give glad tidings and make things easy for the people, and do not make things hard.”

And the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said:

“This deen (religion) is easy, and no one goes to extremes in it except that it overcomes him.”

So he (sallalaahu alayhi wa sallam) said:

“Seek help by doing actions of good deeds in the morning and evening, and something at night.” [meaning: the prayers at night etc.]

So were the Muslims to put into practice this deen, were they to actually to act upon its dictates, were they to follow Qur’an and Sunnah without any extremeness or without any type of slacking or lacking, then they would be upon that which is sound, and they could guide everyone else amongst the creation.

Taken from the audio: Advice to Those Who Want to be on the Straight Path by Shaykh Saalih as-Suhaymee

Testimony of Ahmed Corpus, formerly Marco Corpus

All praise is due to Allah, may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon His last Messenger, Prophet Muhammad, his family, companions, and those following true guidance.

This is my story why I embraced Islam. During my childhood, I was brought up in the Catholic faith particularly within the Aglipayan sect. My grandfather and aunt are faith healers. They worship idols and spirits. I also witnessed many sick people who came to my grandfather and aunt to be healed and they were healed. Thus, these caused me to follow what they believed in.

When I reached the age of seventeen, I noticed that there are many religions having different types of doctrine, however, using one common source, which is the Bible. Everyone claims to be the true religion. Then, I asked myself, “Shall I remain with my family’s faith or shall I try to attend and listen to another religion?” One day my cousin invited me to attend the Pentecost Church. My motive was only to observe what they are doing inside their church. I witnessed that they employ singing, clapping, dancing, crying and raising hands in worship to Jesus. The pastor preached about the bible. He mentioned the most common verses quoted by all preachers pertaining to the divinity of Christ such as: John 1:12, John 3:16, John 8:31-32. That time, I became a born- again Christian. I accepted Jesus Christ as my lord and personal savior.

Every day, my friends used to visit me to go with them in the church. Two months later, they baptized me. I became a regular member of their congregation. Five years passed, our pastor convinced me to work in the ministry, as a volunteer worker. Later on, I became a lead-singer, worship leader, and a Sunday school teacher. Eventually, I became a full time worker in the ministry. My congregation was under the Free Rural Evangelization and Expansion (F.R.E.E.) Mission. It is an evangelical ministry just like the Jesus is Lord (J.I.L), Nazarene, Bread of Life, Pentecostal Church, etc.

I began teaching people about the bible and its doctrines. I read the bible twice from cover to cover. I committed myself to memorize chapters and verses of the bible for the purpose of protecting the faith I was uphold to defend. With the position I had attained, I became proud of myself. I often told myself that I didn’t need other teachings or scriptures except the bible. However, within me, there was still spiritual emptiness. I prayed, fasted, and served to fulfill the will of the god I used to worship, but I only found happiness when inside my church. This feeling of happiness was not constant even when I was with my family. I also noticed that some of my friends who were likewise pastors were materialistic. They indulged themselves with carnality such as illicit relationships with women, corruption, and thirst for fame.

In spite of these, I blindly continued to hold firm with my faith. This is because I knew according to our teachings, many are called but few are chosen. I always prayed to Jesus Christ to forgive my sins as well as their sins. I thought that he is the solution to my problems and as such, he can answer all my prayers.

However, looking into the lives of my co-pastors, you cannot find among them as good examples to the flocks they pastorate. Thus, my faith began to decline. Still, I strived hard to work to serve my congregation.

One day, I thought of going abroad not only to work but also with the intention to proselytize the name of Jesus as lord, Astaghfirullah ( I seek forgiveness of Allah). My plan was to go either to Taiwan or Korea. However, by the Divine Will, I got a visa for Saudi Arabia. Immediately, I signed a three-year contract to work in Jeddah.

A week after I arrived in Jeddah, I observed the diverse lifestyle of different people such as the language, customs, and even the food they eat. I was totally ignorant of other’s culture.

Al-Hamdulillah (all praise and thanks are due to Allah), I had a Filipino co-worker in the factory that happened to be a Muslim and who could speak Arabic. Though, there was little apprehension, I tried to ask him about the Muslims, their faith and beliefs. I thought Muslims were hard-killers who worshipped Satan, Pharaohs, and Muhammad as lords. I shared to him my faith in Christ. As a response, he told me that his religion it totally different from my religion. He quoted two verses from the Noble Quran (which mean):

“…This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion...” [Quran 5:3]

“You worship not besides Him except [mere] names you have named them, you and your fathers, for which Allah has sent down no authority. Legislation is not but for Allah. He has commanded that you worship not except Him. That is the correct religion, but most of the people do not know.” [Quran: 12:40]

The verses he quoted struck me. After that I began to observe his life. Every day we shared each other’s belief and eventually became close friends. In one occasion, we went to Balad (the commercial district of Jeddah) to post some letters. There, I happened to notice many people watching a video of a debate by my favorite “preacher”. My Muslim friend told me that the favorite “preacher” I was telling him happens to be Ahmad Deedat and apparently a famous propagator of Islam. I told him that, our pastors back home had made us to believe that he is just a “great preacher”. They kept to us his real identity that he is a Muslim propagator! Whatever their intention was, definitely, it was to keep us away from knowing the truth. Nevertheless, I bought the videotape as well as some books to read about Islam.

In our residence, my Muslim friend told me about the stories of the Prophets. I was really convinced but pride kept me away from Islam.

Seven months later, another Muslim friend from India came to my room and gave me an English translation of the Quran. Later on, he brought me to Balad and accompanied me to an Islamic Center nearby. There, I met one Filipino brother. We had some religious discussions and related to me his life before when he was a Christian. Then he lectured to me the teachings of Islam.

That blessed night, on the 18th of April 1998, without compulsion, I finally entered Islam. I announced my declaration of faith called the Shahadatain (Profession of Faith), Allahu Akbar! (Allah is the Most Great!). Before that I was following a blind faith. But now, I see the ultimate truth that Islam is the best and complete way of life designed for the whole of mankind, Al-Hamdulillahi Rabbil-‘alamin (All the praises and thanks are to Allah, the Lord of the mankind, jinn and all that exists). My prayer is that Allah will forgive us all our Ignorance regarding Islam and Guide us to the straight path leading to Paradise. Ameen.

Sins extinguish the light of the heart and obstruct the pathway to knowledge.

On the authority of al-Nawwaas ibn Samaan (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet salallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) who said, “Righteousness is good character. And sin is that which wavers in your soul and which you dislike the people finding out about.” [Recorded by Muslim]

The Messenger of Allah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “My entire nation is safe, except al-Mujahirin (those who boast of their sins). Among the Mujaharah is that a man commits an (evil) act, and wakes up in the morning while Allah has kept his (sin) a secret, he says: “O so-and-so! Last night I did this and that.” He goes to sleep while Allah has kept his (sin) a secret but he wakes up in the morning and uncovers what Allah has kept a secret!” [Saheeh al-Bukhari]

Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyyah (rahimahullaah) wrote:

From among the punishment of sins is that they blind the insight and discernment of the heart. Sins extinguish the light of the heart and obstruct the pathway to knowledge. They keep the basic ingredients of guidance hidden from the individual. When Imam Malik met ash-Shafi’i, he noticed that he possessed certain characteristics. He (Malik) said, “I see that Allah the Most High, has cast a light upon you, and you do not extinguish it with the darkness of disobedience.”

This light (within the sinner) continues to weaken and fade away as the darkness of disobedience grows stronger until the heart becomes jet-black. How many destructive situations do such people fall into without knowing what has happened? He is like the blind that ventures into the night, along a path filled with danger and peril. Oh, what a great pity! Oh, how quick the ruin!

As these layers of darkness (resulting from sin) grow stronger, their effects pour out from the heart onto the limbs. Then the face is covered with a blackness (whose density) is according to the frequency and increase of the sins. Eventually, at the time of his death, the darkness appears in the grave.

The Prophet (salallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said,

“إن هده القبور ممتلة على أهلها ظلمة، وإن الله ينورها يصلاتي عليهم”

“Indeed these graves spread a darkness over their people. Allah provides light for the graves with my prayers for the people.” [Saheeh Muslim (no. 956)]

Finally, on the Day that the servants are gathered, the faces of the sinners are held high and made visible as the assembled onlookers watch these faces become black as coal. Oh, what a punishment! A punishment to which there is nothing in the entire world that is comparable to it. How much less is the portion of the unfortunate servant who labors endlessly, during a duration that is only a moment in a dream?

[By: Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyyah (rahimahullaah) - Transcribed from: Sins and their Punishments]

Monday, December 29, 2014

Regarding the Hadeeth: Anyone who possesses half a mustard seed of Pride (kibr) in his heart will not be granted admission to Paradise…

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah [1] (Allah have mercy on him) was asked [2]: Regarding the Prophet’s (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) statement:

“Anyone who possesses a speck of pride (kibr) in his heart will not enter Paradise” [3]

– is this hadeeth specific only to the believers or [is it specific only to the] unbelievers? If we were to say that it is specific for the Believers then [is not] our statement trivial considering [the fact that] the believers shall enter Paradise due to their belief (bi’l-iman). If, on the other hand, we were to say that the hadeeth is specific for the unbelievers then what is the relevance of the statement?

He answered:

The wording of the hadeeth in the Saheeh [4] is: “Anyone who possesses half a mustard seed of Pride (kibr) in his heart will not be granted admission to Paradise. And anyone who possesses half a mustard seed of belief (iman) will not enter the [Eternal] Fire.”

Pride that openly opposes and negates belief results in the banishment of the one who holds it from entering Paradise as is found in Allah’s statement: (And your Lord said: ‘Invoke Me, I will respond to your [invocation]. Verily! Those who scorn My worship, they will surely enter Hell in humiliation!). [5] This is the pride of Iblees (the Devil), Firaun (Pharaoh) and all the others who possessed the pride which invalidated belief. This is also the pride that the Jews possess and those whom Allah has described to us by saying: (Is it that whenever there came to you a Messenger with what you yourselves desired not, you grew arrogant? Some you disbelieved and some you killed). [6]

Pride, in its entirety, openly opposes the essentials of belief. As such, he who has an atom’s weight of pride in his heart will not act upon that which Allah has obligated, nor will he abstain from that which Allah has prohibited. Instead, his pride will result in his disavowal and rejection of the truth and instill in him contempt of others. This, precisely, is the explanatory definition of pride provide by the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) as is found in the complete version of [the initial] hadeeth: “The one who possesses an atom’s weight of pride in his heart shall not be granted admission to Paradise.” He (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) was asked: “[But] O Messenger of Allah! A man likes to have fine clothing and footwear. Is this included in Pride?” He responded, “No. Allah is Beauty and loves Beauty. Pride is the rejection of truth (batr al-haqq) and condescension of others (wa ghamt al-nas).” [7]

The statement ‘batr al-haqq’ denotes disdain and rejection of the Truth, while ‘ghamt al-nas’ implies contempt and condescension of others [from amongst mankind].

Therefore the one who possesses half a mustard seed of [pride] rejects the Truth that he was ordered to accept and act upon. At the same time, [the pride] instills in him a sense of condescension that inculcates in the individual an oppressive demeanour producing transgression over the rights of others. The one who neglects his obligations [due to his rejection of them] and is oppressive to the people, he is not to be amongst the people of Paradise [while in this state], or deserving of it. On the contrary, such an individual is to be counted amongst the people who are threatened with punishment!

His (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) statement: “Anyone who possesses a speck of pride in his heart will not be granted admission to Paradise” implies that the individual is not from the people of Paradise and is not deserving of it. But if he repents, or he possesses righteous deeds (hasanat) that expiate his sins, or Allah has severely tested him in the form of calamities that have expunged his sins, or similar things; then for that individual the recompense of pride – which originally was a barrier for him to enter Paradise – is eliminated and he gains admission [to it]. Similarly Allah, due to Divine Grace, may forgive the individual [the sin of] pride. None shall gain admission [to Paradise] with an atom’s weight of pride. As a result, whoever states that in this hadeeth, and other [hadeeth that have a similar theme] that the thing that is being negated is unconditional admission [to Paradise] without punishment [for the sin of pride] and not the admission to Paradise that is granted to those who have entered the Fire [to be purified and cleansed] and then are allowed admission to Paradise thereafter and if [a hadeeth explicitly declares that a particular person is in Paradise or that a particular person is from the People of Paradise, then it would be understood that the person would enter the Paradise and not enter the fire [beforehand].”

After this clarification we come to understand the true meaning of these narrations as being that the one who possesses an atom’s weight of pride in his heart is not from the people of Paradise [up to that point] and shall not gain admission into it without punishment [for his sin]. Surely he deserves punishment – due to the enormity of the sin – similar to those who perform the major sins (al-kaba’ir). Allah may punish him in the Fire as long as He wishes, but none from amongst the people of Tawheed will remain in the Fire eternally. [This is to be the way we understand all the hadeeth that have a similar meaning as in the meaning of] his (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) statement: “The one who severs the ties of the womb shall not enter Paradise” [8] or “You shall not enter Paradise until you believe. And you shall not believe until you love one another. Shall I inform you of something that if you do you shall [truly] love each other? Spread the greetings of Salam amongst yourselves.” [9] And other narrations like it that contain threats of Punishment. In this way, we understand that the hadeeth is general and can be attributed to both the unbelievers and the Muslims.

If one says, ‘all the Muslims enter Paradise due to their Islam’ then the response is that not all Muslims enter Paradise without punishment. Surely the people who have been threatened [with punishment in the Hereafter due to their sins] will enter into the Fire to remain in it for the period that Allah so wills even though they are not unbelievers. The individual who has some belief coinciding with major sins may enter into the Fire and exit from it as a result of the shafa`a (intercession) of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) or by other reported means as articulated by the Prophet when he (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said: “My intercession (shafa`a) is for the people who commit majors sins from amongst my Umma.” [10] And he (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said as is reported in the Saheeh: “I shall bring out of the Fire the one who possesses half a mustard seed of belief.” [11] In this way we understand what is in store for those whom Allah has threatened with punishment – the murderer, fornicator, the one who consumes alcohol, the one who misappropriates the wealth of the orphans, the one who gives false testimony and others who perform the deeds of the people of major sins. They – even if they are not unbelievers – are not deserving of the Paradise that they are promised [as Muslims] without first being [cleansed and purged through] punishment.

The way and belief (madhhab) of Ahl al-Sunnah wa’ l-Jama`a is that the deviant sinners (fussaq) from amongst the general body of Muslims are not going to be eternally punished in the Fire as held by the Khawarij and the Mu‘tazila. They are not complete in their religion, belief and obedience to Allah. They have good and bad deeds that necessitate a measure of punishment and reward. This is a concise presentation regarding the issue.

And Allah knows best.


[1] Some primary biographical sources for his life include: Ibn Kathir, al-Bidaya wa’l-Nihaya, vol.14, pp.134-140; al-Kutubi, Fawat al-Wafayat, vol.1, pp.44-58; al-Karmi, al-Kawakib al-Durriyya, pp.138-231; al-Bukhari, al-Qawl al-Jali, pp.100-135; Ibn al-`Imad, Shadharat al-Dhahab, vol.6, pp.80-86; al-Dhahabi, Tadhkirat al-Huffaz, vol.4, pp.1496-1498 and al-Shawkani, al-Badr al-Tali`, pp.vol.1, pp.63-72.

[2] See Ibn Taymiyyah, Majmu` al-Fatawa, vol.7, pp.677-679. English translation of the fatwa adapted from

[3] Narrated in the Saheeh of Muslim (no. 91) from `Abd Allah b. Mas`ud.

[4] As in the Kitab al-Tawheed of Ibn Khuzayma, vol.2, pp.771-772.

[5] See Q. 40:60.

[6] See Q. 2:87.

[7] Muslim, Saheeh (no. 91) from `Abd Allah b. Mas`ud.

[8] Muslim, Saheeh (no. 2556) from Jubayr b. Mut`am.

[9] Muslim, Saheeh (no. 54) from Abu Hurayrah.

[10] Abu Dawud, Sunan (no. 4739) from Anas Ibn Malik.

[11] Tirmidhi, Sunan (no. 2598) from Abu Sa`id al-Khudri.

Imaan is Patience and Gratitude

Taken from the book: Tools for the Patient & Provisions for the Thankful By Shaykh ul–Islaam Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah

Imaan is of two halves; half is patience (Sabr) and half is being thankful (Shukr).

More than one from amongst the Salaf said: ‘Patience is half of Imaan.’

Abdullaah bin Masood – radi Allaahu anhu – said: ‘Imaan is of two halves: half is patience and half is gratitude.’

This is why Allaah – Subhanahu – combines patience and being thankful in His saying: Truly, in this there are signs for every patient, thankful person.1

As Allaah has mentioned in the verses of soorat Ha Mim ‘Ain Seen Qaaf 33, and soorat Saba 19, and in soorat Luqman 31. Indeed there are considerations which have been mentioned for these classifications of patience and gratitude:

The First Consideration:

That Imaan is a definition for all sayings, actions and intentions. And this is divided into two divisions: performing righteous actions and leaving prohibitions; so doing an action is obedience to Allaah and that is the reality of Shukr. Leaving a prohibition is being patient in keeping away from sins, and all of the Deen is about these two aspects: doing that what you have been commanded to do, and leaving what you have been commanded to leave.

The Second Consideration:

That Imaan is built upon two pillars: Yaqeen (certainty), and Sabr (patience).

They are two pillars that are mentioned in His Ta’ala’s saying:

And We made from among them (Children of Israel), leaders, giving guidance under Our Command, when they were patient and used to believe with certainty in Our Ayaat2

So with Yaqeen, the reality of commands and prohibitions is known, and the reality of reward and punishment is also known. With patience commands are carried out, and patience also stops a person from doing that which he has been prohibited from. He will not achieve true faith in fulfilling commands and keeping away from prohibitions, knowing these commands and prohibitions are from Allaah, nor will he achieve true faith of reward and punishment, except with Yaqeen (certainty).

It is not possible for the slave to remain steadfast upon carrying out commands, and stopping oneself from prohibitions except with patience, therefore patience becomes half of Imaan, and the second half of Imaan is being thankful, by carrying out what he has been commanded with, and leaving that which he has been prohibited from.

The Third Consideration:

Imaan is sayings and actions. Sayings of the heart, and sayings of the tongue.

Actions of the heart, and actions of the limbs.

The explanation of this is: whoever knows Allaah with his heart, and does not affirm it with his tongue then he cannot be a believer.

As Allaah said concerning the people of Pharaoh:

And they belied the Ayaat, wrongfully and arrogantly, though they themselves were convinced thereof [i.e. those (Ayaat) are from Allaah]3

And like wise, Allaah said concerning the people of ‘Aad and the people of Salih :

And ‘Ad and Thamûd (people)! And indeed (their destruction) is clearly apparent to you from their (ruined) dwellings. Shaytan made their deeds fair seeming to them, and turned them away from the Right Path, though they were intelligent.4

And Musa said to Pharaoh:

Musa said: “Verily, you know that these signs have been sent down by none but the Lord of the heavens and the earth as clear evidences.5

So these people achieved the sayings of the heart: which are al-Ma’rifah (knowing) and ‘ilm (knowledge), but despite this they were not regarded as believers. Also, the person who says with his tongue that which is not in his heart is not regarded as a believer, but rather he is regarded as being from the hypocrites.

Also, the one who knows with his heart and affirms it with his tongue is not regarded as a believer with just that, until he performs actions of the heart from love and hate, friendship and hostility; so he loves for Allaah and His Messenger, and he has loyalty to the ‘Aawliyah (friends) of Allaah and he shows enmity to the enemies of Allaah, and he submits his heart to Allaah Alone. Submitting oneself to following His Messenger and obedience to Him (Allaah), and adhering to His Sharia’ externally and internally, and if he does this, it is not sufficient for him to have complete Imaan until he does that what he has been commanded with.

So these four ‘Arkaan (pillars) are the ‘Arkaan of Imaan upon which Imaan is built, and it is: going back to knowledge and action, and abstaining from that which is prohibited, which is also regarded as action. Both knowledge and action cannot be achieved except with patience, so Imaan becomes two halves: one of which is patience, and the other which is the result of this patience, is knowledge and action.

The Fourth Consideration:

The soul has two forces: a driving force, and a restraining force, and the soul is always going back and forth between the rules of these two forces; driven towards that which it loves, and abstaining from that which it dislikes. The whole of the Deen is based upon, motivating oneself and abstaining. Motivation towards obedience, and abstention from sinning against Allaah. It is not possible to achieve any of these except by patience.

The Fifth Consideration:

The whole of the Deen is hope and fear, so the believer is one who has hope and fear. Allaah Ta’ala said:

Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on us in hope and in fear6

And in the supplication at the time of going to sleep, which Bukhari narrated in his ‘Saheeh’: ‘O Allaah, indeed I have submitted my self to You, and directed my face towards You, and entrusted my matters to You.’

So you will never find a believer except that he is one who has hope and fear. Hope and fear are not established except on the stalk of patience, so fear encourages him to be patient and hope steers him towards being thankful.

The Sixth Consideration:

That everything that a slave is exposed to in this world, does not exclude that which will benefit him in this world and in the Hereafter, or that which will harm him in this world and in the Hereafter, or that which will benefit him in one of these two places, and harm him in the other. The noblest types of action that a person does are those that benefit him in the Hereafter, and he leaves the other world and leaves that which will harm him in it, and this is the reality of Imaan. Hence the action that benefits him is Shukr (thankfulness), and leaving that which harms him is patience.

The Seventh Consideration:

That a slave cannot separate himself from an action that he does, nor a prohibition that he leaves, and destiny overtakes him. He has an obligation of three things, patience and thankfulness. So fulfilling that which you have been commanded to do is Shukr (thankfulness) and leaving prohibitions and being patient with your destiny, is patience.

The Eighth Consideration:

Indeed the slave consists of two aspects which call him: an invitation that calls him to the Duniya and its worldly desires and delights. And an invitation that calls him to Allaah and the Hereafter, and that which has been prepared in it for the ‘Aawliyah of Allaah from amongst its everlasting blessings.

So the rebel of worldly passions and desires is Sabr, and that which responds to Allaah and the Hereafter is Shukr.

The Ninth Consideration:

The Deen revolves around two fundamental principles: determination and perseverance. These are two principles which are mentioned in the hadeeth which has been narrated by Ahmad and an-Nisaee on the authority of the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- ‘O Allaah verily I ask of You perseverance in my affairs, and determination in conduct.7

The foundation of Shukr is the correctness of resolve, and the foundation of Sabr is the force of perseverance, so when a slave is supported with determination and perseverance, then he has indeed been supported with assistance and capability.

The Tenth Consideration:

Indeed the Deen is built upon two foundations: Truth and patience, and both are mentioned in the saying of Allaah Ta’ala:

And they advise one another to the truth, and recommend one another with patience.8

So what it is required of the slave is to do actions truthfully with in himself, and implementing them amongst the people.

And this is the reality of Shukr, which is not possible for the slave unless he is patient upon it, and in doing that Sabr becomes half of Imaan.

And Allaah -Subhanahu Ta’ala- knows best.

All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and all those who follow his guidance.


1 Ibrahim 14:5

2 Sooratul as-Sajda 24

3 Sooratul Naml 14

4 Sooratul Ankaboot 38

5 Sooratul Isra 102

6 Sooratul Anbiyya 90

7 As-Saheehah 3228 – Shaykh Albaani

8 Sooratul Asr 3

Do You Think Productively?

This is the first of a series of 7 articles on ‘Productive Thinking’. The series aims to address the challenges that Muslims face on many different levels when it comes to productivity. These levels include: the mental, emotional and physical levels. This series will tackle thinking and mindset on the mental level; negative emotions like anxiety, stress, low self-esteem, fear, etc., on the emotional level; and habits on the physical level.

Let’s begin with discussing the important principles to understand and acting on on the thinking and mindset level. I’ve drawn up a simple 3-step model for Productive Muslims to follow from the inside out - namely, from thinking to doing and from reasons to results.

1. Why is Productive Thinking Important?

Thinking is a way of being. It’s a habit. Most people who struggle with productivity focus on the doing. Of course, doing – action – is very important. However, if one doesn’t start with being, the right way of thinking and operating from the right mindset, it doesn’t matter what latest cutting-edge technologies and tools one has, he or she will not be able to effectively apply the tools to be productive.

The head and heart need to be dealt with before the hands. Head for thinking and mindset, heart for the right intention, passion and desire and hands to carry out what the heart desires according to the way thought out by the mind. A Productive Muslim has all three operating effectively, starting with the right mindset.

A powerful analogy here is that of a fruit-bearing tree. If you want to change what is visible – the fruits, you have to start with the invisible, which is the root. We don’t just live in one world, one dimension. We live in four dimensions: the spiritual, emotional, mental and physical. The physical world is just a result of how we live in the other three. And vice versa.

As Muslims, we believe in the unseen, which is everything else before the physical world. That is why prayer is important, intention is important and good thinking is important before we complain about the physical result (or lack thereof). If our head and heart are not in the right place, our effort won’t be as fruitful.

2. What is Productive Thinking?

Productive thinking is proactive and responsible thinking: being proactive is the first habit of ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’, by the late leadership expert Stephen Covey. As human beings, we have been blessed with the ability and freedom to choose how to respond to circumstances that happen to us. It is what gives us power and ability to act.

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” [Victor Frankl]

What does it mean to take 100% responsibility for what we do? It starts with recognising that with everything that happens ‘to’ us, we have something to do with it. Even if at the physical level, we have no idea of how ‘things can be happening to us’, recognising that we have something to do with it empowers us to start taking action to move towards change.

Of course, it’s a given that whatever good that we have is ultimately from the blessing of Allah (glorified and exalted be He). The pain comes when we take responsibility for the good times and take credit for them but when things don’t work out, we look for things outside ourselves to blame.

“What comes to you of good is from Allah, but what comes of you of evil, [O man], is from yourself.” [Qur’an: Chapter 4, Verse 79]

“And whatever strikes you of disaster – it is for what your hands have earned; but He pardons much.” [Qur’an: Chapter 42, Verse 30]

Productivity thinking is at-cause thinking: we’re either at the cause side of the equation or we’re at the effect side. It’s our choice. People who are successful and productive in life are at-cause. They believe that they are responsible for everything that happens in their life. Whether that belief is true or not doesn’t really matter. What they care about is whether their belief empowers them or not. Regardless of whether our beliefs are true or not, our beliefs act as possibility filters. They determine what we allow ourselves to experience in our lives and what we filter out as not possible. People who go through life on the cause side of the equation have results. Believing this gives them maximum power to create the life that they want.

But if we believe that we are not responsible for what happens in our life, we won’t be able to do anything about the result that we’re experiencing. Such thinking is called at-effect thinking. People who go through life on the effect side of the equation always have reasons or excuses. They have stories that they tell themselves of why things are the way they are. They put the responsibility on everything or everyone else around them but themselves and as a result, they feel like they have no control over what’s going on in their life.

Ask yourself: are you being at-cause or at-effect? Being at-cause is playing above the line. So, are you playing below or above the line?

3. How to Start Thinking Productively

Awareness: Thinking productively starts with awareness. Remember that space of power, which many people don’t even know exists, between stimulus and response. Always being in a state of remembrance of Allah (glorified and exalted be He) allows us to be aware that we’ve been blessed with the gift of being able to think, decide and act.

Take responsibility: Make tawbah. Repent and seek forgiveness for whatever wrong that you’ve done – whether you’re aware of it or not. Remember the prayer of Prophet Yunus (peace be upon him) that resulted in him being saved:“There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers.” [Qur’an: Chapter 21, Verse 87]

Be above the line: The Qur’an reminds us that we need to change ourselves first before any changes outside of us can happen.“Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.” [Qu'ran: Chapter 13, Verse 11]

If you’re not getting the results that you want in your personal life, your marriage, your career or business, ask yourself these questions and answer them honestly:

Am I taking 100% responsibility for both the results and non-results?

If not, why not? The answer usually has to do with ego and fear: the fear of not being enough, fear of rejection and fear of what people might think.

Who or what am I blaming as the cause of me not getting the result?

What am I in denial of?

What sad stories about myself am I indulging in as to why I can’t?

If there was no such thing as failure, what would I do?

Then take ownership and take action. As Eldridge Cleaver said: “You’re either part of the solution or you’re part of the problem.” Choose what you want to be.

So we’ve touched upon why Productive Thinking is important, what it is and how you can apply it and make it a part of your reality: by first being in the state of awareness, secondly, turning back to Allah (glorified and exalted be He) and taking responsibility for everything that you did or didn’t do and lastly, answering some questions that will put you back above the line.

The next article will cover a model called the ‘3 Levels of Living’ that can easily be used to gauge your productivity level and be applied in your day-to-day living for maximum productivity – helping you go from ‘no productivity’ to ‘full productivity’.

Share your experience in being above the line in the Comments section!

About the Author:

Thurein Win holds a Bachelor of Commerce specialising in Accounting and is a personal leadership and success coach, an NLP Master practitioner and an accredited Consultant and Trainer of Extended DISC (Behaviour Profiling). His vision is to empower Muslim organisations and professionals with cutting-edge behaviour change technologies to serve the greater good of humanity. He is passionate about personal leadership, early childhood education and holistic health and healing. He is also working with communities in developing leadership programs for Muslim and non-Muslim youths. He can be contacted via his website and via Facebook

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Living Up To Justice

Justice is a foundational principle upon which our religion is built. It maintains the balance of all things in our lives. As Muslims we are taught to be just in all affairs of our lives. Discrimination or any other form of injustice is forbidden in Islam. Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) commands the believers, in Sūrat'l-Nisā', āyah 135, to stand for justice in any and every way possible. Not only are we told to rudimentarily demonstrate it, but we are to do whatever it takes to stand up for truth at all times. Instead of saying, “stand” (قُمْ), the Qur'ān commands the believers to “be of those who deliver justice” (كونوا قوّامِيْنَ). Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is not asking us to do an action once; He is commanding the believers to mold their lives around justice and make it their motto to live and die.

Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) uses the word قوّام—the hyperbolized version of قُم— to make us understand how far we need to go to establish justice. Stand up, go out of your way, take all necessary means to stand for justice! Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) ends the verse with “even if it be against yourselves, your parents, or your relatives.” No one is exempt. Justice must be done in every scope of life.

To drive the message home, directly after this verse, Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) commands the believers to believe! We may think our faith is complete, but Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is telling us that there is a deficiency in our faith if we lack the spirit of justice.

We may seek to restore or preserve our own rights, but there's a problem if we are not concerned for the rights of others. Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) clearly outlines that our faith has not fully matured if we have not prioritized and implemented justice in our lives. Whether it is as mere as replacing a borrowed item if we broke it or rallying for a person wrongfully imprisoned, we need to stand up for each other and give what is due.

Recently many of us were upset with the verdict in the Trayvon Martin case. Though proper justice may not have been served, it behooves us to ask ourselves if the 'not guilty' verdict against George Zimmerman is a reflection of our own situation. We purposely cheat in our business dealings, lie on our resumés, wrong each other, and hide behind our power and wealth on a daily basis, and then suddenly have our social media outlets flaring with “Justice for Trayvon.”

What can we expect from our society if we ourselves are not just? Our fad-following, sensationalized Facebook statuses and tweets would be better matched if we sought to be just with the everyday people in our lives through the best manner that Allāh subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) and His messenger ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) have taught us. I am not seeking to antagonize or blame anyone, I simply want to open up a way through which we can think at a more holistic level about the concept of justice and how we can implement it in our lives daily.

May we be given the ability to be agents of justice in all scopes of our lives. Āmīn.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Relationship with the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam)

by Shazia Arif


As a Muslim, it is one’s duty to believe in the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) as the last and final messenger. And of course we all do that. But have you ever wondered who is the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam)? Do you believe in him just because you have to or is it out of love? Do you know him as well as you know yourself? I am pretty sure almost all of us had skeptical answers to these questions. So do you not think it is about time we learn who the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) was and build our relationship with him?

The Seerah

To build a strong relationship with someone, you have to know them. Just because the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is not alive anymore, it does not mean we cannot get to know him. Rather, we should read and study his biography (Seerah). Once you learn about what an amazing and inspiring man he was, the love for him will grow in your heart inshaAllah.

When reading the Seerah, do not treat it like a regular story book; rather, immerse yourself in it and truly realize all the trials and tribulations the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) went through for us, all the pain he endured to make sure Islam spread far and wide to reach every generation, all the humiliation he had to face from his own people, JUST FOR US!

Hadith and Sunnah

Now reading the Seerah and learning about the Prophet’s (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) life, battles, struggles etc. is beautiful indeed. But after you have read it, you will also feel the desire to know and internalize the exact teachings of our beloved Prophet. The scholars of the past were able to preserve the Hadith and the Sunnah of the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) in books for all future generations to benefit from.

What is Hadith? It is a written account of the Sunnah, everything the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) did, said, or silently approved of. We need to learn and implement the Sunnah in our own lives. After learning about the teachings of the greatest man to ever step foot onto this earth, why should not one follow in his footsteps?

There’s a bonus for following the Sunnah! And that is...

“Say, [O Muhammad], ‘If you should love Allah, then follow me, [so] Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.’ ” (3,31)

Just for following the Sunnah, you gain two things: love of Allah, and forgiveness from Him of your sins. Are not those the two things we all are in desperate need of? Indeed he (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is a mercy for all of mankind!

Loving the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is a part of Imaan

“ Him in Whose Hand my soul is, (you will not have complete faith) until I am dearer to you than your own self." (Bukhari)

To have a strong relationship with someone, you need to love them. To love someone, you need to know them. By learning his Seerah and Hadith and following his Sunnah, you will gain ‘true love’ for the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) in your heart. This love will be genuine, straight from the heart, the type of love every Muslim needs to have for him.

As mentioned in the Hadith above, loving him is part of Imaan, part of your faith. You will not truly believe in Islam unless you love him the most!

Stay Away from Bid'ah

As time progressed, many acts of bid'ah (innovation) came into the religion. Many people have attributed these innovations to the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam). Obviously, this is wrong because it is attributing a lie to the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) and to do so is a major sin. Some may argue that these innovations encourage more good deeds. However, acts of encouragement in Hadiths have their own blessings and we should stick to those acts.

Think about it. If you love someone, would you lie about them? Would you attribute a lie to them because you feel they are not good enough and you have to make them look good? What if someone did the same to you?


When you love someone and feel that your relationship is starting to build with them, you want to do something that will benefit them. Although the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) is not alive among us anymore, it does not mean we cannot be of benefit to him. We can pray for him and send peace and blessings upon the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) and his family!

One of the ways of doing so is as follows:

للهم صل على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما صليت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم إنك حميد مجيد، اللهم بارك على محمد وعلى آل محمد كما باركت على إبراهيم وعلى آل إبراهيم إنك حميد مجيد

As we all strive to build a relationship with the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam), let us not forget that nothing comes without dua! Do your best and make dua to Allah to put that love in your heart for the Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam), that it remains there, and that this love only leads you to do much more good in life, InshaAllah.

Fear of Good Deeds? Ain’t nobody got time for that

A long time ago, in an air-conditioned tent far away, Sheikh Yasir Qadhi came to Dubai to deliver a workshop on something that I'm sure was enlightening but whose core topic I've totally forgotten about.

Sorry Shaykh.

What I remember about that workshop was this: when it came time for the question and answer session I took all of my resolve- every last bit of it- pulled it up from my sandals, filtered it through the conflicting thoughts beneath my scarf, and channeled it through my shaky pen- and I finally asked a question that I had been struggling with for years.

“Shaykh, what advice would you give someone who struggles terribly with the fear of Riya'?”

Riya', in case you've never heard it given a name before, is a form of shirk that results from performing an act of worship for the sake of showing off or pleasing someone other than Allāh alone. Shirk is a form of disbelief. And disbelief is not to be taken lightly.

The Prophet (saw), “Should I not inform you of that which I fear for you even more than the dangers of dajjaal? It is the hidden shirk: A person stands to pray and he beautifies his prayer because he sees the people looking at him”. (Sahih; Sunan ibn Majah)

For me, Riya was a daily battle. I didn't normally pray extra sunnah with Dhuhr prayer, but if I was in a masjid praying and saw other people praying their sunnah, part of my brain would say, “māshā'Allāh, good for them. I should pray some sunnah too.”

Hadith Qudsi 6

The first of people against whom judgment will be pronounced on the Day of Resurrection will be a man who died a martyr. He will be brought and Allāh will make known to him His favours and he will recognize them.

Allāh The Almighty will say: And what did you do about them?

He will say: I fought for you until I died a martyr.

Allāh will say: You have lied – you did but fight that it might be said [of you]: He is courageous. And so it was said. Then he will be ordered to be dragged along on his face until he is cast into Hell-fire.

Another will be a man who has studied religious knowledge and has taught it and who used to recite the Qurʾān. He will be brought and Allāh will make known to his His favours and he will recognize them.

Allāh The Almighty will say: And what did you do about them?

He will say: I studied religious knowledge and I taught it and I recited the Qurʾān for Your sake.

Allāh will say: You have lied – you did but study religious knowledge that it might be said of you: He is learned. And you recited the Qurʾān that it might be said [of you]: He is a reciter. And so it was said. Then he will be ordered to be dragged along on his face until he is cast into Hell-fire.

Another will be a man whom Allāh had made rich and to whom He had given all kinds of wealth. He will be brought and Allāh will make known to his His favours and he will recognize them.

Allāh The Almighty will say: And what did you do about them?

He will say: I left no path [untrodden] in which You like money to be spent without spending in it for Your sake.

Allāh will say: You have lied – you did but do so that it might be said [of you]: He is open-handed. And so it was said. Then he will be ordered to be dragged along on his face until he is cast into Hell-fire.

-Hadith related by Muslim (also by at-Tirmidhi and an-Nasa'i).

But then another part would panic. “Wait!” it would scream. “We don't normally pray sunnah at Dhuhr! We're just praying because there are other people praying sunnah here. If we really cared about sunnah we'd pray it whether or not there were other people around! We can't pray any sunnah right now, it's shirk!”

If I was praying in jamaat with family at home, and other people finished their duas before I was done talking to Allāh, I would abruptly end my supplications so that there was no chance of me “showing off” how religious I was by being the last one to stand up. Sometimes I remembered to go make du‘ā’ in private later. Oftentimes I didn't.

When a relative offered to help me read the Qur'an more fluently, and attempted to sit down and go through a few pages with me, my entire spiritual self was revolted by the exercise, because I felt like I was being asked to perform for their benefit, not Allāh's.

When I had the gem of an opportunity to call the azhan in a girls-only summer camp, and I took it and loved it and felt exhilarated by the hope that I could share in the blessings of everyone who responded to the call to prayer. But then the fear of Riya' set in- that maybe I liked calling the azhaan because the other girls complimented me, and because the non-Muslim staff said their nearly jumped out of their beds before sunrise, and that wow, I had such a great voice, māshā'Allāh!

Anything I did for the sake of Allāh that was visible to others became a vicious cycle. Once the guilty pleasure of being complimented wore off, the hangover of self-loathing and fear inevitably followed. Doing anything extra became a source of stress and self-hatred, so I started doing less and less in my religious practice. I stopped attending classes for fearing of being seen as “trying to be too religious.” I told myself I could just read one of the dozens of Islamic books I had at home- most of these are still unread btw.

I didn't know that I was struggling with Riya because I didn't know what it was supposed to be called. I knew that doing acts of worship for anyone other than Allāh was shirk, and I was terrified by the possibility that I could, inadvertently, be worshipping my ego instead of my Lord.

When I finally stumbled upon the word Riya' itself, I was finally able to start looking for more information, and here's where we come back to Yasir Qadhi. He wrote a book called Riyaa- The Hidden Shirk. I wasn't able to find the book in Dubai, but I knew he was coming to town, so I wanted to ask him for help.

The question I wrote to him after that workshop was simple: what advice would you give someone who struggles terribly with the fear of Riya'? The answer I had been cynically expecting was something along the lines of: Make du‘ā’, fear Allāh, do more zhikr, and if you're afraid you might be showing off then back off.

What I got instead was a question: What is shaitaan's number one priority?

To make a long story short, Shaitaan wants as many of us to give his misery some company in hell. He will do so by either enticing us to do bad or- the sneaky custard- he'll preventing us from doing good.

I thought I had been defeating shaitaan by not showing off. What I had really been doing was not praying sunnah, ending my duas quickly, and boycotting religious classes. I was gobsmacked. But still, I was terrified, because to be honest, I like being praised.

We all do, actually. Validation is a primary human need, and in the behavioral yin-yang of reinforcement and punishment, we're all more interested in carrots than we are in being hit with sticks. That's why likes, retweets, and upvotes are emotional gold in our cultural currency. We all need recognition, it's part of human nature. alḥamdulillāh, Islam recognizes human nature, and there's a way of doing good, fighting your ego, and navigating feedback without being destroyed by it. I've learned a lot about Riya since that night in Dubai, and my intention is to share it so that other people can see their way out of Shaitan's sneaky way of scaring us from good deeds.

Even Shuyūkh fear of Riya'. Or maybe, especially Shuyūkh. Having had the opportunity to speak to others about what I was experiencing, I found out that the problems that I was having were shared by anyone who stood in any sort of spotlight- however dim- and mentioned Allāh.

Riya' never goes away and there's no way that you can win the war. The only thing you can do is keep fighting the battle. The individual battles are won by:

renewing your intentions to please Allāh alone

refusing to reduce the amount of good you do based on Shaitaan's fear-mongering

increasing your humility by remembering your sins and making as much Taubah as possible

There are only two ways of losing the war of Riya' entirely. One is to cease even being wary of it, allowing yourself to bask in and anticipate praise from others. The other is to stop doing good deeds out of fear. Both of these achieve the same result: zero points. In the first example you lose the blessings of your actions due to the corruption of Riya', and in the second, you never attempt any new points to begin with. Both are a total loss.

People will always praise you, even if you don't want them to, but there are ways to help do damage control. If you are struggling with the feedback from people who praise you, remember that you are useless, powerless, and incapable of even opening your mouth let alone leading or teaching people except by Allāh's leave- with the knowledge that Allāh gave you, and in the context that Allāh permitted you to do so. Allāh gave you knowledge, sight, charisma, writing skills, speaking skills, all skills- and they are a result of His generosity. Not your merit.

There is good news! For those entirely mortal of us that don't seek praise, aren't comfortable with it, but still get the warm fuzzies when someone says 'Sister, I loved your article. I make du‘ā’ for you all the time,” it's not our fault.

Al-Maqdisi (ra) said, “A man's seeking fame is blameworthy. As for when it occurs due to Allāh ta'ala, without the man having desired it, then that is not blameworthy although it may be a trial for those who are weak.”

You are not accountable for the praise other people lavish on you. You are only accountable for what you do with it. Do you take it, cherish it, bronze it, and hang it around your neck? Or do you let it go in one ear and out the other, and focus on purifying your intentions, seeking refuge from Shaitaan, and moving on to your next good deed?

Recognition is a natural consequence of doing anything well- spiritual or sports- and there is nothing wrong with being famous. Think of how spiritually bankrupt we would be without our famous Muslims- Ibn Taymiyya, Al Ghazali- and our modern celebrities like Yasir Qadhi, Muḥammad Al Shareef, Noman Ali Khan, etc. They are not famous for the sake of fame- because that would be shirk- but they are known as a result of calling people to Allāh. There is a significant difference there.

Regardless of whether you're a public figure or a fan, when you see something that makes you say māshā'Allāh, or you hear a recitation that you think is amazing- don't praise the person, especially not to their face.

Abu Musa reported that the Prophet, may Allāh bless him and grant him peace, heard a man praise another man and he was using exaggeration in his praise of him. The Prophet, may Allāh bless him and grant him peace, said, “You have destroyed ­ or broken ­ the man's back.”

Praise should be delivered much like criticism- don't make it personal, and keep it respectful. Try to avoid saying things like “You're so awesome! I love you! I want to crawl inside of your kufi and live there!” and instead give constructive feedback that can be used to make them better. “alḥamdulillāh, that hadith was a good reminder. Thanks, am looking forward to more of your work.” Respond with the intention of encouraging good, but be very careful of praising the person versus praising the message that person is delivering.

If you like what someone writes or says, and you want more of it, tell them how it helped you- tell them how they can help you better, and tell them you're making du‘ā’ for their continued ability to do so. And please- do this for all of the writers, speakers, tweeters, reciters, and people around you who want to attract Allāh's attention without being spiritually endangered by hearing, or God-Forbid, believing their own hype.

Muslims must always be wary of Riya', but with knowledge and constant renewal of our intentions, we don't have to be incapacitated by it. Life is too short to waste the opportunities for good in paralysis and fear. May Allāh protect us all from shirk in all of its forms, and purify our intentions to do good. May He guide us as we walk the tightrope between seeking attention for the message versus attention for ourselves. And may He bless Yasir Qadhi and bring him to Dubai again. āmīn.


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