Enslavement of the Nafs

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Allah has prescribed that through Islam, we should discipline our nafs, purify it, and instruct it to act according to the obedience of Allah. To Allah belongs all of creation and all commandments.

Our Nafs has the capacity to encourage good and evil. It is the inner self which Allah describes has three stages. They can be better understood with Freud’s psychoanalytical theory of personality in which he makes reference to symbolic concepts of the three qualities of consciousness.

The three stages of the Nafs include:

  1. Nafs al-‘Ammara Bis-soo’ (The soul that urges evil)
  2. Nafs al-Lawwaama (The self- reproaching soul)
  3. Nafs al-Mutma’inna (The tranquil soul)

The three qualities of consciousness are as follows:

  1. The id
  2. The ego
  3. The Superego

The id is the section of our personality that is the source of our bodily needs, wants, impulses and desires. It is the human’s instinctual drive. Similarly the Nafs al-‘Ammara Bis-soo’ is the self that calls towards that which is evil. It has no limits and knows no morality nor does it judge between what is right and wrong. Rather it is purely dependent on our own desires. We have certain desires and inclinations that differ between people, for example some people have this drive to shop excessively whereas others have a drive and an inclination to have sexual intercourse. Our struggles with this nafs is different but the responsibility to restrain these urges is upon us all. This is the lowest stage of our nafs as it cannot be controlled and according to Freud, id is savage and immoral. It only takes into account its desires and if a person doesn’t struggle against their desires then they have been enslaved and shackled to it.

Allah says in the Qur’aan:

And I do not acquit myself. Indeed, the soul is a persistent enjoiner of evil, except those upon which my Lord has mercy. Indeed, my Lord is Forgiving and Merciful.

(Surah Yusuf 12: Verse 53)

It only seeks to satisfy its desires with the enjoyments of this world.

The second stage of the self is the Nafs al-Lawwaama, which is commonly known as the self-reproaching soul. It is the combination of both sections of our personality, the ego and superego. In this stage the Nafs is constantly at war with itself because the ego has to reconcile and make a balance between the reality of one’s desires and the satisfaction of both the id and super ego. In essence the ego takes reality into account when dealing with situations whilst the superego adds morality to the action. In most cases they conflict each other and even though they may reach an agreement on the same decision, the reasons of the superego is purely based on moral values whilst the ego’s reasons are based on what others will think or the consequences of the action. “Thus the ego, driven by the id, confined by the super-ego, repulsed by reality, struggles … [in] bringing about harmony among the forces” (Navaneedhan, 2011).

Allah makes an oath by this nafs in Surah Al-Qiyaamah verse 2:

I swear by the Day of Resurrection,

And I swear by the reproaching soul [to the certainty of resurrection

(Surah Al-Qiyaamah 75: Verses l-2)

A true believer is one who upbraids and questions not only the sins he commits but also the good he does. The believer is one who is conscious of their actions and their intentions for doing everything. They constantly reflect on the deeds they intend to perform for example- ‘why did you smile at your brother, was it to attain the pleasure of Allah or for some worldly gain. Why did you not aim to do more good deeds today, why did you say this statement or lower your gaze, was it to please Allah or to look pious.” This person is constantly reproaching himself. It is understandable if he reproaches himself and feels regret for sins he has committed but why should he criticise himself on the good he does? Because he should strive to reach the highest forms of good deeds and to perform them with complete ikhlaas (sincerity) towards Allah. Which is a struggle, therefore the true believer reproaches himself and is conscious of his intentions for everything he does. He feels regret for the sins he falls into and purifies his intentions constantly for the good he does.

The final stage of the soul is theNafs al-Mutma’inna which is the highest and the most purest stage. It is the stage in which our soul is tranquil and our desires are at ease with the laws and commands of Allah most high. It knows what is right and finds no difficulty in performing righteous deeds, nor does it desire excessiveness in this worldy life. Rather it is pleased with what Allah has provided him with and focusses more on bettering his hereafter. This is the nafs that we should all strive to achieve because as Allah mentions in the Qur’aan, Jannah is prepared for this individual. Allah says:

To the righteous it will be said], “O reassured soul, Return to your Lord, well-pleased and pleasing [to Him],And enter among My [righteous] servants And enter My Paradise.

(Surah Al-Fajr 89: Verses 27-30)

Your place with your Nafs

 

Ibn Al-Qayyim has mentioned: The nafs is a single entity, although it’s state may change from Nafs al`Ammara Bissua, to Nafs al`Lawwama, to Nafs al`Mutma`inna which is the final aim of perfection.

Also Imam al-Aajurri (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

”How bad is the situation of the one who neglects to discipline his nafs and train it on the basis of knowledge; and how good is the situation of the one who pays attention to disciplining his nafs and knows what Allah has enjoined upon him and what He has forbidden to him, and is patient in going against the whims and desires of his nafs, and seeks the help of Allah the Almighty in doing so.” (Adab an-Nufoos, p.17 )

How do you know where you are with your Naf? It is said that your place with your nafs is according to the majority of your actions. It is part of human nature that we are inclined and desire certain things but we need to suppress these desires and not obey them. Our nafs will call to worldly pleasures and possessions but we have to make sure that it confirms to the laws of Allah and take control of this stallion otherwise it will be free till it is properly controlled. If you don’t control your nafs, it will end up controlling you. As we saw in the above verse, Jannah is reserved for those who control their desires (hawa) and the one who restrains from the call of their nafs.

Therefore we need to regulate and monitor it, so that you only give in to that which is permissible and is according to the laws and commands of Allah and so that you stop it from transgressing the limits Allah has set us. For example, we have a desire to drink in order to quench our thirst but there are limits. Allah has told us that there are certain drinks that are forbidden for the Muslim. Even if your nafs is inclined to drinking wine, it is the taqwa (fear, god consciousness) of Allah that causes you to suppress these desires and only drink from that which Allah has made halaal (permissible). But the problem arises when we let our desires take control and transgress the limits of Allah by looking, touching, drinking, eating, wearing what ever our nafs is inclined to. Our nafs then will dictate your every action. When you let your nafs take control then you have enslaved yourself to your desires and have taken it as your master. Allah says in the Quraan:

Have you seen he who has taken as his god his [own] desire, and Allah has sent him astray due to knowledge and has set a seal upon his hearing and his heart and put over his vision a veil? So who will guide him after Allah? Then will you not be reminded? (Surah Al-Jaathiyah 45:23)

This individual abides by his lust, and whatever his lust portrays as good he implements it, and whatever his lust portrays as evil, he abandons it! Now your desires are dictating what you do, spend on, say, look at, love and hate- everything you do is based on fulfilling your desires. You have become the slave of your desires and have made it your lord. There is no doubt that the nafs is stubborn in that if you lower your gaze from that which is prohibited it will not let you abstain from looking and will urge you to look again. Despite the struggle, if your nafs is going to be stubborn in urging you to be inclined to the haram then you have to be stubborn in commanding your nafs to obey the commands of Allah. In order to fulfil the role of being a Muslim one has to submit to Allah alone and strive to not transgress the boundaries He has set despite the calls of his desires. In many cases it is our understanding of freedom that determines our enslavement-whether we are enslaved to our desires or our Creator.

The concept of Freedom

Without going into too much detail, the West encourage this mentality that religion restricts you and that material gains and possessions free you. By analysing this closely, it shows that there can never be absolute freedom, and that every type of freedom has limitations.

This mentality that “you can do whatever you want, whenever you want to” does give you freedom from the laws and guidance of Allah but now you have shackled yourself to your desires. Freedom has become something only found when enslaving yourself to your inclinations and desires but in reality, true freedom is when you enslave yourself to your Master who knows what is best for you in all aspects of life.

We have to know that desires aren’t blameworthy in it of itself unless you full it in ways that Allah has made forbidden.

Discipline and train your Nafs!

  1. Hold it to account

Muhaasabah is a person who holds himself to account and this is the best means to disciplining your nafs. Hold yourself to account before Allah holds it to account on a day when feet will stumble, hearts will tremble and skin colours will change out of the fear of Allah! Judge yourself before you are judged and weigh your deeds before they are weighed on the day of judgement.

If you hold your actions and intentions to account in this life than bi ithnillah it will be made easier for you on yawmul-qiyaamah. We need to be conscious of our intentions and our shortcomings and we need to take the appropriate measures to better ourselves. This implies that you are taking steps to prepare for the day of judgement, because it is not enough to just recognise the problem and not try to rectify it. As they say “watch your thoughts before they become words; watch your words before they become actions; watch your actions before they become habits; watch your habits before they become part of your character; and watch your character before it becomes your destiny.”

The one who has truly fallen short is the one who just follows his desires on false hopes that Allah will forgive him. Yes Allah’s mercy exceeds His wrath and your sins are never too big for the Mercy and Forgiveness of Allah but you have to take steps to rectifying your sins and not intend to sin the next day after ‘repenting.’ To change requires true hope in Allah and this is dictated by your steps to repent sincerely to Him, restrain from haram and strive to do good deeds despite the struggle of the nafs.

2. Recognise that the Struggle is long term

There is no easy fix to dealing with your nafs and for some people it may take years before they leave a bad habit. But it does become easier over time, as your urges decrease. It is inevitable to not make mistakes in life, but to give up on the struggle to change, is immediately giving up on any hope in Allah and entering Jannah and shackling yourself to your nafs. It is a sign of true belief, that you continue to struggle against your desires even after falling short.

Consistency helps in this struggle. Have a program that you will be consistent in fulfilling. It is said that “neglecting yourself (nafs) for even an hour, destroys exercise that was done for a year” SubhaanAllah! And when you really think about it, this is so true. For example if you skip your workouts for 2 weeks, the “feel good” chemicals begin to drop by day two causing you to crave fatty foods, your muscles start to stiffen by day three, then by week two your body begins to lose muscle and gain fat at the same time. Your body just goes into this “reverse mode” therefore ruining a year’s work of building muscle and getting fit. Similarly if you neglect training the nafs and you lose consistency then all that effort will just go down the drain.

Be consistent in nourishing the soul and what better way to do this then by reading the Qur’aan. By pondering its meaning and implementing its teachings you will see the effect of it on your Nafs. It is better for you to read a few verses a day rather than a chapter every three months. The best deed in the sight of Allah is the one that is consistent.

3. Bad environments

This might be an obvious one but stay away from environments and people who call to the urges of your Nafs! Sinning is contagious and if the people around you are sinning then you will sin as well.

4. Self-control is an art and like any art it takes some great practice to master it

LEARN ABOUT THE DEEN!! Gaining beneficial knowledge is a big factor in controlling your nafs. As Ibn al-Qayyim stated Jihad al Nafs (Jihad against one’s self/desires) was of four kinds:

1: Striving to learn the teachings of Islam (without which one cannot attain success and happiness in this world or in the Hereafter

2. Striving to make oneself act upon what they have learned, knowing without acting brings no benefit.

3 . Striving to call others to Islam and teaching those who do not know about it. (Otherwise one will be one of those who conceal that which Allah has revealed of guidance and teaching, and it will not benefit him or save him from the punishment of Allah)

4. Striving to bear patiently the difficulties involved in calling people to Allah and the insults of people; bearing all that for the sake of Allah.

May Allah have mercy on us, for our efforts in disciplining ourselves and our families. Pay heed to Allah and make yourselves adhere to that. May Allah help us control our whims and desires. May Allah protect us from all the evils we fall into knowingly and unknowingly and may Allah protect us from the shackles of our desires and grant us the ability to praise Him and thank Him and submit to Him alone.

Ameen

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  1. Freud, “The Ego and the Id, XIX,” 2nd Edition, Hogarth Press, Richmond, 1923.

Navaneedhan, C. G. (2011). Balance of Internal Drive, Ego and Super Ego through Sel-Hypnosis. Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science, 4.

http://islamqa.info/en/178627

http://islamqa.info/en/27080

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Parable between the believer and the disbeliever

I saw this beautiful tree a while back and it just reminded me of these verses SubhaanAllah.

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24. See you not how Allah sets forth a parable A goodly word as a goodly tree, whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches (reach) to the sky.
25. Giving its fruit at all times, by the leave of its Lord, and Allah sets forth parables for mankind in order that they may remember.
26. And the parable of an evil word is that of an evil tree uprooted from the surface of earth, having no stability.

`Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that `Abdullah bin `Abbas commented: this refers to testifying to La ilaha illallah, (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah) and the goodly tree refers to the believer and that the one whose testimony of faith is firm in the heart is just like a tree that has firmly fixed roots. This parable describes the believer’s deeds, good statements and good actions being consistent throughout the night and day.

`Abdullah bin `Abbas also said that,(as a goodly tree), is a tree in Paradise. Allah said then said:
(Giving its fruit at all times,) It is said that it means by day and by night. And they say that describes the believer as a tree that always has fruits during summer and winter, by night and by day. This is the parable of the believer whose good works ascend to heaven by day and by night and at all times, thus earning perfection and becoming beneficial, plentiful, pure and blessed.

Then Allah describes the disbelief of the disbeliever as having no basis or stability. Similar to a colocynth tree which is a very bitter and unscented plant. Then Allah says that their work will never ascend nor will any of it be accepted. Then in the next Ayah, Allah says that He will keep firm the believer in this world and the hereafter, who testifies with the shahadah meaning that when the Muslim is questioned in the grave Allah will make it easy for Him to testify to the Oneness of Allah and Muhammad being the final messenger.

This just shows the importance of having firmness in your beliefs- gain knowledge so you have 3ilm-ul-Yaqeen.

May Allah keep us firm on the shahaadah and protect us from kufr Ameen

Advice of a Mother: Knowledge

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

I began reading The Biography of Sufyaan Ath-Thawri (rahimahullah) and when I got to the short chapter about his parents, I could see why he became one of the most eminent scholars in Islaam. Not only was his father a scholar and provided Sufyaan with an Islamic environment- growing up amongst students of knowledge and scholars- but his mother was a woman that I wish I knew more about. The only thing that is narrated about her, is her advice to her son.

It was narrated by Wakee’ ibn Al-Jarraah who said,

“One day, the mother of Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said to (young) Sufyaan, ‘O my son! Seek out knowledge, and I will, with my spinning wheel, provide enough for you to live on.

O my son, when you have written down ten Ahaadeeth, look and see if you notice an improvement in the way you walk, in your level of patience and in your degree of self-dignity.

For if you do not see any such improvement, then know that your knowledge harms you and does not benefit you.”

SubhaanAllah Allahuakbar! With such amazing parents, it’s not surprising that Sufyaan became the man he grew up to be. As a child, he was amazingly precocious, and by the time he reached his early teens, he was already relating ahadeeth. Although, Sufyaan lived during an era of peace and prosperity, an era during which scholars thrived, without a doubt, his righteous parents had a great influence on his upbringing and development May Allah have mercy upon them both.

A message to all! Knowledge is what improves your character and takes you out of the state of ignorance. If you’re not seeing this change in yourself, and you still are sinning then you are not truly benefiting from what you learn, rather it is indeed harming you because knowledge without action is heedlessness. It’s like using a torch in the dark, without any batteries. And another reminder, don’t try and gain knowledge in one night- it will just leave you just as fast as you tried to gain it. And if your knowledge is not being implemented it will also leave you.

May Allah grant us 3ilmul-yaqeen (certainty in knowledge), beneficial knowledge, wisdom and understanding of the deen and May Allah allow us to implement what we lean and not deprive us of this blessing to gain knowledge Ameen

Fee amaanillah

Istiqaama- the way of the believers

“True strength often does not lie in one’s physique or muscle-power, but is almost always an issue going much deeper. Many are those who seem strong-willed and distinguished amongst people until there occurs at hand something which exposes their true reality, showing a weak and brittle state. Then there are those few individuals who may remain unknown to society, but who hold a high rank with their Lord. They may be seen to be weak and insignificant, but their reality is such that when Mankind is wandering in darkness and heedlessness, they never lose their path. Were the people to be enveloped in fear and hardship, these individuals would not flinch. Such is the power of having Istiqaama.”

Naseeha

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Spouses should work together to get to Jannah.” On the contrary, many spouses these days are contributing in the destruction of eachothers Ákhira (afterlife). Advice: analyse your marriage and ask yourself, ‘am I creating a hindrance or a positive impact in my spouse?’

1. Check your intention. Actions done for other than Allah holds no substance. Why? When you do things for people, you will never achieve satisfaction in your heart which will affect your marriage. So, do things for Allah and you’ll find tranquility in your marriage.
2. Qur’an, Qur’an, Qur’an which is part and parcel of remembering Allah should be the governing source of your relationship. That means, you should be reading it together, implimenting it together and pondering its meaning together.

Single people: isthikhara, istikhara and more istikhara before you get married. Also, check your intention.
Importantly, before you get into a relationship with another soul; how’s your relationship with Allah (subhanahu wáta3la)???? What’s the measure (you ask)? .
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Salaatul-Fajr.
How is your fajr salah? Are you praying on time? If your a man, are you praying at the masjid? May Allah forgive us. How can you get married and your not getting up for fajr? My brothers, you aim to take care of her rights but your not fulfilling the rights of Allah. My sisters, you aim to be a good wife but you are not good to The One who created you. If this describes you, then ‘I fear that you will drag your partner and become a hindrance for them.’ Let us fix and mend our relationship with Allah before getting into a destructible relationship. Start with repentance. We ask Allah to forgive us and you for our accumulated sins. Ameen. #reminder4MeB4U

*please share so others may benefit and you get reward. Even if, one person takes heed Alhamdulilah. All praise is due to Allah.

“Goodness is not in your wealth and offspring being plentiful…” Part 1

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Ali Ibn Abi Talib (radhiyAllahu 3anhu) is reported to have said:

“Goodness is not in your wealth and offspring being plentiful; true goodness is when your [good] deeds are plenty and you have great understanding and forbearance, and when you compete to worship your Lord.

If you do good you praise Allah and thank Him, and if you sin you beg Allah’s forgiveness. There is no good in this life except with two types of men: A man who sins but then corrects himself through repentance, and a man who strives and hastens to get [the good] of the hereafter.” [1]

Ali ibn Abi Talib describes that true goodness is not and will not be found in the pleasures of this dunya but rather what you prepare for the hereafter. And the best of people are two and SubhaanAllah one post does not give justice to such a profound statement as there are many aspects of this one saying that should be covered. And for us to bi ithnillah, strive to be of those who have goodness in this life we need to understand what Tawbah is and its merits.

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At-Tawbah

Linguistically At-Tawbah is defined as seeking repentance, renouncing that action and to make the intention to not return to that matter.

Islamically, it is the act of returning from acts of disobedience of Allah, Subhaanahu wa ta’alaa, to His obedience. Ibn Al-Qayyim (Rahimahullah) said:

“The true essence of tawbah is to return to Allah and to adhere to what He loves and renounce that which He hates- Tawbah is a journey from the disliked to the liked”

The action of Tawbah uncovers the heart from the darkness of sins and disobedience and illuminates and returns it back to its original, pure and sinless state. At-Tawbah awakens the heart from the slumber of negligence and uncovers the veil of darkness that envelopes the heart.

At-Tawbah Falaah! It calls to success, it leads to happiness and it not only expiate sins but, if it is perfected, it changes the sins into good deed. SubhaanAllah how Merciful Allah is! One of the most beloved acts of worship to Allah is when a slave turns in repentance to Him, seeking only His pleasure and forgiveness, with sincerity.

The Prophet (sal Allaahu alayhi wa sallam) said:

‘A believer sees his sins as if he is sitting under a mountain which he is afraid may fall o­n him. Whereas an evil, wicked doer considers his sins as flies passing over his nose and he just drives them away.’ [2]

Bilaal ibn Sa’eed said:

“Don’t look at any sin as being insignificant, rather, Look at the greatness of the one you disobeyed” [3]

At-Tawbah also has an effect on our ibaadah to Allah, it brings forth love, softness and gratitude to Allah, praises to Him. It opens our heart to being thankful for the many blessings He grants us. From the merits of Tawbah is humbleness and humility of the heart, submissiveness to Allah becomes our main concern. The more Tawbah a slave of Allah makes, the more beloved you become in His eyes. Why? Because the essence of uboodiyah is submissiveness and humility and this, ya ukhti ya akhi is the state you put yourself in when you repent to Allah. And that is why Allah is closest to His slave when he/she is in prostration to the Lord of the world. And as Dr. Saleh as-Saleh (Rahimahullaah) said “…this may be the secret behind the response of Allah to the invocation of the oppressed, the invocation of the traveller and to the invocation of the fasting person. Because of the humility in their hearts. The anguish of the oppressed causes the broken heart. Similarly the traveller finds broken heartedness (humility) when he travels to strange places. Similarly in a fasting person, it breaks the animalistic drive for lust & desires as Imaam Ibn Al-Qayyim (rahimahullah) discussed. Despite the greatness of Tawbah and its great blessings there are however mistakes made by many people regarding Tawbah. And that is due to ignorance or negligence and his heedlessness.”

Allah says,

“O you who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance! It may be that your Lord will expiate from you your sins, and admit you into Gardens under which rivers flow — the Day that Allah will not disgrace the Prophet and those who believe with him. Their light will run forward before them and in their right hands. They will say: “Our Lord! Keep perfect our light for us and grant us forgiveness. Verily, You are Able to do all things.”

 (Surah at-Tahreem verse 8)

Allahuakbar! Allah is calling on the believers! To make a sincere repentance that will erase the sins that preceded it and mend the shortcomings of the repenting person. Allah is encouraging and directing us to quit the evil that we do by describing the reward of Al-Jannah and then Allah says, “it may be” which means as Ibn kathir said, that He will forgive you. And then on yawmul-qiyaamah, on a day, when your Mother will turn away from you, on a day when your siblings will not be there to counsel you nor your father to protect you! On a terrifying day when only Allah, Glory and Might be He, is there…They the believers will say: “Our Lord! Keep perfect our light for us and grant us forgiveness. Verily, You are Able to do all things.’”

Mujahid, Ad-Dahhak and Al-Hasan Al-Basri and other said, “This is the statement that the believers will say on the Day of Resurrection, when they witness the light of the hypocrites being extinguished.” May Allah make us amongst the believers Ameen.

SubhaanAllah, Allah also says:

“Allah accept the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and repent soon afterwards; to them will Allah turn in mercy: For Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom.”

(Surah An-Nisa: 17)

But keep in mind that Allah also said,

“Of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil, until death faces one of them, and he says, “Now have I repented indeed;” nor of those who die rejecting Faith: for them have We prepared a punishment most grievous.” (Surah An-Nisa: 18)

It becomes too late to repent “when the angel of death comes forth and the soul reaches the throat, approaches the chest and arrives at the state when it is being gradually pulled out, then there is no accepted repentance, nor a way out of that certain end.” [4]

Repentance will not be accepted when the sun rises from the west, nor when the disbeliever dies in the state of disbelief and polytheism. “His sorrow and repentance will not avail him. Even if he were to ransom himself with the earth’s fill of gold, it will not be accepted from him. And for them there is a torment that is severe, eternal and enormous.” [4] May Allah protect us from such a punishment Ameen!

A Muslim is one who lives their life in a state between fear and hope, not being certain that he will enter paradise and fearing his sins. Despite the Sahabah (may Allah be pleased with them) being the most righteous of people and despite some of them even being promised paradise, they feared Allah and worshiped Him having a balance of fear and hope. Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid said regarding this that,“…the Muslim must obey Allah and repent and hope for the mercy of Allah, keeping in mind that He forgives and accepts the repentance of the one who turns to Him sincerely, so he hopes that Allah forgives him. He knows that Allah accepts and loves the righteous deeds of His slave, so he strives to do righteous deeds hoping that they will be accepted.

If he lives in this state, fearing his sins and hoping for the mercy of his Lord, he will strive to worship Him and keep away from sin, asking Allah to reward him for his righteous deeds until he meets Him when He is pleased with him, and he seeks refuge with Allaah from his heart being turned away or his situation changing, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to pray, “O Controller of the hearts, make my heart steadfast in Your religion.”

Tawbah is a life transformational process and is the very step to abandoning the old ways and a step for us to replace those sins with righteous deeds. So be of the saabiqoon (foremost) in regards to pleasing Allah and turn away from this sin that is only furthering you away from the love and mercy of Allah.

“The right of Allâh is too great and heavy for the creation to fulfill and the blessings of Allâh are too many to enumerate, but you should remain repentant, morning and evening.” [5]

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[1] Ibn ‘Askir, Al-Tawbah article 13

[2] Saheeh Bukhari Volume 8, Book 75, Number 320

[3] [Bayhaqi in Shu’bul-Eemaan, 5/430].

[4] Tafseer Ibn Kathir

[5] Talq b. Habîb (Allâh have mercy on him­­) collected in Ibn Abî Al-Dunyâ, Al-Tawbah article 62.

[6] Madaarij As-Saalikeen

A Muslimah’s Eyes are Unlike Any Other

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The eyes are like an ocean, every moment carrying various tides of feelings and sentiments; such discreet and inaudible expressions that it is impossible for the limbs to translate each flicker into words and actions. In fact, the eyes are a treasure chest for the secrets hidden within the being of a woman. It is these very eyes that have been a means of attraction, allurement and temptation for centuries. But few indeed are those who have possessed eyes holding the beauty of modesty as do the eyes of the Muslim Woman.
As many fall into the abyss of unrestrained glances, the Muslim Woman’s eyes hold the unique trait of piety, since she derives strength upon strength from knowing that her Lord watches her from above the heavens. Her connection with her Lord helps her greatly in shielding off the attacks of the accursed whisperer, for when he approaches her she easily rushes towards her Lord’s refuge and seeks help in His Power and Might – be that anytime and anywhere.

Her love for her Creator gushes through her being, since He is the One who safeguarded and trained her against the evil that the eyes can incur, as she recited the Words of her Creator “…And tell the believing women to lower their gaze…”[1] Fully trying to entrench these words into her being, her eyes comply and she takes care in only beautifying her eyes within the serenity of her home and the protectiveness of her veil. An old lady was once asked,
‘What matter have you learnt to be the most important for a woman in her life?” She replied,
“Never to allow a non-⁠mahram⁠’s[2] eyes to meet with hers.”
A Muslim Woman should take this advice and be far above complacency in this matter; for a stranger to look towards her adorned eyes is an affront to her modesty, the same modesty that the Prophet (peace be upon him) described when he said: “Modesty results in good only and nothing else”[3] and “…modesty is a branch of faith.”[4] Indeed, treachery to her faith is not the Muslimah’s way therefore she preserves her eyes solely for her spouse, after which her lowered and adorned modest gaze looks up towards and is revealed for her beloved, the one whom ⁠Allah⁠ calls her garment:
“…they are your Libaas and you are their Libaas…”[5]
Seeking Paradise, she begins a journey to expend all her efforts to be able to dive into his eyes – right into his heart. Whilst other women may beautify themselves when leaving the house, she beautifies herself within the realm of her home – her ⁠Jannah⁠ in this temporal world.
May Allah bestow upon the Muslim Women of today modesty unparalleled in the annals of history and make them the most beautiful in the eyes of their respective husbands.
May Sisters worldwide be blessed with obedience to the commands of Allah and His Beloved Messenger. Ameen.
____________________

Qur’an, ⁠Surah⁠ An-Nur 24:30.
“And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent (like both eyes for necessity to see the way, or outer palms of hands or one eye or dress like veil, gloves, head cover, apron), and to draw their veils all over Juyoobihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms) and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, or their fathers, or their husband’s fathers, or their sons, or their husband’s sons, or their brothers or their brother’s sons, or their sister’s sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of feminine sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful.” [al-⁠Noor⁠ 24:31]
3 Bukhari and Muslim
4 Bukhari and Muslim
5 Quran, Suratul Baqarah 2: 187

Repost: Jusst Deen

Essence of Tadabbur

Sadly, contemplation of the book of Allah has become a forgotten practice and more effort is put into the memorisation and recitation of the Qur’aan rather than the reflection of it. It has become a grave problem and a disillusion that many people are ignorant about. On the other hand, we see the great concern and importance that the sahabah had with their relationship with the Qur’aan through their tireless efforts to implement it in their daily lives!

If our aim as Muslims is to implement the laws of Allah on this earth, shouldn’t we exhort the same efforts in understanding the very words in which we want to implement? Yes, it is actually imperative that we do not neglect this practice and strive to revive the Qur’aan in our hearts as well as in our lives.

The reality is that we live in times of negligence towards the Qur’aan, we have not only abandoned it’s understanding but for many of us, the Qur’aan is only read in Ramdaan and then put back on the shelf until the next ramdaan (I will make another post about this issue). It is a sad reality that we have become like those whom the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon Him complained to Allah about when he said:

“And the Messenger has said, ‘O my Lord, indeed my people have taken this Qur`an as [a thing] abandoned,” (Qur’an, 25:30).

May Allah forgive us and protect us from being of those who abandon the Qur’aan Ameen

There are only a few who engage in studying and seeking the understanding of the Qur’aan and acting upon it and we ask Allah to make us amongst them.

In an ayah that talks about Ahlul Kitab (People of the book), Allah سبحانه وتعالى says:

وَمِنْهُمْ أُمِّيُّونَ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ الْكِتَابَ إِلَّا أَمَانِيَّ وَإِنْ هُمْ إِلَّا يَظُنُّونَ

“Some of them are illiterate (‘Ummiyyun), knowing nothing of the Book but wishful thinking. They only speculate.” [Al-Baqarah, 2:78]

It is evident that they, the people of the book, were selective in what they wanted to learn. If it benefitted them in the dunya then they would learn it and if it didn’t then they would leave it. Picking and choosing from the religion.

Furthermore, Ibn Taymiyyah (rh) says about this ayah:

‘Ibn Abbas and Qatadah interpreted the meaning of the word ‘ummiyyoon’ (illiterate) as meaning, “they do not understand the meaning of the book. They learn it, they memorize it, and they recite it without understanding it. The meaning of ‘illiterate’ in this verse does not mean that they cannot read or write. They read it, memorize it and teach it yet they don’t understand what the book is talking about. They are satisfied by only reciting it.”

Imaam Ahmed narrates that the Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم said ‘something’ and then he صلى الله عليه وسلم said, ‘That would happen when knowledge is lost. One of the Sahabah (Ibn Lubaid) said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, how can knowledge be lost when we have studied Qur’an, we are teaching it to our children and our children will teach it to theirs?’ The Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم said, ‘Woe to you! I thought you were one of the most learned men of Madinah. Can’t you see the Jews and Christians are not benefiting even though they have their scriptures (Torah and Injeel) right with them.’

But Allah سبحانه وتعالى says:

كِتَابٌ أَنْزَلْنَاهُ إِلَيْكَ مُبَارَكٌ لِيَدَّبَّرُوا آيَاتِهِ وَلِيَتَذَكَّرَ أُولُو الْأَلْبَابِ

“It is a Book We have sent down to you, full of blessing, so let people of intelligence ponder (liyaddabbaru) its Signs and take heed.” [Saad, 38:29]

In this ayah the word, liyaddabbaru is used – which means have to have ‘taddabur’ (deep contemplation)

Allah سبحانه وتعالى says:

أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ أَمْ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبٍ أَقْفَالُهَا

“Will they not then ponder the Qur’an or are there locks upon their hearts?” [Muhammad, 47:24]

Allah سبحانه وتعالى is not only asking us to recite the Qur’an, rather He is asking us to ponder and contemplate over the Qur’an.

Make an effort to learn the language in which YOUR Creator has chosen to reveal this book in. Make an effort to ponder over its meaning and make an effort to implement its teachings. Ask Allah to increase you in knowledge, understanding and wisdom and have taqwa of Allah and He will give you knowledge.

وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۖ وَيُعَلِّمُكُمُ اللَّهُ

“Have taqwa of Allah and Allah will give you knowledge.” [Al-Baqara, 2:282]

Make the intention now and you will be rewarded for what you intended. Embark on this journey to understanding the kalaam of Allah. Embark on this journey to gaining a closer relationship with the Qur’aan and bi ithnillahi ta’aala, if your efforts are purely for His sake, then He will make the path easy for you.

Defeat of the romans

Abû Ishâq [Al-Fazârî] states:

The enemy was never able to stand up to the Companions of Allâh’s Messenger – Allâh’s praise and peace be upon him, so when the news of the defeat of the Romans came to Heraclius at Antioch he asked [his people], “Woe to you, tell me about these people who fight you, are they not humans like you?” They replied, “Indeed, they are.” He asked, “So are you more in number or them?” They replied, “We outnumber them greatly in all places.” He said, “So how is it that you are defeated whenever you meet them [in battle].” A senior and esteemed elder amongst them replied, “Because they stand in prayer at night, fast during the day, fulfill their agreements and promises, enjoin what is right and forbid what is evil, they are fair and just amongst themselves; and because we drink wine, fornicate, commit sin, break our agreements, steal, oppress and do injustice, enjoin the committing of what angers Allâh and forbid what pleases Allâh the Mighty and Majestic, and we cause evil and corruption in the land.” Heraclius said, “You are the one who has told me the truth.” Abû Bakr Al-Daynûrî, Al-Mujâlasah wa Jawâhir Al-‘Ilm 4:91.

The Last Drops of this World

Khâlid b. ‘Umayr Al-‘Adawî reports, ‘Utbah b. Ghazwân – Allâh be pleased with him – once gave us a sermon. He praised Allâh, then said:

The life of this world has announced its departure and is quickly turning away, and nothing remains of it save the likes of the last drop of water in a vessel as its possessor tries to catch it. You are moving on to an abode that has no end, so move on with the best [deeds] that you have. For it has been said to us that a rock can be dropped from the edge of Hell and fall for seventy years without reaching the bottom. Yet, by Allâh, it will be filled. Do you not then wonder? And it has been said to us that a single entrance to Paradise is as wide as a journey of forty years, yet there will come a day when it will be crowded.

I have seen myself as the seventh of seven [followers of] Allâh’s Messenger – Allâh’s peace and blessings be upon him; we had no food save the leaves of trees which put sores round our mouths. I once got a cloak which I tore in half to share with Sa’d b. Mâlik: I used half as my waist-wrap and he used the other. And yet today, there is not one of us except he has become a governor over some city – and I seek refuge with Allâh that I consider myself great and important when I am small in front of Allâh. Verily there was never prophet-hood except that it gradually changed until it ended up being a kingship, and verily you will see what the governors after us are like.

Sahîh Muslim no. 7624