Blogging and Ramadhan

BISMILLAHIR RAHMAANIR RAHEEM

Asalamu  alaikum

Once in Madressah we did the Tafseer of Surah Asr(Time) and my respected,beloved teacher explained it in one line. Watch an ice block melt ona summer’s day and understand the meaning of Surah Asr.

By the qasam of Time,

Certainly mankind is at a loss

 Except for those who have believed and done good deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience.

(ps: Updating hijabi and fresh beards and iftaar pics are not under the tafseer of “good deeds”)

Let’s spend our time the right way inshaAllah. Let’s not let social media make us waste time. Hold the Quran and tasbih more often than the phone. Sit on the musalla in dua rather than clicking pics on instagram. I salute those bloggers who have chosen not to post in Ramadhan. Reading or writing fiction is not the option that’s the best for us in Ramadhan. InshaAllah.

It is the month for intense Personal ibadah.From one blog,we surf to the next and next. If we are not going to utilise this opportunity now,then when?

One day,we all have to die. How will we answer for how I spent my time? Every night and morning let’s ask ourselves this.

Please forgive me, I know I Have offended many here, I ask for maaf. 

Make dua for my hidayat and the ability to practise on what I preach.

Was salam.

See you’ll in Shawaal if Allah wishes so

 

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The Part;the Fifteen. Getting the wrong end of the miswaak

In class; Hayaatus Sahabaa (R.A)

Hayaatus Sahaaba(Lives of the Companions of Nabi SAW) was a book that fascinated me. At first I didn’t have much interest because of grappling with the Arabic but once that become easier thanks to having a patient mu’tala partner,it opened a treasure box of unending pearls.

For the first time the Sahaba became a reality for me. For the first time I got a glimpse of them as humans like me. As if they emerged from the mists of far-away legends and I could “see” them as real, living, everyday humans with everyday issues yet who lived extraordinarily in their choices. It was a book that even Nu’maan was enamoured with.

“Where are you lost Nabeel? Not paying attention?” Moulana Zahid asks and I snap out of my reverie.

“No,no not at all Moulana, I am…I was just wondering about this waaqiah(incident) that we just covered regarding Ali RA and Muawiyah RA… It just…disturbs me a bit…like I find it hard to …how do I put this eish…”

“Like how could the Sahaba have a so called struggle for leadership? Or why did their differences escalate? And they were supposed to be the best of all people after Ambiyaa” Moulana asks perceptively.

“jee..jee” I nod

And as always it’s the teacher who makes all the difference to what is taught.

“The difference between Sahaba was only and Always because of Deen. They didn’t always see each other the way later generations saw them them yet they looked at each other with completely clean hearts. When there was a difference between Ali RA and Muawiya RA,it was because each thought that they would be more capable to implement Deen amongst the masses. There was No question Ever of them differing because of desire and greed for power.”

I digested this and breathed out in relief. Their entire lives were monuments to Imaan. (Faith)

“Never doubt those who Allah Ta’aala handpicked to be in the company of His Beloved,those who bore every trail and took this deen forward,those who stood as 313 in Badr against an enemy Three times their size and never once thought of running away from the battlefield,the Sahaba gave their lives and hearts in a second for Deen,in a second. We need to have the greatest love and respect for those whom Allah says HE is happy with(Quran)” Moulana continued.

 

The Sahaba,the Best of all ‘ordinary’ mortals, stood on opposite sides of the battlefield,they had differences. They didn’t say,oh okay let’s just be all be one big happy family. Their differences were for Deen. For those beating on the Unity card, you are missing the broader picture. Will you accuse the Sahaba of disuniting the Ummah? Don’t miss the point totally and get the wrong end of the miswaak.

We cannot harp on unity of the MUSLIMS while ISLAM is being torn apart. First comes ISLAM ,then comes the Muslims.

To follow a mazhab is waajib for the masses. Those who pick on Imaam Abu Hanifa,Imaam As-Shaafi,Imaam Malik and Imaam Hambal are greatly deluded.

Those who say they don’t follow their nafs,then Who do you follow when you decided to read 8rakaats? When you decided hijab isn’t compulsory? When you discarded the ‘topee’(Islamic hat) ? Who DID you follow? Your Shaikh? Ibn Taymiyah?  Those who came so many aeons After Nabi SAW but you threw away the stance those who were WITH Nabi SAW? Umar RA made the uniform code of Taraweeh as 20. Sahaba RA followed and so it remained. Sahaba RA wore a hat. Sahabiyaat draped themselves in full niqaab.

So who are we and our scholars when we conveniently throw it all aside in the name of  “I will Only follow Quran and Sunnah”?

I am sorry but when every day,someone is led away from the unity of the ummah that was held intact by following a mazhab,then I Will speak out against it and when gentleness isn’t working,then we have to take other measures. The sisters who were outraged by the disunity of the ummah, what do you say about the fact that so many of these Shaikhs have made tv watching.music,movies.photos okay? Do you get outraged by that?

The manner in which the Shaikh’s were mocked was disliked because of the tone,fine,I accept that but it was to raise a point. The Ulama are supposed to be fountains of wisdom and pillars of spirituality and piety so we may lean on them.

But when our Ulama are making jokes using movies they watched,even with their kids or update a status about how a movie is good or wholesome(though it contains every non Islamic element)then as hard as we try,we cannot find the nur we seek,from them.

Please I beg you, you Have the intelligence,the followers,the sway,now use it in the right way Shaikh. And I plead that with a completely sincere plea.

JazakAllah

 

The Part; The Fourteen. Salafis and 15th of Sha’baan. ( preparing my kafan after this post:)

 

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem

 

To explain this, I need to fast forward this a few years past my first year. This is a super long post,please stick around till the closing credits. JazakAlllah Khair

 

So we were in the midst of exams,stressing like crazy. We are given permission to stay up till later than the usual to study and when you walk into the mess and the boarding,you’re hit with the symphony of Quran,Hadith,Tafseer,explanations,different opinions etc etc and in different languages. It is absolutely amazing. Of course at that time it didn’t feel amazing because you’re stressed out to the max.

So it was somewhere before the 15th of Sha’baan and I walk into the mess late at night after getting some biscuits from my room for my tea break. Some guys were so into their kitabs that even if you dropped something on them, they wouldn’t have flinched. SubhanAllah. Some guys were stretching their backs and arms,trying to get rid of the tiredness while their eyes reddened with exhaustion and some were on a break like me, refuelling and wondering why did studying always make you feel like a hungry lion? While there was another group who had no sign of stress and flipped through their books,laughing and joking while least interested in learning. May Allah Ta’aala forgive us.

Those of us on “eat break” automatically gathered in a circle.

Ayub; “Bismillahi wa alaa barakatillah” (Why do we forget to say this when we snack?)

Zameer; “15th of Sha’baan is coming up next week,I don’t know why the asaatizah  scheduled heavy papers for us the next day. I’m going to be whacked from staying up”

Ramzi; “Zameer…we shouldn’t talk of our nafl ibaadah akhi…keep it between you and Allah”

Zameer; “I didn’t mean it like that Ramzizi, they will have a programme in the musjid and that ends late and then we obviously have to make our own personal ibadat”

Ramzi; “True,true, ighfirli”

Suhaib; “All papers are ‘heavy’ for you Zameer,it’s Aqeedat Tahaawi,it’s not heavy mate”

Ayub; “You’re finding it heavy? Need me to help you brush up? Just let me know. I Love that kitab!”

Me; “me too, it’s almost like poetry!”

They look at me funny. Sigh.

Ramzi; “It is brilliant in its science of Aqeedah(Beliefs) for the ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah”

Zakir; “ I don’t think we have to stay up on the 15th night…there is nothing to prove it is a “big night” That hadith isn’t even found in Bukhari or Muslim,why kill youself when you not going to get all that you Think a hadith promised”

A hush fell over the group.

Zakir was someone who was always questioning,debating and ridiculing the Aimma and asking for (daleel)proofs and although he didn’t claim to be “salafi” it was thought he was.

Ramzi breaks the silence. “I think you are doing yourself disservice my brother if you restrict yourself to only Bukhari and Muslim as your only source. Millions of Muslims,thousands of Muhadditheen (narrators and reserachers of Hadith) and we accept Only Two kitabs as authentic? Are we saying that everyone elses effort is a lie? It is wrong? Made up? , the Muhadittitheen who gave their Lives for Deen,who had more connection to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’aala in a day than we in our whole lives,are liars and fabricators? They were so close to Nabi SAW in action and we are so far ,yet we find it so easy na’am? To say daeef ,daeef,daeef”(weak narration)

Everyone was stunned. In all our time,we had never heard an outburst from Ramzi.

But Ramzi was not done. “Even If it was a weak hadith, it is the 15th of Sha’baan,halfway to Ramadhan, why should we not prepare ourselves? Why? So we can make ourselves feel nice about the wrong we do? What is there if we sit in ibaadah? Even if with just a niyyah to get closer to Allah, it is a night of taubah,to seek true forgiveness. In taraweeh, the salafis say 8 rakaats BUT WHAT DO THEY DO IN THE REMAINING TIME? WHAT? IBADAT?? Why always so ready to debate but not ready to make ibadat Alone!”

Nabeel chipping in here.

My problem with Salafis is this. I have the greatest respect for the True scholars who are “salafi” because their knowledge is intense and immense. Some of the greatest heroes of our time were/are Salafi But I will say this, it is not for the masses to be Salafi. Why? Because you Do not have the indepth knowledge of Deen to take chances like that on a uniform code given to us for the sake of ease by the 4 Imaams;

Imaam Abu Hanifa AR,Imaam Shafi AR,Imaam Ahmed Bin Hambal AR,Imaam Malik AR.

Today’s Salafi scholar and daee is busy,very busy prepping his important Youtube video of Da’wah or printing his glossy pamphlet for his seminars,updating his social account pics and (the  sisters are not going to like this) ,joking with his students.Female students. See a problem in that picture?

Now I am not taking my paintbrush and doing a general paint but I have family who have attended the lessons of scholars who follow Taqleed and those that don’t and I am sad to say, it is amongst those that follow Taqleed, where Hijab is observed More stringently and so are the commands of hijab. Joking and laughing and being informal for a Shaikh to his female students,is wrong! It rips away the nur of the lessons. It makes a mockery of the Divine words  you’re teaching Shaikh. Having access to your Shaikh anytime,is not right.

Not every scholar is like this and not every muqallid scholar is good. No ways. 

Why does our Shaikh pull off his hat that announced he is a Muslim for years because he can’t find the hadith in Bukhari about a hat nevermind he found it everywhere else? But will never wear an Amaamah(turban) coz that’s so IndoPak style you know? Nevermind that wearing a turban is in the authentic ahadith?  Why does our Shaikh suffer an inferiority complez and pulls on a suit jacket over his kurta? The Salafi look for conventions,seminars,weddings and other places he needs to look important. Does he feel the dressing of Nabi SAW is not good enough that he had to add on a western look to feel smarter?

Ah,let’s not forget,the salafi scholar Has to look tip top. It’s in the curriculum.

My main problem with Salafism is the glaring lack of Ruhaniyat. Spirituality. Let me break it down for you. Too much of show business,too much time debating authenticity,not enough time in actual ibaadah,too much time discarding portions of Deen  and not enough in actual dawah where its not through a medium of a seminar or webinar. Too much time window dressing and not enough time away from the glare of the public eye. Contemplation in solitude,as Nabi SAW did.

You scream and shout and abuse the 4 Imaams and mock us for our following them. You claim to follow pristine Deen and to practise it as Nabi SAW did and the Sahaba RA and you follow no one else,so you say.

But you quote Ibn Taymiyah,Albaani and Bin Baaaz left ,right and centre. Seeking reassurance for your choices from their works. Does it not come down to the same thing you accuse us of?

Phew. I’m steamed out.

Once again,some of the greatest men I know of are Salafi. But they are close to the sunnah in the way they walk,talk,dress,eat. With their amaamahs and pants mid calf,dressed as my Nabi SAW did. These men are devout worshippers,modest and observe hijab not only with their eyes but their hearts. I Salute them and love them.

In the above,I refer to the current day, camera friendly Shuyookh who do as I have described. Not those that are trying their best to be like their predecessors in the truest and best sense.

Back to the “eat break”

Ayub; “What is amazing is that we have ahadith on a person’s wudhu been broken by merely touching a female and other narrations from Aisha Siddiqa RA where Nabi SAW kissed her and proceeded to lead the salaah? So how do we reconcile this? Is our wudhu intact or not? when we feel like,then its broken and when its not convenient for us,then we don’t make it.”

Ramzi; “ Exactly Ayub, Imaam Abu Hanifa took the stance that the wudhu is valid and Imaam Shaafi AR said it will be broken in that case,what do those who scorn the Aimma say?Do what you want?”

May Allah guide us all in these trying times Ameen,myself first.

The Authenticity of Laylatul Baraa’ah

The 15th night of Sha’baan is known as Laylatul Baraa’ah or the Night of Emancipation.

Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated:

“Allah Ta’ala looks upon all His creation on the middle Night of Sha’baan and forgives them all, except the one who associates partners with Him or the one who has hatred in his heart (against a Muslim).” (Authenticated as Saheeh in Saheeh ibn Hibban)

There are those who cast doubts about the significance of this night. They would be wise to consider the words of Ibn Taymiya and Albaani, whom they consider as Imaams.

Ibn Taymiya writes in his Al-Fataawal Kubra, “As for the middle night of Sha’baan, indeed it holds virtue.”

Albaani when discussing the Ahadith regarding the 15th night of Sha’baan writes, “In essence, the Hadith, considering the different narrations, is Saheeh (rigorously authenticated) without any doubt.” He further says that those who deny the virtue of this night, then it is due to their haste in passing rulings and the absence of effort in researching the Ahadith. (Silsilatul Ahadithis Sahihah)

The 15th night of Sha’baan is indeed an auspicious night. It is a night of forgiveness and mercy. Let us be of those fortunate ones who maximise the benefits of this night and thereby welcome Ramadhan spiritually rejuvenated.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Salafi Couple

Wife;  “I love you”

Husband; “Give me the daleel”

 

Wife; “Can you please take me to visit my Mum?”

Husband; “Where’s the hadith to prove that I need to do that?’

 

Husband; “Honey it’s the 15th of Sha’baan  tonight”

Wife; “Don’t they say that it’s a “big night” haha, all that is from a weak hadith,no need to strain ourselves making ibaadah or seeking forgiveness as those daeef scholars say so”

Husband; “Totally right,pass the remote,what’s on TV tonight?”

 

The Part;The Thirteen; Mechanics and Islaah

 

BISMILLAHIR RAHMANIR RAHEEM

 

The long story short, Shaikh burnt my ears off(metaphorically!) for listening in on his convo with Zameer. This was the first time my favourite teacher had scolded me and in my ignorance, I was irritated and upset. Come on,what was the big deal? But you see, when you live in an environment where lying,gossiping,making dirty jokes,eavesdropping is not considered a really bad thing and where being mean is funny and when this is endorsed by the one you spend a lot of time with- the TV, then when you are thrown into a pure environment that is continuously egging you on to be better,better,better,you don’t get it at first. You think “oh please man,you’re overdoing it” or at least I did.

Similarly when we’re out in Jamaat(time spent inviting to Allah) or in the Halaqah(gatherings) of our Shuyookh(spiritual guides), then at first it seems a bit much especially when we have major stuff like drugs,booze,no salaah,clubbing and being promiscuous,to see to and remove. But the qualities that we have and that we don’t consider wrong? Will become like weeds that will trip us up in our ultimate quest,may Allah bless those who advice us sincerely.

I woke up during the late part of the night which was weird because usually I slept like a log, to see Ramzi on the floor. That was weird,I was so sure he slept on his bunk bed every night. Oh maybe he had a bed bug or something. Staring at nothing at the dark, I remembered to be grumpy with Shaikh coz he made me feel like scum.

“Nabeel” A voice whispered

I nearly bring the room down with my scream. The guys woke up with shock and since we had no access to lights,pulled out their mini torches and secret phones.

“What???” “What the hell happened?!”  “Who was it?”   “Arreh kya huwa mera baap?”(that was Mustafa)

“I thought It was a jinn! Kasam I heard someone say my name!”I shouted

“Yooou bleddy idiot! You gave me a fright!” Mustafa was Angry,he Hated his sleep disturbed and charged at me in the dark,tackling me. “When I finish you, you’ll hear 10 Jinaat!”

“My head you moron! You bloody banged it against the railing” I shoved him away

“Break it up guys,they will come check up on us just now”  “Mustafa get over yourself,it’s not as if you lost someone,our sleep also broke and we’re not acting like bulls” “Apologise Nabeel you moron” (That was you know Nu’maan)

Then Ramzi,surprisingly threw 2 pillows at us. “here,fight it out take qisaas and go back to sleep,na’am?” he smiled in the dark. The other guys pelted their pillows at us and suddenly it was a free for all. We ended up having a pillow fight and laughing and err swearing at around 2am.  Sometimes I think of those carefree days with the most deepest yearning and I remember one of my close friends advice.The best is still to come.

So anyways, Suhaib, a guy who moved to our room because he had issues with his room,said “I think I can hear Imraan bhai!”

Everyone shoved their phones and torches away and hopped back into bed like greased lightning. One thing, Madressa increases your reflex power!

We lay in bed laughing and my brother Ramzi,as always, reminded us to remember Allah and not just get chocked in our ghaflat(negligence) of fun.

“Come boys,we got a little time before fajr salaah,Allahumma bismika amutu wa ahya(Oh Allah,on Your name I die and come back to life),make a little zikr befre we sleep inshaAllah” Ramzi said.

The next day at breakfast,Ramzi was buttering his toast when he turned to me and smiled “Ya Nabeel,I was the jinn,I sensed you were awake,I whispered,I didn’t know you will get a fright,sorry akhi”

I laughed. “It’s cool, you Must be a jinn to detect that I was awake! Hey why were you sleeping on the floor?”

Ramzi mumbled some excuse as I gulped down my sad looking brown tea and missed my mothers breakfast skills. Only in later years I would figure that Ramzi would pull his duvet and stuff and sleep on the floor to practise on a great sunnah. We say it’s just a sunnah but it’s never “just” it is Nur. We should try and practice on certain sunnats even if we can’t all the time,then now and then and seek istighfaar for when we can’t do so.

“Come on,you’re going to be late for your first dars(lesson) Normally you’re rushing for Shaikhs dars?” Ramzi asked

I told Ramzi about my issue with Shaikh. I didn’t like being told off by anyone.Simple.

“Hmm…that is your ego talking Nabeel. This is an Islaah garage, we are like the cars that met up in accidents because of our sins and weakness so we come to the garage to what you say?”

“panel beat?”

“Yes! Our Asaatizah(teachers) are our panel beaters,they will put us right ,sometimes it hurts the car but do the car get cross with mechanic ya Nabeel?” Ramzi looked at me kindly

I got his point. Alhamdulilah. Some people will pick on you because of the power trip it gives them,some because they got nothing better to do but a teacher/parent/sibling/relative/friend guide/ameer that is sincere will do it out of concern. Don’t push it away.

I smiled at Ramzi , “JazakAllah man” I said simply,picking up my bag of kitabs and jogged to class, I didn’t want to be late for my favourite dars,with my fav teacher.

The part; The Twelve. Loveboats and Eavesdropping

 

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

 

Shaikh Shifu looked at Zameer piercingly. Ok not actually piercingly but as if he could see right through him and everything he had got up to that past week.

“many a love boats have sunk in an ocean of destruction Zameer” Shaikh said calmly. Meanwhile I was thinking howcome it didn’t sound ridiculous when Shaikh spouted lines like that. It made me think of all the blinking Shakespearean claptrap we had to do in high school. But it made sense this.

“many a love boats have sunk in an ocean of destruction.”

‘This is my last warning Zameer,after this I have to take it up with Mufti.” Shaikh told a stricken Zameer. I thought Shaikh was being a bit harsh and ratting out for nothing but when I came to know later that Shaikh had caught Zameer 7 times and each time let him go with advice. Sometimes when someone doesn’t want to listen repeatedly,drastic action has to be taken.

“First I caught you smoking,then I caught you with your phone,you promised not to use it again but you did and then when I took it away,you hooked another student to lend you his. And why? All so you could talk to this girl,is she worth it?” Shaikh asked him

Zameer the tough guy I knew,reacted in a totally unexpected way. He looked like he was about to cry! Baby.

“I…I truly…err feel for her Shaikh…Please understand me…I want to marry her!” His voice cracked with sorrow.

This was certainly entertaining! I tried not to make a noise as I slurped my Sprite.

‘Do you love her?’ Asked Shaikh

“yes!” Zameer said enthusiastically

“do you think she will be faithful to you?”Shaikh enquired as if he was ticking off a medical diagnosis

“Shaikh! I wouldn’t love her so much if she was loose!,she’s a good Muslimah” Zameer muttered

“But if she cant be faithful to her Rabb and you cant be faithful to your Rabb,whose love should dominate…

See,who uses the word dominate and still sounds cool? Shaikh  Shifu,that’s who. I was onto my chappies,listening and growing more impressed.

Shaikh continued”Whose love should dominate our lives, how will you remain faithful to each other when you’ll jeapordised your relationship with Allah,make tauba and leave her, you say she is good,I believe that because you are a good boy and have good judgement most of the time but we all sin and fall,get up and move on,leave her so she may become better and happier without you,in the long run.”

Zameer; “I tried a hundred times…I made tauba..I carried on…and we couldn’t stay apart…Shaikh you don’t understand! Its not that I want to do this sin but I just am unable to give it up,shes my addiction”

Hmm. I hope he realises how embarrassing that was. Hell, I was embarrassed for him, how can you throw lines like that at your seniors? But Shaikh responded like a pro.

“I Do understand Zameer, I do.” Shaikh said holding Zameer shoulders. “ If you tried a hundred times,then try and 102 times,don’t stop trying,increase your zikr. Do you know what zikr does to the heart? Brightens it,lightens it and makes it easier for us to do our other ibaadat.But what is the trick of zikr,what did we do in class?”

Zameer looked relieved “to do it constantly? The hadith declares that the most beloved action to Allah is the one that is constant even if it is little.”

Shaikh smiled “maashaaAllah ,someone is awake in class. Istiqamat,commitment. That’s what we need.”

Shaikh was calm as an ice cube uptil then but then his voice changed to a lighting like tone. Was Scary!

“ Zameer…for all your aqal (intelligence) What I find hard to stomach is seeing you last night with a girl,I assume the same one.”

‘y..you saw me!’ Zameer was perspiring

“Yes and I was gutted that you chose to meet her on a Thursday night! The eve of Jumah Zameer! Why?? You had no sabr for the weekend? I’m not saying go and meet girls on the weekend but why on the night you’ll are given off?? As an amanat?(trust) It is such a pure and blessed night. Our actions are presented to Nabi SAW on this night,do you know that? If we cant sit and read Salawaat or do extra  good on this night,at least abstain from sin of the night and day of jumah! Our sawaab is multiplied on the Mubarak days an nights and the outcome of our sins are also multiplied! Why did you have to drag  the Madressa name in the mud by parading with her publicly on a Mubarak night!”

Shewww. I stood up and was about to leave, trying to blend in the shadows I stood in ,eavesdropping.But…

‘Whose there? Nabeel? How long have you been standing there?” I heard Shaikh’s voice behind me. Damn!

 

Jumah is here,lets try and be xxx good and stay away from sin. Even the ‘small’ ones. Use it as a practise run for Ramadhan which is so near.