Archive for November, 2010

Tas-heel Syllabus – Now available of Darul Ishaat UK

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Tasheel Syllabus - Now available at Darul Ishaat UK www.darul-ishaat.co.uk

We are not aware of any other textbook package that can even come close to these books in clarity, authenticity, breath of coverage, and suitability for the children. The books on Akhlaq and Adab cover Islamic morals, manners, and etiquettes in such a manner that they can go a long way in inculcating good morals and manners in the children.

The books on Aqaid (beliefs) also handle the subject very thoroughly so that those who benefit from them, Insha-Allah, would not encounter the confusions one finds commonly among the western educated Muslims today.

While all material is good, the one on history is exceptional. It is lucid, focused, and well presented. Even difficult subjects like the earlier internecine wars have been handled expertly. In fact, while these books are meant for young Muslims, they could be of tremendous benefit to the adults also.

We enthusiastically recommend that these books be used in the full time Islamic Schools, weekend schools, as well as Islamic home-schools.

To view the whole range of books please visit:  http://www.darul-ishaat.co.uk/store/TASHEEL-SYLLABUS/

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Eid Mubarak

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Eid Mubarak 2010

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Zulhijjah: Eidul-Adha, Hajj, Sacrifice, etc.

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

By Mufti Taqi Usmani

Zulhijjah is the last month of the Islamic calendar. Literally, it means “hajj.” Obviously, this name of the month indicates that the great annual worship of “hajj” is performed in this month, which gives it special significance. Some specific merits and rules relevant to this month are mentioned below:

First Ten Days

The first ten days of Zulhijjah are among the most magnificent days in Islamic calendar. The Holy Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, has said, “One fast during these days is equal to the fasting of one complete year, and the worship of one night during this period is equal to the worship in the “Lailatul-Qadr”.

Every Muslim should avail of this wonderful opportunity by performing during this period as much Iba’dah (acts of worship) to Allah as he or she can.

The 9th day of Zulhijjah

The 9th day of Zulhijjah is called ‘Youmul – “Arafah’ (The Day of ‘Arafah). This is the date when the Hujjaj (Haji pilgrims, plural of Haajj) assemble on the plain of ‘Arafat, six miles away from Makkah al-Mukarramah, where they perform the most essential part of the prescribed duties of hajj, namely, the ‘Wuqoof of’Arafat (the stay in ‘Arafat).

The Fast of Youmul ‘Arafah

For those not performing hajj, it is mustahabb (desirable) to fast on this day according to their own calendar. It sometimes occurs that 9th Zuihijjah falls on different days in different countries according to the sighting of the moon. In such cases, Muslims of each country should observe ‘Youmul ‘Arafah according to the lunar dates of their own country.

For example, if ‘Youmul ‘Arafah’ is being observed in Saudi Arabia on Friday, and in Pakistan on Saturday, Pakistani Muslims should treat Saturday as ‘Youmul ‘Arafah’ and should fast on that day if they desire to benefit from the fast of ‘Youmul’Arafah’.

The fast of ‘Youmul ‘Arafah’ has been emphasized by the Holy Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, as a mustahabb (desirable) act. According to a hadith, the fast of this day becomes a cause, hopefully so, of forgiveness for sins committed in one year.

Takbir-ut-tashriq

Beginning from the Fajr of the 9th Zulhijjah up to the ‘Asr prayer of the 13th, it is obligatory on each Muslim to recite the Takbir of Tashriq after every fard prayer in the following words.

Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar,

La Ilaha Illallahu, Wallahu Akbar,

Allahu Akbar wa lillahilhamd.

(There is no god but Allah and Allah is the greatest, Allah is the greatest and to Allah belongs all praise.)

According to authentic Islamic sources, it is obligatory on each Muslim, to recite this Takbir after every fard salah. For women also, it is commendable though not obligatory. Whether you are performing salah with Jama’ah (collectively) or on your own (individually) makes no difference. You must recite the Takbir. However, male Muslims should recite it in a loud voice, while females should recite it in a low voice.

On the Eid day

The following acts are sunnah on the day of Eidul- adha:

1. To wake up early in the morning.

2. To clean one’s teeth with a miswak or brush

3. To take bath.

4. To put on one’s best available clothes.

5. To use perfume.

6. Not to eat before the Eid prayer.

7. To recite the Takbir of Tashriq in a loud voice while going to the Eid prayer.

How to Perform Eid Prayers (Hanafi School)

The Eid prayer has two raka’at performed in the normal way, with the only addition of six Takbirs, three of them in the beginning of the first raka’ah, and three of them just before ruku’ in the second raka’ah. The detailed way of performing the Eid prayer is as follows:

The Imam will begin the prayer without Adhan or iqamah. He will begin the prayer by reciting Takbir of Tahrimah (Allahu Akbar). You should raise your hands up to the ears, and after reciting the Takbir, you should set your hands on your navel. The Imam will give a little pause during which you should recite Thana’ (Subhanakallahumma .:.). After the completion of Thana’, the Imam will recite Takbir (Allahu Akbar) three times. At the first two calls of Takbir you should raise your hands up to the ears, and after reciting Takbir (Allahu Akbar) in a low voice, should bring your hands down and leave them earthwards. But, after the third Takbir, you should set them on your navel as you do in the normal prayers.

After these three Takbirs, the Imam will recite the Holy Qur’an, which you should listen calmly and quietly. The rest of the raka’ah will be performed in the normal way.

After rising for the second raka’ah, the Imam will begin the recitations from the Holy Qur’an during which you should remain calm and quiet. When the Imam finishes his recitation, he will recite three Takbirs once again, but this time it will be just before bowing down for ruku’. At each Takbir you should raise your hands up to the ears, and after saying ‘Allahu Akbar’, bring them down and leave them earthwards. After these three takbirs have been called and completed, the Imam will say another takbir for bowing down into the ruku’ position. At this takbir you need not raise your hands. You just bow down for your ruku’ saying, ‘Allahu Akbar’. The rest of the salah will be performed in its usual way.

Khutbah: The Address of Eidul-Adha

In this salah of Eid, Khutbah is a sunnah and is delivered after the salah, unlike the salah of Jumu’ah where it is fard and is delivered before the salah. However, listening to the khutbah of Eid salah is wajib or necessary and must be listened to in perfect peace and silence.

It is a sunnah that the Imam begins the first Khutbah by reciting takbir (Allahu Akbar) nine times and the second Khutbah with reciting it seven times.

Note:

The way of Eid prayer described above is according to the Hanafi school of Muslim jurists. Some other jurists, like Imam Shafi’i, have some other ways to perform it. They recite Takbir twelve times before beginning the recitations of the Holy Qur’an in both the raka’at. This way is also permissible. If the Imam, being of the Shafi’i school, follows this way, you can also follow him. Both ways are based on the practice of the Holy Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam.

Sacrifice or Qurbani: Philosophy and Rules

The Urdu and persian word Qurbani (Sacrificial slaughter) is derived from the Arabic word Qurban. Lexically, it means an act performed to seek Allah’s pleasure. Originally, the word Qurban included all acts of charity because the purpose of charity is nothing but to seek Allah’s pleasure. But, in precise religious terminology, the word was later confined to the sacrifice of an animal slaughtered for the sake of Allah.

The sacrifice of an animal has always been treated as a recognized form of worship in all religious orders originating from a divine book. Even in pagan societies, the sacrifice of an animal is recognized as a form of worship, but it is done in the name of some idols and not in the name of Allah, a practice totally rejected by Islam.

In the Shari’ah of our beloved Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, the sacrifice of an animal has been recognized as a form of worship only during three days of Zulhijjah, namely, the 10th, 1lth and 12th of the month. This is to commemorate the unparalleled sacrifice offered by the Prophet Sayyidna Ibrahim, Alayhi Salam, when he, in pursuance to a command of Allah conveyed to him in a dream, prepared himself to slaughter his beloved son, Sayyidna Isma’il, Alayhi Salam, and actually did so but, Allah Almighty, after testing his submission, sent down a sheep and saved his son from the logical fate of slaughter. It is from that time onwards that the sacrifice of an animal became an obligatory duty to be performed by every well to do Muslim.

Qurbani is a demonstration of total submission to Allah and a proof of complete obedience to Allah’s will or command. When a Muslim offers a Qurbani, this is exactly what he intends to prove. Thus, the Qurbani offered by a Muslim signifies that he is a slave of Allah at his best and that he would not hesitate even for a moment, once he receives an absolute command from his Creator, to surrender before it, to obey it willingly, even if it be at the price of his life and possessions. When a true and perfect Muslim receives a command from Allah, he does not make his obedience dependent upon the command’s reasonability’ as perceived through his limited understanding. He knows that Allah is All-knowing, All-Wise and that his own reason cannot encompass the knowledge and wisdom underlying the divine command. He, therefore, submits to the divine command, even if he cannot grasp the reason or wisdom behind it.

This is exactly what the Prophet Ibrahim, Alayhi Salam, did. Apparently, there was no reason why a father should slaughter his innocent son. But, when came the command from Allah, he never asked about the reason for that command, nor did he hesitate to follow it. Even his minor son when asked by his father about the dream he had seen, never questioned the legitimacy of the command, nor did he pine or whine about it, nor did he ask for one good reason why he was being slaughtered. The one and only response he made was:

‘Father, do what you have been ordered to do. You shall find me, God willing, among the patient”.

The present-day Qurbani is offered in memory of this great model of submission set before us by the great father and the great son. So Qurbani must be offered in our time emulating the same ideal and attitude of submission.

This, then, is the true philosophy of Qurbani. With this in mind, one can easily unveil the fallacy of those who raise objections against Qurbani on the basis of economic calculations and depict it to be a wastage of money, resources and livestock. Unable to see beyond mundane benefits, they cannot understand the spirit Islam wants to plant and nourish among its followers, the spirit of total submission to Allah’s will which equips man with most superior qualities so necessary to keep humanity in a state of lasting peace and welfare.

Qurbani is nothing but a powerful symbol of the required human conduct vis-a-vis the divine commands, however “irrational” or “uneconomic” they may seem to be in their appearance. Thus, the distrustful quest for mundane economic benefits behind Qurbani is, in fact, the negation of its real philosophy and the very spirit underlying it.

No doubt, there are in every form of worship ordained by Allah, certain worldly benefits too, but they are not the main purpose of these prescribed duties, nor should they be treated as a pre-condition to submission and obedience. All acts of worship, including Qurbani, must be carried out with a spirit of total submission to Allah, irrespective of their economic, social or political benefits. This is what Ibrahim, Alayhi Salam, did, and this is what every true Muslim is required to do,

Keeping this in view, we are giving here some rules governing the worship of Qurbani in our Shari’ah according to the Hanafi School.

The Time of Qurbani

Qurbani can only be performed during the three days of Eid, namely the 10th, Ilth and 12th of Zulhijjah. It is only in these days that slaughtering of an animal is recognized as an act of worship. No Qurbani can be performed in any other days of the year.

Although Qurbani is permissible on each of the three aforesaid days, yet it is preferable to perform it on the first day i.e. the 10th of Zulhijjah.

No Qurbani is allowed before the Eid prayer is over. However, in small villages where the Eid prayer is not to be performed, Qurbani can be offered’ any time after the break of dawn on the 10th of Zulhijjah.

Qurbani can also be performed in the two nights following the Eid day, but it is more advisable to perform it during daytime.

Who is Required to Perform Qurbani?

Every adult Muslim, male or female, who owns 613.35 grams of silver or its equivalent in money, personal ornaments, stock-in-trade or any other form of wealth which is surplus to his basic needs, is under an obligation to offer a Qurbani. Each adult member of a family who owns the above mentioned amount must perform his own Qurbani separately. If the husband owns the required quantity, but the wife does not, the Qurbani obligatory on the husband only and vice-versa. If both of them have the prescribed amount of wealth, both should perform Qurbani separately.

If the adult children live with their parents, Qurbani is obligatory on each one of them possessing the prescribed amount. The Qurbani offered by a husband for himself does not fulfil the obligation of his wife, nor can the Qurbani offered by a father discharge his son or daughter from their obligation. Each one of them should care for his own.

However, if a husband or a father, apart from offering his own Qurbani, gives another Qurbani on behalf of his wife or his son, he can do so with their permission.

No Alternate for Qurbani

Some people think that instead of offering a Qurbani they should give its amount to some poor people as charity. This attitude is totally wrong. Actually, there are different forms of worship obligatory on Muslims. Each one of them has its own importance and none of them can stand for the other. It is not permissible for a Muslim to perform salah instead of fasting in Ramadan, nor is it permissible for him to give some charity instead of observing the obligatory Salah. Similarly, Qurbani is an independent form of worship and this obligation cannot be discharged by spending money in charity.

However, if somebody, out of his ignorance or negligence, could not offer Qurbani on the three prescribed days (10th, 1lth and 12th Zulhijjah) then, in that case only, he can give the price of a Qurbani as sadaqah to those entitled to receive Zakah. But during the days of Qurbani no Sadaqah can discharge the obligation.

The Animals of Qurbani

The following animals can be slaughtered to offer a Qurbani:

1. Goat, either male or female, of at least one year of age.

2. Sheep, either male or female, of at least six months of age.

3. Cow, ox buffalo of at least two years of age.

4. Camel, male or female, of at least five years of age.

One head of goat or sheep is enough only for one person’s Qurbani. But as for all other animals like cow, buffalo or camel, one head of each is equal to seven offerings thus allowing seven persons to offer Qurbani jointly in one such animal.

If the seller of animal claims that the animal is of the recognized age and there is no apparent evidence to the contrary; one can trust his statement and the sacrifice of such an animal is lawful.

Rules about Defective Animals

The following defective animals are not acceptable in Qurbani:

1. Blind, one eyed or lame animal.

2. An animal so emaciated that it cannot walk to its slaughtering place.

3. An animal with one-third part of the ear or the nose or the tail missing.

4. An animal that has no teeth at all, or the major number of its teeth are missing.

5. An animal born without ears.

The following animals are acceptable in Qurbani:

1. A castrated he – goat. (Rather, its Qurbani is more preferable).

2. An animal that has no horns, or its horns are broken. However, if the horns of an animal are uprooted totally so as to create a defect in the brain, its Qurbani is not lawful.

3. An animal the missing part of whose ear, nose or tail is less than one third.

4. A sick or injured animal, unless it has some above mentioned defects rendering its Qurbani unlawful.

The Sunnah Method of Qurbani

It is more preferable for a Muslim to slaughter the animal of his Qurbani with his own hands. However, if he is unable to slaughter the animal himself, or does not want to do so for some reason, he can request another person to slaughter it on his behalf. In this case also, it is more preferable that he, at least, be present at the time of slaughter. However, his absence at the time of slaughter does not render the Qurbani invalid, if he has authorized the person who slaughtered the animal on his behalf. It is a Sunnah to lay the animal with its face towards the Qiblah, and to recite the following verse of the Holy Quran:

I, being upright, turn my face towards the One who has created the heavens and the earth, and I am not among those who associate partners with Allah. ( Al-An’am, 6:79)

But the most essential recitation when slaughtering an animal is: Bismillah, Allahu Akbar. (In the name of Allah, Allah is the greatest). If somebody intentionally avoids to recite it when slaughtering an animal, it does not only make his Qurbani unlawful, but also renders the animal haram, and it is not permissible to eat the meat of that animal. However, if a person did not avoid this recitation intentionally, but he forgot to recite it when slaughtering the animal, this mistake is forgiven and both the Qurbani and the slaughter are lawful.

If somebody is unable to recite “Bismillah Allahu Akbar” in the Arabic language, he can recite the name of Allah in his own language by saying, “In the name of Allah”.

Distribution of the Meat

If an animal is sacrificed by more than one person, like cow or camel, its meat should be distributed equally among its owners by weighing the meat strictly and not at random or by mere guess. Even if all the partners agree on its distribution without weighing, it is still not permissible according to shari’ah.

However, if the actual weighing is not practicable due to some reason, and all the partners agree to distribute the meat without weighing, distribution by guess can be done with the condition that each share necessarily contains either a leg of the animal or some quantity of its liver.

Although the person offering a Qurbani can keep all its meat for his own use, yet, it is preferable to distribute one-third among the poor, another one-third among his relatives and then, keep the rest for his personal consumption.

All parts of the sacrificed animal can be used for personal benefit, but none can be sold, nor can be given to the butcher as a part of his wages. If somebody has sold the meat of the Qurbani or its skin, he must give the accrued price as sadaqah to a poor man who can receive Zakah.

Hajj

The most important way of worship performed in this month is “hajj”, one of the five pillars of Islam. The Muslims from every part of the world assemble in Arabia to perform this unique way of worship. Hajj is a worship, which requires at least five days to be performed in its proper way. There are detailed rules for different acts of hajj for which separate books are available, and the present article does not aim at explaining all these details. However, some basic information about its obligation is being given here:

1. Hajj is obligatory on every adult Muslim who can afford to go to Makkah during the hajj season, whether on foot or by any other carriage.

2. If a person can travel to Makkah to perform hajj, but he cannot travel to Madinah, hajj is obligatory on him also. He can perform hajj without visiting Madinah.

3. A Muslim woman cannot travel for hajj unless she is accompanied by a mahram (i.e. husband or relative of a prohibited degree like son, father, brother etc.) If she does not find any mahram to accompany her, hajj is not obligatory on her until she finds one. However, she must make a will that in case she dies before performing hajj, his heirs should arrange for her hajj-e-badal out of her left over property.

4. Hajj is obligated only once in one’s life. After performing the obligatory hajj; one is not required to perform it again. However, he can perform the nafl (optional hajj as many times as he or she wishes.)

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Talking of Madinah

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

What type of world would it have been without Makkah and Madinah?

By Shaykh Syed Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi (RA)
Posted: 18 Zul-Hijjah 1422, 3 March 2002

Friends have invited me to give a talk on Madinah, describing what I saw there, and I have readily agreed. As a Persian poet has said: “To talk of the beloved is no less pleasant than to meet him.”

I do not know when I first heard of Makkah and Madinah. Like all Muslim children, I was brought up in an environment in which Hijaz (Arabia) and Makkah and Madinah were household words. I, distinctly, remember people saying Makkah, Madinah together as if these were the same. When they took the name of one of them, they, generally, mentioned that of the other as well. I, thus, came to imagine that Makkah and Madinah were not two different places, but one, and learnt to appreciate the difference only as I grew up. It, then, became clear that these were two different towns separated from each other by over 300 kilometers.

In my childhood, I had heard people talking about Arabia and the two towns with the same fervor and enthusiasm as they did about Paradise and its joys and comforts, and it was from that time that I was seized with the desire to attain Paradise and visit Arabia.

Soon I realized that it was not possible for anyone to see Paradise during his lifetime, but he could, of course, go to Arabia. Parties of Hajjis (pilgrims) were visiting it regularly. So, why could I, also, not make a visit to that ‘Paradise of Faith?’

Days rolled by and I grew in age. My old eagerness was revived when I read books on the life of the Holy Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam and studied the history of Islam, and the urge to perform the Hajj and make the pilgrimage to Makkah and Madinah became so strong that I was never without it.

Then, it so happened that I did reach the place where neither the grass grew nor rivers flowed. Only barren mountains stood on all sides of it like sentinels. Yet, as famous Pakistani poet Hafeez Jullundri has said:

Neither grass grows here nor flowers bloom,
Yet even heavens bend themselves low to meet it.

As I saw the apparently unattractive stretch of land, I felt how devoid of scenery that town was. At the same time, however, I thought what a great favor it had bestowed upon mankind. Without it, the wide world would have been nothing more than a golden cage, and man, a prisoner. This was the town that took man out of the narrow confines of the earth and made him acquainted with limitless possibilities of development, and restored to mankind its glory and freedom. It relieved humanity of the heavy load under which it was groaning and broke the fetters unjust rulers and ignorant lawgivers had put around its feet.

As I reflected over what the world would have been without this town, I thought of comparing it with the bigger towns of the world and seeing what would have been the loss of human race and civilization had the latter not come into existence. One by one, all those towns came to my mind, and I felt that they were flourishing merely for the sake of a handful of men and had made no notable contribution to human progress and happiness. On the contrary, they had been guilty of various sins against man, at various stages of history. For selfish gain, one town had razed the other to the ground, and one country had ravaged the other countries.

Civilization would have been none the poorer without those cities. But without Makkah, humanity would have, certainly, remained unblessed with truths, beliefs, ideals and sciences that were its pride today. It was owing to it that the world regained the imperishable wealth of Faith and rediscovered the true knowledge that lay buried under a thick crust of conjecture and speculation. It got back the dignity and nobility that had been trampled under the feet of cruel oppressors. In fact, humanity was reborn at Makkah, and history turned a new leaf.

But what am I saying? What do I mean when I ask: What would the world have been like had there been no Makkah? It had remained asleep, until the 6th Century, with its dry mountains and huge sand dunes, even with the House of Ka’aba and the Well of Zam-Zam, while humanity was caught in the clutches of death. Surrounded by its mountains and sand dunes, it went on leading a secluded life as if it had nothing to do with the larger human family, and was not a part of, but apart from the world that lay around it.

I should, therefore, not be enquiring what would have been the state of the world without Makkah, but without its illustrious son who turned the scales of history and showed a new path to mankind.

As I reflected on it, a few scenes emerged on the landscape of my mind. It appeared as if the leader of the Quraish was circumambulating around the House of Ka’aba, alone and by himself, and people were jeering at him and passing sarcastic remarks, but he was carrying out the circumambulation with supreme indifference to all hostility and opposition.

On finishing the circumambulation, he wants to go into the House of Ka’aba, but the key-bearer, Osman bin Talha checks him with a firm hand. The leader of the Quraish bears it, too, with exemplary fortitude, and says: “Oh Osman! What will it be like on the day when the key will be in my hand and I will give it to who I please?” “Will all the Quraish be dead on that day?” asks Osman in anger. “No”, he replies. “On that day, they will attain real respect and honor.”

I, then, see the same leader circumambulating around the House of Ka’aba, on the occasion of the Victory of Makkah, and his Companions who had sacrificed their all for his sake gathering around him like moths. He sends for the keeper of the key, and says to him: “Osman! This is your key. Take it. Today is the day of showing kindness and keeping the promise.”

As history tells, the celebrated son of Makkah did not only become the owner of the key with which he could open the door of the House of Ka’aba, but, with him, also, was the key with which he could open the locks of humanity no seer or philosopher had been able to do till then. It was the Qur’an that had been revealed to and the Apostleship that had been bestowed on him.

After performing the Hajj, I flew towards Madinah on the wings of eagerness. The hardships of the way seemed to be a blessing to me, and before my eyes was drawn the soul-stirring image of the earlier traveler whose camel had passed through the same route.

The first thing I did on reaching Madinah was to offer two Rak’ats of salat and express my sincerest gratitude to the Almighty for granting me the good fortune to be there. After it, I betook myself into the ‘presence’ of the Holy Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam. How boundless was his favor upon me, really! I could never give thanks to him as was his due. I offered Durood and Salaam, and affirmed that he had conveyed the Message of the Lord to the world, proved true to the trust He had placed with him, showed the Straight Path to the Ummah, and strove till the last breath of his life in the way of God.

I, then, made the salutation to both the trusted friends of his whose selfless devotion was without a parallel in history. No one had discharged the duties of companionship or fulfilled the obligations of succession as they did.

From the Prophet’s Mosque, I went to Jannat ul-Baq’ee. What a priceless treasure of truth and purity, of love and dedication is buried in this small plot of land! Asleep here are those who had sacrificed the life of this world for the life of futurity. These are the men who willingly abandoned their hearths and homes in the way of faith, and preferred to spend their lives at the feet of the sacred Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallamthan with friends and relatives. “Among the Believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah.” [Al-Ahzab 33:23].

Thereafter, I visited Uhud where the most spectacular drama of love and fealty was staged. It was here that the world saw living models of faith and steadfastness; it was here that it learnt the true significance of courage and constancy. On reaching there, it seemed that I heard Hazrat Anas bin Nazr, Radi-Allahu anhu, say: “I feel the sweet smell of Paradise coming from the side of Uhud.” Or that on hearing the news of the martyrdom of the Holy Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, Sa’ad bin Mu’ad, Radi-Allahu anhu, was saying: “What is the joy of fighting and Jihad when the Apostle of God is no more?” And Anas, Radi-Allahu anhu, interjecting: “What is the joy of living after him?”

It was here, again, that Abu Dujana, Radi-Allahu anhu, had made his back serve as a shield for the Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam arrows pierced his flesh, but he flinched not. Syedna Talha, Radi-Allahu anhu, in the same way, had taken the arrows aimed at the Holy Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam on his hands until the arms were paralyzed. Hazrat Hamza, Radi-Allahu anhu, was killed on this very battlefield and his body was cut to pieces, and Hazrat Mas’ab bin Omair, Radi-Allahu anhu, was martyred in such a state that even a shroud could not be provided for him, and he was buried in a blanket which was so short that if the head was covered, the feet became bare, and if the feet were covered, the head became bare.

Would that Uhud gave something of its treasure to mankind! Would that the world got a small particle of the faith and steadfastness of those glorious times!

Friends say: “You took us to Cairo and acquainted us with its important personalities; you have told us about Damascus and its people, and introduced us with its scholars; you have taken us round the Middle East. Now, tell me something about Hijaz and its distinguished sons.” But what am I to do? To me Hijaz stands only for one man about whom I can go on talking forever. It is because of him that Hijaz is Hijaz, and the World of Islam is the World of Islam.

Our honor, indeed, is by Mustafa’s name!

source: albalagh.net

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The Road from Makkah

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

By Khalid Baig
Posted: 18 Safar 1424, 20 April 2003

Hajj is obligatory once in a lifetime on those who can afford it, but it benefits the entire Ummah. Islam’s acts of worship have multiple dimensions and they are organized at multiple layers. Daily Salat, for example, provides occasion for gathering in the neighborhood Masjid five times a day. The Friday Salat provides a larger weekly gathering and also includes a Khutbah to give this gathering a direction and purpose. The twice-a-year Eid Salats provide a gathering for the entire city. Hajj is the last in this sequence; an annual world wide gathering of the entire Ummah at the most sacred of all places.

Its role is that of the heart and liver in the human body. The heart sucks in the tired blood, which is then filtered and rejuvenated by the liver, and sent again to all parts of the body by the heart. Similarly, Hajj brings in members of this Ummah, rejuvenates their faith, spiritual energy, and commitment, and sends them back to their communities to spread the blessings far and wide.

Its most powerful message is about Tauheed (monotheism) and Akhirat (the hereafter), two of the pillars of faith. If Hajj is a form of Jihad, as some ahadith mention, its battle cry is “Labbaik Allahumma Labaik” “I am here Oh Allah, I am here. There is no partner unto You. All praise and blessings and sovereignty belong to you. There is no partner unto You.” From the moment the pilgrim dons his Ihram, he profusely makes this pronouncement during all waking hours until he has stoned the Shaytan on the 10th of Zul-Hijjah.

As for the Hereafter, Hajj is itself a replay of our death and resurrection. The Ihram, the two unstitched pieces of white cloth that replace dress for men, reminds us of the burial shroud. The gathering on the plain of Arafat reminds us of the time when everyone will be resurrected in the Hereafter to stand before Allah and give account of their deeds.

Built on these twin foundations of faith is the example of Sayyidna Ibrahim, alayhis-salam, that is reflected in many of the rites of Hajj. That example can be summarized in two words: love and obedience. Unwavering love for Allah; unfailing obedience to Him. This also is the message of Hajj.

Hajj is at once an intensely personal and a superbly collective act of worship. Today its role in our collective life has been severely watered down by the rulers over the land of Hajj and by an Ummah that has lost touch with its mission. Today, upon arrival the pilgrims are sorted out on the basis of their passports and are reminded at every turn that they are members of a nation-state and not the one Ummah. Today, every expression that aims at mobilizing this Ummah to stand up collectively to the challenges it faces is brutally suppressed during Hajj. Today the landscape of Makkah and Madinah has also been changed beyond recognition, through obscene attempts at emulating Europe, thereby producing a historic disconnect for the holy land. Today pilgrims have been separated from each other as well as from their glorious history.

So it may be helpful to remind ourselves that Hajj is associated with major turning points and milestones in Islamic History. In fact the history of the Islamic state begins with Hajj. It was here in the 11th year of Prophethood (July 620 C.E) that the first pledge of Aqaba took place, followed two years later by the second pledge that was the basis for Hijrah and the establishment of the Islamic state in Madinah. Just a decade later, it was here that the mission of the Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam reached its peak when 124,000 companions performed Hajj with the Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam in 10 AH.

The Khutbah of the Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam delivered during the Last Hajj is the most important historical document for the entire humanity. It proclaimed: “There is no superiority for an Arab over a non-Arab, nor for the white over the black nor for the black over the white except through Taqwa (Allah Consciousness).”

It declared the sanctity of life, honor, and property: “Oh people! Verily your blood, your property and your honor are sacred and inviolable until you appear before your Lord, just as the sacred inviolability of this day of yours, this month of yours and this town of yours.”

It set down a fundamental principle of justice: “Beware! No one is responsible for a crime but the person who committed it. Neither the child is responsible for the crime of the father, nor is the father responsible for the crime of his child.”

Other celebrated declarations like the Magna-Carta and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights pale in comparison to this proclamation made fourteen centuries ago. For a world submerged in total darkness, this new proclamation would have to be spread through the Ummah that was produced out of the Jahilya society through twenty three years of hard work, sacrifice, and perseverance by the Prophet, Salla-Allahu alayhi wa sallam. To them it reminded: “Every Muslim is the brother of another Muslim and all the Muslims form one brotherhood… Take heed not to go astray after me and strike one another’s necks.” And for the generations to come it also pointed out the way to safeguard this greatest of all revolutions: “I am leaving two things with you such that if you hold on fast to them you will not go astray: the Book of Allah and my Sunnah.”

Those standing that day at the plain of Arafat were the best of humanity. They took the torch and spread the light in four corners of the world, ushering in a new era of peace and justice. They liberated mankind from servitude to false gods and turned it to only the service to the Creator.

With the passage of time, their followers gradually became weak in their faith and corrupt in their practices. Darkness returned to the world. Today the world is such a dark place where Zionism and racism flourish and the strong devour the weak because “Might is right”.

The road from Makkah is full of returning pilgrims who bring back Zamzam, dates, and many souvenirs. These are all great. But what we need the most is the message that was proclaimed there by the Prophet Muhammad Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam 1414 years ago.

source:  albalagh.net

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The Ideal Muslim

Monday, November 15th, 2010
The Ideal Muslim

The Ideal Muslim

The ideal Muslim is a man of the highest moral character. In his relation with his rabb’ (lord), himself, family, parents, relatives, friends, and the community at large, he has a most excellent example in the Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings upon him). His idealism is further strengthened by the characters of the first generations of Muslims who excelled in all the various fields of human endeavour. He is reassured by the teachings of Islam that he also can reach these noble heights by working to improve his character daily.

In this title, the author gives a clear overview of the practical aspects of the Islamic lifestyle, as exemplified by the Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) and his Companions (may Allah be pleased with them). Moving from the innermost aspect of the individual’s spiritual life to his dealings with all those around him, one can see how the Muslim is expected to interact with all others in his life.

# Cover: Hardback
# Author: Muhammad Ali Al-Hashimi
# Publisher: International Islamic Publishing House
# Pages: 386

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The Ideal Muslimah

Monday, November 15th, 2010
The Ideal Muslimah - at Darul Ishaat UK www.darul-ishaat.co.uk

The Ideal Muslimah

The ideal Muslimah is proud of the great position that Islam has given her among humanity. She performs her duties knowing that her role is clearly defined and that her rights are still, even today, greater than any other ideology has provided. She is a woman of moral excellence, true to her nature, not confused by alien and morally bankrupt ideas. She preserves her self-respect and dignity through her piety in obedience to Allah and His Messenger (peace and blessings upon him). She is the role model that every true believer hopes to emulate. This comprehensive work by Dr. Al-Hashimi is a valuable contribution for our English readers who will find the knowledge contained therein truly beneficial and inspiring.

At a time when Muslim women are being increasingly attracted by “feminist theories” and “women’s studies,” this book serves as a timely reminder that the unique and authentic sources of Islam have always spoken of the rights of women and recognized women as full partners in the human venture of history. The translation of this book into English will render this valuable information more readily accessible to all the Muslims whose mother-tongue is not Arabic.

Dr. Muhammad Ali Hashmi is a well-known writer in the Arab world. Born in Syria, he is the author of numerous books on Islamic and literary topics. This is his second book translated into English; the first was “The Ideal Muslim.”

# Cover: Hardback
# Author: Muhammad Ali Al-Hashimi
# Publisher: International Islamic Publishing House
# Pages: 549

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Quran Made Easy (A5 Size) – Hardback Edition

Monday, November 15th, 2010
Quran Made Easy (A5 Size) - Hardback Edition - Darul Ishaat UK

Quran Made Easy (A5 Size) - Hardback Edition - Darul Ishaat UK

This is an English translation of the Complete Quran in Contemporary English to make reading much easier and more understandable.

The layout is based on two columns. One with the Arabic verses, the other has the English translation with explanatory notes in brackets within the translation rather than separately in the footnotes.

A summary of each surah, alongwith its link with the surah before it is also included.

# Cover: Hardback
# Author: Translation Supervised by Mufti Afzal Hoosen Elias
# Publisher: Islamic Book Service
# Pages: 888
# Size: 19 x 14 cm

Buy now from Darul Ishaat UK – Online Islamic Book Store

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Muslim Aid – Qurbani 2010

Sunday, November 14th, 2010
Muslim aid Qurbani - 2010  http://www.muslimaid.org/

Muslim aid Qurbani - 2010 http://www.muslimaid.org

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20% OFF ALL BOOKS – 10 DAYS ONLY

Friday, November 12th, 2010

Huge discounts at Darul Ishaat UK,  for the next 10 days there is 20% off all books.

Darul Ishaat UK - 20 PERCENT OF ALL BOOKS www.darul-ishaat.co.uk

Hurry this offer ends on the 22th Nov 2010

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