Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Zul Hijjah | Great Opportunities for Great Profits


Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)


Allah Ta’ala takes a Qasm by the first ten nights of Zul Hijjah:

وَالْفَجْرِ ۙ وَلَيَالٍ عَشْرٍ ۙ
“By the dawn And [by] ten nights.”
[Surah Al-Fajr 89 : 1/2]


When Allah Ta’ala is taking a Qasm on the blessedness and status of these nights, then there can be no doubt of the greatness of these nights.


Allah Ta’ala is the Creator of the Universe, and Allah Ta’ala has created the days and the nights. As far as the hours of the days and nights, there is no question of different hours. Each day has a fixed twenty four hours.


…We describe certain days of our lives as “memorable” and “enjoyable” and we describe certain days of our lives as “miserable” and “sad”. This alludes to the actions or the happenings of that day, which made the day memorable or miserable.


So certain days become distinguished for us due to the actions that transpired on those days.


As far as Shari’ah is concerned, there is no such thing as the day itself having any misfortune. There is no “bad-luck” day – as people may regard some days. Our deeds make a day good or bad. If we engage in good deeds – we perform our Salaah, fulfil the rights of Allah Ta’ala and the creation, take care of the poor, fast, engage in Zikrullah, Tilawah, Dua and other righteous deeds, so that day is a good day; a bright day. If we spend the day in bad deeds – in Zina, in watching porn, swearing, stealing, dealing in interest or engaging in other vices, we have made the day a bad day; a “dark” day. Such a day is not a blessed day for the person, because he disobeyed Allah Ta’ala in that day.


Allah Ta’ala chose these days and nights of Zul Hijjah for Ibaadah. And Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), who was the most truthful and who received Wahi (revelation) also informed us as of the speciality of these days and nights and how to occupy our time, whereby we gain the maximum profits of this period of time – this peak period for the Ibaadah of Allah Ta’ala.


Not only did Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) present to us the greatness of these days and nights, he practically demonstrated the actions that should be carried out during this very Mubarak time.


Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) was sinless. No one can engage in more Ibaadah, Zikr, Da’wah, and other good as he did; yet look at how he would stand for hours and hours in Salaah – until his Mubarak feet would swell, and look at how he would place his head in Sajdah for so long that his beloved wife, Hazrat Ayesha (Radhiyallahu anha) would fear his soul had departed. Despite all the responsibilities that were entrusted upon him, he would give exclusive time to the Ibaadah of Allah Ta’ala.


So whatever he invited to, he practised upon.


Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days.”


The people asked: “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?”


He said: “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, except in the case of a man who went out, giving himself and his wealth up for the cause (of Allah Ta’ala), and came back with nothing.”[1]


Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) also directed us towards how to occupy our time: "No days are as weighty with Allah and so liked by Him for good deeds than the first ten days of Zul Hijjah. So on these days increasingly read:  Subhanallah, La ilaaha illallaah, Alhamdulillah and Allahu Akbar."[2]


And Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “On no days is the worship of Allah desired more than in the first ten days of Zul Hijjah. The fast of each of these days is equal to the fast of a whole year, and the Ibaadah (worship) of each of these nights is equal to the Ibaadah of Laylatul Qadr.”[3]


We have to search for Laylatul Qadr in Ramadaan, and here Allah Ta’ala is giving us the rewards of Laylatul Qadr, on each of these nights of Zul Hijjah – indicating their blessedness and greatness.


Sadly, we have become of those who ask: Is it Fardh? Is it Waajib?


…We have learnt the definition of the Fiqh terms: Fardh, Waajib, Sunnah, and so forth, so that whatever is not Fardh, we may leave it out. This is our attitude: If something is Nafl, Mustahab, Ghair Muakkadah – we just leave it out. We don’t include it in our timetable, and if it is there, we strike it off, once we learn that it is optional and can be left out, and there is no sin in not carrying it out.


The Sahabah-e-Kiraam (Radhiyallahu anhum) did not have this weak approach to Deen, this offhand attitude to Deen and this laziness in practising on Deen – as we have. No. …They strived in even those actions which were optional. Their sound intellect and their deep understanding were evident in the fact that their entire lives were sacrificed upon the Sunnah. They spent their lives seeking Allah Ta’ala’s Pleasure and Jannah, and raising the flag of Islam wherever they went.


How different we are! Our condition becomes apparent when we see how our lives are sacrificed for Dunya; for what is temporary and what will be left behind when we depart from this world.


Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “The intelligent one is he who suppresses his desires and practises for what is after death, and the foolish one is he who makes his nafs follow its desires and (he) places (baseless) hope on Allah.”[4]


In the light of this Hadith, we can gauge which category we fall into.


Unfortunately and very sadly, we look at the bare minimum when it comes to Ibaadaat. …Why is it that we do not settle for the bare minimum when it comes to our clothing, our cars, our homes and other material items? Why are we not content with the bare necessities of life, like how we are content with the bare necessities of Deen?


Do we require a very luxury car to get from one place to another? Is this a necessity? …Yes, it is permissible, if the person has a correct intention and there is no pride, arrogance and boasting. But how unfortunate that we choose the best in material commodities and we do not seek the best in spiritual commodities: Al-Baaqiyatus Saalihaat (the everlasting, enduring good deeds). Allah Ta’ala presents to us what is better – so that we profit tremendously.


“Wealth and children are [but] adornment of the worldly life. But the enduring good deeds are better to your Lord for reward and better
for [one's] hope.”

[Surah Al-Kahf 18 : 46]


Allah Ta’ala is seeking from us the best of deeds, not the best of material possessions:


“[He] who created death and life to test you [as to] which of you is best in deed - and He is the Exalted in Might, the Forgiving.”

[Surah Al-Mulk 67 : 2]


What was the purpose of these virtues which are related in these Ahādith?


Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) loved the Ummah. He wanted for every Ummati to enter Jannah, with the maximum rewards. So these virtues were presented to us that we appreciate and work in achieving all the rewards attached to these days and nights.


We want maximum profits on worldly investments. We appreciate the person who directs us to the right investments – because that will yield great profits, big returns. We value such friendship and welcome such wonderful advice. However, we do not appreciate Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) nor consider his priceless advice and guidance, which will earn for us the vast and immense profits of the Aakhirah (Hereafter).


Ibaadaat yield Sawaab (rewards). This is the currency of the Aakhirah. This is what we need to take with us.


When we travel in the world, we require certain currency. Not every type of currency will be accepted in a country.


If a person takes Zimbabwean Dollars, then that kind of money will be useless and won’t be accepted in any other country. Moreover, we will require a massive suitcase to carry those dollars. …When I went to Zimbabwe, then a few dollars made me a millionaire. At one stage, a hundred-billion-dollar and a hundred-trillion-dollar bill were the currency in Zimbabwe …but that amount could not even purchase a bus ticket[5].


Our condition is that we are traveling towards the Hereafter but we are not accumulating the much needed currency of the Hereafter. We have very little. And we will require a lot of currency. Nothing except good deeds will help us.


If we accumulate only the Rands, Dollars and Pounds of this world, and give no attention to securing that wealth which will make us multi-rich in the next life, we will find ourselves to be paupers – and full of regret and remorse for having wasted the opportunity of becoming rich in the true sense of the word.


These blessed days and nights are a manifestation of Allah Ta’ala’s great love for us. Out of His Infinite Generosity, He gives us these wonderful opportunities whereby we multiply our rewards and gain the bounties of Jannah with ease, Insha-Allah.


Added to this, Allah Ta’ala’s floodgates of Mercy and Forgiveness are wide open – and are not restricted to only the Hujjaaj; rather it is for the entire Ummah.


Of course, these fasts are not in the category of the Ramadaan fasts, which are Fardh. These fasts are Nafl. So if a person has many responsibilities or his health is ailing, and fasting will weaken him or prevent him from fulfilling his duties at work, etc. then the person should not fast. There is no sin.


However, we should be desirous that if we had the ability, we would have kept these fasts – and on just that good intention, the rewards are secured, Insha-Allah. Where we can keep two or three or at least the fast of the 9th of Zul Hijjah, then let us try and gain the rewards, Insha-Allah.


If a person does not engage in any extra deeds, then the least he should do is abstain from all sins. Don’t spend this Mubarak time displeasing Allah Ta’ala.


Let it not be that our attitude is: We don’t care. We will not give up our sins. We will continue as we like.


How will we then face Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wasallam) on the Day of Qiyamah? If he has to hold our garments and say: You claimed to be my Ummatees and you want the drink of Kauthar? – But where did you spend those days and nights? How did your spend those days and nights, despite me informing you of their blessedness?


 … How will we answer?


Hazrat Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jeelani (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh) had related that Allah Ta’ala rewards a person for honouring and appreciating these ten days and nights. Some of the rewards mentioned are:

1.)        Barakah in one’s life: In a little time, Allah Ta’ala grants so much. It may be a short span of life, but the person achieves much in his time. We see this in the lives of our Akaabir, who were able to do great work of Dien in their lives.

2.)           Barakah in one’s Rizq : Whether a little or a lot, there will be blessings.

3.)           Protection of wealth, property and children.

4.)           Forgiveness of sins

5.)           The pangs of death become easy.

6.)           The scale of good deeds will be weighty

7.)           Protection from Hell.

8.)           Increase in stages in Jannah


For the Friends of Allah Ta’ala, these days are like another Ramadaan to enjoy. For them, this is another occasion to take from Allah Ta’ala’s treasures and enjoy the abundant Anwaar.


Come, let us join the ranks of Allah Ta’ala’s close and beloved friends by appreciating these great opportunities and enjoying the great profits in both worlds. Let us give up sins and move in the direction of Allah Ta’ala’s obedience and pleasure.


May Allah Ta’ala grant us the understanding and Taufeeq.





[1] Sahih Bukhari
[2] Musnad Ahmad
[3] Tirmidhi / Ibn Majah
[4] Tirmidhi
[5] This was around 2008 - 2009, when the Zimbabwean currency became very weak.



Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Islaahi Correspondence | Letter Eighteen | Studying Deen


Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

LETTER EIGHTEEN


Studying Deen

Question

Dearest Hazrat
As-Salaamu alaykum wa-Rahmatullahi wa-Barakaatuhu

With Hazrat’s duas, Alhamdulillah, the Umrah was a very beautiful and spiritually energizing experience. Please make Dua that Allah Ta’ala accepts. I always remembered to convey Hazrat’s Salaam, when at the Raudha Mubarak.

We experienced a number of setbacks during the safr, with delays, etc., but I considered that there must be khair in Allah Ta’ala’s decisions for us. Alhamdulillah, we returned safely.

I would appreciate some understanding of the Zikr sessions that are held at the Masjid.

Hazrat, this is my final year and I have many concerns. I humbly request special duas and guidance in respect to how to carry myself in this final year, studying Hadeeth.



Reply

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

Wa-alaykumus Salaam wa-Rahmatullahi wa-Barakaatuhu

1.)          Masha-Allah, very happy to read that the Umrah and Ziyarah went so well. May Allah Ta’ala accept all the Duas and Ibaadaat.


2.)          JazakAllah Khayr for remembering me in your Duas and for conveying my Salaam.

3.)          The Hadeeth mentions that safr[1]  is a portion of suffering. So a Musaafir[2] should expect some hiccups or difficulties whilst on travel. Dua should constantly be made for ease and Aafiyah. Sadaqah should also be given out as a measure of protection.



4.)          Yes, there is always khayr in Allah Ta’ala’s decisions. The delay could have been a means of protection from some calamity or some loss.


5.)          The Zikr sessions that are held in the Masjid are carried out by different Mashaa`ikh[3] as a training for their students / Mureeds. Their methods are based on experience, together with the benefits in making Zikr in that particular manner. Whilst not Sunnah or Waajib, there is a lot of benefit derived in their methodology. However, do not consider the method as an integral part of the Zikr.


6.)          May Allah Ta’ala grant the best of both worlds and make your final year a most successful year, wherein you imbibe all the anwaar of Hadeeth.

7.)          Complete Adab[4] is required when learning Deen, moreso with Tafseer and Hadeeth.

Try to remain with Wudhu, use Miswaak, and read plenty of Durood Shareef. Have utmost respect for your Ustaadh, otherwise that knowledge will be lost. Try and make the khidmah[5] of your Asaatidha.

It is imperative to abstain from sins. Make every effort to show your love for Nabi Sallallaahu 'alayhi wasallam by following the Sunnah. Make the Niyyah of bringing the reality of each Hadeeth into your life.

When writing Hadeeth, write the Arabic “Sallallaahu 'alayhi wasallam in full. Make Dua for deep understanding of the speech of Rasulullah Sallallaahu 'alayhi wasallam, acceptance in your endeavours and for Allah Ta’ala to use you in the Khidmah of Hadeeth.

The following advice offers much ‘food for thought’: 

"Seeking out knowledge is not saying: ‘So and so related from so-and-so’; rather, seeking out knowledge is fearing Allah, the Possessor of Might and Majesty." 


[Imam Sufyaan At-Thauree (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)]


“When you have written down (studied) ten Ahaadeeth, check 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.”


[Advice given to Imam Sufyaan At-Thauree (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)
by his respected mother]



8.)          May Allah Ta’ala grant the best of both worlds, and accept your learning.

9.)          Also requesting Duas.

Was-Salaamu alaykum wa-Rahmatullahi wa-Barakaatuhu
Yunus Patel (Maulana)




[1] Safr: travel
[2] Musaafir : traveller
[3] Mashaa’ik : plural of Shaykh
[4] Adab : respect
[5] Khidmah : service


Saturday, 9 July 2016

After Ramadaan


Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem




The Blessed month of Ramadaan came like seasonal rain and passed by. This rain did not water the plants and crops - it showered upon the hearts of the Believers. …It is sad, but true, that the hearts of the majority of Muslims were stricken with spiritual drought and spiritual decadence. It was a drought caused by excessive indulgence in un-Islamic activities, immoral behaviour, unjust actions, unfair dealings and so forth. …Drought caused by lack of rain destroys crops - drought caused by lack of piety, lack of fear of Allah Ta’ala and lack of Allah Consciousness destroys the SPIRITUALITY of the heart.


Ramadaan's spiritual rains brought to life the Masaajid and other prayer places. Ramadaan had fanned the dying spark of charity. Ramadaan had awakened the spirit of tolerance, patience and sympathy for the less fortunate.


Now that we come to the end of Ramadaan, the big question is: What to do?


Did we go through all the spiritual exercises in Ramadaan in order that we may have the freedom to indulge, on Eid day, in all types of immoral, shameless and indecent entertainment and amusement?


Did we restrain ourselves from Halaal food, drinks and other pleasures from dawn to sunset throughout Ramadaan, so that we may return with renewed vigour to gambling, drinking, adultery and fornication?


Will the spirit of tolerance, mercy, patience, charity, sympathy and the nurtured quality of piety and Allah-Consciousness be still evident or will these noble qualities be shelved until the dawn of the next Ramadaan?


Will the Masaajid which were filled on most nights in Ramadaan remain the same or will they become empty, wondering where the faithful have gone? Our life-styles after Ramadaan will show whether we used the month to bring about a total reformation within ourselves or whether we wasted the valuable opportunity.


The National and international position of the Muslim communities is something we are all acquainted with. Muslims are lamenting the loss of lives, destruction of property, oppression, tyranny, injustice and a host of other problems afflicting the  Muslims all over the world. They are questioning as to why the promised help of Allah Ta’ala, to the Believers, is nowhere in sight. …However, just one glance into the lifestyles of the overwhelming majority of the Muslims is sufficient to answer the question. Millions of Muslims do not have much to their credit besides Muslim names.


Allah Ta’ala's help comes with ‘aml’ (action) and true Islamic qualities; not with names or faces  - or whether Arab or non-Arab,  African or European, Chinese or Indian. On the other hand every group, organization, society or individual who talks Islam, seems to have got its own brand of Islam. The Islamic teachings which were left behind for us, crystal clear and pristine pure, have become so adulterated with foreign customs, alien practices and un-Islamic ideologies, that a new Muslim has to make an effort to search for the Qur’aan and Sunnah brand of Islam or remain confused and ignorant.


May Allah Ta’ala give us the guidance to resolve that we shall make the Qur’aan and Sunnah our guiding lights and practise Islam as much as possible.  If the non-Muslim inhabitants of our country see Islam in the lives of Muslims, they will not require much persuasion to accept our beautiful Deen.



by Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullah alayh)