Sunday, 21 December 2014

A Means of Protection

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)

In my Duas, I always make mention that we inevitably have to depart from this world. Death is a certainty. However, its time is unknown. Since we do not know where and when and how we are going to die, how can we be engaged in sin? So when making Dua, I say:  O Allah, It must not be that the Angel of Death visits anyone of us when we are popping drugs into our mouths, or when we have a bottle of liquor in our hands, or when we are in a casino or an escort agency, or in adultery and fornication, or watching some filthy movie or reading a filthy novel or magazine.

Alhamdulillah, this Dua has been a means of Hidayat (guidance) and protection for many who found their evil habits difficult to give up. When the thought of death and this Dua flashed before them, someone dashed out of a casino, another distanced himself from an escort agency, and others opted for abstinence and self-restraint.

This remembrance of death becomes a barrier between a person and sin.

My Shaykh, Hazrat Maulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh) often presented the following questions for reflection :

1.     Is sin good or bad ?
…The answer would be ‘Bad’.

2.     Should a bad thing be given up or not ?
... It should be given up.

3.      Should it be given up quickly or slowly ?
... Quickly.

4.     Should it be given up before death or after death ?
 ...Before death.

5.     Who knows when death will pay its only visit ? 

We know fully well that sins should be given up before death. We also know that the hour of death is unknown, and there is no escape therefrom. Should sin not then be given up immediately?  …Is there even any time to think when to give it up? …The time to give up sin is now.

My Shaykh (Rahmatullahi 'alayh) had composed a couplet that spells out this reality, which we should reflect over :

Strange is the visa of life;
It can be cancelled at any time.
The duration of its validity is unknown
And its extension too, impossible.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Artificial Enjoyment

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

Holidays are difficult for students. Most of them do not know what to do to pass their time. The boredom they experience leads them to all kinds of sins : music, television, cinema, theatres, clubs, etc. Even casinos and escort agencies are now being frequented by our youth.

When the ‘thrill’ and ‘enjoyment’ of these sins wears off and the boredom and monotony of the ‘same old thing’ sets in, their boredom leads them to drugs - to induce a high, so that they may experience some artificial enjoyment.

After that ‘high’, they take more and more until they are hooked onto the habit. They become complete wrecks and destroy their lives. They then come crashing right down.

A young girl, who may have been under some sort of intoxicant, and who I was later informed, was from the university, dashed into the Madrasa office one day.                     

She said : “Maulana, I have a question for you.”

I asked : “What is the question ?”

She replied : “Is it Haraam to take drugs ?”

I said : “No.” This reply must have surprised her. …She probably thought that at least she had found a Maulana who has declared drug-taking as Halaal (lawful).

She fired another question : “Is it perfectly acceptable to take drugs?”

I replied : “Yes.”  This must have shocked her even more.

I thereafter explained to her that there are many different types of drugs prescribed by doctors, for various ailments and diseases. Within the prescribed limits, these are permissible. But to take drugs so that you may ‘visit’ the planets and the ‘people of outer space’ or that you may ‘fly without wings’ is definitely not permissible. Such drugs ruin a person’s respect and dignity.

Why was she taking drugs? …Perhaps she was experimenting, or trying to impress, or depressed, or rebelling, or just bored.

Those who believe in Allah Ta’ala and have an intense love for Allah, can never suffer boredom. How can you ever become bored in your search for the Beloved?

Islam is so beautiful and practical as a way of life, that included in its teachings are enjoyment, entertainment and pleasures of the Halaal (lawful) kind in order for one to stay refreshed. It is only left for us to appreciate…

By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)
from the book "KICKING THE HABIT"

Monday, 15 December 2014

Islaahi Correspondence | Letter Three | Marrying a Non-Muslim

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem



As-Salaamu ‘alaikum,

I am in my 20s and still not married. The Muslim boys I know are of dubious and doubtful character, womanisers or into drugs, drink and other Haraam. Their character also leaves little to be liked.

I am working with a man who is very good-natured and very kind-hearted. He also respects me and is very keen on marrying me but he is a Christian. I consider him better than hundreds of Muslim men, so I would like to know if it is permissible to marry him? He will not force me to give up my faith. It is just that I am worried about what the community will say and I think this decision will hurt my parents. I also want to form an Islamic home and bring up my children in a religious environment. However, he is offering me what I want in a husband also. Please advise.

Bismihi Ta’ala

Respected Sister in Islam,

Wa-alaykumus Salaam wa-Rahmatullahi wa-Barakaatuhu

1.)   Even though the character of some Muslims is far from being described as “admirable” or “noble”, there is acknowledgment, recognition and belief in the Oneness of Allah Ta’ala and the Prophethood of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu 'alaihi wasallam). In the Hereafter, there will be salvation for even that Muslim who may have lived a sinful life.

As an example: A person steals a car or is involved in fraud. The government will punish him according to his crime. However, if he betrays his government and is found guilty of high treason, this will incur a punishment which will be, by far, much more severe – because of the magnitude of his crime.

The same with the Muslim and non-Muslim:  The Muslim who is sinful will be punished according to his sins, but inevitably, his Imaan will be a means of securing him salvation. He will enter Jannah.

The non-Muslim, on the other hand, can seemingly have the most noble character and deeds, but because he is committing high treason against his Creator and Nourisher, by rejecting Him (even though Allah Ta’ala’s signs are evident everywhere), or by associating partners to Him, then no matter how good a character he has or how much of service he renders to others, it will not be valid in the Court of Allah Ta’ala – because the “High Treason” – the Kufr[1] and Shirk[2], by far, exceed all limits of disobedience, for which there can be no bail or parole (that is, if the person dies in that condition of disbelief).

The condition of the Believer and that of the disbeliever can also be likened to money. We have money which is genuine and money which is counterfeit. If someone has a R100 note which is old, crumpled and even torn, but it is genuine, it will be valid for use.

If a person has a brand-new, clean, crisp, R100 note but it is counterfeit, the government will reject it.

Similarly, the Muslim can be ‘torn and crumpled’ in his character, even in deeds, but due to his Imaan, he is accepted by Allah Ta’ala. The Non- Muslim can have good character and can be engaged in good deeds, but he is like that counterfeit note, and will not be accepted by Allah Ta’ala.

2.)    No one is saying that this man will not accept Islam. We make Dua that Allah Ta’ala guide him to Islam, but presently, he has no intention to do so. As such, marriage will not be valid to him.

3.)    Allah Ta’ala advises us with that which is in our best interests :

“And do not marry unbelieving women (idolaters) until they believe; and a slave woman who believes (i.e. in Tauheed) is better than an unbelieving woman, even though she may attract you.
Nor marry (your girls) to unbelievers  until they believe: A man slave who believes (i.e. in Tauheed) is better than an unbeliever, even though he may attract you.
Unbelievers do (but) beckon you to the Fire. But Allah beckons by His Grace to the Garden (of bliss) and forgiveness…

[Surah Al-Baqarah 2 : 221]

4.)    You mention his level of respect for you. …But he has no respect for Allah Ta’ala. Which is more important?  Would you prefer to live with a man who does not recognise Allah Ta’ala, does not respect Allah Ta’ala, does not love Allah Ta’ala?

5.)    It is not a matter of worrying about society. It is matter of worrying about what Allah Ta’ala likes and dislikes for us and whether our actions will please Him or displease Him. You should also worry about the consequences that will inevitably follow in respect to living together : different religions, different cultures, living in a relationship that will not be valid, bringing up children in confusion of beliefs, influenced by different families, etc. You have to think long term.

6.) Yes, you should also consider your parents: You would cause them tremendous hurt. Consider the disgrace and embarrassment they will feel. …Then you will be deprived of their Duas and blessings. How then will you enjoy any kind of happiness?

7.)    If he is sincerely interested in accepting Islam – that is, he believes with all his heart that this is the true religion, and not so that he can marry you, it would be a different matter altogether, and also rewarding for you.

8.)    Make Dua for his Hidayah (guidance). Send him suitable literature on Islam, and terminate contact with him. Do not communicate with him. If he wishes to find out more about Islam, refer him to an Aalim.

9.)    You say that you want to “form an Islamic home” – How do you expect to do this by living with someone who does not accept and does not believe in the teachings of Islam?

10.)                   Trust, trust, trust in Allah Ta’ala. Insha-Allah, He will open doors for you to fulfill your desire to settle, form an Islamic home and please your parents. There is a time and place for everything and everyone.

Keep in mind that this worldly life is a test. Success is for the one who strives to please Allah Ta'ala.  

11.)                   May Allah Ta’ala grant you a most suitable Muslim husband, with noble character; a husband who will offer you happiness and contentment and steadfastness on Deen.

12.)                   For a marriage proposal : Read daily, before sleeping : 111 times يَا جَامِعُ . Your mother can read يَا لَطِيْفُ 111 times. Durood Shareef should be read 11 times before and after. Make Dua. You can also read Surah Dahr every night (Juz 29, Surah 76).

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

[1] Kufr : Disbelief
[2] Shirk : Associating partners to Allah Ta’ala

Friday, 5 December 2014

Bridal and Baby Showers

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

There are many customs and trends which have their affiliation with the non-Muslim culture and lifestyle. Many Muslims, due to being afflicted with what appears to be a truly insecure and inferior complex, look towards and choose the customs and trends of the non-Muslims over that of the beautiful Sunnah. It seems as if the need is to secure a kind of acceptance in a non-Muslim society and just blend in with them – so that we are not recognized as Muslims.

Bridal Showers and Baby Showers have become synonymous with the Muslim lifestyle as it is with the rest of the non-Muslim lifestyle. Many may ask: What’s wrong with giving gifts, congratulating the bride-to-be or the new mother, or having a get together with friends?

There is nothing wrong with giving the bride or the new mother, a gift, or congratulating the person. To give a gift and congratulate are from the teachings of Islam – and would draw rewards … but there are conditions to be met in even these noble deeds.

What is extremely wrong and objectionable is the background to these good deeds. They are not within the parameters of Shari’ah.

The picture of a typical bridal shower and baby shower is not typical with the Sunnah. It is typical of the non-Muslim way of life. By following suit, we fall into the sin of “Tashabbu bil Kuffaar” (emulating the disbelievers). It is aligning oneself with those who have rejected Allah Ta’ala, who live their lives in immorality and disobedience.

Nikah is a great Ibaadah. Pregnancy and the birth of a child also have their requisites in Islam. However, the west has commercialized all of these noble occasions, and made them into money-making events. The sacredness of these occasions is forgotten.

…Today, Nikahs have taken on a distinct mould of a Hollywood or Bollywood style wedding – where the bride is dressed to look like a Christian bride or a Bollywood actress – with no sign of Islam on her; and the groom is dressed in a suit and tie, looking like a typical Christian groom.  

Adding insult to injury is the extravagance and open sin at the time of the wedding and Walimah. One’s mind moves in the direction of the millions and millions who are suffering famine and starvation, who have no home, no water, no food, no clothing – but the Muslim ignores all that suffering just for some fleeting attention and praise.

All those hundreds of thousands of Rands wasted on draping a hall, on dressing the chairs, on wine glasses, on musicians, photography, on wedding cards that are thrown away, etc.  is money, which could have been the means of alleviating the plight of so many suffering people.

One brother handed me an elaborate invitation card for his daughter’s wedding. I enquired as to the cost of the wedding card, and was told that each card cost R50. Advising him, I told him that almost all people throw away wedding cards. People generally dispose of them. So he should regard that as people throwing away hundreds of his R50 notes. Would he throw R50 notes into a bin? No. However, the throwing away of those cards is equal to throwing away R50 notes. That same money could have been used in making the Aakhirah. 

Even those who are known to be religious will waste thousands on halls, on décor, etc. sacrificing the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala and Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam). Those who were meant to set the noble example of the Sunnah, who we expect are living the Sunnah – knowingly choose to forsake the Sunnah.  Simplicity, which is part of Imaan, is a rare sight in these times.  

Hazrat ‘Ayesha (Radhiyallahu ‘anha) related that Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said: Verily, the most blessed Nikah is that which involves the least difficulty (expenditure).

We have a perfect Sunnah – a perfect way of life in the life of our Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa-Sallam) and in the lives of his companions, men and women. We have what is superior to all other cultures yet we consider everything else. It shows great weakness if we give preference to the culture of the Christians, Jews and Idolators over the noble Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa-Sallam). We are exchanging diamonds for stones… and what an unprofitable exchange this is! What a great loss!

Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa-Sallam) said: “Whoever emulates a nation is from amongst them.”

In another Hadith, it is stated: “A person is with whom he loves.”

Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa-Sallam) also said that we will be raised on the Day of Judgment with those whom we imitate in this worldly life. (May Allah Ta’ala save us from such disgrace and humiliation.)

Emulating the non-Muslim culture is one downfall but there are many more that are found in the Bridal and Baby Showers.

The non-Muslims have coined a novel concept of begging – especially amongst the upper-class.  It seems as if some, from amongst the wealthy, have developed an art to begging. They even have a name for it. In the name of Bridal Showers, Baby Showers, Registries, people gracefully and politely extend their hands, and they ask and take from others.

The bride-to-be chooses her gifts from exclusive stores that offer a “registry” or she unashamedly hands out a list of those items she wants gifted to her. In the process, she places pressure and financial difficulty and sometimes a great burden on others - to purchase those gifts that she has chosen.

At the get-together, these gifts and other gifts are presented to the bride-to-be, who opens them and shows them to all present – and each person can assess the kind of money that was spent on the gift given. Let us now consider the various wrongs in this act:

·      A person is forced to purchase gifts that the bride has chosen – which may be beyond her budget in spending.

·     A person who gives something simple or inexpensive will feel ashamed and embarrassed, considering the manner in which gifts are being received and shown to others. 

The Hadith encourages giving gifts because giving gifts creates Muhabbah (love). If Muhabbah is not created then this proves that either the giver or receiver in insincere. Sometimes, people give with intentions other than expressing their Muhabbah. However, there are many who request or are desirous of receiving and there is a kind of greed from the receiving side. This request or expectation (Ishraaf) reveals insincerity from the one who is receiving.

A gift must be given happily and willingly – and should be received graciously and thankfully. This is the Sunnah. However, when we ask of people, as in the case of registries, etc. – people will give, but they give unhappily and unwillingly. And if some gift is given, which is not to our liking, then we receive it without any appreciation and thanks. This is our lamentable condition.

Another aspect that has also been brought to attention is the immorality and shamelessness at such gatherings – with indecent talk, shameless dressing by Muslim women, inappropriate games, music, dancing and such filthy entertainment, that we would not want to bring on to our tongues. It is not permissible for a person to attend such gatherings. The Shari'ah instructs us:


Moreover, a person's presence is aiding in promoting and glorifying what is not permissible. We are told not to assist each other in sin; rather to assist in what is righteous:

"Help each other in righteousness and piety, and do not help each other in sin and aggression."

[Surah Al-Maa'idah 5 : 2]

A bride-to-be is known for her modesty and shyness – but all of this is lost in adopting the culture of the non-Muslims. Their dressing and their fashion nurtures immodesty. Added to this, these sins are publicized and photographs are taken and uploaded on social media – for all and sundry to view the level of our degeneration.

The heart bleeds at this miscarriage of the Sunnah. …Nay, this abortion of the Sunnah. How will we meet our Beloved Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) on the Day of Judgment? How will we show our faces to the one whose entire life was sacrificed so that today we be the reciters of the Kalimah?

May Allah Ta’ala have mercy upon us since we stand to lose by adopting this culture. If we continue in this line and direction, we will lose the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala and we will lose the great rewards for enlivening and practising the Sunnah. 

We also stand to lose the companionship of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayh wasallam) at the fountain of Kauthar on the Day of Judgment and even stand to lose the success of our marriages due to having sacrificed the beautiful, noble Sunnah by means of our emulation of the Hollywood and Bollywood culture.

If our allegiance is to Allah Ta’ala and His Rasul (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), then there should be no delay in repentance and mending our ways and coming back to what is pure and beautiful – Islam and the Sunnah. In this, is the success of both worlds. 

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the understanding, the concern and the Taufeeq of Aml. 

by Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)