Allah s.w.t. Responds To You!

Having difficulties focusing in Salah? Remember that when you recite Surah Al-Fatihah in Salah, Allah s.w.t. is responding – to YOU!

Rasulallah sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam said:
“Allah said: I have divided the prayer into 2 halves between Me and My servant. Half of it is for Me, and a half for My servant, and My servant shall acquire what he asked for.

When the servant says: Praise be to Allah, Rabb of the Worlds,
Allah says: My servant has praised Me.

When he says: The Gracious, the Merciful,
Allah says: My servant has exalted Me.

When he says: Master of the Day of Judgment,
Allah says: My servant has glorified Me.

When he says: You alone we worship, You alone we ask for help,
Allah says: This is between Me and My servant, and My servant will have what he has asked for.

When he says: Guide us to the straight path, the path of those whom you have favored, not of those who have earned your anger nor of those who went astray,
Allah says: This is for My servant, and My servant will have what he has asked for.”
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Reference:
Sahih Muslim

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The Ultimate Seclusion from the Outside Storm

Most of the time, the ocean of the dunya hits us, where we constantly find ourselves thinking of that stressful project we’re working on, or that problem with family or friends, or that particular work that went wrong. But at least 5 times a day, you’re allowed to forget all of those problems. You’re allowed to give yourself a break. Not only that, you are REQUIRED to forget everything. Except the One that you’re standing for.

That is, truly, a blessing.

Remember that Allah s.w.t. is Ar-Razzaq, the Provider, the Constant Giver of gifts. Remember that everything that had happened, has happened and will happen are all the simple results of Allah’s [كُن فَيَكُونُ]. Then in that same sentiment, what makes us think that our simple problem cannot be solved by the King of all kings?

So cherish when you enter solah, it’s not a burden. It’s our seclusion that gives tremendous tranquility from the outside storm.

Ramadhan Gem – Day 16

“And the heavens and the earth wept not for them, nor were they given a respite.”
[Ad-Dukhan 44:29]

A man came to Ibn ‘Abbas r.a. and said to him: “O Abu Al-‘Abbas, Allah says, ‘And the heavens and the earth wept not for them, nor were they given respite.’ Do the heavens and the earth weep for anybody?”

He r.a. said, “Yes, there is no one who does not have a gate in the heavens through which his provision comes down and his good deeds ascend. When the believer dies, that gate is closed; it misses him and weeps for him, and the place of prayer on earth where he used to pray and remember Allah also weeps for him. But the people of Fir’awn left no trace of righteousness on the earth and they had no good deeds that ascended to Allah, so the heavens and the earth did not weep for them.”
_____________
Reference:
Tafsir Ibn Kathir

Ramadhan Gem – Day 1

Did you know that just being able to live (and fast) from the previous Ramadhan to this Ramadhan expiates our sins? (with the condition that we avoid / make tawbah from any major sin). Rasulallah s.a.w. said:

“The 5 (daily) prayers,
and from one Friday prayer to the (next) Friday prayer,
and from Ramadhan to Ramadhan,
are expiation for the (sins) committed in between (their intervals),
provided one shuns the major sins.”
[1]

This is one of the many golden opportunities that Allah s.w.t. reward us with the month of Ramadhan. ❤

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[1] Sahih Muslim

Race To Good Deeds

Some golden advice by Sheikh Abdul Muhsin Al-Qasim, Imam of Al-Masjid an-Nabawi, during the Twins of Faith 2015 in Malaysia:

1. Rasulallah s.a.w. said if a single person is guided by Allah through you, it will be better for you than a whole lot of red camels. [Bukhari & Muslim] “Better for you than red camels” is an allegory for everything that is better than anything else! So keep on spreading the truth, and do good deeds because others may follow suit.

2. For women who want to maximize their efforts to attain Jannah: Be consistent with your 5 daily prayers, fast in Ramadhan, guard your chastity and obey your husband as long as it does not go against the Deen, for you will then may enter Jannah by whichever of the gates of Paradise you wish. [Ahmad] How easy it is that Allah has made for the women, as long as these acts are done consistently and sincerely for Allah.

3. Miniscule “unworthy” good deeds, even if it’s the size of half an atom, is still countable. Remember the hadith about the prostitute who was forgiven for her sins because she fed water to a dying dog [Muslim] So this gives us hope even though we have sinned so much, even though people have bad thoughts about you, have hope in Allah and keep on continuing doing good deeds.

In a nutshell: Never, ever look down any of our good deeds, not even those mundane domestic work, because anything good we do to please Allah and in line with the Sunnah, they are our means to attain Jannah, insya Allah.

…Then strive together (as in a race) toward all that is good.
[Al-Baqarah 2:148]

Divine Speech | Verbal Idiom #1 “Coolness of the Eyes”

Language is dynamic. Sometimes it is impossible to do word-by-word translation of certain phrases without losing their actual meaning. This is particularly true for figures of speech, for example someone who asks me, “What’s up?” isn’t asking me in a literally sense, but he is asking how I am, not what’s up there over my head. Similarly, Ancient Arabic has figures of speech and the Qur’an uses them too. In order for us to understand the actual meaning of the Ayat, we have to know how these idioms were used in ancient times.

VERBAL IDIOMS PART 1 – COOLNESS OF THE EYES

Literally, coolness of the eyes would probably mean placing banana peels over our eyes 🙂 What does it actually mean in Ancient Arabic?

  1. Tears of immense joy – There are 2 expressions in the Arab idioms: The eyes becoming cool, and the eyes becoming warm. “May Allah warm his eyes” is actually a curse which means may that person suffer so much sadness the he shed tears out of sorrow. Whereas “Cooling the eyes” is the opposite, to mean shedding tears out of happiness and joy.
  2. Finding refuge & relief – The Arabs when travelling in the desert would wrap their face as a protection from sandstorms. But they couldn’t afford to cover their eyes without losing their vision, so they would say “My eyes are becoming warm.” And when they finally found a cave, they would say “My eyes are becoming cool.”
  3. The word also means when something stays in one place.

We find this figure of speech several times in the Qur’an:

1. [Surah Al-Furqan 25:74] “Our Lord! Bestow on us from our spouses and our offspring the coolness of the eyes…”

What this du’a means is that we ask from Allah for our spouses and children to be the coolness of our eyes from the outside storm. The outside world is full of stress, problems and difficulties, and our refuge and relief from that storm is our home. But sadly, how opposite is the state of our homes today? The storm isn’t happening outside of our homes, rather it’s happening inside. This du’a teaches us to ask from Allah for peace, tranquility and not just a happy home, but a home that makes us so happy that it makes us cry. What a beautiful du’a.

2. [Surah Ta-ha 20:40] “…So We restored you to your mother, that she might cool her eyes and she should not grieve…”

When Fir’aun’s soldiers were approaching, the mother of Musa a.s. put her baby (i.e. Musa) in the river to save him. She saw her baby floating away from her, and her heart became so deeply distraught and distressed, not knowing what would happen to him. So when she was finally reunited with her baby, by the will of Allah, she began to cry… And that cry was not a cry of sadness, it was out of immense happiness. This reunion between a mother and child is captured beautifully by this phrase in the Qur’an.

3. [Surah Al-Qasas 28:9] “And the wife of Fir’aun said: “A comfort [coolness] of the eye for me and for you. Kill him not, perhaps he may be of benefit to us, or we may adopt him as a son…”

Fir’aun’s wife was in an abusive relationship, perhaps both psychologically & physically. She didn’t have any place to turn to, except Allah s.w.t., because the police, government – in general everyone – was owned by Fir’aun. When she discovered Musa a.s. in the river, she picked him up, brought him to Fir’aun and said [paraphrasing]: “When I look at the baby, my eyes stay on him.” She couldn’t take her eyes away from Musa a.s.; she found her relief. Even Fir’aun, the same tyrant who ordered for a military campaign to kill thousands of babies, experienced the same and they ended up adopting Musa a.s.

4. This figure of speech is also found in hadith. Remember when Musa a.s. spoke directly to Allah s.w.t.? There can never, ever be anyone else more important and more beloved than our Rabb. So we know for sure that this is a memory that Musa a.s. will never, ever forget! But what did Allah s.w.t. command? Allah s.w.t. said to Musa a.s.:

Verily! I am Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but I, so worship Me,
and perform As-Salat for My Remembrance.”

[Surah Ta-ha 20:14]

The REAL way to remember Allah s.w.t. is through prayer. And our beloved Rasulallah s.a.w. said The coolness of my eyes is in Salah.” [1]

Those who have a clean heart are more sensitive than others; it really hurts when someone speaks to them in a foul language. Our beloved Rasulallah s.a.w., the best of mankind, heard foul language, curses, allegations, being mocked at, being made fun of by the Quraish every-single-day. But he s.a.w. never stopped making da’wah to the same people, and their hatred and aggressiveness only got worse each day. He s.a.w. was in this storm all the time, but when he enters Solah… that is when he found his relief. The coolness of his s.a.w. eyes is placed in the Solah. It completely changes our perspective what Solah should really mean to us.

The idea about crying in our prayers is true. Usually we cry when we listen to Ayat about the Hellfire or Judgment Day. But the Qur’an should also make us cry that cools our eyes… When we listen to Ayat about Allah’s gifts and rizq, His Mercy and forgiveness, how Allah s.w.t. protects us… they should move us to tears of joy.

References:
[1] Sunan an-Nasa’i | http://sunnah.com/nasai/36/2
Notes extracted from the Divine Speech Seminar by Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan.