Saturday, 23 June 2012

Heart Poisons.

The four poisons of the heart:

1. Excessive speech.

2. Unrestrained glances.

3. Too much food.

4. Keeping bad company.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Mujhe Insaan Kar De.

Mujhe insaan tu kar de
Ke yeh ehsaan tu kar de
Hidayat de mujhe Allah
Dua' din raat karta hoon.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

From Behind The Curtain.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Maryam Bint Jahsh, a scholar of classical Arabic helped her husband, the Yemeni scholar Jamal Al-Deen ‘Ali Bin Abi'l-Fawaris Al-Hamdani resolve a debate with members of the Murji’ sect; while Al-Mutahhar ibn Muhammad who was married to the famous Mujtahidah Fatimah Bint Yahya used to consult her on juristic matters while she sat behind a curtain, such that when he came up with the answer, his students would say:
This is not from you. This is from behind the curtain!’
Taken from Muslim Women Who Taught Their Husbands.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Training Children

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.

Al-Rubay’ bint Mu’awwidh – Allah be pleased with her – said while describing how the Prophet – Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – told them to fast ‘Âshûrâ:
We used to make toys out of dyed wool for the children and keep them with us so if the children asked us for food we would give them the toys to distract them until they completed their fast.
Sahîh Muslim. A similar narration is also in Sahîh Al-Bukhârî.
Al-Nawawî states in his commentary on Sahîh Muslim:
In this narration we are shown that children should be trained to do acts of obedience and made used to doing worship; although they are not legally bound.
Taken from Sayings of the Salaf.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Speak The Truth, O Muslim!

Once during the days of the British occupation of India, a dispute arose between the Hindus and Muslims in Muzaffarnagar District, Kandhla, over a piece of land which both of them claimed as their place of worship. They referred the matter to the English ruler of the district. He heard the case and evidence presented by both parties, but could not reach a verdict. He asked the Hindus, “Is there a Muslim in the area whose word you trust.” The Hindus replied, “Yes, we do,” and they mentioned the name of a Muslim scholar. The ruler, thereupon, summoned the Muslim scholar to his court. The scholar agreed and came to the court. He stood with his back turned towards the ruler and declared, “The Hindus are right. The land in dispute belongs to them.” The ruler decided accordingly. The Muslims lost the case, but truth scored a magnificient victory.
The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) has encouraged speaking the truth no matter how unpalatable it might be to others.


On the authority of Anas, who said: I heard the messenger of Allah say:
Allah the Almighty has said: "O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as it."
Sunan Tirmidhi.

Monday, 21 May 2012

O Man!

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
"Aye Insaan! Tu jitna chahe gunah kar. Agar Allah ta'ala isee zindagi ko jahannum na bana de to dekh lena."
"O Man! Commit as many sins as you wish and then see whether Allah turns this life of yours into a living Hell or not!"
Mufti Muhammad Shafi Sahib (rah) via Bro. Azimuddin.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Inaabat Il-Allah - The Basis Of Deoband.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
The basis of Dar al-‘Uloom (Deoband) was Inaabat Il-Allah (turning towards Allah). Mawlana Yasin Sahib said, “We saw that time of the seminary when the highest to the lowest teacher (ustaad) and even the door-keeper and the orderlies were Saahib-e-nisbat and `awliya’. At that time the school was a place of knowledge during the day and a Khanqah at night. During the last portion of the night, the sounds of Qur’anic recitation (tilaawat) and remembrance of Allah (dhikr) could be heard from most rooms. This in reality is the special distinction of Dar al-‘Uloom.”
From ‘Ulama-e-Deoband Kya The?

Friday, 11 May 2012

Submission & Surrender.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
A man's Islam is not secure unless it is based on submission and surrender. Anyone who desires to know that which is beyond his capacity to know and whose intellect is not content with surrender, his covetousness will veil him from a pure understanding of Allah's Unity, clear knowledge and correct belief, and he will veer between disbelief and belief, confirmation and denial, acceptance and rejection. He will be subject to whisperings and find himself confused and full of doubt, being neither a firm believer nor a resolute denier.
Al-Aqida al-Tahawiyya.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Gems From Tablighi Elders.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Hadrat Mawlana Muhammad Yusuf Kandhalwi once said:
“In Muslims the custom and shape of deen is present. The aim of this Tableeghi struggle is that the spirit and reality of deen may come in them. Scattered parts of the deen are present in them. Our objective is that complete deen may come in them in its proper form and totality…”
Words and Reflections (Malfuzat Mawlana Muhammad Ilyas) by ‘Allama Muhammad Manzoor Nu’mani, translated into English by Hafiz Safwan Muhammad, Pg 28, footnote 1.
Mawlana Abu’l Kalam Azad (rah) said, “Everyone knows flaring up and bursting (into flames) like a bonfire but burning (incessantly) internally like an oven is something which very few know – and this was the quality of the Prophets (as).
Ibid, pg. 48, footnote 2.
“The veils of light are much thicker than the veils of darkness.”
Ibid, pg. 53. An old saying of the Ahl al-‘Ilm quoted by Hadratji Ilyas.
“Anyone who is bent on disgracing anyone other than himself, Allah wills to disgrace him.”
Hadrat Mawlana Muhammad Ilyas Kandhalwi (rah). Ibid pg. 100.
Once Hadrat (Mawlana Muhammad Ilyas) said, “…..Until your nights are not colored by the color of the nights of the Companions (Sahaba) the efforts you make in the day will not bring forth any color…..”
Ibid pg.118, footnote 1.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Submit to Allah.

"And whose words can be better than his, who calls (people) towards Allah, and performs good deeds, and says 'I am one of those who submit to Allah!'"
Al-Qur'an: Surah Fussilat, verse 33.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Bow Only To Allah.

Bajuz tere dar pe, mujhe naaz hai ke ya Rabb
Mera sar kata hai lekin mera sar jhuka nahin hai.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Go To Fir` awn!

“Go to Pharaoh (Fir’ awn), indeed he has rebelled. But speak to him mildly, that he might be reminded or fear (Allah).” Surah Ta-Ha v.43-44.

It is said that one of the later Caliphs was performing Tawaaf when a scholar reproached him harshly. The Caliph (Khalifa) protested, “Look! Neither am I worse than Fir` awn nor are you better than Musa (as). Allah (the Almighty and Exalted) said, ‘speak to him mildly.’”

Commentary taken from Tafsir Ishraq al-Ma’ani by Sayyid Iqbal Zaheer. Translation taken (with slight alterations) from Khan and Hilali’s Noble Qur’an.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Mujhe Hai Hukm-e-Adhaan

Agarchey but hain jama'at ki aasteenon mein
Mujhe hai hukm-e-adhaan
La ilaaha il Allah!
La ilaaha il Allah!

Friday, 27 April 2012

Do As You Say - Mawlana Munir.

Salamu 'Alaykum.

Log taqreer, bayaan awr waaz naheen sunte, balke hamari zindagi dekhte hain.

People don't (only) listen to (our) speeches, sermons and exhortations, rather they (also) look at our lives.

Mawlana Munir (db) through brother 'Azimuddin. 

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Imam Abu Hanifa & His Mother.

Imam ‘Azam and his mother
Imam Abu Hanifa obeyed his mother in everything  she said. Whenever he went to the circle of ‘Umar ibn Dirar, he took her along on a beast. Once, she made a vow to do something and asked him to give a verdict about it but was dissatisfied with his (Imam Abu Hanifa’s) answer. She said, “I will only be at peace if you find (this) out from the preacher Zur’ah.” So he took her to him and she put her question to Zur’ah. He said, “The Faqih of Kufa is with you! Why ask me?” So, out  of respect for his mother, the Imam said, “I will dictate the edict (fatwa) and you issue it.” Thus, she was satisfied. 
The ‘Amir of Kufa, Ibn Hubayra offered the Imam the post of judge and he refused. So Yazid (had him) flogged with 110 lashes. He said that he was not so hurt with the punishment as with the pain that it caused his mother who said to him, “Nu’man! Give up this knowledge for which you have to suffer.” He said, “Mother, if I had sought the world with this knowledge then I would have earned much but I have acquired it only to please Allah and to earn deliverance.
Akhbar Abu Hanifa Wa Ashabihi pg. 53, ‘Uqud al-Juman pg. 292, Tarikh Baghdad, v13, pg.266.
Adapted from Qadi Athar Mubarakpuri’s “Achievements of Muslim Women in the Religious and Scholarly Fields.”


Aa gaya ayn ladaai mein agar waqt-e-namaz, 
Qibla rukh hoke zameen-bos hui qawm-e-hijaz
Ek hi saff mein khade ho gaye Mahmud-o-Ayaz, 
Na koi banda raha awr na koi banda-nawaz.

In the midst of fighting when came the time for prayer
The people of Hijaz turned to the Ka'ba and fell on their faces.
In one line stood king (Mahmud) and servant (Ayaz) 
neither of them a slave or master.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Teachers & Students Of Imam Abu Dawud.

Teachers and Students of Imam Abu Dawood Sijistani.
Teachers of Imam Abu Dawood:
Imam Shamsuddin al-Dhahabi says that he studied under many great ‘ulama. Ibn Hajr puts the number at 300. Among his more famous teachers are:
  • Musaddad ibn Musarhad
  • Yahya ibn Ma’een
  • Qutayba ibn Sa’eed
  • ‘Uthman ibn Abi Shayba
  • Ahmad ibn Hanbal
  • Qa’naby
  • Abu’l Waleed Tayalisi.
  • Muhammad ibn Kathir ‘Abdi
  • Muslim ibn Ibrahim
  • Abu Ja’far Nufaily.
He also benefited from Abu ‘Amr Dharir and ‘Asim ibn ‘Ali who were from the senior scholars of that time. He studied under many of Imam Bukhari’s shuyukh. Ibn Hajr has counted him alongwith Bukhari in the 11th generation of traditionists (muhaddithin).
Among his more noted students are: 
  • Lu’lu’i.
  • Ibn ‘Arabi
  • Ibn Daastah
  • Abu Hasan Ansari
  • Abu Teeb Ashnani
  • Abu ‘Amr Basri 
  • Abu ‘Isa Ramli (to whom he gave his handwritten copy of Kitab al-Sunan) 
  • Abu Usama Ruwas (narrator of 8 Sunan books)
  • Abu ‘Abdullah (narrator of Kitab al-Radd ‘ala Ahl al-Qadr)
  • Abu Bakr Najjar (narrator of Nasikh wa’l Mansukh)
  • Abu ‘Ubayd Aajurri (narrator of Kitab al-Masa’il)
  • Isma’il Saffaar (narrator of Musnad Malik)
  • Abu Bakr ‘Abdullah (son of Imam Tirmidhi)
  • Imam Nasa’i, 
  • Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal.
Adapted from “The Biography of Imam Abu Dawud Sijistani”, edited by Mufti A.H. Elias.

Saving The Eyes & Lowering The Gaze.

It is reported that Hassân b. Abî Sinân (rah) went out one 'Eid and when he returned home his wife said, “How many beautiful women have you looked at today?” After she kept asking him, he said, “Woe to you! I have looked at nothing but my toe from when I went out to when I returned to you.”

It is reported on the authority of Al-Wakî’ b. Al-Jarrâh (rah):
We went out one 'Eid with Sufyân Al-Thawrî and he said, “The first thing we will do on this day of ours is to lower our gaze.”

Ibn Abi al-Dunya, Kitab al-Wara'. Taken from Sayings of the Salaf.

Wa Salam.

Friday, 20 April 2012

'Itteba-e-Sunnat English Translation.


Al Salamu `Alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh.
The following is the beginning of the translation of the book, ‘Itteba-e-Sunnat! Yaad Rakkho, Yaad Rakkhe Jaoge, by Al Haaj Shakil Ahmad Sahib (db). Hadrat has kindly given this sinner permission to translate this book into the English language for the benefit of those who do not know Urdu. Instead of a literal translation from the mother tongue into English, I have chosen a free form of translation that conveys the message of the original while avoiding prolixity and unnecessary repetition. The translation begins (as of now) directly from the meat of the book avoiding the taqriz, the index, the editor’s note etc which will be added later on. This is only the first draft of the translation and will undergo changes and betterment as time goes on, Inshallah. All mistakes are from Shaytan and me. May Allah accept this effort and make it a means for me in the Hereafter. Please inform me of any mistakes so that the translation can be corrected. Jazakamullahu khayra.

Every intelligent person seeks profit.

Respected elders and friends! Every person of intellect in this world wants profit, no one seeks loss. Anyone with even a modicum of understanding and intelligence rushes towards benefit and avoids damage to the maximum extent possible. This approach of avoiding doing deeds of no profit is common to all people of sense. Rather such a person works in a focused manner towards a fixed goal and benefit. These benefits are expected to accrue on the basis of experience. For e.g., xyz received this benefit from this work. Therefore, if we do the same, then we will also profit in the same way. This is the way of the world and if often happens that people achieve these gains according to their expectations.

Human nature

However, the above is not an absolute and infallible law. Meaning that it is not necessary that that one will be able to benefit from doing what others have done before him and profited from. Sometimes, the opposite occurs and a person suffers a loss from the same work. But our nature is such that when we see people profiting from something our desires pull us towards that work in the hope of achieving the same profit; even if we are aware of the possibility of loss, indeed, even if we have experienced people suffering loss, we are pulled inevitably towards it. And when unaware of some profit-making business then we search for knowledgeable people, go to them and take advice from them, saying, “Brother! We would like to do some business but don’t know what line of work or what kind of business has the most profit nowadays and where there is the greatest possibility of progress. So, please guide us.” Then we follow his advice and start the business in the hope of making gains. It often happens that we earn profits and sometimes we suffer losses. This nature is not confined to us and you but to every man of sense. In short, this was an introduction to the fact that every sensible man seeks gain and avoids loss. Further, it was said that whatever we set out to do is not entirely free of risk despite giving profits most of the time.

A Query

The following question arises: Does everything that we do in this world carry the potential for gain and the risk for loss or is there a trade that offers 100% profit with no risk at all? When this question is placed before worldly people then they have no (satisfactory) answer for it. They say that we are unaware of any trade or business that offers 100% profit and zero risk.

100% Profitable Work

But when the same question is placed before the Creator and Owner of this world and His Final Prophet (saw), they guide us towards such a trade that offers 100% profit and no loss, not even a risk of loss. What do you think, when informed of such profitable deeds with no risk attached to them, will one want to do them or not? For sure, he will. Indeed, he will race towards it and be in a hurry to find out about it. Would you also like to know (what it is)? Then listen, it is to follow the Sunna of the Prophet (saw). Following the Prophetic example is that deed that gives a 100% return and never a loss.

The deeds of one who is loved by Allah (swt)

And obeying the Sunna not only gives a 100% return but also makes one beloved to the people; not only peoples’ love, but also the love of the angels; and not only the love of the angels but of the Messenger (saw) too. These bestowals and honors that one gets on following the Sunna are enough to show its importance – nothing more is required. (Even then) a special honor that is given to the follower of the Sunna is that Allah makes him beloved to Himself. This is not something ordinary – receiving Allah’s love and becoming beloved to Him- it is such an honor that no further bestowals are needed. I am not saying this from myself, it is proven from many verses of the Qur’an and traditions of the Prophet (saw). In the Qur’an, Allah says, “Say (O Prophet): “If you really love Allah, then follow me, and Allah shall love you and forgive you your sins. Allah is Most-Forgiving, Very-Merciful.” (Surah Aal-i-‘Imran, verse 31, English translation of Mufti Muhammad Taqi ‘Uthmani)

Two Priceless Gifts

Human nature contains an element of avariciousness so that after doing something he looks for some sort of return. And this potential and desire has been placed in him by Allah Himself who has taken it into consideration. Allah knows that his slave is greedy. When I (i.e. Allah) command him to do something, then he will definitely ask me, “O Sustainer! I will do this deed because you have ordered it, but tell me what will I get on doing it?” Hence keeping man’s disposition in mind, Allah answered his query in the next part of the verse quoted, that if you obey and follow my beloved then I will grant you two favors, both of which are such that none except me can grant them and they cannot be bought for anything in this world.

The First Gift

The first incomparable honor that I (Allah) will bestow on the one who follows the Sunna is that I will begin to love him and make him dear to Myself. The following part of the verse, “Yuhbibkumullah” bears witness to the fact that whoever loves Allah and follows the Holy Prophet (saw), is also loved by Allah who makes him His beloved. Allah has given us a deeper understanding of this favor through his Prophet’s (saw) saying that when I (Allah) love someone and make him dear to Me, then I do not leave him alone. Rather I tell My close angel, Jibril (as), “O Jibril! I love so-and-so. You too love him.” Then, Jibril also starts loving him and announces among all the angels that Allah loves such-and-such slave of His and has made him dear to Himself. Hence, O (Assembly of) Angels! All of you (also) love him. All of them then start loving him. The love of that person is then poured into the hearts of men and all the creatures that walk on the earth… be contd.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012


Dar-e-Nabi (saw) par ye ‘umr beete, ho hum pe lutf-e-dawaam aisa,
Madine-wale kahen muqaami, ho unke dar par qayaam aisa…
'Alaykum Salam.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

The Friends of Allah.

"Lo! Verily the friends of Allah! No fear shall come upon them nor shall they grieve.  They who believed and have been fearing Allah."
Al Qur`an al Kareem, Surah Yunus, v. 62 - 63.

Allah, Allah! Shaykh al-Hind & Shaykh al-Islam.

Istanbul at night
Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Shaykh al-Hind: Hadrat Mawlana Mahmud Hasan Deobandi (rah)(teacher)
Shaykh al-Islam: Hadrat Mawlana Sayyid Husayn Ahmad Madani (rah)(student)
When Hadrat Shaykh al-Hind was arrested by the Firangis and sent to jail in Malta in 1335, Shaykh al- Islam could not stand it and handed himself over to the British in order to serve his Ustad. Being old and sickly at that time, Shaykh al-Hind could not tolerate cold water for wudu' (minor ritual ablution). Shaykh al- Islam would hold a pot of water to his belly throughout the night to warm it and would offer it for wudu' with great respect at the time of tahajjud, there being no hot water in prison. 
Eyes cannot remain dry and hearts cannot remain in a single piece after reading the lives of our elders and their sacrifices for their teachers and this beautiful Deen. May Allah accept those who come after and give them a share in the dua's of our elders.
Peace and Blessings upon Al-Mustafa, his Family and his Sahaba.
Taken from the biography of Shaykh al-Hind with minor modifications.
Wa salamu 'alaykum.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Sayyida A'aisha's Wit & The Prophet's Smile.

Salamun 'Alaykum.
Sayyida ‘Ayesha(ra) says, “Once the Messenger of Allah(saws) came to me and I asked him, ‘Where were you the whole day?’
He said, “I was with Umm Salamah(ra) (one of his other wives).”
I said to him, “You don’t seem to get enough of Umm Salamah.”
Upon this the Prophet(saws) smiled
Tabaqat ibn Sa’ad.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012


Dar-e-Mustafa(saw) se Sajid, main khud aa gaya, mera dil…
Dar-e-Mustafa(saw) se Sajid, main khud aa gaya, mera dil kabhi laut kar na aaya..
Ye karam nahin to kya hai?

(In body), I returned from Mustafa's door, my heart......
(In body), I returned from Mustafa's door, my heart......though never turned back,
If  this not grace upon me, then what is it?

Monday, 9 April 2012

Disloyal Dunya, Disloyal People.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
A Q&A from the Maktubat of Faqih al-Ummah:
Summary of Letter:
Bismihi Ta'ala
Respected Mufti Saheb,
Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakaatuh
I was very attached to someone. I am now shattered by his disloyalty. As a result I cannot even sleep at night. I continuously perform Salaat-ut-Taubah and make dua, yet my condition continues to deteriorate. Please help me to overcome this problem. 
Summary of Reply:
Bismihi Ta'ala
Respected Brother / Sister
Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakaatuh
This world is a temporary place. It is also very disloyal. It keeps a person for a few days until he lives and then pushes him away (to the next world). All the things that one regarded as his own is also snatched away by the world.
Similar is the condition of worldly people. They have no concept of loyalty. Only those who regard this world merely as a guest house (which one will shortly leave and continue upon one’s journey), or those who regard it as a jail, neither get deceived by it, nor do they deceive others.
When making dhikr of Laa Ilaaha illallaah, imagine that you have removed all other love from your heart and thrown it behind you. Then meditate that only the love of Allah Ta`ala has been firmly embedded in your heart. In this world He is with us. In the Hereafter also, He alone will be with us. He will never separate from us.
Try to embed this thought in your heart as much as possible (insha Allah your distress will be removed).
(Maktoobaat of Faqih al-Umma, Mawlana Mahmud Hasan Gangohi(rah); vol 5; pg 43)
Taken from al-Haadi.
Wa'laykum Salam.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Mercy, Forgiveness, Repentance.

Salamun 'Alaykum.

Anyone who does not show mercy will not be shown mercy. 
Anyone who does not forgive will not be forgiven. 
Anyone who does not turn in repentance will not be turned to nor will he be protected or guarded.

Amir al-Mu'minin Sayyiduna `Umar ibn al Khattab(ra) in Imam Bukhari's Adab al Mufrad.

Saturday, 7 April 2012


Al Salamu ‘Alaykum.

Hadrat-e-Aqdas Mawlana Mahmud al-Hasan Gangohi (NawarAllahu Marqaduhu) says while 

making tafsir (exegesis/explanation/commentary) of a Qur’anic verse:

“Allah (swt) has sent his Messenger (saws) as the ideal for the people and has asked them to 

take him as an exemplar (model). We (Allah) want only that kind of life (from the people) that the 

Prophet (saws) lived. It is Our (Allah’s) will that everyone follows his footsteps and accepts his 

way. The people will become dearer to Us (Allah) to the extent that they follow his way and 


(Translated from the book, “Ittiba’-e-Sunnat” by Haji Shakil Ahmad (db). Any mistakes are mine.)

Sunday, 1 April 2012

'Umar's Migration To Madina.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
When Hadrat 'Umar ibn al Khattab(ra) was ready to migrate (from Makka to Madina) he put on his sword(top sword in pic) and slung his bow over his shoulder keeping one of his arrows in his hand, and he put his staff in his waist belt. Then he made his way towards the Ka'bah while some of the Quraish were sitting nearby. Then 'Umar began making tawaaf around the Ka'bah seven times. After finishing tawaaf, he courageously made prayer at the station of Ibraheem. 

Then he stood at their place of gathering and said: "Your faces have become ugly (to me), may Allah rub your noses in dirt. Whoever wishes that his mother weep over him, his children become orphans and his wife a widow then let him meet me (follow me) outside of this valley (the city of Mecca)." 

Ali(ra) said: "No one followed him except a group of the very weak who he recognized as such so he continued on to his destination."

Wa Salam.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Imam Zayn al 'Abideen & Hisham ibn 'Abd al Malik.

Valley of flower - Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand
Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
The person most respected and loved during the Ummayyad period was 'Ali ibn Husayn (Zayn al 'Abideen). In the simple, pure and saintly life led by him, he had no peer. Once Hisham ibn 'Abd al Malik came to the Ka'ba for Tawaaf but owing to the huge gathering he could not reach the Hajr-e-Aswad. Therefore, he sat down to wait till he could get a chance to kiss it. In the meantime 'Ali ibn Husayn arrived and the people at once cleared the way for him to make the Tawaaf and kiss the Black Stone. Everyone present in the Ka'ba received him with the utmost deference. At last Hisham, pretending as if he did not know 'Ali ibn Husayn asked who he was. The poet, Farazdaq who happened to be present immediately composed an introductory ode for Hadrat Zayn al 'Abideen. It has been reported that certain additions were made to this famous ode later on but it is still regarded as a masterpiece of Arabic poetry. It opened with the following verse:

The pebbles and paths of Makka affirm his virtues;
The House of Allah knows him as well as the surroundings do.

Other highly reputed scholars of outstanding piety during this period were Hasan al Muthanna, his son, 'Abdullah al Mahad, Saalim ibn 'Abdullah ibn `Umar, Qaasim ibn Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr, Sa'eed ibn al Musayyib and 'Urwa ibn Zubair.
Taken from Saviours of Islamic Spirit by 'Ali Miyan Nadwi, Chapter on 'Umar ibn 'Abd al 'Aziz. (with some linguistic corrections)

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Hasan al Basri On Hypocrites.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Someone asked Hasan al Basri if hypocrites were still to be found amongst the Muslims of those days. His reply was: "If hypocrites desert the streets of Basra, you will find it hard to live in the city."
On another occasion he remarked, "Subhanallah! What hypocrites and self-seekers have gained an upper hand in this Ummah."
Faryaabi, pg 68.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Hadrat Rabi' ibn 'Amir & The Persians.

Salamun 'Alaykum.
Hadrat Rabi' bin `Amir entered upon Rustam, the leader of Persia, who had 280,000 soldiers under him. 
Rustum addressed him with arrogance of one who has power,
 "What brings you here?
Rabi' was wearing a torn robe and had with him a spear and an old horse.
Rustam told him laughingly, while his ministers and companions were sitting with him:
"You came to conquer the world with this spear, an old horse and a torn robe?"
So Rabi` ibn `Amir responded to him, confident in Allah's help:
"Allah has sent us to take (his) slaves from the servitude of (other) slaves to the servitude of the Lord of slaves, and from the narrowness of this world to the vastness of the hereafter, and from the tyranny of religions to the justice of Islam."
So the wretched one responded to him after the reply of Rabi` bin `Amir baffled him:
"Do not exit my palace or hall until you carry soil on your head". So Rabi` bin `Amir carried soil and said to his companions, "This is a glad tiding that Allah will let us own their land."
Later, Sayyiduna Sa`d bin Abi Waqqas entered this land victoriously and entered the hall of misguidance and smashed the den of the Persian idolatry, and said, what was related in the Qur'an, "How much they left behind of gardens and springs and crops and noble sites and comfort wherein they were amused. And we caused it to be inherited by another people." [Ad-Dukhaan, 44:25-28].
"These are two adversaries who have disputed over their Lord." [Hajj, 22:19]
Such an end befell those who did not know Allah, who did not obey his orders, nor shunned what He forbade.
‘Alaykum Salam.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Despair not, O Heart of mine.

Maayoos mat ho aye dil, dast-e-dua' utha kar,
Pherega na woh khali, dar se tujhe utha kar.

Tham ja, zara theher ja, abr-e-karam hai chhaya,
aayega tham thama kar, barsega jam jamakar.

'Alaykum Salam.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Shaykh 'Abdul Qadir Gilani.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
A contemporary of Shaykh 'Abdul Qadir reports: "His prayers were readily answered. Being extremely tender-hearted, he would burst into tears (if anything sorrowful or touching was mentioned to him). More often he was to be found immersed in meditation and recollection of Allah. He was softhearted, courteous, cheerful, generous and compassionate. Being the offspring of a noble family, he was also highly reputed for his profound knowledge and piety." (Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Yusuf al Barzali in Tabaqat al Kubra)
The testimony of another scholar of those times runs as follows: "Always disposed to avoid things unseemly and indecorous, he only pressed for the desirable and befitting. He would boil with indignation if the Divine commandments were overstepped but remained listless to the wrongs and ill-treatments to his own person. He would never seek revenge save for the sake of Allah nor send back a beggar without giving him something. If he had nothing to give, he would part with the clothes he had been putting on."
(Muhyiuddin Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Haamid al Baghdadi in Qalaa'id al Jawaahir)
Taken from Shaykh Sayyid Abu`l Hasan 'Ali Nadwi's "Saviours of Islamic Spirit - vol 1" with minor modifications.
'Alaykum Salam.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Al-Rahm & Al-Rahman.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra رضي الله عنه reported: The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said, “(The word) Ar-Rahm* (womb) is derived from Ar-Rahman (the Most Merciful), and Allah said: ‘I will keep good relations with one who keeps good relations with you (i.e. family), and I will sever relations with one who severs relations with you.’”
[Hadith Qudsi from Sahih al Bukhari]
* which is why blood relations are known as "rahmi rishtey" in Urdu.
'Alaykum Salam.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Beware Of Giving Fatwas.

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.
Imam Malik ibn Anas (rah) said:

“The people of knowledge and understanding that I have met in our country, when one of them was asked a question on an issue, he would feel like one about to die. But the people of our own time love giving fatwa (without hesitation). Had they known what they are going to face tomorrow (in the Day of Judgement) they would not have done that. Umar, `Ali and ‘Alqama are some of the best Companions of the Prophet , yet when anyone of them was asked a question, he would consult his fellow companions before giving an answer. But it is unfortunate that fatwa has become the pride for the people of our time”.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

The Best Of People.

Narrated Ibn 'Umar: We used to compare the people as to who was better during the lifetime of Allah's Apostle . We used to regard Abu Bakr as the best, then 'Umar, and then 'Uthman.
Sahih al Bukhari.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Only they are the Believers!

The believers are only those whose hearts thrill with fear when Allah is mentioned, and when His revelations are rehearsed unto them; they increase their faith and who trust in their Lord. (2) Who establish prayer and who expend of that wherewith We have provided them. (3) Those: it is they who are the true believers. For them are degrees with their Lord and forgiveness and a provision honorable. 
Surah Anfal: verses 2-4. Translated by 'Abdul Majid Daryabadi.

Friday, 24 February 2012

What Is a Tariqa?

Al Salamu 'Alaykum.

The word Tarīqah linguistically means “manner” or “method” and in reference to the field ofTasawwuf, it refers to a school or order, e.g. the Chishtī Tarīqah, Naqshbandī Tarīqah, Shādhilī Tarīqah etc. Tariqah in relation to Tasawwuf is analogous to the word “madhhab” in relation to the schools of Fiqh. The science of Fiqh concerns itself with the external injunctions and regulations pertaining to things such as salāh, fasting, stealing, interest etc., and the science ofTasawwuf concerns itself with the internal injunctions and regulations pertaining to things such as praiseworthy qualities, e.g. gratefulness, patience, sincerity etc. and reprehensible qualities, e.g. pride, ostentation and greed etc.
In essence, the goal of all the Tarīqahs is one and the same, namely to cure spiritual maladies of the heart, elevate the spiritual status and ultimately gain closeness to Allah; the dissimilarities of the various Tarīqahs mainly revolve around the difference of approach towards achieving this objective. Some Tarīqahs implement one set of spiritual exercises whilst other Tarīqahsimplement a different set of exercises. Some differences in spiritual exercises stem from the differences of the Madhāhib of theShuyūkh of each Tarīqah. Considering the fact that the Shuyūkh of Tasawwuf adhere strictly to the letter of the law, eachTarīqah will differ in exercises of dhikr as well. This will be discussed later. At present, it should suffice to understand that this science pertains to the abstract metaphysical internal element of the soul, thus there exists many seemingly unusual practices and exercises prescribed by the Shuyūkh to address such matters. These exercises were implemented to kindle the burning love of Allah in the heart cleansing it from the rust caused by the passions of the ephemeral Dunya and all that towards which the lower self calls. Dhikr is the nourishment and sustenance of the soul. Just as there are various types of food with varying nutritional benefits, similarly, the various types of dhikr prescribed by the Shuyūkh affect the spirit of a person in diverse ways. The field of Tasawwuf is usually likened to the field of medicine. Throughout history, man has discovered cures to various physical maladies, so to have the Shuyūkh, the spiritual doctors, discovered cures for spiritual maladies. Some of the practices and cures are mentioned in the Qur’ān, some in the Ahadīth, and others have been discovered through the institution of tajrubah(personal experience). Generation after generation, the Shuyūkh of Tasawwuf have dedicated their lives to this field, therefore, they know the effects of various adhkār upon the heart and soul. To those unfamiliar with Tasawwuf, such exercises may seem extremely peculiar and unusual. It is understandable for people to feel uncomfortable and queasy during their first experience with such exercises. However, to repel this discomfort, one should bear in mind that the Shuyūkh don’t claim that these adhkārand spiritual exercises are new forms of worship where it would be classified as an innovation (bid‘ah) in Dīn. Only those bereft of the understanding of Fiqh and the subtleties of Dīn make such professions. These spiritual prescriptions should be seen and regarded as a form of treatment (tadāwī) for the sicknesses of the heart. Just as the physical body must be put through certain therapeutic exercises for the benefit and rejuvenation of the body, so to do the Shuyūkh put the spiritual patient under various exercises to strengthen and treat the soul.
To give you some examples of such exercises, the famous Hadīth of Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم describes the various stages of a believer, from Islam, to Imān to Ihsan.
قالَ : فأخْبِرنِي عنِ الإحْسَانِ ، قال : (( أنْ تَعبُدَ اللهَ كأنَّكَ تَراهُ ، فإنْ لَمْ تَكُنْ تَراهُ فإنَّهُ يراكَ )) .
Jibrīl (AS) asked Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم regarding Ihsān to which Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم replied, “It is that you worship Allah as if you are seeing Him and if you are unable to see Him, then (know well) that He is seeing you.”
From this Hadīth we come to know that there is an extremely high spiritual position known as Ihsān. The question that arises is that how does a person reach such a status. The next question that arises is to whom should one go in order to learn how to attain it. If a person goes to a Muhaddith, his field and preoccupation is to merely to tell the questioner whether the Hadīth isSahīh, Hasan, Dha‘īf, how many chains of narration exist for the Hadīth, and which narrators transmitted the Hadīth etc. In regards to the meaning of the Hadīth, at best, they could offer only a literal translation. If a person goes to a Faqīh, he would only explain the various rulings that could be extracted from the Hadīth as it pertains to the external injunctions of the Sharī‘ah.The Faqīh too could not advise the questioner how to attain such a status nor the reality of such a position because such a question does not pertain to his field of expertise. If a person wants to learn the reality of this spiritual position and experience it, he will have to go to a person who has himself reached it. He will have to go to such a person who has dedicated his life in perfecting his internal attributes and character. Only that person who has already reached the destination can direct the lost seeker to it. To acquire this state, some of the Shuyūkh advise the Murīd to sit in solitude and absolute silence with full concentration and in a state of wudhū, whilst closing his eyes, constantly repeating and deeply pondering over the verse,
 أَلَمْ يَعْلَمْ بِأَنَّ اللَّهَ يَرَى 
“Does he not know that Allah is watching”
After continual practice, the Mūrīd will ultimately establish the understanding and perception that Allah is watching him at all times, whether he is walking, talking, eating, praying etc. Only after exercising great patience and perseverance in acting upon the prescription of his Shaykh and continuously informing the Shaykh of his conditions and states will he understand and experience the quality of Ihsān.
Other peculiar forms of spiritual exercises include making loud dhikr with bodily motion whether standing, as in the case ofhadrah as performed by the Shadhilīs, or sitting, as performed by the Chishtīs. Other exercises include certain breathing exercises like pās anfās as performed by the Chishtīs and various forms of murāqabah (meditation) as done by theNaqshbandīs etc.
The inherent permissibility or impermissibility of some of these exercises will rest upon the differences of the various Madhāhib since some of these practices cross the boundary of a mere internal metaphysical sphere to the externally physical; thus, falling under the jurisdiction of the Fuqahā’. To present a brief example, the practice of hadrah, a type of spiritual bodily movement similar to swaying that some refer to dancing coupled with loud dhikr, is permissible for the followers of the Shāfi‘ī Madhhab since according to their ‘Ulamā and Madhhab dancing is permissible with certain conditions.
والرقص بلا تكسر مباح لخبر الصحيحين إنه صلى الله عليه وسلم وقف لعائشة يسترها حتى تنظر إلى الحبشة وهم يلعبون ويزفنون والزفن الرقص لأنه مجرد حركات على استقامة أو اعوجاج وعلى الإباحة التي صرح بها المصنف الفوراني والغزالي في وسيطه وهي مقتضى كلام غيرهما وقال القفال بالكراهة وعبارة الأصل محتملة لها حيث قال و الرَّقْصُ ليس بِحَرَامٍ وَبِالتَّكَسُّرِ حَرَامٌ وَلَوْ من النِّسَاءِ لِأَنَّهُ يُشْبِهُ أَفْعَالَ الْمُخَنَّثِينَ (أسنى المطالب في شرح روض الطالب ج 4 ص 346  العلمية)
Consequently, it will be permissible for the Shuyūkh and Mūrīds who follow the Shāfi‘ī Madhhab to participate in the hadrah. On the contrary, it will not be permissible for the Shuyūkh and Murīds of the Hanafī Madhhab to participate in the dancing or swaying of the hadrah since no form of dancing is permitted in the Madhhab unless one is overtaken by an uncontrollable state of ecstasy. It is for this reason that the majority of Shuyūkh of the Ahnāf prescribe a different form of dhikr that produces the same result and effect as produced by the hadra. In the Chishti Tarīqah, the Shuyūkh prescribe loud dhikr of the Kalīmah, La Ilāha illa Allah where the Murīd sits and focuses his concentration on his heart with his head turned towards the direction of his heart. Then, with full devotion, absorption and zeal he recites La ilaaha (there is no deity) while moving his head towards the back and left intending thereby the negation and purging of everything other than Allah from the heart. Thereafter, with full vigor and force, he recites illa Allah (except Allah) while meditating that the love of Allah is flooding his heart. The similar effect of thehadra, namely, that of purification of the heart and spiritual vigor is thus produced which are some of the main ingredients for reviving the diseased heart.
( وأما تحريك الرأس فقط يمنة ويسرة تحقيقا لمعنى النفي والإثبات في لا إله إلا الله فالظن الغالب جوازه بل استحبابه إذا كان مع النية الخالصة الصالحة فيخرج عن حد العبث واللعب ) ؛ لأن العبث ما لا فائدة فيه والتحقيق المذكور من أعظم الفوائد ( فيكون ) ذلك التحريك ( فعلا دالا ) دلالة عقلية ( على التوحيد مقارنا للقول ) وهو قول لا إله إلا الله ( الدال عليه ) دلالة وضعية فيجمع بين التوحيد الفعلي والقولي ( فتكون ) الكلمة الطيبة ( كلمة ككلمتين ) فالقول بلا حركة مرتين كالقول بالحركة مرة واحدة ( وأصله ) المقيس عليه ( رفع المسبحة في التشهد في الصلاة عند أشهد أن لا إله إلا الله ، وقد روي عن النبي صلى الله تعالى عليه وسلم في ) الأحاديث ( الصحاح مع أن الصلاة موضع سكون ووقار حتى كره فيها الالتفات ) يمنة ويسرة . (بريقة محمودية في شرح طريقة محمدية وشريعة نبوية ج 4 ص 139 مصطفى البابي الحلبي)
It is important to bear in mind that unfortunately, there has always existed groups of self-centered, worldly motivated pseudo-Sufis who misrepresented Tasawwuf and used some of the practices of the Sufis, not to mention concocted some of their own, to suit their nafsānī (selfish) desires. Some of them feign being Sufis in order to gain fame and popularity, others to engage in singing and dancing and others to earn money etc. It is from such people that deviances began to crop up in this pristine and praiseworthy science. Examples of their innovations include the Qawāli where singing and music are rampant under the guise of Dhikr, grave-worship where people commit shirk by prostrating to the inmates of the grave,  Salāmī where people stand up to offer salutations upon Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم with the belief that Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم visits the gathering and other similar practices that have no real connection with Tasawwuf. Because of the existence of such perfidious people and their impermissible practices, it has become a daunting task for sincere people such as you to find a true Shaykh and Tarīqah. EveryTarīqah has these imposters in their midst preying upon the ignorant masses; therefore, one must be cautious as to who one takes as a Murshid (guide). You should ensure that before taking formal bay‘ah to any Shaykh or entering into any Tarīqah,that the Shaykh is a complete adherent of the Sharī‘ah and upholds its dictates. Anyone who intentionally and openly breaks a single commandment of the Sharī‘ah is not worthy to be a Shaykh. A qualified Shaykh is he whose outward and inward appearance and actions conform to the Sunnah of Rasūlullah صلى الله عليه و سلم. A pious and righteous Shaykh is he in whose company a person feels the urge to act upon the dictates of the Sharī‘ah not disregard them. We advise you to continuously make du‘ā to Allah Ta‘ālā to guide you to a pious and upright Shaykh who will guide you in the field of Tasawwuf. You should make Mashwarah with pious local ‘Ulamā if any for their views on finding a genuine Shaykh. It is also important to understand that aside from the Shaykh being firm upon the Sharī‘ah, it is imperative that one have some congeniality with the Shaykh so that one can gain spiritual benefit from him. Without the existence of this congeniality and amiability, it will be difficult to consult with one’s Shaykh and follow his advices. Once you have found such a Shaykh who is strict in adherence to the Sharī‘ah and the Sunnah and you have an amicable relationship with him, you should place all your trust in him and follow all of his instructions without any doubt. Inshallah, in this manner you will ascend the stages of Tasawwuf with relative ease and obtain your objective.
Mufti Yusuf Bin Yaqub
Student Mufti Ebrahim Desai.
'Alaykum Salam.