“I am engaged now.” vs Nikah Kitaba

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This is one of the most ridiculous ideas I ever came across – please be offended, period.

I get to hear stories of singles willing to know each other before the marriage, so they go through a little (read huge) ceremony called Engagement, which allows them to know each other while not taking any risks. Nikkah sounds very serious and it comes with its obligations. People tend to shy away from it and I am almost certain that this has something to do with a severe lack of reliance on Allah Azzwajal.

Particularly, I am referring to Muslims who take a big gap between the Engagement and the actual Nikkah. I am also expecting ourselves to know that an engagement ring does not in any way allow us to party out in privacy with our future spouses. Engagement is ONLY a promise to marry, and I don’t see fiancé(e) as a relationship in our religion!

But it’s so harsh to say what I just said, because perhaps, almost all my people do it … but they must understand what they are up to. I believe it’s an sneaky attempt that is diffused in our culture to halal-ize the process of seeing potential future spouses on every alternative day just to get to know more about them before it’s too late. Then, if things doesn’t work, the engagement can be broken by just one phone call (just a promise), because after all, it was never meant to be serious. Astagfirullah, this is not Islam.

I don’t want to go into details of this getting-to-know-each-other debate, perhaps I need to know a little more to make opinions about it ..

But anyways, Islam has an alternative, Alhamdolillah. Our Prophet Muhammad PBUH practiced it with Ayesha RA. It is called Celibate Marriage (Nikaḥ kitāba). Now from whatsoever I read about it, it seems exactly like an engagement, but it comes with obligations, and it’s not in any way violation of any of the commandments of Allah SWT, Wa Allahu A’lam.

Few resources I referred to:

  • Brother Saqib Saab talked about it here.
  • The followup discussion thread on Shaykh Yaser’s almagrib lecture here.
  • A question about Engagement in Islam answered here.

In sum, we must always try to find alternatives to all the matters in our lives when there is even a slightest chance of committing something harram. None of us is perfect, and we are not supposed to be perfect. But just like a friend said, we should always try to gradually diminish our sinful acts, and leave the rest on Allah SWT, the oft-forgiving, Most Merciful –

“Say: O my servants who have transgressed against their souls! Despair not of the Mercy Of Allah: for Allah forgives all sins: for He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful” [Qur’an 39:53]

Quick warning to me, myself, and (my) car

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When the brain is asked to tackle two tasks at once, our brain gives priority to the more deeply ingrained skill like talking on the phone, causing us to miss visual cues and experience impaired peripheral vision and coordination.

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the zune is missing though :p

It’s never too late.

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I’ve attended a number of religious talks, listened to numerous online lectures, read hundreds of Islamic articles, and have discussed religious matters with a number of friends and family members. But so far, I never made a serious try to formalize my knowledge about Islam. I know that there are different recitation styles and why they exist, but I can hardly name a few as of now. I have heard about the laws of inheritance in Islam, but I never felt a need to memorize them. I’ve been a victim of dispute of Halal vs Haraam food, but I never wanted to learn exactly what scholars refer to while justifying their stances. I roughly know about what distinguishes a sha’afi praying posture from a Hanafi one, but I never took out time to seek the actual sources of these.

Now, on the other hand, I know what makes Java better than C++ and exactly how to play with dates in php. I can write an SQL query that can exceed 50 lines, and I can extract out patterns out of implicit social networks. I can crawl content from user-content driven websites, and I can write complex code to analyze huge data sets.

So, I hope I am clear :>

I, and I must say that all of us, should strive to mark a balance between how much we learn for our Duniyah and how much we learn for our religion. I see Dawah as an essential constituent of every educated muslim’s daily routine; and, I have experienced that it takes much more than random-know-how of what’s been made obligatory and what’s not by Allah SWT to convince our fellow “enlightened-moderation” affectees. 😉

Anyways, the schedule is tough, the weekends are far worst than the weekdays, the bills are high, and the Satan skips no opportunities to play around with the thoughts [1, 2, 3]; but Inshallah, I will try harder from now onwards to be more attentive and focused in regard to what I should learn about my deen.

over and out.
Asalamalaikum.

Listen.

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My heart is torn
Hear the wounds of my heart
Listen to the hope of a new dawn
I am stricken with grief
Listen to my being soaked with tears
Listen to the hope of a new dawn
My tongue is dry and unable to talk
Talk to my gaping wounds
Listen to the hope of a new dawn
My feet are tired
Listen to the sorrows of my journey
Listen to the hope of a new dawn
From the one who travels in the dark desert of tyranny
Hear him speak of the beauty of dawn
Hear the dawn
Hope of a new dawn
Listen to the hope of a new dawn
[and] My heart is torn ..

Trust, Responsibility, and Intentions.

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“If you put your whole trust in Allah, as you ought, He most certainly will satisfy your needs, as He satisfies those of the birds. They come out hungry in the morning, but return full to their nests.” [Tirmidhi]

Life is all about ups and downs (and downs and downs ?! :>) Alhamdolillah for everything. I try not to hasten but I ensure not to delay things; things that I’ve little control over. I think, talk, listen, argue, and learn. I think ideal, talk truth, listen critically, argue constructively, and learn sincerely. I’ve changed people’s opinions; opinions of people much older than me.. and helped them to be more optimistic.. Allah, the Exalted knows better.

And in the meantime, I discovered a bunch of things about my (real) self by observing the way people see me. The one best thing I learned is that I am different in the way I think about responsibility. One of the facets of optimism is an ideal trust on Allah SWT. With such an ideal trust, you feel comfortable in taking on responsibilities. Now, I don’t like it when someone tells me that he’s not mature enough to take a next big step in life, where apparently, all he is a trying to get is a little more freedom of being single, what we call partying out with friends. To me, it’s a lack of sense of responsibility combined with some nonsensical ideas about life.

Although, most of the times when we talk about the next big step, we refer to marriage. But, I want to talk in general. In general, how the heck can you feel immature by the age of 22-26? and again why the heck do you want to party out at such an age? I feel like this has something to do with the definition of freedom that perhaps is communicated to us by well-defined devilish sources like teen movies, sitcoms, and just some specific breed of friends. And this is where I become argumentative. I am straight in letting someone know that he’s a ruined fellow as far as his related concepts are concerned..  so harsh, I know! But to leave someone in a laughable state is NOT at all better than making him angry with you and at the same time, incite some serious thought process in him.

Anyways, unless someone has a geniune reason of not taking the next big step, He/She must take it.. I don’t see an option here and taking this step is not hastening, it’s truely about time. Talking about marriage, I am dead sure that it brings happiness being equally propotional to your intentions. If you want to enjoy a “few more” gatherings with friends to pick on each other and do some indecent jabbering etc. (while being financially able to get married) then you’re really not planning to take the most out of this relationship. There is not a single aim or goal of our lives that would ensure our well being in the hereafter, which might get obstructed by getting married. For all worldly objectives of supposed “well-being”, such a human being needs a serious rethinking.

Now most importantly, I don’t talk out of experience, I just try to make the most of the Hadeeths I know and the essence of trust on Allah SWT communicated by Allah SWT Himself. You are supposed to trust Him, depend on His plans, refresh your intentions, and take the decisions. And then, it’s so simple, with no need to know about people’s experiences :> and Allah, the Exalted knows the best.

`Abdullah ibn Mas’ood (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that he heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) say:

“Whoever transforms all of his concerns into one concern only – concern for the Hereafter – Allah will satsify his demands and needs in this life. As for he who devotes his concerns to wordly matters, Allah will not care in which valley he perishes.”

“Is he turning out to be a mulla?!”

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I knew that.

Sooner or later, the question becomes inevitable if you are determined to take “the u-turn“.

Things are happening around me at a much faster pace than I expected. Unfortunately, attitudes are turning out to be more hostile and questions becoming more critical. Observations are constant and judgments are biased. Some of them realized, and appreciated; but, perhaps the bigger chunk denounced and saddened me.

But, was I not prepared? No, I was prepared. Although, I am still not “complete” but I feel like I have what it takes to be patient with all the criticism around. Two things are worth mentioning here:

“Do men think that they will be left alone on saying, “We believe” and that they will not be tested?” [Quran 29-2]

“A person who is sitting on the ground does not fall, and people do not kick a dead dog.” [Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni]

I wouldn’t be able to complete this for now … academics – always there to haunt me and halt my learning :>

~asalamalaikum

I am back!

For a long time now, I have been trying to compose my thoughts in regard to this bombardment of questions. And overtime, I realized that my gradual self-cleansing is one of the facets of a trade off. A trade off where, if I stick to my plans, I would loose a lot of “my” people. My people who were always there to laugh and promote my jokes with even the slightest indecency; and, my people who always appreciated my ignorance pertaining to certain religious obligations.

But now, I am there. I am there to pray for them, and ask for them exactly what I ask for myself from Allah SWT because I know that the Prophet Mohammed (peace be up him) said, “Ask for others what you Ask for yourself, and you will be the most just of men.” [Ahmad].

Anyways, what do I expect in return!? .. as of now, just silence!

Allah The Most Kind – Tribute To Andalus (@ muslimmatters.org)

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I came across this hamd here. Sheikh Yasir Birjas described this effort as “The poem is attributed to Abdurrahim Ali Albura’iee a famous poet from Yemen who died in the 15th century, i.e the 9th hijri century. He was famous for his poems which promote Zuhd and asceticism. sh. Mishari sang more than one of his poems, and this is one of them. (Taken from another Arabic website). And Allah knows best.”

Undoubtedly, this poem is marvelously soothing for the ears.. and although I know nothing at all of arabic,  I can feel the sensational and powerful words literally affecting me somewhere inside. Mashallah!

May we all live in absolute fear of Allah SWT and find tranquility in submission ~ ameen.

الله ذو اللطائف

Allah, The Most Kind and Gentle

أَغِيبُ وذو اللّطائِف لا يغيبُ وأرجُوهُ رَجاءً لا يَخِيبُ

Although I vanish, the Most Gentle and Kind vanishes not.
Thus, I have hope in Him – hope that fails not.

وأَسْأَلُهُ السَّلامَةَ مِن زَمانٍ بُلِيتُ به نوائبهُ تُشِيبُ

I seek safety with Him from a time
where trials would age this body of mine

وأُنزِلُ حاجتي في كل حالٍ إلى مَن تطمئنُّ به القلوبُ

So, I bring my needs, and I’m ever in poverty
To the One with whom hearts find tranquility

فكم لله مِنْ تَدبِيرِ أَمْرٍ طَوَتْهُ عَنِ المُشَاهَدةِ الغُيوبُ

Numerous are the matters that Allah decrees!
Yet, the unseen realm, is that which none sees

وكم في الغَيْبِ مِن تَيْسِيرِ عُسْرٍ ومِنْ تَفريجِ نائبةٍ تَنُوبُ

His decree eases secretly our difficulties
And by decree does He alleviate our calamities

ومِن كَرَمٍ ومِن لُطْفٍ خَفِيٍّ ومِن فَرَجٍ تَزُولُ بِه الكُرُوبُ

and by His discreet kindness and generosity,
there’s relief – replacing all adversity.

ومَنْ لِي غَيرَ بابِ الله بابٌ ولا مَوْلًى سِواهُ ولا حَبيبُ

Whose door do I have, besides Allah’s door?
I have no other Master nor another whom I so adore!

كريمٌ مُنْعِمٌ بَرٌّ لَطِيفٌ جَمِيلُ الستْرِ للدّاعي مُجيبُ

He is generous, kind and gentle, blessing us ceaselessly,
He answers our prayers and conceals our faults so beautifully,

حَليمٌ لا يُعاجِلُ بالخَطايا رحيمٌ غَيْثُ رَحْمَتِهِ يَصُوبُ

Enduring is He, never hastening to recompense our delinquency
He bestows his mercy like pure rain, gracefully

فيا مَلِكَ المُلوكِ أَقِلْ عِثَارِي فَإنِّي عنْكَ أَنْأَتْنِي الذُّنُوبُ

Therefore, King of kings, please pardon me;
My sins have cast me so far away from thee

وَأَمْرَضَنِي الهَوَى لِهَوانِ حَظِّي وَلَكِنْ لَيسَ غَيْرَكَ لِي طَبِيبُ

My lusts have caused my malady
Yet there’s none but thee to heal me

فَآمِنْ رَوْعَتِي وَاكْبِتْ حَسُودًا فَإِنَّ النَّائِباتِ لها نُيُوبُ

So my Lord, comfort and shield me from eyes burning green.
for when calamities strike they do so with fangs sharp keen.

وَآنِسْنِي بِأَوْلادِي وَأَهْلِي فَقَدْ يَسْتَوْحِشَ الرَّجُلُ الغَرِيبُ

My Lord, fasten me with the joys of children and family
Without them a man is certainly a stranger, poor and lonely

وَلِي شَجَنٌ بِأَطْفالٍ صِغَارٍ أَكادُ إِذا ذَكَرْتُهُمُ أَذُوبُ

Ah, my young children, on their fate I do fret
Worn from worry and grief I am ever upset

ولَكِنِّي نَبَذْتُ زِمَامَ أَمْري لِمَنْ تَدْبِيرُهُ فِينا عَجِيبُ

But to thee the reigns of my life I do surrender
To the One who handles affairs with majestic splendor

هُوَ الرَّحْمنُ حَوْلِي وَاعْتِصَامِي بِهِ وَإِلَيْهِ مُبْتَهِلاً أُتِيبُ

The Most Merciful, my refuge and the pillar on which I lean
In repentance, I call Him with none in between.

إِلهِي أَنْتَ تَعْلَمُ كَيفَ حَالِي فَهَلْ يا سَيِّدِي فَرَجٌ قَرِيبُ

Allah, Of my condition thee did hear
so my Master, I ask, is relief near?

فيا دَيِّانَ يَومِ الدِّينِ فَرِّجْ هُمُوماً فِي الفُؤَادِ لها دَبِيبُ

O Lord of Judgment Day, relieve this anxiety
of stubborn worries that in my heart sink deeply

وَصِلْ حَبْلِي بِحَبْلِ رِضَاكَ وَانْظُرْ إِلَيَّ وَتُبْ عَلَيَّ عَسى أَتُوبُ

And bind me to the rope of thy content, and turn thy Face to me
And accept me so that I may repent and return wholly to thee.

وَرَاعِ حِمَايَتِي وَتَوَلَّ نَصْرِي وَشُدَّ عُرَايَ إِنْ عَرَتِ الخُطُوبُ

My safety and success are in thy Hands
So support my will against life’s difficult demands

وَأَلْهِمنِي لِذِكْرِكَ طُولَ عُمْرِي فَإِنَّ بِذِكْرِكَ الدُّنْيا تَطِيبُ

And with Thy remembrance illuminate my life.
Indeed when recalling thy name sweetness becomes rife

وَقُل عَبْدُ الرَّحِيمِ وَمَنْ يَلِيهِ لَهُم فِي رِيفِ رَأْفَتِنَا نَصِيبُ

And say of me that I am still thy servant
sharing in thy Kindness, drawing near to thee, no longer distant

فَظَنِّي فِيكَ يا سَنَدِي جَمِيلٌ وَمَرْعَى ذَوْدِ آمَالِي خَصِيبُ

My thoughts of thee, my Sustainer, are pleasant
And my hopes in thee, lie in meadows, fertile and fragrant

وَصَلِّ عَلى النَّبِيِّ وآلهِ مَا تَرَنَّمَ فِي الأراكِ العَنْدَلِيبُ

And send prayers and praises upon the Prophet and his family
For whom the nightingales from their branches sing their sweet melody


Translation by:
Yaser Birjas, Shpendim Nadzaku
Final Editing: “Manoffewwords”
Video by: Ahmad Saleem, Sadaf Tahir
Dedicated to the students of Ilm Summit 2008