The Goodly Life (Al Hayaat At-Tayyibah) – Shaykh Ash-Shinqitee

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Somewhere up there ..

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Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) was speaking about the people of Paradise one day when a Bedouin was present. He described how a man of the people of Paradise will ask his Lord’s permission to grow some plants. (In Arabic, the past tense is used here to show that this will undoubtedly happen). Allaah will ask him, “Do you not already have all that you want?” He will say, “Yes, but I like to grow things.” So he will go and plant his seeds, and within the blinking of an eye they will grow, ripen, be harvested and piled up like mountains. Allaah will say, “Here you are, O son of Adam, nothing makes you satisfied!” The Bedouin said, “O Messenger of Allaah, you will find that he is either from Quraysh or the Ansaar, for they are the ones who like to grow things; we don’t like to grow anything!” The Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) smiled broadly.
[Reported by al-Bukhaari, 6965]

Every once in a while, my imagination takes me somewhere up there where I catch glimpses of people enjoying certain charms known to this world as extraordinary. I don’t know many of them but what I know is that whatsoever they are enjoying is exactly what they left behind in this world because of the contamination that came along with it.

Somewhere up there, I see a brother who’s almost always chilling around with the Prophet Muhammad PBUH. I learned that he’s not one of His PBUH companions or the successors. Then, it doesn’t take long for me to recall that this brother was always the odd one out where ever I saw him. He was the strangest and to some, scariest person to roam around with. He used to ‘annoy’ us to pray on time, stay away from movies, turn the music off, and grow our beards the way the Prophet Muhammad PBUH had it. We were really fed up with his redundant alhamdolillahs and subhanallahs every now and then. His humbleness and apparent piety was really frustrating. We never saw him angry, impatient, or complaining about circumstances. We were jealous and annoyed … He was living the best moments of his life.

Somewhere up there, I see a brother surfing the blue waves of a beautiful sea that he owns while riding the most stylish Jetski, which is out of this world. Within moments a flashback roughly reminds me of the incident where the very same brother denied accompanying his friends to a beach party on a summer weekend, embarrassingly mentioning that “it’s too much” .. they ridiculed him for his lack of courage and for messing up the whole plan for his stupid ideas. But right now, I can’t stop looking at this beautiful sight; he just wouldn’t get tired surfing it.

Somewhere up there, once, I saw a few brothers cruising in some sort of vehicles. Those weren’t the cars we drive here but a lot faster than the fastest super cars I know of. They were competing in all sorts of competitions from sprints to drag races. Noticing them for a while, I realized that only a few of them were good at it, but they were all happy and content, they were loving it. One of them was a rich brother that I knew of. He was very rich but he chose to live a simple life.. we used to think that he’s a stingy person, and he’s just hoarding money. Just after he died we were shocked to know that he was not saving his money for the duniya, he was donating all of it for his akhirah. Next to him, was another brother who was almost always found around mosques and religious gatherings. He belonged to a lower middle class family, but he loved cars. He was pious, God-fearing, humble, and patient – but he just loved cars! Up there, they were enjoying together in the rides they never dreamed of.. they were happy, unlike anything!

But then I come back. I come back to find myself sitting on a couch with a bunch of worries. I find myself in midst of a chaos where every decision has the potential to lead me away from the straight path. And so we all have to come back. We all have to come back in this world which is worth nothing compared to what’s up there.

This temptation that leads us to struggle in certain matters of our lives is derived from our innate desire to achieve perfection. Unfortunately, it is not possible. It was never meant to be possible. But up there, you can let your desires drive your future. The future that has no boundaries :>

So, somewhere up there, I want to see myself enjoying everything that I must keep myself away from in this world. I want to see myself with my people. By Allah, I believe that many of us are very close to change this beautiful imagination into reality. A little more perseverance and patience, and Inshallah by means of Allah swt’s mercy, we are all set for the never ending, and uncontaminated pleasures of Jannah ..

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said (that Allaah said): ‘I have prepared for My righteous slaves that which no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and it has never entered the mind of man.’ Recite if you wish: “No person knows what is kept hidden for them of joy as a reward for what they used to do” [al-Sajdah 32:17]
[al-Bukhaari, 3244; Muslim 2824]

About Trials and Tribulations

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“Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: ‘We believe,’ and will not be tested?” [Qur’an 29:1-3]

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: “The people most severely tested are the Prophets, then the righteous, then the next best and the next best. A man will be tested in accordance with the degree of his religious commitment; the stronger his religious commitment, the stronger his test.”[Tuhfat al-Ahwadhi (7:78)]

“Or think you that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said: ‘When (will come) the help of Allah?’ Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!” [Qur’an 2:214]

And surely We shall try you with something of fear and hunger, and loss of wealth and lives and crops; but give glad tidings to the patient, Who says, when afflicted with calamity: “To Allah We belong, and to Him is our return”: They are those on whom (descend) Blessings from Allah, and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance. [Qur’an 2:155-157]

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “He whom Allah intends good, He makes him to suffer from some affliction” [Bukhari]

Abu Yahya Suhaib bin Sinan (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “How wonderful is the case of a believer; there is good for him in everything and this applies only to a believer. If prosperity attends him, he expresses gratitude to Allah and that is good for him; and if adversity befalls him, he endures it patiently and that is good for him” [Muslim]

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “A strong believer is better and dearer to Allah than a weak one, and both are good. Adhere to that which is beneficial for you. Keep asking Allah for help and do not refrain from it. (If you are afflicted in any way), do not say: ‘If I had taken this or that step, it would have resulted into such and such,’ but say only: ‘Allah so determined and did as He willed.’ The word ‘if’ opens the gates of satanic (thoughts)” [Muslim]

Graduated.

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The long pause was deliberate. Writing is addictive and sometimes we end up enlisting confessions that should have vanished .. perhaps, the key is to hold your horses; so, hold your pens, let the passage of time be at your service. Alhamdolillah, I graduated (masters degree) a couple of weeks ago. By Allah, every part of every endeavor I made by far was easy, very easy .. & by all means, I take it as a beginning. A beginning of a revitalized struggle to follow a true calling, an energetic devotion to a life of absolute servitude, and a passion to contribute with my abilities. I am not underestimating my experiences and successes, but I am not expecting things to soothe from now onwards. To be honest, there seems to be no stopping to this, and I like it as it is .. “easy” is boring :->

Inshallah, remember me in your prayers.
Asalamalaikum.

My Ramadan

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Asalamalaikum,

There’s a trend – Muslim bloggers just vanish from the blogosphere when it’s Ramadan, we know why, Alhamdolillah! But we’re almost done; I’ll break the silence, and I don’t want the memories to fade away.

First thing first – this was the best Ramadan of my life, I mean it, seriously. I don’t want to fake up anything.. a weaker faith, the distortions of a messed up mindset, serious lack of guidance, and the hopelessness are a few things that kept me away from staying up in the nights of previous Ramadans.

I am sure that my conclusions won’t be novel enough, but still, I am literally fearing as the last few hours of Ramadan are passing by. I discovered that the actual marathon hasn’t started yet, and that it’ll only end by the start of next Ramadan.. some of us might not see it. The distractions would be numerous and the shayateen would be all out to corrupt our pure thoughts. I seek help from Allah SWT, I am begging for it, I cried for it.

Following few things, I believe, are essentially what I practiced frequently. I pray to Allah SWT to bless us all with the motivation and consciousness to continue the Ramadan lifestyles, Inshallah.

1- TAHAJJUD PRAYERS

Abu Hurairah reports that the Messenger of Allah said: “Our Lord descends to the lowest heaven during the last third of the night, inquiring: ‘Who will call on Me so that I may respond to him? Who is asking something of Me so I may give it to him? Who is asking for My forgiveness so I may forgive him?’” [bukhari]

Take this Hadeeth in a literal sense! It’s not a fantasy and there’s nothing hypothetical about it. Alhamdolillah, can there be anything better than your ability to respond to Allah SWT’s above call by enlisting your halal desires?! And to add to it, think for a second – those who begin their days with such prayers, can there be any sort of satisfaction more worthy than the inner peace they get blessed with?! Subhanallah.

2- DESPAIR NOT THE MERCY

From Surah Al-Talaq (#65): “.. And for those who fear Allah, He (ever) prepares a way out [2] And He provides for him from (sources) he never could imagine. And if anyone puts his trust in Allah, sufficient is (Allah) for him. [3]

Focus; just try to focus on the words of these verses for a moment. Our biggest misery strikes us, when we try to “imagine” the ideal solutions to our problems. But Allah SWT gives us a straight-forward answer – the best of solutions, often a times, are unimaginable. This must end the story for a true believer because there is no logic that could justify that feel of despair – it’s not our responsibility to specify the solutions to Allah SWT in our supplications, and I repeat – it’s not, not at all! But, what’s the pre-condition? Just one – Fear Allah!

3- ASK FOR NOTHING BUT PERFECTION

Scholars try to bring us back to the realization that we need to compromise by coming out of the fantasy where we seek only the ideals – be it a wife, a job, or just about anything else. To a certain extent, I disagree. Compromise and Idealism can go together – realistically, we might have to give up on certain features, but in our supplications, we must not! We must not ask for anything lesser than a perfect outcome!

So our wordings do matter – never settle for less, at least in your duas. Ask Allah SWT to bless you with the best of the bests as per His criteria, and not your own understanding. Finally, what follows is Allah SWT’s decree and that’s where your compromise might come into play.

4- IF YOU ARE LIVING ON A TIGHT BUDGET, GIVE OUT SADAQA!

From Surah Saba’ (#34): “Say: Verily my Lord enlarges and restricts the Sustenance to such of His servants as He pleases: and what you spend in charity He replaces it: for He is the Best of those who grant Sustenance”. Saba 34 : 39

Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him) related that Allah’s messenger ( PBUH ) said, “No money ever decreases because of charity; when a servant of Allah forgives, Allah increases him in dignity; and whenever a person humbles himself to Allah, Allah will elevate his status” [Bukhari & Muslim]

This one applies to poor freaks like me. If you are tight on budget to a point where you’ve to cut on your eating-out feasts, it’s about time to follow the strategy suggested above! Just give it a try, I am a living proof! Get rid of the taboo that Sadaqa isn’t for students!

5- BEG FOR FORGIVENESS

From Surah At-Tahrim (#66): “O you who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance: In the hope that your Lord will remove from you your ills .. [8]”

Abu Bakr Al siddiq (May Allah be pleased with him), narrated: “I heard Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) saying: ‘There isn’t a man who, when he commits a sin, rises, makes ablution, and offers two rak’as of prayers, but Allah forgives his sins.

From Surah Az-Zumar (#39): “Tell them (oh Muhammad): ‘My (Allah’s) Servants who have committed excesses against themselves, do not be in despair in the mercy of Allah – surely, Allah forgives all sins. Verily Allah is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful [53]’”

Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Every son of Adam is a sinner, and the best of sinners are those who turn (to Allah) in repentance.” [Mishkatul-Masabih, Vol. 3, p. 360]

For the sake of brevity, I wish to convey just one idea – You don’t have to commit a sin and you don’t really have to recall some old sins as a pre-condition to seek forgiveness! Shouldn’t we be seeking forgiveness for lack of our thankfulness for the blessings of Allah SWT? Just for a moment, think once – would you have been able to be like one the strong companions of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), if you were living back then? if not, then shouldn’t you be repenting out of fear that you wouldn’t be able to catch up with them on the day of judgment?

With this state of mind, you’ll always be forcing yourself to rise up from your sujoods – and in such a case, Allah SWT will take care of your worldly matters to start with! :->

6- INNER PEACE & A SATISFIED HEART

I don’t have guts to write about this – I am no’t capable enough. Perhaps, there isn’t anything more important than it. It’s not rare that we desire for something (thinking that it will result in ultimate happiness) and when we get it, we are exactly the same person with just one change – we pick a new goal while tricking ourselves to run after it for happiness. All our lives, in general, we run after things one by one, the trail never ends.. we take wrong turns.

To end it, I picked up few quotes from “Don’t be Sad” by Aaidh ibn Abdullah al-Qarni:

“It has been said that happiness is an art that needs to be learned. And if you learn it, you will be blessed in this life.. The opposite of being content is being shortsighted,.. Basic to the art of happiness is to bridle our thoughts and to restrain them, not allowing them to wander, stray, escape, or go wild. For if you were to leave your thoughts to wander as they wish, then they will run wild and control you. They’ll open the catalogue of your past woes.. If your thoughts are left to roam, then they will bring to you images of past difficulties and images of a future that is frightening. These thoughts will shake your very being and will cause your feelings to flare. Therefore bridle them, and restrain them by directing them to the concentrated application of the kind of serious thought that begets fruitful and beneficial work.”

Few related supplications:

“O Allah! It is Your mercy that I hope for so do not leave me in charge of my affairs even for a blink of an eye and rectify for me all of my affairs. None has the right to be worshiped except You.”

“O Allah, I take refuge in you from anxiety and sorrow, weakness and laziness, miserliness and cowardice, the burden of debts and from being over-powered by men.”

Just got the news, it’s Eid tomorrow 🙂

May Allah SWT accept our fasts and duas at the commencement of this blessed month,  Assalaam alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuhu!

Done with academics Period

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  • Twenty four years of examinations, Alhamdolillah, & I am done now.
  • It’s about time to step into the new phase of my life.
  • I am prepared and I am satisfied; I am blessed by all means, Alhamdolillah.
  • I just can’t stop thanking Allah SWT for everything that has been happening around me, with me, for me.

But, there’s always something that keeps me from being ‘absolute’ happy.. I don’t feel like home anywhere. I get suggestions to visit the parents back home, but I am sure that it’s going to add more weight to this melancholy (I wished never to use this word). There are few thing I can talk about though.

I do not ‘party’. Not that I don’t want to, but I just don’t want to damage my Imaan by becoming a part of some celebration that goes beyond the limits set by Allah SWT for Muslims. Now when I do this, I make a whole bunch of people angry at me. And, the situation turns worst when I try to justify the cause of my decisions. Then, I also try my level best to stay away from movies and music. Not that it’s all not attractive to me, but because I don’t want to witness the kissing scenes in transformers2 with no shame and pretend that I didn’t see it. I am a man and I am not kid enough to shade my eyes when 18+ stuff happens. So, I have two options: either I enjoy my Isha prayer; or, I feel the guilt while praying it at 1:00 am because I went to theater and then wasted some time in talking rubbish at starbucks. And finally, I put a period on all discussions that lead to obscenity. So, I lost the ‘fun’ part of my old friends, I lost my friends.

So, I am alone, perhaps by purpose. If good comes, I’ll take it. For all else, I hold up on myself. I’ll force myself to hate that which is not in compliance with The Instruction Set.  I’ll prefer the patience over the useless laugh-out-louds. I’ll wait, Inshallah :>

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 ..