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Ali Hammuda
01-20-2016, 12:02 AM
Every door to Allah SWT is vaulted shut till the end of time, with the exception of one; the door which the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) opened.

The perfect guidance is in his, the finest example is in him and the only way to Paradise is strictly behind him.

Never was it about wishful thinking or hollow words of admiration, but love of the Prophet (PBUH) - should it be true - is in one’s reliving of his mornings and evenings, public and private life within ours.

Al-Hasan Al-Basri said,
كان علامة حبِّهم إياه إتِّباع سنَّة رسول الله صلَّى الله عليه وسلَّم
“A sign of their love of the Prophet (PBUH) was in their adherence to his way.”


This is love in its truest and most rewarding form, for your station as a Muslim in the eyes of Allah is directly linked to your level of adherence to His Messenger’s (PBUH) way.

Things have changed dramatically however from how they used to be ..

The companions would insist on *every* Sunnah because, “it’s a Sunnah!” whilst many of us today downplay them, arguing “it’s a Sunnah” How different they were from us.

The companions felt that they had a *serious* interest in tracking down the footsteps of the beloved Messenger (PBUH), for they’d recognised that he’d been entered into the highest grades in Paradise and had attained Allah’s pleasure.

However, we – the Muslims of the 21st century – definitely crave a similar prize!

With that said, I will - insha’Allah - start a new series of 40 concise daily postings pertaining to carefully picked Sunnahs which, in many cases, have been neglected and are in need of reviving in our day to day lives.

The Prophet (PBUH) said,
إِنَّهُ مَنْ أَحْيَا سُنَّةً مِنْ سُنَّتِي قَدْ أُمِيتَتْ بَعْدِي، فَإِنَّ لَهُ مِنَ الأَجْرِ مِثْلَ مَنْ عَمِلَ بِهَا مِنْ غَيْرِ أَنْ يَنْقُصَ مِنْ أُجُورِهِمْ شَيْئًا
“Whoever revives a Sunnah of mine which had been forsaken after me, he will be given the reward of all those who act upon it without any of their rewards diminishing.” (Narrated by At-Tirmithi)

Do not deprive yourself in partaking in this reward from this post onwards by:

(1) Immediately reliving each Sunnah as it’s posted
(2) Sharing them with family firstly and then your wider circle of associates.

Do not belittle any Deed. This may be the one that saves you and I.
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farhan
01-20-2016, 02:43 AM
:jz:

Wow look forward to this series :).

May Allah help us practise and implement all these beautiful Sunnahs. Ameen.
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Ali Hammuda
01-20-2016, 03:40 PM
Avoiding criticism of the Halal food & drink which one dislikes

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 1 of 40]


“Yuck!” “Ugh!” “That reeks!” “What on earth is that?!” These are terms and sounds that we’ve all heard before around the dinner table. May Allah SWT pardon us.

Abu Huraira says, describing a Sunnah that was abandoned in the examples above:

ما رأيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عاب طعاما قط . كان إذا اشتهاه أكله ، وإن لم يشتهه سكت
“Never in my life did I see the Prophet (PBUH) mock any type of food. If he desired it, he would it from it. If he didn’t, he would remain quiet.” (Narrated by Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

In fact, the Prophet (PBUH) and Khalid Ibnul Walid once entered upon the house of Maymoona, the wife of the Prophet (PBUH) and a roasted long-tailed lizard was presented. The Prophet (PBUH) reached out to eat from it but then some of the women said, ‘Tell the Prophet (PBUH) about what he’s about to eat!’ They said, ‘This is a lizard’ So at once, he lifted his hand away.

Upon seeing this, Khalid asked, ‘O messenger of Allah, is it Haraam?’ The response of the Prophet (PBUH) was remarkably polite and carefully worded. He said,

لا ولكن لم يكن بأرض قومي فأجدني أعافه
‘No, but this type of food is unfamiliar in my land and so I find myself disliking it.’

Having received the green light, Khalid said, ‘So I took it and began chewing it whilst the Prophet (PBUH) looked at me.’ (Narrated by Al-Bukhari)

Even if certain foods & drinks don’t sit well with us, they certainly do with many others and thus are deserving of tremendous gratitude to Allah, not vulgar mockery.

This Hadith also shows that there isn’t a problem in politely turning down food which one dislikes and that there is no shyness in doing so, as opposed to forcefully swallowing what we abhor whilst trying to exhibit the fakest of smiles!

From today, plug in this prophetic Sunnah into your life.

May Allah gather the writer of this post, its readers and every Muslim who contributes in the reviving of this Sunnah with the beloved Mohammad (PBUH) in the highest of gardens in Jannah.
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Ali Hammuda
01-21-2016, 06:46 PM
When shaking the hand of another Muslim

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 2 of 40]

Anas Ibnu Maalik said,

أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم كان إذا صافح رجلاً لم يترك يده حتى يكون هو التارك ليدِ رسول الله
“Whenever the Prophet (PBUH) would shake hands with another man, he would not remove his hand from his till the man would pull away first.” (Narrated by At-Tirmithi)

Subtlety at its best and care at its peak. The feelings of people were incredibly important to him.

Full-fledged fall outs between Muslims have occurred that were merely due to a “half-hearted handshake”. Whilst such a reaction is unjustified, the reality is that we are all *very* prone to the harbouring of such sentiments. We are weak and shaytan whispers, thus the Prophet (PBUH) did everything at his disposal to close every one of his potential doors.

If this was his level of care during a short-lived episode of handshaking, how would he react had he seen those of us today who’ve unjustly boycotted another Muslim, refusing to even greet in the first place?

Beginning with the next Muslim you greet, plug in this beautiful Sunnah.

May Allah gather the writer of this post, its readers and every Muslim who contributes in the reviving of this Sunnah with the beloved Mohammad (PBUH) in the highest of gardens in Jannah.
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Ali Hammuda
01-25-2016, 10:49 PM
Saying, “I don’t know”

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 3 of 40]

One of the heaviest matters on the hearts of many people - particularly in an era which provides an unrestricted platform for everyone to voice their opinions - is the statement, “I don’t know”, “I don’t have an answer”, “I will look into it and get back to you”

Ibn Sarh said, وقد صار لا أدري عند أهل زماننا هذا عيبًا!
“The statement of ‘I don’t know’ in our times is now deemed embarrassing!”

Allahu akbar! This is what Ibn Sarh says about his community, bearing in mind that he passed away in 250AH, around 1200 years ago.

As for the Prophet (PBUH), he was not afraid in the least in saying, “I do not know”. He once said,

مَا أَدْرِي تُبَّعٌ أَلَعِينًا كَانَ أَمْ لَا؟ وَمَا أَدْرِي ذُو الْقَرْنَيْنِ أَنَبِيًّا كَانَ أَمْ لَا؟ وَمَا أَدْرِي الْحُدُودَ كَفَّارَاتٌ لِأَهْلِهَا أَمْ لَا
“I do not know if Tubba’ was cursed or not. I do not know if Dhul Qarnayn was a prophet or not. I do not know if capital punishments cleanse a person from sins or not.”
(Narrated by Al-Bayhaqi)

This Prophetic mannerism and tremendous caution of our Prophet (PBUH) rubbed off immensely on his companions and those who came after them. Reflect on the following passages.

The companion Abu Bakr said,

أَيُّ سَمَاءٍ تُظِلُّنِي، وَأَيُّ أَرْضٍ تُقِلُّنِي؟ إِذَا أَنَا قُلْتُ فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ مَا لَا أَعْلَمُ
“Which sky will roof me and which earth will carry me if I was to speak with regards to the Qur’an without knowledge?!”

The companion Ibnu Mas’ood said, من أفتى الناس في كل ما يستفتونه فهو مجنون

“Whoever provides an answer to every question that’s posed to him is insane.”

In fact, ‘AbdurRahman Ibn Abi Layla said,

أدركتُ عشرين ومائة من الأنصار من أصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم، يُسأل أحدهم المسألة فيردها إلى هذا، وهذا إلى هذا، حتى ترجع إلى الأول منهم، ما منهم من أحد إلا ود أن أخاه كفاه الفتيا
“I met 120 companions from the companions of the Prophet (PBUH). One of them would be asked a question and so he would refer him to someone else and that someone would refer him to someone else till the question would return back to the first person! Each and every single one of them wished that his brother would spare him the burden of answering!”

When Imam Malik answered a questioner with, “I don’t know”, the questioner urged him to answer, saying: “It’s only a light matter”. This infuriated Malik. He said,

ليس في العلم شيء خفيف، ألم تسمع قوله جل ثناؤه: "إِنَّا سَنُلْقِي عَلَيْكَ قَوْلا ثَقِيلا"
“No aspect of knowledge is light!! Have you not read the verse where Allah said, ‘We shall send down to you a *heavy* word!’ (Surat Al-Muzammil)

Allahu Akbar ..

They were not afraid of exercising the Islamic practice of “I don’t know”, for they’d recognised that any answer is in fact a signature on behalf of Allah and His messenger. Thus, realise that every opinion of yours, lecture, post, comment that wasn’t the product of astute understanding and grounded knowledge on the matter is a forged the signature.

Whether the matter pertains to segregation, niqaab, men’s/women’s role in society, the interpretation of Islamic texts or their likes, almost everyone seems to have an opinion to share. Just as Hisn Al-Asdi once said,

إن أحدكم ليفتي في المسألة، لو وردت على عمر بن الخطاب لجمع لها أهل بدر
“One of you issues verdicts on matters which, had they been presented to ‘Umar, he would have gathered the people of Badr for consultation!”

It is not necessary for you to have an opinion in every matter out there.

But even if you do have an opinion, it is not always necessary that you convey it.

But even if you do need to convey it, it is not always necessary that you do so to everyone.

But even if you do, it is not necessary for you to feel offended should you be corrected.

Beginning with the next impulse to comment without *absolute* surety, exercise the practice of “I don’t know”.
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Ali Hammuda
01-29-2016, 11:14 PM
Looking towards the sky

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 4 of 40]

Another largely forsaken Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH) is looking up towards the sky, a practice which gives a clear indication as per where the mind and heart of the Prophet (PBUH) were situated.

‘Umar Ibnul Khattaab said that the Prophet (PBUH) said,

مَنْ تَوَضَّأَ فَأَحْسَنَ الْوُضُوءَ، ثُمَّ رَفَعَ بَصَرَهُ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ فَقَالَ: أَشْهَدُ أَنْ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللهُ، وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ، وَأَشْهَدُ أَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا عَبْدُهُ وَرَسُولُهُ، فُتِحَتْ لَهُ ثَمَانِيَةُ أَبْوَابٍ مِنَ الْجَنَّةِ يَدْخُلً مِنَ أَيِّهَا شَاءَ
“Whoever performs Wudhoo’ with perfection, then looks into the heavens and says, ‘Ash-hadu an laa ilaaha ilallaah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu wa rasooluh’ the eight gates of Paradise will be made to open for him (!!) so that he can enter through whichever gates he wishes.” (Narrated by An-Nasaa’i)

In fact, this was common practice of our Prophet (PBUH). The companion, Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari says about the Prophet (PBUH),

وكان كثيرا ما ينظر على السماء
“He used to *frequently* look into the sky.” (Narrated by Muslim)

His wife, Maymoona would even say,

مَا خَرَجَ رَسُولُ اللهِ -صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ- مِنْ بَيْتِي قَطُّ إِلَّا رَفَعَ بَصَرَهُ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ، فَقَالَ: «اللهُمَّ إِنِّي أَعُوذُ بِكَ أَنْ أَضِلَّ أَوْ أُضَلَّ، أَوْ أَزِلَّ أَوْ أُزَلَّ، أَوْ أَجْهَلَ أَوْ يُجْهَلَ عَلِيَّ، أَوْ أَظْلِمَ أَوْ أُظْلَمَ»
“Never did the Prophet (PBUH) ever leave my house except that he would raise his glance to the sky and say, ‘O Allah, I seek refuge in You from leading others astray or being led astray, or causing others to slip or slipping myself, or behaving ignorantly or others behaving ignorantly with me, or oppressing others or others oppressing me”
(Narrated by At-Tabaraani)

The Prophet (PBUH) would also look upwards at times, even if he was indoors! In fact, our mother ‘Aisha said, speaking about the Prophet’s (PBUH) final moments which took place within her house,

فرفع رأسه إلى السماء وقال : في الرفيق الأعلى . في الرفيق الأعلى
“He then raised his head to the sky and said, ‘I want to be with the Highest Companion, I want to be with the Highest Companion.” (Al-Bukhari)

Allah SWT would acknowledge the repetitive upwards looking of the Prophet (PBUH), saying to him:

قَدْ نَرَى تَقَلُّبَ وَجْهِكَ فِي السَّمَاءِ
“We certainly see the turning of your face towards the heaven” (Al-Qur’an)

It is well known that repetitive staring at a matter indicates the heart’s attachment to it. In fact, repetitive staring at a matter can be the very cause of attachment, and thus the obligation of lowering the gaze from the opposite gender.

With that said, have you ever noticed how whenever the “heavens and earth” are made mention of in the Qur’an, the heavens are almost always mentioned first?

This is by no accident. In fact, in the verses that speak of reflection, ALL of them begin with the mentioning of the heavens first. Yes, the sky above us is special.

Allow your eyes to roam freely into the sky, particularly when making Du’aah, when contemplating over the Qur’an, or even randomly as you walk to work, and see

1: How your awe of Allah will grow

2: How your awe of others will dwindle

3: How your fear of Allah will grow

4: How your fear of others will dwindle

5: How your dependency and attachment to Allah will surge

6: How your dependency and attachment to others will dwindle
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Ali Hammuda
02-02-2016, 10:27 PM
Present absence

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 5 of 40]

Sitting in the presence of scholars is a wondrous privilege, let alone being in the company of a messenger who communicates with angels and is connected with the heavens, let alone the company of the greatest of those messengers and finest of Allah’s creation; Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

Only Allah knows of just how magnificent, pure and righteous such a gathering was. Yet, despite this, the Prophet (PBUH) would be heard in such gatherings quietly begging Allah for His pardon over and over again.

The companion, Ibnu ‘Umar was one such companion who’d witnessed this. He said,

إن كنَّا نعد لرسول الله صلَّى الله عليه وسلَّم، في المجلس الواحد مائة مرة: رب اغفر لي، وتب عليَّ، إنَّك أنت التَّواب الرَّحيم
“In just one sitting with the Prophet (PBUH), we used to count him saying, ‘My Lord, forgive me and pardon me, for You are the One who forgives, The Most Merciful’ no less than 100 times” (Narrated by Abu Dawud and At-Tirmithi)

His body was with his companions, conversing with them, listening to their needs, rejoicing at their happiness and sharing their sorrows, but his mind was eternally latched on to its Creator, struggling to allow a moment to pass without remembering Him.

Why is such a Sunnah particularly important today?

Because if these were the words of the Prophet (PBUH) in the gathering of companions, those gatherings which he so dearly loved as the discussions were almost always centred around Paradise, Hell and the Home of the Hereafter, then you and I are *most* in need of this forsaken Sunnah, in an age when Hereafter-oriented conversation is, at times, completely missing from our conversations or is brought up very shyly by a reluctant attendee.

We have all experienced the sticky situation before where we find ourselves compelled to sit with those whom we don’t necessarily want to. People whom you feel will pose a greater harm to your heart than benefit. What does one do in such a situation?

= Apply the Sunnah above! It will prove indispensable.

Imam Ibnul Qayyim elaborates on this with the most remarkable of words. He says,

"وإن دعت الحاجة إلى خلطتهم في فضول المباحات : فليجتهد أن يقلب ذلك المجلس طاعة لله إن أمكنه، ويشجع نفسه، ويقوي قلبه، ولا يلتفت إلى الوارد الشيطاني القاطع له عن ذلك، بأن هذا رياء ومحبة لإظهار علمك وحالك، ونحوذلك، فليحاربه، وليستغن بالله، ويؤثر فيهم من الخير ما أمكنه"
“And if you are put in a situation where you *must* interact with such a gathering of excessive 'mubaahaat' (meaning, those things which don’t bring about sin nor good deeds, but excessive indulgence in them isn’t praiseworthy) then let him do his best in converting this gathering to a gathering of obedience to Allah, if possible.
Let him encourage himself, gather his heart and not pay attention to shaytan who whispers, saying: ‘You are showing off! You want people to look at you!” No, fight this off, seek the assistance of Allah, and try your best to affect them in the best possible way”

But what if this isn’t an option? For at times, not only is one unable to offer advice, but is even restricted from leaving such a gathering!

Imam Ibnul Qayyim goes on to say, offering the marvellous solution:

"فإن أعجزته المقادير عن ذلك، فليَسُلَّ قلبه من بينهم كسل الشعرة من العجين،وليكن فيهم حاضراً غائباً، قريباً بعيداً، نائماً يقظاناً، ينظر إليهم ولايبصرهم، ويسمع كلامهم ولا يعيه، لأنه قد أخذ قلبه من بينهم ورقى به إلى الملأ الأعلى، يسبح حول العرش مع الأرواح العلوية الزكية
“But if he really is unable to do this, then (*read carefully*) let him pull his heart away from them the same way he pulls out the strand of hair from the dough, and let him be present yet absent, close to them yet so far, asleep yet wide awake, he looks at them but he can’t see them, he perceives them speaking but he can’t hear them.
This is because he has pulled his heart away from them and ascended with it to the highest of heights, as it praises Allah and glorifies Him around His Throne, along with all of the other pure souls of humanity”

He concludes,

"وما أصعب هذا وأشقه على النفوس، وإنه ليسير على من يسره الله عليه"
“And how difficult this on one’s heart! Yet it is easy for the one whom Allah assists.”
(From his book, 'Madaarij As-Saalikeen')

If the circumstances have dictated that your body is bound within an unfavourable gathering, then release your heart into the meadows of remembrance, allowing it to inhale from its winds of ‘iman and Godliness.

In any case however, beginning from the next gathering you sit in, revive this Prophetic Sunnah.
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Ali Hammuda
02-02-2016, 10:29 PM
Give it a moment to cool

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 6 of 40]


The sight of the waiter walking towards our table carrying the food as it sits in its iron plate within the wooden tray, crackling away in its heat is beyond exciting.

The idea of presenting diners with a sizzling plate of food is a dramatic introduction to the dish.

The tray barely makes contact with the table before the hungry diners pounce at the dish, juggling the scorching bits of food from hand to hand before then throwing it into their mouths. Funnily enough, despite the subsequent complaints of being burnt and urgent cries for yoghurt, people seem to enjoy this experience and do it again and again.

In fact, the vast majority of people nowadays cannot stomach their food unless it’s piping hot!

Many of us will be surprised to learn however that eating food in that piping-hot state is a head-on collision with the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH)

Whenever Asmaa, the daughter of Abu Bakr, would make Thareed (a traditional Arab dish which the Prophet (PBUH) liked), she would cover it so that the steam may subside and would say,

إني سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول : إنه أعظم للبركة
“I heard the Prophet (PBUH) say, ‘By doing this, the Barakah (blessing) will be increased.” (Narrated by Ibnu Hibbaan)

Similarly, Abu Huraira would said,

لا يؤكل طعام حتى يذهب بخاره
“Food isn’t to be eaten till its steam subsides.” (Narrated by Al-Bayhaqi)

Rather than spattering your shirt with stains, dirtying your carpet and causing yourself painful burns, revive this forsaken Sunnah and encourage others to do so.

We wait for angered people to cool down before conversing with them. Similarly, food is most beneficial when it is in that state as well.
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Ali Hammuda
02-05-2016, 01:29 AM
Don’t sleep till you first do this!

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 7 of 40]

The Night of Decree (‘Laylatul Qadr’) is a night which every Muslim eagerly pursues in the last ten nights of Ramadan, hoping in a reward of having worshipped Allah for more than 1000 months.

There is however a much abandoned opportunity which offers itself *every* single evening for those who wish to reap a reward of similar multiplication, namely -
Four units of Salaah after the ‘Isha Salaah.

The companion, ‘Abdullahi Ibnu ‘Amr said,

مَنْ صَلَّى أَرْبَعًا بَعْدَ الْعِشَاءِ كُنَّ كَقَدْرِهِنَّ مِنْ لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْر
“Whoever prays four units after the ‘Isha prayer, his reward will be like a person who’d offered them on Laylatul Qadr (!!)”(Narrated by Ibnu Abi Shayba)

Our mother ‘Aisha also said,

أَرْبَعٌ بَعْدَ الْعِشَاءِ يَعْدِلْنَ بِمِثْلِهِنَّ مِنْ لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ
“Four units after the ‘Isha prayer are as if one had offered them on Laylatul Qadr” (Narrated by Ibnu Abi Shayba)

Furthermore, Ibnu Mas’ood would say,

مَنْ صَلَّى أَرْبَعًا بَعْدَ الْعِشَاءِ لَا يَفْصِلُ بَيْنَهُنَّ بِتَسْلِيمٍ ، عَدَلْنَ بِمِثْلِهِنَّ مِنْ لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ
“Whoever prays four units after ‘Isha without doing Tashuhhud in between, it will be as if he’d offered them on LaylatulQadr.” (Narrated by Ibnu Abi Shayba)

Similar statements are also attributed to Mujaahid, ‘AbdurRahman Ibnul Aswad and others, all of which have authentic chains of narrations, as was stated by Shaykh Al-Albaany (from his book, ‘Ad-Da’eefa’)

From this evening onwards, ensure that you don’t fall asleep only after you’ve first applied this light Sunnah that brings with it such a heavy reward.
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Ali Hammuda
03-08-2016, 01:01 PM
Your joints & the Duha prayer

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 8 of 40]

Something as minor as a sprained ankle or a dislocated thumb is all what it takes to awaken us to just how indispensable every one of our God-given joints are. In fact, the damaging of certain joints can bring about a complete standstill to our lives.

Due to the enormity of such a blessing, the Prophet (PBUH) once said,

كُلُّ سُلاَمَى مِنَ النَّاسِ عَلَيهِ صَدَقَةٌ، كُلَّ يَومٍ تَطلُعُ فِيهِ الشَّمْسُ: تَعْدِلُ بَينَ الاثْنَينِ صَدَقةٌ، وتُعِينُ الرَّجُلَ فِي دَابَّتِهِ، فَتَحْمِلُهُ عَلَيْهَا أَوْ تَرفَعُ لَهُ عَلَيْهَا مَتَاعَهُ صَدَقَةٌ، وَالكَلِمَةُ الطَيِّبَةُ صَدَقَةٌ، وبكلِّ خَطْوَةٍ تَمشِيهَا إِلَى الصَّلاةِ صَدَقَةٌ، وتُمِيطُ الأذَى عَنِ الطَّريقِ صَدَقَةٌ
"A charity is due for *every* joint within a person’s body on each day that the sun rises (Then, the Prophet (PBUH) goes on to elaborate on the various avenues of charity). To judge justly between two people is a charity. To help a man with his mount, lifting him onto it or hoisting up his belongings onto it, is a charity. And the good word is a charity. And every step that you take towards the prayer is a charity, and removing a harmful object from the road is a charity." (Narrated by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

But for us to realise just how many charities are due of us each day, we first need to be aware of the number of joints within us.

The Prophet (PBUH) has informed us that we in fact possess no less than 360 joints (!) and thus whoever manages to give 360 charities each day, then ..

فَإنَّهُ يُمْسِي يَومَئِذٍ وقَدْ زَحْزَحَ نَفسَهُ عَنِ النَّارِ
“he would have pushed himself away from the fire that evening.” (Narrated by Muslim)

This is incredibly worrying. Whilst we may manage to put forward 360 charities on some days, we will most surely fail to do so on many others. Such failure will only add to the burden of accountability on the Day of Standing, as the questioning before Allah will only increase in its details.

But, Alhamdulillah, there is a way out.

The Prophet (PBUH) said, after having listed the many avenues of charity:

وَيُجزِىءُ مِنْ ذلِكَ رَكْعَتَانِ يَركَعُهُما مِنَ الضُّحَى
“..And praying two units of the Duha prayer suffices from all of this” (Narrated by Muslim)

For those who worry about the prospects of not being able to keep up with 360 charities on a daily basis, this bit of Prophetic guidance should really be acted upon with a passion.

How many units is the Duha prayer?

= The minimum is two units and the maximum is unlimited.

When does the time for the Duha prayer begin?

= From around a quarter of an hour after the sun has risen until ten minutes before the Dhuhr (noon) prayer.

But such a time is so inconvenient, for it coincides with our work, studies and morning outings!

= That is true. For this reason, the Prophet (PBUH) would say:

لَا يُحَافِظُ عَلَى صَلَاةِ الضُّحَى إِلَّا أَوَّابٌ
“The only one who *diligently* performs the Duha prayer is the ‘Awwaab’” (Narrated by At-Tabarani)

The term ‘Awwaab’ is a praiseworthy trait which is in reference to a person who is always returning to Allah in repentance.

May Allah make us amongst them, for Paradise belongs to them. Allah said,

وَأُزْلِفَتِ الْجَنَّةُ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ غَيْرَ بَعِيدٍ (31) هَذَا مَا تُوعَدُونَ لِكُلِّ أَوَّابٍ حَفِيظٍ (32)
“And Paradise will be brought near to the righteous, not far. It will be said, "This is what you were promised - for every Awwaab and keeper of His covenant.” (Al-Qur’an)

Set a daily alarm on repeat for your Duha prayer, and I ask Allah to enter you and I into Jannah without any prior accountability or suffering.
Reply

Ali Hammuda
03-11-2016, 12:16 AM
Two units of prayer after sin

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 9 of 40]

Imam Ibnu Taymiyyah said,

“When the believer commits a sin, its punishment can be pushed away via 10 ways:

1 – By repentance and thus Allah pardons him, for the one who repents from sin is just like the one who had not committed the sin
2 – Or he asks Allah for forgiveness and thus is forgiven
3 – Or he does good deeds which, by their nature, wipe sins away.
4 – Or when his brothers from the believers make Du’ah for Allah to pardon him, whether he is dead or alive.
5 – Or when they gift some of their good deeds to him
6 – Or when the Prophet (PBUH) intercedes for him on the day of Judgement
7 – Or when Allah trials him with calamities in the life of this world which erase sins
8 – Or when Allah trials him in the grave which erases sins
9 – Or when Allah trials him on the Day of Judgement via its horrors which erases sins
10 – Or when the Most Merciful shows mercy to him”

Imam Ibnu Taymiyyah goes on to say,

فَمَنْ أَخْطَأَتْهُ هَذِهِ الْعَشَرَةُ فَلَا يَلُومَنَّ إلَّا نَفْسَهُ
“So whoever misses every one of these ten ways, then let him not blame anyone but himself.” (Majmoo’ Al-Fatawah)

Reread points number 1 and 2, as the neglected Sunnah which this reminder will allude to focuses on them.

The Prophet (PBUH) said,

ما من رجلٍ يذنب ذنباً، ثمَّ يقوم فيتطهر، ثمَّ يصلِّي - وفي رواية: ركعتين - ثمَّ يستغفر الله؛ إلا غفر الله له
“There isn’t anyone who commits a sin but then gets up, purifies himself, prays two units of prayer, and then asks Allah for forgiveness except that Allah will forgive him” (narrated by Abu Dawood and At-Tirmithi and classified as authentic by Al-Albany)

This is a Sunnah that screams out in desperation, urging every sinner to revive it.

We will most certainly fall weak, perhaps we may trespass a limit of Allah in privacy or at times, even come out with the sin in public. This will not pass without repercussions.

But is there a way out from such repercussions?

Yes, and as Ibnu Taymiyyah illustrated above, it has been *clearly* signposted.

One such signpost is the Sunnah above.

Apply it over and over again, and do not despair.
Reply

Ali Hammuda
03-12-2016, 11:21 AM
If you’re happy and you know it

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 10 of 40]

The air punch has become an iconic gesture which indicates excitement and triumph. Should this triumph be of even greater importance, the individual at hand may even “jump for joy”, an expression that has become an idiomatic expression of joy.

With that said, we should ask:

How did our the beloved Prophet (PBUH) express his joy?

= By doing something which in fact was the polar opposite of the above.

The companion Abu Huraira explains,

أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم كَانَ إِذَا جَاءَهُ أَمْرُ سُرُورٍ أَوْ بُشِّرَ بِهِ خَرَّ سَاجِدًا شَاكِرًا للهِ
“Whenever the Prophet (PBUH) would encounter happy moments or would be given good news, he would fall to his face in prostration in gratitude to Allah.” (Narrated by Abu Dawud)

Imam Ibnul Qayyim said, commenting on this:

وكان من هديه صلَّى الله عليه وسلَّم وهدي أصحابه، سجود الشُّكر عند تجدُّد نعمة تسر، أو اندفاع نقمة
“It was from the practice of the Prophet (PBUH) and his companions to fall into prostration whenever a matter of happiness would arrive or when harm would be warded away.” (From his book, ‘Zaad Al-Ma’aad)

It could be news of an exam that you’d passed, or hopeful blood test results that you’d feared, or an ability to finally wake up for the night prayer, or strength to finally resist a temptation, or their likes. Prostrate to Allah!

Furthermore, the application of this Sunnah is as if one is saying to Allah, and to others, and to himself that “I had no power in this matter! This success is entirely from You, O Allah, and thus I place my forehead on the ground in humble gratitude to You and You alone.”

According to many scholars, this Sunnah does not require the conditions of Salaah. So it can be performed without Wudhoo, without Hijaab, in the direction of other than the Qibla, etc.

Thus,

If you’re happy and you know it ..

Fall to the ground!
Reply

Ali Hammuda
03-14-2016, 09:14 PM
Seeing His signs in everything

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 11 of 40]

Consider the situation of a team of professionals who walk into a building. Each professional will find himself pondering over a particular element of the building that resonates with his field of expertise.

The carpenter finds himself pondering over the doors and windows.

The architect finds himself pondering over the aesthetics and layout.

The electrician finds himself pondering over the lights and wiring.

The structural engineer finds himself pondering over the beams and pillars.

Similarly is the situation of a Muslim, the wakeful and alert Muslim, in the life of this world.

The moment he hears a frightening noise, he remembers the final blowing of the horn. When he experiences darkness, his thought immediately shifts to the darkness of the grave. When scorching heat is felt, the thought of the hellfire’s horrors are evoked within him. When he sees beauty or experiences any joy, his mind instantly wonders off at the expanse and magnificence of Paradise.

When it came to this, our Prophet (PBUH) was the chief of all people and was their example. His consciousness of Allah and the Home of the Hereafter was such that he would see the signs of Allah in *every* walk of life and would invest in that opportunity to move hearts.

The Prophet (PBUH) was once walking with his companions in the market place. He came across a dead goat that had very small ears. He took hold of its ear and
said, “Who among you would like to purchase this for one dirham?" They said, “We wouldn’t pay anything for it. What can we do with it?” He then asked, “Would you take it for free?” The said, “By Allah, even if it was alive, we still wouldn’t want it due to its defect, let alone when it’s dead!” Having caught their attention, the Prophet (PBUH) then said,

فوَاللهِ للدُّنْيَا أهْوَنُ عَلَى اللهِ مِنْ هَذَا عَلَيْكُمْ
"By Allah, the life of this world is more insignificant to Allah than this goat is to you.” (Narrated by Muslim)

Whilst others would have covered up their noses and walked away hurriedly, the Prophet (PBUH) was able to pull out an incredibly profound reminder from the dead goat.

Similarly, the Prophet (PBUH) saw a woman who was running around frantically, looking for her child that she’d lost. Eventually she would find him and would immediately place the breastfeeding child to her chest. The companions saw this as well, but as for the Prophet (PBUH), again, his mind was elsewhere. He said to them,
“Do you think that such a woman would ever throw her child into fire?” They said, “Never, by Allah!” The Prophet (PBUH) then said,

للهُ أرْحَمُ بِعِبَادِهِ مِنْ هذِهِ بِوَلَدِهَا

“Allah is more merciful towards His slaves than this lady is to her child.” (Narrated Bukhari and Muslim)

Again, he used the very ordinary scene of parents searching for lost children to redirect people’s attention to the chief of all matters; Allah and the Hereafter. Amazing.

Our predecessors had inherited this remarkable mindset as well. ‘Umar Ibnu ‘Abdil ‘Azeez was seen smiling as the skies thundered ferociously with heavy rain.

Those around him were terrified and so ‘Umar was asked at how he can be smile in such circumstances. He said,

هذا صوت رحمة الله، فكيف لو سمعت صوت عذاب الله؟
“If what you are hearing now are the sounds of Allah’s mercy (i.e. rain), how would you react if you’d heard the sounds of Allah’s punishment?”

This practice of seeing Allah’s signs in everything and using them to issue timely advice is indicative of a heart that shines with ‘iman, for such a person is not dependent on YouTube videos, weekly Friday sermons or Islamic text messages for his share of remembrance.

No,

But rather, such an individual sees the reminder in *every* single happening that takes place around him, where he pounces at every opportunity that presents itself to string together a heart moving reminder, just as the messenger (PBUH) used to do.

A wonderful practice to be revived.
Reply

Ali Hammuda
03-21-2016, 09:20 PM
Just before we get up

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 12 of 40]
We’ve all sat in gatherings before where the nature of that sitting was not ideal.

Perhaps it was a gathering of gossip, or one where voices were being excessively raised, or bad language was being used, or where worldly discussions stole the limelight, or when too many jokes were cracked, or where the precious gift of time was abused.

I’m sure you remember just how rough and grimy your heart felt upon the leaving of such a gathering, right?

With the revival of the following Sunnah however, such grimes can be removed and softness of heart can be restored.

The Prophet (PBUH) said,

مَنْ جَلَسَ في مَجْلِسٍ، فَكَثُرَ فِيهِ لَغَطُهُ فَقَالَ قَبْلَ أَنْ يَقُومَ مِنْ مَجْلِسِهِ ذَلِكَ: سُبْحَانَكَ اللَّهُمَّ وَبِحَمْدِكَ، أشْهَدُ أَنْ لاَّ إِلهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ، أَسْتَغْفِرُكَ وَأَتُوبُ إلَيْكَ، إِلاَّ غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا كَانَ في مَجْلِسِهِ ذَلِكَ
“There isn’t any person who sits in a gathering where much idle speech was engaged in, but then says before leaving the gathering:
“Subhaanak allaahumma wa bihamdik, ash-hadu an laa ilaaha illa ant. Astaghfiruka wa atoobu ilaik”

(Meaning: “My Lord, glory be to You, I praise You. I bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except You. I ask You to forgive me and I repent You.”)
Except that Allah will pardon *all* what was engaged in within that gathering.” (Narrated by At-Tirmithi)

It’s thus very understandable why this Du’aah was always at the tip of the Prophet’s (PBUH) tongue. In fact, our mother ‘Aisha even said:

" مَا جَلَسَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ مَجْلِسًا قَطُّ ، وَلَا تَلَا قُرْآنًا، وَلَا صَلَّى صَلَاةً ، إِلَّا خَتَمَ ذَلِكَ بِكَلِمَاتٍ"
“Never did the Prophet (PBUH) ever sit in a gathering, or recited Qur’an, or engaged in a prayer except that he would conclude that act with these words!”

This of course caught her attention. So she asked him about this, to which he replied:

نَعَمْ، مَنْ قَالَ خَيْرًا خُتِمَ لَهُ طَابَعٌ عَلَى ذَلِكَ الْخَيْرِ، وَمَنْ قَالَ شَرًّا كُنَّ لَهُ كَفَّارَةً
“Yes. Whoever had said good things, this Du’aah will seal those good words, whilst whoever had spoken sinfully, this Du’aah will wipe them away.” (Narrated by An-Nasaa’i)

Good actions that are sealed are lifted to Allah and ensures Allah’s acceptance of them.

Now, if these were the words of the Prophet (PBUH) at the end of his gatherings, those that were in pure remembrance and praise of Allah, how eager should you and I be in concluding our sittings with them?

Whether it’s the table of a restaurant that you’re leaving,

Or an evening with family that has come to a close,

Or your daily portion of Salah and Qur’an that has reached its end,

Or even a chat on social media that you're wrapping up,

Make sure that you revive this Sunnah and remind others to do so as well.
Reply

Ali Hammuda
03-29-2016, 02:19 PM
Avoidance of putting on one’s shoes whilst standing

[‘Daily revivals’ – Number 13 of 40]

In countless instances, we'd found ourselves hopping around on one foot, desperately trying to tuck in our feet within our shoes.

Whilst some have developed the balance to pull it off without needing to lean on something, others come crashing down or at least come close to doing so. Thus the Prophet (PBUH) had something to say about this as well.

Jaabir (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that,

نهى الرسول صلى الله عليه و سلم أن ينتعل الرجل قائما
“The Prophet (PBUH) forbade that a person puts on his shoes whilst standing” (Narrated by Abu Dawud)

Commenting on this Hadith, Al-Mannaawi said:
“The instruction is by way of advice, because putting them on whilst sitting is easier. At-Teebi and others drew the conclusion from this hadeeth that this prohibition applies to footwear that is difficult to put on whilst standing, like the Khufoof (leather slippers).” (Fayd Al-Qadeer)

Thus, footwear that requires minimal effort in putting them on is excluded from this prohibition.

This is the type of keenness which Islam displays towards the preservation of the Muslim’s dignity and appearance, a keenness which extends to the very manner in which we put on your shoes!

With that said, it therefore doesn't make sense for one to uphold this Sunnah only to then tear down such decency via his speech, dress code, imitation of the sinners or posts on social media.

Begin by reviving this Sunnah, then allow its spirit to flow within everything else that you do.
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