// Understaing the Prophet's (SAW) Life
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« Reply #100 on: Dec 15, 2009 06:25 AM »

Human Effort

Ali ibn Abi Talib said, "One night Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) came to me and Fatimah and asked, 'Won't you pray (at night)?' I said, 'O Allah's Messenger! Our souls are in the hands of Allah and if He wants us to get up He will make us get up.' When I said that, he left us without saying anything, and I heard him hitting his thigh and saying, 'But man is more quarrelsome than anything.' (Quran 18:54)" [Bukhari]

This hadith brings out the following important points:

1) Justifying a failure of human effort by referring it to the Will of Allah is a false argument and is therefore unacceptable.

2) All forms of worship require a strong will and a firm determination, so that one can effectively dispense with physical needs, such as sleep, etc.

3) Supplication must be accompanied by human effort and endeavour of a congenial nature. Supplication denotes love, and true love
    relishes vigil, staying awake, and dispensing with physical comforts like sleep and rest.

4) A true believer looks after his household and brings up his children in accordance with these higher values.

5) Education is by persuasion not by compulsion. We see how the many Quranic verses recited by the Prophet, peace be upon him, to this
    effect seeped down into the depths of human souls. They will continue to do so, insha Allah, and guide and lend strength to all believing men and women until the
    very end of time.

Compiled From:
"Freedom and Responsibility in Quranic Perspective" - Hasan Al-Anani, pp. 202, 203

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #101 on: Dec 17, 2009 01:18 PM »

Rejoice: Do Not Crush the Joy of Eid

Feeling joy and showing happiness and delight are essential elements of Eid. That is why scholars stated that showing happiness in Eid is a religious rite. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) encouraged the Muslim community to manifest happiness on this day. The following report emphasizes this point. Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated:

          Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) came to my house while two girls were singing beside me the songs of Buath (a war between Madinah’s
          two major tribes, the Aws and the Khazraj, before Islam). The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) lay down and turned his face to the other side. Then
          Abu Bakr came. Seeing that, Abu Bakr spoke harshly to them saying, “Musical instruments of Satan in the presence of the Messenger of Allah?” But the Prophet
          (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Leave them, Abu Bakr, for there is Eid for every nation and this is our Eid.”

Another manifestation of joy in Eid during the Prophet’s time was the Abyssinians’ show: they gathered at the mosque and played with shields and spears. When the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) heard them, he looked at them then asked Aishah whether she would like to watch. She replied in the affirmative, and the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) made her stand behind him and her cheek was touching his cheek. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) encouraged them saying, “Carry on, Banu Arfadah! Let Jews know that we have a space of relaxation in our religion.” Here we see the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) approving and even encouraging such shows of happiness and joy.

What makes one wonder is the act of those who overlook this Prophetic guidance and try to destroy this joy and spoil Eid’s cheerful spirit. In fact, some ascetics and worshipers did so in the past out of good intention. This gloomy spirit is echoed today by some sincere people who are used to turning Eids into occasions of lamenting the Ummah’s shortcomings and tragedies, and mourning over the lost glories. Sadness and gloominess will never be the remedy for our tragedies. The remedy needs more than that. It needs reflection and wise thinking, as well as courageous self-criticism and assessment. Rejecting the manifestations of joy, extinguishing every smile and succumbing to sadness and grief have nothing to do with liberating even hand-span of land, satisfying a hungry person, or answering any call for help.

The best guidance is that of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), who used to seek refuge in Allah from worry and sorrow. He was always an optimistic, smiling man. We need to infuse the Ummah with this hopeful spirit. Eid is a ray that dispels the darks engulfing our souls and the despair strangling our hearts.

So let hope find its way into our souls. The life-span of Islam is far longer than ours; its horizons are far wider than our countries; the calamities afflicting us are not unchangeable fate. We should not be hasty and impatient. Allah’s laws in running the universe cannot be altered according to the humans’ whims or wishes. Let’s look at the bright side and appreciate the favours Allah has bestowed on us. A desperate soul overwhelmed by fears and blinded by a gloomy view can never be helpful in rectifying our situation. After all, we should remember that Allah is always there and that He Almighty is the Greatest.

Compiled From:
"Do Not Crush the Joy of Eid" - Abdul-Wahhab ibn Nasir At-Turairi
http://click.icptrack.com/icp/relay.php?r=1049602440&msgid=31129790&act=216G&c=68038&admin=0&destination=http://www.islamonline.net/english/eid/1426/Rejoice/articles/01.shtml

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #102 on: Dec 22, 2009 06:49 AM »

Excellence in all things

"Verily, Allah has prescribed (Kataba) excellence (Ihsan) in all things."

Ihsan is a very vast concept. It embodies both the concept of perfecting a deed in itself as well as doing excellence towards others. In this hadith, it seems that Allah is requiring both types of Ihsan. However, the more apparent meaning is the concept of performing an act in the best way possible. But this also implies doing well to others, beyond the minimum expected, as this is the best way to treat others.

The order of Ihsan is sometimes an obligatory order and sometimes a recommended order. For example, the order to have Ihsan towards one's parents or one's visitors is an obligatory type of Ihsan. The order to give voluntary charity is also an order of Ihsan but, obviously, in this case, it is only a recommended form and not a required one.

The important point that should be emphasized is that Ihsan is sought after. Allah has requested it and it is very pleasing to Him. Hence, regardless of which level it is, obligatory or recommended, every true believer should seek the quality of Ihsan in all of his deeds. He should realize that there is a level of Ihsan that is beyond that which he should strive for in all of his deeds.

Ihsan is not simply in matters of worship. Instead, this concept should rule a person's behaviour in every realm of his life. When dealing with others, the principle of Ihsan should dominate how he works and deals with others. He must fulfill their rights, this is the obligatory level of Ihsan. However, he should also try to go beyond that and be, for lack of a better phrase, "better than them". He should treat them beyond the minimum that is required of him.

Compiled From:
"Commentary on the Forty Hadith of al-Nawawi" - Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo, pp. 675-677
http://click.icptrack.com/icp/relay.php?r=1049602440&msgid=31132598&act=216G&c=68038&admin=0&destination=http://www.al-basheer.com/cgi-bin/category.cgi?item%3D10000

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #103 on: Dec 24, 2009 06:20 AM »

The Day of Ashura

It is reported in the Sahih of Imam Al-Bukhari and other authentic collections of hadith that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and his Companions used to fast on the 10th day of Muharram while they were in Makkah (before the hijrah).

It was a day on which people of Makkah used to change the covering (kiswah) of the Kabah. Quraysh also used to fast on this day. (Al-Bukhari, hadith 1489 and 1760)

After the hijrah when the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) came to Madinah, he found that the Jews of Madinah also used to observe this day with fasting. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) asked them the reason of their fasting on this day. They said, “This is a blessed day. On this day Allah saved the Children of Israel from their enemy (in Egypt) and so Prophet Musa fasted on this day giving thanks to Allah.” The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “We have more claim to Musa than you.” He fasted on that day and commanded Muslims to fast on this day. (Al-Bukhari, hadith 1865)

In another report it is mentioned that Jews of Madinah used to hold a feast on this day. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) told his Companions to fast instead. (Al-Bukhari, hadith 1866)

Ashura fasting was obligatory (fard) in the beginning. In the second year of hijrah (624 CE) when Allah’s command came that Muslims should fast the whole month of Ramadan, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) then sent someone to announce to people that fasting of Ashura had become voluntary (nafl). This indicates that whosoever wishes to fast, may fast and whosoever does not want to fast, there will be no blame on him/her.

Imam at-Tirmidhi mentioned that ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with them both) used to say that we should fast on two days: the 9th and 10th of Muharram to distinguish ourselves from the Jewish community. (At-Tirmidhi, Hadith 686)

Ibn Abbas also quoted the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as saying, “If I live next year, I shall also fast on the 9th day.” (Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal, hadith 2002)

There is a great reward in fasting the day of Ashura. There are many hadiths that mention its blessings and virtues. It is good to fast on this day, although it is not obligatory.

Compiled From:
"Significance of Fasting the day of Ashura" - Muzammil Siddiqi
http://click.icptrack.com/icp/relay.php?r=1049602440&msgid=31135589&act=216G&c=68038&admin=0&destination=http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?pagename%3DIslamOnline-English-Ask_Scholar/FatwaE/FatwaEAskTheScholar%26cid%3D1119503545084

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #104 on: Dec 27, 2009 11:57 AM »

Prophetic Medicine

A common concern among some students of the Sunnah is with the 'medicine of the Prophet'. They focus their energy and concern on the medicines, nutriments, herbs, grains, and other things from what the Prophet, peace be upon him, described as being medicines in the treatment of some bodily defects or illnesses. They quote well-known hadiths in this regard, for example:

          "The best of what you can use as medicine is cupping." [Al-Tabarani]

          "[It is incumbent] upon you [to treat] with this black seed, for in it there is healing for every ailment except al-sam, and that is death."
          [Ibn Majah]

          "Wear kohl with antimony for it clears the vision and makes the hair grow." [Al-Tirmidhi]

These prescriptions and their likes are not of the spirit of the Prophetic medicine. Rather, its spirit is preservation of the life and health of the human being, and soundness of the body and its strength, its right to rest when tired, to food when hungry, and to treatment when ill. Its spirit is that the seeking of treatment does not contradict faith in predestination (al-qadr), nor reliance upon God. Its spirit is that for every ailment there is a cure, and confirmation of the law of God (sunnat Allah) in respect of contagion; the legitimization of quarantine for health reasons; the concern for hygiene of the person, the house and the road; and the prohibition of pollution of water and land; the emphasis on prevention above cure; the stipulation of relaxation to preserve bodily well-being; and the preservation of the health of the mind alongside bodily health - and other teachings which represent the reality of the Prophetic medicine, in those aspects of it which are true for every time and place.

The means change at times, from age to age, from one situation to another. Indeed it is inevitable that they should change. So, when a hadith stipulates a particular means, that is only to be taken as an explanation of the reality of its time: we are not bound by it, and we are not restricted to it.

Compiled From:
"Approaching the Sunnah: Comprehension & Controversy" - Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, pp. 139-141
http://click.icptrack.com/icp/relay.php?r=1049602440&msgid=31138616&act=216G&c=68038&admin=0&destination=http://iiit.org/Publications/Books/Englishbooks/tabid/185/Default.aspx

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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