Most Beloved People to Allah – Al-Mutabaeun


Adapted for Hiba Magazine by Tasneem Vali

“Say (O Muhammad to mankind): “If you (really) love Allâh Then follow me (i.e. Accept Islâmic Monotheism, follow the Qur’ân and the Sunnah), Allâh will love you and forgive you of your sins. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (Al-Imran 31)

 Ibn Kathīr explains this verse: “This verse gives a verdict in the case of anyone who claims to love God but does not follow the way of life laid down by Prophet Muhammad (sa). His very claim is an absolute lie unless he follows the Sunnah in all his actions and statements. This is endorsed by the authentic tradition of the Prophet (sa) which states: ‘Anyone who does something which is not in conformity with this matter of ours will have it rejected.’ ”

The dilemma here is that no one has an issue with loving Allah; the real test is to follow the Prophet (sa). The ayah makes a clear statement; Allah has connected following the Prophet (sa) as a condition to gain His love– so it is essential (in a way obligatory) to follow Prophet Muhammad (sa). The point is not to let your ego prevent you from gaining Allah’s love.

أَشْهَدُ أن لا إلٰهَ إلَّا الله وَأشْهَدُ أنَّ مُحَمَّدً أعَبْدُه وَرَسُوْلُه

I testify that there is no god but Allah and I testify that Prophet Muhammad is His messenger

 The testimony of a Muslim’s faith has two aspects, one is that we bear witness to the Unity of Allah; the other part is that we also acknowledge that Muhammad (sa) is His messenger. Thus, following the Prophet (sa) is a very important matter because Allah has connected His love to it; it is a matter of completing one’s faith.

How do we follow Prophet (sa)?

  • Following the Sunnah of the Prophet (sa)
  • Following the Prophet’s (sa) commands without any questions, any debate, any excuse– but do not follow anyone else blindly
  • React/behave the way he used to behave in certain situations; in all matters of worship and life

The Prophet (sa) was only a man, so why can we not question his authority/way? Very simple, because he never did anything in his life unless it was revelation from Allah, our goal is to worship Allah. This is achieved by following the Sunnah of the Prophet (sa).

What are some situations we follow the Prophet (sa) in?

Worship is divided into two categories: obligatory and recommended.

Allah mentions obligatory forms of worship in the Quran – Salah, Hajj, Zakat etc. but the correct way to perform them is shown by the Prophet’s (sa) Sunnah. Regarding these acts we must follow his way.

For the recommended acts, for e.g., the fast on 9 Dhul Hijjah, how Prophet (sa) slept, how he prayed Tahajjud prayer, how he ate, what dua he recited when he left his house, etc. It is suggested that we follow what Prophet (sa) did. The more you try to follow the Prophet (sa) – the more your rank with Allah is raised, and Allah’s love for you increases.

Allah mentions in the Quran: “There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often.” (Al-Ahzab 21).

Following the Prophet’s (sa) Sunnah is the fail-safe. Since we are just a follower, we will not invent something new, alien to the deen of Islam. If there is something Prophet Muhammad (sa) did not do – we should not do it. Allah has reminded us that in following the Prophet’s (sa) example we are safe and no one can possibly do more for Islam than what he has done, so don’t do anything unless you are sure he did it or endorsed it. Small deeds that follow the Prophet‘s (sa) Sunnah are more beloved to Allah than doing multiple acts of worship that are recommended by some scholar (away from the Sunnah).

When you follow the Sunnah, Allah will make your life easy for you, love you and forgive your sins. However, when you follow Bidat (innovations in deen) your life will become complicated and you will not be among those who Allah loves. All your hours of devotion and acts of worship will be wasted as they will not be acceptable to Allah.

“Every innovation is a misguidance and every misguidance goes to hellfire.” (Muslim)

“Say (O Muhammad ): “Obey Allah and the Messenger (Muhammad).” but if they turn away, Then Allah does not like the disbelievers.” (Al Imran 3:32)

Allah says in this verse; those who don’t obey both [Allah and the Prophet (sa)] they are like the disbelievers and Allah does not love the disbelievers. Satan encourages people to innovate in religion and because it’s a matter of religion – extra prayer, extra dhikr –people are caught off guard that how can extra prayer be unacceptable to Allah?

Rewards for being among Al-Mutabaeun

  • Allah’s love
  • Guidance in this world and the Hereafter- to have a knowledge and act upon it (Hidayah)
  • Special mercy from Allah – makes your life smooth and easy; no difficulties
  • You will be among the successful (Al-Muflihoon): people who struggle in life and get the success in the Hereafter
  • You will accompany those people on whom Allah has bestowed His blessings, the Prophets, Messengers, the Martyrs, the Truthful ones, the righteous people etc.
  • Entry into Paradise

Sins cause us to feel guilty but Bidat  (innovations) do not leave a guilty feeling, so they are difficult to give up or recognize. May Allah protect us from all Bidat. Ameen.

Biddats – Before, During and After Death

Vol 6 - Issue 3 BiddatsBy Uzma Jawed

Allah (swt) says in the Quran that every individual is bound to taste death. Everybody knows that we are in this world for a short period, whereas our life in the Akhirah is eternal. Therefore, we need to think more on how we can improve our life in the Hereafter. Abu Hurairah (rta) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (sa) said: “When a man dies, all his good deeds come to an end except three: ongoing charity, beneficial knowledge or a righteous offspring, who prays for him.” (Muslim)

Customs and Rituals Following Death

It is wrongly believed that certain rituals can benefit the dead. For example, gatherings are held on specific days:

  • Soyem/Qul: Held on the third day after death. A huge gathering of relatives and friends is held at the house and a lavish meal is served.
  • Tabarak: Held every Thursday after death to recite the Quran together for the departed soul. In some cases, food is laid out for the deceased, with the belief that the soul of the departed will visit its house on that day.
  • Duswan: Held on the tenth day after death.
  • Beeswan: Held on the twentieth day after death.
  • Chaleeswan: Held on the fortieth day after death. It is a major event, which is organized on a grand scale. It is wrongly believed that if Chaleeswan is not held on the fortieth day or a day or two before, another family member might die.
  • Bursi: Death anniversary is held and all the relatives and friends gather together and condolences are repeated.
  • First Eid: The household of the deceased believe that the first Eid after the demise is a day of mourning and people visit to offer the first Eid condolences.

Other Misconceptions

  • Surah Al-Baqarah is read fourteen times, while the body of the deceased is still at home.
  • Keeping rice or wheat under the bed, where the dead body has been placed, and distributing it among the poor after the burial.
  • Paying someone to recite the Quran at the grave for several days.
  • Illuminating the grave for forty days, believing that the soul of the deceased visits the grave for forty days.

Several of these rituals are practiced in many Muslim countries today. In some Asian countries (India, Pakistan and Bangladesh), these are considered part of our Deen. Similar practices are prevalent in some Arab countries. These customs come from pagan religions, especially Hinduism.

For example, in Hinduism, emphasis is placed on gathering in the home of the deceased and remembering the deceased on certain days. They also believe that the deceased may suffer, if the family members do not prepare food and drink for others.

All these rituals are innovations that have neither legal basis nor precedent in Islam. Any Biddat, in the eyes of the Shariah, is highly reprehensible. Aisha (rta) has narrated that Prophet Muhammad (sa) said: “If somebody innovates something, which is not in harmony with the principles of our religion, that thing is rejected.” (Bukhari) Thus, we should try to distinguish Haq from Batil and Sunnahfrom Biddat. This can only be done, if we understand the message that Allah (swt) has conveyed to us through the Quran and Prophet’s (sa) Sunnah.

Funeral Rites in Islam

Relatives and friends should only observe a three-day mourning period. Abdullah Ibn Jafar (rta) narrated that the Prophet (sa) delayed coming to visit Jafar’s family for three days after his death; then, he came to them and said:“Do not cry for my brother after today.” (Abu Dawood)

We need to ensure that the funeral is performed in accordance with the Quran and Sunnah. We should visit the family of the deceased and offer condolences, help them and supplicate for the dead. Prophet Muhammad (sa) explicitly instructed relatives, friends and neighbours to send food to the bereaved family.

Abdullah Ibn Jafar (rta) has narrated: “When the news of Jafar’s (rta) death came, Allah’s Messenger (sa) said: ‘Prepare some food for the family of Jafar (rta), for verily there has come to them that which will preoccupy them.’” (Abu Dawood and At-Tirmidhi) The family members should not be burdened with entertaining guests, when they themselves are dealing with a calamity. Imam Shafai said: “I dislike gatherings, even if there is no wailing or crying. For it only renews the (family’s feeling of) sorrow and puts burdens on their food supplies.”

Moreover, recitation of the Quran before supplicating to Allah for forgiveness for the deceased can certainly be a means of acceptance of that supplication. However, there is no evidence found in the Quran and Sunnah that several readings of the Quran be completed on specific days. Death is a great tragedy that is combined by the desire to please Allah (swt) and benefit the dead through legislated means. It is a time to remember the deceased by instigating the Sunnah and shunning innovations with all their links to paganism.

The Boulder of Biddats (Innovations)

Vol 5 - Issue 4 The Boulder of biddatsThe term ‘innovation’ means to invent or make something up. To understand the concept of innovation in Islam, one can imagine a glass of crystal clear water that is meant to quench thirst. Someone adds some colour to it with the intention of making it appear more appealing to the thirsty. Then, another person further adds some sugar to make it tastier. Would you still consider it to be a glass of pure water? Not quite. Now, what you have is an adulterated version of what was formerly water. This is the saga of Islam today.

Muhammad Iqbal Kailani in his book “Following the Prophet’s Path” states:

Innovations have done greatest damage to the religion of Islam. Since innovations are practiced by way of virtue and in the hope of rewards, an innovator seldom thinks of leaving them, whereas in the case of other sins, the sinner is conscious that he is doing a wrong thing. It can be assumed that at some later stage he would be ashamed of his sins and turn to Allah (swt) with repentance.

The root causes behind innovations have been identified as follows:

Presuming good rewards

Some people consider innovated practices of worship a means to bring them closer to Allah (swt) to such an extent that they decide on the rewards as a result of following it. They claim sincere intentions and devotion towards Deen and confidently advocate self-made practices, which do not hurt anyone. But as Allah’s Messenger (sa) clearly stated: “All kinds of innovations lead astray.” (Bukhari)

One may argue that instead of four Rakahs for Zuhr prayer, I want to offer five, so that I may earn extra merit and pleasure of Allah (swt). Do you seriously think this will be a cause of pleasure for Allah (swt), when His prescribed Deen is being changed, especially after His final revelation through His last Messenger (saw)?

Self following

Most commonly a large number of uneducated, illiterate or ignorant masses follow customs and practices observed by teachers, ancestors, tribe, rulers, etc. They never feel the need to verify a certain ritual, let alone to question it. To them blind reverence is sufficient.

When one tries to appeal to their logic in the hope that they discontinue innovated practices never propagated by our Prophet (sa), they falsely accuse: “This is a new religion you are trying to invent. We found our ancestors following the same rituals you are preventing us from.”

Allah (swt) responds to them: “They said: ‘(Nay) but we found our fathers doing so.’” (Ash-Shuara 26:74)

Exaggeration in devotion to holy men

To seek the company of virtuous teachers and role models is always desirable; but excessive, un-natural and blind devotion to holy men has harmed Islam, too. After all, these religious scholars, in spite of their sincere and great contributions towards Islam, were human beings who did not have the authority to introduce anything new to the religion.

Some followers in their excessive devotion started to grant a supernatural colour to the dreams, personal observations and minor experiences of these holy men. This provided a whole new concept of intercession, grave worship, saint following, etc.

Muhammad Iqbal Kailani writes: “It is said, when the Sufis first came to India on the mission of propagating Islam, they found the local people (the Hindus) were fond of music. So, to attract them to Islam, the Sufis invented Sama or Qawwali. Thus, was set a precedent for a new innovation. To argue that it was considered expedient in the remote past is no reason to stick to it now.”

Difference of opinion

Ill informed and incompetent religious preachers treat innovations lightly. They claim that due to difference in interpretations and judgments there is a difference of opinion among different schools of thought.

One can claim this in cases where both parties have substantial evidence in the form of Sahih (authentic) Hadeeth. But in cases where one party has a Daeef (weak) Hadeeth, by no means should it be encouraged.

This disintegrates societies, confuses the followers and becomes a major source of trial when the supposed experts seem to be at war with each other claiming supremacy one over another.

The Prophet (sa) stated: “I will be the first person at the fountain of Kauthar. Whoever comes there will drink from it, and whoever drinks once will never feel thirst again. There will be some persons who will also come there, whom I will recognize and consider them to be my followers and they also will recognize me. But the angels will stop them from coming near me. I will say: ‘They are my followers.’ But I will be informed: ‘Oh Muhammad (sa), you do not know what innovations these people have invented after you.’ Then, I will say: ‘Be gone! It is better to be at a distance from such people who changed my religion after me.’” (Bukhari and Muslim)

Ignorance of the true Sunnah

Many times, in true devotion, Muslims quickly accept anything known to be associated with the Prophet (sa) and do not inquire into its authenticity. Since ignorance in relation to our Deen is rife today, fabricators find this situation to be to their advantage.

On the other hand, some pseudo-intellectuals or self-appointed preachers attribute matters so carelessly to our Messenger (saw), often misquoting or narrating Ahadeeth incorrectly and thus altering its meaning altogether.

The Messenger (sa) warned: “He who intentionally attributes a false thing to me should seek his abode in Hell.” (Muslim)

Allah’s Messenger (sa) also stated: “Whoever has resurrected one Sunnah of mine and people acted upon it, that person will be entitled to the reward of all people, who have enacted it, and the reward of people will not be diminished. And the person who started an innovation, and people started acting upon it, the sins of all those people will be dumped upon who initiated it, and the sins of the people will not be diminished.” (Ibn Majah)

Political expediency

In some Muslim countries, religious clergy have an apologetic attitude. They dare not state right from wrong in case it brings them defame or loss of public support. Their first loyalty belongs to the religious group they are from, even if it means supporting a certain innovation to win public response, thereby compromising the Shariah.

Ali (rta) narrated that the Prophet (sa) said: “Allah has cursed the person who sacrifices an animal in the name of other than Allah, who changes the boundary stones, who curses his own father and who protects an innovator.” (Muslim)

Anas Ibn Malik (rta) narrated that the Prophet (sa) warned: “Allah does not accept the repentance of an innovator, until he forgoes the innovation.” (Tabarani)

In conclusion, if a Muslim can honestly offer Huqooq Allah and Huqooq-Al-Ibad, as prescribed by Allah (swt) and His Prophet (sa), it should suffice to take him to Paradise by Allah’s (swt) mercy. There is no need to create new and novel ways to win Allah’s (swt) approval. Besides, innovations liquidate the true essence of our Deen. The pillars of Islam should be observed staunchly, articles of faith should be distinctly clear, the Quran should be read with understanding and the Sunnah should be followed meticulously. This will bring back the lost glory, Insha’Allah!

Common Biddats practiced today

We find no authentic sources from the Quran or the Sunnah for any of the following acts of worship, festivities or celebrations; hence, they fall under the category of Biddats:

  • Ayat-e-Kareema in congregation,
  • Chilla Kashi (sitting for 40 days at the tomb of a saint),
  • Chaleeswan,
  • Darood recitation in congregation,
  • Daswan,
  • Darga (tomb of a saint),
  • Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi,
  • Fatiha,
  • Giarween Shareef,
  • Hal,
  • Institution of Peer – Mureedi,
  • Koonday,
  • Niyaz Shareef,
  • Quran Khwani in congregation,
  • Shab-e-Barat,
  • Shab-e-Mairaj,
  • Urs Shareef, etc.

Muslim Weddings

Vol 4-Issue 3 Muslim WeddingsAllah (swt) sent Prophet Muhammad (sa) as a role model for showing us the practical implementation of the Quranic Ayahs. The importance of this role model is stressed in Surah An-Nisa (4:80): “He who obeys the Messenger (Muhammad (sa)), has indeed obeyed Allah.”

Knowing the emphasis Allah (swt) places on the Sunnah, it is highly unfortunate how far people are from following the Prophet’s (sa) path. We have compartmentalized Islam in our lives and restricted its implementation to the praying mat and the Masjid. Our Deen is an amalgamation of the spiritual, mental, emotional as well as social aspects of a person – it is a complete way of life.

Marriage is one of the most important events in a person’s life. Surah Ar-Rum (30:21) states that it is Allah (swt), Who puts affection and mercy between a man and his wife. Hence, it is one of Allah’s (swt) innumerable Barakahs that He has made Nikah a source of peace and comfort for us. However, we fail to recognize the direct relation existing between His promise of Barakah and His command to follow the Sunnah in all walks of life. Prophet’s (sa) Seerah shows that he got married several times during his lifetime; hence, Nikah is his Sunnah. If we want Allah (swt) to put His Barakah in this relationship, is it not binding upon us to celebrate this event by following the Prophet’s (sa) footsteps entirely? Unfortunately, many of us do not even know how a Nikah is performed as per Sunnah. In this article, Insha’Allah, we will compare the wedding ceremonies that take place in our society today with our Prophet’s (sa) prescribed way of Nikah.

Always remember – keep it simple. “The marriage, which produces the most blessings, is that which involves least burden.” (Tirmidhi) Unfortunately, by adopting numerous non-Muslims customs, we have made Nikah the most complicated of affairs! Planning for the wedding starts months before the due date.

Regarding extravagance, Allah (swt) says: “Verily, the spendthrifts are brothers of the Shayatin (devils).” (Al-Isra 17:27) Israaf (extravagance) creates envy – the working staff of the house sees such wastefulness around them, while their own children do not get even two proper meals in a day!

Indian films promote the idea of lavish weddings, and Muslims, being followers of culture instead of the Sunnah, trace their footsteps blindly! Multinationals cash in on this trend by endorsing popular songs and TV serials with wedding backgrounds. Gangs of designers and wedding planners further orchestrate this event and make it the ‘business of a wedding’ rather than the ‘solemnization of a Nikah’! The wedding extravaganza held in Karachi (November, 2005) was a proof of this. Apparently, looking like a non-Muslim is a far more appealing concept than upholding the dignity and honour that comes with the Muslim dress!

What’s the harm in adopting a few of non-Muslim rituals? The danger of emulating non-Muslims can be understood from Surah Al-Imran (3:149): “If you obey those who disbelieve, they will send you back on your heels, and you will turn back (from Faith) as losers.”

It is important to understand that every ritual has an underlying Aqeeda (dogma). We celebrate the Peela Joura in the Mayoon with great fervor, not realizing what it means. In the Mushrik Mudahib (idol worshippers), yellow is considered to be a good omen – one that wards off evil spirits and keeps the bride safe from harm. The custom of seven Sohaganain (married women) performing a ritual with sweet and turmeric stems from the belief that this ritual will ensure that the bride would remain a Sohagan (married) for the next seven times she is reincarnated! Can a Muslims believe in reincarnation? Do the beliefs that a particular colour or someone’s marital status bring luck and ward off evil match our Aqeeda of Tauheed? Are we not associating partners with Allah (swt) in terms of putting our trust in places other than Him?

Joota Chuppaee, or finger holding of the groom, is an equally disturbing ritual that goes against the teachings of Islam! A Mehndi is no short of a dance party. Taking a look at such functions, one immediately understands the Hikmah behind Allah’s (swt) commandments regarding segregated functions and limited interaction of the two genders! If the harmful effects of such occasions are pointed out, people immediately take refuge in the famous Hadeeth: “Deeds depend upon intention.” (Bukhari) Interestingly enough, the Hadeeth that “singing produces hypocrisy in the hearts” (Abu Dawood) is neither remembered nor quoted!

There is nothing wrong with celebrating happiness. Various Ahadeeth can be found, where Prophet (sa) allowed young girls to play tambourines and sing songs to celebrate. (Bukhari) However, no Hadeeth mentions girls and boys of all ages expressing their happiness by beating drums, blowing trumpets and dancing all night together!

Another nuisance is that of Jehaiz (dowry). Also here we fail to take a look at the concept behind this custom. It is a well known fact that in all Mushrik Mudhahib (idol worshippers) the value of a female is very low. In pre-Islamic days, daughters were buried alive and were considered a sign of misfortune. Jehaiz stems from the same concept. The value of the girl is so low that her parents have to bribe the groom to marry her! In Islam, however, it is the responsibility of the groom to provide to his wife all the things that we expect the girl’s parents to supply her with.

The more the Jehaiz, the more the Izzat (respect)? Wrong again! We are actually devaluing the girl even further. Our Deen does not permit to put any burden on the bride’s family. We quote the Seerah of our Prophet (sa) and say that he also gave Fatima (rta) Jehaiz (dowry). What most of us don’t know is that the Prophet (sa) bought the things for Fatima (rta) from Ali’s (rta) Mahr money, as Ali (rta) didn’t have a father, and Prophet (sa) was also his guardian. Agreed – parents can give to their daughter gifts for her personal use, for example, clothes, jewellery, make-up, etc. But personal belongings in no way include bedroom furniture, kitchen appliances, car or a sofa set for the drawing room! We see parents going bankrupt. Even today baby girls are buried alive, because their parents fear the time of their marriage!


What’s the harm in giving to our daughters what we want, if we can afford it? The harms are plenty. We must realize that the affording class is the trendsetter for the ones below. By giving Jehaiz we are fortifying an un-Islamic custom, the disadvantages and repercussions of which are far reaching. Besides we also demean our own daughter’s value and lure her husband to be and his family into greedy enticements.

Prophet’s (sa) Seerah tells us that getting married is the easiest of affairs. The steps involved are only three!

Step 1: Solemnize the Nikah in a Masjid

“Make this marriage publicly known, solemnize it in the mosques, and play tambourines in honour of it.” (At-Tirmidhi)

There are no such occasions as Barat or Rukhsati in Islam. Nikah should be held in the Masjid, after which the groom should seek the permission of the bride’s father to take the bride home. The bride’s family does not have to host a wedding banquet in honour of the Nikah at all! The wedding party is the groom’s responsibility and is done in the form of a Valima.

Also Baraath stems from the Mushrik Aqeeda (idol worshipper’s belief). In the old days, it was common for the bride to be from one village and the groom from another. The groom and his family knew that on the way back from the Rukhsati, they would also have a lot of Jehaiz to carry. Since, there was no concept of cars or armed guards for protection, the family collected their relatives to make sure that they could protect the Jehaiz from robbers on the way back. Hence, the concept of Baraath emerged that Muslims choose to follow blindly! People argue: “What’s the harm?” Is it not enough harm that it’s not a Sunnah of our Prophet (sa) but a part of the Mushrik Aqeeda?

Step 2: Give the Bride her Mahr (Jointure Money)

Mahr is given by the groom to his bride as a gift. Several Ahadeeth stress the importance of Mahr. The Prophet (sa) once said to a man: “The Mahr that you paid was for having sexual relations with her lawfully.” (Bukhari) Hence, Mahr differentiates Zina from Nikah!

Unfortunately, we have attached several fallacies to the concept. Men generally confuse Mahr with alimony, i.e., the money given by the husband to his wife after divorce! Mahr has nothing to do with divorce. It needs to be paid at the time of the Nikah to make the relations between a man and his wife Halaal.

The bride’s parents think that Mahr is the value the groom puts on their daughter. Hence, the higher the better! They fail to understand that Mahr is not open to negotiation. It’s not a transaction but a gift the amount of which should be decided by the husband on the basis of what he can afford, not what his father can afford.

Step 3: Announce the Nikah with a Valima Banquet

At the time of some Companion’s marriage, the Prophet (sa) said: “Give a wedding banquet, even if with one sheep.” (Bukhari)

The Valima, hence, holds great significance in Islam. Several Ahadeeth show that the only wedding banquet held in a marriage is the one hosted by the groom himself. (Bukhari)

Alhumdulillah, Nikah, if carried out as per Sunnah, is very simple and easy. It only takes Nikah, Mahr and Valima banquet to complete the entire procedure! It is our culture that makes the whole marriage affair so much more complicated!