Path to Jannah; Path of Knowledge!

Image courtesy

Image courtesy

‘Dwelling in a magnificent palace made up of gold and silver bricks. Reclining on jeweled couches upholstered with rich brocade. Amidst lush green gardens with abundance of fruits at an easy reach. Rivers flowing underneath. Living with chaste and bashful spouses, so beautiful as though they were rubies and corals. Served by energetic youths with goblets of pure wine that will neither pain your head nor inebriate you.’

Subhan’Allah, what a royal reception! What sheer fascination!

That is where the ultimate success lies. That is the true definition of victory according to Allah (swt): Jannah!

“..And whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception (a deceiving thing).” (Al-Imran 3:185)

Do you really crave for Jannah as you crave for worldly wealth, property and success? Are you really eager for it? And, do you actually want to know the shortest and easiest route to getting there?

The Messenger of Allah (sa) said:

“For he who follows a path in quest of knowledge, Allah (swt) will make the path of Jannah easy. The angels lower their wings over the seeker of knowledge, being pleased with what he does. The inhabitants of the heavens and the earth and even the fish in the depth of the oceans seek forgiveness for him. The superiority of the learned man over the devout worshipper is like that of the full moon over the rest of the stars (i.e., in brightness). The learned are the heirs of the prophets who bequeath neither Dinars nor Dirhams but only knowledge; he who acquires it has, in fact, acquired an abundant portion.” (Abu Dawud and Tirmidhi) What an honour and prestige!

There are innumerable paths to get to this Land of Eternal Bliss; and one such path is that of seeking knowledge.

Do you really crave for Jannah as you crave for worldly wealth, property and success? Are you really eager for it? And, do you actually want to know the shortest and easiest route to getting there?

Knowledge is the cornerstone of all good; it enkindles deeds that are based on the commandments of Allah (swt) and the instructions of the Prophet (sa). Therefore, those who have knowledge are not similar to those who do not.

Hence, every Muslim must ingrain in his mind a desire to seek knowledge as our beloved Prophet (sa) said:

“Seeking of knowledge is obligatory for every Muslim.” (Tirmidhi)

When a servant of Allah (swt) is well-versed about the knowledge of His Deen, he recognizes and truly appreciates the creation of Allah (swt); thus, wholeheartedly acknowledging His Oneness. This, in return, generates in his heart a fear, which is akin to a sincere gratitude and love of his Lord.

“It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allah…” (Fatir 35:28)

The Messenger of Allah (sa) constantly praised the seekers of knowledge amongst his companions. He would make Dua for a person indulged in this route. Ibn Masood (rta) reported that he heard the Messenger of Allah (sa) say:

“May Allah (swt) freshen the affairs of a person who hears something from us and communicates it to others exactly as he has heard it (i.e., both the meaning and the words), for it may be that the recipient of knowledge understands it better than the one who has heard it.” (Tirmidhi)

He (sa) further said:

“Envy is permitted only in two cases: A man whom Allah (swt) gives wealth, and he disposes of it rightfully; and a man to whom Allah (swt) gives knowledge which he applies and teaches.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

When a person dies, his chances of attaining rewards come to a halt except for three things.

The Messenger of Allah (sa) said:

“When a man dies, his deeds come to an end except for three things: Sadaqah Jariyah (ongoing charity); knowledge which is beneficial, or a virtuous descendant who prays for him (the deceased).” (Muslim)

“Knowledge which is beneficial” refers to knowledge that is imparted to others. The deceased continues to earn rewards for the knowledge he acquired as long as those whom he taught implement it and transmit it to others.

We need the knowledge of Quran to perfect our Ibadah. We need the knowledge of Quran to establish truth and justice; freedom and dignity.  We need it to get ourselves closer to our Lord, know His true value, and worship Him in the best possible way.

Then only may we be amongst the inheritors of Al-Firdaws Al-Ala, Insha’Allah.

A glimpse of Jannah on Earth!

housebyriverWorld cup vs. Jannah cup

There is one thing about paradise that really fascinates me. I mean there are so many descriptions of Jannah in the Quran, right? Rivers flowing and cups being offered. I used to wonder why are cups being offered and Allah (swt) says “cups that are placed”- what’s the point in that? You ever throw a BBQ, you ever go to somebody’s backyard and they are throwing a BBQ party; and they buy those cups from like Walmart and Cosco, serving drinks and whatever. Right? That’s a little homely party. You have to go, pour your own drinks. Have you ever gone to an expensive restaurant? Like at a really elite restaurant, you got to pay 50-fifty bucks just to sit down. What do you see on the table before even you get there? Cups. Those 1400 years ago, Allah (swt) knows how we think. Allah (swt) says water flowing, rivers flowing. Have you ever been to a lobby of a very expensive hotel? What do they have? Have you ever been to the CEO’s office of a corporate executive at the top floor of New York City? What do they have? Artificial water fall.

Do you dream of a heavenly vacation?

Same thing Allah (swt) has described. You must have seen a commercial where they tell you to go take a vacation in the Bahamas; or take a vacation in you know Hawaii or something- escape to paradise, it says. What do they show you? A Palm tree, water, drinks, relaxation; these are the pictures they show you on TV commercials. What is Allah (swt) describing? He talks about waterfalls, trees, fruits, drinks, people reclining and relaxing, enjoying each other’s company. And, you are looking at that and going, wow. These guys made a commercial about escape to paradise, and it’s like they read the Quran and made that. Allah (swt) knows who He is talking to, He knows what we want. Now look at this, I don’t even care about what religion you are, everyone has to get, especially men and even women, older and older. There is one thing in our head.

It’s programmed, we can’t even get rid of it; it’s the love of a beautiful house. You go through a nice neighbourhood, what are you going to do? Wow, that’s nice. Look at that yard, oh my God, did you see that one? People can’t help themselves, I don’t care what religion, what background you are from- everybody has desires to save up and have a stable place to live. They don’t want to live on rent, they want to own a place, want to have a nice house, want to have it just the way they like it.

Allah (swt) offers an eternal beach fund property

It’s incredible. He says I will give you a house. And it will have, what’s the most expensive real estate in the world? Beach Fund Property, Manhattan is one of the most expensive cities in the world. What’s the most expensive part of Manhattan? It is anything that looks over to that water- the higher up, the more expensive. And Allah (swt) puts houses on top of mountains, mansions; they overlook the entire garden, they overlook the water fall; these are the things that Allah (swt) has put inside our psyche. He wants us to desire these things in this world. So that when he talks about these in a much superior version in the next world, then we truly want them there. We say, if this mansion can exist here, oh my God! What does Allah (swt) have for me there? If these beautiful vacation spots like the beaches in California, the Canyons in Arizona, you know, the water falls in Niagara. If that can exist here, what does Allah (swt) have for me in the Akhirah? What amazing things is He going to give me?

The price for paradise

In order to get Jannah, to get paradise, what are the simple things we have to? Is it something very complicated? What should we do to achieve eternity, bliss, and perpetual happiness? Do you ever get tired or bored in Jannah?

No, you would never get bored in Jannah- that’s one of the joys of Jannah. You have beautiful company in Jannah. You know, when in this world, we take a vacation- especially we take a vacation with the family, kids might love it, it’s a nightmare for parents, because they take care of everything and this and that; when people get together for a break, like you know Christians get together for Christmas break.

World is not a wish-granting factory- Jannah is!

Maybe families get together for Eid break or something, fights break out, arguments happen; this is supposed to be a time for celebration, but at the best celebrations when you are with others, what happens? Arguments, right? Oh God, this is supposed to be a happy time, what happened here? People are crying at weddings and things like that. Then, here Allah (swt) says, in Jannah, one of the great joys of it first of all, boredom is taken away; second of all, you get whatever you want; third of all, Gil, this ill feeling towards each other is eliminated, we are not even capable of it in Jannah. You can’t even say something that hurts somebody else’s feelings. It’s gone.

So, you only have this beautiful relationship, you know how sometimes husband and wife get into arguments, and they don’t even know where it came from. Like, they are both confused; like how did we end up here, how did this conversation even start, why did it get so nasty? Allah (swt) will take that ability away from us in Jannah. We can only have wonderful conversation, I have something I am looking forward to like being at peace all the time. You know when people are happy, they sit and say: “Man, I wish life could be like this all the time, and they know it’s not going to be; they know round the corner, a problem is awaiting them; something’s coming- whether its physical, emotional- something is coming, just to know that there is nothing problematic coming.

Transcribed for Hiba by Sana Mohsin

Finding Our Way To Jannah


While reciting the ending verses of Surah Al-Bayyinah, tears do not stop. You cry out to Allah (swt) to make you among those with whom He is pleased and who are pleased with Him. You wonder what a great honour to have it mentioned in the Quran that Allah (swt) is pleased with you.

It is the love and pleasure of Allah (swt) that our souls seek for if that has not been attained, then what have we really achieved? It will be a life wasted.

Allah (swt) tells us that if we follow the footsteps of the prophets, their companions, and the pious predecessors, we too might become the inheritors of Paradise. But to follow them, first we will have to learn the character traits that got them Allah’s (swt) pleasure.

Abu Bakr (rtam) – Truthfulness

After learning that the Prophet (sa) has been given prophethood, it did not take Abu Bakr (rtam) even a second to testify. Embracing Islam, he rushed to convey the message to others. When the Quraysh mocked and refused to accept the miraculous journey of Isra, Abu Bakr (rtam) said: “If he (the Prophet [sa]) said so, then he has told the truth.” It was this incident that earned him the title of As-Siddiq (the truthful).

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In The Dark, I See The Spark!


In the dark, silent nights,

The pillow absorbs the warm tears that roll down my eyes.

The aches are still apparent.

The agony which tears apart every inch of my soul.

The memory of letting you down several times.

The hurt of giving priority to those other than you.

The burning feeling of cheating you.

The fear of becoming a hardened one.

The anguish of being lost and alone.

The shiver of spell bound heedlessness.

The denial of standing in front of you one day.

The nervousness of being accountable.

The pit in stomach when hear of your justice and anger.

The forgetfulness of daily obligatory prayers.

I cry and become restless for wasting one more day.

In dark, silent nights,

The pillow absorbs the warm tears that roll down my eyes.

I sob out of love for you Ya Rabbi.

I ask, I ask for Jannah like a stubborn child.

In the dark, silent nights,

I long for your pleasure.

I pray for steadfastness.

In the dark, silent nights,

The hope is still high-

As your blessing is more observant.



Changes for the better
Motivation for work, with clear
Consolation for trying and a sure
Compensation for a job done
With great aspiration for next

Gone have been laxities
Pulled off all self-restraining desires
Adorned with the garment of Taqwa
Hoping it would last beyond 720 hours

Every claim, to a reason
Even those that lead to treason
Every purpose to satisfaction
Nothing is called done, except with action

The motivation to do more
Clinical cleansing in no clinic
Shopping for rewards
All route to the market of Ibadah

Humble simplicity
Not lack of strength but obedience
This task, a must carry on
Its essence is to last long

Don’t be constrained
Just for the moment
Changes seen in a few days
A lifelong story not a case study

Aspiration for a rank in paradise
Compensation for this changed heart
Consolation with tranquillity from the
Motivation of fasting

Actions you have taken to seek
Satisfaction of the Most Merciful
Treason against God your wish to subdue
Reason so clear, as Jannah is the only clue

Allah (swt) gave us this month
To submit, submit and change
Grow your faith and manners
All thanks to Him
For this yearly rehabilitation for the best of mankind

Abdullah Bn Bashir [13/07/14 16th Ramadan 1435]

Retrospection: Death is Inevitable (Part 2)

kum-saati1It is human nature (more specific in women) that they dwell in their past, hold grudges, taunt and are sarcastic about the times that have been wronged by others; they chase luxuries, hoard wealth, and the list goes on. As much we remember all this, we must remember our death, too. Death is inevitable. We all will face it sooner or later.

“Everyone shall taste death. And only on the Day of Resurrection shall you be paid your wages in full. And whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception (a deceiving thing).” (Al-Imran 3:185)

She was laid in her grave. I was more worried about what she will be facing. It is said that the grave clenches itself for the wrongdoers and spaces up itself for the righteous. It is not for us to judge, whether a person has been good or bad – Allah (swt) is the Supreme Authority, Who will decide, and His judgement would be fair. We still have time to retrospect about our own selves than to pinpoint others. Who knows whether we are going to live for the very second minute? It aches to even assume that one day it will be my own parents, my siblings, my offspring, and my spouse. Do I really love them when I claim so? Will I be able to see them burning in hellfire? Will I be able to bear the endless pain of hell?

We still have time to retrospect about our own selves than to pinpoint others. Who knows whether we are going to live for the very second minute?

“That is the recompense of the enemies of Allah: The Fire therein will be for them the eternal home, a (deserving) recompense for that they used to deny Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.).” (Fussilat 41:28)

Nouman Ali Khan explains it very nicely that we get immune to constant pains at some point in this world and then we don’t feel the intensity. But in the later world, we will not get immune. We will feel the intensity the same way we felt it for the first time. Our body will not get used to it. It will be as severe and as fresh, as it was the first time we experienced it. The torment will be eternal, hence, no escape.

Am I striving to lead a righteous life? Am I contributing or trying to protect my loved ones from going astray? Am I prepared to meet my Lord? Am I bringing up my children to be happy and content to face their Lord? Why are we afraid of death? It is not because we fear losing our loved ones. It is because of the underlying fear that we ourselves have – the fear to meet our Lord, to face His wrath, to see our bad deeds leading us to hell (Astaghfirullah), to imagine ourselves alone in our dark, gloomy graves, where we will be stung by scorpions and snakes. We are aware of all this. The Quran warns us so many times, if we go through it, but we do not have time to open it and to read it, to comprehend it or to implement it. I am among those, too. We are aware, yet we are letting ourselves fall for the petty things. We know we will be questioned about our prayers, yet we are not offering any or delaying them. We associate others with Allah (swt) by believing in amulets (Taweez), going to shrines and making vows; believing that it is the doctor or red chilies that will cure the ill ones amongst us, when Allah (swt) is the One in authority to give health and recovery; doctors are just a medium.

“Hunafa’ Lillah (i.e. to worship none but Allah), not associating partners (in worship, etc.) unto Him and whoever assigns partners to Allah, it is as if he had fallen from the sky, and the birds had snatched him, or the wind had thrown him to a far off place.” (Al-Hajj 22:31)

“After the soul becomes in the hands of the Angel of death (Azrael – Izraeel) the other present angels take the soul and prepare it in a coffin with good fragrance of musk or the worst odor(depending on one’s deeds) and take it up on a trip across the Seven Heavens towards Allah. In the case of the soul of the person with Faith in Allah the angels in each Heaven welcome it and know it is a good soul because of its beautiful smell that has come from towards earth. But in the case of a disbelieving person, the gates of each Heaven will not easily open for it and the angels will point to its bad odor. Until the soul reaches the Seventh Heaven and Allah knows what type of person he was and Allah commands his record to be written in “Illiyeen” (in the highest place) or Sijjeen (in the lowest earth). Then Allah will command to take it back to earth. So the angels gently return back the believing person’s soul to his body. As for the unbelieving person’s soul, the angels throw it from the Heaven to go back to its body.” (Tafseer ibn Katheer)

We must pray for our deceased ones and give charity on their behalf. We must also work for our eternal abode ahead. Death is not an end but a newfangled beginning. We are going back to our home where our parents (Adam and Hawwa) were – that is Jannah. It is a moment of rejoice, if we have done well for the life hereafter.

Cloak with an Eternal Glow

Photo credit: TexasEagle / Foter / CC BY-NC

Photo credit: TexasEagle / Foter / CC BY-NC

The first time I met a princess;
Astonished, I don’t know how to express,
The look of an empress,
That leaves man always impressed.

A beauty that radiates from the heart,
Makes you look down when it meets your sight.
The show of modesty so bright,
That places her in the greatest heights.

Beauty –
A controversial discussion.
Whose is the duty
To judge in that position?

Their acclaimed beauty is skin scratched;
Nothing, but a facial mask!
To a pitiful task,
Obliged to what the society asks.

The sight that betrays the gaze,
As it cruises in lustful chase.
On flesh, a baked clay,
Leaving body and soul dazed.

Beautifully unique are these knights,
Who wear the flags of the One with Might.
Not parading what is meant out of sight,
These beauties you cannot smite.

With bigots from the society,
Plague to humanity,
Coming from their so-called liberty
To distort nature’s morality.

Freedom without values,
Forced in skimp and hills,
Degrading our milieu,
With shapes without skills.

She’s free from the eyes that prey,
Cover to the heart that prays,
Save the next generation from fray,
With guidance from the religious rays.

Clothe to please her Lord
Distinguished from them all
As believers in His law,
Who look away from human lure.

She’s free;
Freedom from the denizen of earth.
She’s beautiful in her Hijab and heart.
She’s a princess on earth
And a Queen in Jannah.

She’s better than Hurul-Ayan;
They didn’t pass through this worldly strain,
Obeying their Lord’s claim,
Eminent ladies of heavenly gain.

To all Hijabis,
The queen of Al-Jannah.

Acquire Taqwa, Build a Home in Jannah

6 build a home in jannah“This is the Book (The Quran), whereof there is no doubt, a guidance to those who are Al-Muttaqun (the pious believers of Islamic Monotheism who fear Allah much and love Allah much).” (Al-Baqarah 2:2)

The above-stated verse clarifies that guidance is given to those who fear Allah (swt) and have Taqwa. What is Taqwa? It stems from the root word ‘Waqa’ meaning ‘to protect’.

Fear of Allah (swt) is only one element of Taqwa, which also means ‘to build a barrier between oneself and whatever angers or displeases Him’.

We have a remarkable example of Taqwa in the annals of history, and the way it brought a very noble person to Islam. Our beloved Prophet (sa), while braving the hardships of opposition and persecution by the Makkans, earnestly invoked Allah (swt) to strengthen Islam by guiding either Amr ibn Hisham (Abu Jahl) or Umar ibn Al-Khattab (rtam).

Allah (swt) answered his Dua, and granted Islam to Umar (rtam). Why? In spite of being an apparent archenemy of Muslims, he was not completely evil, and Allah knew the beauty of his heart. Subsequently, when he heard his sister recite the Ayah of Surah Taha, Umar’s (rtam) heart melted, and he entered the fold of Islam.

The word ‘Taqwa’ has been mentioned 250 times in the Quran. It is the essence of Islam. How can it be attained? Allah (swt) created Ramadan to train and discipline us for the rest of the eleven months. It is an opportunity for the believer to exit this month with rewards, to gain Taqwa, and, finally, to enter Jannah.

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Citizenship of Jannah

rural-crossroads1My Quran Reflections Journal – 4

Gems from Taleem ul-Quran 2015

Day 7 Reflection

(Al-Baqarah 2:21-25)

Citizenship of Jannah

Today’s lesson was about the first glimpse of Jannah in the Quran. Subhan’Allah, the mere glimpse of it makes one wish to work towards pleasing Allah (swt) to earn it. A beautiful reflection was shared by one of my classmates today, after we completed the lesson. She actually gave words to what I was thinking. She said that this is the beginning of the year (2015), and the beginning of our course (today was just the 7th day) and the beginning of the Quran. Subhan’Allah, Allah (swt) sets forth this description of Jannah in the second chapter among the first few Ayahs, so this is nothing but His mercy. If you come to think about it, we can set a goal from now onwards to reach that destination (Jannah).

I would like to elaborate further that through continuous worship of our Lord (not just in our prayers but also in our daily lives) we can hope to attain our citizenship of Jannah. We must remember that worship is an entire way of living. It encompasses concrete obligatory acts, which come under this category, such as Salah, Zakah, Hajj, etc. as well as abstract qualities, such as honesty, sincerity, empathy and care.

Indeed our Rabb is the Entirely Merciful, The Especially Merciful, and He sends signs, reminders and admonitions from all ends.

Oh Allah (swt), make us from the dwellers of Jannah and save us from the Hellfire. Aameen!

Day 8 Reflection
(Al-Baqarah 2:26)

Wisdom or Illiteracy?

Today’s lesson was about the example of a mosquito, which Allah (swt) presents to explain the abstract viewpoint of how certain disbelievers challenge Allah’s (swt) words, only because in all the Hikmah (Wisdom) best known to Him, He chose to use this example.

Have we ever wondered that in the Quran there are examples of the heavenly rivers and provisions, as well as the gigantic universe and whatever it contains – even a mosquito as it also is a part of this universe! Why do we have such big egos that we deny the truth or question Allah’s (swt) wisdom of presenting an example of such a small creature as a mosquito, when we readily get awestruck by the magnanimous and humangous creations of Allah (swt)? Is the Message and Who is giving that message important, or does the importance of the message diminishes, because the example used here is that of a creature we consider almost negligible? Is it wise for us to question His Hikmah or are we being illiterate by doing so?

Oh Allah (swt), make us understand the logic of the Quran, rather than the logic of using a trivial creature as an example. Open our minds, so we can see the bigger picture and learn the lesson, which You intend for us to understand, rather than try to negate the divine message because of the petty nature of the example used to explain an abstract concept. Oh Allah (swt), give us the mind that can understand the significance of Your insightful message and the heart that can act upon it. Aameen!  

Four Steps to Jannah

stepping-stones‘Abdullah bin Salam (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (sa) saying, “O people, exchange greetings of peace (i.e., say: As-Salamu ‘Alaikum to one another), feed people, strengthen the ties of kinship, and be in prayer when others are asleep, you will enter Jannah in peace.” (Tirmidhi)

Lessons from the Hadith:
This beautiful hadith encourages us to do three actions that generate mutual love and remove any kind of hatred, evil thoughts and dislike we could have in our hearts for others .and motivates us to do an action that helps to build a stronger relationship with our creator by worshipping Him at a time when everyone around us is sleeping.

All these actions are also connected as they help us grow slowly, step by step to build a stronger relationship with people and ultimately get closer to Allah (swt).

1. Spreading Salaam
The Prophet(sa) said, “You will not enter paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love one another: ‘spread salaam’ (the greeting of peace) among you.” [Muslim]

2. Feeding others
A man asked the Prophet(sa) , “What sort of deeds or (what qualities of) Islam are good?” The Prophet(sa) replied: ‘To feed (the poor) and greet those whom you know and those whom you do not Know.”

“‏ تُطْعِمُ الطَّعَامَ، وَتَقْرَأُ السَّلاَمَ عَلَى مَنْ عَرَفْتَ وَمَنْ لَمْ تَعْرِفْ ‏”

[Bukhari and Muslim]

3. Strengthen the ties of Kinship:
A man said to the Prophet(sa): “Direct me to a deed which may admit me to Jannah.” Upon this he (sa) said, “Worship Allah and never associate anything with Him in worship, establish Salah, pay Zakah, and strengthen the ties of kinship.”

‏تعبد الله لا تشرك به شيئًا، وتقيم الصلاة، وتؤتي الزكاة، وتصل الرحم‏

[Bukhari and Muslim]

4. Praying at night

Narrated Abu Hurairah: Allah’s Messenger(sa) said, “Our Lord, the Blessed, the Superior, comes every night down on the nearest Heaven to us when the last third of the night remains, saying: “Is there anyone to invoke Me, so that I may respond to invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me, so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone seeking My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him?” (Sahih al-Bukhari )

‏ يَنْزِلُ رَبُّنَا تَبَارَكَ وَتَعَالَى كُلَّ لَيْلَةٍ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ الدُّنْيَا حِينَ يَبْقَى ثُلُثُ اللَّيْلِ الآخِرُ يَقُولُ مَنْ

يَدْعُونِي فَأَسْتَجِيبَ لَهُ مَنْ يَسْأَلُنِي فَأُعْطِيَهُ مَنْ يَسْتَغْفِرُنِي فَأَغْفِرَ لَهُ ‏‏‏.‏


Thus the Prophet(sa) has urged the believers to soften their hearts by combining the good actions in both words and deeds which is a perfect treatment that sows seeds of love and friendship in their hearts.

Action Points:
Peace of mind, contentment, happiness and freedom from worries and anxiety… this is what everyone wants, and these are the ways in which people can have a good life and find complete happiness and joy in this life and Akhirah. But this can only be achieved when one has the nature of caring and giving.

All actions mentioned in the hadith requires self control and patience and when we are able to conquer this, the path to enter in Jannah with peace becomes easier.

On the other hand we must engage ourselves in remembrance of Allah (swt) as this is the greatest means of feeling content and relaxed and of acquiring peace of mind in dunya and then ultimately in Akhirah as Allah (swt) said in Surah al-An’aam:127

لَهُمْ دَارُ السَّلَامِ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ ۖ وَهُوَ وَلِيُّهُم بِمَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ
“For them will be a Home of Peace in the presence of their Lord: He will be their Friend because they practiced (righteousness)”

When we are at peace with others, our heart is at peace to worship our creator. And thus we are able to enter Paradise with peace and that is the ultimate achievement, the epitome of success and the greatest of rewards.

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْأَلُكَ الْجَنَّةَ وَمَا قَرَّبَ إِلَيْهَا مِنْ قَوْلٍ أَوْ عَمَلٍ وَأَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنَ النَّارِ وَمَا قَرَّبَ إِلَيْهَا مِنْ قَوْلٍ أَوْ عَمَلٍ وَأَسْأَلُكَ أَنْ تَجْعَلَ كُلَّ قَضَاءٍ قَضَيْتَهُ لِي خَيْرًا ‏
O Allah, I ask You for Paradise and for that which brings one closer to it, in word and deed, and I seek refuge in You from Hell and from that which brings one closer to it, in word and deed. And I ask You to make every decree that You decree concerning me good, Ameen!

Courtesy: Alhuda Canada

Waving Goodbye to Disney

The Old Walt Disney Castle LogoMariam experienced a dilemma, after going through the most popular Disney videos: Cinderella, Snow White, Beauty and the Beast, Rapunzel, Tangled and the like. Her daughter Hannah was a die-heart fan of the Disney movies. She was soon out of her ocean of thoughts, as she caught a glimpse of Hannah, who was flying with happiness after receiving a gift from her aunt – a dress that resembled the one worn by Cinderella, her favourite Disney character.

“Happily Ever After is Only in Jannah.” This expression, which she had recently read in an Islamic book, was banging on her level of consciousness and unconsciousness unceasingly.

“What am I teaching my girl? Am I myself pushing her in the world of deception and fiction? Will it not create a rift between the real and false? Would it not create a dissonance?” A series of questions flowed into her mind adding volume to her vulnerability.

Hannah, wearing that pretty Cinderella dress, was enjoying her meal with father, and for the first time, she did not seem to gain her mother’s warm look and praise.

“Daddy, see how pretty this dress is,” she was bouncing with delight.

Am I myself pushing her in the world of deception and fiction? Will it not create a rift between the real and false?

“My girl is the prettiest girl in the world!” Danial was overwhelmed to see her. “And she is fairer than snow white. And one day her prince will come and take her away from us to her palace, where there will be dwarves to serve my girl.”

“….and I will live happily ever after with my prince,” added Hannah.

Mariam used to be part of these discussions. She was the one who would always uplift and praise her daughter, show her hopeful dreams and a bright happy future ahead with her husband-to-be. It is a fact that mothers start to reflect on their daughter’s wedding the day they are born. They hope and pray for the unsurpassed, super perfect soul mate for their daughters.

After putting her daughter to sleep, she thought of sharing her recent thoughts with Danial. She tried her level best to phrase her words in such a way that they wouldn’t sound judgemental and cynical. “Dani, don’t you think we are communicating ample details of Disney stories to Mariam and thus leading her expectations to rise to a level of unmet fulfilments about her future marriage and husband?” she asked with a concerned look.

A widespread smile touched his lips. He said, “She is just seven years old; she does not know all this. It is just a story. Come on, you cannot be serious about it.” His statement caused her jaw to drop down in shock. Regaining composure, she said: “It is a serious matter. We are instilling falsehood in her perception and pushing her into the world of deception. We are making her believe that after getting married with her prince, she will have a happy life.”

“Do you remember Hijab, who was studying psychology?” she exclaimed anxiously.

He raised his eyebrow and paused for a while, as if he was sorting out her name from his long term memory. “Oh yes! That weird lady!” he exclaimed, with an outburst of laughter. He knew it very well that Mariam is very touchy about her friends, especially that one. He just wanted to make the situation lighter. But it did not make any change.

Ignoring his prank, she continued: “The other day, she was telling me about the subliminal cues these cartoons depict. She quoted that one cartoon named Lion King which was about a lion named Simba. According to a research, the wind that caused Simba’s hair to move had a message in disguise. With naked eye one cannot see, but mind being the master piece can absorb the meaning without any deliberate effort. When the wind was seen in slow motion, the word ‘sex’ was written.” She looked so stunned and worried communicating all this.

This information caught Danial’s attention, too. “Are you sure about it?” he exclaimed.

“She said so. Allah (swt) knows best. But we cannot deny the fact that cartoon nowadays are full of filth and sexuality. Apart from the ‘happily after notion’, they are also giving some really dangerous and unacceptable messages, which are gradually seeping into our culture and becoming a part of our norms.”

“And yes, how can we ignore that birthday party incident that took place in school, where kids kissed on lips after cake cutting ceremony. According to them, they were dating, and the Disney movies end by this kissing scene. We are making it so absorbent.”

“Hmm-mm,” he sighed. Lost in his thoughts, he uttered: “The discussion has reminded me of my mother. She used to say that this world is a prison for a believer. Life in this world will be full of pain, sorrows and tests, but the later life will be eternal, loaded with happiness, ease, laughter and tranquillity. It is we, who decide, which life to be treasured. If we keep our focus here then we are at a total loss as we are sacrificing permanent peace for temporary peace. We are so involved in this world’s deception that we don’t even consider the righteousness of our thoughts and actions, of our intention and preferences.”

Mariam was at ease now. It is an immense blessing, when both partners are on the same page.

We are so involved in this world’s deception that we don’t even consider the righteousness of our thoughts and actions, of our intention and preferences.

“So what can we do now? I mean, since we have induced so much love for Disney world in Hannah’s heart – how to detox it?” she asked him.

He said: “It will be difficult, but nothing is impossible, if we really intend to do it. First of all, together we should supplicate. Repent for our mistake and beg for Allah’s (swt) aid.”

“Divert her interest to such other activities as baking, for example,” Mariam added her suggestion. “Yes, this sounds good. In addition to this, we can talk to her about Jannah, its gardens and eternal life and will try to shift her idea of happiness to it. And make her greedy to do good deeds, in order to acquire Jannah,” he added. “Most importantly, we should tell her stories about the lives of Asiya (ra) and prophet Noah (as), who, despite their piety and spirituality, ended up getting bad spouses, which became a source of pain, not pleasure. This will make her realize that marriage is not all about ‘happily ever after’; likewise, that your goodness will not guarantee you the pleasures of life in this world.”

She concluded by saying: “So true! It is our trial period. Our real home is Jannah, and its pleasure and happiness should be our sole aim. In this world, bad things can happen with good people, too. This all has brought the negligence in us towards reality.

As the clock struck two at night, they finally retired to bed, having discussed their vision and formed a firm strategy to follow with the help of Allah (swt).

Love Gets it Started, Mercy Keeps it Going

Beloved People

You were sitting there, on the couch,

Well dressed, smart, no slouch

With hair well-trimmed and glasses neat,

The beard just made it all the more sweet.


Your shy smile and your gaze at the floor –

I knew it then that there is more.

With our Mahrams right there with us,

We discussed our interests and what suits us.


The conversation lasted for just a few minutes,

Enough to help us get our tickets

To start this movie of life and adventure

With each other as companions, we write our own scripture.


With the will of Allah (swt) comes opportunity,

And the aid too comes from Allah (swt) only.

Istikhara, my family and my instincts

Helped me make a decision remarkable and distinct.


Little did I know you are the light to my dark,

The answer to my prayers, my own benchmark.

You held me, helped me took all my faults,

You converted them all and gave me exalts.


Alhamdulillah, you are the coolness of my eyes,

My guardian now and the reason for my smile.

You encourage me to work hard and pursue high goals

For this life and hereafter and to perfect my loopholes.


You are pious, caring, sometimes panic, mostly calm,

May your knowledge increase as a student of Islam.

You love to teach and correct what’s wrong,

You made me a better Muslim and human being along.


You care for your grandmother, aunt and mom,

You strengthen ties of kinship, maintain your Salah and Saum.

You are honest and brave and provide for me,

Your love is as big as a wide open sea.


You keep your promise and never fake one,

Whatever you say, I consider it already done.

You give me space with my friends and family,

You are the reason for my growing personality.


You share with me the highlights of the day

And discuss the details too with energy and play.

You invest time in our religion and relationship –

I pray I enter Jannah with you in my companionship.


You know how to balance work and family life,

You are active, sporty and want the same from your wife.

You are intelligent and cute, smart and funny, too,

You are my tall, dark and handsome, my price charming in blue.


You wipe away my tears, understand my pain,

You deal with my tantrums with no complain.

I shout, I cry in anger, I flare,

With you I am myself, none to you I compare.


We both make mistakes, fight for many reasons,

Like any married couple, we have our fall seasons.

But either apologizes and the other one follows,

Ask Allah (swt) for forgiveness, or else we are just hollows.


I never thought I could write again, to myself I swore

Or feel for a poem, like I used to before.

It is the thought of you that I sit after years, today

To compose a poem, hope it suits you I pray.


Love gets it started, mercy keeps it going.

Every day it blossoms, may Allah (swt) keep us growing.

In health and wealth, and success may we have Barakah,

Protect us from evil eye, sins and grant us Tawbah.


To my better half, my knight in shining armour

This poem is a mere symbol of my endeavour

For all the love and respect I have for you,

And the Jannah I yearn for you and me, too.

[Poem] Du’a


There’s unexplainable anguish,
And unbearable pain!
My heart feels heavy while,
I stare my surroundings in vain!

I am in a state of denial,
I am experiencing agony,
I want to escape the truth,
Oh Allah, I want to flee!

The hand that rocked my cradle,
Is not in the world, no more!
I can’t change what’s happened,
As it was your will, I know!

But the reality is killing me,
Agonizing, this pain is so much!
My heart seems to tear apart,
Nothing to console me, as such!

I feel I have lost my shelter,
I feel so insecure,
My mother was my refuge,
She was my Jannah’s door!

Her voice echoes in my ears,
I can still feel her touch,
Her beautiful smile and face,
I can’t forget, It’s really tough!

Although my ‘Ma’ has departed
To her abode that’s final,
I want to acknowledge,
The goodness of her survival ….

Her beautiful patience,
Her demeanor that was lively,
Her kind words and deeds,
Her dua’s that came timely!

Oh Ummi, I miss you badly,
While you submit to His summon!

I know you are in a better place,
You are in Allah’s perfect care,
You have finally met your Creator,
You are much happier there!

May Allah lighten up your grave,
And may He shower His mercy,
On you, O Ma, so you may,
Reach eternal bliss and be…

A resident of the Paradise,
His rewarded and blessed one,
May you be granted the highest rank,
In your journey, that has just begun!


The Mountain Peak

jannah-paradiseHow honorable is dwelling with mates,

In Paradise and that’s indeed the best company,

How great is neighborhood to persons of repute,

They will have the pleasure of seeing the Lord,

And listen with delight to His Sublime Word,

With silk brocade being their main garment,

They have their heads crowned with finest crowns,

Inlaid with ornate pearls and rare moonstones,

Or silver that is made of only pure gold

And golden rings and bracelets molded,

Of silver and prettily adorned forearms

Their served food is soft bird meat

The finest of camel that feed on all sorts

And bowls of precious pearls and gold,

Strewn, as seventy thousand, on a thousand tables,

If you feel a thirst and desirous for these,

As much as an exile who yearns for home,

Be as charitable as you can and then you will

Be rewarded for good with that which is best

Prepare for the Gardens of Eden and all

The blessings of it that surely never cease,

Observe fast always and rise in prayer,

For both are indeed acceptable deeds,

Wake in the night and recite Qur’an,

And have little sleep as an anxious one,

Perhaps, your death knell once suddenly tolls,

Your coffin then, not bed, will be the place to rest, How great to shed tears at night,

Due to the fear of the Lord, the Ever Compassionate,

So, lower your gaze and always avoid,

Any forbidden looks and strain to be modest,

Strive and beware of all women’s temptations,

You get them as mates as many hours in Paradise,

Blessed is life there and all its pleasures,

With all kinds of fruit as served in pairs,

Belittle you never any venial sin,

As fire begins with little sparks

Once you sin, be quick to repent,

For fear of sudden death, with no delay,

Sate not your whims and never be excessive,

Allah surely hates greedy persons,

The one who gives in to lust and appetite,

Will suffer forever their two-forked yoke,

So, fast by day to drink your fill

On the day people will be parched with thirst,

There is no good at all in musical instruments,

Or dancing or similar forms of merry-making,

The devout are always afraid of their Lord,

Avoiding listening to music and singing,

They rather recite the Glorious Qur’an,

Especially with melodious and tuneful to ears,

At night, than all those flutes and fifes,

If you just perceive the Doomsday’s horrors,

You would surely flee from kinfolk and home,

Due to its horrors, the skies would crack,

The infant’s hair will turn grey,

Austere and distressful that day will be,

And highly burdensome for humans at all,

that day the devout are driven to their Lord,

With finest of mounts carrying them all,

The wretched, however, are driven to Hell,

Where they will suffer the parching thirst,

So, Heaven and Hellfire respectively will be

For the devout and wicked an eternal abode.

(Published with permission from “On the Mountain Peak” by Dr. Muhammad Al-‘Areefi. Publisher: “Darussalam”)

Meant to be Together Forever

Herbaceous border in full bloom at Priorwood Garden, Melrose, BoFor him, it was a non-ending night. Everything seemed sad. He was facing something he could never think of. It was something that ruined his happiness forever.

While gazing at the dark, cloudy sky through the window, he was thinking why people go so far away from this world, leaving behind others unhappy. Tears dropped out of his eyes as he thought about his loving brother who had died about a week ago. “It is hard to live without you my brother.” He whispered. He had lost a brother who was his inspiration to Deen. He not only loved him because he was his brother, but also because he was a practicing Muslim.

Everything in their room was making him recall the eighteen years he had spent with his only sibling. The football lying at the side on the floor, their favourite books on the shelves and the tennis balls in the basket were making him feel lonely. They were not only brothers, but best friends indeed. Both of them used to go Masjid together, had the same friends and same interests. He opened the common wardrobe and found out the favourite shirt of his beloved brother. It was still aromatized with his beautiful smell. “I wish we could live together forever,” he said to himself, “but no one on this earth lived forever, each and every person has to die.” He thought.

Quran – The Spiritual Healer

He opened the Quran (for he knew that it is the cure for restless hearts), started reciting “Gardens of perpetual bliss: they shall enter there as well as the righteous among their fathers, their spouses and their offspring.”

While reading these lines, he fell asleep and met his brother in his dream where he hugged him and said: “I love you with the core of my heart my pious brother, I hope you acquire Jannah, I will try to do good deeds like you and with Allah’s (swt) mercy we will meet in paradise Insha’Allah. And there we will live together forever!”

The Ultimate Success

graduation-capsShe threw herself on the bed, turned on the air conditioner and closed her eyes as she was feeling extremely tired. However, it was a big day for her, in fact one of the happiest moments of her life. Finally, she had gotten the piece of paper for which she along with her whole family had struggled a lot. What a big day it was. Happiness and wishes were pouring in from everywhere. In addition to that the two lettered prefix (Dr.) with her name was giving her great joy. “This is the ultimate success!” she thought.

As the days passed, the joy decreased; everything started getting normal. She completed her house job, got married, was blessed with a child and left practice as it wasn’t possible for her to continue. The joy of that piece of paper vanished completely. The success that was considered as “the ultimate success,” attained after chronic hard work of eighteen years and investment of a lot of money, faded in no time.” She wondered what success truly was.

While she was in deep thought, the verse resounded in her ears: “And whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception (a deceiving thing).” (Al-Imran 2:185)

“Surely, this is the ultimate success!” she whispered.